Sunday, 28 June 2015

A very busy week!

Before I start I'd like to welcome Jayke Hall to Inso's World. Welcome aboard and feel free to wander the grounds and share your experiences.

So... this week has been one of much ado.

First of all, I decided that it was a good idea to show my daughter an 'about turn' with bare feet on a lumpy carpet... the resounding 'CRACK' that followed, signalled a broken toe. Luckily, it is quite numb and not causing me too much pain but it was a touch annoying because a few hours later, I attended a summer ball.

The summer ball was an all-nighter and was great. Lots of food, drink, dancing and entertainment. I got the opportunity to try oysters (which were nice) and even had some insects in jelly (which were nutty but crunchy)... not to mention various cocktails that I have never had before. We eventually left at 02:30 in the morning but had a great time while we were there.

This weekend has also seen the 18th birthday of my daughter so I have been caught up in the celebrations for that as well.

Hobby wise, I have been working on the first of my Primaris Psykers and have been putting out WIP images to get feedback... having listened to it all, and altering things slightly, this is where I have ended up:

Click the Pic!

I have aimed for a smarter looking Beastman who could double as a Jedi (if you squint a bit).

I have also had a small rethink about my sculpting queue.

I am still ticking along with my secret project but have stalled a bit on the Squat platoon so I have decided to change things a bit.

As it stands, the second platoon had a pair of auto-cannon heavy weapons. This wasn't right because I want the second platoon to have missile launchers so the loaders were carrying the wrong ammunition... as a result, I have removed the heavy weapon teams from the second platoon and will be adding another team to make up the heavy weapon squad for the first platoon... which means that I need to finish six troops rather than twenty five... and that should be easier to get motivated for. I have no pix but there should be something to show off relatively soon.

Well... that's about it for today.

See you from the world's end!

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Oooo... something NEW.

Hello again.

It has been a good week really. Much of it has been fairly normal but I also had a leaving do to attend (lots and LOTS of cocktails) so that was nice.

So what's new? Well... there is a new tabletop gaming magazine out and it is called Tabletop Gaming (OK... not the most original title... but it certainly is all about what it says on the cover).

I bought one to see what was inside and you get 162, full colour, nicely laid out pages for the price of £5.25. It is an independent magazine so has stuff about a host of games (by host I actually mean HOST!!!!!) with a certain amount of advertising throughout. I bought mine from WH Smith's and it was in the computing section... which didn't surprise me because it has the look and feel of a computer magazine.

The content of the magazine is a mix of gaming types with everything from card games, through board games and dice games to wargames. Due to this magazine being about '101 Games You Need to Play' there are a lot of games with a small amount of detail. There are one or two of the games that have interviews and are expanded a bit but generally, you get a brief overview of the game and not much else. If you are expecting a wargaming magazine, this isn't it... and there is only a two page spread of hobby material, which seemed a bit lost.

With all that said, it was worth getting and there is a bit of text that says that the next magazine will get a bit more balance... so there may be more hobby stuff in there. So look out for Tabletop Gaming Magazine when you are out and about.

Now that has been said... what hobby have I been getting upto this week. Well, I have been working on my secret project a bit but have also managed to finish the second Gun Servitor which completes the Engineseer's little unit:

Click the Pic!

He is armed with a Multimelta... even though it happens to be one that has been traded from a Tau. The gun choice was out of necessity due to me not having anything else I liked the look of and I didn't want to go parts shopping again.

In other news, I have been working on my Beastman Primaris Psyker and have managed to get the proportions right but I haven't got far enough to show him off so you'll have to wait for him a little while longer... but he is a Jedi so he should be worth the wait.

As well as the beastman, I have been tidying up the easy areas of the second platoon ready for the arm slog. I have attached the comm sets where I need to and will be sorting out the carrying straps soon. They are very nice little comms sets from Mad Robot and can be found HERE.

That's about it for now... next weekend is socially very busy for me so if there is a blip, don't worry, I'll make sure I post an update Monday/Tuesday instead.

See you from the box under the wardrobe!

Sunday, 14 June 2015

A nice cuppa.

