Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Battletech: The Fox Hounds Graduate

Last night, the Foxhounds completed their final training exercise: a raid on a well defended facility. The raid began badly when Ranger's Locust walked right into a hidden medium laser turret and two platoons of infantry, losing it's right leg only seconds into the action.

Meanwhile, Scarlett in her simulated Valkyrie, Domino in her simulated Falcon and Vike in his simulated Commando set about destroying the buildings in question. Ranger's piloting skills were impressive, as his damaged Mech regained it's feet and proceeded to hose down the infantry, then destroy two laser turrets and a building. Although his Mech was a wreck by the time his fellow destroyed the last building and began to retreat, Striker kept some of the defenders busy (and provided his crippled Mech with some breathing room) by setting fire to a few acres of forest. Using the smoke to aid his escape and evasion plan, he abandoned his (simulated) Mech and escaped in the smoke. Meanwhile, just as Vike was about to follow both Scarlett and Domino from the board, he took a PPC hit in the back that crippled his Mech. His attempts to crawl to safety were ultimately unsuccessful. Only two Mechs escaped in this, the groups least successful training mission to date. Although the mission was accomplished, this was the first time anyone in the lance had ever actually lost a Mech.

Aftermath: XP and Mech Selection:

With their sponsor still very pleased, the Foxhounds were presented with their Mechs; a Javelin, an Assassin, a Commando and a Valkyrie. Although Lishka/Scarlett scored highest in her training exercise, she graciously allowed Ranger to choose the fist mech. However, it soon became apparent that all the pilots favoured a different Mech. Therefore, every Pilot got the Mech they wanted. Ranger took the Commando, Scarlett took the Javelin. Vike chose the Valkyrie while Domino acquired a shiny new Assassin.

With 4 xp each, Scarlett and Vike chose to improve their piloting skills. Ranger and Domino elected to save their xp in the meantime, wanting to increase their gunnery skills (at 8xp per increase) as soon as possible.

Note: I've updated the pilot roster for the Foxhounds on the Battletech page with new Mech Assignments, Pilot Stats and Career Events. Just click on the tab at the top of the page.

First Contract:

Although presented with a double-mission to provide security for an Isotech dig-site, the Foxhounds decided that the expected opposition would be too heavy for too little reward (no salvage rights). Instead, they accepted a contract to provide an escort for medical convoys targeted by pirates.The contract has the added advantages of Independent Command (the employer won't be giving any orders), at least some salvage rights, a bounty on downed enemy Mechs and great publicity if successful. However, much of the pay will need to go towards paying the Jump Fee's to their next assignment, Great Gorge being something of a back-water planet.

Contract Registry: FS-OC-08-08
Unit Assigned: Unassigned
Working for the: Federated Suns
In the: Federated Suns
To complete the following: Escort
System: Great Gorge
Forces Recommended: 1 Lance
Contract Duration: 1 Month (15 Days in REAL TIME)
Employer Contact: Losart Ulitock, Marquis of Great Gorge
Jump/Drop Fees: 50 WP
Pay Rate: 100 WP
Support: None
Salvage Rights: Low
Command: Independent

You are requested to provide escort for a shipment of medical supplies being transported from New Stockden to Gorge View. Pirate activity from the Tortuga Dominions has been hitting shipments. Ensure the shipment reaches Gorge view unharmed. A 5 WP bounty will be paid for each destroyed pirate mech.

Planetary System Data:

Star Type A3V
Position in System 5
Time to Jump Point 21 Days
Recharging Station None
HPG Facility Class B
Percent, Level of Native Life 40%, Primitive Plants
Planetary Capital New Stockdon


Deviant Gaming

My good friend and Chaos of the Warp pod-cast co-host, Rich, has just started his own gaming-dedicated blog. Rich is very knowledgeable and opinionated when it comes to gaming, so it's well worth a look. Only two posts up so far, but expect many more soon.

