Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 is Over

Well, another year is over and done and where did it take us?  What were the highs and lows?  And how can I mock, abuse and destroy all of it in one post?  Well, there's no sense delaying the inevitable so I guess a good place to start would be...

Friday, November 11, 2011


In honor of those that have served in the military, I present my Sternguard Veterans.  Your sacrifice means I have the freedom to spout insanity here on my little corner of the interwebs.  If you like all this cool freedom and stuff, go thank a veteran today.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Necrons and more

I don't put my face online, but this is a happy General,
 as taken by my wife outside the Vorhees, NJ GW Store

So yes, the rumors are true...I'm still alive.  I haven't been too active I know, but as a reward to the...4 or 5 people that actually read my rants I have a treat.  It's a double-article.  This weekend saw 2 big things happen.  First, the Necrons are playable again and second I got my first Finecrap so I can tell you, noble reader (singular) just how shit it is first-hand.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

A new level of Fail

Well Games Day was this weekend and in true GW fashion, they revealed...ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.  Really GW?  Well I guess they're saving the big reveal of the next codex for UK Games Day and giving every other continent the shaft like every year.  Wait...(holds finger to earpiece that doesn't actually exist)Yes, I'm just being notified that this WAS Games Day UK.  Really GW?  REALLY??

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Armies 101 Part 4: Eldar

Yes, I'm alive for anyone who noticed my absence.  We just got over a heat wave here in Nj and I learned that when it's too hot to sit on my leather computer chair...or think posts don't seem to happen.  But we're back in the 80's and I got home early from work today so here we go with the next installment of my totally arbitrary analysis/advice to new gamers...the Eldar

Friday, July 15, 2011

Armies 101 part 3: Demons

The run-down continues, though slightly delayed.  After a weekend trip to war at Gettysburg and a new tactic to find a full-time job, the last 2 weeks just disappeared.  Still here we are and the army examinations continue.  We continue with the newest army to hit the shelves, the Demons of Chaos. 

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Armies 101: Part 2, Dark Eldar

We continue our (well "my" since this isn't a discussion, but my own little virtual soap box) analysis of the armies of 40K.  Today we look at the twisted children of Commorogh, the Dark Eldar.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Armies 101: A Beginner's Guide Part 1

So here we are. You've been considering getting into this Warhammer 40,000 thing all the kids are talking about. What do you do first? Well, perhaps the most important decision a new player has to make is what army do I like? Some players come in either knowing the fluff or liking a certain army. Others have no idea and this is who I'm talking to. We're going to look at what you want to put into the hobby and what you want to get out of it to determine what army you may like to try first...yes I said first because if you are like many of us, one army will become two or three...or one of each. First I'll explain my ratings and then we'll breakdown the armies in terms of hobby, gaming and modeling values. With some luck, you'll have a decent idea of where to go from there.
In this modern time, lets be honest...this hobby is expensive. There are degrees to this and tricks to help make it cheaper, but it isn't like buying a 99 cent deck of playing cards and dealing a poker game. For that reason, I will be taking starting costs in. I am not including the codex since they are all around the same price, but will instead look at availability and affordability of the models needed to get you a good 1500 points.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


After a year of preparation and waiting for the fun it's once again time for Orkfest at the Gamer's Realm in beautiful West (or possibly East)Windsor NJ.  I went last year with my Chaos and this event was what gave me the desire to finally get my own Orks done.  A year and a lot of boys later I had done it.  A Grotsnik list (Yeah I discovered I love him...more later) and my Goff Klawstompa were joining the Green side right an' proppa.  The turnout was pretty small this year.  We had about 15 or just under half of last year's participants.  Still it was a day of gaming with some old friends and a few new ones (thanks Rich for helping me get the hang of my greenskins).  The "Imperial" side ended up getting the two Chaos players this year and we picked up Necron and Tyranid allies.  The Non-Ork leader ended up not coming so my buddy Alex (ironically a Chaos player) commanded the Imperial forces.  The stage was set for a day of WAAAGH!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Taking a cue from Dethtron...GW's pricing response snowmobiled