I'm sitting having a nice cuppa whilst updating Inso's World this week. It is nice to just plonk sometimes and be a bit lazy and that is what I am doing today. This week has been a mix of dental pain, fitness tests (I passed it) and an excess of tequila (and the bruises that turn up as a result).

Since I returned from the Falklands, I have been trying to get my head together but have been failing dismally. I am hoping that once I shake off the final pains from my wisdom tooth extractions, I can get a grip and start thinking clearly with a bit more focus. There is a lot of 'stuff' going on at home that I am not going to sharehere until some really big decisions are made... and that has been like a big cloud hanging over me. Unfortunately, I have to wait for a few things to arrive to make the decisions so the suspense is getting to me.

More about all that at a later date.

So... what have I been doing this week from a hobby perspective? Well... mostly a secret project but I have also been finishing off the first of the two gun-servitors for my Engineseer:

Click the Pic!

I have also continued to work on the second one but I am having a bit of a dilemma with what to arm it with. I have other heavy bolters but they look completely different... and I don't have a plasma cannon or multi-melta... but I do have a pair of meltas which I can convert. I could, alternatively build my own heavy weapon... Hmmm... decisions; decisions...

So what else have I been thinking about? Vehicles... that's what. I have seen this wonderful thread on the Forum of Doom (LINK) that has inspired me to think outside the box and I have got myself some bits and pieces to do a bit of casting. Bearing in mind that I have never done any casting before and I don't yet have anything to cast, you will have to excuse the lack of pix or even talk of models. I can also say that it will be a while before I start on anything meaningful because I want to have a bit of a play first... just to see how things work.

Exciting times.

See you from the top level of the stadium!

Sunday, 7 June 2015

The long haul.

IHello again. I've not been too busy with sculpting this week but I have been doing little bits here and there... namely working on the second Squat Platoon:

Click the Pic!

As you can see, all of the basic assembly has been completed and a certain amount of sculpting wiork has been done. Today, I finished off putting the first layer of Green Stuff on the arms; ready for the sculpting to happen at a later date. I will also need to tidy things up, sort out any missed details and add a comms pack to certain troopers... but I am progressing; even if it is slowly.

Last post, I said that I would start on a few Berserkers to try and stimulate a bit of motivation but I quickly realised that they would be very similar to the rest of the platoons so I opted for something a bit different. I have decided that it would be nice for my Engineseer to have a pair of Gun Servitors so I got a little gun tractor and added a few bits... here is the WIP so far:

Click the Pic!

As you can see, the Engineseer is still working on it so it is little more than an idea at the moment. There will be all sorts added yet... so watch this space.

Well... that is it for today.

See you from the veterinary surgery!

Friday, 5 June 2015

Friday meandering.

Before I start this out of sequence post, I'd like to welcome the newest follower to Inso's World; Ian. I hope you enjoy your stay and feel free to share your thoughts and ideas here, in the comments.

So... yesterday, I had a pair of wisdom teeth out and today I decided to put a day's leave in so that I can carry out the cleaning regime easier and be able to eat/take pain-killers when I feel the need to... so I'm at home rattling around on my own.

As I have mentioned, I am working on the second platoon of Squats at the moment and although I am ticking along slowly, I am starting to lose a little momentum (partly to do with having access to the Codex).

I think I need to put together something different to stimulate a bit more enthusiasm but I want it to still fit in with what I have planned for the army so I thought I'd talk about how the army is made up.

I have previously mentioned that the core of the Astra Militarum part of the army will consist of the following:

  1. HQ - Command Squad
  2. HQ (free) - Engineseer with Servitors
  3. Troops - Infantry platoon (command, 2x Infantry and 1x Heavy Weapon squad)
  4. Troops - Infantry platoon (command, 2x Infantry and 1x Heavy Weapon squad)
  5. Fast Attack - Sentinel Squadron (3x Sentinel)
  6. Fast Attack - Sentinel Squadron (3x Sentinel)
Each of the platoons above have a command squad with Comms, Medic, leader and Special weapon and the infantry squads have Comms, Special and Heavy Weapons. The Army HQ Command Squad will follow the same layout as the platoon command squads (when I get around to it).

