Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Poxwalker Outbreak

It's time for a good old fashion Halloween zombie brawl. 90PL of Death Guard (with so, so many Poxwalkers) versus a rag-tag group of Imperial Guard and a squad of Blood Angel Devastators.

The odds were against Typhus' horde of undead from the beginning. The setup was not at all favorable to the slow moving zombies, with a 24" gap between forces. Still they came on.
There was a clash of the armored forces on my left flank, with the tankers of the Guard coming out on top.
The huge horde (100+) of Poxwalkers was an intimidating sight as they shambled across the field. The buffs they received from Typhus and the other characters made it all the more worrying.
Just a few of the annoyingly had to put down Poxwalkers can tie up a unit so the following waves of undead can surge forward.

Unfortunately we had to call the battle early, but it was a good game, and the sight of so many zombies is something to be experienced.

The Emperor Protects
But Send More Flamers

Friday, October 26, 2018

Tower of Madness

What happens when you mix KerPlunk with Yahtzee and wrap it in a Cthulhu theme? It's Tower of Madness! (Published by Smirk & Dagger Games, 2018).
Tower of Madness is a semi-cooperative game for 3-5 players. Each player takes the role of a 1920s-style Investigator in everyone's favorite doomed township, Arkham.

The players must stop the Big Bad from coming forth to lay waste to our world. This is accomplished by rolling dice and matching up the symbols and clearing each location. Each location may have some special rules to make things a bit harder, or give a bonus.
If a player cannot match the symbols, then they must pull a tentacle out of the tower, which may release some colored marbles. Not all the marbles are bad for you: Blue gives you extra points at the end of the game, White gives you a new spell card. Of course the Red Marble gives you madness. Four of those and you go irreversibly insane, which then makes you work against the sane. If all three green marbles get dropped, then the Old One has arrived and all it lost. The Insane players can win if that happens.

Setup of the game is a bit tricky the first time or two, but you quickly get a handle on setting up the Tower. (Hint: start from the bottom and work up)  The Tower is cleverly held together by the magic of magnets, but be careful once it is loaded with marbles.
Play is fast and a lot of fun. The Spell cards add a lot to the game, and give it the not a full co-op game. The sane players win if they go through the deck of locations without all three green marbles showing up, but the player with the most points is the overall winner.

A game can run up to about an hour, but could be much quicker. It's a light fun game that is a good addition to a Cthulhu game collection. Recommended.
The Doom has been summoned!
Go Roll Some Dice
And Pull Some Tentacles While You're At It

Friday, October 19, 2018

Objective: MacGuffin

It was time to make some new objective markers. I have a bunch of ones on the old flat, 60mm bases. They are the typical objectives: fuel drums, ammo crates and the like. For Kill Team, I wanted some new exciting ones on smaller 40mm bases. Enter The MacGuffins!

Here Lady Halifax secures the Containment Cylinder with Beacon, and The Forbidden Case.

  Acolyte Smith stands watch over the Comms Station, and Escape Pod.

Tech Priest Anders-XiL7 and Helper put the finishing touches on The Device, with items from the Useful Crate.

 Now I have some fun and colorful objectives to kill for!

Go Make Something
Plenty of Weird Bits to Choose From

Friday, October 5, 2018

The Lost and The Damned

Today we have a guest article written by the Best Selling Author and fellow Warlord, Mr. Peter Clines. 

So, I moved recently, and it made me go through a lot of old GW stuff that had piled up over the... wow, nineteen years that I’ve been playing these games and building these models.  Some harsh cuts were made.  I had a bunch of older Tyranids, Demons, Necrons, Genestealer Cultists, and more that I’d hauled from San Diego to LA, across LA, and potentially back down to San Diego if I didn’t re-evaluate some of it.
As I went through things, though, one thing that came up was just how much stuff isn’t supported anymore.  Granted, there are a lot of things that have been... well, lost in recent times.  Especially in Age of Sigmar.  With the loss of the World That Was, we’ve seen the end of the entire Bretonnian line, the Empire, all of the Tomb Kings, Dogs of War, a lot of elf and dwarf sub-types.  Probably a lot of other stuff, too. I never knew Warhammer Fantasy that well.
And this was true for 40K, as well.  There used to be lots of metal models and elements for the grim, dark future.  Some of them became finecast and some... didn’t.  And then the whole finecast line sort of... well, we’re all friends here, yes?  We can be honest.  Good intentions, horrible execution.  Now finecast is on life support in the back room and everyone’s agreed not to pay attention to it unless it coughs too loud.
But this has left a lot of armies with gaping holes.  Popular models or options have just sort of ceased to exist.  And the more I thought about it, the more I was struck by how many things GW just doesn’t make any more.  Or only has available in limited numbers from limited sources, which is... well, really limiting.
For example...

