Some kind of progress

Sorry for being quiet recently, life’s been a bit up and down and that’s affecting my hobbying (not least in that I’ve somehow hurt my painting wrist so that highlighting of my latest model is taking a lot longer than I’d hoped). Once I’ve finished this guy I will move onto something a little bit simpler as a month on one Shining Spear is a bit long even for me.

I picked up the Imperial Knight codex the other day. The fluff is good but it’d have been nice to have added a couple more units to bulk the army list out. We seem to be moving to a more modular game these days with Imperial Knights, Inquisition etc. adding more stuff to (Imperial) armies. Hopefully GW will branch out into the non Imperial armies sooner rather than later. I doubt that we’ll see Exodites anytime soon but I hope that whenever they bring out the Ork codex (no idea when of course) that they add a few supplements or a Grot codex or something.

I quite like the new Militarum Tempestus. I’m not going to pick them up immediately but I might make a nice, fluffy little list with these guys and the Inquisition codex. The Imperial Guard (or Astra Militarum as they’re now called) has never really been my thing but these guys look kind of cool. I’m trying not to buy too much at the moment though as I’ll probably be moving in a few months and things can wait until after then.

I made some scenery this weekend. We desperately needed some line of sight (L.O.S.) blocking for our games so I decided to build a hill. It took me a few weeks to find the bits. The shop where I picked up foamcore in the past has closed and our local model train shop charged more than I was willing to pay for an A2 rectangle of foam. In the end I found some, along with a bag of static grass, in a bookshop in town which has a limited art section (and the most beautiful-and pricey- model aeroplanes). It’s not a very sophisticated hill. I cut the foam with a knife as I don’t have a hot wire cutter and glued the layers together with thick super glue. I then painted it with Chrome Green acrylic paint. I couldn’t undercoat the model as the spray primer melts the foam, so I used a thick coat of cheap acrylic rather than the finer modelling acrylic, which would have required multiple coats. I added a few lichen “trees” and some grass tufts before smearing the whole thing with PVA glue and covering it was static grass. It’s cheap and a little bit crude but it’s a piece of all too important L.O.S. Blocking terrain that doesn’t resemble a pile of books!

102_0181

So, having built this hill we had to test it out with a game of Kill Team. I’ve been playing with my Space Wolves and I finally think I’m getting there. I took:

5x Grey Hunters
5x Wolf Scouts (3x sniper rifles, 2x bolt guns)
5x Fenrisian Wolves

I need to tweak it some more but it’s a much better list (at least against Orks) than the last one. I have a slight problem in that apart from Grey Hunters, which are fine as they are, most of the usable things for Kill Team in the Space Wolves codex are too expensive for the limited points budget (Swiftclaws, Wolf Guard, Lone Wolves, Thunderwolf Cavalry) or have to be taken in fives (Wolf Scouts, Fenrisian Wolves).

The game went far better for me than the last two times I played, although the Fenrisian Wolves die too easily which meant that my boyfriend’s Orks broke my army about two turns too soon. I’m going to drop them from my next list because of this, although they are good fun to use and its nice to have something that can zip across the board. If I could take fewer of them, I’d keep them in. We played the Head Hunt mission and in the end I won 6-4 on Primaries. It was a nice close game, the last time we played was a bit of a disaster for me, I’d taken Grey Hunters, Wolf Guard and Fenrisian Wolves and was then systemically taken apart by Lootas and my own dice. The Wolf Scouts really made the game for me this time, their ability to infiltrate and the 36” range of the sniper rifles more than made up for their carapace armour. I’m looking forward to the next game as I’m sure that The Other Half will have found a good counter to them.

Well that’s it for now. Hopefully I’ll have something else to post about sooner rather than later!

L.o.F.

Advertisements

On the twelfth day of Christmas the hobby meant to me…

Twelve Space Wolf Great Companies…

So this is the last post in this series, normal service will shortly be resumed. This post took longer than I expected, sorry. The reason why will, hopefully, become clear soon enough.

Today I want to talk about my army. The picture below describes my army as it is. I’ve arranged it mostly in the same way as the Force Org although you may notice that there are four Heavy Support slots drawn in. That is because I have a Land Raider to paint one of these days as well as another pack of Long Fangs.

Great company coloured

My Wolves are part of the Great Company of Ælthere Greatpaw. I wanted to give my guys a Viking raider feel, so I’m going for lots of Fast Attack in the form of Swiftclaws, Land Speeders and Fenrisian Wolves, although I’m not impressed with the Landspeeder so far. The bikes are cheaper and survive a little bit longer (if more by luck than any special ability). I don’t like Thunderwolf Cavalry, don’t ask me why, I just don’t, so I’m avoiding them.

