Thursday, 25 April 2013

WIP Sanguinor Conversion

I don't know what it is about the GW sculpt of the Sanguinor, but it doesn't inspire me that this guy is a real bad ass....yet his rules make him da'boss...

The Sanguinor, Exemplar of the Host

I imagined something a little darker, perhaps more a tense dark figure than an exalted sunshine figure....

Here's some images of what I mean......these guys are much more talented at sketching than I so I've used their images to illustrate what I was going for.....

Black Angel Revisit

SciFi and Fantasy Art Kneeling Angel of War by Janie Ng

SciFi and Fantasy Art Angel Knight by Daniel-David ´Guert´ Guertin

SciFi and Fantasy Art Kneeling Angel by Alexza Nicole Johnson

I think you can get the I took a finecast Sanguinor and chopped him to bits, pinned practically every joint and tried positioning him as best I could, plenty of green stuff and sticky fingers and here's what I eventually came up with......

The Blood Shadows Sanguinor

The green stuff needs tidying up, but I'm quite happy with this guy.....slight problem is that he's way over 25mm in diameter....I may need to make a special base.....

Deathwatch Keepers (feat. Horus Heresy Deathshrouds)

Deathwatch Keepers are amongst the longest serving members of the watch

Hi guys, around Christmas of 2012 I fell in love.....not for the first time....but this time I knew it was for real......Forgeworld's Deathshroud terminators, they're amazing, possibly my favourite space marine sculpts ever.....

But as an owner of Imperial armies I had to have a long think as to how I could incorporate them into any of my existing armies....I just had to!

As part of my Deathwatch project I had been struggling for some time with viable ordo xenos troops choices......(no storm troopers without coteaz, curses).  Then my solution was delivered to me mainly thanks to FFG and the improved fluff they've created about the Deathwatch.

Deathwatch Keepers, guardians of ancient xenos relics, protectors of the Ordos' darkest secrets.....(awesome!!).....they wear armour amongst the oldest to be found in the Deathwatch.....(sweet, justifies the Heresy look!!).......They carry double handed CCWs like eviserators etc.......(well its not a hard stretch to justify a scythe now is it?!!)

So I had my fluff but which rules to use.

Unfortunately those amazing flamer weapons would have to no known terminator in the Imperium can carry 5x diddy they had to go....  I did consider calling it done and claiming the scythes to count as lightning claws allowing them to proxy as assault termies, but I feel that's a bit of a stretch......

The I realised with the addition of a Stormbolter these guys nicely slot in as GK Termies, I had initially thought about them being Paladins, but then I realised I could take Termies as troops fulfilling my troop allocation for my GK Ordo Xenos allies!  This means I'll now be able to take a proper Ordo Xenos inquisitor, an Assassin, GK Termies and a Stormraven to back up my BA Deathwatch or vice versa......if there's enough points I may be able to squeeze a set of Stormtrooper henchmen in too (though clearly @13pts each it'd just be for the fluff).

Suffer not the alien to live.........these guys are troops :)

Getting on with the Job

When my order came through from FW I was in awe of the models and had to take time to honour the machine spirit of the terminator armour before hacking bits off, the models are so nice I really needed to make the conversion count.  

The detail on the deathshrouds is amazing and very delicate,   however this did mean some of the mold flash is next to impossible to remove.  After modifying the Deathguard symbols down to being just a skull and removing the flamers I set about looking for Storm bolter bits.

I had a couple of spare sprues of PAGK lying in wait but really don't like the new GK pig nosed stormbolters, so I went searching through my bits box and found some BA SG Angelus boltguns which looked ideal, when combined with either a boltpistol or another angelus gun they look smart.  To be RHS mounted I needed to switch the ammo packs to the opposite side of the barrel which was easy enough.   In the end I had to resort to using a single PAGK stormbolter to complete the set, but with an Angelus ammo pack its nowhere near as bad.

I also had to consider a balance with table top play, so I gave one guy an incinerator and another a hammer, I had wanted to through in a banner and considered Psycannons too, but they where too challenging on such complex models, perhaps with a TAGK box the bits would be more amenable.

The idea of having instant death weapons is quite funky so I do need to think about it, having said that I'm much more likely to use Hammer hand in CC than to use the force capability, the Hammer can ID most things anyhow. 

