Friday, July 29, 2016

Crowdfunded Undying Dynasties/Empire of Dust/Tomb Kings

Just launched is a new crowdfunding initiative looking to provide figures for The Ninth Age "Undying Dynasties" army. These figures are also suitable for the Kings of War "Empire of the Dead" and for Warhammer "Tomb Kings".

Late last year, Games Workshop withdrew their Tomb Kings figures and this Indiegogo initiative is an attempt to step into the gap.

The figures aren't cheap - and I suspect that they may get a visit from GW's IP people at some stage - but good on them for trying.

I can't help thinking though that most East Europeans will just buy the cheaper Mantic figures for their ETC armies.

FOB NZ Rankings - Warhammer 40k updated for CavCon

The 40k Rankings have been updated for CavCon held on the first weekend in July in the home of NZ 40k, Christchurch.

The event attracted 48 players and as such was the largest ranking event to date in  2016 (though Tempest got more players it was only three rounds - results are discounted).

The numbers that Christchurch are getting bodes well for Conquest in October and strong representation in the Masters field.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Shock & Awe - Ratkin List for Call to Arms

Sitting my San Francisco hotel on the last week of my winter migratory flight, I had to come up with a list for CTA five days after I return to the blustery climes of NZ.

So I played around with Easy Army and came up with an evolution on the list I had been using in recent months. As I've opined before I have not been enjoying my Brutes as I don't find that I get real value out of them. They have generally been susceptible to shooting and with the lower nerve they can disappear fast.

My new list removes them and also replaces a Slave unit with a Vermintide Regiment. I initially used a Horde of these but I got rid of them from my list as I played around with points. Now they are back and I've added a second Shock Troop Horde to replace the Brutes.

Ratkin - SHOCK & AWE

  • 3x Tunnel Slave Regiments
  • 2x Shock Troop Hordes
  • Blight Horde
  • Vermintide Regiment
  • 2x Weapons Teams with Storm of Lead
  • 2x Death Engine with Vile Sorcery
  • Swarm Crier
  • Warlock with Bane Chant and Inspiring Talisman
  • Daemon-spawn with Wings

The real distinguishing thing is the lack of Magic Items. I've spent a total of 20 points (the Talisman is really necessary) with the other 1980 points on units.

I like the list as it has a little bit of everything in it and I generally find that KoW works best with combined arms.


CTA Lists Released - Uncharted Empires Strikes Back

At WSS Winter there were only two Uncharted Empires lists as the main rulebook dominated the choice players brought to the table. Well Call to Arms sees a big change with over 50% of lists not from the main rulebook.

The breakdown of lists is as follows:

  • Elves x2
  • Ratkin x2
  • Twilight Kin x2
  • Varangur x2
  • Abyssal Dwarfs
  • Empire of the Dead
  • Goblins
  • Ogres
  • Undead
You can check out the lists here

It will be interesting to see if Empire of Dead can make it three tournaments in a row here in Wellington.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Wargaming - It's A Small World

So this morning I'm walking up Powell Street In San Franciso and an Englishman strikes up a conversation with me. He's noticed my Adepticon T-shirt and says you can find wargamers anywhere.

Then says he's with Mantic Games and we have a chat about Kings of War and the inroads it is making. He's off to breakfast with his two sons.

Hello Ronnie Renton. It is a really small world!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

National WWII Museum - New Orleans

If you are a regular reader then you know that like a migratory bird I am taking a sojourn in warmer climes while the Wellington winter blows itself out. And what warmer climes. The average temperature so far on our trek across the USA has been 35 degrees Celsius (is America the only country in the world that uses Imperial measurements - perhaps some sort of longing for their colonial overlords). We've been to Houston, New Orleans and Boston, and I'm currently flying to San Francisco before home (I hear SF has a more realistic 20 degrees on offer).

Last week we visited the National WWII Museum in New Orleans and what a great experience it was. The conflict is handled in an informative and tasteful way - not too much "USA - Back-to-Back World War Champions". At the ticket office you are offered the chance to buy tickets to a 45 minute film "Beyond All Boundaries" produced and narrated by Tom Hanks. Make sure you do. It is a great presentation and puts the rest of the museum in context (don't worry about the "Last Mission of the USS Tang").

The two best exhibits are the two campaign exhibits - one on the Pacific War and one on the European Conflict. In the latter there is little mention of the Soviet Union apart from their death toll.

The P-51 Mustang that was billed as the "best fighter plane in WWII".....though it is mentioned it was crap until refitted with Rolls Royce engines.

