Friday, September 15, 2017

Community Rules for Aeldari Super Heavy Units

After a lot of number crunching and some playtesting I've finished a revamped Index for the Super Heavy units for Aeldari.  This is mostly an extension of my personal Codex Ulthwe passion project, which is why all the models pictured are mine, and much of the fluff description is Ulthwe-centric.

These rules are intended for open play.

Revised damage charts (with a more game appropriate scaling)
Revised weapon profiles
Revised Distort field
Revised point values
Revised Power points
Revised Keywords (Revenant and Phantom no longer insanely vulnerable to poison)
Updated (appropriate) Abilities for the Revenant and Phantom
Missing weapons included
Vampire Hunter/Raider combined
Void Spinner included
Storm Serpent included

Sample Page:

I hope everyone enjoys this, and comments are welcome.

*Update -

Added Colossal Flyer rule back to Vampire and updated data sheet wording to read power instead of points.

The PDF can be downloaded: HERE

Friday, September 1, 2017

Video Battle Report Ulthwe vs Imperium

I had the opportunity to get in another game this week, once again against Andrew, but this time using a mixed Imperial list.  A warhost of Ulthwe descended upon the Imperial invaders of an Exodite world under the cover of night as we tried out the Night Fight battlezone.

Enjoy the game!

Friday, August 25, 2017

Video Battle Report: Ulthwe vs UItramarines

This week I got a chance to play my largest 8th edition game at 3000 pts.  It was a narrative game being played in the Psychic Maelstrom battlezone from the main rulebook.  It was an absolute blast.  Things I have come to understand is that while the Warlock Conclave is an absolute garbage unit, two Supreme Command detachments to replace it aren't an awful idea.  It makes the job of replacing the current ruleset for that unit a much tougher job.  On a lighter note, D-cannons were not bad.  I'd say they are perhaps a little overpriced, but not that much.  I was happy enough with them to use them again.

For this report I've worked to test out some new techniques.  I think people will mostly appreciate the improved audio, and the stop motion turns will be a feature I think I'll continue to use, but with quicker intervals than I was using.  I hope everyone likes the improvements I've tried to build and edit in and I hope to keep getting better at it.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

First 8th Edition 40k Game (Craftworld Eldar vs Astra Militarum 2k points) Pictures and Thoughts

I've finally had my first game of 8th.  I've watched a number of video reports, which , while getting things wrong here and there, ultimately gave me a bit of a primer for my own game, and in that way they were really helpful.

First off what did my army look like at 2k points?

My force was about two units smaller than it classically would have been at 2k points.  I had really high hopes for the Rangers and Hemlock, but I was curious to try out the Night Spinner and Shining Spears.  In my head the Scorpions, Avatar, and Prism already had the seal of approval from other players so I was ready to let slip the dogs of war.

But what did my opponent have?

For me this was sort of a worst case scenario. 3 Punishers, one with Pask, and 2 Wyverns and 2 Hell hounds.  In addition they were rolling out as many infantry squads as I had units in my whole army.  About the only thing providing me solace was that my opponent would have to go after me.  

I deployed aggressively and was thrilled when my opponent failed to steal the initiative from me!

I planned to be aggressive and as the game started I pushed forward to put pressure on one flank.  My cards were all achievable and the one for holding 3 objectives handed out D3 plus 3 if the Avatar held one of them (thanks to the card that gave a +3 bonus for the warlord completing the objective.  I determined he was far back enough from my bike squads that I wouldn't be able to charge, so I would advance with both units of bikes.

The Guardian Jetbikes removed a Guard special weapon squad with multiple flamers and killed two of the three mortar teams.  The Shining Spears destroyed a Sentinel with their lances while their catapults deleted full squad of guardsman that was just drooling to unleash its flamer upon them.  My shooting outside of that was sort of depressingly bad.  The Night Spinner failed to do any damage to a unit of Auto Cannons sitting in ruins, and my Hemlock managed to take a Hell Hound down to just 3 wounds and killed 1 1/2 auto cannon teams.  Seven Rangers lit into the commissar holding up my opponent's left flank and managed to do a total of 1 wound to him (only due to a mortal wound on a 6 to wound.  Both the Fire Prism (thanks Guide) and a bright lance slammed in to one of the Wyverns doing a grand total of... 2 damage.  Then my scorpions failed their charge, even with a reroll thanks to proximity to the Avatar.  I was gutted at the thought of all the incoming firepower I was about to suffer, but I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.  I had a commanding 10 VPs at the end of the first turn, so a lot depended on my opponent's response.

