Thursday, 30 January 2014

Painting Blood Angels Tactical Squad Tutorial

This Blood Angels painting tutorial is based off of my new, darker, colour scheme (although it's not too dark - they're still 'bangles' after all!). You had a taster of my next generation BA army with the Scouts, well here is a fully blown Blood Angels Tactical Squad. Sorry about lack of detail in the photos, I desperately need a new camera!

Blood Angels Tactical Squad

I don't confess to be an expert on painting, but I hope this little tutorial will help a few people get started without the experimentation I had to do first. I've tried to write this for beginners, but assume basic knowledge of painting (i.e. you know how to highlight, what a wash is, etc).

What you will need if you want to follow this tutorial exactly (although you don't have to follow my method to the letter if you don't have all the paints):

  • Models (duh)
  • Chaos Black spray
  • Mephiston Red spray
  • Base: Mephiston Red
  • Base: Mechanicus Standard Grey
  • Base: Leadbelcher
  • Base: Rakarth Flesh
  • Base: Zandri Dust
  • Base: Averland Sunset
  • Base: Abaddon Black
  • Base: Steel Legion Drab
  • Base: Warplock Bronze
  • Layer: Warpstone Glow
  • Layer: Moot Gren
  • Layer: Evil Sunz Scarlet
  • Layer: Wild Rider Red
  • Layer: Runefang Steel
  • Layer: Ushabti Bone
  • Layer: Flash Gitz Yellow
  • Layer: Dawnstone
  • Layer: Pallid Wych Flesh
  • Layer: Gehenna's Gold
  • Layer: Auric Armour Gold
  • Shade: Carroburg Crimson
  • Shade: Nuln Oil
  • Shade: Seraphim Sepia
  • Shade: Biel-tan Green
  • Shade: Agrax Earthshade
  • Shade: Reikland Fleshshade
  • Technical: Lahmian Medium
  • Transfers
  • A refreshing beer


Step 0: Construction
You know what to do here, but I just wanted to interject and say its really useful (especially if you're spraying the basecoat) to leave the boltguns detached. Leave the guns on their sprue if you want an easy time with painting too, although you should chop at least one out to use as a guide when assembling. It's useful to cut out the bits highlighted yellow in the image below before you undercoat the sprue, this will give you only two points (one of which will be covered up anyway) to touch up.

Boltgun sprue - bits to chop out.

Step 1: Undercoat and Basecoat

The easy bit, spray Chaos Black and leave to dry for ages. Spray Mephiston Red. These coats need to be really light, and make sure you hold the can more than 30cm away to prevent bobbling or it going on too thick (the red spray is especially touchy). Make sure the black is completely dry before you move on to the red.


Step 2: Base Colours and Washes

Wash the entire model with Carroburg Crimson and wait for it to completely dry. Paint the armour joints and chest eagle Mechanicus Standard Grey, and metal bits Leadbelcher. Wash both of these colours with Nuln Oil. Now you need to do the base and wash for the following things:

  • Parchment/Cloth: base Rakarth Flesh then wash with Seraphim Sepia.
  • Skulls: base Zandri Dust then wash with Seraphim Sepia.
  • Wax/Eyes/Plasma: base Warpstone Glow then wash with Biel-tan Green.
  • Gold: base Warplock Bronze followed by Gehenna's Gold then wash with Reikland Fleshshade.

Try and be neat with these but if you slip don't worry as we'll be touching them up.


Step 3: Basing

It may seem weird to be basing your model at this stage, but I've found you can get a much better drybrush if you don't have to worry about ruining your paint work, and you'll be touching up stray brush strokes in the next step anyway. Different people have different ways of basing, but for these models I've gone with a 'dead ash world' style. Water down some PVA and paint it onto the base. Dip the model in sand and leave it to dry for a few hours. Wash the sand with Nuln Oil, this also helps it stick. Once the wash is completely dry heavy drybrush Rakarth Flesh over the sand, then a very light drybrush of Pallid Wych Flesh.


Step 4: Layer Colours

Layer on Mephiston Red (water it down!), leaving the recesses and bits no one is going to see anyway. Layer the base colour back over the bits you washed in Step 2, leaving the recesses:

  • Parchment/Cloth: Rakarth Flesh.
  • Skulls: Zandri Dust.
  • Wax/Eyes/Plasma: Warpstone Glow.
  • Gold: Gehenna's Gold.


