The Four Strands Modeling, Painting, Gaming and Storytelling


The Bait rematch – Tau Shan’al Shi’ur vs. Imperial Navy

Stephen and I wanted to get together to play another game of Gothic.  However, due to mutual delays, we couldn't get started until 9pm.  Stephen suggested a rematch of The Bait, which he played against my Dark Eldar.  This time, however, I was the pursued as my Tau Kor'or'vesh fleet!


Mission: The Bait

Setting: Outer Reaches


Bozeman - Tau Kor'or'vesh Shan'al Shi'ur

-Lar'shi'vre "Protector" class cruiser, T'au Lar'shi'vre Aloh Sho'ka, T'olku configuration (pursued ship)

-Il'porrui "Emmisary" class light cruiser, T'au Il'porrui M'yen Lar'shi, Bor'kan configuration (squadroned with two other ships below)

-----Il'porrui "Emmisary" class light cruiser, T'au Il'porrui Lynu Kar'tyr, Bor'kan configuration

-----Il'porrui "Emmisary" class light cruiser, T'au Il'porrui Sh've Mont're, Sa'cea configuration

-Vral Squadron: 4 Kir'la "Warden" escorts and 1 Kir'shash'vre "Castellan" escort


Stephen - Imperial Navy

-Avenger class grand cruiser

-Dauntless light cruiser (torpedo configuration)

-Dauntless light cruiser (lance configuration)

-Squadron of 2 Cobra destoryers




Turn 1 - Tau Shan'al Shi'ur

The Aloh Sho'ka fails to go on Come to a New Heading, and so simply moves and launches missiles and a fighter for a CAP.

Turn 1 - Imperial Navy

A bad roll prevents the fleet from going on special orders.  The whole fleet advances.

Turn 2 - Tau Shan'al Shi'ur

Aloh Sho'ka Reloads Ordnance and turns.

Turn 2 - Imperial Navy

Cobras and the torpedo Dauntless get All Ahead Full, but the other ships don't.  Small torpedo wave from a cobra stops the CAP around the Aloh Sho'ka, and the Dauntless fires torpedoes.  It fails to brace.  One damage causes an Engine Room Damaged result!

Turn 3 - Tau Shan'al Shi'ur

Aloh Sho'ka re-launches a CAP and fires at the Cobras, taking down a shield.  The squadron of 3 Emissary light cruisers arrives, and fire 8 missiles at the lance Dauntless.  One missile is shot down by turrets and the rest... MISS!  8 misses on a roll of 5+! Things are looking down for the Tau...

Turn 3 - Imperial Navy

Fleet moves up, but fire is ineffective.  The other Cobra fires torpedoes at the Aloh Sho'ka and removes the fighters on CAP.

Turn 4 - Tau Shan'al Shi'ur

Aloh Sho'ka goes on All Ahead Full to get around the Warp Rift.  The Emissaries Reload Ordnance and fire on the Dauntless again, doing minor damage.  The missiles remove a Cobra.

Turn 4 - Imperial Navy

The lance Dauntless fires on the Emissaries, but do no damage.  The torpedo Dauntless fails to reload, so it chases the Aloh Sho'ka.

Turn 5 - Tau Shan'al Shi'ur

The Emissaries Reload Ordnance, and combined fire reduces the lance Dauntless to a Blazing Hulk!  Vral Squadron comes in from the board edge, destroys the other Cobra, and lowers a shield on the torpedo Dauntless!  The Dauntless Braces for Impact.

Turn 5 - Imperial Navy

The blazing Dauntless suffers a Plasma Drive Overload, exploding and firing 4 lances at one of the Emissaries, lowering one shield and doing no damage.  The Avenger grand cruiser puts the Emissaries in its sight, but a poor roll does no damage.  Torpedo Dauntless on Brace fires ineffectually at Vral Squadron.

Turn 6 - Tau Shan'al Shi'ur

Emmisaries Come to a New Heading to get a shot on the Avenger, but the order reduces their weapons and has little effect.  The Aloh Sho'ka Reloads Ordnance and fires missiles and a Manta Bomber.  Vral Squadron cripples the Dauntless.

Turn 6 - Imperial Navy

Dauntless disengages.  The Avenger fires on the Emissaries causing a Brace.

Turn 7 - Tau Shan'al Shi'ur

Emissaries fire on the Avenger, taking down only 2 shields.  Missiles and the Manta prove ineffective.

