Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Painted Ashlynn

Three day weekends are great for painting and I was able to get my Ashlynn conversion done over this past one.

There are a few things I'm not thrilled with. The face in particular didn't come out as well as I had hoped, mostly because I painted eyes and I'm not happy with them. I'm also not convinced with the little freehand icons on the coat or the gray gloves, but they're not too bad.

I am actually quite happy with how she turned out, despite my grumbling. I don't have any more Merc models for this army yet so I'm not sure what I'll be painting in the mean time.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Converting Ashlynn

The stock model for Ashlynn is pretty much the worst Privateer Press model around. That's a shame because Ashlynn is one of the more interesting and dynamic characters in the Warmachine world and she deserves a better model.

One of the biggest sources of inspiration for this army came from a thread I saw on the Privateer forums where a guy named MOZZ converted and painted Ashlynn as part of a Tale of Painters. His conversion was so good I bookmarked the thread to refer to later.

This is the un-assembled conversion. It uses an Iron Kingdoms Alexia Ciannor body for most of it, the sword hand from another IK model, and a Journeyman Warcaster generator backpack. Pretty simple. The hardest thing to do was pin the hand to the body - everything else went together just fine.

Here's my assembled Ashlynn. MOZZ used putty to fill in a lot of the holes and tears on her coat but I decided not to. My green stuff skills are poor at best and I figure since she's a fugitive and on the run she's bound to be a little worn.

photo by MOZZ

Here's what MOZZ's Ashlynn looks like with paint - I think he did a fantastic job. I haven't decided on my color scheme yet but I'm hoping to have a little more purple than he does. Once she's based and primed I'll be getting right to painting her.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Zerkova and Greylord Escort

I'm still quite burned out from Templecon but I wanted to get back on the painting horse and work through some of my model backlog before starting an Ashlynn army.

Greylords are my one of my favorite parts of Khador, and Zerkova (the lady on the right) has been one of my favorite characters in the Warmachine setting since I started reading the fluff. I've only ever gotten one game in with her but I'm hoping to remedy that now that she's painted.

The other Greylord is the Escort, a UA for Doom Reavers who makes them kill each other less and be just a little more survivable. I've used him a little more as part of Strakhov lists.

Both models were fun to paint and a good warm up exercise. I'm so used to the basecoat wash method of the Trolls that doing multiple layers of highlights seems weird.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Templecon 2011 - Recap Part 2

Blood, Sweat, and Tiers ended at 7:30am and I got to bed at 8:00am, so Saturday didn't start for me until 2:00pm. I wanted to try to get a few Iron Arena games in before Death Race that night so I started looking for opponents.

The first player I found was running a very 'jack heavy eNemo list. I brought out the Grim list I didn't get to play the previous night.

I used the Burrowers and Grim's feat on turn 2 to pin all of his 'jacks in place while the two units of Scouts ran around them. On my turn 3 I was able to get the Bomber, Impaler, and some Scouts to shoot Nemo to death - my first win of Templecon!

I was feeling pretty good (that was the first time I really felt the Grim list worked well) and found a Skorne opponent playing Mordikaar and a scenario table to play on next. The table had four blue crystals in the middle that were objectives, first to 2 won.

His list had two Incorporeal solos and Mordikaar could make a unit Incorporeal, so he won this on turn two pretty easily because he could ignore the terrain and I couldn't. Neither of us realized this game would go like this when we started and by the time we figured it out it was too late.

After those two games I had dinner and a nap to prepare for the tournament I was most excited about - Death Race!

Game 1
If there's one game I was upset about losing over the whole weekend it would be this one. My opponent was running eMorghoul with Molik Karn, a Gladiator, Cyclops Brute, and some skirmishing infantry. Karn terrifies me and my plan if I was going to face him was to feed him a Kodiak, counter with Butcher and the second Kodiak, while hoping that my Kayazy could take down the other 'caster.

