Category Archives: Reviews

Krondspine Incarnate – A First Look at the Rules

So we’ve had a little more information on the Krondspine Incarnate today from Warhammer Community.

EDIT: Plastic Craic has now managed to get hold of all the rules. For a complete rundown visit Plastic Craic.

Attacks

First off are its attacks, and it has quite a few. All at rend -2 or -3! The Krondspine works in a series of power levels rather then wounds. With each type of attack receiving a number of additional attacks equal to its level.

The model starts at level 2 and so will get 8 Vicious Claws attacks and 3 Tearing Fangs attacks. If you’re rolling REALLY well that will mean you can potentially dish out 28 wounds. However, that’s very unlikely, so let’s take the averages….

Attack# of AttacksSuccessful HitsSuccessful WoundsDamage Pre-Save Roll
Vicious Claws85.33.66-8
Tearing Fangs32.01.74-8
Based on Average Dice Rolls at Level 2

Note, that if it destroys an Endless Spell or devours a MONSTER, then it will gain a level and an additional attack for each attack type (it’s maximum level is 3). Most Monsters have between 12-18 wounds, so they’d need to be softened up first to guarantee the Throndspike making the kill and gaining the power level, but you’re probably only talking 3-4 wounds.

What about Killing it?

Yup, it has no wounds only power levels. Once it gets reduced to Power Level 0 it is removed from play, however what’s not clear is how easy it is to reduce its power level. There’s no mention of a save anywhere, but I suspect that each increase in power level brings an increase in its save value judging by this line on Warhammer Community:

The better they’re doing, the more lethal they become – and the harder they are to kill.

– Warhammer Community

The Krondspine will feed on Endless Spells as well, and for each one it consumes it will gain a power level. However, that’s not a guarantee!

Don’t get me wrong, on average the controlling player will be rolling a 9 (Level 2) which will consume most endless spells. However, if it does fail that roll then it will drop a level.

The best bet may be to kill the bonded character, at which point the Krondspine is reduced to its Wildform where it will attack the nearest unit (enemy or friendly) or Endless Spell within 12″. This could mean if you kill the bonded character early doors, the Krondspine could run rampant in its own lines.

As has been mentioned on our new Discord Server though, you could link it to a cheap as chips Savage Orruk Boss and just send them hell for leather up the table…

Conclusion

There’s a lot here, but we need more info yet. What’s its save, and exactly how much damage is needed to reduce its level? Does it reduce only one level per turn regardless of the damage inflicted on it? If this is the case, then things that cause a mass of mortal wounds are going to be pretty ineffective against it (looking at you Wurgog).

More importantly, what’s its value in points?

Availability

At the moment it looks like you need to buy the Battlescape Box in order to get the model as there’s been no official confirmation that the Krondspine will be sold separately.

Of course there are other options you could use…

Neat and Handy Airbrush Review

I’ve never actually owned an airbrush despite wanting one for many years. With the birth of my first child in 2019 I decided to postpone this purchase further as I was concerned that an airbrush would wake any children in the house when I used it (myself being a late night painter).

Recently however I had seen the YouTube advert for the neat and handy airbrush. The main draw was the fact that this was a cordless airbrush and no louder than an electric razor.

Delivery

I ordered the product on 21st February via their website, when ordering you’re given three locations for the airbrush to be despatched from. These are the UK, USA and Australia. I was given updates throughout the week on the progress of my order until it arrived on my doorstep on 23rd February. 3 working days! Impressive!

The box
Note I purchased the pack with the additional battery.

The airbrush came very well wrapped inside a bubble wrap envelope, the airbrush itself sits in a foam tray as shown above, very little opportunity for this to be damaged on route.

Batteries

Being an eager beaver I charged up the batteries immediately with the USB connector supplied. There is no plug with this, so you will need to plug the USB either into a computer or a phone charger plug with a USB port. The batteries were charged within 40 minutes each and they both provide 30 minutes of non-stop use.

Note that you can also use this while connected to the power supply if you wish through a power inlet on the compressor shown below. So if you do run out of battery you can still continue using the airbrush.

Noise

So how was the noise? Was it really as quiet as an electric razor? Actually, it was quieter! I recorded this on my phone (phone is approx 15cm from the airbrush).

But the true test of this, was my infant son of 5 months was sleeping in his cot in the next room and he didn’t even stir! Exactly what I need so far!

