Monthly Archives: February 2017

Big guns never tire

2017-02-25-12-25-40Hu-what?! Two posts in one month?

That’s right, I’ve most definitely entered stage three of my wargaming and hobby cycle. I’m thinking lately that a large part of the wisdom of experience is just being around long enough that eventually, no matter how thick you are, you notice your own patterns and habits – both short and long term. I’ve come to peace with the fact that I like the odd game, and I enjoy painting models (so long as it’s reasonably varied and interesting) but I get to “urgh, too much” quite quickly with respect to both.

In response to this, I seem to have developed an unconscious habit. I get excited by something new about once every two years or so, bite off a manageable chunk, then tweak models and background to my satisfaction so that it can fit more-or-less organically into my existing collection. At the moment I have two manageable chunks in mind, one for SAGA and one for 40k.

I mentioned a while back that I got some Pictish models. Well now my Aetius and Arthur book has arrived, and I realised that with my three historical warbands of Picts, Irish and Vikings, I am now fully equipped to accurately fight petty wars and raids the length and breadth of dark ages Scotland! Let’s hear it for extremely narrow historical/geographic gaming windows! Sorry, I think this is probably funnier to me as an Australian than it would be to a European. I know there were several rich, disparate cultures – entire kingdoms even – fighting for supremacy. But it’s just kind of funny that they were doing so in an area that’s probably smaller than some of the great West Australian cattle properties of the 1800s… which had about sixty people on them. I just imagine that the Picts and the Scots must have been very tiny.

Now, to 40k. I don’t know why and I don’t know how (to paraphrase Nick Cave), but I’ve suddenly become enamoured of the Skitarii. The models look cool, they have a post-human, cyberpunk theme married to the usual grimdarkery, and they look to me as though they even have my preferred playstyle: mid-range savagery a la the Sisters of Battle. Unfortunately in the last year my family has been hit with several huge medical, dental and car-related expenses, leaving me flat broke. And flat broke is the worst state to be in when you get the 40k itch, right?

So I think I’m going to put my Tau up for sale on the local facebook groups. They’re a small, nicely painted allied detachment that are mercenary themed so they can plug into almost anyone’s army. Hopefully I can get enough for them to fund the Skitarii, who will also only ever be a small army that I can plug into my Guard. And maybe if and when I get sick of the Skitarii I’ll sell them to fund the next lot, as I did with my Sisters and my Eldar.

I’m still wary of 40k. The whole thing could go Age of Sigmar mental at any time, and it’s already confusing as all hell. But that’s life I guess, you take your dice and roll ’em.

Oh and I also painted my medusa emplacements for my 30k militia, the Uruq Immortals. That’s them at the top there.

Gryph-Hounds and Eldar

goodwin-eldar-sketch

I stared at these blade-like curves for hours as a kid.

I wonder how many other people around the world saw pictures of the new Age of Sigmar Gryph-Hound thingies and immediately had to know: “would an Imperial Guardsman look good on that thing’s back?”

Apologies if you thought this blog was dead. I doubt it will ever truly die, given my fairly predictable gaming cycle:

  • Stage one: Hmmm. I used to like playing the odd game of Warhams. I wonder what’s going on in that world at the moment?
  • Stage two: Whoa! That’s pretty cool. But holy shit this stuff is expensive. No way am I investing in another army when the last game I played was like a year ago.
  • Stage three: I do like Inquisition though… and Guard will never go out of fashion, right? Maybe if I carefully buy and plan this one unit to add on, it’ll be fine.
  • Stage four: (three months later) Done! Let’s play a game!
  • Stage five: Well that was fun. Games sure do take a long time though. I’m tired and thirsty. And the store is so far away. Maybe I’ll give next week a miss.
  • Stage six: Do nothing miniature gaming-related for a year or so, then return to stage one.

Anyway if you’re a neat person who unfollows blogs when they go dormant for a few months, it was nice knowing you!

For the rest of you who are still here… I’m currently entering stage three. There are some interesting and nice models coming out of GW lately, and I’m curious to see where the 40k not-End Times ends up. I’m still intimidated by how many books keep coming out. And in fact I already haven’t bought two because even though I really wanted them, I was afraid they’d be invalidated before I ever played a game with them. Genestealer Cults and Imperial Agents, if you’re wondering.

I also think it’s great that they are giving away prints of some of Jes Goodwin’s Rogue Trader Eldar artwork. It’s probably my favourite art from that era of GW illustration. Shame I can’t just buy the print without also buying hundreds of dollars worth of Aeldari Reborn or whatever. Ah well. It seems a bit rough to complain when they’ve made some amazing models in the last couple of years for things like the Mechanicum and the stealer cults – stuff I’ve wanted for decades.

Jes’s art really is great. I was just thinking yesterday, the older I get the more obvious it is to me that very few people, even among the so-called creative class, actually have a good imagination. When someone does, it blows everything around it up and lasts for ages. It’s like Lord of the Rings. A whole genre appeared, and for like thirty years afterwards people – who were supposed to be fiction writers, and fantasy ones at that – seemed incapable of imagining villains who weren’t some sort of Dark Lord. It took decades before people started to wonder why the Dark Lord was so Dark anyway, and what if we looked at it from his point of view? Or what if *gasp* there was no dark lord at all in this story?

Anyway, Jes’s Eldar were like that. They were the most original aesthetic in Rogue Trader and the Eldar Aeldari models and art we see today still echo their look. So to speak.

I’m serious, does anyone know if a Cadian would fit on a Gryph-Hound?