Monday, April 28, 2014

Aulech Henschblut's Raiders (Mouse's Oldhammer Chaos Army So Far)

Spent a spare hour or two today reviewing what I've painted up for my Chaos Army over the last couple of years.  Two years is a damn long time, and when I look at this fragment of Buzzgobb Phesterlick's Chaos Horde (I plan on eventually fielding a horde of at least six thousand points) it doesn't seem like a lot to have acheived in that much time.  As I line it all up and gaze lovingly at it, I must say I do feel somewhat the proud father, though.  I'm certainly no meister painter, not by a long shot.  But I think Buzzgobb's legion of twisted hellspawn look pretty good massed and ready for battle.

Long way to go, including Buzzgobb himself, but here's the horde so far...

In the vanguard of any of Buzzgobb's raids run horrid packs of howling and slavering chaos hounds, ready to sweep away weak opposition or fall upon flanks as the Thugs and Chaos warriors pin down the enemy to the front.

2 packs of 6 Chaos Hounds each, Beastmen handlers with shields.......................................384 pts

A Nurglesque contingent advances on the horde's right flank...Chaos Champion Igor Pussdribble leads his warband of Thugs to battle, supported by the horrid mutant Chaos Sorcerer, Buboe Sourwing on his flying chaos steed...
19 Chaos Thugs with  light armor, hand weapon, shield, standard and musician
Chaos Champion with heavy armor, hand weapon,
 tentacle arm, (counts as extra hand weapon), and pistol...................................................................320 pts
 LVL 15 Chaos Sorcerer on Chaos Steed with chaos armor and enchanted weapon (cursed spear)..262 pts

The army's Slaaneshi contingent sweeps forward,  a mob of twisted, gibbering madmen, bent on satiating their unholy desires at the expense of the enemy...the fallen Inquisitor Luptuous Stenk and his warriors are here supported by the insufferably loathsome Sleekrist Kizzenkillum and his Gorgon lover...

19 Chaos thugs with light armor, hand weapon, shield, and unit standard, Chaos Marauder unit leader with light armor and flail............................................................................................................218 pts

1 lvl 10 Chaos Sorcerer with extra hand weapon, Chaos armor and
bound Chaos host...1 Gorgon with bow bound for 10 pts..................................................261 pts

 On the army's left, a second Nurglesque contingent leaps and lumbers toward the fields of slaughter.  Here we have the decidedly unpleasant Chaos Champion Digglechum Smegmar and his clutch of Chaos Trolls, preceded by a third and rather Nurgly-looking pack of Chaos Hounds...
In combat Digglechum likes to lead his "friends" in a direct charge against the enemy's front, while the hounds engage the enemy to flank or rear.  With a wall of simultaneously suppurating and regenerating flesh to their front, and rotting, stinking, slashing jaws lapping about their sides and backs, few enemy units can stand against Smegmarr and his minions for long...

Chaos Champion with heavy armor,  magic weapon,  (Enchanted Strike) and 3 Chaos Trolls...... 358 Pts
1 Beastman handler with shield and 6 Chaos Hounds....................................................................192 Pts

Though there's no doubting the strength of the Nurgle contingent, the Worshippers of Khorne remain the real fighting strength of the army so far.  Here, Chaos Knight Aulech Henschblut and Army Standard Bearer Ulrich Hellhorn drive the soldiers of the Khornate Cult toward the enemy...

On the right, the terrible Norse Chaos Champion Ulfgrimm Strang can be glimpsed loping forward at the head of his retinue of Chaos Marauders, supported by The Blood God's Huntmen, plying their bows to deadly effect as they close in upon the enemy...

Aulech Henschblut and Ulrich Hellhorn:
Chaos Knight (Army General) heavy armor, chaos steed w/ horse barding, Enchanted Sword (Frenzied Blade), Enchanted Shield (Talismanic Shield).........................................................................335 Pts
Chaos Warrior with heavy armor, shield, army standard, chaos steed, horse barding.................160 Pts

Ulfgrimm Strang's Marauders:
Chaos Champion with heavy armor, Dragon Helm, Enchanted Weapon, 2-handed hammer, (Mighty Strike), 9 Chaos Marauders with heavy armor,  shields, 2-handed weapons..............................532 Pts

The Blood God's Huntsmen:
1 Chaos Marauder with bow, light armor, 2-handed weapon, pistol, 9 Chaos thugs with long bows and hand weapons, light armor................................................................................................................140 Pts.

Total Points:  3,162 Pts!
Hey, I made it to 3,000 points!  I thought I was still short of the mark...Neat!

Forth, my twisted minions!  