So we all know by now that the world ended last week.  I'm not talking about some religious nut-job's idiotic predictions, but GW's latest move toward bankruptcy.  That is, their idea that it's OK to jack up prices despite a switch to cheaper materials and the decision that people living in different parts of the world can pay 70% more then other parts just because GW feels it's fair.  Everyone's complained and surprisingly the company that doesn't acknolowedge that they have customers decided to post a response of sorts to their wallets with eyes.  In the spirit of Deth Tron of Dick Move, I have taken it upon myself to provide adequate snowmobiling to this obvious pandering.  If you don't know what that means, go read his Friday Night Internet Fights...funny as hell,

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Money money money Money...MMOONNEEYY

I think by now everyone's heard about this year's anal annual gouging from our friendly neighborhood game company.  I typically don't bitch too much about GW's prices, but after the events of the past few days, I have to chime in with a rant.  Things may get violent...Oh, and I'm from New Jersey so language of a "Sopranos" style may have been warned.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

They will survive...

Tomb Kings are out, and with them comes a nice shiny new hardcover, full-color Army Book…guess GW just likes square-basers more since Grey Knights god shafted with the old “will it last a week?”-style binding we all know and loathe. As for the army in general, I like what they’ve done mostly and look forward to seeing what my undead brethren can do when they are brought up to 8th edition.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

How I scratch-built a Klawstompa in a week

The big addition to my Orkfest army is done, and it took me a week.  Is it the best scratch-built Stompa on the net?  No.  Is it the worst?  HELL no.  There's some serious crap outt here, but I'm pretty happy with him overall...espically since he was cheap.  Mind you, the picture here doesn't really do it justice, because I'm not really set up to take pictures of something that big.  That's an Ork boy next to it for scale.  I thought it might be too small until I put him next to this guy.  I think it's just right.  So how did I do it?  Well...

Warning: lots of pics ahead

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Big Guns...Space Marine Heavy and Elites

I know this is a bit late, but here's the last of my Space Marine Codex review.  Partially inspired by my recent visit to the Battleship New Jersey (those are her foward turrets with the main battery's 16" guns taken by me from the Bridge) today we're talking about firepower.  Every slot typically has a job in an army.  The HQ leads, the Fast Attack gets where it's needed quickly and the troops hold ground but the Elites and Heavies are there for one kill stuff.  As ususal we have some good choices, one AWESOME choice and some crap.  There's lots of choices and wargear options, but I'll try to focus on the what to do and what not to do as much as possible.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Too damn 'Ard Boys

As many of you know this past weekend was Fantasy 'Ard Boys...a day for no holds barred battles.  Of course for people like me it's an excuse to take some serious punishment.  I don't have a functioning 3000 point army.  I borrowed my friends WoC army because my VC's blow right now and I don't feel like buying a new vampire army and my Empire is about 16 models strong at the moment.  I got 0 points.  That's right ZERO!  There were only a few people that showed up so I hoped I'd at least place but it was not to be.
My list consisted of 2 squads of 20 warriors of Khorne with shields, full command and 2 hand weapons, 20 chosen with the same and the frenzy banner.  5 knights with full command, a Khorne lord on juggernaught, a BSB, a Khorne hero, a Sorceror Lord with lore of Death and a Sorceror of Nurgle with a scroll and lore of Nurgle.  70 models total...way too few as I would learn...

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Orks are done!

I have completed my Killa Kans and with that, my Orks are complete for Orkfest.  I'm still hoping to scratch-build a Stompa but I don't have any plasticard to do so yet.  Still I set my goal last year and I made it.  90 Boys, 5 Nob Bikers with Painboy, 6 foot Nobs with Painboy, 10 Lootas, 3 Killa Kans, 4 Deffcoptas, a Big Mek with KFF and a Warboss on a bike all painted and ready to go.

