Recently I’ve been looking outside the 40K game a little. Actually, it’s not really all that ‘recently’. I’ve been on and off Fantasy for ages now (I’ve still got two decent-sized armies from previous forays). Having played a couple of games of 8th edition, I do have to say that overall I prefer it to 7th. It causes fewer headaches and seems geared towards a more fun game. I understand some of the objections to it, what with uncounterable spells forcing gigantic blobs of death onto the field, but I don’t really play that kind of game. Or, more importantly, my regular opponents don’t. So this latest bout of square-basing has been brought on by one of my friends, Alex. He (for some reason) seized on a Vampire Counts army book and then set to army listing.
Naturally, I couldn’t let one of my friends wander down this dark path alone, so I bought an army book for a force I’d been thinking about doing for a while and starting researching Beastmen. I was initially uncertain about going for Beastmen, as the other two armies I own are Lizardmen (a lot of Stegadons) and Warriors of Chaos. There is a common theme running through these armies as you may well notice. Pretty much bugger all in terms of ranged combat. That and the worrying level of anthropomorphism that runs through a lot of these forces. Thank god I’m not doing Skaven as well. I’d need to report to some body dysmorphia specialist or something…
Anyway, the new load Beastmen (if I ever collect them) will pose a bit of a challenge, painting wise. One of the main problems I had with collecting Beastmen was from a painting standpoint. They are just so, well, brown. It’s kind of unavoidable. I don’t particularly like brown, or many hues that fall into the earth tones range of utter tedium. And the Beastmen, being Beastmen do tend to be focussed around one of my least favourite colours. I have, however, stumbled upon a colour scheme that may well work and keeps the brown-ness to a minimum.
I plan on painting my army very pale. Almost albino-style. Certainly for the skin. The fur I haven’t settled on the colour. However, I plan to go for very pale flesh and some woad tattoos and plenty of blood splatters on them as well. It think the deep red and blue will contrast nicely with the anaemic pale flesh and provide a distinctive look for the herd. That’s the plan anyway. To add to the challenge, I’ll also be trying out a different style of painting in general, namely wash-painting. I love washes; they’re an excellent substitute for talent and patience. I tend to go through a good amount of wash whenever I paint. Undercoat, basecoat, wash the hell out of it. But working with washes as the base of the paint job is not something I’ve ever done before. Fortunately some of the guys at the local GW are going to show me how to do it (hopefully without needing airbrushes or anything that silly), so that’ll be another string to my unimpressive-looking bow.
It’s not just Beastmen on the horizon for me though. I’ve finally started making inroads into Malifaux. Down at Manufactured Conflict, we’ve got some of the very nice WorldWorks card terrain. The only criticisms I have about it is the length of setup (it took two of us about 25 minutes to set up before we could start to use it) and the area of coverage. The setup length is unavoidable given the amount of customisation inherent in the terrain, so I can’t realistically complain about that. However, we found that we were just not able to cover the recommended area of ground for a game. The rulebook states that small games should be played on 3’ x 3’, but we were just not able to cover that with the one box of terrain and one box of clips to hold them together. We got close (2.5’ x 2.5’), so maybe it’s just splitting hairs, but it’s still a bit of an irritation to need just a little more of a really quite expensive kit to fulfil its purpose. Nevertheless the stuff looks really good and you can get some very interesting skirmish terrain out of it. Soon we’ll have to break out the other two sets! I’ll address more Malifaux as I play it more. I’ve only got two games under my belt, so I can’t really talk with any authority other than to say that I’ve really enjoyed the system so far.
And I’ve won twice.
But that’s probably not statistically viable!