Stop. Hobby Time.

I’ve started a new job and haven’t had much time to do anything gaming related. I did spend a few hours getting my paint on.

Infinity

I picked up the HVT known as Mobutu halfway through the month. He was a joy to paint. The new infinity models have a lot of details that are fairly easy to shade and highlight. The older models have a lot of flat surfaces that require a bit of skill to get the best out of. Anyhoo, I wanted my Mobutu to rock a red jacket with gold highlights. My NMM isn’t their yet but I feel that I’m getting close. I’m also getting better with smoothing out my highlights. A little glaze of the original color helps hide most of the mistakes. The pants were blue grey to barley grey. I was happiest with the way they turned out. 


I was so excited after painiting this guy so I jumped into my next project, painting up a Naga. I tried to follow the Corvis Belli paint scheme for the skin. That is light browns highlighted to sandy white after a violet wash. I wanted the armor and uniforms to be blue, instead of Corvus Belli’s black highlighted to white with a blue glaze. The bags were medium green highlighted to light brown and sand. My violet wash on the skin was a bit messy and I wasn’t able to fix it during the highlighting stage. I was very happy with the way the bags turned out. I’ll definitely be using this on my SAA. 


Next up I tried some airbrushing. My terrain project from last year wasn’t really going anywhere so I thought I might restart it. I had primed and pre shaded micro arts objective markers a very long time ago. I’ve always wanted them to look like something from Aleph. I based coated it with light browns and highlighted to sand. The violet wash looked a bit weird so I painted over it with a mix of light brown and sand. I ended up washing some dark brown into the grooves to add some definition. If airbrushed steel bluefin the screens and anywhere where I thought there would be a light source. I highlighted to sky blue with the airbrush to help with with the lighting effect. My lighting effect could do with a lot more work. It looks good on the table but doesn’t look very good up close.

I had a plascraft objective room that I wanted to try out. It was cheaper than the micro arts one since it was cheaper to ship. Furthermore, it won’t require much prep time to paint. It requires a bit of glue but it’s a lot easier to build than mdf buildings. I wasn’t super happy with the way the corners turned out so I used a bit of glue on them. The tape was there to hold it in place as the glue set. 

My son is a prolific gamer and hobby guru. He seems to be able to paint up a bunch of guys every week to a pretty good quality. I’ve attached some pics of my favorites. 


Malifaux

I totally blame Ash Barker and his Guerrilla Miniature Games for this. I’ve been umming and arring over Malifaux for years and I finally took the plunge. Binge watching all those battle reports is what pushed me over the edge. I’ll probably get around to painting these up in around 3 months. The miniatures look fantastic but seem very fragile. Just look at the sprues below! One mistake and some delicate but vital part of the model is buggered! 

Bagh-Mari FTW (or loss as the case may be)

I’ve played my Shock Army of Acontecimento (SAA) only a handful of times but I love them. They haven’t had as much attention as my Combined Army so I’ve only got them to a semi table top standard. Most of them are base coated and waiting some washes and highlighting.

One of the go to units in the SAA is the Bagh Mari. Bagh Mari are medium infantry with BS12 ARM 2 W1 MSV1 and Mimitism. They’re great for holding down a position because they have reasonable BS and are hard to shoot at because of the mimitism.

Where they really shine is in a link team. You can link 4 of them together in an SAA army. 4 man links are great because the link team benefits from sixth sense lvl 2. This means they can ignore surprise shots and can shoot back through smoke at no penalty. Combined with the MSV1, Bagh Mari are pretty scary for camo troops trying to get a sneaky shot in.

They can form a special 5 man link team with the inclusion of Stephen Rao. Stephen can be your Lieutenant, though I wouldn’t recommend it seeing that he’s obvious and squishy. By completing the 5 man link, he turns the Bagh Mari BS12 into an effective BS15!

 

Base coated Bagh-Mari with the wrong grey. Shot gun and hacker hands are from old akhalis models

 

I always take a sniper. In a 5 man link, this thing can hold down any fire lane. Even the dreaded HMG spetnaz will think twice about shooting at it. His minelaying ability is great for protecting the teams blind spot and he becomes useful when you move them up the field.

For the offensive I take a HMG and a boarding shotgun. The HMG shoots downrange with 5 dice and the boarding shotgun can hit at 21 if you can get close enough. Finally, I chuck in  a paramedic for completing objectives and for patching up his buddies.

According to the rumors, Human Sphere N3 makes the boarding shotgun profile more expensive but gives him access to Haris. I’ve run 3 man bagh-mari link teams in smaller games and the extra burst is awesome. However, the lack of sixth sense level 2 and the BS bonus makes them very vulnerable to camo sneak attacks. For that reason, I’ll always try and max out the Bagh-Mari link.

ITS 2016 and Operation Flamestrike

I had a chance to pop into the local club meet in the first few weeks of ITS 2016 and the first week of Operation Flamestrike. The club meet usually starts at 6.30pm and finishes late. I can’t really stay out past 7pm these days  so I threw up a game request for 5pm. Luckily my old buddy Deon had a few weeks off and accepted my challenge.

I still remember playing Deon a few years ago during the clubs slow grow. He’s now one our most active member and also one of our best players, consistently placing well in all the tournaments he plays in. He and a few of the guys at the club love the game so much they’ve decided to distribute it in Australia under toysoldierimports.com. I’ve pre-ordered HSN3 through them.

We decided on the ITS 2016 version of seize the antennas as part of the Flamestrike campaign. 3 antennas are placed down the center line of the table. One goes 12 inches from my table edge, the other 12 inches from Deon’s table edge and one in the center. You get 3 points for holding an antenna at the end of the game. There is one classified objective worth 1 point.

I was up against 2 link teams, a war core, a Dactyl Doctor and Tuecer. The first link team was lead by none other than the mighty Hector. He was accompanied by Phoenix, Machaon and a chain rifle Myrmidon. The second link team included Thrasymedes, 2 specialist thorakiti and one thorakiti with a light rocket launcher. My list consisted of my go to Bagh Mari link, Peacemaker with a spitfire, minelayer Naga, multi rifle Guarda, a Regular hacker and 3 Regulars (one of them the Lt.).

 

300pt SAA army. Has a bit of everything except for specialists that i actually needed

The Table

We have a lot of terrain at the club now. It was only a year ago where 2 tables would be full of terrain and the other 2 tables would have some bits and pieces that we borrowed from the 40k and Fantasy terrain.

One side of the table had  a bunch of single level buildings. The other side had some trucks and a multi level building. A line of buildings separated the board forming long diagonal fire lanes. There was enough scatter terrain such as cars and low walls so that a model could get some cover when advancing on the diagonals.

This is the view from Deon’s side.

Deployment

Deon won initiative and decided to go first. He has a very mobile and hard hitting force and probably wanted to move up and secure the center objective early. He set up Tuecer and the doctor on top of his only building in his deployment zone. Hector and friends set up near the truck in his center. Thras and team set up behind some low walls on my left. Last but not least, the Warcor laid prone on top of a red truck with line of sight all the way down to my deployment zone.

I took the side that had line of sight to the center objective. My Bagh-Mari team spread out near the rear most building in my center. The sniper was slightly exposed covering the fire lane to the center objective. The hacker was prone on top of the building holding my objective. The other Regulars were spread in my back line. Covering the rear and flanks. The Guarda and bot were in one of the diagonal fire lanes, behind a low wall covering the central objective. My Peacemaker and bot were also nearby covering the central objective. My Naga put a mine near the central objective and hid near the sign to my right.

