I finally got my hands on the new Orc and Goblin army book for Warhammer Fantasy battle. All the cool Orc and Goblin players already had it and have been adapting their armies to the newest rules. What I lack in coolness I make up for in stubbornness and weirdness. Here is the 2000 point all Goblin army I’m going to be running some day. I actually have almost every single goblin painted, I just need to do some basing and some shields.
I plan on running the new mega spider with a Shaman on top so I use up almost all of my Lord allowance. The core of my army remains however three big blogs of infantry, three war machines, and a hero to lead each mob. When I totalled it all up, using most of my allotment for magic items, I was just 80 or 90 points short of 2000, enter the Squig Hoppers. I might eventually go higher points and run a second Lord on a Gigantic Spider or even just a Big Boss and a block of spider riders to continue the spider theme. Not sure what I’ll do with all my ork models, maybe I’ll sell them or use some of them for 40K…
Here is a picture of my ‘bigger’ unit of Night Goblins. It is the only unit completely finished, complete with Shaman leader Icky Bob.
Goblin Great Shaman, riding Arachnarok Spider, with Catchweb Shrine and Opal Amulet 490 points
Night Goblin Shaman with extra level, Ironcurse Icon, and Dispell Scroll 115 points
Goblin Big Boss, Battle Standard Bearer, Mork’s War Banner, Light Armour and Shield 164 points
Night Goblin Big Boss, Light Armor and Short Bow, Enchanted Shield, and Obsidian Loadstone 84 points
54 Night Goblins with Short Bows, full command, three fanatics 267 points
29 Night Goblins with Short Bows, full command, three fanatics, and nets 237 points
65 Goblins with spears, shields, and light armor, full command and three skulkers 320 points
6 Night Goblin Squig Hoppers 72 points
2 Doom Divers 160 points
1 Stone Thrower 85 points
My theoryhammer, besides just finding a use for all the old plastic goblins I own and have almost gotten painted over the years, is, the goblins do the fighting. So much so I don’t even have a single ork in my army, even though the ten point bully might be worth it. I went with a hero in each squad as the heroes and the upgrades arguably will do more damage than the actual goblins.
Having played once and a while, generally every second edition of the game, I know goblins aren’t very good, but lots of them can look intimidating. The plan with the massive units is to not take panic checks. Every hero has defensive magic items, that boost their squad, I even opted for the most expensive magic banner. I also hope to dominate the magic phase and maybe even the shooting. The war machines can hurt most anything and the big spider should be able to handle itself. My main plan is to advance so I can’t run away in the first turn, release the squigs and just wait. Bombard the enemy with stones and spells and eventually arrows. After they get through all that I release the fanatics and hope to halt the charges. But if all else fails hopefully 60 plus goblins in a horde is a tough nut to crack. The Night Goblin units run away often, but hopefully not before they release their fanatics and get off a volley or two of arrows.
Last night or this morning I was lying in bed thinking of changes I could make to my Warhammer armies to try to actually win a game of Warhammer Fantasy Battle in 8th Edition. There isn’t much I can do with an all Nurgle Daemon army at 1500 points. I can add or subtract Plaguebearers, Nurglings, and Beasts of Nurgle and none of them have done much on the table top. The Herald of Tzeentch might keep a few more of my models from dying in the magic phase but in general I have to play with the models I have painted.
After finishing the sorcerer I picked up yet more hobby supplies and looked for work. A lot of jobs seem to be good fits for me this week and I talked to a CEO of a startup so maybe my third lengthy period of unemployment post-MBA will finally come to an end. I really don’t care what I do, all experience will obviously help me, and I need money as I have too much debt. But that’s not what my few readers care about.
I just finished writing a new army list at 1500 points, as that is the magic number at Strategies. Bigger games obviously are possible as I have a lot of models painted and quite a few unpainted unlike the Daemon army which is mostly painted except for a few odds and sods OOP models. My army list is goblin heavy and I’ve been trying to embrace that. I even tried to go all goblins, but in the end I couldn’t say no to a 5 point bully and the Big Waaagh spell list. So my 1500 point army list actually has 2 orks in it. My 2000 point army list will have more orks and to save on painting but also so I can have a magic banner (Mork’s Spirit Totem) I’m breaking my vow of no Big ‘Uns. I’m still unlikely to have Black Orks, though some Savage Orks might be fun, especially if new plastic models are in the pipe line as rumored.