I really want to take Justicar Thawn too as he's a level 2 psyker boss that makes the squad fearless, can hammer hand and ID badguys.....may need a specific model for this guy......then a banner too

Friday, 19 April 2013

Are BA Scouts worth it?

"Dib Dib Dob Dob CC Monsters..."

OK so most fellas will tell you that the only way to run BA Scouts is to camp on an objective whilst toting sniper rifles.

I on the other hand want my neophytes blooded in the most glorious fighting on the battle field!

Here's some bullets as to why:
  • Infiltrating Scouts with a locator beacon can bring a Dante-esque precision strike right into your opponents backlines.
  • Combined with a minimum of 3 drop pods you're guaranteed to bring in 2x units of reinforcements on your first turn.  A little more susceptible to dice rolls but you can also get off the Heroic intervention a little easier.
  • They can get 2 (3) Attacks base, boosted to 3 (4) with either Chapter Banner or Sanguinor
  • At WS3 Str4 Int4, this means they hit on 4's, wound on 4's vs marines, exactly the same as an Assault squad.  With a powerfist on the Sgt thats WS4 Str8 Int1 to pile in late and snipe those bad guys.
  • They can carry a combi-melta and powerfist
  • Yes they only get a 4+ save but can get +1 cover save if equipped with camo cloaks, together with a Librarian they can nearly always get a 4+ cover save thanks to the Shield of Sanguinias psychic.
  • Yes you can't attach a priest if they infiltrate but with DOA and a 75pt priest you can precision strike on in from reserve or my preferred method of bringing one in first turn in a drop pod.
  • They still get red thirst so can be fearless, though they have ATSKNF anyway.
  • They have the same Ld as marines, with Tycho they're leadership 10.
  • They have Move Through Cover
So the biggest negatives to infiltrating scouts they shoot worse than marines and they can die quicker than marines, particularly in cc as vs shooting they have the cover buff.

This doesn't need that much mitigation, scouts shooting before the charge isn't really so important, they will die though.  In the old days of an Int5 furious charge this could be gotten its a straight up fist fight they will die faster than Assault marines.........this just means you need to take more of them!

A ten man scout squad with locator beacon, combi weapon and powerfist is 200 points, it's an extra 30pts for camo cloaks, I tend not to do it on the assault guys, if I bring a squad with bolters as support they might get the upgrade.

200 points sounds like a lot, 600 points for three squads is also not cheap.  But it does give you a precision strike to the rest of your army.  If you want to play Russian roulette you can save 50pts by just taking one locator beacon and rely on your drop pods to act as the homing device from turn 2, and actually with the 3+ from reserves it's a lot easier to bring stuff in before that pod goes boom.

The power in this list is what you bring in from reserves, Furioso Dreds are great for getting attention, you could also deploy something eye catching like a vindicator on the table.  Scouts can literally become invisible to your opponent until he's dealt with the greater perceived threat.

Interesting Allies for this are other infiltrating units, Cpt. Shrike and a unit of Termies, Devastators or Sternguard........From GK an assassin or two, 30 scouts would provide a decent meat shield for a Vindicare assassin, if not a little over kill.......

I'll have a go at thinking up a list and put it up here later.


Thursday, 18 April 2013

Deathwatch (BA Honour Guard) Combi Melta & Flamer

Combi - Melta Flamer

So for my Deathwatch I wanted Wall of Death D3s and 2D6 armour penetration but didn't want to model my guys with two goonish guns....... I decided to make one mahoosive goon gun! In fact not one......but four.......

Introducing the Kill Team Command Squad:

Apothecary Shardlake Black shield of the Deathwatch

Battle-Brother Astrax Black shield of the Deathwatch

Battle-Brother Ivan Black shield of the Deathwatch

Battle-Brother Zieger Black shield of the Deathwatch

Battle-Brother Thorgen Black shield of the Deathwatch

This squad will accompany Commander of the Watch Tycho.

Watch Commander (BA Tycho)                                         .......175pts

Deathwatch Command Squad (Honour Guard)                    .......220pts


Apothecary is armed with
Bolt Pistol 
Frag/ Krak grenades

Each Battle-Brother is armed with 
Frag/ Krak grenades
edit: 3 Battle Brothers (without Banner) have Melta Bombs

One Battle-Brother carries the Banner of the Watch (BA Chapter Banner)

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

BA Honour Guard as Deathwatch Kill Team

Just how many guns to take?

