Deliverance Lost

Hey everybody!
I’ve made a return to the Horus Heresy lately, having read book 18 in the mammoth series: Deliverance Lost.

Deliverance Lost

The book follows on from the events of the dropsite massacre on Isstvan V, and details the activities of the Raven Guard, under their primarch Corvus Corax, as he attempts to rebuild the legion. I’ve admired the Raven Guard colour scheme when I’ve seen it in stuff like the Kill Team box set, but I’ve never really thought of myself as a fan of the XIX legion. However, after reading this book – well, I’m not about to start building a new army, but I do think I have a better appreciation for them.

As Corvax and his marines escape the Isstvan system, we discover that the Alpha Legion has managed to infiltrate the loyalists, and there is some really wonderful misdirection throughout the entire novel, as we follow the spy, “Alpharius”, as he gathers intelligence for Omegon, who has placed himself close to Deliverance, the heartland of the Raven Guard.

I think it’s widely known that Corvax obtained knowledge of genetic manipulation from the Emperor in order to rebuild his legion, especially since all of the Primaris hullabaloo that brought out other instances of people other than the Master of Mankind building space marines. Corvax obtains access to the primarch project itself after an elaborate set-piece trap sequence, which seemed somewhat out of place, but was nevertheless entertaining. Postulating that they could mix Raven Guard geneseed with primarch genetics to produce space marines that have the superhuman powers and enhanced growth rate of the primarchs, the Raven Guard begin to re-create their numbers, but this is sabotaged by “Alpharius” and his introduction of demon ichor to the genetic material, which causes the new recruits to spawn demonic talons and such. While thousands of marines are successfully made, it’s an unfortunate stumbling block on the road for Corvax, and I did find myself quite sorry for the poor guy as his continued attempts to re-build are thwarted!

While the Alpha Legion spies all seem to have been outed by the end of the novel, an interesting question is posed by the fact that, if the Alpha Legion has successfully infiltrated one legion, how many more have spies within them now? There is a lot here that has an impact within the wider storyline of the Heresy, and I particularly liked the idea that nobody was quite sure if the Raven Guard were still loyal to the Emperor at the beginning. The undercurrent of fear is shown to be quite the effective weapon, and you can easily believe that Horus doesn’t actually need to march on Terra quite yet, as the mistrust that he has sown among the Imperium is doing so much work for him already.

This is a really good novel, and one that I was surprised at because I hadn’t been expecting to enjoy it quite as much. I think the inclusion of the Alpha Legion helped here, for sure, but even without that, I was suitably intrigued by the Raven Guard that I’ve found myself looking forward to seeing where they get to next.

Until then, however, it’s time to join the Ultramarines properly, as the Battle of Calth beckons!

Upcoming Black Library goodness

I’ve made a return to the Horus Heresy series, and a short discussion on Twitter has got me looking ahead for more on the latest and upcoming Black Library offerings…

Oh my goodness, this thing has gotten my interest! The Devastation of Baal looks like it should be a really good book. Guy Haley does churn out some great fiction, of course, and I’m really keen to see how the new 8th Edition timeline is going to progress, so I’m looking forward to getting this next month!

I’m not the biggest Blood Angels fan, of course, but I did really enjoy the Shield of Baal series back in 2014/15, so if it gives off this kind of vibe, then I’m all for it!

Also – Space Marine Conquests? Is this another series of Space Marine-centric novels? If they have similarly amazing stories as the Devastation of Baal seems to be, then I’m all for it!

Sons of the Hydra, coming in January, sounds like it could be a really interesting book. An Alpha Legion soldier seeking redemption for his legion? I’m more intrigued than I can possibly say! Of course, I have an Alpha Legion army that is still something of a work in progress, and definitely hold a soft spot for the duplicitous sons of Alpharius. It’s one of the things that’s interesting me so much about Deliverance Lost right now.

There are still plenty of new books (and some not-so-new!) that I want to get round to, mainly that I’m waiting to arrive in paperback, top of that list being Ghost Warrior and Shroud of Night. It’s going to be a very busy winter!

Necromunda News!

Hey everybody!
I’m so excited to see the news about Necromunda from Spiel – pre-order date for the new boxed game is 11 November! I’m so looking forward to getting this game in my hot little hands!

