Tag Archives: Warhammer

#oldorcs finis

My #oldorcs submission took me longer than anticipated; after all, it’s just one orc model. I should have been able to complete that in an hour or so. But the more I looked at it, the more I put off actually beginning to work on it. I really wanted to capture the Oldhammer painting style; a style I haven’t used since, well, since the Oldhammer days of my youth. I painted the basic green skin tone and left the model to sit for a bit while I prepped my Vamp for Vampifan, the Red Duke.

I’ve been having an odd sleep schedule lately, and I found myself thinking about him at 3 am. It was a night of soaking rain here. Usually that helps me sleep, but I had Ork on the brain. I got up and went to my painting table, and I stared. I stared at the Ork for 15 minutes or so, while the rain came down on my bulkhead. I stared, and he stared back. And then I knew what I was going to do.

I decided to make him a Death Skull; because I’ve always been partial to their blue facepaint. Once I did that, the rest of the model came pretty quickly.

When I painted my Warhammer Orc and Goblin army decades ago, I used the same orc skin recipe on almost all the models: Snot Green base, Goblin Green tone, Scorpion Green highlight (all are avialable through Coat D’Arms nowadays). I didn’t want to do that here, so instead I used a base of Citadel Caliban Green, followed by Reaper’s Turf Green and Meadow Green. This resulted in a slightly darker skin tone than I liked, so I once again added some Scorpion Green highlights. For the blue face paint, I based it in Vallejo Prussian Blue, highlighted with Reaper’s Dragon Blue, and then a final highlight of Vallejo Andrea Blue.

The rest was pretty easy: I just went back to the brightly-colored John Blanche/Mike McVey Oldhammer palette that was the norm when I first started playing. You can see plenty of examples of it in old White Dwarf and Dragon magazines, if you have them; or of course any old codices, catalogs and army books of the time. Barring that, there’s always the Internet…

This was a fun little diversion and my first Instagram painting challenge. Thanks to Old Man Paints for hosting it! There are prizes to be won, but they weren’t my motivation. I really just needed the kick in the pants to get back to hobbying.

Now, back to the bloodsucker…

#oldorcs

The other day I stumbled across an Instagram painting challenge for Orctober. Old Man Paints is running his Old Orcs Challenge. The rules are on his site (which is a cool site to visit anyway), but put simply they are: paint an old orc miniature from the Oldhammer era (mid 80’s-early 90’s) and post it on Instagram by the end of the month. (There are hashtag requirements and stuff like that, but that’s about the gist of it.)

Well, if there’s one thing I have a lot of, it’s Oldhammer Orcs. Sadly, all of mine are painted already, and one of the rules is a “before” picture is necessary. It seems I was out of luck.

Well, it just so happens I have had a 40K Ork army as a planned project for about 10 years. This makes no sense, as I don’t play 40K anymore; but who among you can say you don’t have similar nonsensical ambitions in your pile of shame? I have a ton of Orks, most still on the sprue, just waiting for assembly and painting. (I’m in no hurry.) The vast majority of these are from this millennium. In other words, most of them.

Then I found this guy, along with a handful of other Rogue Trader-era Boyz. I’m back in business.

I have no expectation of actually winning this challenge, considering the level of talent I see on Instagram; but I figure I can pretty easily paint one ork in my sleep by the end of the month, so why not participate? Next time you see this guy, he’ll have paint (and arms) on him.

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH!

Fee Fie Fo Fum!

I smell the blood of an Englishman. Be he alive or be he dead, I’ll grind his bones to make my bread!

Not surprising, really, since I know of at least three Englishmen who frequent Dead Dick’s Tavern. Only too likely one of them would leave their spoor behind. Of course, I would never grind their bones to make bread. That’s just silly.

This is the classic Marauder/Citadel Giant, and he is my “Big ‘Un” for Monster May(hem) this year. This guy came out circa 1989 or so; and for decades he was “the” Warhammer giant; there wasn’t another until well after this one ceased production. I’m pretty sure he was sculpted by one or both of the Perry brothers, but I could be wrong. (Edit: I was wrong. A simple Google search turned up it was sculpted by Aly Morrison. Thanks to Matt and shame on me.) Whoever sculpted him did a great job. (It was Aly Morrison.) I’ve always loved this model. As an Orc and Goblin player back in the day, I always wanted one, but could never lay hands on it.

