Friday, April 30, 2010

Because it might be a while before next time

With the end of the semester looming hobby time has shrunk to 0. Since I won't get back to this for another week or two, and because I could use a warm-up exercise for the paper I'm writing, a little update. Had a bit of a shopping spree on Saturday, with the main pick ups being:

Doomreavers! When I hit my FLGS they had the UA too, so I got the Doomies. As I was heading home I realized that my "cheaper" option ended up costing me ~$5 more than the Great Bears would have, but such is life. I had a bit of a time putting them together. One pose in particular didn't want to mesh up, so I had to do some green stuff work to bridge some gaps. You can see where it is, if not exactly how it looks, here. There was a sizable gap between the forearm and the elbow that had to be filled.

I probably should have pinned more of them, but after pinning the UA's staff and drilling through his wrist I wasn't in the mood for more patching. I do rather like the models though, so hopefully they turn out well.

Other items on the shopping trip were Elmer's Glue All, which HMcT had mentioned and will hopefully work out better than plain old Elmer's has so far, a No Quarter back issue for what turned out to be a disappointing army collection article, and a pack of cheap brushes (12 for ~$1.25) to do basing with as the brushes I used to use were just horrible.

The Doomies are mostly primed now. I ran out of primer while still needing to finish up the front of the minis, so I plan to look for Duplicolor Sandable Primer which I hear is good stuff. I looked at my local K- and Walmarts, but to no avail. There are a couple auto supply stores nearby which I'll try, and if I still don't have any luck I'll look for plan b. With a week and a half left in the semester I have 3 papers, a portfolio of papers, and at least one final ahead of me, with two papers being due Monday, so sadly hobby time is on the shelf for now. The good news is that after the semester is over I'll have time to sit and work on stuff, which is good because I have a characterful conversion in mind after trolling the PP forums that I'm dying to get a crack at. I plan on trying out the Warstore when school is finished, so Kayazy and Strakhov at least are inbound in the future, and maybe some other goodies too.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

A more deliberate blogging after a paper has been finished

So it turns out it isn't as easy to mill herbs and blog simultaneously as I'd thought it would be. It happens I suppose. If the Khadoran machine rolls on, so too must the glyph making machine.

To expand on the game from Thursday a little more, here are the list I used and the one I'm guessing EV used. I made sure we knew what points total we were playing beforehand. We went with 25 because I wanted to see how a smaller game worked.

A quick blog before bed

Khadoran machine finally hit a snag yesterday. I'll do a fuller write up tomorrow, but the short version is I made a list to use the new bits I haven't used yet, tried running a single jack for the first time, and let my opponent back up when I had him under my heel. I left Sorscha too close to the front lines and got caught by pDenny with full focus, which means that even MAT 5 will hurt. Though I was upset with myself for letting go of the game like I did, I had a good time all the same and I did get to try out my new pieces. The Rocketeer did ok, but the dog and marksman were underwhelming. Tomorrow I plan on getting some quality painting in after I finish a paper. I'll probably polish off the Manhuntress and maybe Sorscha instead of plunging on ahead with the Winter Guard. The Manhuntress in particular is done but for a bit of detail work and painting the base, so I want to finish it off so I can cross another item off the to-be-painted list.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Varnish woes and future lists

Still no pictures of the finished mortar team. I have a can of matte varnish from way back when that I used over top of the gloss varnish, but it didn't cut the shine as much as I think it should. One day I'll end up at the hobby store and get some Testors dullcoat, which I hear is the way to go. Until then my unit remains finished and varnished, but still waiting for that final flat coat.

I'm mostly decided on painting the Winter Guard Infantry next. Having seen how effective they were in my last game I think they'll be seeing plenty of table time, and I'd rather get units painted that will get played than ones that will sit around. Not that I have many that will just sit around at this point, but the WGI are central to at least 3 casters that I have/plan to have in the near future (both Sorschas and pIrusk), I've seen how well they work with pVlad, and pButcher has Iron Flesh so they'll end up in his lists too. Current estimate is that the unit is 20% finished.

