Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Drunken Rampage of Lord Commissar Xerxes

I recently picked up the Dark Vengeance starter set for Warhammer 40k from my local game store because, quite honestly, if I'm going to be paying that much money for something I want to make it worth my while. The set includes two full Space Marine and Chaos armies, a rule book, dice, templates and an introductory book. So yeah, not too bad.

One of the missions in the Dark Vengeance book is called Rampage. It's a solo mission that calls for a deranged war machine to attack its own forces. The player controls the troops while the machine's actions are laid out in the scenario. It's essentially Solitaire....40k style.

I took that scenario and twisted it around a bit. I broke out my Praetorian army for the first time in years and had the deranged machine be a drunken Lord Commissar. The expedition's commander has decided that, in order to protect his men, that the drunkard must be knocked unconscious and returned back to camp. Failure means death.

The table was set up with Lord Commissar Xerxes in the dead center. The space is only 24" x 24" and very tight to say the least. It was also about this time that I realized I needed more scenery....guess I'll need to get started on that.

Having won a small victory against an enemy outpost, Lord Commissar Xerxes celebrated with a bottle of very old wine. Not used to the drink, he becomes very drunk and dangerous. His powerfist crackles with energy as he stumbles to the center of the compound.

The Lord Commissar began to call the Praetorians vile names and read passages from The Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer in a belligerent manner. The Praetorian commander, Major M.B. Fletcher-Jones, decides to surround him in an attempt to subdue Xerxes before anyone gets hurt.

The Praetorians cautiously approach. Though drunk, the Lord Commissar is still a dangerous force to be reckoned with.

Lord Commissar Xerxes wastes no time and jumps into combat with a flamer squad. One soldier is killed outright but one man manages to wound the attacker. But they ultimately break and run, which further infuriates the political officer. The entire squad was killed and Xerxes was heard to be shouting (and slurring), "Not an inch backwards!" 

It was at this moment that a meltagunner from Major Fletcher-Jones' command squad took a shot at the Lord Commissar. Directly hitting him in the back, the armor melted away as a agonized scream went up.

Either too drunk or in pain to care, Lord Commissar Xerxes charged into combat with another Praetorian squad. Although he flailed his powerfist around wildly, all the soldiers were able to easily duck out of the way. 

Sergeant Nairn emerged behind the Lord Commissar and struck him with the butt of his laspistol. Unfortunately, however, Xerxes turned his head at the last moment and his temple was smashed - killing him instantly. The Lord Commissar crumpled to the ground in a heap and the men stopped and shot horrified glances to their sergeant.

Nairn was quickly arrested for murder by Major Fletcher-Jones and given a court martial on the spot and found guilty. The death sentence was later commuted to service in the Penal Legion based on Nairn's sterling record.

All in all, this was a fun little game. It only lasted 2.5 turns but was a nice little way to help knock the dust off and get reacquainted with Warhammer 40k.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Completed Bane Wolf

Pleased to report that I've finished my Bane Wolf!

Usually I dislike building 40k tank models, but this was actually a pretty fun project. It's been several years since I've built one and I feel my modelling skills have improved greatly since last time.

I was going for a "bogged down in wet and muddy trench warfare" look for this vehicle, and I think it came out rather well. The WWI camouflage works well underneath all the mud, rust and grime. It was really fun to discover a new way to paint rust and rather enjoyable muddying things up. I think this is the look I want to go with for most of my Death Korps vehicles.

What do you all think? As always, comments are welcomed!

Monday, June 3, 2013

WIP: Bane Wolf - Part II

Pleased to say that I made a lot of progress on my tank! Here just a few photos to show how things are going. 

Here is the hull finally glued together. I can say with absolute certainly that I hate putting these tank models together. Give me Flames of War anyway....they're much easier to assemble. But as much as I dislike building these things, they sure are fun to paint! It makes up for all the hours spent cutting, gluing, cursing and re-gluing.

Starting on the camouflage. I really like this particular color scheme. Reminds me of the old Cobra tanks they used to have in "G.I. Joe." But alas, that wasn't what I was going for. In keeping with the WWI theme of my Death Korps force, I kept on adding period appropriate colors.

This is what I eventually got. I was copying the following color scheme...

Now all I need to do is assemble the turret, add the hull weapon, outline the different colors with a Micron pen and weather the vehicle. The next few days should be pretty fun ones!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

WIP: Bane Wolf - Part I

I've decided to build a new sort of tank for my 40k Death Korps regiment - a nasty little thing called the Bane Wolf. What does it do, you might ask? It shoots out poison gas and has a hull mounted flame thrower. Because  nothing says "I loathe you" to an opponent more than gassing their army and then turning the corpses into charcoal. Not to mention it's also very, very World War I-ish. So it seems appropriate.

A dry fitting after I cut some of the pieces from the sprue. Unlike previous 40k tanks I've built, they all fit together rather well and shouldn't have much of a problem staying glued together.

I began painting the tank pieces after priming them. This is something new I'm trying with this vehicle. Instead of gluing everything together, priming, and then painting I'm painting the pieces as I go along. It takes a bit more time but I think delivers a superb, clean look. Eventually this tank is going to be covered in French WWI camouflage (hence the blue). My work with Flames of War tanks has definitely made me more confident about doing vehicles.

Everything was going fine until....

I realized I had glued the front hatch to the wrong section of the hull! I may have in fact uttered a few choice words at this moment....

I tried prying the hatch cover off, but it wasn't budging.

This is where the MacGyver skills my friend Ben taught me came in handy, however. 

I've gotten in the habit of scrounging things that may be useful for modelling. Rocks, sticks, coffee stirrers, etc. Basically, I'm always on the lookout for useful items for the bits box. While walking to work, as it happened, I found a piece of a shredded American Express gift card. Thinking that its grooved, gold chip might be useful I picked it up. Not 24 hours later it came in quite useful! While it's not perfect, it'll work for now. Especially since I'm probably going to find something to further cover the hatch.

More pieces painted and ready to go! I'm actually surprised by how quickly this bad boy's coming together. Stay tuned for more updates!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Death Korps of Krieg Test Figure

It's been a long time since I've done anything with Warhammer 40,000, but I knew it was only a matter of time before I returned to it. It was the game that first got me into miniatures after all. It's also fairly easy to find players out here on the East Coast. Flames of War too, but that's a blog post for a later time.

Something I've always wanted to do is run a Death Korps of Krieg army for the Imperial Guard. These guys are inspired by World War I soldiers and come complete with gas mask, puttees and trench coats. Everyone and their mother seems to paint them up as Germans, though. There's nothing wrong with that but I wanted a different look for my force. Given that I like a little bit of color within the dark and gloomy setting of 40k and am big on how good an army looks as it's being slaughtered, I decided to paint the test figure up as a WWI French soldier. That horizon blue looks très bon!

This unfortunate chap has taken a shot to the ribs and is fading fast. He implores his comrades for help, but they take no notice of him as they charge headlong into a storm of murderous fire. 

I scored this figure on eBay and payed a decent price for it (in my own mind anyway). It took two or three hours to finish him up, which actually kind of surprised me. But I'm quite fond of how this guy turned out. I think it'll be nice to see a whole force of these guys on the game table. But it's gonna take time. A whole lot of precious time. 

What do you think? Thoughts and comments are appreciated!