Saturday, 21 December 2019

Alzuri Angels

Hi all

This is the last in my series of Blood Bowl teams this year, but have no fear there will be more coming as I've backed a Norse Team KS due to land mid 2020 and I will be getting a Xmas treat involving the halflings.

So for my 4th and final team of 2019, we have the Alzuri Angels!

The Angels are another all female elf team, this time Elven Union.   This is taken from Wiki

"The story of High Elves in Blood Bowl is a long and interesting one, full of juicy scandals and long-running disputes between larger-than-life characters. One of the biggest scandals in their history came in the years following the collapse of the NAF, when teams suddenly found themselves indebted to noble backers from the Elven kingdoms, who- thanks to a lot of small print- began to make their way onto the pitch, shunting established players to the sidelines. Outrage abounded among players and fans alike, and it was only a matter of time before someone did something about it.
When it finally happened, the formation of the Elven Union came as a surprise to no one. A loose federation of Elven teams, made primarily of disgruntled former High Elf players, but including the odd Wood Elf and even Dark Elf, the Union seeks to repair the damaged reputation of Elven teams and show that they can take Blood Bowl seriously. What the teams lack in funding, they make up for with experience and stubborn determination."

Sadly, I didn't have enough time to take pictures for you, as Damon has whisked them away to practice with them for the tournament in January. So you just get the ones I did just after finishing the main team.

Now the very sharp-eyed among you may remember this team from the beginning of last year - and think this is just a recycled post... and you would be kind of correct. In the last post, I had numbered the minis incorrectly, the bases were awful and I only had 2 catchers painted.  So now was the time to dust them off, paint the newbies and re-highlight the old ones before basing the minis as a team.

The miniatures are from Shadowforge and I bought them many years ago. Scale wise they are 28mm and are really nice minis - detail wise and to paint. I bought the main team as I said years ago, but in order to fit the new roster I needed to pick up a couple of catchers and these are the only duplicates in the team. I decided to go for a pink/purple and white strip which looks kinda jazzy and painted the base rims in the colours recommended in BB ed 2 to identify positions.  There are some other back room minis for this team which I bought with the extra catchers, including cheerleaders, apothecary and assistant coach, but they are on the paint table so will have to be for another time.

That's it for me this year.  I won't be posting until 2020 now, so please have a great Christmas and I hope you get the toys that you wish for!


Saturday, 14 December 2019

The Darkened Dream or The Ramsgate Razors...

Hi guys

I haven't decided on the name of my 3rd team for Blood Bowl, hence the title of this post. Online I have both and they are both doing well but I can't quite choose between the two...

Anyhoo, for my 3rd team I went to a 3rd party producer and got myself some Dark Elves!  Oh how I love the Delfs. I love the dark and twisted lore from the Warhammer world, I love the Malus Darkblade books, I love playing them online. What I don't love is the GW Delf team.... more specifically I mean these ones

Now don't get me wrong, GW make some pretty bloody awesome minis but I do NOT like these ones. It's the cold one skin scarfs, they leave me...well... cold. 

This is my favourite sculpt
I'm not gonna lie, these are some of the best miniatures I have ever had the pleasure to paint and I was nervous to put brush to resin, because I didn't want to bugger them up! but hell, just look at them...

Anyway, these are my Dark Elf players. Unlike my other teams i'm not going to do separate intros, instead you'll get them all in one splurge of a post, with all of the minis I have.

First up, the line elves.

The bases are made by Das modelling clay and my favourite Green Stuff World rollers and will be the surface of a custom Delf pitch, that I will build later.  The armour is a bastardisation of a paint scheme perfected by Bryan "Vampifan" on his Nemesis bugs.

Next are the Witch Elves, I love the red cloaks on these beauts.

The Blitzers, with their elaborate helms are very impressive.

The assassins are the reason I spotted this miniature range in the first place and are lush.

Onto the Runners and also the only two males in the team...

alongside their female counterparts...

and finally I couldn't resist the last miniature that they had on offer, the cheerleader

I love these minis so much and I love the way the team play, so much so that I'm taking them to a BB tournament in late January.

hope you enjoy.

Saturday, 7 December 2019

Throw-throw, catch-catch!!

Hi all

***edit*** in my haste to post, I put out the last in this series of BB posts first and forgot this one.  Looks like a double post this week you lucky people!!***

This week I look at the first two positionals for the Gnash-Gnaw. 

