Friday, December 7, 2012

Bushido and Ito!!

Yesterday I received my shipment of the "Ito" - the fifth faction for GCT Studios amazing skirmish game of Bushido. They ran an Indiegogo campaign a few months ago which you can view here:

I'm not going to go too much into what Bushido or the Ito are in this review - have a read of that page or head over to:

Also look up GCT studios on Facebook for photos of greens and upcoming information. This is an exciting time for Bushido - a new faction, another set of incredible releases for the existing factions and hopefully forthcoming rulebook, more faction dice, tokens etc. 2013 is shaping up to be a great year for the game! In this review I will look at what I received from the Indiegogo campaign and show you just how incredible these models are.

Dice & Cards

First up dice - normally in Bushido starters you get ten black and white dice and a red die (defence and attack). This is GCT's first foray into Faction dice. They are a good size and contain five green and five green/black dice. The six on the dice is the Ito faction logo. The dice are bigger than the normal starter dice at 16mm compared to 8mm. Not much more to say about them but they look nice and will be good to roll the colours for my team! I will definitely be getting more faction specific dice in the future being the hobby tart I am.

For the Profile cards they look great and are in the "New Dawn" rules format which I feel is a great improvement. The starter set cards are in a special Ito design. These are an Indiegogo campaign backer thing only, but as you can see in the pic they are very nice and hopefully an indication of card sets being made available seperately to movels and in different styles for the other factions too.

Starter Set

Kenzo Ito
This guy is the main chap. He is on a 50mm base and looks easy to put together, although the middle body part will probably require some extra pinning to hold it securely to the tail peice. Both arms glue onto the body holding the spear in front with the dual swords going onto the right side of the body. Well armoured with a good CP, First Strike and very useful fighting feats making him excellant in close combat.

Another 50mm mounted model with an awesome tail. It will be quite long when assembled. The head is easy to attach, the arms fit on quite nicely and I hope won't require a pin. The tail I probably will to give it extra strength. Being a slow painter the idea of a finished model being re-worked is not a good one! Can blind his opponent on the way into fighting them, he's fast, slippery and fear causing too!

A 30mm base, I will dig out the arm a little to make the insert of the arm onto the body a bit deeper. The fan has a small nodule for extra security on the back of  the head. In game she has a nasty ability to dump poison counters on the enemy from afar!

Temple Bushi/Chiyo

These two models are either standard Temple Bushi with a joint profile card, or the fellow on the bottom can be Chiyo, who is more expensive (in terms of rice), but has a few different traits and a special defence which gives you additional force building options. I look forward to seeing more of this as I think it works well to have a few rules tweaks in this manner.

A 30mm mount, the front arm is pulling his sword out of the sheath so two points on contact. The back of the scabbard though extends from the rear of the model and deinitely could do with a pin, but it is very small! Time to get my careful hands ready....

30mm too, with the same pin needed on the scabbard. His left arm is holding the sword out though so I will also try to pin this for added strength while playing/transporting. These two guys are fairly standard foot soldiers in game with armour, six wounds and a healthy CP. Chiryo has leap and jump up making him a bit more agile than the Temple Bushi.

Extra Guys

These models will come available over the next few months and give some nice options as well as being some of my favourite miniatures ever!

30mm with two contact points for the spear. The horns are quite small and the extra swords will be easy to attach on the side/front so I hoping for no extra pinnning here. Very good armour and hes tough with a Ki feat to give extra toughness! He can gain the order ability as well, but only six wounds. A modest CP but it only costs 2 Ki to increase it.

An easy to attach arm on this 30mm model. He is a cheap in game character and can make himself fear and terror causing. A low CP, but brings 2 to the Blood of Orochi pool!

Itsunagi Ito
The scabbards attach in his middle wich will be east enough. Again with the arms though care is the name of the game to get a pin in there! A 30mm incredble fighter! The most in game expensive model for the Ito. A high CP, low wound count but has ranged defense. Can give himself armour peircing and his Ki feats focus on improving his close combat.

