Yearly Archives: 2009

Painting Progress – 20091229

I’m officially sick of painting Skaven.  That didn’t take long, which is a little surprising.  I think it’s because I focused on painting older models (slaves, giant rats) and not the neater, newer models.  I got through a block of 20 slaves and a bit of the way through a block of giant rats before I lost steam.

On the bright side, I’m painting my Daemons, now.  I’ve decided I’m happy with the paint scheme.

I fiddled around with several alternative approaches for the Hellblade…. and all of them looked like utter crap.  So, although the black w/ Coal Black highlights don’t scream “Hellblade” so much as “Heckblade,” they’re the least worst approach.

So, I’ve been painting Bloodletters.

I did try a slightly different approach to doing the post-Ogryn Flesh Dheneb Stone wash: heavy drybrushing.  I’m not sure how I feel about it: I definitely don’t like the result as much as the blocking out that I normally do but, boy howdy, it does go a lot faster.

(The one one the left is the drybrushed one.)

I also did a test model for the Flesh Hounds that’s… a little different than the Bloodletters, but I think still works.

Also, unrelated to all of that, I finished off a Cygnar Squire I’ve had mostly there for quite some time.  Might as well post that now.

Anyway, status on the Daemons:

Maximum Khornage – Status, Goals

Now that I’ve settled on a paint scheme for my Bloodletters and Flesh Hounds, I’ve started painting them in earnest.  I’m going to shoot for the list I’ve got here before I start doing anything else with my daemons.  Because goals help (one of the reasons my Skaven have been frustrating, I think, is that I haven’t had a goal), I’m going to shoot to have that list 100% in time for Madicon (3/12).

That list, in terms of models, and their current status:

  • Bloodthirsters x2
    • 100% Assembled

  • Bloodcrushers x4
    • 75% assembled
    • Need to attach Bloodletters
    • Need to convert for Fury, Icon and Instrument

  • Bloodletters x24
    • 100% assembled
    • 6 fully painted
    • 5 75% painted
    • 5 primed
    • 8 unprimed
    • 2 banners untouched

  • Karanak
    • Assembled
    • Needs basing work
  • Flesh Hounds x15
    • 100% Assembled
    • 1 painted
    • 14 unprimed
  • Soul Grinders x2
    • 100% Assembled

(Why 6/5/5/8 with the Bloodletters?  I painted a test model, then tried the same technique with drybrushing.  Then I did 4, which is my preferred batch size, but now I had weird numbers, so I’m working on two batches of 5 each to put me at 16 (1+1+4+5+5) before I can do the last octet 4 at a time.)

Bloodletters aren’t bad, but they’re a mite time-consuming.  Flesh Hounds will paint quickly.  Bloodcrushers are going to be a pain in the ass, as they’re going to require some work in attaching the Bloodletters and some creativity and research in conversion.  That leaves four big models, the ‘Thirsters and the ‘Grinders, which shouldn’t be bad, but I’ve found that I don’t enjoy painting huge models very much.

My rough schedule puts me at:

  • 12/28 – Finish the 5 Bloodletters I’m currently working on, as well as basecoat and get the ball rolling on the 5 I’ve got primed.
  • 1/3 – Have the last 8 primed, basecoated and washed (wash 1).  Hopefully have 4 of them further along than that.
  • 1/10 – Completely done with Bloodletters.  Ball rolling on Flesh Hounds.
  • 1/17 – Finish 7 Flesh Hounds. 
  • 1/24 – Completely done with Flesh Hounds.   Finish assembly/conversion on Bloodcrushers.
  • 2/14 – Done with Bloodcrushers.  Prime Bloodthirsters.
  • 2/21 – Done with Bloodthirsters, Karanak.
  • 3/7 – Done with Soul Griders.  (And done with the army!)

That’s pretty aggressive (even giving myself, basically, a week per big model) and tough, but it I think it’s feasible.  It also gives me some room for slippage: I’ve got an extra week at the end, there.  And, if I focus on the Bloodletters and Flesh Hounds, I can really blow through them.  It also shouldn’t take me two full weeks to do the Bloodcrushers.  The things that really have me worried are the big models.

We’ll see if I can do it.

Bloodletter Test Model – Opinions Wanted

I’ve had more fun playing with my Khornate Daemons than I have playing with any of my other 40K armies.  It’s weird, but I’ve yet to have a bad game with them: I’m a far cry from winning all my games with them, but even my draws and losses feel so close that, a few days later, I couldn’t even tell you if I’d won or lost the game.  I’ve got a list that, thanks to a lot of input from Casey, I’m quite satisfied with.