B-24 Bomber that undertook the daytime bombing of Germany from UK Air Force bases.

The US Army's workhorse Sherman tank. I wouldn't have fancied sitting in one of these as throughout the war it was significantly outgunned by the German armour. Yes quantity has its own quality but not necessarily if you are one of the "quantity".

The one that ended it all. It was one of these planes that dropped the bombs on Hiroshima and Ngasaki forcing the Japanese surrender. If you were in any doubt as to the validity of the action, the footage of IWork Jima, Okinawa and Japanese response to Tokyo firebombing may change that view. Thankfully it has never had to be used again.

The Museum is in downtown New Orleans and is a little at odds with the city's other attractions. If you are a local who hasn't visited or a visitor passing through the city I'd urge you to check it out. We spent a full day there.


Friday, July 22, 2016

LOVE Multibasing - Brutox

Ok, this is exactly Multibasing but it is the next unit/model in my Herd army.

A couple of years ago I supported a Mierce Kickstarter that gave me the basis for a Beastmen army. One of the models I got was their Ghorgan equivalent that fits in to The Herd as a Brutox.

Recently I gave it to Sam to paint and here's the model. All the painting bar the metals is Sam's (I wanted to play around with rust effects) and the basing is mine.

I think Sam has done a great job. The only thing that is required before it hits the table is a spray of Dullcote to remove some of the sheen.


Thursday, July 21, 2016

Experience With Clash of Kings Tournament Tweaks

Earlier in the month I ran a tournament in Wellington (New Zealand, for my overseas readers) that utilised the tweaks in the tournament pack for Clash of Kings.

At the outset, I think it is important to note that our local community did not have the "rage" against flyers, allies and individual models that the tournament tweaks were seeking to address. So we were probably a "control" for the tweaks.

The event was four rounds, 2000 points with tables with 8-10 terrain pieces on them. Scenarios used were Dominate, Invade, Loot and Pillage (so not the two new scenarios). The rest of the tweaks were used.

You can find the lists and results by searching back through the blogroll - both are on the second page.

So how did we find them?

Well I asked for feedback and here is the collated opinion:

  • Changes to Flyers – Good/Bad? Did it impact your game markedly - Had an impact in that Flyers were less prevalent than in prior events. Expect this was uncertainty as to the effects but the change did alter army composition to a minor extent. The majority found that the actual in-game effects were minimal as people amended their tactics somewhat knowing that they couldn't just park then dash.
  • Changes to Scenarios – limiting the impact of Individuals and War Engines, Movement limitations in Loot - Overwhelmingly the view was positive. The restrictions on control/claiming of objectives were seen as sensible while movement limitations in Loot were welcomed. Most people said that their use changed the outcome of at least one game.
  • Restrictions on multiples of units, limits on allies, no magic artefacts for allies - Again the reaction was overwhelmingly positive. Wellington doesn't see a lot of Allies (hangover as a result of most of players being ex-WHFB) anyway. Less than 20% of the armies had them and they were not the normal suspects generally. Some discussion as to whether Artefacts below 25 points could be allowed for Allies but majority saw this as cleaner. Limit on spamming welcomed though to be far the only likely list change was a Goblin who wanted to bring 4 Rock Lobbas.
  • “Downgrade” of Pharaoh - this was the one that provoked the most discussion. There was only one Empire of Dust and one Undead army at the event (previous event slightly larger had seen three EoD and two Undead). Two schools of thought - firstly, hurrah! Much needed as he was very strong especially in the hands of a good player. The second, was why single him out? The Dwarf Lord with Wings is also a handful. In the end he still proved to be very hard to kill. However he is seen as something whose existence limits the proliferation of shooting Hordes (our local meta is strong in EoD and Undead usually). Probably the most debated of the changes.
In the end the event was won by the Empire of Dust player who finished second at the previous event with the same list. I guess that gives a nice feedback point. The changes weren't game-breaking.

However after the event, the TO for the next event Call to Arms asked for a show of hands as to whether his Players Pack should be amended to include the tweaks. This was overwhelmingly positive. In the end that's probably the best feedback the Rules Committee can get.

Friday, July 15, 2016

A Blast From The Past - My First Website

Back in 2000 (yes the dim dark ages) I contracted somebody to build me a website where I could post pictures of my Ancient wargaming armies.

I was heavily into 15mm DBM (a set of rules by Wargames Research Group) and was prolific in building and painting armies. At its peak I think I had nineteen 15mm armies. A lot of them are represented on the site.

You can access it here

Remember this was in the days before Facebook and Google and blogs were yet to be discovered. There were email groups such as Yahoo Groups - and that was it.


