Thursday, 24 September 2009

Bolter Drill

Tuesday was toys night down at the Enfield Gamers and several of us played through a game of the re-released Space Hulk, my first, taking the first mission from the book.

Seeing everything out on the table really drove home the very high quality of the "product" as a whole. Given that they're all a maximum of three piece, the figures are simply awesome, both the Termies and 'Stealers. I quite simply couldn't find a weak one.

The game itself remains Fast, Fun and Furious keeping a slick set of mechanics that are true to the game's heritage. "Moments to learn but a lifetime to master "we were soon learning various game strategies, mainly the hard way.

Initially progress was fairly easy for myself and Charlie whilst Jon built up his "blips" at the two main choke points. With the heavy flamer clearing the way over-confidence quickly cost us three Marines, including the assault cannon

With 'Stealers closing in on all sides some stunning Marine dice making the most of sustained fire victory belonged to the Blood Angels but at a high price.

The game also helped my motivation as I want to complete the clones before working on my copy of Hulk. With a couple of weekends away lined up i'm having a day's leave tomorrow, primarily to get some painting in.

I'm going to have to be overly sensible and batch up the clones into fives in order to make some progress. I shall let you know.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Back in Black!!

It was the London Wasp's first home game of the season on Sunday and I made it three games in three weeks which can't be bad.

Accompanying me was the missus along with her brother Will and his wife Anna. As it was my suggestion I sorted out the tickets and keen to impress we ended up three rows back at about the 35m line. Following previous visits to Twickers and Wembley returning to Adams Park was far more intimate, though no less atmospheric especially as we were only 10ft from play.

Elsewhere the game has been described as stodgy and i'd have to agree with both teams keeping the ball on the floor for long periods and line-breaks a first half rarity.

Worcestor Warriors were the visitors and spent the first half knocking on and being turned over whenever they produced any menace though defending well enough to negate Wasps undoubted dominance in terms of both posession and territory. At half time 7-0 to Wasps looked inadequate.

The second half sparked up a bit as Cip's kicking became more of a weapon with a pair of drop goals and a penalty stretching the lead as Wasps took control. Dom Waldouck was impressive as well as Paul Sackey returning from a broken leg with a busy performance.

Tom Varndell remained man of the moment scoring a 8oth minute try after Dom W broke the line once more and placed an excellent cross-field kick into Varndell's path. He, and his shorts, have two new female fans.

23-3 was a final scoreline that did a dis-service to Worcestor's undoubted efforts but Wasps put in a far slicker performance and deserved the win. Next week is London Irish, undoubtedly the premiership's pundit's choice. Oggy, oggy, oggy.......

Saturday, 19 September 2009

Blast from the past

Life really has been that busy recently that it wsn't until last night that I finally got round to opening my copy of the recently re-released. I just really wanted to able to spend a bit of time having a look throught the sprues and savouring the new box smell.

The moment I saw the link up on the Enfield Gamers forums I was horribly tempted and within 12 hours i'd pre-ordered a copy. As much as i've had no interest in playing 40K for some years my love of the figures and the imagery has always remained.

Seeing the quality of the figures, and the product as a whole, I just couldn't miss out. Not only will it be an excellent limited edition "project in a box" but it's a connection back to a slightly misty eyed time when GW was simply "better".......... sniff
Meanwhile, back in the box, it weighs a fair number of kilos and the sprues are so dense they barely let daylight through. All of the tiles and counters are very thick card beautifully printed and should be extremely durable. There's even a set of marbled bone dice to add an extra bit of "atmos-fear". Awesome.

The 12 termiantors are all excellent with a good balanced range of weapon fits. The lavish mission book gives specific background for them all to the point of including individual heraldry.

The 22 gene-stealers are similarly well sculpted and each an individual often leaping from struts with some excellent dynamic posing.

The only slight downer is WHEN i'm going to be all to put some time in on the project. I'd really like to spend a whole month getting things done. With a couple of busy weeks on the cards and a couple of stalling projects elsewhere it might be a while.

As a result i've decided to not have more than three projects on the go so HORDES pays the ultimate price and slips back into the case for a while. Meanwhile I simply need to find a bit more time with the brushes. We shall see!!

Wednesday, 16 September 2009 easy as 1-2-3

HUZZAH..... points on the board!!

Life has been pretty much work, work and work over the last ten days so despite the girly being away for a while the brushes have remained somewhat inactive.

I have done a fair bit more work for the Clones roleplaying and I was well prepared for last night's session. Quite entertainingly the players managed to take things fairly off track but "WE" went with it and eventually got to back on track...... mostly!

As previously alluded to the chaps are on a recovery mission to recover an advanced prototype droid, designated HS-RVR-o1A. Obviously a suitable figure is required and this chap has been sat in a box for some time having been picked up as a Foundry pre-cast.

He's been spirited away by a swoop biker gang known as "The Small Numbers". The wookie, Chew-tofu has successfully made contact.