My opponent struck back with a hideous amount of firepower killing off most of the scorpions, a few rangers, and knocking the Hemlock down to just 2 wounds.  The Jetbikes took a mammoth amount of firepower, but being made of sterner stuff than before only lost three models.  they absorbed a charge and survived, as did the shining spears, who caused about four casualties to the unit that charged them!  His turn was solid, but not as deadly as he wanted.  More problematic was that he hadn't yet scored any points.

At this point I decided needed to make some tough choices.  I sent the Hemlock directly behind Pask to do what I could to kill him and mitigate his firepower.  I might have been surrendering it, but if I could somehow kill him it would make an enormous difference for me.  Choosing between the Wyverns and those thrice damned Punishers I sent my 5 living Shining Spears after the Punishers.  I sent my bikes and scorpions over to the centre of his lines and left just my Avatar to clean up my right flank.

The Hemlock battered Pask, leaving his tank smoking and creaking, but whole at 3 wounds.  Shining Spears tore up another guard squad with catapults and put a few solid wounds on one of the punishers.  The Fire Prism again did a single wound on the Wyvern while the Night Spinner managed to do no damage to the autocannons again.  The Avatar failed to hit when shooting, in classic form.  The jetbikes and Warlock got stuck in and the Hell Hound shrugged off everything I shot at it to finish it off.  The Rangers caused an additional Mortal Wound on the Commissar and he shrugged off all other damage.

The Scorpions surprisingly made it in to combat and after putting out some damage the unit was reduced to just the Exarch holding off a Lord Commissar and his guardsman friends.

Having been swept into by Shining Spears the second Punisher fled from combat.  The special weapon squad that had been hunkered in the corner and shot the Hemlock out of the sky.  Everything else on my opponent's right flank fired into the shining Spears.  With their combined firepower they managed to wipe the unit out.  Two units charged the Avatar with in hopes of pinning him and preventing him from getting in to combat with the Wyverns.  After making his charge attacks against the Avatar I interrupted to let the Striking Scorpion Exarch go and he put all his attacks into the Commissar and slew him before he got to strike.  He then survived the return attacks my regular jetbikes held up well and flew from combat.  The game was at 22 - 2, so the Astra Militarum would have to wipe out the Aeldari to take the day.

At the start of the third turn casualties were already atrocious.  The Avatar was trapped in combat but my bikes were able to disengage and hoped to get some quality damage done.  The Night Spinner finished off the injured Hell Hound.  The injured Wyvern finally collapsed under the weight of another Prism Lance and Bright Lance hitting home.  Their combined damage was exactly enough wounds to destroy it after a total of 3 wounds from the prior 2 turns.  The guardians helped take out more guardsmen as the bikes assisted and the farseer took out a lone guardsman with grenade launcher and netted me warlord with his Singing spear.  The advanced guardian squad assaulted the guardians fighting the Scorpion Exarch and killed one guardsman while the Exarch slaughtered the last tattered remnants of the squad.  They all took refuge in the ruin.

The Wyvern fired at the Guardians standing in the open and in a shocking display of poor rolling caused 0 wounds.  The Guardians in the ruins and the Exarch were turned to a fine pink mist by the Punishers while the Hell Hound finished off the Rangers.  My opponent's right flank had finally crossed the field and his missile sentinels caught the Night Spinner off guard, smashing it for 5 wounds.

Guardians rushed forward and with the help of a farseer dooming a hellhound and guiding the squad they managed to reduce the Hell Hound to 2 wounds.  The remaining wounds meant the Night Spinner had to take it out rather than finish off Pask.  Meanwhile the Avatar tore through the last Wyvern, seriously reducing the firepower the Imperium could bring to bear.

Pask responded quickly killing the Farseer and reducing the guardians to 4 members. Meanwhile the other Punisher fired at the Avatar causing a couple of wounds.

Guardsmen were gaining the field as the Guardians retreated behind the cover of an existing imperial wall.  The Avatar took cover against the ruins and thanks to the Advance tactical card Ulthwe managed to string together a few more points. late in the game.

The Imperium moved aggressively forward, not simply holding their right flank but pushing forward to the centre of the board, crippling the Night Spinner down to 5 wounds and the Fire Prism to 8 wounds.

The Night Spinner responded by Destroying Pask.

