Tuesday, 29 January 2013

There's A Storm Brewing

What, you might ask, am I doing with a Stormraven Gunship? It's a good question seeing as I've so often sniggered at all the power armour lovers out there. Well it turns out that I've been wrong all along and it's time to get me some Space Marine loving.

It all began when I was thinking about future paining projects. I wanted to find something different in order to really stretch my skills and learn a few new techniques along the way. My Nurgle project, Beastmen, and soon-to-be-started Dark Eldar are all bestowed with a grubbiness that I adore. However, it's never a good idea to stick in a comfort zone, so I'm going to have a shot at some Imperial Fists.

And there's an additional plan at play here because long-term - by which I mean next year - I'm going to enter my force in GW's Army On Parade (probably). This will be a totally new challenge and goal for me. It's all getting started with a few crafty eBay purchases, as I build up a small and elite force that has just the aesthetic I'm looking for.

Oh yes, and why the Stormraven Gunship? Aside from being able to zoom it about making whooshing noises and pretending it's for the benefit of the kids (it's not). It looks as though Space Marines will get the use of this fine war bird with the advent of the new 'flyers' supplement, due in a few weeks time. And it was a bargain and I'm such a sucker for a bargain on eBay.

(Must stay off eBay...Must stay off eBay... Must stay off eBay...)

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

A Crazed Cohort Of Converted Chaos Cultists

When the CSM codex came out I thought a massed mob of the maximum number of 35 cultists was an excellent way to fill a troops slot. Looking at this lot now I'm not so sure... It's going to take a while to paint all these crazies up. Just look at all the little buggers!

To keep the task enjoyable I've kitbashed many of these using ghoul arms in the most part. Other changes have involved swapping arms and weapons around, then melting all the gaps with additional plastic shavings to give them a misshapen and mutated look. The melting approach is fun, swift and effective, and involves no greenstuff. All you need is a radiator to dry them on so that the melty gluey plastic stays in the pose you want. I'll be keeping the colour scheme very basic with these otherwise it'll take me weeks to get them done. The same green tones as the CSM on weapons and boots, simple flesh, then white hoods and clothing. Simple. 

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Nurgle CSM Mutilators WIP #3

I've not spent too much time on these as I've been busy finishing kitbashing my mob of 35 cultists (more on them during the coming week). I have finished the conversion job on all three of these chaps now though, and got the basic base coats on all the new bits. So here they together for the first time. I think these will come out really well, although the stylised paint scheme will take quite a few sessions to come together. To preserve my patience for the job ahead I'm going to spend the week with the far more straightforward cultists. 

Friday, 18 January 2013

Nurgle CSM Mutilators WIP #2

It's taken me ages to decide what to do with two of my mutilator conversions. I've wavered between fitting them with more futuristic weapons and alternatively keeping their trollish clubs (which would've fitted reasonably well, if not perfectly). In the end, as these pictures attest, I've made substantial changes. The first mutilator below is now in the midst of forming a great daemonic sword (taken from the daemon prince set); the second has morphed two power mauls (taken from the Carnifex kit). Tomorrow I'll post a WIP of all three. Thanks to Ben for the comment that nudged me to finally take the plunge and make these changes.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Nurgle CSM Mutilators WIP #1

The fluff for Chaos Space Marine mutilators is better than the available GW models. Who doesn't think that fleshmetal is a great concept? For my Nurgle worshippers I decided to employ my hitherto nomadic and rather unloved river trolls as mutilators, reasoning that their appearance was suitably rotten and that I could develop an interesting technique for representing a hybrid of organic and machine. Here is my early progress. 

Plenty still to do but I'm laying down a kind of work that I've not tried before, namely capturing two different kinds of light and shade, which are opposite to each other. For the green areas that represent the hardened armour plates, I'm using highlights in the regular way. For the pinkish flesh parts though, I'm attempting lowlights, as you might say, to hint at a molten underbelly to these foul beasts. 

Saturday, 12 January 2013

New Genestealer Art

Just a quick heads up to all the genestealer fans out there: there's some great new art by a guy called Jon Sullivan over at Faeit 212, here's some of the best of it (really captures the foulness I always imagine of the beasts!)...

Thank You Games Workshop For Doing Away With Surplus Clicking!

For many years I've been looking to do away with all the unnecessary mouse clicking involved in ordering my wargaming miniatures online. How arduous it is to click laboriously on the 'buy' icon below each and every different item I wish to purchase.

Now, Games Workshop has an answer to all my woes! As announced on Faeit 212, our favourite premium wargaming supplier is now rolling out more of their extraordinary 'one click bundles'!

GW are reported as saying: 
So what is it exactly?
  • Every month we will release six collections of themed products that have been put together from existing ranges of miniatures to allow our customers to purchase multiple, related products in one convenient click.
  • These collections are put together as exciting opportunities for our customers to collect more miniatures. For example, a Space Marine Tactical Squad and Drop Pod is a simple one-click purchase that is nicely themed.

Amazing! No longer will I need to undertake the ever tiresome task of thinking for myself when building an army - and here's the clever bit - Games Workshop are deftly avoiding overcomplicating the process by not including any discount whatsoever! So, no additional worry about how much of your hard earned cash you're saving, because you're not saving anything!

Thank you Games Workshop for this stroke of genius. I for one will sleep better tonight!  

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Have Titan Forge Produced The Perfect Nurgle Heldrake?