First Use

Here I had a problem. I had connected the charged battery, screwed the cup in and filled the cup with a little diluted Abaddon Black. I went to use the airbrush and only air was ejected from the nozzle. After playing around for sometime and becoming increasingly frustrated I emailed neat and tidy using their contact us page.

Bear in mind that I emailed them at 23:30 GMT, with this in mind I had a response within half an hour from a nice chap called John. John asked me how I had used it so far and if I could provide a video for them to view. After saying that I had cleaned the brush and tried it with water alone I was provided with a link to a quick fix.

Yup, that did the job!

I used citadel paints on my first go and immediately found that these needed diluting for them to work, but once they had a little water added to them the airbrush worked a treat.

There is very little in the way of over spray from what I can tell and the airbrush is extremely easy to control.

Conclusion

It’s obviously not a high end airbrush but it’s a perfect tool for undercoating your miniatures indoors as well as giving you an easier way to paint OSL if you wish.

Plus with the support I received I can’t recommend this brush enough!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Unboxing – French Starter Army for Black Powder: Epic Waterloo

Warlord Games have released their Epic Waterloo miniatures and game system this weekend just gone. I was lucky enough to pick my French Starter Set from SCN Hobby World yesterday and I was eager to take a peek and see what was inside.

It’s one of the largest starter boxes I’ve seen, and one of the heaviest! I picked mine up at 20% off for £72 through Sarah at SCN Hobby World.

Lifting the Lid

Theres a tonne of sprues inside. Ten infantry, three heavy cavalry and three light cavalry. Along with the meaty full colour rulebook, a scenery piece, painting guide and flags. I

It was all very nicely packages tightly inside. Warlord must have learnt their lesson form the ACW version Starter Set here, as a common complaint was that everything was a bit loose inside that box and often some of the contents would arrive damaged.

“Do you have a flag….?” – Eddie Izzard

They have coloured the plastic of both starter sets, (blue for french and Red for British) so if you’re eager and know someone with the other set you can play straight away without the need for painting.

Sprue 1 Light Cavalry

Hussar!

There enough here for 11 bases of Light Cavalry, as well as 3 artillery. Made up of 4 Lancer bases (one spare model), 3 Hussar bases (3 spare models) and 4 Chasseur bases (1 spare model). None of these models are command models but the addition of two Imperial Eagles on each sprue allows you to convert some in to standards. You can also use the spare models for ADC’s or for diorama pieces on your Brigade Commander stands.

Geek Point 1: The standards were made optional as none of the French Cavalry had their standards on the Waterloo campaign.

Sprue 2 Heavy Cavalry

These are the other 10 bases of Cavalry, but these make heavier versions of the Cavalry regiments. Here you’ll have 4 bases of Cuirassiers, 3 bases of Carabiniers and 3 bases of Dragoons. Again, you have the inclusion of an artillery piece on each sprue and two french eagles. There were a lot more Cuirassiers and Dragoons at Waterloo than Carabiniers but I can understand why Warlord have included one of each type on the sprue.

Sprue 3 Infantry

There’s loads of infantry… all told just over 800 men. The detail on the sprues is incredible given their size, and time has been taken to differentiate the flank companies of Grenadiers and Voltigeurs from the centre companies.

This sprue is packed. You’ve eight stands of infantry and enough skirmishing Voltigeurs for another stand, as well as some foot artillery and a command figure.

Bases

Bases… lots of them!

Of course, none of these would play well without the basic addition of bases… just look at that pile! It’s huge.

Dice

And some dice… as if wargamers don’t have enough to build their own fort! Still a good inclusion for a starter set.

Declan’s picture of the dice included

Decoster’s House – Building

Decoster’s House

Warlord games have teamed up with Sarissa Precision to bring some scenery with the boxset which also comes with its own painting guide and stencil.

Flags & Painting Guide

A great addition is a full colour sheet of French flags. This will really add to the colour and make the regiments individual on the tabletop. Well done to Warlord games for this inclusion.

Rulesbook

The full rules book for the Waterloo Campaign in Epic Battles. This appears to be a full rulebook at 260 pages. It’s in glorious full colour as well and means you don’t need a separate copy of any of the existing Black Powder rule books.

Summary

This is a great box, and real value for money. It should draw many GW fans looking to get into Napoleonics. Declan and I are just two of them.

Book Review – Broken Realms: Morathi

By Games Workshop

Over a year on since the release of the Broken Realms books are they good and essential, or pretty eye candy for the completionist… read on!