Necromunda Underhive

It looks wonderful, anyway – GW have really been knocking it out of the park with their boxed games, and I can’t wait to see what this one is like. Should be a lot of fun, and I look forward to a whole slew of expansions and support for it with new gangs and – gasp! – maybe even the Adeptus Arbites, themselves! Let’s hope…

Adeptus Arbites

Ghostmaker

Hey everybody!
Earlier this week, I finally finished reading my way through Ghostmaker, the second novel in the Gaunt’s Ghosts series. I won’t deny, it was a tough slog to get through this one in the end, not as good as the first, but get through it I did… let’s take a look…

Back to the Ghosts tonight! #Warhammer40k #GauntsGhosts

A post shared by Mark (@marrrkusss) on

The novel is set on the world of Monthax, as the Ghosts are preparing to fight another onslaught of Chaos Cultists. However, the actual story of this action doesn’t really begin until about 100 pages from the end. The majority of the novel is taken up with reminiscences from several key members of the regiment, tied together with a couple of pages of Gaunt walking the trenches and reassuring his men on the eve of battle.

We get to see Gaunt arrive on Tanith for the founding ceremony, and the Chaos invasion that ultimately destroyed the world. We see extended flashbacks from Major Rawne, Mkoll, Larkin, Corbec, and others, which somehow manage to interweave among each other as well as helping to inform the final story section, where the Ghosts storm a ruined building on Monthax and find a small group of Eldar from Craftworld Dolthe, who are trying to seal a webway portal to which the Chaos cultists are so desperate to gain access.

While the structure of a series of reminiscences like this is quite a tried and tested formula for telling a story, I found that it irritated me the longer it went on in this particular instance. I generally don’t read the synopses on the backs of novels like this, but had somehow caught sight of the fact that the Ghosts were going up against the Eldar, and so was looking forward to seeing that – as a result, every time I read about something else, I felt somehow cheated by it. The book isn’t a bad one, and fans of the series no doubt will appreciate the character portraits that emerge as we get to see more of individual Ghosts, but I felt that the endless flashbacks got in the way of a story that I wanted to read.

And that’s the great shame about Ghostmaker, for me. I know that, ultimately, the novel isn’t really about the Tanith vs Eldar battle, but the final chapter that actually details the fight is actually really interesting, and I wish that there had been some way of peppering these flashbacks into the narrative while throwing the focus instead on the “present” story.

I think I might have another break before making it on to Necropolis, anyway!

Ambush!

Hey everybody!
It’s my 700th blog post! Crikey!

This isn’t really going to be a very long post, but it’s going to be an exciting one, all the same! See, I’ve been doing a bit of an inventory of my Warhamer kits that are waiting to be built, and while I’m continually shocked at just how much plastic I have waiting for me to get round to it, I think that everything I have is fairly necessary. I mean, of course, that I don’t really have an odd kit for an army that I don’t really collect. I have a lot of things that I’ve not really managed to properly do much of anything with yet, like Space Marines, and I have a lot of stuff for well-established armies such as Necrons and Dark Eldar. And I have bits and pieces for the combined Militarum Tempestus/Adeptus Mechanicus list that I’m working on, along with some pieces for a Genestealer Cults army that has been on my mind for about a year now…

Genestealer Cults progress

It’s this last army that I want to talk about briefly today. I’ve got a bunch of kits, along with the stuff from Deathwatch Overkill, that has been in varying stages of completion for quite some time now. I know the colour scheme that I want to use, both on the mining Cultists and the guardsmen Cultists, and I have a vague idea for including a detachment of Tyranids in with them now that I’ve been delving into Index: Xenos 2, but it’s finding the time to work out a proper army list that is proving to be difficult right now!

So far, I’ve decided that I want to have a core of actual Genestealer Cultists for the army, and I’m probably looking at a Battalion detachment, given the number of HQ units that I’ll be doing for these chaps. My big plan is to then have waves of Neophyte Hybrids much like in the picture above, though on a much larger scale. I think I want to get at least two more boxes of these guys – to add to the one box I bought last year, and the contents of Overkill.

Incidentally – how good are the contents of Overkill for starting a GSC army?! According to my calculations, the total points cost for the models you get in the box, for 8th Edition, is 809 points. Now, that does assume a squad of 5 purestrain genestealers, and not the four that are supplied, but it’s otherwise a very good start to the army. I was initially a bit bummed that GSC don’t yet have a Start Collecting box for the faction, but I actually feel that Overkill is such a good place to start, it’s a lot better than a Start Collecting box will be. Though, you don’t get any transports in the boxed game, of course.

Anyway!

I then have a sort of secondary plan to use the Acolyte Hybrids probably in a separate detachment with an Acolyte Iconward. However, I found it quite interesting when working out the points values for the squad of Acolytes that I had built up last year:

The squad that I built up just over 12 months ago now works out at 106 points, by my reckoning – with the weapons forming almost half of that cost. Now, I have 5-man troop squads that have quite a high cost, and something I’ve been thinking about when building my Imperium army has been keeping the cost down in order to get more bodies on the ground, so I’m surprised at just how expensive these things can turn out to be.

