Saturday, 29 December 2012

How to Fluff in Two Easy Steps!

Schiffskanone bereit!  Read on to find out how U-158 helped
me create fluff for my Imperial Guard army ...
Well, belated Christmas and preemptive New Year's greetings to you all!  We're almost at the end of Palladian Guard's first year, so I thought I'd do a throwback to some of my earlier posts with a look at fluff, and fluff creation.  I should also mention Headologist, who's done a series of fluff creation posts of his own over at DYHAF.

His posts focus a bit more on creating settings, factions and background from the ground up - making your own Space Marine chapter or Imperial Guard regiment, for example.  So as not to tread on fluffy toes, this is more focussed on creating background for an existing army, so how to write up battle reports and campaigns in a 'fluffy' way.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Mordian7th's Palladian Veterans: Part III

Hi again!  I know it's Christmas Eve, but in the spirit of giving and goodwill, I'll do a post on the Veteran Squad I'm doing for Mordian7th, over at his eponymous and quite superlative blog.  If you missed them, check here for the Part I (planning) and here for Part II (building).  This is part of an exchange project - make sure you check out Thargadd's Thumpers, shortly making their way to join 122/7 Coy.

Part III will glaze over painting a bit, as they were very simple.  I wanted them to be veterans, but I wanted them to be part of the army.  So they used exactly the same scheme as my regular infantry, except they had a bit of weathering powder added, and used a variety of tunics and insignia.  I know you all know I'm a fan of Victoria Lamb stuff, but I'll make a special mention of the tunics and shoulder boards here.  All really, really nice to paint, they look totally interchangeable with regular Mordians, and I'm also very much liking the extra medals and details. 

So instead, Part III will focus on ... you guessed it ... fluff!

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Diorama: For Valour

Morning people, welcome to a very festive-feeling post on Palladian Guard this morning.  Not festive because of Christmas etc, but festive because today marks this blog's first birthday!  Hurrah!  (The festive spirit is also somewhat dampened by me being at work over Christmas as well).

Anyway, on to business.  A few months back I used one of the scenic bases from Secret Weapon Miniatures to create a Sherlock Holmes-themed diorama.  It ended up making a nice gift, so I thought I'd do something similar for Christmas.

The base is the same from Secret Weapon.  I've not started a whole new army since the Palladians, but if I did I'd definitely get these bases to build my army.  Really nice - and dead easy to use.  The model is one of the PIAT gunners from Warlord Games' British Airborne range - there's no conversion and painting was fairly straightforward.  I used a similar process to my Army of Freedom from World War Two month.  The base used successive layers of drybrushing and a generous application of weathering powder.

Monday, 17 December 2012

St Adelphia's Hope: A Collaborative 40K Project

In my last post I showed some of the Penal Legionaries I'd done using some nice Victoria Lamb bitz, and a few of you mentioned the fluff paragraph I did.  Well, me and Headologist have decided to get our respective acts together and do the proper posts for you now.  We've split it in half, so go to Headologist's blog for the background, and I'm doing the stuff on the various Imperial Guard units on the planet.
St Adelphia's Hope breeds a rare kind of man.  Like the icy tundra of Valhalla, the deadly jungles of Catachan or the bleak hives of Armageddon, survival is a battle in itself and to live to adulthood needs a certain toughness that off-worlders just cannot match.  This makes these planets ideal recruiting-grounds for the Departmento Munitorium
St Adelphia's Hope is one such world. 
The P.D.F. and Imperial Guard contingents are quite small.  There are four regiments in the P.D.F., for a total of about 12,000 men, who are almost exclusively tied up in supporting the overstretched Public Order and Control Corps.  By ancient decree, St. Adelphia's Hope is bound to tithe every tenth man for service in the Imperial Guard, and so there is a small brigade of about a thousand men who make up St Adelphia's tithe. 
The Imperial Guard brigade is known as the 1st Adelphian Expeditionary Brigade, and the P.D.F. regiments are the 3rd through to the 7th Adelphian Internal Regiments.  Generally made up of former miners, the Expeditionary Brigade's men are tough, hardy soldiers who take great pleasure in 'digging in' alongside some of the other troops of the Guard and showing them how it's done.  But their reputation is generally one of undisciplined ruffians; fine fighters, they aren't too fussy if it's fighting with Chaotic heretics on the battlefield or Cadian Military Policemen on planet leave ... 
The Internal Regiments are in theory the 'heavy guns' of the internal security forces, used to quell dissent and break up strikes amongst the restive mining community.  In practice, young men do three years in 'the regiments', often guarding the same areas they grew up in.  This means that the criminal and gang links are still strong, and the precinct commanders rarely even need a bribe to turn a blind eye.  
But if the Adelphian Guard regiments are famous for anything beyond their own borders, it's their Penal Companies.  The concept of convict warriors is nothing new to the Imperial Guard, but the Adelphians take it to the next level - the substantial prison population, carrying out dangerous slave labour, also provide recruits for the Penal Companies who work alongside the civilian workforce of penal labourers.  So vital has this job become that St Adelphia's hope is now a net importer of convicts, meaning there is a large contingent of Imperial Guard penal units to work in the mines. 