But they’re wholly unpainted.  This distresses me.  I’ve been trying to work through how I’m going to do them for months now, experimenting on extra D&D minis I’ve got laying around… and I haven’t been close to being happy with the results.

As I said a couple of days ago,  Ron from From the Warp posted his technique for painting pale skin that I’d been very interested in, since it was along the lines of what I wanted to do with my daemons.  I tried it out on a Vampire, and was happy with the results, but unsure of how it would look on a Bloodletter.

See, the thing is that I want to do something different from 99% of the daemon armies out there: Khornate daemons are always blood red.  I get that, and I get why.

I like the idea of making them look bloodless, like pale corpses.  This lets me then splash them with blood in different ways to make squads, Heralds, and models with Fury of Khorne stand out more.

 But I’d like to do something different because 1) I’d like my army to be somewhat more unique and 2) I think it opens up more painting options, different ways to differentiate between different squads of Bloodletters and such.
So, anyway, I finally decided to put up or shutup and give it a try to see what happened.  This is what I got.
I really started to have my doubts about halfway through.  In the end, I’m quite pleased with the results.  I like it.  I’m not sure if I’m actually going to go through with it for my Bloodletters, but I like it.  What do y’all think?

The flesh is done with Dheneb Stone, heavily washed with Ogryn Flesh.  I go back and paint Dheneb Stone over most of the model, and then wash it with a mix of 1:1:2 mix of Asurmen Blue wash, Devlan Mud wash and water.  Then I pick out the highlights with Dheneb Stone.
The horns and sword are black, then a highlight of 1:1 Black and P3 Coal Black, then a highlight of Coal Black.  The base is one of the textured plasticard bases I was talking about back in June (though I’ve since decided that, once I start painting this army, I’m going to base it with these temple bases that I’ve fallen in love with for Khorne) painted Shining Gold and washed with Devlan Mud.

I’ve definitely spotted a number of things I could do better with it.  For one, I clearly need to do some gap-filling.  The gap between the legs and torso and the one in the Bloodletter’s forehead doesn’t look so bad with bare plastic, but it really stands out on the painted model.  Easily fixed, though.
I also think I phoned it in on the black and brass.  
The black needs to pop more.  I think I need to blend up through Coal Black and not to Coal Black.  That’s fine, though it’ll take some fiddling.
I also need to do something more with the brass.  I’m going to experiment with doing a bit of patina on it, using Les Bursley’s really awesome weathering wash tutorial as a start.  Brass doesn’t patina the same way bronze does, but it still builds up a bit of something.
So, there’s definitely room for improvement.  I’m very curious, though, as to what other people think!

Painting Progress – 20091210

I feel like it’s been slow-going for the past week or so.  I don’t think that’s actually the case, though.  It’s probably just because I’ve been sick.

I assembled my Doomwheel.  Not all the way, since I’d like to be able to paint the thing.  It’s  in as few subassemblies as possible (each wheel, the gears that hold the wheels in place, the top-front bracket and everything else).  I put blu-tac on each contact point; this protects the spot from primer and paint, which means the glue will actually work.

I’ve been focusing on my Skavenslaves.  I’ve done too much fiddling with one-off things when I really need to focus on putting more painted bodies on the table.  Although I’ve fiddled with the Doomwheel, my goal is to do a block of slaves and a block of Giant Rats before I really work on anything else.

That said, a week or so ago, Ron posted his technique for painting pale skin, which I’d been looking forward to. I really want to use it on my Bloodletters, but I’m not sure that it’s going to work out the way I’d like.  I did try a couple of variations on it, and ended up doing this to a Warrior Priest I had laying around.

I went ahead and finished it off.  I even tried my hand at wet-blending on his robes.  For a first attempt, it could have been a lot worse… but it’s far from perfect.

I really hate those spots where the paint gets rubbed off and no amount of paint will ever stick there again.  It happened to my Gorax, and it happened along the edge of this guy’s robes.

I’m very satisfied with the skintone, though.

Rapid Fire 2010

In March, Matt Hoell and I pulled off a 40K tournament idea I’d had bouncing around in my head for the better part of the year.  It was very, very successful: everyone had a good time (which is all that truly matters).

Not only that, the IFL went on to adapt it to Fantasy and run both the 40K and Fantasy version at Games Day Baltimore (where it was very well received) and the GW Sugarland store ran their own version just last month.

Well, we’re going to run it again, in January.  I’m really hoping to make it an annual thing.  So, if you’re within driving distance of The Game Vault in Fredericksburg, VA, you should come!  It’ll be fun!   (You can sign up here.)

Rapid Fire 40k Tournament

When: 1/23/10
Where: The Game Vault, Fredericksburg, VA

Set up and registration: 10am-11am
Start time session 1: 11am
Lunch break: 1:30pm
Start time session 2: 2:30pm
All games end at 6pm
Awards: 6:30pm

Entry fee: $10 (100% of entry fees will go for awards.)

35 spots available.


The goal is to try to play quickly.

There will be an odd number of players for this tournament. Players pair off, in order of sign-in, for the first game, with the extra, last-to-sign-in player “on deck.”

As soon as a game finishes, the player on deck challenges the Defender and the loser goes on deck.  If the Defender’s won three games in a row, the Challenger remains on the table, and the Defender goes on deck.  In case of a tie, the Challenger remains on the table.

Fully painted armies will receive one re-roll on any single die roll per game(this includes everything from the roll for mission, who deploys first all the way to extra turns).  Any single die roll.

Army Composition:

  • 500 points
  • 1+ Troops Slots
  • 0-1 HQ Slot
  • 0-1 Elite, Fast Attack, and Heavy Support Slot
  • No model with 3+ wounds
  • No 2+ Saves
  • No vehicles with a total Front + Side + Rear > 33
  • No ordnance
  • No Imperial Assassins
  • No more than 2 vehicles

No unit is mandatory, save the single Troops choice. This means, for example, Kroot Mercs do not have to take shapers.  If it says “1+” ignore it!

Game Structure:

  1. Both players roll for their mission
  2. Defender rolls for deployment
  3. Play the game!
  4. Loser reports game, Winner waits for new Challenger

Games are played on a 4″x4″ mat.


Each player rolls once on the following table.

Seize Ground
As the standard Seize Ground mission, except players place d3 objectives on the table.  Challenger places first.
If your opponent rolls King of the Hill, one objective must go in the center of the table; one of your opponent’s if possible.
If you control more objectives than your opponent, you’ve succeeded in your mission.
King of the Hill
As the standard Capture and Control mission, except there is only one objective, placed in the center of the table.
If you control the center objective, you’ve succeeded in your mission.
At the end of the game each player calculates the value of every model in their opponent’s army killed or removed from the game for any reason (Deep Strike Mishap, Gets Hot, etc).
For simplicity’s sake, each member of a unit is worth an equal portion of that unit’s cost.  Discard any fractions, please.
If you have more VP’s than your opponent, you’ve succeeded in your mission.


Roll for Deployment as per 40K Rulebook.


If one player has succeeded, and the other has failed, that player has won the game.
If both players have succeeded or failed in their mission, the game is a draw.

Your Score
Opponent’s Score

The person who plays the most games will be given 15 bonus battle points.

Winning streaks are calculated based on the players succeeding in their mission, not games at the table.


  • Most Battle Points
  • Longest Winning Streak
  • Best Painted Army
  • Best conversion or Best Themed 

Ties will broken by Number of Games, then Winning Streak length.  If ties cannot be broken, the prize will be split.

Clan Moulder

I worked up a Clan Moulder list a little while ago.  It’s not a great list, and I didn’t really think it was at the time.  Since then, I’ve tweaked it a good bit, and I’m pretty excited about trying it out.

Skaven – 2250 points

Lords & Heroes
Throt the Unclean
Plague Priest – Lvl 1, Flail, Great Pox Rat
Plague Priest – Lvl 2, Flail, Poisoned Attacks, Great Pox Rat, Dispel Scroll
Plague Priest – Lvl 2, Flail, Poisoned Attacks, Great Pox Rat, Dispel Scroll

Giant Rats x25 – Skweel Gnawtooth, Packmasters x4
Giant Rats x25 – Master Moulder, Shock Prod, Packmasters x4
Giant Rats x26 – Master Moulder, Packmasters x4
Giant Rats x25 – Master Moulder, Packmasters x4
Giant Rats x5 – Packmaster
Giant Rats x5 – Packmaster
Giant Rats x5 – Packmaster
Giant Rats x5 – Packmaster
Rat Ogres x2 – Master Moulder
Rat Ogres x2 – Master Moulder

Hellpit Abomination – Warpstone Spikes
Hellpit Abomination – Warpstone Spikes

Each character goes into a big block of rats.