Thursday, April 7, 2011


Well it seems GW may be changing the game again.  Several sources have now made the announcement that GW has or will very soon stop production on their entire metal line.  Now they do have several new metal releases and a few models (like the damn Space Monkey) that aren't even out yet so they are at least making metal a little longer but rumors abound that in the very near future they'll be phasing it out.  Considering the rising price of tin combined with recent laws regarding the sales of metal "toys" that may contain lead and this comes as little surprise.  Right now it's still up in the air what they will replace it with but there are theories.

The first theory is that they'll take what they've learned from Forge World and start making resin blisters.  I personally doubt this for a few reasons.  Anyone who has worked with resin models knows it can be a mixed bag what you get an d how difficult it can be to get things many model resins are toxic.  Resin casting is also a bit of a challenge and seems to be more time consuming and less forgiving.  Finally from what I hear it's probably going to cost them the same as metal.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The tactics of Tactical Marines or Scouts honor...

Round Two: Troops and Fast Attack.
Honestly this won't be as long as Spcae Marines don't have many choices in either squad...and even less good ones.  Still you need troops and there are some decent options so here we go.
Here we have Tactical Marines and Scouts.  These are both very symbolic units in 40k in general and there are few people in the hobby that don't have a Tactical Marine lying around somewhere in their collection.  Both of these recieved major changes for better and worse with the coming of the not-so-new codex, but since you need at least two from these guys, you have to know what to do with them.

Friday, April 1, 2011

At last!...not quite

Followers of my warp little blog will know I was once an independant retailer.  Now my store has long since closed, but I do still get insider info from time to time that retailers are not supposed to share, but since I'm not one anymore, I could give a damn.  So here it is...NECRONS at last!  Now there are still a few things I don't know but I can address a few things...

First, Phase out is gone.  This alone makes them infinately more playable.  WBB is being changed to work something like a combination between the old rules and FnP.  Basically you'll get it vs any weapon, but it happens immediately.  The orbs, which are now standard equipment make it a 3+.

The Gauss rule is being altered somewhat.  Not every weapon has it anymore, but now rolling a 6 leads to a second roll...a 5+ on that will penetrate no matter what.  If not, it's still a glance.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Space Marines or how I learned to stop worrying and love the Astartes, Part 1: Start at the top

As requested by a fellow player in a tournament, I've decided to give my first army a good examination. Now it is true that I have something of a love-hate relationship with the boys in blue. My first and biggest army is my 2nd Company of Ultramarines and I will always keep them in a special place on the gaming shelf, but as more 5th edition books come out I've been more and more disapointed with their codex. It's not that theirs is particularly bad, more that those that have come after are just so much better. Space Wolves and Blood Angels can do almost everything the Space Marines do, only better and cheaper points-wise. Having said that, I do think Marines still have a few things going for them and I think they deserve a closer look. Besides, this is my soapbox and since you chose to come here, you might s well read what I have to say.  Fair warning...this will be long, but I think worth the read.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Quick update

As the logo might hint, I am now a member of the House of Paincakes blogging community. What does this mean? Well, aside from the recognition of my unlimited awesomness hopefully it means that the 13 followers I currently have may have some company. It's not that I don't appreciate you few but faithful it's just that I like big parties better.

My next hobby community goal is to get a guest spot on a webcast but I'm not sure how likely that one is seeing there isn't a single one from anywhere in the tri-state area. I think TEW are the closest and they're way out in the Chicago-land area. Still as a long-term goal it's fun to think of...any takers?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tournament Report

This past Saturday I went to a tournament at the local store and had a blast. I did OK all things considered, but got a few compliments on my painting and won a prize, so who's complaining.

I brought my standard Chaos Marine Nurgle list which is 2 winged princes with warptime, 3 squads of 7 Plague Marines with double melta guns and a Champ with a fist in a Rhino with Havoc Launcher, 5 Terminators with 2 combi-meltas, 2 chainfists, one with twin lightning claws, one with a Heavy Flamer and one bare. All of them were upgraded to Champions because I had 50 points to spare. I also had 3 Oblits and a Defiler. The tournament was 1850.

