Friday, 25 August 2017

Returning for now

Wow, remember this blog?

Well, a lot has happened, its been a huge two years for the hobby and especially for the Games Workshop side of things.

Honestly, I can't think of a better time to be involved in wargaming and painting miniatures. Games Workshop are continually pushing the boundaries of what's happening and a lot of companies are taking them on and really improving too.

Anyway, I have two ideas for new blog posts that I'll be putting up either this week or next. I also have a game I made to write about, but first I need to check that's allowed with the company I submitted it to as part of a job application (maybe more on that later too)

Monday, 13 July 2015

Nerd Rage of Sigmar

It's been an interesting week hobby-wise, I wrote a post for Corehammer that got a lot of attention, most of it positive at first, but then the dickhead, sexist, gamergate arseholes on Reddit got hold of it and took offence that they might be asked not to make quite so many rape jokes and consider being a considerate human being. 

Being all about ethics as they are, they flooded the comments with their barely coherent rage.

That was a fun little distraction.  

More rage was generated by the replacement for Warhammer: Fantasy Battles, Warhammer Age of Sigmar.

First off, I've played quite a few games so far and all have been great, nice and quick, loads of fun and everyone has had a good time. I've played more Age of Sigmar in the last two weeks than I've played Fantasy in the last 2 years. 

The hardcore nerds hated it.

The rule book is just 4 pages long. This sounds like a huge deal but it really isn't, with the Army Building mechanics shorn out of the rules and the fact that every unit has its own War Scroll with their rules on, meaning anything that was previously a Universal Special Rule is now on the War Scroll, it's plenty of space to fit the core mechanics on to. 

This seems simplified but in practice it allows them to expand unit by unit and easily add in as much extra stuff as they want in the future.

It works really well but still generated fury from people calling it childish (you know, as opposed to the super serious world of Squig Hoppers and Giant Hamster Wheels).

It's not in the least bit suited for traditional competitive play. It doesn't have points values or any sort of restrictions on what you can use, asking you to agree with your opponent if the game is going to be fair. Turns out, most “competitive” players can’t comprehend why you'd want to play fair when you're playing a game against another person when you can just overpower them and then you win. We've seen this happen with Unbound in 40K but they've doubled down here, use as much or as little as you like.

Then there were the “silly” rules, lots of the rules for the game give you benefits for little roleplaying things in the game, having a moustache, growling like a beast, etc. Being a rational and relatively mature human being I was able to see the funny side of this, but there have been more complaints, conspiracy theories about this trying to embarrass players into buying new stuff and throwing away the old and everything.

What you essentially have is the players no one actually liked to play, the ones who hadn’t bought any new models since 2006 and generally fucking stink raging at Games Workshop for ruining the game that they’d already ruined for most normal people. There was much flipping of tables (actually happened) and setting fire to their models in a pathetic and homophobic rant (again, actually happened) but the rest of us rejoiced, we can balance the games between us and not have to care about points and OP units any more. And so we actually tried the game. Because its free so why not?

Oh yeah, I didn't mention that, the game is free, the rules – free, rules for the existing models – free, the rules for new models – come with the models and probably free on the free app that’s on the way.
And yet still they complain.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Necromunda Part 3

Gangs, gangs, gangs!

The Underhive has loads of gangs you can join up to. Anyone who wants to get ahead in life joins a gang, it’s the only way to move on up and not be a victim, it’s a Giant Rat eat Giant Rat Hive World so make sure you bite first. Most young Juves will be born with an allegiance with one of the Hive City Houses, so I'll go through them first, they're the most common gangs in Hive Primus and what most players would use and, where possible, show you a typical ganger from the man whose pen defined my childhood, Mark Gibbons.

House Cawdor

Firstly is House Cawdor, this gang are strict members of the Redemption Cult,  a militant offshoot of the Imperial Cult that means they can’t show their face in public or risk death, so they wear heavy hoods, cowls and masks to hide themselves. This gang are typically aggressive and straight forward , they get access to lots of the close combat skills making them nasty in hand to hand.

House Delaque

The next house is House Delaque, these are the shiftiest dudes in the hive, if there is a scheme or a plot, these guys know about it. They wear long coats to conceal weapons in and shave their heads to make it hard for others to tell who is who, they prefer to shoot you in the back than take you on face to face, and they just think that makes more sense.

