quest for blog content continues with this little idea a friend had
to get me back into painting:
time I finish painting a unit or a character model, I will write a
small piece of background for them. Nothing extravagant, just a
hundred words or so, give every character some personality and every
unit a little piece of history. Just a few lines for each thing that
makes it off my painting table fully painted, based and varnished.
my habit of playing with half-painted miniatures, they'll probably
have some legit battle honours by that point anyway, which will
certainly help. Take the Bogenhafen Handgunners I'm currently putting
finishing touches to, which already saw honourable service at our
group's big year end game The Siege Of Altdorf. I'm certain I can
expand that to a couple of paragraphs.
advantage of finally being settled in the new place is I have time to
catch up on the huge stack of comics that have accumulated in the
last month and a bit. The advantage of that
is it means I finally have some content for the blog I originally set
up to be about comics!
funny what catches the eye as a good subject for a post. Take this
snippet from Starfire #8...
yeah, I may be 1,000 words into an essay analysing a masturbation
gag. It isn't even a joke essay, this really did help crystallise a
whole bunch of issues concerning Starfire's sexuality that I wanted
to discuss into sharp relief.
just read that last sentence back and I didn't mean it like that. I
really didn't. I'm sorry.
a little something I cobbled together between assembling skeletons: a
foot knight character for my Bretonnia army.
friend came up with this idea a while back and I finally got around
to putting it together. Basis is a Vampire Counts Wight King with the
vampire iconography scraped off the shield, a Knight Of The Realm
head and some other bits of bling from the same kit. The simple
addition of the head with dragon heraldry on it changes all those bat
wings on the model into dragon wings, which was either clever of me
or lazy. You decide!
keeping the ragged cloak and mail, too, since I like the idea of
having a hermit knight joining the army on some mysterious purpose.
hasn't come out exactly as I'd like: the head is tilted a little
lower than I wanted but the overall effect works for me and I look
forward to painting him up for a bit of variety between soooooo many
had to explain this to someone the other day and I think there's some
mileage in putting this out there in case anyone is interested.
reason I think that Mad Max: Fury Road can get away with doing
things with and to its female characters that would normally bring it
in for criticism (like, say, running a pregnant woman over with a
monster truck or the one Bride who decides for a moment that, yep,
sexual slavery in exchange for material comfort wasn't too bad a
deal, actually) is because there are close to a dozen named, speaking
female roles in the movie. What this means is that no single
character has to bear the weight of representing their entire gender.
you only have one or two developed female characters in an
overwhelmingly male cast (oh, hello, Avengers: Age Of Ultron,
I didn't see you there) you get way less leeway because there's
nothing to offset these things. Its easier to read the Bride who
breaks as an individual rather than a statement on women as a group
because she's standing next to Furiosa, the other Brides and the
how do you get to explore flaws or weakness in female characters without being
accused of portraying women as innately weak? You include plenty of
them in what you're writing to show that you are treating characters
as individuals and not as a case study on your views of an entire
half of the human race.
I hate that something this simple even needed to be explained.
Matt and I had a quick game of Fantasy to test drive our new armies.
1,000 points, Dwarfs versus Tomb Kings. I lost pretty conclusively
after my Hierophant found himself standing just in the right spot to
be in line of sight of ten Thunderers and nature took its black
powdery course. My army actually survived its crumble tests for a
couple of turns after that but with Matt's army almost completely
intact we both knew I was only running out the clock.
a loss with a new army is an educative experience. Obvious first
lesson: pay very, very close attention to where the Hierophant is
think I might have made poor use of my general. I took a Tomb Prince
on foot and kept him in a block of Skeleton Spearmen with a
Necrotect. They did well as a team, conferring Hatred and WS5 on the
unit between them. However, I also took a unit of three chariots.
Both units did okay but as the game went on I began to suspect I'd
made the wrong choice with the Tomb Prince. The chariots made a
charge against a ranked up unit of Dwarf Warriors and did well in
that first turn, impact hits and spear bonus and all, but weren't
half as effective in succeeding turns. Once the impact hits and spear
bonus were spent they just had their natural strength and weapon
skill to rely on, neither of which are that good. Spirit of the
staircase and all but I can't help but wonder how WS5 might have
helped that situation.
