Thursday 30 April 2009

Da need fo Speed

Anuvva Orky Fighta.

Da Mek has been eksperimentin wiv a new sorta fighta for da Flyin Circus. He felt da need fo speed so dis one has been made from a flyin Barrel. Da wings, tail bits an rudda have all been reduced. Ir was fast but completely unstable. Da flyboyz don't mind that too much as they like a bitta manooverbility but it kept fallin out of da sky before shootin up da enemy.

Da Mek came up wiv da solutshun employin da Orky know wots. He attached wires from da control surfaces to a grot in the fusalage. When da fighta started to go out of control da grot gotta da eletric shock from da wire. He could only turn it off by pushing a control stick in da right direction. Dis left da flyboy in da cockpit to point da nose any direction he wanted and da grot sorted out da airydynamic.

He calls it da 'fly by wire' system.

Wednesday 29 April 2009

Guns of Navaronee

I tend to buy a Basilisk when I need a Chimera for kitbashing. This gives me a cannon for fortification purposes. I use these three for Siege of Vrak games. I kept the Aquila because Vrak stuff is looted Imperial and I can then use them in other games.


Leman Russ Exterminator

This model had already been withdrawn when I found it in the back of a stockroom. With the new codex, I have been dusting off some of my old models and sprusing them up a bit. :)

The executioner is now a serious tank.


Tuesday 28 April 2009

Last Man Standing

Well, I delivered the short story "Last Man Standing" to Black Library, almost on time as well. Now, I wait for a response. I was rather pleased with the tale. It is a somewhat complex puzzle that knits together like a jigsaw. I would like to have a go writing mystery stories one day; I am a keen Agatha Christie fan. I have an idea for a comedy murder novel set in the academic world. Write about what you know!


PS The picture illustrated my Baen novellette, "As Black As Hell". It depicts the first scene in the story when The Commission hunt Karla down, but the hunters become the hunted.

Air Raid

My regular opponent, Shaun, and I have been working on a new scenario - Air Raid.

The idea is to set up a base, could be an airbase, a fire support base, HQ, supply dump or some combination.

The base is attacked from the air, including a number of flyers using the Apocalypse flyer rules. Non flyers have to be delivered by air, including jetbikes, teleports, deep strike etc. The defender should have air defence weapons. Winning and losing is about the amount of damage inflicted, depending on the scenario. The attacker has the first turn.

The game only last three turns. Air raids are quick in and outs. Apart from anything else, the planes run out of ammo and fuel.

Organised forces, such as Tau and Eldar use programmed entry. They write down, which turn their assets will appear. Only half can appear on the first turn.

Everyone else uses the reserves rule, with the proviso that you start rolling on turn 1, bumping all the probabilities up one turn.

We did a simple scenario to test the concept in our Sunday game. Basically it worked. I used my Flying Circus and rolled amazing dice throughout. All assets but the fightabomba arrived on turn 1. Shaun had his usual bad luck.

Six Deffcoptas swept across the base and un loaded on the Hydra, knocking it out on turn 1. That was critical. Three fightas shot up the Basilisks, knocking one out and the Black Baron strafed the Imperial flyers to no effect. The return fire from the shocked imperials went wild and failed to hit.

The fightabomba arrived on turn two and rocketed the Gorgon, but missed. The deffcoptas split into two squadrons. One took out an ammo crate and the other a Basilisk. The fightas all missed.

Leutenant Sparky, hastily put the spark plugs back in and drove the base's second Hydra out of the servicing depot. It took out a fighta with its first burst.

On the third turn the fightabomba dropped its full bombload on the parked Vulture - hur, hur, hur - a most satisfying bang. No other major damage was inflicted. In reply the Hydra took a second fighta down and an AA autocannon on a Salamander took a third.

The Circus decided to disengage at this point.

So the Orks lost three fightas.

The Imperials lost a Vulture, two Basilisks, a Hydra and a supply crate.

The Orks had a tactical victory but, strategically, I am not so sure. The orks lost three planes taking out three strategic assets. Counting a squadron of deffcoptas as equal to a plane that is three out of seven ‘units’, a loss rate of 43%. That seems high, even for Orks.

Conclusion: The scenario is great fun and all over in a couple of hours. We could easily double the size of the forces. The Imperials needed more firepower (which is why we brought the Hydra back).


PS Sorry about poor photos.

Sunday 26 April 2009

Hell Talon

I have a weakness for airplanes. I think it goes back to my childhood when I made plastic Airfix kits and hung them from my bedroom ceiling. I used to try to shoot them down with a torch.

Anyway, here is my latest kitbash, a Chaos Hell Talon. I kitbash rather than buy Forge world because (i) I have a limited budget and (ii) I enjoy the challenge of making something unique.