I have three HQ choices at the moment and I’m not planning on any more for now. As well as Greatpaw himself, who is a Wolf Lord in Terminator armour, I have Alvaldi Ratatosk, the Rune Priest, and Hildólfr Deathmask, the Wolf Priest. I actually have two models of Deathmask, one in Terminator Armour and one on a bike, as I wanted a more mobile HQ choice to go with my Swiftclaws.

Oddly enough, although this is Greatpaw’s Company, he’s the one guy for which I have least fluff (beyond the fact that I imagine him with a broad Yorkshire accent. My imagination is weird some days). Deathmask though is explained in detail in two posts here! The symbolism on Ratatosk is mentioned in my original post on him. I like trying to add symbolism to my figures. I find that it helps me to paint them if I have a sketchy idea of name and personality. Sometimes this personality doesn’t develop until I paint them (I have a Blood Claw with an axe who looks like he hasn’t had an original idea in his life), sometimes it never develops at all, but I find that a model with a sketchy back story gets painted far more quickly than one without. Oddly enough I forget all about this as soon as I field them in a game!

For Elites I currently have Wolf Guard Terminators (three for now, but hopefully more will follow in time) and a mixed bunch of Wolf Scouts. In future I’ll be adding a Dreadnought to the list, but he’s still in his box and desperately needs assembling and painting. I like Dreadnoughts, I’m just not sure how I want to build this one though.

My troops slot still has plenty of room to expand. I currently split the ten man packs into two but what I really need to do is build more. I’m working on it, honestly! The Space Wolf Pack boxes are almost too detailed. It takes a long time to paint each guy properly and that makes painting new Grey Hunter and Blood Claw packs a little bit off-putting.

I’m still building up my Heavy Support choices too. I have one complete pack of Long Fangs and another partly painted pack. The rest are in need of assembly and my Land Raider needs painting. It’s just a little bit daunting! I’m also a little bit nervous about putting too many points into this slot as my Long Fangs have seen very little action so far.

Anyway, that’s the last of this series. I hope that you enjoyed them. I’ll be back to my usual schedule (hopefully) on Tuesday. I have plenty of non-numericially themed posts waiting!

L.o.F.

…Eleven months of blogging…

…Ten thousand years past…

…Nine different tools…

…Eight books to look at…

…Seven days of hobbying…

… Learning sixth edition…

…Fifth Edition!…

…Four more excuses…

…Three things to think of…

Two different opinions

And a gift under the Christmas Tree

Getting to the base of the matter

I just thought that I’d talk about how I do my bases. It’s not the most complicated or the most spectacular method but it does the job. I’m still using the old Citadel Paints. The names of the equivalent new Citadel Paints are in brackets when the paint is first mentioned.

I start by painting the top of the base with a 2:1 mixture of Bleached Bone (Ushabti Bone) to Tausept Ochre (Balor Brown) and the sides with Shadow Grey (The Fang).

I then add rocks. For larger rocks (used very occasionally) I paint them first. Here I used a Tausept Ochre base coat followed by a 1:1 mixture of Bleached Bone to Tausept Ochre. For the veins I used Bleached Bone, Tausept Ochre and Scorched Brown (Rinox Hide), before washing the rock with Gryphone Sepia (Seraphim Sepia). The smaller rocks came from a local chain store and were designed for flower arrangements. I just glue them on with superglue as they happen to match my basing colour scheme pretty much perfectly as they are (this is a total coincidence, honest!).

I then apply PVA glue to the top surface apart from where it’s covered in rocks before dipping it in sand. I wipe off any stray sand that is attached to the model or the rocks before leaving it to dry.

I then apply splodges of more PVA glue before dipping the base in Citadel Snow to get a patchy snow effect. I blow off any excess snow, taking care not to do it over the open tub after the first time I tried to base and ended up covering the table in fake snow, and leave the model to dry.

To finish off I add a few drops of Baal Red (Carroburg Crimson) for blood and use Shining Gold (Gehenna’s Gold) to write the model’s name on the side. I like to think of Viking names for my figures and I use Wikipedia to get most of them. This site has some good wolf/dog names though.

The whole process can be done very quickly, particularly when I set up a production line of models. There’s something incredibly satisfying about finishing a model by decorating the base, particularly as it’s a sign that it’s over and I can move on to something else!

A quick planning update

I’m rather tired this evening, but I felt that the last post was rather too short so I thought I’d put up a progress report for my Space Wolves. I’ve got rather a lot going on at once at the moment, so this list is as much for my benefit than the blog’s!