Morathi, High Oracle of Khaine, sets her sights upon the greatest prize of all – the power of a goddess! As furious war consumes the Mortal Realms, the shadow-wreathed empire of Hagg Nar makes its ambitious play for power. The cruel and boundlessly cunning Morathi, ruler of the Daughters of Khaine, desires to claim her rightful place as a goddess – but to do so she must sacrifice her past, forge bitter new foes, and spill the blood of rivals and allies alike!

The Mortal Realms will never be the same again. In Broken Realms: Morathi, a new era begins for Warhammer Age of Sigmar, bringing with it seismic shifts in the status quo, epic stories, and new rules for your army however you prefer to play. Part narrative supplement, part rulebook, this first Broken Realms book allows you to immerse yourself in the Mortal Realms fiercest conflict yet.

The first in the Broken Realms series begins with the Story of Morathi, the Herald of Khaine, and includes a number of other related stories.

As a gaming book this had enabled the authors to add narrative battle plans, and the rules writers to change some warscrolls, and update points. It’s a well put together book with – as you might expect – lovely artwork, which advances the story significantly. Indeed this is one of the advantages of the these books – they can advance the overall narrative of the Age of Sigmar in a way that Black Library novels are rarely permitted to do.

Unfortunately, I can’t get past the price, which if you buy all 4 books in the series will be £100 – a significant investment if you want to keep up with the lore (as I do), and a reason why many people won’t be able to. GW do need to consider how to release the narrative elements of these books at a much more reasonable price.

A good book, and probably essential to those using Morathi, but for others it’s difficult to recommend just for the lore advancement – especially as the plot has probably been spoilt for you by now – especially if you watch the Warhammer+ Loremaster series.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

— Declan

Black Powder Epic Waterloo British Cavalry

So my issues of Wargames Illustrated arrived this week with their accompanying sprues.

I managed to get hold of three copies of the British Heavy Cavalry sprue.

The Sprue in all its glory.

I’ve started by painting the Scots Grey’s and first off these models are really easy to paint straight on the sprue. You just need to clip away any armatures of the sprue that are connected to the horse or riders directly.

I may have gone a little too detailed considering their size but this is only because I’ve enjoyed painting them so much.

I can’t wait to see the unit finished and on its base. I’m also looking forward to painting the cannon and seeing what that looks like. Once I’ve a few units done I’ll post again.

My Introduction to Kriegsspiel as a Player

After my many years as a wargamer (25+ years) I’ve played quite a number of different games during that time, but one that I’ve never played (despite hearing about) is Kreigsspiel the original wargame written in the 1800’s by George Leopold von Reisswitz.

Kreigsspiel is a game of warfare that attempts to realistically replicate what would happen on a battlefield during the 1800’s. It requires a map, some blocks to represent the different units involved and three players.

The Battle of Waterloo played in Kreigsspiel

Why three players?

When I say three players, what it actually involves is two players and an umpire. But it’s best to think of the umpire as a Games/Dungeon Master.

Each player is only aware of what their own units are doing on the table top and exactly where they’re positioned, and the enemy movements and units only become apparent once they move into visual range of your own. This is where the umpire comes in.

Each player communicates with the umpire how they wish to deploy their units and what movements and actions they would like those units to take. This gives the players a true fog of war setting.

It sounds complex right?

Yes it does! But actually it’s really not. Why? Because the only person who needs to know the rules is the umpire. The players just have to communicate with the umpire what orders they would like their units to follow. This can be communicated either in an RPG format or a simple “I would like these units to entrench themselves on top of the hill overlooking the town

The umpire then moves both players units according to their wishes and communicates back to the players if any contact has been made with the enemy.

When contact has been made the players then decide how they want their units to act, i.e. “The units will form line and wait for the enemy to attack before firing.”

The umpire then rolls the dice and decides the outcomes for that turn (which replicate a few minutes of real world battle at a time).

That Sounds like it takes Ages!

Actually no, a small game of Kriegsspiel can played out in a few hours. Or you can even play it on a play by post basis with a number of friends negating the need for vast spaces to be used like a conventional table top wargame.

Why have I not played this before?

When I read about the rules and the requirement for three players I immediately thought it would be too difficult to get a game together. Bot was I wrong!

The International Kreigsspiel Society which I have recently had the honour of discovering, have a Discord channel where you can join introduce yourself and just jump straight in with your first game!

I’ve recently started two play by post games, one being a small battle during the Haitian Revolution and another being the Battle of Chancellorsville in 1863. In the first I’m in command of a small Brigade of infantry (7 battalions) with the game having 5 players a side, while in the second I have an entire Division under my command and roughly 17 players per side.