Turn 7 - Imperial Navy

Avenger disengages.  Turn not pictured.


Final score:

Bozeman: 219.5

Stephen: 0


Stephen really loves that Avenger.  Honestly, I can't understand why.  It's up-gunned, but only up close.  It has no dorsal or prow armaments to lend it some versatility.  It seems to be good only against the Imperial Navy, who also has to get close, or perhaps Tyranids.  I'm not a fan.  I'd rather have the Vengeance which can scare the pants off of Eldar, or the Exorcist for some fighter craft fun.  The Avenger lost him this game, even though it didn't get hurt.  It was so SLOW, and short range that it didn't get to do much.  More Dauntlesses, escorts, or Nova Cannons would have been nice.  A Dominator could have ended the Aloh Sho'ka in two or three turns with luck, or forced it to brace in fear the whole game.

Next: more Gothic?  Projects?  Perhaps some fun times at Highland?


Big Game 2, a blast from the past.


Oh man.  Lexington came to visit me and we took a walk down memory lane.  He brought me some photos of a past I had almost forgotten.

So, in previous posts I've detailed some of the Big Games, mostly Big Game 5.  However, there were others.  Big Game 1 was hardly worthy of the name, it was a big mess.  No one knew what we were doing, and some drunk fratboys interrupted us.  But it gave us ambition.

Ambition for Big Game 2.

As you can see, we're on the floor.  This was in the the pole barn of our friend Jake's Parent's christmas tree farm.  The central city used the 3rd edition rules found in Codex: Cityfight (remember that?).  The yellow taped areas are "ruins"  and the green "forests."  You see kids, back in 3rd edition, we had to use our imaginations.  We were allowed to make area terrain without having actual trees.  Sure, it's not as visually exciting as having an actual ruin or forest, but it allows more freedom of terrain.

Seen here, the "good guys" reserves table.

...and here are some awkward looking young men!  To the left, in the foreground, is Andy (who we called Other Andy), who played Dark Angels.  Sadly, we lost touch with Other Andy, as this was the age before Facebook.  Standing above him is John.  Yes, the one who introduced me to Battlefleet Gothic, here playing his Tyranids.  The blurry kid in the jacket in the foreground is none other than yours truly, bringing the relatively young Azure Flames.  In the back, Joe (left) confers with Brian B. (right).  Joe was the leader of the "good" side, with his Space Marine chapter: the Angels Sacrosanct, a Blood Angels successor.  Brian B. is Little Matt's younger brother, here with his Imperial Guard.

Here, Dark Eldar and Iron Warriors advance together.

Imperial Guardsmen defend the large building in the City.

Other Andy's Dark Angels were supposed to all Deep Strike.  Sounds great, right?  They can go where they're needed.  However, we found out after the game began that he could only Deep Strike... within 24 inches of the Fuel Dump.  So, he got to deploy randomly in a tight area and lose two of his units to Perils of the Warp.

Joe is at left, walking away.  Other Andy and I are on the ground.  Checking his watch is Andy (not Other Andy) who brought his Chaos Marines.  To the extreme right, "Little" Matt B, with his Iron Warriors.

Me and Other Andy try to take the dark portal.

The Tank Company advances toward the city.

The Azure Flames had a small force guarding the bridge.  They were supposed to hold out so that reinforcements would come...

...sadly they were waylaid by Eldar.  The Evil forces take the bridge.

Scott's Orks roll into the city.

John's Tyranids deploy... out of focus.

John's Tyranids advance on the city as well.

...and enter the city.


Space Wolves drop pod in to take the building from Dark Eldar.  Some veterans may recognize that building from GORKAMORKA.

Finally (which is ironic because it's not the end) Andy (on the ladder) and Scott (from the waist down) survey the battle for the "bad" guys.  Fun story: Scott almost fell off that platform, and Andy ran to catch him.  That rope hanging from the ceiling and Scott's quick wits are the only reason both of them did not go to the hospital that night.  Fun!

So, how did Big Game 2 end?  The "bad" guys won.  However, it set the stage for Big Games 3 and 5 (Big Game 4 was along a different narrative).

*drowns in nostalgia*


Compendium Updates

Check the sections to the right.  Blood Bowl has been given a version 2.0 upgrade with MASSIVE re-organization.  Battlefleet Gothic also got a minor tweak.  Rules for setting up Warp Rifts were added to the terrain setup section.


