Monday 30 November 2015

Darksun Life vol. 8 : The Lost Fleet Review

Good Evening.
Action shot!

This Monday, please enjoy my review of the Lost Fleet Series. Should you be particularly interested, please comment and i'll send you one of them!

Saturday 28 November 2015

X-wing epic battle report

So, continuing our series on X-wing and as promised from Thursday, here is a review of the big epic game we had on Wednesday. we had about 320 points a side. the epic ships were loaded out the same, with 3 different cannons and a few other things:

Ian led the forces of order with Jonathan and I have to confess somebody who's name escapes me! 
They had:
1 imperial raider, kitted out with three sorts of cannons and some imperial crew (including the guy who lets you drive over asteroids)
-1TIE Punnisher, Redline with munitions, plasma torpedoes, cluster missiles and free target lock sensors upgrade thingy. 
-Captain Jonas in a TIE Bomber (re rolls for allies with secondary weapons) munitions, plasma torpedoes, ion pulse missiles.
 -PS4 bomber with the same loadout as Jonas.
-2 Black Squadron TIEs with Wingman. 
-A PS3 Defender with ion engines. 
-Kir Kanos (exchange evade tokens for hits) in an interceptor with title, shield and hull upgrades. 
(This is mostly quoted from the text conversation)
Opening engagements

I flew he rebellion with robin and Andrew, with roughly something like
-A tantive, also with three cannons, Han, leia
-B-Wing: Dagger Squadron Pilot (Heavy Laser Cannon) 
-B-Wing: Dagger Squadron Pilot ("Mangler" Cannon) 
-Y-Wing: Gray Squadron Pilot (Twin Laser Turret ) 
-K-Wing: •Miranda Doni (Plasma Torpedoes; Plasma Torpedoes; Tactician) 
-A-Wing: •Jake Farrell (Outmanoeuvre ; Proton Rockets; Autothrusters ) 
-Z-95 Headhunter: Tala Squadron (Cluster Missiles) 
-Z-95 Headhunter: Tala Squadron

Roughly the same points, but crucially two intentional things that I'd done. Firstly, I deliberately out everybody ps4 or higher. So that even if they got cleared of by the imperial raider they'd get to shoot. Secondly, and for a lasting effect- I made a strong  initiative bid. With the choice on initiative, we gave it to the imperials. Perhaps a little to tactical for the level we were playing at, but it meant that the raider and half their ships were down before we placed anything. Meaning we refused flank away from the raider. Good for us, but probably the wrong decision for the game. My competitive nature got the best of me there. 

So we set up, concentrating all of forces in the centre, and left of centre.  The imperials set up in the centre, and to the right of Centre from our perspective. 
First Engagement

In the first two rounds, we decided to rush the imperials and see if they would blink. With the imperial raider cruising towards us, our plan was to try and use our superior firepower to take a couple of ships out before battle was joined. So all of our ships went as fast as they could without pulling red manoeuvres.


Over the next couple of turns, the forces of the imperial side took the bait and joined battle, much to the silent curses of their admiral as he continued to move at a glacial pace towards the battle. This resulted in an almighty dogfight in the centre of the board, with Miranda and Jake quickly into the flank and rear. There is a lot of space on a 6x3 board!


The clinching factor was that the tantive was able to engage relatively early on, and start throwing 5 dice attacks at ships. Because the imperial fighters were preoccupied with our fighters, I was able to cruise along our back line at about range 4 from the fight and destroy a ship a turn. This tipped the balance in our favour, until then it had been touch and go. 
I rolled this, and then used han solo crew to pump it up

Seeing his comrades fall into our carefully placed trap, their Admiral placed all power to the engines in an effort to save his fellows. Unfortunately for him, due in part to unlucky imperial dice rolls, by the time he got there, we had cleaved our way through the imperial fleet like a lightsaber through butter. This meant that the imperial raider and a tie defender were facing the tantive, a bwing, Jake and Miranda. 

This was where we called it. A victory for the filthy rebel scum. The club only goes on to 10pm and any longer and we would have overstayed our welcome. In the next turn we would have probably lost the bwing (I'd advised putting it in a very risky place where it was going to get run over!) and potentially another ship. But the rear of the raider was halfway dead from one round of shooting! 
Closing Shots

All in all a great game. Next week we are playing 100 point dogfights, and then in the final week before Christmas I'm thinking about a narrative mission, with side tables. Robin has suggested one as a potential as well. If you want to come along and join us, please let me know! The more the merrier!

Thursday 26 November 2015

X-wing battle report

So this happened......

