31 December 2013

Another year in the books...

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Very nearly so, anyway. During the week between Christmas and New Year's eve I usually try to find a little time in-between all the parties and dinners. Time to have a look at the waning year, and a few of the events from it.

Field trips... We didn't manage quite as many as last year but by now we have made pretty much all the necessary arrangements for Adepticon 2014. We also managed a record attendance at Invasion. Five of us made the trip down to play through the five games of the tournament. We all want to go back again next year, RL permitting of course. We're also hoping to increase our numbers to six for next year's.

Ørn also arranged for a set of clothes with the Team StormBolter logo and our names on them. We didn't get them in time for the Nottingham trip, but we did get to go to Kristiansand with our 'colours' on.

...and while we're on the subject of Ørn. I'll never quite understand what it is that possessed him to re-do his entire Ultramarine army - again. That aside though... The end result is fantastic. As he says himself. 'They finally look like they've managed to get off of the parade ground and into the field.' Before he even started on that project, he built and painted no less than three gorgeous new gaming tables and not a few pieces of terrain to go on them as well.

The rest of us haven't been entirely idle either. The monthly hobby challenges we ran for a few months saw the rise of new Aspiring Champions for my CSM squads, a pair of Hell Blade fighters, two old metal Chaos Spawn, a small squad of Noise Marines, a Forge Fiend, a Great Unclean one and a squad each of Plague Bearers and Nurglings, a pair of Heldrakes and I finished my Chaos Warhound Titan a couple of days ago too. (It'll be featured in my first article next year!)

Linus produced a fantastic looking squad of Chosen and a matching Helbr Chaos Dreadnought, an imposing Heldrake and there are rumours of lots of new Daemon models having been built. Hopefully we'll be seeing those on the table in 2014.

The newest member of our group; Tom-Erik completed two Triarch Stalkers, Immortals, Deathmarks and a handful of nice terrain pieces too before getting lured by the new Heresy line of Death Guard models from Forge World.

A new Autarch did show up early this year, didn't it, but Trond's been putting most of his building/painting efforts into the Revenant Titan he bought in Nottingham. I'm not quite sure if he's been able to finish it or not...

- + - + -

So... Last year's resolutions...

Linus resolved...
...to finish painting (all) the chaos models he had unpainted/unassembled, from the Baneblade to the Heldrake, the Forgefiend and a couple of Forge World items.
...to have a good learning curve on airbrush painting.
...to contribute more on the Team StormBolter blog.
...to see you TS friends much more, maybe in a year I manage around 10 games and a tournament. I will be pleased with that.

Ørnulv resolved...
...to finish 2 new themed gaming tables with updated and new terrain.
...to decide if Tau or IG will be his next army project.
...to host 2 "Hunker in the Bunker".
...to attend at least one tournament.
...to play at least 25 40K games.

Jørn resolved...
...to finish the Basilica de Veteris.
...to finish another 1500 point of Traitor Guard, to bring them to at least 2000 points.
...to play 40 games of 40K.
...to finish the Chaos Warhound Titan, and play at least one game of Apocalypse with it.

Trond resolved...
...to perhaps start a New army?
...to play at least 40 games, not including tournaments.
...to build his new Titan.
...to make some Eldar terrain.
...to attend Invasion, and also perhaps Strategikon.

Some goals easier to measure than others there, guys. Let's hear how you feel you've done, if I've missed anything above and what you've got planned for next year. (Even if you didn't pledge anything for this year.)

30 December 2013

Ultramarines “Stormtalon Gunship conversion”

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Thought it appropriate to end the hobby activities in 2013 with a post presenting the last of my two finished models-

In a somewhat desperate attempt to challenge the Helldrakes out there, I decided to give the Stormtalon Gunship a go. But there was one major problem. I did not like the GW model at al (we named it “the shrimp”)! During a gaming event at my flat back in April Linus and Jørn suggested that I looked at the Dark Angles Nephilim Jetfighter. Now that’s a fighter/gunship with clear design coherence with the Forge World "Imperial models" (my opinion anyway).

I of course had to ”convert” it a little. First I had to cut/sand away all the dark Angels markings. Then I decided to alter the antenna array a little, and to add, ”belly thrusts to the engines making them longer and more potent, but the biggest problem was the weapons. I did not want to end up with a ”shrimp” looking nose with wings, it was the slim lines I liked, so I had to compromise. Since the missile housing is an integrated part of the wings I decided to use them as either the Typhoon missile launcher or the Skyhammer missile launcher. So far so good. What about the nose and standard twin linked assault cannons? Well, the original model has various armaments in the nose, but I could not fit two Assault Cannons in it, so I decided to use a vent/fan from an old Vindicator set. I then mounted the Assault Cannons where the Heavy Bolters where mounted on the original models. To make them more flexible, I added two Lascannons under the wings. All guns are magnetized, so I can now field all current weapons configurations (when using the Lascannons I must tell my opponent to ignore the missiles).

