Tuesday, November 30, 2021

KOW - Return of the Ratkin

This weekend I will be having my first game of Kings of War in four years. Since I last played the edition has changed and the supporting army lists have also been updated. 

I am going to use my Ratkin and so have spent the last couple of weeks painting the necessary new models and basing where required.

Decided to go with a pretty straightforward list rather than to get too "cute" while trying to re-learn the game. Here is the list I am using:
  • Warrior Horde - Plague Pots
  • Shock Troop Horde - Plague Pots & Brew of Strength
  • Shock Troop Horde - Plague Pots & Caterpillar Potion
  • Wretches Horde
  • Vermintide Regiment
  • Vermintide Regiment
  • Mutant Rat Fiend
  • Mutant Rat Fiend
  • Brood Mother
  • Tangle
  • Daemonspawn
So all the units have Unit Strength of 1+, with a total of Unit Strength 21. I have 11 drops....which is possibly on the light side.

Looking to have some pictures of the finished army later in the week.

Monday, November 29, 2021

40K - Open War Mission Pack - Narrative Campaign Use

On the weekend we used the Open War Mission Pack cards to generate the missions used in our campaign games.

The cards give a number of different deployments, objectives and twists to provide a unique game.

However rather than have a totally random scenario, the guys in the group have adapted/created a mini-game around scenario generation.

This works by creating a grid of three cards by three cards.

The top row are Deployment Cards, the middle row Objective Cards and the bottom row are the Twist Cards.

The default selection is the most LHS card in the row.













Each Player has two opportunities to remove a card (however they can choose to pass. You may only remove the most LHS card in each row. 

e.g. Player A can choose to remove D1, O1, T1 or he can pass. Assuming he removes O1 then when it passes to Player B then he can remove D1, O2, T1 or pass. It then switches back to Player A and then finally back to Player B.

After both players have chosen/passed twice you the most LHS card in each row is the specific card in play.

This gives you the opportunity to get the Objective you want, for instance, but then you have to accept you have no control over deployment and twist. 

creates an interesting game of bluff before the battle starts.

Hobby - The Week Ahead

 Well last week I managed to paint up both my Brood Mother and Tangle and got approximately 50% through my Mutant Rat Fiend. I'm keen to finish the beast this week ahead of a game on the weekend.

The other thing I did was order some MDF bases from Battle Kiwi. A few of my Ratkin units are now on different base sizes while others function in smaller units. The service from Battle Kiwi was great....ordered 8pm Thursday, with me lunchtime Saturday. Fully recommend them. Check them out here

I have a KoW game set up for this weekend (with the hope of a second one), and then one next week - so I have a deadline to get the basing done!

The Hellions are still waiting....

40k - Planetary Empires: First Forays

 On Saturday we had the first chapter of our 40k narrative campaign - The Battle for Kithrup - played using the Planetary Empires system.

The first forays were all about Chaos.

The Word Bearers ensconced in the Monza Hive City managed to seize a manufactorium back from the Necrons landing on the surface. This was then followed up by the Death Guard making planetfall and seizing territory from the Tyranids and then occupying an unoccupied hex adjacent to their territory.

In other conflicts, the Necrons in Hive City Boca pushed back the rapid response Ultramarines while the Tyranids and Dark Eldar battled to a stalemate.

The matchups played so far:



Word Bearers - Josh

Death Guard - Jordan

Necrons - Harpreet

Tyranids - Alastair

Ultramarines - Kent

Custodes - Nick

Necrons - Louis

Dark Eldar - Pete


Word Bearers - Josh 










Death Guard - Jordan










Necrons - Harpreet










Tyranids - Alastair










Ultramarines - Kent










Custodes - Nick










Necrons - Louis










Dark Eldar - Pete









And the current scoreboard:





Word Bearers - Josh



Death Guard - Jordan



Necrons - Harpreet



Tyranids - Alastair



Ultramarines - Kent



Custodes - Nick



Necrons - Louis



Dark Eldar - Pete


To emerge successful in the campaign you must play the seven other players at least once and hold 10+ tiles.

The next round is scheduled for the weekend of 11/12 December.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Hobby - The Vagaries of International Post

 "I've seen things you people wouldn't believe"

Everyone will know the difficulties currently being experienced with global logistics. Here in New Zealand we are now living with a "no-delivery" directive of US Postal Service, meaning that the only shipping options involve the use of couriers.

Against that backdrop, I got a surprise yesterday. A parcel turned up from Elrick's Hobbies in the US Midwest, which contained some of their resin bases. I placed the order for these in May and they were dispatched (with tracking) on May 28th.

Prior to yesterday's arrival, the last information around this parcel was that they had arrived in Ho Chi Minh City on the 4th June. Since then, nada, 

So whether they have been sitting in a postal facility in Vietnam for the last 5-6 months or more likely sitting at a NZ Post facility in Auckland, there is no doubt that they have seen some shit.