Here’s how it went down

1st turn

  • Hector and team moved toward my right flank which was only covered by the Naga. After a few orders the Naga was put into a dogged state.
  • The team moved back toward their nearest objective and popped Phoenix around the corner of the central building to shoot at the Bagh-Mari sniper. Phoenix came off worse for wear surviving a few DA rounds.
  • Deon decided to consolidate and secure the objective. The rest of the team moved around into cover and Machaon successfully rolled for the objective.
  • My hacker crawled up to my objective and secured it. She then used a full order to give the Peacemaker marksmanship 2 and shock. I was looking forward to ripping through some NWI models.
  • Guarda launched smoke to cover the lane for the Peacemaker. Peacemaker made its way toward hector and the team. Unfortunately it was crit blinded by the Warcor. To add insult to injury, the Warcor then crit blinded the Auxbot too!
  • I jumped my Akhalis into Deon’s back line. It was a hacker but I didn’t fancy my chances of hacking Hector so I just shot him out of cover. Got crazy lucky and put 2 wounds on him in a round of fire. The next round was opposed and the Akhalis died instantly from his allergy to high energy plasma.

2nd turn

  • Machaon moved around to fix up Phoenix and succeeded in cancelling his NWI. After some judicious use of smoke by the Myrmidon, Machaon made his way to Hector. In a serious case of bad luck, Hector failed the first roll and 3 command token re-rolls to kill his Lt.
  • Phoenix moved through the smoke to the other side of the central building to take out my Peacemaker and Guarda who were both badly placed and unsupported.
  • With the peacemaker and Guarda gone, it was up to my Bagh-Mari to clear the lane for my hacker to steal the central objective. The sniper was free to move without ARO so I moved the entire Bagh-Mari team toward the low wall near the fried Guarda. My HMG Bagh Mari was lead and fired at Phoenix finally bringing him down.
  • The Bagh-Mari HMG then moved to the building to my left of the center building and took out Tuecer. At this stage, I had run out of orders and the rest of the Bagh-Mari team were in the open but in striking distance of the central objective.

3rd turn

  • It was time for Thras and the gang to come into the game and boy did they make a difference. Thras moved up through the center of the board. One of the Thorakiti forward observed an Auxbot putting Deon in front by one point.
  • Deon had to take out the Bagh-Mari paramedic to stop it from securing the center and had to take out the supporting fire of the sniper and HMG. Thras moved around to take out the HMG at medium range. Thras then moved to shoot at the Bagh-Mari paramedic and Rao in the open. After a few heroic dodges they both ended up dying to fire.
  • At the this stage I didn’t have enough orders for my hacker to reach the objective. My shot gun Bagh-Mari rushed around the corner for some payback but met with a crit to the face from Machaon.

Result Deon 4 Ex 3

Lessons Learnt

We totally forgot about sixth sense level 2 on Hector’s link team at the start of the game. Hector would’ve been able to react to my Akhalis shooting him in the back. This was a silly mistake which meant that Hector would’ve been alive for the 2nd turn and quite possibly the 3rd turn. Lets face it, Hector would’ve dominated any fire lane under 16″.

We also forgot about the special Flamestrike rules for seize the antennas. Under operation Flamestrike, the area between the antennas is a low vis zone applying a -3 penalty to shoot. This would’ve hurt a lot of the Aleph shooting against the Bagh-Mari. The Bagh-Mari would’ve dominated that center lane as their MSV1 lets them ignore low vis zones.

Outside of the rules mistakes, I could’ve played the game a lot better. Deon had outplayed me by taking advantage of my poor placement after the 1st turn. My Peacemaker, Guarda and Bagh Mari were all caught in the open on turns 2 and 3. I should’ve kept my Bagh Mari back until they had cleared that central lane. It would’ve only taken a few orders to rush up and take the objective. The Guarda should’ve been prone behind the barricade or at the very least covering a shorter fire lane. Poor old peacemaker overstretched. Once blinded, I should’ve called it a day and hid behind cover.

I’m getting better at placing my AD troops. The Akhalis landed well but there was no good reason to put him all the way up the field. Had I played to the mission I would’ve landed him next to the central objective and out of line of sight. I could’ve popped the objective, climbed on top of the central building and just been a general hacking nuisance in ARO. Furthermore, I could’ve spotlighted somebody and got my classified!

The list needs a bit of tweaking. I feel that my play style would benefit more from a naga hacker than it would from an Akhalis hacker. The Naga has board presence and gives the Peacemaker more 1st turn ARO punch because of its repeater. I’m also reconsidering the 2nd order group. They provided some order support at the start of the game through coordinated orders but they just don’t do anything unless someone comes into my back line.

Reactive Fire

Do you remember when you first played Space Hulk? For me it was 1st edition at a friends house. My mighty terminators would go into overwatch and wait for the pesky genestealers to come into LOS. Through the darkness you could see them coming. PEW! PEW! PEW! More often than not I would miss or even worse, the storm bolter would jam. Either way, overwatch was a very exciting mechanic. It meant that the space marine player could interrupt the genestealer player during the genestealers turn! Coming from basic D&D, this reaction mechanic was very refreshing.

When I moved on to 40k, the reaction mechanic was sorely missed. 40k made some amends with its overwatch rule in 6th ed. This version of overwatch let units snap fire (hits on 6+ on a d6) against units that charged it in close combat. Funnily enough, GW maintained a real overwatch in Necromunda. A model could spend its whole turn to go into overwatch. In the opponents turn the model could shoot during the movement phase of another model.

Dust Tactics has an efficient reaction system. A model can forego its activation to react to enemy movement in 4 squares. Some models can react to enemy movement in 6 squares! The reacting player must roll 2 dice. For each success (5+ on a d6) the reactive model can make an action. Either shoot or move. If there are 2 successes the model can even make a sustained fire action (re-rolling misses)! If a model had already activated that turn then it was tough luck.

All of the examples of of reactive fire above, interrupt the opposing players movement phases before they can shoot. Infinity has the most elegant reaction mechanism because both the attacking player and the reacting player get to shoot/dodge/whatever against each other at the same time! In Infinity, every model that can draw line of sight to an enemy model performing an action has an Automatic Reaction Order. The reacting player was limited to a number of orders like shoot back, dodge or (if they were suitably equipped) throw smoke grenades. There are more complicated examples such as camouflaged models surprise shotting unsuspecting troops, reacting against fire teams and even reacting against someones dirty hacker behind a firewall.

Its not all good for the reacting model. The attacking model gets to fire with the full effect of their weapon. This is measured in the number of dice they can roll and is usually 3 and can go as high as 5. The poor old reactive model only gets to roll 1 dice most of the time. This can be improved by using link teams and other rules. The player that rolls the highest value on one of the dice but under the required target number wins. If a player rolls exactly their target number they score a critical hit. This means that even though the defending player often has a low chance of winning, they always have a chance of winning big.

  
Infinity has the luxury of having a very elegant reaction system because of its low model count and high density of terrain. Space Hulk and Necromunda have similar characteristics and as a result, have very nice reaction mechanisms. It would be very cumbersome for a game like 40k to have similar reaction mechanisms. However, Dust Tactics has a relatively high model count and it still has a very good reaction mechanism. 

I think 40k would benefit from adding its overwatch fire to any enemy movement in 12″ and not just against charging units. However, I would limit overwatch fire to once per unit per turn. This would prevent a unit from too easily dominating a position and would add to the tactical choices for a player. Does the player rush in close to risk reactive fire? Does the player take out the shooting squad nearby or save their overwatch fire for the hand to hand specialists? I’ll try and play test this later this year. 

Dust Tactics Bat Rep

Steve and I played another game of Dust Tactics a few weeks ago. I went with the same list as last time [see my last blog post] and Steve went with a slight change. Instead of taking a Wotan he brought along Konigsluther. We rolled up Radio Free Babylon and Steve went first. The aim of the mission is to hold the central building at the end of turn 8. Or you could just table your opponent.
   
