Monday, October 31, 2011

Expect the Unexpected: pButcher vs eStryker

You already know what their chief weapons are.
The lead-up to today's game begins last night.  (Bad form to start with the parenthesis so soon, but it happens.  Standard time caveat applies: today is relative to when I'm writing [Thursday] and not necessarily when this gets posted, which might be a few days.)  Wednesday night is the traditional "I need to figure out what I'm playing tomorrow" time, when I become enamored with some particular combination that can pull of some wacky trick that needs just the right situation and even then may not work right.  This is when I come up with half-baked Harkevich lists that are based around having a Marauder knock something over.  These are great flights of fancy that never realize their potential.  Last night I decided to go the other way and build a list that was no trickery and all ass-kickery.  The poster boy for this approach is good ole' Orsus, who has been waiting patiently for a shot at the table since he's been painted, and no sane man denies the Butcher his desires.  After some wrangling I came up with the following list:

I blame EV for this one

Cast-iron bitch to assemble.
With EV's birthday coming up in the near future, I went out to do something about it.  I had a few ideas (Wrath, Black 13th, Bane Thrall UA, Primal mk. 2) and took a tour of the game stores in the area to see what I could find.  Good news is I found stuff.  Bad news is the stuff is for me.  Good news is I have a Warstore order in to remedy this situation.  Bad news is there's more stuff for me in said order.  This flies in the face of my resolution to not add to the pile of unpainted/unassembled models until I've taken a significant chunk out of what I have on hand, but I can't very well go to a game store and leave empty handed, can I?  We all have to do our parts to support local game stores so that we can still have local game stores.  It was for America.  Yeah, that's the ticket...

Friday, October 28, 2011

Another quick one

Not as hard to pin as I expected.
After reading a recent 3++ post about Hordes, a thought got stuck in my craw.  The idea that warlocks need more beasts than warcasters need jacks made me wonder if my desire to run jack heavy might not be better suited to Hordes.  When I first started looking at Warmachine, well before I started playing, the jacks didn't do much for me.  They all looked basically the same, and while I can appreciate the subtle differences between Khadoran and Cygnaran jacks now the point still stands.  There's no way you're going to mistake a Circle beast for a Legion one though.  Looks aside, once I got into the game I wanted to run a handful of jacks, at least three, but sadly the game just doesn't support it.  Granted I could run Karchev or some crazy pButcher list with a ton of Kodiaks and Berserkers, but the system just doesn't encourage running more than two jacks per caster, and even that's pushing it for some.  So perhaps Hordes is the key, where the beasts power the locks instead of the other way around.  With all this in mind I sat down for some pinning and got pMadrak assembled.  I wanted to put a beast together, but they're going to take some real work to get together and my pinning skills, while getting better, still need lots of work.  Perhaps I'll get Madrak up there based and primed, plus splash some paint around, while I'm on a between-paint-the-target-goals hiatus.  Maybe I'll get the beasts together and start work on the battle group.  More likely Madrak will sit and wait for a while before getting any love while I continue to plug away at Khador troops.  Whatever the future holds at least I finally cracked Primal and the Trollbloods box that have been waiting for attention since they arrived at my door.

In other news, there's a battle report in the works.  It might get finished tonight or it might get done sometime over the weekend.  In the meantime, ratchet up your anticipation.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Productive morning

Currently in the drying booth (aka the bathroom[aka my office])
First coat of varnish on the Doomies.  Snowed the Doomies and WGI.  Second coat of varnish of the lot.  All the remains is the Dullcote and they'll be done done.  In celebration I may bring along the plastic Sorscha and/or Kreoss and/or some Menoth jack and/or the plastic Juggernaut to put together before I ambush NGF with Devestators.  Again.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Return of the cleave age

Just snow and varnish to go.
I hoped my painting mojo from yesterday would return, but such was not the case.  Determined to finish the Doomies, I pushed on and got all the paint applied.  All that's left is a couple coats of varnish and the snow for the bases.  Thinking of basing, I find it odd that I can date these models by how I based them.  No bit of slate for a rock, no green stuff filler between the tab and the slot, sand instead of ballast.  The funny/sad thing is that the sand took a brushing better than any basing I've done since.  It stuck around despite drybrushing and being flooded with paint.  Only a few bits flaked off, and those were mostly bits glued to other bits instead of the base.  The various severed heads gave me a bit of trouble, but overall this batch of minis was the best time I've had painting in quite a while (possibly ever).  The best part?  I can have my cleavetastic madmen back on the table this week if my varnish/base/varnish plan for tomorrow goes well.

