Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Knights of the Realm!

Well, they took me longer than I would normally take to paint only 8 models but my first unit of Knights of the Realm are completed (mostly, gotta polish up the bases). I've got a picture of them together and then each knight separately because, well, each is different as per normal application of paint to Knights of the Realm.
The total unit.. only 8 but there will be a Damsel in their midst at the least.
Champion obviously. The photography isn't so good so I'll tell you he's red.

Musician, again, obviously. The only non-helmet knight in the unit.

The standard he carries is that of the Bretonnian Lord the unit is fighting under. My general's colors will be black with a white field and a black battle axe for his symbol. This is mostly because my general figure has a battle axe modeled on the shield on his back and it is a perfectly acceptable decal.

He is BONE.



He is BLAZING YELLOW to the front and ROTTING FLESH to the back.
 My next unit will be the Grail Reliquae which I'm pretty excited about. The lighting didn't let the bone color come through very well here and I like bone as a general color so you'll see more of it. I think the colors for the Reliquae will be white and red... or white and shadow gray... probably red.

Also I'm working on some warmachine for my friend and more WoC... lots of Marauders to do.

I need to get a battle in as well.. really two we are in the fourth week of the year and I've only got 2 battles in so I need to catch up. Club night is this weekend and I have to official challenges one from High Elves and one from Ogres so my new Bretonnians will be put through their paces I'm sure!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Converted Skaven

A friend of mine went Skaven crazy for about a month, bought a shload of models brand new (including 3 IOB sets) and promptly played 2 turns of a single game then traded them all off for something else. He does this regularly, like, he's had dozens of armies and has played only a small fraction of that which he has possessed.


He asked if I could take a couple of the IOB pieces and convert him a Skaven warlord riding a rat ogre bonebreaker... I do so and this is the result..

... this is not a terrible complex conversion. I simply pinned the warlord's stone base to the back of the rat ogre then threw on a whole buncha burnt up pipe cleaners as various straps and ropes like it was lashed to him. I also threw on some shields to mask the simpleness of the conversion. I'm going to paint it up then put it for sale to see what I can get for it.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Under Construction: Bretonnia

On my work space right now is a bunch of stuff...
  • WoC War Altar scratch built by my friend Darrell.
  • WoC characters on foot; one with hw/shld one with hw/hw
  • WoC mounted wizards
  • 8 knights of the realm
  • 5 terradons
...and all of them are nearly done. I don't know why I haul out so much at one time. I wish I could get a grip.
Roman Dice... they knew how to game didn't they?

But anyway, here is my proposed Bretonnian army list I'd like to put forth for advice from my peers...

Bretonnian Lord on barded warhorse … 247 points
War gear: hand weapon, great weapon, heavy armor, shield and Sirienne’s Locket
Special: Questing Vow; Virtue of Knightly Temper
Saving throw: 2+ or 3+ when using the great weapon

Prophetess of the Lady on warhorse … 245 points
War gear: hand weapon, Channeling Staff, The Terrifying Mask of EEE!
Special: Aura of the Lady (2); Level 3 Wizard
Saving throw: 6+

Damsel of the Lady … 110 points
War gear: hand weapon and The Silver Mirror
Special: Aura of the Lady (1); Level 1 Wizard
Saving throw: none

Paladin on Royal Pegasus … 164 points
War gear: hand weapon, lance, heavy armor and Enchanted Shield
Special: The Knight’s Vow; Virtue of Ideal
Saving throw: 3+ / none for the royal pegasus

Paladin on barded warhorse … 204 points
War gear: hand weapon, heavy armor and Banner of the Lady as battle standard
Special: Grail Vow; Virtue of Duty
Saving throw: 3+

Knights of the Realm … 226 points
~8 knights led by a Gallant, musician and standard bearer carrying the Banner of Chalons
Special: The Knight’s Vow; Purebred Warhorses
Saving throw: 2+

