Thursday, 26 May 2011

Enigma Winged Vampire

With all the hullabaloo about GW prices and the rest of it, I think it's worth remembering that there are plenty of other manufacturers out there. I spotted this model on my morning trawl of the net. For me, just how a vampire should look. I was so impressed I immediately lifted my Vampire Counts book off the shelf and started to think about a list with a flying vampire, wondering if it would be viable.

The scale is 32mm, which is possibly bigger than a typical troop sized model. Not that it would bother me too much, heroes are meant to stand out of the crowd. I have a completely unpainted Undead army waiting for some attention, this figure might just have shunted them nearer to the front of the queue.

Also by Enigma is this lovely sculpt. What a fine pair of models! A lord standing in the ranks of the skeletons, a lesser vampire flying around the battlefield, it's a tantalising prospect. Damn it, I am feeling distracted by the possibilities. Must resist, must resist.....gah, I am as weak as a busty maiden in the arms of Dracula, who am I kidding?

Monday, 23 May 2011

Favoured of the Gods III : The Wizard's Tower

The Favoured of the Gods is a series of linked scenarios, pitching rival chaos champions into bloody combat. Each champion is striving to impress the chaos gods on the battlefield, hoping to earn favour in their eyes. If the champions fight well they will be rewarded, but failure in battle may result in punishment from the gods. 

The third scenario is fought over two games, each army's sorceror aiming to defeat a wizard in his tower, claiming a magical artefact if he is successful.  The 2500 point Chaos army contains 3 characters, the champion from scenario 1, the sorceror from scenario 2 and an army standard bearer. Each of these characters carries any magic items/chaos gifts gained (or lost!) in the previous battles. The enemy army is chosen by opponent. The game is played on a 6x4 table with a wizard tower in the centre and roughly six other pieces of terrain. In addition, three markers should be evenly spaced around the tower, about 12 inches from it.

Wizard. A wizard lives in the tower, he is placed on the top floor and never moves from this position. He is a level 1 wizard but knows all the spells from a randomly determined deck (we chose from fire, shadow, metal and death). Each magic phase he is controlled by the player who's turn it is. He can attempt to channel the winds of magic as normal. He can cast one spell per turn, randomly chosen by rolling a d6. The controlling player then decides if he wants the wizard to cast the spell, using dice from the casting pool (and the wizard's channeled dice if he gained one). The usual rules for casting spells from a building apply.

Terrain rules. The wizard has magical traps and enchantments in place to protect his domain. Around the tower are 3 markers, which represent magically concealed terrain. When a unit gets to within 3 inches of a marker, the terrain is revealed. Randomly determine the type of terrain and any effects it has on the triggering unit. In addition, the tower is magically sealed and can only be entered by single characters. 

End of Game. The chaos sorceror is aiming to impress the chaos gods. He can do this in two ways. If the chaos army wins the game (using victory points as normal) the sorceror may be able to advance a level. Calculate the margin of victory and divide by 100, rounding up. The sorceror must then roll equal to or less than this number to gain a level. For example, if the margin of victory is 237 points, dividing by 100 gives 3 (2.37 rounded up), so the sorceror would have to roll 3 or less to advance a level. A roll of 1 is an automatic success, a roll of 6 automatically fails. 

If the chaos army manages to get a character into the wizard's tower then he can fight the wizard. If the wizard is slain, the chaos sorceror may ransack the tower at the end of the game. Roll a d6 to determine what he finds:- 

1 - the wizard's revenge, a magical trap causes d3 wounds on the sorceror!
2 - nothing is found
3 - Channeling Staff
4 - Earthing Rod
5 - Power Scroll
6 - choose any arcane item up to a value of 50 points from the main rulebook or the chaos army book

If any chaos character loses all his wounds during the battle he is removed as a casualty in the usual manner. At the end of the game his fate is decided by the roll of a d6:-

1 - dead!
2 - turned to spawn
3 - lose a randomly determined gift/magic item
4+ - no long term effect, but miss the next game in the campaign

Monday, 16 May 2011

That's what I call a longbeard!