The modular flavour of building a 40k army is something that I really enjoy, and drilling down to that level of precisely what I can kit out my guys with is always a lot of fun for me. Especially given how restrictive my first army, Necrons, can be! So I don’t think I’m ever going to go for a boring, basic squad, but I do feel somewhat bad about including such expensive wargear in just one squad!

(I’ve lost some of my miniatures in moving house, and currently can’t find the Neophytes that I had built prior to the move. Once I do, I’m planning to write up a proper “My First Genestealer Cult Army” style blog, so stay tuned for that!)

The Tyranid detachment is something that I’m very much looking forward to adding, as it’ll finally give me the impetus I need to get painting these chaps! I love the look of the Zoanthropes, and have been looking forward to getting them done for a while now. I’ve been thinking about adding these in a Vanguard detachment, just because there are more Elite units of Tyranids that I want to add to the army than anything else. I definitely want to build up my Maleceptor for the list, and add some Venomthropes (along with a Toxicrene in the heavy support slot). It would be more thematic, however, to build the list around a Broodlord and Genestealers, which are troops in the Index, so I suppose the idea of concentrating on a Vanguard because of the Elites really isn’t quite so limiting.

Genestealer Cult

Anyway, I thought this blog would be a short one, but clearly not! Tyranids and Genestealer Cultists always intrigue me greatly around this time of year, so I expect to be talking about them more as the autumn goes on. Thanks for making it this far through the post, and here’s to the next 700!

Army Updates!

Hey everybody!
For today’s game day blog, I thought I’d share the fruits of some of my musings on Warhammer 40k since I spent the best part of a weekend sorting out how I’m going to field the legions of little people that I have right now. It’s been a very exciting time, I have to say, so I’m excited to share it with you all!

Imperium Army

First of all, I’m sure by now you’ll all remember the combined AdMech/Militarum Tempestus army that I’ve been thinking about for a while? Well I’ve been looking into getting the AdMech part ready for a tournament at my local game store at the end of October, so was working on a 1500-point list of Skitarii and the odd Tech Priest. What a glorious list that would have been! The only problem, of course, is that I would need to buy more miniatures than I already have, and the enormity of the task was somewhat getting to me… I mean, the total project weighed in at 1468 points and 66 miniatures, of which I’ve currently only painted one five-man Skitarii Ranger squad.

Hm.

It’s with a bit of regret, then, that I think this army project will likely not be ready inside of a month… But I’m going to continue on with it for the time being, as I really do like the idea of having a wave of Skitarii robot-men marching across the field implacably!

I picked up the Codex for the AdMech when it dropped, and also the Guard Codex when that came out at the weekend. What a pair of books!! A lot of people have been really tearing the AdMech to pieces, whereas the Guard have had nothing but glowing reviews – indeed, it seems right now, they’re the most powerful army in 8th Edition! So I’m intrigued to see how a combined army would fare.

Of course, my own Guard contribution is Militarum Tempestus, which seem to have come off the worse in comparison with the other Regiments in the book. However, the models are so damn amazing that I would never let a small factor like the rules get in the way of me enjoying them! So before I move on, let me talk about the planned army that I have right now.

The original army list for the Scions that I posted back when I was working from the Index came in at 385 points, very much a subsidiary portion of the overall force. I’ve not actually changed the load-out, from what I can see, but my new Tempestus force weighs in at 391 points, so still not exactly a massive part of the force.

Tempestus list

I’ve since bought another box of Tempestus Scions, and the Start Collecting box, as I managed to find both at a reasonable discount. It’s probably important to note, I’ve never owned a Guard Codex previously, so I’ve never really been aware of the make-up of the army. Reading through the new edition at the weekend, though, I was quite impressed to discover that this list, plus the kits I have yet to build, make up a single Militarum Tempestus Platoon! Exciting times. I do enjoy having the proper organisation for these things, after all.

