Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Harvester of Souls 2016 - Best Appearance Winner!

I just got back yesterday from the Harvester of Souls 2016 Grand Tournament, and am pleased to say I won the trophy for Best Appearance! My Dark Eldar army got a lot of positive and excited feedback, especially among the tournament organizers. Naturally everyone loved the comic as well, which I think is a big reason I got a lot of favorite army votes from the players.
I also won Best in Dark Eldar out of 3 total Dark Eldar players. It was mostly the painting and appearance score for that though as I only won a single game of the five I played. My army wasn't really that competitive, but that's the great thing about the Harvester; 33% of your overall score comes from actual gameplay, 33% from sportsmanship, and 33% from appearance and painting. This is in contrast to most grand tournaments placing a higher stake in gameplay over the other two. It doesn't alleviate hyper-competitive players and lists, but it also doesn't encourage it, and puts more emphasis on the hobby, which I love. They also do something unusual, they don't use the ITC missions. Each table at the event has its own terrain set-up with its own narrative scenario. Every time I go back I am playing a different set of 5 games. Most of them are a lot of fun.

This was my 3rd attendance to the Harvester, and I love it. Anyone wanting a good fun tournament and you are in the north-west area of the United States (or even western Canada) the Harvester of Souls is a lot of fun.

Finally a few acknowledgements for this award:
  • First to my beautiful patient wife, Beth. She supported the entire effort from the beginning and offered encouragement. She is awesome and helps balance my life in this nerdy hobby of mine. She also edited the comic book to made sure it made sense.
  • Second to my brother, Jarom. The cutaway of the underground sewer and how to achieve it was his idea, and of course his awesome art on the comic really brought my story to life. They exceeded my initial storyboard. On a side note, congratulations to Jarom for winning best in Orks. He really rocked it this tournament and his army appearance was a definite improvement over last year.
  • Third to my friend, Timo Swaner. He was a big encouragement and someone I could really bounce lists and ideas off of. A partner in crime when it comes to 40k.
  • Fourth and final to the War Head blog. It was this post that started the ball rolling on the idea and I cited them since the beginning. It was the idea of space rats as Dark Eldar which festered within me for quite some time that culminated into my own take on it. This is a gorgeous blog to follow if only for the pictures alone, even though most of the time it's in Finnish.
Now I gotta get working on finishing my Duardin for the LVO!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Silver Tower - New mini standees

In playing Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower, we found the stand-in miniatures to be a little immersion-breaking. Still too cheap to buy the real ones, I came up with an alternative.
Now paper miniatures is nothing new, but I just thought I'd give it a shot and like what they turned out to be. I think these will help with the confusion of what was what as the bases are clearly labeled what each standee reperesents and their wargear. I even made sure that the pictures in them represented their weapons. The pictures are all recognizable as I ripped them from GW's pictures of the models.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

The Coven of Verminlord Skrax - The Comic Book

I have something very exciting to share with you guys. I commissioned my brother to illustrate the comic book which will tell Verminlord Skrax' story. I wrote it out and did a basic layout and storyboard for my brother, and my wife edited the text. And so I bring you the comic book:

These are all the pages of a booklet I will be giving away while my board and army are on display at the tournament. I just got to get them printed, folded, and stapled and everything for my army is good to go! After the tournament I will provide a report of how well it did.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Forthammer Clan Throng - Drake Dunsson (Cogsmith)

One of the featured models for my Duardin side of my AoS army (for the LVO) will be Drake Dunsson, the Master Cogsmith. I featured him here, as I talked about using him in Silver Tower. Well he went through a redesign, which I love.

This happened when I took off his original head. I am fond of the Irondrake heads, but since my Forgesworn Eternals were all to use those heads, I didn't want my Duardin to use the same, opting instead for different available heads. Then I purchased the Gyrocopter kit, which I plan to use for another conversion. In going through the bits, I found one of the bits for the front fuselage gun-mount used on the Gyrocopter variant could be turned around and put on a body to look like a really cool mantle. Also I really liked one of the pilot heads, as it would be perfect for the eccentric engineer that Drake is. I also redesigned the back unit. I liked the gear assembly up top, but stick it on a few engniney bits from my collection, and ran hoses to the pistols, to look like they were feeding it.

I think this makes a more unique looking engineer model, and I can't wait to show it off when painted.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Forgesworn Eternals - Painted Models Part 6

Another short painting update. My Knight-questor from the Silver Tower set is done.

And this completes the painting (before the basing of course) of my Forgesworn Eternals. I like the method I used for painting them because it's simple enough and worked well for their theme. Now I will start dedicating my resources to working on my Duardin portion of the army. I have some ambitious plans for it, but attainable goals I feel.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Verminlord Skrax' Lair - Title Plaque - How I did it

Doing a painted title plaque was a last minute idea for my display board. I wanted originally just to do a simple print of the army title and stick it on the base. However I knew it would look cheap and unimpressive, even if you find the perfect font for it (which is Dark Crystal font, by the way).

I thought of this idea because I wanted something hand painted to title the whole board. So here is the process of how I went about doing it:
Start off by printing off the text onto label paper. Label paper is just a big sheet of paper with a sticker backing. It's primarily meant for printing labels onto things. I kept the size of the font so it would fit within the 1" thick base of the board. Luckily the font I donwloaded had an outline version, which made this so much easier. I cut out a sizeable portion of the label paper and stuck it on a piece of plasticard, then stuck the outlying sticker on a piece of wood that I usually do my cutting and painting on. This is to prevent curling and a hard back for the painting. As the paint would dry, the whole thing would want to warp. You can see the outline of the plasticard underneath the label.
Next I painted within the text and the background of the title, trying to keep within and without the lines as much as possible. I purposefully painted outside the boundaries of the plague because I knew I was going to cut it out, and it would be better than having white within the cut.
Using the colors of my army's armor and warpstone, I painted a reflection type gradient. This was easier than I thought because I didn't bother with any sort of wet blending, just applying layers of the right colors.
Next I applied a layer of a lighter red surrounding the text to bring it out a little more. It still blends well enough with the background.
To finish the text, I used a fine tip black ink marker to recorrect the original black outline. It sharpens up the details. Then I give the whole thing plenty of time to dry, so any tendency to warp would be done by now.
I marked out the borders with a fine tip pen and cut it out using a hobby knife and a metal ruler to ensure the angles were as right and edges straight as possible.
Then using a black I painted a thin uneven border around it just for effect. Some warping still happened, but not as much if I hadn't use the label paper to keep the whole thing down. Also I painted along the white edges of the plasticard so it wouldn't stand out, that can really distract the from the overall feel of it.

Then I gave the whole thing a quick coat of spray on matte varnish to protect it, and glued it to the display board.