Now, according to my list (yes... I make lists... LOTS of lists), I have a lot of Squat plastics left over so I plan to add a third, reserve, platoon. The troops in this platoon will all get berets it will be made up as follows:
  • Command Squad
  • 3x Infantry Squad
  • 3x Special Weapon Squad
The Command Squad will have the same layout as the rest of the platoons. The Infantry Squads will be similar to the others but will not have the Heavy Weapon. The 3 Special Weapon Squads will be armed with different weapons to one another but will definitely have a sniper unit in amongst them.

This reserve platoon has got me thinking about how they would be used and I decided to have a look in the Codex to see what I could add. Now, I could kill off the platoon and turn it into squads of veterans but I have plans for the three remaining troop selections and don't want to spend them all (that is a way off so I am not sharing at the moment). With that in mind I decided to look at personalities who could join the units and here is what I came up with:
  • Commissars - No. I don't want my own troops killing each other.
  • Primaris Psykers - No. I am sorry but Dwarfs are far too earthed to have psyker powers.
  • Ministorum Priests - No... Well... Maybe... Hmmm.... Aren't they like Berserkers?
...and that is when it hit me... I could add a Ministorum Priest to a unit and it would turn into a unit of berserkers. If I made that Ministorum Priest look like a Berserker (standard uniform, heroic pose and a big orange mohawk) he would fit into the army perfectly. I could put him in the Reserve Platoon (with their red berets - famed for being worn by very capable, British nutters) and all of a sudden I have a more able assault asset that looks pretty cool too. This got me thinking about which units he could join and although he would probably be excellent in the Special Weapon Squads (how about a unit with Demo-charges... very characterful for a Berserker unit), I decided that he would join the standard Infantry Squads to bolster them a bit.

The beauty of having Ministorum Priests is that they are free on the HQ chart and you can have three of them for one choice... so the perfect number for my reserve platoon's Infantry Squads. It is almost like they were destined to join in the fun.

So... I may put together three Berserkers while I am working on my second platoon to try and chivvy things along a bit.

Just a few thoughts...

See you from the edge of reason!

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Reflection, adaptation and focus realignment.

It is that time of week again and I have had a week where some plans have had to be changed and some focus has had to be adjusted.

What do I mean? Well... when it comes to army building you have to have an idea of what you are aiming for. Sometimes it will be 'building an army and seeing where it goes' and other times it will be 'here's the list, I need to build my army to fit into it'.

Initially, I started my Squat army with a loose idea that it should fit into the Imperial Guard codex. Bearing in mind that I don't have a copy of the latest 'Astra Militarum' codex, it was always going to be a struggle building an army to that list... and this has led to a little bit of adaptation (explained a bit later) in order to fit in.

Don't get me wrong, I have every other edition of the Imperial Guard codex so I know roughly what is required... but they are in the loft and I have been building units from memory (which for me, is always a bad idea!).

Yesterday, I managed to get my eyes on a Codex Astra Militarum and have a good old scan through. This has led to the discovery that I have equipped one of my command squads incorrectly (bolt pistols for the troops). Me being me, there was no way I could leave things like that so I have had to make some changes; namely replacing bolt pistols with las pistols on the troops (here's a before and after):

Click the Pix!

The problem I had was that I have used Khorn Berserker bolt pistols which were attached to their massive hands so I had to choose some las pistols with a bit more bulk than the old Rogue Trader ones. Fortunately, I had some Catachan las pistols and they seem to fit nicely. I can explain the change in pistol design by saying that the pistols are from the command armoury rather than the troop armoury so are a bit different. My other command squads will have Cadian las pistols... because that is what I have in my bits box!

So now I've seen the new Codex, I have been thinking about bringing everything into line. That has meant that I needed to get some Comms equipment for my troops. Recently I have been looking all over the place to find suitable items, in enough quantity, for a relatively cheap price and to be honest, I was beginning to think that I would have to make my own. Fortunately, I noticed a post on one of the forums I visit and it pointed me towards Mad Robot Miniatures and this pack of COMMS SETS. Not only are these little comms sets available cheaply and in sets of 5 but they also have little telephone handsets and that means that I don't have to add any headsets to my troops; I just need to add the packs. That saves me a lot of effort so I am really pleased. Now all I have to do is wait for them to arrive and glue them on.