Well, that's a good note to leave for Kafiristan on.  I'm debating what minis I should have the wife mail to me later on, so I can bring them home, painted and ready to join the horde in about a year.  Right now 10 Tzeentchian Chaos Marauders, a score of Beastmen, and half-a-dozen centaurs are a the top of my list to deploy with me...Of course I really need to do Buzzgobb and his "Brides"...a unit of ten lovely harpies...

Mighty Ulfgrimm Strang leads his Marauders into battle.  Out of all my Chaos Champions, I believe he's my favorite so far.  I don't know if it's because I like the wolf-head figure so much, or because I'm proud of the background I wrote for him...mmmhh...probably both.

Well there they are...3,000 points of Old School Chaos critters.  Happy day.

"Pleasure,Slaughter and Contagion!"

Friday, April 25, 2014

Afghanistan Again/Darkness Descends

Hey, friends!

In a couple of weeks the tiny guns will fall silent, the tiny banners will be furled.  The Big Board will be covered by a sheet to keep the dust off through the coming year.   The War Room curtains will be drawn.  Minis, books and paints will be boxed away,  and TFTBB will be going dark for a bit.  Seems my real time regiment has been called up to do some infernal security duty in the darkest depths of Kafiristan.  Blast!!  And I was getting so close to finishing up my Oldhammer armies. Well, it is what it is.

Last time I was Back of Beyond was nearly ten years ago...can it have been so long?  I was just Private First Class Mouse back then, with my Alma Mater, the mighty 82nd.  Looking back on it, it was a good deployment.  Not very long, just the right amount of stupid, joyous, harebrained violence, plenty of exercise in the Mountain air, and none of my friends got shot or blown up, despite the enemy's best efforts. My deployment to Iraq a year later was a tougher gig.

My good buddy Evan M. on the roof of the world, 2005.

Well, I'm going back with the reserves, and reserves get all the shit jobs, so I'm likely to be static, base-bound, irritated and angry throughout this deployment.  Still, I don't think it should stop me from painting lots of little metal warrior people.  All through Iraq, despite a frantic mission tempo, curtains of dust and very bad things going on on all sides, my buddy Dustin and I spent many, many hours painting up our 40k armies in eager anticipation of getting at each others' throats as soon as we got back to The States.  If I could paint little armies back then, I'm sure I'll be able to do it this time, too.

My best buddy Dustin, amoung the Afghan Army, nine years ago.  We're still tight.  Last weekend he drove 8 hours to have a last game of Rogue Trader 40k and Flames of War before I depart for back o' beyond.

What I'm not so certain about is whether I'll be able to blog anything I'm painting or modeling, or any stories or anything.  Don't know what my internet access situation will be, exactly.  I'll do my best to stay in touch with all the great friends I've made here, and keep the Oldhammer flag flying from where ever I'm at.

"The Castle" An ancient Hill-Fort visible from our FOB and not far from Kandahar.  Local legend insisted that various warlords had used it to dominate the surrounding plain from prehistory until Alexander's guys came through and took it.  When "Sikander's" influence faded, assorted Warlords reclaimed it, then Tamerlane's heinous bunch, then the British, then the Russians, and finally the American backed Afghan Army.  Are the legends true?  I don't know.  Do I care?  Not particularly.  It's a great story, and that's what matters.  (If you ask me.)

View from the Driver's Seat of a Hummvee

Native Flora

Shot I took of a few of my young comrades near the close of what I'll always remember as "The Fight at the Farm".  It was one of my first real firefights and, as such, seemed like kind of a big deal to me at the time.  Intel had told us that a "Taliban" group had taken control of a farm, splendidly positioned on a hilltop overlooking a large portion of the plains near Kandahar.  We were supposed to land one hilltop over, then assault the farm, (a silly plan, in every way, if you ask me).  Instead, our Chinook pilots became confused and landed us, (rather sensibly, I think) directly on top of our objective.  We leaped out of the birds, Panzergrenadier-style, almost straight into the midst of the startled foe.   I shiver a little bit, sometimes, looking back at that tactical situation, because it seems to me that if the enemy had stood fast and fought, they would surely have killed at least a couple of us before they were overcome.  But fortune favored the bold, as it often does in battle, and the Tali's either tried to blend in amoung the farmers or, after a brief blaze of covering fire, scattered into the ravines that veined the hillsides. The farmers delightedly pointed out the Jihadis who tried to pass themselves off as members of their own families, and we took all these as prisoners.  They probably served 6 or 8 months in prison before being released to fight us again.  The die-hards who fled the scene and refused to give up were hunted to their deaths in the spiderweb of ravines and creek-beds below the ridge.  And good riddance to you, you sons of bitches.