Deviant Gaming.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

The Shriven Test Miniature

Here's the first painted figure for my Chaos Space Marine warband. Originally I was planning on three test figures, but I like this guy so much I won't be trying out the other variations. Unlike other miniatures I've had to paint lately, there's no rush to finish these guys: the Journeyman League's structure means that I'll only have to paint a handful of miniatures a month. So for once, I'll be able to lavish some time on miniatures painted for my own personal use, rather than rushing like I did with my Imperial Guard.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

40K Journeyman League

Shriven Colour Scheme.
We're going to be starting a new 40K League over at my local gaming group. Unusually for us, this will a  "Journeyman League" in the Warmachine/Hordes style. Each players starts a new army with 500pts and builds it into a full army between now and the end of 2012.  After some humming and hawing, I've settled on a Chaos Space Marine List. I'll be resurrecting "The Shriven", my old CSM Warband from about ten years ago. The fluff behind these guys is that they're a break-away faction of the Black Legion. Disgusted by the "weakness" of Abbaddon and the hubris of Warmaster Horus, they have rejected their Black Legion heritage to embrace the doctrines of the pre-Horus Luna Wolves.

For the Shriven, Chaos is merely a means to an end. They do not worship the Chaos Powers as Gods, regarding them as being no more divine than the Emperor, merely Warp entities of great power. Only through harnessing the power of the Warp, so the Shriven say, can humanity become powerful enough to rid itself of Xenos filth and the twisted superstitions of the Imperial Cult.

Needless to say, these beliefs do not make them popular with their Brother Chaos Marines, let alone anyone else.

The presence of Berserkers, Noise Guard Death Guard and Thousand Son's marines within the ranks is due to a mixture of warrior lodges within the Warband that favour the combat doctrine of one Chaos Power in particular (with the exception of the Thousands Sons, are basically Thousand Son's that have thrown in with the warband).

The image above is the Shriven Colour Scheme, (re)created using the Chaos Marine Painter at Bolter and Chainsword. They host a painter for Imperial Space Marines as well. Their symbol is a wolf's head, so I'll be hitting up my Space Puppy playing friends for spare Great Company transfers.

For the first month of the campaign, we've to assemble and paint a 500 point list. I'll be posting up images as soon as I get them painted (they haven't even arrived yet). For now, here's my initial list:

Chaos Lord with Poweraxe and Mark of Khorne. Cost: 115.

5 Chaos Space Marines. 1 has Plasmagun. 90 points.

5 Chaos Space Marines. 1 has Plasmagun. 90 points.

5 Khorne Berserkers. 105 points.

Heavy Support:
Chaos Dreadnaught with Multi-melta and close combat arm. 100 points

Total: 500 points.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Battletech: Sword and Dragon Update

We've been playing a few games of Battletech in the weeks since I posted the profiles of the Steel Legion and Fox Hound Mechwarriors. While the Steel Legion have completed the last two training missions, selected their first contract and received their Battlemech allocations, we Foxhounds are still only half-way through our final training scenario. Foa and Lishka were unable to prevent their Foxhound Lance mates from winning the "Capture the Flag" scenario, despite some pretty impressive manoeuvring and shooting on Lishka's part especially. Meanwhile, the Raid mission has already gone horribly wrong, with Striker's Locust crippled (but nicely placed to destroy a couple of buildings and some infantry regardless). Meanwhile, the Commando piloted by Foa is in position to destroy two more. Lishka in her Valkyrie has blown up a building with her LRM's and set herself up as bait so that Domino's Falcon can get a clear shot at an Opfor Jenner's rear armour.

But even so, with one Mech crippled and laser turrets popping up everywhere, we're already faring poorly in comparison to the Steel Legion, who completed the final training mission without losing a Mech.

In the meantime, here's a photograph of some Battlemechs from the 25th anniversary box set. I've organized the 24 Inner Sphere Mechs in the box into a Marik Company and a Steiner Company. Here are four of the Marik Mechs, painted in the colors of the 12th Atrean Dragoons. The Jaegermech, Vindicator and Catapult are all from the box set. The Wolfhound is a metal Mech I bought because it's one of my favorite Mech's in it's weight class by a long way. There's a lot to be said for Mechs will full energy-weapon load-outs in a campaign game that keeps track of ammunition expenditure and other such logistics.

12th Atrean Dragoons


I'm going to talk about two recent events in my 3rd ed Warhammer Fantasy Battle gaming.

First, a group of Oldhammer bloggers have gotten together and created the Oldhammer blog-zine, to which I will be contributing on occasion. One of the first events they will be running is the Golden Goblin painting award for an Old School GW miniature. A statue of smaller (goblin-proportioned) goblin figure is the prize, in the spirit of the (proportionally much, much larger) Golden Demon painting competition run by GW on a yearly basis.