A bit of tease, I'll be posting properly about it before the weekend :) check back for more action shots and great tales of dice rolling

Tuesday 24 November 2015

Darksun Life Vol 7 - B-Wing Repaints

So, Another week, another Vlog. Sorry its a bit late! real life got really busy over the weekend!

Anyways, check out the video below:

(sorry its only the link, for some reason it wont upload the embedded video)

As ever, comments, feedback are welcome! Im hoping to guest Vlog Aaron next week on Hobby stuff! And later this week I will be updating the Leicester Sabres X-wing league story with a couple of reports.

Thursday 19 November 2015

X-wing league review

Just a quick one today. Ian and I have been learning people from our club (Leicester sabres) to play X-wing for the last 2 weeks. Since BWX I'm keeping my hobby passion going with X-wing and the idea is hat we use these four weeks to teach other club members how to play X-wing. 

Last week we had four people, and they got to play two games each, with Andrew ending up 2-0, Jonathan 1-1, Tim 0-2 and somebody else (Mike I think!?) going 1-1. This week we gave them prebuilt 100point lists, that were hopefully balanced against each other. 

Tim played Andrew, whilst we had a new participant called robin. Over the course of the evening he battered Ian's fleet into oblivion. On the other map, Andrew and Tim had picked quite different lists:

-Green squadron a-wing, with Ptl and wired(title)
-naked bandit z95
-warden k-wing, with lasssult missiles, plasma torpedoes and extra munitions
-Jake Farrell with outmanoeuvre, swarm tactics, (title), proton rockets

-ps4 interceptor with adrenaline rush
-ps7 interceptor (tur fenur?) with adrenaline rush
- two ps4 tie bombers, each with plasma torps, seismic charges and extra munitions.

So two fairly balanced lists, that begin to show of the possible combos and mechanics of the game. 

They played for 75 mins- at 60 mins it was on a knife edge so we let it roll. As time was called going into the last round, Tim was ahead by 3 points. Then he swooped his bomber right exactly where it needed to be to down the k-wing (who had 1 hull left!) however Andrew had other ideas, sending Jake in close to blow the bomber apart. That left Tim massively behind, with one shot left. Ps7 interceptor trying to down the k-wing at range three. Could he do it and seal the win? YES! Moments later he shot the k-wing out of the sky, and sealed a 7 point win 58-51. 

A thrilling game. Next Wednesday we are having an epic sized 300 points a side game, with both the raider and the rebel corvette. We are hopefully having supporting wings of bombers and fighters. Lots of different players in each side, I might even work out some objectives for each side beyond just "kill each other." Tune in next week to find out how it went!

Tuesday 17 November 2015

X-wing repaints series. Episode 2: B-wing repairs

So recently, whilst playing my friend Aaron I broke one of my B-wings! Not just true model, but the peg. Right by the engines. Disaster. Especially because they are one of my favourite ships to fly! But also because I figured it would be a total pain to fix. 

So that was about a month ago. On Sunday evening I thought to myself, "I can fix that, I have the skills to fix that!" So I thought I'd give it a go. 

The snap was right in between the engines, and it wasn't a clean break. There was no way I could just whack a bit of superglue on it, it needed pinning. I don't know if you're aware of the X-wing pegs, but they are thin and comparatively brittle. Putting a drill into this made me nervous, because I'd only get one go with the bit that had snapped off. 

To get my eye in I decided to drill into the back of the b-wing first. This was comparatively easy, the drill went straight in-between the engines. My tip here would be to apply even pressure and work slowly, you don't need to rush it. I probably drilled 0.5 cms at least into the back of it. The key here is to go deep because you aren't going to be able to go deep into the peg. So you need that on the ship. 

Next, I drilled into the back of the peg, where it had snapped. This was more difficult, I had to take it really easy because I didn't want to snap the peg through drilling in the wrong place. I filed down the peg as best I could and then made sure that where I was drilling was the centre of the peg. This was tricky, the drill slipped a couple of times before it went in. 

The advantage with drilling into a peg is that it's clear, so you can see where the drill bit is. Make sure you are careful here, I was mentally telling myself that I only got one shot at this. I find it helpful to trial the paperclip out, see how much it goes in, if it's loose etc. 

What I did next, and the bit I think that has probably made this while exercise work is use green stuff. I put a little bit in each end, before dipping the paperclip in super glue. The green stuff makes the join secure when you out the paperclip in (you have no idea how much I'm trying to avoid innuendos) and the superglue cements the join.  

I having cemented the b-wing end, I assessed how much paperclip I'd need to make the join, and then cemented the other in. 

One of the joys about doing this was that I was able change the angle that the ship is flying at. I'm really pleased with this because I'd always wanted to do that with one of them but I'd never been brave enough! So I'm glad I was forced into it. Now I just need to finish painting it!

