Sunday, August 30, 2009

More Urban Landscaping

I have finished four buildings for my new 40k terrain collection and the fifth, my largest so far, is probably about half done. These buildings are tricky though in that the smallest I've done to this point, the pump station, has taken me the most time due to the extra time needed to make the floor sections fit in place. I therefore really have no idea how long the current construction project will take me complete. My goal now is to have around 8 to 10 buildings, as well as some smaller scenic pieces and barricades, which should keep me busy for the next couple of weeks perhaps. I'm definitely learning some useful techniques for assembling these kits, although it feels to me like each building somehow manages to present new challanges, and unfortunately quite often it seems the only solution is lots and lots of tedious filing and scraping. Oh well, the buildings look really cool when finished and I'm overall having a lot of fun putting them together. I will eventually post up some pictures but it could be a while as these are busy times for me.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

It's On... Again!

My brother and I have rescheduled our first game of 5th edition 40k for next weekend, giving me just over a week to finish reading the rules, get the armies ready, and the terrain assembled. This seems much more realistic than the last time when I had only 36 hours to do the same. I'm going to throw myself into this as much as I can for the next week with the caveat of course being that I know I'll still be busy being a dad. I just need to maximize my usage of whatever spare moments I am able to get along the way.

As for the battle itself, I think we're going to stick with the same plan of 500 point armies, although I have a feeling that my brother is going to be using his Necrons instead of my Tyranids which is okay. I want him to eventually, and hopefully soon, begin using another army beside Necrons as they have not fared well in the transition from 4th to 5th edition. I'm sure they'll be viable again if Games Workshop ever gets around to doing another Codex for them but who knows how long that could take? I've always felt that Necrons were a bit boring and somewhat frustrating both to use and to play against as there just is not a lot of variety in the army list. Add to that the annoyance factor of Monoliths and self-repairing robots and we now have all the components needed for a game that just isn't a lot of fun.

Despite all that I've painted enough Necrons to field an almost fully painted army which is more than I can say for many of other collections. If I could force myself to finish off one squad of Necron Warriors and the Flayed Ones then I would be satisfied, although a few more Heavy Destroyers would be useful. Since I promised my brother years ago that I would paint an army for him, this is really a project to which I should return. They are fotunately at least quite easy to paint even though I still managed to ruin my last batch of Warriors with a basecoat spray malfunction. (I now suspect it was again due to trying to spray paint when the humidity was too high.) So while I'm at it another Necron Lord and at least another three Destroyers would certainly fill out his roster sheet nicely, not mention an additional three or four Warrior squads to get the army more suited to 5th editions emphasis on scoring units.... Sigh.

Monday, August 24, 2009

City Planner 40,000

My urban scenery collection for 40k has grown with another burst of assembly today. I started to put together the pump station but had to stop because I ran out of wall sections, lacking two particular panels that I need to complete the main structure. I placed another order for some more kits and thought I would not do anymore until my purchases arrived. I couldn't resist though and started tinkering with the remaining panels that I had left over from my initial Manufactorum boxes. I realized I still had enough to assemble a ruined building using the left over door, the remaining window sections and the six end pieces. So other than the one door it is entirely window panels or else damaged ones. It is therefore easy for me to imagine that it was designed to take advantage of either a lot of natural light or else significant ventilation. I should be able to finish putting it together tomorrow and the pump station soon after the shipment arrives so I will quickly have the core of an industrial center built and ready for use. Now as for when I will get around to painting them is an entirely different matter.

Friday, August 21, 2009

WIP - Sector 7G

The photo above is a WIP shot of my first Cities of Death terrain piece which I have named Sector 7G. Since taking these photos I have finished the assembly stage and ended up using almost exactly one kit's worth of pieces, although I did take wall sections from both Manufactorum boxes. I've also drawn up plans for a very simple pump station, a blasted chapel and some administration buildings, all of which I will mount on bases identical to the one I used for Sector 7G. I would also like to do a couple of larger buildings on bases twice that size but I think I am going to stick to the smaller stuff for a bit. I still had a few problems with 7G and so I would like to try to work them out on simpler structures before moving on to more complex ones. I am really looking forward to incorporating water effects into my terrain pieces so that too might require a few baby steps as well for which I think the pump station should help.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Building A Building

I spent a few hours tonight working with two boxes of the Cities of Death Manufactorum kit and have probably 90% of my first building assembled. I don't know why but I've always found scenery and terrain projects to be particularly enjoyable even though they can be quite intimidating for me at times. When these 40k scenery kits were first released I tried putting one together but had a lot of difficulty getting it to assemble the way I wanted, and didn't bother with them again until now. One valuable thing I learned with that first go-round is that a single box is insufficient for anything except rather small ruins or a single corner of a larger ruined building. So for my second attempt at the Manufactorum I assumed I would need at least two boxes. I'm putting together a single-storey, mostly intact structure as I've decided I want a mixture of blown-up ruins as well as some with only minimal damage.

I'll post a work-in-progress shot soon but for now I have got to go pack up the bus again. Tomorrow is my first anniversary as a married man and we're heading out of town to celebrate. With the coastal South Carolina summer in full effect, it's going to be nice to feel some cool mountain air... adios!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Peace for Now

The game scheduled for last night between my brother and I has been delayed for probably a week or so. We've been cleaning so much around the house that I did not have time to get much done preparing for the game and certainly did not finish reading the rules or writing any scenarios. My brother was exhausted from his work week and decided it would be too late of a night for him as well since we were not planning on starting until shortly after 9pm. Oh well, we'll get in a game eventually, although I'm sure I've said the same thing many times over the past few years. I have confidence this time though and will be sure to post updates as warranted.

