Sunday, November 29, 2009

Poised and Ready

Yesterday I finished undercoating the Realm of Battle gameboard, and it only took three cans of primer! But that gives me twenty four square feet of plastic ready for painting and that's pretty exciting. My problem now is that I don't know where I could paint them due to the size of the sections themselves. I think I've got a possible solution in the works, I just need to check on a few things before I can give it the green light. All things considered, I am happy to have this big albeit uncomplicated step out of the way. Also for the first time ever I have taken the extra precaution of washing all of the plastic in soapy watery to hopefully remove any remaining release-gunk from the manufacturing process. Although I haven't noticed any obvious benefit, the primer did adhere quite well and looks like I achieved an even coating.

Finally, I am one backpack away from having primed the first of my new Space Marines army. I'm going with Dark Angels and am going to really try to get into the painting as fast as I can. I have Dark Angels boxed army dating back to the release of their Codex several years ago and am going to be working mostly from what I got back then. I am however planning on using the normal Chapter Master rather than the limited edition one that came special with the boxed army as I would like to save it for sometime in the future. The one that is regularly available is cool enough and I reminds me of one of my old Dark Angels Captains that I painted close to two decades ago. That reminds me of another reason why doing a Dark Angels army has strong appeal to me. A long time ago, probably during the days of 2nd and early 3rd edition, I collected a mixed force of primarily Dark Angels with some Ultramarine allies. I therefore like the idea of returning to them after such a long absence... I might even be able to track down some of those ancient minis too! I don't know how well the paint job would look in comparison to the new ones, but it should at least still be intact; I remember that they had so much matte varnish on them that they looked wet. It wasn't intentional, but they certainly survived some rough encounters.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

AdeptiCon 2010

Some big news to share today... I'm going to AdeptiCon! I've never been but I've been reading about it and hearing about it for years now so I am really excited about going to the 2010 event. Making it even sweeter, I am going to be attending with one of my very best friends from my younger years with whom I have not been able to hang out in a long, long time. I am going to be so full into geek-mode, it's ridiculous. As my loving and supportive wife said, "I'm so happy for you, you're going to Dork Boot Camp!"

With AdeptiCon just 120 days from now, I have some serious preparing to do. Even though I won't be involved in any of the official tournaments, I want to be sure I can take advantage of any opportunities for pick-up games. I therefore want to have an army painted and ready to go so that I can take it with me to the convention, but I don't know quite what to bring. I will be flying to Chicago so I need to make sure it's a compact force which I can fit entirely within one Army Transport bag. Having thus eliminated any horde armies, that leaves me with either Marines, Chaos Marines, or Eldar from which to choose. I'm tempted to throw caution to the wind and go with Eldar as I assume power armour will already be very well represented. On the other hand, though, I have almost no experience using them and don't think I want to add the challenge of learning a new army as well. So that leaves me with some variant of the Space Marines, but which to choose?

Since I am already a ways into putting together my Black Legion Chaos Marines, it would make sense for me to push on with them and quickly get to painting. I now feel however like I don't want to rush them for this event and would instead prefer to take something else, especially as I still do not know how I plan on highlighting all of that black power armour. Turning therefore to the loyalist Marine chapters, I have come up with two options: my own Stonecutters, or the long-historied Dark Angels. Although it would be cool to premier my DIY chapter at AdeptiCon, again I don't want to rush them, especially as I hope to learn much in the hobby and painting seminars which I could afterwards apply to painting the Stonecutters. So that leads me to the First Legion, the Dark Angels.

This is how it always seems to happen. I start one project, but then I get excited about something else and switch gears. Even though this is something I have been trying to avoid, with little success so far, I think in this case it is a special occasion. I'm going to continue with my other terrain projects and what-not on the side, but until AdeptiCon my main focus will be on painting the Dark Angels. That's the plan, at least.