Then, a few years ago, I bought a miniatures lot off a guy on Craiglist who was getting out of the hobby (which was a pretty aggravating experience, but eventually turned out ok). This giant was in there, assembled and primed white (which I HATE). Back in 2018, when I first decided May was Monster Month (remember when it was called that?) , I put this guy on my desk to paint him. I decided to do my Orc Warlord on Wyvern instead, and there the giant sat until now. Every once in a while, when I squeezed out too much paint, I would dab some on him somewhere. He looked a mess, and I made no progress, always telling myself I’d get him done eventually.

Well, he’s done. Mostly.

About halfway through painting him this month, I noticed he’s incomplete. He’s missing two pieces: a keg which he has slung around his hip (where the rope meets in thie picture above), and a sword that attaches to his other hip. The guy included a huge bag o’bitz in the Craigslist purchase. Guess which two bitz were not there?

I guess it doesn’t look terrible without the keg. And who needs a sword when you can rip a tree out of the ground and swat someone with it? Anyway, I did what I could with him, and I’m pretty happy with the result. I’m most happy that he’s DONE, and I can remove him from my painting desk forthwith.

I know I just said it a few paragraphs ago, but I’ll say it again. I love this model. No computer sculpting or 3D printing here, and no resin or plastic to be found. This model is all metal, and reminds me of a time when transporting your army doubled as a biceps workout. Bring back those days…

Here’s a scale comparison to a Reaper Hill Giant (also all metal, though they make him in Bones now), and an Empire Greatsword. I know the current GW giant is even bigger, but I think this guy is just right.

And that brings Monster May(hem) to a close…or does it? It is currently 7:30 a.m. at Dead Dick’s Tavern. That means there’s still 16 hours or so left in May…and I have two unpainted monsters still sitting on my desk. Can I get one painted before midnight?

Be sure to check out all the other participants. Since last post, Matt painted yet another monster: the cloak fiend, and Dave sculpted and painted a Bantha for some Star Wars gaming! Plus, I forgot to mention Harry painted some unicorns and treekin over on his site, along with his High Elf dragon!

Next month is Forgotten Heroes over at Carrion Crow’s Buffet, and I can’t wait. But for now, there’s still time to paint some monsters!

Blogroll

Roger, aka Dick Garrison, from Rantings From Under the Wargames Table

Dave Stone from Wargames Terrain Workshop

Matt from PMPainting

Coyotepunc from Coyotepunc’s Creativity

Ken from Blue Moose Arts

Jeremy, aka Carrion Crow, from Carrion Crow’s Buffet

Harry from War Across the Ages

You can find links to all these blogs (and others) in the sidebar as well!

Varg Bonebreaka: Orc Warlord on War Wyvern

To finish off Monster Month, I present a  monster miniature that is finally seeing paint after almost THIRTY YEARS in my “to-do pile”!

It’s an old Warhammer Orc Shaman on War Wyvern, circa 1990 or thereabouts. I got him on the secondary market sometime in the mid-nineties. Originally, he was to be for use with my Warhammer Fantasy Orc & Goblin Army, but I wanted to use the wyvern as a mount for an army general, Varg Bonebreaka,  rather than a shaman (more on this later). Before I could do more than buy the bitz and start the conversion, though, several things happened.

  1. Mounting characters on monsters fell out of favor, if not with the entire WFB community, then certainly with my WFB gaming group. The focus of WFB became more about troops than super, unit-killing characters. A positive change, I would say.
  2. I stopped playing “special characters” in my army, for the same reason as above.
  3. I got distracted by something else. I don’t know what. It could have been a bright spot of reflected light shining onto the wall, for all I know. More likely it was my 40K Mordian Iron Guard.

Eventually, around 2003 or thereabouts, I ceased playing Warhammer and Warhammer 40K altogether. This miniature, along with all my others, languished in storage until around 2010 or so, when I started painting miniatures again.

The mounted shaman miniature is perfectly acceptable, in a “I’m holding two weapons parallel to my body within my frontal plane” kind of way (typical of GW of the time). He just wasn’t all that exciting. For my general, Varg,  I decided to use the original Morglum Necksnapper model as the base of the conversion.  You can see in the picture below how the original model looked way back when. I intended to mount the shaman on Morglum’s boar, since he wouldn’t be using it. I still haven’t got around to that yet, either.

