Monday, 15 January 2018

Multi-purpose flying skiffs

I got this kit from MadMechaGuy long time ago, but I had never got to the assembling phase (which generally is step 1 of all this!). Well, about time! It's a flying skiff that immediately remembered me those from Jabba in the Return of the Jedi movie. I loved it that much that I even got two of them! Well, let's see what am I talking about...

Not seeing it? Don't worry, tends to happen
When you turn it upside down it looks better
Weeeeell, this is the rough main shape. Job done
It's really intuitive to assembly (I didn't have any instructions, but the final pics from the web were enough) and the basic design is cool, but oh, you can certainly expect this is not the lousy end of this post. As I got two of them, I pretended to do two totally different skiffs.

The first one would be a recreation barge, more in the Jabba style, but WH40K oriented. So it would need some extra work to set an awning and stuff:

Now we're getting closer
The finished product would look like this:

Red flying luxury barge
The awning itself is but a piece of cloth, the rest are some random 40K bits or so. Some close-ups:

Ahhh, the grandeur
I should add armchairs there, or a table with a bottle of wine
Comfy for your wild parties off town
But I said I got two... I took a totally opposite approach for the other one. It's an industrial cargo barge:

The simplest configuration possible
Fodinae Corporatio or 'Mining Guild' in proper WH40K Gothic
It certainly covers all your needings. Buy one now!
The kit is pretty simple to assemble and, though the basic shape may look kind of raw in the beginning, it's full of possibilities. Had I devoted some more time to them, I could have added more details, but I'm happy with the results as this is just the work of this weekend, so the efficiency rate is fine for my standards :)

Already working on more stuff... ;)

Sunday, 7 January 2018

Riot Control Armoured Sentinel

Riot Control Armoured Sentinel. RCAS. Agh, that sucks. I really have to find a better name for this. But oh, I'm digressing and I haven't even begun to speak. Anyway, from what I've said, you may have a hint; I'm assembling a Sentinel for the Adeptus Arbites. The idea came to mind long time ago, but had never developed it until now.

The idea of having light armoured elements looked appealing, and I do love the Sentinel model. So everything was meant to happen this way! The work on the model is quite simple. I had to perform some unexpected greenstuff work as the sprue had some casting fails, but it was pretty simple to solve. I used the flamethrower configuration, but replaced it for a heavy webber (slight conversion), as it is of course the only logical choice I can imagine for a law enforcement riot control walker.

The police lights are from a cheap toy I ravaged/salvaged/ahem

Just in case you are new to WH40K, webber weapons fire chemical fibers that entangle the objective and immobilises it. It may be the most civilised weapon in all the Warhammer arsenal (of course if you don't take into account that the harder the victims struggles, the harder the fibers shrink until the objective is utterly crushed). Well, let's keep the 'it fires sticky glue to immobilise rioters' approach.

When you paint it in Arbites black, this is what you get:

You don't want to mess with the Arbites
Batman asked for a similar one, also in black. But he didn't get one
Much better than the lousy ED-209
The paintjob is consistent with the rest of my Adeptus Arbites stuff. Straight black, yellow stripes and the Arbites seal on the front. This will certainly be a hard challenge for the rioters in the scenario I hoped to play in 2017 and which now I hope to play in 2018.

It will come. It will eventually come...

Sunday, 31 December 2017

The Battle for Christmas

Last post of the year is going to be the promised Frostgrave AAR. It's been my first approach to the game and I've enjoyed it beyond imagination. I wanted to have played it some days ago, but you know what's calendar like these days. Anyway, there we go!

The ruins laid silent, the thin snow shining under the light of dawn, giving the whole view a true magical aspect. Magic would indeed be unleashed in a matter of minutes. Both Wizards felt each other. Close, really close. Father Chistmas and his Elves better run to get as many treasures as they could. The Grinch and his evildoers would do everything in their hand to beat them and avoid them to take the presents for the Children of Men. The Battle for Christmas was about to begin...

The Grinch Warband on the Left. Father Christmas' Warband on the right
Let's see how this goes. My pal will lead Father Christmas (Illusionist) and his merry ransackers while I take command of evil Grinch (Witch) and his green grin henchmen. The Elves have a bowman, a treasure hunter, a barbarian and thieves; the Gnolls have two bowmen, a templar and thugs. The spells were selected with the characters in mind. For example, Father Christmas has Beauty (you have to be a &%$# bastard if you want to beat Santa, for heaven's sake!) or Furious Quill (seriously, imagine a giant feather tickling the enemies, can you think of anything merrier? Ho ho ho!). The Grinch had Monstrous Form (needless to explain!) or Steal Health (as the Grinch steals joy, life and anything good in Christmas) instead. That kind of stuff helped the game to be more in the 'proper' mood.