Picking my daemon list is easy, my Ork and Goblin list takes a lot more time. I have a lot more options, even with only a few units actually painted. I painted so many goblins (with a tiny bit of help) that I can add or remove dozens of models from units, which doesn’t do that much, but it means I pick my CORE last. I pick my warmachines first as I want them to be central to my army. They shoot over the goblins, which in turn shoot and cast spells at the enemy until they get annoyed and charge or I get to cast one of the movement spells and opt for a surprise charge. The Fanatics of course get in the way of the enemy.
Having dealt with Leadership 4 Night Goblin mercenaries I’ve been thinking of ways to increase my leadership. I still don’t want an Ork general, but I can switch to a Goblin Warboss for one more leadership over the Night Goblin Warboss I added last time I revised the army list. I also decided to put him in with the unit of spearmen and to move my Goblin Battle Standard Bearer to the big unit of archers as that will keep them from running away better than the sorcerer who I had leading the unit. My yet to arrive new Night Goblin Boss figure will still go with the blue archers, but he’ll be demoted to Big Boss and I doubt I’ll bulk that unit up anymore. This all means that I need to paint two hero goblins, which will be a pleasure, something like seven warmachine crew and then base up everything that doesn’t have it’s base finished, which is every model not in this picture.
So without further ado here is the army list:
SPECIAL: Rock Lobber with Bully 75pts
RARE: 2 Doom Divers 160pts
LORD: Goblin Warboss with light armor, shield, Talisman of Preservation, and Martog’s Best Basha 131pts
LORD: Night Goblin Great Shaman with Staff of Sneaky Stealing, Amulet of Protectyness, and Magic Mushrooms 235pts
HERO: Goblin Big Boss Battle Standard Bearer with light armor and the Spider Banner 112pts
HERO: Night Goblin Big Boss with light armor, shield, Mad Cap Mushrooms, and Ulag’s Akrit Axe 79pts
HERO: Ork Shaman, Level 2 Wizard with the Horn of Urgok 140pts
CORE: Blue Archers, 24 Night Goblins with Bows, Full Command, 3 Fanatics, and Nets 202pts
CORE: Purple Archers, 28 Night Goblins with Bows, Full Command, and 2 Fanatics 154pts
CORE: Spearmen, 44 Goblins with Spears, Shields, and Light Armour plus Full Command 240pts
After working out all my heroes which I really need to keep the goblins from running away and to try not to get raped in the magic phase, I priced out all the blue archers, this is my smallest unit, but with max Fanatics and Nets and a Big Boss geared offensively they are both my most expendable unit and the one I’d like to send out first from my lines. I’d just as soon not get into H2H with the other units as their main goal is to keep their heroes alive.
I also moved the Mad Cap Mushrooms to the Big Boss, this unit is almost completely painted and should be easier to base and make the movement tray for as it is half the size of the other archer unit.
For the purple archers I wanted to make them a Horde so that meant three rows of at least ten. They also have two heroes the Battle Standard Bearer for his Leadership 7 and the Night Goblin Shaman who is the most expensive model in my army. Hopefully even at Level 3 he can do a good job at dispelling and combined with his Sneaky Staff he should. The Magic Mushrooms are just for fun and so that I can avoid an unlucky failed casting. The Ork Shaman is my offensive magical force. He should have better spells and at 2000 points he’ll be a lot more powerful due to the unit of Big ‘Uns, Waaagh Paint, and Mork’s Spirit Totem. I really think both my armies will start to come into their own at 2000 points…
The last unit I priced out was the biggest. Previously I’d stubbornly insisted on fielding 65 Goblins with spears as that is how they are ranked up in my miniature case, but honestly once you get past four rows of ten, the rest are mainly human shields and based on how my games have gone lots of my models get killed before they get to fight anything. I think this army will do most of it’s damage in the shooting and magic phase with my heroes occasionally having a good round of H2H. The rank and file mainly will die in droves. In order to maximize my Fanatics as much as possible the final unit ended up being 44 strong with full command. This will necessitate me making three more movement trays to play this army at 1500 points but that’s alright, they aren’t as much work as painting and basing the actual models. Eventually maybe I’ll have a whole collection of custom movement trays.
I haven’t priced it out, but I know what I want to add at 2000 points. Waaagh Paint and Mork’s Spirit Totem and a unit of Big ‘Uns on foot with Choppas and Shields will eat up most of the points, but I’m tempted to buy another small Night Goblin Shaman just to get certain other magic items, like say a Dispell Scroll but honestly with all the anti-magic I will have thanks to other magic items I don’t really need it. Usually when someone really wants to cast a spell they risk the miscast to get Irresistible Force. I’ll also probably bulk up the purple goblin units a bit as I have the models painted, unlike the Orks on foot which I only have a handful painted.