I purchased all the bitz I needed for the conversion from a GW rep who came by my FLGS in the “Bitz Wagon”. I bought a dwarf casualty for the base, as my Orcs & Goblins often faced off against my friend’s Dwarfs. (Yes, I wanted to irritate him.) I got rid of Morglum’s axes, as I hated how they looked, and replaced one with a double-edged Chaos axe. I decided I was going to give him a long spear in his other hand, as he would be pretty high up on that wyvern and wouldn’t be able to reach his opponents with anything else. For that, I used a lance from an old Skeleton Horsemen box. Finally, I ditched Morglum’s banner poles and replaced them with the back banner from an old Skaven model, Queek Head-Taker.

Then I let him sit there in the Insanity Pile, untouched, for almost 30 years. When Monster Month rolled around, he wasn’t hard to find.

Here are the results. Because of the large amount of conversion on the orc, I needed to paint them separately prior to assembly. This is actually the first time I mounted a model on something to handle it while painting (I usually just hold it between my fingers). The wooden “plant pot” was intended to provide some stability, but it didn’t do much as the model kept falling over whenever I accidentally hit it (which was often). After the third time fixing the spear, I got wise and glued it to this coffee can lid for added stability.

I don’t go in for the double banners on the wyvern’s back, because I think it looks stupid. Also, I suck at making banners. I opted to add some severed heads from an old GW zombie sprue instead.

I couldn’t find the “back end” of the lance pole. It disappeared some time in the last 25+ years or so. Instead I used a piece of plastic rod. I thought it looked kind of boring, so I added this scythe blade from a GW zombie sprue to the end, turning it into a nasty, unique-looking pole-arm.

I drilled a couple of holes in the wyvern’s flank and added some arrows. Monsters, and the generals on them, tend to attract missile fire.

My friend’s Dwarfs, IIRC, were painted in a green color scheme. I decided to paint this dwarf blue to make him really stand out against the grass and under the wyvern’s claw. The broken barrel is from an Army Painter basing kit.

At last, some final pictures of the complete wyvern with the rider. I give you Varg Bonebreaka, a name inscribed forever in the Book of Grudges many times over! WAAAAAAAAAAAGH!!!!!!!!

Makes me wish I still played Warhammer.

This model took me longer than I thought to complete, so I’m glad I started when I did. Unfortunately, I still have a few monsters that aren’t quite finished, and the end of Monster Month is nigh! Oh well. Perhaps I will finish them up soon, and post them as an intermission during next month’s Forgotten Heroes challenge!

 

Insanity Pile Progress

Miniatures Painted Thus Far: 8

Miniatures Purchased: 0

Total: +8

The Dwarves Are Upon You (again)!

Just in time for 3 years after the Age of Sigmar destroyed the Warhammer Fantasy universe, I have finally finished my dwarf army. Well, mostly finished. I firmly believe that you can never have enough dwarfs. But for now, I am content.

This was definitely a labor of love. It has been over a decade since I played a game of Warhammer Fantasy, and I have no interest whatsoever in Age of Sigmar. It is unlikely that these stalwart dwarfs will ever see battle, which is a real pity. Nonetheless I did my best to paint them in a manner most glorious, limited only by my shortcomings of  painting skill.

Some of these miniatures and units have appeared before on this blog, back when I was zealous enough to think I could complete a project in a reasonable amount of time. Now that the army as a whole is finished (mostly), I decided to present them once again, this time with the rest of the army. My dwarfs are from several different manufacturers. I have no brand loyalty when it comes to good-looking miniatures, and I don’t play in tournaments where “official” miniatures are required. To that I say most vehemently: “Fuck that shit.”

First up, the Thunder from Down Under(ground), my missile troops!

This is the small unit of Thunderers included with the Battle for Skull Pass (BFSP) boxed set. Ten stalwart gunners, led by a Hero (more on him later). I really like these one-piece plastics; even though they’re not poseable, it’s still possible to achieve enough variation with the paint jobs to make them all appear different.


Up next is a group of ten Quarrelers, produced by Mantic. Mantic definitely has a unique look that you either love or hate (I like these guys), but the price can’t be beat. Not as detailed as some of the other manufacturers, but they certainly do the job for rank-and-file troops. These dwarfs could have been build as Ironwatch, which is Mantic’s equivalent of Thunderers, but I chose to give them crossbows rather than rifles because crossbows are cool.

Finally, my favorite unit of missile troops: my Dwarf Gunners, manufactured by Black Tree Designs. Let me be clear: I LOVE BLACK TREE MINIATURES.These guys are all metal, and hearken back to the glory days of GW and Citadel metal miniatures. They have the same “chunky” look to them and the same weight in the hand. They’re priced fairly well, especially since Black Tree seems to have constant 40%-50% off sales going on at any given moment. These guys were a joy to paint, and although 18 is quite a lot of dwarfs for a unit of Thunderers, I really like them!