Step 5: Highlights

The time consuming step, but arguably the most important as it just makes your painting more 'real'. Highlight the edges of the red with Evil Sunz Scarlet. Have a beer (maybe a nap) to help reduce the pain of RSI. Then highlight just the corners with Wild Rider Red (this makes the armour pop). Then highlight the following:
  • Grey: Mechanicus Standard Grey.
  • Metal: Runefang Steel.
  • Parchment/Cloth: Pallid Wych Flesh.
  • Skulls: Ushabti Bone.
  • Wax/Eyes/Plasma: Moot Green.
  • Gold: Auric Armour Gold.


Step 6: Squad Markings (optional)

It depends on how you want to paint your squad, but I've chosen to detail squad markings on the knees in accordance with the BA codex. The pad is painted with watered down Averland Sunset and given a highlight of Flash Gitz Yellow. I've also used these colours to paint the blood drops on my Sergeant. The blood drop on the knee is Mephiston Red with a slight Evil Sunz Scarlet fleck. A good trick to painting blood drops is to paint an upside down cross, connect the tips, then fill it in.


Step 7: Boltguns

With the main model mostly done it's time to paint the weapons! Base the gun with Leadbelcher and give it a wash of Nuln Oil. Paint the 'case' of the gun with Abaddon Black. Highlight the metal with Runefang Steel and the black with Mechanicus Standard Grey. Finally, give the black corners a highlight of Dawnstone. Paint the rest of the gun (i.e. the hand and any skulls/purity seals) with the same colours you did in previous steps. Once your guns are dry, chop them out the sprue and tidy up the barrel end with Leadbelcher (or drill it out like I've done). Give the wrist a drop of super glue and stick it to the model.



Step 8 Transfers

My previous Blood Angels used sculpted metal pads, but as I didn't fancy the idea of the new finecast version (and didn't want to fork out £11.50 for a single squad's shoulder pads) I opted for transfers. I've heard great things about Microsol when working with transfers but I ended up trying the simple GW method.

Cut around the transfer as close as you can with a knife, leave to soak for 30 seconds then brush off the baking paper on to the shoulder pad. Once the transfers are dry, paint over them with a layer of Lahmian Medium to bring the gloss down and keep them stuck. Touch up the areas around the transfers with Mephiston Red. I also like to add 'battle damage' to the transfers to blend them in (see the second image below especially).


Step 9: Celebrate!

Finally, give the base rim a few coats of Steel Legion Drab. Pop the cork on a bottle of bubbly and wish yourselves well done!

Blood Angels Tactical Squad - FINISHED!

Sergeant Armand

If you found this tutorial helpful (or incomprehensible) leave a comment below!

Darth Meer

Monday, 20 January 2014

HoR Kill Team Update

It's been a while since I posted a Kill Team update on this blog, but don't worry the HoR snotlings and Kill Team community have been fervently tweaking the rules and team lists for your enjoyment.


A Name Change (well, tweak)
What's in a name? Well apparently lots of confusion. People have been getting mixed up between our version of Kill Team and the newly released Kill Team digital rules by GW. I won't go into which is superior (I'll leave that to the loyal members of our Facebook group) but it has become apparent that we need to distinguish ourselves a little. From this point forward we will reference our popular, unofficial ruleset as 'HoR Kill Team'. It's only a little tweak, but may save some confusion.

HoR Kill Team Rules v2.1
Although the sweeping changes to the HoR Kill Team rules have finally been ironed out, the core rules has seen a few tweaks (and a style change) since the last KT update I posted, especially within the mission rules. Most of the team lists have also had a large update in the last few months to bring them up to date, so if you haven't checked them out in a while you can grab the latest version of the rules and team lists here.

The HoR Kill Team Facebook Group
As always, your one-stop-shop for HoR Kill Team news, feedback and questions is the HoR Kill Team Facebook group, which you can visit here. Our numbers have grown to over 500 now so join in the discussion and share some photos of your team!


Here are a few of the photos the community has shared with us during the past year to wet your appetite:

Photo by Jeffrey Rademakers
Photo by Markus Kuttelwascher
Photo by Markus Kuttelwascher
Photo by Joshua Edward Collins
Photo by Jared Swenson
Photo by David Martin
Photo by Maciej Kaminski
Photo by Luigi Accardo
Photo by Damiano Garonzi

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Blood Angels Honour Guard Kit Bash

I received a few sets of the new marine boxes over Christmas, and as I didn't really need a Sternguard squad I though I'd kit bash it up and build myself a proper traditional Honour Guard for my Blood Angels (i.e. one with all the trimmings, not just 4 special weapons).

