New Army Update One

Hey everybody,
It’s time for an update on my New Year, New Army project for 2021 – yes, already! Only because I’ve been making some really good progress, so thought I’d come along and share it with you all!

Mortek Guard

I’ve been painting up the Mortek Guard, the basic foot soldiers of the Ossiarch Bonereapers, as I thought I’d try first to get the colour scheme down on the basic guys, before moving on to the more exciting stuff! I’ve gone for the colour scheme of the Petrifex Elite, after seeing them in the battletome and liking the mix of dark bone on the warriors themselves, lighter bone trim, then the more striking bright red armour and jade/turquoise cloth!

I’ve got a long way to go yet, but fortunately there are painting guides included in the Battletomes for Age of Sigmar, so I have some idea of where I need to go with it all! The scheme uses Contrast paints, which is fairly exciting for me, as I’ve not really done a great deal with them before. I must admit, I’m still not 100% sold on them even now, but I think once I start to bring it all together, it could be quite nice!

The Petrifex Elite were the original go-to choice for all the tournament lists once Ossiarch Bonereapers initially came out, due to the army-wide +1 to save. Basic troops with a 3+ save is quite powerful, after all! However, this has now been changed to a re-roll save rolls of 1, which isn’t quite as powerful, though for sure will have its uses! Of course, I’m no power gamer, so I’m fairly oblivious to the vagaries of these things! I also have nowhere near a playable army, with my partially-painted Mortek Guard bringing the grand total of 130 points to my army list!

The other Petrifex Elite abilities are nice, improving the rend of melee weapons as a command ability, and negating the first wound allocated to the relic-bearer etc. Age of Sigmar rules are not my specialism at the moment, however, so I’m going to have to go away and learn all about this stuff before I can talk sensibly about these things!

I have, however, made a start on my list, and have made the decision on which sub-Legion to use now, so that’s positive!

I’m starting out with the unit of 10 Mortek Guard, armed with Nadirite Blades (plus the one-in-ten champion type, who is armed with a Soulcleaver Greatblade which hits on a 3+, rather than a 4+). Nadirite weapons score 2 hits on a natural 6, which is very nice because the unit has 9 of these things, which make 2 attacks each! In 18 dice rolls, there has to be at least a couple of natural 6s, even the way I roll dice!

Mortek Guard are the basic troops, but I’ve ordered some Immortis Guard to give myself some elite options. These guys are armed with halberds that have a slightly improved stat line to the Guard’s blades, but importantly they also attack with their massive shields, which has the same Nadirite weapon ability of causing 2 hits on a natural 6. Fantastic! Furthermore, they have a command ability that lets them attack for a second time with the shields – anything that gives extra attacks is okay in my book!

The Immortis Guard also have the HEKATOS keyword, which is the name of the sergeant-type guys, and triggers off a number of other abilities, including the Legion-specific command abilities. For my Legion choice, I’ve gone with the Mortis Praetorians, which is the Legion on the box art, and the one with the named characters in there. I’m not sure, because I’m thinking like a 40k player, but I imagine that I can’t include those characters in my army if I were playing a different Legion… anyway!

Mortis Praetorians have a fear-like army-wide rule that subtracts 1 from the bravery of any unit within 12″ of them, and the command ability allows you to re-roll hits for units within range of a HERO or a HEKATOS, which is nice!

Speaking of heroes, I have got the Mortisan Boneshaper, a support wizard that can heal units, with a spell that lets them deal mortal wounds to enemy units based on that unit’s model count. It’s a variation on a fairly popular theme, but I think he’ll be quite useful in the back-line (his spell is 18″). I’ve got my eye on one of the named characters, Arch-Kavalos Zandtos, though currently haven’t pulled the trigger on buying him (it was him or the Immortis Guard this month!)

As a bit of heavy support, I have the Gothizzar Harvester to go about healing my chaps in a similar manner to the Boneshaper, though I’m also arming him with Soulcleaver Sickles, which increase the attacks for larger units. I’m not entirely sure how big this guy is, but I’m thinking somewhat Carnifex-sized. Should be a nice sort of centrepiece model while the army is still small-ish, though!

In total, then, we’ve got:

Mortisan Boneshaper: 130 points
10 Mortek Guard: 130 points
3 Immortis Guard: 200 points
Gothizzar Harvester: 200 points

There is a lot to do right now, for sure, but I’m trying to focus myself on building and painting one unit at a time (might do the hero alongside the big guy though). My principal focus for the time being is to get the equivalent of a Start Collecting box painted, so I’m thinking the troops, the hero, and the big guy. I want those finished by the end of February, and given how quickly the Guard have progressed since I started painting them on Saturday, I’m hopeful this is achievable! I may even get the other 10 warriors painted up in that time, actually!

In addition…

Following a flurry of interest back in September, Warcry has somewhat fallen on the back burner once more for me, as 40k and Necromunda took over my life for the remainder of the year. However, I’m really on the fantasy kick once more with this current project, and I’m really enjoying the return to fantasy models and all that entails – it’s always the same for me when I come back after time away, it’s like my world is blown open and I remember why I got into this whole mess in the first place.