Next up, the foot troops. First is the small unit of Dwarf Warriors from the Battle for Skull Pass set. Ten dwarfs does not a unit make, IMO, but they’re what I had. They’re positioned behind one of the King’s Wall obstacles, also from the BFSP set. I acquired a few more of these dwarf walls over the years.  These warriors are positioned next to a Flame Cannon (more on that later).

Up next, a group of 16 Dwarf Rangers. These guys are GW plastics, and they lack a command group because I couldn’t find a dwarf command group that looks the same as the unit. I’d still like to get one, though…so if anyone has dwarf plastics from this set that could be made into a command group, contact me and let me know.  Although they are ubiquitous in Fantasy, especially with Dwarfs, I’ve never been a fan of double-bladed axes (they look dumb to me), so I took the liberty of modifying some of axe-heads by removing one of the blades. I like the way it looks much better. They’re standing next to an old -style GW Dwarf Organ Gun (see below).

A unit of Black Tree Dwarf Warriors. Now this is more like it! A small unit at 18 models, but a solid enough brick on the table. Red is my least favorite color, and I loathe painting yellow, so why I chose this color scheme I couldn’t really tell you. The standard bearer had a miscast axe, so I just clipped it and replaced it with a Mantic hammer head.

This unit is a unit of Black Tree Miners. Note the shiny headlamps and the hammers. I love the look of these guys, and there’s 20 of them, so it’s a decent sized unit. But I’ve decided to use these guys as warriors rather than miners; I am a big proponent of core troops over special or elite choices, and these guys can serve as warriors just as well…

…especially since I already have a unit of Miners. These guys are mix of the GW BFSP miners and a GW miners regiment, for a total of 18. The one-piece BFSP sculpts blend pretty well with the poseable regiment dwarfs. The command group is from the BFSP set, so I was free to make the entire regiment box rank-and-file miners.

These Mantic Shield-Breakers are proxy Hammerers. Since there’s only 10 of them, I figured I would use them as a bodyguard for my army general. To be blunt, I hate half of these miniatures. The ones that have smooshed-down helmets annoy me, as it can’t possibly be that difficult to cast a miniature headless instead. This would give you the option of adding whichever dwarf head you prefer. Any of them would look better than these lazy, one-piece castings. The other dwarfs actually look pretty cool. And once again, the price can’t be beat (I guess you get what you pay for). This was the most recent unit I painted, completing it just last week, even though I bought it at Gen Con in 2012.

Lastly, my elite unit. These are 20 Black Tree Dwarf Ironclads; in other words, proxy Ironbreakers. I love these guys, and they’re pretty much the best dwarf unit you can field. I once had a unit of Savage Orc Boar Boyz charge a unit of my friend’s Ironbreakers, only to get decimated on the charge and routed. That’s right: my unit of Savage Orcs charged the dwarfs and got their asses kicked so hard they ran away; and somehow I rolled so badly that the dwarfs were able to run faster than my boars and cut the entire unit down like ripe wheat. Oh, the humanity.

Next up: the artillery! Here is a standard cannon. Note the crew is being kept well-hydrated by the Dwarf Brewmeister and his team. The cannon is a metal GW piece, the beer guys are from Reaper and serve no purpose other than to look cool.

Another cannon, this time the plastic one from the Battle for Skull Pass boxed set. I’m a fan of the models, especially the Dwarf Engineer. Note the Dwarf bagpiper in the background. He’s from Bob Olley’s Dwarf World line, and he’s playing the only instrument loud enough to be heard over cannon fire. Hell yeah!

Here is a close-up of the old-style dwarf Organ Gun from Games Workshop. I’m pretty sure I have the wrong crew miniatures for this artillery piece (I think these are technically cannon crew), but they came with the gun and I got the whole kit on the secondary market. I like the newer GW model better. In fact, I like the Mantic version better, too…but the spiky front on this one has some charm. Kind of superfluous, though…I mean, wouldn’t the five loaded guns deter a frontal assault just fine without all the spikes?

This trebuchet is from Black Tree Design. You may ask: who needs a stone-thrower when you have cannons? Well, I do. My cannons almost always misfire. I have better luck with rocks. And dwarfs are pretty traditional…rocks have been around forever, and if there is one thing dwarfs have no shortage of, it’s rocks. They served well enough in the past…why change things? Rocks are obviously made for hurling at greenskins or those annoying elves. AS IT SHOULD BE!

