Friday, August 9, 2019

Mr Saturday's Big Adventure - Warhammer World and BOYL 2019

In full BOYL mode: Sean, other Sean (TheOttoVonBismark), myself, Thomas (Airbornegrove) and JB (Asslessman).

Another BOYL post you say? Well, this one is special, as it's my first one. After many years crying into my pillow while the BOYL photos and posts roll in this time of year, I am at last able to join in. YEAH! Come with me on my whirlwind adventure into hobby overload. Prepare yourself, this is wildly self-indulgent. (Warning: I have shamelessly lifted photos from all over. Should one be yours and you want it removed I will forward the request to HR and legal and we'll be in touch.)

I set off to Notthingham last Thursday. After I met up with some of my my gamer bros who had similarly arrived early, we went on the rip. Several drinks later some more folks arrived and buoyed up by excited anticipation we had a couple more drinks. A good start in my book.

Day 1: Warhammer World
On Friday I rose early and walked through a very sunny Nottingham to have breakfast with yet more of the gaming fraternity. I greeted old friends and met several people I've known online for years but was meeting in the flesh for the first time. They were, to a person, all excellent folks, turns out. With that, off the Warhammer World we went!

Look! It's the rhino! Like, THE RHINO!

I'd never been to the mecca of all things Games Workshop, though I'd wanted to visit it for many years. The plan for the day was for most of us to play a Realm of Chaos warbands campaign, and for myself and a few others to take things a little more easy, take in all the hobby magic, see the exhibition, look at all the shinies, drink a Bugmans and play some Underworlds.

More posing. This time in front of the marine in all his 2nd edition glory.

The rest of the fellows had put together some amazing chaos warbands for the day, which they flung at each other with manic gusto.

Darrin (Lopez), Thomas (AirborneGrove), Chris (Blue), Sean and JB there at the back making the traditional Oldhammer greeting.
Orcs and beastmen engage in furious dance-off.

A Khorne champion rudely jostles a man on his way to get a pint of milk and the paper.

Take the photo!! This sword is really heavy!

While the others brutalized each other in the chaos wastes the rest of us got our Underworlds on. I brought my Sepulchral Guard on their first outing. It's a great game, which I lost several games of over the weekend. It's given me a need to deck build and paint some Nightvault terrain.

Patrick (BazPaz), myself, Chris (Antipixi) and other Chris (Curis) get down in Bugmans.

Once We'd had played a few games and wandered about the hallowed halls, fought the urge to buy everything in Forge World and then had to go and have a sit to calm down, it was time to visit the exhibition. I'd been very much looking forward to this. There were some exhibits in there I'd been wanting to see for decades.

There it is. The thing that started it all.

Pat (BazPaz), Paul(Cheetor) and myself dove in. Right at the start of the exhibition, there it sits. John Blanche's undead assault diorama. This kind of stopped me in my tracks, and 12 year old Mr Saturday took over the show. I spent about ten minutes staring at this. Photos are fine, but seeing the real thing really overwhelmed me. I'd still be there if I hadn't had to move on to see everything else.

Another firm favourite. Hatless Kemmler!
Lustrian rescue.
The Joust. There's so much going on here. It's an amazing diorama.
I love chaos dwarves. Now, for years I really dislike the big hats, but now I love them. It's such a quirky army. Also, if anyone wants to send me an Astragoth Ironhand that'd be fine.
Micke McVey's Warhammer Quest diorama. Another favourite. Again, it's great, and a little surreal looking at these from different angles than you've seen in photographs.
One of the huge dioarama scenes. Crazy impressive.

Another iconic diorama from Mike McVery, the Emperor and Horus. I did take a look behind Horus' Khorne shrine. Finally, I know why he turned. It's all so clear now.
Dave Andrew's beautiful Thunderbolt diarama. Still incredible.
Another giant diorama, with Death Guard versus Dark Angels. These things are incredibly huge, and deeply cool. Forgive the glare, but can you see the Thunderhawk that's just fired it's missiles there top left? 
This one of the Space Wolves defending a fortress against the Tyranids was a mighty game of where's wally. There are so many great little scenes of genestealers crossing frozen rivers, scaling cliffs and popping out of manholes. Those wolves are in so much trouble.
This really spoke to the young boy in me that spent many happy hours lining up toy soldiers. Also the adult with possible  mild OCD. Yes, things should be in lines. Approved.
This photo does zero justice to this diorama. It's humongous. See that liiiitle figure there, top left? That's a titan. It's about 12 foot high at it's highest point, and maybe 20 feet long. There are stairs required to see it all.

