Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Winter is coming...to TANKS

After deliberating and pondering and much chewing of finger nails.I made the decision to try the winter wash look on my German Panther Tank for the TANKS game.

Bearing in mind that i was already happy with the look, it was a big step.
I hadn't ever tried to winter wash a model before and the whole experiment was very much a case of...fly or fall and could easily have resulted in the destruction of a model.

But....

Aside from possibly adding in some snow build up along the tracks and running gear (not sure if it actually needs it), i personally think the model looks done and pretty good.

For those not up to speed on the winter wash...let me explain......
Wavey flash back images with 40's music.....

Its winter 1944, the allies and Germans are duking it out in Europe. Tanks stalk each other across snow covered fields and towns....in dark greens and camouflage. Sadly this is well suited to the verdant greens of summer/autumn Europe.

As you can imagine..sitting atop a dark green tank in a field of white snow...is a bit of a give away.

So both the allied and axis forces tried to camouflage there tanks. In general the technique was to use a white wash paint. Water soluble and roughly applied with brushes, brooms, mops and rags.
The idea was that as winter wore on, the paint would wear away and save repainting again for the spring and summer.
A great idea....
Only, that winter wash...wore off a bit easier and tended to expose the paint underneath if it came into contact with pretty much anything....bushes, trees etc. So in many reference pics, the paint is either non existant or heavily worn.

And this is the look i wanted.
Wavy wooshey flash back to current times.

With this in mind i present my attempt...

Pre winter wash



Post wash





And thats..the job almost complete





Sunday, 10 July 2016

TANKS! The germans are coming

So this...would appear to be post 101.
A mini milestone in many ways and a number synonymous with ww2.

But unlike a certain division, this ones looking at my one German tank for the TANKS game.
That tank is the Panther (i do have the jagdpanther hull, but for now its the panther that's on the go).

Although i have painted a fair few ww2 models over time...nothing has ever been of the German armoured variety. With their approach to camouflage, this provides a unique challenge and something new to try.

When i initially built and planned the model out, i was thinking about doing my Germans in a 'winter' theme. That means all the work of camo followed by plenty of white wash.
But like any good plan...this ones hitting a speed bump. That speed bump is liking the look and being uncertain about white washing a model that i am already fairly happy with.
The woes of a wargamer eh.

I guess a nights sleep might help guide the decision.
For now...here's some pics.




Saturday, 9 July 2016

My Dirty Americans of the 3rd Armoured division

First off let me give a big shout out to @PaintmateTumblr over on twitter, without whom i would not have got these guys finished. The decals are very much appreciated!!!!

Despite the relatively fun and non historical nature of the tanks game. I wanted to keep some historical theme with my forces.
With this in mind and my use of the Super Pershing, my options were limited to either the American 3rd or 9th Armoured division with a time frame somewhere post 'Battle of the buldge/ardennes'.

I wanted a dirty, been through the mud and brush feel to my force, and it may be something i carry over to all my 'Tanks' forces. It gave me a different focus, a chance to use some rarely tried techniques and heck...it looked fun.

So here they are. A Super Pershing and pair of Sherman 76mm Tanks of the 3rd US Armoured Division.







Wednesday, 6 July 2016

GF9 Tanks update

So as far as i can, i have finished off my intended American force for the TANKS game by gf9.
They still need some decals and a final coat of varnish to seal everything up.
But for the moment they are as done as they can be.

Part of today's post is to show a little 'how to' on the weathering technique i use.
I was asked by a member of the Norfolk Wargamers fb group and promised to do the guide to show how easy it really is to do. So here goes.

You will need.
Tanks. Painted to a level you are happy with.
Q-tips/cotton buds.
Enamel paint thinner. I use Humbrol thinner
Black enamel paint. I use humbrol Enamel thinner.
Weathering powder. I use MIG pigments Dark Mud.
2 brushes, i use a cheap large brush and a battered old dry brush.


My intended victims



On a pallet, mix a 50/50 ratio of Black enamel paint and thinners. Mix plenty. Now plaint this all over your tank, get a good solid coat on all over the tank and give about 10 minutes to cure a little.
Something like this.


After about 10 minutes, take a cotton bud, dip one end into neat enamel paint thinner and wipe over any area you don't want the black enamel paint, flip the bud over and use the dry end to gently wipe away the thinned paint. It may take a few passes over each area to get the look you want. But be patient, use fresh cotton buds regularly and eventually you will have something like this.