Early Samurai

Patrician Roman Foederati

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Hobby Update

Well pretty much none since I left New Zealand on holiday last Saturday.

However the hobby tragic I am, yesterday I was in the store at Houston Natural History Museum considering whether I would buy a Mastodon figurine for my Herd army. In the end I didn't but boy I wished that they made some figures for Texas Longhorn cattle.

Call to Arms is coming up in less than a month. Sign up for the Kings of War event - see Calendar - numbers are growing. I'm aware of a dozen registrations so far. It would be great to break 20 especially given it is a two day event.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

LOVE Multibasing - "The Blackened Plate" - Longhorn Regiment

My second unit for my Herd army is a regiment of Longhorns.

About 5-6 years ago I painted up a unit of Pestigors to use as Marauders in a Nurgle Warriors of Chaos army. This week I got them out and detailed them to fit in with what I was doing with my Herd. I think they are a good fit as Longhorns and have christened them "The Blackened Plate" to denote their pestilent nature.

I multibased using twigs and stones plus tufts and static grass. In the front corner you can see the GW Agrellan Earth. There are also some thistles by fallen log and other blossoms.

Really enjoying the scope that KoW Multibasing provides.


Thursday, July 7, 2016

LOVE Multibasing - Lycan Horde

One of the big attractions of Kings of War for me was the opportunity to create diorama multibases.

I have always strived to give my armies interesting bases - be it DBM, 40k or WHFB - but KOW makes multibases an integral part of the game.

My first entirely KOW army will be The Herd and I have sourced miniatures from many different manufacturers and ranges. To tie this all together I was keen to have common basing that reflected the army's background.

Given my painting speed has slowed with age, I am very lucky to have a local painter who turns out high quality at a rapid speed. Sam Whitt's armies have gone from strength to strength and he is now painting a lot of The Herd for me.

Last week I posted some pictures of some WIP multibases and now I can post the finished article with minis included. Sam has done a great job on the wolves I'm using for Lycans.

The great thing about the basing is how quick it is to achieve good results. Bases comprise stones and twigs from garden, some bark, a variety of sands and tufts, some static grass and GW Agrellan Earth paint. The one above took about 2-3 hours work.

I'm currently working on a second unit and will post pictures when it is finished.


"King of Shore" KOW Tournament - 14 August in Auckland

Rob Sadler is running a one day, three game 2000 point KOW tournament on 14 August on the North Shore, Auckland.

You can get the details from Rob by dropping him an email

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

FOB NZ Rankings - KOW Updated For WSS "Winter"

The FOB rankings have been updated for last weekend's WSS Winter event.

Starting to see some consolidation in the rankings as this is the 7th event entered.

Greater Wellington is obviously the current home of KOW in New Zealand with six ranking and one non-ranked event so far. Hopefully we'll see other communities pick up the game as time goes on.

Crack's Call - Date Change

Crack's Call will now be run in Masterton on the weekend of 1/2 October.

The event will be a Kings of War 2000 point event - but with a twist. TO Neil Williamson will be developing some special scenarios for the event.

You can see all the details in the Players Pack here

Monday, July 4, 2016

Rules Questions Asked At This Weekend's Event

This weekend I had only two questions asked of me - other than the normal "flank or front" judgement calls.

  • If a unit is in terrain that provides cover and shoots at another unit also in that terrain piece, does the shooter take the cover modifier? Yes
  • Can a unit countercharge a unit to its flank if there is no room to pivot due to the close proximity of other units? Yes, but only if its final position is completely free of other units. During a Countercharge, the pivot can take it over other units but after it has contacted its target, it must be completely clear of all units. It may slide to achieve this.
The situation in the second question is covered in the most recent FAQ where there are diagrams illustrating this. It was also a question that had previously provided confusion in threads on Mantic Forum prior to the FAQ being issued.

I will say, as an Umpire, I find KoW an excellent set of tournament rules where the rule is easily found in the well written and logical rulebook. This makes umpiring a relatively painless process.

Weekend Hobby Update

Most of the weekend was taken up with WSS "Winter" which ran on Saturday. The event went off well and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.

The idea of having a series of events tied go the local club has worked well. Entry for the events is free to club members and with four tournaments, a club membership is a 50% discount on entry (if you go to all four events). It has resulted in 12 new members plus the non-member entry has covered all the costs of trophies. Win-win.

Yesterday I started making the bases for my first "The Herd" units. These are my first attempts at multi basing.

I used various pieces of bark, slate and twig and have now primed them, prior to painting. I left the twig unpainted as I wasn't sure I could improve on nature.