Blood Angels Honour Guard Kit Bash

I've used a combination of Sternguard, Vanguard, Sanguinary Guard, Death Company and a few bits from my bits box with these models. I've purposefully gave them static poses to match with the plastic Chaplain and Librarian models (which I also received for Christmas and will be building soon!) The heads are blu-taced on at the moment, as i want to spray/paint these separately (being gold and all).

I've also built up a Vanguard and Sanguinary Guard squad too. Used both of them in my last game and they actually did fairly well, even against my friends Iron Warrior Terminator list... The Vanguard Vets survived a crash and burn from the Stormraven thanks to their fancy storm shields.



Can't wait to paint these up!

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

What a difference 5 years painting makes!

What a difference 5 years makes to your painting! The model on the left is from 2008 (I was 21, fresh from uni), the model on the right is one I've just painted - although I've yet to apply transfers.


If you need proof that practice makes perfect, here is is.

Blood Angels painting tutorial coming soon :-D

Darth Meer

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Getting Started With Marvel Hardcover Collections - A Buyers Guide

A little off-topic for this one, but most of us are like-minded guys so I'm pretty sure this article will be of interest to a few of you!

First, a preamble: I don't claim to be an expert in comics in any shape or form. I read comics when I was kid but they have only recently (last 5 years or so) regained my interest. It has taken me a good few years to get my head around it all, and this article is me sharing what I've found when I restarted my collection. Hopefully it will help someone else out there to understand where to begin their own!

My Marvel Hardcover Shelf... in progress.

Getting Started

So, I decided to start a Marvel graphic novel collection. I found that there are many ways you can do this, the cheapest way would be to go the trade paperback route: these are perfect bound books of about 150 pages (about 5/6 issues). Oversized Hardcovers can vary from 150-500 pages and can collect entire runs of comics - plus they look awesome on the shelf (and can still be fairly cheap from Amazon). Finally, The fairly recent Omnibus range can hit 1500 pages and cost near £100, but are great for collecting single series - especially those of non-modern age.

As I wasn't going to go mad (to start with) I chose to focus on Oversized Hardcovers (OHCs) as these seemed to be the best way of collecting a good looking shelf collection.

Marvel Events

When I first started collected OHCs I focussed on contemporary X-men books. This seemed to be the easiest way to begin as there was a clear-cut reading order. However as I progressed I soon learned that Marvel comics do not have a clear reading order! Their yearly 'events' interweave with the rest of the series', and storylines in those series' become incomprehensible unless you read the event 'mini-series' first...

So in the end I gave up on X-men and read the most recent events in order. According to the web its best to start at around 2004 and work from there, as it was at that point where Marvel events really started to affect continuity. There have been loads of events (including lots of 'cosmic' ones that don't really affect the continuity of the 'earth-based' ones), so I tried to figure out the key ones before planning my purchases:

2004-05: Secret War - OHC Link TBP Link
This is a nice tidy event where Nick Fury rounds up a bunch of heroes and invades Latvaria (Dr Doom's kingdom). Although fairly simple, it actually has the beginnings of story threads that only come to fruition many years later. It also acts as a great introduction to the main Marvel characters (especially if you've just started collecting), as most are present in some way during this event.

2005-06: House of M - OHC Link TPB Link
No More Mutants. Pretty much mandatory if you're thinking of starting an X-men collection as its repercussions reverberate through a decades worth of storylines. It's also a must if you're following the Scarlet Witch storyline.

2006-07: Civil War - OHC Link TPB Link
Civil War is an epic event where the mighty heroes of earth are split down the middle, fighting each other over the Superhuman Registration Act, and ends in a surprising death. Although the main mini-series if quite short, this event plays out more in the Avengers comics, which is why I also recommend getting this book as a companion.

2008: Secret Invasion - OHC Link TPB Link
The Skrull alien race infiltrates earth and imposes as their most loved heroes. The beginnings of this event took place during the Secret War and through the (mostly) Avengers comics since then. Some cool twists and turns in this book. The Mighty Avengers: Secret Invasion book ties up loads of lose ends as well.

