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Sunday, July 3, 2016

Skitarii fresh off the Forgeworld Assembly-line

Hey there Chaos enthusiasts everywhere! Old Man Chaos is back with yet another scintillating edition of Chaos Corner. Summer is upon us in the Eye of Terror. Since I despise sunlight and the outdoors and dolphins, I know that I will be able to accomplish a ton of painting. Now, I have a huge list of projects, but at this pace I may be able to put a significant dent in that list (even with my Horus Heresy project taking shape and all).

Just this past week alone, I have been able to finish not one but two units of Skitarii- a new squad of Vanguard and a squad of Sicarian Ruststalkers. For both, I decided to use some of the new GW paints, namely Nuln Oil Gloss and the shinny and new "warpstone" technical paints. So- let's take a look...

Sikarian Ruststalkers

 Now, up to this point, I have only done the Infiltrators. With their large helmets and cabling, they looked weird and very different from the other Skitarii. I was also interested in them because of the Taser Goads- which are great close combat weapons. So naturally I did 10 of them in total.

I was initially less impressed with the Ruststalkers. Their headgear was certainly less impressive and less "odd", as compared to the Infiltrators. As far as weaponry, I was less than impressed by their load out. The chordclaw is fine (1 attack fleshbane) enough, but the trasnoic razors / blades are less than idea. In the first round of combat they have AP 2 only on a to wound of 6. In subsequent rounds of that combat, all hits are AP 2. That means to be effective they must survive (in sufficient numbers) for at least one round of combat in order to be really effective. Kinda sucks if you ask me.

However, I HAD to build at least one squad of Ruststalkers if I am ever to do the War Convocation formation from an issue of White Dwarf. So, in earnest, I decided to assemble a new box of Sicarians as Ruststalkers.

I still think the headgear isn't as cool, but the chordclaw looks really nasty. I highlighted the claws with the new GW metal paint Stormhost Silver. That paint is incredible. I always had a hard time with the previous silvers- either being too thin or not bright enough. Like Retributor Gold, this goes on so nicely and leaves it looking very bright. The grasping chordclaws really pop now, as compared to the rest of the model.

As for the transonic razors / blades- I decided to do a little experiment. I painted them first with Mephiston Red. Then I painted the whole blade with Evil Sunz Scarlet. Then I highlighted with Wazdakka Red, and finally Fire Dragon Bright. Once that was done I used the "warpstone" technical paint Spiritstone Red. I must say that I really, really like the effect. It is kind of like Bloodletter Glaze, except that it really brightens and shines the blade. The technical paint really makes the blades "pop" as it were. Indeed, with my dark color scheme of Stegadon Scale Green and Leadblecher hit with Nuln Oil (matte) for my Mechanicus, the bright red blades really change the dynamic of the model, with your eyes first being drawn to the blades, making a great contrast with the dark and dingy Sicarians.

I ultimately do not know how these guys are going to do in-game. I believe that I will need to do up 5 more, just to bulk out the squad. My instinct tells me that they are just too squishy in a unit of 5 alone- they NEED to survive a round of combat to be effective. I think 5 won't cut it. So- it will have to be 10.

Skitarii Vanguard

So next up I have another squad of Skitarii Vanguard. This will make 20 Vanguard total for me (and I plan on adding a few more at some point). They are quite a good troop unit- cheap with great access to special weapons (as befitting a Mechanicus army). I had initially hoped that Kataphron Destroyers would be the bulk of my Mechanicus force, but for all their power, they have some limits. They can't really hide in cover all that well as they are too large for example. And they are more costly points wise. For me, Vanguard will fill in that gap nicely.

At any rate, I really like the almost Roman-esque look of these guys- their helmets are really remeniscent of Roman style helms. Naturally I assembled most of them with their standard Radium Carbines. I painted them Dryad Bark, making them look like old wooden rifles, in complete odds with their otherwise mechanical look. I highlighted the helmets with Stormhost Silver, again really loving the new paint.

For the Vanguard Alpha, I decided to go with the mace, as I had already done a Vanguard Alpha with a sword, and my Alpha Ranger has the taser goad. In my gaming circles, that doesn't matter so much- as long as he looks like an Alpha that's all that really counts, and we can WYSIWYG it before the battle. I used the new metallic paint Skullcrusher Brass for his face plate. As I said before, I have been really pleased by the new paints overall, and this one is no exception.

