Monday, November 18, 2013

Kingdom of Britannia: KRRC Sergeant

For this month's Colore ton Monde, the challenge is to paint a secondary leader. Not the big boss, but someone in authority none the less. This, matched with an inspiring game of Dystopian Legions last week (my first win, and the first outing for the Terrier Ironclad) led me back to this guy. The Sergeant from this box, who has been painted up to lead the King's Royal Rifle Corps, who now number 8 figures including the drummer (which leaves me with three troopers to complete their number, or 1 more and some specialists).

I'm quite happy with the way he turned out, although the rusty barbed wire on his base needs a little something to make it more realistic

I had this guy earmarked for this unit as it was the one I had just finished when I bought him. There was some swithering as to whether he would be repurposed for the 91st once I started them, as the army I fielded last week was essentially Scottish in theme, but he has been commisioned to his original unit. I'll have to find my Scots Sergeant elsewhere.

Now to get back to the Ironclad.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Terrier Ironclad WIP

I started painting the Terrier Ironclad the other night. I went with the same blue scheme as I used for the Bassets. I am finding it more of an issue to paint such a large vehicle. I undercoated with gesso, and there was my first issue. In my rush to get the model assembled, I took it right out of the box and put it together, without giving it a wash before hand. As I had previously noted with my Bassets, if you do this to such large pieces of resin, you have an issue with left over release agent. This led to some parts of the model rejecting the undercoat. Worse, once I started with the base coat of a thin wash of blue and black, I noticed some of the undercoat peeling off, and other larger areas hidden between the tracks and the main body of the Ironclad where I had missed completely with the undercoat. My laziness/eagerness at the start of the project is going to cost me time in reparations before I continue, still, at least she won't be plain resin for her first outing on the table next week.

Yesterday evening I filled in some gaps and gave the blue a wash with Nuln Oil, giving her the first of many layers that will be required to get her table ready.

Royal Scots Cap Badge
Going with my current trend of basing my DL sections on real units, I decided my ironclads would be driven by members of the 2nd Dragoons,  Royal Scots Greys Regiment, who were in real life given tanks after their invention. This means I am currently tracking down some flags to stick on this beauty, to make it more of a centrepiece. It also gives me options for various insignia which I can use to liven things up.

Anyone out there who knows where to get good flags, please let me know, as I've never bought any pre-made before

The name of this tank will have to be H.M.I. Ewart. (H.M.I. standing for Her Majesties Ironclad, and Ewart after the famous Royal Scots Grey Ensign, Charles Ewart).

I'm now off on the hunt for flags and cavalry pennants to use for this, and to put on my Bassets too.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Colore Ton Monde November

As I predicted, I didn't have the time to find and paint a mini on scheme for the month of October, due to being in the UK for half of it, with the other half preparing to go, and getting over the trip. But if you do want to see some of the excellent figures that were submitted to the challenge, go here.

For the month of November, the challenge is as follows:

P'tit boss de bécosse

Ce weekend, on vote pour les élections municipales au Québec. Malgré toute l'importance de ces postes, ils sont souvent considérés secondaires par rapport aux élus provinciaux et nationaux. Pour le mois de novembre, on vous invite à peindre un p'tit boss: un sergent d'unité, un personnage de deuxième classe, un héro wannabe/hasbeen: à vous d’interpréter le thème à votre manière.

Lil boss of the shit-house*

This weekend we vote in the Quebec municipal elections. No matter the importance of these positions, they are often considered secondary to politicians elected to positions at the provincial and federal levels. For the month of November we invite you to paint a  lil boss: a unit sergeant, a second class character, a wannabe/has-been hero: it's for you to interpret the theme in your own way.

So that should be easy enough. I have a stack of sergeant and unit leader minis to finish off for current games. Indeed, the unit leader for my Bretonnian bowmen wears full plate armour, what indeed could be easier (if not a little bland)? I think I'll paint him up with his command group to make things a little more colourful.