 
Turn 1

  • We both moved our infantry on first. My jump troops went in early capturing the central building. Steve’s snipers roll up into cover on each of the flanks. Our other infantry move in using the central building as cover.
  • Steve’s Konigs’ moves in on my left with the Flammluther and fixerbot in support. My Pounders take cover on both the left and the right flank. My Wildfire moves in to support my Pounder on my right

Turn 2

  • I win initiative and my Wildfire sustain fires the axis heavy infantry. Killing them all.
  • Angela sustain fires my Tankbusters in cover killing one. They retaliate by jumping next to Angela. The Ghosts behind the building react killing one of them. They’re shots and punches wiff. They’re later killed by the flammluther.
  • My flamer squad screams up the left side trying to blow up the Konigs’. The Konigs’ snipers react killing a few of them. I am able to put some damage on the Konigs before it blasts them to bits. I follow this up with an attack from my leftmost pounder but it wiffs.
  • The grim reapers move up through the central building and take out the right most snipers. I wiff on both my order rolls for the my command squad and Johnny One Eye’s Death Dealer Squad move up the left in full view of the Konigs’
  • The Fixerbot manages to heal some damage on the Konigs’

Turn 3

  • Steve wins initiative and takes out my left most Pounder with the Konigs’
  • We’re both running out of infantry units so i decide to rush my armour forward to take them out. My wildfire moves in to kill the ghosts but reaction fire from the Flammluther kills it. My right most Pounder puts a dent into the Flammluther.
  • Angela does an amazing sustained set of shots taking out the Grim Reapers.
  • I rush Johnny One Eye and friends into a position where they can take out both the Ghosts and the right most snipers. Both the Ghosts and the Snipers react with the Ghosts making scoring a hit on both dice. Sustained fire from the Ghosts and regular fire from the snipers kill everyone but Johnny One Eye. Johnny wiffs on his roll.
  • My officers prove useless wiffing on their reinforcements roll.

Turn 4

  • Steve wins initiative again. Johhny One Eye is turned inside out by the Ghosts. With his flank clear, he moves his Konigs’ toward the other flank.
  • My Pounder tries to move into a position where he can target the Ghosts in the next round and places a cheeky shot on the Flammluther. The fixerbot only heals a few points so I might be able to kill it in my next turn.
  • My officer wiffs on another roll. To add insult to injury, the snipers on my right flank take the officer and the mechanic out.

Turn 5

  • I put another round into the Flammluther but the Pounder is taken out by the Konigs’
  • My mechanic makes a charge up the right but is taken out by Angela

Great game. I played too aggressively with my jump units thinking I could wipe out Steve’s infantry units like the last game. I did not count on the effectiveness of reactive fire. Reactive fire not only prevented his units from getting stomped by Grim Reapers or Johnny One Eye, it also wiped out units that I needed to put into the objective. I should’ve played a cagier game, keeping my units out of LOS until the end of the game. I should’ve also minimized the amount of reactive fire by using my mobility to outflank the snipers and then attack the center.

As per the last game, the Pounders are proving useless against Axis armor. They’re absolutely deadly against enemy infantry but I already have tools for that (Johnny and Grim Reapers). I might change up the points spent on the Pounders for something else. Barking Dog perhaps? How about a heavy walker?

  
 

Getting Dusty

Facebook Shoutouts

Props to Chris Bates for this one. In late January, Chris asked everyone in the Dust Tactics Fans – Official Facebook Group to comment on where they lived and what they played. I posted some details on the off chance that there was another Dust player nearby.

A few days later, I got a message from Steve. He’d moved to Sydney about a year ago and he’s been looking for another Dust player since.  Steve and I organised to meet at the local Goodgames. We were both a bit rusty so stuck with 100 points of tactics. My allies versus his Axis.

100 Points Tactics

I brought along 2 pounders, 1 wildfire, 1 tank busters, 1 grim reapers, 1 big boss, 1 death dealers, 1 BBQ squad and Johnny One Eye. Steve brought along 1 Wotan, 2 Snipers, 1 Angela, 1 Panzerprinz, 1 Flammluther, 1 Heavy Infantry laser squad, 1 battle grenadiers, 1 heavy infantry flamers and 1 repair vehicle.

We rolled fuel grab and then placed terrain. You win by capturing both objectives (represented here by ammo crates) on or after turn 3. Units will enter from the left or right. I won initiative and chose to go second. Steve decided to deploy on the right.

IMG_1003

Turn 1

  • Steve and I used our infantry to move out first, baiting each other to bring our armour on the board.
  • Steve brought out his flamer infantry on the top right and I countered by moving my wildfire out on the top left and firing. 10 odd dice made short work of the heavy infantry in the open, Steve getting unlucky with his damage resilience rolls.
  • The Wotan entered on the top right and blasted the wildfire to bits.
  • My pounder entered on the top left and scored a hit on the wotan. Steve’s repair vehicle then came on an fixed up all but one damage on the wotan.

Turn 2

  • I won initiative again. My pounder had no chance of killing the wotan so moved forward taking cover behind the centre pylons.
  • Angela was entrenched in the tank trap toward the bottom of the map and was taking pot shots at the nearby grim reapers. Steve’s snipers were positioned around the right objective with the heavy laser grenadiers nearby.
  • The grim reapers moved adjacent to Angela, firing on the grenadiers and wiping them out. The boys also managed to rocket punch Angela a few times. The heavy lasers shot back at the grim reapers, killing 2.
  • Tank busters were charging up the top of the board, staying behind cover and threatening the wotan and friends near their deployment in the top right.
  • Johnny One Eye and his squad of death dealers exited the cover of the left objective to shoot at some snipers. Both survived.
  • After a successful get moving you bunch of monkeys roll, the other pounder had made its way up the bottom of the board and fired on heavy laser grenadiers causing no casualties. The wotan moved back toward the right most tank trap and destroyed the pounder.
  • The hell boys had made their way up the centre of the board to threaten the snipers and heavy laser grenadiers in the next turn.

Turn 3

  • I wanted to wipe out all of Steve’s infantry so moved my tank busters to fire on the snipers. What a waste since I didn’t kill any models and I put them in line of site of the wotan. The wotan just cut them to shreds.
  • The surviving grim reaper made a sustained fire attack on the laser grenadiers killing them all. Steve was getting really unlucky with his damage resistance rolls. This freed up the BBQ squad who moved up and tried to take out the Wotan. I managed to score a few hits but these were repaired by that damn  repair vehicle.
  • Johnny one eye and team did a sustained fire action on the snipers killing them. I moved the big boss to the left most objective with their first activation and then made a another successful get moving you bunch of monkeys roll on the grim reaper. I moved him to the right most objective and won the game.

Here are some things I had learned

  • Pounder is useless against Armour 5 vehicles like the Wotan. I can use its mobility to take out infantry and keep it away from things like the Wotan.
  • Never underestimate a repair vehicle. Normally I would work away at a high damage target. The repair vehicle kept the wotan going and going.
  • Wotan backed up by a repair vehicle and a flammluther is an excellent firebase. The flammluther makes it difficult for Grim Reapers and Tank Busters to get close.
  • Grim Reapers, Pounders and Tank Busters are incredibly fast. On this small board, I was able to get them in really good positions by turn 2
  • Always take a command squad. Using get moving you bunch of monkeys was very helpful. I was able to move a pounder and grim reapers unit into some very good positions.

That was a really fun game. Steve is a blast to play against. I think his tanks would do a lot better on a bigger board. We’re setting up some regular sessions. I’m also going to teach him to play Infinity.

Battlefoam

Mightape.com.au had imported a big chunk of battlefoam products. I didn’t want to fork out a few hundered dollars for a bag but I did need something to store my ever growing horde of Dust minis. I picked up 2 eco bags with the half tray loadout.

The eco bags are great value and hold a lot of stuff. The half tray load out doesn’t seem to fit as well as it does in a battlefoam bag. Dust infantry are a snug fit in the troop trays. Type 3 infantry have to go into the terminator trays. I ran out of space in the pluck foam for my axis and I ended up cutting down some of the troop trays to fit in some long barrels.

