Friday, June 30, 2017

Getting started for Kings of War with an undead Army first Part 1

I never had the opportunity to get into Warhammer Fantasy Battles when I got started in minis in 2007 as I was just getting into the hobby, and was exploring different brands and games.

I found the fantasy side interesting, but every time I went to a GW store, it was always 40K this and 40K that. The only games played there were 40K from what I could tell. So, that was a turn-off.

I like the pageantry of the ranks of troops, flags unfurled and drums beating, that rank and file wargames emulate.  I thus wanted to try it out but deferred playing as I said, though I had the Warhammer Fantasy RPG from the 80s, which I found intriguing. The lore of Warhammer Old World was great, and it was very disappointing when GW blew up the old world to make way for Age of Sigmar, which is trying to be fantasy 40K.

However, over the last two years, lots of podcasts kept mentioning how great Kings of War is, from Mantic Games. Lots of Mantic staffers were ex-GW employees, including the famous Alessio Cavatore, who did Mordheim.

Cavatore did Kings of War.

So, I bought a starter set which, for what you're getting, is pretty cheap compared to GW. The sculpts are not as good, but when you need to paint 100s of minis, that's okay as you can't see or appreciate the wedding ring painted on trooper #92230 in the 3rd rank of regiment X on the tabletop.

The starter set comes in this no frills box with just sprues. Not even instructions, but that's fine as the sculpts are pretty easy to assemble.

Now, I've always liked the undead skeletons and necromancers, ever since I was a kid watching the old Ray Harryhausen movies...

Unlike Warhammer fantasy, the great thing about Kings of War is that you can build dioramas for each of your block of units as individual troopers are not removed during play. As long as your footprint remains game legal for the type of unit, you can build a nice scene, which many have done. 

So, since I am building two regiments of Skeleton infantry, the base size footprint will be 100x80mm.. no more, no less in size.

With Kings of War, you can use any mini from any company, and can have as little as 50% + 1 of the units required to build a block of troops. So, you can really stretch out your gaming dollar to build extra regiments and troops.

So, I can theoretically build a regiment on a 100x80mm base with as little as 11 troops and use the other 9 to build another regiment. Of course, it's better to make it 15 or so, and then add scenery to make it look good.

So, I assembled the undead skeletons first, which should give me about 2 regiments.

I gave them a worn rusty look to go with the old skeleton theme. 

I now got to the part where I needed to do some freehand painting on the shields. I have not done freehand in the past as I can't draw very well unfortunately.

Still, I gave it the old college try.

I like the idea from Warhammer where Vampire Counts lead undead skeletons, so I painted some lips and fangs as that was easy for me to do, relatively speaking.

Though not required, I found the standard bearer kind of lacking without a banner.

As I said, some of the appeal of blocks of troops games for me is the pageantry of the different regiments.

I decided to add some very thin plasticard, and looked around for a vampire theme to paint on it. Something easy.

I googled vampire clip art and decided to copy a simple one.. Slowly but surely I did a simple drawing and paintjob.

However, when I put it on the mini, I was horrified how fake and bad it looked. This thin plasticard is not working!

Angrily, I tore it off and greenstuffed a worn out banner..

I then painted it again, but I realize now that the red background paint just makes it look less vampire-ish and more demon stuff, even when dirtied up.. Oh well, too late. I kept it and it's good enough.

I put the troops on the mantic bases but have not decided what kind of diorama I'll do for the one that has some room in. I did not glue them on to the 100x80mm board just yet.

I've got a long way to go, just for the undead side, let alone the enemy troops, but it's good enough for me for now. Even when painting just at tabletop standard, painting 20, 30, 40 minis at a time is exhausting.

Kings of War it is!

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