I also made a Vanguard with a Data Tether. He looks different enough that I could use him as an Auspex or Tether, as well as another Vanguard if I decide to split the 10 Vanguard into 2 units of 5. His face I did Rakarth Flesh with Cmmoshade over, and a little highlight over his cheekbone. The rest of his face is mechanical, lending him a cruel visage. 

One of my Vanguard was "converted" due to a happy accident. I was cutting off his left arm from the sprue and when I did it just flew off, and I simply couldn't find it anywhere! So- what to do? I then saw my Ruststalker spues, and there are mechanical arms for the Infiltrator Pinceps computer- with a bit of trickery I made it into his arm. There was little mechanical digits as well as a full connection to the hand on the rifle. Hence, it looks like a totally mechanical arm. Adding screens (blue and green) on the flat parts (where the computer was supposed to go on the Princeps) and a targeter in the front (in red)  makes the dual limb arm look mechanical indeed.

The special weapons I did my old way but added 2 steps to with the new paints. For the Plasma Caliver, I started with Khorne Red, highlighted with lighter reds before finally drybrushing on Ryza Rust orange. But this time, I decided to add 2 more short steps. After the orange drybushing, I put Nuln Oil Gloss into the recesses of the coils, giving it a deeper but glossy shadows. Then, I used Spiritstone Red over the coils.

Compare the two. The nearer one is the new one (done as described above). The further away one is the old one, painted in the same way minus those last two steps (didn't have those new paints then). On my camera it my be harder to see, but the fact is the Spiritstone Red just makes the whole thing pop- it adds a brightness to it.

The same thing was applied to the Arc Rifle. This time I started with greens, ending with a Moot Green highlight. And again, I added 2 extra steps. I did the Nuln Oil Gloss into the recesses of the energy chamber, and then I used the technical paint Waystone Green. Again, the result made for a brighter and more dynamic looking weapon.

Again, compare the results. The near one is the new, the far one the old scheme. The difference is greater in person, but here you can see it is a subtle but notable difference. It just looks deeper and more vibrant.

Well, that's all I have done for now. I have a few more Mechanicus items that I am working on, and then I will be doing some other "mystery" things. I want to paint my Deathwatch set, and then my mystery Horus Heresy project. I'll be back to show them as soon as they are completed.

Until Next time!!

Friday, June 24, 2016

The New GW Containers, A Battle Report and a "Brexit"

Hey there Chaos fanatics! Old Man Chaos is back with an update to this part of the Realm of Chaos, known as the interweb. Like the title says I've got a lot so lets get started:

GW Containers

After seeing them in a recent issue of White Dwarf I knew I was going to get a set. My friend Joe and I have decided to split the cost, as they will be used frequently on his ice world table. I really like the look of the big containers- they were fairly easy to assemble and paint up. The barrels are also nice and an improvement on the old barrels. Finally, the ammo cases are a cool, though I think they give you too many- save that plastic for something else!

At any rate, I painted the containers and ammo crates pretty much like it says on the back of the box. I did one in Mephiston Red, with a drybrush of Astorath Red. I used Nuln Oil (matte) on the recesses to give it a bit of depth. I also added signs of wear and tear with dark browns and metals, as well as some acid or slime coming through the vents.

I painted half of the barrels the same way- Mephiston Red, with copious amounts of slime and grime. The other barrels I did in Leadbelcher with plenty of Typhus Corrosion. I think that putting a singular barrel somewhere is OK, but grouping them together is just so much cooler.

As for the other tow storage containers, I did one in Mechanicum Grey with lighter highlights. The green one was naturally Castellan with a drybrush of Niblet Green. To these two I added streaks of blood and even bullet holes. These details would have been lost on the red container, but they show up just fine on these. I also gave them signs of wear and tear as I described above.

The ammo crates were painted using the methods above. I really like them, but painting that many was a bit annoying. They are also somewhat small, so to give it a good effect on the table you'll have to pile them all together to look cool. 

I wanted to show them off, so I staged some photos of them with models so you can see the sizes. I pitted my Mechanicus against my Khorne Bezerkers and Chaos Cultists. I think you'll find that the storage containers are a good size, as are the barrels. I think they are quite interesting looking, and will give your battlefield a bit more detail.

I painted these ones quite "neutral", though one could paint them to be almost anything- cargo for Space Marines, or perhaps rusted out wrecks, or maybe they've been "looted"... The possibilities with these are endless. The price ain't too bad either, considering the 3 cargo containers are, together, bigger than a Rhino.

When we use them in a game I will be sure to use them as terrain, though I'm rather dubious of using the somewhat silly rules they have- but who knows? I'll have to give it a shot at any rate.

