Sunday, 22 February 2009
Saturday, 21 February 2009
This was the game me and my mate Doug played today using our 40K armies. Doug was using his Black Templars, and in a change to the norm I was giving my Tyranids their first battle. The objective was for the Templars to get their Rhino filled with spare parts to the disabled Baneblade in the centre of the battlefield.
I set my Tyranids up in a wood and we were then ready to begin. I won the initiative and moved my lighter troops forward to try and slow up Doug's advance. My Rippers moved in to prevent his fast attack from speeding in and creating havoc while my heavier units stayed back and fired their heavy weapons from a distance hoping to soften the enemy up as much as possible before assaulting.
Meanwhile, Doug began to move all his units forward, but remained cautious as he knew that he had the upper hand as his ranged units were far superior to mine. This meant that I'd have to try and get into combat as quickly as possible so as to not sustain too much fire from his units.
Sadly for Doug, the Baneblade fell victim to a series of blasts from my Zoanthropes and was destroyed before the Templars could reach it. This meant that Doug could at least salvage something from the battle by getting his Chaplain away to safety.
My Rippers did their job perfectly and held his Assault Marines up long enough for the rest of my army to get into a good position. The Rippers did all get destroyed as I'd predicted. Doug's Land Raider meanwhile was making short work of a unit of my Genestealers as well as one of my Raveners leaving me lacking in fast attack choices. The Land Raider now faced a new threat from my waiting Lictors who attacked the Land Raider along with the remaining Genestealers.
Over on the other side of the battlefield my other unit of Genestealers had taken a pounding from two units of Marines leaving my Carnifex to deal with his Dreadnought and second Chaplain. The Carnifex made short work of the Dreadnought leaving a straight fight between him and the Chaplain. The Marines who had eliminated the Genestealers now faced a new threat from the advancing Zoanthropes who caused a great deal of damage using their warp blasts before finishing them off in assault.
The Emperor's Champion then made a bid for glory by assaulting a unit of Termagaunts on his own. This melee went on for some time but didn't really amount to anything.
Meanwhile, the Lictor's and Genestealers had finally managed to destroy the Land Raider while the remaining Ravener made it's way over to cut off the Chaplain's escape route while the Warriors held up the bikes and assault marines eventually defeating them in combat. Things were now looking even worse for Doug as I still had a lot of my heavier units still remaining.
The battle ended after the Ravener won in combat with the Chaplain forcing him to attempt to flee, but he was easily caught by the quicker Ravener and killed. Handing my Tyranids their first victory.
Wednesday, 18 February 2009
OK, I'm sure everyone knows Games Workshop, and I'm pretty sure you'll all agree their prices leave a bit to be desired. However, in my opinion the best value range the do is the Lord of the Rings range. For example, in 40K a box of Assault Marines costs £15 for 5 figures. In Lord of the Rings the same price will get you 24 warriors which for Games Workshop isn't that bad.
War of The Ring is the game of massed battles in Middle-earth; it's the way to recreate the epic encounters described in The Lord of The Rings. In War of The Ring you collect an army of warriors and unleash them on the field of battle in a size and scale never before attainable with Games Workshop's The Lord of The Rings miniatures.
In this article I'll be taking a look at how to start preparing for the oncoming War of The Ring and examine the best ways to begin or expand your The Lord of The Rings miniatures collection.
You might have already formed a couple of questions, so I'll take a stab at the two most commonly asked ones before I push on:
So, does this replace The Lord of The Rings Strategy Battle Game?
Absolutely not! The Strategy Battle Game is the perfect format for recreating many of the thrilling scenes that take place throughout The Lord of The Rings - the blistering fight in Balin's Tomb, the daring escape through Dwarrowdelf, the Ambush at Amon Hen and more besides. Much as we love that system, however, (and I really do, with a massive collection of miniatures that grows ever larger) we realised we wanted something that let us fight the greatest battles in The Lord of The Rings - so we invented some rules to play big battles, and the War of The Ring was born.
So, if you're a fan of the Strategy Battle Game, it's all good news! War of The Ring has given us even more enthusiasm for our range of The Lord of The Rings miniatures and of course everything we release for one system can be used for the other (so keep your eyes peeled over the coming months for even more great releases and rules). Meanwhile, if you're interested in fighting massed battles in Middle-earth, you might find that War of The Ring is just what you've been looking for.
The first thing to learn about War of The Ring is how models interact with each other. Unlike the skirmish game, miniatures are grouped onto bases called a company (eight infantry models or two cavalry models form a single company). These fight as formations, which are several companies all chosen and grouped together. The warriors in a formation are generally all armed in the same way. Monsters are considered big enough (and dangerous enough) that they aren't grouped into formations.
In this picture we've arranged two formations and a monster. You'll notice that the infantry companies each have eight models (and are all armed in the same fashion) and that the cavalry companies have two models. The monster is on his own.
Generally speaking formations can be anywhere in size from one company to six companies in size, although a few particularly elite, or weak, formations can be smaller or larger in size.
If you're looking to collect a War of The Ring force, it's worth thinking in these numbers - the plastic box sets for The Lord of The Rings are generally packaged in a manner which lends itself to these numbers too, so it's fairly easy to get started.
So, what are those bases all about?
Well, companies in War of The Ring are mounted on movement trays. This makes them easier to move about the table, and also helps us to keep track of the space that they take up on the battlefield. We're releasing moulded plastic movement trays (on the 28th of February), which are ideal for mounting your miniatures on, but there's nothing to stop you making your own out of cardboard, plasticard or some other suitable material - I've used plasticard to make my own bases.
To make the game fair, and to keep things consistent, there are minimum sizes for these movement trays:
Infantry: Infantry companies are mounted on bases at least 110mm wide by 60mm deep.
Cavalry: Cavalry companies are mounted on bases at least 90mm wide by 50mm deep.
If you're making your own bases, it's important that they adhere to these minimum sizes, and they probably shouldn't exceed those measurements by too much either - the game is fairest for everyone if the movement trays are all equally sized, but a few millimetres at either side isn't going to be a problem.
So how do Captains, named Heroes and Banner Bearers fit in?
The Lord of The Rings is a story about heroic acts, sacrifice and glory - and the heroes of the story feature heavily in War of The Ring. Generally speaking Heroes are added to a company within a formation at the start of a game (and Epic Heroes can move from one formation to another during play). While they are part of a company, it benefits from some of the Hero's statistics, and the whole formation will gain access to certain special rules.
The same is true of unnamed Heroes such as Captains - in fact, as you play War of The Ring, you'll soon come to realise that Heroes, in all their shapes and sizes, are essential if you're looking to get the best from your formations.
Banner Bearers (and other models such as Drummers, Hornblowers and so forth) each confer additional benefits to the formation, and you'll probably want to add some into your collection once you start playing.
Tuesday, 17 February 2009
Sunday, 15 February 2009
This is my 15mm figure of Barkmann in his Panther with repair shop.
Ernst Barkmann was a farmer’s son born in Holstein, Germany, on 25 August 1919. At the age of sixteen he applied for service with the elite Waffen-SS, the armed force of the Nazi Party.
Barkmann saw his first action of the war as a machine gunner with the 9. Kompanie/III. Bataillon of Germania. Distinguishing himself, he was promoted to Rottenführer (Corporal) and received the Wound Badge in Black. He next saw action in 1940 with the invasion of France, earning the Infantry Assault Badge for his participation in three days of battle.
Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941, saw Rottenführer Barkmann seriously injured near Dnieprpetrovksk, for which he received the Wound Badge in Silver. He spent the next year recovering and training SS volunteers. Late in 1942 he returned to the Eastern Front.
Assigned to the second company of the ‘Das Reich’ SS-Panzerregiment as a gunner in a Panzer III tank, he proved himself an excellent shot. He was subsequently promoted to Unterscharführer (sergeant) and given command of his own Panzer III just in time for the Third Battle of Kharkov.
He continued to distinguish himself during the mammoth tanks battles around Prokhorovka during the Kursk offensive. In August 1943, Das Reich was withdrawn into reserve. Barkmann was transferred to the fourth company and given a new Panther D tank for the defensive battles in Southern Russia. He was awarded both classes of the Iron Cross for his actions during this time.
In January 1944, Das Reich was ordered to southern France for refit and Barkmann’s battalion was upgraded to the new model Panther. Unfortunately the Allies choose this particular time to mount their invasion of Fortress Europe and ‘Das Reich’ quickly found itself embroiled in the fighting. A month after D-Day, elements of the division went into action against American forces near St. Lô. Here, the legend of Barkmann’s Corner was born and he received the Knight’s Cross and a promotion to Oberscharführer (senior sergeant) for his actions.
During the Ardennes Offensive in December 1944, Barkmann spearheaded the main attack against the US 2nd Armored Division. He finished the war knocking out Soviet T-34 tanks near Stuhlweissenburg in March 1945.
Saturday, 14 February 2009
Friday, 13 February 2009
Just got back from Peeler's place after having a good natter and a game of 10mm fantasy DBF. Thoroughly enjoyable, fast playing game with easy to learn rules and good company. Just what wargaming should be about. Needless to say I lost but that's not important to me. For more info on the game why not head of over to Peeler's blog.
Thursday, 12 February 2009
Well so much for the weathermen saying the worst was over. Just sat down to have my dinner and noticed some tiny snowflakes. By the time it came to me going to work BAM! Total whiteout. Luckily because I live in one of the outlying villages my boss gave me the day off. So I thought why not get some stuff painted or clean up my workspace a bit. Needless to say that neither got done as I have been trying to resuscitate my laptop with little success as it appears to have developed amnesia. I have been thinking recently of ideas for a future show battle. I will be posting more on this as it develops so watch this space.
Tuesday, 10 February 2009
Here are some photos of a game me and my group put on at Vapnartak 09.
A big thank you to everyone who came along and offered such positive feedback. Also thank you to Peeler for taking the photos and of course to the rest of my crew namely my brother Gaz and his mate Stuart.
The game was played using 1/2400 scale ships from Noble Miniatures and made use of the Grand Fleet Actions in the Age of Sail rules by A and A Games. The rules themselves are pretty straightforward and allow fast flowing play. A good day was had by all we all had a good laugh and I am hoping to put on another next year. The game followed history and resulted in the British triumphing over the French and Spanish navies.
Monday, 9 February 2009
OK time to kick things off. I've recently got quite interested in WWII gaming and have begun assembling the start of a 15mm German army. First up I have some Panzergrenadiers which I've been working on starting with the command halftrack complete with crew.