I wanted to do a Horde of Orks but honestly I haven’t benefited much from the new Horde rule. I think I’ve fielded the two largest units in the Mighty Empires Campaign and I’ve yet to win. I think higher initiative is still more important than just masses of expendable bodies. Leadership is even more important than Initiative which is why I fitted in the Horn of Urgok into this army list. That will increase my Leadership army wide with a one in six chance of the Shaman carrying it taking a wound. That’ll probably be the first thing I try to cast every Magic Phase, at least while the Shaman has two wounds.
And two more losses. I’m beginning to think I’m the worst army list selector in the world. Night Goblin mercenaries have leadership 4! Of course they were in range of both my general and the battle standard bearer when they panicked and ran in the first game, from Salamander fire. Didn’t know they shot that far and force mandatory panic checks. I don’t know much about the army lists I don’t own, playing something like 5 games since 4th Edition.
Anyway this was week two of the Strategies Mighty Empires campaign and I was tied with two other people for last. It was also mandatory mercenaries week and in my defense I didn’t have any options. I did Nurgle daemons as I own them from my 40K army the Diseased Sons, I just painted more, a movement tray, and ranked them up to give 8th Edition a go. The only other fantasy models I own besides one or two more chaos champions, mostly all on round bases, was my 4th Edition Night Goblin army.
Being unemployed and them being close to being table ready, I grabbed one unit, which turned out to be 50 models, threw in a Night Goblin Shaman to help me in the magic phase, as in every game of 8th Edition I’ve played I’ve faced a Level 4 Sorcerer, that’s how I chose the army for this week. It is impossible for Chaos Daemons to have a level 4 magic user in a 1500 point game. If I make and save some gold in the campaign I can add up to another 250 points to my army. But that is going to have to wait two weeks, because I’m going to a cousin’s wedding reception next Sunday. Even the three fanatics I felt a little guilty about taking didn’t really do much, they killed a few Night Goblins and a Plaguebearer or two…
I just realized I forgot my animosity rolls. Oh well I forget lots of rules…
This week I got to choose early, first even of the campaign events and took Building Boom and wanted to challenge Sidhu but he wasn’t there, so I ended up fighting Corey and his Lizardmen. He had a Slann, Temple Guard, regular Sauruses who were the mercenaries, some skinks with blow guns, the big triceratops lizard and three salamanders. Once again we rolled up lots of terrain and lots of it magical. I played the second game on the same terrain approximately we rolled what type of rivers and stuff were on the board. No one ever went in the mysterious forest. I’m beginning to think I should hide behind the scenery, but the Nurgle Daemons don’t even have any ranged attacks and I generally lose during the magic phase, though this week was a bit better.
Anyway I’ve been thinking a lot on what I could do to try to make this army competitive. It is tough at this points level, but I think the long term solution is another unit of line infantry and I’m thinking Daemonettes. Short term the Herald of Tzeentch will be added if for no other reason than defensive magic ability. I also hope to slowly build up some Fiends of Slaneesh, but until then the Beasts of Nurgle will get to come out and play. Nurglings just seems so much worse than other options, even Beasts are no prize. Nurgle appears to have the worst daemons in fantasy, but Plaguebearers are super popular in 40K, getting Feel No Pain and all.
Here is the quick version of the two games, as neither went terribly long. In the first game, my small army in terms of units, finished deploying first and then my scouts didn’t really have any place to go in no man’s land. The mission was a modified version of “Hired Guns” which uses I think mission 4 deployment.
In the first game the Nurglings went on my far left flank as I figured they might have a chance at killing Skinks. The Plaguebearers went in front of the end of the river where the fighting would obviously take place. Fantasy is so predictable in terms of where H2H will take place, I even tried to cast a movement spell but it was mainly a failure, I didn’t get to move far enough to get into H2H and it was ruled I had to go through my own fanatics. I thought the Hand of Gork should pick up the unit, then put it down in a new place…
Anyway there is a good picture of deployment. The dreaded Stegadon, that’s what the big dino is called, rampaged towards the Plaguebeares and despite me trying the tricky magic spell charge, got the charge on me. The Plaguebearers of course held, but that thing is tough to wound. So eventually the Temple Guard got to flank charge the Plaguebearers. The reason the Plaguebearers got flanked charged was the mercenary Night Goblin archers got hit by Salamander flames, which can go surprisingly far. These cause auto panic checks and despite getting two tries to roll 8 or less the Night Goblins panicked and ran, never rallied and disappeared off the board leaving Slim and a lone fanatic at the end.