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Hellbrooke's 'Last Gasp' Platoon

Some of the desperadoes of Captain Hellbrooke's Last Gasp Platoon
Morning all!  Hope everyone's okay - time for a quick post on a surprise project that'll blindside you all, as me and Headologist have been secretly working on.  I recently bought a load of bitz from Victoria Lamb for building Mordian7th's veterans, part of a recent collaboration project.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Mordian7th's Palladian Veterans: Part II

My order from Victoria Lamb - a bitz site well worth a look

Hi everybody - time for another update on one of my collaboration projects, this time with Mordian7th.  For those of you who missed the last post on planning, the idea is for us both to build a squad for each other and post them off to join the other's army - a nice way to get a permanent link between the two forces.  Mordian7th has just done a post on Thargadd's Thumpers, a squad of Ogryns shortly to join the Second Battalion.  As he's pointed out, loud, muscley Ogryns are perfect for a squad from across the pond in good ol' US of A, so for my part some prim, smartly dressed Palladian veterans will be my contribution for this swap!

Well - not quite smartly-dressed.  I had to think about the unit I wanted to build, and I didn't want to do just an ordinary infantry squad.  Mordian7th wanted some veterans, which was perfect: I could use smart uniforms but also put a bit of individuality into my models.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Devos IV Detachment: Captain Aelius

Hi everybody, hope you're all okay reading this from your respective corners of the globe.  My own corner is boxed in with paints, brushes, glue, knives and Silent Hunter 3 at the moment but that does mean I've managed to plough on with a fair bit this week.  First on the painting list was a detachment I did for Zzzzzz over at Devos IV, a liaison squad of an officer and a few Honour Guardsmen.  This is part of a few detachments and collaborations I've got in the works at the moment - it's actually quite refreshing painting for someone else as it ups your game and makes you get down to it a little more!  Anyway, without further ado ... first slide, please.

Captain Aelius, with his Honour Guard and Centaur Arty Tractor

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Converted Tank Destroyer

Afternoon everyone, and welcome back to Palladian Guard.  Well, as (long since) promised, I finally got my act together and finished my Tank Destroyer that I started a while back.  Click the link to see a bit about the construction and background.  After building and painting I've decided to redesignate it a 'Tank Destroyer' rather than a Laser Destroyer, since the breech and lack of any big cables or anything make it clear it's a shell-firing gun.


Saturday, 1 December 2012

Battle Report: Seize The Comms Tower!

Hello again and welcome back!  On my way home I stopped off and managed to get a quick 1,000 Take And Hold game in with my mate Coldsteel Dan - not a blogger but an ardent gamer with two full-sized Space Marine armies.  He brought along some nicely-converted Blades of Fire Marines, built with a mix of FW conversion kits and representing a loyalist splinter from a traitor chapter.  Well, without further ado, let's look at how the battle went!

We plumped for a 1,000 pt game, although both of us underspent by about 50-odd points and the FOC was fairly loosely-adhered to.  Apologies for the slightly blurry photos but we were underground for this game, so the lighting wasn't perfect.  The scenario represented a Blades of Fire scout mission, as they tried to secure a comms tower that may have vital information as to their parent (traitor) legion's whereabouts.  The Palladians misidentify them as the traitor unit and close in for the attack ...

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Mordian7th's Palladian Veterans: Part I

Hi everyone!  Thanks to all who've been reading over the last few days while I've been away on holiday, despite being caught by the floods I've managed to escape with only minor car damage - which I think is pretty lucky.  Back to London in a few days, where my twelfth-floor flat is in little danger of being washed out.  Anyway, fully exhausted after my six days of holiday, I'm ready to get back to sitting down, modelling and letting my shattered legs rebuild.

A holiday well spent (this is pre-flood) 
Right, onwards and upwards, with something a bit new.  Before we start properly I'll recap (more for my own sanity/reference) the main projects I have ongoing right now.
The WW2 stuff is on the back burner, but the other two are nearly done and I hope to get an update on soon.  Seriously, I really think these 'what's on my desk' lists are helpful.  It makes me think that there is an expectant public out there waiting for these projects to be finished, and it helps motivate me a bit.  As well as being a useful reference point.

Friday, 23 November 2012

And the Liebster goes to...

Greetings to all of you!

For those who don't know I'm on holiday at the moment, brushing up on my fitness a bit, which has turned into 'gym 'n' swim' since I've been working in London, so this is to get me out and about in the hills/sea/beach a bit.  The downside is a total lack of modelling and internetting - I miserably failed my Robinson Crusoe test; I drove 20 mins up the A1 to get to a petrol station, where I now sit, typing out my blog post :(

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Sacré bleu! Collaborateur!

Yes, that's right folks, Colonel Scipio is a collaborator!

No, no, put away the lynch ropes and pitchforks.  I don't mean the sort of collaborator who turns James Donald into the Germans, I mean a wargaming collaborator.  Over the last few weeks I've been getting involved in projects with other gamers and bloggers, and I thought I'd share with you some of my thoughts on it.

Collaboration, in this context, is basically working together on a joint wargaming project.  It's a great way to add some variety to your army, tackle painting something new without starting a new army, as well as getting to know a few of your fellow bloggers a bit better.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Nebelwerfer and Weathering Practice

Evening again all!  Just time for a quick post tonight, on my Waffen-SS Nebelwerfer from Warlord Games.  I've had this for a while and recently decided to finish it off - some of you might recall last week's Fallschirmjager post, where I experimented a bit with using weathering powders on non-vehicle models.  Well, despite the initial results being encouraging, I decided to use my half-painted Nebelwerfer as a test model to get a bit of practice on using powders.  And as it happens, it turned out quite well!  So I thought I'd share this today before finishing off some of the other projects over the next few weeks.

Nebelwerfer - incidentally, has anyone ever wondered why artillery guns
have those red and white poles on the trails?  Here's your answer! 


