Friday, February 23, 2018

Games!: Warhammer 40K

Last night I played a brutal game of 40K, continuing the evolving narrative campaign involving my buddy John's Dark Angels, my Eldar and Chaos Space Marines (and soon to be John's Tyranids).

In this instance the Dark Angels were trying to use mobile plasma generators to fire up the final power plant which would activate a defensive ring around the planet  - hoping to use the ancient Imperium world's defenses against the inbound battle barges of the Wandering Sons (Chaos Space Marines).

In the end the Dark Angels failed by a few feet - a lone Ravenwing biker managing to get a plasma generator within feet of the door of the power plant station before Eldar reinforcements blunted the attack.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Obliterators...take three.

Finally came up with an idea that suited me for using Obliterators in my Chaos Space Marine force.  Using easy-to-build Aggressors.  I'll probably keep these unlike my other two attempts!

Saturday, February 17, 2018

I am become death.

Or something suitably spooky at the very least.  Just kidding, it's just five standard issue Chaos Marines this time.

Friday, February 16, 2018

You are required to gain altitude (possibly twice) in order to reduce altitude.

I finished these four assault marines a while (expanding my force to two seven-man units instead of one large unit of ten).  However I was short of jump packs.  I picked up some alternate packs from and they're great...large, but great.  I may pick up some more in the future and use them for character jump packs.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

My lascannon brings all the daemons to the yard...

And they're like "it's more cursed than yours..."

So, I've been playing Chaos Space Marines (really renegades is more apt...) for a while, and I've been rather undergunning my stuff, because I was too lazy to do up some proper champions, or aspiring champions - they try so hard!

I finally added some more marines to the cause, making three aspiring champions and building two lascannon marines with the Horus Heresy Forge World bits donated by a lovely friend.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Syvotus gets some new boom boom.

Syvotus, my Chaos Dreadnought (Helbrute by the new "rules") has been pretty effective in games of 40K, but I'd only had a twin-lascannon arm, meaning he was always quite pricey. Using a spare arm from the dreadnought kit I chopped up two Leman Russ sponson heavy bolters and create a twin-heavy bolter arm for him.  Now I can field him in a cheaper version (or future additional dreadnoughts!).

Point of order: Syvotus was in a game this past weekend, and as the only newly painted model (or partially) he was shot off the board immediately in the first turn and never fired a shot.  #newlypaintedfeels.

Hobby Tips: Taking Pictures of Miniatures (easy and cheap!)

I saw this pop up on a forum the other day and I figured I'd do a quick and dirty "how to" for taking pictures of miniatures for your tabletop games when you're not a photographer and have no fancy gear.

What you need:

1) A flat surface.
2) A couple of decent lamps, or a well lit room.
3) A curvable backdrop (even just some printer paper, or poster-board, etc.)
4) A camera.
5) Some simple photo/image editing software.

Your average dirty work this case I'm taking pictures of some Custodes I'm selling on eBay for a friend.
I use a box of goblins for a "back" to hold my printer paper.
You want the backdrop to curve up against the stop so you don't have any edges or creases in the picture.  There are some pro-fabric and fancy backdrops you can buy if you get serious about this stuff.

I use two LED lights (the ones I use to paint under) and with long necks I can adjust them, so I try to lower the actual light to aim at the front of the miniature, from where I'm taking the picture - this room is particularly dark with only one old overhead lamp.

Steady Hands, or a Tripod

When taking pictures, you'll want either a tripod (using a timer), or simply find a way of supporting your hands/wrists while taking the picture.  I just balance my camera and my arms on the desk etc. to give myself a stable platform when taking pics. 
I snap a picture, making sure my background is large enough that nothing shows on the edges (these Custodes are pushing it!).  It's easier with single figures.  Occasionally I use two sheets of printer paper to make the background larger.
Macro Settings
One thing to address if you're using a camera, or some phones is that you'll want to use the 'Macro' setting.  This ensures the camera is planning to focus on small or tiny things, and is generally much sharper/crisper when taking pictures of little things (or heavily zoomed in for details). 
Now with a closer picture on a single figure - you can see that even with two lamps the picture is a bit grey, a bit dark, and you can see some shadows playing around.  Not a great picture.
Photo Editing Software
This is where you grab a photo or image editing software.  I used GIMP which is like a free version of Photoshop.  It's a paint to learn to use, but even I have managed to teach myself some basics.  In this instance I'm going to edit it by doing two main things to the image: white balance, and then some brightness/contrast adjustments.
White Balance should basically take the closest thing to white in the picture and make it much whiter/brighter (thus adjusting the overall colour of the picture).  Brightness/Contrast allows me to adjust the overall appearance of the picture.
Here is a sample of a picture before and after I make these two small adjustments.  The final picture shows much more what the miniature looks like in real life.
 As taken with the camera (a simple Nikon Coolpix L820)
 With white balance and some contrast/brightness adjustments. stated above, I'm not a photographer, but some tips and tricks to help make good pictures.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Games!: Warhammer 40K (2nd edition, and 8th edition)

Was fortunate enough to visit some friends this weekend and got in...a lot of 40K.  Perhaps too much!

Got some 2nd edition games in against a friend who was running her Chaos Space Marines, on a gorgeous techno themed table/mat (mat from Deep Cut Studios)

Then I got in a couple games against another buddy, this time trying out my new mat (Concrete Area from Urbanmatz) and my new terrain!  Huzzah!).  The table is a work in a progress but it wasn't a bad time.  I did have one of the very worst dice-games I've ever had in 20 years...that was a tough defeat!