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Saturday, February 3, 2018

Creatues of Chaos Incoming!

As if I don't have enough to paint already and adding to the fact that my painting desk is groaning under the weight of copious amounts of unpainted lead. What do I do? Of course, I purchase more minis. I've been eying the excellent range of Creatures of Chaos by Andrew Taylor for several months now and finally got around to pulling the trigger. Suffice to say I'm eagerly awaiting these guys from the UK.

My purchase was of the cockatrice, chimera and manticore with a toss-up between the chimera and manticore as to which one I want to paint first! NOTE: these are not my paint jobs:

If you are in the market for these guys, whether for role-playing games or for war-gaming you could do a lot worse. These guys look excellent and cant wait to get my grubby mits on them. Link to Langley Miniatures. I'll just have to remember to post my progress here as my various projects underway are scattered across multiple sites.

Lastly, more Old School miniatures in thesame vein goodness can also be found here, great stuff really.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Warhammer 3rd Edition- Old Worlder Mercenary Contingent

One of the coolest things about 3rd Edition Warhammer are the rules for Allies and Mercenaries. While not perfect, I think they are the closest they have ever come to being truly playable in the various iterations of Warhammer.

This post is about the Old Worlder Mercenary Contingent, but first a bit of backstory.

As I noted here, my very first step into Warhammer Fantasy Battle was in 3rd Edition. Since the other guys had already picked armies and we didn't want to duplicate any one army I had a few choices to go with, all on the "good side". I had always liked knights back in the day so Brettonia it was. A few stops at the local games stores left me with the following for my very first games (around1988)

  • 10 Chevaliers D'Honneur
  • 22 Archers
  • 1 cannon and crew
  • A bunch of assorted models I recall fielding as Brigands. 
I only ever recall playing against Dave's Skaven before converting them to an Empire force which would become my first real army. Jeff had some he sold me some Empire halberdiers I think to bolster the force and aide the conversion of the army. As knights of the Empire I used epoxy glue to add aluminum foil to paint barding! Ugh. The lengths we went through to make the models WYWIWYG. Nowdays I could pull it off with green-stuff but back then my skills at modelling werent so good and no one knew what green-stuff was.

After a while my dislike of all things Bretonnia grew as well as eventually creating three 10+ units of Empire Knights which the need for Brettonian knights standing in as Imperial ones diminish. Even so, I bought some 5th Edition Bretonnian horses a number of years later repainting and remounting the knights; and then promptly did nothing with them. I was fortunate in that I did save the original horses having a vague idea of using them as steeds for a paddock and stable terrain piece. A casualty of them sitting at the bottom of various bits boxes for years was that almost all were missing their tails. No big deal as I recreated them with green-stuff that came out quite well. Moral of the story: never throw anything out!

Now this brings me to the present. A month or so back I stripped down the archers and primed them just for the Hell of it. But in doing so I got to thinking. About six months I have reassembled one of my Bretonnian cannons that I saved the frame for 20 years (the barrel was part of a crappy home built steam tank, now since destroyed). Did this mean I was going to reassemble my Bretonnian? No. With a perusal through the 3rd Edition Warhammer Armies book it became clear it would be more fun to paint them up as scummy mercenaries! This has the added benefit of the fact that I'm the administrator of Dogs of War Online, homeland of mercenaries!

A few nights of stripping paint, redoing horse tails and finding shields and were all set. Note the shields will be repainted; some of them sport their crappy 1988 paint jobs. Paint jobs reflective of me not knowing what the Hell I was doing back then..

Snooty Bretonnian knights on the way to becoming scummy mercenaries!

So now the force becomes:
  • 10 Tilean Condotieri or 10 Estalian Caballeros
  • 22 Archers now equating to 20 Frieforstjaegers*
  • 1 cannon and crew (probably will just end up as a small diorama type piece)
  • 9 crossbowmen I've had for odds and ends to form a small unit of Tilean crossbowmen. 
  • Going to add 20 pikemen from either the Pike and Shotte range or the Perry Miniatures range*. 
  • 20 Bretonnian brigands. I did have a few here but foolishly traded them, I'll need to reacquire these guys.
  • I also was able to rehab 10  unarmored 3rd edition horses; I'll be looking for more knight figures on eBay sans riders to fill them out.
  • Still need to decided on a mounted contingent commander.
* Yes, the rules say a maximum of 20, but I'm not too worried about the 3rd Edition Warhammer police breaking down my door at 2 AM for rules violations....

** Perry miniatures obviously, seamlessly integrate with the other minis. Minis from the Foundry line are another possibility.

Free Foresters at the ready!

So with that I'll have a nice, tight Old World Mercenary force. In a pinch they can shift to an Old World Ally Contingent as needed or even a small Bretonnian force (yuck). The only downside is that only Empire, Bretonnian and Dwarf armies can field Old Worlder Ally and Mercenary contingents...