Sunday, 11 November 2012

Remembrance Sunday

It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

General George S Patton

Friday, 9 November 2012

Fallschirmjäger WIP

The story so far ... these are my first non-vehicle models
I've used weathering powders on.
Morning all!  As promised last time round, today I'm doing a quick WIP for a set of Warlord Games' Fallschirmjäger. Kudos due here to Warlord for sculpting a frankly superb set of miniatures here, some of my favourite yet.  These are due to take part in the alternate history WW2 campaign as light infantry in the North Wales area - however, as parachutists we might also see them in some of the actual Invasion of Britain scenarios that are currently in my head.

Anyway.  On to the painting ... there's nothing new here for the base coat techniques, they're the same that I use all the time.  That is:

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Tshushima is Just Around The Corner...

Morning again to everybody!  Welcome back to Palladian Guard, where today I'm rounding off another  long-running project.  My Russo-Japanese war ships, from the War Times Journal site.  These are going to be used for me and Headologist to indulge our newfound naval interests - with the added bonus that almost no terrain is required!  I must apologise, especially to Mad Padre, because we haven't managed to get a game in yet and so there's no AAR at the moment :(

A close up of some of the detail on the Russian ships.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Rogue Trader Commander Finished!

I realised the other day that I did a WiP post for my Rogue Trader Officer, but never showed you how it turned out.  Well, you can rest easy now because here he is!

I can't tell you what a joy it was to paint this chap.  He was a very welcome change from ordinary Guardsmen and he's very different to a lot of my other officers.

Having said that, I'm not very happy with some bits of the painting, mainly the breastplate.  I tried to use the Gun Metal paint but it was a bit rubbish, it was more like glitter glue than a proper paint.  I tried to recover him and to be honest he'll pass, but if I wasn't worried about loosing the detail I'd repaint it with good ol' Boltgun Metal.

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Laser Destroyer Conversion

One of the Flakwagens that got
past the drawing board
UPDATE:  See the painted version here

Hi all!  As promised at the end of my last post, here's an update on my latest project - a Laser Destroyer!  This is not intended to be an everyday part of my army, instead it's just an idea which struck me and I decided to try and model it up.  The seeds were first sown playing the excellent Eastern Front mod for Company of Heroes.  I often play as the Luftwaffe faction, and their reward unit is the Nashorn Tank Destroyer bearing the dreaded 'eighty-eight' FlaK gun.  I love this gun, on the game and in history.  In the game, it's a basic necessity to stop waves of T-34s and KV-1s overunning you.  Its long range, enormous power and freakish accuracy make it a truly game-dominating artillery piece.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Battle Report: Purge the Alien!

The field (or back garden) of battle
Another Battle Report!  That's right, this being my week off I managed to get down to a GW store (not my regular one) and drop in for a game.  After battling my way through the tube with a 2,000pt army on my back I managed to arrive and was paired up with a Tau player (not my usual 40K opponent Headologist.  We rolled for a mission and decided on the Purge the Alien, a very simple smash mission.  Despite my reservations about playing 2,000pts on a 4'x4' table that was what we agreed upon in the end.

Deployment was simple in that it was as much as I could do to get everything crammed into my 4'x1' area, so there wasn't really any meaningful tactics on either side, we both seemed content on a firing line.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Human Rebels

Hello again - time for a very brief post today, just some photos of a couple of models I stumbled across when packing up for my last game.

These are intended to be 'Human Rebels' - that is, non-Imperial humans, defined as rebels by the Imperium.  In the fluff for 40K, there's far too much focus (IMHO) on the Imperium and all fluff seems to be told from their perspective.  These chaps are intended to represent 'ordinary' humans - not necessarily Chaotic, just independent.  The Imperium's far too big (and busy) to have an established presence on every world.  I like to think that the majority of worlds marked on the maps as 'pro-Imperial' are in fact planets where a ship's company landed about 500 years ago, the lieutenant marched to the nearest village and announced to the nearest peasant that they now lived on an Imperial world, and then promptly departed.  On lot of 'Imperial' worlds the citizens don't even know they're part of it, and on the ones that do, the Imperial presence is long-since scaled-down and faded into an almost mythical tale.

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Battle Report: Nuts to this!

Hi again everybody, and welcome to yet another battle report - that's four so far this year!  I've tried to make this one a bit more picture-heavy and less wordy.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

GW Speaks ...

No hyperlink in this picture - you get enough traffic.
It's been a good long while since I've had a bit of a rant at GW's expense.  But I've also resolved to be a little bit more constructive and balanced after having one of those side-chats with a store worker, so I thought I'd post up some of the stuff that came out.

We got chatting after he asked me what I was using my purchases for (I now get all my models from alternative sites but I also still buy paints and brushes from GW direct.  I told him Mordians and some WW2 stuff - his colleague behind the counter gave a very slight disgusted look, presumably for stating out loud that I gamed with something other than GW - but his mate appeared genuinely interested.  Both in the Mordians and the WW2 models.

Friday, 12 October 2012

Rogue Trader Commander - and The Kindness of Strangers

Evening all!  I hate to start posts by apologising and pleading the Real Life defence, but things have been really busy at work so modelling has dropped behind a little bit.  Couple that with my recent rediscovery of Silent Hunter and Das Boot and it's a wonder I get any modelling done at all.  I usually get back from work at about 8pm, then an hour's gym/swim leaves me with about three hours per day to myself, so that's usually only about half an hour a day.

Nonetheless, there are a few projects going down the range at the moment - RJW Naval, WW2 Alternate History, and a few Imperial Guard tidbits.  I'm even hoping to get a game in next week when me and Headologist go back to our old childhood club for a reunion/game.

Monday, 8 October 2012

West Wind Germans Review

Hi all!  Thanks for stopping by again.  Well, we've covered quite a bit over the last month with new Sentinels and a whole new historical RJW Naval project.  So, it's time to take a look back at another ongoing project in the form of the Alternate History WW2 armies.  August was WW2 month, and I managed to complete the Army of Freedom - so it's time for Ze Chermans to get some re-enforcements.