Knights Errant … 210 points
~8 knights errant led by a Cavalier, musician and standard bearer carrying the Errantry Banner
Special: Impetuous; The Knight’s Vow; Purebred Warhorses
Saving throw: 2+

Men-At-Arms … 127 points
~20 soldiers with hand weapons, light armor, shields and pole-arms led by a Yeoman Warden, musician and standard bearer
Special: The Peasant’s Duty
Saving throw: 5+; or 6+ when using the pole-arm

Peasant Bowmen … 137 points
~16 bowmen with hand weapons, light armor and long bows led by a Villein, musician and standard bearer; the bowmen have defensive stakes and braziers.
Special: The Peasant’s Duty
Saving throw: 6+

Peasant Bowmen … 140 points
~20 bowmen with hand weapons and long bows upgraded to skirmishers
Special: The Peasant’s Duty; Skirmish
Saving throw: none

Grail Reliquae … 172 points
~accompanied by 12 battle pilgrims armed with hand weapons, light armor and shields
Special: The Peasant’s Duty; Hatred; Stubborn
Saving throw: 5+

...this list encompasses my family, there is myself as the lord character, my wife as the prophetess, my daughter as a damsel and my sons as paladins. I think it might be a little character heavy to be reliable but I'm hoping those characters can bring about quite a bit of destruction themselves. The royal pegasus paladin should do well in hunting down war machine crews or other such threats like weapon teams. The two lances will each have substantial support, one with the battle standard bearer and the other with the general. The foot infantry, though mostly bowmen, should be able to hold the middle or where ever I put them. I play to use the bowmen to long term effect, raining as many arrows as I can while my damsels bring magical hurt. The reliquae will advance with the knights, though not as fast obviously.

I would like to say it annoys me that the battle standard, if taking a magic banner can take no other equipment even stuff listed normally with the entry. So my paladin cannot take a shield, or lance or any such option because his standard is magical. If it was a normal standard he could equip all the magic items he could afford and normal gear. I am fine with the idea he can have no other magic if bearing a magic standard, but no other gear? Not logical imho.

Any thoughts?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Battle 2: Battle Cry

I own a considerable number of board games of all varieties and I am the father of three children, my lovely 18 year old daughter and my handsome twin 11 year old sons. I am always trying to engage my sons in my hobby and its mostly hit or miss. But Christian has kind of grown fond of the game Battle Cry from Avalon Hill/WotC. We played it once before and he's asked several times since then and I do not know why I put it off so much. I like the C&C game design and I like ACW and I like playing games with my sons... so why did I put it off?
Stolen from Wikipedia by Kurtz and Allison

Questions of fatherly oddities aside, we sat down last night to engage this game again. This is my number 2 battle of the 52 I'm aiming for this year and I think it is a good battle to add. Battle Cry is a really good game, and pretty easy to grasp but not always easy to do well in. Christian and I played scenario number two, Pea Ridge where a larger force of Confederates engage a smaller force of the Union. Historically the Union defeated the Confederates so we were going to see if we could replicate that. Christian played the Union and I played the CSA.

The opening was a pretty equal exchange of fire as we both played several 'probe' cards and the center and my left (his right) flank saw several maneuvers towards each other and exchange of casualties. There was no defining moment and the numerous woods spaces were used for good cover.

The middle of the battle was fairly bloody for the Union. I drew several good command cards and pressed my forces in the center and eventually eliminated all the union there except an infantry regiment that held up in a farm. Christian should have moved his left flank (my right) forces to support the farm and kept them in there as reducing the number of dice you roll by 2 to attack them requires you to get pretty close, but instead he moved them out in the late game. By the end of the mid game saw his forces separated from one another on the flanks with two Union cavalry units in between and two bodies of infantry each with an artillery unit in support to face each flank. he was out numbered at this point about 3 to 1.