Secondly, my friend Ali, one of my role-playing buddies, brought a long a gift last night: an entire army of 3rd and 4th edition Chaos miniatures. The timing was all the more poignant because he also brought along some Chronopia miniatures. Why poignant? My good friend Spencer Warner died yesterday after a long battle with cancer. Spencer knew just about everyone who was anyone in the UK gaming scene in the 80's, 90's and early 00's. He worked for worked for a number of gaming companies, most notably WOTC UK, but including Fantasy Forge; a precursor of Target Games, who produced Chronopia and Leviathan. I actually remember attending DrakCon in Aberdeen many years ago and playing a demo game of Leviathan  with Spence while in my late teens. It was probably the first game we played together. We also ended up playing each other in a game of Battle Cows at the same con a year or two later, I think.

Ali hadn't received the message that our game had been cancelled because of Spencer's death. I didn't find out about this generous gift until I got home from an impromptu wake held by a (very large) group of Spencer's friends. By which point Ali had already caught a bus back to Edinburgh.

So, thanks Ali. Your generosity made a difficult day a little more bearable. Spence loved classic GW mini's too. He'd have been well chuffed to see so many classic mini's going to someone who'll put them to good use.

Friday, 6 July 2012

6th ed Imperial Guard Footslogger List

Well, now that I've finally had a chance to look at 6th ed (and now that I've had a few days to digest what I've read) I've come up with a completely new list.

This is quite a shift in direction for a gear-head like me, but the snap-fire rules, hull points and the availability of fortifications seem to have made light infantry (i.e foot-slogging) lists much more viable in sixth addition.

So, other-than having two Chimera-mounted five man Storm Trooper squads, two supporting tanks and a squadron each of Sentinels and Rough Riders (rough Riders FTW now, by the way), everything in this list gets around on the mark 1 troop transporter. Your standard Imperial Guard issue boot.

I'm a little leery of having a Special Character as my HQ choice . Normally, I don't take Special Characters as a rule, preferring for my own characters to become "special" through their battlefield fleets. But at the last Chaos of the Warp Tournament one of my guys "earned a name". In turn 7 of my last game, the sergeant from my Plasma Vet squad was my last miniature on the board. For five turns he held off (and defeated) Necron and Necron in hand-to-hand combat and survived a whole army's worth of shooting on turn 7. If anything in my army deserved a name, he did. So I decided to call him Sgt Slade, after Sam Slade: Robohunter, from the British comic 2000AD.

I was originally going to use convert him and use him as a "counts-as-Marbo" miniature, playing on the whole "maddened sole survivor schtick".  The resultant outcry on the Chaos of the Warp  facebook page made me change my mind. The main argument seemed to be that a guy who could  survive all that deserved use Straken's profile at the very least. So I had a poll to see which IG profile I should use for Slade. Straken won by a huge margin, which was a problem given that Stracken is an HQ choice rather than a squad upgrade. So Sgt. Slade, in recognition of his bravery, won himself a promotion to Company Sargent Major. He's now the power-behind-the-throne in the 13th Malegaunt PDF Regiment's 13th Company and, given that's fought two Space Marine chapters, Eldar Slavers, Orks and Necrons in the last few weeks, he's starting to wonder what's so important about his home-world. But not as much as he's wondering why loyal Space Marine Battle Brothers are so unhappy with the new Planetary Governor and his regime...

After all, what have the Ultramarines and Blood Angels got against the Word Bearers? Aren't they Space Marine's too?

Update: I've had a bit of a rethink since I first wrote this list. Chimera's are even more paper-thin in practice than they are on paper. Sentinels aren't much better. The new list has neither.

Company Command Squad: 2 troopers with flamers (10), 1 with Heavy Flamer (20)  Ensign Paxx with Company Standard (build as officer but counts as normal guardsman with Regimental Banner 15 points), Company Sgt Major Slade (Colonel Straken 95 points) Nork Deadogg (110points) +50 points base cost.
                                                                                                       Total: 255 points


Platoon HQ:
Lt and four guardsmen. 4 guardsmen have Grenade Launchers(15).  Cost: 50 points.

Imp Guard Squads x3:
1xSgt and 9x guardsmen per squad. 1 per squad has Grenade Launcher (5), 2 per Squad have Autocannon (squads 2 and 3) or Heavy Bolter (squad 1).
Cost: 65 points each (195 points).

Heavy Weapon Squad: 3x Lascannon Teams. Cost: 105 points.

Heavy Weapon Squad: 3x Lascannon Teams. Cost: 105 points.

Heavy Weapon Squad: 3x Missile Launcher Teams. Cost: 90 points.

