Friday, 29 March 2013

Victory Ale, Sir!

So, last night, JY, JS and JY's brother, OY, came round for a game of Warhammer 40K. Up to this point, we had failed to actually finish a game completely - that is, although we had called games, and in one case got to a point where it was impossible for me to win, we hadn't actually played a game through from first turn to last turn. Last night was going to be different. We were going to play until we were finished no matter what, damnit!

We ended up playing the Ork scenario Waaagh! from the Battle Missions book. Each side was comprised of a team of two players, each of which would have a 1500 point army:

JY  (Dark Angels):
HQ - Azrael
Troops 1 - Terminators (assault cannon, chainfists)
Troops 2 - Terminators (assault cannon, chainfists)
Troops 3 - Assault Terminators (3x Thunder Hammer/Storm Shield, 2x Lightning Claws
Heavy Support 1: Landspeeder Vengeance
Heavy Support 2: Predator Annihilator (lascannons! Lascannons everywhere!)
Heavy Support 3: Land Raider

JS (Orks):
HQ1 - Ghazgkull
HQ2 - Big Mek with Shokk Attak Gun
HQ3 - Warboss (we allowed JS to field three HQs because he asked nicely)
Elites 1 - Ork Nob Squad
Troops 1 - Three Meganobs in a Trukk
Troops 2 - Ork Boy Squad
Fast Attack 1 - 5 Stormboyz and Boss Zagstrukk
Fast Attack 2 - Warbuggy
Heavy Support 1 - Zzap Gun

OY (Imperial Guard):
HQ1 - Company Command Squad with Master of Ordnance in a Chimera
Troops 1 - 10 Veterans with Carapace armour and 3 plasma guns in a Chimera
Troops 2 - 10 Veterans with Carapace armour and 3 meltaguns in a Chimera
Troops 3 - 10 Veterans with Carapace armour, 3 grenade launchers and a heavy bolter in a Chimera
Heavy Support 1 - Leman Russ Demolisher
Heavy Support 2 - Leman Russ Demolisher
Heavy Support 3 - Griffon Troop (two Griffons)

Me (Imperial Guard):
HQ1 - Primaris Psyker
Troops 1 - Platoon HQ, 30-man Combined Squad with Commissar, plasma guns, and heavy bolters.
Troops 2 - Platoon HQ, three 10-man Infantry Squads with rocket launchers and flamers.
Fast Attack 1 - Armoured Sentinel Troop (three Sentinels with autocannons)
Heavy Support 1 - Leman Russ Vanquisher (Captain Count Geranium of Bigbush and Littletree)
Heavy Support 2 - Leman Russ Troop (two Leman Russ MBTs)

Board layout: three ruined buildings lie to the left of a small wood and a crashed Valkyrie, the middle of the board has two trenches, and on the other side are a small pumping station, a section of crashed spaceship, a factory, a deadly swamp, a ruined shop, and a two-storey dwelling with garden.
Objectives: bunker entrance between trenches, ammo dump just visible top right of the grey and brown ruin in the middle foreground, and injured soldier between shop and house top right.

We rolled off to see who was deploying where, with the Ork-Dark Angel alliance (JY and JS) wanting to win and get the side with the three ruins. They lost, and the Guard (OY and myself) deployed there instead. Due to the scenario rules, the Orks and Dark Angels would deploy first, and almost certainly go first too.

Deployment: The Guard refused their right flank, mainly because I didn't really want to be on the sharp end of a first turn charge from a trukk full of Meganobs, or indeed allow the footslogging Ghazgkull and friends to get stuck in quickly. This left the Dark Angels and the weaker part of the Orks facing off against 3,000 points of tanks and infantry. The Ultramarine RH1N0 is standing in for a Land Raider. The Sentinels then performed a 6" Scout redeployment and moved to their right.