My first opponent was...12? maybe? He brought Ultramarines, 2nd company complete with Sicarius. It was a foot-slogging list with a few dreads, a command squad, 2 combat-squadded Tac squads and a mixed weapon Dev squad. The deployment was Spearhead and there were 5 objectives. I'd like to think I was nice to this kid, I was forgiving when he forgot a few things and I helped him out a bit, though I refused to say anything when he was unsure on tactics. As his opponent, I just didn't feel right saying anything even if I was sure what he should do and what I'd want him to do. In the end I held 3 objectives and my Termies had cleared him off the only one he had. I didn't want to destroy the kid, but he had about 6 models left at the end while I had lost my princes, one Rhino and 3 termies. I got his vote for favorite opponent, so I guess he had fun. I did help him, but I made it a point to not treat him like some kid playing with toys but a fellow equal. I hope he appreciated it and learned something and I hope he'll be back.

At this point there were 4 players that had annihilated their opponent and being one of them, I ended up playing my buddy Alex of My Dice Suck. He had a primarily Khorne is his usual, but he brought some Plague Marines and a Lord with Bloodfeeder for a change. He had Berzerkers in a land raider with the lord, a rhino of Berzerkers, a Khorne prince, 2 squads of Oblits and a Rhino of chosen with 5 melta guns and an Icon of Chaos Glory. It was the "roll dice and tie" mission and dawn of war, but with a twist. Your opponent's objective was more valuable then your own. This was just painful. It started fun with a turn 1 charge between his prince and one of mine. I brought my other one in for support to kill his off. Here we are 8 minutes into the game and we have a 3 Demon Prince slug-fest. Things went downhill from here. I couldn't hit anything with my shooting while his was effective, popping two rhinos in one turn. He had his Plague marines parked on his objective so I threw 2 rhinos toward of which was destroyed at this point. One Prince was gunned down while the other ended up getting charged bt the berzerkers and lord. He rolled a ton of attacks at me and I left him with one wound as he stood over my demonic corpse. He got back in and ran the raider to my objective, parking on the wreck of my rhino while his oblits finished the squad off there. Mind you all the oblits on the board didn't really follow the "slow" part of their movement as we were both rolling high on their movement. On the other flank, the chosen came in and got my last Rhino. I assaulted them with the plague marines and watched them slowly die. I had a shot at evening out this flank with my termies...who promptly scattered off the board and died in a deep-strike mishap. The game ended when my last model died a horrible death.

The third game was against another Space Marine player. He had Kantor, 10 shooty termies with 2 cyclones, 2 tac squads in Rhinos, a 5 man Sternguard squad with 2 lascannons, 3 attack bikes and 2 autocannon preds with lascannon sponsons. It was pitched battle and kill points. I split my force as I often do with one Rhino and Prince going right and the other two Rhinos and prince left. My oblits ended up in a vary tall building giving them fields of fire across the table and my Defiler was inside a building getting cover. He was spread across the field, keeping all his squads together and attaching Kantor to the Termies. I siezed the initiative after deploying conservatively while his depolyment was to capitalize on his first turn. I blasted an attack bike apart with my battle cannon and the other two ran off the board. We swapped Rhinos on the Right and I slowly killed everything on that flank over the next few turns. Teh Termies came in on my third turn, meaning for once I actually was able to use my Icons. They always come in turn 2 and I don't have an Icon anywhere helpful. On my Right, I moved around a large building and started doing damage while the termies moved to deal with the stronger assault. The Right Prince assaulted the Termies, hoping to kill Kantor before he gets annihiliated by 10 power fists, but I only put 2 wounds on him. This blob took a few casualties but was largely intact by game's end. I ended up winning by a kill point, but we finished on Turn 5 with lots of time left so we played it to 7 anyway for fun. I had to win this game to ensure Alex got 2nd place after a bad run in with a much hated IG player.

I ended up in 4th place, but all 3 of my opponents voted me as favorite opponent (their equivalent of sportsmanship) so I used my winnings to snag some Greatswords and move one step closer to completing my Empire army.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Ork update

As Orkfest approaches, my Waagh is getting close to being finished. I have 15 boys, 3 kans and 5 lootas left and I'm done. I haven't based the boys yet but I have my nobs and bikers, so here they are. First my Warboss on a bike. He's mostly from the biker kit, with some bits from the Nob box (which is awesome for random Orkiness). He's being run with the standard Klaw, Cybork, Bosspole and the "attack Grot" hanging off the pole. I don't have a squig but I figure if you shake up a grot, give him something pointy and whip him in an enemy's face from the back of a speeding bike, you get the same result so there's his +1 attack.

