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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Pics of my Ultramarine Stalker and Where 40K is at now

Hey there friends! Welcome back to another edition of Chaos Corner. Old Man Chaos has more pics for you, this time of a newly minted Ultramarine Stalker tank. Yes, every so often I have to take a break on the bad guys to work on my good guys. I do have plenty of Chaos stuff in the works though, but once in a while I need to work on the sons of Guilliman.

Childish, but chuckle-worthy
Before that, I just want to rant about the state of GW and 40K. I am still mad about Visions being such a rip off. I emailed the editors at WD, expressing to them my (admittedly) strong feelings on the subject. They have not emailed me any reply (nor did I expect them to). I just hope that others who were frustrated by the Visions mess has emailed them/cancelled subscriptions as well. As for the 2nd issue of WD weekly- it was all Dwarfs. I approve of this, even though I don't play them. I know now for sure that there will be some weeks I simply won't buy. That will save me money in the long run, and gives me choice. I am happy with this- but I still feel GW pulled the wool over people's eyes with Visions.

As for the game, the recent Vegas tournament has caused a stir- rather needlessly I say. Look, I don't usually play tournaments (except at I-Con). I play against friends, and I play at my local store. I have fun, win or lose. Most of the people I play with are pretty much the same. Yes, the competition gets a bit heated with some opponents, but at the end everyone has a good time and shakes hands. Yes, I have met WAACs, but they are not the majority. Not even close. As for the tournaments, its just not my scene. If it is yours, that's cool, more power to you. But there are people getting all bent out of shape about it- because Eldar won? So now the game is broken and all over. Seriously? Come now- just turn it down a notch. Tyranids didn't do great? That is a concern, though the book has only been out a month- again, too soon to say that the game is broken.

I haven't played a game since December (work, snow, stuff), though I intend to rectify that soon and start playing weekly again (spring sounds good). My local even wants to do a campaign in the spring (I'm down with that). Notice- he said "campaign" not "tournament".  A big part of the fun of 40K is the story, the characters and factions, not just winning at dice rolling. That's why I'll never get WAACs. 40K is a fun game, but not necessarily a "make or break" competition. That's making it something that it really isn't. I wish some players could just take a deep breath, relax, and enjoy the game for its story, modelling, and camaraderie. Ugh.

Anyways, here's some pics about my Stalker. I was in a hobby store I used to go to frequently (back in college, which is now much further from my more local store). The owner is a great guy, if a little eccentric. That's part of his charm. Anyways, I was out there with my wife near Christmas and decided to go to my old stomping grounds. At any rate, as I looked around the store (and my wife dreaded what I'd want to buy hehehe!), I saw that he had a "holiday bargain" table. There was a Stalker/Hunter kit- for 39 bucks! That was a huge discount. I immediately grabbed it- how could I pass that up? When I asked him why it was cut so low, he said that the darn things just wouldn't sell, so he lowered the price just to get it out of the store. Well, at that price I decided to help him out and buy it. Hey, I told you he was eccentric.

Interestingly, I was about to get a Storm Talon for Christmas as well- thus I had no choice but to take up my Ultramarines again. As you know, I did the Storm Talon first- a really easy model to put together, and painting it was fun. At the same point, I was also working on the Stalker.

At first, I tried a different blue, which didn't work (the darker blue just didn't look as "right" for the Ultramarines). Thus, I had to re-do it with Altdorf Blue... so if the Stalker looks slightly different from the Storm Talon, there you go. Still looks good for my army though.

The kit is basically a Rhino, which I can pretty much put together in my sleep at this point. The extra armor sides were easy enough to put on though. The trick was the gun- did I want a Stalker or Hunter? I decided on the Stalker, as I thought the anti-air guns looked more "action-packed" if you take my meaning- more dynamic. The guns were a pain to put together and get them just even though. I later discovered that the missile was super easy to put together... I did actually assemble that later, and I may use that on terrain or something (a story driven missile silo or something).

Anyways, once assembled, painting it was fine, and it settled for me how I'd paint the Ultramarines with the new paints. I did it like the Talon- Altdorf blue, with Earthshade gently done in the recesses and the like. Then I cleaned the mess with more Altdorf, followed by line highlighting of Calgar Blue. The metals were done with Leadbelcher, Nuln Oil, and highlights of Ironbreaker.

I painted up some areas of the tank to have battle damage and wear and tear. Its again leadbelcher and ironbreaker. Once the model was done, I decided to put on some transfers- I had experimented with transfers on my Talon, and felt more confident in using them now. I must say they look quite good, and add some punch to the tank. I wouldn't use transfers on my Plague Marines, and I actually draw and paint it on my Khorne Bezerkers, so I don't need it there. Perhaps if I do Thousand Sons... Hahahaha!!

So, is the tank useful? Hmmm. I have only played against a Space Marine force that had one only once. The guy fired it once, but then kept forgetting about it (don't know why). So, I really don't know how it does. As a dedicated anti-air, you run the risk of paying the points but being SOL if the opponent has no flyers (rare nowadays, but still a possibility). Most players now take flyers, so I think a Stalker would be a good investment. And besides, the super sales price meant that I couldn't pass it up, in any case. Hehehe!

Well, that's all for now from the Eye of Terror. Stay tuned for future astropathic messages. (That is, until next time...)

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