   
   

Boss vs. Big Boss

Hello fight fans. Tonight we decide on who is a better command squad in the game of “Dust Tactics”. In the blue corner  we have “The Boss”. A 5 man lightly armoured infantry unit weighing in at 12 points. In the red corner we have “The Big Boss”. A 3 man heavily armoured infantry unit weighing in at 13 points.

Both units have access to officer, mechanic and medic special skills. This means that they have the chance to issue special orders to other units giving them things like extra actions or more ammo. Officers are particularly powerful because they can call in reinforcements in the form of infantry squads or vehicles that have been destroyed.

Which one is better?

Offensive Capabilities

IMG_0970The Boss is armed with 4 M1 automatic rifles and 1 victory HMG. Against type 2 infantry they can spit out 14 dice at 6 range. Against heavily armoured type 3 infantry they can roll a respectable 8 dice.

IMG_0971

The Big Boss is armed with 2 twin victory machine guns, a flamethrower and a wrench. At range 6, the Big Boss rolls a whopping 22 dice against type 2 infantry and 16 dice against type 3 infantry. That is double the firepower of The Boss against Type 3 infantry at the same range.

Close up is where things get interesting. At range 1, the Bog Boss can use the flamethrower and attack with the wrench. The flamethrower adds one dice for every infantry model in the target unit. Furthermore, each flamethrower hit causes 2 damage, making it dangerous against multi wound models like heroes. The flamethrower can also harm vehicles. The wrench adds 1 dice in hand to hand combat and is effective against infantry and vehicles.

The Big Boss is hands down the winner in offensive power. Rolls more dice at range and is more dangerous up close with its flamethrower and wrench.

Defensive Capabilities

 

An Axis Recon Squad rolls 20 dice against The Boss. With infantry saves that would lead to 4.44 casualties on average. In cover, that lowers to 3.33 casualties on average. Not a great result but there is a good chance that 1 or 2 models survive a volley of fire.

The more heavily armed and armoured Axis Heavy Recon Squad are a lot more effective at killing infantry units. The Heavy Recon Squad rolls a whopping 33 dice averaging 7.33 casualties in the open and 5.5 casualties in cover.

Fighting against anti armour vehicles like the Jagdluther is a bit better. The Jagdluther isn’t really designed to take out light infantry and only rolls 11 dice against The Boss. The extra damage its main weapon causes is wasted on non-hero infantry. On average, The Boss would suffer 2.44 casualties in the open and 1.83 casualties in cover.

When taking on units like the Axis Recon Squad, being Infantry 3 is not that much help for The Big Boss. The Recon Squad rolls 14 dice averaging 3.11 casualties in the open and 2.33 casualties in cover. That means that there is a very real chance that the unit would be wiped out by a volley of fire.

The Big Boss’s chances don’t get any better against the Heavy Axis Recon Squad. These guys roll 24 dice against the heavy allied command squad, averaging 5.33 casualties in the open and 4 casualties in cover.

The Jagdluther is quite ineffective against The Big Boss, rolling 9 dice and averaging 2 casualties in the open and 1.5 casualties in cover.

The more lightly armoured The Boss is better in defence. Having the extra bodies means that they’re likely to withstand an assault from light infantry and anti vehicle tanks. Both units a very vulnerable to specialised anti infantry units like the Axis Heavy Recon.

As the defending player gets to choose the casualties from non-sniper fire, they would more than likely choose the officer model as the last survivor. The Big Boss officer carries his own radio so is a lot more effective as The Boss officer. However, this won’t mean much when the unit is wiped out by a volley from a light infantry unit.

The Winner

The Big Boss has a lot more versatility than The Boss. Sure they’re more vulnerable against more types of units but they also have the ability to threaten more enemies. In addition to hiding in the back and making special actions, The Big Boss can go on the attack with a good chance of wiping out other infantry units and damaging vehicles at close range.

That is not to say that The Boss is a bad unit. If you have a spare 12 points and a lot of hard hitting units, this unit can be great in support. Put them in total cover and issue extra actions for your hard hitting units. This is great for when your Pounder has already scored a hit on a Jagdluther. One hit isn’t enough to kill it, so that extra action can come in handy.

IMG_0998

 

Man Cave

MAN CAVE

Hello again. Earlier this month, we moved the family back into the burbs. Over the last few weeks my hobby time became completely disrupted. While I wasn’t able to play, I soaked up all the hobby goodness the internet had to offer.

I’ll say this now. I hate the suburbs. I spent a good chunk of my life living in the burbs and having moved back, I remember why i spent the last 9 years living within walking distance of a major city. One advantage of living in the burbs is space. My little study nook served me well for many years but I am very happy with the man cave that I have now.

The new place has a double garage that is currently serving as a large storage room (for unpacked boxes), home gym and the new MAN CAVE. Most of the toys are still in boxes and I plan on putting them on small shelves. My infinity stuff and magic cards are transportable and still easy to access. I pinched a little container/shelf from my wife and it now serves as my storage unit for paints, basing materials, glue and spare airbrush bits. I bought a fold-able bought a fold-able table for my workspace and a spare for playing games on.

ManCaveUntouched

NEW AIR BRUSHES

Props to Dan Vis-One Cade for letting me know about the Amazon sale on Badger Airbrushes. I suck at airbrushing and painting in general but I jumped at the chance to own a real airbrush. After some credit card abuse i forked out for a Sotar 20/20.

My original airbrushes were generic rebrands from the now defunct Underground Wargaming. They were great value and served me well for the last year. I thought that jumping from these to a Sotar would be too great a leap so I picked a Patriot as well.

I’ve been using the patriot over the last few months and I am impressed. The needle is large and sticks waaaaay out of the front of the airbrush. However, it retracts all the way in when fully engaged. Instead of paint drying in the airbrush and having to constantly clean around the openings, paint builds up on top of the needle on a patriot. This was relatively easy to clean. I only had to take apart patriot once to clean a blockage.

After a  few months of intermittent abuse, the trigger wouldn’t work. As it turns out, the spring that holds up a needle that holds up the trigger broke. I had to order a new assembly valve from the US and this was not cheap. According to Patriot, no tools are needed. However I found that the thingy was screwed in tight and I had to use a “tool” to get it out. I gripped too hard and damaged the already broken assembly valve.

Last week I tried the Sotar 20/20 and boy was I impressed. I still screwed up by over spraying certain areas on my ACA models. It was super smooth to use and the scatter pattern was excellent. The only time I got splatter was after a long session without me cleaning the needle. I do worry about the fragility of the needle.

NEW TABLE

Mid last year I had bought 2 mototronica building sets to go with the set from operation ice storm. Right before new years, I bought the mototronica mat from micro art. The mototronica went together like a dream and looks amazing for the effort that you put in (that is, not much effort at all). The mat looks amazing and matches the containers and buildings perfectly.

One complaint about the mat is that one of the edges was folded and twisted and wouldn’t lay flat on the table. I put some resin terrain on it to keep it down but I suspect that it will require some more weight or some more time rolled up properly.

3 sets or mototronica is just enough to make a playable table. There were only a few lanes from ground level going up to 30″. LOS from the top of the buildings was limited as well, the containers providing enough cover for ground level models to move around. Diagonal fire lanes and fire lanes from the left to the right were more open. I like this because I think it encourages movement or at least the placement of infiltrating troops.

To make it perfect, I’m going to add an objective room and some micro arts scatter terrain. That a project that I had hoped to have finished last year. I’m hoping to get it done in the next weeks.

IMG_0940

IceStormTable_ObliqueView

The best part about the mototronica terrain is that it stacks in a neat pile. Take 1 building, jam 3 containers on the roof. Take another building and put it upside down on the 3 containers.

IceStormTerrainStack

1st GAME FOR 2016

I was finally able to fit a game in at the local club. Dulydude and I organized a 250pt game of highly classified. I hadn’t seen Dulydude ,Deon or the rest of the Sydney infinity guys in a while so I was really stoked about being able to play.