First up are the throwers.  I have 2 (naturally) but only take one in my first 11.  So number 1 is Krik,  this all-star rat boy originally ran with the bad rats at the lowest level of "the Pit". Spotted by the overlords of that Hellish place when he kept his nerve, not spraying the musk of fear, when facing down a squad of Storm Vermin and flinging a pilfered bag of warptokens at a waiting runt in a nearby tunnel with pinpoint accuracy.  Since then his calming presence helps steer the Gnash-Gnaw to victory.

Number 13 is yet to appear on the TableTop for me, although he has made it into my online version of the Gnash-Gnaw (when I play BB2) and therefore has finally been given a name - Likad Venom. Venom is happily warming the benches most times, its safe and warm but when he does manage to get some field time, he's known for his "dump off" skills - a quick pass just before being sacked.  This cool headed ability allows the team to keep the ball even as he gets taken out.

Onto the sneakiest of the sneaky - the Gutter Runners. The Skaven don't have catchers as such, but they do have these guys. Super agile, fast and armed with the dodge skill, they are able to get themselves into and out of tricky situations and into scoring positions.  These guys are literally the fastest players in the entire game and have pulled my fat out of the fire on many an occasion. I started with two with the option to take two more as and when I can afford them.  Not much is known about the mysterious runners, closeted away in the Eshin quarter of Hells Pit when not playing but Nurgjit is my star player online and on the TT, racking up the SPP

so that's my throw/catching contingent, next up is the heavy hitters.
hope you enjoy

Crush- crush, kill-kill

Hi all

***edit*** in all the excitement, I've published this post before another, rather than recall this one and publish in order, I've just posted both today. My suggestion would be to read "Throw-Throw, Catch-Catch" first and then come back to this one***

So we get to the last part of my Gnash-Gnaw team overview - The muscle section

Skaven, in this edition, have access to Storm Vermin who play in the Blitzer role.  These are my favourite minis in the 2nd ed range and the reason I didn't buy the new GW minis for my fave race.

So we have Surgad Venom (2) litter-kin to Likad Venom, substitute thrower for the GGs. Surgad was taken from the litter as an infant due to his aggressive (for a skaven) behaviour and began his training as a Storm Vermin, the elite warriors of the Clan. It was due to Surged's influence that his smaller kin was taken onto the team and away from the beast pits of the deeper warrens at Hell's Pit.

Neeable Snarl (3) is a massive ratman, bulging muscles ripple beneath his fur, mostly due to his Skalm addiction and this is reflected in a strength increase for him.  This increase combined with his block skill, makes him a very formidable player and I often use him out on his own, splitting the play and my opponents attention.

Kratak (4) is a huge Rat Ogre, a mutated beast - created by mad engineers of Clan Moulder at the cost of many warp tokens. Online he was killed in my very first league game, leaving a huge gap in my team. He has survived and performed much better on the TT and restores my faith in taken a "big guy" despite the downsides of skills such as "wild animal" meaning they only perform some of the time.  Kratak is a Warhammer FB mini from some time in the 90's and was part of my massive Skaven horde up until recently when I painted him up to bolster the Gnash-Gnaw ranks.

So that's my team guys, with no support staff.  I was going to ask for some coaching minis and cheerleaders (yes there are some around!!) for xmas but ended up buying another BB team which I will show off next week.

just to finish this post, I've attached a YouTube playthrough of my boardgame "Blood, Sweat & Horses" that I recently recorded with Jay Austin, the founder of Meeples Peoples Circus. Sadly you don't get the multi camera angles that were planned due to technical difficulties, but you do get a top down view of the game board and of course some quality banter between the players. Hopefully this gives you an idea of how the game plays.

hope you enjoy

Saturday, 30 November 2019

Ratling Cannon Fodder

Hi all

So onto the first part of my introduction of my Skaven BB team - the Gnash-Gnaw and as I did with the UUs, I'll introduce the line men...ahem line rats first!

 No backgrounds for these guys as yet, as not one of them has lasted long enough to level up! Yes the attrition rate of line rats is huge! Low AV and no outstanding qualities, line rats struggle to cope with bashy opponents and subsequently die in droves, but as an experienced skaven coach, I know this and factor it into my plans.  luckily they are as cheap as chips to buy...

These minis are all 2nd ed and that puts them in the 25+ years bracket and I've had them since then as well.  They, along with the 2nd ed game, have moved house (twice) survived living in my loft when I lost my wargaming mojo for several years and have been repainted 3 times! I do love these little critters... not enough to name them but still... Number 11 is the old kicker model but seeing as that position has been retired, he steps in with his giant armoured boot as a line rat.

hope you enjoy

ps as this post is a little light, I have been building a pitch for the Gnash-Gnaw! check out my You Tube channel to watch the build

Saturday, 23 November 2019

Gnash - Gnaw

Hi all

more Blood Bowl goodness coming your way, this time from the dark places beneath the empires of men and dwarfs - the Skaven!  While the Double U's (my human team) were the first team to get painted following my rediscovery of BB and I really enjoy playing them, I couldn't resist digging out my Skaven team - the Gnash-Gnaw!