The end game was brutal and fast but Christian didn't get upset and he fought to the end. I again drew several really good cards and used my cavalry to move around to the rear of his forces. The last unit he had standing was on my right flank and it was a single model artillery unit which was eventually defeated by my cavalry.

We did not recreate the historical outcome but I would put that mostly to the fact I have twenty years of generalship on my son. I did not play to beat him but I did play to challenge him and not treat him like an inferior opponent. When he asked advice I gave it but there were several instances where I wanted to say something but held back. I believe we learn though our mistakes and rather than bother him with unsolicited advice I let him play his game. He never got upset even when his brother was trying to chide him and we shook hands like good gamers afterward. I've got to say it was one of the best war gaming experiences I've had in years.

Hopefully next up will be some Uncharted Seas. I've got FIVE painted fleets and I've been trying to get the boys interested. also, I'll try to take some picture of that battle!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

52 Weeks of War ... Battle #1: Defend the Towers

I'm not much for new year's resolutions as they just seem insurmountable to me but I do like to try to make plans for the upcoming year and these tend to repeat themselves;
  • Loose a little weight
  • Eat less sweets
  • Eat healthier
  • Do something fantastic in my career
  • Be a better husband and father
...you get the idea. Well, one of my plans this year involves my hobby, not something common for me. A lot of bloggers plan to paint a certain number of figures and keep records of this but I am neither that dedicated nor that organized. But my real grip with my hobby is that I don't get to use it that much in my opinion. I paint figures, dozens of them, and they don't get used for months... or years in some cases. So, I've decided to to aim to fight 52 battles over the year 2011. I'd like to play at least one per week an this may mean I need to play some solo war games as I might not always have an opponent. Also, I would like to photojournal the battles but I've already screwed that up so I make no promises.

The first battle took place with my son Christian and myself playing Hordes of the Things. I've not really played this game and he has not either so it was also a learning experience for us both. I have two 15mm HOTT armies though as you might know at this point so we built from those and went to it. I played the goblin horde and he played the high elves. We rolled off and I won making him the defender.

The high elves consisted of 1x hero general; 1x magician; 3x knights; 3x spears; 1x behemoth (griffin).

The goblin horde consisted of 1x warband general; 5x warband; 2x riders; 2x shooters; 1x behemoth.

His home base was a couple paint pots to represent a pair of high elf towers as I have not built bases for the armies yet. We played on an old ceiling tile that was not standard size battle field although I'm not sure how small and we drew just a couple of forrest on it as bad going. Deploying our forces I blocked up the six warband elements (three in front and three in support) and the behemoth to their left. On the left flank I placed the two riders and to the right flank the two shooters. Christian placed three knights, behemoth and magician in the middle as a single black with the magician behind an element of knights. On his left flank in front of the towers he placed the three spears with the hero general in a two by two formation.

I can't give a play by play but there were three significant points of the battle. In the second or third bound my his knights/behemoth/magician block crashed into my warbands/behemoth block and he had a rough go. Two of the knights were destroyed and the third forced to recoil while I lost nothing. For the next several turns the knight and behemoth continued to fight back and forth until he was able to destroy four of the six warbands (not the general thankfully). On the left the riders engaged the magician several times but failed to eliminate him and he failed to either destroy them through magic or through battle. Eventually I split the two elements up and this allowed him to eliminate them in the long term. On the right my remaining forces engaged the spears and hero general and surprisingly held their own even tot he point of destroying all the spears. As the end game drew near it came down to my general warband and behemoth vs. his magician and hero general near the towers. I pushed forward several times and tried to reach the towers but were rebuffed each time with by the hero general. The magician attempted magic but failed, eventually we called it a draw.

I feel the battle went very well, high casualties on both sides but neither of us dominated at any point and fought to a draw. Christian did not feel so though and was frustrated by his low rolls and the inability of the magician to destroy with magic. I hope he plays again, I really enjoy playing war games with my sons but they are not very interested.

Well, that is battle one of fifty-two done, lets see how the others go eh?