The boss rides with 5 Nobs, including the painboy. These are again largely a kitbash between the Nob box and the Bikers. 3 came from a Battleforce and had a base so those went to the boss and 2 nobs...the others ride on the table until I decide to get them bases too. The squad has Cybork, 2 Klaws, one Klaw carries the Waaagh banner, one big choppa and one base rider. If I ever decide to add to the squad I still have other options to keep playing the wound allocation game but for now, here's the army's big bad hammer. I point them at what I want to die and off they go.

I also run a squad of Nobs that are for now mounted in a trukk. I have a metal Painboy in there, one Nob from Black Reach and the rest come from the Nob box. They don't yet have a Waaagh Banner or Bosspole, but a Klaw will get the Bosspole and a Big Choppa gets the Waaagh banner. They have 'Eavy Armor and Cybork. I have 2 Klaws, 2 Big Choppas, a Combi-Skorcha and one with just a Slugga and Choppa.

And finally, their Trukk, showing off what I think is some decent freehand checks. I have lots of cheched shoulder pads mixed in the army. Yes, despite me only posting fast stuff I am pretty much a Goff warband. the 90 boys on foot should proove that. I may run some deffcoptas, but most of this army just advances through the fire, with a KFF to get them there, then eats whatever gets in the way. I can't wait to field them and I look forward to Orkfest.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Undead rise...well some of them do...

Well, because I like to be on the cutting edge of news, the Tomb Kings will be resurrected this spring. I'm not going to talk about them, largely because this was kind of a surprise and largely because everyone and their brother will be sucking up every rumor out there. I'm looking at what this might mean for us...

Well, for starters we're seeing 3 army updates in 3 months, something GW hasn't done in my tenure with the game. Not only that but this makes 2 Fantasy armies in 3 months after 13 with no new army books (sorry GW but one crappy army that no one cared about and the 8th edition rulebook did not make 2010 "The Year of Fantasy") Also the Grey Knights and Tomb Kings are in that bundle of what I see as "forgotten armies". After moving Dark Eldar out of that club finally they take 2 more which is interesting. (So when do my Necrons get to move out of that club?)

Now what can we get from this? Well for starters I think this is a direct response to the low sales numbers announced last year. I don't think lack of releases is why their sales dipped (I think they're pricing themselves out of their own market, but that's another article) but pushing up a release that most of us expected this fall is probably an attempt to speed up their release schedule in an attempt to boost sales.

I think this is a flaw in their strategy as once again they're acting reactively and not proactively. GW is a dinosaur and while they are still a mighty T-rex, the Raptors are swarming in the form of Privateer Press, Spartan Games, Battlefront and a few other companies that are working to avoid GW's mistakes. These little companies are evolving to meet the new gamer's needs and GW is only slowly shifting to catch up with these new competators. It's a matter of time before one of those little raptors turns into that big finned thing from Jurassic Park III and becomes a real threat to GW.

I'm also worried that if I'm right and the TK book was bumped up 6 months, we'll see a mediocre book and very limited first wave model release. Does anyone remember the Sega Saturn? No I didn't think so, but once upon a time Sega tried to beat their competition to the market by releasing their system 6 months before their previously announced "Saturnday" release. As a result, the system dropped with about 4 games as developers were still months from what they expected to be the release window. When those games finally hit on time, the Saturn had already been forgotten.