A simple game of Kreigsspiel

Is it just for Wars in the 1800’s?

Absolutely not, the Society is currently developing additional rules for World War 2 and Ancients to name but two.

Interested?

If this sounds like your cup of tea, then why not slide into the Discord server and take a look around, perhaps try a small game with the friendly guys who run the many games each week that takes place.

INTERNATIONAL KREIGSSPIEL SOCIETY DISCORD SERVER

Game Review – Blood Red Skies

Type:World War 2/Aviation
Scale:1/200th
Players:2+
Age:12+
Game Length:30-60 Minutes
Starter Box Cost:£45
Designer(s):Andy Chambers
Publisher:Warlord Games
Complexity:2.6/5.0
Board Game Geek Rating:7.4 (166 Ratings)

Blood Red Skies is the new World War II mass air combat game from Warlord Games, written by renowned game developer Andy Chambers.

Packed with everything you need to play this fast paced air combat game, the Blood Red Skies starter set does what it says on the tin. Plus once started you’ll have the extra rules to introduce the play cards that really bring your fighter aircraft to life, allowing you to fly them just as they would have been by the Aces of WW2!

Description from Warlord Games

First of all, right off the bat, this isn’t a simulation game. If simulation of World War 2 dogfights is what you’re looking for then this isn’t the game for you.

Blood Red Skies: Battle of Britain

However that being said, there has been a lot of work that has gone into the rules to give them an authentic ‘feel’ of the period.

The Blood Red Skies: Battle of Britain starter set contains everything you will need to carry out air battles over the British Isles in World War 2. With six Spitfires, six Messerschmitt BF-109s and a number of scenarios through which the players can jump straight in.

The minis unpainted

The games core mechanic revolves around aircraft being Advantaged, Neutral and Disadvantaged. Disadvantaged aircraft cannot shoot aircraft that are Advantaged or Neutral and Neutral aircraft cannot shoot Advantaged aircraft. However, you can choose to make your aircraft disadvantaged to gain manoeuvrability and enabling you to try and get on the tale of enemy aircraft.

Scoring is done by using boom chits, where any shots that hit the enemy cause a chit regardless of whether it causes damage. Once a player has more chits against them than they have aircraft then their squadron are forced to break contact with the enemy and head for home. This can mean that games are over without a single aircraft being shot down, which is true to the real life dogfights that would be carried our in the skies during World War 2.

Painted Luftwaffe Aircraft

Gameplay is quick with a loop of Shoot-Move-Action that is enhanced by the use of the action deck, with extra abilities and events. These cards can be selected based on the planes in use and the period of the war the combat is taking place.

Downsides of the game are that the pilot discs are easy to damage when inserting or removing them from the plane bases. Measuring can also be tricky with arcs being difficult to set on the circular bases.

That said, this game is fantastic and is ideal for a quick pick up and play game during a lunch break or a spare 30 minutes with friends in between other games.

Warhammer 40,000: Imperium – Issue #2

I thought I’d share my progress following last week’s article before reviewing the next issue.

I have managed to complete the Royal Warden using a very simple colour scheme which should mean I can get through the Necrons quickly enough.

Eknothet Xopcan, the Gleeful Eradicator and Oppressor of the Weak.

I decided to use the ‘fluff builder’ inside the magazine to give the Royal Warden some personality. Therefore after some dice rolling on the following tables in the image, his name was determined to be Eknothet Xopcan, the Gleeful Eradicator and Oppressor of the Weak. However it appears Eknothet is envious of those who still possess flesh and so collects gruesome trophies from his foes. He also carries his Relic Gauss Blaster Verminscourge into battle at every opportunity.

The fluff builder

The Primaris Lieutenant on the other hand is probably around 80% complete as I’ve found I was missing a couple of key paints. But they’re on order so he should be finished this coming week.

No fluff for this guy yet, however any fluff given to him will be of my own making and not from the magazine, as my Void Dragons are a distinctly Anglo-Saxon vibe to them ,(think Alfred the Great etc).

Issue 2

So on to this week’s issue. You’re given three Necron Warriors and some Runelord Brass paint.

I quickly set about building the Necrons and giving them a few base coats to keep up my progress.

But, again these fellows aren’t quite finished yet.

The magazine this week goes into a little more detail about the Ultramarines and the Szarekhan Dynasty, allowing those newer players to develop their knowledge of the background of 40k and the two factions that they’ll be collecting.