Veteran Squad: 3 have Plasma Guns. Cost:  115 points.

Stormtrooper Squad: sgt + 4 stormtroopers. 1 have Melta Guns. 1 has Plasma Gun.  Cost:  110 points.

Stormtrooper Squad: sgt + 4 troopers. 2 have Melta Guns. 105 points.


8 x Rough Riders. 2 have Melta Guns. Cost: 115 pts.

1x Demolisher Siege Tank with Lascannon: Cost: 180 points.

1 x Leman Russ Executioner with Lascannon and 2x Heavy Bolters. Cost: 225

Aegis Defence Line with Quad cannon. Cost: 100 points

Total Cost:

Need to buy: 4 Heavy Weapon Box Sets (6 Lascannon, 2 Autocannon, 3 Missile Launchers. Already have Heavy Bolter). Executioner Turret. 10x Rough Riders. Aegis Defence Line.

Need to build: Officer carrying Standard, Heavy Flamer guy and convert CSM Slade.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012


The rival Merc Lance in our club's Battletech campaign. Boo! Hiss!


Despite being lucky enough (unlike the Foxhounds) to have decent piloting rolls, The Steel Legion has been plagued by several unfortunate incident's during training. At least one pilot has successfully (and repeatedly) inflicted more damage on his own Mech by falling than has been sustained via the actions of simulated enemies. It remains to be seen if the Lance's luck will turn.


Played by William. Eldest son of Baron Flavius Valentino, Tiberius served in the House Steiner military for several years before an act of betrayal by a beloved friend led to charges of "Cowardice in the face of the enemy." Moreover, Tiberous was further charged with being in collusion with the enemy. Only his family connections saved him from execution. Tiberius has since come to Galatea to find work with a mercenary company, prove his courage, and regain his honor.
Gunnery: 4
MercNet Training Log:
Centurion has completed 3 of the four designated training missions, providing heavy covering fire defending the flag in Scenario 1, providing recon in Scenario 2 and participating in a city fight in Scenario 3, destroying a Panther. 

[*] Lost his Mech in scenario 1 when Hoida (piloting an enemy mech in this scenario) triggered off an ammunition explosion.


 Played by Mark. Fox claims to have been one of the better pilots in the Arenas of Solaris IV, using speed and daring dash and elan to outfox his opponents before getting in close and unleashing all weaponry on his target. Alas, he lost his Mech in a fixed match when his Heat Sinks were rigged to fail upon execution of his signature move.
Mechless, Fawlkes jumped ship, went into hiding (from various organisations who lost vast sums of money due to his defeat) and ended up signing on with the newly established 'Steel Legion' at Galatea.

Gunnery: 4
Piloting: 4
MercNet Training Log:
Fox has completed 3 of the four designated training missions, defending the flag in Scenario 1, providing recon in Scenario 2 and participating in a city fight in Scenario 3.


Played by Martin. Hoida's sensei was implicated in a minor Rasalhaguen rebellion and accused of ties with the Tyr. His master having been ordered to commit Sepoku, Hoida, blaming himself, travelled to Galatea.
 He sees his only chance at redemption to be to gather the evidence to clear his Masters honour and to earn forgiveness for his betrayal of his Master. First he must find out who masterminded the uprising and who in the DCMS or ISF made sure his Master took the fall. Hoida believes that the only way he can gain this information is to search outside the DCMS and even the Draconis Combine itself.

Gunnery: 3
Piloting: 6
MercNet Training Log:
Hoida has completed 3 of the four designated training missions, capturing the flag in Scenario 1, providing accurate fire support in Scenario 2 and participating in a city fight in Scenario 3, fighting whilst outnumbered.  

[*] Destroyed Centurion's Mech in Scenario one by triggering an ammunition explosion.


Played by John.A former member of the 24th Lyran Guard and a graduate of the famous Nagelring Mechwarrior academy. He participated in the 13th Battle of Hesperus, defending the strategic world from an attacking force from the Mercenary company Wolf's Dragoons, in the employ of House Marik.
Striker's career was compromised by being one of the few Mechwarrior's to survive the battle. Unable to find a post in a combat unit, he resigned his commission and traveled to Galate, hoping to find himself in a company contracted to operate against House Marik.

Gunnery: 4
Piloting: 5
MercNet Training Log:
Striker has completed 3 of the four designated training missions, capturing the flag in Scenario 1, providing accurate fire support in Scenario 2 and participating in a city fight in Scenario 3.