The Ork and Dark Angel force then won the roll to go first - "anything but a one!" and they got a six - and pretty much surged forwards en masse. Terminator weapons fire killed eight Guardsmen - including a plasma gunner - from the platoon in the right-hand ruin, the Vengeance stunned the crew of the green Chimera between the leftmost and central ruin, while Ork shooting from their Killa Kans killed six Veteran Guardsmen - including all three plasma gunners, the Sergeant, and radioman - from the most forward squad in the central ruin; the Shokk Attak Gun closed affairs by killing one Guardsman from a squad on the right flank.

Return fire from the Guard badly damaged the Land Raider, but didn't destroy it (this was Bad News), smashed apart most of the big Ork Boy squad advancing in the centre, wrecked the Ork Trukk (pinning the Meganobs in the process), destroyed the Landspeeder Vengeance, killed three Terminators, and blew up a Killa Kan.

End Turn One: You can see the results of the Guard's ordnance clearly - Griffon self-propelled mortars are fantastic. Equally there are dents in the Guard infantry line; most painful were the loss of the plasma guns.

In turn two, after killing a few Guarsdmen from shooting, the Orks and Dark Angels got into combat. That was painful. The Assault Terminators poured out of their Land Raider, and assaulted everyone in the central ruin, killing or breaking 14 men for the loss of one... leaving the Terminators consolidated into a huddle in the middle of the ruin, hoping that cover and invulnerable saves would protect them through the Guard's return fire. The Ork boys got stuck into the combined Guard squad, and killed off the last two plasma gunners and the heavy bolter teams, but lost two boys and couldn't break the Guard thanks, I suspect, to the Commissar (though he didn't have to shoot anyone, most disappointing). Ghazgkull's Waaagh! got him to within charge range of the Sentinels, and I mentally said goodbye; but he rolled very low and couldn't engage.

The Guard, for their part, pulled their socks up, and opened fire. The Sentinels wrecked the remaining Killa Kan. Meanwhile, Captain Count Geranium of Bigbush and Littletree failed - despite hitting square on with both shots - to penetrate or indeed even glance the Land Raider, which shook off his lascannon blast and high-velocity armour-piercing shell as though it were nothing. The Assault Terminators were hit by a storm of fire from everything that could shoot at them, wiping them out. The Griffons, Sentinels and the right flank platoon plus the Veterans in the woods fired at Ghazgkull's Nobs, killing several and wounding three more. Over in the right-hand ruin, the Guard combined squad killed the Nob and another Ork, but combat continued nonetheless.

End of Dark Angel/Ork Turn Two: The single most effective Ork/Dark Angel turn, I think.

In the next Ork and Dark Angel turn, shooting from the Shokk Attak Gun and Terminators killed all of the Veterans in the woods on the right flank, and reduced the depleted right flank squad to just a few men. Then Ghazgkull's Nobs got into combat with the Sentinels, destroying all of them in short order (two exploded, but they didn't do any damage to the tough Orks). Azrael and his Terminators got into combat with the camouflaged Chimera and Azrael destroyed it all by himself! The combat in the right hand ruin continued again, with another Ork dying and the Guard refusing, still, to run away.

OY's command squad beat a hasty retreat to the nearby ruin, and then the shooting commenced. The Land Raider was again inconvenienced by the Vanquisher, but one of OY's Demolishers did the job instead, using a really really big high explosive shell to wreck the damn thing. More fire was poured onto Ghazgkull's Nob mob, because it was becoming apparent that it was extremely threatening and had to be stopped. One or two Orks were killed as I recall - the combination of 5+ invulnerable and 5+ Feel No Pain saves made them very tough indeed.

End Turn Three: OY takes a nap as the Guard tank park executes some nifty maneuvering to bring the Terminators and Orks under their guns.

In turn four, the Orks and Dark Angels failed to do much - desultory shooting killed a couple of Guardsmen and took a hull point off a Leman Russ, while Azrael's men failed to charge the swirling combat in the right hand ruin, and it continued.

However, the Imperial Guard killed three of Azrael's Terminators, all the remaining Ork Nobs with Ghazgkull, and Captain Count Geranium of Bigbush and Littletree made up for his three previous turns of nothing by destroying the Predator (and gaining a kill ring in the process). The right-hand ruin now contained one Ork, still grimly fighting on.