So as part of my extended Deathwatch project I want to build a BA honour guard as a Deathwatch kill team to accompany Cpt. Tycho my Master of the Watch.

They'll not be going with Jump packs, as I think I covered earlier special weapons and Jump packs are for RAS and Sanguinary Guards.

I want something that's going to model as well as it plays.....


Normally my kill team/ honour guard/ stern guard units are used like a punch to the face, dropped in first turn to focus the enemies attention where I want it and to stop them progressing across the board, I'd normally drop a Furioso or regular Dred in a pod too to split the enemies fire.

I don't think they'll need a power weapon, although I'm considering a Blood champion to protect Tycho from any biased challenges.

So what wargear loadout should these Ordo Xenos bad asses be packing.....


Storm Bolters are a nice option, they provide funky extra shots at distance making up for low squad numbers and can compliment specialist short range weapons like meltas and flamers.  They're also dirt cheap.

Flamers, now I'm all for flamers in the face on first turn, especially against hordes.  I've also found multiple flamers reliable enough to thin the ranks of TEQs too.  It's a shame there's not a heavy flamer option but these will definitely figure.  But my main reason for wanting these is for overwatch Wall of Death.....if there was a 5pt per model option that just let you auto hit assulting units with D3 Str4 Ap5 hits I'd take it, and these babies can ignore cover too.

Melta guns vs Plasma, I've always favoured the melta vs. plasma, 40k has an amazing habit of throwing up Gets Hot results right when you don't need them.  But with TEQ and the 2+ save becoming so important in 6th Ed, the extra shots are definitely useful.  However if you face off against Paladins or even BA TEQs, melta has to be the better choice to instant gib and get round feel no pain.  Meltas are cheaper too, unless one goes for the gunslinger infernus option, which does increase the number of shots, but we lose out on our defensive template weapons which I really want to keep.  If I go for plasma I always tend to pack a melta bomb or two to take on serious armour, which to be honest isn't needed if one's packing melta heat.

I'm just mulling over the two options:

1) 2x hand flamer gunslingers  & 2x infernus gunslingers = 80 pts

2) 4 Flamer & 4 Meltas = 60 pts

20 pts for an extra 4 Str4 AP- attacks seems a lot, but it is cheaper than the chapter banner by 10 points, however the weapons in option 2 are far more superior, so I'm heading that way I think.  

I'll be playing around now with some Flamer / Melta combi weapon proto-types......

Monday, 15 April 2013

Blood Angels Deathwatch Contingent

I've never seen the attraction of a Str 3 Ap6 flame weapon, 
however gimme two of them and I might change my mind..........gimme 8 and I'm sold!

OK so I've decided I'm going to reconnect with my fluff and work the Ordo Xenos Deathwatch aspect a little more.  I want an allied detachment of BA to sit as a Deathwatch strike force to partner a GK or IG army.  Now I want these guys to be stand out as Deathwatch with all their flavour and special wargear.  I intend to incorporate either Tycho in DW livery or a DW librarian, I was thinking which units could imaginatively come across as Deathwatch without excessively proxying the BA's DNA too much.  

The challenge is creating a flavour that is beyond the obvious Sternguard vets (who will definitely figure), I want some more variety in the other FOC slots.

Death Co. and Sanguinary guard have plenty of character but are so recognisable as Blood Angels its a stretch for me to proxy them as anything else........I'd considered creating some fluff to explain their special rules away, but I'd just end up telling my opponent that they were Death Company for ease of recognition during a game.

The options I'm looking at then are Honour Guard, none D.Co. Troops and Vanguard vets...... It occurred to me I could take advantage of the "Gunslingers" pistols rule to make a cool unit with enough character and special shooting to allow them to pass as Deathwatch.....

Honour Guard are clearly head and shoulders the most versatile shooting unit in the codex, the ability to take two special weapons is attractive from a conversion and a game play point of view and they're fully capable of fielding four gunslingers too.  