The final Punisher pressed forward and with the combined firepower of nearby guardsmen squads knocked the Night Spinner to 1 wound.

 The final turn for Eldar saw the Avatar come out from his cover and fail to hit the Punisher with shooting.  The Prism and Spinner also failed to do any damage.  Then the Avatar advanced at the Punisher, but failed his 7" charge despite his reroll.

The Punisher turned all its weapons to the approaching Avatar and finally killed it, sending the dormant monster crashing to the ground.  Sentinels failed to hit the guardians with their frag missiles and the guardsmen failed to take the last wound from the damaged Night spinner.

Final Results
Ulthwe 28 Astra Militarum 6

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Engines of Vaul Complete Set

It all started with me getting a broken Cobra kit from FW and them sending me a replacement hull.  It triggered an idea in my head about creating conversions for the Storm Serpent and Void Spinner.  Once I saw an old Night Spinner kit go up on ebay I new I had to do it.  Now that I finished the Scorpion, over 3 years after this whole project started, I have now completed the fourth and final Engine of Vaul.  As far as I know I'm the only person with all four Engines of Vaul in 40k scale.  It still surprises me that FW hasn't released kits of these on their own.  They seem like low hanging fruit.  In the mean time, Enjoy:

I'm pretty happy with the two converted kits, though I may bring in the rear fins.  I'm not certain yet.  That said I certainly feel like a burden has been lifted now that these are completed and the project as a whole is no longer hanging over my head.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Asuryani Damage Tracker Cards

With the new edition coming out and more details available I started to think about the battles I normally play... which are on the larger side.  Since I rarely get to play I enjoy spending a whole day playing a truly massive game.  That said the ubiquitous 3 hull point standard is gone, and has been replaced with a standardised wound mechanic and a slew of wounds for each vehicle.  In some ways this isn't too much of an issue, but for some units this means deterioration as they continue to get wounded.  So I thought about tables crowded with models and dice getting mixed up and figured cards might be useful for people... then I thought what if the cards could be adapted for any individual model?  So I came up with these:

For these cards I used generic terms that fit the damage scale for those types of units.  The set pictured above have my models in them (for my use, but also as stand in guides), but with the downloadable file below I've set it up so you can put pictures of your own models in their place!  Just mouse over the picture, click on it, and it asks you to choose the picture you want.  It will pop any image into the frame, but to fill the frame exactly I've included the necessary image dimensions on the pdf page (and paper size).

In addition there's a generic psyker card for people that run a lot of psykers.  you can pop in an image of your psyker and then check off the box for the game you're playing.  

These cards are made to be the same size as M:TG cards, so they should fit an a standard plastic sleeve, which can allow the cards to be reused as you track your wounds by filling in the box with a dry-erase marker.  You can download the cards here: Cards

P.S. As I continue to work on gaming aids for the community, in lieu of any donations from people feeling generous I instead request checking out my books at  The digital editions are available at the retailer minimum, so they're about $1 each (US).

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Another Aeldari Unit

I've been slowly getting to some of the units I've had kicking around that I really wanted to finish and get out of the way.  In this case it's one of the most beautiful units in the game... Mandrakes.  These models were originally made in metal, and they did not fare well in the transition to finecast, predominantly because their feet are such a thin and frail connection to the base, so they consistently break at the feet.  In addition some of the weapons are extremely thin and removing thicker flash can break them.

With 8th allowing Keyword Aeldari and no real reason to build to a deeper keyword right now it's opened up the units I can take.  In addition the rules for Mandrakes are quite sexy.  Having them painted means my Ulthwe force can benefit from a thematic game wherein the warp is being abused and Mandrakes can represent an Aeldari style lesser daemon that isn't affiliated with Slaanesh.  In their 5th edition book they were daemons.

In the hands of a better painter I think the unit would look absolutely gorgeous, but for my own skill level I was very happy with them and feel like they captured the feel I wanted them to have.

One thing you'll note is that similar to my Ulthwe Craftworld units no two models are exactly the same.  For this squad I made sure their weapons were more varied, and I used a piece from a Venom to make sure the Night Fiend is properly recognisable in the squad.

The GW Technical blood has felt very appropriate for the Dark Eldar units, but none moreso than the Mandrakes, who I wanted to be if not bathed in it then definitely as stained as a butcher's apron.  As for the bases, I made sure all of them had tufts of dying grass to thematically represent plants dying in their proximity (similar to what I did with Ynnead).

