Sunday, 26 July 2015

Vampire Counts.....I'm going to say.....progress?

Two weeks ago I had grand plans to have an ENTIRELY new Vampire Counts/Death force done to play Age Of Sigmar with in mid-August.  The real world keeps interfering with that plan so I've made some headway on one new unit and I've done some re-basing and touch-ups to re-use one of my oldest Vampire Counts unit.

First up I have re-based my Armoured Skeletons.  These were some of the newest figs for the (then) Undead army for Warhammer when I first started the army roughly 18 years ago.  I did these up and they were effectively both the centre-piece and core of my army for a decade.  I'm not going to have time to get all my new skeletons done in time for August 17th but I have made a decision; at the end of August this unit is retiring permanently.  It's not that I don't still love the figures but continuing to haul them back out continues to be the main reason why I don't "need" to paint a new unit.  They've served me well over the years but they've got a few games left and then they're done.

I also made some decent progress on my Vargheists.  The Vargheists are very cool an uniquely Warhammer-y.  They are flying-ogre-sized-vampire-mutants.  Basically when a vampire gives in fully to their inner beast they become one of these guys.  This is the one unit I had always meant to add to my Warhammer army when the last army book came out but never got around to it, now they can make their debut in the Age Of Sigmar.

That's it for tonight.  If all goes well there will be another cool new (new for me anyway) unit done tomorrow and if not you'll at least see a WIP picture.


Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Age Of Sigmar - "Gently used" character models

Tonight I re-based a few character models for use in my Vampire/Death force for Age Of Sigmar.

It felt funny to already be re-basing these figures because the one thing all  three of them have in common is that they have never actually been used in a game.  In the case of my Jester (who I'm fairly certain I'm going to use as a necromancer) this is because I painted him recently for a game that I never actually got around to playing, no big deal really.  But in the case of the two Von Carstein models this is slightly odder or more embarrassing.  I actually got both of those models and had them painted prior to their initial release in metal, this means I've had them painted for about 8 years now.  In spite of that I haven't played a single game of Warhammer Fantasy since they were released to they've been sitting along on their 20mm square bases waiting for some attention for a while.

Stan told me based on his goofy rules I had to field Konrad Von Carstein in a game at some point and if you've read his rules (I have to talk to him and he has to talk back to me during games) and/or ever played a game against me you probably realise that kind of stuff is right in my wheelhouse.

Hopefully the Ghouls will be done tomorrow and then it's on to the Vargheists!


Monday, 13 July 2015

Age Of Sigmar - Ghouls (WIP)

Every time I think I'm out, they pull me back in!

I shared my thoughts last week on the new Age Of Sigmar rules for Warhammer and one of the things I walked away thinking was; hey great I can use my existing know....

So being a hobbyist I've decided to start up a semi-new Vampire/Death force in earnest.  I had originally been planning on playing Mordheim so I had picked up a few models but now I'm really exploring what I can do with Age Of Sigmar.  I've got to say the warscrolls have really gotten me away from thinking in terms of what a unit should look like (numbers, options, add-ons, etc) and have really sold me on looking at Warhammer box sets the same way I would look at Warmachine or Malifaux box sets, if it comes in a box it's a unit and I can use it that way.

So back to my Mordheim story; I had bought a box of ghouls with the intention of using 5 for Mordheim and keeping the rest aside for conversions, at one point I considered doing all 10 of them and starting a Warhammer Fantasy Battle unit but then I would need another box or two that I honestly wasn't sure I would ever field in a game.  Fast forward to Age Of Sigmar and my 10 Ghouls are a proper unit and can jump to the table once they're painted.

So far I've gotten the skin done and not much else, I'm planning an hour or two on them tonight and again tomorrow and then they should be done.

It's funny sometimes how the circle of your hobby life goes.  18 years ago when I had just started working for Games Workshop I was an avid 40K player who had never played Warhammer Fantasy.  I decided for my first staff tournament to play fantasy to force myself to collect an army and really learn the game.  The first unit I ever painted for my first fantasy army; Ghouls.  Now I've been gone from Games Workshop for 6-7 years and here I am looking at teaching myself a new version of Warhammer Fantasy and I'm painting Ghouls, sometimes it feels like you CAN go home again.


Saturday, 4 July 2015

Up On A Soapbox - Age Of Sigmar

It seems like everybody with an Internet connection is sharing their opinion on Warhammer Age Of Sigmar so I figured I'd take my turn.

Years ago I used to watch an animated TV show called King Of The Hill.  The show followed the adventures of Hank Hill a propane sales manager from Texas where the main source of the comedy was frequently Hank's confusion that some of the people around him didn't share his stereotypical simple conservative American values.  In one episode (I don't remember the main plot) Hank is confronted by a left leaning activist-type who questions the morality of his profession.  The dialogue between the two of them went something like this.
ACTIVIST - Your whole barbecue business glorifies the grilling of meat taken from animals using fossil fuels!
HANK - I used those same words with a more positive attitude to sell three grills this morning.

So here's what the talking heads on the Internet seem to agree on about Age Of Sigmar:
1.  The rules are really stripped down
2.  It's basically a beer and pretzels game
3.   Some of the special rules for characters/units are kind of funny
4.  It's an entirely new game that has nothing in common with previous editions of Warhammer
But what the major disagreement seems to be about is whether or not these things constitute a good thing, or a bad thing.
Personally I don't think good vs bad in this case is something that can be quantified and measured.  I think the real question is; your type of game vs not your type of game.  I don't think a points system and a lot of complex rules necessarily make for a balanced or better game (chess anyone?), but I can completely understand where some people find the lack of familiarity discomforting to the point where it's become a logical jumping off point.

For me, I'm super excited about Age Of Sigmar.  It really seems to put the idea of simple fun back into the game.  I also felt like I was done with Warhammer before this, not out of some sense of rage or old-git syndrome but because I was just bored of it.  This is new and fresh and invites me to use and paint (and yes, buy) small quantities of cool models and play quick fun games with them.

My last thought incidentally for all the competitive and tourney players who think that the game lacks depth; when Warmachine originally launched it was supported by a single page of rules and everyone thought it represented a quantum leap forward in thinking for miniature game design.