Before all that happened the Skinks advanced to within 8 inches of the Night Goblins so I remember to send out the fanatics, but one of the many rules is they can’t go through terrain. So I had to redo it as at first I sent two towards the Skinks and one towards the Temple Guard. I also peppered the Temple Guard with 35 arrows and some magic. Despite all the crap I threw at them, they still got the flank charge.
Slim and the Nurglings charged the Skinks. I beat them up and pursued and wiped them out, but this left Slim kinda out of it positionally. The Nurglings went on to charge the Sauruses in the side which obviously didn’t go well. Slim turned himself around and flew back to try and rally the Night Goblins and to charge the Temple Guard in the rear.
I can’t remember all the details, but basically Slim needed to make his leadership test on 8 or less as I lost combat by one after the Plaguebearers were weakened further. He failed, twice! This cost him his last wound. This kinda left my battle standard bearer and a few other Plaguebearers and of course one lone fanatic. I was not lucky with them, I think they killed more of my stuff than his.
After Slim died and the Night Goblins fled I conceded. I then had to wait around to try to get a second chance to win my first game. Eventually I did get to play Sidhu.
His army had a big unit of the elite Skaven with Halberds. That unit also had the Grey Seer, a chieftain and the battle standard bearer. I through a tonne of shots and spells at it, but couldn’t halt it in the end. He also had two Doom Wheels which again I hit with piles of arrows, fanatics, Plague Swords, well maybe none of those, but goblin fists, I think Slim had a go at them too. Both survived with one wound and two respectively. Those things are pretty sick, they get shooting attacks, move randomly but fast, so you can’t stand and shoot them, the rats get 2D6 hits, they get Impact hits which as they go before everything are making me think some chariots will get painted for the goblins eventually. I own one or two unpainted ones.
Anyway you can see deployment. He had mercenary Blood Knights as that was his other evil army. They did nothing effectively, though everything charged the Plaguebearers in the end and after they got hit by the Dreaded 13th spell I conceded. Before all that happened I deployed the Nurglings on the right flank and moved the Night Goblins away from the river so the Fanatics would have more room to go crazy. They didn’t do that great, Sidhu kept making saves with the damn Doom Wheels but I’d have to say they did better than game one.
The Night Goblins got off one volley of 35 arrows and managed to hit the Doom Wheel a pile, but did zero wounds. Before that happened and despite setting up fairly far back, both Doom Wheels rolled very high, survived driving over the flaming barricade (the barbed wire) and smashed into the Nurglings wiping them out.
They over ran and drew out the fanatics and ultimately made it into H2H with the Night Goblins.
Night Goblins with Short Bows have no armour save at all. So even 50 die pretty quickly when anything hardier than a sneeze kills them. In my real Night Goblin army I’d have more of them, more fanatics too, and would have a Great Shaman leading that unit and my Warboss leading the other unit. Plus I’d have my huge block of spearmen to occupy the centre and take the charge. My goblin army is designed to stand around and shoot, the warmachines and magic do the damage and when the enemy gets frustrated he has to risk fanatics and lots of arrows and spears plus lots of goblin heroes.
So yeah two loses and no game next week for me. Eventually I will earn some gold and can add up to 250 more points more to the army which will allow Slim and my Heralds to buy fancier toys, but more Plaguebearers and Nurglings is not the answer. Maybe the Beasts can be useful, but I think I’d rather have 2 Fiends than one Beast of Nurgle. Also the long term solution is another unit of line infantry. 10 Daemonettes with Full Command is 150 points which is 1.5 Beasts of Nurgle or basically 4.2 Nurgling stands. The Daemonettes will have more attacks at 21, the rank and standard bonus, and likely fight before the enemy helping to soften them up for the Plaguebearers. Nurglings have lots of wounds, but they are only toughness 3 and basically always lose combat and just disappear with their Leadership of 5, even 8 isn’t a big improvement.
Nope next month maybe after I get a job if I seriously try to turn this army into something that maybe wins a game, I’ll have to do up at least 10 Daemonettes maybe even 15. Here is my army list, the best one I can make with the models I have painted:
Daemon Prince with wings and level 1 magic ability 370pts
Harold of Nurgle, Battle Standard Bearer, Slime Trail and the Banner of Unholy Victory 200pts
Herold of Tzeentch, Flames of Tzeentch, and Spell Breaker 165pts
29 Plaguebearers, Full Command and a magic banner for 403pts
3 Beasts of Nurgle 300pts
With my last 62 points I can buy five more Plaguebearers or if I get it painted, the Fiend of Slaneesh
About the only magic item I can take that might make a difference is switching from Icon of Eternal Virulence to the one that allows me to re-roll failed to wound rolls. I’ll have to think on that some more. The Harold of Tzeentch will get painted, but after that I need to paint my 2010 Astronomi-con Vancouver army, or at least the remaining 5 or 6 models.
