Sunday, 22 February 2015


Hey all, Toby here 

I'm proud to say I've been inducted into AGIF, I’ve been a quiet follower of this blog for almost a year now so I’m honoured to be a part of it.  I’ve done a little hobby blogging in my past and found that it helps me stay focussed and motivated if I have a way to show others what I’ve been working on.

A quick bit of my hobby history.  I’ve been a fanatic closet hobbyist since the 90’s when I got my first miniature, a dwarven runepriest.  True I didn’t know what to do with it, not even that it needed to be painted, but I was hooked nonetheless.  Through the years I have in one way or another collected almost every WFB and 40k army out there, usually only until the next months releases come out and I realise I like them more.  I am first and foremost a hobbier over a gamer though, so my project indecisiveness has never really bothered me because at the end of the day it’s converting and painting that gets my rocks off.


I genuinely feel like a 30k army might be my chance to finally build an army ready for the table and the xxth are going to help me get there.  Ever since the CSM 2nd edition codex I’ve always loved the aesthetics and idea behind the Alpha Legion, their questionable allegiances and their constantly adapting tactics.  Being a keen converter as well I also like that their range is less than complete giving me plenty of opportunity to freely adapt the look of my army.  I plan on starting small with a 1000pt army then slowly building it up.

Take the following list with a grain of salt as I’ve never actually played a game, but the idea behind it is many small elite units backed up by some rapid moving support which I think is sticking with AL fluff.

Centurion, Consul Delegatus, Artificer Armour, Power Weapon                  100pts

7 x Vet Tactical Squad, Banestrike shells, Plasma gun                                  190pts

7 x Vet Tactical Squad, Banestrike shells, Plasma gun                                  190pts

Contemptor, Kheres Assault Cannon                                                             190pts

5x Headhunter, Prime, Banestrike shells, Heavy Bolter, Rhino                     240pts

Javelin Attack Speeder                                                                                   75pts

That comes to 985pts and seems like a pretty standard list.  However I’m open to suggestions on how to improve it.

I’ve got a few orders incoming so I should be starting on the bulk of the modelling in the coming weeks.  I have an order though Forgeworld (shoulder pads and rhino doors), faux Forgeworld (the bulk of the above list), Combat company (some Alpha Legion specific paints) and Anvil industry (pouches and weapon mods). 

Due to a generous donation however I do have several sets of Mk VI armour which I’ve started to modify a little to better suit my vision.

On that note my biggest gripe with space marines is their somewhat warped body proportions, for 7 foot super soldiers they are remarkably short.  So the first mod I’ll be doing is adding a little extra height and proportion to the legs, not too much, just enough to put the Alpha back in Alpha Legion.

Step 1:  Remove both legs from the hip carefully, cut inbetween the upper leg and the ribbed under-armour (there’s only one leg because at the time I couldn’t find the other one)

Step 2:  Sand/smooth down the top of the leg where you cut it, it’s important to get this as flat as possible so it sits flush with the plasticard in the next step.

Step 3:  Take some small squares of plasticard and glue them to the top of the leg, I used 2mm but 1mm would work just as well, 3mm might even be ok.

Step 4:  With the hip section, flatten out the top and put another bit of plasticard on top this extends the torso a little above the hips and adds that little bit more height.

Step 5:  This is where it gets fiddly.  Shave off the excess plasticard so it’s shaped with the contours of the leg and hip armour then sand and smooth it down so it’s nice and rounded.  If you sat the plasticard flush on top of the leg you will barely see the join between the two.  And even if you do it looks like another groove in the armour, so it’s ok.  The hip tops not quite as important to get smooth because it will be hidden in the torso.

Step 6:  You don’t have to but just to add a little more structural integrity I pinned the legs back onto the hips, it also gives a bit more freedom when posing the legs.

Step 7:  And lastly I took a little yellow grey putty and filled in some small gaps between the joins.  Every different putty type has its merits and yellow milliput is great for small gap filling, it has an interesting grainy consistency and smooths out really well with a bit of water.