Some of the Latvian Legion: the officers and NCOs

At the moment, my German forces consist of some fairly generic mid-late war, Warlord Games Waffen-SS (painted to represent the Latvian Legion).  In time, I'll be getting some more Waffen-SS and use the Handschar Heads from Warlord to make some anti-partisan troops as well.  These will end up getting used for most of the general skirmishing - but I'll also need some generic sentries and officers as well.  The very nature of partisan and insurgency warfare means that the Army of Freedom will be choosing most of the missions - ambushing and combating the occupiers on their own terms, then melting away into the darkness.  For this reason, some static troops and HQ scenery will be needed - and this poses a singular problem.  I need some 'relaxing' Germans ... if they exist.

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Ships On The Horizon

Hi everybody.  Thanks again for stopping by while I pause and take a quick look at my projects over the last couple of months, before introducing my latest.  After fiddling with the formatting of the site, I now have links across the top which show all my completed and in progress projects.  My two big ones are of course the Imperial Guard and the WW2 stuff.  With the Imperial Guard, I've finished the planned 2 - 2,500 pt army, so I'm just buying interesting things (like the Sentinels) that are fun to build.  And with the WW2, I've got a small force for each side and I'll just buy some bits to expand it as we go along.

Monday, 1 October 2012

Finished Sentinel Squadron

Hello again!  Thanks for swinging by once again.  Today, as promised, a (final) update on my Sentinel Squadron, complete with a little bit of provisional fluff.

Make sure, if you missed them, to look at the first post and the one detailing their construction.  Now all that's out of the way - the painting!

The commander of the squadron, Wolfgang Darius de la Rontoire-Khol
(I know!  See the fluff ... )

Friday, 28 September 2012

The Founding of Seventh Company

Hi everybody!  You may have noticed my posting hasn't been quite as frequent as once it was - but I'm happy to say that I've got a number of projects on the go now that I'll be able to share.  My main one is the Sentinels - hopefully all painted up by Monday.  But also I've been doing some work on my 'Mordian'-themed army of Palladian Guardsmen, after being inspired by a book I read recently.  So while I haven't organised the fluff I've been working on or typed it up, I'm going to share a little bit about the company's origins.

Monday, 24 September 2012

The Sentinel Construction Company

... or construction of the company sentinels, whichever you like.

Yes!  After a brief look at my next plan for Imperial Guard fluff, I've been back to modelling as I finish the building of my new-look, dynamic Sentinel Squadron!  As I said last time, they were really fun to make and I'm glad I did that post, as it stimulated some quite interesting discussion about open-topped, fully detailed Sentinels vs. enclosed, better tabletop Sentinels.  I have to admit, although the interior detail is cool, I'm very much a fan of the proper Steel Legion-style closed crew compartment.  Sixgun45LC also suggested having one with an open hatch as a balance, which I did using a leftover crewman from when I bought the Imperial Guard tank commanders blister to make a spare officer.  Let's have a look at some lovely piccys, shall we?

(By the way, pictures are back up to good quality as I located my camera.  You know the pockets on the back of the driver's seat that you're supposed to put road maps and things in?  It was there.  I didn't put it there; I didn't even know that pocket existed.  What a stupid place for a pocket, anyway!  How are you supposed to reach it from the driver's seat?  Anyway the camera was there.)

All three Sentinels, complete with stowage and scenic bases.  I was going to use some Secret Weapon bases, but
since I hadn't used any in the rest of the army I thought it would look out of place.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Book Review and Fluff Plans

After reading some top-quality book reviews around the blogosphere, I thought I'd branch out a bit today with a little review of a book - or rather a class of book - I became interested in recently.  The tome in question is Combat History of Heavy Anti-Tank Unit 653, by Karlheinz Munch.  I got this as a gift but it's available on Amazon for just over £10, depending on seller.  It's one of a number of books that have come out recently on the subject of the organisation and history of German units in World War II.  After a wave in the 90s and 00s of first-hand memoirs, written by veterans seeking to get their experiences on paper and pass them on to the next generation, there have recently been a number of thoroughly-researched, more technical and less personal histories of the minutiae of some German army units.  It's into this category that this book falls.

Monday, 17 September 2012

Sentinel Squadron

New arrivals!  (I also got some cheap
foam miniature carry trays from GiftsForGeeks
After coming to a natural pause in my Imperial Guard army, I've been struggling to think of what to add to it.  It's about 2,500 - 3,000 points' worth at the moment, and my gaming chums probably have about 2,000 points.  However, as they say, size isn't everything and we're not really interested in playing any battles bigger than 2,000 points - but I want to keep collecting the army for the painting and modelling purposes.  So how to expand it?

Well fluff-wise as an Infantry Company, all they should have is more infantry.  And cool though that would be, I can't face painting many more of them for now.  I might buy up a load and hoard them, for fear GW will withdraw Mordians from sale, or even worse - make them Finecast!  But for now, I thought a nice addition would be a Sentinel Squadron.  Models I haven't had in a while, and that might give me a bit more mobile AT punch (my lascannons all being immobile emplacements).

Friday, 14 September 2012

100th Post! Meet Colonel Scipio - Part II

Greetings once again!  Thanks for popping back to Palladian Guard for a very special, 100th-post-edition!  But before we get on to all that, let's take a look at the end result of my recent project to make a model to represent me, Colonel Scipio, on the battlefield!  Brave, I know - what if he dies?  Do I have to give up wargaming because of my fluff obsession, and kill him off?  We'll see.