Next you want to crack open the pot of weathering powder and grab your drybrush. You will need to decide how 'dirty' you want your tanks before applying the powders, though they are fairly easy to remove.
Dab the drybrush into the powders and begin dabbing the loaded brush onto the areas you want to build up mud. the more you put the, thicker the mud. For light mud/dust you can dab a little onto the model and use your finger to smudge it around.
I tend to do the weathering stage whilst the enamel wash is still wet as this will help to fix the powder to the model, but you could wait and use hairspray or a proper fixative.
If you want to create streaks of mud, you can use a little water or white spirit to activate the powder pigments and spread them. I didn't on these models as i wanted a dirty 'been through the Normandy mud' look.
Once you have built up the powder and mud, you should have something like this.





Now all you need to do is leave the models over night and seal them with varnish to fix the powders to the model properly.
If you intend to add decals, the best way would be to add them before the weathering process is started, as it will make life a bit easier.
Alas i didn't have any decals, so my approach will be to add them then weather the decals once they have set.

I hope this helps, I am certainly no guide writer and far from the levels of any pro painters out there. But I am happy enough with the way these tanks turned out.




















Sunday, 3 July 2016

TANKS by gf9

So its been a while since i posted anything truly wargame related..besides a for sale post.

Mostly due to a complete lack of motivation and gaming, the rest...just sheer laziness.

But something has tickled my fancy...and that something is TANKS by Galeforce Nine.

Its been described as x-wing meets flames of war and it's no real surprise as Battlefront  (flames of war fame) are partly behind the game.
So yesterday armed with a couple of quid and a itch to scratch. I went off to Norwich to Final Reroll (store) and picked the game and an expansion up.






Those of you with sharp eyes will notice the low entry cost of the game. Those 2 sets cost a mere £22.50. RRP for the sets are £18 for the game and £7 for the expansion pack. In fact £36 the price of 2 starters could give you 2 'organised play' legal 100pt forces. Now that is cheap!.

But of course...cheap doesn't always mean good. So lets delve inside the packets of plasticrack and see if it's good quality.

Inside the box you will find the following, 2 Sherman tanks, 1 panther/jagd panther, a 22 page rulebook, tokens and a bundle of cards.Lets breakdown each component.
First off the gratuitous back of the box shot



Nothing fancy and as expected.

Now lets delve in.

First up the rulebook.
Its not a monstrous tome like many of the books out there, weighing in at a whopping 22 pages.!!!
Quality wise, its full colour, clearly printed with a mix of artistic pictures, a few real life pictures and lots of diagrams to explain the points the rules are making.
A decent book and i look forward to putting the rules through their paces, they do sound good fun!









Next up we have the cards.
There are several types. First off are the tank cards themselves. These contain everything you need to know about a basic naked tank. The 1st symbol is the initiative the defines the moving and shooting order. The second is firepower, the number of dice rolled for shooting (can be modified by range,movement and other modifiers). The 3rd is defence dice. This is your chance to cancel out hits on your tanks (again this can be modified through various means) and finally the health points or damage. There's a couple of ways to record this, either with tokens beside the tank, or if you want there are health dots on the card that you can mark as you play.
Around the edge of the card are various boxes for crew and this brings us to the next set of cards. Crewman.
A vehicle can only have as many crew cards as there are boxes available. A crewman can be anything from a driver through to gunner, loader, commander etc. There are also named 'character' crewman. So if you want to be Wittman or wardaddy you can. The only minor gripe i have here is that there appears to be no restriction on what tank (aside from nationality) that a character can man. So wittman in a stugg is viable if not a little meh.
In addition to crew there are also upgrades you can purchase. Some of these like some of the crew, are nation restricted, some are generic.
These allow you to further upgrade and improve an individual tank.
The upgrades feel very much like the ones from xwing and mean you have to decide between that much vaunted heroic commander and crew in an all singing all dancing super tank, or an extra tank.
The final set of cards are Critical hit cards.
Any to hit roll of 6, that goes uncancelled by defence, generates a critical hit. Aside from potential extra damage, you can also suffer effects like reduced movement or even a bailed out tank crew. All the details are listed there on the cards.
A couple of things to note here.
Tanks are only ever destroyed in the final phase of a turn. So even if your health is reduced to zero, you will still get to activate your tank...unless....you suffer a critical hit that causes the tank to be inoperable like bailed out. So you want those 6's up and at em.

German Tanks


American Tanks


British Tanks


Russian Tanks


Crew/upgrade cards (just a selection of them)


Critical hit cards





Also in the box you will find some terrain and tokens.
There's a couple of woods and buildings (with a rules reminder written on them for quick reference). There's also a mix of damage, identity, destroyed, objective etc tokens. All are printed on very thick card that borders on being more like wood. Great print quality and sure to survive the day to day gaming use.




I also picked up a Pershing/super Pershing expansion pack.
Within the box there was the tanks sprues, some more crew and upgrade cards including another named character and a pair of tank cards for either the Pershing or super Pershing tank.
The quality is in line with the boxed game.