I'm glad that we didn't rush into a game without anything ready and with both of us fumbling with the rules. I normally would never take such an approach but my brother tends to be more daring than me in these situations. Also I do try to avoid using unpainted miniatures in even friendly matches with family so I can for now hold off from fielding my Imperial Guard army. I really need to get the gameboard painted so that I can then paint the scenery to match, afterwhich I will feel much more comfortable moving forward with the new armies. I've got my priorities set and am watching the local weather conditions for any opportunities for low-humidity undercoating. Hmmm... considering this is coastal South Carolina marshland and it's Summer, this waiting could become problematic.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Friday Night Fight

It's on! My brother and I are going to play a game of 40k this Friday night which will be the first game for both of us in probably two years or more. Neither of us has read the 5th edition rules but I want us to try them which means I have some reading to do in the next day and a half. I figure we would be rusty with 4th edition rules so why not give it a try as I'd be having to review rules with my brother either way. I haven't gotten any painting done (big surprise...sigh) so we'll be pushing a lot of grey plastic across a grey plastic Realm of Battle gameboard. I'm planning on having us play 500 point armies featuring Imperial Guard vs. Tyranids, but if I have extra time I'd like to write a scenario for 500 points of IG against a 1000 point Nid army just to have more painted minis and plenty of carnage. My brother suggested we use thousand point armies each but I don't know if I could manage that with the minis to which I have easy access. Should be fun!!

I have 36 hours to get everything ready in addition to learning the new rules set... no problem.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Stonecutters Guild

I still am no closer to figuring out what paint scheme to use for my Imperial Guard army, but I have had a break-through on a different front. I've played Space Marines for as long as I've played 40k, which dates back to the Rogue Trader era. Early on I primarily focused on the well known First Founding chapters, painting and gaming with Ultramarines, Dark Angels, and Space Wolves, in additiona to many squads from various other random chapters. For the last ten or so years I haven't done anything significant with Marines other than paint up the occasional figure to test a color scheme.

As I could no longer settle on any one of the established chapters, I've been interested in doing a Space Marine army from a DIY chapter. But with so many options this has lead to my previous hobby paralysis, although I did paint a full Chaos Space Marine army with a DIY background that even made it to an actual GW-run Grand Tournament. (My tournament record of 1 win and 5 losses was not so impressive but it was good motivation for getting an army project completed.) But now I know what Marine chapter I was born to create... the Stonecutters! I've still got lots of blanks to fill in about their background, but it's a start! For those of you not familiar with the Stonecutters, they are a secret society and fraternal order featured in The Simpsons episode "Homer the Great," from season 6. I'm a die-hard fan of The Simpsons and I've been watching the show religiously since about halfway through its first season. Doing a Simpsons-themed Marine army will be a fun way for me to pay tribute to my all-time favorite television show and take my hobby to whole new levels of dorkitude.

Name: Stonecutters

Founding Chapter: Silver Skulls

Founding: Twenty Sixth, 738.M41

Chapter Master: Number One, Patricius

Homeworld: Fonsager (Springfield in Latin, sort of...)

Fortress-Monastery: Primary base located on Fonsager's moon, Hertagha.

Main Colors: Burgundy armour, yellow chapter badge and unit markings, yellow trim on the pauldrons, steel -colored chest eagle, turquoise or emerald helmet-lenses.

Specialty: Drunken assaults and Belligerent defense

Battle Cry: "We Do!" (usually in song form, like this, "Who shoots Ork Boyz in the face? Who kills off the Eldar race? We do! We DO!!")

Estimated Strength: 10 Companies with approximately 1000 Battle Brothers and Initiates

Thursday, August 6, 2009


The last few days haven't been very productive on the hobby front though I have gotten a lot done around the house. In the meantime I have also learned that I am subluxated and have been for probably the last twenty years, at least according to my chiropractor. My wife is a long standing advocate of chiropractics which in the past I never took seriously. But after a year and a half she finally succeeded in getting me to see one and I am now a patient committed to a year's worth of care. So although I still haven't done any painting in close to two months, I now have a new excuse... my spine is misaligned! Oh yeah, I'm also getting new glasses in less than two weeks which I think could make an immediate impact so maybe things will start to turn around. We're making real progress on the house too so I'm feeling positive about the general direction of things and I believe I'll get the hobby side worked out soon.

As for the Jopall 99th I have decided to put together the minis needed for an initial 500 point army while I try to sort out my concerns about their paint scheme. I'm having second thoughts on using the standard Jopall colors. The use of white is really starting to bother me but I'm liking the regiment's background more and more. I feel like if I abandon having white plates then there's really nothing much left that ties them to the orthox costume and that they would be essentially Jopallian in name only. It makes sense to me that a regiment wouldn't be defined by the colors of its uniform but it often feels that way to me with the less well defined IG regiments. By comparison it was just in the previous codex that featured almost a full page of alternate uniforms worn by just the Cadian 8th, so I suspect there may be more latitude with my army from Jopall than I am currently feeling. I'm still going to paint a test figure just to see if I like it but regardless I am not as set on a scheme than I had last believed. Meanwhile the little bit of hobby time I have had has been spent putting together more guardsmen, including a plasma gunner and two standard troopers to replace a pair of old ones with poses for which I no longer care.

[Maybe more to come on this, but I probably don't have much else to write. Sorry]

Sunday, August 2, 2009