Here is a shot of the Flame Cannon, also by Black Tree. Sadly, since I will probably never play this army in a game, I will not be able to see the flame cannon in action. Burning things seems like a lot of fun. Like all my Black Tree dwarf models, I love this gun. As a bonus, here’s another look at the Dwarf Warriors from BFSP.

Confession time: Although love dwarfs, I hate Dwarf Slayers. I think they’re stupid. That’s why I will never field a unit of them. Although GW has made them iconic, I refuse to buy into their bullshit. Nonetheless, one of them came with the BFSP boxed set, so I painted him up. There he is.

And finally, a closeup of my Lords. The army general on the left came with BFSP. I painted him up a couple of years ago as part of Dwarvember, along with those GW warriors and miners. You can see more pictures of him here. On the right is a GW Dwarf Hero. Since he has a cool pistol,  I placed with my small unit of Thunderers.

As I said, the army is mostly done. Astute viewers may have noticed bare banner poles on some of my standards. That’s because I suck at freehanding banners, but hopefully I’ll get around to it. Also, the Mantic units do not come with command groups (it’s not necessary for their game, Kings of War), and neither do I have a command group for my Rangers. I’d like to get command groups painted for all my units. Perhaps it’s because I played so much Warhammer Fantasy, but units without command groups look incomplete to me, and are therefore irksome.

I’m just glad I completed this project (mostly) after talking about it for so long. The army may be complete, but I still have plenty of dwarfs to paint. Watch this space soon!

Imperial Bunker

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. Time to jump back in the pool with a piece of terrain I’ve had for about 12-15 years or so. It’s an Imperial bunker I bought for use in Warhammer 40,000.

I have a few pieces of terrain cast from the same material. It feels like solidified Great Stuff (spray insulation), but a bit stronger. Looking closely, I can see it was made by a company called “Epicast”. The “Breeder Bomb” was also one of these pieces. As you can see, the bunker comes apart into 3 pieces, so it’s possible to put miniatures inside the balcony and on the roof.

Anyway, as you can see, it painted up pretty easily. It took me about an hour to apply the craft paint, shade and highlight it, and add some base turf here and there. Here’s what it looks like finished, front and back:

It seems to be a bit high for a bunker, but a bit too small for a fort.

An Ultramarine standard bearer from my first ever 40K army, circa 1994 or so. My marines were primarily beakies from the Rogue Trader boxed set. Guys like this were considered “new” at the time. I remember he retailed for $6.50.

A couple of Imperial Guard (yes, I said Imperial Guard, not Astra Militarium!), a commissar and a Mordian trooper, from my main 40K army, the Mordian IX.  The roof has been removed and they’re in the balcony.

Sadly, since I no longer play 40K, it’s unlikely I’ll ever use this piece in a game. Tough to use it for anything else, either, considering that big skull just screams GW. Still, it’s good to get it painted up after all these years.

Armies of Yesteryear: 40K Mordian Iron Guard

Once again, a look back on my old armies. This time it’s my favorite old Imperial Guard faction: the Mordian Iron Guard.

What really drew me to the Imperial Guard is not really all that unusual: I wanted to field tanks and blow shit up.  I chose the Mordian Iron Guard because they were the chapter that appealed to me most, despite them not having any special characters in the Codex. (Actually, that appealed to me as well, as by the time I started playing Guard, special characters had fallen out of favor.) I never liked the Catachans, found the Rough Riders silly, didn’t really dig the Tallarns or the Cadians. And while I liked the Valhallans, I didn’t want to deal with snowy bases. (An old acquiaintance had a killer Valhallan Ice Warrior army complete with custom sentinels that was really cool, however.)

This army was my main Warhammer 40K army for most of the late 90’s -2003 or so. In choosing my army I decided that I would not field any Abhuman troops like Ratlings and Ogryns. I would use lots of base troops and have as many Commissars as possible to keep order and hopefully lend a little strength to squads in melee. I’d augment the core troops with fire-support and stormtrooper squads, and tanks tanks tanks!

And that’s what I did.

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Starting off in the front is a squad of pre-Kasarkin stormtroopers. These guys came 6 to a box and were all plastic. You had to buy your special weapons and command separately. Behind them is a standard Infantry squad of Mordians led by both a Sergeant and a Lieutenant. Behind them is an anti-tank battery of 3 Lascannon teams. Way in the back is a Basilisk Heavy Support Tank. Over on the right is a Chimera, deploying an Armored Fist Infantry Squad.