My beloved Chaos Marines have lost a lot of their character models.  Abbadon, Lucius the Eternal, and Fabius Bile have all kind of vanished into that back room.  And that’s considering Abbadon’s desperately needed a new sculpt for... well, a quarter-century now?  Huron Blackheart’s gone, too.  No generic Sorcerers. either, except for the alt-Terminator Lord model.  Has anyone seen a Dark Apostle or a Warpsmith in the past few years?
Heck, there aren’t any more Chaos heavy weapons.  You can get a heavy bolter in the basic Chaos Marines pack and... that’s it.  No lascannons, no missile launchers, no autocannons.  I’m still using a metal lascannon guy from the 1990s because... there’s no other option.  And all the Noise Marine weapons are gone as well.

Are there any Space Marine characters left, aside from the glory that is Guilliman?  I think there’s a Dark Angels Primaris character, but past that...?  No Calgar or Cassius or Tigerius.  No Shryke or Kossaro or (Imperial Fists???)  Blood Angels?  Space Wolves?
Heck, what’s left for basic Space Marine command units at this point?  Can you still get Chaplains or Librarians?  They made a plastic Librarian a while back, right?
I think the Legion of the Damned has completely vanished.  All troops, options, etc.  They were metal-turned-finecast-turned-lost-in-the-warp as well.
Granted, a lot of this may be part of the slow, inevitable creep toward all loyalist marines becoming Primaris.  I could see a whole quarter of 2019 or 2020 dedicated to new hero models, all in their amazing new Primaris bodies/armors/wargear.  Which would probably be followed by a story about the Alpha Legion or Iron Warriors stealing a bunch of Primaris gene seed, and then... boom, Primaris Fabius Bile is in the house (do kids still say “in the house”?).  Followed by an all new, swollen-with-power Primaris Abaddon, and then a scattering of new-and-improved Chaos Marines.
Well, that’s what I’d do if I was telling the story.

There are many things effectively missing from the Eldar armies—say, all the Aspect Warriors—but the big one that stands out to me is the Avatar.  Like Abbadon, here’s a huge model that’s supposed to be the centerpiece of the army and it just... doesn’t exist.  Well, there’s a really expensive Forge World one, I think.  Is that still a thing?

For such an all-inclusive group, the Tau Empire left a lot of people behind.  The Vespids didn’t have a ton of options or models to start with, and they’re all gone.  Same with the Kroot auxiliary beasts—the Kroot hounds and the big ol’ Krootox (with its big ol’ cannon on its back).  And I don’t think there’ an actual Shaper model anymore, either.  You’re just supposed to stick extra bitz on one Kroot and say he’s in charge.

Is the Tyranid Lictor still available?  It’s gone from a nightmare on the board to a nuisance to... well, not even worth having a model, apparently.  Same with Deathleaper and the Red Terror.  And the Pyrovore.  When’s the last time anyone saw a Pyrovore in the flesh-and-chitin?

So what did I miss?  I admit I can be a bit narrow-focus, so I don’t know as much about armies I don’t play.  Is there a big one I skimmed over?
And, sure... a lot of these are easy to make very passable versions of (said as a  guy who had a long-running blog about how to do things on the cheap).  I’ve been using Heresy-era missile launchers for my Alpha Legionnaires.  The Vanguard Veterans set comes with all the options you’d need to make a very solid Captain Shrike.  And even with the big cull, I hung onto all my metal Krootbeasts.
But considering how extreme Games Workshop used to be about no model = no rules, it’s still kinda weird to see the pendulum swing so far the other way.

Go Roll Some Dice
And Be Thankful For Your Old Ones