New Terrain Piece

Saw this Star of Chaos bouncing around online late one night and thought I should do something with it. So…

 

A scrap of 1″ insulation foam, a couple hours with an X-acto, some house paint, and voila! an Evil Dias.

Mantic ghouls scrounged from my bitz box make appropriate Tormented and Damned climbing from the flames while a Reaper Bones skeleton on throne adds a dash of underworldly tyrannical menace. I might fuss with it a bit more but right now it looks like a good place for a final Boss fight for one of our mini-campaigns.

A couple more shots:

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NEXT UP: FREE TERRAIN TO A GOOD HOME

The Fall of House Navratola

Our gaming group is arranging mini-campaigns for our Fall game night schedule. John is currently hammering out the details on one, possibly two Dungeon Crawl RPG sessions. Derek is perusing the Pathfinder version of Interface Zero for some cyberpunk adventures, and Matt ordered the Blood Rage 5th player expansion so newcomer Anti-Patrick can join in the frenzy for glory as the worlds crumble and burn. (We all decided Blood Rage will be our go-to pick up game on those nights when no one has had time to prep.)

For my part, I’m currently writing up a three-game ASoBH campaign titled “Fall of House Navratola”, where a secret brotherhood of ‘Dusk Watchers’ – men and women sworn to hunt down the evil that preys on humankind – investigates arcane and bloody rumors in a remote province  of Trastaya.    

To that end, the Dusk Watcher party recently received some reinforcements. The Dusk Warden and Dusk Hunter are joined by a Dusk Medicae and a Dusk Quarreler. A Dusk Skean is in the queue.

 

While the Dusk Watchers are formidable, here are some of the ruinous powers that will oppose them:

 

Lastly, speaking of cyberpunk not only have I been leafing through the gorgeous Eclipse Phase rule book during lunch, I wanted to make sure I had suitable figs for whatever Derek cooked up. So here are a couple potentials I fished out of my c-punk storage case.

 

My workshop’s main table is filled with a commission for a large-ish memorial window at the moment, but outlining the third and final House Navratola game last night, I see a terrain project in my future. More on that as it happens.

Til then, have a great day.

 

Recent Brushwork

Trying to change my palette if not my technique to achieve a different look on my minis. I read a ‘How To Paint Military Miniatures’ book ages ago, and settled on the ink wash/Shade Down method rather than the Highlight Up all the cool kids do nowadays.

Whippersnappers! Back in my day, a real painter had messy fingers from all the run-off.

40 years on, I still don’t have an airbrush. Maybe someday. But until then, here are several new figs from the painting desk.

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Trying for that Arabian theme.
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A Kev White sculpt according to Reaper. I like that he’s tough but normal looking.
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Great fig. Very subtle. The pic doesn’t quite show it but I went for a weathered duster feel to his cloak and jacket.
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Nothing really special about these four – except they’re a bunch of Do-Gooder, Avenging Paladin-types. (Sounds like a 90’s Christian metal band) There’s a fifth member of the band on the way.
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Brightening up a Thief defeats the purpose, but his gray clothes and lighter tone than usual armor works nice.
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“I told you what would happen if you got up.”
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Iconic Investigator investigating a mysterious rune stone. (Or a new FB Profile picture)

 

Primaris Marines and Vedros Objectives

A root canal and a light work schedule for a couple days gave me some time at the painting desk.

First, here’s my take GW’s new super-sized Primaris Marines. Stock color schemes, I have to say they paint up easily and make a table top quality painter like myself look good. Blue with darker shoulder pads for the line troops, stealth blue/black for the Reivers, add a Command type and they’ll make a nice little recon force to face the Space Hulk genestealers I picked up off eBay.  Time to break out my Interior Boards.

Next are some fast-n-easy Objective markers for my grandsons’ Battle for Vedros set. A tarted up Ork glyph and UM banner swiped from the internet, they’re basically plastic sprue, cardboard, and a few bitz on 50mm bases. It’s ‘Capture the Flag’ time now, fellas. That should introduce more fun plus a hint of tactical thinking to our slugfests. They came out alright and should stand up to repeated use.

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That’s it for now. Have a great day.

Hard Kill and Zombie 6 – Free Stories

HardKill-Book-Cover-FINAL

Wanted to inform anyone interested one of my Military Sci-Fi shorts “Hard Kill” will be available free at Amazon August 8 – 12. Here’s the Link. 

Also, I’ve been serializing another story, Zombie Six: Planetfall over at my author’s blog. It’s up to chapter 10. Click HERE for the start.

z6team

 

And hey, if any of you have read one of my books, could you do me a solid and fire off a quick review at Amazon or Goodreads? Doesn’t have to be a book report, a few honest lines will do fine. Every one helps and I’d greatly appreciate it.

Thanks much. Have a great day.

 

3:10 to Yharma

A Song of Blades and Heroes Bat Rep

***

“That’s a ‘4’!” Brynar insisted. 

“No you thick Northman, that’s a ‘3’,” the grizzled cleric replied. “It says the caravan leaves at 3:10. The caravan we were paid to escort.” 

The barbarian shrugged his massive shoulders. “It’s not my fault the attendant scribbles. You’re the educated one in this crew. You should have deciphered the note sooner.”

