Saturday, 2 July 2016

So musings, very pictures, such magpie

It's a bit of a mixed bag this time around - a few pictures of some projects and some few thoughts on the general state of things-magpie.

First off, I've painted a BA army. Well most of one. This is the first test basing for the army. I'm pretty happy with how they've come up.
BA American Command Troops
Panzerschreck 2016 is in a couple of weeks and this year Tank and I will be taking tanks, tanks and more tanks. Tank's done some really nice Stuart I 'Honeys' to zoom around my mostly much slower captured Italian M13/40s.
My half of the McZ / Tank pairing for Panzerschreck 2016
My attempts at Caunter Camouflage. Hard. Very hard. 
And I'm finishing up the last of the support for my 6mm TY army. The helicopters are done and I'm just painting the Frogfoots (Frogfeet?) at the moment. 
And then this happened. How many Hind Ds does one man need? Six, apparently. 
And how is the state of things-magpie? Well, I've played my first games of Warmachine Mark III and I think it's fair to say that overall, it's good. Better than Mark II? Different certainly. The core of the game has had a fairly significant overhaul (there are better summaries out there than I will ever give you) but the changes to the Focus mechanics certainly feel to me like they've opened up a whole bunch of play possibilities for me at least (look at me avoiding the words design space!) I found some ways to run some interesting combinations of big, stompy robots in Mark II but looking at Mark III, this is going to be the norm not the exception and that, in and of itself, is an improvement.

Inside my own faction of choice (the Protectorate of Menoth), I am generally pretty happy with the way things have panned out. While I freely admit to being puzzled by some of the choices made by Privateer Press (the "rebalancing" (and yes, the inverted commas there are, I think, somewhat legit) of Exemplar Bastions and Exemplar Cinerators is completely inexplicable), for the most part the changes to the game engine have made the faction more entertaining to play and the changes to most of the troop and support choices mean that every list I make doesn't immediately dial in a shed ton of support from the get go. Reckoners will no longer be my go-to warjack (although they remain very effective) and instead I'll be looking to the combined arms forces that I prefer anyway.

To put all of this in some context (at least for the Warmachine readers) - I dropped Thyra and Amon into three games at the last club meeting. In all three of them my casters were on half way and in the last one, Thyra was most of the way to my opponents deployment zone. In Mark II, if I'd tried getting that far up the board with either of those two, I'd have lost. Now admittedly, I did lose Amon to assaulting Trenchers but he was over half way and I ain't got no issue with that. It was good to see Trenchers on the table too!

In closing, I'm pretty sure the Vigilant giving cover is absolute jank. Especially with a journeyman warcaster who has Fortify. That's Warmachine though.

I've also been enjoying essentially building scale model kits again. I've so far managed a Warlord / Italieri M8 and an M20 and am most of the way through a Rubicon Sherman kit. I think a quick review of these two kits is in order, since I'm in writing mode. I'll put some photos up when they're done (mostly I need to order some crew - too many years of playing Flames of War means I have to have a dude in the turret if at all possible!)

The Warlord / Italieri M8/M20 kit is really nice. Easy to assemble, looks great and paints up well. I would have liked some crew for the two crew compartments. I'll be picking up some aftermarket crew from Company B in the not too distant future. I liked how easy it was to put together and the level of detail is exceptional for what is designed to be a gaming kit. I'd love a slightly more cunning design to allow a straight swap of the deck plate and turret so one kit would do both vehicles, but as it was, the kit is so affordable that I simply bought two. There's very little not to love about this kit. I would recommend avoiding the 3 part decal for the rear engine deck unless you are some kind of masochist.

As for the Rubicon M4A3 Sherman kit, well, it's great. I'm not quite done with it yet, but it looks great too. It's got a nice level of detail and plenty of room to customise the kit once I add some stowage. The entire hull assembly was done in less than 20 minutes and it's pretty solid, not the empty box of a lot of plastic scale kits.  The turret assembly would be equally quick if you decided to just build one of the three variants available in the box and this is where I get really, really ticked off with this kit. If Rubicon included a second turret ring and a second commanders hatch, anyone who's had a bit of experience with modelling could assemble all three variants in the box. Even someone with little to no experience (who would otherwise love this kit) could build the 76mm variant and either the 75mm or 105mm. But as it is, I have had to cut a new turret base and ring from plasticard for the 76mm turret and am currently mucking around with greenstuff and plasticard to build a second commanders hatch. I know I'll be super happy with the result - to get all three Sherman variants that might want to use will be cool - but it could have been a thousand times simpler.

The projects have been quietly being ticked off. I'll probably not get to the Farrow this year for Hordes, as I suspect I'll be more interested in playing with my Protectorate and acquiring the small number of models I want for my third Frostgrave Wizgang is proving to be harder than I would like. But the Teutons are done, the 6mm Russians are done, the Elves are done, the Panzerschreck army is done and the BA army (that I was genuinely not going to buy when I wrote at New Year) is mostly finished - awaiting the purchase of a Chaffee and a Hellcat (oh, and maybe a Long Tom). I've even done a fair whack of a BA table as well.

Anyway, the rest of the BA Americans won't base themselves so signing off!


  1. Love the americans- that basing has come our excellently.

    And who can argue with a full flight of Hinds?