I have a growing hoard of daemonettes. The models have dynamic and threatening poses, and in numbers they bring some great close combat grunt. A large squad with a herald can gain re-rolling, rending wounds on the charge. While shooting can really mess up their day, if they can get in a charge, terminators and other marines will be quickly gutted and served up as victory kebabs.
The chainmail-bikinis can perhaps be forgiven since they have 5+ invulnerable saves. However, I do have reservations about collecting daemonettes. It doesn’t take long to see that in the Grim Dark future the patriarchy has not withered and died. It is more than the frequent lack of women in this fantasy sci-fi vision of the universe. The images that do make it through into the background and the artwork, and onto the table, are from a rather limited selection. It is like the designers of the 40K universe read the first couple of pages of the Damned Whores and God’s Police and rather missed the point.


The Juan Diaz sculptures: still my favourites, even with the limited number of poses

And yet, here I am. Life is messy. Daemonettes often accompany my Word Bearers. Nothing says I’ve been reading Lorgar quite like zealots summoning daemons, and the combination of shooty marines and close combat daemons complement each other nicely. With my most regular opponent often fielding pskyer heavy Grey Knights it also feels right on theme.


An experiment in practicing painting flesh


One from each squad

I have a recently acquired a lot of Nurgle plaguebearers. Add a Soulgrinder and greater daemon (or two)  and a troop heavy Nurgle-Slaanesh daemon hoard is looking like my next 40K army.


The most recent, and final, squad. For now.

And in the meantime, no slut-shaming my daemonettes or they’ll manifest on your home world and teach you the error of your ways.


Daughters of the revolution

Scott bought over his growing Soviet force for Konflikt 47, the joint Warlord Games-Clockwork Goblin game of weird world war. The rules are similar but distinct from Bolt Action and bring new challenges to the table along with the opportunity to field some of your more esoteric units. The fictional diesel-punk background gives motivation for the weird-science that changes the course of the war and extends the fighting into 1947.


Armoured SS-Shocktroopers take cover in a barn as their truck brews up

What lifts K-47 above a mere campaign book for BA, with a bit of fiction and a collection of special rules that add walking-armour, flying-troops and horror-elements, is that the core mechanics also change. The main shift is adding more complexity to the assault phase, which gives room for specialist close-combat troops to participate on equal footing in the game. Close combat is still lethal, as is shooting at a distance, but the changes mean that both types of units can compete without the game being unbalanced.  The added complexity works in this milieu because of the expanded range of abilities – it allows werewolves to exist on a battlefield full of machine-guns; handled well either can win.

Players of Gates of Antares will recognise the ability to react to enemy orders. This also brings new dimensions to game and is a welcome tweak, keeping both players engaged at the table in ways the IGYG rarely can. Reactions can be great, but while they can save a unit it still surrenders the initiative somewhat to your opponent. It is not always clear what is the best decision, which is what makes it a fun addition. I think the complexity of reaction-orders could be bought into Bolt Action too, although the ability of officers to order units when they activate does fill this niche in a simpler way.



The Soviet first wave emerges from the morning mist

I pretty much took my standard Bolt Action Germans, adding some Games Workshop zombies as totenkorps, and a unit of sci-fi stormtroopers as ersatz SS-shocktroopers. We played 1,000 points, so while I usually take a Tiger in the late war (not because they’re ace, but because, well Tiger), I fielded a Stug III.

Scott’s army has more of the new units, with lots of walkers, a sonic-armed tank and a unit of daughters of the motherland. His painting skills are top-notch, let down by snaps with my phone-camera. We played the maximum attrition mission from the book.


The Germans push forward to take up firing positions

The game was evenly balanced until turn 3. The Soviet advance was beginning to stall, with the Germans taking up good positions to take advantage of their better squad based shooting, and the Stug III was giving grief to the Soviet light walkers. It felt like to me like the Germans were about to take the upper hand and start not just laying pins but start to destroy Soviet units. Sensing the weakening resolve of their inexperienced brothers, the daughters of motherland broke cover and charged towards the not one but three LMG nests. Their rush forward left them in the open and taking fire from all sides they went to ground. However their enhanced DNA saw them survive, and by absorbing fire that would have destroyed most other units, allowed the other Soviets to push forward. The Germans found their own attack falter, and break.


