More Hyperian Wars Escalation – The Dauntless Redux!

We live in an increasingly turbulent world. Our cousin races – the Ee’la, the Stoc’d – withdraw into themselves, thinking only of their own interests. The Beasts – Orca, Grub, Virum Nascii, Lacerats – their numbers grow by the day, encroaching onto those territories claimed by Man. The Dead pour from the dark places.. and even while all this takes place, still we turn on each other.

Our Sky Marines perform above and beyond the call of duty but in the face of peer and near-peer competitors it is vital that we shore up our technological to maintain overmatch in the face of these perils. And so we are proud to unveil a new generation of Skycutters to ensure that our forces go into battle equipped the very best in firepower and protection from perils both physical and enchanted. To this end, we present our latest and best battlefield weapon – the Allied Sky Vessel “Dauntless”

Her power fields and wards will provide unmatched protection against conventional and magickal attacks, whilst a Vrilfire cannon can cut a swathe through enemy warriors. Vril-tipped missiles equipped with Artificial Cognisance can bring down threats up to and including the largest dragons employed by the Beast races, whilst reinforced liftwood levitation engines ensure maximal mobility. Noospheric networking allows the Dauntless class to network with lesser constructs such as the Whippet, as well as with platoon command sections and Masters Of Artificials on the ground
The Dauntless combines speed, protection and lethality into one construct, ensuring our society has nothing to fear from the Dead, the Beasts, or any other threat that the world of Hyperia may choose to throw against us
She can be seen here flying the colours of the 301st Skyborne, a tried and tested formation who have defended the Grand Alliance against many foes
Live fire combat testing proved the efficacy of the design, the Skyborne being highly appreciated of her concentrated firepower

Yep, I got into the recycling again…

Actually, I’ve been meaning to do this for AGES. Ever since I saw this:

This is the lid of a bottle of laundry detergent. And looked at the right way… it has an air of steampunk, Adeptus Mechanicus-style menace, doesn’t it? And given that the previous incarnation of the Dauntless was basically a toilet roll tube with pretensions, I’d long wondered if I couldn’t do something a bit better.
Filled the body with caulk and popped a ping pong ball in there to be the liftwood core
Some EPVC (I think) from an eBay purchase provided the wings – you’ll have seen the same stuff used here as base.
Bevelled the wings and glued them on using a mix of quick dry PVA, caulk and superglue.
Jet thrusters from a pair of now-dead biros
Chin cannon (thinking steampunk/ fantasy A-10 here, so something analogous to the iconic “Avenger” cannon) – this was made from a mysterious leftover part from an IKEA bookcase!
Missiles added for those hard to reach targets! These are rawl plugs, attached to the wings with the same mix of PVA and superglue
Something this big needs a base equal to the challenge! Pretty sure 2005 virus protection isn’t much use in 2022, so this CD will do, with a Tactical Rock added to cover the hole
Cardboard added for armour plating and rivets daubed on as blobs of PVA with a cocktail stick, and then we bring the primer! White, to match the Whippet
Cat litter added to the base for scenic effect
Primed and ready for painting…
And done! Painting was the same as the Whippet, and the basing mostly used the same idea – I did a little bot of leopard spotting on the rocks before drybrushing them with cream and using the tried and trusty mix of PVA and superglue to attach the ping pong ball liftwood core.. Thumb added for scale!

So there we go – I’m really, really chuffed with this build, it came together really well and I think it looks the part too… full of menace, hovering across the battlefield dispensing Vrilfire death to the enemies of the Grand Alliance… let’s see what those filthy Greenskin savages, rat abominations or misguided religious zealots can come up with to match her!