Imperial Navy vs. Dark Eldar – The Bait (at AFK)

Dastardly Dark Eldar pirates have been preying on shipping lanes.  Top Admirals plan to risk the Avenger class Grand Cruiser Enif to set a trap for the pesky aliens!  Will the Dark Eldar be curtailed, or will the Imperials come up with empty nets?


Mission: The Bait - Deep Space


Bozeman - Dark Eldar

-Torture class cruiser Gift of Discord, Launch Bays, Mimic Engines

-Corsair class escort x2, The Knives of Sweetness, Impaler Attack Craft, Mimic Engines

-Corsair class escort x2, Needle's Promise, Impaler Attack Craft, Mimic Engines


Stephen - Imperial Navy

-Avenger Grand Cruiser Enif (Pursued Ship)

-Lunar Cruiser Adara

-Dominator Cruiser Avior

-Dauntless Light Cruiser Resa (Lances)



Before the game began, the Dark Eldar took a move, thanks to Mimic Engines!

Turn 1 - Imperial Navy

The Enif goes on All Ahead Full.  No help arrives.

Turn 1 - Dark Eldar

The Knives of Sweetness Come to a New Heading to avoid the dust cloud, and the whole fleet fires Torpedoes, Impalers, and Bombers.  Total damage done to the Enif is 6, including two Engine Room Damaged results!  The Enif refuses to Brace for Impact.

Turn 2 - Imperial Navy

The rest of the Imperial fleet arrives, with the Lunar and Dauntless on All Ahead full!  A bank shot from the Dominator removes one of the Needle's Promise escorts.  Torpedoes stop short of the Gift of Discord.

Turn 2 - Dark Eldar

Lucky torpedoes cause 2 damage to the Gift of Discord!  The Dark Eldar fleet Reloads Ordnance, except the remaining Needle's Promise escort who disengages.  Battery fire finishes the Enif, but lucky turrets and Brace saves prevent the launched ordnance from harming the Lunar and Dominator.

Turn 3 - Imperial Navy

The surviving fleet closes in.  Failure to brace by the Gift of Discord dooms it to a drifting hulk!  The Knives of Sweetness brace and survive.

Turn 3 - Dark Eldar

The Knives of Sweetness attempt a bold boarding action!  ...they lose and one of them dies.  Game ceded.


Final Score

Imperial Navy - 325

Dark Eldar - 230


Ugh!  I could have won had I disengaged on turn 2 (a classic Dark Eldar move) but I got greedy.  The Dark Eldar all-ordnance fleet is terrifying, but I think next time a more balanced approach could give me more options, such as Lock On with Phantom Lances and Batteries.  Stephen did what you should do in The Bait: pounce!

Next: Epic Eldar, possibly a training mission for Gothic, more Epic at Highland, and perhaps more Compendium stuff!  Stay tuned!


Epic Daemon Pool Counter

Daemons are a tough thing to keep track of.  Appearing from the warp.  Disappearing into the warp.  Stealing cookies.  That sort of thing.

Well, now you can keep track of your extradimensional entities in STYLE.  Behold!  The Daemon Pool Counter!

Epic Armageddon Daemon Pool Counter


-Print the file in color on 11x17" Tabloid paper.

-Trim 1.25" off of the long edges and 3" off the short edges to cut it down to 8.5x11" with a full bleed.

-Laminate the sheet.

-During the game, place two Blast Markers on the Counter, corresponding to how many Lesser and Greater Daemons you purchased.  When you summon Daemons, move the Blast Marker down, and when the Daemons are removed or unsummoned move the Blast Marker up.

Have fun ripping down the walls of reality!


Epic Training number 2: Bozeman (Orks) vs. Sean (Marines)

After the previous battle at Highland, Sean decided to take a look at Epic.  Due to a lack of available challengers, I took the role of the Orks as Sean manned the Space Marines.  Let's get Epic AGAIN!