I've trolled around for local tournaments and found a 25 point steamroller tourney in not-so-local Fredericksburg next month. This set me off on a mini-frenzy of list writing as I've played battle box games and 35 point games, but no 25 point games. I wanted to get some ideas down so I could prioritize what to paint if I made it down to this tournament. Of course work, school and hockey playoffs will likely conspire to keep me away, and Fredericksburg is much farther away than I'd thought, but even so it's not a bad idea to plan for the future. Most of the lists revolve around a single jack, generally a Kodiak, and a max WGI unit with UA, and Widowmakers. There's still some wiggle room in there that I'm debating putting the Great Bears into, but since I don't have the models that makes me hesitate to do so. I'd like to get a couple scenario games in with EV, not to mention actually getting my models painted, before I really start looking at tournaments, but the itch is definitely there.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

A Little Tease

Caught in a fit of painting frenzy on Friday, I have an all but complete unit. A tiny taste here.

I still have to finish the bases, but they're 95% finished. I had talked with HMcT about my indecision while painting, where I bounce between models constantly. He said he liked to do whole units from start to finish so that when he finished he had a squad done. I don't know that I'll ever take up that viewpoint, but it is nice to finally have a bit of Warmachine in the (nearly) finished column. More, better pictures when they're 100%.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Khador vs Cryx Battle Report

Had my third game this afternoon against EV, again a Cryx vs. Khador match-up. I took some pictures to do up a battle report, so I won't spoil how it goes to entice further reading. I finished green stuffing, basing and priming (mostly) last night, so I had the Winter Guard ready to go along with the Koldun Lord. I had a list ready to go but changed my mind on its composition when I was heading from school to EV's place. I changed from pSorscha to pVlad, mostly for Signs & Portents and his extra focus point, and swapped out the Wardog and Rocketeer for the Koldun Lord. These changes in mind, this was the list I used:

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Where all paper progress stops

I saw it coming, but as usual was powerless to stop it. All work on my papers has halted now that I've figured out how to work the camera. More pics incoming, starting with some Sorscha.

Paper progress provides photographing potential

First things first, just noticed Blogger has a spell checker. Not that I think I've made any glaring errors, being a writer and all, but it's good to have a safety net.

Having made some good progress on my papers, I took a minute to give photographing another shot. This time I thought I'd try zooming in while in macro mode and behold, success! These are poor quality, but I hope they'll get better with time. The camera battery ran out after these two shots, so this is all I have to work with at the moment, but now that I've figured out how to get the camera to focus on miniatures there will be more forthcoming.

Pinning practice

Found the Blood Angels codex at my FLGS this weekend, only took three tries. I enacted my master plan when I saw it was in and picked up a deck box (red of course), a Widowmaker Marksman, and a Koldun Lord. Because I have two papers due this week, I spent about two hours last night and another hour this morning assembling models. The bad result of this is that I haven't gotten a whole lot done on the papers. The good result is I got a lot of pinning experience in, relative to my pinning experience previously. Both the solos have the single-foot tab that PP seems to be going with for new minis, so I reused my Wardog basing tactic by drilling a hole in the tab and cutting a notch in the base, which worked well once again.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

New arrivals, future intentions

I've been working up lists lately as I get a better handle on what units do, at least in theory. Double checking my collection, I found I had 8 Winter Guard Infantry and 10 like I'd thought. Naturally this prompted a trip to my FLGS, which is conveniently and unfortunately located in the same shopping center as the store I work at. They were still sold out of the Blood Angels codex, but they had a blister of WGI that I picked up along with the single Rocketeer they had. Though I'd intended to at least get the last batch of purchases assembled, green stuffed and based, and hopefully primed too, before getting anything else, but that didn't quite work. I rationalize it by telling myself that the WGI I had were in limbo: too many models for a minimum unit, but too few for a maximum unit.