Stay thrifty out there and see you soon – we’ve just noticed that it is (drumroll please) Orctober!!! So no prizes for guessing the next few posts themes…

The Fawcett-Fairchild FV1066 “Whippet” Quadrupedal Ambulatory Weapons Platform

As tensions across the world of Hyperia escalate, the Grand Alliance coalition of willing floating cities and aero-states are finding it necessary to deploy Sky Marine task forces with increasing regularity. As by necessity these task forces are small in terms of numbers, despite their high quality training and equipment they are vulnerable to near-peer competitors able to deploy overwhelming numbers. To this end, the Alliance military-industrial complex have been tasked with developing easily deployable “force multipliers”. The Fawcett-Fairchild “Whippet” class Quadrupedal Ambulatory Weapons Platform is such a device, crewed by a single Sky Marine, Vril-enabled Artificial Cognisance enabling it to track multiple targets, prioritise them and engage with twin belt-fed 1-inch canons – all the while networking with “senior” constructs such as the Dauntless-class Skycutter.”

You know that feeling when you see a piece of junk that you’re about to throw out and all of a sudden a voice in your head says “Keep me… I am destined to be more than this..”…

Yes, it’s a junk build. Missed these, haven’t you? 😉

So it was with a simple plastic cap off a bottle of guitar string cleaner – there was just something about the proportions that I thought looked right in 1/72… coupled with the fact that Dan had mentioned a new RTS called Iron Harvest that he reckoned I might get a kick out of…

OK, failed to take any pics of the build process, it seems. So – I began with the clear plastic spray top that forms the body of the mech. Next, I bored some holes in it and used cocktail sticks, snapped in half at the “knee” joints and sealed with superglue to form the legs. A mix of superglue and quick dry PVA did wonders to fix the legs in place to the body.

Next up, the cannons – two more cocktail sticks with sort of grippy bits on them (look at the pic, I don’t know how best to describe them!) – these got the superglue/ PVA treatment straight to the body. This works really well – PVA gives a flexible, sturdy bond but it takes time to dry, whereas superglue is quick drying but brittle. Mixing them seems to do wonders, and there doesn’t seem to be any side effects like Mel The Terrain Tutor describes from mixing superglue and hot glue.

The ammo belts you see feeding the cannons are cut from IDE cable (credit to Zrunelord from TMP there), chopped about 5mm by 10mm and given the magic glue mix, and the shiny thing on top is a defunct watch battery – gives the thing a nice bit of weight.

On the top you can see a chopped down superglue cap, and a couple of thin pieces of card glued to the front for armour plating, and just out of shot are a couple of drinking straws trimmed to represent exhausts:

Old brush bristle got repurposed as an aerial, and the rivets are our classic method of PVA blobs dabbed on with a cocktail stick
Finally I drew round a paint pot on a piece of corrugated card for the base. And with that, time for priming!
White, as was the style of the time..
Prewash with thinned black paint & Vallejo Smokey Ink mix

And once again, I forgot to take pics of the painting process, so here we are with some finished beauty shots:

Basecoat of Vallejo Russian Green, washed with Arm Pinter Green Tone and then thinned Vallejo Brown Ink with a pin wash of Vallejo Smokey Ink.. then drybrushed back with Russian Green, and mixed with craft tan to lighten it. Weathering was Vallejo Skin Wash streaked on to simulate rainwater and then sponge chipping with craft black and Vallejo Mithril silver for where bare metal pokes through (not too much, Sky Marines undertake regular maintenance of their armoury). The brass ammo belts were Mithril Silver washed with Skin Wash, and the base painted with chocolate brown before covered with dry soil, sand and Jarvis flock before varnish
Seen here about to kick some greenskin ass.. “They are to our right, left and centre.. they can’t get away now!”

Stay thrifty out there, and if you’re so inclined you can now follow us on Instagram! Just search “@skinflintgames” – see you in the next one

Goin’ Street Legal – Tidying Up The Guard

This was supposed to be an easy one….

So, back in the days of M2 992 when the 2nd edition of Space Marine came out, supplemented by Armies Of The Imperium, the Guard got a few tricks that haven’t endured to the present day. Crucially – as GW only had a limited number of model kits available – the Rhino was a standardised piece of kit available to Guard and Astartes forces alike.