Monday, October 24, 2011

How did I not title this post when I posted it?

Group shot looks better than the individual for once.
My painting mojo was in full swing this morning, right up until I had to stop.  I'm a painting nomad in that my paints are rarely at home, and when they are it's because I'm in transit to another painting locale.  This is by design and has worked well right up until today.  A new furnace was installed here last week, and today there's a follow-up visit to fix up some of the loose ends.  Someone has to be here to let the guy in, and that someone is me.  This isn't a problem, nor a surprise, but it did cause some unexpected problems today.  As you can see, I got some good progress in on the Doomies.  They'd probably be finished today if I hadn't had to break off early to wait for the furnace guy.  I got the greens and reds done, plus (most of) the bandages on the limbs.  I was having a good old time on the reds when my hurry-home-so-I-can-wait timer went off, so the front rank of the above picture got the TLC highlight treatment, while the back rank got a much quicker pass.  I have a bad feeling that when I get back to the models and compare the two batches there won't be much difference.  The good news hidden in there is that I was reminded that I'm trying to strike a balance between detailed painting and getting things done quickly.  The other silver lining is that, barring a catastrophe, I should have them finished next time I sit down, which is hopefully tomorrow.  If I can manage all that, I might even have them available for Thursday.  I have missed my bloody, crazy Doomie safety blanket these past few weeks.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

There can be only one

Mostly as a place to link the pic from, but since the Caps are the last undefeated team in the league I think a little celebration is in order.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Is there such a thing as a "quick" post?

The group, it progresses.
Though my previous estimate of completing the Doomies in another two sessions is probably off, I did get in some decent work today.  As you can hopefully tell by looking at them, I got the skin done.  Less noticeable is the leather bits, which also got finished.  To round out the day I did a coat of Red Gore to firm up the red which had gotten rather dark after the wash.  While I have a firm idea of what color is going where, the firmness is most squishy when it comes to the trophy heads.  Like all good maniacs, the Doomies have taken plenty of trophies and display them on their belts, or in your face in the case of the leader.  Pending a good, close examination to see if any are Skorne heads, Ogruns, anything other than human, I'm thinking of doing some sort of wash or unusual (for me) shading on the heads to show that they're not fresh.  Having never done decaying/putrefying skin before, I'm not sure where to start.  My current inclination is a green wash, though purple seems like a good idea too. 

Individual shots show details better.
Because I need another paragraph to put in the second picture, I'll continue.  Tomorrow is D-Day for NGF.  I'll be bringing a box of Devastators and my handy modelling box, which has all my tools and materials for assembling minis, when I pay him a visit tomorrow.  My natural inclination when assembling is to save the one I'm most excited about until the end so I can get all my learning out of the way before I care about a stray cut here or there.  Since I want to set the hook firmly on the first strike with NGF, I'm considering going the opposite route.  As much as I want to give him the full treatment on cleaning, basing, posing, all the modelling goodness, I think the better tactic will be to just have him open the box and see what catches his fancy.  My big bag of marine kits may stay at home to avoid option overload, as staring at 30-40 sprues might be a bit much.  In the meantime I have to actually go get that box of marines.  And go make that money to get marines with.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

More boots approach

One of these things is not like the others.
Due to some schedule swaps, I had a larger than usual amount of hobby time available yesterday.  As such I packed up quite the laundry list of potential modelling projects:
  • The 2 player box, save the Destroyer chassis which is now Black Ivan
  • Old Witch + Scrapjack
  • Aiyana & Holt
  • eIrusk
  • Trollblood starter box
I also had my usual huge stack of books for flipping.  (As a side note, I want an all-inclusive Warmachine app that lets me flip through full entries for all the stuff in the game.  I realize this won't happen because it would invalidate the Forces books, plus all the cards, and basically give someone the whole of the game (minus the rules) in the one place, but isn't that what that program that rhymes with Smarmy Guilder does already?  iBodger is great and all, but sometimes I want to see the exact wording of a feat while on the crapper, in the car, at work, or elsewhere when my books aren't handy:)  While I didn't get as much out of that time as I hoped I would, I did make some progress, as you can see on the left.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Camoflague is not neccesarily on the card: Harkevich vs eStryker

