Monday, June 11, 2018

Ork Vehicles

This driver gets it.

Road rage - Built Ork Tough.

I've never wanted a beater car to paint up more than I do now. I'd have to invest in new brushes though. 

Friday, June 8, 2018

Midwest Conquest and Bug Eater Grand Tournaments

The past two weekends were spent on the road at a couple of Warhammer 40k Grand Tournaments; the Midwest Conquest GT in Kansas City and the Bug Eater GT in Omaha.

midwest conquest space marines imperium
Salamanders - Blood Angels

For the tourneys, I planned on bringing my Imperium combo of Salamanders and Blood Angels. The Salamanders are the backbone with four razorbacks, a Leviathan dreadnought in a drop pod and tac squads with lascannons. The Blood Angels have two smash captains and a chaplain with jump packs to thump the enemy.

chaplain warhammer 40k jump pack
Blood Angel Command

Somehow I drew the ringer army in the first round. One of the tournament organizers played a Custodes army and played me kind of soft - and I still lost. I technically won the game because it was the ringer but I actually lost in "real" points and that started a spiral of losing that I have never experienced before. 

I know I didn't have an optimized list for tournament play but I didn't do well at all. Bad dice, bad army construction, not enough models... I can point to a lot of things but I really have to blame myself for the losses. However, I had a very good time and in the final game I got to play my buddy Warren and his Orks. Coincidentally, we played in the same round and on the same table as last year and we had another great game. Officially for the tournament, I went 1-5 but I really put up a goose-egg.

The next weekend, I went to Omaha to the Bug Eater GT - another one of my favorite tournaments. My buddy Kyle went with and I had so much fun. I often go solo to these events since my local gaming group went to a new store in the area but having a friend along took the trip to the next level.

space marines omaha bug eater tournament
Salamanders Catachan and Blood Angels
I changed my army up a little bit and added a Storm Raven, dropped the Leviathn, added a Catachan spearhead of Manticores, and made the Blood Angel force a little bit smaller. I also finished my display box which is supposed to be a Salamanders fortress with a force field generator for the, "Time of Trials," when the Salamanders home world splits open and lava washes over the planet.

The changes to my army didn't really help my gameplay as much as I had hoped. The Manticores are normally the alpha strike of my list but many players were able to tie them up despite my efforts to bubble wrap them. 

omaha bug eater tournament
Bugs slowly scratching my paint. Not fooled by Catachan camouflage.
In fact, I play a Tyranid player in the first round in a Hammer and Anvil deployment and he managed to move 48" across the table, eat my units protecting the Manticores and then tie them up for the rest of the game. I never got a shot off...

The rest of the tournament went about the same way for me, and I ended up going 0-6. A guy who dropped out after the first day scored more points that me however I met some other fantastic players, including Mark from Sacramento who is another game store operator and comic book fan. He had an Eldar army inspired by the X-Men and we had a blast - maybe my most fun game all month. We've friended each other on Facebook and I hope that I can play him again at some point. 

I also played "Robe Guy" and his crazy Judge Dread themed Sisters of Battle Army. He also had a model of himself in his combat robe, Ash from Evil Dead, and working lights on his police tanks. Another amazing guy who loved his army and winning be damned kind of guy.

tatooine terrain bugeater tournament
Imperial Soup vs Judge Dread themed Sisters of Battle on Tatooine.

warhammer 40k
Judge Saint Celestine beats up my Salamanders Captain.

Things I've learned about tournaments and the current 40k meta:

*Deployment is key. A Raven Guard/AM player herded me with scout deployment and won the game before the first turn. Raven Guard, Alpha Legion, Stygies AdMech lists are almost a must; at least having a special deployment unit. I probably learned more from losing to the Raven Guard player than I have in any other game of 40k. 
*Tournament players often don't care about painting. I played so many armies that looked like they were finger-painted - I was kind of taken back that they didn't care for their army like I love mine. I really care about each of my models but for the winning tournament players, they are just game pieces and represent rules. I maybe need to shift my thinking from fluff to winning?
*Except for a Necron player in the Midwest Conquest, most the winning armies had 100-150 models in their army. Lots of cheap troops to soak wounds, control the board and hold objectives; zombies, cultists, bugs, conscripts seem to be the flavor of the month. I dropped the Leviathan in the droppod because I could never place it in my opponent's deployment zone.
*Big expensive vehicles aren't worth their points.
*I really want to build the Trent Northington Thousand Sons army that has TONS of cultists, tzannagors, and shammans to spam Smite. He won or placed in the top 3 in both tourneys and I love his simple and nasty army.

Despite playing terribly, I had a blast. I have had more fun playing 8th edition than any other edition of Warhammer - perhaps the most fun playing any miniature game system. Kyle going along on the Bug Eater trip especially fueled my enjoyment. 