I didn’t take any pictures but I’m hoping Dulydude did. Here is a link to his site http://dulydudesshenanigans.blogspot.com.au/

Last year I played with vanilla combined and tried to be too fancy. Consequently I didn’t do so well. This year, I’m going back to my Acontecimento Shock Army. ACA plays very aggressively with relatively few specialists. I knew I wouldn’t have enough specialists to do everything so I had a simple plan. Score a few objectives early then lay on the pressure.

My list had 4 regulars (including a 1 SWC hacker), 1 Peacemaker (SF), 1 Guarda, 1 naga (Mono), 3 man Bagh link (MSR, HMG and Para) and finally a machinist. Dulydude has 2 bikes (hacker and SF), Raiden (HRL), Necko and 2 buddies in a link team, a CoC dude (BS), Panzerfaust engineer spec ops lady, line trooper hacker and FO bot.

I won the roll out and decided to go first. Dulydude chose the side with the most cover in the back line and a great spot for his Raiden to deploy. There was a long fire lane diagonally across the board. Both flanks of the board had a lot of trees which we treated as saturation zones.

We drew telemetry, HVT engineer, HVT doctor/para, Telemetry and Engineer 1 STR.

Deployment

-Baghs on top of the centre builing behind full cover. Guarda and hacker on the right flank. Naga near the big diagonal fire lane so I can place mono mines on passers by. HVT not far from the Guarda and it woudn’t take much for the Bagh’s to get line of sight on any specialists trying to fiddle with him. Peacemaker in reserve.

-Necko and friends in total cover near the diagonal fire lane. Raiden on top of his centre most building. Panzerfuast lady prone on top of a building on my right flank. FO and bike hacker on my right flank behind a building. CoC building in the building close by. HVT in a little nook on my right flank covered by trees and walls.

-Peacemaker goes near my right flank halfway up the board. Dulydudes Spit Fire Bike goes on my left flank behind some trees.

Turn 1

-Peacemaker moves up the right flank through the trees. The hacker uses it as a repeater and scores 2 points for my secret objective. The peacemaker the scoots around the side and spends a bunch of orders trying to kill the biker hacker. It also tries to kill neko and friends but only manages to kill the FO bot with a flamer shot and put one wound on Neko.

-Spitfire biker moves across his backline to take out the peacemaker. The biker hacker then speeds past the naga unmolested and kills my engineer. The hacker then spends a few orders hacking my hacker, eventually succeeding in immobilizing him. Biker hacker also immobilizes the guarda for 2 turns. The spitfire hacker and raiden try to take out the naga but the naga ends up killing the raiden.

Turn 2

-Engineer and hacker down. Things aren’t looking good. The baghs moved a bit, the sniper taking out Neko out of spite. The baghs then moved again and spent a few orders to eventually kill the biker hacker. The baghs moved to the unconscious engineer and successfully paramedics him. The naga, engineer and a regular coordinate to take out the spitfire biker. Engineer goes over and fixes up the hacker.

-Panzerfaust engineer fixes up the FO bot which scores Dulydude 1 point. Dulydude leads on the number of missions completed. FO bot tries to observe the naga but the naga wins the face to face. FO bot survives and moves back behind cover.

Turn 3

-I have to complete at least 2 missions to have a chance. I still have a few orders left so I desperately run my engineer up the right flank and successfully engineer the HVT and my stranded peacemaker back to 1 unconscious level scoring me 2 points.

-FO bot scores telemetry against the naga. CoC guy tries a revenge attack against the machinist but the engineer survives.

Result

Ex 6 points Dulydude 4 points

That was really close. The clutch roll was reviving the engineer. Without the engineer I would not have been able to complete 2 objectives. Dulydude played really well taking out 2 of my 3 specialists early in the game. I got crazy lucky with the naga’s rolls and he was able to hold back 2 of the heavy hitters. I look forward to more games this year.

 

 

 

 

 

All is Dust

The Game

I’ve been a collector of Dust Tactics for the last few years. For those not in the know, Dust Tactics is a tactical board game set in an alternative history where the axis discovers alien technology, kills Hitler and prevents world war 2 from ending in 1945. At the time of writing, there were 4 playable factions. The Axis have tough walkers, zombies, super apes and lasers. The Allies have rocket pack heavy infantry, fast walkers and phasers. The SSU have access to the most resilient walkers, tanks and infantry. The newest faction is mercenaries. This faction has only had a limited release and isn’t really fleshed out yet.

Dust Tactics is played on a grid. Players roll initiative at the start of each turn then alternate activating units. Once all units are activated, players start the next turn by rolling initiative. Units can march, move and shoot, shoot and move or sustained fire. Some units can perform special actions like repair a vehicle or call for reinforcements. If a unit hasn’t activated, it can use up its action to react to nearby enemy actions if it has line of site. Shooting is deadly, especially against infantry. Only the heaviest vehicles or heavy infantry in cover can survive multiple attacks.

Dust Tactics Grid with 2 building tiles

Dust Tactics Grid with 2 building tiles

The Kickstarter

A few years ago, Dust Studios decided to use kickstarter to launch its next wave of Dust products called Operation Babylon. Operation Babylon sounded super exciting. It was Dust set in the middle east with a revitalised Afrika Corps coming up against the US marines. The Spetsnaz are also in the middle east, raiding both the Axis and Allied positions.

To run its kickstarter, Dust Studios asked its then distributor Battlefield Games to run the project. Dust Studios would be the manufacturer. In terms of raising capital, the kickstarter was a resounding success. It had raised almost USD$500k, exceeding any ones expectations. Things looked bright for Dust.

What the backers didn’t know was that Battlefield had a stack of unsold Dust products in its warehouse and a big stack of debt to dust studios for not selling it. There were also legal problems with selling older dust models. Dust’s previous distributor, Fantasy Flight, would not let Battlefront sell certain skus until it had sold out.

Some of the cash from the Kickstarter was used to pay off the debt to Dust Studios banks and the rest was used to fulfil “Wave 1” orders. Wave 1 orders were meant to include the Babylon units boxes, expansion pack and older dust skus. Wave 1 orders were close to a year late after the poor handling of the pledge manager and the now growing problems of who would pay for the rest of the kickstarter. I’ve yet to receive my wave 2 though I have read that it is coming. Eventually.

Starter Boxes

I was lucky enough to receive my USMC starter box, the NDAK starter box, the campaign book and some older dust products I had purchased at discount during the campaign. I have read that some backers haven’t received anything! The starters themselves are excellent value if you can still find them. It comes with a good sized army that wouldn’t cost much to expand on. Maybe some more infantry, a command squad and an aircraft. The USMC box has more points than the NDAK box. To balance things out, I would add a Wotan or an Axis jet.

USMC Starter Box

  • Devastator, six legged fortress of pain armed with the worlds largest phaser weapon
  • Tropical Mickey, light to medium walker good against infantry and light vehicles
  • Tropical Barking, light to medium walker armed with 6 recoilless rifles
  • Mavericks, light infantry that are very good against other infantry at medium range
  • Saints, light infantry armed with shot guns and explosives
  • Steel Marines, heavy powered armour marines with flamers and bazookas
  • Machete Mack, light infantry hero who is good in hand to hand combat
IMG_0793
NDAK Starter Box
  • Stummel, transport walker with a grenade launcher for support
  • Tropical Leopold, light walker with quad machine guns. pew pew
  • Tropical Jagdluther, medium walker with great range and hitting power
  • Sand Vipers, light infantry good at killing other infantry
  • African Lions, light infantry armed with sub machineguns and panzerfausts
  • Tina, hero that comes with her own pet hyena. Good at close range

IMG_0795

Going it alone

It wasn’t too long after the 1st wave was shipped, that Battlefield and Dust Studios decided to part ways. This would be the third bust up with a distributor in Dust’s short life. Dust Studio has decided to go it alone and distribute its products through local game stores and through its own website.