First off I have undercoated my scouts, at least partly so. I don’t have a garden so spraying gets difficult. I managed two coats yesterday and I’m going to touch it up with the new Imperial Primer, which may be interesting. Hopefully I will finish priming them this weekend, although part of my reason for getting the spray cans out was to stop me adding more to them.

Painting-wise this weekend I want to finish my last three (for now) Fenrisian wolves. I’m hoping to talk about them in detail another day, but I need to finish them first. I also need to finish highlighting my Blood Claws. I still have six to go and because they’re almost done I tend to forget that they’re there.

The other thing that I plan to do this weekend is strip the old undercoat off the old school metal Devastators that I acquired from my boyfriend during our last trip to the UK. I don’t know why he never used them for his Blood Angels, but they look kind of fun, especially with the shoulder mounted weaponry. I might not paint them in the style shown on the box though!

© Games Workshop 1992 (yep, they're that old!)

© Games Workshop 1992 (yep, they’re that old!)

Beyond that I have two other primed models to consider- a Wolf Guard Terminator and a Land Speeder and there’s also a Land Raider that I need to think about. I guess that I might wolfify it with greenstuff and wolf skulls, but it requires some planning.

What I am not going to do is buy more models, at least not until I have made some inroads into the pile. With all the talk of Chaos Legions on the internet I have been looking at various models and I’m very tempted to start a painting project involving Chaos Marines, especially as I am partway through re-reading the Horus Heresy books and all the old legions are fresh in my mind. However I have too much to do and too much of a pile on my painting tray as there is. I also need more guys for my Space Wolves as even I know that my army needs some tweaking! Chaos Marines will just have to wait.

Visiting the Overlords

So, I’m in the UK on holiday at the moment and on Sunday my boyfriend and I went to visit The Overlords. I brought along 1000 points(ish) of mostly painted Space Wolves (there was the rather embarrassing Wolf Guard terminator blue-tacked on his base while another terminator and my Land Speeder were only undercoated) while my boyfriend managed 1500 points of Daemons.

My intended opponent was a bit late so I ended up playing two games. In the first I played 550 points of Space Wolves against roughly 500 points of Tyranids. I’ve only ever played Orks and Daemons before and Tyranids are another assaulty army so I was expecting to die quite quickly (again). We played capture and control on a 4 x 4 board and we used spearhead deployment. Using a 4 x 4 board rather than the 3 x 3 that we use at home (none of our tables are the right shape) for 500 points, definitely makes things easier for my Wolves as they’re not immediately thrown into assault. It’s not that Space Wolves seem to be bad in assault, it’s just that Tyranids (and Daemons for that matter) specialise in assault and don’t really do shooting and I’ve learned the hard way that you really need to thin out assaulty units before you charge them/ get charged.

Anyway… I was facing two units of Genestealers, a unit of Tyranid Warriors and a Tyranid Prime. My list was as follows:

 HQ: Wolf Lord, Terminator Armour, Wolf Claw (145 pts)

HQ: Wolf Priest, Terminator Armour (120pts)

Elites: Wolf scouts: 4x sniper rifles, 1x missile launcher (97)

Troops: 5x Grey Hunters, 1 with a power fist (100)

Troops: 5x Grey Hunters, 1 with a plasma gun (85)

 = 547 points

 The first time I played with Wolf Scouts I wasn’t too impressed with them as they died very, very quickly without having much of an effect. I’m now beginning to really like them as they’re quite nice when infiltrated. They draw some attention away from the rest of the army and can plink away at the opposing army while doing so. The 36” range of the sniper rifles and the 48” range of the missile launcher are quite nice too.

Wolf Scouts

Wolf Scouts: Sneaky snipers

I feel a little bit guilty about the game as my Grey Hunters destroyed most of the Genestealers before they could assault. I did forget about my objective for a bit and around turn 4 or 5 it looked like heading for a tie. However, we rolled to continue and I’m afraid that turned the game to my favour. I don’t think that I was contesting my opponent’s objective, but he couldn’t oppose mine, which I’d finally remembered about and sat some Grey Hunters on.

By this point my other opponent had turned up. I was supposed to be facing Guard, but due to a bit of a mix-up regarding cases, I ended up facing Necrons. I’m afraid I can’t remember the Necron list particularly well (except for the killyness of it). I know there were two annihilation barges, some Deathmarks, two Crypteks, a bunch of Destroyers and two squads of Necron Warriors. I think there were some Immortals too, but I’m not sure (I don’t think I’d even seen Necrons before) and I’ve completely forgotten what my opponent’s HQ was (sorry) (edit: oops- there were scarabs too!).