*One of the reasons I have put off posting this for about a week is that my English is failing me. I know for a fact there is a similar saying in English for this type of person/position, but I cannot for the life of me find the best phrase. I guess there goes my job in translation!
If you can think of a saying that works, please put it in the comments!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Warhammer Fantasy, Some Thoughts

After a gap of about 20 years, I played a game of Warhammer fantasy battle last week.

There has been talk of playing 500 point games, as they fit perfectly within the time available to us on a Tuesday evening, and of course do not need many figures, although most of the palyers have many more points than that available to them as we are players of a certain age who grew up with GW products. I do of course have a similar amount of figures, just not at my immediate disposal, and a recent trip to the old country didn't leave me with enough free time in my parents attic to fill a suitcase with WFB armies. This is one of the reasons I picked Bretonnians. It meant I could collect an army from what I found in the bits box at the store (started off with the big bag o' archers I found a while ago), combined with some Perry War of the Roses infantry and some nice Reaper minis.

At the risk of becoming a battle report without pictures (I didn't plan to write a report, so I didn't take any pics), I write for your enjoyment of my thoughts on the battle, and why it seemed to go so badly for me. It also may become a comparison betweeen the current edition of WFB (what is it,6th, 8th?), and my hazy recollections of 3rd Ed.

The basis of the game has of course not changed, and this is of course intentional on the part of GW. They have kept essentially the same stat line, and basic rules of Hit, Wound and Save. There are of course changes to the minutiae, and maybe even some of the larger parts of the game that I have forgotten from 3rd ed, or did not come up in our game. The magic system is one place that seems to have changed the most, and seems more streamlined from 3rd ed. I do indeed recall one of the reasons I dropped WFB with the advent of 4th ed was the changes to the magic system (and I lost interest in the minis that were released with that edition), but that does not mean the system was perfect before. I do recall there being the exceedingly broken Vortex of Chaos, and even worse Vorpal Hurricane of Chaos, which, if unleashed would rip an army in two. Of course this was magnified by the exceedingly cheap points cost of Goblin mages, increasing their chances to have it by spamming mages, still, I digress.
In the game last week, I lost badly. The main problem I seem to have had was my army selection. It seems Bretonnians suffer particularly badly at the 500pts level due to their required picks of a paladin and a banner (which we dropped), and having to have knights as the base unit. This plus a mage of level 2 only left me with enough points to field a basic unit of archers and pikemen. At the 500 point level you really need bodies on the table, and I didn't have those. My opponent took High elves, and his only character was a mage attached to a unit of spearmen, this meant his base troops were more than enough to deal with my peasant horde, and my Paladin is but one man to stem the tide.
The last issue I had was underestimating the charge distance of the High Elf Infantry.  I thought I was safe and well placed to charge him next turn, but no, random charge distances of 2D6 plus Move was more than enough to plug the gap. I think this was more of an issue of me thinking in Warmachine distances rather than 3rd ed, as I have no recollection of how charges were handled there.

How can I fix this? Well, I don't have to take the peasant force that I did. For 500 points, we don't need to take 2 units of Core forces, just 25% of the total, so my unit of Knights alone cover this. What would I then take? Well, with the compulsory Paladin, and tactically compulsory mage, I really don't have too many options. I could fill the field with archers, stand behind the stakes and shoot the hell out of the opponent. Kind of boring, but it may be the only way.

So, in the end, I was stuck with a list that was uncompetitive in two ways, one because of the choices I made, and two because the Bretonnian list seems to be limited in the choices it can make much more at this level than it may be at higher points games. There was also the theory that since the army book for Bretonnians was older than the rest, it was not as balanced as the newer books, or at least not in balance with the newer force books. This is one of the main issues I have with GW, and their games, and what has put me off from playing their games in the last 20 years (that along with their prices and business practices, but you may note, GW have not profited directly from my purchases).

Still, I would like to try again, and may do so this week. Afterall, who really gives up on their first love?