Back when I bought the first few Ossiarch Bonereapers kits, I also picked up the Warcry cards for them, as I think the store had one left in stock, and I thought, why not? The Bonereapers seem to have a fair number of units available to them, made from three boxes: the Mortek Guard, the Necropolis Stakers (the Immortis Guard aren’t allowed, oddly), and the Kavalos Deathriders (the cavalry units). There are two leader choices, one of them mounted, and a whole host of new rules for unit types that I’d not come across when I initially tried the game out, so that’s been exciting!

There is the “bulwark” runemark which grants an ability that can be used by shield-wielding Mortek Guard, giving them +1 toughness, and two units for the “destroyer” runemark, which can be used by the Necropolis Stalkers to grant an additional move on a double, or a bonus to the number of attacks made on a quad. Very nice!

Warcry is definitely something that I’d like to try out some more, as I really do love the look of the game. For a 1000-point warband of Ossiarch Bonereapers, I’ve thrown together the idea of a Hekatos, a Necropolis Stalker, and the Guard champion fella, with six further Mortek Guard to get me nine guys at 985 points. Could be quite interesting, though I suppose there’s only one way to find out!!

New Year, New Army 2021!

Hey everybody,
It’s been a while in the planning stages, but I’m finally ready to talk about the new project for 2021! New projects are, of course, nothing new for me, although finished projects are much more of a rarity. However, this one is something that I’ve been thinking about for a couple of months now, since picking up some bits late last year, and it’s something that I’m very excited to get moving with, so I’m hoping that I’ll be able to keep some momentum with things, and see some real results when I look back on this point in the future!

The project I’m talking about is nothing less than Ossiarch Bonereapers!

This is an army that I was incredibly excited for back when it was first revealed at the 2019 Nova Open. Tomb Kings re-imagined as ancient conquerors with hints of both Roman and Mongolian heritage in the lore and aesthetic, it was wonderful! I’ve been a huge fan of the armies of Death for Warhammer Fantasy and Age of Sigmar for such a long time, in part due to the nostalgia of having the Nagash releases happening back when I was properly falling into the whole miniatures side of things. I currently have a fairly sizable Nighthaunt army as well, although I’m not exactly sure what I’m doing with that as it has been languishing in a box for a long time now.

Arkhan the Black is one of my favourite miniatures of all time, and while I had initially thought to include him with the Nighthaunt, it seems like he has found a much more permanent home among the Bonereapers, which makes me love them all the more! I really like the fact that the Arkhan model is, what, 5 years removed from the Bonereapers, and yet they all share certain design cues that makes everything feel really quite homogeneous. Arkhan is still unpainted, I think I recently put him up in the loft as I need the space for something else, but when I’ve got a decent force built and painted, I think I’d like to test my skills with painting the big lad himself, as that should be a real fun project!

The lore on these guys does veer a bit towards the silly at times, though I think in part this is due to the penchant for Games Workshop to give over-the-top names for stuff, which really goes across the board and isn’t unique to the Bonereapers. Here is an army of undead skeletons, and the amount of necro- prefixes, mort- prefixes, and osseo / bone references is just off the charts. Bones, bones, bones.

The idea behind them is that Nagash created a race of warriors from bone, almost as a secret weapon, and hid them underground “in serried ranks”. So, terracotta warriors style. The Necroquake that was (I think) the event that kicked off Soul Wars unleashed the Bonereapers, and they’ve been going about the Mortal Realms ever since, conquering empires in the name of Nagash. They extract a toll of bone from the vanquished populace, which they use to then replenish their ranks to keep the immortal legions strong.

Among the theme of BONES then, there is also a strong undercurrent of contracts and extracting tithes, which no doubt appeals to me as a civil servant, thinking there might somewhere be countless clerks making sure these tithes are met! It’s very weird, to me, for a fantasy army in a game like this, to have such a convoluted backstory that is based around taxation. But that’s pretty immaterial, really, because the miniatures themselves look great!

I’m a big fan of the line soldiers of this faction. It always helps, when you’re looking at having to paint vast hordes, that you’d actually want to do so! The Mortis Guard are the basic troops that come in two flavours: sword and spear. Each box has 20 models, and I’ve already begun to build up my first unit, for which I’m building the sword variety. There isn’t really anything more to say about these guys, they’re just the basic troops, and they’ll doubtless be forming the backbone (ha!) of the army as it evolves.

There are so many good-looking models in this range, but my first hero choice is going to be one of the few named characters in the faction, Vokmortian, Master of the Bone-tithe. He was the central hero of the faction at launch, in the Feast of Bones boxset, and his miniature seems to just drip with that officiousness, holding out the contract there as if to point out the small print. What a guy! In the game, he has the ability to outright kill a model on a 5+, the only downside being that model has to be within 1″ of him. I wonder how many times that has actually been pulled off against some god-like character in the opposing army…

In time, I’m probably going to collect everything, but aside from (probably) more Mortis Guard, I’d really like to get my hands on the Mortek Crawler. A giant, walking catapult, this thing is absolutely absurd, but the more I’ve been looking at it lately, the more I’ve fallen in love with it!

I love the fact that it’s almost a mini-diorama piece in and of itself, with the guys crawling over it and that dude in his little hamster wheel to (presumably) move the thing forwards. In the game, it fires magical skulls, although has two additional once-per-game missiles, including a lump of inscribed stone that looks so amazing I just love it! It’s barmy, but it’s another of these models that I hope to be able to paint up and do justice to as something of a centrepiece model.