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Continuing, my Sentinel squad is in the forefront of this picture. (My sentinels never did anything but get shot and blow up, usually by Turn 2. But they look so cool.) Behind them is another Infantry Squad. Farther back from left to right is a Leman Russ Battle Tank, the Command Squad (more on that later), and a Mortar Battery led by another Commissar. On the right is a Chimera with a Forgeworld twin-linked heavy bolter turret. Better than a multilaser any day of the week, and it looks better too.

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Rounding out the force are the rest: in front, another squad of Stormtroopers. I used to love to Deep Strike with these guys and tie up some enemy units long enough to rain death from above with my artillery. Behind them is a fire-support battery (2 heavy bolters and an autocannon), crewed by Stormtroopers. Behind them is yet another Infantry squad. To the right are three more tanks: a Leman Russ Demolisher, a Hellhound, and in the back, an old Griffon Heavy Mortar. Last but not least a final Infantry squad is on the far right, led by another Commissar.

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I would often deploy an Adeptus Mechanicus tech-priest and some servitors between my tanks, especially those I usually kept stationary, like the Basilisk, Griffon and Demolisher. Sometimes they could save or fix something, and sometimes they couldn’t.

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Close-up of the pre-Kasarkin Stormtroopers armed with Hellguns.

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A Commissar leads an Infantry squad on the flank.

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Close-up of the anti-tank Lascannon battery.

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You can never have too many indirect fire weapons. I love mortars. Nothing better than dropping a couple of templates on some Orks, Gaunts, or Eldar.

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My command squad. The Commander is a converted miniature from the defunct and short-lived game Cell. (Don’t tell GW he’s not “official”.) He towers over everyone else in the army and is almost the size of an Ogryn. (“Methinks I detect the influence of the Warp….”)

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This is my Army Standard. I converted a Brin Milo miniature so that he wasn’t playing the Tanith pipes anymore. Then I used some 3/64mm brass rod to make the pipes. I used Squadron model putty (!) to sculpt the ferrules and the pipe sash and to beef up the bag (this was before I discovered Green Stuff). He was one of my first conversions ever and I still love him.

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Sentinels look bad-ass. Too bad they suck. You may also notice that none of the armor in this army has the slightest bit of mud or dust on it. That’s because it’s Mordian armor, dammit!

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Leman Russ Demolisher.  Boom.

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Leman Russ Battle Tank. I always went for the heavy bolters in the sponsons, as my strategy was shoot as many times as you can as opposed to courting disaster with plasma guns.

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My Basilisk. I think maybe I moved it during a game, once. Most of the time it sat there and angered my opponent. I used a radio from a 1/48th German radio set to represent improved comms.

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Lastly, my Griffon. I loved this tank, and of course, when I finally got this painted, GW came out with a new codex that didn’t include it. Like I said, I love mortars, so I have nothing but good things to say about it. I thought the Griffon tank crew that came with it didn’t look like they would pass Mordian muster, so I used some extra Mordian Lascannon crew members instead.

The problem with playing Imperial Guard, at least at that time, was cost. (Somehow I doubt that’s changed.) Most of these tanks were purchased secondhand. When it came to Infantry, Mordians, like every other chapter, were available in a 10 man squad for $30. The problem was each 10-man squad came with a grenade launcher and a Lascannon. If you wanted to change that, then you needed to buy heavy weapon teams and special weapon troops separately. That got pretty pricey, and left you with extra grenade launchers and Lascannon teams.

I’m still in the market for some plain-old Mordian Infantry with lasguns. I don’t need any heavy weapons or any special weapons, but I sure would like to get more regular joes.

More Armies of Yesteryear soon.

Armies of Yesteryear: Warhammer 40K Tyranids

Like many folks, my first Warhammer 40K army was Space Marines. Since almost everyone at my friendly local game store was playing marines, it became somewhat boring. Sure, there was one Ork player and an Eldar player, but they weren’t always around. So I bit the bullet and bought some Tyranids off a kid who was getting out of the hobby. Some of the paint jobs on the plastics are a little rough, but that’s because I was painting over his initial paint job, which was done with craft paints and was impossible to strip first. (Melonberry Genestealers anyone?)

68916_sm-2nd Edition, Copyright Games Workshop, Tyranids

Most of these miniatures are from the golden age of Tyranids, 2nd edition 40K. Old school players may remember these original paint schemes from the codex. Present-day Tyranids have changed a lot since then. I actually really like the present models but I’m obviously not buying new ones to replace what I already have. Aside from the cost, that’s just silly.