Ayaka Ito
A 30mm beautiful figure. Look on GCT Studios Facebook for the studio paint job. Very very impressive. Expensive in game, but like other Shisai can channel. Can dish out poison from afar, suck ki from a target and remote worsen models conditions! 

There isn't one figure here which doesn't blow me away. I'm loving the Indiegogo flavour cards for the starter set and the dice are a nice addition to the range. The entire snake aspect to this force makes for some incredible figures. My clear favouite at the moment being Naoko. 10/10 GCT Studios - these figures were worth the wait and surpassed all my expectations.

Just got to decide on the basing now! Expect pics of assembled figures very soon!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

June Happenings

I am rubbish! I meant to update this blog once a week but....oh well! This post is a catch up on the hobby for me recently!

First I went to Sheffield for the "Clash of the Northern Kingdoms" Bushido tournament! I lost all four games very badly, but did win best painted Warband which I was very chuffed with. There is a good write up and pics from the tournament here:

Second I found a new KickStarter to back - BadAss Zombie Killers! After backing Zombicide I have more zombies than you can shake a stick at, but this looks like a novel short card game. I have Zombie Dice and Poo, the card game, as the only two beer and pretzel type games I own so thought this would make a nice addition. He's a day or so in but already about $1.6K towards target. Check it out here:

Finally I have massive new game excitement over Hawk Miniatures "Dropship". I saw them at Salute and the models are simply jaw dropping. Ive wanted to get into a good ship based game and tried Firestorm Armada but there was no-one else who played it, but this games has a lot of interest and some excellent terrain. Release is late July and pre-orders up all over the place. As always I recommend the excellent FireStorm Games for your order! Check out the following links for more information:

I'll get some pics up soon for the above and also of my recent painting


Sunday, May 27, 2012

Painting Fire!!

As you may know I enjoy my painting and think I can paint to an average standard. I do like the satisfaction I get when finishing a model and I am pleased with the outcome. This is why the skirmish game is good for my painting - I like to take time over a model and huge armies don't fit well with that!

Bushido is full of beautiful miniatures and none more so for me than Hotaru - the wave 6 addition to the Temple of Ro Kan faction. I managed to get my hands on her early at Jwardiff 2012 (thank you GCT!) and I haven't tried painting fire before! However she deserves a good job so here is my documenting painting her fire in case it turns out well and can be of help to others!

I found a guide to painting fire on line that I have tried to adapt and follow so full respect and acknowledgement to Laszlo Jakusovszky at these pages: I recommend a thorough read of this! So here is Hotaru assembled:

Step 1: I undercoated the model using a standard Black and then gave the fire trail two thin coats of Gw foundation white to give it a nice bright base.

Step 2: A thinned wash 3:1 of Vallejo GC7 (gold yellow)

Step 3: A wash of Orange fire

Step 4: A wash of hot orange focusing on the bottom two thirds of the fire arch.

Step 5 - Some red gore at the bottom. I figured the top by her foot was the hottest area so the colour gets redder the lower the flame trail as it is cooler. This is the washing complete now and with the Hot Iron guide I am at Step 9. Ready to highlight!

This shot is from the back of the model to show the colour gradient better.

Step 6 - I slowly start with Gold Yellow and bring it up to skull white on the top third of the flame. I forgot to take a picture but I applied a third glaze of yellow after doing this and then one final touch of skull white on the high parts.

Step 7 - First apologies for the pic quality! I layer Golden Yellow in the middle third and Golden Yellow + Hot Orange and a little pure Hot Orange in the bottom third. I also use skull white on small highlights in the middle third

Step 8 -  A final thin glaze of Orange, retouch upper whites and.....


There may be quicker ways through this but these are the steps I followed. If you have a go let me know how you got on!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Salute 2012 & Bushido!

No recent blogs but lots of hobby!! I continue progressing my Busido painting and will get some pictures up later. The guys at GCT Studios have a painting competition on at the moment that end next Friday. Theres some more information here:

I will be getting Riku ready hopefully tomorrow!