It is not quite finished. I am still waiting for my emblems from Forge World and I have to add some bombs.

It is now in playable condition.


Saturday 25 April 2009

IG Codex Tanks

I have been having a look at the Leman Russ variants in the new codex.

The basic rank and demolisher remain the same. These now have the only ordnance weapons.

1. The Exterminator is back with uprated autocannons which are now Heavy - 4, twin linked.

2. The Vanquisher has a pure anti-tank gun with a 72" range. It's S8, AP2, Heavy - 1 but it rolls two D6 for penetration.

3. The Eradicator nova cannon is a sort weaker, long range Demolisher with R36", S6, AP4, Heavy 1 Large blast marker. Targets do not get a cover save which is useful.

4. The Punisher is an anti-infantry gem with R24", S5, No AP but 20 shots. That is not a typo!

5. The Executioner is a half way between the Demolisher and the Eradicator with R36", S7, AP2, Heavy 3 Blast.

I will probably retain my Demolishers, Standard tanks and Exterminators as I have the models and they are a good mix. I will definitely be fielding at least one Punisher.

Thursday 23 April 2009

Valkyrie and Hydra

I have been looking in more detail at the IG Codex.

Valkyries are skimmers in a standard 40K game. They can't fly. This is an expensive, well armed vehicle with 12:12:10 armour,m i.e. very vulnerable, although they do get the extra-armour rule.

The one thing you won't do is put Stormtroopers in them as Stormtroopers can Deep Strike from the air, and get a free scatter reroll when on airborne operations.

So if there are no flyers, what is a Hydra for? Ah well, it has a special auto-targeting rule. Skimmers and bikes do not get the special fast moving 'cover' save against a Hydra. The Hydra has two twin linked autocannon with a 72" range. A battery of three which occupies a single slot will spew out twelve shots with reroll per turn.

Jetbikes, anyone?

If nothing else offers itself as a target, they will chew up armoured infantry and light vehicles.

Better get your order into Forge World (see photo) quickly, there is going to be a big, big demand.


Cadian Command Set

I have been going through my box of advance order goodies.

The Cadian command set is brilliantly conceived. You have a wide range of options and these can be added to standard Cadian models. There is a great range of special weapons, note the HEAVY hand-held flamer.

There are two sets of banners, nice touches like add on rebreathers and so on.

It is great value for money.

The only odd thing is that mine came with a sealed pack of FOUR bases for a five model set.

It doesn't matter to me because I have loads of old bases knocking around but how about the kids who have no spares?

Trouble in store for the shop managers, methinks.

Leaving that aside, another winner methinks. GW are producing some great stuff.

Wednesday 22 April 2009

Imperial Guard Codex

My advance order from GW arrived this morning, including the Codex.

It is very different from the old army list. It has a greater number of characters, for a start, but I won't consider these further.

It is much easier to use than the old codex as weapon and wargear choices are given for each troop choice. Frag grenades are included in trooper stats.

Your choices are as follows:

HQ: Command Squad, which may include additional advisors (Astropath, Master of Ordnance, 2 Bodyguards)
HQ Independent Characters: Lord Commissar, Primaris Psycher, 0-5 Priests, 0-2 Techpriests.

Elites: Ogryn, Stormtrooper, Ratling and Psycher Battle squads

Troops: Platoon Command, Platoon Squads (Infantry, Heavy Weapon, Conscript) Veteran and Penal
Snipers are available to infantry squads. Penal troops seem a bad deal, except that you can take them without a platoon. Any infantry, command, storm trooper and veteran squads can use Chimeras - but nothing seems to be allowed to use a Valkyrie???????

Fast Attack: Sentinel, Rough Rider, Hellhound/Devildog/Banewolf and Valkyrie/Vendetta squadrons (1-3 in the case of vehicles).

Heavy Support: Leman Russ/Exterminator(autocannon)/Vanquisher/Eradicator(nova cannon)/Demolisher/Punisher(gatling) and Executioner(plasma cannon) squadrons (any mix 1-3 tanks)
Hydra Flak Tank Battery and Ordnance Battery (Basilisk, Medusa, Colossus, Griffon), Manticore Launcher and deathstrike Launcher (Battery = 1-3 vehicles in any combination).

This is now a very dangerous, very vehicle heavy army.


PS The dalek is just there because I like it.

Tuesday 21 April 2009

Blood Pact Mutie Patrol

I have finished my first Mutie patrol based around a half track.

I went to town on the weathering as this is supposed to be a hard used vehicle. It is supposed to look like an agricultural tractor with a armoured cab added in the field.