Oh yeah, and a Happy Thanksgiving to you!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Home Alone

I know it's been a while since the last time I mentioned my plans for the Realm of Battle gameboard that I own. Well I finally have started work on it! I've been home alone with the baby for a few days and am taking advantage of this time to tackle this project. Since I still have this weekend plus most of Monday until my wife gets back home, I feel like this is a nice chunk of time that needs to be utilized for something worthwhile. It's a big project but not one so extensive, like painting an army or lately even just a single unit, and I therefore think I should be able to get most of it done, if not all. I will post updates over the next few days to report my progress.

Today I opened for the first time the black bag that came with the Realm of Battle and was impressed with the strength of the pieces, as well as the nice details scattered across the surface. I rinsed each of the sections, then rubbed the paintable surfaces with dish soap. Finally I sprayed them with a hose to wash away the soap and have been waiting since then for them to finish drying. I still hope tonight to begin undercoating the pieces, although I anticipate having to do most of this step tomorrow. Hopefully the baby will cooperate and allow me a few brakes to do some spray painting.

As nice as the Realm of Battle is, I am disappointed with has the difficulty of using the clips that snap the six 2'x2' sections together. They seem fidgety and I don't like the idea of having to mash the sections down in order to get them to grab hold. Maybe there's a better way to get them together and I just need more practice. I hope so since I have had a change of mind and now plan on flocking the board and do not want to leave hand impressions on the grass. I've decided that it is unrealistic to think that I will someday have two boards, which would allow me to have one for 40k and one for Fantasy. On the other hand it is quite likely that I'll be using the one board for both game systems and so I therefore have decided to go with the basic Grassy Plains paint scheme. I feel pretty good about this compromise and have started to rethink how I will get the rest of my terrain pieces to match this particular environment. I need to make sure that the board still conveys the feeling of being an alien world in a sci-fi setting. I think a couple of Imperial Bastions or some ruined buildings will go a long way towards placing the board in the 41st millennium. Any other suggestions will be much appreciated, thanks!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

All Geeked Up

Woo-hoo! I have my new phone and my new laptop!!! They both arrived yesterday and it's been so much fun playing with them. I'm really impressed with my MacBook Air and I loved the fact that it was ready to run without almost any setup time. I am definitely feeling good about these purchases and am confident that I'll be happy with them for a long time. The only thing that surprised me with the computer is the lack of a disc drive, although I assume there is an external one available for purchase which would satisfy me completely. The phone works like a charm and I can tell it is going to change the way I do a lot of things. It amazes me what is possible these days, especially considering the first mobile phone I owned was one of those huge bag-phones that had to be plugged into your car's lighter.

On the hobby front, I anticipate taking a break for a few days as I know I will be spending a lot of time in the next week becoming familiar with these machines. Thanks for your patience!

Sunday, November 1, 2009


I am greatly pleased to announce that my long ordeal is almost at an end! I am making the switch to Macs!! Today I am going to order a new MacBook Air so that I can integrate my technowhatnots with the Apple stuff that my wife already has up and running. My expectation is that not only will I be writing more, but that also it should make the updates themselves more interesting as it should be easier for me to add pictures again to the site. I have been hesitant to do much while using my wife's computer as I did not want to cause and clutter with dorky photos and sci-fi art, so that will be taken care of once I again have a functional computer of my own on which to work.

I've been buying IBM/PC products for the extent of my computing life and have always been let down and disappointed by them. Not once have I ever felt comfortable with them or thought that I was in control and knew what I was doing. They must not function on the same logic as me because everything seems counterintuitive. Oh well, I'm through with them and good riddance to their nonsense. I've always appreciated PCs for their merits with regards to gaming, but I haven't been into computer games for years. It will be nice to be able to work on projects without everything constantly crashing.

Finally I also will be purchasing a new iPhone to replace my annoying Samsung Glide to complete the change in my technological allegiance. I picked out the phone because I wanted the little keyboard for texting but have since become horribly dissatisfied with it. To top it off, it was even more expensive than the iPhone when I bought it last year. So I'm doing what I should have probably done a year ago, and as an added bonus this means I will get to tell Verizon to bugger off as well. Not only did they provide me with crappy service, they did so at approximately three times the rate which I'll be paying for AT&T to be my carrier. Adios jerks, and thanks for nothing!