Steering away from the codex for now, I have been busy working on the next platoon and here is where I am with it, at the moment:

Click the Pic!

All of them have had neckerchiefs and beards added and the top squad has had its rifles shortened and attached. I have also started to add putty to the wire arms so I am well on the way to getting this platoon finished.

Steering back towards the codex and I have been thinking a lot about what the army should include and I am dead set on this (from the Astra Militarum Codex - this does not include the units I have from the Space Marine Codex - Exo Squad units):
  1. Army Command Squad: (Commander and 4 Troops)
  2. Infantry platoon: (Command Squad, 2x Infantry Squad, 1x Heavy Weapon Squad)
  3. Infantry platoon: (Command Squad, 2x Infantry Squad, 1x Heavy Weapon Squad)
  4. Sentinel Squadron: (3x Sentinel. Attached to a platoon for support)
  5. Sentinel Squadron: (3x Sentinel. Attached to a platoon for support)
  6. Engineseer: (Engineseer + Servitors)
As you are aware, I also plan to add a third platoon and it is this platoon that is causing me to think about what I plan to do.

Having looked through the codex, I have noticed that Ministorum Priests are pretty cool. How about treating a Ministorum Priest as a Squat Berserker? More or less dressed the same as a standard Squat but with a fiery mohawk and a bit of specialist equipment that marks him out as something special. I am still in the thinking phase at the moment but there are a lot of options open to me (attaching a priest to a standard infantry squad OR maybe a specialist squad with demolition charges?). Obviously, I would have the priest as a permanent fixture to a particular squad so that they can all get the mohawk treatment... 

I still have a lot to think about.

So... always be prepared to alter things if you start out without a clear view of what you want to acheive.

See you from the vortex!

Sunday, 24 May 2015

The sabatical is nearly over.

Hello again and welcome to this weeks blog update. As you may have guessed from the title, my three weeks away from work are nearly at an end so what better way to enjoy the last couple of days than to recap on what I have managed to get done while I have been on holiday (with hobby stuff in mind).

Initially I finished off the infantry platoon that I brought back from the Falklands by adding back packs to the loaders and the little gun tractors to the infantry squads.

Then... I went to Salute and came back with a pair of Prodos Games Vulkan Battlesuits that were going to be my proxy Sentinels and a Clockwork Goblin Grizzly Walker that was going to be my Dreadnought.

While I was thinking about what to do with the Sentinels (and waiting for a third one to arrive from EBay), I started to assemble some more basic infantry but also put together a unit of Exo Armour made from Mantic Games Forge Guard.

Finally, I built the Sentinels and partially built the dreadnought and suddenly realised that I had no army commander... so I made one in Exo Armour.

Well... I may have originally planned to finish the second platoon while on my leave but I think that 3 finished Sentinels, an Exo Squad with Exo commander and a really good start on the first squad for the second platoon was pretty good.

So, I guess it's time for some pix. Here is the finished Sentinel Squadron (3 armoured Sentinels with Heavy Bolter and Close Combat Attachment):

Click the Pic!

Here is the finished Exo Squad with the commander to lead it (count as Space Marine Terminators):

Click the Pic!

And finally, here is the army as it currently stands (only complete miniatures, ready for paint):

Click the Pic!

So far I have finished:

1x Exo Commander
1x Exo Squad (5 troops)
1x Infantry Platoon (25 troops)
1x Engineseer with Servitors (3 troops)
1x Sentinel Squadron (3 Sentinels)
3x Misc Troops (including dog handler)

All I really need is to finish the second platoon (and find a place for the three stragglers at the front) and I will have quite a nice little army.

What I plan to add in the short term will be:

The second infantry platoon.
A third platoon (in caps rather than helmets).
A second Sentinel Squadron.
Veterans in berets (I don't know what unit size to do these... I am not sure if I can have a platoon or whether it is in squads only).

Then long term:


So I guess this has been another all Squat post but you know how my muse works... next week it could be something completely different! Who knows?

See you from the bridge of the leviathan!