Tomb Scorpion suffered a mishap when I tried to bring it up behind
Matt's battle line, appearing instead from my table edge. It spent
the next three turns shambling forward and then crumbled to death
when the Hierophant died. Pity, but it taught me early on not to rely
too much on Entombed Beneath The Sands units.
unit that did really, really well were the Ushabti who were a lot
more durable than I expected them to be. They held their own for six
rounds of combat against a ranked up unit of Dwarf Warriors
practically identical from the one that both my Spearmen and chariots
just bounced off.
not lie, Tomb Kings are a challenging army and they're distinct
enough from the Vampire Counts that I'm having to relearn how to work
a whole bunch of units I thought I'd already have a handle on. That's
actually kind of cool and something to look forward to.
just hope I get some use out of the Tomb Scorpion next time, I love
so Finn Balor left an NXT live event in Nashville on crutches this
Friday. I'm not even sure I can remember the full list of injuries
right now: Randy Orton, John Cena, Paige, Cesaro, Seth Rollins, Nikki
Bella, Shamus, Daniel Bryan, Sin Cara, Rusev... that's just the ones
I can remember.
anyone considered just booking an exorcism for WWE headquarters?
this rate of attrition, the Wrestlemania card might actually be a
four hour Iron Man match between Triple H and Frank The Audio Guy (if
anyone remembers that joke...).
for serious, it's not all doom and gloom: there's AJ Styles and the
other NJPW signings; Roman Reigns is currently being kept wrapped in
pillows at all times by a heavily sweating Vince McMahon; the tag
division is still mostly intact; and, 'Taker probably won't be
competing until 'Mania and his presumed retirement match.
then there are the women.
women's division (and I will never call it the Diva's Division) has
rarely, if ever, been in a healthier state than it is right now. Yes,
the nine woman, three way “Divas Revolution” was a disaster of
poor booking decisions but Charlotte's feud with Becky Lynch has been
focused, well-written and brought us some great matches. Sasha's
return from injury at The Royal Rumble got the biggest cheer of the
night that didn't involve AJ Styles. Over on NXT we have the
gloriously threatening Asuka and the brilliantly chirpy Bayley, who
can get a crowd on their feet like few babyfaces I've ever seen.
Bayley and Sasha's Iron Man match at NTX Takeover: Respect was the
first time a women's match has headlined a WWE live special and it
there'll be a women's title match (never, NEVER going to call it the
Diva's Championship) but maybe it's time to try pushing more women's
matches on the grandest stage of them all?
weeks on end of packing, moving, unpacking, building furniture,
arranging bill payments and entertaining violent revenge fantasies
about certain employees of the local council, my housemates and I are
now all moved in to our new place.
my new housemates are old friends and fellow hobbyists so we've set
up a dedicated gaming space. Originally I planned to start a new
project to celebrate a successful (if typically stressful) move but
after a quick game against Dave with my Orks... well, I had a better
see, I got nostalgic from living with my friends again and so I
decided to return to some old projects: one an army that I started
but which never got off the ground, the other a revival of what was
once my signature army.
couple years ago I had a chance to snap up a bunch of Tomb Kings kits
at a dirt cheap price so I did. Trouble was that whilst I was looking
to move on to a new army, the army I was moving on from was Vampire
Counts and so I just wasn't feeling it. I'd painted enough skeletons
and so the kits have sat in a box ever since. Still, a year or so of
Lizardmen later I can look at the Tomb Kings and see what I loved
about them originally.
"Forward, my minions!"
like that they're these Universal Studios-style Egyptian undead who
are, in their own way, good guys. They even use exorcism magic. I
like that just about everything in the army is either a skeleton or
an animated statue and not just because it means I can dash off the
block infantry and cavalry pretty quickly and concentrate my time on
the centrepiece models. That's certainly a benefit but it also means
the army has a very unified, focussed look to it. Plus, I have this
odd affection for the Tomb Scorpion, which was one of the first
“centrepiece” models I ever saw and one I'm really looking
forward to painting one of my own.
other army on the docket are The Lost And The Damned or, rather,
Renegades & Heretics since I'll be using the list from Imperial
Armour 13. The Lost And The Damned used to be my signature army back
in the old Codex: Eye Of Terror days.
the Tomb Kings are an army with a very unified aesthetic that I can
make straight out of the box, the Lost And The Damned are anything
but. The Lost And The Damned are an army all about converting models,
be it with the Forge World upgrade sets or by digging through your
bits box. It is, in essence, the ultimate show-off's army. You can
customise the characters and units as much or as little as you want.
I have a bunch of the Forge World conversion sets I picked up at the
final Games Day and oodles of ideas on top of that for cool
conversions. Anyone who converts their models, I am convinced, loves
that moment when someone asks to take a closer look at their work.
Its a lovely feeling.
the Imperial Armour list is, to my mind, the best version of the army
so far. It has some very odd moments of copy editing and some rules
my friends and I have flat out decided to ignore because they are
flat out stupid. There's a lot of that Hordes of Chaos business where
your choice of general opens up one or two options and closes off
about a dozen others. That's just ripe for ignoring, frankly, which
is why we don't usually see so much of it these days. Plus, there's a
silly restriction on who can use Daemonology which, again, is a rule
the group has roundly voted for me to completely forget.