For those of you who missed that last post, the project is a converted Warlord Games Roman miniature, who'll go with my Regimental bodyguard - the Iron Hearts Honour Guard.  A fairly straightforward idea, but one which necessitated a lot of chopping and changing to get the scales to fit.  But as you can (hopefully) see, it doesn't seem to look too bad and fits well with most of the 28-30mm GW stuff.

And now for pictures!  As Col Shofer would say, clicky for biggy ...

Monday, 10 September 2012

Meet Colonel Scipio - Part I

Hi all, welcome back to Palladian Guard.  Very exciting conversion today, as I prepare a model to go with my Iron Hearts Honour Guard.  I cryptically revealed my intentions to convert a regimental commander at the end of the last post - Colonel Scipio, my name on forums and blogs internet-wide, is in fact the name of the regimental commander of the First, or Praetorian, Regiment of the Palladian Guard.  Let's see what the Background Book has to say on this:

First-Colonel Titus Cornelius Scipio Edethoria, Regimental Principal, I Praetoriae

Friday, 7 September 2012

Iron Hearts Honour Guardsmen

Hi everyone!  Welcome back to Palladian Guard.  Today sees the completion of a very long-running project to convert some 'Iron Hearts' - heavily-armoured Honour Guard troops for senior Palladian officers.

The Iron Hearts idea came from Colonel Gravis, and was a conversion based on several specifically ordered bits:
You can see the WiP (from two months ago!) here.  And see the completed models below ...

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Platoon Commander Replacement: 2Lt Aelius

 Hi everybody!  Carrying on with more 40K today, as I show off the latest addition to the Imperial Guard army in the form of Second Lieutenant Aelius, ready to command one of my infantry platoons.

Regular readers might remember my Death By Fluff post a few weeks back, where I looked at army background, and the contraversial practice of 'killing off' characters who really do die in battle, regardless of the time and effort spent on conversions and their battle records.  Well, this of course means that Lieutenant Creticus, when he was cut to pieces in a recent battle, was gone forever.

All this means my officers have very 'real' heroics - if they do a blind charge, there really is a threat of them dying forever (rather than just being wounded and back in the next battle).  It does, of course, mean also that I have to keep the army constantly supplied with new officer models.  Their backgrounds are fairly easy (I haven't even written one for this chap yet), since they are all 'factory' officers straight from The Academy who will earn their spurs in battle, for real.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Army Update - 1/7th Pioneer Company

Captain Lucius Nero at the head of his company
Hi everybody!  A summary post today, after my WW2 month, detailing the progress on my Imperial Guard army.  Read the page for the full story so far ...

Anyway, the development of this army had been a long time coming.  It usually squares off against Headologist's superbly converted Spears of Mawdryn Space Marines.  The original target was a company, so 2,000 pts worth with two platoons of three squads.  With the heavy artillery and tanks, this would now more comfortably fit into a 2,500 pt-er.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Army of Freedom Complete

Colonel Scipio here, bringing you painting projects on target, under budget and to the standard the Imperial citizen expects.  Vote Scipio for a safer Forty-Second Millennium!

Which means, that as WW2 Month draws to a close I have the completed Army of Freedom to show off!  Make sure you check out the original post and the background to our alternate history project.  These are all Warlord Games packs - partisans, some individual US Airborne, and the SAS NW Europe Section.  I'll let the painting talk for itself and not waffle today - enjoy!

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Painting Freehand

Hello again everyone - what's this, two posts in two days?!  Something must be up!  Well, those of you following the progress of the Army of Freedom only have a few days left before their unveiling at the close of WW2 Month here at Palladian Guard - hopefully they'll be posted in the middle of next week.

But before that, I wanted to take a quick look at freehand painting.  For me, this is divided into two parts.  Large-scale freehand is normally what you see on Golden Daemon-winning 40K miniatures.  Enormous eagles or angels painted onto the back of a Land Raider in exquisite detail.  If this is the sort of thing you want, Ron over at FTW has some breathtaking minis and good tutorials for beginners.

But what I'm talking about today is more for small-scale, historical stuff.  Badges, insignia, pips, medals, flashes ... that sort of thing.  So, how do you do it?

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Vehicle Stowage - Sculpting for Beginners

Afternoon everybody!  A few posts back, I looked at how to make your own vehicle stowage from odds and ends, spending minimal cash.  I used a Hanomag halftrack as an example, and on my second vehicle (my Latvian Legion Panzergrenadier platoon needing four in total), I've tried some sculpting techniques.  This is another of the Warlord Hanomags.

My last post used bits of sprue and wire mostly, whereas this one will need a modest amount of Green Stuff or any modelling putty.  For context, I'm not a sculptor at all so this is aimed at others who haven't really used it before rather than experienced sculptors - for whose skills I have an enormous amount of respect.  This is just a very quick summary of the basic techniques I used for my three or four bits of stowage.

So, let's get started:

Tools:  Green Stuff, my model, flour, and various basic sculpting tools.  The mat helps protect my precious dining table and the cling film gives a flat, smooth surface to work on. 

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

How To Paint British Splinter Camo

Hi everyone!  Welcome back again as we delve back in time to the Second World War to continue with the Army of Freedom!  As promised, this is a quick step-by-step to painting WW2-era 'splinter camouflage'.  Splinter camo was very widely used by the German armed forces - the Luftwaffe field divisions and Fallschirmjäger extensively used it, and the standard issue Heer zeltbahn was in splinter camo (the Waffen-SS, despite probably using camouflage uniforms the most, went for a distinctive 'pea dot' pattern however).  But they were by no means the only users - when Britain began the formation of Commando units, they used similar-looking splinter camouflage smocks.  How to paint them, you say? Well, you've come to the right place.