My list was not one I’d ever played before, as it was the first time that I’d fielded 1000 points. As I had three Wolf Guard I had more than enough pack leaders, so I let my Wolf Lord be all heroic and take his wolves for walkies. Actually, that turned out to be quite a useful unit, so I might use it again,although Saga of Majesty was pretty much useless, so that might go. I also used Blood Claws for the first time and a Land Speeder, although that didn’t really get used in the end as it got shot down in turn 2 or 3. So, my list was:

HQ: Wolf Lord, Terminator Armour, Wolf Claw, Wolf Tooth Necklace, 2 x Fenrisian Wolves, Saga of Majesty (190 pts)

HQ: Wolf Priest, Terminator Armour, Wolf Tooth Necklace (130pts)

Elites: Wolf Guard Terminators: 1 x standard, 1 x 2 Wolf Claws, 1 x Storm Shield and Thunder Hammer (144 pts)

Elites: Wolf scouts: 4x Sniper Rifles, 1x Missile Launcher (97 pts)

Troops: 5x Grey Hunters, 1 with a Power Fist (100 pts)

Troops: 5x Grey Hunters, 1 with a Plasma Gun (85 pts)

Troops: 5 x Blood Claws, 1 with Power Weapon (90 pts)

Troops: 5 x Blood Claws, 1 with Meltagun (80 pts)

Fast Attack: Land Speeder Tornado with Multi-melta and Heavy Flamer (70pts)

 = 996 points

As I’ve already mentioned, the Land Speeder didn’t really do much, but the rest of my army, although it got totally creamed, seemed to work quite well. I liked being able to use my Wolf Lord as an independent unit, as he’s quite difficult to kill and with four attacks he’s quite formidable on his own. Add the Fenrisian Wolves and he’s very useful. The Wolf Scouts were also quite useful. They do die quite easily, thanks to their light armour, but they are sneaky and can cause quite a bit of damage.

Walkies

Walkies! (picture taken at home, not during the game)

However Necrons are very, very good at killing and once my guys started being shot at they began to die quite quickly. I left one unit of Grey Hunters near my objective and they remained largely intact for a few turns, but one of my Blood Claw packs met an Annihilation Barge and while they ended up assaulting it thanks to the Headstrong rule (their Wolf Guard leader had been killed), they were soon whittled down to one guy who turned out to be quite lucky (at least for a while).

In the end though my guys all died, but the game was really good fun and it was interesting to play different armies.

Both games were great fun and I really enjoyed them and I really enjoyed playing my opponents. It was wonderful to meet the Overlords and put faces to names and I hope that I can wander down there again some time when I next visit the UK. Thanks again guys, if you’re reading!

Making Plans

Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m easily distracted and a little bit absent-minded. My PC at work is full of abandoned to-do lists and plans that sort of diverged somehow and I’ve lost count of the cups of tea that I’ve abandoned because I want to check out this site, fix this bit of painting or read this next chapter. So, don’t be surprised in a few months if, instead of the list I’m going to post below, I’ve painted, I don’t know, two dreadnoughts and (horror of horrors) a pack of Thunderwolf Cavalry. What I am going to talk about is what I need to think about doing next with my Space Wolves, or more particularly, what models do I really want to paint rather than the poor Blood Claw standing on my painting tray at present. It’s a long term plan as I’m not a fast modeller or painter!

What I have

In my “to paint” pile at the moment are four Fenrisian Wolves, seven and three quarter Blood Claws, a Wolf Guard Terminator and a Land Speeder. I also have a box of Scouts to build which can wait for a bit. I bought them at Christmas when a store in my parents’ area was getting rid of its stock. However I received a box of Scouts with sniper rifles as a gift from my boyfriend a day later which I built first (they have cloaks and things and looked pretty cool). Obviously, I want to make inroads into this list before I buy anything else. The troops are the highest priority as I’m desperately short of them. I’ve played three games with the guys that I have painted, and every time I’ve needed more troops rather than the elites and HQs that I’ve painted. I’m thinking of mixing the other things in though, to stop myself getting too bogged down, starting with the wolves. However, I’m tempted to pick up a few more things to build to give me a bit of a change from painting.

What I want

Long-Fangs

Partly because I want to finish off the trilogy and partly because even I know that they’re a good unit, I’ve been thinking of getting Long Fangs for a while.

