40K · Warhammer 40k

First Primaris!

So, I had a little time to myself today to paint some of the new Primaris Marines that we bought last week. Alright, so we also got some Deathguard as well but I am having nothing to do with those plague-ridden things unless it’s shooting at them or blowing them up!

It was decided that they should be painted as regular Ultramarines. They have been seconded to the Black Hands for the time being. It means we can use Guilliman for large scale fights as well – though I have seen that Primarch’s bits, honestly, putting him together frightens the life out of me…

Anyway, moving on from that, I found the miniature to be a real pleasure to paint. Alright, so I am biased, I like painting Space Marines already but still, it was nice to paint a different flavour! What you can see in the pictures is my trial of a single model – this scheme works really well I thought so I have now begun the rest of the unit, and the captain as well.

Of course, the marine does need his transfers doing, but I am going to wait until I have done all of them to put them on. The other new thing I have done with these guys is to undercoat them blue rather than black. I was a little apprehensive about doing so because I have ALWAYS used black and I don’t like to change things that work. Black is a forgiving undercoat and I find that it adds shade to the lower areas you don’t always paint over. It is also good at hiding those bits you miss off… we all do it from time to time. That said, these models are mostly blue anyway so I was persuaded. I’m not convinced about it still but I don’t think I did too bad a job!

 

40K · Warhammer 40k

Release Day

So, the brand new version of 40K was released today and it felt a bit like Christmas…

We headed down to Stronghold Games to pick up the goodies we had pre-ordered and spent a bit of time chatting to some friends.

The next port of call was Hull’s Angels Games Club where we had arranged to meet with friends for a mass cut and stick session, as well as some games. I spent the next hour or so looking at the pretty books and reading.

Knowing where to begin is always a bit of an issue when faced with a big pile of sprues so my friend and I decided to do the logical thing – we used the instructions… The rest of the day was spent chatting, listening to my very random playlist and fighting with super glue.

The models went together easily however and they look amazing – even the gross Death Guard are ‘nice’ looking miniatures. I am really looking forward to getting some paint on them in the not too distant future!

Needless to say we didn’t get any games in but we did have a great day. I have even included a picture of the Ork Big Gunz one of my friends, Matt, was converting from MDF templates and various bits he had managed to find.

Today will be more of the same, while battling the hot weather. We might even get to play something if were lucky!

40K · space marines · Warhammer 40000

Battle Report: New 40K Demonstration!

So, today was the pre-release for 8th Edition 40K and we decided that it was a good enough time to go out and give it a try out. I have never played a game of 40K in my life and can count on one hand the amount of miniature games I have played in the past. It was something I was a touch nervous about, I’m not big on people watching what I am doing and we played in a store. At first, I was rather out of my comfort zone. Then I reminded myself that not many people have played this game before either as it was new rules and I relaxed.

Then I started to have actual fun.

A lot of the models in the few shots that I did manage to take were proxies, the store, which is always very busy, not yet had the time to put everything together. This happened as we played and by the end of the game nearly all the correct models were in play.

Not knowing a thing about what I was doing wasn’t a problem as I had friends about to lend a hand. I know I have a lot to learn when it comes to playing this game and it seems like at the moment there are a lot of rules to learn, however by the end of the game, I think I got the hang of it. I rolled a lot of dice and tried to stomp on the Chaos Spawn on the other side of the board.

Gradually, the two sides got closer together and  several pitched battles ensued. I quickly learned to ignore the plague zombies as they didn’t do a great deal and focus on the nastier models. One of the lieutenants survived surrounded by them and the  psyker for some time before finally succumbing to a disastrous end.

The guy with the bell on his back did far too much damage than was reasonable but he was eventually dispatched by the Captain, who was pretty hard – turns out powerfists are mean! I also want to give a special mention to the Inceptor squad, who fell from space just to blast things for me – they did a fine job of it too.

I liked the mechanic in the game where the leaders had auras (a bit like Paladin Auras in World of Warcraft) which meant I got to re-roll on ones. I know this report is a bit informal, it is built of first impressions and enthusiasm. I am sure that the more I play, the better I will get at learning the tactics and the proper names for things. Right now I am reveling in the fact that I enjoyed something I never thought I would. Yes, we have the game on pre-order and I am looking forward to being able to field some of the dudes I have painted up – that is all to come!

