Warcry – Undead Legions of Nagash

So the new game from Game Workshop is Warcry and like many others I have bought into this. I like most of the models, but what really gets me is the small footprint, and fairly quick resolution of the game. It can be played in a board game cafe, although transporting the terrain is a little harder to do… I also like that they have worked hard to avoid the ‘sameness’ of many skirmish games with random start points, objectives and terrain. That can cause some difficult scenario’s for some forces but I think it’s worth the cost. That also avoid a player specializing a force too much, which can be an issue I see with some skirmish game.

I’ll likely do a review/game report at some point. There are loads of true reviews on the net already if you have not read about this game. For now though, I thought I’d break up the Dark Ages work and posts by doing and showing my now rebased Vampire counts figures. These are done for the Legions of Nagash force specifically for Warcry.

These were painted oh 25 to 30 years ago and based on standard green painted square bases. That was standard for the Warhammer armies of the day but was bland. It does not work for the current rules. So, now they are on round bases. I guess at some point I’ll have to do all the other models to make a true Age of Sigmar army.

I have used some sand and basing paint to give them a little structure/texture on the bases. I then tried the snow flock from GW, again bought many years ago, to give a wintery look. I had to do several layers of snow to give it a better/more realistic resulting effect. Living here in Canada we are a bit too used to snow, even when melting/blowing too not have it looks somewhat realistic. You can see it on the Necromancer below, who I think is an original GW vampire actually. But he works well for a Necromancer now.

Next we have the two real nasty combatants. These will be my Seneschal models – these are the hardest figures in this war cry faction. They can hit very hard, especially when they have the special powers of the faction enabled on them. The down side is they are expensive points wise. I may never use both of them in a force but then again it’s good to have 2 models who can be the ‘hard fighters’ of the force.

I really needed to dust these guys of the final snow before taking these photo’s but heck they will do. The snow flock is quite interesting and not something I have used before. It needed multiple coats to look somewhat ok as I mentioned. Realistically, this does not look too much like real snow still. If melting the snow should likely be all dirty, or there should be more all across the base. But heck it works for a different look for the models.

The rest of the tough fighters in this faction are Grave Guard models. Mine are the original Grave guard models. I have a few more of these but 6 are more than enough for Warcry. These are real old school models – but after all these are meant to be ancient and they are. These are old school late 80’s/early 90’s models. They do have a certain style which I like and so they will get used for this force. It’s a second life for these old models.

Lastly, we have the skeletons. These are definitely more than 30 years old. They are some of the first mini’s I ever bought in university in the UK. This was before the original 40k Rouge Trader rules came out! So that makes them 30 years old or so. I have a collection of around 100 of these guys, but just did 10 of them. There are 5 armed with swords and 5 with spears, as that makes a difference in stats in warcry.

The spear models include one with a scythe. I could not use these models and not include at least one of these. You can also see the red of blood I used all those years ago to ‘bling’ some of them up. The blood is a little too red for their own dried blood, so it must be from their previous opponents!

Well there we are. I’m going to start work on the specific Warcry figures at some point, but next I’ll focus on the terrain. After all I now have a force to use in games, so that needs to be the next thing to do for this project.

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Dark Age – Command and mounted

After doing a selection of Dark Age (mainly Saxon/Anglo-Saxon or similar troops to be honest), I’m not though with that yet. So, it’s time to show the commanders for these troops. I have done 6 command stands for them. These have a decent selection of models – who are all well armoured and most of them have the same shields to show that they are from the same commander. I did not do that for all of them, as I’m sure that some of the commanders would have other senior people around them who had their own shield emblems.

Half of these bases have flags. I don’t think there were many flags in these armies but the command pack from Old Glory comes with them. They do focus the eye to those models and it is likely that commanders may have had flags – as they are good ways to show their position on the battlefield. The flags are not complex and don’t have the detail that would be needed in later centuries banners/flags but it works. This also allows me to paint them by hand and not be too concerned about it.

You can see the basing is as the other bases in this set/army. There is no point in having the bases not match the others after all!

Below are the second set of command bases. This includes a mounted commander. I know that fighting mounted was fairly rare for Saxon forces but some of the other armies in this period were more likely to have commanders who rode. Those of course were the armies such as Eastern Germans and Franks, who used mounted troops in their armies. That said being mounted would make you visible and increase your visibility as a commander so it may have occurred for Anglo-Saxon armies as well.

You can also see the purple cloak for the mounted guy. That’s an expensive color in they period (well most periods really) so I thought I would use that for that figure. I also used a few different colors on the horns that are being used by various figures. Simple horn commands are likely to have been used by Dark Age commanders, so having them on the commander bases made sense to me.

Finally i this post is a single cavalry base. I plan to have more of these for armies other than Saxons.Ango-Saxons, but I had these and so they got painted up. In ADLG there is an option of having a single base of cavalry in a Anglo-Saxon force so it’s worth having at least one.

So there we are the commanders of this force. These are more than ready for the table in various different games.

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Dark Ages – Skirmishers

After showing the heavy foot for my Saxon/Dark Age armies it seems like a good idea to now show the skirmishers. These are not that common in Vikings/Saxons armies but do appear more in other forces of the time. However, they are the troops who who will keep the flanks safe especially in difficult going and maybe cause some delays for enemy moves. So it’s good to have some in my forces to use fort armies.

First, I have 12 bases of bow armed skirmishers. These would be often be troops of lesser status. A man of honor at this time in north western europe would go to battle in the ranks of the heavy infantry by choice. But the bow was widely used for hunting and although not yet the draw strength of the welsh/english longbow I’m sure that they had their uses in combat as well. After all, Harold was hit/slain by an arrow at Hastings – although that may have been a crossbow bolt…

All these are again from old glory 15mm miniatures. I must admit although many of these miniatures have shields and I’m not sure how many of them really would have those. However, I had the models and so heck they are not bad models for that.

The next lot to show are 9 bases of javelin armed guys. Again, these definitely would be the low class troops. Likely below the bow armed guys. I have even heard mention that some of these could be ‘slaves/indentured servants’ or boys – men or the young too weak/young/small to really be effective in the shield wall of the main force.

That lack of status is somewhat reflecting in their lack of good clothing. I expect troops like this would be running around a lot, but many of these guys have just trousers. There are a few with shields etc but still this is not the greatest way to get into combat to my mind. Maybe there are some prototype berserkers here… but either way it’s not the best protection you can have in battle.

As you can see I have kept the same style of basing as the heavy foot. With the extra space on bases I have tried to go for more of a ‘wild moors’ look on the bases. That means they have patches of different styles of greenery. This I admit does mean that I can continue to add to these for other forces as they should mix with many troops. It also means that even if have to change the flock and grass I use if I add extra troops of this style they won’t be too out of sorts with other troops.

So there we are. These provide the skirmish troops in Dark Age forces I have done so far. I have not got any slingers, but I’m not sure how much the sling was really used in the armies of this period. More importunely though, is that I did not have models for slingers to use…

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Dark Age – Dane Axe Heavy Foot

So, back to the 15mm Dark Age project, and a fairly quick one really this week. I have continued to work on this and next up are 12 bases of ‘Dane Axe’ armored heavy infantry. These are likely to be elite or at least special heavy foot bases in games. They are again Old Glory 15’s miniatures and show their late Anglo-Saxon/Viking/Dane styling with knee length mail coats, simple helmets and a mixture of round kite shields.

I thought this time I’d show the 4 bases I did with individual shield styles on first. I admit I found the kite shields quite hard to do a decent pattern on by hand. There is not a great deal of space on them, but I managed to give them each a different pattern. I tried to use brighter colours as well, because these guys likely would have more cash to throw around on such things.

Below are the other 8 bases of these troops. Hopefully, you can see that these all have the same shield patterns on a base, and I actually did 2 bases the same way. That means 4 ADLG bases of troops of this style. That uniformity reflects their elite nature as well, because I expect their welders to be huscarl’s or other ‘professional warriors’. After all from my understanding the Dane axe (or English long axe) was a real warriors weapon, being roughly the height of a man and taking quite a bit of skill and strength to use correctly. There is a picture of a Saxon with such a long axe killing a Norman Knights horse (he is taking it’s head off with a blow) and dismounting the knight on the Bayeux Tapestry. So these were deadly weapons in skilled hands – or at least the Norman who faced them thought they were!

The Dane axe is also known to have been used by the Varangian Guard fot Byzantium. So if I ever get to do a force of those then they could maybe work for them – but that’s a long way off at this point. But this again goes to show that these were not for the unskilled to use – we hear of the weapon being used by the best of the best of that period of foot troops.