On top of this you’re also given some background into the warzone that the combat is taking place.

You’re also given your first painting instructions if you’re following the magazine. It’s fairly simple this week, but will become more complex as the model collection gets larger and more paints are acquired.

Overall, I’m enjoying this a lot more than I though I would be and it is great value for money compared to buying the models and paints separately.

The Woeful Brush Painting Competition Sponsored by SCN Hobby World

Closing date for entries 30th November. £1 entry, win your choice of a Start Collecting or Combat Patrol box set!

LINK

White Dwarf #1 – Old School Review

After writing about the History of Games Workshop and doing research into A Life in Wargames, I’ve been able to get my grubby little hands on to electronic copies of the first White Dwarf.

Therefore I thought it would be interesting to have a read and to review the first ever issue.

The Cover of Issue #1

The first thing that is noticeable (and to be expected, considering the age) is the whole magazine including the cover is in black and white. There are no photographs and nothing in the way of graphics to make elements stand out. There are a number of drawings that are used throughout the magazine.

Out of the nine articles inside the magazine, four are about Dungeons and Dragons. In the editorial, Ian Livingstone mentions that he hopes White Dwarf will be a vehicle to bring the readers news of all the best science fiction and fantasy games on the market.

The magazine is targeted to the older generation with a comic strip included about Dungeons and Dragons that is distinctly adult in its theme.

Ian starts the issue by reviewing Metamorphosis Alpha a game by TSR that is a science fiction setting for a roleplay game. Metamorphosis Alpha takes place on a gigantic generational space ship whose inhabitants have undergone a series of mutations and every day turns into a challenge to survive as the survivors explore the ship to find supplies.

You can still buy Metamorphosis Alpha today on PDF via Drivethrurpg.com. The game costs just $5.99.

There are also segments about the inaugural UK D&D society and how to become a member.

There is a very long article (which includes algebra) on how to calculate the effectiveness of monsters in D&D. I actually enjoyed this, but I would assume for many that it would be a bit dry.

Open Box gives ratings out of ten to games currently on the market. Their markings so far are;

  • Diplomacy 10/10
  • Dungeons and Dragons 10/10
  • Sorcerer 7/10
  • Starship Troopers 9/10

There’s a further review of another game called ‘The Warlord’ which is comparable in style to Diplomacy.

This is a very different White Dwarf to the one you know and love, but as a piece of wargaming history it’s fascinating.

The Woeful Brush Painting Competition Sponsored by SCN Hobby World

Closing date for entries 30th November. £1 entry, win your choice of a Start Collecting or Combat Patrol box set!

LINK

Warhammer 40,000: Imperium – Issue #1

As a massive fan boy of both 40k and Space Marines when I heard about the new Hatchette collection for Space Marines and Necrons I jumped at the chance.

For those who aren’t aware, Games Workshop and Hatchette are working together to allow players to collect, paint and game with Space Marines and Necrons in a weekly magazine. Each week you’re sent a new issue which usually contains 1-3 models and some paint. The issue will give you background on the models you’ve been sent as well as instructions on how to build and paint them.

Issue #1 arrived through my door late last week. This week’s magazine includes two models, a Primaris Lieutenant with Volkite Pistol and a Necron Royal Warden.

No paints this week, but as a subscriber I did receive a pair of clippers, glue and seam remover as a free gift.

The magazine is nicely detailed, with some information about the factions you’re collecting and some ideas for colour schemes aside from the one you see included on the cover.

Your also given a set of six dice and a small game Matt so that you can take part in your first game (the Warden v the Lieutenant).

The gaming mat

Although it’s not the best quality, I did like that the gaming mat has wound tokens and objective markers which can be cut out and used.

After some work I managed to glue both figures together ready for painting (which as they’re push fit, you don’t need to but I would recommend).

I’ve left the back pack of the marine to make it easier to paint.

I won’t be painting my Marines in the colours of the Ultramarines as shown in the magazine but instead will be painting them as my homebrew chapter the Void Dragons.

One of my other Void Dragon Lieutenants

I’ll try and keep you updated with my progress with the magazine and the two armies as and when I can.

But if you’re interested in subscribing, then I would suggest you check out the website here.

The Woeful Brush Painting Competition Sponsored by SCN Hobby World

Closing date for entries 30th November. £1 entry, win your choice of a Start Collecting or Combat Patrol box set!

LINK