 

 

book review · Warhammer 40000 · Wh40K

Mechanicum – Horus Heresy Book 9 – Graham McNeill

Mechanicum-A5-thumbI was fortunate enough to read this book while I was sunning myself on the beach in the far distant Caribbean, both of which was a treat.

This book was rather different than the last few I have read. Instead of focusing on Space Marines and Primachs, this one looks at how the Heresy affects the workings of the forges on Mars (The Mechanicum as the title subtly suggests…)

I found this book to be a welcome change from the material I have been reading so far. There are mention of Space Marines, however they are far from the focus of the novel. Instead, the reader is treated to the inner workings of large warmachines – Titans, and their respective Princeps. As well as following the tale of a young tech genius and her friends.

I am not going to give away what happens, that would be unfair and I hate writing review with spoilers in. The book is well worth a read, the characters are well written and although I was not as taken with them as I have been in previous books, they are still worth reading and investing in!

There is one particular piece of writing that I feel deserves a special mention – the description of what happened during a particular disaster that spread across the whole planet was particularly masterful. I was easily able to picture exactly what was happening throughout the section and the sense of impending doom that ran through the section was spectacular.

I did feel that the pace of the book was somewhat slower in places, though it never dragged. I have put this down to being used to the rapid flow of the previous novels. Not every book can run at a break neck speed and the story did not lose anything because of this.

All in all, I rather enjoyed the change of focus of the novel and would recommend it as a decent read.

book review · Warhammer 40000

Battle for the Abyss – Horus Heresy Book 8 – Ben Counter

Ben Counter Battle For The AbyssNow, I know this book has not been the most popular in the series. When I said it was the one I was reading next, my sister, and several other people, warned me that it was ‘a bit rubbish’ (I am paraphrasing) and that I should skip it.

I am glad I didn’t listen to them!

Alright, so it’s nowhere near as good as the first three books in the series, but then again that is going to take a lot of beating.

Lets start with the positive.

Excellent characters: They are well written, carefully thought out and each have their own goals. None of them are perfect and for most of the novel, none of them actually get on either. I’m not going to spoil the novel for those that want to go away and read it but for me, ‘Rambo-Space Marine’ was one of the highlights of the book. The mental images that the writing brought to mind were perfect!

Solid Story Line: There is a good plot to the novel which I never thought I would like. The setting is space and it involves a lot of ship combat – something I never thought I would like about a novel. However this is the exception. There is a lot of it in the book and it is very well written. Ben Counter knows his stuff!

The Negative.

Pace: I would have thought that a book with so much going on in it would be a bit quicker. Such is not the case however. There are parts of the novel that are plodding and slow and I feel that with another round of editing, it could have been so much better. There are a lot of dead words and without these ti would have been a much more exciting read.

Generally speaking, pace is the only thing wrong with the novel. Counter is a master at writing and I really enjoyed reading this book.

 

 

 

40K · hobby · Warhammer 40k

Update

Seven Model Army...Just a quick update to let folks know where I am up to and what I have spent the last few days doing in regards to the hobby.

I am part the way through Battle for the Abyss and I am enjoying it. Not as much as Legion but I find I am liking the story and the characters. This is a bit of a surprise as it has been mostly ship based so far, not something I thought I would like.

I have been painting some Space Marines with heavy weapons and they are proving to be a bit of a challenge. I’ve run out of regular guys to paint so need to get my act together and get some put together to fix this little problem – pictures of that (failure) to follow.

The novel writing is also coming along well, I have hit over fifteen thousand words and am going strong with it. Most days I smash my pitiably low target of one hundred words and I am loving getting to know the characters and how they react in different situations.

On a much sadder note, I did not get the job as a writer for Games Workshop.

book review · Warhammer 40000 · Warhammer 40k

Legion – Dan Abnett

LegionI don’t know if I have the words to say how much I loved reading this book. I could not put it down. Admittedly, there have been a few in the series that have been like this for me. After Descent of Angels I was a bit worried the series might be falling off. I had nothing to worry about because this little gem of a book followed it up.

