Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Sin City Dispatch #1

Hello everyone and welcome to the new Sin City Dispatch!

In this issue of the Dispatch, we will be looking at the new preview pictures that Rackham has released for AT-43 plus we will take a look at the new Assault on Black Reach boxed set for Warhammer 40,000 5th Edition. Next, we will be taking another look at my new Space Marine Chapter, the Reclaimers, to see how they are progressing. Last but not least, I stumbled across something at my local grocery store that has inspired me to start work on a new terrain piece. Just what could it be? Well, you'll just have to read on to find out!

Upcoming releases for AT-43 and Warhammer 40,000

In the latest Cry Havoc Online, Rackham released previews of several different miniatures that they having coming down the pipe in the next few months for AT-43. The first is the UNA Fire Crawler, the second of the support striders to hit the shelves.

Mounting two Grasers, this support strider packs a considerable punch and can easily cripple lighter striders with one salvo. It also mounts enough armor to make it a hard nut to crack though it does have the lightest armor of the support striders, the common hallmark of the UNA vehicles.

Now what about the miniature? Personally, I don't really like it. The forward sections of the hull swoops down so low that they really negate any ground clearance that the walker would have and the articulation of the legs where they meet the hull just doesn't look like it would be able to move well enough for it to be very maneuverable. There is also a large hatch on the back of the hull which seems odd. I would assume that this is meant for the crew to enter the vehicle but with the overall height of the hull it makes it look like the Crawler also has some kind of APC capability which it doesn't. While this is a nice addition to the game because it finally finishes off the units from the UNA army book, I am really not that thrilled with the sculpt. To each their own though, right?

Next are the Cog Warmongers.

While there are not many details out there about the Cogs, it seems like the Warmongers are going to be their basic infantry unit based on the previews that Rackham has been showing us. The main difference between this picture and the previous ones is they finally got some paint on them so we can see what they will look like. One question though; why are they wearing hunting vests?

These are still nice miniatures but I am really not that thrilled with the paint scheme. It reminds me too much of deer hunting season in Maine. Now don't get me wrong, I have nothing against hunting but it looks like the Warmongers are wearing safety gear so that they don't accidentally shoot each other. Makes me a little nervous about how the rest of the army will look like, but maybe there is a reason.

Last but not least is the ONI TacArm which for some reason I can not post a current picture of so I will have to put up the old one in its place.

These two pictures are identical in all respects but one; the new picture has the "helmet" of the TacArm open so that you can see the pilot. As I noted before, the arms and torso seem very odd because they look like some kind of body suit rather then armor and the new picture seems to support this look. The face of the pilot within seems to be heavily scared (of course they are mercenaries which could explain this) but he also doesn't look like he has a neck (which the mercenaries thing doesn't really touch on). In fact the musculature of his shoulders looks absolutely massive, giving him an almost Frankstein look. While this seems really odd, he is ONI and they have already aluded to the fact that ONI has access to technologies from all of the other factions. It might be that the TacArms are enhanced and modified Humans but only time will tell and until that time I am going to hold back my opinion of this one.

On the Warhammer 40k front, the big release is the new Assault on Black Reach starter set. Coming in at $60, this is an amazing value for all of the stuff that it comes crammed into the box. Don't believe me? Well, here is a look at what you get in there.

As you can see, that is a ton of minis, plus three templates, dice and a digest sized version of the full rulebook containing all of the rules for the game. Definitely a great value for anyone that is new to 40k or even anyone that it already a fan. Since I have mainly focused on AT-43 in the past, I do want to point out that Games Workshop minis are not pre-painted so you will need to break out the brushes for these but I really do think that it is worth it. From what I have seen and heard, the new edition is pretty good set of rules and Assault On Black Reach is a solid step toward collecting either a Space Marine or and Ork army (or both if you are crazy like me).

As a side note, I am also going to do a review comparing 40k and AT-43 in the future but I want to get a bit more experience with Warhammer first. I can already think of a few pros and cons for each system but I want to get a little more play in to see if there is anything else that I might be missing.

From the Workbench
Raising the Reclaimers

As I showed you a couple of weeks ago, I recently unearthed some of my old Space Marines and started painting them up. I had the base coats on the full squad and force leader and I have made some more progress on them. Here they are in all their glory.

Not the clearest picture I'll admit but I think that you can get the idea. Beyond the base coat, I added a few details to them; the trim on the shoulder pads, the Imperial Eagles on the chest, the white stripe on the right pad indicating the squad type. These are all small additions to the models and it was very quick and easy to do them but they really do add a lot to the model. The bases are also very important as well. I didn't add any details to the bases beyond some flock and painting the edges black but even this helps to give the whole group a more uniform and finished look. I am still in the process of working on the Eddy the Dread but once I get some more work done on him I will be posting his picture as well.

Is this all that I will be doing with the Reclaimers? Not hardly! This is just the beginning of my new Space Marine Chapter and the minis from Black Reach will be helping to swell their ranks. I also have some other ideas floating about things that I can do to really give the Chapter my own feel instead of just being another cookie cutter Marine Chapter. Unfortunately more on that will have to wait until the new Codex comes out in a so that I can see exactly how far I can go with it all. So have no fear; the Reclaimers are coming for you!

Lay of the Land
The Storage Tank Project

While I was picking up some groceries the other day I noticed these items on the shelf.

I almost walked right past them but something told me to pick a couple up so into the cart they went. When I got home, I took another look at them and instantly saw the potential for a terrain piece, namely a large storage tank. With only a few additions I plan on taking this simple jug from the grocery store to the battlefields of the far future, and the beautiful thing is that it cost me less than a dollar. That's right only $0.75 for one of these bad boys so we will have to see just how cheap I can make this project by the time I am finished. I even picked up a couple of extra ones so that I could put several of them onto the table to create a small industrial complex but more on that later.

And that is it for this issue of the Dispatch! It was a long time in coming but it took me a little while to figure out just what direction I wanted to go in. Thanks to everybody for putting up with the wait! Now that I think I have things figured out, the updates should be more regular in the future. This is the Snowman signing off and until next time, may all of your dice come up Dragons!


DE said...

Very cool post!

Though I disagree on the Crawler, I find its design very slick and will definitely buy it once it arrives here in Poland (we get Rackham stuff with a month/two month delay compared to the rest of the civilized world :)

As for 40K, I too am assembling a SM army ATM. A DIY chapter too, coincidentally. I'm giving the starter set a miss, as I don't like anything save the Tacticals, but I have about fifty of'em so don't need more, especially since they're essentialy single-piece and with limited number of poses. Termies are nice, but I want them bits from the proper termie box set.

Good luck with your projects. Looking forward to new posts, I've already read all of the previous ones!

Snowman said...

Hey de,

Thanks very much for the feedback and I am glad that you like the blog!

I can understand what you are saying about Black Reach as they are much more limited from a modeling point of view. My main goal at this point is to bulk up my armies quickly so this is a good fit for me. I do want to get the actual sets later (gotta love the bits!) but right now this is a great way for me to dive back into the game.

Talk to you again soon!