Speaking of battles, I had a "final grudge match" against one of my regular opponents at my local store. Nick is a great player- friendly, even-tempered, very fair and laid back. He also plays very much old school- no wacky allies, no broken formations. He plays in the old style, and I have always appreciated that, and he had become one of the opponents I most looked forward to playing- our matches were not only fun- but just about all of them were nail bitters, right down to the wire! And yet we were both always laughing and laid back. Great games.

Unfortunately (for me at least), Nick is moving quite far away, and won't be around the local anymore. Nick also sold most of his stuff (a bit of it to me actually. He's a damn pirate, appealing to my weakness for plastic crack at a discount), and now he only has a small Dark Angels force.

At any rate, we decided to have a "final grudge match". It was a small game, at 1250 points. The mission was The Relic. It was tough for me to make a Plague Marine list at 1250, so I included 6 meltas in 3 squads of 5 Plague Marines in 3 Rhinos (champions had power fists). I also had a Heldrake, Predator, Vindicator, and a lord and 4 terminators all armed with power fists.Nick had like 4 squads of terminators and 2 tac squads with plasma cannons.

Our final match was no different from the others. My heldrake incinerated his tac squads. His terminators attacked my heavy armor with their powerfists. It went back and forth like that for a while. But, Nick faced 2 problems. First, the Meltas ruined his day, killing whole swaths of terminators (his 5 inv sav rolling was lousy).

However, the game truly ended when one of my champions challenged one of his in combat. Nick's power sword attacks all whiffed (1s!!). When it was my champion's turn, he nailed him with the powerfist. I then rolled on the Chaos Boon Table and... Bam! Instant Daemon Prince. At that point, there was no real way for Nick to win, though he gave it a good go. In the end, I had the relic and he had virtually nothing to stop me, especially with a rampaging Daemon Prince running amok.

The game was a ton of fun. One of the things I liked about the battle was that at 1250, you had to make tough choices about what to take. It also meant no allies or formation tom foolery. It made for a fast, intense, and desperate game- each unit is vital, and yet you must risk them to win. You don't always feel that in 2000 plus point games. It was a lot of fun. I salute Nick- a worthy and honorable opponent. I hope to play him again someday.

Finally, I want a word about the "Brexit". Now, I have been following it fairly closely, and I get the arguments on both sides. It was a close vote, unquestionably. I find myself thinking that if the EU leaders were a bit more careful with their decisions, they might have not faced British backlash. Instead, the EU mismanaged and made big mistakes. I get British anger. I just don't know if the "Brexit" will help them or not, in the long run.

However, like a lot of you, I decided to act as a vulture (it's their fault for making me want it so bad)- I ordered some stuff from Forgeworld. As the dollar vs pound ratio shifted so crazily today, my friend Joe and I placed a $400 (American) order at FW. What did I order? I won't tell you now, as if I did it would be a HERESY and I'd have to kill you. You will just have to wait and see...

Until next time!!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Chaos Corner... On YouTube!? It Can't Be!?!

Hey there Chaos fanatics! Like the title says... it is true. The legions of Chaos have been vomited out of the Eye of Terror, and even now they strike out against the Imperium! The forces of Chaos Corner have taken over YouTube!!! Nothing will ever be the same again! LOL

Seriously, I have decided to take the plunge and do YouTube. Now, this will be to supplement Chaos Corner, not replace it. I will still do plenty of blog posts, showing off miniatures, terrain projects, pics of recent games, reviews, and all the other things you have come to expect on Chaos Corner. However, I am itching to try my hand on YouTube. I have seen so many videos on line for 40K- great battle reports and other hobby videos-they have inspired me to try it out.

So my first video is decidedly Un-Chaos, I must say. I show off my Adeptus Mechanicus army as a whole (which I have not done yet on the blog). I didn't do ANY editing or have music (which is trickier than I thought on YouTube). I will be experimenting with all kinds of things as time goes on though.

Here is my channel, be sure to check it out- Corners of Chaos

Let me know what you think of my first YouTube video! Hope you enjoyed it. 

Until next time...

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Space Hulk

Hello everyone and welcome back to a new installment of the blog you never asked for- Chaos Corner. Now, we all know that the warp consumes all- everything is taken by the Immaterium. But, every once in a while, the Sea of Souls gives something back---- in this case, a dreaded Space Hulk!

This has been a project I have been working on for the better part of 2 months. Now, I can hear already what you're saying "Come on, Old Man Chaos- this game was released years ago! You mean you haven't done it yet?!"