He threw Karn and the Gladiator forward and on my second turn I was able to charge both with Kayazy. Between Fury and Butcher's feat I was able to blow Karn up and leave the Gladiator with two boxes left and I was feeling on top of the world. I used my Kodiaks to kill some infantry with Vent Steam because I got greedy and it cost me the game. Morghoul charged in and took Butcher apart.

I really should have seen what was going to happen because I knew Morghoul was more than capable of killing me but I was so amped up on killing Karn that I stopped thinking.

Game 2
I was paired up against a guy from my store running a Strakhov list. We practiced these lists against each other a lot leading up to Templecon so we both knew what to expect. I was able to get the drop on Strakhov first but seriously bombed my dice rolls.

Kayazy get to Strakhov but I can't roll dice to save my life

In the ensuing few turns we both had epic dice failure until Beast 09 and Fenris eventually got themselves back on the dice bell curve and killed Butcher.
Game 3
My third game was against Reznik running five light 'jacks and a Choir. This was my first game against Menoth ever and I didn't know what to expect.

I was able to engage his lines on my second turn (the photo above) and got in a charge on my third turn. My dice took a 180 from last game and a single Kayazy took Reznik from full health to zero in one shot - awesome!

Game 4
The last game of the tournament was against a young player running Saeryn. I have very little experience against Legion so I did my tried and true strategy of Kayazy + Iron Flesh + running forward. He jumped Saeryn in the middle of my army, did a few points of damage to Butcher, and feated. My turn was a total wash because I had no guns able to shoot (Butcher was engaged and Kell was dead) so I camped all 6 Focus and hoped for the best.

My opponent's dice failed him big time on his turn so Butcher feated and clobbered Saeryn on my next turn. Hooray 2-2!

Saturday night ended a lot earlier than Friday night did so I was able to get another game in on Sunday morning against a Zaal list. This was my only 50 point game of the weekend so I added tweaked my normal 35 point Grim list to include an Earthborn and Blitzer.

I made a terrible distance judgment in the second turn that resulted in my Bomber and Blitzer being half an inch too short to make their shots and it cost me the game. His army started winning an attrition game and I couldn't swing the momentum back in my favor.

A very fun game against a very nice opponent and a fantastic way to end my Templecon experience. I cashed in my Iron Arena points for the black dice back and red Templecon dice in the last photo of the previous post, packed up my Trolls, and headed back to Boston for a serious nap. I'll absolutely be back to Templecon next year if I'm still in the New England area.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Templecon 2011 - Recap Part 1

Templecon 2011 is over and was an excellent end to an intense month of painting and practice games. I slept very little, played over a dozen games in two tournaments and Iron Arena, won some cool prizes, met and hung out with a ton of cool people, and overall had a blast.

After hitting a ton of traffic on the ride down we arrived on Friday afternoon. I jumped right into Iron Arena and played a game on one of the scenario tables. I had 35 points of Trolls on my side against 50 points of Khador on the other side. The table was set up wide open on my side with a huge piece of impassable terrain choking the board into two tiny passes on the edges. The idea was that I had to defend the passes against the superior forces of the enemy.

The Khador army was armour heavy (4 'jacks and 2 units of Man-O-Wars), something my Grim list isn't equipped to handle. It was also super slow, so I got bored and took the fight to him in the pass on the left, which was a terrible idea. I lost rather badly.

I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening wandering around checking out games, painted armies, and saying hello.

That night (or the next morning) was Blood, Sweat, and Tiers. We ended up playing until 7:30am.

Game 1
My first pairing was CaptainSpud of Lost Hemisphere fame running a very nicely painted pCaine list that had two units of Gun Mages. I ran eDoomshaper, figuring he'd have a lot of trouble with two heavy beasts and ARM 18 Champions. He did, but a collection of errors on my part saw my beast sling-shot fall short of Caine and put Doomie in a bad spot. It took his whole army, down to literally the last shot, but Doomie died.

