Monday, February 27, 2012

This Week in the Gnarls League, Part 3

vs Danny, part one.
Last week I was in a three-way tie for first in league, and on Monday I got in the first game of this week against one of the people I was tied with: Danny and his Cryx.  My first few trips to the FLGS for Thursday night Warmahordes I played against new or inexperienced players (which seems to apply to 50-60% of the regulars), including what was one of the first handful of games Danny played.  A nice guy who's eager to learn, I've kept an eye on Danny since then to see how he develops.  This game was the first since that initial game months ago and was a good opportunity to see first-hand how Danny has progressed (after a trip to Templecon no less).  We played at 50 points and I fielded the same Aby list I played last week (Typhon, Carni, Seraph, Angelius, Raek, 4 Shredders, 2 Forsakens, and a Shepherd).  I was concerned about facing 50 points worth of Cryx infantry, but fortunately the reality was slightly different as Danny fielded eSkarre with the Deathjack, Defiler, max Bane Thralls with UA and Tartarus, max Satyxis with UA and their solo, Darragh Wrathe, two Pistol Wraiths, and Saxon Orrik.  Our scenario was Whirling Gauntlet, which proved to be interesting.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Kovnik Joe Ready, Objectives WIP #2

Inspiration is available again.
I hadn't planned on painting today, but when I took a look at Joe to see how much was left to do I found the list wasn't that long.  After a brief bit of detail work and a wash, Joe is finished and no doubt eager to be back on the field.  Unfortunately it's raining, with occasional deluges, here in the DMV today, so Joe will have to wait a bit for the first pass of varnish.  Once that pass goes through my opponents will once again have the opportunity to experience the firepower of a fully armed and operational (and painted!) Death Star battle station.

When I sit down to make fully painted lists, I often run into the problem of having the WGI done, but not Joe.  This has less to do with it being hard to make a list that doesn't feature the full Death Star (really not that hard, Khador has plenty of other options), but rather that the WGI are the only "core" infantry unit that I have painted.  (I define "core" Khadoran infantry as Winter Guard Infantry, Kayazy Assassins, and Iron Fang Pikemen.  I have the Kayazy but they aren't painted, and I have no IFP yet.)  I've gone on before about how Khador, and Warmachine in general, doesn't support multiple jacks very well, so this lack of infantry is a large problem.  While Joe isn't absolutely required for the WGI, it's as close as possible.  He just does so much for his two points that it's all but impossible to leave him in the bag if there's any sort of Winter Guard on the table, much less the WGI.  He puts the "super" in "super solo."

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Carnivean WIP #4, Starting Objectives

All but done.
The Carnivean is all finished except for the base, hence the WIP label.  I went with all the options listed in the last WIP post, namely orange edge highlighting with brown tips and orange barnacles.  The results are most pleasing.  The base is unfinished as I've yet to decide how to base the army, though I'm leaning towards fairly simple snow bases.  My only reservation there is that the scheme is already on the light side, so adding white base will only make it that much lighter.  Then again, if the bases are dark they might draw attention away from the actual models.

Monday, February 20, 2012

This Week in the Gnarls League, Part 2

Against Jason.
Week two of the Gnarls league wraps up today, but for me it finished yesterday with my third game.  Let's start at the beginning.  The first game was Thursday against Jason, a regular Menoth player who I had not yet faced off against.  I ran a newish Absylonia list with Typhon, a Carnivean, a Seraph, four Shredders, and a pair of both Shepherds and Forsaken.  Jason used Amon with a horde of light jacks, 8 in all, with a pair of min choirs and some wracks.  The scenario was Hold the Line, one that I enjoy for its straight-forwardness.  As usual when facing a new caster/army, I read the cards and took note of abilities, then promptly forgot or underestimated them.  Synergy caught me with my pants not down, but off and in another room.  I lost Typhon and the Carni, both undamaged, on the same turn and that was about it.  I almost shot down Amon with the Seraph, then couldn't quite manage to get Aby in charge range of him.  This game was a fairly ugly case of learning by taking it in the face for me, but that knowledge would come in handy in the next game.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Carni WIP #3, A Crossroads