As you can see the simple mod adds a little extra height and makes the upper leg a bit more realistically proportioned.  It’ll also help them to tower over the lesser legions out there.

Well that's all from me for now, back to chopping up little bits of resin.  I'll be back when my packages arrive.


Thursday, 19 February 2015

2000pts Sons of Horus - Playtest and Tweak

G'day all, Keepy here with a quick revisit from the previously posted army list for the Sons of 
Horus. The original army list can be found here.

So I had my good mates Buzz and the Dice Wizard himself Braden (from the Dicewizard blog) come over for a friendly playtest game on the Istvaan III board (which is still a WIP.... why do I have so many half finished projects?!) and play test my SoH list as well as give Buzz's Dark Angels list a run.

Buzz's list went something like this:

+++  2000pts Dark Angels (using Stubborn) +++


145pts Legion Chaplin w/ Artificer Armour, Jump Pack, Power Fist, Refractor Field

145pts Primus Medicae w/  Jetbike, Meltabombs, Refractor Field


65pts Apothecarian Detachment (x1) w/ Artificer Armour, Power Weapon


380pts Legion Assault Squad (x9) w/ Combat Shields, Meltabombs, 2x Power Weapons, Sgt w/ Artificer Armour, Pair of Lightning Claws

240pts Legion Tactical Squad (x14) w/ Close Combat Weapons, Sgt w/ Artificer Armour

Fast Attack

170pts Legion Javelin Attack Speeder Squadron (x2) w/ 2x Cyclone Missile Launchers, 2x Mulitmeltas

300pts Legion Jetbike Sky Hunter Squadron (x6) w/ 2x Plasma Cannons, Meltabombs

270pts Legion Storm Eagle Assault Gunship w/ 2x Twin Linked Lascannons, Twin Linked Heavy Bolter

Heavy Support

135pts Legion Sicaran Battle Tank 

150pts Legion Vindicator w/ Combi-Bolter, Machine Spirit

+++ End List +++

Modus Operandi: The Chaplin would attach to the Assault Squad to make them Fearless and also give them hatred. They would look for targets of opportunity or go tank hunting with Meltabombs. The Medicae Primus would attach to the Jetbike Skyhunters, giving an already tough unit FNP. The Tactical Squad loads up into the Storm Eagle and provides aerial fire support as well as a scoring unit which can be used for last minute objective grabbing. The Land Speeder would outflank, and put some hurt on the rear armour of tanks or use Frag Missiles to hit squads. The Vindicator could move 12" and still shoot it's Demolisher Cannon thanks to Machine Spirit, giving it a heap of range, and the Sicaran was there for all round dakka / AA duty.

As you can see the Dark Angels are very mobile, and can put out a fair bit of dakka whilst still being choppy. It wasn't until I put out all my models that I realised that the SoH list was missing something, I couldn't put my finger on it but it just looked light on the ground. I won't go into a full battle report, but the key points / events were:

  • The Sicaran and Venator are nearly permanent choices in a conventional 30k list. The Venator popped most of the armour and the Sicaran drew a heap of fire, and also denied the Javelins jink saves which brought about their end. In saying that, Buzz rolled badly whilst trying to outflank them, and they turned up auto on Turn 4. Then he rolled up the outflank side with no one on it. Le sigh.
  • The Seeker's Dreadclaw scattered onto terrain and went into ongoing reserves. They showed up on Turn 2 gunning for the Jetbikes who were Deathmarked, but they were locked in combat with one of my Tactical squads... so they intercepted the DA Assault Squad instead, killing all bar three and the Chaplin. There were no other targets available so they held an objective, the Dreadclaw went flying off to either flame units or act as an area denial piece for the Storm Eagle.
  • The DA charged their Jetbikes into the first Tactical Squad which was holding an objective, the Medicae Primus and the Tac Sgt ended up in a dual for four turns and could not kill each other (many lols and angry shouting at dice). This left both squads tar pitted until it turned into a massive battle royale with both the remains of the DA Assault squad and the full strength second SoH Tactical squad charged in! It was pretty funny to watch and play with this mass of 50 or so bodies fighting around an objective.
  • The SoH Landraider really didn't achieve anything and the cheap version I purchased didn't have the assault rule. So instead of saving me points for other things, my counter charge unit could not counter charge, making the command squad kind of redundant as they could not reach any combats without being shot to pieces first. 