The Blood Pact use these to hold down rural areas on conquered planets, to ferry troops across the battlefield and for reconnaissance.

Sunday 19 April 2009

Blood Pact Mutie Commander with Escort

I hate doing infantry having a low boredom threshhold.

But it's gotta be done.

The legas are old beastmen models and the heads are from West Wind's Wierd WWII range.

I trim the neck and then epoxy resin the head on.

Saturday 18 April 2009

Siege Mortar

The basic siege mortar actually existed. The Germans had a mania for large weapons, most of which were an ineffective use of resources.

This model was based on a 1:35 kit of a "Karl-Gerät" siege mortar. This was a self propellled gun that was strategically moved by attachment to two railway trucks. There were six used. I think the kit was Tamiya.

Adeptus Mechanicus Siege Engine

I conceived this originally as a piece of terrain but with the coming of Apocalypse I guess that I should work out a stats sheet.

It is not intended to fight so no defensive guns but the Skitarii have set up an autocannon on a tripod just in case the enemy have not read the manual.

It is just about finished. I would like to add an FW tech servitor when I can and some mechanicus badges, if I can find any.

Friday 17 April 2009

Siege of Vrak Sideshow

Unknown to the Imperium, Eldar came creeping from their webway onto Vraks. They searched an area of the planet well away from the contested city. A place where there is an old ruined temple. Other warp-energised eyes saw them. Eyes in psychers that passed messages to the Cardinal from the Gods. The aliens must be stopped.

A Vrak Renegade force sneaked from the eastern city to interdict the Eldar. The Cardinal sent two Malcador and an infantry platoon including a squad of Disciples and Enhanced Ogryn. The force was heavy in artillery with light and heavy mortor batteries and an antitank battery.

The Mortor barrages forced the Eldar to make a lightning strike at the Vrak line with their elite aspect warriors. After some initial successes, notably slaughtering the anti-tank battery, the warriors were attrited away by massed autogun and heavy bolter fire, and hand to hand combat with drug crazed Ogryn. All the time, mortors pounded their main force.

Both Malcador suffered engine failures, a fault of the breed, but served as immobile strongpoints.


The Eldar withdrew, leaving the field to the renegades. Whatever was in the temple was now the property of the heretic cardinal.

Wednesday 15 April 2009

Usurper Assault SPG

I have built a Blood Pact SPG based on a 1918 Whippet. It looks like an armoured fighting compartment plonked on the back of a tractor - which is what it basically was. The gun is a Baneblade cannon.

I am really pleased with this model and intend to do more. Note the overhang, the fighting compartment doesn't quite fit!!!!

This fits my idea of non - STC vehicles used by the Sabbat Worlds renegades, converted civilian AFVs.

The mud is from a Tamiya weathering stick. I find these really convenient. Rust was put on using the sponge technique.

Old Crow VTOLs

These are a couple of Old Crow VTOLs. The kit is a VTOL and a cargo container. I have built one pretty much as it comes except to put the container back a little and fill the space in with plasticard to give a smooth fusalage.

The second model has been more worked. I discarded the cargo container and built a hull with plasticard and Robogear walls. Then I fitted two Cadians with heavy bolters to make a gunship.

I basically use Valkyrie rules.

Like all Old crow kits, these are superbly finished and very robust. They are also good value.


Tuesday 14 April 2009

Last Man Standing

I finished the story today. My editor at Black Library has graced me a few extra days for editing. This is the most ambitiously structured story that I have attempted. I hope that i have pulled it off.


The pic is of a scorpion made from two despoilers.

Saturday 11 April 2009

Kitbashed Malcador

I had this Sturmtiger that I picked up in a sale.

Enter a kitbashed Malcador for my Renegades of Vrak Army.

I put a couple of tank riders on for versimilitude.

I prefer plastic models to resin as they are easier to store.


Malacador Defender

This was the first Forge World Kit that I ever attempted. I made a bit of a bodge of it in some ways. It is kitted out as a Renegades of Vrak tank.

I used a battleship gray as it is supposed to be a mothballed vehicle that they have brought out, daubed in chaos symbols and committed straight from recommision.


Blood Pact Kits

Urdesh was one of the Imperial Worlds captured by Chaos Renegades fleeing the disaster at Balhaut. It was taken in 766-67.M41.

Balhaut was one of the most important forge worlds in the Sabbat Worlds. Many of its stockpiled weapons fell into enemy hands and were used by the Blood Pact and the Sons of Sek.

These included STeG 4 light armoured cars, N20/22 half tracks and AT70 Reaver MBTs.

These are the plastic kits that I am 'kitbashing' for these models. All are 1:35 scale.

Nest will be Usurper SPGs and AT38 Brigand Super Heavy Tanks.