Friday, May 26, 2017

Reinforcing My Ynnari

I've finished some long term projects.  The first is my second Hemlock, painted roughly 4 years after painting the first, and I've had it for over 6 months so it's about time I got to it.  I'm happy with how similar they look.  I'm hoping they are good in the new edition because I love the concept behind them.

Otherwise I've finally finished off the Incubi squad I started in 2012.  They are lead by Drazhar (whom I converted to look like the 5th edition codex artwork).  There is also a Klaivex with Banner (Crimson Moon Temple).  I love the aesthetics of the unit and really hope they're fierce in 8th.  To be honest I always had a bit of a sad run with this unit (they had three painted Incubi and I'd run them in a Venom with Drazhar and an Archon.  That unit never made it into combat.  They always died an ignominious death well before getting in to combat.  However, with Strength from Death in the Ynnari rule set I had the chance to run them even without Drazhar and they royally kicked ass.  The extra speed and out of sequence assaults made them an impressive threat.  I had so much fun using that particular unit it inspired me to actually get around to painting the whole unit.  With that in mind, I will need to get a raider if I ever intend to get them all in one transport at the same time.  So many units waiting to get painted.  I wish I was quicker at it.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Ulthwe Combat Gauge

In preparation for 8th edition I have been in a bit of a slumber with completing new projects.  For instance I have unedited battle reports, one of which was sizeable and Ynnari vs the big imperial formation from Gathering Storm 1.

When I saw the combat gauge they showcased an Imperial Eagle.  Not to be ignored by GW I put my design skills to work and made an Ulthwe Combat gauge.  I was pretty happy with it.  If you're interested in the file to make your own you can get the file here.  It is an A4 page, not Letterhead for folks in the US, so please adjust your sizing accordingly.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Triumverate of Ynnead, Deathworld Forest and Ynnari thoughts

As you can see I finished the Triumverate and the Deathworld Forest kit.  As a painting project I found them models challenging in the way that they're layered, and in some ways they're easier to paint before being put together than when they're done, but the final product is striking on the table top.  As far as the Forest, I opted for bright colours for most of the build as it is a stronger contrast to my army.  I may even go back and add some further detail work on the terrain if I get bored enough, but even completing the main roots and trunks without picking out the fungi with a different colour than the rest of the trunk they look great.  If the vines didn't cover the giant runes on the Eldritch Ruins you could probably get away without painting those if you wanted to (though I chose to paint them).

Having used the Deathworld Forest in a game we decided that if you were in overlapping areas that you had to take the effects of both pieces of terrain, which means in some areas you were taking AP 3 wounds on a 1-3.  Over the course of a game the Deathworld Forest managed to kill 2 of my Scythe-Wraithguard, wounded a Wraithknight and took out both a Jetbike AND a Warlock (with sanctuary and Fortune).  It was pretty harsh for me.  My opponent, on the other hand, suffered a total of 0 wounds.  While the 3+ save was handy (or a 2+ for the Nightfight turn) I'm not sure it balanced out the sheer destructiveness it unleashed upon me.  This is definitely NOT to be confused with army friendly terrain such as the Tau wall or any of the slew of imperial stuff.  That said it does look pretty.

Recently I got to play an 8k game against a Castellans of the Imperium force that included Guilliman as its warlord.  We also tried out the Empyric Storm cards and the Balewind Vortex rules we'd come up with (the rules can be found here).  While I did try out some new formations like the Ulthwe Strike Force and Triumverate, the game was big enough for me to include old favourites such as Crimson Death, Aspect Host, Wraith Host, and Seer Council.  I added in a small cad as a complement and I was ready to set the world alight.

Things I learned:

The Visarch is better than I'd anticipated.  Lacking an invul and being... not quite enough of a beat stick in my eyes I didn't have much in the way of high hopes, but the warlord trait that works when he's not the warlord was pretty useful, and since I had him in a small unit of Incubi it became clear to me that it was a substantially good way to deploy him.  He took the first two wounds in the squad and then, as other models in his unit died, he'd regain a wound and gain an attack.  I maxed him to the +3 attacks pretty quickly, but with Rage he really shines in a small unit taking on a greater foe.

The Revenant Discipline doesn't tickle my fancy.  For me the best spell is the one that triggers a soulburst at 24" and all the others are forgettable.

Harlequins feel so much more formidable as Ynnari.  The ability to pull off charges in an early phase, do some damage in an assault in the wrong phase, and then Hit & Run, followed by another charge in the same turn makes even a small squad a bit of a nightmare for opponents.