For now these just give me some more elite heavy foot for games. They will give me options compared to the elite spears I showed earlier. These are suitable for any Dane, Viking, or Anglo-Saxon force. They would even work for an occasional English Heavy foot in the 11th or maybe early 12 cent from places where the old ways have not been completed replaced by Norman influences yet.

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WILDLANDS – Adventurers and Unquiet Dead

After the series of 15mm posts I though it time to close out the Wildlands posts – especially as some kind of similar game is due out soon. That is a Judge Dredd version which is about to be released, in Oct I think. It’s called Judge Dredd: Helter Skelter (see here for more info- https://ospreypublishing.com/blog/announcement_judge_dredd_helter_skelter/). I’m still not sure if I’ll get that, but I would recommend this version to anyone who likes simple but tactical fantasy games. So in summary get Wildlands.

In this post I’ll go through the 2 expansions that come with figures. There is a 3rd expansion which adds 2 extra map boards for more variety of play. That is cool and if you play a lot is worth it – if not then it’s a collectors special aka for someone who wants it all. It’s not bad but definitely a 3rd choice in my opinion. Both the other expansions actually add something to the game, as well as providing different player options. I’ll explain that as well, in summary at least.

So first we have the Adventurers pack, and you can se the painted figures below. There are only 4 models in the pack but they are nice models.

This group can be used as an alternative to the starting forces that come with the game. I’ll be honest and say we have not used them in this manner. The other way you can use them is as a set of NPC’s. They start in the spaces which are not occupied by either a players crystal or start. There are two in each of the empty spaces in a 4 player game.

When played in an NPC manner they move after each players move – you draw a card to see which figure moves. They do ‘preprogrammed’ moves, which are different for each character. They can steal crystals though and target player characters with attacks. If there is a choice of target to attack/space to move into then the player whose turn it is decides. This makes them spoilers and annoyances in the game. This adds to the madness for 4 player games but can be more influential in 2 or 3 player games.

Next we have the Unquite dead pack. I must admit of the two packs this would be my first recommendation for buying if you play regularly with 3 or 4 players. There are 6 extra models in this pack. These figures again can be used as a players group of models but once again we have again not tried that. We like the starting models and so just use those.

They other way to use these is that when a figure is killed on the board you replace it with one of these models. Then, at any time a player can use a card of any of their dead models to activate any undead figure on the table in their turn rather than activate one of their normal models.

This means that even a player down to 2 models of their faction can significantly effect the game. They can play spoiler for the others and still have a chance to win the game by clever use of their figures and the undead. Note, actions with the undead in this case don’t get you cyrstals and any deaths caused by the undead are not added to your count. That said, they give a player who is not doing well a lot more options in the game. So no one feels truly left out even if they are not doing well.

I really like how this expansion balances things out and means no one ever has to just ‘carry on’ because they are ‘out of it’ while the other players try to win. We have had had games where players with most of their figures dead still win – and the undead figures helped them do it. Clever use of them can also be spoilers if nothing else

I have to say the models again are rally nice and paint up well. They are very characterful and I started trying to do the weird lighting effects on the cards but in the end gave up and just used ‘bloody’ effects on the models instead.

So this set is really one I would recommend for the game. We have had a lot of laughs with this. We find revenge aspect of players who might not have been doing well generates some fun and interesting extra challenges in games with these. You are never short of options even if you have lost a few models from your faction.

So there we are. A quick description and showing of the Wildland models. Overall, as I said at the start of these posts I think this is a great game and one which is simple yet tactical and provides a good amount of replay value, especially with 4 players.

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Dark Age – Heavy foot swordsman

So far I have shown the heavy foot spearmen and some elite spear guys for this project. These are for generic Dark age forces but many of the models used so far have been from Saxon figures – well that’s what the manufactures sell them as. I think it’s hard to have too much of a good thing (in 15mm models at least) so I think I should show some more heavy foot bases. These ones are definitely swordsmen/blades as there is only the occasional spear in amongst them.

You can see there are another 20 DBA style bases – so that’s 10 bases of ADLG or games such as Dux Brit/Longships where I plan to use either 1 or 2 bases for an element. We’ll see when/if I get to playing those games. Oh and yes this does means there is another 80 figures completed in this post!

As with the previous posts I’ll keep the photo’s to a limited level with just a close up of the fronts and backs of the different groups of figures.

The first base include a some half naked fighters. These can be berserkers if the game allows such, if not then they will be slightly different troops, who thing that their shields and ferocity alone is enough defense for them! Overall though as I hinted at above I believe there would be much ‘fashion difference’ between 7th and 10th cent peoples clothing between the Saxons, Angles, Jutes, Britains, Franks, Vikings etc. Hair styles may vary and yes there would be differences but by the time you get to 15mm figs and my painting level I’m pretty certain I use these figures for any of the Levy/fyrd type forces. i.e. the general common infantry! The more professional forces would be different and that’s why I have my elite bases but these are the common infantry of a large army.

These all use the same basing flock etc as the rest of the figures I have done and thus they will match with the others. This means that for games such as Dux Brit it won’t really matter whether I use the spear or sword guys for the games. It’s things like ADLG where that matters.

They are still the scruffy and as you can see I have kept to the generally dark colours for them. The randomness and palette is getting to me a little though and I’ll need to change soon and move to some other figures. I love 15mm but even I can only take so much of this dark age figure before needing to swap for a little. That said I am really enjoying painting 15mm figs. There is something I really like about the scale, much more than 28 or 10/6mm.

As you can see I also kept to doing all the shields by hand and trying to make them individual. I know transfers would be so much cleaner in look but that just does not really fit with the style of these figs. Dark age masses would be chaotic and I can see lots of self made shields. I just don’t see ‘great artists’ working on the wooden shields of this period – but then again I may be mistake. Just wait though, eventually when I do Ancient Greek hoplites I likely will try to use transfers for those.

These are all Saxon’s or similar figures from Old Glory 15mm. As you can see many (but not all) have chainmail armour. That means in games such as Peter Pig’s Longships these will likely be armored bases. For Dux Brit they will be suitable for most of the Saxon troops – but as I mentioned I may well use the elite troops show previously in the front rank to show that they are elite.

You can see in the bases above and below, a few kite shields in with mix. These have crept into the bases as I had the figures. I doubt that those took over all of a sudden so I have mixed them into the troops here. Call these guys trend setters if you like! Those bases really do sit in the end of the 11th cent though but I doubt anyone is going to get too upset if I use them for earlier troops by accident.

Finally, like I did for the spearmen here is a shot from above. This is to show the flocking a little but I’m not sure that really works. The 15mm deep bases mean that even from this view it’s hard to see too much of the basing.

This takes me to 50 DBA bases – or 25 ‘doubled up’ bases of standard or mediocre heavy foot which should be enough for most games I would think. Even with big games and using 4 bases for a unit that gives me 12 units which is enough for 3 divisions – with some support.

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Dark Age – Elite heavy foot

Well after last week’s post of a large number of mixed heavy spear I though I would show the elite troops I have in the same line/style. These guys are the elite of the dark ages – the Lords/Huscals and their direct retinues. Basically the elite of the warlords troops and the ones who would likely make their living supporting and fighting for the lord. They would in society by part police, part soldiers and part of the ruling class as well. Because of that I did all the shields the same on these bases -to reflect that position. It works nicely to differentiate them from the masses as well.

These guys also are all heavily protected with good chainmail – as you can see from the back. They don’t have the formal drill of the Romans or other troops, but this is an age of shieldwalls and individual fighters and their honour. So the random poses work well for these troops.

All these are again Old Glory miniatures. These 10 bases add an extra 40 figures to the ones done for this project. Half of the bases have a flag – from the command pack, the other half are all ‘just’ spearmen. The bases are 15mm deep, so that they work with ADLG and DBA etc. These in their pairs will be the ‘unit commanders’ in games of Peter Pig Vikings. It just happened I had 5 of these and so that works out perfectly for that game. In that game those have the be the best troops and differentiated from the others. So the standard shields will do that nicely.

I did not want them to look too uniformed though and that’s why each of the 5 sets has a different shield colour/pattern. I also made sure that the unit flags match those shields. I suspect that’s not really correct and all kinds of different flags but would be used. From my reading we really don’t know that much about the true flags used. But, the limits of my painting skills mean this a decent compromise.

So there we are. The Elite spearmen for my Darkage project – even though there are a decent mix of swordsmen in with them. I likely would use them as either spear or swordsmen depending on the need. If I have to use more for games then I’ll just use these as the front rank and the normal guys behind them. Even that is somewhat realistic to my understanding. With the best troops fighting in the front ranks during this time.

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