Pretty much how the scheme will work out.
The Carnivean stomps on towards completion.  I probably could have finished it today had I pushed it, but as previously noted I have others things on the plate that preclude such a push.  The base color (I should find a better term for that as it's not really a basecoat, maybe midtone?  Also need something better than upperplates) on the upperplates got finished, along with a first highlight.  One more layer of highlights and I'll call it finished.  That's the problem though: where to take the highlights.  My initial plan was to use orange for the final highlight, and I probably will end up doing that, but looking at Cloudfang's Orange Blight tutorial makes me curious about "highlighting" with a darker color to show older, harder growth on the plates.  What I'd like to do is the orange highlight, then do an edge highlight (as much as possible on something as organic as the Carni) with a darker brown, perhaps the VGC Leather Brown that was the initial layer on the upperplates, then round the whole thing out with a nice wash of some sort.  My concern is that there may be too much going on if I do all those steps.  Once again I summon opinions from you, oh Internet who is full of little but opinions.  Go with orange, brown, wash?  Skip the orange and/or brown?  Dark wash (Badab Black), light(Ogryn Flesh), or somewhere in between (Devlan Mud)?  I won't be getting back to the Carni until next week, so you have some time to consider.

P.S.:  Had an idea just now, moments after finishing the post.  Perhaps I'll do some of the little bumps and juts in a bright orange.  That way I could still work in the overt orange without making half the model look like a pumpkin...

Carnivean WIP #2

Getting there.
Lots of progress yesterday on most hobby fronts.  Let's start with the painting, since I have a picture of that.  The various plates got washed, then underplates were finished, and the upperplates got a start.  Turns out those will take longer than anticipated.  I didn't quite finish the initial coat on the yesterday, but with just those plates to finish I'm relatively confident that I can get the Carni done today.  Then again, there's plenty on the docket for today that isn't painting, so I can't sink the whole day into it despite my desire to do just that.  The picture on the left isn't from the best angle progress-wise, but it was the only angle I could get that showed the underplates.  Just the one arm and the rest of the upperplates need the initial coat of brown, the rest of them are ready for highlighting.  I'll do a breakdown of what colors went where when I'm done with the whole thing, as much for me as for anyone else.  I'm pleased with how it's turning out so far, but final judgement is reserved until the end as always.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

I Bleed For My Hobby, Carnivean WIP #1

So many pins...
While getting curb-stomped by EV on Tuesday I noticed I had some skin peeling off my left index finger.  What caused this wasn't immediately apparent.  At the time I thought perhaps it was from scraping mold lines, though in that case it should have been on the thumb and on my right hand.  Yesterday I figured out what the cause was: pinning.  To be more accurate, pinning spiky Legion models.  In constructing Typhon and the Raek you see on the left, I did a lot of pinning.  A whole lot of pinning.  More pinning than I've ever done on a pair of models before.  Except for one of Typhon's heads, every piece on both models has at least one pin in it, for a grand total of twenty four (24) pins between the two.  Greenstuffing is still underway.  The bad news is that I rubbed off a couple layers of skin and drilled straight into my thumb twice.  The good news is that I should never have to worry about these models coming apart, even if I manage to pick up Typhon by one of his teeny T-Rex arms.  Hopefully the taste of blood they got makes them more vicious on the table.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Torch Finished, Beasts Arrive, LotR?

Ready to rip and burn for your entertainment.
There wasn't much left to do on Torch, as I mentioned in a previous post, so today I did those few things and called it done.  The 5th Border Legion icon didn't turn out as well as it did on Black Ivan.  I'll put a little of the blame on the scheme since the gold on black really popped, but mostly I'll fault my own brush work.  The spikes on the bottom of the 5 are a bit chunky, the arrows in the corners don't look quite right, and in retrospect a bit of black lining would have helped as well.  All that is academic at this point since Torch has a coat of varnish drying at the moment, and it's just nitpicking really.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

This Week in the Gnarls League, Part 1

Not these Gnarls.
The Gnarls League started this week and despite some scheduling difficulties (read: hockey on Thursday night) I managed to get my three games in for the week.  These seasonal leagues have intrigued me since I first heard about them.  The idea that some models are taken out and replaced with variations on them is a novel one.  This year's leagues take the novelty a step further by allying two factions (Legion pairs up with Mercs for the Gnarls)  and allowing them to field each others' seasonal model.  The Merc's model (grape shot cannon) doesn't do much for me, and a lot of the pairings are odd, but it's a good way to add in some variety without actually adding new pieces to the game which astute readers will remember is a plus for me.  Looks like I've finally encased my first picture in text, so on to the mini battle reports.