2009: Dark Reign
As a result of the Secret Invasion Norman Osborn (The Green Goblin) becomes director of SHIELD and replaces the Avengers with his own, less savoury, team. There isn't actually an 'event' book as such for this one, but the best compilation of Dark Reign is the Dark Avengers book which takes place neatly between Secret Invasion and Siege. Speaking of which...

2009-10: Siege - OHC Link TPB Link
Siege is the culmination of the Civil War/Secret Invasion/Dark Reign storyline in an epic finale! To get the most out of this you'll need to grab the Thor (Straczynski) omnibus, as it explains why Asgard is in Oklahoma. The end of Siege then follows straight into...

2010: The Heroic Age - OHC Link
After Siege the 'big three' Iron Man, Cap America and Thor become best buds (well not quite) again after years of fighting. I assume due to the success of The Avengers movie! :-P.

Interlude
There are quite a few 'mini-events' that take place here. Including Chaos War and Children Crusade. Honestly you don't really need them for continuity's sake. The Children Crusade is actually really good though, and explains Scarlet Witch's re-emergence and basically sets up Avengers vs. X-Men. Fear Itself also takes place here (a pretty big event) but isn't available in OHC and apparently wasn't that good.

2012: Avengers vs. X-Men - OHC Link TPB Link
This is actually best read AFTER you've read the X-men books to be honest (see below), as it focusses a lot on Hope's storyline as well as understanding what Utopia is.

And that's you up to date! You can of course also grab the 2013 event Age of Ultron, but it's a pretty standalone event.

Character Series OHC/Omnibus List (2004+)

Now you've got all the recent events out the way, you should be looking at collecting your favourite character series! Honestly it doesn't matter what order you read these in, especially if you've read all the events above.

I'm sticking to the OHC and Omnibus collections that take place during the 2004+ era with my collection (so they coincide with the events I've also collected), so I'll focus on them here and try and explain where each book fits in the Marvel timeline. There are lots more books that cover the earlier years but you'll have to look elsewhere for where to start with them!

Iron Man
Iron Man Extremis (before Civil War - a cool story that defines the modern Iron Man)
Invincible Iron Man vol 1 and vol 2 (during the Dark Reign, Siege and well into the Heroic Age)

Captain America
These take place directly after one another:
Captain America (Brubaker) Omnibus (before Civil War)
The Death Of Captain America Omnibus (spoiler much! after Civil War, during Secret Invasion)
Captain America Lives! Omnibus (during Dark Reign)

Thor
Thor (Straczynski) Omnibus (pretty much sets up the Siege event)

Fantastic Four
Fantastic Four (Hickman) Omnibus vol 1 (during the Dark Reign)

New Avengers
This is a tricky one, as the first 3 volumes of the OHC are now collected in an Omnibus but the others are yet to be! I would assume the last 4 OHCs will be in a vol 2 at some point...
New Avengers Omnibus vol 1 (starts before House of M, ends with Secret Invasion)
New Avengers Omnibus vol 2 (between Secret Invasion and Siege - yet to be released)

Mighty Avengers
A new Avengers team created by Iron Man after the events of Civil War, runs parallel and ends at the same point as the New Avengers above).
Mighty Avengers: Assemble
Mighty Avengers: Secret Invasion
Mighty Avengers: Dark Reign

Hulk
Hulk doesn't really feature that heavily in Marvel events for some reason, but he did have his own event in 2006 with the amazing Planet Hulk/World War Hulk storyline.
Planet Hulk
World War Hulk

Others
Secret Warriors Omnibus (takes place during Dark Reign, a great 'spy' book)
Dark Avengers (basically the Dark Reign event book)

X-men
The X-men arc between House of M and AvX is epic (with many, many books), so I've just included the important books in the storyline:
New X-Men (Morrison) Omnibus (although older than 2004, this is great starting point to modern X-men)
Astonishing X-Men (Joss Whedon) Omnibus
House of M (the event - see above)
Endangered Species
Messiah Complex
Manifest Destiny
Utopia (takes place during Dark Reign and features the Dark Avengers)
Nation X
Messiah War
Second Coming
Schism
If you grab Children Crusade this will lead you nicely into the Avengers vs. X-Men event.

The End

I know this article has been a bit waffly, but I hope it has helped at least one person out there to make sense of the minefield that is modern Marvel!