Although your common or garden Guardsman is expected to footslog into battle and basically stand and die, under 2nd Ed Epic all Guard company HQs were all issued with Rhinos and furthermore each Guard company got issued a Commissar – essentially an independent morale/ political officer type, this is a useful unit able to act independently, handy in close combat and crucially able to reinforce the slightly inflexible Guard command structure by relaying orders and taking command over Guard units left leaderless. These units were free, and looked to be hugely useful – so in order to make the Granny Grating Guard a fully “street legal” playable force under 2nd Edition, I needed to make some.

Infantry were a piece of cake – usual cross shapes, with a slight alteration for the Commissar to represent his chainsword and a little smear of greenstuff for his cape. I painted the Guardsmen escorting him in the usual manner, while the Commissars themselves got funky red caps with black capes (I know, capes are pretty wizard) and shiny Vallejo Mithril Silver chainswords.

The Rhinos were a slightly trickier affair – I went back to the Vindicators from back in… 2019? The Before Times, the Long Long Ago and copied the dimensions, just leaving off the reinforcement glacis plate and unfeasibly large gun and adding a couple of hatches from thin cardboard (the circular ones were done with my hole punch), and the details of boltguns and exhausts were done with granny grating offcuts. I’ve got into a new technique with these – holding them with tweezers und using a mix of superglue and tacky PVA. The superglue provides the initial hold, the PVA provides are stringer more flexible bond after it dries.

I primed everything white because 1992, and painted with the same pattern of Granite Dust house paint/ Green Wash/ Brown wash/ Black wash/ Granite Dust Drybrush for the uniform bits. Craft black for the commissars, and following the “Assault On Barbarius” battle report forces I added yellow and blue stripes for the HQ vehicles.

Back when I last gave this project some love, John@justneedsvarnish mentioned that they could use some flags… now, I could have got all smug and snarky -“Oh yes, everyone knows that all sci-fi armies use banners to denote their valuable command units, totally tactically sound” – except of course, that he’s dead right. You can’t do ’90s GW without flags. So I copied the infantry company HQ flags as best I could onto paper and superglued them onto poles made from about 15mm of straightened out, snipped up paperclip.. and I also added some flags to the HQ units of the other companies and the Leviathan, using the white/red/white army ID symbol the army uses on its’ right front quarters.

So with that done, pics:

Commissars rocking the black and red finish, HQs in blue (Tactical company) and yellow (Heavy Company)
HQs – I think these came out the best tbh
Commissars, all ready and decked out to ensure faith in the Emperor
The force in its entirety, all ready to hit the table!

So that gets us to:

Imperial Guard Vindicator Company – 450pts, Break Point 5, Morale 4+ ,VPs 5

Imperial Guard Tactical Company – 600pts, Break Point 17, Morale 4+, VPs 6

Imperial Guard Heavy Company – 600pts, Break Point 9, Morale 4+, VPs 6

Imperial Guard Leviathan – 350pts, 4 VPs

Imperial Guard Sentinel Squadron – 100pts, Break Point 3, Morale 4+, VPs 1

Imperial Guard Rough Rider Squadron – 150pts, Break Point 5, Morale 4+, VPs 2
3 x Commissars – Free

So that’s a cool 2250pts of Epic to throw down with, not enough for a BIG big game, but enough for a decent enough scuffle – unfortunately Skinflint HQ is out of action for the moment (redecoration), but it’s nice to know the Hazzard PDF can throw something into the field to combat Waaagh- Bozzhog!

Slava Ukrainia, see you again soon

The Battle Of Outpost 44 – A Star Wars Story!