As always, the product from Elrick's Hobbies is first class and I now have the bases for 30 Death Guard Poxwalkers....now where are those models ๐Ÿ˜

Saturday, November 27, 2021

Hobby - World's Best Varnish - Black Friday Sale

 In my opinion, VMS varnish is the best I have ever used. Goes on either with brush or directly through the airbrush and available in Matt, Satin and Gloss.

You can check out their range here

They are currently having a Black Friday Sale giving 35% off with the code: 


If you haven't used them then you really should try them. You won't be disappointed.

Friday, November 26, 2021

KoW - Wellington Kings of War Facebook Group

 I recently set up a Facebook Group for Kings of War players here in Wellington (or those interested in what we get up to).

You can access the page here

The Group is Public so anyone can join - currently it has 12 members.

The purpose of the group is to arrange games and share hobby.

If you are at all interested in playing a rank and flank Fantasy game please jump in. 

Now is a good time to get into the game. The rules are 2-3 years into their 3rd Edition so most of the rules interactions have been well ironed out. It has also been supported by two Clash of Kings books (the latest just out) giving greater depth to the base rules and expanding the number of races/list to 28, each with their own character.

Hobby - Opportunities Are Endless

 Every now and then I like to take a moment, step back and see where my hobby is.

I first started wargaming at the age of 14, taking a break once I turned 20 and coming back almost 22 years ago.

In the time I've been back in the hobby I have played DBM (historical Ancients & Medieval), Warhammer 40k, Warhammer Fantasy, Kings of War and then Warhammer 40k again. During all those periods, I played (and organised tournaments for them).

Earlier this year, having played/organised tournament 40k for the past 3-4 years, I dramatically fell out of love with it. The reason behind this was my perception that the mission structure in 9th Ed was incredibly bland - effectively you played the same mission over and over again (YMMV). This coupled with an accelerated power creep and enormous rules bloat made the game incredibly unenjoyable for me. So I stepped away.

Now I have no doubts that with time things will rebalance, added superfluous complexity will be stripped out and the game will become attractive to me again.    

What this space has given me is the opportunity to look at other gaming options. I have dusted off - and built - Ancient/Medieval armies and units, focused on more narrative 40k and even rediscovered Kings of War for Fantasy RnF action.

And that's the thing. There are so many different ways to enjoy your gaming and games to play.

We are really living in a golden age as far as hobby goes.
  • It's more mainstream. More people are playing than ever before. It is less of a geek "secret shame" and more an outlet for creativity and competition. This has been helped by the rise of video games.
  • There are so many more games/figure ranges. More manufacturers, more purchasing options etc. The rise first of Kickstarter and then of 3D printing has opened a myriad of creativity in the hobby.
  • Different ways to play. Twenty years ago everything available fell largely into one of two camps - role playing or army combat. If there is anything that has characterised the past 10 years it is the rise of skirmish games that have a lesser model count than the traditional army conflict.
  • Content creators. A dozen years ago there were probably 3-4 wargaming podcast, now there are hundreds and alongside them have grown the "Youtubers". Now if you want to watch a tutorial on how to do something or a battle report for entertainment then you truly are spoilt for choice.
The biggest constraint now for me is time, rather than options.

Already this year, I have stopped myself on multiple occasions from buying a 3D resin printer - "You neither need nor will you paint all those figures you paint!". I've also had to stop myself buying Necromunda and Kill Team forces - after watching how much fun the guys playing it at my local club are having. Again, a time issue.

We do really live in a golden time for hobby and sometimes if you are not enjoying your current iteration then it really is just a case of looking around and doing something different. You'll never lack for opportunities.

40K - Planetary Empires Campaign - Background

 The Tiberius Sector has long been beset by conflict. In the past millenia it has seen multiple Chaos incursions, Ork Waaghs and privateer raids.

Within the Sector the planet of Kithrup has had to suffer more than its share of Xenos attacks and Chaos uprisings. However, over the past two hundred years there has been a fragile peace. In part this was because the High Lords had installed a force of Adeptus Custodes in St. Palatine, the Capitol of Chadaquy Province. The presence of the Emperor's footmen brought some semblance of order to Kithrup.

Unfortunately, that was all a facade!

Over the past ten years, there was first a Chaos uprising within the Monza Hive City. Cultists, inspired by the Word Bearers Legion, took control of the hive securing landing sites for Word Bearer dropships. The past 12 months have seen Lorgar's Legion reinforce Monza and now the entire populace has been subjugated.

If that wasn't problem enough for the Imperium, Adeptus Mechanicus servitors dug deep into the base of Kithrup's most populous hive city, Boca and found evidence of past inhabitants. Unfortunately, those past inhabitants were a Necron Dynasty who were then awakened. Six weeks later the entirety of Boca had a new Overlord.