Saturday 14 November 2015

X-wing Mat Unboxing video - Darksun life vol. 6

So, I've finished my latest vlog. It's a custom design that I got printed at an Italian printing company. I thought I'd do a vlog review of the mat, check it out here:

I found a design from all credit goes to guy there. They are his designs, and it's his idea to go to that site!

The Italian printing site is:

Next week I'll be showing of the yt-2400 in that video :)

Thursday 12 November 2015

Unit Reviews From Blog Wars X: Winners and Loosers

I thought I'd review the performances of my units from BWX. You can watch a vlog here that details how I got on at the tournament. 

As a whole my army performed quite well, but some units did better than others. Some of my units were probably a dead weight, at least in terms of the armies that I faced, or how they performed.

The Guys (thanks mike for taking the photo!)

Telion - loser
My "sudo vindicare" gave away first strike twice! Twice! And the other game I don't think he caused a wound. Admittedly, one of the times he died he took the chaos deamon warp storm table to the face, but he underperformed. In a practice game he earns his place by killing nurglings. I'm still tempted by Marneaus Calgar.

Librarian - loser
But in addition to Telion giving away first strike, my librarian gave away warlord in the two games I won by blowing his own head of! The second time he did that, he also took a grav centurion with him! Useful for a bit of preseince, but I'm thinking about taking him out tbh. And maybe trying a bike captain.

Scouts & landspeeder storm - winner
Easily justified their cost. Gave me speed and objective secured, as well as holding my left flank in the draw until the 4th turn. Even then they only folded because they got charged by a greater daemon. If I'd of remembered in the 3rd game I could have got more points by using them better as well.

Tactical squad, with missile launcher, melta, combi melta and drop pod - winner
I was going to say that they didn't do a lot but hen I remembered that the one guy left alive was the whole reason I drew with Dan. His contesting of that central objective meant that I didn't loose that game :). None of the armies I faced classified a melta drop pod as a threat, but creative use in all three games meant that they got me line breaker (twice) and claimed a couple of points in mission 3.

2 squads of grav gun bikes. (3 bikes per squad) - winner
One of the strong performers in every game. In the first game, One squad deleted a trygon prime in a single shooting phase. In the second game they were also instrumental in the draw, helping to clear plaguebearers from my home objective and reclaim it. They were a massive bonus in the third game, giving me speed and shooting to take out two units of obliterators. As with BW9, the bikes repaid their selection.
10 sternguard in a drop pod, with 2 combi meltas, 2 combi plasmas and a lightning claw - winner
A unit that probably overperformed in the first game, was badly used in the second and in the third hit once and hard. Overall, they justified selection. In the first game, they killed a flying give tyrant and some Gaunts. In the second game, they killed nothing. (I probably should of gone for a different target!) In the third game, they dropped down, killed typhus and then got eaten by Chaos spawn and a helldrake. A good inclusion. Predictably used, but a reliable and strong addition.

Grav centurions in a drop pod - winner
This unit again had a varied experience. In the first game, their pod scattered back towards my deployment. This meant that they couldn't shoot first turn, but did end up killing hive guard, tyrant guard and the swarmlord. They turned a refused flank into a wall of death all by themselves. In the second game, as with most of my units they didn't do a great deal. They punched some chaos spawn in combat but hat was about it.

In the third game, they were amazing. Took out a land raider, a unit of chaos terminators, a chaos librarian and a helldrake. And only the raider was before the librarian blew his own head off, taking one of them with him. They made it impossible for my opponent to come towards me.
I think having them in a drop pod is excellent. Partly because it means my opponent can't pinpoint where they are going to be as easily in the setup, and then if I loose or don't have first turn they are protected.
Devastators 3x missile launcher, 1x lascannon
Again, a unit that piled on well i was doing well, and didnt turn the balance when i wasnt doing well. i dont know if these guys are worth it tbh. They cement my backline, and help with anti tank, but i was never in a sitaution where i thought "man im really glad i have these devastators." tbh, even in my most recent practice games they havent been pulling thier weight. Maybe i should try without them.

Lord commissar and guard blob squad with two Flamers - unsure
Overall, these guys held a space. In the first game, they held a flank against Gaunts and in the third game they infiltrated near some obliterators and then ran against them shooting (and killed one or two). In the second game, they did a job defensively in that they absorbed a charge (and then died).  The model count in my army would be very low of it wasn't for these guys, and they have the potential to absorb firepower because there is so many of them. But they don't contribute offensively very often.

Platoon command squad with four Flamers - Winner
These guys did very little, but they are outrageously good when they work. For 50 points you get for flamer templates and you could put them in a drop pod if you wanted since the one the centurions ride in is from the fast attack slot.