End Turn Four: At this stage the Orks and Dark Angels had only one option open to them - kill all my remaining troops units in their next turn or two, while moving their Meganobs back to the wounded soldier objective. Any other course of action would result in a loss.

With little left, turn five opened quietly. The Shokk Attak Gun killed a guardsman or two from the last full-strength infantry squad, while the two Terminators on the right flank killed and then broke the platoon command squad behind them - they ran off the board. Assaults were inevitable - Ghazgkull smashed aside the infantry in front of him, while Azrael and Chums assaulted the remnants of the platoon in the right hand ruin. The platoon took casualties, but killed the last Ork and refused to run away. At this point Zagstruk and Stormboyz arrived, tried to destroy a Demolisher and a Griffon, and failed to do anything.

For the Guard's part, the remaining platoon command squad moved as fast as they could in the direction of the bunker entrance, and the last intact Guard squad moved up to try and contest the ammo dump. Meanwhile tank fire from the Leman Russ troop not only wiped out the two remaining unengaged Terminators, but a stray battlecannon shell landed on the melee in the ruin, killing several Guardsmen and a Terminator! Over on the left flank, some judicious tank-based redeployment meant that Zagstruk and friends were all killed. In the assault phase, more Guardsmen died. The combat... continued.

At this point, I had to roll to see if the game ended or not. It didn't.

End Turn Five: The situation at this stage would have been a draw: One contested objective and two unclaimed. In terms of damage done, however, it is a clear Guard victory already...

Turn six! There was no seriously effective Ork shooting, although a flamethrower operator was killed by the Zzap gun. Ghazgkull charged the last mainly intact Guard squad and smashed them to bits. Azrael and the Terminator killed all bar the Psyker (who hung grimly on).

The platoon command squad legged it to the safety of the wrecked Land Raider, and incidentally claimed the bunker entrance objective. Captain Count Geranium of Bigbush and Littletree shot the Big Mek off his perch on the tower, while a Demolisher destroyed the Zzap gun. Griffon and Leman Russ fire failed to kill any Meganobs, but did wound a few. At this stage, all the Orks had left were a Warboss, Ghazgkull, three Meganobs and a warbuggy. The Dark Angels had Azrael and a Terminator, who handily despatched the Psyker and consolidated towards the Vanquisher in hopes of killing it next turn.

But - lo - there was no next turn. The game ended and OY and I had won!

End Turn Six: The victory-claiming platoon command squad can just be seen to the left of the wrecked Land Raider, while the pitiful remnants of the Orks and Dark Angels are scattered around the board. Clearly a heroic victory for the Guard!

I'd love to say tactics and strategy won this game, but beyond the initial refused flank our strategy was basically "shoot them until they die, then shoot them some more" and it worked because our opponents did not have a list capable of taking on such an armour-heavy list. Although they had some bad luck - the Predator in particular did nothing at all all game despite its three lascannons!

So Victor's Laurels to OY and myself, then!

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

From Imperial Army to Imperial Guard - Six Editions of the Emperor's Hammer

In 1986, when I was busy developing as a foetus, Rick Priestly's seminal SF wargame, Rogue Trader, hit the shelves. It was pulp, dark, space-opera pulling ideas and inspiration from sources as varied as Dune and Blade Runner to Tolkein and the Spanish Inquisition. In addition to the instantly recognisable, and massively profitable, Space Marines of the Adeptus Astartes, the book also introduced the world to the Imperial Army, the Hammer of the Emperor.

Of course, we now know the Army as the Guard, and they have long since lost their grav tanks, Land Raiders, conversion beamers, and much more besides. But what of the basic infantry squad? The PBI of the 41st Millenium has, apparently, changed a lot since the late 1980s - but just how much? This is a question I'm hoping to answer now, with the aid of my copies of Rogue Trader, Codex: Imperial Guard (2nd Ed), Codex: Imperial Guard (3rd Ed), Codex: Imperial Guard (4th Ed) and Codex: Imperial Guard (5th Ed). According to the rumour mills, the 6th Edition Codex is currently in playtesting, so we shall have to wait and see what wondrous madness comes forth from Nottingham next.