That’s right, it only took about 15 years but I sacrificed my shoulder and back, to finish off this unit of 54 Night Goblin Archers led by a Shaman. The last little bit of brown is drying, then I’ll take the celebratory picture. I don’t think I’ve ever done anything that compares to these guys. At 55 models, all of which have custom bases and decent highlights on the flesh, with the front two rows being quite spiffy, the magnetic movement tray, the four different types of basing, no five…
First I got guilted into getting help with the base coating of these guys. I’m not sure how much time that really saved me as the quality was well below what I would have done. Even the cleaning of the models often leaves a lot to desire. I highlighted the best dozen or so and did up command and a hero, then they sat for a couple more years. Now with the arrival of Warhammer 8th Edition and being presently unemployed I had no excuse other than just not having the commitment to getting them done.
All week it seems I’ve been working towards this blog post. I built the custom 11 by 5 movement tray. I magnetized all the bases. I created an Autumnal basing scheme. I discovered I was five Night Goblins short of 55, so in one day I painted the missing members of the squad. Then I didn’t think the back 3/5ths were highlighted enough so that was added to the ‘ta do’ list.
Finally I did an epic basing scheme, which I may not completely duplicate on the other squads in this army. First I found the perfect brown, or at least a decent brown. Then after painting the bases,I used UHU glue to put ballast and a little bit of this weird red flock on all the bases.
When that was dry I then did lichen, three different Autumnal colours spread out amongst the unit. When this was completed and dried it was time for the static grass. I had little experience with this material but I had a good set of tweezers which helped. I also learned that static grass absorbs super glue quite a lot and that you need to keep the tweezers about a centimetre from where the glue is, and even then sometimes the glue will flow up the grass cramping your style.
I experimented with different sized clumps, different heights, pushing down to make it messy, applying it on an angle. Not all my experiments were a success but taking the unit as a whole, it looks pretty damn impressive, even with all the one pose 4th Edition Warhammer box set archers.
When the static grass was dry it was time for the little brown leaves I got off of Antenociti’s Workshop. These were applied with white glue (Weldbond brand) as was the lichen. These were given ample time to dry as I was summoned out to celebrate Jeff’s birthday. Then at the end of the evening I had to touch up the Delta Ceramcoat Golden Brown.
If I had to do it all over, it probably wouldn’t get done. I put a lot of effort into these goblins even spread over 55 models. The basing is over the top and the magnetized movement tray is a total luxury too, especially considering how often I play Warhammer Fantasy Battle. One thing that could be done is to mix up the basing material and apply the mix to save steps. The other thing that should be done is multiple coats of Golden Brown before any other basing material is applied.
Now on to the pictures, I took a lot, one or two after every stage, plus the obligatory final money shot.
While making the magnetic movement tray for a unit of old Night Goblin archers that I thought was 55 strong, 5 rows of 11. I discovered that it was only 50 strong, well 49 including the hero. It was late at night and I had been cutting 20mm squares of magnetic material into the wee hours, so I decided rather than just borrow one goblin from another unit for the game I was planning to play on Sunday, I’d dig out some new plastic Night Goblin archers I got off eBay and paint them up.
I’m a slow painter, so painting five models, even rank and file Night Goblins in basically one day, which was the task ahead of me, was going to take effort. I would not be able to go at a leisurely pace, nor would I have lots of time for layered washes or trying out new stuff. I began cleaning the models and though I learned later I didn’t too a perfect job, I had them cleaned and on magnetic bases by 1:38 AM.
Despite staying up late the night before I couldn’t sleep and got out of bed at quarter to six. No I didn’t start painting then, but I did update this blog and probably give them there first coat of Chaos Black Spray primer. I had to take care of my daily job search as well as buy groceries, so about 10 AM I had to get serious about painting these models.
I did two blasts of GW Black spray paint, which unlike all my recent Plaguebearers covered pretty good. I did need to put on some more black here and there. After I had a good black it was time to highlight it. I used my top secret black highlighting recipe of Foundry Black Triad number 34. After quickly putting on B & C from the triad I did a wash of Badab Black. Then I did a slight re-highlight of 34C.
That’s it. Bam!On to the purple.
For the purple I used my new dark purple recipe which consists of Liche Purple highlighted with the entire Foundry Royal Purple Triad, number 19 for the numerically superior. That was it, even the flames were free-handed in one go. No washes in this purple recipe. I did take my second break during this phase.
The next phase was the most stressful, painting a face inside the hoods which I’d already highlighted. This was a bit unnerving, but I never had to redo any purple or black highlights. The only time I touched up one dot of purple, was doing one eyeball later on.
I didn’t use the exact green recipe I used on the others. I probably went further than I needed to, but Goblins have characterful faces and getting the green to pop is the key to painting them. I used Vallejo Sick Green, Game Colour 29 as my base. Then I used a less than great pot of GW Goblin Green. Things were looking OK, but I decided to paint GW Thraka Green wash into the darker recesses of the face and pretty much all over the hands and forearms.
I then had to build back up my highlights so I used Vallejo Game Colour Goblin Green. This is only slightly lighter than GW’s Goblin Green if any different at all. Although this was sound blending and colour progression, it wasn’t a big difference maker and was probably a poor choice given my goal of speed. Then I got serious about highlighting the skin, I used a medium aged octagon pot of GW’s Striking Scorpion Green. Finally highlights were with a round pot, that is starting to really show it’s age of, Bilious Green. That pot was one of the first ten or if not ten, twenty I ever bought. It came in I think the Monster Paint Set.
I think I took a break during the greens, I know I took a WIP photo. The model was basically done, the big three of tunic, trim, and flesh were finished. So I decided to ‘stick it to the man’ and not highlight the brown. I quickly put brown over the leather straps, quiver, and arrows and practically ran down the hall to photograph them thinking I was done and it was time for dinner.
I think it was about 5pm. As I was uploading the photos to my computer from my iPhone I remember, “Oi I didn’t paint the eyes!”. Turns out I didn’t paint the mouths either. These are important elements especially for Night Goblins.
This can be a tricky phase as you can ruin or at least damage careful highlights. I dotted the eyes white, then Sunburst Yellow, another epically old pot, but not as old as the one beside it which will remain nameless (Badmoon Yellow from the Ork VS Eldar paint set). That was it for the eyes.
The mouths I did a bit differently than usual. I got out the paint colour I’m making famous, Reaper Master Series Clotted Red and painted the entire interior of the mouth with it. I then got out Vallejo Beige and made sure it was subtle and painted the teeth. The teeth on these models are like a carved pumpkin they go back as little triangles way into the back of the mouth. This is not the norm for GW teeth and I wonder why it was done this way, probably something to do with lasers.
Anyway I think I took a WIP photo and despite being tired and hungry I did one more trick on the mouths. I took a drop of water and some plasma red ink, mixed up a thin wash and filled the mouths with it. I then leaned the models on their backs so it could colour the teeth and dry. You have to wash that your wash doesn’t overflow. If it does, quickly soak it up with a brush.
After laying on the couch listening to some blues, it was time to re-highlight the teeth. It was necessary to touch up a lip here and there during the whole mouth painting process. Highlights were done with Vallejo Beige and boring old Skull White.
Then I took a nap. That’s right no dinner for me I was beat.
Much later I dragged my ass out of bed, photographed the models as best I could, typed up this here blog entry/tutorial and then gave the models a coal of Purity Seal.
Tomorrow I will base 54 Night Goblins and their magnetic movement tray, or die in the attempt. Well maybe things aren’t that dire, it is just a game. Damn mandatory mercenaries week in the Mighty Empires Campaign.
Good morning sports fans. I was up until quite late last night cutting little squares of magnetized material so that I could show off a completely built but not completely painted magnetized movement tray for a Horde of 54 Night Goblin Archers. One of my discoveries late last night was I only had 50 Night Goblins in the unit, well 49 and a hero so I cleaned and prepared five more archers which I’ll paint this afternoon.
I’m up obscenely early bringing you the freshest miniature painting news from my painting table.
Making a magnetized movement tray isn’t any harder than making a non-magnetized one, but it does take time. The most time consuming part especially for a Horde of 54 Night Goblins is cutting the small squares of magnetized material and affixing it to the bottom of each miniatures base. You could use regimental bases to speed up the process, but I did 55 individual bases. The hero was of course magnetized too.