Skaven society is highly stratified and bound up in complex rituals, but on the Blood Bowl pitch, all barriers drop away as every player gives their all for their teams complete and utter victory. The game has become very popular in all fields of Skaven life - the Skaven loving any opportunity for mindless violence. In fact, it has become very difficult to persuade them that there is any other purpose to the game once they are on the field, or even when they are just spectating in the stands! Some of the great all-time Player Death and Crowd Death records have occurred in games in which the Skaven have been on the pitch.

Skaven are one of the fastest teams in the game, capable of moving the ball from one end zone to the other with ease. They are generally thought of as a finesse team because of their Gutter Runners’ but their Blitzers’ and Rat Ogre give the team a real punch as well. They are a very versatile team capable of switching their tactics at any point in the game to get the win, and while they will lose players most games they can still function very effectively on the pitch when reduced to a handful of players. Unlike bashy teams Skaven can fall back on plan B or C if plan A is not going to plan, so no matter how bad things seem to be getting a win is almost always within reach. 
What makes Skaven so special is their Gutter Runners; 4 players with Ma 9, Dodge and Ag4 means any mistake or bad luck from your opponent can be exploited with a ruthless efficiency and their main strength and tactic is to just go for the ball and ‘Shoot the Gap’. 

So onto my team the Gnash - Gnaw. This team of malcontent verminous villains hail from Hell Pit in the far north and have just started to make a name for themselves.  Led on the field by the Thrower - Krik, these ruinous rats are racking up the TDs.

The majority of this team are 2nd Ed miniatures that I have owned since 2nd ed BB was released back in the day, this is their third reinvention and I'm loving them! Sadly as the Catcher role is no longer on the Skaven roster, I've had to retire my pair of catchers but in the main, these gorgeous minis date back 20+ years!

more about the team when I introduce them next time...
hope you enjoy

Saturday, 16 November 2019

The Rescue part 2

Private Conti inched the small mirrored device around the corner of the housing tenement, that he and Dewbury were hunkered down in. He winced as the bullets struck the paramedic and threw the portly male to the ground with a thud.  The deserter watched in fascination as the shorter female snarled a cry of rage and lifted a wicked looking crossbow. Conti held his breath as she let fly a bolt at the sinister Mr Smith.  The former soldier had held the “Men in Black” in awe having seen them in action. He had thought them as beyond human, so he was horrified as the bolt flew true and struck the agent high in the shoulder and dropped him to the tarmac.

The low moaning of the D-Subs grew louder as the MiB went down. As one they surged forward in an effort to get to the warm flesh of the agent, their teeth bared in anticipation. Conti withdrew the device and hitched his assault rifle up, nudging the nervous man that hovered behind him, he indicated that the deserters should get while the going was good. Without a backward glance, the former soldiers ghosted away from the crash site.

one of the PEFs comes close to being revealed but then turns around and retreats

April heard the sickly thud as the heavy rounds struck Gobbo, a fine spray of blood flew from the medic's head as the bullets tore a crease down the side of his face. She stood frozen to the spot as Gobbo’s daughter – Astrid raised her bow to return fire, dropping the agent in the black coat.  A door slamming open behind her, had her spinning around with her ASP held loosely in her hand. A zed stumbled over the threshold, falling forward and allowing April the chance to crash the heavy extendible baton into the back of it’s head.

Astrid felt her father’s blood splatter the side of her face as he was spun around, before crashing to the floor.  The young woman pushed down a surge of fear for the stricken medic and sighted down her crossbow, shooting the bad guy who had fired on her dad so callously. She grinned fiercely as the bolt lodged in the sinister agent’s shoulder and taking him out of the action.  That grin turned into a shout of both surprise and glee, as she spotted her dad’s crewmate clamber over a wall behind the agent, firing an assault rifle at a couple of the zombies that were milling around.  Raising her hand, Astrid called out to the fiery paramedic, gesturing for her to run toward their group.

Smith, gasping from the pain in his shoulder, shook his head to clear the woozy feeling that was threatening to drive him into unconsciousness.  The girl was limping passed him, not 10 feet away, but he couldn’t bring his pistols up to take her out.  Grimacing against the agony of the barbed bolt pressing against his clavicle, he staggered to his feet.  Looking around, he decided that discretion was the better part of valour and darted/stumbled along the high wall that marked the boundaries of a wooded park.