Not sure how many local games stores will take up Dust. I’m sure none of the guys in Australia are likely to stock it given the debacle with the Kickstarter. Furthermore, the local game stores I had dealt with in the past had problems with getting stock from Battlefield. Overseas, the situation seems better with places like Questing Knight and the Miniature Market proudly stocking Dust.

Despite a threat of legal action from Battlefield, Dust Studios made its new Mercernary and Blutcreuz starter sets available for pre-order and for purchase at Gen Con. I spent a few days thinking about whether I should buy these. Backers were meant to receive a unit of mercenaries as part of the kickstarter but I figured the chances of that happening were now very small. The minis themselves were great. Buxom beauties in t-shirts carrying heavy weapons. What’s not to like? The Blutcreuz was a tougher choice since I had enough zombies.

In the end, I put in an order for both. The mercenary box was a no brainer and lets face it, you can never have enough zombies. The starters themselves represent a tremendous amount of value. The play mats alone are the fancy rubberised ones and cost USD$20. The units inside are worth at least USD$60. If you pre-ordered, Dust Studios would not only throw in an exclusive zombie hero, they would also provide free shipping. For an Australian, this means a lot.

Mercenary Starter

  • Sisters of Demolition, light infantry girls with big guns. Awesome models
  • Tanya, hero with a big machinegun
  • Wrecker, damage resilient light walker armed with lots of machineguns

IMG_0782

Blutcreuz Starter

  • Brain Eaters, zombies armed with sub machineguns and panzerfausts
  • Frank, zombie hero with claws
  • Tropical Heinrich, light walker much like the old one. This version has a zombie driver

IMG_0784

My son has 125pts or so of SSU and he’s keen to unleash them on the Blutcreuz. Next time, I should have a bat rep and maybe some painted minis.

Cheers

Ex

Getting Work Done

Having A Schedule

With my free time being reduced to around 1 hour a day, I thought it would be a good idea to get organised. It is all too easy to sit on the couch and watch TV. I had some hobby goals that I have lost track of and some computer games that I’ll never get around to playing. I have a list of hobby mini goals like shade & highlight a miniature, build some miniatures or even just play an hour of diablo. It’s important to keep the goals small and I don’t expect to meet all the goals. It is just something I can aim for and you always feel extra awesome when you finish a small goal. My goals for the last 2 weeks were

  1. Getting 3 old morat sculpts to tabletop quality sans basing
  2. Undercoat and pre-shade the boxes and objectives
  3. Undercoat and pre-shade combined army reinforcements
  4. Building Umbras and 2 unidrons
  5. Building the objective room

Morats

Cheeky monkeys with guns and axes

Cheeky monkeys with guns and axes


Gentleman, please turn to the left

Gentleman, please turn to the right


...and lets see your backs

…and lets see your backs

I originally painted the morat armour all green. I added german grey to parts of the armour to give them a darker, more sinister look. Next week I’m going to work on the highlights more, going to a lighter green on the armour, steel blue to white on the weapons and light blue grey to white on the darker armour.

New Minis

Umbra brothers and friends.

Umbra brothers and friends.

I couldn’t resist putting together the umbra legates and some unidrons. I was going to use them in the my lists but they didn’t meet the criteria of old sculpts. I’ll get back to them toward the end of the year.

Terrain Project: Boxes

Lots of boxes. All black and grey

Lots of boxes. All black and grey

This took a few spray painting sessions. I prepared the resin by washing it in hot water and drying it. Some of the recesses wouldn’t accept the undercoat and started pooling. Starting with a black undercoat I pre-shaded with grey undercoat. The biggest problem I had was not having clean airbrushes. For the hour a day I reserved hobbying, I spent about 20min cleaning the airbrush. The next problem was getting the right mix for the paint. You have to add some thinner to the primer! My son gave me that tip after about 5 days of frustration.

Terrain Project: Objective Room

IMG_0756

It took a good hour or two in front of the TV to construct the Micro Arts objective room. Despite all the swearing and complaining about the really tight fits, I really enjoyed building this model. For the price, I think it looks awesome. I only wish that they would sell a roof that fits on top. As it is, I’ll probably use one of the district 5 building levels and a spare floor/ceiling from the district 5 kits.

Next month

My goal for the next few weeks is

  1. Get the original 300pts to table top quality (3 months late)
  2. Base coat the boxes and objectives
  3. Base coat combined army reinforcements
  4. Get some games on

I was meant to have my original 300pts at table top quality about 2 months ago. It is going to be a bit of a struggle to get that 300pts and the “reinforcements” to a tabletop quality. I’ve covered the re-enforcements in previous posts. Short story is that I added a lot more long range firepower. Hopefully this next set of goals is a little more realistic than the last few. I’ve been given the leave pass for games nights in August. This will be my first month with a fully painted combined army. I might base coat the rest of my Acontecimento for some games too.

Reinforcements. Zerat, Noctifier, Yaogat, Imetron and Charontid

Reinforcements. Zerat, Noctifier, Yaogat, Imetron and Charontid

Its been a long time between drinks

Hello

Its been a while since my last post. Work, Netflix, X-com and the birth of my 3rd child has really destroyed my gaming time for the last month or two. The new bub is a bundle of joy and my wife and I are very happy. Unfortunately some sacrifices had to be made. Given the small size of our terrace, my study area has now been turned into a nursery. Gone is my desk, replaced with a crib and a changing table.

Most of my collectibles (my wife calls them toys) have been packed away in nooks and crannies around the house. I was able to save some space in my cupboard for my improvised painting tray, some paints, lamp and some magic card decks.

My semi portable painting tray  next to my lamp, paints and magic cards.

My semi portable painting tray next to my lamp, paints and magic cards.

Gaming

I haven’t had a game in a while. My last game was about 2 months ago at the local store. I had been paired with Alex as part of our slow grow. It was 150 pts annihilation, no command tokens and no link teams. Alex brought along 150pts of Haqq. My memory is a little hazy but I think there were 3 Mutts, 1 HMG trooper, a rocket launcher line troop, a sniper line troop, an impersonator, a holofield guy, a guy with a heavy flamer and 1 or 2 other line troops. I brought along 150pts of Acontacimento. I had 4 regulars, 1 bagh mari w/HMG, 1 Bagh mari w/Sniper rifle, 1 Akhalis and 1 naga with monofilament mines.

The set up was fairly open. A large building in the middle blocked most diagonal fire. 2 fire lanes on either side of the centre would probably get contested by our limited number of heavy weapons. We rolled for initiative and Alex won, choosing to go first. I chose to set up and picked the side of board with the Truck. I’m not sure why I picked that side. I was better off picking the side with the sniper tower.

Thursday night battlefield. Having the mushroom park was a nice touch

Thursday night battlefield. Having the mushroom park was a nice touch

Alex set up the bulk of her force to the right of my position around the cluster of walls. Her line trooper sniper went into the sniper tower on my left, near the mushroom park. The missile launcher LI and heavy flamer trooper deployed behind the centre building. 2 mutts were deployed to my left near the sniper and 1 to my right. Alex held her impersonator in reserve.

Haqq set up. Sniper in the tower and the bulk of the force on the right

Haqq set up. Sniper in the tower and the bulk of the force on the right

I didn’t have much in terms of cover. I deployed 3 of my regulars behind the building on my centre left. I had them facing toward my back line as I was expecting a rajik or a hassassin. My sniper bagh mari deployed in the centre building in my deployment zone covering the long left fire lane. My HMG bagh mari set up to its right, covering the right fire lane. My last regular set up between them, facing toward my back line. I kept my naga in reserve, ready to hunt any infiltrators.

Sure enough, Alex deployed an impersonator near the building outside of my deployment zone to the right. I deployed my naga behind the truck so I could knock off an impersonation state when it came around the corner or drop a mono mine if it was crazy enough to attack the naga.

Aco regulars facing the wrong way.