Bozeman - Orks

  • ‘Uge Ork Warband with 18 Ork, 6 Gretchin, and 6 Nobs stands!
  • Ork Warband with 6 Ork, 2 Gretchin, and 2 Nobs stands plus 3 Battlewagons, 1 Flakwagon and 1 Gunwagon.
  • Ork Warband with 6 Ork, 2 Gretchin, and 2 Nobs stands plus 3 Battlewagons, 1 Flakwagon and 1 Gunwagon.
  • Mekboy Stompamob with 3 Stompas
  • Fighta Sqwadrun with 3 Fighta-Bommerz
  • Kult of Speed with 6 Warbikes and 2 Buggies
  • Big Blitz Brigade with 9 Gunwagonz, two of which have Supa-Zzap-Gunz
  • Great Gargant with Warlord Character Upgrade

Sean - Space Marines

  • Tactical formation with 6 Tactical stands, 3 Rhinos, and a Supreme Commander upgrade.
  • Devastator formation with 4 Devastator stands, 2 Rhinos, and 1 Hunter
  • Terminator formation with 4 Terminator stands and a Chaplain upgrade
  • Whirlwind formation with 4 Whirlwinds
  • Assault formation with 4 Assault stands
  • Assault formation with 4 Assault stands
  • Thunderhawk Gunship
  • Land Speeder formation with 5 regular Land Speeders
  • Warlord Titan

Standard Tournament Scenario




Turn 1

Sean puts the Whirlwinds on Sustained Fire and lays into the garrisoned 'Uge Ork Warband that is so close to his lines.

The Orks fire back at the Tactical formation, and are in turn fired upon by the Warlord Titan.

Retaining the initiative, the Fighta-bommaz go after the Land Speeders, but fail spectacularly.

The Land Speeders move forward, close enough to the objective to ward off Ork advances.

Both the Gargant and the Blitz Brigade go for a Double, blasting the Titan and getting up close and personal.

The Devastators Double to put some pressure on the Blitz Brigade, with little effectiveness.

The Stompas go after the Land Speeders, and get a lucky shot.

Taking a big risk, I put the Blood Axe squad on Overwatch.  I get a lucky 4+.

The Thunderhawk with the two Assault Marine squads perform and Air Assault against the 'Uge Ork Warband!  Poor rolls make the Orks retaliation brutal, wiping out all but one Assault Marine stand and killing that stand and the Thunderhawk with an overrum!  However, casualties break the Ork Warband.  The Kult of Speed responds by taking a Double to shore up the Gargant and get close to the bridge.

The Evil Sunz formation then Doubles to cover another objective.


Turn 2

At the top of turn 2, Sean teleports the Terminators near the 'Uge Ork Warband, which has regrouped during the End Phase.

The Orks win the Strategy roll, and the Gargant uses the Warlord's re-roll to succeed and go on a Sustained Fire action, killing most of the Terminators.

BIG GAMBLE sustained fire for the Blitz Brigade takes the void shields off the Titan and do some damage.

Whirlwinds blast the Orks again.

Devastators wreck the Blitz Brigade, breaking them.

Kult of Speed doubles to get into the Marine's board half!

Fighta Bommers try to do some damage to the Whirlwinds, but fail again.

Land Speeders back up to prevent being charged by the Stompas.

Stompas move up to keep pressure on Land Speeders.

Retaining, the Evil Sunz double to try to take out some Land Speeders.  They fail, but they hold the objective.

Despite me not removing the die marker that indicates Overwatch, the Blood Axes move up to hold both objectives.


Turn 3

The Gargant doubles up and lays the smack down on the Warlord Titan, dropping the last shield, and doing five damage reducing the Warlord to one damage capacity remaining.

The Kult of Speed retains the initiative, Engages the Warlord Titan, and manages to peel the last damage off, killing it!  The six Warbikes are killed in retaliation and the Buggies flee in victory.

The Devastators try to blast the Gargant and removes all but one power field.

Finally, Sean ceded.


Final Score:

Blitzkrieg: NONE

Break Their Spirit: ORKS

Defend The Flag: ORKS

Take and Hold: ORKS

They Shall Not Pass: ORKS

Final Score: Space Marines 0, Orks 4  Victory for the Orks!


Wow.  There were several key moments where Sean's rolling was terrible.  He's almost as bad as my former room mate Matt.  Sean should have done much better.  He also should have used the Thunderhawk against one of the objectives rather than the 'Uge Warband that could have held them off.

Next: some Epic Eldar or Lost and the Damned, and some Battlefleet Gothic at AFK!  Stay tuned!


Epic Armageddon training game: Dominic (Orks) vs. Kyle (Space Marines)

Having just barely finished the last of the Ork units just in time, I was able to show Dominic and Kyle how to play Epic with two FULLY PAINTED 3000 point lists!  Let's get Epic!


Dominic - Orks

  • ‘Uge Ork Warband with 18 Ork, 6 Gretchin, and 6 Nobs stands!
  • Ork Warband with 6 Ork, 2 Gretchin, and 2 Nobs stands plus 3 Battlewagons, 1 Flakwagon and 1 Gunwagon.
  • Ork Warband with 6 Ork, 2 Gretchin, and 2 Nobs stands plus 3 Battlewagons, 1 Flakwagon and 1 Gunwagon.
  • Mekboy Stompamob with 3 Stompas
  • Fighta Sqwadrun with 3 Fighta-Bommerz
  • Kult of Speed with 6 Warbikes and 2 Buggies
  • Big Blitz Brigade with 9 Gunwagonz, two of which have Supa-Zzap-Gunz
  • Great Gargant with Warlord Character Upgrade

Kyle -Space Marines

  • Tactical formation with 6 Tactical stands, 3 Rhinos, and a Supreme Commander upgrade.
  • Devastator formation with 4 Devastator stands, 2 Rhinos, and 1 Hunter
  • Terminator formation with 4 Terminator stands and a Chaplain upgrade
  • Whirlwind formation with 4 Whirlwinds
  • Assault formation with 4 Assault stands
  • Assault formation with 4 Assault stands
  • Thunderhawk Gunship
  • Land Speeder formation with 5 regular Land Speeders
  • Warlord Titan

Standard Tournament Scenario




Turn 1

Kyle teleports the Terminators right next to the gunwagons!

Strategy roll goes to the Orks!  Dominic goes first.

Dominic takes an Engage action with the Kult of Speed, who charge the Terminators!  ...aaaaaaand bounce right off.  No Terminators die, and the bikes are broken and fleeing.

Next, Dominic retains the initiative, and Doubles with the Blitz Brigade to put the hurt on the Warlord Titan.  Just out of range with most regular Gunwagons, the Supa Zzap Gunz take down a grand total of... one void shield.

Kyle retaliates with a Sustained Fire action by the Titan.  The Gunwagons are shattered and break.

Retaining, Kyle sets the Whirlwinds loose on the 'Uge Ork Warband with Indirect Fire.  Many gretchin die, much to the amusement of the orks!

Dominic moves the Evil Sunz mounted Warband up towards the objective with a Double.

Dominic tries to retain, but a poor roll leaves the Fighta Bommaz with a blast marker!

Kyle sends the Land Speeders to engage the Stompas.  One Stompa goes down, breaking the formation.

Dominic turns the gunz of the Great Gargant on the Terminators!  Three die, and the last flees!

Dominic takes a BIG GAMBLE and puts the 'Uge Ork Warband on Overwatch!  Will it pay off?

Kyle Advances the Devastators, firing on the broken Blitz Brigade and scattering their remnants further.  However, a poor Dangerous Terrain roll loses the Hunter!  The Marines have no anti air!

Retaining the initiative, Kyle Marches with the Tactical formation to hold an objective.

Dominic puts the Blood Axe Warband on Overwatch, as they babysit the Objective on the board edge.

Kyle declares an Air Assault with the Thunderhawk, which brings BOTH Assault formations and goes for the Evil Sunz mounted warband!  AMAZING overwatch fire from the 'Uge Warband kills three Assault stands, breaking one of the two formations, sending the survivors running.  The remaining Assault marines open the battlewagons like tuna cans, and wipe the whole formation out!



Turn 2

Kyle wins the Strategy roll, and sends the surviving Assault formation after the broken Ork bikes!  This assault was a complete disaster.  Whiffs and poor armor saves, plus FOUR WHOLE ROUNDS of fighting finally wipe out the Assault Marines, and leave one Ork Bike stand alive.

Dominic Doubles the Great Gargant, and puts the Land Speeders in his sights!  Poor rolls left four Speeders intact.

Kyle wanted to March to get the Warlord into position, but a blast marker ruins his day, and the Warlord end up moving once on a Hold action...

Dominic's Fighta Bommers shake off their Blast Marker and put some SERIOUS hurt on the Whirlwinds!

The Land Speeders menace the 'Uge Warband.

Having enough of the Land Speeder's crap, the 'Uge Warband charges them.  The Landspeeders lose two and break, but the Warband loses two as well, and loses the combat, forced to flee.