Wraith blades feel more viable with Strength from Death.  Cannon and Scythe guard, however, feel too good.  I paired up 10 standard wraithguard with an Archon with portal and when they entered play they were effectively guaranteed to trigger themselves for a soulburst.  This meant the moment they drop down they wipe out two priority targets, assuming I place them correctly.  That doesn't even include how likely it is for the scythe guard to self trigger.  I had average luck with the heavy wraithcannons, but the Suncannon firing effectively 3 times every turn was an unholy terror on the board.  I could see people using that build again once they see how effective it can be.

Strength from Death seems to move the game forward at an insane speed, making time to play the game all the way through exponentially quicker based on the game size.  It really is an amazing defence against drop pod armies as they can lose units that haven't even fired yet to either assault or return fire.  In some cases I was able to do more damage to my opponent in his turn than he was to me.  We called the game after 2 1/2 turns when he had somewhere between 700 and 1500 pts left and I had roughly 6,500 pts left.  I had roughly run through the equivalent of 5 turns of shooting in that time.  It was absolutely ludicrous.  Playing against Ynnari will require completely different tactics than playing against any other force in the game.  One thing to recognise is that once the force gets rolling it's an absolutely juggernaut.  In many ways if you're caught off guard it doesn't just feel like you're playing against a new army... It feels like the two players are playing different games.

The Ulthwe Strike Force is interesting, but my predilection for large units means I actually find Battle Focus more helpful to the unit than Strength from Death.

I really, really want to try Shining Spears out in the Ynnari list.  I think they are one of the units that is potentially terrifying.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Yvraine: The Emissary of Ynnead

Another week passed and Another member of the Triumverate is completed.  In this case Yvraine.  I'm a big fan of the model as I really like its  over the top elegance.  To keep the model as a unifying choice between the factions I opted to use some of the blood technical paint to help it bridge the gap.  I gave it a second coating post Matte spray in order to keep it glistening and fresh looking.  In reference to her arc in the book I made her left hand, the restored hand, coloured with the blood paint as well, almost as if it's a bridge between Ynnead and Khaine.

One of the real joys of these Ynnari models is that they allow me to splash more colour in to my force.  I've built the Visarch and I've also started the Deathworld Forest.  Seems odd to have an obviously themed terrain set that is actually deadly to the force using it as cover.  Especially considering it doesn't actually block line of sight.  In fact, I just don't know how much I like that it is so porous.  I might try to find ways to amend that issue, which would also make the terrain more tactical in its implementation.  We'll see how it goes.  In the mean time I'm back at the Triumverate and I've been crafting my first list.  

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Ynnari Gaming Cards

Over the last few years I've found the cards that Games Workshop released very helpful for actual gaming, and so I was a bit disappointed that Gathering Storm II (Electric Boogaloo) did not have a set of cards released for the Revenant discipline or tactical objective cards.  So I thought I'd make my own, but while I was at it I figured I'd make wargear cards as well to cover the entire range of Aeldari relics/artefacts/enigmas since an Ynnari list can take from either the parent book or the new set.  I find it's good to have something on hand that both I and my opponent can use to reference rules without having to flip through books as often.

Below you can find the file to print out your own copy of the cards.  They are designed to be the back to back on A4 sized paper (slightly different from the US Letter size).  To create a real card feel I'd suggest using 200gsm paper or thicker.  The corners are designed like the 6th edition psychic cards and I left the tactical cards square so that the corners can be left square or rounded as per the wish of the person doing the cutting.

Download: Ynnari Cards

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Yncarne

It took me about a week, but I finished the Yncarne (pictured next to the FW Avatar of Khaine for size comparison):

I have real respect for the people that could put the whole model together and paint it as one piece.  I simply couldn't I found there were too many details hidden in the parallel pieces that were too close together for me to either 1) get my brush in there or 2) not ruin another part of the model.  I had to keep in in five pieces.  The left and right parts of the lower part of the soulstream.  The add on section of soul stream at that goes high, the head with top part of the hair, and the body.

I actually quite disliked the model when it was all grey.  It looked far too busy and seemed to lack definition to me.  That said, the fully painted version of the model feels far more elegant.  There is a lot of detail, but it doesn't feel overwhelming.

It doesn't have the pure centrepiece size one might expect, but it with the vibrant colours it should still stick out on the tabletop.  More pics below: