Tuesday, 24 April 2012

059 - Ortegas Assemble

Yesterday I put the finishing touches to my 5th complete starter box, adding Perdita to the list of Pandora, Seamus, Dreamer and Ophelia. Here's the gunslinging gal herself:

I'm especially pleased with the skin and face (unfortunately obscured by her hat) and the speed at which I got her painted - only 3 short sessions. You couldn't tell by looking, but her hat is actually cast from Greenstuff after I lost the original, from a mould kindly donated by Demonn Agram from the Wyrd boards (thanks mate!).

Here's the crew in full:

I have a few additions to paint up to get me to 35ss, including an Austringer and some Guild Guard. I'm also looking at the new Latigo Pistoleros for additional bodies and I'm looking forward to giving the crew some table time.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

058 - Malifaux UK GT Doubles Roundup

Just thought I'd write a short belated roundup of my time at the Doubles tournament a few weekends back. Actually I realise it's a full month ago today - time flies!

The Doubles format required two players to team up and nominate a single Master that would be their crew leader over 5 brawls. the second Master could be changed from game to game. I formed an alliance with Dom "Dumb Luck" Westerland, one of the more prolific gremlin players in the UK, with him bringing Som'er alongside my Ophelia. Unfortunately I wasn't able to contribute quite as much to the available model pool as Dom, as you can see below.

Mine are the models in muted tones. Dom's have Scorpion Green bases

Round 1
Since I was the last person to arrive at the venue, team "One and a Half Grem" suffered a bye through to the next round.

Round 2
Shared Destroy Evidence vs Jo-anne (Neverata) and Aidan (Cunningstunt) fielding Leviticus and "Ramatar" (that's aRamos to everyone else!).
This was where I first experienced the Pigapult and saw how it really comes into it's own when firing disposable Bayou Gremlins at Evidence markers. The first turn saw two Gremlins sucessfully destroy their evidence, and Reckless used to fire a third to protect an enemy counter from a roaming Watcher. My first meeting with Ashes and Dust ended when it met the Gremlin gunline, and Ophelia met a sticky end when she gambled our last Soulstone on a Pigapult launch (only a DF 12 flip required and she flipped a 2 and then Soulstoned a 1! Opheliafaceplantapult!). Ramos manifested late in the game and did his best to clear up the gremlins in his DZ for breakthrough but it wasn't enough and the Gremlins squealed to a narrow victory

Round 3
Shared Reconnoiter vs Mitch (Stern) and Simon - another meeting with Avatar Ramos, this time with Kaeris in support.
The Gremlins again turtled up in our deployment zone with the plan of launching from the Pigapult or just plain legging it across to the enemy half once they came a bit closer. Ramos manifested early and was on us too quickly. Ophelia got paralysed when we forgot about the Arachnid Swarm's trigger, which meant our main offensive power was out of action. In Turn 3 aRamos was in our deployment zone cutting up Gremlins with impunity and droppings Large SPAs and Electrical Creations in their midst. It was a bloodbath and the Arcanists sealed a comfortable win.

Ramos reaches the Gremlin gunline, tears up Ophelia and rips our plan to shreds

Round 4
Shared Escape and Survive vs Rich and Phil playing as Perdita and Hoffman.
In the first activation of the Turn 1, a companioned Ophelia, Pigapult and Pere Ravage managed to land a very big explosion into the middle of the Guild forces. Nino, his Grandmother and the Enslaved Nephilim all perished in the detonation, as well as a big chunk of Perdita's wounds. I later learned that Dom had promised our opponents (guys from his FLGS that he was relying on for a lift home!) that he wouldn't pull this move, so I felt rather bad for how effective it was (especially with +1 feud damage!). The Guild never fully recovered from this strike. Hoffman secured himself in the center of the board with Stake a Claim and Bodyguard active meanwhile Somer manifested and, with the help of Reactivate from a Hog Whisperer, crossed the whole length of the table in one turn, including a brief pause for Peaches to stampede all over an unfortunate Guild Guard. His ability to give free Reckless to all Gremlins around him, combined with McTavish giving everyone the Scout ability, meant that the Gremlin horde was able to quickly cross the table and gang up to finish off Perdita and claim max VPs for the strategy, giving the Gremlins their second win of the weekend.

Round 5
Shared Claim Jump vs Malcolm & Andrew playing Hoffman & Lady Justice.
We had a similar tactic in this game to the previous. Turtle up in a corner and make more Gremlins for a few turns, then Avatar up and make a rush for the Claim (with Swamp Gas to push enemies off the marker) in turns 4-6. Hoffman and his Peacekeeper/Guardian combo positioned themselves near the claim but also refused to commit. We sent our Mosquitoes to get rid of a roaming Watcher, and once it was gone, to tie up enemy models in melee to stop them walking about.
The plan went pretty well, a couple of hit and run strikes with Rami and Ophelia got rid of some Death Marshalls, but Lady J was hiding behind the building nearest the Claim and we couldn't get a bead on her. Andrew and Malcolm wisely kept her protected after we announced Assassinate on her, but this worked in our favour as it kept her out of most of the fight.
In Turn 5, we suddenly realised that aSom'er has "Companion: Bayou Gremlin", and how ridiculous this was when combined with Reckless Frenzy. Thus began around 10 or 12 simultaneous activations whereby we swarmed onto the claim marker all guns blazing. Unfortunately Som'er didn't make it close enough to use Swamp Gas, and the Peacekeeper advanced next to the claim marker. All that remained was to see how many Gremlins survived the Peacekeeper/Lady J melee onslaught.

The buildings made accessing the Claim Jump marker rather difficult

In the final tally, the Gremlins had two extra models within 3" of the objective (helped by the large base of the Peacekeeper blocking too many Guild from getting close). Another Gremlin victory!

Our final results for the day were thus 3W/0D/1L and a bye. Unfortunately the first round bye only ended up counting for 0.5 Tournament points, and so we finished on 9.5TPs which put us in 4th place. Narrowly behind Mitch and Simon who also had 9.5TPs but a much higher VP Diff due to a rollicking 10-0 final game win (I heard that Collodi + 8 Marionettes wrecked the enemy Master in the first activation of their game!).

Narrowly missing out on a podium spot (and a pair of custom 3rd place trophies made up of the Hog Whisperer and a Piglet) was a bit disappointing, but it didn't detract from an awesome weekend with a great bunch of people.

I don't think I'll be able to make it to the Team GT in June, but the main GT in November is getting closer and I'm already looking forward to it!


Friday, 13 April 2012

057 - Malifaux 2012 Q1 Performance

I pulled together a summary of the games I've played so far this year.

My current win rate is 45%, but this is coloured by the fact that I've attended 3 tournaments so far (making up the majority of my 22 games) and two of those were whitewashes.

Target for the year: 75% wins


Sunday, 1 April 2012

056 - Malifaux February Releases Review

Witchling Handler

A nice little model, matching the artwork closely, I think this girl fits quite well with the Witchling Stalkers and the rest of the guild range. I particularly like her headgear. She has one seriously massive sword, (perhaps *too* massive) which looks a little bit chunky but it’s hard to tell from the pictures. I might be wrong, but the Wyrd paint job appears to have been done over a black undercoat, as the shadows are very defined. If so this could be why the model looks a bit cartoon-y compared to pictures of other recent releases.


As a first aside, compare this model to the Witchling Handler above and you can clearly see the differences in painting style. Rafkin looks to be painted over a white undercoat in a much more realistic and weathered style, compared to the bright, black-lined style of the Handler. I’m not sure how I feel about the fact that Wyrd haven’t imposed a definite style/standard for promotion of their miniatures, and are allowing the various painters on their payroll free reign to paint in whatever style they want to. Fair enough it demonstrates the different looks that their customers might prefer, but it’s very inconsistent and I think it’s a bad idea overall.

Rafkin himself is a lovely mini. There aren’t masses of details and features – in fact he’s very understated. The apron ties him into the current Rezzer range, and the face mask and disheveled hair are characterful. I can’t quite make out what he’s carrying in his left hand – is it a poison vial of some sort? Looking forward to making this guy a feature of my soon-to-be-worked-on Nicodem crew.

Alt Marcus

Marcus is definitely channeling the Native American spirits in this model, compared to his original incarnation which lacked theme. The feathers and the skirt are great touches, and the pose is nice, although are his legs a little stumpy? His chest musculature also seems to be a bit…. off? Where are his abs? Looking at his face, it seems the sculptor has gone for an animalistic type appearance, and the whole thing is a bit more bestial than the original, which is good. On the whole, another Alt which goes above and beyond the original sculpt. Nice work!

Avatar Marcus

As Rathnard over at The Aethervox recently explained, anyone who hits people with a big stick, in a world where everyone else is using blades and guns, is inherently cool. This is an indisputable fact, so Avatar Marcus gets plus points straight off the bat for the size of his stick. Having seen this model in person I have to say I was surprised that it wasn't bigger. I pictured it as being gigantic and beastly but he's actually quite small - no bigger than a rider anyway. And even then the small wings don't look big enough to be able to get him off the ground.

That being said, I don't think the model deserves the bad press it's received on the Wyrd boards. It's a great concept executed well, the sculpt is plenty detailed enough with extra little details, and it's shown off by a tidy paint job.

Avatar Kirai

Kirai herself looks brilliant with the outstretched arm and crumpled dress, but I think I've pinned down what doesn't work with this model. To me the Ikiryo emerging from Kirai's prone body is too clunky. It's a large humanoid model that doesn't feel detailed on the same scale as other smaller models. Probably made more apparent by it only being painted one colour. I think it might look pretty decent if something was done to break up the large expanse of green and add a bit of detail, but the main culprit is the oversized sleeves that just look really heavy - not an ideal adjective for spectral fabric!

Ten Thunders Brothers

Sorry, these guys should have gone in the previous roundup, so I'll shoehorn them in here.Absolutely flawless models. That's about all that needs to be said! Evocative stances, cool weaponry, exotic clothing - these minis have it all. Plus I understand they're not too terrible in game either. I hope that whoever sculpted these gets to work their magic on the other anticipated Ten Thunders special forces models expected in the next book - that would make for a fantastic looking crew!

055 - Molly is the one for me!

I tried out a Molly Squidpiddge-led crew yesterday and I was very impressed indeed! She has such amazing synergy with her crew that it makes up for the fact that some of her abilities are sub-par. After lookkng at her again, I genuinely now think she could go toe to toe with Hamelin, Chompy, Kirai etc and come out on top.

For this reason I've decided to make Molly my exclusive competitive Master for the rest of the year. Move over Pandora, there's a new girl in town!