Joe WIP #4, Torch WIP #3

Just needs a little more work.
I've been waffling about what to post for a few days, with the result of not posting anything.  Instead of continuing this trend, I decided to just do a painting post and let the rest of it keep simmering.  Most of the week has been spent reading, so there hasn't been a whole lot of painting.  On Friday I decided I had to get some work done on something.  What did I pick?  Rivets.  There was some other little work, doing the few black areas, some bronze, starting on the base.  As a result, Torch is almost done.  There are some lingering details I haven't gotten to and a couple I've missed, but I could call Torch finished right now (base aside) and be happy with it.  That won't happen as I still have plans for a 5th Border Legion logo on the top hatch (like Black Ivan) and I'm not ready to let the other details slide just yet.  It's awful nice to be all-but finished though.  I'm always amazed at how quick jacks paint up compared to infantry.  You'd think the larger model would take longer, yet I can do a jack in a day or two while infantry takes about a week.  Hopefully beasts paint as quick as jacks.  If so, I could (in theory) get all my Legion painted up before the league is finished.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Joe WIP #3, Torch WIP#2

Stomping towards completion.
Why do I always wait so long before I start writing?  Inevitably time slips up on me and I have to hurry to not be late for work.  One day I'll learn, but not today.

Things did happen today.  Painting things.  The greens got finished, along with the reds, and I got started on some of the gold details as well.  A while back I switched up how I highlighted the olive drab green that forms the base of the 5th Border Legion scheme.  I had been mixin in Bleached Bone to do highlights with, but the result never quite looked right.  Then one day I had an idea: what if I use a light grey instead of a light brown?  In goes the Stonewall Grey and miraculously the highlights look (to my eye) much better, like actual highlights instead of a completely different color slapped on top of the green base.  One day I may do a tutorial for my scheme but in case I don't I wanted to note that little nugget of wisdom.  Torch is progressing nicely and may well be done by the end of the week, depending on how much painting time I get and how any freehanding goes.

Friday, February 3, 2012

WIPs: Kovnik Joe #2, Torch #1; Colossal Skepticism

Not bad for an hour or two of work.
The past couple days have been lost to reading.  While a pleasant pastime, it makes painting progress proceed at a plodding pace.  Today I managed to put the book down, for a little while at least, and pick a brush up once again.  My intention was to work on Kovnik Joe and basecoat Torch along the way, but it ended up the other way around.  Everything got a base color, save a few details like the collar badge and shoulder spikes, plus some sort of wash.  Tamiya Smoke was slathered across the metals while I gave Badab Black a trial run on the other bits.  (A few days ago I hit the FLGS and completed my GW Wash collection.)  I had considered doing Torch in an alternate scheme, either red or black, to differentiate between character and standard jacks.  Black seemed the most appropriate for the whole stealthy, black ops angle with Strakhov.  Torch was already primed grey though, plus Black Ivan, and ultimately I wanted to paint some green across huge surfaces.  If Torch seems to have sprung out of nowhere to land on the painting table then blame this month's Paint the Target, which is a character beast/jack or a beast/jack that represents one of the league upgrades.  Since painting up Torch was easier than converting something up that's the road I took, but it will be nice to have it painted up.  Torch has three initial attacks, to say nothing of the Sustained Attack Ripsaw, and is the jack I currently reach for when I want an assassin jack.  Plus it sets things on fire.  What's not to like?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Battle of the Buxom Babes: pLylyth vs eSkarre

Textbook definition of "buxom."
This is a report that's been in the hopper for a little while and is finally getting some love.  This is partly because I want to clear out the backlog (7 games and counting), and partly because EV told me I only do prompt reports of games I win.  While obviously untrue, I though I'd take a look back to last week (depending on when this gets posted) and the debut of playing Slipstream the right way with EV.  For this game I returned to pLylyth and went even heavier on the beasts (if that's possible) by dropping the infantry and adding some Shredders and a Deathstalker.  My list was thus:

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

It lives!

My internets are back to full speed, or so it seems at the moment.  Turns out it's a good idea to install the modem that your ISP sends you.  With a return to normalcy I should be able to upload pictures, not to mention load the blogging interface itself, in a timely manner, so expect a battle report in the near future and more of them in the slightly further future.