House Escher

House Escher are unique in that they're all women. Due to a genetic quirk, Escher men are all weak and a bit thick, so the women have to do everything. They are a fast, hand to hand gang who excel at getting in close before you can do anything about it. If you like to outmanoeuvre your opponent, before dispatching them in the bloodiest way imaginable, this could be the gang for you.  

House Goliath

Goliaths are all muscle, especially in their heads, they can grow into brutal combat monsters able to take a lot of pain and dish out even more, raging steroid enhanced techno-barbarians, they respect strength above all else. And they all have Mohawk’s which is cool.

House Orlock

House Orlock is the most populous House in the Hive City, they’re well balanced, having access to combat and shooting skills so are easy to use as you can build it the way you like to suit your play style as the campaign unfolds and adapt to who you’re fighting against, good all rounders who can take on any gang out there.

House Van Saar

The Van Saar are the most technically advanced of the Houses, they are renowned for making the most reliable tech in Hive Primus and so can sell at a premium price, because of that, they’re very well off. Most Van Saar have a knack for technology, which is a massive advantage as the campaign unfolds, the Techno skills are very handy. Its appropriate that this is literally a very beardy gang.

Outlanders; renegades, outcasts and psychopaths. 

The Outlanders supplement introduced a few other gangs as well, these less common gangs all operate very differently from the standard gangs and so you should check with your group if these are ok to use.

Ratskin Renegades

No MG image for the Ratskins, sorry, this is ace though

 The Ratskins are the natives of the deepest parts of the Underhive, thousands of years living among the debris of the Hive has given them a deep spiritual connection with it that no one else has, they avoid the other humans that don't show the Hive the respect it deserves.Some Ratskins do get involved in the world of the Hive City, through curiosity or to revenge harm done to their people. Known as Ratskin Renegades, they have been shunned from the tribes and group together into gangs of their own.  They have pretty crap ranged weapons, unable to make much technology themselves but are decent at hand to hand and can get around the Hive better than nearly anyone else.


The Scavvie gangs also live in the deepest depths of the Under Hive, not because its their ancestral land like the Ratskins, but because they’ve been driven out of the slightly more civilised areas of Hive Primus, they’re mutants and freaks all. They have tons of weird mutations but really bad at getting ammo for their weapons meaning they run out quickly. They can get an equivalent to a Heavy in the truly abhuman crocodilian Scalies, who have massive harpoon guns or shot cannons.


The Redmentionists are members of the same intolerant religion as House Cawdor, but they’ve decided that not enough is being done to purge the Hive of sin, so they gather up as many flamers as possible and set about doing it. These guys have tons of flame weapons, all their basic weapons can fit a one shot flamer on to add extra burning goodness.

Spyre Hunters

Just one of the 4 Hunting Rigs available to the Spyrer kids, the creepy Malcadon

The Spyrers aren’t from the Hive City or the Under Hive, they’re from the Spire, the world of the upper class, the rich and powerful. The 1% on Necromunda literally and figuratively look down on the teeming masses. They also hunt them for sport. That’s what Spryrer gangs are, bored and spoilt teenagers, proving themselves worthy of inheriting their family fortune by donning advanced Hunting Rigs with hosts of exotic and powerful weaponry and then hunting down the proles for a lark. Its fox hunting taken to its logical conclusion. Rich people never change, as is now, as will be in the 41st millennium. They’re the smallest gangs, numerically, you’re never going to have more than 5 gangers, but each one is massively powerful, starting with weapons and armour even the more experienced gang could only dream of and it gets better the more they kill.

Another Goliath because they're cool and never get enough love. 

That covers all the gangs in the main game and the expansion set, there were more though, the Arbites, the Pit Slaves and more but that's for another time, next article will be about the Hive City and how to go about getting one of your own to fight over. 

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Necromunda Part 2

Last post was some info on the world of Necromunda and the premise of the game, this time, I’ll talk about playing the game itself, the choices and setting up your gang to make your claim for glory in the Under Hive.

War on a different scale.