It is the first that features the Imperial Guard being the focus of the novel rather than the Space Marines and their Primarchs. The story begins with a torture scene and then details the events that lead up to that moment.

The plot in the book twists and turns in masterful loops and I did not see the ending turning out the way it did. There were a few key elements that I did manage to figure out but man, I did not expect the ending to do what it did. It is a real credit to Abnett, who told the tale masterfully well without giving away everything too early. It never felt as if it dragged and the pace was as punchy as I have come to expect from this series.

The characters within the story are well written and are not cardboard cut outs or cliche ridden fools. they each play their part well and come off as well rounded individuals. Not a single person in the novel annoyed me, though I did get a bit angry with some, it was for well motivated reasons rather them being badly written. I genuinely cared about how the characters acted and what happened to them too and after Istsvan III, (There were tears and ice-cream) I have been most reluctant to do so.

There was only one point that was a bit abrupt, which was towards the end. I won’t go into details because spoilers but it felt as though it was a rush at the end and a neat tie off rather than an actual ending. It just read as forced which was a shame.

That said, it did not spoil the rest of this amazing novel for me. I really look forward to reading the next one in the series and hope it is as pacy as this one!

 

blue · Warhammer 40k

A Fighting Force…

Just thought I would give an update on how the painting is going as a whole as I now have enough models to look half decent in the display case.

When I started off painting Space Marines, I really did not have a clue what I was doing with them. I had seen them before, anyone who has entered a Games Workshop will have done, but I had never been interested. When I picked the first ones up a few short weeks ago I had no idea how much I was going to enjoy painting them.

I am now a semi-regular feature at the local games store – Stronghold (I should write about them here too one day) and have never enjoyed the hobby more than I do now.

New rules were announced for 40K yesterday as well, which also has me excited, I look forward to actually using these guys in the future and filling you all in on my blunderings through the game. I have no doubts that it will be a journey filled with blast holes and craters but I am looking forward to it all the same!

painting · Warhammer 40k

Painting Update

As some of you know, and my sister will very much understand, when someone says they’re selling off some unwanted Space Marines, we tend to buy them. Who would want them to be homeless or worse, sat in a cabinet in the local games store for all eternity waiting for a home?  It’s an act of kindness, not a sign of obsession I swear.

I have been repainting some of these Marines for some time. They were already a shade of blue, which made the job a little easier. I just needed to wash them so the blue was a bit darker and then highlight them as per the other ones I have painted. I want them all looking regimented. I imagine they’re proud of their colours and have some ideas for fiction based around this, though that is a post for another day.

I am rather pleased with the result of the one pictured above. I think the highlighting on the knee pads has come off rather well and I felt like showing this one off a bit more than the others. He is not quite finished, he needs chapter markings and squad markings painting on the shoulder pads and a few details adding here and there I am proud of the outcome of this one, though I know I am not the world’s best painter and never will be. I still feel as though this is a good effort, one of the better ones at the very least.

 

40K · book review

Descent of Angels – Horus Heresy book 6

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading the Horus Heresy thus far and after the emotional roller coaster I have been on, I was looking forward to reading the next installment.

This one is very different to the others so far, it focuses on the Dark Angels and is more of an origin story than anything else. It was not what I was expecting, however I decided to give it a go.

The pace of the descent-of-angels.jpgnovel is much slower than the rest of the series thus far and I found that to be a bit jolting. I have gotten used to the break neck pace of the first five books and compared to that, I found this book a bit slow to get going. Once it did, I found to be an alright read.

The characters are certainly engaging and well written, I cared about what happened to them at the end of the book and they have been well developed over the course of the novel. They change as well, which is always a sign of a good story.

I did feel as though the ending of the novel was rushed however, there was plenty of scope for further world building after the Dark Angels leave their home world and set about conquest. There was so much room for the bad guys to be awesome and the stakes to be much higher, however there seems to be something key missing from this part of the novel, which is a real shame. I felt as though there could have been more. Perhaps that is because I was used to reading the fast paced, action packed novels that it has ruined this slower one for me.

All in all, it is not a bad read, however I much prefer the earlier novels in the series as they are much more action packed!