Stormtroopers - looser
These guys did not a lot. They got me line breaker in the second game, but in the first and third games they didn't do an awful lot. Maybe I didn't use them well in the third game, I tried to use the to kill a helldrake after all. I'm not sure if I'll keep them in.

Squadron of 2 wyverns - winner
These guys are probably my MVP. in the first game, they killed about 30 gaunts, including most of a 20 man unit of gargoyles. In the second game, their kills got me first strike and the draw, killing a unit of plaguebearers and a unit of nurglings. In the third game, they did actually die, but not before they eliminated my opponent's objective holding units of plague zombies, and most of a unit of chaos spawn. They are a key part of the "walk through your comrades corpses to get to me" strategy. So yes, definitely my MVP. 

Overall, these are my top 3 units from each side. im now thinking about addressing these going forwards, shifting the focus a bit. but i need to make sure its not just done on form. as they say, form is temporary, but class is permanent.  

1: Wyerns
2: Grav Bikes (seriously better than i expected!)
3: Grav centurions (i know they get called a bit of a crutch, but they arent a knight or a superheavy.)

1: Devastators
2: Telion
3: Librarian (who doesnt normally blow his own head of but was useless on the day.

Sunday 8 November 2015

Vlog 5: Blog wars X tournament report

So! Here is my vlog of our experiences at the north west gaming centre on Saturday. 10 of use went from Leicester sabres to Blog Wars X, a tournament run by Alex at From the Fang

He's just put the standings up, and I came 11th. Annoyingly, just outside the top 10, but I had a really great three great games, and came 2nd in one of the painting competitions. So a pretty good day! It was the last blog wars, meaning that of the 18 games I played at blog wars, I only lost the first one at blog wars 3. Since then, I've not lost! Winning 14 and drawing 3. Click today's video to find out how I did this time :)

Ill follow up with a couple of unit reviews this week - for now enjoy the video!

Thursday 5 November 2015

X-wing repaints series - episode 1

One of the things in my long absence from writing on this blog I took up was the X-wing miniatures game. I've mentioned before why I like it so much, and one the major bonuses for many people (myself included) is that the ships are painted. 

However, as part of my heart is as a hobbyist I wanted to try my hand at repaints. In this series I will showcase my repaints of various models. I view this as a long term thing - I'd like to repaint all of my models but so far I'm at about 50%. Part of the reason for repainting them is that I want them to look a little bit like spaceships that get used! I feel like the paint jobs that occur "out of the box" have a way to parade ground feel. 

The first ship I wanted to show you is a b-wing. With a lot of my Rebel ships, I have chosen to paint them with red markings. I like the way that themes then together. Obviously the inspiration is red/rogue squadron, but I know that doesn't fit within the canon. 

I've painted this b-wing broadly following the pre-painted markings, just making sure that I emphasise the pipes/wiring that runs across the wings. The trickest bit was not painting over the  pipes on the wings when painting the red, and vice versa. Although when I say tricky, I don't mean shooting a whomp rat tricky. I have another two of these on the go st the moment, but the my aren't finished yet.

The other offering for the episode if one of my A-wings. The white stipe is to differentiate between ships, and also helps denote the elite pilot, should one be a higher PS than the other.  I'm really pleased with the engines on these guys. They glow a little bit, just like I want them too.

I have most of the rebel ships, and whilst A-wings aren't super competitive they are the most fun ship to fly. They've got a lot of good manevuers available, and the auto thrusters card has really given them another lease of life.

The one thing I'd love advice on is what to strip the paint off with? These guys are painted straight over, and they do begin to loose a bit of their detail. Any suggestions?

Sunday 1 November 2015

Blog Wars X Unit Reviews - Darksun Life Vol 4

So, in a change to the advertised vlog (I will get to the x-wing one I promise, I’m just having more difficulties putting it together than I thought I would!) I’ve decided to vlog some of the units from my army that I’m taking to Blog Wars X!

It’s difficult to fit all of my 1850 point army into a short Vlog, but in summary it hasn’t change very much since last time. So still drop pods and Sternguard. The one change is that I’ve swapped Coteaz out for some imperial guard. Gives me a few more men, allows me to bulk up my line a bit.

My personal highlight from our practice games this weekend was Telion facing off against Ezekiel and half a tactical squad. He died eventually in combat, but because he died in my turn (after sniping Ezekiel the previous turn, resisting having his mind turned to jelly and then club a Tac marine to death in combat) Toph didn’t get the maelstrom points for that card.

Press play to enjoy! Feel free to comment below as well - is there anything you’d like to see me vlog in the future?