Peek-a-boo dog is playing with you.
Gaming got moved up a couple days to accommodate the arrival of a new furnace here on Thursday, so EV and I had a shorter gap than usual between matches.  I ran the same list as last time, except in this game I only fielded what was in my list and made sure to double check what I had on the table against what I had on my phone.  Because EV generally has his army, cards, dice, various ephemera, and the table ready to go when I arrive I don't get around to making a copy of his list for later use until he's taking his first turn.  Such was the case today, and it avoided another math issue when we found that he was a couple points over.  Fortunately a) we figured this out before the game was over, and b) it was during his first movement phase and thus easily corrected.  His list was as follows:

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pre-battle quickness

Getting closer.
Got a bit of painting in yesterday.  It's funny how my intention was to run the Doomies through the Paint-o-tron as quick as possible (while not having them look like crap) so I could get them back on the table with as little delay as possible.  Turns out that, like most of my painting projects, the Doomies have been on the painting table for about two weeks and have had a grand total of two sessions put in, totaling perhaps four hours.  This is not a recipe for a quick finish.  To compound matters, this week is not looking good for painting sessions.  The silver lining there is that it'll probably on be another two, maybe three sessions before the squad is finished.  Of course that doesn't factor in varnishing which is a matter largely out of my control, but the models have to be finished before they can be sealed.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I don't like math part two (the ripple effect)

I made an oopsie.

Chances are good that if you're reading this post you've read the last one, wherein I detail the latest tabletop clash between EV and myself.  If you aren't familiar with that post I'm curious how you got here.  More to the point you should go and read up so you'll have the context for this post.

While shamelessly promoting my blog over on the PP boards, one of the replies I caught concerned Kovnik Joe and his (lack of a) place in my list.  My first thought was "Of course he was in the list, who fields Winter Guard without Joe?"  Upon further review, it looks like I do.  At least in theory.  Turns out Joe wasn't in the list since I was intending to use the WGI as a support squad instead of a central component.  This is a bit unusual for me, especially since I first ran them with an Iron Flesh caster, but I wanted to try something new with them.  When I told EV of my error he pointed out that Joe didn't affect the game much and it probably would have turned out the same regardless of whether he was on the table or not.  This was my initial reaction as well.  I forgot to activate Joe until I had started moving the Winter Guard once, the unit ran once, and they remained unactivated when the game ended in turn four, so he only boosted attack rolls once (which was really gravy since it was a 5-6 piece CRA that he was boosting).  Tough is nice and all, but Joe is there to boost attack rolls.  Granted the boosted attack did hit, and I did make a Tough roll for one of the Guardsman, but ultimately Joe didn't do a whole lot.  That was my line of thinking, but since I worked this morning and didn't have a whole lot to do I had plenty of time to think about the game.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Afternoon of the Wolf: Harkevich vs Siege

Feel the power.
Part of my painting zeal of earlier this week was the result of my desire to try out some of my new models.  A fully painted (except for a Dullcote) Harkevich was eager to see the table, while newly constructed non-proxy Black Ivan and some Bombardiers had cherries in need of popping.  I took a couple swings at a Harkevich list, probably a dozen or so before I was finally satisfied.  I toyed with Ivan and a Destroyer, but I didn't have enough Focus to Broadsides every turn.  Yet I had too much Focus to just shoot two boosted Bombards since Ivan boosts attacks for free while in control range of Harkevich.  Once I paired Ivan with a more focus hungry melee jack like a Juggernaut or Kodiak, things started looking better.  The Devestator also came to mind, but after Crippling Grasp shut it down last game I looked to the cheaper options.  When mixed with some Winter Guard and a smattering of solos I was pretty satisfied.  A little too satisfied in the end, or perhaps too little satisfied, as I ended up with three versions of the same list.  The choice of a tier list, a list with Greylords, and a list with a Koldun but no Ternion was too close to call, so I sought an unbiased opinion.  Before we got down to business I labeled the three lists and gave EV a choice of A, B, or C.  He picked A, the Koldun but no Ternion list, which is:

