Typically we go and get into a game a mere few weeks before the manufacturer decides they are going to stop supporting it and stop casting anymore miniatures…
For anyone that hasn’t come across this game yet, it is a sci-fi space fleet combat game at the level of squadrons of escorts and capital ships. It is a GW game but…its from back when they actually designed decent games and it wasn’t all about ‘pay to win’. A typical fleet might be a few squadrons of frigates/destroyers supporting maybe half a dozen cruisers and a battleship. The rules are pretty good and there is plenty of really nice aspects such as launching ordinance in the forms of torpedoes or fighters/bombers and the minimum distance ships have to move before they can turn.
Clearly you have to have a ship so equipped before you can launch fighters/bombers but the idea of having a carrier in the fleet appealed to me even before we played our first game. It was even better when I realised the whole game is full of choices, there is nothing you can do that isn’t a matter of summing up the array of options before you. Sometimes it comes down to the least worst option, which is an aspect I particularly like in a game. Anyway, you can read loads of reviews of this game elsewhere.
When Rick showed us all this game for the first time it was an Imperial versus Chaos fleet skirmish, Nigel and me were the Imperials. Although this ended in an imperial victory it was the Chaos ships that appealed to me, especially since Rick had painted them a deep red colour reminiscent of the Cygnus from the ‘The Black Hole’ movie. If you don’t know what this was or have never seen it, check out this link http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0078869/, the guy in the review that talks about Maximillian the robot has got it dead right!
Anyway, from that game onwards I had to get me a Chaos fleet. This is despite my usual aversion to anything with the word Chaos in the title and also my aversion to anything from GW…In my mind they are just cool ships from a different fleet.
Since GW were good enough to stop making the models I have had to source the fleet from e-bay but luckily I have managed to get them all in an unpainted state so far, the cruisers were unmade plastics still on the sprue. So here is the current fleet:
(3 photos because I am struggling with my new camera…)
The fleet is made up of:
An Acheron class heavy cruiser. The main armament of this ship being long range lances.
In BFG a lance is a generic term for a hard hitting weapon, think of them as powerful lasers or such like. They ignore the armour value of the target ship and always hit on a 4+.
A Devestation class cruiser. This is a carrier and enables the fleet to launch either fighters for defence from torpedoes or enemy bombers, or to launch offensive waves of bombers or assault ships.
Currently I have eight stands of fighters but there are more on the way. The fighters are from Brigade Games and mounted on 20mm square bases. The number of fighter models on the base makes no difference at all so 3 is a nice number as they are suitably spread out so that the base doesn’t look to overcrowded. Also the Brigade Games fighters are about the same size as the GW ones but are much more reasonably priced. I really don’t understand why anyone would pay for the GW or Forgeworld ones.
Two Murder class cruisers. These are damn fine cruisers and I have high hopes for them in coming games. The Murder class cruiser has very strong weapon batteries to each side and a lance that can fire forwards.
Three Idolator class raiders. Fast and manoeuvrable escort ships that carry a lance and small weapons battery. Expecting these to be quite good at being a real pain in the rear for whoever they are fielded against.
Four Iconoclast class destroyers. Small and weakly armoured but fast and manoeuvrable with a small weapons battery.
Painting these ships was a doddle but that said, I have never been so uninspired by models that I like so much…must be because I have a psychological block against anything with the word ‘Chaos’ in the title. All were glued to the stands and then undercoated with a matt black spray. This had the added benefit of giving a smooth even coating on the stands that was devoid of brush strokes.
After that, a heavy fairly wet ‘dry brush’ of scab read from the GW range. This was to give a good base covering but to allow the black to show through in the recesses. I then blended some ‘bright red’ into the scab red and dry brushed to pick out the details. The amount of bright red was increased depending on how it felt at the time, most ended up with a final brush of just the bright red.
Details picked out in a dull metallic silver and bright green or yellow as you can see on the photos.
The varnish I have used has gone a bit ‘gloss’ it is supposed to be matt…not that I mind much, but they did look better when matt before they were varnished. At some point I might get some of the Army Painter matt spray and give them a quick going over to dull them down.