My only gripe and it is only minor, is in regards to the instructions for the models. The sprues come with a plethora of options and extras. Indeed in relation to the Sherman kit, you can make the American Sherman 75 and 76mm variant, the British firefly and i think the British Sherman V.
With so many parts, it can be a little difficult to match the explode component diagram up with the actual sprue parts.
Its nothing major, but a little clearer would have been nice, especially for the less experienced modeller.



So that pretty much sums it up. I am hoping to get some games in soon and will give my thoughts on the mechanics in due course. I am also hoping to take part in an 'Organised Play' event over the coming months which is pretty much a 3 mission league tournament.

What? why are you all looking at me like that. It's not like i forgot something is it..

what do you mean models?
Pft ok then,....jeez you lot crack the whip.

As mentioned above, there are a multitude of options on the sprues. Indeed, out the core box you can make 2 complete Sherman's and make the turrets for 2 more. So you could make a pair of 75mm Sherman's and turrets to switch out to 76's.
The German sprue is equally well packed. You can make the panther and if you don't glue the upper hull to the lower, swap out the panthers upper with the jagd panther very easily.
The Pershing box isn't quiet as nice as unlike the Sherman sprues, there aren't enough turret parts to make both the Pershing/super Pershing turrets.Although it may be possible if you magnetise the upper and lower turret halves. But I'm not 100% sure.

Mould quality is good, though you need to take care with things like the hull machine guns, turret machine guns and the likes as they are easily snapped if you rush.
There are minimum mould lines on the kits and they go together very easily with no big gaps etc.
Detail is decent and at 15mm i have seen a lot worse for more money. Sure there are better quality kits, but not for the price your paying.
On a side not. The kits from plastic soldier company are probably slightly better, however they are also slightly smaller in scale.

I know...less waffle, more plastic. So here you go.

Panther/Jagd Panther




2 Sherman 76's and a super Pershing




So my final thoughts.
For the price, your getting a lot of game for your money. There's plenty of early options in the kits included. If your already a flames of war gamer, then the inclusion of cards for British and Russian tanks is a very nice touch, allowing for 4 nations of play fairly quickly.
The models are decent quality, the expansions good value for money and the rules look to be fun and interesting.
I believe the intention of GF9 here was to make a fun x-wing style game, to introduce people to a more 'historical' type of game. If that is the case then i believe they have succeeded well and produced what looks to be a solid beer and pretzels ww2 tank game that should benefit from the popularity of the likes of 'World of Tanks' 'War Thunder' and recent movies like Fury. 

Have fun, keep rolling and may your dice forever roll 1's.
Like mine :(


Thursday, 16 June 2016

my black library sale

So as many of you know, i am to lose my hobby room over the enxt few days.
alas this means less room for the mountain of plasti-crack,books, magazines and paint stuff.

Most has gone, but i still have a lot of books to go.
So here is a list.
Prices are simple and exclude postage.
Paperback £1.50
Hardback £2.50
Omnibus £3.50

WFB books.

Wild Kingdom
Invasion
Fell Cargo
The Great Betrayal
The Legened of Sigmar
Fyreslayer
Elves Omnibus
Vampireslayer

40K books

Space Wolf Omnibus one
Space Wolf Omnibus two
Blood Angel Omnibus
Gaunts Ghosts- Bloodpact X2
Eye of terror
Storm of Iron
Into the Maelstrom
The Bleeding Chalice
Crucible of Iron
Grey Knights
Execution Hour
Path of the Seer
Path of the outcast

Horus Heresy novels
A thousand sons
Prospero Burns
Galaxy in Flames X2
Horus Rising
False Gods
Fallen Angels
Battle for the Abyss
Flight of the Eisenstein
Fulgrim
Angels Exterminatus

 Postage will depend on the number of books but will always be recorded delivery.
All the books above in a single bundle price £45 posted.
Yup thats 30 odd books for 45 quid!

So hit me up folks!

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Who let the devil dog out who who who who who

So it's been a bit too long since my last post.
But i found a bunch of gamers, that fit in with my available time and they play the games i like.
What...impossible you say. Well...it really happened.
They even play Infinity. Which is awesome because i got swept up in the Gencon release and ended up with a USAriadna army pack and gencon exclusive Roger Van Zant (think the cool and supremely bad ass American dude from Reign of Fire).

So i got painting since gencon at my usually slow speed. But have finished the Devil dog off. If your not up to speed with infinity. Think domesticated Werewolf. I also got some early progress on the rest of the force. End results are something like this thus far






And get this ...last night. I actually played a GAME!! With real living people and terrain and stuff. The shock was so bad, i only took one pic. But what follows is a small attempt at a noobs look battle report in my usual someone...personal style.