Anna, hearing the stricken cry of Gobbo’s daughter as he was shot down, near boiled over the garden wall that she had been resting behind. Landing awkwardly, she ignored the flare of pain from her ruined ankle, she lifted her borrowed rifle to her shoulder and mowed down a trio of D-Subs that threatened to attack her fallen crewmate.  The paramedic looked left and right but failed to spot the mysterious agent who had gunned down her friend, grimly striding forward as more and more shambling D’s flooded the area.

 Reaching the fallen medic, she bent down to palpate Gobbo’s carotid artery. Feeling a strong pulse, Anna turned his head, tutting at the crease where the round had scraped passed the older medic’s temple.

“For Christ’s sake Gobbo, get your fat, lazy arse up of the floor!” she shouted in his ear, accompanied by a hard pinch to his trapezius muscle.

With a shout the middle-aged medic, practically jumped up as the pain from his trapezius temporarily outweighed the pain in his head. “What the fuck?!?” he spluttered as he shook his head, trying to orientate himself.  As he staggered sideways, he glimpsed sight of a zed bearing down on his beloved daughter.  Drunkenly he raised the heavy firearm that he still clutched, pulling the trigger and discharging a spray of pellets at the creature and throwing it backward.  The noise chased the last of the cobwebs from his brain and he pulled his kin into a powerful bear hug.

“Touching as this is people, I think we need to get the hell out of here…” Drawled Anna, nodding at the reporter in greeting and pulling on the arm of her crewmate.

“Of course, Putters professional at all times!” laughed the portly medic, delighted to see his young friend and mentor whole. “The ambo is just up the alleyway, ready to go”.

Pistol fire, followed by the sound of roaring engine, drew their attention as they realised that the mysterious agent had somehow escaped. All four of the humans, grimaced at the sound of snapping bones clearly heard over the squealing of tyres. 

“I somehow doubt that’ll be the last we see of him.” Astrid surmised, slowly shaking her head at the thought of the formidable foe coming after her and her loved ones.  The others nodded in agreement and turn back toward the waiting ambulance and safety. 

“Let’s get out of here.” Said Gobbo, grimly stepping over the still twitching remains of the D-Sub he had perforated with his shotgun moments before.

The shock of being shot in the head clearly slowing his thought process, it was some few precious seconds before his brain caught up. Still twitching remains…

With a hungry moan the zed lurched to it’s feet, clawed fingers reaching for April’s clothing and pulling the startled reporter in close, trying to bite the young woman. April tried to swing with her baton, but the creature was too close and pinned her arm to her sides, causing the blow to be ineffectual.  The others, caught by surprise could only watch in horror as the two combatants fell to the floor in a tangled heap of thrashing limbs. After long seconds, there was a loud snap as April leaned her full weight onto the creature, snapping it’s neck and causing it to go limp.

an event - a previously dead zed comes back to unlife...

April stood, wiping blood off her coat and looking pale as she staggered toward the ambulance.  “Hurry,” she implored, “we’ve got to get out of here.” Pushing passed her stunned colleagues, she clambered into the back of the vehicle and slumped onto the trolley, staring up at the roof of the truck.

April loses a round of combat with the zed before killing it...

With a shrug, Gobbo got behind the wheel and gunned the engine as the others got into the emergency vehicle.  Throwing it into reverse, he put his foot to the floor and backed the ambulance out of the hot zone.

That's it for this episode of my ongoing ATZ - an English Adventure.
hope you enjoy

April clutched the torn sleeve of her jacket, the pain from the D-Subs bite was abominable and she thought she might pass out. So far she hadn't checked to see if the flesh had been broken by the filthy teeth of the creature and she was petrified to look just in case it had. She'd seen the films, she'd read the books and seen first hand what the bites of the zombies did to humans.  Glancing fearfully around the ambo, she saw the two medics deep in conversation, no doubt catching each other up on the recent events. Gobbo's daughter Astrid, was watching her with her too clever eyes, taking in everything, analysing everything. Nothing would get by that one, nothing...

Friday, 8 November 2019

The Rescue part 1

The low moans of the D-Subs, as they clustered around the crash site, jarred Anna’s nerves and she checked and rechecked the safety of the assault rifle picked up from the torn carcass of the young soldier at her feet.  Glancing around, the young paramedic spotted more of the zombie-like ex residents of the Isle of Thanet gathering in a narrow road next to a sweet looking motorbike.  Lifting the rifle to her shoulder, she aimed vaguely in their direction and squeezed the trigger in a long burst.