Of course, the Bonereapers have perhaps the original centrepiece model, Katakros, the new Mortarch! This guy seems to have attracted more hate than I think he deserves, as the model is definitely an imposing piece, and it is also really quite amazing in the true sense of the word, with all the attendants that he has surrounding him. He’s become almost a blueprint for others, such as the Triumph of St Katherine, with multi-model diorama style miniatures coming out for several armies since.

I won’t be rushing to get this model, mainly because of the price and the fact I don’t think I am good enough to do it any kind of justice! But in time, I think it would be a wonderful crowning piece for the army, and I’d love to have a go at it!

For now, though, my collection of Bone-Boys is really quite modest:

I’ve also got the Gothizzar Harvester on order, the idea being that my local store is doing a New Year New Army thing, where we all paint up the equivalent of a Start Collecting box. In the absence of such a box for the Bonereapers, I thought Vokmortian, some Mortek Guard, and the Harvester would make a very decent start! Now I just need to get a move on and start building and painting these things!

I’m still not 100% set on my colour scheme just yet, but I think I’m leaning towards that of the Petrifex Elite. They used to be almost overpowered, from what I’ve picked up, but have since been nerfed quite considerably. Personally, I just like the combination of colours, and think it could work really nicely across the whole force!

I haven’t looked at the rules properly since I picked up the book last October, so I need to properly read up on everything to see what subfaction I actually choose to go for. I’ll be back sometime soon with some waffle about this, though – probably with an army list that I’m going to be aiming for, and maybe some updates on the actual models, if I’ve managed to get anywhere with them! So stay tuned for that!!

Genestealer Cults: A New Army for 9th Edition

Hey everybody!
So with the news of the new edition coming out this summer, I’ve been going through my vast collection of 40k miniatures, and seeing what I can get rid of, trying to thin out the ranks as we start anew. In doing so, however, I’ve decided to finally make a proper go of things with my Genestealer Cult! I’ve been here before, of course, but I’m currently feeling really positive about this new project, so decided to announce things here, and go through it with regular updates as I proceed!

Genestealer Cults Hybrid Metamorphs

As always with these things, I’m building a list by starting with a unit from the codex, and seeing what I can do to build out from there. I’m starting with the Hybrid Metamorphs, a unit that I’ve always liked the sound of, and had originally built up two years ago for Kill Team. The Hybrids are those cultists who have begun to mutate with more Tyranid bioforms than the usual Acolytes and Neophytes, and are seen as particularly blessed by their fellows. These saint-like creatures are usually deployed very near to the day of ascension, in time to wreak havoc among the planet that has been chosen for the Tyranid invasion.

In the game, these chaps are quite the blender, pretty wholly close combat-orientated, with three attacks base (and four for the Leader). I’ve always found their upgrades quite confusing, as they are swapped out in pairs – talons and claws for whips and claws, or talons and claws for bigger claws… The Metamorph talon gives the bearer one additional attack, which is always nice, as keeping the squad at their basic load-out gives them 21 attacks. However, two of mine have traded their talons for Metamorph claws, so I’m doing myself out of 2 attacks. Sad face.

Genestealer Cults

But things can get really interesting when you start pairing these guys up with stratagems, psychic powers, and the like. Let’s start with the Primus. This guy has got four attacks of his own, but gives +1 to the hit rolls of friendly <cult> models within 6″ in the fight phase. Now, the Metamorph talon allows you to add 1 to hit rolls as well, but a natural 1 will always fail, so let’s put this to the side for now. So my Metamorphs are making 19 attacks, and they’re hitting on 2s. I’ve got a cult icon with my squad, as well, which allows me to re-roll any hit rolls of 1. Nice!

Now, they’re only S4, for sure, but there are two guys in the squad with Metamorph claws, those massive crab things which are S+2. So there are 19 attacks, six of which are S6. Nice!

Without trying to get too far ahead of myself here, I want to include a Patriarch in my list, so he will have to be the warlord. However, I’m planning to spend a command point before the battle for the Broodcoven stratagem, allowing me to pick warlord traits for the Magus and Primus in the list as well. For my Primus, I’m taking the Biomorph Adaptation for +1 strength and +1 attacks. So the Primus is making 5 attacks of his own, hitting on 2s, and his attacks are at S5. Handy!

Let’s leave the Primus for a moment, and turn to the Magus. His sole use here is as a Psychic powerhouse – he knows 2 powers from the Broodmind discipline, but can only attempt to cast one per turn. I’m giving him Might from Beyond, which gives +1 to strength and attacks of units within 18″, and then Psychic Stimulus, which allows units to charge even if they have advanced, and also fight first in the fight phase. For one command point, I can use the Cult’s Psyche stratagem to attempt a second psychic power in my turn. I’m up to 2 CP used now, but my Hybrid Metamorphs are now making 24 attacks, eight at S7 with sixteen at S5.

But I’m not done yet!

In The Greater Good, there is a Hybrid Metamorph-specific stratagem for 1 command point, Violence Unleashed, which gives the unit +1 attack. What’s that, 29 attacks? I’ll take that, thank you very much!