Enough said, this is how the model turned out with all weapons mounted:

Both of them:

Gaming wise, as it turned out, they where both absolutely rubbish when facing several Helldrakes, but still cool models and effective against other targets (I think...)!

2013 is coming to an end! As I looked back at 2013 I am pretty satisfied with my hobby activities. First of all I have finished two gaming boards with new woods, a temple, new craters, tank traps, a bridge and a large building. Second I have finished a 3500p Warriors of Chaos Army. Thirdly I have given my Ultramarines a major Makeover and I have added three new units. I have also added three new units to my High Elves. When it comes to gaming I had a goal of playing a game every second week. I think I played approximately 25 games of 40K including a tournament (not counting several Fantasy battles), so that is ok. In the tournament I came 6, and I managed to win best painted army with my Dark Eldar:) I have also hosted a private gaming event and tried to be helpful toward fellow team members where I could contribute. My gaming results in 2013 are not as good as in 2011 ore 2012. I have way more losses and draws than before. But as I stated in my pledge for 2013, new gaming boards and hobby activities (Fantasy) would claim a lot of my resources, so I guess it was inevitable. With this in mind; Al in al I am happy with 2013 and look forward to more gaming and hobby activities in 2014!

Finally I would like to wish you all a happy new year!


18 December 2013

Ultramarines Makeover part 13 – Landraiders

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A 4-model makeover!

So, finally the ”makeover process” is done! As stated earlier, I still have to do Callgar and his Honour Guard, and some Vanguard Veterans (all metal models), but I will save that for later. I find it important to make some new models, like the Stalker/Hunter posted earlier; I guess they serve as a kind of motivation.

Enough said, first out, one out of two standard Landraiders:

Then, my Landraider Crusader:

All of my Landraiders (in blue):

Chaplain Cassius, and he’s apprentice, Chaplain Desticados, personal Landraider:

Finally, all of them:

Next up, my new Storm Talon’s!


12 December 2013

Ultramarines Stalker/Hunter

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This model was purchased the same day the new Codex was released, and initially I had planned to use it during a tournament in September. But – I had started a “make over” of my Ultramarines Army, hence it proved to be a to large undertaking to get everything done in time. Articles from the “makeover” can be seen on this blog.

I bought two of these models (Stalker/Hunter), but soon realized that I would very seldom field two of them. Therefore I partially magnetized the model so I can field both versions of the “Anti Flyer Tank”. I guess the remaining will be traded against NIDS models when they arrive. ;)

The Stalker

The Hunter

Next – Stormtalon Gunship


9 December 2013

Chaos Warhound Titan - WIP "All is Rust"

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After finishing off the interior of the Chaos Warhound, back in October, I restarted my research on paint schemes for Traitor Titan Legions. It quickly became apparent that there's really not that much detailed information to be had on the subject. None of the colour schemes I did find appealed to me. Forge World's red Chaos Titan Legion scheme is just too similar to my Word Bearers, and a several of the other were just too... I don't know... Not what I was looking for.

In the end I went back to Forge World, and their other Chaos Titan scheme. The old faded look seemed appropriate for a war machine several thousand years old, but I also saw an opportunity there to be able to play around with oil washes (again) and pigments and weathering powders. To that end Ørn and I went on a field trip to Small Size Hobbyland in Strømmen (north-east of Oslo) one Saturday morning. They have a pretty large range of both MIG, Vallejo and AK Interactive products, we both came away with healthy amounts of loot.

After assembling the body and head I pulled out the airbrush and gave the model a couple of light coats of Vallejo matt varnish. I then masked off the interior and applied another coat of Chaos Black primer. Satisfied that I now had a base coat that would stand up to handling, I used a large soft brush to drybrush the entire model. First a pretty heavy coating of Citadel's Warplock Bronze and then a lighter coat of Leadbelcher, focussing on surface details like battle damage, Chaos symbols and the edges of the armour plates.

The observant reader will note that these are the same first steps that I use on my Word Bearers. I did toy around with just inking the Warhound, perhaps just using a different colour, but I decided against it because it would be a shame to just take 'more of the same' approach with a model that'll be the centrepiece of my collection for quite some time.

I gathered the AK Interactive washes and weathering powders I had bought in anticipation of my (still) upcoming Traitor Guard project as well as my oil paints and turpentine. Since then I've been playing around and experimenting a lot with mixtures and effects... I've gotten to a point where I think I'm happy with how it looks now. Unfortunately, it's gotten a bit too cold outside to be able to take the titan outside and give it a couple of coatings of varnish. (It's a few degrees below 0°C.) I'll either have to find somewhere relatively close, or... find some other solution I'd better not write about here, in case She-who-comes-first happens to read the blog in secret. (Yeah, right!)

So, there it is. I still hope to have the Warhound finished in time for my birthday party in January, but I'm not comfortable with using masking tape on the model without protecting the paint-job as it stands now.

In the mean time, it turns out I still have lots of unbuilt plastic miniatures lying around...