Note that there are always new books coming out, so this article will go out of date pretty quickly. The best place I can suggest to visit for your Marvel OHC/Omnibus news and help is this forum.

If I've missed anything or made an error leave a comment below!

Darth Meer

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Blood Angels Scouts with Sniper Rifles Painted

With the new marine dex hitting, my enthusiasm for marines has come around again. Originally I had planned to start a wholly new chapter (Iron Hands) and start an army from scratch. But then I remembered all those other, unfinished, armies I have and re-thought that plan... If you read my last post you'll see the Blood Angels supplement I've been using.

Blood Angels Scout Squad

So, I'm going to be painting a few new Blood Angels units to scratch that power armour itch. Using a new colour scheme with the new citadel paints. I'm working on a Tactical Squad painting tutorial (using Mephiston Red spray) as well, so keep an eye out for that. The new scheme is a bit darker, a bit more realistic than my old 'ARGH RED!' style.

Blood Angles Scouts - Back

These Scouts are the first unit I've painted of my Blood Angels: The Next Generation. I've tried to do a little conversion work on them as well. I fully admit I'm not the best at sculpting with green stuff but hopefully it's not too obvious...

Blood Angels Scout Sergeant - With green stuff trim!

I wanted to give the Scout Sergeant an armour trim to make him more spangly (I don't think that's a proper word) and gave him a hand and head swap to mark him out as more of a veteran than his squad.

The previous generation of my Blood Angels.

For those of you not following my blog, you can find posts of my previous generation of Blood Angels here (scroll down). They were painted using the old GW paints so expansion is impossible really. Also, I started to paint them a good 5 years ago now and my painting has improved somewhat since the heady days of yore (well... Uni). Hopefully Blood Angels Gen 2 will be an improvement!

Darth Meer

Friday, 18 October 2013

Homebrew Blood Angels Supplement - Warlord Traits, Chapter Relics

Learning that the soon to be released Blood Angels digital codex is literally just an errata update was very disappointing. So I had a quick brainstorm and gave the Blood Angels the 'Adepta Sororitas' treatment with warlord traits, relics, etc. I also wanted to update their points costs to 6th edition standard, the simplest way of doing this was to write a mini-supplement for the new Space Marine codex. The Blood Angels follow the Codex Astartes pretty well so it made sense. My usual gaming buddies are usually pretty happy with me trying these thing out so I'll report back once I've had a few games.

You can download a slightly prettier pdf version here.


BLOOD ANGELS
AN UNOFFICIAL CODEX: SPACE MARINES SUPPLEMENT

To use this unofficial supplement you will need both Codex: Space Marines and Codex: Blood Angels. A Blood Angels army is chosen using the army list presented in Codex: Space Marines. There are a number of supplemental rules found below, including rules that will dictate which units you may or may not take in a Blood Angels army.


CHAPTER TACTICS
When creating a Blood Angels army, all models with the Chapter Tactics special rule must use the Blood Angels Chapter Tactic with the following special rules:

Descent of Angels
A unit that entirely consists of models with Chapter Tactics (Blood Angels) with Jump Packs can re-roll failed reserve rolls if arriving by Deep Strike. Also, due to the precision of their descent, it scatters D6" less.

The Red Thirst
After forces have been deployed, but before any scout moves are taken, roll a D6 for each unit with Chapter Tactics (Blood Angels). On a 1 the unit gains the Furious Charge and Fearless special rules instead of the And They Shall Know No Fear special rule for the duration of the game.


WARLORD TRAITS
When generating his Warlord Traits, a Blood Angels Warlord may either roll on the Warlord Traits table in the Warhammer 40,000 rulebook or on the table below:

1. Blood of Sanguinius: The Warlord and his unit have the Fleet and Fear special rules whilst equipped with a Jump Pack. If your Warlord is not equipped with a Jump pack, re-roll this result.

2. Accuracy of Angels: The Warlord, and any unit he joins, does not scatter when arriving by Deep Strike. If your Warlord cannot Deep Strike, re-roll this result.

3. Champion of Baal: The Warlord may re-roll any To Hit rolls while taking part in a challenge.

4. Visions of the Primarch: All units with Chapter Tactics (Blood Angels) in the Warlord's detachment will succumb to its effects on a roll of 3 or less, rather than a roll of 1.