This happy chappy made me laugh, he has the best beard in the world. Coincidentally, I am thinking about updating my dwarf army to convert it from 7th edition to 8th edition style, so I have been browsing various forums to see how the stout ones have been affected.

It's pretty glum reading in some respect, as armies seem to gravitate toward a certain style. For dwarfs this means taking a runelord, a thane army standard, 40 great weapons in a horde unit, a unit of Hammerers, some rangers, and one each of a cannon, grudge thrower and organ gun. That's if I want to build a competitive list.

But what if I want to continue using my army of old? It has unit sizes of 7th edition, 15 longbeards, 20 warriors and the like. Should I boost these to the bigger units of 30 or even 40 strong. Or should I stubbornly refuse to change in true dwarf fashion, clinging to the old ways? Is it better to follow the path already forged by countless players around the world, or should I plot my own course?

Thursday, 12 May 2011

Mad Machine # 4

The snotlings have been at it again. Another pump wagon ready for testing. This one is built from an old metal chassis that had both bolt thrower and stone thrower components. Some of these have been hacked around and re-assembled, the two "horns" for example were originally uprights to support the bow. Half of the bow has been recycled as a spiky roller. I guess it's quite easy being green if you are a snotling!

The crew are proving to be difficult to source, my old metal snotlings are tiny and would be difficult to see. I do have some old metal goblins carrying rocks that might fit the bill a bit better. Along with a few gnoblars I reckon they will be ideal.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Mad Machine # 2 and # 3

The second and third of the gizmos ready for action! The one on the right is straight from the box, a goblin doom diver. The rock lobba on the left is made from a number of bits scrounged from ebay. As far as I can tell they were originally stone throwers of some type, I have simply recycled them in a slightly haphazard manner, as a mad goblin inventor would.

I have one more gizmo to build, in it's original form it's a bolt thrower of old, but it will make the perfect basis for a second snotling pump wagon.

Monday, 2 May 2011

Mad Machine # 1

Here's a work in progress shot of the first of Gobrat's Gizmos. It's a pump wagon with the out-rigga upgrade (which is basically a makeshift sail). As I was building the chassis and main body I was struck that it resembled half a boat, so the upgrade suggested itself really. Most of the bits are from the chariot kit, with a few other bits and bobs from the orc warriors sprue. Only the barrel on top of the mast has been looted (from the Ogre Kingdoms sprue). There will be a lookout in the crow's nest plus a selection of motley crew. I have some old metal snotlings but they might be too small, so I might have to draft in some snotlings from the Bignose tribe (aka gnoblars).

Gizmo 1 is pretty much complete and ready to be primed and painted. I will build at least one more pump wagon before I get the paints out. I might even paint all the gizmos in one batch, after a mass building project. I also want to have Gobrat himself involved somehow, I would like him to be a bit like the greenskin equivalent of a dwarf engineer, but I'm not sure how to pull it off.

Sunday, 1 May 2011

May is Mad Machinery Month!

Stand at ease! Now chaps, settle down and pay attention, especially you at the back. This fine example of a World War II British commanding officer is Major General Percy Hobart of the Royal Engineers. He designed a number of adaptations to battle tanks to overcome anticipated problems in the planned invasion of Normandy, better known as D-Day. Tanks were adapted to build bridges, to clear minefields, to lay temporary road over marshy ground and overcome many other problems associated with amphibious operations. These weird and wonderful vehicles had fittingly bizarre names, such as the Crab, the Crocodile and even the Rhino (40000 years ahead of his time obviously). Collectively they were known as Hobart's Funnies, for more information you can browse this article on Wikipedia.

Apart from a tenuous link to a Space Marine personnel carrier, what has this got to do with Warhammer? It's an example of how the strangest thing can determine how my army is shaped, of course. I was intending to paint savage orcs in the coming month, but I have hit a wall with that particular project so have decided to put it to one side and do something else. Reading about Hobart gave me a flash of inspiration, to have a mad inventor character in my orc and goblin army. With a one letter change and a slight re-arrangement of letters, Gobrat the Goblin was born. He is going to invent and build some wacky contraptions for my army, known as Gobrat's Gizmos. May is mad machinery month!
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