Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Rogue Trader Eldar Score!

Myself and some friends had another one of our school reunions again last week. When I arrived my mate handed me a small bag full of his old miniatures he'd promised me. When I opened it I was over the moon. Not only were there almost a complete set of Harlequins and two War Walkers, the base colours on them were nicely done. Myself, Jay and Barry (another old school days gaming buddy) emptied them out on the pub table, and it was like unlocking a time capsule.

Anyway, over the next couple of days I gave the first few figures some ink washes and highlights and now they're pretty much ready to go. I love the old 80's style colour scheme, and couldn't bring myself to just strip them all. As these are the beginning of my RT force I've decided to copy a similar style with the rest. Photos of the War Walkers coming soon!

In other news I picked up a copy of the new Osprey Sci Fi skirmish rules 'Rogue Stars'. At first glance it looks pretty good. I think Osprey have done well with these new small (and incredibly affordable) rule sets. Top marks for the really great Mark Copplestone figures featured in its pages too.

Monday, 17 October 2016

Warhammer 40k On a Budget

It's no surprise that the Oldhammer Community have had a huge inspiration in sparking my return to fantasy and Sci-Fi wargaming. Games Workshop back in the early '80's was my starting point, as I'm sure it was for many people. Aside from time and family commitments etc it's usually the cost that puts many people off. What I've realised in the last few months however, is that this doesn't have to be the case.

The photograph above is my current collection of Imperial Guard and Dark Angels. Bought brand new, these would have taken a significant chunk from the weekly paycheck. But thanks to buying and selling websites like Ebay and Gumtree (as well as the Facebook page "Warhammer Buy, Sell and Swap" which is fantastic btw) I've gathered this entire force for less than £50.

The popularity of GW over the years is perhaps the reason that there's so much of it available cheaply secondhand. Like any wargaming fanatic, lots of folks go through phases of collecting - whereby they either decide on some other period or genre, or give up on the hobby altogether. Either way if the items don't end up on ebay or on car boot sales (this is especially the case with Warhammer stuff and is another ideal way of buying collections) or they get stashed into the attic.

I began with just asking friends who I knew had been into the hobby in the past. Quite often they had a couple of shoe boxes or carrier bags somewhere with unused sprues, vehicle parts etc. or a load of half painted odds and sods. Most were happy to part with everything for a couple of quid. If you're quite lucky you'll even get some decently painted figures. Many of my Dark Angels were already basecoated and had the armour highlights started. It took me a rainy afternoon to finish the guns and gear, and hey presto...30 figures ready to go.

Again, Ebay and Gumtree offer similar opportunities. The Imperial Guard here were in a sorry state with a particularly rough paintjob, but it doesn't take much to turn them around (some of my Terminators were spray painted in silver and gold - so the way I see it, almost anything can be salvaged!

I imagine the method of collecting I'm suggesting here is quite good if you've got children who want to get into GW. Especially if you're worried about coughing up £100 for the GW Deathwatch Overkill game, facing the possibility that it'll be discarded in favour of the XBox somewhere down the line. On that point in particular; Ebay sellers are currently flogging the Deathwatch Rulebook and tiles for £10-£15 without the figures. Buying a load of cheap Tyranid Genestealers secondhand, along with some space marines and Imperial Guard would probably mean you'd get everything you need for less than £35.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Citadel Plague Cart

The Plague Cart was produced in October 1987, so a little after my own childhood Warhammer obsession which concluded just before that date. Nevertheless, after deciding on the resurrection of an Oldhammer style Undead army it seemed like the perfect addition to my growing collection.

Those with a keen eye and sense of history will notice that the Undead steed pulling it, is in fact a Lord of the Rings (ME series) Dunharrow skeleton horse minus the rider. This was because I'd picked up the cart alone for a few quid on Ebay and wasn't interested in paying the exorbitant prices sometimes asked for a complete one (£60-£150 in some cases!!). A fellow Oldhammer forum member had suggested a replacement 'Skeleton Buffalo' made by Secret Weapon Miniatures, which was nice but when it arrived was way too big. Anyway I think the Dunharrow nag definitely looks the part.

Most painters I talk to mention how easy it is to paint Undead. I'll attest to that. This was undercoated in Black primer, then given an all over base coat of GW Dryad Bark (Brown). Next a drybrush of Zandri Dust, then another of Screaming Skull. Finally highlighted in White (very slightly).

Anyway, I think it's a great model. Very unassuming on any battlefield but likely to bring fear and horror upon its approach..rrrrrraaaaarrghhh!! 

Monday, 23 May 2016

Frostgrave 'White Gorilla'

I picked up this Northstar Figures 'White Gorilla' from their Frostgrave fantasy game. I think it should fit in very nicely with my future Oldhammer campaigns. When we were young our Warhammer Fantasy battles consisted of quite a few other figures than the standard Citadel ones - anything that looked good (in other words "fierce") and could handle itself on the battlefield was usually fair game. Hence our armies included quite a few models by Grenadier, Asgard, Essex and others.

I could imagine myself at that age purchasing something like this, and reacting with great excitement, as it rampages and throws Orcs around or some such.

The Frostgrave figures are really nice and I'm planning on getting a few more to mix in with my Oldhammer stuff.

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

All Rolled Up RPG Accessories

Something lovely arrived in the post today. It was my 'All Rolled Up' order. If you haven't seen them before then just have a look at their website: http://www.allrolledup.co.uk/

I first saw their stall at Dragonmeet 2015. Unfortunately I'd already exceeded my budget at the time but was extremely tempted to wander into overdraft territory. When the weekend was over I promised myself one when the finances were topped up. Last week I mentioned them to my partner and she pointed out a rather spammy "There and Back Again" Roll illustrated with a map of The Shire. As I'd been revisiting my interest in Lord of the Rings (especially the BBC Radio play and the Middle Earth Role Playing Game) it was the perfect choice.

The roll itself is very well stitched and printed, with a nice compliment of autumn colours. The small pockets are ideally placed for pens and other bits, as well as a large velcro fastened pocket which holds plenty of dice. The extras I ordered were a folding faux leather dice tray (no more losing those dice under the table), some wipe cards, cloth, pens and a plastic wallet. The total including postage came to around £40 - if some consider this steep, be aware that I purchased the deluxe design. There are plenty of excellent rolls that cater for those who don't want to spend as much.