My other concern is did they shift everything up or will this now just leave a gap in their releases? I'm hoping everything will be shifted accordingly which means my Necrons might see an update before the world ends. We do expect another 40K expansion this summer, but considering how well Planetstrike and Spearhead did, I hope they're not banking on that and there's still 1-2 codex/army book release possibilities before the end of the year. The rumored flyers release will hopefully see a few plastic kits (fighta bomma and Thunderhawk please) but I don't know if Tomb Kings are opoular enough to boost their numbers. Only time will tell if this was a one-time boost or the beginning of an accelerated release schedule.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Orcs and Goblins

So partly because it's awesome and partly so I can scoop a certain "news" board that may post about this in a few weeks (you know who they are...) I want to address the new Orcs up on GW's site today.

First the Army book. It's nice to see GW finally acknowledging that color exists and a hardcover book that hopefully will last more then a week. The price is GW high but not bad considering the source. Of course this is before this year's annual price-gouge but I'm excited to see that GW has finally discovered the infinite value of Kinkos.

Next is the Arachnarok Spider. This thing looks HUGE and is another amazing plastic model from the industry leaders. Add price-bitching here, but otherwise this is a winner. I can't wait to see the rules for this beast and then to aim a few cannonballs at it.

Then we have the Savage Orks. This looks like it will be fun. I see tons of bits for customising which I think is awesome, but again $29 for horde models? This is why people should NEVER buy at GW retail stores. Go online and get these for a bit closer to what they should cost. This basically goes for the Boar Boys and Shaman, too.

The Whirling Death really doesn't seem to have any purpose as they're a re-release of older fanatic models and there's really nothing wrong with current models.

Overall, I'm interested to see to see where the greenskins end up. Not only is this the first new Army book in a year but also the first 8th edition book so we can see what to expect in the future. Will the new books be balanced or will they follow 40k's established pattern of releasing a codex that's even more broken then the previous one? Only time will tell.

Friday, January 28, 2011

My Predictions for the Future

The last few weeks have seen some interesting new stuff from GW. They released a long-overdue FAQ for the older Marine books and announced that the Grey Knights will indeed be the next Codex to come out, on the way for an April release. Between this, a few rumors and what's been going on at GW for the last year, I have an interesting picture of 2011/2012.

Let's start with the FAQ's. I think it's great that these armies finally get the new wargear rules and with them a shot at being competative again. This is good. Yes, this should have happened 2 years ago, but better late then never, so I won't complain about that. When I saw this, I did read something else into it though and that is don't expect a DA or BT codex anytime soon.

Next we have the Grey Marines book, following the Power armor/non-power armor pattern again. This I have mixed feelings about for the sole reason that I liked running a squad with my Ultramarines and I won't be able to anymore. Of course I may end up with a GK army some day so I can field my models but that's way down the road.

The other thing I've considered is last years lack of Fantasy releases. They did one army book and the 8th ed rulebook. Now when 40k got its 5th ed book in 2008, GW supported that with 3 Codex releases that year. I can't help but think Fantasy got the shaft, and I hope to see them make it up this year.

So having said all that, here's my predictions....April 2011 will be Grey Knights...yeah we know that. Rumors say this will be followed by Orcs & Goblins. I think we'll see Necrons in the fall...probably around October and likely have another fantasy book (hopefully Tomb Kings, Bretoninas or Ogres) around the same time. There's rumors of some flyer expansion and I don't know if this will be the epuc fail Planetstrike was or the moderate fail Spearhead was but we'll see. I think that's all we see this year. This will be a bit slower release year for financial reasons as we've all seen GW numbers falling and they'll probably pull back production to compensate but also to gear up for 2010 and...

Warhammer 40,000 6th Edition! Yes, I'm calling it now that we will see a new rulebook in 2012. I will also say that I am 100% against it. I think 5th has lots of life left and could easily go another 4-5 years but the evidence is piling. Yes, we were told a while back that there were plans to update every codex before 6th, but that was Alessio Cavatore's plan and he's long gone. Rumor also had it Jervis was against this plan and with Alessio out of GW, Jervis will likely get his way. The semi-update FAQ's support this theory...why give them this equipment so far after the Space Marine codex unless you aren't giving them a book for a while? This is espically true if until more recently you were functioning under the idea that their book is 18 months off or so. Also a 2012 release gives 5th ed a 4 year lifespan. 4th edition had a 4 year lifespan so that's consistant. I see another 40K release next winter followed by another fantasy army in the spring and 6th edition next summer, then of course Codex Space Marines in fall 2012 and GW will coast through to the end of the world.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

2010 has Rhino Tracks on it...*

Well here we are. It's 2011 and a new year of gaming and hobby goodness. But how can we know where we're going if we don't look at where we've been. 2010 was a good one hobby-wise...well mostly. Sure, I'm a little late in the "year in review" department, but with it. So here we go...2010. Which started with...