So the game went down. Not sure what the mission is called but we played an its mission where you had to sync and escort a model into the enemy deployment zone.
My opponent was using Yu Jing. Tallying in at 247pts. Seemed like a mostly elite force with only 7 or 8 orders. But im still too new to know what he was using.

My US ariadna was made up of

Roger Van Zant - executive order
112
2 grunt paramedics
Grunt Lt
Maverick with molotock
Devil dog team with heavy shotgun.
fox trot with rifle and mines.
Minute man with rifle + 2 light flamethrowers
Marauder Paramedic
Dozer with rifle and akrylat Kanone.

He deployed first as this was very much a learning game and i went first.
I set my devil dog team, minuteman, 112 down the edge of left side of the table escorting the objective (figuring the 112 could offer medic assistance)
I set the foxtrot up in camo covering a slightly off centre road way with the Marauder paramedic just to his right in cover.
On the opposite side of the road i set the maverick up with a supporting grunt medic in cover. Then the right corner of the board i had the engineer, grunt lt, and grunt paramedic on the roof of a building.

TURN 1
The first turn saw my devil dog team advancing down the table edge facing off against 2 yu jing. Shots were traded but the result was only a single would on the devil dog. My minuteman climbed to the top of a crate stack, took aim at a yu jing trooper on the opposite side of the board and shook him up enough that he went prone. He then climbed down off the crates and synced to the objective and scuttled forward. The rest of my force shifted to better cover positions and exchanged a few shots to no avail.
The yu jing mostly shifted positions and traded ineffective shots with the USAriadna forces.

TURN 2
Turn 2 saw me start to try and apply pressure. The devil dogs exhanged fire with a yu jing trooper with a shotgun, inflicting a would on the trooper. I then moved up shaking off the ARO's that came my way before systematically tearing the shotgun trooper apart. The minuteman scooted forward to just past the mid table point along with the 112. Whilst the foxtrot and marauder held position. My maverick popped smoke to aid the guys moving up the left of the board. The rooftop troops on the right  exchanged shots with some yu jing opposite them and the grunt lt hit the deck and went prone in fright. Van Zant parachuted into an open building, then snuck round on a yu jung trooper in the next room before levelling him in a hail of gunfire.
In response the yu jing poored shots into my rooftop guys to no avail, a ninja appeared just around the corner from my maverick. The yu jin trooper who was prone on the rooftop on my left moved up to the front edge of the roof and went into suppression fire. The another close combat specialist popped out of the ground floor of the same building, shot at the antipode and wounded it before charging in. Confident he could tackle the devil dog. A mistake he didnt live to regret as he promptly became dog chow.

Turn 3.
I tried to view the risks and rewards of order process. Skipping the mavericks imp order. With the devildog team i used their super jump to leap to the rooftop holding the trooper in suppression fire. Fortunately out of his LOF. The ARO's rained in to no avail. No sensing the danger he was in, the yu jing trooper ignored the screams of 'he's behind you' and waited for a shot. It never came as he was summarily torn apart by the devildog and antipode who scored their 3rd kill of the game. Unfortunately the swathe of ARO's they took from other troops on the way into combat finally found a chink and both the devil dog and antipode went down. But they ha cleared the way.
The maverick moved up and traded shots with the newly revealed ninja. Wounding it before succumbing in a second firefight with it. The rooftop grunt (former lt) and paramedic hunkered down and the engineer kept waving his pom poms.The foxtrot finally made himself known finishing off the wounded ninja who had taken the maverick out.
On the left flank the minuteman hauled the objective into the enemy deployment zone, but as he crossed the last stretch of open ground he was cut down. The 112 shuffled closer to the edge of the gap before launching his medkit at the minuteman. Would it be a cous de grais or a healing angel. The dice bounced and the minuteman stood up, nodding a thank you to the 112. With the game in the bag and 4 orders left there was only one thing for it.
ROGER VAN ZANT Rampage.
Bursting from his cover he traded shots and Aro's with the now retreating Yu Jing. Cutting down the first in his path, before a prolonged gun fight with another in cover. The first exchange wounding RVZ. In his dogged state his aim wavered, but with the last order of the game he cut down his tormentor.

As the dust settled and the evac birds were called in, a lone yu jing trooper slipped away through the back streets. The 'package' was though it had cost the USAriadna forces a maverick, a devil dog and an antipode.

Overall i was fairly happy with the game. My grasp of the rules improved a lot along with my understanding of the special rules my USAriadna forces had at their disposal. As soon as i saw the table i had a plan in mind. Though i must confess that my opponent was taking it easy and not playing as 'aggressive' as he normally would. I also made a disgustingly high number of armour saves for the devil dog on turn 1 and in many games he would have been dead before he could whimper.

Of course no report or the likes is complete without at least 1 pic. So here it is....
In your best pantomime voices
On 3 are your ready.
1
2
3
He's behind you!!!!!!