Aco regulars facing the wrong way.

1st Turn

The mutts came charging forward with their impetuous orders. The 2 mutts on the left did not fair very well, both going down to AROs from the bagh mari sniper. The mutt on the right did a bit better managing to run into cover. Alex turns things up a notch by moving the impersonator toward the truck. This brought it into view of one of my regulars. At that range and with the impersonation modifier I had to roll a 5 or something. I chuckled a little when I made it.

Alex was disappointed but pressed on. A few more orders and the impersonator was behind the truck and making its way toward my back line. It eventually made a dash for my HMG bagh mari but had another impersonator level stripped by the now exposed naga. The impersonator wasn’t in template range of the bagh mari so decided to unload on the naga with a rifle. The naga won the face to face, bringing down the impersonator.

Having only a few more orders left, Alex wanted some blood and decided that more dice are better than bad odds. Her line infantry sniper fired on the bagh mari sniper. The bagh mari had a higher BS and mimetism, bringing down the haqq sniper in ARO.

I moved my HMG toward the truck and fired on a helpless line trooper. 4 dice at long range making short work of the combi rifle equipped haqq. My naga charged up the right flank, hoping to drop some mines. My last order had the naga re-enter camo.

Shoot out at the truck stop

Shoot out at the truck stop

2nd Turn

Alex’s haqq were pinned down from both fire lanes but she still had 2 heavy weapons to contest them. The mutt to my right charged forward behind the building to the centre right. Alex moved her missile launcher into a position to take on the HMG bagh mari at long range. The odds were not with her but she wanted blood. I like her style. The bagh mari won the firefight, dropping the missile launcher trooper.

Things were looking grim so Alex decided to fight fire with fire. Literally. The heavy flamer trooper went through the doors of the centre most building and up the stairs, eventually appearing on its balcony. This brought it in heavy flamer range of my bagh mari sniper. The bagh mari sniper was not able to take down the haqq trooper and was burnt to a crisp. A aco regular also had LOS but missed his shot. The haqq trooper turned to face the poor aco regular and burnt him to a crisp as well.

I had just lost a big chunk of points to that marauding haqq. The HMG bagh mari moved slightly so that he could get LOS on the flamer trooper. The flame trooper tried to dodge the incoming volley of fire but 4 dice proved too much. I thought it was time to bring on my Akhalis. I dropped him in full LOS of the mutt thinking I’d be out of range of his chain rifle. It wasn’t so and my Akhalis died without firing a shot. I dumped a few orders into the naga, dumping a mono mine and re-camoing. I was hoping that the mutt would come round the corner and be minced.

Turn 3

Alex was running pretty low on orders but had managed to cause a lot of damage. The bagh mari, aco reg and the akhalis were a big chunk of my points. She decided to dump some orders into the mutt, hoping to take out my camo’d naga. It rounded the corner and fired an intuitive shot into the camo marker. The naga died to the chain rifle but in turn, the mutt was minced by the mono mine. Looking back, we played the intuitive shot wrong as it is a long order.

The HMG bagh mari is medium infantry and too slow to make a bolt for Alex’s back lines. It was time for my aco regular lieutenant to earn his stripes. After a few orders, I was able to get the lieutenant to run up the field and get into combi rifle sweet spot range of the HMG trooper, taking him out. The last order of the game saw my lieutenant take out Alex’s holofield guy.

I won in the end but it was close. After a bad start, Alex was able to claw back a lot of ground by killing relatively expensive models. I really need to watch out for impersonators. Had I not been lucky with the dice, the impersonator would’ve taken out my HMG bagh mari and opened up the right fire lane. I need to think more about how I use drop troops. In most of the games I have played, my drop troops have proven useless.

Reinforcements

I had been rethinking my combined army list and felt that I needed a heavy hitter. The suryat is nice but doesn’t do so well against other heavy infantry and would also have a hard time against things like ODD. A Charontid has MSV3 and can double as my lieutenant. I opted for the HMG equipped one, gluing him to a resin base after repositioning one of its legs.

Maybe if I put my hand up. I'll be able to shoot better.

Maybe if I put my hand up. I’ll be able to shoot better.

I eventually want to play a shasvasti sectoral army. I have enough to play a decent game but I needed more long range firepower and a bit more ooomph. Gwailos are the heaviest non-tag troops shasvasti can field. They have access to some pretty bas ass weaponry including a multi rifle and the must have rocket launcher. A gwailos fire team can be joined by the super quick cadmus. BS15 multi rifle and bring your own cover in the form of a nano shield is enough to scare most people.

Yep. I'm so bad ass I bring a pole arm to a gun fight.

Yep. I’m so bad ass I bring a pole arm to a gun fight.

I also built a malignos sniper. Its super expensive for what you get but I think that a shasastii army is sorely lacking in options for long range fire power. I plan on using it as a surprise ARO threat along with my noctifier missile launcher.

Sshhhhh, I'm hunting wabbits.

Sshhhhh, I’m hunting wabbits.

Next Project: Terrain

I’ve got a bunch of MDF terrain that I need to build and paint. I will get to it eventually but in the mean time, I need something that looks pretty, is cheap and easy to build. Moto.tronica meets that brief. I’ve seen pictures of tables filled with 4 moto.tronica sets. I feel that these tables look a bit cluttered so I decided on 3 sets.

How to fill a table with terrain. 3 easy steps

How to fill a table with terrain. 3 easy steps

What the moto.tronica set is missing is the objective room. An objective room makes it possible for missions like “the armoury” to be played. Its the only MDF building I plan on using for this project.

Need something to fight for

Need something to fight for

All tables benefit from good scatter terrain and objective markers. I have a few sets of the micro arts boxes, consoles and comms hubb. This is the most expensive part of the table as they are made of resin. However I think they look great and its adds a lot of character to a table. Lets not forget that the objective markers are essential for playing a lot of ITS missions.

Thats a lot of boxes

Thats a lot of boxes

Here is a breakdown of the costs using Australian RRP.

Moto.Tronica $17 *3

Objective Room $42

Micro Arts Box Set 1 $28

Micro Arts Box Set 2 $35

Micro Arts Tech Crates (6) $26

Micro Arts Consoles $13

Micro Arts Communications Hubb $9

Total $204

I’m hoping to bring you an update on constructing the table in my next post.

Cheers

Ex

One game and a bit of highlighting

Lots going on

I have been fairly busy over the last few weekends. I survived a half marathon, endured a weekend of birthing classes and was mesmerised by the arrival of Netflix in Australia. Combined with work, I didn’t have much time for hobbying or gaming in general. Again.

Battle Rep

Deon and I had arranged to play a 300pt game at the local infinity club. I like playing Deon because he brings his A-Game each time and has a great attitude about everything. Also comes up with some wacky lists. Deon was pretty excited to play his “horde” vanilla Aleph list.

I showed up about 30min too early so went down to the pub to sink a few beers. Bad mistake as when I came back, all the good terrain was gone. Deon and I are very resourceful so we cobbled together some Warhammer Terrain and some mushroom clusters to make a pretty good table.

In hindsight, we could’ve used one or two more buildings to break up the killzone in front of the sniper tower and maybe some more mushroom clusters as scatter terrain. The picture doesn’t show a cluster of trees in the back corner behind the tower.

We were both tired and didn’t want to play anything fancy so went for frontline.

Mushroom Town. Ended up being quite a nice set up. Its a bit open on the right.

Mushroom Town. Ended up being quite a nice set up. Its a bit open on the right.

Deployment

Deon won the roll off and decided to deploy after me. I chose to go first.

I set up my Q-Drone in the little farm on the bottom right to cover the open ground in front of the snipers tower and to provide some general fire support. Doctor Worm joined him behind the shed. The Skaivoros went behind the closest mushroom cluster in the centre, just at the edge of my deployment zone. I placed one shrouded behind the left most centre building and another behind the most centre building. The rest of my units were scattered behind the two large buildings in my deployment zone.