I’m running my army as Cult of the Bladed Cog, whose unique strategem (1 command point) gives exploding hits on 6s. How nice! So that’s a total of four command points used, and I’m sort of banking on two psychic powers going off – the two powers have a warp charge value of 7 and 6, respectively, so I’d hope that it would work out, but I could potentially take a Familiar with the Magus to allow me a third bite at the (psychic) cherry.

I have no real head for probability calculations, so have used a dice roller to give it a try, and rolled an average of six 6s. Now, if you remember that I’m hitting on 2s and re-rolling 1s, so I’m going to be hitting on a lot of these attacks! Assuming that 32 attacks will hit, against T4 models, I’m going to be getting roughly 20 wounds in. My favourite tactic of drowning a unit in saving throws might well work out here!

On top of this, of course, we’ll have the Primus in close proximity, probably making his own five attacks. Interesting…

Of course, this is all fairly theoretical stuff, but it’s always nice to see what sort of things you can do with a unit like this. For info, my Metamorph – Primus – Magus combo costs 209 points (I did think about throwing in a Clamavus for an extra 55 points, to give +1 to advance and charge rolls, helping them get closer, but I’m thinking now that I’d prefer to throw them into a transport to ensure they get to combat unscathed), but I’m now considering making a max-unit of 10 Metamorphs, which would be purely with talons to get that 20 attacks base (30 attacks with all the buffs, which generated an average of three 6s for a potential +33 attacks in the unit, hitting on 2s and wounding MEQ on 3s).

Who knows how 9th Edition will change this up? Genestealer Cults were one of the last codexes published for 8th Edition, of course, so my guess is that they will be hanging around in this form for some time to come.

I’m going to be looking at using some Aberrants, and I am for sure going to be investigating the new Atalan Jackals, as they are some very cool models. I have two boxes of them, so it’ll be fun to see what I can come up with there! I think I’m going to do these sort of update-style blogs as I decide on the pieces of the list, rather than going through a massive run-down once I’ve got the whole thing decided (as I have done for Necrons before!)

So Genestealer Cults will be my 9th Edition army, although Necrons and Drukhari will definitely see play, and I hope that I can continue to paint my Grey Knights, and get started properly with the Sisters. Those are my current plans, but who knows if the AdMech or Black Legion, or any other project will get in the way?!

Thanks for reading, and check back soon for more musings on our four-armed saviours!

The Grey Knights (again!)

Hey everybody!
Remember this post from last year, when I started with my plans for a Grey Knight army? Well, surprisingly, I haven’t managed to get very far with them over the last twelve months but, as it is clearly that time of year again, I’m now poring over the codex, and planning once more to get round to the massed psykers of Chapter 666!

Almost a year to the day (it was a year yesterday), I’m once more planning how to bring this army to the tabletop. Since I wrote up the original blog, I’ve not really done a great deal of work on them, truth be told. It was always my intention to build it as a sort of slow-grow thing, where I would build a unit, and paint it, then move on. So often in the past, I’ve fallen into the trap of building up a whole truck load of models, and then found myself almost overwhelmed and just shelving everything. Not wanting to fall into that trap again, I’ve therefore decided to pace myself, and go at things on a much smaller scale.

Last winter, I built up the contents of a Strike Force box, as well as adding two HQ units to the mix: a Grand Master built from the Paladins kit, and a Brotherhood Champion built from bits. It’s only a patrol detachment currently, and weighs in around the 450 points mark (pre Chapter Approved 2019, of course!) so I will need to get my act together here if I want to get in some games with it!

I’ve bought the almost-obsolete Doomglaive Dreadnought, an awesome model from Forge World that is now, inexplicably, discontinued. However, since I had built it up at the weekend, I think it has come to pass that I’ve been sold a recast, with some fairly toxic smells coming from it when I was cleaning it up! I’ve decided to plough on regardless, but the more I think about it, the more I’m probably going to go for the regular Venerable Dreadnought in my list, as time goes on.

Anyway, enough of that, where do I stand with the army right now?

So far, though, this is the entirety of what I have built. Yes, I know, I’ve built a lot more without getting it all painted, but that’s just a fact of life where my hobby is concerned! I’ve got a game planned in for Monday, my first since becoming a daddy, so we’ve agreed to have a small 1000-point battle. My buddy JP has got more daemons for his Heretic Astartes list, so I think it might be an ideal opportunity to bring out the Grey Knights and see what I’ve been missing for the last twelve months!

In order to bring the total up nearer 1000, I’m hoping to get a Purgation Squad built, with three psycannons for some heavier support, but I don’t know whether that will be a thing, so I’m erring on the side of caution for the time being and not including them in the list.

Grey Knights, perhaps more than any other army that I’ve played so far, appear to rely a lot on overlapping buffs. There aren’t many aura effects – the Grand Master allows for re-rolls and the Brother-Captain extends the Smite range, but that’s about it. Instead, they seem to rely on psychic powers going off that will buff each other as they progress through the battle. Reading tactica generally confuses me, anyway, but I’d been so hung up on the idea of units needing to know a power to benefit from it, I’d not really thought about it in terms of one unit using the power on another unit. So, for instance, it doesn’t matter if I give Hammerhand to the Strike Squad, when the Paladin Squad might be the best target for it – the Strike Squad can simply target the Paladins when they use it. Thus, the mental image of some crazy psychic shenanigans has been born, with eight psychic powers going off per turn!