I guess that Frostgrave is quite well known by now, so I think I can skip the rules explanation thing (if there's something you want me to explain better, please let me know in the comments!). For the first turn, Father Christmas got the initiative. He and some of his soldiers moved towards the closest treasure...

It's inside the church. Spoiler alert; you see it's half painted/half built. You will see it finished during 2018
So did the Grinch and some Gnolls...
Keep formation!
The Elf Apprentice casts Beauty on herself and more Elves run for the treasures...

Yeah, you run while I think of how beautiful I am
Gnoll Apprentice and his followers move on the other flank
So the first turn was about moving through the ruins and running towards the presents. Second Turn started and soon blood would be shed...

The Grinch throws a Grenade to the Elves (a stone embedded with evil magic)
Kills a thief and hurts the treasure hunter. Glups!
A thing I've liked about Frostgrave is its lethality. Strikes really disable you. That doesn't mean it actually kills you, but at least leaves you out of combat (which is the same in terms of gaming). Not many fantasy games dare to give this approach to its rules.
Meanwhile, a Thug reaches a Treasure
Father Christmas teleports close to more treasures
Rudolph gets the treasure inside the church and the other Elves move against the Gnolls
The Elf apprentice casts a spell sings a magical Carol and a Furious Quill begins to harass the Grinch:
Tickle tickle, ho ho ho!
Nasty Gnolls attack father Christmas!!
Gnoll offensive is not to be taken lightly
Rudolph takes advantage of the mess and drags a treasure towards his lair
The Elf bowman decides to shoot to the Father Christmas melee. Two Gnolls agains his master, what are the odds he accidentally hits his own boss? Well... Let me tell you.

1/3 is enough. The arrow hits the bearded wizard himself. Ouch!
On one side of the board, we have a one-on-one fight over some gifts
On the opposite one, we have the epic clash between the treasure hunter and the templar
A thief tries to sneak out with more presents
General overview of the battlefield by the end of Turn 3
The critical moment arrives...

Father Christmas is taken down by the filthy Gnolls!
Oooops! This may turn the tide of the game. Not only the elves' Wizard is killed, the treasure he was to get is in the power of the enemy!

In addition, the Grinch steals the treasure hunter's health, leaving her dead
A Gnoll takes another treasure...
But not everything are bad news to the Elves!

A critical hit immediately kills the Gnoll thug
And a pinpoint arrow kills the Gnoll Apprentice!
Well, things get interesting! A Gnoll leaves the board with a treasure. There are still 5 on the board. Two of them in the Elves' power (and a third left by Rudolph, so he can finally get into combat) and the other two in possession of the Gnolls.

End of Turn 4. can you spot all the treasures?
So let's go for Turn 5. Initiative is for Father Christmas Warband...
Frenzy Rudolph charges against the murderer of his master
The archer takes down the Elf thief. The treasure falls derelict
On the limits of the board, the Gnoll templar charges the Elf thief
The poor Elf has nothing to do
Neither has the Elf archer, slain with a critical hit
Green grinning hyenas begin to smother the Apprentice
At the beginning of next turn, the Grinch uses his magic to leap...

...and support his minion against Rudoplh
No matter how beautiful the Apprentice was, she is ruthlessly dismembered
Well, by now two Gnolls have left the board with treasure and two more are on their way. Father Christmas' Warband is reduced to just poor Rudolph, and things don't look good...

But he decides to give battle till the end. Respect
In fact he delivers a deadly blow to the Grinch himself!
But only to succumb immediately afterwards
The desolation after the battle
So in the end the Gnolls had three treasures out of the board and control over another one, while the Elves hadn't taken any for their profit and the whole Warband had been killed. Ouch. Appaling, I'm afraid. So yes, though the Grinch didn't survive to see his evil deeds fulfiled, the spirit of Christmas has been smashed. Spoiler: That explains why you didn't receive gifts this year and had to buy them yourself. Sorry, my fault.

What can I say, I've enjoyed the game a lot. The alternate activation system works perfectly and gives a lot of thrill; even if you have the initiative this turn, if you don't have a Wizard, your enemy is moving first, that kind of things. The spells were selected with care, trying to fit the characters' traits, and they have given a lot of flavour to the battle.
The game is tremedously agile, and deadly, as I said before! You have to be cautious about your actions, and I think that is what failed to my rival. He didn't make the most of his Wizard, using him mostly as a regular combatant, and the same goes for Rudolph the barbarian, who only used his full potential in the final turns, when all was almost lost. Besides, I have to say my pal had some extrememly awful dice rolls. That didn't help, of course, he jinxed almost all his rolls and had some catastrophic results at crucial moments that in the end turned the tide for the Gnolls.

Anyway, the system works and now we may have to think about a campaign. I'll have a look at the book, as many ideas may fit in this context. New characters and settings. Hmmm....

Until that moment comes, I hope you have the best 2017 ending and of course the best 2018 greeting! Happy new year!!