So, once we tore ourselves away from the many delights of Warhammer World we took to Nottingham town again, with Curis bringing us to an all you can eat place. There are few things better than unlimited options when you're hungry. I ate a great deal. A great deal indeed.

I'm smiling, but it's the rictus grin of someone feeling the crab claws and ice cream are starting to kick in.

Day 2: BOYL Saturday
Myself, Colin (Whiskeypriest) JB and Sean headed out to Stoke Hall early Saturday. I wasn't sure what to expect, but free range chickens was not one of the things on that list.

Off to BOYL Saturday morning and- wait! Oh my God, Colin's driving with his eyes closed!

I was playing in JB's Epic game. Nine titans would battle in three teams to find out who iz da best. (Little clue there to who won.) For my part I had painted up my first warlord titan ever, the chaos titan Misericordia.

Curis explaining the plan to his (shortly after, award-winning) Warlord titan.

The ork gargants just rocked this game. Within two turns two of the Imperial titans were nothing more than rapidly cooling radioactive vapour. The remaining Imperial game (piloted by princeps Bazpaz) played a canny game of hide and shoot before double-crossing it's new chaotic allies and then paying the terrible price. Sadly the gargants, despite soaking up an incredible amount of fire, then managed to destroy two of the three chaos titans and win the game. The warlord titans poured city-destroying firepower into the gargants, but managed little more than winding a gretchin and knocking over a bin on deck five.

The Misericordia saws it's saw through the reaver to get to the Imperial titan.
It turned out that orks, indeed, iz da best.

After the epic game it was time to investigate the famous foundry miniature cabinets. In particular I wanted to see Bryan Ansell's genestealer cult, with the famous Dale Hurst limousines.

The cult that started it all.

I know you've seen a hundred photos of the original cult, but there are MY photos of the original cult. I felt like I should have made an offering or said a wee prayer to the four armed emperor. I'll be honest, there was a little moment of feels here.

I wanted a good old look at the chaotic hierarch on the top left here as I have a plan to convert one of my own. I've never seen anyone make a modern version and I'm quite stoked to do it now.

Big poppa himself.

Again, I wanted a hard look at these as I'm planning a possessed magus based on the Blackstone fortress chaos psykers. I may even have a go at that banner. It tickles me to imagine a secret chaos coven inside a generstealer cult. 'Aha, we are revealed! Praise the Star Gods!' 'Actually brother, about those Star Gods...'

Those Dale Hurst limos. Goddam.

Limos. I love all the new cult vehicles, but limos you know? Another thing to look into. I also blew a little kiss to the unreleased hybrid on the right with the halberd. I would donate your kidney for one of those. I'm going to tart up some of those plastic guardsmen with modern cult bits for brood brothers too. I got so much mojo from this.

Following a wander about the miniature cases there was some time to enter the BOYL painting competition. I entered three minis and then got ready to join Michael Cassidy's Strontium Dog game, The Schicklgruber Grab. The game follows a bunch of Strontium Dogs are sent back in time to arrest Hitler near the end of World War 2. Michael had painted up a load of period miniatures for this game, which I was eager to play being a big 2000AD fan.

Before we could get stuck in though, the painting competition results came out, and by the Gods, I won one! The competition was judged by Tony Yates, Garth James and the mighty John Blanche. Having my minis judged by John Blanche hisself is something of a tick on the hobby bucket list. I've been soaking in his artwork since I was twelve. In fact, having so many gaming celebrities around all weekend was a bit mental. Some of ye might be used to this, but this was my first BOYL and it was utterly new to me. Walking past Rick Priestley to get a coffee. Chatting with Kev Adams in the graveyard about the supernatural and sculpting. Totally failing to realise Trish Carden was there. If anything, I wish I'd stopped and chatted to them all a bit more, but one was a tad starstruck in truth.