Too true. Too true. The game was released in late summer 2009. I have owned it for that long, as a matter of fact. Sad but true story to follow: It was August of 2009 and the rumors were true: GW was going to make a new version of Space Hulk, with gorgeous models and gaming boards. However, just at I pre-ordered it, I experienced a family tragedy. My father passed away after a brief battle with cancer. I recall my friend Joe talking to me about Space Hulk after my father's passing; Joe was obviously trying to take my mind off things, but it wasn't working, for obvious reasons.

So, when I got the game, I opened it and looked at the contents, but I just couldn't seem to be able to sit down and paint the models. I just couldn't at that point. So, I gave my friend Pete the Broodlord from the box and then put the thing in my basement. And forgot about it pretty much. Every once in a while I'd look it over, maybe even read the rules. But I just couldn't bring myself to do it. I guess it just reminded me too much of my father.

So, fast forward to this past winter. GW announced the new game, Deathwatch: Overkill. This box looked simply amazing. The Genestealer cults?! I have always loved that idea. And I am a fan of the Deathwatch. How could I not get this game? So of course, my wife ordered it for me. As soon as I got it, I immediately put all of those models together.

But then it suddenly occurred to me... I said to myself "Self, wouldn't it be cool to do Space Hulk? You could paint the Tyranids in the same way you did for that commissioned work from last year... Paint up Space Hulk, then Deathwatch: Overkill, and you could do a huge "campaign" based on these Tyranid board games..."

Of course, I always listen to the voices that whisper to me (that's what got me to the Chaos Corner in the first place). So I dug up the Space Hulk set, opened the long closed box, and began modeling away... Everything but the Broodlord was there. Heck, the corridors and markers hadn't even been punched out yet.

My first order of business was to put all the models on bases. I figured, IF I ever wanted to use them for a regular 40K game for what ever reason, I could. Plus, I felt it made them look better, and the bases fit well enough on the Space Hulk corridors. This way I could handle them by the base, not by the model itself.

I painted the Tyranids first. I used the same technique as I had on that commission I did last year. The skin was painted white and then washed with Sepia all over, and then some Earthshade in the recesses. I painted their chitin armor I did in blues- Altdorf with a blue wash, highlighted with more Altdorf and Temple Guard, and then I did the blue glaze over it. I also went to town adding copious amounts of green slime and blood. I also added some corrosion to the metal corridors that the Nids were walking on- for all the rust and grime on these old Space Hulks.

The Blood Angels I painted in the same way that I did for that commission (which I never got a chance to take pics of before the guy needed them). Their basecoat is naturally Mephiston Red, with a wash of earthsahde, with more Mephiston over it, with successive lighter highlights.

I didn't do anything too fancy to the Blood Angels. After all, they are Blood Angels and they should look a certain way. No experimentation or anything here- just straight up Blood Angels. I did add some character in terms of adding Tyranid blood (slime) on their power fists.

In particular, the guy holding an eviscerated Tyranid head and torso was a lot of fun to paint. The bone/blue makes a great contrast with the red armor, and the green slime accentuates both, pulling your eye to that poor dead Tyranid.

I also had fun painting the Librarian. I have never liked the idea of painting them blue, as I felt that made them look too much like Ultramarines. I decided, in this case, to paint the armor Blood Angel red, however, I painted the shoulder pad and psychic hood blue, in honor of the Librarius. Thus, he looks like a Blood Angel, and yet he stands apart and is very distinct.

I also enjoyed painting the dead Blood Angel on the command throne- it was a bit of a hoot for this old Chaos player to paint up a slain servant of the false Emperor lol. But seriously, it is a nice model with lots of detail that I enjoyed painting.

All in all, with this many models, it took me nearly 2 months off and on to paint. I enjoyed it, but at times I was getting tired of painting so many damn Genestealers. One good thing about the Deathwatch box is that there is some variety among the Genestealer cult, which I will have a lot of fun painting. And the Deathwatch marines have so much character, and I look forward to bringing that out as I paint them.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed painting Space Hulk, but at times it was more a labor of love than just hobby fun. I guess 'Nids are not the army for me then LOL. I need another army like I need a hole in the head.

At any rate, I am greatly looking forward to playing Space Hulk with my friends, or even taking the game down to my local. I am planning to start Deathwatch within the next month or so- I have a few other projects simmering that I must attend to first. As it turns out, I have quite a bit to assemble and paint over the summer... But as soon as I do Deathwatch I will show it off here.

Until next time....