Anyway! On with the comparison...

Imperial Army Infantry Squad, Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader:
'Warriors of the Army' pp 162-166.

Five men from a Squad - 3 troopers, the heavy weapons operator and Sergeant.

A "typical squad" comprises a Sergeant, 8 troopers, and a special weapons trooper. They all wear flak armour, carry a knife, and a lasgun. The Sergeant has a laspistol as well, and the weapons trooper can have either a flamer or a rocket launcher.

In terms of optional wargear, there are several tables to roll a d100 on to see if your soldiers have been issued (or captured) anything from chainmail to shuriken weapons, rad-suits, bio-scanners, and so on and so forth. Some of the equipment will never be seen in future lists: flight packs, rad-gear, D-Cannons, Multi-Meltas, Graviton Guns, shuriken catapults, and so on.

Points Value: N/A - there were no points values. Scenarios and campaigns were king here.

So this sets up the basic format of an Imperial Army or Guard squad: 10 men, led by an NCO, all armed with lasguns and - in this case - just one special or heavy weapon. Although there was a 5% chance per man for the issue of boltguns, for example.

Imperial Guard Infantry Squad, 2nd Edition Warhammer 40,000:
Codex: Imperial Guard pg 79.

A whole squad of the Rigellian 59th.

An Imperial Guard Squad consists of a Sergeant with laspistol and sword, and 9 Guardsmen with lasguns. All have frag grenades and flak armour as standard. Two can be turned into a Heavy Weapons team and one can be issued a special weapon.

Following the pattern of the Army squad, we shall equip our special weapons trooper with a flame-thrower, and the heavy weapons team can have a rocket launcher.

Points Value: 100 (basic) +7 (flamer) + 30 (rocket launcher) = 137

Suddenly the squad's firepower has dramatically increased, although the sheer variance of possible equipment options has been narrowed down enormously. All of a sudden those flight-pack wearing, shuriken-catapult wielding Army units with a D-Cannon in support have had to turn in their gear.

Imperial Guard Infantry Squad, 3rd Edition Warhammer 40,000:
Codex: Imperial Guard pg 17.

A Squad from the Darendaran X Mechanised (without Chimera).

The squad remains identical in makeup: Sergeant and 9 troopers. However, their basic equipment has changed: now all come with only lasguns and flak armour. Again, two can be issued a heavy weapon and one a special weapon, but now they can have a comm-link, and the Sergeant can be made a Veteran.

We'll keep the same squad as before, in order to make it easier to compare at the end..

Points Value: 60 (basic) + 3 (flamer) + 15 (rocket launcher) + 10 (frag grenades)  = 88

Although the Sergeant now comes with a lasgun as standard, this is - in my opinion - an improvement. Guard, and indeed Army, squads, are not for close combat. They are for shooting!

Imperial Guard Infantry Squad, 4th Edition Warhammer 40,000:
Codex: Imperial Guard pg 44.

My old warriors, the Karaboudjani XV Kataphraktoi. These fellows have fought and died on battlefields all over the galaxy against everyone from Tyranids to Tau via Space Marines and Guard!

As always, the squad is led by a Sergeant and has 9 Guardsmen. Here they retain their lasguns and their flak armour, and can now opt to take krak grenades as well as the same options as the previous iteration: a Veteran Sergeant, heavy weapons team, and special weapons operator. The comm-link is now called a vox-caster, though, because obviously 'comm-link' wasn't 40K enough.

We won't give our heroic soldiers krak grenades, as they have a perfectly good anti-tank rocket launcher anyway.

Points Value: 60 (basic) + 6 (flamer) + 15 (rocket launcher) + 10 (frag grenades) = 91

Imperial Guard Infantry Squad, 5th Edition Warhammer 40,000:
Codex: Imperial Guard pg 97.