One of the things I've noticed is that the good nature of the Table Top Tactics guys has rubbed off on me. Unconsciously I have stopped worrying about winning and adopted their outgoing play style where they cheer on their opponents and play for a fun game rather than simply relishing in my own success. I've caught myself using some of their catch phrases, like, "be somebody," or "lucky for some," and "marked for death."  I've also started cackling like Bone and yelling, "YEESSSS! YAS!" when my opponent does something well and I've stopped moaning and bitching about my own luck. I've occasionally yelled, "DAMNIT," like Joe when I roll terribly but it's more in character than out of of frustration. Their ability to enjoy a game, win or lose is amazing and I'm glad that it's now appearing in my own games.

I went 0-12 the past two weekends and I don't think I've had a better time losing.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Warhammer 40k in the Marvel Universe - including Deadpool

I've mentioned before that I'm a big comic book collector in addition to a miniature war gamer and recently there have been a few borrowed designs from the Warhammer/Warhammer 40k universe showing up in Marvel comics.

First, I saw a Tau Riptide in an issue of Venom (nay Space Venom.)

The recently, we found out that Deadpool is a mini war gamer himself:

I didn't picture Pooly as a Skaven kind of guy, I would have thought he'd play some flavor of Chaos. Or maybe Harlequins.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Army on Parade on Spikey Bits!

I'm busy building out my Salamanders/IG force for some upcoming tournaments and I start second guessing my build and daydream about retooling my Admech.

I did a quick Google search for some color schemes for a Mars/Stygies combined force and I found Spikey Bit's photos of my army from the LVO a couple of years ago!

Pilgrims of Erudition

Spoiler alert: they didn't do well, but I did have fun playing them!

Thursday, March 1, 2018

New Spearhead Detachment

I've just finished painting a detachment that has caused my opponents to rage quit.

My new favorite Warhammer 40k detachment is a Spearhead of Astra Militarum (nay Imperial Guard) Manticores with a Master of Ordnance from the Catachan regiment.

Defending my kitchen counter top, not a jungle.
These guys pump out 2d6 shots of S10 AV -2 carnage. Making them Catachan allows me to re-roll one of the random d6 shots per missile used. Keeping my master of ordnance within 6" of the tanks allows me to reroll 1s to hit.

Needless to say, they rain hell on my opponents and there isn't much they can do to stop it.

How do?
Got Mortarion? Turned to dust.
Got Magnus? I don't even have to see you.
Got giant bugs? Exterminated.

At less than 500 points, I have a hard time finding another formation that can pump this amount of damage that has rules that buff itself as efficiently without spending any command points. It's great against hoards, monsters, Primarchs and armor.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Radio silence and New Space Marine Chapter Conversion

Since switching to my new job with the State, I've had little to no time off for gaming, painting or anything much related to my hobbies. Some days are literally 4:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. with little time for eating or even bathroom breaks. Needless to say, I've not had much time to blog either and I apologize for the silence.

My new job does have a lot of travel time - by plane or car - and that does give me some time to daydream and I have managed to scribble down an idea for a naval/amphibious based Space Marine chapter in the style of a fan Wiki.

I call them, the Sea Wolves!

I've started making a chapter master model from the generic Space Marine Captain. I've given him a peg leg and converted his weapon into a trident-sword. Let me know what you guys think!

warhammer 40k chapter master sea wolves
Peg leg conversion.

trident sea wolves
Relic Blade/power sword trident conversion.

New Chapter Creation: Sea Wolves aka Aquamarines

Founded: 27th Founding – Ultima Founding
Successors of: Unknown
Chapter Master:
Home World: Fleet Based
Fortress: The Ark Imperial
Allies: Imperial Guard
Size: 1,000 Marines
Specialty: Mechanized Assault
Battle Cry: Give no quarter!
Motto: Per Terra Mare Aeram (Land, sea, and air!)

Colors: Teal and white

The Sea Wolves are a codex compliant loyalist chapter of Space Marines who specialize in naval warfare and water-based assault founded during the 27th Founding, known as the “Ultima Founding.” The Chapter was specifically engineered for Marines to have an amphibious gill and lung system to quickly adapt to sea and land combat as well as webbed fingers and toes for added mobility in aquatic environments.

The Sea Wolves, often nicknamed Aquamarines for both their chapter colors and their focus on amphibious combat, are a highly mobile fleet-based Chapter that adhere to old Terran sailing customs and traditions. They are a prideful Chapter that adheres strictly to the Index Astartes with rigid formality but are prone to outbursts of anger when they feel they have been slighted or if their reputation has been shown disrespect. This has also bred a certain amount of superstition within the Chapter and those who do not follow protocol or rituals closely can be ostracized by their own Chapter. However, this behavior has the added benefit of creating a fierce loyalty to their commanders and fellow battle brothers.

Utilizing primarily lighting assault tactics, the Sea Wolves use a variety of mechanized combat craft to move into combat zones quickly and strike where opponents least expect. Small teams of Marines rapidly deploy into combat theaters from fast vehicles masking their approach by using intervening terrain and weather conditions to cover their approach and prefer to work in situations where enemy targets will have difficulty in responding to threats. This predilection for rapid deployment and lighting assault lead some Imperial officials to believe the Sea Wolves are a successor of either White Scars, Space Wolves, or even the Raven Guard chapters.