Sunday, July 3, 2016

Call to Arms Kings of War - 6/7 August

Just a reminder that Call to Arms is on 6/7 August at Kilbirnie, Wellington.

You can download the Players' Pack in the "Event Calendar" section just below the banner.

The Umpire announced yesterday that the Clash of Kings Pack "Tournament Tweaks" as used at WSS "Winter" will be used for the event. This was after a show of hands showed that an overwhelming majority of WSS participants were happy with the changes.

A list of participants can be found under "Event Registrations" and will be updated as people signup.

Press Coverage of 3D Printed Wargaming Scenery

Article in the Sunday Press about local gamer Matt Barker and his successful Kickstarter for 3D printed wargaming scenery.

You can read the article here

AS you know I'm a big fan of Printable Scenery's models so nice to see some mainstream coverage.

WSS Winter Photos

Here are a selection of photos I took at WSS Winter yesterday.

Sam Whitt, Otaki's very own "Mother of Dragons" was leading into the fourth round but saw his dreams crumble against Peter Williamson's Empire of Dust.

An elf-off in the last round saw Rex Foote prevail versus Kent Jackson.

By all accounts Kent's Elves withered against the torrent of fire from Rex's two shooting hordes.

WSS "Winter" Results

Yesterday "Winter" arrived in Wellington and we had the third of the Warlords' Super Series.

Four rounds, 2000 points with each player having 55 minutes (including deployment). The four scenarios used were INVADE, DOMINATE, LOOT and PILLAGE (in that order). Also used were the Clash of Kings tournament tweaks.

Results were as follows:

Best Sport was Robert Higgins who had 3 out of his 4 opponents give him their Best Opponent vote.
Best Army went to Neil Williamson's Goblins.

I'll post some photos later today and also some thoughts on the CoK tweaks.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Painting At Future FOB Events

Over the past 12 months there have been relaxed painting criteria at Fields of Blood run events. This is largely because Kings of War issued a new edition and indeed for most people was a new game.

The intention was to allow people time to transition to the new game, build new armies or rebase if necessary.

Well a year has past and I'm of the opinion that those that intended doing so, probably have. And so for future events I'll be insisting on painted armies and utilising paint scoring.

As in the past, this will be a checklist system whereby there will be 45-50 points on offer but you only need to get 35 points to get full painting marks. The infamous "checklist" will return.

All the reasons of why I have used this in the past still hold true. For me - and let's not forget it is all about me - Wargaming is a visual hobby. If I am organising an event I go to a lot of effort to create nice tabletops with high quality, functional terrain. Therefore I want those boards to be complemented by painted armies.

I can hear the groans already but as with WHFB in the past the outcome is worth the noise.

This doesn't mean that you have to rebase your figures on multibases. Quite happy for people to use individually mounted figures in the appropriate trays. These are cheap (try Sarissa Precision) or you can easily make them yourself.

However your army will have to be painted to a minimum tabletop standard. Given that that covers everyone at the past two events that shouldn't cause too many waves.

Winterdale Turret - Six Piece 3D Tower

On Monday and Tuesday I printed off the Winterdale Turret that came as part of the Indigogo crowd funding campaign run in April/May.

The turret is a modular tower that you can make as high as you want. You can also use it to put on the towers for the Winterdale Castle.

These are the six modular pieces straight from the printer. There are two of the window floor but effectively five unique.

  • Roof Section
  • Ring Support for Roof
  • Window Floor
  • Door Floor
  • Base

You can do without the base if you need to.

The pieces fit together flawlessly. The interiors are all detailed. I will likely put plastic pins in to help in game use (don't want floors falling off).

All together the six pieces took 48 hours of printing time. However my direct interaction was only about an hour. This included ten minutes using Cura (free software programme that converts STL files to Gcode) and loading them on SD card.

From the web I have found out about a product called XTC-3D which is a resin coating for PLA (the plastic filament) prints. I am going to use that tomorrow to seal the pieces and see if it improves finish as much as it promotes.

My tower stands 12" high. I intend painting it up over next week and will post it once it is finished.


"Winter is Coming" - WSS Winter Tomorrow

Unrolling one of the most used cliches of the past five years "Winter is Coming"

Well tomorrow it is here.

The third of the Warlords Super Series "Winter" is on this Saturday at the Warlords venue in Khandallah.

All visitors welcome. If you are interested at all in Kings of War wander along and have a look. Warlords is on Ganges Road in Khandallah. Battle kicks off at 8.15am and continues through to 5.00pm