So that was a general summary of what happened. SoH managed to get a win, but it was neck and neck until the bottom of Turn 5. It would have been a different game if those speeders came on. GG Buzz! Mucho fun. From the game I learnt a few things about my list and some glaring faults with it. After the game Buzz, Braden and myself sat around for a while and discussed a few options with how to improve the list. Some observations and changes were:

  • The Command Squad in a Proteus Landraider is a very ineffective way to run them. Not only could they not assault out of the vehicle, but the 7th Ed FAQ also means that the Legion Standard does not effect models outside the vehicle like it used to. They need to be dismounted for others to benefit from the 6" Fearless bubble. The fix? It worked out for the command squad to ditch the Landraider and take Jetbikes was 25pts cheaper. Easy fix! This left a big points gap for the Praetor who had to upgrade to have a Jetbike, and while I was at it added a Powerfist. I will discuss where the points came from shortly, but the reason for the Powerfist is so that with a Paragon Blade, you have two specialist weapons and gain an extra attack, as well as a good anti-tank option for mulit-hits, unlike the single shot Meltabomb.
  •  Legion Tactical Squads at full strength of twenty are rather unwieldy. They can put down a heap of fire and have excellent overwatch capability but it is not very often you have all twenty in rapid fire range or LoS of your target for maximum effectiveness for Fury of the Legion. The good thing was that if you took a few casualties, it was hardly noticed from damage output. Rather than keep the big squads, each one got cut by five men freeing up 100pts to use elsewhere (see Command Squad above).
  • Legion Seekers did well but once the spent their combi-weapons they ran out of punch. It was nice to have BS 5 and preferred enemy on a chosen unit, but as soon as that target is unavailable or destroyed then they really don't have a job that they can do effectively. These are going to be replaced with a 9 man Legion Tactical Support Squad with Plasmaguns, mounted in a separate fast attack choice Dreadclaw. No BS 5 or Deathmark rule, but you can fire them all day until your hands melt off (which will no doubt happen on numerous occasions).
  • Apothecaries were solid. They saved about 50% of the casualties that would have been thanks to some good rolls and really kept the Tactical Squads in the fight. With the Command Squad going to Jetbikes, it will cost too much for a Medicae Primus to attach to them, to do so would cost me a unit or vehicle which I am not prepared to drop at this stage. I also dropped two of the Augury Scanners from the the two Apothecaries that will be supporting the Tactical Squads. They are nice to have but they really didn't get used. Most things that turn up on Deepstrike / Outflank are vehicles, and bolters can only do so much. I kept the one for the Seekers / Support Squad as they may actually do some damage to tanks / terminators / flyers, unlike bolt guns. Apothecaries were also upgraded to have Artificer Armour to give a bit more protection.
  • Vehicles were solid. The only upgrades that would be good would be Dozer Blades and Armoured Ceremite, but with only 5pts left to spare the Sicaran got a Dozer Blade to enhance maneuvering.

 Implementing these into the new list, it looks a little something like this:

+++ 2000pts Sons of Horus +++


215pts Praetor w/ Iron Halo, Paragon Blade, Powerfist, Jetbike

395ptspts Legion Command Squad (x5) w/ Jetbikes, 5x Combat Shields, 4x Power Weapons, Power Fist


170pts Apothecarion Detachment w/ 3x Apothecaries, 3x Artificer Armour, 1x Augury Scanner


240pts Legion Tactical Squad (x15) w/ Legion Vexilla, Sgt w/ Artificer Armour, Powerfist, Meltabombs

240pts Legion Tactical Squad (x15) w/ Legion Vexilla, Sgt w/ Artificer Armour, Powerfist, Meltabombs

310pts Legion Tactical Support Squad (x9) w/ Plasmaguns, Sgt w/ Artificer Armour, Meltabombs

Fast Attack

100pts Dreadclaw Drop Pod


190pts Sicaran Venator Tank Destroyer

140pts Legion Sicaran Battle Tank, Dozer Blade

+++ End List +++

I am pretty happy with the tweaks, the Jetbikes for the Command Squad will make them much more
self supporting, speedy and most of all useful rather than a points sink that doesnt get used. Tac squads are a bit easier to use but still have a pile of wounds, and the bulk plasma in the Tactical Support squad should be enough to hurt nearly anyone. 