It should be glorious!

It is important to me, however, that I don’t go too crazy with this army when I get going with it. I want to try, as much as possible, to stay true to the initial plan of painting up the units that I build as I go, and not end up in the situation where I’m looking at a whole desk full of unpainted models! The game on Monday will certainly be using grey plastic (but they are Grey Knights…chortle…) and, while I do hope to build up that Purgation squad, that will then be the limit, and I’ll set to work on painting what I have. The Purifiers are so close to being finished, it’s almost tangible, so I have no excuse to still be in this position in another twelve months’ time!

Looking ahead, I think Grey Knights could be a really fun project to use alongside the Sisters of Battle, as they’re both chambers militant of the Inquisition that work very well together: Sisters pursuing the Heretic, and Grey Knights pursuing the Daemon. Heretic Astartes are known for summoning daemons, after all, so it’s always a possibility that both elements will have stuff to do. Indeed, it could well be the sort of army that the old Imperial Agents codex inspired! Might even slip in an inquisitor!

Blood for the Blood God!

Well folks, putting aside the Shadowspear hype, this weekend sees a slew of models on pre-order for Khorne, and I’m finding it really hard to resist selling my soul to the Blood God – though I suppose he’d more prefer my skull than my soul, but anyway.

I’ve been considering what I actually want to do about my Chaos Daemons army idea for a few weeks now, alongside how I want to play it with the Chaos stuff coming from Shadowspear. I must admit to be leaning really quite heavily towards the Khornate aspect of Chaos a lot more, recently, and now that we have these beautiful Judgements of Khorne on the way, I think they could very well be enough to seal the deal for me!

I mean, floating skulls weeping rivers of blood! These Hexgorger Skulls are what has really attracted me to the army, and got me thinking about getting some brutal violence and slaughter in my life!

While I did actually sell off the Khorne side of the starter set back when Age of Sigmar first unleashed itself upon us, I have since been thinking about getting some of the models to build and paint, almost simply because I want to just have them as a painting project. However, since playing (and enjoying) Age of Sigmar, I think this could be the second army that I’ve been looking for!

I really shouldn’t be looking at branching out so often with my army choices, I know. There are so many unpainted models in my pile of shame, it’s just unreal, but I think it’s good to keep the variety to ensure things don’t go stale. I’ve talked before about being a follower of Chaos in games such as Warhammer Invasion, and I think this project could well scratch that itch for wanting an army that harkens back to the old Fantasy, while also being a force where I can use a lot of the models in 40k as well.

There is a lot to enjoy about Chaos at the minute, between these new models for the Blades of Khorne, and the upcoming Warcry skirmish game, which seems to have a very Khorne-y feel to some of those fighters. I think it could be a good time to get started with some daemonic forces of Chaos, after all!

Can’t wait to get started with all this stuff!

Chaos Daemons!

Hey everybody!
It’s New Year’s Eve, so what better time to start talking about my next big new project?! I’m not about to go down the whole route of “2019 will be the year of…”, but I do want to start thinking about working on something that will be quite new (well, kind of) for the year ahead, alongside all the other stuff I’ll no doubt continue with. For 2019, for me, that new project is going to be Chaos Daemons – specifically, the opposing forces of Khorne and Slaanesh!

I’ve always wanted a Slaanesh daemons army, and for years have been buying daemonettes, only to then sell them off again, most recently over the summer this year, when I sold off all of the daemons that I’d bought for the project, instead just trying to focus on a couple of armies. Well, I’ve come to realise that I’m never going to be a one or two-army guy, but enjoy having a number of small forces, as they provide a useful way to stay focused on the hobby. When the previews for Wrath & Rapture started, it got me thinking again about those daemon plans, but oddly enough, the thing that really tipped me over the edge into getting back into daemons was the new Grey Knights project that I’ve now started working on!

At any rate, this month I’ve bought myself a couple of the Start Collecting boxes, one for each force, and for the time being I think they will be sufficient for my purposes here!

I’ve designed a list for 40k that will basically involve throwing all of my units into melee as quickly as possible. An all-melee army is something I’m not really used to with 40k, being a Necrons / Dark Eldar player, so it’s got something going for it there as a novelty factor! There is very little shooting in the Chaos Daemons book, especially if you’re staying god-specific, so I’m thinking that I will doubtless be using this list in conjunction with all of my Cultists that I’ve got plans for, pretty much in the manner of having the humans alongside the daemons they’ve managed to summon into the world.

Purely speaking about the daemons, however, I’ve got two very distinct lists that should look pretty good on the tabletop, I’m thinking.