Game 2
I got sleepy at this point and forgot to get my phone out for any more pictures. My opponent was running Rasheth, the new Skorne warlock, with three Titans. Grim can't handle that much armour so Doomshaper came out again. He charged my Mauler with a Bronzeback on turn 2 but missed by about half an inch. I figured I'd kill the Bronzeback with my Mauler (the Earthborn was tied down by some Gatormen), tie up his other two heavies with my Champs and Scouts, and deal with them one by one with my pair of heavies.

My Mauler's damage rolls had some of the worst dice-hate I've ever seen and I barely scratched the Bronzeback. On his turn he nuked the Mauler while the Gladiator and Cannoneer worked their way through the models I had tying them up, leaving my Earthborn to deal with 3 heavies all on his own - no surprise that it didn't work.

Game 3
I was paired up against a very skilled player that I've played before running an Ashlynn list with two Gun Mage units. This seemed like another good match up for Doomshaper. Details start to get fuzzy as this was around 4am but I remember getting jammed up with my heavies and Ashlynn taking the final points off Doomie with boosted Twisters.

Game 4
My last game, around 6am, was against Epic Vlad, 6 Ulhans, and Markov. I was too tired to think about how to play Grim so Doomie came out for a 4th time. He made a big mistake in letting his Ulhans get too far forward and my two Dires ate them without much retaliation. I was feeling good about this game but he snuck the last Ulhan around to Doomie while tying up my Dires with a Berzerker and Drago and that Ulhan and some Widowmakers popped Doomie.

more on the other two prizes pictured here in the next post

Even though I went 0-4 I consider this evening a success because I won two prize drawings! During the third round I won a Sorcha 2010 resculpt because I was playing a tier 3 list and at the end of the tournament I won 20 dollars to the PP store in the fully painted army drawing. - pretty awesome.

Friday, February 4, 2011

January Summary

Painting for Points
What a month for painting. I got through 36 models in less than a month as I prepped for Templecon 2011 (which I'm currently attending!). Here's what I finished:

Epic Doomshaper
10 Whelps
12 Scouts
Dire Troll Bomber
Swamp Troll
Blythe and Bull
Alten Ashley
4 Kayazy + UA
Widowmaker Marskman
War Dog

That's 41 points done in a single month! I wore out two brushes and several pots of paint but put a HUGE dent in my unpainted model pile.

New Model Fund
I bought a lot of models for Templecon. A lot of it was using Christmas money but just to be safe I'm going to say I spent all 50 bucks for the month and call it even. I'll have a new $50 to spend for February and I'm looking at getting two Vanguards and Gorman so I have that Zerkova list ready to run.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Post Templcon Projects

Templecon hasn't even happened yet and I'm already looking ahead to some projects I'd like to start when it is all over.

Finish my Khador
Getting the small chunk of Khador models done for Templecon left me with only 3 unpainted Khador models in my collection. I'd like to get those models done and dusted so I can start new projects with at least one old project fully completed. I have Zerkova, a Greylord Escort, and a mounted Drakhun to paint.

Paint Jeremiah Kraye
Spoony bought me Kraye for Christmas last year and he's sat on my shelf ever since. Kraye is my favorite PP model and I want to do a good job painting him so I've been putting it off for a while. This isn't a project I necessarily want to finish before doing anything else but I do want to start putting paint to metal in the weeks following Templecon.

Play the new Zerkova Tier Army
I talked about this in my last post. It looks fun and will be a good break from all the Trolls I've been playing recently.

Start a Mercenary Army
There have been some rumblings at my LGS about doing a slow grow league following Templecon and I'd like to start a Merc army if we do. I'm currently looking at a Highborn Ashlynn list or a pMagnus tier list, and I'm leaning more toward Ashlynn. Here's a list I've been toying around with:

Gun Mages + UA
6 Forge Guard
Aiyana and Holt
Rupert Carvolo
Taryn di la Rovissi

Two days 'til Templecon!