So the Honour Guard are top of the list, not to mention they bring a much needed priest and put extra bodies into the allied detachment without filling up the FOC.  But how about making them gunslingers? Certainly not with plasma pistols, plasma guns can put out that many shots much cheaper, but for infernus you can double the number of shots available, though its not cheap......but where I really get excited is the thought of using hand flamers......8 hand flamer templates and the overwatch potential could be quite a deterrent to opposing charging units......8D3 a minimum of 8 and a max of 24 possible strength 3 auto hits, add melta bombs and you're good to take out MCs and walkers too.....perhaps exchange 1 guy for a melta gun/ flamer combo and escort Tycho into the midst of battle......If I go with a Libby option I might consider doing a prescience/plasma mix with flamers as secondary weapons, this could also be funky.

Tactical squads are out just too vanilla for me, they got a boost in 6th but are only capable of fielding plasma pistols on the sergeant and the rapid fire and one heavy dictates plasma on the special for me too.  Gunslinging plasma pistols just don't make sense when a combi-plas is available for 1/3 of the cost.

RAS: Well these guys can do ok, we can get 1x special and 1x gunslinger for a five man squad, they get a nice discount on a transport, as well as fulfilling the allied troop requirement.  The three to seven guys with chainswords isn't ideal but could work under proxy just fine.  The RAS is one of the cheapest power armoured troop choices in the game when taking into account the 35 point discount for a transport.  If there's value to be had it's here.  

Toting plasma doesn't make much sense though, not just because of the restrictive rapid fire on the special weapons but also in regard to what you get: The extra points for two extra plasma shots, coupled with the higher cost of the special weapon makes this option really expensive, 1x plasma gun and 2x plasma pistols practically adds 50% to the cost of a 5 man squad, making it cheaper to do the same job with Sternguard.  

The infernus gunslinger and melta gun is only marginally more attractive as it answers the assault concern of plasma, however a 5 man unit with three melta shots at <6" costs the same as a Sternguard squad putting out three melta shots at upto 12".  

The RAS infernus gunslinger could be useful    as a cheap alternative jump pack unit to accompany Dante in a BA loadout, but not for this Deathwatch purpose.  

As with the Honour Guard, I like the low cost big effect of taking 2 hand flamers, add a cheap Str4 flamer in the squad and I'm all over it.  Now the Sternguard can't put out 3 templates for 125 so this does bring something different to the table. Yes, the Sternguard have rapid fire dragonfire bolts however, they don't give 3D3 auto hits to overwatch......(hmmm note to self another idea...equip Sternguard with combi flamers for wall of death anti-charge deterrent?!)  

Vanguard vets on first glance look attractive to bring something different, there's potential for upto 4x gunslingers and a pistol/powerweapon combo on the vet sgt,  however Vanguard vets are really expensive!  They're the same cost as Death Company with none of the rules and more expensive than Sanguinary guard once loaded with wargear.....The only way I can ever imagine using them will be for the heroic intervention with melta bombs, now this could be a fluffy Deathwatch style demolitions mission, but I really struggle to know what they do once they've come in and done the HI thing and then get shot to bits.....

So my first attempt at a DW Allies list just for fun:

HQ: 460pts

Capt Tycho 

Honour Guard w/ 8x hand flamers and 1x melta bombs, chapter banner, 
Dedicated transport: Heavy flamer razor back

Elite: 205

5 Sternguard w/ 2 meltas and 3 combi weapons (melta or plas)
Dedicated transport: Heavy flamer razor back

Troop: 150

5 man RAS with 1x flamers, twin hand flamers and a melta bomb on the sgt 
(must check precision shot rules for templates?!)
Dedicated transport: Heavy flamer razor back

Fast: 180

Land Speeder Squadron with twin heavy bolters each (not flamers I know)

All comes in at a whopping 995points....ah well may have to drop the honour guard......they do seem excessive.....I did fancy sneaking in an extra attack for Tycho too...I could scrap 'em and run  Tycho with the RAS instead....perhaps drop Tycho in favour of a Libby for an even lower cost option......

As for the Speeders? They're BS4, can move anywhere and put out 18x Str 5 AP4 shots each turn and get a jink save what's not to love......I sometimes run a double melta version for 240 points but this is about DW and they, like me, like heavy bolters..........and gunslingers are expensive.....

Thursday, 11 April 2013

OK so been off for a while pressures of coaching, family and stealing a living.......finally back at the painting table to get some of those troops painted up!