I do like a lot of infantry, as I’ve mentioned a number of times recently, and this list definitely allows for a lot of bodies on the ground! Chapter Approved has been really kind to Daemons, and Slaanesh in particular has seen a number of points reductions – before CA landed, this list cost 975 points, but the Slaanesh units have seen enough drops that I’ve got a significant number of points back – I could easily get some Seekers in there now, or maybe a Skull Cannon if I wanted to try for some much-needed ranged firepower…

I mentioned the fact that I’m melee-heavy, and I think this is something that really interests me in this particular build, because it’s the sort of army that I will need to change my playstyle for. I wouldn’t say I tend to play games without lots of cover, but being mainly a shooty kinda guy, I think I always tend to look for the open spots to take advantage of my ranged weaponry. Now, I’ll need to learn how to use cover more to my advantage, and move up the board preserving as many units as possible. So that will definitely be interesting.

I have always wanted this sort of army, though – I think it stems back to my love of the card game, Warhammer: Invasion, a game that I still need to get on this blog at some point! I would almost invariably play Chaos though, and with as many Slaanesh cards as possible, followed up with as many Khorne cards. The Bloodletter artwork has always been somewhat iconic for me, so having an army with those daemons in it is definitely a long-held dream of mine!

I would also like to get the Greater Daemons in this list at some point – maybe if I took it to 2000 points I could manage to take the Cultist contingent alongside more daemons. I suppose that will be decided when GW decides to release a plastic Keeper of Secrets, though. I keep hearing rumours every so often, but I wonder if they were perhaps mistaken for the new Fiends. Wrath & Rapture does make me wonder if there are more wide-ranging plans for new Slaanesh, of course, so hopefully we’ll be able to get something to replace the awful finecast soon! (I don’t mean that in terms of the fact I hate finecast – the model is just ridiculous, and not in a weird way that I think it would work for Slaanesh, either!)

Bringing things up to 1500 points, though, will be the Chaos Cultist contingent, so let’s take a look at that right now. I’ve been through several iterations of how I want this list to look, but for the time being, I think I’ve struck on the version that will be the most enjoyable for me to build and paint.

There are still a decent number of points left over here to cope with any additions that I might want to make, but I think it should be a good, solid base for the army build overall. There’s a healthy use of some Blackstone Fortress miniatures, and the interesting addition of a Maulerfiend – a model that I was only tangentially aware of until I picked one up while browsing my local store recently. While I don’t intend to keep things separated on the battlefield, in my head it makes some nice sense to have a heavy beatstick in with the Cultists when they’re in melee, so it will act like a protection for them. The exalted champion is only really there because I like the model, but I’ve been thinking about changing him out for Obsidius Mallex – the only thing keeping me from doing so at the moment is that I want to keep the BF models as their own thing.

Talking with the manager of my local GW the other day, it seems that the Blackstone Fortress models are going to be released as their own thing to mark the 80 days for Vigilus to fall thing that we’ve got going on right now. Whether that means we’re getting just the multi-part Traitor Guardsmen etc, or if that specific range will be released with more models alongside it, I have no idea. I do hope that we see more new weird Chaos stuff like the Rogue Psykers and Negavolt Cultists, as those models are really opening a door to all manner of weird and wonderful stuff. I’d assume we’ll also be getting the second campaign book, wherein we’ll be getting more official 40k rules than came in the pamphlet within Blackstone Fortress, as I can’t imagine Traitor Guard will be stuck in that specific 7-man configuration forever. So I may well be re-writing the Chaos Cultist part of this list very soon!

I’m choosing to field this detachment as a Renegade Chapter, rather than going for one of the named Legions, so they get to advance and charge in the same turn, which is useful for the fact there are so many melee-orientated units in the list, so it’ll keep the theme going from the daemonic part of the army.

I’m really excited for a lot of the projects that I have on the go right now, and I think this one will really be a nice one to have going on in the background while I work on the other stuff that I want to get finished in 2019!

The Grey Knights

Hey everybody!
Well, having spent most of the month of December looking through the Codex, and thinking of a couple of list ideas, I think I’m more or less settled on how I want to build up my Grey Knights for the first 1500 points. I must say, the new Chapter Approved has helped incredibly with this list, as I had originally written it up with the points from the Codex, and realised I’d have to get rid of something in order to fit in enough HQs to make the detachments I wanted. Now, however, I can not only build a battalion and a vanguard detachment, but I’m halfway to a spearhead detachment, as well!

Let’s take a look…

The idea of the list is to have some massed firepower to help get most of the units into melee range. Pretty much everybody has some form of ranged weaponry, of course, but it feels like the Grey Knights want to be in close combat (albeit their attacks and weapons skill might not make you think that at first glance!) Everybody is a psyker, too – even the dreadnought – which is a whole new world for me as regards 40k. Playing Dark Eldar, Necrons and most recently, Tau, has not prepared me well for just what is involved in the psychic phase!

There are a couple of lynchpins for the army, though, and I think I’ll go over these first. The Grand Master has the Rites of Battle ability, granting re-rolls of hit rolls of 1 for units within 6″ of him. The Paladin Ancient’s banner will not only add 1 to the Leadership of units within 6″, but he will also give each model from those units an extra attack when they fight in the combat phase. So he’s quite useful to have, though he does need to be shielded from being targeted himself, so I see him being behind the Paladins and at least one of the Strike Squads in the combat phase.