I'm not a fan GW's robot chicken so I'm keeping an eye out for potential Heldrake substitutes for my Nurgle chaps. Now along comes the undead wyvern from Titan Forge. Goodness me this looks like a fun model! In truth, it's a few steps away from being perfect - the zombie dragon is probably where I'll look in earnest - but I'll keep a look out for the price of this when it's released on 21st January.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

'The Real Me' - Blogging And Identity

Online identities are peculiar things and people construct them in myriad ways for numerous reasons. I think that blogging in many respects remains one online space where people are rather coy about revealing their offline identities - by which I mean, the person that their friends and families actually know.

Recently I've found myself admiring those bloggers that I read who go by their real names and use an actual picture of themselves in their profile. I wonder if I trust these people more, if I pay attention to them in a different way. Blogging is very personal but also very public, so being one's self - particularly in this geeky corner of the net - is a judgment call. Back in the old days, when interaction online was limited to rather basic chat forums, I seem to remember most people used an alias. Now, with the phenomenal growth of the 'confessional society', self-revelation is more the norm.

I've decided to be more of 'the real me' in my blogging. This isn't a huge move, as Dave actually is my name and I do live the life that sometimes seeps through in the form of anecdotes - most often, how my wife cannot stand clusters of my miniatures taking up shelf space in the more public areas of our house. So this isn't a major move, rather it's an enhancement of sorts. To celebrate this and to mark in some small way my reaching 100 followers I've changed my profile photo to one that actually shows me.

It will be interesting to see if this changes the way I blog (although it's doubtful whether anyone actually cares!). I'm a sociologist by background (three degrees if you're interested... I just get a small chance to show off!), so it's only normal that I should be interested in identity. 

I'll expand the remit of the blog a little, or at least live up to the tagline billing as an observer of mass geekery. I may merge more of the personal with the general in order to reflect deeper on certain things. I may just carry on as per usual.

Whatever happens, a sincere thank you to all who follow the Gazette, to those who drop by causally, and even to those who come passing once but take the time to have a little read.

One Ring To Rule Them All...

Posted a few days ago on Games Workshop Cardiff's Facebook page. Fellow geeks take note of this, it made me laugh...

Monday, 7 January 2013

The Work Tray Of Nurgle

Apologies for the awful quality photo - I'm having a very lazy evening. I just wanted to give you a taste of all the nurgle goodness going on in these parts. I'll get my act together over the coming days and do a few reasonable work in progress shots.

Saturday, 5 January 2013

Mantic Nurgle Misstep, OR, The Continuing Mystery Of Mantic Games

I admire Mantic Games but sometimes they confuse me. By which I mean I don't know what they're trying to do. Are they a truly independent gaming company? Or do they intend to continuously ride on the tail coats of Games Workshop?

Of course, GW is such a behemoth that any company looking to survive in this niche market of ours needs to appeal heavily to GW gamers (Privateer Press being the one exception in science fantasy gaming). Take Mantic's latest promotion of 'zombie marines' for example. This is clearly a result of the recent Chaos Space Marines codex and the special abilities of our friend Typhus to conjure up cohorts of the undead. Mantic have even gone so far as to release this 'hero' figure, called 'Mortis', and here he is:

All fine I suppose. Yet this model looks to be pretty low quality and it's hardly inspiring, is it? And at £10 it's not exactly competitively priced, given that it's obviously modelled as a Typhus substitute. 

So really this just deepens the mystery of Mantic Games. Cut price and reasonable quality in some areas (ghouls and zombies, for example), baffling in others (the Veer-Myn), and opportunist in still others (Dreadball cashing in on GW's delay in updating Blood Bowl - now a must if they've got any commercial sense).

Still, they're a young company and I wish them well. I'll skip adding Mortis to my Nurgle army though.

Friday, 4 January 2013

A Really Rotten Start To 2013 - A Deep Winter Of Nurgle Goodness

Happy New Year to one and all. 2013 begins for me with a deep winter love affair with all things Nurgle. Over the coming weeks I'm focusing exclusively on my joint Chaos Marines / Chaos Daemons force for 40k. I have all the models I need and I'm getting properly stuck in - as coming up-dates will show - with an eye also on the rumours that the new Great Unclean One is due out within a month, and will be accompanied by some kind of Plaguebearers riding giant flies set (please, please, please be good!) Fortunately I have funds set aside for them.

Generally this year I'm going to be far more project focused, as I've really got into the swing of things with my painting style reaching a very pleasing point of development. This won't mean 'to-do' lists as I'm still not keen on them and still have nothing specific to prepare for - I don't play tournaments, but I would like to tour my finished forces around a few gaming clubs at the tail end of the year.

So the early winter months will be Nurgle focussed. Around March I anticipate commencing the final push to get my beastmen finished, and these will be fully themed as a chaos undivided army (some Tzeench ungor skirmishers will be heading this way, for example). That should take me up to the summer when I will embrace my Dark Eldar and compete with my brother in something like an army-in-a-month challenge (or something like that... he'll be doing Dark Angels I think).

Speaking of my brother, he's a big collector (plastic crack addict) but not a blogger so I plan to feature some of his collection and work in the Gazette. A few other regular features will begin to appear, including some snappy book reviews (probably). We'll see.

Later in the year... who knows, but I very much like the idea of doing some Imperial Fists, although that depends on the freeing up of some serious cash from selling the depths of my collection...
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