Kyle's Whirlwinds Marshall to remove their blast markers.

Dominic gives the Great Gargant a Double to move it out where it can do some good, as it has no enemies to fight!  What a terrible fate for an Ork.

Kyle's one remaining Assault Marine which regrouped earlier moves out and holds the objective.

Kyle bides his time, Advancing the Tactical marines, but not moving them.


Turn 3

Kyle wins the Strategy roll, and puts his Devastators on Overwatch.

Fighta Bommerz go after the last Assault Marine to clear the objective, but REALLY poor rolls keep the Assault Marines safe.

Kyle has a plan.  He needs the Titan to go off, but first he chains the Tactical Marines to hold both objectives!

Kyle's plan falls apart as the Warlord fails again.

Dominic, to deny Kyle the They Shall Not Pass condition, Doubles the Gargant to get into Kyle's table half.  Not to be outdone, Kyle Doubles his Devastators which loses a Rhino and a Devastator stand to dangerous terrain.  Now, neither player has They Shall Not Pass.

Kyle's Assault Marines move into cover to protect themselves.

Dominic gambles and wins, putting the 'Uge warband on March, and a ridiculous daisy chain CAPTURES THREE OBJECTIVES!

Final Score:

Blitzkrieg: NONE

Break Their Spirit: NONE

Defend The Flag: ORKS

Take and Hold: NONE

They Shall Not Pass: NONE

Final Score: Space Marines 0, Orks 1  Victory for the Orks!

Next, another training mission!


Epic Orks aplenty, 3000 pt. Teaching List complete!

You saw my previous post, with the squid.  That massive undertaking left me little time to finish the 3000 pts of Epic Orks that I promised to show my peeps in Highland tomorrow.

Just under the wire, I completed the last three formations.  Job's a good 'un!

Next: see these models (and my Space Marines) in action as my Highland peeps check out Epic Armageddon!  Stay tuned!


A Modest Cephalopod Proposal – Reaper Bones Unleash the Kraken!

For more than two years, I have been incredibly lucky.  The most wonderful woman I have ever met has somehow come to love me as much as I love her.  We both agreed that we're going to get married at SOME point, but we've been distracted by the usual suspects.  Poverty, illness, painting models, Lou Gossett, Jr., etc.

A bit more than a year ago, Reaper Miniatures began their second Bones Kickstarter, and like a sucker, I threw a small fortune at them.  You know how it is.  One of the add-ons offered was called "Unleash the Kraken!"

It was perfect.  The love of my life has a POWERFUL ken for cephalopods.  I ordered it and waited... a lot.  Thanks China.  But it arrived and I have been dutifully painting it.


This masterpiece serves two purposes: a belated xmas present, and an official declaration to the world of my intent to marry her.  She loved it.

Love is wonderful, but it's not what this blog is about.  Being the first Reaper Bones mini I've actually BOTHERED to paint, I'd be remiss without a thorough review of this product, and a complete breakdown of all the steps that led to this final, precious artifact.


The Reaper Bones Miniature:

Beautifully sculpted, I followed the instructions on the Reaper Bones Preparation Guide.  I washed the squid gently in soapy water, and dried each piece.  The Beak, mouth/head, tentacles, body, ship, and mast holding up the squid are all seperate parts.  Each part was carefully cleaned with a diamond file.  The bottom of the body had some Reaper branding words that took a lot of elbow grease to scrape off.



I did a pre-assembly of some parts.  The support mast was glued to the ship using super glue.  Gaps between the ship and mast needed a bit of green stuff, which I modeled into barnacles to cover it up.  I painstakingly arranged the tentacles about the mouth/head, and used more green stuff to join them more perfectly.  It was joined later, after some parts were painted.



As per the Reaper instructions, I (for the first time) used no primer.  At first.  The green stuff demanded primer, so I used a Reaper black paint on primer.  As for the rest, the paint did stick... mostly.  I found that 95% of the surface area of the model held paint with one coat.  Some very small areas refused a second but paid heed to a third.  Paint took an INCREDIBLE amount of friction to remove with rubbing, just as good as if it had been primered.