Wave 5 releases were this week and Firestorm has them all in. Not only are the models really fantastic and true to art but the rules are inspired too! The Dragon is officially the first Prefecture model I have. I've got all bar the Slaver now and was going to have a bash at a quick video later unboxing them!

The demos have been thick and fast for Bushido and if you are in South Wales don't forget to give me a shout for a go. Speaking of demos I will be at Salute in London on the 21st demoing Bushido at the Wayland Games stand!

GCT Studios also have a stand and every item you buy from them puts you in with a chance of winning a superb board!! See here for all the details:

One last note! Jwardiff 2012 is round the corner in May - we have six places left available and some tokens have been made for all attendees. GCT are also giving the highest placed finisher of each faction the Wave 6 release for free two weeks early! Check out the Tournament pack here:

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Jwardiff 2012 & New Bushido!

My self and Mick (Greeny on the Bushido forums) are putting together a one day tournament at Firestorm - Jwardiff 2012!! Tickets are £10 for the day and available from Firestorm. You can get more information and copy of the rounament pack on the forums here:

Also GCT announced Wave 4's releases - I have ordered Riku, the Water Monk, and Gengo, the Cults Barakumin. Only the greens can be seen at the moment but they look awesome. Another consistently excellent release from GCT.

As always if anyone is in the South Wales area and fancies a demo and trying the game out then let me  know. If you fancy trying the tournament out fantastic!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Rudders The Retainer

I am now an official Retainer for Bushido. This means I will be looking to run demos and raise Bushido awareness so I will be looking to get in touch with local clubs and attend events. I am playing a bit at Firestorm at the moment and attempting to get some last minute space at the Crusdae Games Day held by Penarth Wargamers. More information on that event is here:

If you are within a 2 hour drive of Cardiff and would like a demo please let me know or contact me on the Bushido forums:

I am ret-rudders there. They also have a player locator map which sevceral stores who stock Bushido have added their location information as well. If you are struggling to find a stockist the excellant Firestorm games offer free international sghipping for orders over £30 and a flat rate under that. They can be found here:

Monday, January 16, 2012

WHFB Vampire Counts Book!

Ever since I first got into the hobby Games Workshop have repeatedly seduced me with their wares. It seemed like every White Dwarf there was a revamp or a new army and I would convince myself that was the army I wanted. This ended up with me owning a lot of models, but never really having an army. I think in my many years I have only had two 1000 point Warhammer Fantasy armies!!

Some years ago (3 or 4) I picked up the Vampire Counts book – promising myself this would be the army I go for. It didn’t happen. The new book came out at the weekend and while I haven’t played WHFB for a long time I have always wanted a nice big army. So I decided to pick up the book and take it from there. Then I thought – what really changes between books? I decided to compare them as close as possible and this post is the result of that! Bear in mind that I have not played VC and if I have missed anything good please add a comment!

Presentation and Content
The new book is gorgeous. Wonderful hardback, as the recent few books, print quality is awesome and looks very durable for flicking through and carrying around. Every page is in glorious full colour. In the last VC book the only colour was the covers and ‘Eavy Metal section. There are 96 pages which is exactly the same as the old book. With several new models available it will be interesting to see what was dropped to make space, although the new book does have a smaller font size.
Winner: New Book

Aside from a few subtle changes to headings the fluff from the old book remains the same. I think overall it has been made more fluid and the rewordings are a good thing. The new book has a section called "War In The Border Princes" which is new and introduces Krell - a new character. Grim Moor has dropped off the map as well as the fluff from the lands section and the Timeline has been slightly truncated in the new book.The section of fluff called "Infamous Vampires" has been dropped as well, but the new book has two new playable characters in it.
Winner: New Book

Army Lists
There are bigger changes here. The new book has 2 new characters, 6 new units and 2 war engines. There are two big changes for the army rules. One to allow the army to not crumble if the general is slain as long as a friendly wizard is on the field and one to allow units within 12" of the General or a vampiric model to march - this was 6" previously.
  • Vampires regain wounds on a roll of 6 in they kill an enemy in close combat. They have an extra attack and slightly higher points cost
  • There is now a Master Necromancer. Base Necromancer costs slightly more
  • Wight King gains "Killing Blow" and 10 points in cost
  • Cairn Wraith and Tomb Banshee now characters and more expensive
  • Strigoi Ghoul Kings is a new wizard with Vampiric who can lead the army
  • Crypt Ghouls stats stay same, but 2 points more
  • Skeletons down to 5 points
  • Zombies strength and toughness up 1 - points down 1!!
  • Corpse Cart wounds and strength up - 15 points more
  • Grave Guard down 1 point
  • Black Knights down 3 points
  • Spirit Host down 20 points
  • Dire Wolves get no points change but strength bonus when charging
  • Bat swarms get 1 wound and attack, points stay the same
  • Fell bats - no change
  • Crypt Horror and Vargheist = new gribblies!
  • Blood knights get 1 higher initiative and 5 points off
  • Varghulf higher Initiative - same points
  • Black Coach 5 points cheaper - Evocation of Death Effects altered
  • Hexwraiths = new spirit riders!
  • Terrorgheist is new flying terror. Was in White Dwarf before but not old book
  • Zombie Dragon, lower WS but +1 to T and W - 30 points cheaper!
  • Abyssal Terror, 15 points cheaper, but Nightmares and Hellsteads cost more
  • Coven Throne and Mortis Engine - massive beautiful new models!!
  • Vlad stats same - 5 points higher
  • Isabella higher WS, S and A - points almost double!
  • Mannfred has 1 more attack. Approx 30 more points and Acolyte up about 15 points
  • Konrad has 1 more attack up 15 points
  • Krell and Heinrich Kemmler = new baddies!
There are some subtle changes ion rules, probably because of 8th edition as well, that mean I have probably missed commenting on some juicy stuff but it is clear that every unit has been tweaked a bit, some a bit more and it all looks like a good thing to me.
Winner: New Book

Magic, Powers and Items

I'm not detailing everything here otherwise this would take an age! But the highlights are:
  • Invocation of Nehek. Now 6+ cast, but affects all units within a radius of 6" - can be powered up to 18" by increasing cast
  • Raise Dead now has range of 18" and create 2D6+3. Can create skellies on 14+#
  • Gaze of Nagash can be powered up to 48" range on cast of 12+
  • Curse of Years now 12+
  • Wind of Death has no spirit host creation, higher cast and can be powered up to increase strength
  • Summon Undead Horde gone - replaced by Hellish Vigour allowing a unit to re-roll failed to wound rolls in CC
Also for magic on each successful cast the wizard, or another friendly wizard within 12" recovers a wound.
  • Vampiric powers consolidated to 14 powers from 24. Various rewrites and alterations 
  • Massive drop of banners and artifacts.Only 2 banners and 6 items left.
For me this is a vast improvement to make it less complex. Still enough choice, but I can imagine if you are used to using a banner or item and it has been dropped it could be frustrating.
Winner: New Book

Models and 'Eavy Metal
Amazing stuff as always. The painting is another step up from the impressive quality of the last book and the new models, particularly Coven Throne and Mortis engine really shine. I am really liking GW's one kit makes one of two things approach too.
Winner: New Book

Final Thoughts
For it is a big thumbs up and improvements all round. Yes the new book costs more new than the old one did. But given the dramatic improvement in quality I am fine with this. The book is lovely - the full colour pages, hard cover - for me these justify the rise in price. Not to mention the fluff is nice as always and rewritten/added to where needed. The new models are beautiful kits with lovely rules and it does look to me like there are so many choices here for an army build.
I would like to think I can hold with VC's now and build up a nice army at last! Even if I don't manage that I don't feel I will find myself regretting picking this book up.
Winner: New Book