This tutorial is using a Bolt Action SAS figure from Warlord, and I usually use new GW paints.  There are, however, a few of the old ones that have not run out yet lurking in there.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Hanomag Halftrack Complete

I think this is turning into an all-WW2 month.  Sorry to my Palladian followers - promise there will be an update at the end of the month, as I'm still working on the squads in tandem with the Army of Freedom.  But I'm caught up now in the planning and enjoying the change of pace that painting something new brings.  And also, it seems to have made the blog more exciting - of my six posts so far this month, the titles of three have ended in exclamation marks (!).

A post or two ago, I looked at creating vehicle stowage on the cheap.  Now I've painted the model, it's time to see the results ...

Friday, 17 August 2012

Posties Rejects 20 Questions

Don't come near me!

I'm infected!!

With the latest viral sensation sweeping through the blogs - answering the Posties Rejects 20 Questions.  Deep breath, and here goes ... but make sure you take a look at Fran and Ray's answers, as well as Vladdd's (where I caught the disease).

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Alternate History 101: Britain Invaded!

Continuing with the strong WW2 theme this month, I'm planning a campaign for Headologist and myself.  Some might remember the idea was an alternate history set of missions focussing on the Resistance movement of the long-expected invasion of Britain by Germany in 1940.  It's going to be set in Anglesey and Caernarfonshire (is that the right spelling Dai?), with troops from the SS Mountain Division Handschar pitted against the elite Army of Freedom, a US-backed coalition of British, French and Polish special forces mixed with local resistance groups - probably using a mix of Nuts and TW&T rules.

Without too much further ado, this is a brief historical timetable of what happened to get us to June 1942.  I include it here as a resource for anyone wishing to do something similar, but also as a raw example of how I go about reshaping history.  This is, unedited, what I typed into my laptop while waiting for my MOT.  As well as the timeline it includes some thoughts about the feasibility of an invasion in real life as well as general points on alternate history.  Any comments or suggestions would be very welcome!

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Making Vehicle Stowage From Nothing!

Hello again, and welcome back to what seems to be turning into World War Two Month at Palladian Guard.  In my first posts this month I did a bit of work on some 1:56 WW2 vehicles for the first time in ages.  The other day saw the arrival of the British-led Army of Freedom, and today we'll return to vehicles with a mini tutorial on how to create realistic-looking vehicle stowage from nothing!

The model is a Warlord Games Sdkfz 251 Hanomag half-track.  I picked it up off Amazon second-hand, where it only cost me £10!  Huzzah.  

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

The British Are Coming - Army of Freedom Lands!

Evening all!  Well, those who've been following will remember my last two updates focussed on some vehicular reinforcements for my Waffen-SS force of Latvians.  Well, with that army pretty much finished my next project is the alternate history invasion of Britain!

I'm quite a big fan of alternate history, and one of my favourite films is a little-known 1960s independent film called It Happened Here.  It details the physical and mental struggle of ordinary citizens and resistance fighters in a world where the Germans successfully invaded Britain.  It was shot entirely with volunteers, took years to make, and there isn't a single frame of stock footage (so yes, those German soldiers really did march across Trafalgar Square!)  Check out the teaser:

Sunday, 5 August 2012

A Tale of Two Sonderkraftfahrzeugen - Part II

Evening again!  Well, time for Part 2 of my World War 2 update.  In Part 1, I took a look at two Warlord Game's vehicles, and build/undercoated them.  Today, I'm going to show you the stages of painting.

Part II - Painting

Hands up, I confess it.  I'm a World War 2 nut.  Wandering around central London (while avoiding Olympic marathons, thieves, buskers etc) I found myself at Foyles, which is on Charing Cross Road.  Any UK based bloggers, or visitors, I heartily recommend it - the top floor has the widest (but not the cheapest) selection of WW2 books out there. I spent over two hours and a hundred quid picking up every book going - including £20 on a book entirely devoted to the succinctly-named Sonderabzeichen für das Niederkämpfen von Panzerkampfwagen durch Einzelkämpfer. Fascinating.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

A Tale of Two Sonderkraftfahrzeugen - Part I

Hello again to you all!  Ready for another action-packed post?  Well, this one should keep you going until I write one.  Boom boom!  Anyway, I'm taking a pause from my recent fluff posts to refocus on modelling.

Incidentally, if you're interested in the fluff I produce and are interested in making some of your own, I'd highly recommend my good pal Headologist's posts on the subject (especially for Marine players).  He very kindly gave me a shout in his post for people interested in Guard fluff, so I'm returning the favour by encouraging you to visit his as well.  Some really good guides for whiteshields and veteran sergeants alike on creating your own personal fluff.

With my 40K and War In South America armies both coming to a natural pause, I'm now looking again at my World War 2 project.  For those who haven't heard I'm doing a small force of the Latvian Legion after reading some good books on the subject of foreign troops serving the major powers in World War 2.  I'm doing some similar forces in the future for Indian soldiers in the British Army as well.

So, on to today's post!  I've recently invested in some of Warlord's Bolt Action range; specifically the Sdkfz 166 VW Schwimmwagen and the Sdkfz 222 Armoured Car.  They'll give me a chance to paint some historical vehicles, which I haven't done in a long time - so here's a rundown of construction and a quick review too.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Diorama: The Game Is Afoot!

Morning all, and welcome to a very busy day at Colonel Scipio's Headquarters.  Just put that vox-caster on the floor, and move those maps, soldier!  That's it, sit there.  With the Olympics hitting my home city, life is busy modelling time is a precious rarity nowadays.  Nonetheless, I've managed to finish an exciting project that's been in the works for some time.  This is one of those random ideas that comes into your head when you see a specific model, and think, "ooh, that'd make a nice model."