Men from the 5th Amalgamated Regiment - these are from the death world of Bhoorma. A gap in my collection - they are short a trooper and a rocket launcher!

Suddenly, the squad has changed! Although the basic unit of Sergeant and 9 Guardsmen remains the same, their is the option to take a Commissar in order to prevent serious cases of common sense and tactical withdrawal. Equipment wise, the Sergeant has been ordered to hand in his lasgun, and has had to go into battle with a laspistol and close combat weapon only. The rest of the squad has been specifically re-issued knives (close combat weapons) for the first time since Rogue Trader, and frag grenades for the first time since 2nd Edition.

We won't hinder our squad with a Commissar, as we want a like-for-like comparison at the end of all this.

Points Value: 50 (basic) + 5 (flamer) + 15 (rocket launcher) = 70


So what have we found? Well, since Warhammer 40,000 changed from being a role-playing skirmish game in which the scenario, campaign and collections dictated a squad's composition into a points-based company sized wargame, points have been dropping (except from 3rd to 4th edition, when the flame-thrower got more expensive). This is, of course, to encourage larger armies and therefore more profit for Games Workshop - not in and of itself a bad thing; I don't really want to rehash the old battles regarding price here - but what of our squad itself?

Firstly, the squad has been remarkably consistent. It has always been 10 strong, and has had very few equipment changes. The major ones are the introduction of both heavy AND special weapon in 2nd Edition, the introduction of comm-links in 3rd, and the option to have krak grenades in 4th. Oh, and the change from lasgun-armed sergeants in Rogue Trader to pistol-packing NCOs in 2nd... and then back again in 3rd, and back again to pistols in 5th.

Secondly, the points fluctuations. In 2nd Edition, when a game really portrayed a reinforced platoon or short company in action, a squad costs a whopping 137 points! This drops to 88 in 3rd, rises slightly to 91 in 4th, and falls dramatically to 70 in 5th. I suspect it may well go down again in 6th, if this trend is anything to go by. On average, a squad of 10 men with flamer and rocket launcher and carrying frag grenades, over the six editions, has cost (0+137+88+91+70)/5 = 77.2 points. More interestingly, between the first points costs in 2nd and the most recent in 5th, the squad has got 67 points cheaper overall, which means that for the price of one squad in 2nd Edition, you can now get nearly two full squads in 5th!

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this trip through memory lane, and the pictures of my 'squads through the ages'...

Monday, 18 March 2013


Tonight, I saw the new Red DawnRed Dawn comes in two flavours. The first, from 1984, is a classic piece of late-Cold War Red Scare Hollywood fantasy. In it, the Soviet Union (backed by the Cubans!) invades America, and the opening scene - of Airborne troops dropping on a sleepy town in the US and machine-gunning a school - is wonderful. Not least because of the panning shot from a Sheriff's car with the bumper sticker 'They'll Take My Gun From My Cold Dead Hands'... to the dead Sheriff on the ground, having his Browning Hi-Power taken by an Airborne trooper.

The second, the newly released remake, is a fantastic piece of cheesy action in which the Red Dawn of the original has been replaced with some serious Yellow Peril - in the form of a surprisingly modern and well-equipped Korean People's Army. In it, the economic collapse of the West leads to the breakup of NATO and the resurgence of a Pacific Rim Coalition involving (from the brief shot of the flags) Iran, Russia, China and North Korea among others. Possibly even that well-known military superpower, Venezuela, but it wasn't clear. Then the dastardly Commies invade! With the help of, apparently, EMP weapons, which render completely useless almost all of the US defence.

And in both, as the Airborne troops fall, the local High School American Football team take up arms to defend their town against the, well, highly-trained, well-equipped, enemy army. It's worth going to see, although be warned! there is a high level of cheese, including a Marine who speaks entirely in cliches, with dialogue like "This is a shit sandwich without the bread" and "A Marine with his rifle! The finest ass-kicking weapon in the world!" But for all that, the action scenes are great, and the hilariously Russian Spetsnaz men - who appear to be in there mainly to prevent accusations of racism - add wonderful comic relief. Plus, the sight of Jocks and cheerleaders taking up arms "like the VietCong, mujahideen, or even the Minutemen" against the tank-driving, Humvee-stealing, digital-camo'd, KPA is just too brilliant to pass up on.