So... What do you think about the changes? I would love some feedback guys.

Till next time


Monday, 16 February 2015

Iron Havok Squad 1

I know what you're all thinking: Three posts in three days from that asshole Macca. He was too busy to put anything up for a month, now he gives us 3 posts in 3 days. Yes, I'm as bad as BOLS for click-baiting sometimes.

But hey, at least I show what I promise?

So, what did I promise today? Converted Iron Havoks, that's what! Iron Within, Iron Without Brothers and Sisters.

The squad leader has all the kit, including servo skulls. Mechanicum bitches love servo skulls.

The shoulder marking is a nice simple one. Also note the pattern I applied to the drum mag on the heavy bolter, and on top of his helm in the next picture.

I have chosen to have very few minis in this army unhelmed so far. This is one of them, because I love this sculpt, it's perfectly detailed.

Believe it or not, this is the only member of the squad with some hazard stripe markings. I chose to keep them really tones down here, as the Iron Hands kit these minis are based on already has quite a lot of bling.

So there you have it. In game, this loadout is a bit meh. Their weapons cause cover saves taken against them to be at -1, however they also lose a point of ap for using shrapnel (pinning) rounds, making them kind redundant in this role. On the plus side, the unit has tank hunters, so against units like rhinos and skimmers, these guys may just pull off some kills.

Why might I use this unit if I am not a fan of them weapon-wise? Because I don't care. The rule of cool trumps tactical usability any day haha.

(For those who are curious, the bases are quite plain at the moment. Well, that's because this army is making the move to 32mm shortly)

Thanks for checking them out,


Sunday, 15 February 2015

MK III Iron Warrior Destroyers

G'day folks, Macca here with some more Iron Warriors! This time out we have some gentle kitbashing: MK III Destroyers. I am pleased with them for the most part, the black Torso, helm and top of their packs, complemented by the yellow in the corner of their pauldrons is a catchy scheme. I can't seem to take a photo today without glare, and my good camera doesn't have the correct lens at the moment to properly capture the scheme. As a result, everything sorta blends towards a silver tone.

Bah. Pish Posh.

Anyway, here's the unit:

If the Moriat is the Alpha, then these guys are the Omega. No jokes from the Alpha Legion please, you closet loyalists.

Just for fun, I added my Moriat to the photos, complete with his volkites.

There are a few things I might have done better. They would have been nicer had I done my original plan and gone with the Death Guard torsos and possibly Iron Hands helms. Markings wise, I could have gone with the Destroyer symbol, that rip-off nuclear/bio-hazard one. But, in the end, I am pleased, you can tell these guys are different to regular marines, so all is well.

Now, to get back to the important things in my life, such as guarding the Bee.

Crap. It's getting away! Aw, we did bad!


Friday, 13 February 2015

Kyr Vhalen, the Siege Breaker and the Moriat

 So, here we are, a while without posting actually minis up, (about a month and a half by my reckoning), but we're back with a bang. Today, I have 3 HQ's to show off.

Kyr Vhalen

The master of the 77th Grand Battalion, Warsmith Kyr Vhalen is just the sorta guy I like, brutal, quick to reprisal, and a survivor. Even as the dust settled and the Alpha Legion conquered Paramar, his Apothecaries dragged him from the rubble of his shattered bunker, but he was kicking, screaming, spitting blood and curses at the XXth Legion. You just know that one day he will be back for more.