Now, I’m quite keen on the dramatics of my army (yeah, I know, fluffier than a fluffy kitten that’s sitting on a feather filled fake fur cushion), so I want to build Long Fangs that make me think of ancient warriors, wise beyond measure, battered by a thousand wars on countless worlds. This got me thinking, why would a Space Wolf become a Long Fang. As a group they are pretty bloodthirsty, and I imagine it might take quite a lot of effort/persuasion to make a son of Russ stand back and shoot at things from a distance. My main thoughts on this can be summed up as “attrition”. A Long Fang is a rare thing, most of his brothers would have died in battle as Blood Claws and Grey Hunters, the Company needs his unique experience and if he keeps charging in, bolter in one hand, chainsword in the other, there will be a day when they won’t be able to. He’ll also have seen brothers needlessly lost to things that a good missile would have sorted out, a sort of mental attrition that one day might lead to him swapping his bolter for that missile launcher. Finally there will be physical attrition, he might have lost an eye or a limb or two, or three.

With this last point in mind I want to build my Long Fangs so that they sport the odd prosthetic. I’ve been eyeing up a Forgeworld sprue for a while, but when I was listening to The Overlords this week I heard mention of an Iron Hands Tactical Marine box which contained, among other things, prosthetic limbs. If you consider the ten marine models, this would work out cheaper and give me more options than the Forgeworld sprue, and I already know what I could do with ten Space Marine Figures…

Wolfblades

The Wolfblades are a unit from William King’s Space Wolves novels. Basically they are outcasts, either through disgrace or embarrassment, that are sent by the Chapter to be bodyguards to the Navis Nobilite family that provides their navigators. When I read the books they stood out as a fun unit to try to represent. I’d count them as Wolf Guard and paint one as a Grey Hunter, two as Blood Claws, one as a former Wolf Guard and the final guy as a Long Fang. I can’t give the Long Fang a heavy weapon, so I’ll just have to be creative. The other five Tac Marine figures will get used as Grey Hunters I guess.

Fast Attack and other things

I’ve mentioned before that I want a strong raider feel to my army, which I’m going to create hopefully using bikes and Land Speeders. How many and who leads them hasn’t been thought through yet. I should probably get a Rune Priest but I don’t know whether sticking him on a bike would be a good idea or not!

Anyway, as you can see, I have a lot planned. Of course, planning is the easy part, doing is the difficult part and I may play a couple more games and realise that I need to go in another direction entirely! I really should get back to painting my Blood Claws I guess.

L.o.F.

Fenrisian Wolves: Kit Review part 3: Tassen the erm… Wolf

So, for part 3 of my Fenrisian Wolf extended review is on painting. I make no claims to be a good painter, I enjoy it and I work at it, but I’ve only been hobbying since last July so I’m still a newbie.

Fenrisian Wolves, unlike my poor half-painted Blood Claws, are relatively straightforward to paint. They can be divided into four parts: undercoat, base coat, wash and layer and, unusually for me, I only used 10 paints, a spray and a wash on this, the first of the pack, and I think that I’ll use variations on these ten colours for the rest of the pack.

So this is Tassen, which, you may notice, was painted with a certain childhood favourite in mind (which looks a bit macabre now that I look at him). I based him after I painted him and I’ll paint that to match the rest of my army when I have a batch of models ready.

I started with a chaos black undercoat. I then painted the eyes and the inside of the mouth. Now, I don’t like the eyes in the example pictures on the box and in the March 2012 White Dwarf, so instead I painted them with a base coat of Iyanden Darksun, followed by a coat of Golden Yellow. I used Chaos Black for the pupil and I painted the lids with a blend of Chaos Black and Codex Grey. For the mouth I used first Mechrite Red for a base coat and then used different blends of Mechrite Red, Red Gore and Elf Flesh for the inside of the mouth. I then rimmed the mouth with the same blend of Chaos Black and Codex Grey as I used for round the eyes. I should apologise here. I normally use quantifiable blends, but when I’m painting small areas with a lot of similar shades, I tend to work by eye, so that I have a bit more of a colour gradient.

I then moved onto the main body which I base coated with an approximately 5:1 mixture of Bleached Bone to Tausept Ochre. I actually started off with a mix that included Iyanden Darksun, but it was too yellow. I then washed the whole model with Gryphone Sepia. For the brown areas I used a 1:1 blend of Chaos Black and Scorched Brown. I then drybrushed the legs with Bleached Bone.
Next I moved onto the highlights. On the light bits of fur I used Bleached Bone, while on the brown parts I used first Scorched Brown and then Snakebite Leather. On the legs I used Skull White. Finally I painted the teeth Bleached Bone, followed by a sepia wash and Skull White highlights.

I’m quite happy with this model. It was quite straightforward to paint and looks quite nice with relatively little effort. I’d recommend painting them off the base though, as it makes it easier to get at the underneath.

Finally I should apologise for the late post. I was at a work function yesterday. I may be a bit late with tomorrow’s post too, but that’s life I guess.

L.o.F.