Brilliantly, of course, the modern remake originally featured the Chinese People's Liberation Army. Once you know that, the uniforms and everything else makes a lot more sense. So why was it changed to the KPA? Well, the Chinese said "No." and that was that!

Anyway, what does this have to do with wargames? Well... I want to get Force on Force even more now. Arrrgh! So many periods! So many shiny toys! So little disposable income! But, even allowing for a long delay in actually getting into ultra-modern alternative universe gaming, there were lots of scenes that would make amazing Tomorrow's War scenarios, so for wargamers who like to get ideas from films, I recommend this.

Similarly, and in a much more British vein, the rebooted Savage! from 2000AD in which Volgs (Russians) invade and occupy Britain in the 2000s is a wonderful source of scenarios, and - at least in the first series, with Charlie Adlard as artist - treats the concept with the power it holds and demands. When your heroes set car bombs and use suicide vests, particularly in the context of the never ending War on Terror, it can be an amazing tool to analyse and critique political and military decisions and actions. Of course, such things never really trouble either version of Red Dawn, despite lines like "For them, it's just a place" and "We are the bad guys - we bring chaos!".

As a final note, when the US military finally captured the late dictator of Iraq, Saddam Hussein, the operation took its codenames from the 1984 film. Although, of course, the US were here playing the part of the Soviets.

Bad Photography and the Imperial Guard Through the Ages

First of all, an apology. I have been taking all my photographs with my mobile phone's camera (a technological marvel in and of itself!) but they are not particularly high quality (now there's a First World Problem for you).

At any rate, here are the two figures and the tanks that I have completed and the remaining tank that I am still working on:

A sergeant and Forward Observer (Master of Ordnance) from the Karaboudjani XV Kataphraktoi. The sergeant is wearing a dress uniform coat with red arm of service piping, and a Catachan web set, while carrying a revolver taken from a metal Escher figure from the Necromunda range. The Forward Observer is a standing tank commander figure with pink waffenfarb - after all, a regiment like this gets its artillery support from organic self-propelled guns. And it's an excuse to get a Basilisk, eventually.

'Charlie' Squadron, Valachian 1011th Armoured. L-R: Captain Count Geranium of Littlebush and Bigtree's Vanquisher, C1, with three kill rings, C2, awaiting tracks and initial weathering, and C3 with searchlight and hunter-killer missile. The blue square with red 'A' on the sides of C1 and C3 is the Crusade Badge of the Amalthean Crusade.

A note on the provenance of the machines. The turret of C1 and body of C3 came from a kit that I bought from GW Slough in the early 2000s, while the body of C1 and turret of C3 came from a fully-built model that I bought aged 10 from a schoolfriend at West Kidlington Primary almost two decades ago. I paid the princely sum of £5 for a model that had no turret stowage, badly applied detailing, and no fronts on the sponsons! C2 is a kit I bought in GW Leamington Spa in 2003, I think. The new Leman Russ kit has a completely different turret structure... but it's still too small for the crew and gun breech!

And finally, something that you may find interesting:

The Imperial Guard (well, the Cadians) through the ages! L-R: Rogue Trader Imperial Army sergeant from the 1980s, 2nd Edition Cadian Shock Troop Lieutenant from the mid 1990s, and a 3rd Edition Cadian sergeant from the early 2000s. Scale has proved remarkably consistent, although I do still prefer the look of the 2nd Edition Cadians to the modern figures.

For my fellow loons, they represent Sergeants of the Syrtis 72nd, the Rigellian 59th, and the Karaboudjani 15th. I am going to do a post soon comparing the Imperial Guard in each edition of 40K using a standard infantry squad as a baseline. Look forwards to it!

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Of Tank Aces and Excuses

Wahey! A post! The world must be ending!