As an aside, I also now have enough minis from the various armies to field almost all outside of pygmies, Skaven (I have some but not a lot) and Fimir. My ultimate goal is to have enough to field all these! But for some reason Old Worlder strikes me as cool as I haven't really seen any truly dedicated forces on the internet. And that's my goal to have enough dedicated minis rather than always pulling from the main army.

Last part for those wondering- yes I'm still working on my scale Castle Von Wittgenstein and my Nippon castle. In fact I'm working on a ton of stuff and going wherever my muse takes me! Its a fun ride, updates over at Chaos Dwarfs Online and Dogs of War Online.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Death on the Reik- Scale Model of Castle Von Wittgenstein

My favorite RPG might just be 1st Edition WFRP, followed by 2nd Edition AD&D. So with that in mind my thoughts have been turning to iconic images from 1st Edition WFRP. And if I don't have enough "irons in the fire" as it were when it comes to Warhammer projects my thoughts have been turning to the next large scale terrain project.

What got me thinking about it is this: 
T1 The Village of Hommlet was a classic, seminal module for many and the Moathouse (meat grinder thought it was/is) stands a indelible image of AD&D. I think for me it would be fairly easy to do something like this, but its already been done as it were. And I should add its an excellent model all around so no need to do it again.

So with that in mind, my thoughts have started to coalesce around this, a scale model of Castle Von Wittgenstein from Death on the Reik.

It's certainly an ambitious undertaking at a 25-28mm scale, but after this I think I can pull it off:

I don't think anyone has ever done something quite like this in terms of an old-school module as a terrain piece, that is in WFRP terms.

Now, I do have the module (obviously) but one thing I'd have to decide early on is which route to go. What do I mean by that? The floor plan/map is not the same as the art which is to be expected.
The tougher route to go with is the art because its just that one picture from the cover and the backside not shown would require some guess work based on the map.

NOTE: I've posted this a couple of different places (Chaos Dwarfs Online and the RPG Site) to gauge interest/ideas/feedback.

Right now this is in the idea phase only.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Nippon Castle for Warhammer- Part III

Wow, the Nippon castle has been garnering a lot of attention on the web, keep up the comments guys and many thanks; especially the shout out here, thanks Scot!

I've stepped back and taken stock of where I am with the project at this point which is to say a lot further along then when I really picked it back up in October. Overall I'm pleased with the pace I've been on and have been enjoying the whole project. I've even found time to work on other projects like the siege equipment, paint a few units and other things that strike my fancy.

But, the title of this post says Part III so what am I working on right now in relation to the Nippon castle you ask: As I mentioned in Part II I've been re-reading my stack of White Dwarf magazines from the range of #220-235. In particular, in #225, Nick Davis' "Jungle Fever - Part 2" where he covers the creation of his Lizardman Castle has been of particular interest. #224 is where the rules appeared for 5th Edition Siege rules for moats which I'm drawing on as well, so here is the point of this post, moats.

As you can see, I've started on the beginnings of a moat for the castle. The moat will obviously surround the entire castle to simulate a Nippon fortress situated on the lowlands of Nippon (or Nihon?) near rice patties perhaps? I deliberately started at the most difficult part of the moats, the corner towers knowing the wall sections would be far easier. I also took inspiration from the corner board sections of 3rd Edition Talisman.

From there, once finished I also have been formulating ideas to create a way to raise up the entire thing so it will sit on a series of cliff walls to simulate a mountain top type of castle. That is further off and I will be using fair amount of paper-mache to make the mountainside.  In this, the 6th Edition High Elf Army Book has some interesting photos of minis and mountains so we'll see.

Note- my overall progress of my Nippon Army is tracked over here at Dogs of War Online.

Speaking of paper-mache, I took a brief side track to work a tomb/barrow, first seen in the 6th Edition General's Compendium on page 52. I started out when I looked at a barrow I created about 15 years ago. I was going to pull that apart but just decided to create something from scratch. Then remembered the barrow in the a fore mentioned General's Compendium. You'll have to excuse this photo as I remembered to take it as I was applying the paper-mache. But I digress, here is the barrow:

As you can see, the top will be removable because I'm insane apparently and need to add all kinds of stuff to the interior..

And if the barrow/tomb were not enough of a bonus, I've also been working on redoing the river pieces of the terrain that Jeff and Dave created 25+ years ago! I widened them a few years back but now I've added gravel to the river edges and will be painting them shortly. Need to add a few more bends and another river crossing part. You'll have to excuse the quick photo on this one too, I only remembered to take a picture after I had already started on it and undercoated one.

I think that's all for now. Good gaming in the new year everyone.


Sunday, December 17, 2017

Nippon Castle for Warhammer- Part II

While I haven't updated the blog in a bit, I  have been plugging away and highlighting my progress on the Nippon castle for Warhammer Fantasy Battle over at Dogs of War Online. One of the things I've been trying to reconcile is that its not an Asian/Oriental/Japanese castle* but a castle set in the mythical Warhammer world. Those are two very different things but it seems I have a hard time separating it!

As such,  the walls and castle are very symmetrical which is very unlike a traditional Japanese castle which snaked back and forth with large sprawling grounds and multiple walls and moats.  Since gunpowder was not widely used in medieval Japan,  castles, were for the most part made of wood and with very large moats. Tthis had the practical effect of  said castles taking up a very large amount of ground.

What I created however is a conceit to the physical limitations of  building a castle at 28mm scale and my gaming table which is  5x6 in terms of feet. It fits, but even with centering it in the middle of the table there isn't a ton of room on the edges (note its not centered in the photos below). While rules exist for playing siege games across the editions I'm planning on  using the siege rules for 3rd Edition, warts and all.

One benefit of using the 3rd Edition rules for siege is this lack of space is accounted for with Remote, Encamped and Ready zones that are part and parcel of the rules. For those not in the know these rules formed areas outside of the table top where action took place, essentially "off table" as it were.

As is depicted above you can see the corner towers are all complete now, along with the previously completed corner wall sections.The tops of all four towers are removable to facilitate the placement of war engines as needed.

After I took these photos I began the process of gluing down stones an gravel in preparation of painting in the not too distant future. I'm also in the process of determining what the "inner" courtyard will look like so stay tuned.

* Note no offense implied, sad this has to be stated, but this is the day and age we live in...

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Nippon Castle for Warhammer

Hello all- Been a bit busy of late, but have been working hard on Warhammer terrain. Case in point over at Dogs of War Online work on my Nippon Army continues. Aor more accurately, work on my Nippon Castle continues.

At this point I'm so far into working on it I cant really stop (nor do I want to!) But, I've also come to realize that it probably would have been cheaper to buy some already made terrain available from outlets on the web. But therein lies my main argument against that: I work on the castle when I want to and at my own pace, also I'm having a lot of fun doing it. It's relaxing to do and something away from technology (which I get a lot of Monday through Friday working in IT at my job).

I originally started on the castle in the Spring of 2013 and I've worked on it in fits and spurts ever since. About a month ago I picked it back up and have been diligently been working away on it. What started it off was I took a step back and started working on the outer walls which admittedly are inspired by the walls from Siege & Conquest from the Warhammer Historical range. I think as strange as it sounds, that is what spurned me on. I then went back and fixed some of the flaws in the main structure and it keeps getting better and better.

Of course, here are some photos (this AM I started working on more of the roofs of the outer walls).

Here is where it stands as of a week ago:

Here is where it stands as of a last night after about one week week of work between the photos. It may not look like much but I spent a lot of time fixing the roofs of the castle and strengthening the whole roof structure as well.


More updates will be on Dogs of War Online as I continue to work on what is turning out to be a long, but very fun project. 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The reason for my Nippon mania in Warhammer- 80s Ninja Craze!

As I blogged about here in post here I've been working in my Warband of Nippon in anon again, off again fashion. Currently, its in the on mode, huzzah.

I've just completed a few far eastern/nippon/samuari type major purchases and will be rounding out two units with enough minis to have a sizeable force to play with. I've currently tracking all activity on this particular army over at Dogs of War Online. As you can see I've made substantial progress with the ninja, for those inclined here is a picture from the blog featuring my first unit rounding to form:

I've been having a lot of fun scouring eBay for these guys and I am nearing the end of my quest to have one of one each of the ninjas from back in the 1980s (there were 48 in all).

But, only recently I stepped back and wondered just why? Why the interest in ninjas? No it wasn't the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles either (I missed that by a few years). The roots of my being smack dab in the middle of the 80s Ninja Craze was this awesome great/bad movie, AMERICAN NINJA!

Of course, after watching it on HBO I wanted to be a ninja so of course I then proceeded to make some ninjatō, painted them silver and proceeded to whack the crap out of my friends with them. I also had some ninja stars to fling around too with my main target being the garage drywall. Of one thing I know for sure, I also dressed up as a ninja for Halloween one year too, probably seventh grade. My mom has a picture of it, but I'm not letting that out to become the next internet meme.

So there you go, 80s' Ninja Craze, 3rd Edition Warhammer a few short years later with some vestigial traces (and the let down of no Nippon army from GW*) and then going full-bore later in my life. I guess what was once old is now new again?

As a final thought one does have to deal with a Inverse ninja law...

* Games Workshop teased at Nippon on page 194 of the 3rd Edition Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay book, "For the moment we shall pass over these lands, leaving their exploration to others. A complete guide to the lands of Nippon is already under development." Looks like that became never with the move to 4th Edition Warhammer Fantasy Battle and then "Herohammer".