5. Masters of the Sky: The Warlord, and any unit he joins, gains the Skyfire special rule

6. The Rage Consumes: One use only. Declare your Warlord is using this ability at the start of one of your Assault phases. For the duration of the phase, the Warlord and his unit have the Rage special rule.


BLOOD ANGELS ARMOURY
The Blood Angels use a number of Chapter-unique items, and have access to their own Chapter Relics.

Add the following to the Ranged Weapons list:
   - Hand Flamer 10 pts
   - Infernus Pistol 15 pts
Add the following to the Melee Weapons list:
   - Glaive Encarmine 15 pts
Replace the Chapter Relics list with the following:
   - Blood of Heroes 20 pts
   - Wings of Saronath 25 pts
   - Standard of Sanguinius' Bane 50 pts
   - Spear of Telesto 60 pts

Blood of Heroes
It was during the first battles of the Greyhell front against the Tau that the Blood of Heroes was created. The Chapter records that a single Blood Angel, outnumbered and alone, stood against an entire cadre of alien warriors, blessed by a single drop of blood from each of his fallen brothers gathered in a vial. The Battle-Brother claimed his brothers spoke to him through their blood and strengthened his will to survive against his foes. 

A model bearing the Blood of Heroes gains the Adamantium Will and Fearless special rules.

Wings of Saronath
The Wings of Saronath is the jump pack of the legendary Sanguinary Guard Saronath. Saronath was killed by unknown alien attackers on Baraspine, in the Adrantis Nebula. When he was found, his body was a dry husk, his golden armour shattered into thousands of fragments. Only his winged jump pack was salvageable. 

The Wings of Saronath is a Jump Pack (and therefore may not be taken with a Space Marine Bike or Terminator armour). In addition, its wearer gains the Fleet special rule and may use its Jump Pack in both Movement and Assault phases if it wishes.

Spear of Telesto
The Spear of Telesto is said to have been wielded by Sanguinius during the Great Crusade. Its blade is shaped like an elongated tear with a hollow in the centre to represent the single drop of blood Sanguinius shed when he swore fealty to the Emperor. The haft is sculpted to show the primarch as a hooded angel of blood and beneath that is a Purity Seal handwritten by the Emperor.

The Spear of Telesto is a weapon with two profiles:

                Range S AP Type
Melee           - +1 3 Melee, Two-handed, Master-crafted, Primarch's Wrath
Shooting Template 5 3 Assault 1, Blood Memory

Primarch's Wrath: The bearer of this weapon has the Rampage and Fear special rules.

Blood Memory: The Spear of Telesto will never cause Wounds against a model with the Chapter Tactics (Blood Angels) special rule, and the template may be placed over friendly models with this rule in contradiction to the normal template rules.

Standard of Sanguinius' Bane
This Standard of Sanguinius' Bane is an ancient banner that usually resides within the Fortress-monastery on Baal, it depicts the fateful duel between Sanguinius and Horus during the Horus Heresy. All Blood Angels that look upon it are driven to near blood lust with anger.

Friendly units within 12" of the bearer with Chapter Tactics (Blood Angels) gain the Fearless, Rage and Hatred special rules.


BLOOD ANGELS UNITS
A Blood Angels detachment may use the following units from Codex: Blood Angels in addition to those found in Codex: Space Marines:
  • Commander Dante
  • Chapter Master Gabriel Seth
  • Astorath the Grim
  • The Sanguinor
  • Mephiston
  • Captain Tycho
  • Sanguinary Guard
  • Furioso Dreadnought
  • Sanguinary Priest (and Brother Corbulo)
  • Death Company (and Lemartes)
  • Death Company Dreadnought
  • Baal Predator

A Blood Angels detachment may not use the following units from Codex: Space Marines:
  • Chapter Master (and therefore Honour Guard)
  • Master of the Forge
  • Ironclad Dreadnought
  • Legion of the Damned
  • Thunderfire Cannon


UNIT ADJUSTMENTS
A number of units in Codex: Space Marines are adjusted in the following ways:

Librarian
Librarians taken in a Blood Angels detachment must generate their powers from the Biomancy, Divination, Telepathy or Telekinesis disciplines instead of those stated in Codex Space Marines.

Chaplain
Chaplains are moved to the Elites section and gain the Blood Rage special rule. The Blood Rage special rule grants re-rolls to Wound in the first turn of combat for any Death Company unit the Chaplain/Reclusiarch joins. A Chaplain may be upgraded to a Reclusiarch for 40 points. A Reclusiarch is an HQ choice instead of Elite and gains +1 to his Wounds, Ballistic Skill, Initiative, and Attacks. A Reclusiarch may take an option a Chaplain can take.