 A fun detail to do was creating the ruins of his face. If you look at the guy in HH Book III, he looks like Hicks at the end of James Cameron's Aliens. His face is half melted off, and an empty eye socket stares out from the sneering leader. The actual head is a plastic Space Marine 40k one, which I cut and drilled. I used a Sons of Horus commander and cut and drilled his head off, as I felt I couldn't get the detail I wanted. I then proceeded to combine a few bits together to create his MK IV servo harness. In the end, I got a tidy, if simple commander.

The Siegemaster.

This guy can act as one of 4 or 5 different HQ options (see if you can name them), but for now, he is the siege master, ready to load the thudd guns of his battalion. Having the heavier armour, his servo harness is big and bulky, unlike the warsmith.

The Moriat.

MK III power armour is sexy as hell. I just love it. So, I built an ENTIRE unit of destroyers in it (pics soon), and then I made this guy to lead them. The colour palette for this features a lot of black, because most Legion Moriats and Destroyers wore black. I kept the legs and arms silver, but the torso, helm and part of the back were painted in black. I used yellow on the shoulders as I saw a scheme I really liked at the start of the Iron Warrior pics showing a lot of yellow in the destroyer markings. His shoulder marking is an Alpha, as he is a Moriat, the Alpha, or pack leader of the destroyers. Just works in my mind.

Kyr Vhalen leads his command squad into battle.

So there it is, 3 commanders, 3 different approaches. I have painted them for my table top gaming, so unlike my Primarchs, the colours are a bit more basic, and the glare of my lighting doesn't help the photos too much, but I hope you enjoy them anyway. As always, I kept the Hazard Stripes to a minimum, in only one place on the armour.

If you haven't seen it yet, check out Keepy's list from earlier today, he would love any feedback about how he is a cheesy jerk. Thanks for looking,


2000pts Sons of Horus Army List

Gday all,

Keepy here after a bit of a hiatus from all things blog. I have a few things in the works regarding the Istvaan III build and a few other projects, so today's post is a good break from those and exercise my poor under nourished brain a bit.

I have found my love for the Sons of Horus again, and have shelved the Mechanicum for a while. Just a bit tired of playing them I think, and need a change to keep my interest up.

This is a bit of a play test to see what units I paint first, but also to see what I can get for 2k worth of points. This list is supposed to be a bit fluffy, but with a kick to it:

2000pts Sons of Horus


150pts Praetor w/ Iron Halo, Paragon Blade
195pts Legion Command Squad (x5) w/ Combat Shields, 4x Power Weapons, Power Fist
200pts Proteus Land Raider (Dedicated Transport)


150pts Apothecarion Detachment w/ 3x Apothecaries, Augury Scanners


290pts Legion Tactical Squad (x20) w/ Legion Vexilla, Sgt w/ Artificer Armour, Powerfist, Meltabombs
290pts Legion Tactical Squad (x20) w/ Legion Vexilla, Sgt w/ Artificer Armour, Powerfist, Meltabombs

Fast Attack

400pts Legion Seeker Squad (x8) w/ Combi Bolters, Dreadclaw


190pts Sicaran Venator Tank Destroyer
135pts Legion Sicaran Battle Tank

Modus Operandi: Apothecaries split up with the two Tactical Squads and the Legion Command squad, they are equipped with augury scanners so they also give these units the Interceptor special rule if my opponent plonks down a pod or somthing in range... And of course gives them all FNP. The Command Squad mounts up in the Land Raider and will sit inbetween the two Tactical Squads acting as a counter-charge unit as well as giving off a 6" Fearless bubble from the Hull of the Land Raider thanks to the Legion Standard. Tacticals also have Legion Vexillas as a backup in case out of Fearless range. This combined blob is the core of the army and provides a massive footprint on the table to dominate / hold ground with.

The Sicaran and Venator will both work the flanks picking targets / transports to pop for the Seekers, as well as acting as a defensive / cut off unit for fast movers. Seekers drop down in the Dreadclaw T1 and smoke a high value / threat target (for example, a Jetbike squad) with a mixture of Combi Plas/Melta. If they survive longer than two turns then they can load up in the Dreadclaw again and hit something else a bit more squishy with their special ammo.