The ship was my first test to see how the paint stood up.  I started by coating the entire ship with black.  I then heavily drybrushed it (almost a wet brush) with Fortress Gray.  I inked then entire ship with Army Painter black ink wash, and then hit the whole ship with another lighter drybrush of Fortress Gray.  I then built up color with a drybrush of Snakebite Leather.  The next layer was Snot Green, but only in places that face "up" where sunlight could reach algae.  Ropes were given a much thicker coat, as algae would gain a stronger foothold in a softer surface.  The eagle bowsprit was given a very light drybrush of Vallejo brand gold, to simulate fading gilt.  Barnacles were picked out with Fortress gray, and washed to darken the insides.  The shelf corals were hit with a custom blend of paints to make them a salmon/coral pink.

Next, I tackled the body.  Colossal Squids tend to be orange, so I built up from Mechrite Red, to Blood Red, Firey Orange, and Blazing Orange.  The belly was Bleached Bone washed with 50% Citadel Chestnut Ink and 50% water with one drop of dish soap (saved from at least a decade ago!).  It was then drybrushed Bleached Bone and then lighter with White.  Armor plates were Shadow Gray drybrushed Space Wolves Gray.

The head came next.  The interior of the mouth was similar to the body.  Teeth were black with a slight highlight of Shadow Gray.  Face was similar to the upper body.  The eyes were a challenge.  I started black, and when I added white I left a circle of black around the edges for contrast.  Vallejo brand teal for the eyes, and a mix of various paints to create a different teal for some eye freckles.  I then did a circle of black for the pupil.

Tentacles were built up similar to the upper body, and spines are black with Shadow Gray.

The interior of the beak was bleached bone, with a small painted on orifice inside.  Exterior is black with Shadow Gray highlights.

Finally, the Squid was assembled, touched up, and sealed with Testors matte varnish.


The final verdict: Thanks to Reaper's master sculptors and the skills I have honed over 14 years, this is my finest work.  There can be no better proposal, at least not with my skills.

...and by the way, she said yes!

Filed under: Modeling, Painting No Comments

Battlefleet Gothic 1505 Fleet Engagement – Marines vs. Imperial Navy

Had an amazing game of Gothic with Stephen, despite some setbacks.  But first, a shout out to all the peeps at AFK games in Holt for all the incredibly diverse games played!

First, some amazing Eldar tanks with clear red glazed canopies that look great!

Next, some shots of an amazing super-weathered Mantis Warriors army, fighting hard to regain their honor after the Badab war.  Those fellas could use a bit of fresh paint.  How about it, Munitorum?


Nathaniel's white Imperial Guard tango with Mr. Cat's tan colored Crimson Fists.

Josh's Brettonians square off against some Lizardmen!

One table was set up with the Robotech miniatures game!  Valkyries clashed with Zentraedi pods over a city!

Long time Fourstrands contributor Stephen (Dark Angels) was practicing for a tournament with his partner, who had a stunning Saim-Hann Eldar army.

Finally, there was even some Warmahordes!  Here's a nice Circle list led by Morvahna.


Scenario - Fleet Engagement - 1505 points

Battlezone - Primary Biosphere


Bozeman - Azure Flames Space Marines

-Piers, Master of the Fleet, one re-roll (aboard His Hammer II)

-Battlebarge His Hammer II

-Battlebarge His Anvil

-Strike Cruiser Sacrifice, extra shield (squadroned with following two ships)

---Strike Cruiser Vigilance, extra shield

---Strike Cruiser Courage, extra shield

-Nova Frigates x2, Flame Squadron


Stephen - Imperial Navy

-Admiral (Ld9), one re-roll (aboard the Mars class battlecruiser)

-Retribution Battleship

-Mars Battlecruiser (squadroned with following two ships)

---Dominator Cruiser

---Gothic Cruiser

-Dauntless Light Cruiser, lances

-Sword Frigates x3

-Firestorm Frigates x3

-Cobra Destroyers x2


The Azure Flames Space Marines deploy in a Wedge (white area) to cut into the Sphere of the Imperial Navy (gray area).  Deployment map C:


Azure Flames turn 1

His Hammer II launches Thunderhawks and comes about.  Strike Cruisers go on All Ahead Full.  His Anvil fires Thunderhawks and Boarding Torpedoes to put the Imperials on the defensive.  Novas move up the edge of the board.

The Imperials are denied.

A threatening volley is fired!

Novas try to creep up the board edge.

Imperial Navy turn 1

The squadron of cruisers turns on His Anvil, which braces.  One Nova Cannon misses, but another hits!  ...doing one hit.  Amazing fire from the Sword frigates lower the Battlebarge's other two shields.  Torpedoes from the Gothic stop the boarding torpedoes.  The rest of the fleet comes about to re-engage.  Thunderhawks take out one of the two Cobras.