Regardless of how they all arrived, the new Winter Guard models are all assembled now (though the Rocketeer's rocket is as yet unglued). I have 2 bits of drilling and pinning to do, then green stuff and basing can follow. Of course priming is simple after those steps are done, so really I just have to pin and green stuff this batch of minis and they'll be ready to go. The list I would run if those models were done and I were playing right now is as follows.

pSorscha + 5
Destroyer - 9
Kodiak - 8
Wardog - 1
Greylord Ternion - 4
Widowmakers - 4
Full WGI - 6
WGI UA - 2
Rocketeer - 1
Mortar - 3
Kovnik Joe - 2

This doesn't fit into the pSorscha tier, but I like the Ternions so far and I want to use the Wardog, so some compromises had to be made. I've been pondering adding a Koldun Lord in to give the Destroyer a focus point without actually marshaling it. I've also been considering the Widowmaker Marksman and the WG Rifle Corps, which will probably lead to an eSorscha list eventually. I'm going to make a better effort at holding off on new stuff until I get what I have now ready to go, but realistically I'm still on the trail of the BA codex and I need to get a deck box for my army cards now that I have sleeves for them, so another trip to the FLGS is going to happen. I'm hoping to not get anything until the codex comes in, then make one fell swoop of said codex, Koldun Lord, Marksman, deck box and (if they have him) Strakhox, then put the brakes on until I get everything put together, primed and at least somewhat painted.

I had intended to keep going about ideas for what I want to add in the future and what kind of lists I want to try, as well as a bit about Hordes, but I should really just get to modeling, so I'm gonna get on that instead.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

New additions, new processes

I had ordered some deck protectors from my FLGS a week ago that came in yesterday. Of course I couldn't make a trip there without browsing. I ended up with the aforementioned card sleeves, Kovnik Joe and a Winter Guard UA. I would have also left with a Blood Angels codex (you never get over your first love) but they were sold out. My resolve held when confronted with pButcher, pIrusk, Rocketeers and the Koldun Lord, so in total it was a good trip. If I can get them assembled and primed before my next game I may try out the Winter Guard. I've made a pact with myself to not field bare metal models, so priming is the least I can do and still use them. I've also decided to get all my models base coated so they look halfway decent on the table and to then go back and do details. I figure having a full army base coated is going to look better than having two jacks and a few troopers fully detailed while the rest are solid black or grey.

This entry is part of my program to avoid finishing a paper that is due in approximately eight hours. The rest of the program includes reading random blogs and basing my wardog. I assembled the little guy last night and it went together much easier than anticipated. I just glued the pin in place instead of reinforcing it with green stuff, then ran glue around the hollow edges where contact was made. Finally I plugged and smoothed the gaps with more green stuff. Hopefully I didn't already make an entry about pinning the dog to the base, but if I did I'm doing it again. The tab on the wardog is very small, barely as long as the paw that it rests on. With the whole model resting on this single, small point of contact with the base I wanted to pin it in place, but the paw is small enough that I didn't want to try and pin the paw itself. So I ended up drilling a hole in the tab, then cutting a notch in the slot portion of the base to allow the pin to be longer than the tab is wide. This both locked the model in place in the slot and kept it from coming off the base. I glued the tab and pin in place, then came back and crammed green stuff into the assembly after it had dried. I filled the whole slot and most of the underside while I was at it because I can never cut just the sliver of green stuff I need, I always end up with a ton. I'm very pleased with the solution I came up with. It feels solid now and I expect it to improve a bit as the green stuff cures into its ultimate hardness.

The basing of the dog involved using a different material than I have been. I have a little container of sand I got from a local volleyball court many years ago that I use for basing. In my last game with HMcT (who tells me he's also starting a blog, hopefully with a more user-friendly name) I mentioned that just using Elmer's glue wasn't quite cutting it and I was worried that the sand was going to rub off, especially on the models that were already primed since they didn't have the primer to really lock the sand into place. He recommended model railroad ballast, which I'll look into in more detail later, and also gave me a little tub of GW slate from one of their basing kits. I used this slate on the wardog just a few minutes ago and it's a noticeably different texture than the sand, a larger grit. I'm not sure how this will end up looking or if the slate will stick better than the sand did. If it works out I may use both, with the sand being the base and patches of the gravel for a different texture. I also intend to have snow on the bases as well, because what's a Khadoran base without snow? All that is in the future though, and in the present is a paper which I should really stop dodging. Fingers are still crossed to have pictures in the near future.