In terms of Psychic ability, every unit is a Psyker as mentioned, with a total output of thirteen psychic powers per turn (and thirteen deny tests). Grey Knights take their power from the Sanctic discipline, which are a good mix of directly offensive, combat buffs and protection for the army. Everybody also knows Smite, although it works a little differently for Grey Knights, thanks to the Rites of Banishment ability. It has a shorter range, and only deals out one mortal wound if successful, except when targeting a Daemon unit, in which case it deals a flat 3 mortal wounds. At first glance, it feels a bit like Grey Knights are hard done by with this, but then you have to remember that it is a question of balance. Whereas most armies will have maybe a couple of Psykers, every single one of my models in this army is a Psyker, so you can’t have them all dishing out normal Smite and think the game could still be balanced!

As it stands, I’m pretty happy with the army list that I’ve come up with. It’s also going to be fairly straightforward to put together. I’ve already got two Strike Squad boxes, a Paladins box and the Brother-Captain model, so I’m almost halfway there already! I’ve ordered some bits online with which to make the Brotherhood Champion, and the Paladins box will make both the Squad themselves and the Ancient and Grand Master – there’s a fantastically-posed Paladin Paragon in the Codex that looks so wonderfully ornate and fancy that I think he’ll make a great figurehead for the army!

That only leaves a third Strike Squad box and a Venerable Dreadnought to get, so it should be an easy enough task! The models are so beautiful though, I can see me taking about six months or longer to actually get anywhere with them! Especially that banner on the Ancient – it looks awesome, I really hope I can get somewhere close to that!

However, I’m already thinking about how I can build this up to 2000 points, at which point I think I might be finished with the force. While I am a bit hesitant about the infamous baby-carrier, I think it might be nice to get the Nemesis Dreadknight in there, simply because it’s still such an iconic model for the army despite the fact it looks kinda silly. I’d also like either more Paladins or else regular Terminators, as I think they also look fancy as all hell, and it would be great to get some more in there. Transports are an issue for me, as I think the amount of close combat stuff I have going on in here means I do kinda need them, but I don’t really know how! I was initially thinking Land Raiders, but they’re so expensive I’m veering more towards Razorbacks for now. But that’s a problem for another day. I definitely want to have another Strike Squad, mainly because of the fact I’d like to have one of every unit, so think I’d like to get some Interceptors, and then maybe just five more regular Strike Squad guys, who can be used if I ever want to swap-out the heavy weapons for a cheaper squad.

I’m really excited to get moving with my Grey Knights, as I think it’s a unified army that looks pretty awesome when you see them en masse. The heraldry, and the whole lore of the daemon-hunters with their words of power and warding implements really appeals to me somehow. I’d imagine that playing these guys on the tabletop would be nicely thematic, although I have heard that going up against daemons isn’t exactly a picnic for them. Even so, I’m quite excited all the same!

Part of me has been thinking about doing a Kill Team for these guys while I’m building up the full force, though I’d also like to just get moving with the things that I actually want to paint, which may not have a place in KT. For the time being, though, I’ve still got the five Purifiers on the go, and I’m joining in with Azazel’s January Painting Challenge with the Grand Master himself! So stay tuned for updates there!!

The Grey Knights, and more!

Hey everybody!
It’s been an interesting couple of days for me, as I’ve been trying to implement my plans to get stuff painted – so far, so good, but I have been noticing the fact that I’m actually feeling in the mood to try different things all the time, and I’m finding it difficult to stay focused. It’s always the trouble, I guess, when trying to do something like this, as you risk not being productive because you’re instead in the mood for something else.

For me, right now that something else is Grey Knights!

I’ve talked about my Deathwatch plans here not too long ago, of course, and I’ve been thinking a lot about that army and maybe making some addition to it, trying to incorporate the more weird and wonderful elements of the Imperium. Something that always attracts me to 40k is the gothic grimdark look of it all, and the smaller factions of the Imperium such as the Adeptus Ministorum and the Inquisition really pull me in for their weird and wonderful aesthetic. We’re probably another year away from getting anything associated with the Adepta Sororitas, which I would imagine to include all manner of Priests and other wonderful bits, but the 40k-adjacent stuff like Blackstone Fortress has provided us already with some of the more obscure stuff, with the promise of more to come, and I love it! But today, after about a week of turning it over in my mind, I went and bought the Codex and a Strike Squad.

I’d originally bought a Purifier Squad in 2016, but only got as far as this bad boy before selling it off as another abandoned project (though I did use the swords for some Alpha Legion Chosen back when I was building an army of those sneaky chaps). I had some serious painting issues in 2016, as I kept going wider and wider with my projects, and ended up selling off a whole load of things I’d partially finished or finished entirely. It wasn’t really until I wrote that blog about the Inquisition the other week that I began to think about doing anything remotely linked to Chapter 666.

I’ve played against Grey Knights in Kill Team, and it was shocking (though I was playing as Genestealer Cults, so there is that…) I’m definitely looking forward to making up a small detachment of daemon-hunters to add to my xenos-hunting Deathwatch, anyway!

Mention of Genestealer Cults brings me on to today’s preview of the new Vigilus Defiant campaign book over on the Community site. The book is bringing out some specialist detachments for armies in all three branches of play, and it sounds amazing. Rather than having the crazy special rules of 7th edition, or merely having points attached to them like Age of Sigmar, detachments in 8th edition are bought using Command Points, and merely unlock further Stratagems, Relics and Warlord Traits that you can give to your units within that specialist detachment. It’s a bit early to say, for sure, but it sounds like it should be a really nice addition to the game and, so long as they don’t use this as an excuse to drive sales of miniatures that aren’t doing so well at retail, or try to balance the meta by bringing out more and more insane detachments, I think it should be good.