No, I've just finally set time aside to, well, you know, make a post.

Since the last update I have fought three battles of 40K - only two of which were actually completed, the other having to be called in my side's favour at the close of turn three - and painted two figures, and refurbed (to borrow a phrase) three Leman Russ tanks that I have had since I was 10.

Of the three, one had damaged side sponsons and a tank commander figure. So I tore off the sponsons, glued in some hatches to cover the holes, and elongated the barrel of the Battle Cannon with a second example that I had. Et voila, I had a Vanquisher variant Leman Russ! And with a 'Tank Ace' character model as well.

As far as the games went... the first game was a multi-player bash marking the inauguration of the games club I've informally set up, with myself (Guard), SB (Guard), P (Eldar), JB (Dark Angels) and JS (Orks). It should be noted that A and J, his wife, came too, but played Zombie Dice and spectated. This was SB and P's first experience with 40K (although P is an experienced Fantasy Battle player), and they had a great time - thankfully. We won, although we also didn't get past turn three.

Game 1, Pre-Deployment: SB contemplates the madness ahead of her.
Game 1 - Victory! JB and JS hang their heads in shame while P takes the salute.

The second game, I fought A's proxied Necron army with my Guard, and got utterly, horribly, completely destroyed. I killed one Necron Destroyer. One. And lost almost my whole army. In less than three turns? Urgh. Horrible. That was the first time my Vanquisher saw action, too. I didn't bother paying the points to upgrade to the Tank Ace. And I promptly missed with every shot.

Game 2: Turn 1. I have advanced two of my platoons, and there my luck ended.

Anyway, this time round, in the third game, I paid for the upgrade, and killed two Dreadnoughts, a Predator, and an Attack Bike. SUCCESS! I still lost the game though*. Bloody Kill Points. On the bright side I got to paint some kill rings for the vehicle kills onto the barrel of the Vanquisher Cannon, so now my Tank Ace is on the way to actually being one.

Game 3: The first kill (note instantly applied kill ring)! Tank Ace Captain Count Geranium of Bigbush and Littletree punches a Dark Angels Dreadnought off its feet with a high-velocity armour-piercing shell. He would go on to destroy a Predator and a Furioso Dreadnought before ending the game by obliterating an Attack Bike.

Game 3: The End. Here you can see the shattered remnants of my Guard army, and the pitiful remains of the Ork-Marine alliance - three Space Marines, the Dark Angels Grand Master, Ghazkull and two Nobs in a Trukk, a Warbuggy, a Zzap Gun and (off the board) a Blood Angels Predator and the Dark Angels Landspeeder Vengeance. The three Meganobs to the bottom left were dead, courtesy of the Demolisher Squadron.

Game 3: The Victor! Without this Landspeeder fleeing the field and denying me a chance to kill it, I could have dragged the game to a bloody draw (with some luck).

Thanks to Panther Six Actual, I have also been hooked by BattleTech again, and am seriously contemplating purchasing a Lance of St Ives Compact 'mechs to play against my good friend C's Capellan Death Commandos.

In addition to this new interest, I am yet to finish the Hybrid baddies for JB, although they are primed and the first coat of Boltgun Metal was applied yesterday. So I have actually started them.

Next update, hopefully tomorrow, I will post pictures of the tanks, the figures, and the in-progress Hybrid baddies.

Painting Points:
2013: 59 (19x 28mm, 2x 54mm, 2x tanks)

* (Ork) Battle Mission: Cut 'N' Run,  3,000 points of Guard versus three  1,000 point armies: Orks, Blood Angels and Dark Angels. Final kill points: 20-32 in the enemy's favour. I started the game with 87 men, 6 Sentinels, 2 Griffons, 2 Leman Russ, 1 Vanquisher, 2 Demolishers, and 8 Chimeras. I ended it with 2 Demolishers, 1 mobile Leman Russ, 1 Vanquisher, 1 immobilised Leman Russ, 1 Chimera and 1 immobilised Chimera. Meanwhile, 5 of my infantry had fled the board alive.