Friday, January 13, 2012

Bushido Action - 12/1/12

Rudders Temple vs Greenys Cult
Last night saw my Temple square off against Greenys Cult, using both starter sets. We played the idol scenario – here is a quick rundown of events!
The game started with Ekusa lining up to the left of my deployment zone with the two peasants. Kenko and Yumi paired up on the right. On the other side of the board Kato and a pair of Kairai were opposite Kenko and Ikiryo and the other Kairai opposite Ekusa. I lost the initiative role (this continued for almost every turn!).
Kato moved behind some trees and the Kairai headed for the idol on the right. Kenko and Yumi both moved forwards, Yumi getting into base contact with it and then turning it with Kenko to the right of her. Ekusa and the peasants moved forward as did Ikiryo and her Kairai. Kenko attempted to take on a Kairai but got scared! Ekusa and the peasants move forward towards the middle idol which a Kairai was headed for. Ikiryo went to the idol on the left and turned it and Kato then popped out a Marionette who promptly possessed Kenko!
Yumi moved around her idol to take on a Kairai. A peasant turned the middle idol and Ekusa put out an aura to stop the middle Kairai from attacking the peasant. Kenko, under mind control, had also been heading to deal pain to a peasant but the aura saved that so he instead decided to investigate a small swamp at the bottom of the board! The Ikiryo moved towards the middle idol though and a poor peasant had his mind literally blown. Yumi fought bravely but was taken down and a new Kairai raised. Kato moved up and turned the right idol while Ekusa got to the idol on the left and turned it.
Kenko got his senses back and he charged back towards the middle statue and obliterated a Kairai there. Ikiryo moved into base contact with the middle idol as did a Kairai. The remaining peasant got frightened by this and was then charged by Kato but survived.
Ekusa put Contemplation of Existence on the Ikiryo. A Kairai was able to turn the middle idol twice but Kenko ran in there and turned it once for a draw!
Many thanks to Greeny for a superb and enjoyable game – 50 rice in two weeks! There is a couple of pics from Greeny and a bit more info on the Bushido blog here:

Friday, January 6, 2012

New Models Procured!!

One of the websites I look at daily is Tabletop Gaming News. A few days ago they posted about two limited edition models that Meow miniatures have released. I hadn't heard of them before but they are a French company who resell here in the UK through Allsorts Emporium. The model shown below is called "Double Face' and is the second version made of that character. They have only made 400 and I managed to snag one. Here is the painted pic from Meow's website and a pic of the model I received today:

I also ordered a Devil baby and they appear to make a game which you play with these freaky dice so I got a set of those too for the cool factor!

I wasn't sure what to use the dice for (or the baby for that matter!) but I picked up Quarriors the other day (love it - absolutely love it!! - more on this soon!). The counters it comes with for tracking your score are small ordinary wooden blocks, so I am painting up four dice in the player colours and using them instead. Check out Meow's website here. They sell some very cool stuff and shipping from Allsorts is very fast.

The models are resin and spot on - barely any cleanup needed and no bubbles. The dice are just wicked and I am thinking Double Face might make a good replacement for the Dopple Ganger in Malifaux but I have a lot of painting to tackle before going there!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

XMas Hobby Action!

It was a very sparse and dry period for me gaming wise - except for "Poo" the card game! A younger sister got me the Shisa dogs for my Temple of Ro-Khan Bushido faction though and they are awesome! If you haven't looked at Bushido yet I cannot reccomend it enough. Start with this website:

The forums are quite active and well frequented by the game owners. I will be putting more up here on Bushido soon and my painting table at the moment is overrun with Bushido models, Temple and the Cult. I have a game this coming Thursday down Firestorm that I am very much looking forward to and a tournament in Feb hopefully!

Other than that I have started looking into Secrets of the Third Reich from West Wind productions. I have the rulebooks and am greatly enjoying the whole fluff at the moment. I have gathered a few boardgames as well at the moment. Namely Gears Of War, Super Dungeon Explore, Doom of the Eldar (old GWgame) and Incursion so I need to find a lot of time to plough through all this gaming greatness!! 2012 is shaping up great so far