Now, of course, I just need to think of how I want to kit-out the three other squads of Scions…

For the AdMech portion of the army, however, I’m not being quite so formal. I very much want to field an army that I want to field, if that makes sense, and so I don’t particularly want to go forcing myself to get miniatures that I don’t particularly want, just for the sake of getting a Maniple or Cohort or whatever…

Skitarii list

The army is Skitarii-heavy, as I’ve mentioned already, but I think it should be an interesting build to play (and, hopefully, to play against!) Right now, then, I have a total of 717 points built and primed, which I suppose isn’t too bad going, on the whole! I’ve added a 10-man Skitarii Rangers group to this list since I first blogged about starting the army, as well as the Tech-Priest Enginseer, as I was aiming to get that Battalion detachment going on there. I’ve since started work on a further box of Skitarii, building them as Vanguard this time, so I’m now wondering if I can manage to slip them into a Patrol detachment that would give me yet more command points to spend, but I think I’ll need to give this some more thought for the time being. The dream remains a Brigade detachment, of course, but I think that will be a long way off yet…

On the whole, then, I have a Skitarii Battalion and a Tempestus Patrol detachment, so I’ll be getting the grand sum of 9 command points. So what can I do with all these things?

Codex Astra Militarum has given us some really nice, juicy Stratagems to work with. I’ve taken great care to ensure that all of my Tempestus units have vox casters in them, to allow for Orders to be issued as far as 18″ away, and the Tempestor Prime has his command rod that allows him to issue two orders instead of one each turn, anyway. The Inspired Tactics stratagem will allow him to issue up to three orders per turn, all for a single command point, which I find very exciting – I’m looking forward to seeing how well that can work for me, anyway! The Tempestus also have their own unique stratagem that allows them to immediately fire at a unit arriving from reserves within 12″, which could be quite useful, though so far in 8th I’ve not really played against a great deal of these types of armies…

As for the Codex Adeptus Mechanicus list of Stratagems, I’m not entirely sure if I’ll be using a great deal. I do like the Protector Doctrina Imperative, allowing for +1 to hit in the shooting phase (+2 if the unit has an enhanced or broad-spectrum data tether) – as I’m seeing the AdMech primarily as a gun-line army, I think it’ll be really useful to bolster them like this. I don’t have a Forge World for my army, so I’ve been taking a look through those in the book, and overall I think I like the look of Metalica – it was originally going to be my colour scheme, after all! So I think I’m going to have them as subsidiaries of the Metalica FW and go from there.

This has been an incredibly long ramble, so well done if you’ve made it to the end here! I’ve been very excitedly looking at my Dark Eldar collection in a similar vein, but I think I’ll wait for a bit before writing up my thoughts on the space pirates. October will definitely be a time for trying to get more of the AdMech and Tempestus guys finished for the tabletop, so I hope that I can soon get to my local store for some games!

My tabletop update!

Hey everybody!
While my games day blog from earlier this week has described how I haven’t really had a lot of time to be doing much in the way of gaming this last month or so, I do seem to have found the time to build a few miniatures lately, so I thought I’d take a brief look around the old tabletop and catch up with what I’ve been doing!

Adeptus Mechanicus update

No real surprise, in light of the recent Codex release, is the preponderance of Adeptus Mechanicus models here. I started to build up the Skitarii Rangers (and those two Vanguard) a couple of weeks before the Codex arrived, and have been steadily adding to the ranks of unpainted Rangers right up to this weekend just gone. Having now picked up the Codex, I’m pleased to see there haven’t been any differences in unit composition compared with the Index, just a slight points difference. These sorts of things always concern me a little, so I’m glad that I can now plough on with these chaps.

Adeptus Mechanicus Skitarii

You may recall that I painted up five Rangers back in July? Well, it’s time to try and really get going now with a massive force of these implacable robot-men!

These recent efforts have been in an attempt to get moving with my Imperial Soup army that I discussed in the blog linked above. That army involves 23 Adeptus Mechanicus models, and I’m very close to having everything at least built. I still need to get the Vanguard built, of course, and the Dominus, but still!

For that same army, I’ve already had the three groups of Scions built, but now have added the Chimera and Commissar to the roster.

Of course, now I just need to paint them!

The Commissar model in particular went together really nicely, I have to say. I still wanted to do a little conversion to him, as I fancied getting a power fist on there somehow, but in the event I put him together as he comes. I’ve now bought a Start Collecting Militarum Tempestus box as well, which also comes with a Commissar, so I might do some work to him instead…

Right now, I’m definitely in a building mood, as I continue to get to grips with how to arrange my paints in my new house. I’ve currently got things scattered all over the place, which is particularly annoying as my house is split across three floors. But hopefully I can get this sorted soon, and then make a start on painting these models. I’ve recently fancied getting those Haemotrope Reactors painted, though, so I’m hoping that I’ll be able to follow up on this soon!!

Unfortunately, I don’t think I’m going to have my industrial board ready in time for this year’s Armies on Parade. Far too much going on right now, after all! But next year…