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!