Thing is fucking huge.
I’m going to be controversial and assume most wargamers know about Warhammer 40k, chances are, if you stumble across this blog, you play it, you might have heard of Necromunda and wonder how it differs.

Warhammer 40,000 is typically played with a company of troops, maybe 100 models a side, depending on the faction, fewer for Space Marines, more for the horde armies like Orks, this can scale up to the thousands if you wish, with tanks and other larger war machines, up to the building sized Titans in your game, with Forge World recently releasing the massive Warlord Titan, which st Millennium.
stands at over 2 feet tall. These games represent the bitter struggles of armies of the 41

 Necromunda shows the grim reality of life for the downtrodden forgotten citizens of the Imperium of man. Gangs are around 10 strong and they’re regular citizens for the most part, to start with at least.

Because its smaller in scope, this means there is a lot more room for detail, each Gang member should have a name and will develop a story as they go on, gaining skills and injuries to show for their exploits.

Each gang member has a stat line, which looks the same as the current 40k one except it has a mysterious M at the start of it, this, if you play Fantasy Battle you’ll know, is the Movement Value. A typical human has a Move of 4, meaning in the Movement phase, they move 4 inches.

(This means that generally, it’s a little slower to get to grips with the enemy compared with the current 40k rules where most infantry moves 6 inches, it makes movement more important to get right and more of a challenge to think about, I have no idea why they got rid of this and replaced it with a standard movement and tons of special rules to make things move at different rates.)

Each Gang has a Leader, which in the typical 90s GW style, is your representative on the battlefield, which I always get a kick out of. The Leader has access to the best kit and is generally a little handier in a scrap and has better Leadership characteristics (obviously).

Most gangs then have a Heavy or some equivalent, for the standard gangs this is the guy who is a bit more capable than most and so is entrusted with looking after the best weapons, they’ll usually have a big gun, the most common starting Heavy will have a Heavy Stubber, maybe a Heavy Bolter if they’re very lucky.

The majority of your gang is then made up of Gangers, these are your average Joe or Jane Grox Pack, they have average stats and can have pretty average guns, Lasguns and Autoguns are popular, or a pistol and club if you want them to be more fighty than shooty.  As the system is more detailed, the amount of weapons you have can affect your combat ability, if you’ve got a Heavy weapon or a Rifle, its going to get in the way when things get up close and personal.
(Melee combat is very, very deadly in Necromunda but it’s a challenge to get into close range so it’s a gamble.)

Lastly, you’ll have the Juves, short for juveniles (this is common Mega City 1 slang for a young delinquent, unashamedly borrowed for the game set in a city which shares a lot of similarities with the home of Joe Dredd), these are the inexperienced kids, throwing their lot in with a gang for survival or for the glamour of being in a Gang. They’re lousy shots and worthless in melee and can only grab a pistol and a knife but after a few fights, they’ll soon toughen up and be a match for any other experienced ganger.

Your Gang isn’t just the bodies in it, its also its territory, as a Gang, you hold influence over an area of the Under Hive, what’s in your territory is randomly selected, you might have an archeotech horde with the promise of untapped wealth inside, a mine where you can work captured enemy gangers to death digging up the discarded waste of the millennia or just an old sump that you might be able to scrounge some water up from, each gang starts with a few of these and can expand over the course of the campaign, or of course, lose them if things go very wrong.

Next time I’ll go over the types of gang you can choose from and how they differ from each other! 

Tuesday, 23 June 2015


I'm going to start a few posts to introduce people to what is easily the best game GW have ever made, Necromunda!

What the hell is Necromunda anyway?

It’s the 41st Millenium, the Imperium of Mankind holds a million worlds throughout the galaxy, such a massive empire requires lots of sacrifices to be made, whole planets devoted to growing crops, factory worlds and more.

 Necromunda is a Hive World, it has a population of over 100 billion, all cramped in to huge Hive Cities, towering structures that stretch miles into the air and back down into the depths of the planet. The population manufactures mostly weapons, all natural resources long since depleted, they process millions of tons of resources from other worlds and recycle the waste of previous millennia into useable material.

At the top of each of the Hive Cities the richest and most power live, amongst the Spires above the pollution, they live in relative luxury and decadence, far away from the riff raff, below there is the Hive City itself, the countless billions live and work in the factories and recyc-plants, working for the Noble Houses making weapons to meet the ceaseless need of the Departmento Munitorum, scraping out a life as one of the untold cogs working themselves to death for the good of the Imperium.