January: This was a big one. Tyranid players have been eager for a new book ever since 5th came out and this one was nice. Sure it wasn't the powerhouse that Wolves and IG were but it's a potent book with lots of great new stuff, some redesigned old stuff and the obligitory useless unit (pyrovores I'd say. Here's something that has to get very close to be effective, but it sucks in CC so if you don't kill what you flamed you're boned) It was balanced and it came with some gorgeous new models. The Trygon is an epic plastic beastie, Gargoyles are finally priced so that players without a healthy trust fund can field them. Sure GW continued their new tradition of leaving gaping holes in their new lines with no models or pictures of several popular new units, but overall it was a good month. We also saw the release of the Legion of the Damned models...great figures from a unit that no one uses.

February: We saw what was to be the only Army Book released in 2010 with the Beastmen. More great model kits came with this one bit somehow the rules were a bit lacking. It's not that it's a bad army, it's just a bit bland and not very Beastman-ly. They were an army that didn't see much use in my neck of the woods and it looks like they'll remain that way.

March: March started off with an expansion to 40k with the Battle Missions book...and to it I say meh. Sure it has some fun stuff to play around with, but it was not worth the price tag and anyone with access to Google can find fan-made scenarios similar to those for free. What was nice was the accompanying models. We got a more user-friendly Chimer chassis which also found its way into the Basilisk box, and some plastic walkers. The Ven dread has lots of bits for customization and was a vast improvement over the metal one. The Kans and Deff Dread models are just fantastic in plastic and honestly the only critique I have is the typical GW policy of shorting on weapons for people like me that want 3 Kans with the same weapon but still it was another good job by the GW sculptors.

April: Finally the Blood Angels got their own book...and not a PDF but a real book with pages and paper and everything. The army plays well compared to the fluff and has some character. And the models...just some amazing additions to the line-up. The unfortunate thing is that the Death Company is gorgeous, but the rules that accompany them are somewhat less desirable. Once again, there are missing models with no pictures, but if the flying fry basket is an indicator, they may not have much longer to wait.

May: May was a big LOTR no one cared. When will the contract expire so GW can focus on their real games? We did see some Orc and Goblin models that were good. The Boar Boys had a very dynamic pose and the vomiting River Troll is just perfect.

June: June saw Spearhead...meh again, but at least it was free. It's kind of Apocalypse light, but if I'm running that much armor, why not play Apoc anyway? At the very least it was an excuse to put out a bunch of tank models. IG players got a bunch of new toys and Eldar even got in on the new goodness with an all-plastic Fire Prism (because metal-plastic hybrid models blow) that doubles as their all-new and aparently codex-legal Night Spinner. Not the best unit, since I think Eldar have better uses for their Heavy slots, but still it's nice to see GW remembers back when White dwarf was more then a catalog and Chapter Approved meant something.

July: Here it is...the long-awaited 8th Edition Fantasy ruleset. It's a polarizing book, with quite a few people critizing it. I think it's pretty good myself and honestly I'm more interested in playing 8th then 7th. My Vampires got a huge kick in the crotch, but honestly they needed it. I think maybe they were taken down a bit too far since an army canm't rely on Magic anymore but still I like what's come from 8th. The release was accompanied by...well nothing really. There was a new template set that was meh and a few other play-aid bits and pieces but overall, nothing special came from the book except the massive price tag. This book is my answer to critics saying GW should make full color codexes..."Yeah if you want a $60 codex". They did come out with the magic cards which are pretty handy.