John Blanche is judging me. I feel light headed.

The mini in question was my hybrid rider, Kol Renko, that I painted for Jon Boyce's (Axiom) Ash Waste Race game. More on that later. Here's the fellow himself.

Kol Renko, Jackal Alphus

Having spent no small part of the previous day staring at Mr Blanche's sublime Undead Assault diorama in Warhammer World, this really was a bit surreal and highly excellent. It put a pep in my step for the rest of the weekend. You can see how pep-filled I am here.

Happy Mr Saturday. Pep overload.

Other pals (JB, Chris Webb and Steve Beales - Thantsants. I played epic with him while never realising it was him. I dearly love Somewherethetea'sgettingcold) picked up prizes in the other categories for their excellent minis. The painting standard overall in BOYL is superb.

So, once my feet touched back down we returned to Strontium Dog. Michael had been running it all day and the winner of each game got a full size SD badge that Michael printed and painted himself. He is generally regarded as one of the finest gentlemen in the hobby. Buy him a pint next time you see him.

The Stix creeps up on his unwitting victims. But stuff them, they're Nazis.

Our game had four stronts (the others were one of the Stix, Jerry Adams and Slabhead and the Dervish Dogs) make for the central building under heavy shelling and Nazi patrols. My chosen stront, Middenface McNulty punched, blasted and head-butted his way to the building only to be thrown from a second story building by the insane Dervish Dogs who then herded Hitler away to judgement.

Middenface prepares to ambush a nearby patrol.

Next up was a game by another fine gent, Jon Boyce. The Ash Wastes Race had also been eagerly anticipated, and there was a full lineup of racers. Some of the most mental creations I've ever seen revved engines, slipped mounts stims and racked shotguns. The race was on!

Wacky Races eat your heart out.

As soon as starter pistol fired the shenanigans started. Racers punched, rammed and shot each other with abandon. Shane (Papafakis) turned his rather excellent racer about and raced off the other way. You do your thing man. The rest of us ploughed on.

Soon racers began to fall as they were shot from their mounts or engines exploded. There were mines to consider, swampy ground and soon enough the leaders pulled clear. Despite my hybrid unloading several rounds, Papafakis ambushing him and Sean deciding to ride through the barriers with his ork hybrid, Colin brought home the winner's trophy! A cracking game.

With that, Saturday at BOYL came to an end. We loaded up and headed back to Nottingham. More food, beers and laughs ensued. Turns out Lopez does looks a bit like Tiger Woods in the right light.

Day 3: BOYL Sunday
Sunday saw us face the machine as we played Paul's (Cheetor) terminator survival game. The idea was not to win, but rescue a group of captives and then buy them time to escape by being the last survivor to perish. Terminated players could then play increasingly dangerous machines until all the humans were dead. I had great fun in this game. Bouyed up by taking out a T800 in turn one, I ran, dove and shot my way across the table.

Ulysses Jones and Faherty (on the right) prepare to fight the machines.

Again, the game attracted a full compliment of players, so the mayhem level was high. There were some great survivor minis, and Cheetor had a very healty compliment of Skynet's finest, including a Hunter Killer.

The resistance fighters rush the free the captives.

My favourite moment has to have been Pat's survivor taking down the HK with a missile launcher, only to be shredded by a second coming in behind him. No future baby.

Fight the power!

I pulled off the win in this game, well, joint win. Colin and my survivors being gunned down almost simultaneously. Ulysses' body hit the floor a couple seconds later I reckon, having been torn apart by a T800 with a minigun. That's what the T1000 nearby told the ref anyway.

I had planned a game of Space Hulk on Nico's majestic table with JB, but time, she was against us. I did get to have a good chat with Nico where we compared cults and had a chat about hybrids. What a guy.

Before things broke up I just had time for one last game of Underworlds. Chris (Curis) ran at me shouting 'Fight me!' with his hands in the air, and we set to battle. We had tried to get a game in all over the weekend. Chris pounded me with his beautiful orruks, but it was a really fun game and Chris is a pure gent.