The Alephs main guns set up on my right side. Phoenix and some other line trooper took cover in the building next to the sniper tower. The Mk12 wielding myrmidon hero set up behind the cluser of trees in his back corner. His hacker and a HMG daikini set up behind the snipers tower. 2 myrmidons set up behind the building, and 4 daikinis including one armed with a HMG and a repeater bot all set up behind cover to my left. Finally 2 of his AI order generators made their roll and landed close to the centre.

I placed my speculo right next to the sniper tower and my yaogat next to the little farm so that I had a straight up shot against phoenix. I turned around so Deon could place his hidden deployment reserve. I wonder where he was going to place it?

Turn 1

With my first order, my Yaogat opened fire on Phoenix. The odds were in my favour as he was in the open and I was not and I had 2 dice. It didn’t matter as Deon managed to roll a crit on that first face to face. Ouch. I tried to recover by moving the Q-Drone in place to kill Phoenix with weight of fire. Deon popped his hidden deployment sniper for ARO. The Q—Drone went down without as much as a whimper.

I walked my Rasyat in on the left side behind the left centre building. Luckily he was out of line of sight from any of Deon’s troops and had a clear shot at the Mk12 super hero’s back. I had the choice of taking the shot with low chances or having the alpha strike with my speculo. I chose the speculo as I would get to take out his daikini and hacker before the MK12 superhero got to turn around

The speculo didn’t manage to kill anything, despite surprise shotting the daikini and having a shotgun blast hit the hacker. The speculo was going to die for sure so I pumped another round into the daikini and this time it went down. The hacker dodged and the Mk12 guy killed off the speculo with a nanopulser. That speculo really hasn’t done much for me in two games.

My Rasyat was now stuck in the open with a Mk12 super hero in line of sight. I tried to throw some zero v smoke so he could at least move around behind cover. I rolled low and Deon rolled high enough to nail him. The ARM 3 doing nothing against the Damage 15 Mk12.

Things were looking grim at this stage. Like my last game, my alpha strikes failed and my long range weaponry proved useless. I decided to throw my Skaivoros into the fray, firing some hail mary shots at the TO camo sniper in the tower. I needed something like a 1 and finally the dice gods were with me. A crit took out the sniper.

I eventually moved my shrouded near Deon’s daikini in the left corner. I was hoping to use his mines and camo shenanigans to hold them back.

Deon began counting his orders at the start of his turn. He still had 14 or so orders left! His hacker gave the Daikini HMG Marksmenship Lvl 2 through his repeater. The daikinis advanced up my left flank to take shots against the skaivoros who was no longer in cover. My shrouded dropped a mine to slow them down but after 2 orders the skaivoros went down. The daikinis eventually turned their attention to the shrouded minlelayer but were not able to kill him because of a combination of camo, cover and low vis.

The Aleph decided that enough was enough and used a coordinated order to move phoenix and some daikini in firing positions to take out the shrouded. Miraculously, the shrouded survived and a mine ended up destroying the HMG daikini and his buddy. 2 more daikini came up through cover and eventually put the shrouded to rest.

Turn 2

In my second turn I only had a few orders left and nothing in terms of firepower. My shrouded hacker moved from his hiding hole toward the daikini on my left. He surprise shotted one and took out the other in a straight up shoot out. Doctor worm successfully revived my yaogat. He wasn’t very happy about getting critted on the first order and wanted some revenge. He lined up another shot at phoenix in the open and BAM! Phonenix critted him again. To add insult to injury, he fried doctor worm as well.

Aleph brought in some Garuda tac bots at the start of its second turn. One of tac bots failed their roll and landed in front of my M-Drone who happily shot it in ARO. The other Garuda nailed its landing and plastered my seed soldier with its next order. The rest of the aleph turn saw the repeater bot move closer to the HVT and the hacker eventually hacked it.

Turn 3

On my last turn, the M-Drone heroically moved to engage the Aleph right flank. The range and the low vis zones meant that he survived the limited amount of AROs. The Ikadron went on a suicide mission to fry the Garuda. The shrouded hacker pumped some rounds into the repeater and eventually destroyed it. Somewhere there the shrouded coup-de grad a daikini giving me a tleast one point.

At that stage we called it. Deon had enough orders to get units to dominate the board and kill everything. It was a 10-1 drubbing in the end. It was a really fun game. Alpha strikes and long range shooting managed to fail me in 2 games in a row. Consolidating with my shrouded was better than pressing an attack with them. Deon’s mass of troops was just hard to kill. I couldn’t kill enough of them to really make a difference.

Tactically, I should’ve moved my skaivoros into cover instead of being aggressive with him. He could’ve provided some much needed fire support toward the end of the game. Not moving my Rasyat into cover and then go into suppression fire at the start of the game was also pretty stupid.

Reinforcements

In both games, my alpha strikes have been ineffective. In part this is bad luck but it is also a lack of punch. The Rasyat is good at taking out other line troopers but is not exactly a great assassin. Against harder troops with ODD and high armour, he’s not going to cope. I’m going to keep the Speculo in the line up for smoke support, mines and the anti armour monofilament. The Rasyat will get replaced with Ko-Dali. Ko-Dali has a higher BS and MSV2 for messing with camo and ODD. The speculo smoke and Ko-Dali MSV2 should do well together. When Ko-Dali is close, she can use her dual assault pistols for 5 dice! That’s potentially more firepower than the spitfire too.

Long range firepower has really let me down. Once the Yaogat sniper goes down, the Q-Drone doesn’t put up that much of a fight on his own. Without long range fire support its hard to counter advances and provide any resistance to heavy weapons. I’m going to add a yaogat with a combi rifle and panzerfaust. This guy is a one shot sniper with AP+EXP rounds. That extra MSV2 won’t hurt either.

To add to long range firepower and provide a bit of surprise to advancing troops, I’ve added a noctifier with a missile launcher. I plan on holding this guy back until he can take out a choice unit or screw up a link team. Assuming my heavy support goes down early game, like it always does, my opponent will probably walk into the missile launchers LOF.

The lack of multi wound troops hurts. Having one wound assault troops makes me vulnerable to lucky AROs. I can’t really afford to put in a Charontid and I only want to use old sculpts, which knocks out the new sogarats. I do have an old Suryat multi rifle model that I attached a HMG on. The list would benefit from the Suryats survivability.

A zerat gives me more options in the mid field. In its standard load out, the zerat provides an early threat by being mimetic and infiltrating. It can also lay down some mines for area denial and threaten aggressive troops with its flame thrower. The zerat can be fielded as a cheaper assault hacker than a shrouded but lacks the mines and the auto medikit.

Noctifier w/ Missile Launcher, Ko Dali and Slave Worm

Noctifier w/ Missile Launcher, Ko Dali and Slave Worm


Zerat, Suryat w/HMG (old sculpt with kit bash), Yaogat

Zerat, Suryat w/HMG (old sculpt with kit bash), Yaogat

Painting

Haven’t done much in terms of painting. I managed to paint the main sections of armour for the M-Drone, Q-Drone and Doctor Worm. I wanted the main pieces of armour to look like dark steel and the weapons and other bit of armour to look like gold.

For the dark steel, I spray painted the models black then highlighted with white. They eventually looked like they were dark grey. I used the brush to shade the recesses with a mix of black and intermediate blue. I then highlighted to white by blending black into intermediate blue then intermediate blue into white.

For the gold, I base coated with middle stone then washed with mahogany. I then highlighted to white by blending middle stone into yellow gold then yellow gold into white.

Shas, Doctor Worm and the Bots. Black Undercoat and Grey

Shas, Doctor Worm and the Bots. Black Undercoat and Grey “pre” highlight.


Black, Intermediate Blue, White

Black, Intermediate Blue, White


Mahogany, Middle Stone, Gold Yellow, White

Mahogany, Middle Stone, Gold Yellow, White

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