Lazarus Stern bit his tongue. He looked into the faces of the rest of the party – Hrodor the Druid, the two Rangers, Quinn and Terryn, his own comrade, the Paladin Jorgen. 

“Nothing to do for it now except get a move on, he sighed. “They’re only a half hour down the Yharma road.  We hurry now, we’ll catch up before supper. I mean, what can go wrong in a half hour?”

***

A new player joined us for this week’s gaming session, bringing the total to five. He’s an old hand at DnD, so I opted for a quick ASOBH scenario. We all enjoy the rules, are very familiar with them, they’re easy for a first-timer, and we have plenty of terrain and a variety of miniatures.

We split up, 3 v 2. John and I would play the Baddies while Derek, Matt and Anti-Patrick each controlled two members of the adventuring party.

The game area was split into two sections. The first was the now looted caravan at the turn in the road. The second section was the ruined abbey. Each would trigger attacks by hostiles (Me and John)

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While Matt took his Rangers strolling through the woods toward the Abbey on the right, the other four gathered near the first wagon. This kicked off the first attack, with a small Gnoll warband coming in from either side of the table.

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While fast, ugly, and very smelly, the Gnolls failed to do any serious damage to the party.  The older Ranger (that Matt insisted on calling ‘Grandpa’) took down three attackers by his lonesome in the woods on the left, while the other Ranger watched from the hilltop. Meanwhile, the other Canines were easily dispatched near the wagon. A quick search showed signs of a struggle, as well as a trail leading to the old Abbey.  Oh and a couple of recharges for the members’ Healing amulets.

Supremely confident, the party hurried down the Abbey Road to rescue the survivors.

The second set of Hostiles rushed out from the ruins the moment the the first Adventurer neared the stone gate: a Death Priest, two Warriors of Chaos, two packs of ghouls, and a giant Were-Rat.

“Oh look, they have a Were-Rat.”

 

The battle was quickly joined. The Death Priest sent one pack of Ghouls to swarm Grandpa while the rest of the Tainted surged out of the gates and attacked in a head-long frenzy.

 

Fierce combat raged back and forth inside and outside the Abbey. The air rang with clashing steel, savage howls, and ferocious battle cries. Both Rangers died under the filthy, blood-soaked claws of the Ghouls, selling their lives dearly and buying precious time for their comrades.

Barbarian met Barbarian. Mage fought Mage. Blinded by a murderous frenzy, the monstrous Were-Rat launched itself tooth and claw at anyone in it’s line of sight.

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Slowly, surely, the Adventurers’ skill and discipline drove the forces of Darkness back, first slaying the evil barbarian. Then the Chaos Champion Gurn Gravehand fell under Jorgen’s the Paladin’s flashing coldsilver blade. Victory teetered on a razor’s edge. But it was the Druid’s Gruesome Kill of the foul Death Priest that sealed evil’s fate. The wretch’s death-scream shook the remaining forces of Darkness to their withered, blackened souls and they fled the field of battle.

Victory.

***

There’s a reason why Song of Blades and Heroes is our go-to fantasy skirmish game: fast, versatile, robust, easily learned, fun… Anti-Pat picked it up by turn three and jumped right into the flow of the game. His Druid and Barbarian were brawling it out alongside veteran players figs in no time. It was a good fun with good people. We’re all looking forward to doing it again soon.

If you’re in the market for a fast and fun fantasy skirmish game, pick up a copy of Advanced Song of Blades and Heroes. You won’t be disappointed.

Thanks and have a good week.

 

 

Battle for Vedros armies

Recruiting the next generation of wargamers

 

battle

40 years wargaming and playing with toy soldiers, I’m still not a WH/40K tabletop player. I tried several times and it never took. But when Grandsons 1 and 2 caught me playing the PC game “Warhammer 40,000 : Armageddon”, they were so taken by the epic battles between Space Marines and Orks, I seized the opportunity and grabbed the “Battle for Vedros” starter game to see if I couldn’t channel some of that interest from the screen to the game table.

Well it worked. We’ve been playing very simple slugfests when they visit and they love it. They split command of the mighty Space Marines while I Warboss my way into their fields of fire and lose with all the appropriate sound effects and over-dramatized anguish.

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All things considered, the Battle for Vedros set is the perfect starter for something like this: decent price point (especially if you find it on sale) a good amount of easy-assemble models, dice, a simple rule book. Terrain would have been helpful, but hey… The models have nice detail but are robust enough to stand up to rough play by 6 and 7-year old boys. Now of course I had to ‘reinforce’ the box armies, which meant a Killa Kan and an Attack Bike for sheer coolness quotient. Then a few more infantry to round out the foot sloggers. But that’s just me…

There’s lots to be said about getting kids to play a table top or board game: it gets them away from a screen, interacting with other actual people. They learn about fair play, taking chances, planning moves, accepting loss when the dice don’t roll their way, being gracious when they win, and most of all, having a blast with friends and family over little army men. They’re already leafing through the booklet, pouring over the pictures, and lobbying for more reinforcements. (“Grandpa, that tank looks cool.”)

Yes it does. It does indeed.

But I better buy some decent terrain first. Something cool looking but simple and robust, without fiddly bits that break easily. I’m open to suggestions here.

Anyway, Hats off to Games Workshop for a great little starter set. The Battle for Vedros made my grandsons quite happy.