Mentioned in dispatches: daughters of the motherland

The Soviets took the field with a major victory over the fascist invaders.


Totenkorps have yet to have a big impact in any game, but they do receive a lot of firepower

If you don’t mind a bit of weird in your world war, Konflikt 47 may well work for you. It adds lots of modelling opportunities and new challenges for your gaming pleasure.

Drop me a line if you want a game and happen to be near the Republic of Northcote.

Sisters are doin’ it for themselves

Rejoice citizens of the Imperium. Those valiant warriors of the faith the Adepta Sororitas have successfully defended Imperial Shrine world WB-R-Murphy-02 from a brutal Chaos Marine invasion. Long a shining light of the Imperial Creed, Murphy-02 found itself threatened and near obliterated by the combined efforts of several traitor legions. However, the Sisters, along with steadfast support from the Mechanicus and several Imperial Knight Houses, stood firm.


The Sisters and their allies prepare for the initial Chaos assault

Apocalypse means beer, huge templates, buckets of dice and lots of minis. It remains a favourite with our gaming circle. Big games are especially sweet if you can assemble two themed lists and play with friends over an ace looking table. In the past we have played Tyranids versus Space Marines and lots of Marines against combined daemon and traitor lists. This time we bought in the Sisters and pitted them against a “pure” traitor marine list: no daemons, cultists or dodgy alien allies; 12,000 points a side plus super heavies.

The Sisters set up the center of the table and Chaos came on from both short table edges.

The Sisters won the role for first turn and while tactics can be hard in a game that large, the Sisters players coordinated their first round of shooting well. Chaos never really came back from that opening round of shooting.  Orbital bombardments and combined Knight firepower took out our Titan and the Chaos mad, long dash across no-mans’ land never had a chance to gain momentum.


Turns out all you need are some lucky orbital bombardment roles and 3 or 4 Knights and Nurgle’s finest Titan is a smoking, smelly pile.

Once close combat was joined the scores started to close, but Chaos never looked like getting in front. But that is not the point of Apocalypse. You just have to go with the flow, and “forge the narrative”.

A game this large, over 25,000 points on the table, is hard to take in. As a player I find myself concentrating on the part of the battlefield where my forces are and larger trends are missed or confused. This is part of the Apoc experience. Highlights for me include Abaddon and two terminators charging two Imperial Knights. And destroying both. At the other end of the table, not one, but four Saints teleported into the fray, and reclaimed at least two objectives. The stuff Saints live for, surely.

Don’t worry, Abaddon is already plotting his revenge.


Life can really get in the way of your hobby at times. I did managed to sign up for a tour of duty for the May Victorian Bolt Action League event. Three games in a day, held at the excellent House of War in Ringwood. I liked how Tristan organised the day. Rather than the usual swiss chess sort of thing, we were divided into axis and allies, so no blue on blue. He had also appointed overall commanders, who (in consultation with their team) allocated people to tables. Each table had a different mission, so the terrain matched the mission. Both terrific things to bring to an event, and greatly lowered the stress levels because there was no “top-table”.

I took my Germans, of course. They are still my only painted 28mm WWII. At 1,000 points I left my Tiger at home and gave my Stug III a run instead.

I faced Soviets twice and the US once. I didn’t win a sausage all day, but had a cracking good time.

Round 1 Loss to Rick Vaveliuk’s Soviets. I ran out of momentum (and men) in the centre, while a T34 demolished my supply dump on turn 7 to turn a draw into a good win.
It is always a pleasure to fight Rick and was a nice way to start the day

Round 2 Another loss. Soviets again. Having trouble keeping the Bolshevik hoards back today. Kittyhawk Down and a great game.
Thanks Tim, and nice to see the citizens’ militia on the table

Round 3 Loss to Chris in hold until relieved. Turn 3 just saw my Germans taking too many pins and I failed order tests across the board.
Clear victory to the marines.