There are plenty of hobby things I would love to do with this list, the main one being a Land Raider with a massive Sons of Horus banner on it, like this image from Visions of Heresy:

I am pretty sure this has already been done, but it is something I can see tearing around the battlefield insipiring troops to crack on and fight through!

The Sons of Horus command squad is the other project, with instead of being modeled with big combat shields, placing the small  buckler style shields you see in the generic legion command and on 40k terminator Sergeants. And of course, plenty of SoH iconography and parts.

While writing up this list I thought of several alternatives you could do that would also be great hobby projects. If you ditch the Land Raider and give the Preator and Command Squad all Jetbikes, it comes in 10pts more expensive. You lose FNP due to no Jetbiking Apothecary, but you get speed, toughness and alot of heavy weapons fire with some chop to it as well, not to mention a Jink save. Seekers can also be replaced with a 9 man Tactical Support squad with Meltas / Plasmas for the same cost as the 8 man Seeker sqaud, you gain consitant plasma / melta fire but at the cost of BS4 and no Death Mark special rule for Prefered Enemy against a target. If you wanted to free up some points you could also cut 5 legionares from each Tactical Squad, making them a bit less unweildy and freeing up 100pts to play with.

Anyway, what are your thoughts? Good? As bad as a Macca rant? I would love to get your thoughts on this and discuss!


Sunday, 1 February 2015

How To Clean Miniatures With Files

G'day, Macca here, and today I'm here to talk to you about something near and dear to my heart, filing. No, not the paper work kind, I'm talking hand tools, files. Over the years, files have dropped out of popularity, which I find strange, as they can do some high-precision work. I attribute this to poor understanding of how they work, as many people think they leave rough finishes. Well, I'm here today to tell you you're wrong! Yes, this bland, boring, dry article will attempt to show the hobbyist how the file works (it's more complicated then you think) and hopefully you will get better results on your work with some of my advice.

There are lots of kinds, Bastard, Flat, Second Cut, Warding etc., but for all intents and purposes, the general hobbyist only needs needle files. Needle files can come in many shapes, such as round, half round, flat, square, three-square, but what you really need to understand is the way they work, and the two types of teeth.


To start with, the teeth on a file looks something like this up close. (view pic below).

The teeth will only cut one way, and if you try and use them in reverse, they risk curling over and blunting. Pretty straight forward eh?

The Type of Cut:

There are two types of cut, single and double. A single is like this pic below;

The double cut is the exact same again, however, the teeth criss-cross. The main difference for you to understand is that single cut takes off less material, but looks prettier, whilst double cut files tear away much faster.

The Cut Angle:

The file will have all the teeth arranged into rows, or a direction of cut. This is the angle of the teeth, and it is important to understand which direction you can cut in and why.

The two best directions to use are straight up with the file (left side image) and in the opposite direction to the teeth (right side image). If you go in any other direction, you will actually cut gouges OR not cut at all.

Single and Double Cut Files:

 In this image you can see that the teeth all are cut in the same direction, making this a 'single cut' file.

However, you can see here that this file has two sets of teeth. I have marked the cross over point in chalk where the teeth transition.

The results of directional filing:

As you can see here, a straight push on this chalk leaves a smooth flat finish. This is the simplest method to use, and the result speaks for itself.

However, if you move in the direction of the teeth, you end up scoring gouged lines across the surface of whatever you are filing. Believe me, resin WILL do this, as will plastic. I have seen many a miniature ruined by gouging.

This image is where I have filed AGAINST the direction of the teeth. Again, the finish is very smooth, and the damage from the gouging is removed. This is my preferred method of filing.

The below example is why we tend to avoid double cut files. The teeth leave a series of small marks that waver and zig zag across the surface. This is best only used for very rough work.

Although the files used here are fulls sized files (from when I did my apprenticeship, back in the dark ages), they are honestly just scaled up versions of what we use. This is a single cut needle next to a single cut straight file, and as you can see, they are almost identical.

So, next time you want to get a nice straight line on a tank, or you're filing the side of a marine torso so you can get the arm to sit flat against the joint, remember these tips,