Then, there are those to whom this life of unceasing work is an unreachable luxury, those who survive in the Under Hive, this is where life is cheap and disposable, people survive by bartering with the Merchant Guilds, scavenging among the refuse piles for a bit of useable tech or material that could be sold on and by grouping together in gangs. Gang warfare is common, gangs align themselves with the Noble Houses, working to do their dirty work in return for patronage and the promise of one day moving up in to the Hive City proper, or perhaps hoping to hit it reach with an archeotech hoard that will raise them up to the Spires.

Ok, so Necromunda is a planet, but isn't it a game?

In the game of Necromunda, you take on the role of one such gang in the Capital Hive City of the eponymous planet, Hive Primus, your gang is usually aligned to the Houses Cawdor, Delaque, Escher, Goliath, Orlock or Van Saar, each have their own history and predilections, from the more technologically advanced Van Saar to the near barbarian House Goliath and each will begin to affect how you play.

The game is designed to be ran as a campaign, with ongoing experience, with your gangers getting better the more they fight, earning credits to buy better weapons and equipment but risking injury and ruin at the same time. You’re aiming to become the biggest and badest gang around but a few bad decisions and luck not going your way will see you plummeting into the Sump with nothing but a rusty autopistol to your name.

Friday, 10 April 2015

Warhammer Quest and Deadzone

I've been mulling over doing a set of modern Warhammer models to use to play Warhammer Quest for over a year now, I have most of the miniatures I need in place and yesterday I finally started painting some heroes, both WIP so far. Haven't painted human (or dwarf) skin in quite a while, the Barbarian is especially nice to work on, rippling as it is with muscle, cuts and scars, lots of interesting things to work on, decided against the fur cloak he comes with, even though the original WHQ one has one, because it obscures some gorgeous sculpting on the back.

Easily my favourite miniature, Barbarian Dude Redux by Raining Frogs, I think between me and my painting friends, I have two of these of the 500 cast, gorgeous model. 

Also started on the Dwarf, although you can't really tell as it belnds with the primer, the beard is also started, I'm trying to match the Dwarf from the original as well as I can in spirit, which calls for him to be a Greybeard.

I also started and finished a Deadzone model in about 15 minutes, wanted to try something on this model and I have two of them to do, so here it is, its mostly drybrushed, with a touch on line highlighted for the extremes. It was quick and looks ok and really, thats all I am aiming for with Deadzone, the "Restic" miniatures aren't worth spending any real time or effort on.

Added some blood effects too, the Resin version includes a ripped
apart soldier and will need even more blood. 

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Improving Basing

How it looked before
So last post, I showed the painted Thanatar Siege Automata, and talked about how I wasn't happy with the base and letting it tell the story that I wanted.

I decided that adding a discarded shoulder pad of the Sons of Horus would help tie the theme in, I decided to change this to Death Guard, keeping it more relevant for 40K if I'm able to use Mechanicum forces in that game at some point, and I think it would mix in with the corruption and rust a bit better.

Pad in place and weatherd to match. 
Layering up bone to white, then sponging and stipping rust on to the pad gave it the look I wanted, a few washes of Vallejo Smoke dirtied it up a bit and picking out the edging in a dirty bronze.

This was then glued next to the beam and stippled with the weathing powders used on the base to tie it together.

Something is still missing from this though, looks bare. 
Despite this addition, it was still missing something, so it was back to the drawing board/ the Facebook discussion group for more ideas, I had thought of adding more discarded Astartes parts, weapons etc. but I didn't think it would help to be honest.

My friend Pete suggested grass. We chatted and I've tried it and I think it looks good,

 The idea was again, to represent the spreading corruption of the Heresy and the Chaos Gods in general, the addition of the shoulder pad helps now, its as if even a discarded part armour of a tainted soul is enough to desecrate the ground, but the loyal forces of the Emperor still stride on, impervious.

This has been a really fun project and its nice to have gotten a model and base totally finished, this is the first model I've managed to finish completely since moving house 6 months ago!

More dead grass would be
great to really sell it