I really like Underworlds.

So, that about wraps it up. A huge thanks to everyone who organised games, painted minis, drove cars, sorted accommodation, made breakfast baps and ran the thing. I'll see yez all next year!

Shane (Papafakis), Douglas, Rochie, myself and Chris (Curis) bid thee farewell!

Monday, July 29, 2019

Adeptus Titanicus - The Misericordia

Only know pict image of the Misericordia, captured by the Baneblade Son of Iron at Kazani bridge, Katara, M41.

With BOYL fast descending on me, I finally finished work my titan for the epic clash on Saturday morning. This is my first painted epic miniature and something of a bucket list miniature for me. I've long wanted to paint a chaos titan. Now of course I want to paint another. In any case, I dug into my hoard of titan bits and constructed the Iron Skulls legion titan, The Misericordia.

It's been many, many years since I played epic, and I had forgotten much of the rules. After some consultation with my epic expert peeps I went for some reasonable guns and lots of close combat fun. The trident in particular seemed too entertaining not to take. There are several chaos titan heads, and this skull-faced one was my first choice for a Khornate titan.

I tried to future-proof this titan a little, so all the weapons are magnetized. After some early insanity I recessed many of the magnets (Magnets do not love paint) bar the ones for the metal arms, which are mostly out of sight and need a bigger magnet anyway. I hear that the carapace weapons are twin-linked these days, so for my second titan I'll paint another plasma cannon so I can double up on the Misericordia if needs be. I painted the weapons in a neutral scheme so they can be swapped around on various traitor and loyalist titans.

As you can see, our titan has a big old tail. The face on it creeps me out some, reminding me of 1980s European stop motion films, which scare the piss out of me. I blended the metal of the titan's superstructure into bone, which I think worked pretty well. You can also see that sweet trident better here.

An effect I wanted to try on the carapace was a cracked and pitted effect. After 10,000 years of service you'd expect a few wrinkles. You cans see it on the left side here. I splashed on a liberal dose of crackle paint (Agrellan Earth) to get the effect, then covered it in a layer of pva glue to stop it flaking off.  You can also see the exhausts. Yeah, I know they have nuclear reactors. Rule of cool baby.

More crackly carapace for you here. That tail, Jesus.

The basing was pretty straightforward. I wanted a ruined, slightly overgrown city. The statue and collapsed tower added a little scale. Clump foliage works quite well for epic too. Some metal mesh torn up for steel concrete reinforcement sticking out of wrecked walls and done.

So, there we are. The Misericordia strides into battle this Saturday against all-comers!

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Strontium Dog - Middenface McNulty

Something random from The Mumblings today. Those of you who are fans of the venerable 2000AD might recognise this fellow as the Strontium Dog Middenface McNulty, sometime pal of the main character in the Strontium Dog series, Johnny Alpha.

I've always been a fan of Middenface. When I were a very wee lad I used to love how he spoke in the comic. It was only when I got a little older I realised this was because he was a Scot, from Shytehill, in fact. Here's a wee taste of Middenface in action.

He's no gonnae go doon easy eh? 

At BoYL this year one of  my pals is running a Strontium Dog game (the schicklgruber grab) where the stronts attempt to carry out a warrant to arrest Hitler to bring him back to the future to stand trial. How could one resist a nuts game like that? So as I had picked up Middenface when Foundry were selling off their 2000AD range, I had my man.

I picked some quite vibrant comic book colours for Middenface initially, then dialed it back to give him a little more realism. I wanted to make him look a bit more like the seasoned guerrilla fighter and bounty hunter he is, so I gave him a fairly heavy five o'clock shadow as well, and just a touch of redness on his nose. He is pretty fond of the gargle.

Painting his tartan shoulder pad turned out way easier to do than I expected, though I have simplified it down some to work at 28mm. 

I'm looking forward to seeing Middenface in action at BoYL along with the other stronts the rest of the players have been painting. I'll try my best not to talk in a bad Scottish accent the whole time, but I can't promise there won't be at least one 'Take that ye scunners!' or 'Get that stitched ya bam!'

Wayland Games

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