Painting wise, the size and simplicity of "RoVeR" helped greatly. The yellow scheme however I was far less comfortable as its one I found rathere challenging.

I ended up trying out a pre-shading technique using browns, with GW's Iyanden Darksun, as a base up to a fairly harsh bone drybrushed highlight. A yellow "wash" was then applied and a softer bone drybrush applied.

Non-yellow detail was painted in and GW's new Devlan Mud wash gave a sparklingly good result with what felt like minimal effort.

Highlights added and bingo-bango-bongo, four whole painting points.

Unfortunately the ironing awaits so thats all for the mo folks!!

Monday, 14 September 2009

Invaders must DIE!

Yesterday afternoon the missus and I went and saw District 9 at the flicks. She was unimpressed and felt that it was overly grim, I LOVED it!

It's a modern day sci-fi adventure shot in a semi-documentary style which I found to be a refreshingly new slant on the genre. The CGI is excellently understated, blending in beautifully to the film's grim real-life qualities which are a real antidote to all the "Trek shininess" which I personally can find so irritatingly insincere.

The anti apartheid sub-plot is somewhat overt with an execellently evil multi-corp doing it's thang as only evil multi-corps can. Threaded amongst amongst this, along with a voodoo worshipping Nigerian warlord, is a sensitive story of epic loss and the struggle to regain a two world's "humanity".

There is also genuine humour and many genuinely touching moments, similarly understanded. There's also just enough laser guns and a death by flying pig!
I really need to find some merchandise to purchase.

Apparantly i'm going to have to pay by being "chick-flicked" at some point, though this is a price that i'm more than happy to pay.

We also went to Wembley on Saturday for Saracens vs Northampton with the Dawes. Despite concerns that the stadium might dwarf the game it was not to be so and a very entertaining afternoon.
The first half was scrappy for both sides but the second half ignited quickly with the Saints unfortunate to be held off after an opportunistic Sarries try and a last gasp try of thier own being disallowed. An excellent game won by just 3 points.

More importantly Wasps beat Bath 17-15 at the Rec to top the table. Happy days. Next week is Worcester at home.

Young Nathan Dawe kindly enquired as to my progress with the big yellow robot. The answer, unfortunately, is none as work has dominated recently.
I have however got enough adventure written for tomorrow evening's Star Wars RPG and cleared myself this evening with the brushes.

Roll on home time.

Monday, 7 September 2009

.....Oi, Oi, Oi

As much as i'm aware of "the commentator's curse" I never thought i'd be the one inflicting it.

Following my recent comments England are suddenly 2-0 down in the ODI series (not so good) and the Wallabies gave the Springboks a good shoeing (very good).

More importantly Wasps neat 'Quinns on Saturday in the better of the two double header games. 'Quins had a lock sent off in the first minute for a headbutt, with REAL blood involved, but played out of thier skins to take the lead with two excellently audacious trys.
Wasps stuttered at times but confirmed victory with a penalty try in the 4th quarter. A solid result and an excellent day out.

I had recorded the rest of the weekend's rugby and had planned to catch up yesterday whilst also breaking out the brushes and getting a game in with Rich.
Unfortunately work intervened as I was "on-call" and ended up working all day. I've re-scheduled with Rich for this evening, with accompanying "flied-lice" but a busy week will see reduced opportunity for fresh painting points!

With the Star Wars players leaning towards what should be thier next job I need to finalise some details and paint a big yellow robot with furhter 200AD connections.

Friday, 4 September 2009

Aussie, aussie, aussie......

Quite unbelieveably i've failed to mention England regaining the ashes.

Australian sport, or at least the bits that I pay attention to Rugby Union and Cricket, seems to be having a bit of a hard time at the mo.

The Wallabies are having a torrid tri-nations against the imperious Springboks and even the stuttering All Blacks. I watched last weeks game as they were kept bottled up for the first three quarters, spilling possession, penalties and making error after error.
Makes a change from teh blokes in white doing the same.

During the Ashes, the convicts scored many more centuries than England and finished with the three top wicket takers in the series. But somehow England, with Broad's timely purple patch at the Oval, took the honours.
With both sides inconsistent it came down to taking the chances that presented themselves, which England did twice and Australia only once.

The first ODI is currently in play so we shall see if I can jinx proceedings and for whom.

Meanwhile, in a galaxy far far away, my intrepid band of players have completed thier first assignment fairly well unscathed. Despite a few blaster burns certain merchandise was recovered and delivered to some rather terse young men of the hooded variety.

More importantly, for me, several plot points were established as well as the openess of the format. I've been impressed and pleased at how much the players have put in and the tenseness of atmosphere that has been generated at the relevant times.

Two new jobs have been offered up from different employers and a number of decisons need to be made. Overall i'm really enjoying the experience after a long break from GMing.

Tomorrow meanwhile is the start of the new Rugby season and a day at Twickers for the double header. My beloved Wasps taken on the nefarious and evil Harlequins.

Oggy, oggy, oggy..... Wasps, Wasps, Wasps......... :)