Assault Squad
In a Blood Angels detachment, all Assault Squads are Troops choices instead of Fast Attack choices. Remove the 'Up to two Space Marines may replace their bolt pistols with one of the following:' option and replace with 'For every five models in the squad, one Space Marine may take one item from the Special Weapons list.'

Stormraven
A Stormraven replaces its Stormstrike Missiles with Bloodstrike Missiles.

Lucifer Engines
All models with the Tank unit type in a Blood Angels detachment, except for all variants of Land Raider, may purchase Lucifer Engines for 10 points. Lucifer Engines grant a vehicle the Fast unit type.

Land Raiders
All variants of Land Raider gain the Deep Strike special rule for free and are moved to the Dedicated Transport section. You may not take Land Raider variants as Heavy Support.

Sunday, 6 October 2013

The X-Wing Collection Expands (plus a little Rebel tactics)

For those who have read my review on the X-Wing miniatures game you know I think it's pretty awesome. So It's no surprise I've been increasing my collection of ships since then, as well as improving my space board:

X-Wing Space Board

The new space board is a simple canvas frame with the stars/nebulae painted on. Easy peasy! We even have two to play bigger games (as well as BFG):

Playing Battlefleet Gothic on 2 boards

My absolute favourite thing to use ever has to be this beauty though:

X-Wing Millennium Falcon

It's such an awesome model, and the paint job is top notch for a pre-paint. Many, many compliments to Fantasy Flight! The Millennium Falcon is also a beast in game, my two favourite ways to outfit this ship are:

Chewbacca - Draw Their Fire, Shield Upgrade, Millennium Falcon = 48 pts
or simply
Han Solo - Gunner = 51 pts

Chewbacca is by far the toughest nut to crack in the game, with his special ability of simply ignoring all crits your opponent has to get through every. single. one. of those 5(6) shields and 8 hull with no loss of firepower during that time. The Draw Their Fire card makes Chewie the perfect tank, taking critical hits from your more vulnerable ships (Y-wings and B-wings with their 1 agility spring to mind) and the 360 turret on the Falcon means Chewie can manoeuvre close to friendly ships without worrying about his own firing arc. Shield Upgrade increases your Shields by 1, its pretty expensive at 4 points but it just ups his survivability even more, The Falcon title is also a must as you'll be wanting to spam those Evades with all that firepower coming your way!

If you want your Falcon to be more of a beatstick you can always grab Han Solo as HAN ALWAYS SHOOTS FIRST. Well that's not strictly true (Imperials getting Initiative and all that) but you get the idea. I usually just load him up with a Gunner to absolutely make sure he damages something.

Although I've been rambling on about how awesome the Falcon is, I've been trying not to use it in our friendly games (it is pretty EPIC). The current build I'm playing around with is:

My latest X-Wing fleet

Luke Skywalker (X-wing) - Swarm Tactics, R2-F2 = 33 pts
Rookie Pilot (X-wing) = 21 pts
Prototype Pilot (A-wing) - Assault Missiles = 22 pts
Blue Squadron Pilot (B-wing) - Fire Control System = 24 pts

I struggle against a lot of TIE fighter swarms, so I thought 'if you can't beat them, join them'! Rebel ships are expensive, so my fleet is pretty unskilled (most of them are skill 1/2...) to keep the points down but its actually worked pretty well so far. Luke is in the list purely for skill 8 swarm tactics - mainly so I get the A-wings missiles off before it blows up, secondly so I can use the B-wing for pot shots at wounded ships before they can strike. Otherwise Luke's job is to try and stay alive.

As stated before, the A-wing is in there for its assault missiles: assault missiles are great against TIE swarms flying in formation! B-wings are pretty durable with a lot of shields/hull and can pump out plenty of firepower while barrel rolling out the way of firing arcs (the FCS is in there so he can still target lock while rolling).

I've tried some of the list combos on the net and they all end up with tiny fleets. In my experience, the more ships the better! I suppose I should really play Imperials...

Darth Meer

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Quick Citadel Mephiston Red Spray Review

Thought I'd do a quick review of the new citadel sprays (in-between the rain, I live in Nottingham...). Specifically Mephiston Red. I used the Blood Red spray back-in-the-day and remember it not being very good, so I was very curious about this new attempt by GW.