The Priests are there to add punch to the army.  Static 4 combat resolution is nice, but I think I need to make the units a bit more dangerous.  Plus, I need some amount of magic; with these guys I’ve got 5 Dispel Dice and two Scrolls, which isn’t bad.  I’m also spitting out 7 Casting Dice a turn.  They’re each on Pox Rats so they can keep up; I don’t think it’d be smart to drop the Movement on the bulk of the army down to 5 when one of the advantages of the rats is their speed.

I could accomplish the same thing with Warlock Engineers, but I feel like Plague is a more thematically relevant lore than Ruin.  Plus Engineers don’t contribute much to the punchiness of a unit and none of these units are going to be static, hang-back and shoot units.

Plague Censers are nice, but 1) they’re wholly inappropriate to the theme of the list and 2) are a dumb thing to put in a unit of Toughness 3, non-Pestilens models.

Frenzy could be a problem, but I think I can handle it with the small rat blocks.

I’ve got two Abominations.  Although I don’t think they’re exactly the win button some construe them to be, taking two of them isn’t the sort of thing polite people do.  I think I get a pass because of the theme, however.  They’ll take some fire off of the blocks of troops (or be spared fire because of the blocks of troops).

I’ve got 13 drops across over 150 models.  4 blocks of troops, 4 trash-droppy little units, 2 rank breakers and 2 big nasty mothers.

There’s a lot of room for tweaking here:

  • Drop Thrott.  Take three blocks of slaves to meet minimum Core requirements.  I don’t think he’s a very good character.  That said, when I put 60 slaves on the table, I’ve lost my theme.
  • Drop Poisoned Attacks on the Plague Priests.  If I do that, I can bump the Lvl 1 up to a Lvl 2.
  • Replace the Lvl 1 caster for a BSB.  This is something I’ll probably do after a few games.
  • Drop the blocks of 25 rats to blocks of 20.  25 rats really means 30 models (as 20 rats really means 24 models).  I’m more used to running blocks of 25 models than blocks of 30.  If I did this, I’d have a fifth big block of rats.
  • Rat Ogres?  Huh?  I’ve not been impressed with them so far.  They’re here for theme.  I expect these guys won’t stick around too long.  Currently, I’m assuming that with the blocks and the Abominations, they’ll probably live long enough to do something.
In terms of models:
  • I’ve got… three or four Thrott the Unclean models (2-3 of the old school ones, 1 of the new ones).
  • I’ve got Nurglitch, a Master Moulder (both on Pox Rats) and will proxy the third with the Bonebreaker (since I’m not sure I really want three Priests on Rats).
  • I need to glue 3 more Giant Rats to bases. Set on Rat Ogres.
  • I’ve got to take a look in my tubs to see what the deal is with Packmasters & Master Moulders: I’ve got 16 out and about (19 if I use the ones I’ve got as Musicians in my Slave units), but I’ll need a total of 24.  I’ve got more, but that might be pushing it.
  •  I’ll be picking up Skweel this week.
  • For the Abominations, I’ll be using the one I’ve converted (obviously) and my Screaming Bell for the second one (since I want to buy whatever kit they eventually put out for it).
So, just need buy Skweel and dig up/find/buy 5-8 Packmasters.

Painting Progress – 20091201

Haven’t been making nearly the progress I’d like to; I feel like I’ve been spending too much time building and not enough time painting.  This isn’t unreasonable, considering all the new Skaven stuff, but it’s sort of been the theme for 2009.

I’ve started painting slaves.  Hopefully, I can power through and knock out half a block of them this week.  Mrs. Rushputin is awesome and gave me a Plague Furnace, a Doomwheel and a box of Stormvermin for my birthday.  I spent most of today putting together the Furnace and most of yesterday converting up a War Litter.

The War Litter

The litter itself is made from an Orc Boar Chariot, supported by fence posts from the Warhammer Manor kit.  The bearers are, obviously, Stormvermin, and the Warlord the Lustria Warlord.
I’d originally used the halberd hafts, but they didn’t raise the litter high enough to fit the stormvermin’s heads under, so I had to go to brass rods.  I think the rods lift the platform a bit too high, so I’m probably going to drop it down a quarter of an inch.
I tried building a Warlord from the Stormvermin kit, but what I got didn’t fit well in the litter. So, I went with my original plan to use one of the Lustria warlords (I really love the model).
I’m going to take one of the new clanrat banners and hang it off of the post in the back.  I’m also going to hang some shields from the front of the litter.  I’m trying to think of a few other bits I can use to bling up the litter a bit more, as well.
I’m not entirely happy with the arrangement of the stormvermin.  They look like they’re milling about beneath the litter, and not marching towards the Doom of the Elf-Things.  I feel like it’s the best I can manage, though.
Master Mutator
I’m really stoked about the all-Moulder list I’m dangerously close to fielding (more on that later).  It’s going to involve a number of Pox Rat-mounted Plague Priests; I’ve already got Nurglitch, but I’ll need another one or two.  So, I threw together a rat-mounted Packmaster; he’ll be a Master Mutator– counts as a Plague Priest.
Bonebreaker Rat Ogre