As the Grim Darkness of the.. present day.. grinds on, we fancied taking our wargaming as far away from reality as possible- the other week it was Hyperian Wars (which gave us a load of ideas for game development), this time it was our 6mm “Epic” scale take on our rules engine in it’s sci-fi skin “Future Force Warrior”…

I laid out a somewhat similar battleground to last week’s fight, substituting the ruined temple with plasma reactors and the Valiant 44th command centre – codename Objective Hamilton – which would be the objective for both sides… so theoretically at least, it would be best commander wins!

Rebels win the deployment roll off, getting to pick the side and forcing the Imperials to start deployment first. Support platoon with E-Web blasters set up shop in the woods on top of the hill towards the bottom of the pic.
Rebels set up using cover to screen their infantry from Imperial fire (they hope) – mechs lurk in the rocky gulch, speeder bike team in the woods to the bottom of the pic
Overview of the battlefield – Rebels stage left, Imperials stage right, Outpost 44 dead centre
Vader leads the Imperial attack from the front – “Leave them to me!”
Rebel speeders burst from cover, performing a hit and run attack destroying one AT-PT and damaging another, using a command point to move them back into cover before Imperial fire can respond
First blood to the Rebellion!
…aaand back into cover before return fire hits!
Rebel infantry storm forward to consolidate the objective
Yeah, we’ve got line of sight…. (say the Imperial support platoon)
Where’d Yellow platoon go?!? The Empire Strikes Back!
The first turn ends with the Rebels in control of Outpost 44 but they’ve taken significant casualties and Lord Vader is marching forwards…
Red platoon double time forward to capture the outpost, successfully using a command point to gun down a Stormtrooper platoon caught out in the open
Marching forward into cover, Imperial AT-PTs catch a Rebel speeder in the open and damage it
Imperial and Rebel speeder bike teams duel at point blank range in the forest
Inconclusive, but definitely bloody!

Imperial support platoon draws a bead on the exposed Rebel mechs… 6’s to hit?

That’ll do..
Die, Rebel Scum!!
Vader leads the remaining Stormtroopers in a last ditch attack towards the outpost
The moment we’ve all been waiting for! Vader engages Luke in close combat – “I AM YOUR FATHER!”
“NOW YOUR FAILURE IS COMPLETE!” Vader fells Luke and the Rebel platoon look at each other nervously..
…before annihilating him with the combined fire of a full platoon’s blasters! Actually in retrospect we should probably have done all this as close combat, maybe some form of Force shenanigans.. as it was, he took 18 hits, fluffed every Force save and every Hero save…. “NOOOOOOO!”
Rebel speeder team carries the duel in the woods
With the remaining Stormtroopers annihilated by the second Rebel platoon, the support platoon weigh up their options as the sole remaining Imperial unit and decide to retreat to fight another day… it was close, but the Rebel Alliance wins this round!

All in all, a fun little game – we need to finesse the “fighting in buildings” aspect, we were a little inconsistent with how we abstracted that, but on the whole, a solid rules engine and I think we’ve struck a good balance between alternate activation and IGO/UGO mechanics, as well as the range abstraction that dogs wargames… Till next time, May The Force Be With You (particularly if you’re Ukrainian)!

May The 4th Be (Belatedly) With You Once More

So, not going to labour this as there’s another juicy battle report to get to! But in the build up towards it I did manage a couple of fun little scratchbuilds to pad out the Epic Star Wars armies which I thought I’d share. So, to business!

First up, some support infantry – these represent heavy E-Web blaster teams, able to lay down heavy fire from covered positions. I knocked up a platoon of 6 each for the Rebel & Imperial sides.

Yep, it’s our old stalwarts of granny grating & wine box card! The two crewmen were the standard infantry shape, the guns used an H-shape for bipod and a long beam for the barrel. I had the stormtroopers stood at parade ground attention, while the Rebels got to stand at ease at different angles. Hot glue to attach the grating to the card, superglue to attach the barrels to the bipod. Make sure you let the hot glue dry and cool, you don’t want to mix superglue and hot glue together! Just ask Mel The Terrain Tutor

Unfortunately I forgot to take any photos pf these guys painted, but the schemes I used were exactly the same as the first round of infantry, so let’s move on to…

Imperial AT-PT Walkers!