Ease of Use
If you know how to use the Citadel undercoat sprays you should be right at home with these new colour sprays. Just remember to undercoat your model first! Very light coats is a must, otherwise you'll either get obscured detail or a powder-like coating. You can usually get away with heavy coats with the black, but this red spray is very unforgiving (like white) - I'm having to strip a few models from my first attempt...

Coverage
The true test of a sprays capabilities (in my opinion) is BFG ships - it just has so many nooks and crannies to get into!


Pretty good! A few bits I need to touch up but a fairly even coating overall. Here's another model sprayed with plenty of detail:


This one has come out a little thick. You really have to spray this stuff on lightly! Hey, its all good experience for when I use this stuff for proper models (don't worry, that model was a spare). Coverage isn't a problem though.

Colour Match
Maybe the most important question is does the spray match the paint colour? 


The model was sprayed, then the right hand-side painted with Mephiston Red. It's probably hard to see on this photo but there is only a slight difference in shade. Mostly, its the fact the paint is more glossy, which most people will wash over anyway.

Economy
A 400ml can of spray costs £10, a 12ml pot of paint costs £2.40. You would think the pure maths of the matter would sway heavily in the favour of the spray can, but remember most of that 400ml is probably propellant and the very act of using a spray can is very wasteful. I sprayed a battleship, 2 capital ships, 3 escorts and that marine with about 1/4 of a can I reckon. For saying that the battleship is the size of most tanks (and I put way too much spray on my models) it's not bad. Would I have used a pot of paint (the same cost at 1/4 can)? Probably not.

Conclusion
In my opinion the new sprays (or the red I've tested anyhow) are a very good basecoat (not undercoat). It's infinitely quicker to spray models than basecoat them by hand. But they should be used as a basecoat and washed or painted over. The finish looks a bit too matt, especially in comparison with the regular GW paints. I think I still need some practice with them as they also seem to go on too thick - maybe GW really wanted them to colour match the base paints and piled up the pigment. Advice to myself from this test: lighter dustings from further away.

Darth Meer

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

The Blog's Back Baby

That's right, it's back! The blog has been on hiatus for quite a few months as I sort my new house out, plan for weddings etc (I'm sure it wasn't missed too much) but I'm going to be hitting the painting table again with renewed enthusiasm.

Blog Changes
"There's going to be a few changes around here." The original plan was to get guest bloggers to write some articles but that idea seemed to die (although if any readers want to submit one, or even start a regular feature, email me here). So, as my painting isn't as prolific as it used to be I'm going to expand the blog's focus a little. Not only will I share my painting and gaming progress as normal, I may be doing reviews of non-GW gaming and even some graphic novel articles (well... one, maybe). We're finally getting a dining table soon so hopefully I'll be playing more board and card games - if you have any suggestions of games my mates and I should play let me know in the comments!

Kill Team
The Kill Team ruleset is still going strong, and you can check out the growing community on Facebook. At the time of writing the group has over 150 members! The group is a great place to share photos of your team and gaming boards, as well as work out any rule contentions you may have. Campaigns v2 has just been uploaded, adding more in-depth rules for Walkers as well as a new optional 'HQ' mechanic for those who want to take their campaigns further (think base upgrades in the original Dawn of War).

Mutagenesis Skirmish Game
The 2nd edition of my home-grown game Mutagenesis is nearing completion. You can find the alpha version here. It's a lot different to the original book, and now has a 'you-go-I-go' system like chess which has allowed me to add in things like interrupt actions and just gives a whole new tactical depth to the game. The book is still in heavy alpha and needs a full proof-read and more playtesting before it goes beta but if you have any comments or ideas please contact me (either on the KT facebook page or email below).

Plans for the Future
In the coming months you'll hopefully see progress on my Lizardmen army, as well as bits a bobs from my on-going Storm Reavers (chaos). We've also started playing Battlefleet Gothic again so you'll probably see me finally paint some ships! I'm also putting together a guide on how to start reading Marvel graphic novels so we'll have our first non-gaming post soon. Also look out for more 'xenos' related posts on the horizon... maybe with a Tauish feel.

Again, if anyone wants to post an article or start a regular progress report email me here! It may take me a while to reply to your email as I don't check this one very often.

Until next time,
Darth Meer