The first thing you need to do is determine how large of a movement tray you need to make. In GW land the most common base sizes are 20mm square and 25mm square, so the interior size is likely some multiple of those two numbers. I’ve found they are sometimes a bit bigger when they have a miniature on them so it is good to leave a few millimetres wiggle room. The movement tray was to be 11 goblins wide and 5 goblins deep. I grabbed the piece of balsa wood I used for the Plaguebearers base and it was just a little too small.
You need to allow 3-4 mm depending on the material used for the edges. I make my bases with three edges just like the ones GW sells. Maybe four edges is better, I don’t know I’ve only made a few movement trays in my time. I play mostly round base games where you deploy in dispersed formation not ranked up.
After cutting out the bottom of the tray it is important to check your measurements two or three times. I used a metal straight edge and an exacto knife to cut the balsa wood. Go slow and apply moderate pressure, eventually you may need to apply more pressure but by scoring it once or twice at low pressure you have a good groove to follow.
With the bottom ready it was time for the front and the sides. I measured and cut the front first. Then I use the front in measuring the sides. I measure and cut one side then I make a twin. When all three edge pieces are ready it is time to glue them to the bottom of the movement tray. I used balsa wood for the sides as well, a little deeper piece than before about 3-4mm wide and about 5-6 high. I wanted a deeper tray to accommodate the magnetic material.
Now you have to measure the inside space of your tray. You only really need to measure the width. Once you have your measurement transfer that measurement to the magnetic sheet. I used a silver sharpie to mark the black magnetic material. I again used a metal straight edge to cut the material. I used a depth of 10cm for the other measurement, it overhung the wooden bottom by a couple millimetres but I figured it was worth it.
I used simple wood glue (Weldbond brand if it matters) to glue the magnetic material to the bottom of the tray. Make sure you get the poles correct. The other magnetic sheet I used had adhesive already on one side so it can only be applied one way so make sure the bottom of your tray isn’t repelling. I then put something that weighed a kilo or two on the tray bottom and let it dry.
I was working on a number of different little projects at the same time, including how I was actually going to finish the bases of the model. I have Autumnal materials which look alright but some of them I’m unfamiliar with. Peabody wrote a tutorial on how he does his bases and I’ll be doing something similar. I actually have the Matte Medium and plenty of pigment and ink, but I think I’ll just use white glue, that is how the test model was done. I don’t want to make a mess of the entire unit.
Now after some drying time, which you really don’t have to wait for if you’re a keener, it is time to affix the magnetic material to the bases of the miniatures. This is made really easy by the fact that I bought two types of magnetic sheets. I bought both types at Urban Source on Main Street in Vancouver, but you could order the stuff off the internet I’m sure. I carefully measure 20mm and then using the metal edge and the exacto knife cut out a long thin strip. I actually needed four of them. I could fit 15 bases on one strip.
It is actually pretty tough making a long perfectly straight cut with an exacto knife so in hindsight I might have been better off marking it with a pen and using scissors.
Once I had the strips I just grabbed a mini, put it on the white side, traced the edge and cut it with the exacto. Eventually I switched to cutting the strips with scissors. Once you have your little square just peel off the backing and put it on the bottom of the miniature. It is better to have a little bit too much magnetic material than too little. It cuts easy so once you have it on the bottom of the base you can use your exacto knife to trim it off, just like cleaning flash from a miniature.
Now since I’d let my glue dry on the movement tray, I could rank up my models as I magnetized them. I did do the upside down test, all three plastic Night Goblins stayed affixed to the tray, even using less powerful magnets. I never tried this test with my metal models in the unit nor did I tip the whole unit upside down. The models stay put quite well and make it so it is easy to move the tray and the unit around. Tipping your whole unit upside down and shaking it is just dumb.
Once I discovered I was a few goblins short of my desired unit size I got out some more Night Goblin archers that I got off eBay. I cleaned them and magnetized their bases too. Then I ranked them up, took a picture and went to bed.
See that wasn’t so hard, you can base the models however you want and use a little bit of basing material along the edge of the movement tray to help it blend in some more. The models, even the metal ones, stay in place when you tip, tilt, and jostle the tray. None of them tip over or fall out. Yet you can pluck them out without any trouble as well.
Today I’ll be painting five more archers as I’d rather have one unit completely finished than borrow an archer from my other unit for the game on Sunday. I’ll also be test basing another archer and my fanatics until I’m satisfied it looks as good as I can get it in the time allowed. I dug out yet more basing material, including some fancy leaves I got off of Antenociti’s Workshop, they almost seem too nice to use on 15 year old, not terribly well painted, plastic goblins. I’ve been stockpiling stuff for years and it is time see it on the table, so some of these leaves will find their way onto goblin bases, maybe just the front row, I painted them nicer too.