Stuff I like

I found this comic being published via blog. I know nothing about Olde England Grown New, except it is a tale of danger and derring do set in the English Civil War. The first episode can be found grouped together here and is worth the read.

Something else that not too far away is edition two of The Golden D6 I’m looking forward to this being published, it looks like a ripper.  Come on Adam, just because you have a day job, a family, …


Strike Force Varus

The Teutoburg System sits just beyond the Ultramare region ruled by the Ultramarines. While not governed by them it is considered part of its sphere of influence, so when tax receipts ceased agents were sent to discover the source of the problem. When the agents also failed to return, Strike Force Varus was despatched to investigate, with orders to crush any heresy, mutant or xenos they find and restore order to the system.

Strike Force Varus is 1,350 points of Ultramarines (almost) ready for Arc40K 2016.


Brother Captain Varus

It consists of a battle demi-company, led by Brother Captain Varus and is accompanied by the Teller-Penn Anomaly, a Librarius Conclave. Varus and part of this team went to the Norris 1,000 and I was pleased with how they worked on the table. I only won one game, but this was really a function of my generalship, I think, not the army. By replacing the scouts with tactical squads I will get to field a demi-company. Along with the Ultramarine chapter tactics this means most squads will be re-rolling at least ones in four of the game turns (in either shooting, assault or both). I think this will provide the edge to the army. It will need it as there are few other toys.

The Librarius Conclave looks fun and I haven’t seen one on the table before.
We shall see how it goes.

Onward, to the Teutoburg System.


See you on the battlefields.

Good golly, good gaming

There are some great hobby related sites about on the web. One of the things I love is that much of the best content can be found on people’s personal blogs and websites. We all have our favourites. Like many other bloggers, I keep links to some of my favourites on my home page (the list other gaming sites). Here is my current list, along with some comments. There are plenty of others – it is a pretty cool time to be a gamer.

Arkie Gamer tends to the historical, with beautiful minis and tables and often entertaining battle reports.

Azazel’s Bitz Box is a hobby machine, mostly fantasy and sci-fi

Dawn of the Lead is pretty eclectic, but always seems to have an interesting project on the go.

Flying Gorilla is not super active, but Costa a super talented sculpture, mostly for Eureka Miniatures and this blog gives a glimpse of his development process as well as some of his other projects.

Knights of Dice are a local (for me) company who are starting to do some pretty cool stuff with terrain. More active on FaceBook, but still worth keeping an eye on how ever you choose to do it.
(RubbishInRubbishOut is Viv’s YouTube channel, but I’m not sure what he’s doing with it at the moment.)

T’leroth’s easily distracted painting blog is by my friend Ian. Not so active recently – curse you work – but a fine painter.

Sprue Grey Toy Soldiers is the original Melbourne hobby blog. Claims to be the world’s slowest gamer, but I think a few of us could challenge him on for that title.

Adam from Sprue Grey is also the evil genius behind an online game magazine, The Golden D6. Issue one is out, and number two is expected soon. What I like about this magazine is Adam has done some of the hard work in finding the best of recent online bloggers and put them in a single place.


Box opening of a really old box

My big brother was into building model airplanes and like many little brothers I sought to emulate this, but never with any real love, or to be honest, success. However he used to spend some of his newspaper round money on Military Modelling, which I liked because it had tanks, and Battle, which I waited impatiently for him to finish because it had tanks.

And, like magic, one day articles on wargaming began to appear! People with lots and lots of toy soldiers, playing with them. Awesome. My modelling finally had a focus, even if my gaming didn’t. And of tanks. And Romans. And Romans battling tanks, because you worked with what you had.

Well, entering the loft in search of something else and saying to myself, “I wonder what is in that box?” led to me finding copies of:


Now, while not many may remember this magazine, it was a wargame lifeline, if a wierd world away for my country Australian childhood.

This edition comes with a double helping of nostalgia, as it contains a review welcoming the arrival of a brand new magazine:


You may have to squint, but it is writing about White Dwarf!


I found some other treasures in the same long ignored box. Mayby other day; I’ve got some old magazines to read …