"Watson!  The Game Is Afoot!"

Friday, 27 July 2012

Lurking in the Background - Imperial Guard Fluff

Hello everyone, thanks again for stopping by!  Well, today you're all in for a treat.  A few days ago, the comments section on my last post got talking about the fluff and background for 1/7 Company, and the Palladian Guard in general.  Before I start out on the whole post and reveal the free download (!), I'll wax lyrical about my passion for fluff and the Imperial Guard in general .... as well as a bit of a preamble for those of you who don't know what the Palladian Guard are all about.

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Praetorian Delihan Army - 99 Psyonic Detachment

Afternoon everybody!  Today sees the next update in the ongoing exchange project between myself and Lord Gordon.  This basically involves painting up some of our models in each others' colours, the aim being to have liaison or exchange officers.  The first project, Lieutenant Marcus Rhyn, was intended to be a background thing that I'd build up over the weeks.  However, it looks like he might be cutting his teeth earlier than planned!

After the death of Lieutenant Creticus, my previous platoon commander, I'm short on reinforcements (in other words, I've not converted any new Palladian officers to take his place), so he's going to be acting First Lieutenant and commander of First Platoon until I can get a permanent replacement.  Should make an interesting backstory ...

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Russian Navy Gatling Gun

Hola, friend!  As promised, today sees another update in the War In South America series, as the Russian contingent beefs up its firepower.  Last week, we saw some of their experimental steam-powered Landships, and today it's time for the (slightly more realistic) addition of a Gatling Gun and crew.

These models are in actual fact Royal Navy + Gatling gun from Perry Miniatures, for £8.50 (that's around $12-13 for US/Canadian/Australian Dollars, or 3,100 Hungarian Forints).  The original kit also comes with a pith-helmeted officer (who's been reassigned to my infantry company).

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Landships Ahoy!

Over the last few weeks, in tandem with my ongoing 40K Army, I've been tinkering with some 19th Century, alternate history units for a setting called War In South America - see the concept and original idea here at Sippin' On Paint Water.  This all has a slightly steampunk-esque feel to it, and unable to sculpt/scratch build the tanks (aka 'landships') like the originals, I've resorted to buying and converting my own.

All three vehicles, complete with an infantryman for scale

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Death By Fluff?

UPDATED: Sun 22 Jul.  Headologist has put together a superb triage report on Captain Nero's injuries - make sure you check it out here!

Afternoon again to all, thanks for stopping by.  Well, me and Headologist are still reeling from our mighty battle the other day which was a hard-fought draw.  It was a steep learning curve for 6th (having realised we inadvertently missed out a few of the new rules), but we're both very impressed by the changes for the most part.

Anyway, as soon as the battle ended the work really began for me.  Regular readers will know I'm a fluff addict, and all the details of my army right down to the tiniest bit of fluff are carefully recorded in my background tome.  As well as this, all the officers in my army have career service records, to which all their medals and misdemeanours are appended, so all these had to be updated.  The army has a company history as well, detailing every battle in which they've fought in true biased, Imperial language.

Captain Nero.  I'm not sure I could ever be ruthless enough
to kill him off if he died in battle.
Probably my most controversial fluff practice is, however, killing off my commanders.  In 1/7 Company, usually if an officer dies, that's it.  The model is retired and the service record gets a big 'KIA' stamp on it, and I convert a new officer to use.  This is highly annoying, since some of my nicest conversions end up in the 'graveyard' spot and don't get to be used very much - but on the other hand, it gives them a very strong narrative that they earn through sweat and toil.  (Incidentally after a while, I will probably bring out the old conversions and use them again with new names.  I can't buy a new officer for every time someone dies).

Captain Nero was an original commander from another Guard army from years ago.  He transferred to my new army and has fought in every battle, among other things killing a Space Marine captain in close combat and single-handedly bringing down a Monolith with melta-bombs.  His list of battlefield feats is made all the more impressive since he's never actually died.  Well, until the last game, when he was killed by a scattering Earthshaker round.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Battle Report: Take and Hold

Morning all, and welcome to the latest battle report between the valiant Palladian Guardsmen and my wargaming adversary Headologist!  Those who tuned into my last update will have seen the 1500 point list, so once I arrived at the field of battle we got straight to the fight.  This would be our first 40K game in a few months, and our first of Sixth Edition so we decided to avoid all house rules and field a vanilla force, just to get the feel of the new rules.

We didn't go for a structured mission - given the fairly small nature of our forces and the chance that we might have to call the game early, we did a simple Take And Hold where we had to rush scoring units onto a centre building.  That way, if we had to finish early we could easily declare a winner.  On arriving, the dining table was a bit too small, but there was an empty double bed upstairs (despite my initial reservations about where this was going ... ), which we covered in a large sheet of cardboard and a grey cloth.  Some of our half-finished city ruins completed the scene.  Also, Headologist hadn't managed to finish his Rhino transport, so I dropped my Salamander to even out the points.  A good lesson in:
  • being flexible during deployment
  • improvising to make a table
  • being handy with a pencil and paper for those last-minute adjustments
Anyway, despite all obstacles we managed to deploy:

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Prepare for Battle!

UPDATE:  Thanks for reading and commenting ... the battle's now been fought so anyone who wants to find out how they fared, read the Battle Report here!