That is the first test goblin base. It was suggested I wash the ballast, I tried too washes, the ballast like cat litter is absorbent so it came out looking messy. I don’t mind it as is, it is the weird red stuff that I bought so much of that doesn’t look too good to me. It will be used judiciously, perhaps mixed in with some ballast or even some green flock. I believe I still have some of the original green flock I bought over 15 years ago…
So although I got a very late start to the day, it appears at least one Golden Daemon winning or aspiring painter is following my blog. I don’t really run in that circle, I’m not a bad painter, I can do better, but I paint my army or my toy soldiers to use in games. People are often surprised I don’t enter more painting competitions, I just don’t need more stress in my life. Painting 28mm miniatures can be stressful enough without flying to a contest and having them subjected to incredible scrutiny. I just try to do the best I can, on the models I need to paint to play, in the time I have available.
What did I paint today upon learning that expert level miniature painters are paying attention to my little tips, techniques, and travails?I drybrushed sand! That’s right boring old beach sand, drybrushed a series of browns, that is what I needed to do to get the second movement tray finished for the Neatherworldly Mathematicians. Since I knew I had to do this anyway I got out two entrenchments that have been off on the side of my painting desk for a month or more. They needed some sand and drybrushing too.
After drybrushing sand, I painted wood and drybrushed that too. Then I painted sandbags and drybrushed them as well. I was running out of dry brushes. That is the thing about drybrushing, you really do need a dry brush. I painted the other details on my hand built entrenchment and the green growth on the Snap Dragon one and called them done. Not before I mixed up a custom rust wash and applied it to the metal plate and the pick axe.
Remember my other big goal for the week, basing 54 Night Goblins? Well here is the material I bought years ago when I was considering strongly doing a Warhammer Ancients army. Amazingly I’m tired of drybrushing mud, so I decided my next army, my first new army in decades, would be based with something other than drybrushed sand. I opted for a fall scheme, now all I needed was to choose a brown.
When I started the Trench Table project I went to Deserres and stocked up on browns. I picked four I liked best and upon inspecting the alsorans, I opted to use the one I labeled W2. It is an in-stock Delta Ceramcoat Golden Brown.
Last night while not sleeping, I remember I had two spare Night Goblin archers painted in my miniature case in colour schemes I discarded years ago when I did up some greenskins to play Mordheim. My greenskins were deemed such a success and so old school pressure was put on to paint the other 150 and have an army of them. Now about 8 years later I’m very close to having a playable Warhammer 8th Edition army of goblins. Loyal readers will know I opted to use Nurgle Daemons in the Mighty Empires campaign at Strategies as it was even less work getting them legal for 8th Edition, however in an unexpected campaign twist it is mandatory mercenaries week, so some of the Night Goblins must get based in time for Sunday’s game.
I tried the Golden Brown on the base of one of these unneeded but still painted Night Goblin archers, it looked like peanut butter. I put the ballast on, it looked like crunchy peanut butter. I’m not sure I need any more jokes about this, impatiently I put some of this weird red flock, or what I thought was flock on. It seems to be really fine foam-like material, you kinda have to squish it down with the end of a brush say to get it behave a bit more. I wasn’t crazy over how it looked or the colour, but it certainly was different.
The final material I bought at Imperial Hobbies years ago, was lichen in Autumnal colours. I reached for a tiny sprig of a non-red one and I thought it looked much better on the base than the weird red foamy stuff… My plan is still to go ahead with basing the 54 Night Goblins and their movement tray I have to now make, peanut butter brown, add the crunchy bits and the some twigs of lichen. Then after all that is dry add very little red stuff. I also thought of mixing the red stuff and ballast together so I can apply it in one go…
That might just make a big headache, mess. The finished model looks OK, hopefully it looks fine with my purple and blue flamed Night Goblins, the Nefarious Fire Tribe. I’ve even named all the units now. The one getting based is of course Ickybob’s Boyz still to come are the Prickly Posse and the Blue Bootie Brigade. My ork unit which isn’t assembled or painted will be called Snaggletooth’s Snappers and will be lead by Ol’ Snaggletooth himself. The Battle Standard Bearer and the Warboss who lead the other two goblin units might have had names last night while I couldn’t sleep, or perhaps they did not.
After dinner and a fresh round of applying for jobs, I’ll start work on making my custom magnetic movement tray for the 54 (55 with Hero) strong unit of Night Goblin archers, ranked up in five rows of 11.