I put some speeder mechs together for the Rebel forces a couple of weeks ago, so it was only right that the Empire got some mechanised support too – and because I have a weakness for Return Of The Jedi and the Care Bears taking down stormtroopers with twigs, I was really psyched to build these!

Foamboard! 5mm deep, cut these shapes out. Two of them glued side on make the cab.
This is thin “modelling card” bought from The Works discount stationary chain here in the UK – cut these shapes out to wrap around the exposed foamboard. If you haven’t got access to this stuff you can always use printer paper.
Of COURSE – granny grating! Cut this shape out to form the underside assembly carrying the laser cannons
“She’s got LEGS… and here’s how you make them..” cut these shapes out of chipboard (that thick cardstock stuff at the back of A4 pads)
Here are the templates drawn out – the circles are where they’ll attach to the “hips”, the toes at the bottom will be cut out and folded in opposing ways to make sure this thing holds together and stays upright!
NOW we’re cooking! I added some PVA blobs for rivets and extra detail where the legs met the body
Based on wine box card bases (these are integral to keeping the model together, really)
Added a couple of card squares to represent armour reinforcements and crew access hatches, primed white and painted basically the same way I did the rebels – Granite Dust house paint, green wash, brown wash, black wash, drybrush. Mithril Silver washed with black ink for the metallics.
The “eyes” were just painted on, doesn’t work too well close up but works well from two feet away!
Seen here backing up the stormtrooper infantry and Lord Vader himself!
“We will destroy the Rebel scum!”

And in my NEXT report… we’ll find out if they manage to!

Meanwhile, stay safe, stay thrifty, and Slavia Ukrainia!

Crossing The Rubicon Nostalgius Pt.9 – When You’re On A Roll…

There’s an old saying – when you’re in a hole, stop digging, but when you’re on a roll, keep rollin’! So after the first Rhino actually took me slightly less than two years….

Yeah…

After having realised (with a couple of pointers from Jim) how to crank ’em out, here’s two more:

These were built exactly the same way as the first one, papercraft template downloaded from “In The Grim Cheapness” (RIP), glued to card… ignored the fiddly bits, used straws for the exhausts, PVA dabs for the rivets and Polyfilla (sanded down with an emery board) to fill in and take care of any glaring gaps. Primed white (and pre-shaded with brown ink), then Vallejo Hot Orange base, Red Ink Wash, drybrush with Hot Orange and edged with cheap Cadmium Yellow craft paint.

Metallics are Vallejo Mithril Silver over craft black base, whites are Dulux Jasmine White house paint (!)
Notice that No. 9 Rhino has a) the variant frontal armour and b) a small dent after having been inadvertently sat on by the boy.. not to worry, what would have been £30+ quid of plastic down the pan gets a quick shake, squeeze and prodding back out with a cocktail stick and..
Good to go! Seen here with the first Rhino, Captain Tycho and some friends…
“Our aim is to create a recognisable brand to strike fear into the hearts of the Imperium’s enemies”

So there we go, more progress on the 1991 Blood Angels Tribute Act… now, to make this force 2nd Ed legal, I need to bodge together a Techmarine, plus there’s a Land Speeder, a Land Raider, a Thudd Gun, two bikes (Christ knows how I’m going to do them) and the rest of the characters still to do… so hmmm, what’s next on the hit list….

Stay safe and thrifty out there, and slavia Ukrainia, slavia heroyem – all things pass

Crossing The Rubicon Nostalgius Pt. 8- Startin’ Up The Motor Pool!

After my compatriot’s rather heartfelt (and heavily researched) post on the unfolding conflict in Ukraine, I kind of feel a bit sheepish popping this here, but here we are – the first vehicle for the 1991 Blood Angels!

Fittingly enough, it’s a Rhino – the ubiquitous M113-battle-taxi of the far future. This was (fanfare please) a DIY papercraft build, put together from a template downloaded from the now-shuttered (sadly) blog “In The Grim Cheapness” – I’d recommend downloading the hell out of everything on that site while it’s still up.

I actually built the basic hull and treads back in 2020 (!) and pretty much forgot about it, so hauled it back out and started applying details. Hatches and armour layers were cut from thin card, and the iconic four exhausts (borrowing from Wyloch.. praise be upon him) were made from drinking straws. I plugged up the holes with greenstuff and cut down thinner drinking straws for the very top of the exhaust.

You can see the rivets – dots of PVA glue, dabbed on with a cocktail stick. I also used Polyfilla (spackle, in American) to fill in some of the gaps, and then sanded it down before priming.

In white, naturally, as was the style of the time – and I decided to get clever, adding a thin chestnut/brown wash over the primer:

Before applying the basecoat, two thin coats (naturally) of Vallejo Hot Orange, washed with Vallejo Red Ink, drybrushed with Hot Orange and edge highlighted with thinned Cadmium Yellow craft paint.

Craft black for the bits that are going to be metallic and the campaign badge, and the vision slits because no bloody way was I going to cut out raised lips for them…

You might notice that although this is based on the classic Mk 1 Rhino from the Rogue Trader but I wimped out of doing the radiator grills – I did have a plan to use nylon tulle (which we used when we made Skalk Point) but after losing several layers of skin trying to superglue the bastard stuff I gave up and went for armour layers with cardboard. So we have a beast which is neither quite fish nor fowl, but after a lick of paint, we are left with….

My First Papercraft! With thanks to Jim for a bit of assistance 😉
Freehand shapes were drawn on in pencil and then Dulux Jasmine White house paint (thinned with Windsor & Newton medium) to fill in the shapes.. I actually measured the arrow to get it geometrically right, a first for me!

In situ on the terrain mat with some friends for scale

So there we are – it’s not quite done, I need to get a couple of bolters to mount on it but riding a wave of confidence I may even scratchbuild some to stick on there!

Not perfect and I very much doubt it would fool anyone into thinking it’s a legit GW product, but works nicely for us and looks pretty good – the army list calls for another two, so that’s me occupied for the next few weeks!

On another note, we decided that one thing we could do is cash out everything we’ve earned from selling Apocalypse: Earth to the DEC appeal to support Ukraine, so from now on until all this is over all proceeds will be going there. Not much, but better than nothing. As Jim mentioned in the last post, we did have some engagement with Russia (43 readers… out of 144 million people.. still) so if you ARE a young Russian chap of draftable age reading this and conscription season is right around the corner, maybe now is time to take that gap year abroad you’ve been promising yourself…..

Stay thrifty and safe out there, and may sanity prevail before too long. Slavia Ukraini, slavia heroyem

Back To The Granny Grating – DIY Epic Sentinels

How do again world. Having built up a nice head of steam painting Captain Tycho and being within touching distance of finishing my Retro Blood Angels, it makes perfect sense to leave them once again to concentrate on something else.. but as my partner in thrift mentioned, sometimes you just want those little wins, and the idea of a quick and simple project lit a fire under me.

In these days of economic apocalypse where just heating your house seems to require working three jobs (and one of them being a hedge fund manager), the casual wargamer could be forgiven for thinking that the Epic Imperial Guard army he once coveted as a kid would remain out of reach forever…

Look at the top caption – a glorious sight, one’s heart fills to bursting with pride in the Hammer Of The Emperor

Guess again.

Some of you have already seen the Granny Grating Imperial Guard force taking shape over the last couple of years (and I certainly can’t take credit for the idea) and as the project as taken on a life of it’s own I’ve started to base it more and more on this force from the “Assault On Barbarius” battle from 2nd Ed Space Marine back in the early 90s. We’ve got the infantry component and a contingent of Rough Riders, plus a Vindicator company (the Guard could take them way back when) and of course the DIY Leviathan. The Assault On Barbarius force also called for (amongst other things) a squadron of Sentinels, and I quickly saw how a bit of granny grating and greenstuff could take care of that. A couple of evenings later – done!

The infamous “Eggs On Legs”! Granny grating frame (3 up and one across, I believe), vaguely elliptical blob of greenstuff for the cockpit, “L” shape greenstuff for weapon and pilot. Bases 20mm single corrugated cardboard from wine box. Shown here about to be primed white, as was the style of the time.
Up close and personal- these are never going to fool anyone that they’re GW originals, but it’s clear what they’re supposed to be.
The army (as it stands) deployed on the DIY battle mat..
A few units to go before we’re “street legal” but I’m pretty pleased so far
“Wow.. how much did all this cost you?” “So far? About £5”

So there we go, another unit added to the Hazzard 1977th – for free! Stay safe and sane, see you soon

Terrain Talk Pt. 19 – Epic Imperial Communications Bunker

Sometimes, you just want that quick little win. And so it was the other day, as I finished the washing up and was about to toss an innocuous looking soft cheese container into the recycling, when I caught sight of it from a certain angle and something about it caught my eye..

Hmmm..

Cue a rummage around the Drawer Of Interestingly Shaped Crap (we’ve all got one) – and an old internet/ phone line junction box, a bottle cap and the lid from a nasal spray and things are starting to take shape:

Definitely something there….
Added superglue tops and made an archway with cardboard – after all, personnel have to be able to get in and out, even in the Imperium!
View from the other side
Out to the shed we go.. Primed black, then dusted white.. I’m not sure about the merits of zenithal highlighting, but as the black spray can ran out events forced my hand…
Overbrush with Wilko’s Duck Egg Blue house paint from our long serving tester pot
Splodge on some thinned red craft paint (thanks to Lukes APS for the paint scheme – veterans of the blog will recognise this scheme many times over)
Drybrush/overbrush with Granite Dust (another Wilko’s tester pot)
Highlight up with Cloud Burst house paint drybrushed strategically, and then a thin black wash to tie it all together

Next up I blocked in base colours – Vallejo Russian Green and Mithril Silver for the metallic bits and gave the whole thing a thin black wash. I mixed in a little tan craft paint to create something lighter and did a little edge highlighting (sorry Dan) on the exposed edges, and for the psychic Astronomicon relay tower I used the same trick from the plasma reactors (itself lifted from one of Duncan’s old Warhammer TV painting guides), so I won’t retread that here – particularly since I don’t think I made that great a job of it, just couldn’t get it accurate enough so the effect is a bit smeary.

The great thing about the base box is that it comes with its own base! So I painted the lip brown, painted it with PVA and sprinkled first earth, then sand, then flock over it. Matt varnish sealed the whole thing and boom, we’re good to go! Beauty shots below:

Roman numeral for “44” in honour of the TRUE F1 world champion.. he shall return and wreak vengeance!!
Weathering wash applied using a thinned down Vallejo skinwash – I tried to find places where rain might gather and streak
One of Whittlesey’s decals – I was hoping to get a second one on the other side but failed in applying it and manged to tear it…

So there we go, first build of 2022! On an unrelated note, we’re both big fans of Mel The Terrain Tutor, and he’s been worryingly quiet of late, particularly taking note of health issues he’s been suffering from – we wish him well wherever he is, and if you happen to be reading this Mel, drop us a line to let us know you’re Ok.

Meantime, stay safe, sane and thrifty everyone, we’ll see you again soon!

Jager March! New units for the League Of European Nations…

It’s good to get back to your roots. With all the 40k and granny grating shenanigans that have been going on of late, you’d be forgiven for thinking that we’d forgotten about our first love – our own game, “Apocalypse: Earth” set in an alternate WW2 in the 1950s between the West and the Holy Soviet Empire that is not at all inspired by a popular computer game from the late 90s.

I’ve had custody of the “goodies”, the Atlantic Alliance – UK, US & Commonwealth – while Dan has been commanding the Holy Soviet Empire forever, but in the last couple of years I’ve been investigating the League Of European Nations… short version, Germany (sort of) wins WWI, sets up a proto-EU, the UK doesn’t bankrupt itself in WWI and as a result the Commonwealth and US go into partnership more or less as equals.

In the original rulebook (from 2014!!) I made reference to a League unit called a Panzerjager, which is basically a walking light tank/ power armour suit, but at that time I had no idea how I might go about making one…

Fast (fast?) forward seven years, and I am SO much older and wiser. So, allow me to walk you through the construction process… you’ll need foamboard, cardboard, a straw, a coffee strawer and a kebab skewer… and yeah, a bit of granny grating, and some sprue.

Here’s where we start – 5mm thick foamcore, 20 x 25mm wide – we’re going to glue these on top of each other to create 3 lots of 2 foamcore bodies. These form the core of the models.
Now we taper the upper layer – 5mm off either edge.
Next we encase the main torso in thin cardboard – this is just cheap stuff from The Works, but cereal box or even printer paper should do the job just as well
Cardstock covering the foamboard torso, next a 4.5cm chunk of coffee stirrer to provide the “shoulders” (the black marks on the centre are there to ensure accurate alignment)

Now, full disclosure, I built these while watching the England – Denmark game, which meant that my attention did wander at times… as a result, the next few steps didn’t get documented…..

Legs from kebab skewers, broken in the middle and sealed with superglue… laser cannon cut from drinking straw, machinegun from (you guessed it) granny grating, and exhaust pipes on the back clipped from sprue and superglued on. Rivets are blobs of PVA dabbed on with a cocktail stick.
Out to the shed for priming…
Based with two coats of Crafter’s Choice tan…
Camo patterns added with Vallejo Russian Green
And Americana Light Cinammon craft paint
Washed with (very) thin Vallejo Brown Ink
Pin wash of neat Vallejo Smokey Ink
Drybrushed with bone craft paint (Americana Buttermilk)…
And done! Bases were painted chocolate brown then added sand and flock… I superglued a piece of gravel to each base partly for scenic reasons and partly to impart some weight to these models, as being simply cardboard, foamboard and straw for the most part they had a tendency to fall over when someone nearby coughed (although you could make the case for that being a COVID early warning system)
Taking the field (in this case Bose Cliff) with some friends….

Why have I built these? Well, as COVID restrictions are lifting and the Great Plague of 2020-21 goes into remission… probably…. we’re planning our Great Summer Smackdown once again! Now Dan & I are both double jabbed and so are our other halves, we can start to plan some big games again… and believe me, we are!

If you’re interested in the rules for these Panzerjagers, they’re in the Apocalypse: Earth rulebook, but because we love you all (Pete, John, Subedai, IRO, Roger, Whittlesey and all of you) here they are again, updated to represent these models:

Panzerjager Squadron – 250pts

Independent unit

Leader – Panzerjager suit equipped with Laser Designator, SS-10 “Cobra” ATGM, Heavy Machine Gun

2 Troopers – Panzerjager suit equipped with SS-10 “Cobra” ATGM & Heavy Machine Gun

Special Rule – the Panzerjager suits each allow the wearer to mount heavy weapons without suffering any movement penalties. It protects it’s wearer with an armour value of 12.

Heavy Machine Gun – range 100cm, ROF 8, Penetration 6+2D6

SS-10 “Cobra” ATGM – range 100cm, ROF 1, Penetration 15+2D6, +1 to hit on designated target

Laser Designator – the player chooses a target to be designated, all other unit members get +1 to hit with their Cobra ATGM launchers.

And if you fancy having a crack yourself, here’s the rulebook and fluff on Wargames Vault: Apocalypse: Earth

Stay safe and thrifty out there, and a BIG fight coming soon!