Giving a select few units access to some cool new stuff sounds like a fun idea, anyway, and from the look of the preview article, it sounds like they’re definitely aiming for theme more than anything else. Of course, that can always go one of two ways, so I suppose it will just be a case of waiting to see how all of this pans out…

That’s not all on the Community site today though – we also got a pdf with Kill Team rules for the miniatures within Blackstone Fortress, which is really nice! While there have been no firm promises to provide Blackstone Fortress rules for the Kill Team Rogue Trader stuff, it’s still good to see the level of crossover within these games, and I like the fact they’re available for free.

While the explorers all have specific armies they slot into (mainly Imperium ones, though obviously Tau and Eldar feature), the adversaries all slot into their own Servants of the Abyss faction, and I’m definitely going to be looking at building a list with these guys soon enough!! I’m thinking a Rogue Psyker, some Negavolt Cultists, maybe a Black Legionnaire, and a few Traitor Guard to round it out to 100 points. Should be interesting – I’ve played against psykers in Kill Team of course, but the psychic phase in general is one that I tend to avoid!

Finally, I started to read the Enforcer omnibus the other day – so far, it’s been excellent, so I hope that the quality continues! I’m probably only going to read the first book in the trilogy for now, as I’m also itching to get back to the Horus Heresy, but had been reading far too much about the Iron Warriors lately, so felt the need for a palette cleanse before I get back to it with Angel Exterminatus!

Look out for my review soon, anyway, along with progress with the Grey Knights!

Jumping on the beast-wagon

Hey everybody!
Well, if you’re one of my instagram followers, not only do you have impeccable taste, but you’ve likely already seen the post from last week about being seduced by the lure of the Beasts of Chaos battletome for Age of Sigmar. The musk is obviously heavy with those fine gentlemen. Ahem, anyway.

I haven’t played Age of Sigmar in years. In fact, I’ve only played it twice, and that was in its first edition, and I was playing with the new Stormcast Eternals. I did like those chaps, and still have my army from back in the day. At any rate, while I’ve made no real move to do anything more with the fantasy setting of Warhammer, I have been keeping an eye on things, and have often felt myself weakening as regards to getting back into it all. See, Warhammer Fantasy is what got me into this mess in the first place, and I will no doubt always have a soft spot for the Old World, even in its new incarnation.

While I was almost won over by the Daughters of Khaine (I did buy a couple of things, but then returned them and bought loads of Tau, instead) and the Idoneth Deepkin (I do actually have a box of something from that line, though I’m planning to turn them into Mandrakes for my Dark Eldar army – though I have heard they’re not quite the right scale? Oh, anyway), I’ve always managed to keep myself back from pulling the trigger on getting into Age of Sigmar with a full army. But when the previews started coming out on the Warhammer Community website, I was finding myself increasingly drawn to the Beasts of Chaos, and the idea of once again getting into the whole Fantasy thing, and so I have cautiously begun to dip my toe into the pond on that. Well, we’re probably mid-calf at this point, but I’m digressing.

Beasts of Chaos are one of the classic armies from the World that Was, of course, and were incidentally the first army I played against in the AoS system. I remember at the time thinking they looked like great models, and around the same time I bought some Minotaurs (now called Bullgors). I never did anything with them, and I think I ended up selling them. Anyway.

With all the new stuff coming for the army, I’ve once again turned my focus to these delightful, hairy chaps, and have decided that here is the army that I’ve been waiting for to get my attention.

I’m hearing a lot of good things about Age of Sigmar 2.0, and there has always been a very vibrant Fantasy scene at my local store, so I reckon it’s as good a time as any to start getting properly into this stuff. For the moment, life seems to have settled a little, so I think it’s about time I looked into the other offerings from Games Workshop, and see what they have going on.

Endless Spells are something I have no idea about, but they do sound kinda fun, adding another level to the game. I’ve always played armies with no psychic ability in 40k, so magic and the like is something that I’m not 100% sure about. So that’ll be interesting to see where it goes. The fact that magic spells have models sounds great, anyway, and the flaming bull and magical horn look tremendous – not so sure on the birds, but they’ll make great Razorwing Flock proxies for my Beast Pack in my Dark Eldar army.

All in all, I’m really looking forward to trying my hand with the Beastmen.

But wait – there’s more!!

I’ve been talking with a mate about Blood Bowl, and we’re both going to give it a go at some point, with a bit of luck. Once again, it’s good to have the sort of game where all you need is one team to get going, so I think it’ll be nice to have something available to use should the opportunity arise. Naturally, I’ve chosen the Doom Lords, although I was also considering the Dark Elves at one point. I have no idea about getting into Blood Bowl, and have only today ordered the box of these chaps, so once I’m sufficiently along with the AoS Beastmen, I think I’ll start to look at the fantasy football team and see where I can go with them, also.

Stay tuned for more blogs where I ramble inanely about my adventures with Beastmen, as I get started with both Age of Sigmar and Bloodbowl!