Currently waiting for a Battleship to arrive (another e-bay impulse buy) and that will be about it for this fleet. I don’t intend on purchasing anything else although I’ll probably keep an eye on e-bay in case any bargains come up. The fleet needs a better carrier I think…so possibly another Devastation or a Styx heavy cruiser (bigger carrier), but this is currently 975pts worth so doesn’t really need anything else for the games we play.
I am seriously thinking about getting back into Warhammer 40k, so I got the latest edition rule book and read it cover to cover a few times. Looks like it might be a fun game and I can use my existing models so everything I need is already to hand…only it isn’t. The main difference between this version and the last version I played (some 15+ years ago) is in the interpretation of terrain. The latest version is very much based around ‘models line of sight’. So, it turns out I need to make something like 6sqft of terrrain (to cover one third of a 6ftx4ft table).
Anyway, I came accross these nice looking rock ornaments in an aquarium (photographed with a half painted Eldar Harlequin model for scale).
Gonna base them and possibly tart them up a little but I think they should work pretty well. They are large enough to block line of sight to even the largest models and if I put them on suitably rocky looking bases they should work reasonably well as difficult ground that provides a cover save.
I’ll update this post with work in progress pictures…honest!
Should add that these are actually hollow resin that is painted/textured to look/feel like stone but they are a lot lighter.
First set of WIP pictures. Here they are on bases with some ‘bits’ attached so that when they get textured the bases don’t look flat. I may cut the polystyrene bits down quite a bit as they look a little too big at the moment…but I don’t know yet, will see what they look like when textured.
Update 18 December:
I put some solvent glue on the polystyrene bits to melt them down and remove some of the square edges then covered the bases in poly-filer. Painted the bases with some chocolate brown emulsion I got for £1 from B&Q and highlighted with ‘desert yellow’, painted the rocks black and highlighted with light grey and white. The large rocks have a green band painted around their bases so I copied this around various elements of each base to tie the whole thing together. Next step is to flock the bases with some sand and static grass. Here are a few pictures of them so far:
Yay – nothing like the prospect of having to tidy the house and put up the christmas tree to make me finish off a modeling task!
Here are pictures of completed items with sand/N-gauge granite flock and some static grass. I have pictured them with some 20mm Persians since they have the same style of bases.
I might come back to these at some point in the future to add some kind of water feature or something to the base. They look a bit dry and desert like at the moment – which is fine, but in my mind I want something a little more swampy. I have this idea to make up some swamp bases at some time in the future but I haven’t really decided how to do them yet. Perhaps when I do I will return to these and tie them together with some common scenic item.
Heh, no job is ever really completed is it…
Hard to tell what is what at this scale if the vehicles are at true scale, can you really spot the difference between a tracked or a GEV?
A certain well known company got around that problem quite easily by making everyting a little bit bigger – good move!
I have loads of Epic scale WH40k that I will eventually photograph but until then here is the small portion that I seperated off for use with the Dirtside II rules. I had many good games of this with Paul Mitchel but I just could not get used to pulling counters out of a bag instead of rolling a dice. Also, I could never understand why Paul ‘always’ thrashed me at this game, no matter what the scenario or who was supposed to have the upper hand.
A futuristic settlement, complete with a column of tanks to give an indication of scale.
Heh heh, this will be a right blast from the past for some.
Remember when they first brought out Epic 40k, it was called Adeptus Titanicus and then later Space Marine. Well if you recall they released models for the Falcon Grav Tank too, but they looked nothing like the current one.
Well when they released statistics for the Falcon for WH40k I just had to have one, but at that time they made no model. So…I scratch built this from cardboard, plastic spoons (yes honestly!) and various other stuff that I found lying around (bits of sprue etc).
Ship to ship combat in deep space…good fun game even if the miniatures now look very dated.
This was an excellent space combat game although it was played on a hex-grid which made life a little awkward. Introduced to this by Paul Mitchel and we played many excellent games. Well remember many a happy afternoon playing this with Stephen Minshaw too.
I did think I had more miniatures than this but perhaps we used ‘proxy ships’ or they were mainly owned by Paul or Stephen.