Captured Enemy Stuff From the Fight at the Farm

 I myself did nothing of importance in this fight, really.  I slew no enemy.  I saved no comrade's life.  I won no awards or commendations.  But I'll always remember spilling out of the ass of that Chinook into the swirling dust and seeing and hearing the enemy's musketry sparkling and crackling at us as they laid down a few hurried bursts to cover their retreat.  I'll remember knocking a hole in the mud-brick 12' high farm wall and being the first poor, dumb bastard to tumble through it, gathering up some of the enemy's abandoned weapons and gear, and racing to the other side of the farm complex, then striding out toward the gunships that circled and dipped like hawks upon the fleeing foe. Moments like that, you feel Mars walking beside you.

And that's kind of crazy.

But...want to know what's really crazy?  In the midst of all this...Men can still find time for Oldhammer! Make sense of that, if you can!

Sgt. Mouse and Sgt. Dustin, Iraq, 2007

So... back to this strange world I go...
Keep gaming, friends!  And I'll be in touch as often as I may...


Sunday, April 13, 2014

Luptuous Stenk and his Slaaneshi Chaos Thugs

Sontag, 2nd Pflugzeit 3144
This day, with the dawn breaking at our backs and Faith in Sigmar and the Emperor blazing in our hearts, we assaulted the walls of the rebel town of Damd.  Our troop of the Knights Panther stormed the gatehouse, and at their coming, resistance melted fast away.  Entering the town, we found many people there in the streets to greet us, and these were willing and ready to aid us and to answer our many questions.  As the Emperor's Inquisitor here, I find the paucity of the resistance gives me heart, I think that the teeth of the Lords of Decay have not bitten here too deeply, and that the most part of these folk are not beyond saving...

Marktag, 3rd Pflugzeit, 3144
This day we have gone throughout the town, seeking from chimney and attic to alley and cellar for those marks of The Enemy which Providence shall see fit to reveal to us.  We found a few skulking here and there with the mark of Chaos upon them, and these we have thrown into the town's gaol for later questioning.  But we found many amoung the people who came forward to whisper to us, albeit haltingly and with a terrible dread shadowing their humble countenances of "The Council of Six."  This coterie, they claim, murdered the Magistrate, and seized governance of the town.  Eagerly, I pressed these volunteers for news of where we might go to lay hands on these six suspects, but at this folk become evasive, or spread their hands helplessly to display their ignorance of the whereabouts of these villains.

Backertag, 3rd Pflugzeit, 3144
Questioning of the handful of mutants found in the town on Sontag has yielded us nothing.  Most are little more than idiots who probably did not grasp the source or the nature of their corruption.  Having no more use for them we commended them to Sigmar's cleansing flames. 

Festag, 3rd Pflugzeit, 3144
I begin to grow impatient with those amoung the townsfolk who claim they wish to aid in our cause, yet give us no hard evidence as to the whereabouts of this "Council of Six" who supposedly raised the town in rebellion against our Emperor.  Perhaps all these people are conspiring quietly against us?  Is the Council of Six a mere Phantom conjured up to mislead us?  

Konistag, 3rd Pflugzeit, 3144
Providence smiled upon us at last, today.  While patrolling the Applegate, a few of our men heard a commotion from some of the windows above, as if some wild cavort were in progress.  Forcing entry into one of the houses and making their way quickly upstairs, they came upon a number of the town's well-to-do citizens in the midst of a set of detestable orgiastic rites.  A number of curious objects and scrolls were found amoung the tumbled pots and twisted bedding, and those they did not cast into the fire in disgust, they gathered up to take away as evidence.  At the sight of their fetishes blazing in the flames, these people set up a hideous wailing and gibbering.  These our good men have arrested and brought to the gaol straight away.  
 Now we shall see.

Festag, 3rd Pflugzeit, 3144
 Today we set rack and flame to the flesh of our new friends from dawn to dusk, and plied them with many questions.  Most of all I wished to know who amoung them were part of this "Council of Six" and where their den might be found.  They are a hardy lot, and resisted our efforts all throughout the day.  But they will crack soon.
They always do.

Sontag, 3rd Pflugzeit 3144
One of the prisoners died under our questioning today.  Died with a smile on his face.  His eyes seemed to blossom, wide and dark, at the moment of his death, and his irises turned a strange and luminous shade of pink, the result, I imagine, of a burst blood vessel in the brain.  Still, it looked very queer.  I sit beside my fire, here, tonight, feeling weary and depressed.  What is wrong with me?  As absurd as it seems, these Children of Darkness make me feel as though I am not in control of this situation...Despite all the extremities of agony and terror we have put to them, they still tease us with hints, they seem coy and taunting... I try to find the words... If I did not know better, I would say that they must delight in their distress, and deliberately provoke us in order to prolong and sharpen it...