Anna starts in section 7 (bottom left corner)

The rounds tore the ground in front of the D-Subs to pieces but spectacularly failed to slow the creatures down at all. Anna snorted, she had the feel of the weapon now and the next time, the result would be different.  However, the D-Subs were starting to fill the narrow street forcing Anna to move slowly away, wary of putting too much pressure on her torn ankle.

she quickly abandons the idea of using the motorcycle as there are too many zeds

and instead cuts down behind the truck

++FOB control, we have gunfire just ahead – possible survivors – 30 seconds ‘till contact++
Mr Smith replaced the handset and looked over at his partner, Mr Jones who was skilfully manuvering the big SUV through the cluttered streets.
“Sounds like at least one of the strike team survived the crash.” He mused to the big man, adding in muttered tones, “unless it’s the girl of course.”
Jones looked over at the taciturn Mr Smith and raised an eyebrow. “You think someone survived that?” he nodded at the rapidly approaching crash site.
“Find out in 5 seconds” Smith barked as he drew his twin pistols and slapped off his quick release seatbelt. Jones hit the brakes and brought the vehicle to a complete stop in a controlled slide, before leaping out and drawing his own weapon.

the laser pointer shows there is a LoS from Jones to Anna and the go to insight with Jones getting more successes
Anna looked up as the roar of the massive military vehicle’s engine was drowned out by the screeching of vulcanised rubber. The driver jumping down from the SUV was all dressed in black and looked for all the world like the government agent that he most likely was. The sound of a second door opening suggested a partner, but she couldn’t catch sight of them due to a wall restricting her vision.  Time slowed down for the young paramedic as her eyes recorded the information and analysed every last detail. The ripples of the black fabric of the large man’s coat as he flowed with the practiced grace of a natural athlete. The blank, dark gaze from his, no doubt standard issue ‘Men in Black’ shades. The gaping empty barrel of the enormous pistol held in his right fist as he brought it up in line with Anna’s chest…
however he rolls two 1's and runs out of ammo... Anna is not so unlucky and puts him down
Click, click, click… Jones looked confused at the sound of the pistol’s hammer slamming down on an empty chamber. The gun felt lighter somehow too, as if there was something missing? With a frown, he lifted the butt of the handgun and looked at the empty space where his magazine should fill. “That’s strange” he managed to say, just before three 5.56 NATO rounds struck his groin, abdomen and finally his chest.

Anna lowered the assault rifle from her shoulder as the MiB was thrown backward by her return fire, crashing into the side of the SUV.  Without waiting for a response from his partner, she hobbled around the back of the lorry that had plowed into a nearby wall and scuttled into the garden of the ruined terrace. All around her, the D-Subs, drawn by the sound of gunfire, moaned and shuffled, desperate for the flesh of the still-humans.

Mr Smith heard the thud of Jones’ body as it slammed against the vehicle and slid to the ground. “What the f…?!?” he mouthed as he looked around for the shooter, quickly surmising the enemy combatant’s rough position. The shooter must be skilled to have got the drop on his highly trained partner, Jones had been around the block and then some.  Smith dropped into a crouch and moving away from the still running SUV, he edged his way along the length of the articulated lorry, pistols at the ready.  Focused as he was, and thanks to the high sides of the truck, he failed to spot the puffing paramedic as she struggled over the wall of a nearby property and dropped into the next garden and out of sight.

Prowling forward he reached the back end of the trailer and cast a quick look around. Annoyingly he could only see the damned D-Subs, with two directly in front of him within touching distance. Instantly the pistols came up, like extensions of his own body. Years of drilling, target practice and real combat experience served him well as two bodies dropped to the floor. Without looking back at the still twitching body of one of the zombies, he headed the way he had come, thinking that the shooter would be trying to flank him. As he turned, he caught sight of a small group of people walking in his direction.

Like a flash, his brain kicked into analytical mode – one male, middle aged, a bit pudgy around the middle and dressed as a paramedic, but rather incongruently carrying a serious looking firearm. With him - two females, one in her early twenties and carrying a wicked crossbow, she bore a strong resemblance to the male and he surmised a father/daughter relationship.  The other he recognised from somewhere, but he didn’t know from what.  She carried a police ASP loosely in one hand as she scanned the immediate area.  They were clearly looking for someone and considering the male wore the same uniform as the target, it wasn’t difficult to figure out who…

Once again Smith raised his deadly pistols and discharged them, his left-hand pistol discharging a controlled burst and knocking over two D-Subs that partially shielded his true target. His right-hand pistol tracked the fat man and spat its deadly load at what Smith had decided was the biggest threat. With a satisfied grunt, he watched the bullets slam into the paramedic and throw him to the ground.

part 2 next time
hope you enjoy