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From l-r: An old Lictor model, some (very) old-school Zooanthropes, a Biovore and a brood of metal Gargoyles. In front is a brood of Genestealers.

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In front are some metal Hormagaunts. These guys were always tipping over-a real pain in the ass during deployment and movement. Of course, they either got shot up or made it into hand-to-hand, so they didn’t stick around long once the game got underway. Behind them is a brood of Termagants, mostly the old plastic ones but some metal ones too. I still have about 12 of these that need to be painted. I always wanted to add more Termagants to the army. Way in the back in the center is my Hive Tyrant, the old school model with a Venom Cannon, Lash Whip and Bonesword. He’s flanked by two broods of original Tyranid Warriors (although the brood on the right has a newer Warrior with a Barbed Strangler),and you can barely make out a second Biovore behind the Hive Tyrant. I still love the look of these old models. Back then, they based all large size models on 40mm square monster bases.

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Last but not least, more Genestealers, more Gargoyles, another Lictor, one last Biovore, and the old metal Carnifex! The Carnifex is one of my favorite all-time GW models. It’s definitely got some heft to it!

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Oddly enough, you can see the Biovore better than the Carnifex in this picture. Blame the photographer.

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Tyranid Warriors with boneswords. I built the other brood with Deathspitters. As I recall, Deathspitters suck, and Tyranids shouldn’t waste time shooting when they can get up close and personal.

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Remember these old-school Zooanthropes? This is before they became floating heads.

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The Tyranid Lictor. Like the carnifex, one of my favorite metal models. But damn was it fiddly to put together!

I actually played a quick game of 40K with these Tyranids with a friend last year. He used my Ultramarines. As I recall, he won, but we both had about 2 miniatures left on the board at the end of the game. As it should be!

I still have a few more Armies of Yesteryear to post, so check back soon!

 

Armies of Yesteryear: Warhammer Orcs and Goblins

I just got a brand new mat from Cigar Box Battle Mats, and I love it. To celebrate, I thought I’d photograph my old Warhammer Fantasy Orcs and Goblins on it. I haven’t played a game of Warhammer Fantasy since about 2003, so it’s been a while since these miniatures have seen battle. I’ve been using a few here and there for RPGs and skirmishes, but that’s about it.

The WAAAAAAGH is too big for me to photograph all at once, so I just took pictures of the individual units. This was my main WFB army from 1995 or so until about 2003. Previously I played Undead, but when GW split them into two different army books I never really went back. I was on a pretty limited gaming budget back then and couldn’t afford it.

Most of these miniatures were picked up in trades on Bartertown or in the boxed sets. The paint jobs aren’t terrible, but neither are they as good as they would be if I was painting them today. I tried to do a decent job as fast as possible so I could field them quickly. (I didn’t play with unpainted miniatures then, and I still don’t now.)

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First up, two units of archers. Night Goblins on the left, Orcs on the right. The Goblins came from the 4th edition boxed set. My friend bought the set for $60 bucks. It included Goblins and High Elves. He took the Elves and the rules sold me the goblins for $20. A good deal then and would still be now. The Orcs were old style Arrer Boyz, mostly plastic but a couple of metal ones too. This was the era when core troops were pretty much all the same sculpt with no variation. The armies today look better, but say what you will about the old style: at least they ranked up with no problems. Out in front are three Night Goblin Fanatics, as well as the old version of Skarsnik and Gobbla. In the back is the old Orc Rock Lobba.

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Moving onwards, here’s a unit of Goblin Wolf Riders and my main unit of Goblin spearmen (also from the 4th edition boxed set). Way in the back you can see an old-school Doom Diver Catapult.

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Next we come to my main core units of Boyz. On the left is a big brick of Orc Boyz from the 5th Edition boxed set. I forget who sold me these, but it was someone who was only interested in playing Empire. In the middle is my elite unit of Black Orcs (the old-school sculpts). This unit is one of the only ones I paid full retail for. On the right is another unit of Orc Boyz. These are mostly old Heroscape Orcs I picked up in trades. Once I had an opponent in a local tournament object to me using them, because, technically, they weren’t “purely GW miniatures”.  I took the unit out of my army and still trounced him. Then I told him to fuck off. Also in the picture is one of my Orc Bolt Throwers (which are now apparently crewed by Goblins in the newest version of the rules). More on the characters in front later.