Nova Cannon?  More like marshmallow cannon.

Cobras get too close, and Thunderhawks make them pay.

Azure Flames turn 2

His Hammer II goes on All Ahead Full and leaves the Imperials in the dust (cloud).  Strike Cruisers pool their Thunderhawks and fire a 6 strong wave.  Novas and His Anvil destroy 2 of the 3 Sword frigates.

Here come the Space Marines!

The Novas pounce!

Imperial Navy turn 2

Mars launches 4 fighters which take up CAP duties in the squadron.  Gothic launches torpedoes, but a terrible Turret roll by me and a terrible Torpedo roll by Stephen means all 6 torpedoes go right through me!  Up close and personal Nova Cannon shotguns hit His Anvil hard, but fantastic Brace saves prevent any damage.  Thunderhawks approach.  Remaining Sword goes on a suicide charge at the Novas.  The rest of the fleet goes on All Ahead Full with some fantastic leadership rolls!

Nova Cannons lay into His Anvil, which weathers the storm.  The Sword prepares to sell its life dearly...

Don't spare the plasma!

Azure Flames turn 3

Remaining Sword lives, despite failing to Brace for Impact, TWICE!  Strike Cruisers mass for a strength 18 torpedo wave!  One Thunderhawk splits off to remove the screen from the Gothic class.  This along with fire from His Anvil cripples the Gothic class, causing an Engine Room critical.  The Mars also gets an Engine Room critical and two fires from Thunderhawks.


The storm is coming...

Imperial Navy turn 3

Due to Engine Room criticals, the Gothic and Mars cannot turn, so they move minimum distance.  Torpedoes fired by the Gothic several turns ago strike the Dauntless, causing one damage!  Lagging fleet continues All Ahead Full.  Nova Canon shot does 3 hits to the Courage, doing 1 damage, and causing an Engine Room critical! The surviving Sword disengages!

Friendly fire!

The Dominator draws blood from the Strike Cruiser Courage.  A fantastic Nova Cannon shot makes it unable to turn!

Azure Flames turn 4

Thanks to the planet, His Anvil makes a turn and boards the Mars class, doing 9 damage and turning it into a drifting hulk.  The Courage and the Vigilance board the crippled Gothic, making it a drifting hulk.  The Sacrifice fires torpedoes and Thunderhawks at the Dominator, doing two damage and causing a Port Weapons Malfunction.  His Hammer II launches Thunderhawks to menace the incoming escorts.

The storm breaks upon the Imperials... (pictured above, the Vigilance is where the blank base is)

Here comes trouble...

Imperial Navy turn 4

Dominator tries to disengage, but fails!  The rest of the fleet sticks around to help it.  Lance fire takes two shields down from His Hammer II.

The rest of the fleet covers for the Dominator.

Azure Flames turn 5

Both Battlebarges go on Lock On, and the Strike Cruisers Come to a New Heading.  The fleet does four more damage (with some poor rolls), crippling the Dominator.  Turn not pictured.

Imperial Navy turn 5

All ships disengage, except the Firestorms who fail!  They make for a Gas Cloud for cover...  Turn not pictured.

Azure Flames turn 6

Strike Cruisers Reload Ordnance.  18 torpedoes kill the closest and farthest Firestorm, but an incredible brace roll saves the second Firestorm!  ...which then dies to Thunderhawk gunships.  Game ends.  Turn not pictured.


Final Score

Azure Flames - 907

Imperial Navy - 10


*squirts Mountain Dew out of nose*


Well!  Let's see what happened.  I got a great deployment opportunity to divide the Imperials.  Stephen had a 1500 list that he wanted to play, but it wasn't tailored to fight Marines.  Stephen could have unbalanced his deployment (because he had more to deploy) but he was about as balanced as I was.  Next, I got lucky with some missed Nova Cannon shots and UNBELIEVABLE boarding rolls.  His Anvil beat the Mars class by NINE.  That killed a completely undamaged cruiser in one go.  Finally, the two hulked ships remained as I held the field, giving me approximately 140 extra points.  Finally I got 120 extra points because the Firestorms failed to disengage.

Next: Super Secret Project, Gothic or 40K at AFK and EPIC ARMAGEDDON at Highland!