Well, the loyal staff officers behind the scenes at Second Battalion HQ have been slaving away, cooking up an army list for an upcoming game with my old adversary Headologist next week.  We're strictly limiting our extensive house rules for this game to give 6th Edition a fair trial.  Anyway, the list:

1/7 (Pioneer) Company, Second Battalion The Life-Guards, First Regiment The Praetorian Guard

Company Command Squad - 227pts
  • Bolt Pistol and Melta Bombs for Commander
  • Regimental Standard
  • Master of Ordnance
  • Bodyguard
  • Vox Caster
  • Krak Grenades
  • Regimental Standard
  • Lord Commissar, with Power Weapon and Carapace Armour
Ratling Squad - 50pts
  • 5 Ratlings

Friday, 6 July 2012

Praetorian Delihan Army - Liaison Officer

Lt Marcus Rhyn, Delihan Field Force
Good morning, welcome again to Palladian Guard.  A very special post this morning, as I post the first work in a collaborative project between myself and the Hon. Lord Gordon; a fellow blogger from way across the seas in Rheinland-Pfalz, sunny Germany.  

While surfing the blogosphere a few weeks ago, I noticed a post offering to do a collaborative exchange project between two Guard armies.  The idea is simple, and brilliant - we each build and paint one model from each other's army to act as a liaison or exchange officer.  It's a way to link the background of two armies as well as painting a brand new model!  I snapped up the opportunity (so did Gordon) and we both got to work.

'Left a bit, left a bit more!'
I say we both got to work; Gordon did and soon had a finished Master of Ordnance, Lt Gen Aemilius Agrippa, to show for his efforts.  I got my rear in gear and used one of the GW tank commanders with some Pig Iron legs to make the officer.  Painting was simple, I got the colours off Gordon which happened to be beige trousers and gloves, gold trim and a white hat.

I used a black undercoat and am not very happy with the way it turned out on part of the model; underneath his pouch on the rear view there's a blotchy, shiny patch.  I tried to paint over it and failed, so I've decided to leave it.  It's very inconspicuous and hopefully the Matt Varnish will take the shine away.  I should say he's mounted on a penny so that I could paint him, he'll eventually be based on a 40mm mini-diorama base.  Otherwise painting was simple (may re-tackle the face though).

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Renegade Guard Platoon

After quite a few months of chipping away, I've managed to finish the Renegade Imperial Guard platoon off!  Huzzahs all round!

These chaps are all Forgeworld Renegade Militia conversion sets.  Not cheep, but they look very nice.  I'd saved up for a while to get these, and they make a nice change from painting ranks of neatly-ironed tunics.  Apologies in advance for the quality of the photos but the camera's on the blink, so back to the phone for a few days.

The project began back in April, but these are so new to me that it took about five or six practice models before I could get a production line going.  An interim update came in May featuring the Command Squad, but over the last week I've been hammering through them in batches of six and finished the first platoon (and a bit) of them.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Painting Desks

Good evening everybody!  Thankyou for stopping by again.  Tonight, I write despite an all-night rave that's been set up about two hundred yards from my flat.  Bad news: (according to my letter to the council) this is now the third night of imaginary sleep my imaginary baby daughter has lost.  Good news:  Insomnia = all-night painting session!  So much has been done over the last few nights (and mornings) - but today I'm going to post up a little update on my various paint stations and work areas, so that hopefully others will join in and we can have a nice exchange of ideas.

The Desk
Unlike a lot of wargamers I'm lucky in not having any family with me in the flat (except my imaginary Imperial Guard friends), so I'm a lot more free than many to sprawl my stuff over the dining table on a semi-permenant basis.

The Colonel Scipio painting operation is divided up in to three parts.  The Desk (left and right) is where most of my day-to-day painting goes on.  Paints and glue on the left; brushes, water and basic tools on the right, and modelling board in the middle.  You can just see the light in the top of the first picture.  (And also Jeremy Brett on the computer screen, who keeps me company as well)

Thursday, 28 June 2012

How to Paint British MTP

Evening everybody!  Welcome back, I thought I'd detract from my current 40K frenzy with a post I've intended to do for a while on painting modern British camouflage, known as MTP or Multi Terrain Pattern.  I've seen a lot of attempts out there, but the problem is that this stuff's so new there's almost no decent reference material, and even if there is the models aren't accurate enough to warrant this kind of accuracy.

All that changed with Empress Miniatures UK troops (read the review here); they're lovely sculpts which are really worth going to town on with detail and accuracy.  To that end I've got some reference material (right) which I've been using as a guide for my painting.  For the finished results of the rest of the model, check out War In Afghanistan here.

Anyway - the beauty of this tutorial is that it's quite simple.  No complicated steps, in fact it's all pretty much a simple one-line-per-step.  The problem is there are many steps and it does involve a lot of changing colours - you'll be flat painting, drybrushing and washing for this one.  Although I give GW paints here as there were the ones I used, because of the drybrushing at the last step the exact colours don't have to match that well.  Onwards, to painting ....

Monday, 25 June 2012

Iron Hearts WiP, Updates and Legs Fixed!

Hello everyone!  Hope you're ready for a breakneck few weeks on Palladian Guard, as I've invested and started a whole host of new projects which I'm going to try and finish soon!

First off, let me introduce the first preview of my Iron Hearts - a sort of regimental command squad, the Palladian Guard's elite warriors (and the bodyguard of Colonel Scipio on the table).  These were originally an idea from Colonel Gravis, and I'm really excited about them - having finished buying most of my army I went around custom buying parts to make this squad.  The idea is they are like Rough Riders on foot - explosive spears and shields, looking a little like early Romans to tie in with the theme of my army.

Friday, 22 June 2012

Platoon Commander: 2Lt Creticus

Morning all!  Back to normal today as I continue with my series of officer background and painting articles.  In case you missed the first two, 2 Platoon's Lt Galbrio is here, and the Company Commander Capt Nero's here.

Anyway, bring on the photos!