Ever the opportunists, a passing Dark Eldar realspace raiding party picked up the distress calls coming from Boca and Monza. They diverted to the planet and descended on the fourth hive city, Vulgagrad. There they found a surfeit of specimens suitable to met the requirements of their in-house Coven's expansion plans. A different type of music is now emanating from that hive.

So the following situation exists across Chadaquy's four largest population centres:


Hive City





Word Bearers

St. Palatine





Dark Eldar




Faced with this triple threat, a distress message went out from St. Palatine. This was picked up by an Ultramarine Successor force travelling on the outskirts of the sector. They have just broken Kithrup's orbit and have secured one of the spaceports. What they weren't aware of was that they were being shadowed by Death Guard Pox Mongers who have secured their own landing site.

Of course the old folk wisdom is that "It never rains, it pours" and that is the case here. The disturbance of the Necron artefacts in Boca, triggered a signal to a second Necron force who have also entered the system. And in one of the remaining spaceports, there have been increased reports of aberrant behaviour and even some fanciful sightings of "genestealers". Strangely, all communications from that facility have now ceased.

KOW - "Mrs. Whiskers" - Ratkin Brood Mother

 Early this year I purchased the files for "The Affliction Outbreak" from Archvillian Games. These were a series of vermin models suitable for Skaven, Ratkin, Verminkin for different games systems.

Just after I got them Jack purchased a 3D Resin printer (happy coincidence) and printed me off the set of figures.

The first that I painted was the Broodmother which I'll be using, surprisingly, as a Brood Mother in my Ratkin. I've dubbed her "Mrs. Whiskers" after a particularly nasty Momma Rat our cats once brought inside and then realised their mistake. I eventually trapped her but then she proceeded to start chewing off her own leg to escape....that's the sort of rat I want leading my Ratkin!

Thursday, November 25, 2021

40K - Planetary Empires: Starting Positions

 Here is the map with the starting positions for our Planetary Empires campaign.

And the starting resources are:

Spaceports: Facilitate movement and open options to capture tiles

Shield Generators: Make it harder to capture tiles

Manufactoriums: Give larger in-game forces

Power Stations: Pre-game advantages

KOW - WIP "Tangle" for my Ratkin

 Last evening I sprayed some models to paint up for my Ratkin to make them playable in v3 KoW.

The first I started to paint up was a resin model I picked up at Adepticon a few years ago. I can't remember the manufacturer's name but it was from a boutique sculpter rather than one of the bigger companies. Liked the sculpt but never had a use for it until I saw the "Tangle" in the Ratkin list.

The model is on a 50mm base at the moment - should give an idea of size.

Here are some WIP photos:

Of course as soon as I photographed it I saw the mold line on the tail ๐Ÿ˜’Other than that, I'm happy how it is coming on.

Need to finish some of the detail work, give it a matt varnish and then base it.

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Hobby - The Week Ahead

 My hobby plans over the next week are quite mixed.

Over the past three-four evenings I've been reading through all the Kings of War 3rd Ed material - rules, supplements, net articles - that I had accumulated. I'm very keen to return to playing a Fantasy rank and flank game, and the updated Kings of War looks very appealing.

I have worked through Uncharted Empires and downloaded EasyArmy list software and have created a 2000 point Ratkin list. There have been quite a few unit changes since I last played four years ago and that will necessitate painting a couple of new models. I'm quite lucky in that I purchased Archvillian's Vermin army files earlier this year and Jack printed me off the full set on his resin printer. So I'll be breaking out the airbrush and painting them up.

This Saturday I have the first day of the Planetary Empires campaign I am organising for a group of local players interested in 40k narrative gaming. There are 8 of us ready to go and I have finished the board and unit markers. Six of us are playing at mine on Saturday. Hoping this will develop into a one day a month gaming event.

And those Hellions are still waiting to be done! 

40K - Dark Eldar Coven Units

 Over the last couple of weeks I have been tidying up my 3rd Edition Dark Eldar army. This has, as its base, the Troy Forster Haemoculous Coven I covered in a previous post.

In addition to this are a number of additional units I have painted up to fit into the force - now enough to run it as a pure Coven army. I have taken the opportunity to put it all on common basing and to repair/repaint where necessary.

Troy's two foot Archons are now joined by 4 metal Haemoculai and the Urien Special Character. One of the fleshmaster is the infamous Khloe who caused such distress to Tau armies in 8th Ed as a result of her Vexator Mask.

Urien Rakarth rebased and ready to create!

Khloe on the right with her sisters Kourtney, Kim and Kendall - keeping it real in Commoragh.

The three metal Talos - guaranteed to shed arms and legs every single game.

Troy's infamous Ork Talos (below). The others have been painted to replicate that scheme.

Finally, my Grotesques. These have been built from Crypt Horrors using plastic Talos parts. Enough for a big squad of seven.

The final task my Dark Eldar army is to tidy up a Hellion unit and two units of Wyches.