The Sea Wolves

In the wake of the Abaddon the Despoiler’s 13th Black Crusade, the recently resurrected Ultramarines Primarch Roboute Guilliman launched his own Ultima Crusade and founded countless new Space Marine chapters constructed primarily of Primaris Space Marines, including the Sea Wolves.

Guilliman recognized the need for a chapter of Marines that could hold Imperial planets and resources that are primarily covered in aquatic conditions but can quickly adapt to traditional ground-based assaults. He requested that a strain of gene seed be engineered specifically to address the need for amphibious attack from Belisarius Cawl. Cawl created a new gene seed from an unrevealed Primarch to create soldiers with the desired physical traits.

Chapter Doctrine and Culture:

The Sea Wolves Chapter maintain a stringent chain of command and closely follow precepts of the Index Astartes. Sea Wolves rarely use informal names and always address their fellow brothers by rank and name or other honorifics earned during their service. Sea Wolf commanders are strict and do not tolerate insubordination among its ranks and will quickly punish lower ranking brothers who do not follow protocols; even in the most dire of situations.

The rigorous adherence to codes of conduct often leads other Imperial unit to think that the Sea Wolves are a humorless Chapter but the temperament of the battle brothers can vary from Company to Company and even squad to squad. Some “crews” are very informal and are more lax when it comes to appearance and personal behavior and can be quite loud and boisterous by Space Marine standards while other squads can be more solemn and maintain a high level of austerity.

Most Sea Wolves are relatively suppositious compared to other Space Marine chapters and often participate in Chapter-wide rituals for good fortune and warding off bad luck. Many Companies and ship crews have a good luck charm or trinket affixed to their ships or transports to bring good fortune. Others will sing songs, partake in a drink, or touch a holy relic and any misfortune suffered by a crew will be blamed on a lack of performing their ritual.


When initially creating the Sea Wolves Chapter, Guillman drafted Neophyte candidates from the merchant class of the Rogue Trader fleets who already had an understanding of naval combat and took aspirants who had strong beliefs in the chain of command as-well-as members of royal Imperial families.

These Neophytes were then trained in standard Space Marine combat drill and were given additional training on amphibious assault tactics. Neophites must also pass a grueling rite of passage called, “The Long Voyage” before being full members of the Chapter. This arduous challenge tests the aspirant’s physical endurance while they are forced to demonstrate complex skills, including the mastery of traditional weapons and the ability to pilot and operate weapon systems onboard a variety of standard Imperial vehicles while withholding food, water, and sleep for weeks at a time. The actual length of “The Long Voyage” and the skills needed to pass are kept secret but those who pass describe the challenge as both physically and mentally taxing and rumors suggest that the test lasts for weeks or months. Even the augmented bodies of the Space Marines find this trial to be taxing and the success rate is rumored to be in the single digits.

Upon completion of, “The Long Voyage,” Sea Wolves often commemorate the event with ritual tattoos and a period celebration with crewmates before being assigned to their regular company assignments.

Home world:
The Sea Wolves are a fleet-based Chapter and do not count any single planet home. Instead, vessels in the Sea Wolves fleet gather in close proximity to their flag ship, “the Ark Imperial” in a constantly evolving flotilla.

Fortress Monastery:
The Gloriana-Class Battleship, “Ark Imperial” is the flagship of the Sea Wolves and serves as a Fortress Monastery. All ceremonial events such as promotions and

Chapter Organization:
The Sea Wolves are organized into a standard Space Marine chapter according to the Index Astartes. However, at each level of command in the Chapter has chosen to give themselves unique nick names and monikers. These names are often colorful and are a source of pride to the members. Such emphasis is given to these epithets that members will make flags, tattoos, slogans and bawdy songs to show their pride.

Chapter Badge:

The chapter badge of the Sea Wolves is a gold anchor.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Another Cracking Unboxing Video

While I was mid-journey to visit my genetic forefather and foremother (foreparents?) for the holiday, my frequently-favorite Youtube content creator, the Bard at BardicBroadcasts released a new video for my viewing pleasure; a cracking unboxing video of a Medusa statue based on a "Heavy Metal" cover by Simon Bisley.

I only say, "frequently favorite Youtube content creator" because after each viewing of a Bardic Broadcast, the Bard jumps back to the top of my list of videos I tell others about.

Unfortunately, as time slips by and as I watch an endless amount of batreps, tutorials, videos of pandas rolling, or raccoons doing cute things with their bandit-like hands, I tend to forget how much I love the Bard's videos. Perhaps if he generated the volume of content that other more bloated channels produce, the Bard wouldn't slip so far out of mind. Perhaps it's the longing for new Bard content that makes me impatient with anticipation for more eloquent and impassioned critiques from behind his bristling, Odin-like beard.

If I had the means, I'd send the Bard items to unbox just so I could see videos of him unboxing them.