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I should really put a title on this post

The madness begins to take shape.
Productivity was up in all sectors today, hobby progress included.  I kicked things off by getting a start on the Doomies.  Nothing much yet, just roughing in colors as has become my habit of late.  For the first time in a long while, possibly ever, I took a single look at these models and knew what colors would go where.  Is it possible I'm just getting more comfortable with my scheme for the army?  Is it possible that these particular models are better suited to my scheme than others that I've painted?  Is it really possible that I'm dipping a third time into a reference that no one is likely to get?  Whatever the cause, knowing what I'm going to do before I do it (in a painting context) is such a pleasant experience that I'll have to do it again.  Ordinarily I'd describe what it is I plan to do, but with any luck I'll have the Doomies to a point that the scheme is evident via pictures in the near future.

Monday, October 10, 2011

The clomp of approaching boots

A whole stack of high POW AoEs, coming soon to a table near you.
Breaking Bad is a hell of a show, one that I've watched since it started a couple years back.  It's the most compelling show on TV now, for me at least, and one I look forward to each week.  This week's episode was the season finale (which I thought was the series finale for a couple weeks, but that's not especially relevant) which was the culmination of a story arc that's been going for at least two seasons.  To describe things in a somewhat cheeky manner, this season ended with a bang, and now I'm curious to see where they take the show next season.  I tell you all this so that when I say I had it on in the background while finishing up these Bombardiers you'll have an appreciation of everything that statement implies.  My entertainment sacrifice, though swap might be more accurate, has revealed a few things about this kit to me that I'll pass along to you.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

That's no moon, that's a Deathstar: eSorscha vs. pDenny

I love Legos, but this one never appealed to me.
I've been on a bit of a losing streak lately, especially the epic pasting I got myself into last time out, so for this game I brought out the big guns.  Again.  This time I took a slightly different approach though.  Reasoning that Sorscha learned a valuable lesson in her last fight, this time around eSorscha hit the table.  Infantry was the appetizer, main dish, side dish, and dessert.  As a result the list fell into place with little effort.  The only real hangup was in the after dinner coffee phase of what jack to bring.  Black Ivan was my first choice (I really love that guy), but if Ivan was my only jack I wouldn't be able to use eSorscha's bond.  Remembering how well that bond has worked in the past I couldn't leave it unused.  Beast 09 is the obvious choice for Sorscha, but since I don't have the Beast I had to cast further afield.  The Devastator is a nearly perfect fit for the bond since it's such a tough nut to crack, so I plugged it in to the list and got the following result:

The Deluge arrives

Smaller than anticipated.
After much refreshing of the UPS tracking page, my shipment from the Warstore arrived yesterday.  I was expecting a largeish box, considering the Warmachine starter and the Bombardiers were part of the shipment, so you can imagine my surprise when it was a "normal" sized UPS mailer box and not a proper fold-up cardboard box.  (I worked in receiving for years at Tower Records(RIP) so I have an unhealthy interest in boxes and shipping.)  It made a bit more sense once I opened up the box and saw the size of the Warmachine starter.  No doubt you've seen the size of it by now as well, but if not just look to the left of this paragraph.  GW starter boxes come in a particular dimension, as do most boardgames, yet the Warmachine box is much smaller.  It's about the size of a record if that reference has meaning for anyone anymore.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Agendaless posting is a danerous thing

Real life Widowmakers.
Negligible hobby activity over the past few days makes me antsy to post for some reason, so here we are.  How about a nice list?
  • UPS tells me the Deluge will arrive on Wednesday, which is the same day the two player starter box is set to release.  Said box is part of my order.  Half props to the Warstore for bringing the war to my door the day it's released.  The other half of the props will be issued when the package actually arrives.