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A better shot of the 5th Edition Boyz. In front are three Goblin Squig Hoppers. I loved the absolute randomness and fun of playing goblins. The Fanatics, the Doom Divers and the Squig Hoppers…none of them ever worked how you wanted them to, but they were just too fun not to include in the army. I don’t think any of the Hoppers ever killed anything. They always got shot before they could even make contact with an enemy.

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These guys won many a battle for me. Back in 4th-5th Edition, Savage Orc Boar Boyz were insane unit killers. I had 12 armed with spears and could usually break any unit on the charge (except for Dwarf Ironbreakers…Ooooo, how I hated them). Next to them is another Bolt Thrower, another unit of Orc Arrer Boyz (also from the 5th Edition boxed set) and another Doom Diver Catapult.

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Lastly, here’s another shot of the Orc Arrer Boyz. To the right is another Night Goblin archer unit (from the 4th edition Boxed set), a Night Goblin shaman, and a few more Fanatics.

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My Night Goblin archers couldn’t hit the ground if they aimed at it, but that’s not why I played two units of them. I did it for the Fanatics. I would always equip one of them with a Madcap Mushroom. That would be the guy riding the 8 Ball.

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A close up of one of the Doom Diver Catapults. The new model is pretty cool, but it’s also three times as big. I like the old one better.

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The old-school Rock Lobber. I was supposed to have two of these, but I got burned in a trade on Bartertown. I will always remember the name and email address of the asshole who screwed me. He lives in Healdsburg, California. So, Ben, if you’re reading this, go fuck yourself.

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A couple of character models. On the left was my Warboss. He was an exclusive Games Day miniature that my friend picked up for me. On the right is Nazgob, the Orc Shaman. He was a new miniature when I bought him. GW still makes him today. He was originally wearing bright blue, but I recently repainted him and he looks much better.

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Skarsnik and Gobbla, a very fun (but not very effective) Night Goblin team. I don’t think I ever won any battles with Skarsnik as my general;, but it was always fun to see which of my own troops Gobbla would eat. On the right is my old Warboss before I got the Games Day miniature.

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Last but not least, Gorfang Rotgut. I added some bitz from the zombie boxed set and added a shield to his shield. It was one of my first conversions. I once played a campaign against my friend using Gorfang as my army commander. My friend played Dwarfs. I got crushed. No sour grapes here, I still had a blast. But I realized that Gorfang was one of the most overpriced (points-wise) and ineffective special characters in the game.I chose him because he had a hatred of Dwarfs (believe me the Dwarfs felt the same way), but that didn’t help. In the end, my Orcs got curb-stomped by the Dwarfs. I think I won one out of eight battles.

I picked up a Battle for Skull Pass boxed set about two years ago, mainly for the Dwarfs. (I’ve always loved Dwarfs, and my friend kicking my ass with them did nothing to diminish that.) I considered painting up the Spider Riders and adding them to the WAAAAGH, but decided against it. I also thought about buying the Arachnarok Spider, but again, decided not to, even though it’s a really cool model. After all, I never play Warhammer anymore. I’d like to, but I’m not about to try to keep current with whatever version of WFB GW  is hawking, or whatever new units they come up with to replace units they arbitrarily deem obsolete.

Grom the Paunch didn’t make it to the table here because his chariot broke and is awaiting repair. Not that it matters. I never won a game with Grom as my general (Goblin generals suck), and, come to think of it, I never won a game with anyone in a chariot as my general. Chariots are huge targets for war machine and missile fire, and whenever I fielded Grom he got shot to death by turn 3, or his wolves got shot and effectively stranded him wherever they died.

More Armies of Yesteryear to come!

Bringin’ the Thunder

Two posts in one day! I did a little more work on my Dwarf Army recently and I thought I’d share the latest additions to my bearded host with you. I decided to paint up the artillery and some handgunners, so here they are.

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First up, the artillery: two Dwarf cannons with crew. The one on the left is the old-school metal cannon, the one on the right is the plastic (much smaller) cannon from Battle for Skull Pass.

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Next is a unit of Dwarf Thunderers from Battle for Skull Pass, along with an OOP Dwarf Lord holding a pistol. Ten Thunderers do not a unit make, IMHO, but there are enough for a skirmish or two.

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This is my organ gun (painted previously). Together with the cannons, it should make life difficult for anyone in front of them.

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Here are most of the shooty units in my Dwarf Army…coming along slowly but surely. Apologies for the blurriness. Up next: Miners!!!!