August: Finally Demons get some new models. The Bloodcrushers are great and the Demon Prince is epic...though I can't see how to make it Nurgle-y and besides I like my metal one. Demons now only have one troop left that's metal only. GW's plastic keeps getting better and these kits are great. If I have one complaint it's that I'm not fond of the current Demonettes and the Seekers are just those on lizard-things.

September: Another light month, but we have Island of Blood, the 8th ed starter kit. Like Black Reach before it, we're given 2 decent-sized forces with quality models for the simplified construction they use. Sure, the High Elf army as given isn't legal since you can't fit a Griffin-mounted prince in the points provided, but it's still nice.

October: We had a few more fantasy releases with High Elves getting plastic Special kits. again some nice sculpts, but it looks like GW is going for a new $40+ price point for a mere 10 plastic Special models. The Greatswords started it and the White Lions and Phoenix Guard continued it.

November: Hell froze over. After 12 years the Dark Eldar return. Seems like it was worth the wait as they got some cool new toys. Again it's a mostly balanced book. There are some over-the-top goodies but largely it fits the fluff. DE are fast and hit like a freight train, but their armor is all but non-exsistant and their vehicles have as much armor as your average snowblower. The "glass cannon" is very DE so I was glad to see it come back.

December: GW typically doesn't do much in December and again they've kept to this. The Empire got an upgrade kit and there was some new terrain, but otherwise they ended the year with nothing.

All in all it was a busy year. Fantasy players should feel shafted by only getting one army book and GW can't use the edition as an excuse because 2008 saw 3 codex's and 40k 5th edition. We also have a few dex's this year that showed that GW does indeed remember how to write a book that's balanced. Guess the Wolves and IG will be sitting pretty up there for a while longer. Not to say that Angels and DE aren't up there, but those two are still jacked-up. 2011 is already starting with some new Skaven and the announcement of the Grey Knights. I have a few predictions...

I think we'll see GW all but neglected Fantasy last year aside from the new rulebook and I think they'll make up for it this year. I think we'll have 3 Army Books this year, but only 2 codex's. We know Grey Knights are coming and rumors suggest they will be followed by Orcs & Goblins. I think we'll see another fantasy release in fall and a Codex close to it. Possibly a Tomb Kings and Necron release in September/October and a third army book (Ogres? Bretonians?) late in November or possibly very early in 2012. We ahve still heard of some flyer-based 40K expansion in the summer. Only time will tell, but the next 12 months could be interesting.

*Get's behind us...hence the tracks....Well fine, you come up with something better then "2010 year in review" or some such crap.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

My take on the Fry Basket

In the beginning there was a Blood Angel Codex...a real one with pages and a binding and everything...and it was good (for BA players anyway). But as has been the norm for GW recently there were units with no model, no description and no pictures. Ask Tyranid players how that works...that's almost every new unit in their book. It's a modellers dream and nightmare at once. They can do what they want, but have no big is too big? How small is too small? what happens to my scratch-build if GW makes an official model? These were big issues for people who wanted to field this big guy, but GW had a plan...a new model was in the making and a few months this picture was leaked. Yes, the Stormraven was apparently this monstrosity. The Flying Fry Basket in all its glory. I've had time to look at it and consider it and I still am amazed by it. Looks like they got a Thunderhawk and its sister Valkyrie hammered. They had a wild night and nature took its unholy course. Then the Valkyrie drank a lot during the pregnancy and the resultant inbred retarded mutant offspring that this union produced was called "Stormraven".

Then a few weeks ago this second pic surfaced. It looks marginally better and may even be worth the likely $60 price tag. There have been comments that they improved it...that GW made a model look better and even that they listened to the comments after the leaked picture hit, but lets be honest here, huh? This is THE SAME MODEL! Yes it looks better at this angle but it's also missing a few parts. The B-24-esque ball-turret doesn't have the guns or clear parts..the cockpit isn't there and the front weapons haven't been mounted, but it's still the flying fry basket and it's probably coming with the newly announced Grey Knights in April.
Oh yeah, GW announced the Grey Knights are coming in April. Pretty cool that I can cover months-old news and finish with yesterday's announcement, huh?