I’ve already posted this guy, but in basing the Mutator, I decided to crack a few more rocks (and my finger) and rebase the Bonebreaker Rat Ogre.  That damn arm fell off, though, and feels loose, so I might be replacing it with a different one before I paint him.

Poisoned Wind Mortar

Finished my second Poisoned Wind Mortar.  I’ve got bits to make a third, but I don’t think I’m going to any time soon.  The guy in the front is a spare old-style Jezzail barrel holder, the guy in the back is a Plague Monk.  The tank, as before, is from a Cadian Flamer and the mask is a vent from a Space Marine backpack.
I don’t like this one nearly as much as the first one, but it’s not bad.
Warp Grinder

I also finished a Warp Grinder.  I’m really stoked about it; although I don’t think I’m going to use it any time soon, I’m very happy with the conversion.
The guy in the front is a Packmaster; the one in the back is a Plague Monk.  Tank is from a Cadian flamer.  The Grinder is a Things-Catcher with a segment removed and replaced with a chunk of warpstone from… some sort of Skaven musician (not sure what exactly, though).  The center spike’s been replaced with a spearhead from the new Clanrats.  They each have old clanrat mace hands with the macehead removed replaced with Dwarfen Miner Pickaxes.  The guy in the back has a map made from plasticard.  I’m not altogether happy with the map: I might go back and make it better.
Still, very happy with the model.

Bonebreaker Rat Ogre & Look Out Sir!

Since there’s been some discussion about it here and other places, I thought I’d share what we came up with re: the Bonebreaker Rat Ogre and Look Out Sir!

I guess the notion that the BRO removed LOS! stems from absence of a note about it in the unit description, while the War Litter has such a note.  This, coupled with its 4 wounds implying that it gets up to Unit Strength 5 (+1 from the rider), would lead one to think LOS! doesn’t apply.

The trick is, however: the BRO isn’t US 5.  Here are the relevant bits from the Unit Strength chart on pg 71 of the BRB:

Now, there’s some debate over the correct base size for the BRO; whether or not it should be 40x40mm or 50x50mm.  I’ve based mine 40×40, since it’ll rank up (and that’s why I think they put the Pox Rat on a 40×40), but I don’t think it’s crazy talk to think it goes on a 50×50.

But I hope we can all agree that, although the BRO is “a prodigiously proportioned Rat Ogre,” it’s not going to be larger than a Dragon Ogre and it’s not going to live in the same size category as a Stegadon or a Giant.  That, by definition, an Ogre is going to be “Ogre-sized.”  (Because if it were larger than Ogre-sized, it’d probably be called a “Bonebreaker Rat Giant,” right?)

That means it belongs in the first quoted category rather than the second quoted category.  This means the BRO is US 3, +1 for the rider, giving us US 4.  (As opposed to the second category, which would make the BRO US 4, +1 for the rider for US 5.)

As the model is merely US 4, it still gets to benefit from Look Out Sir!

3/8 UPDATE – From the new Skaven FAQ (dated 3/8/10):

Q. What are the Unit Strengths and base size of a War-litter? And what about a Bonebreaker?

A. For both models, we suggest using a Unit Strength of 3 (plus 1 for the Warlord), and a base size of 40mm square. However, do keep in mind that, as for all conversions, there are no strict rules about base size (other than: ‘Be reasonable!’), and that any forthcoming Citadel miniature might be different from this suggested size.

So, that settles it! (Until they change it.)  I’m glad; it was an unworkably terrible choice at US 5.


For the Warlord riding in the War-Litter, do I:

  • Build him with bits from the new Stormvermin kit? That sort of thing is why I’m getting one, after all.
  • Strip my Warlord w/ Two Hand Weapons? I rarely use him, especially now that I can’t see myself running an unmounted Warlord.
  • Just buy a new Warlord w/ Two Hand Weapons?  Why repaint what’s already acceptably painted?  Although I rarely use the one I have, if I ever run an unmounted Warlord he’d be the one I use.
Mind you, I’m pretty set on how I’m doing the litter and its bearers… just trying to settle on the rider.