Sunday, 20 November 2016

Hallow'd Ground - Game 4

The Haunted Mansion

It had taken Lothar the rest of the night and a good part of the following day to regroup the scattered survivors of the debacle at Deathwatch Manor and rejoin with the rest of the Church. Luckily, they had found a minor Realmgate that, according to the ancient tome, would have led them to the Necomancer's Mansion. The travel had been difficult and they had lost Pieter von Toorn along the way, but they had finally made it to their destination.

The Church filed out of the Realmgate, weapons at the ready. To their dismay, whatever the orruk shaman had found inside Deathwatch Manor had put the greenskinz on the right track.

From the platform of a Dreadfire Portal, the shaman spurred the orruks forth, chanting his praises to Gorkamorka.

In response to the orruk's chants, green flames billowed forth and enveloped Sigmar's Hound and Avram.

Bellowing with joy at the sight of the roasted gryphs, the entire orruk warband stomped forward. Yet, as they approached the Mansion, the Black Orcs halted wearily. The foreboding building was suffused with such a dreadful aura that even the brainless greenskinz thought twice before charging headlong through it.

That was all good, as the orruks' hesitation meant they were now exposed to a charge. Sharpbeak and the surviving Sigmar's Hound darted forward, the Militia and Lothar hot on Sharpbeak's trail. Gunshots and arrows whistled past the Gryph Hound and felled one of the Black Orcs.

Avram dared again the Realmgate, reappearing, as he had hoped, close to the Dreadfire Portal. The shaman had to pay for setting his beard aflame.

But then, a sudden squall of rain battered the area, making any charge impossible.
As the rain passed away and the orruks started their waaagh! cries, the surviving Hound cried out a warning as the first Deadwalker lumbered close. Friederik quickly put it down with a well aimed pistol shot.

Then the orruks charged forward, cutting down both Gryph Hounds.

Rotten shutters burst off their hinges as Deadwalkers poured out of the Mansion and onto the courtyard.

As one, the entire Church charged, Avram seeking revenge on the shaman and Friederik engaging the boyz that had felled his last Hound.

The combats were brutal, with casualties on both sides, and as blood poured forth more Deadwalkers came like moats to a flame.

The combats turned into gruelling affairs as the zombies clawed and bite at both orruks and men.

Avram cast down the shaman from the Dreadfire Portal, sending the grot attendant into a screaming flight.

But that was not enough. Trapped between the Black Orcs and the Deadwalkers, Lothar had lost the support of the Militia. As he prepared to fall at the hands of the orruk warboss, a chill wind blew from the Mansion and a hunchbacked figure appeared on the Mansion's balcony.

"Cursed you all!" screeched the owner of the Mansion "You and your puny gods! There's a price for interfering with Nagash's will, a blood price! Pay it, or perish!"
With these words, the Necromancer turned into a purple mist and drifted away.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Quintus Severus' retinue - 1

The lure of the dark future is still keeping me away from the Silver Tower box. Reading Blanchitsu on the first issue of the new monthly White Dwarf, while holding in my hands the Slaughter Priest freebie, inspired me to use a bunch of models I had stashed away and which were not finding their way in any of my existing armies. What better way to use them than to convert them into an Inquisitorial retinue? I put all those models into a pile, threw in a few assorted bits and frantically started converting.

Inquisitor Quintus Severus

The first model I tackled was the Liberator that came with the weekly White Dwarf issue announcing the release of Age of Sigmar. The baroque armour was perfect to represent a high-ranking Imperial figure like an Inquisitor and its size perfectly matched the bits I had left over from the Chaos Terminator Lord from Asassinorum: Execution Force.

First, I removed the more obviously Chaos decorations like the skull on the storm bolter and the horn and hook hanging from the power axe cable. Then I swapped the axe head for the Liberator's hammer. To add a more Imperial feeling I added parchments from the Plague Monks hanging from the armour and hammer, sculpting a seal on one of them. The base comes from the now out of production 40k urban basing kits.

The collar comes from the Collegiate Arcana Battle Mage merged to the armour gorget using a bit of Green Stuff. The head, like the arms, comes from the Chaos Terminator Lord. The aged face with its resolute expression and the lack of any Chaos marking makes it perfect to represent a seasoned, grim Inquisitor.

On the back of the collar I glued an etched brass Imperial Eagle coming again from the Urban Basing kit. The vents on the armour back are taken from a Space Marine backpack. The combination of Eagle on the collar and small, built-in vents is inspired by the Custodes armours from The Burning of Prospero.

With the addition of a scroll and skull from the Plague Monks and a sculpted plug to join the hammer cable to the armour, Quintus Severus was done.

Servitor XA-305

Next in line was the Slaughter Priest. With the addition of weapons from the Astra Militarum Sentinel and by shaving away all the spikes on the armour and flesh, it turned into a perfect Servitor.

I used pieces of wire and a bit of green stuff to add some more futuristic details, to replace the Khorne icon on the belt and to cover the one on the helmet. The Chaos star hanging from the belt was instead replaced with the hook I had removed from Quintus' axe power cable.

The gun is the Sentinel Autocannon with shortened barrel. As Servitor XA-305 has no hands to throw grenades, the smoke launcher, also from the Sentinel, found its way on the Priest's shoulder pad.

Psyber Familiars

For these three little fellows I made use of various bits.

The Cherub comes from the Freeguild General and for its base I used another etched brass detail from the Urban Basing Kit and a Space Marine banner.

The Servoskull is a skull from the Khemri Skeleton Warriors, with wires and green stuff for the cables and bionic implants. The base is a resin details from the Urban Basing Kit.

The Raven also comes from the Freeguild General with the addition of a bionic eye and cable. The base combines another resin details from the Urban Basing Kit and a broken spar I had left over after finishing Hab-block S22.

While I was assembling it, I realised that it reminds of this Blanche's drawing from the Necromunda rulebook. So thank you Mr Blanche for your inspiring work!

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Hallow'd Ground - Game 3

Into the Zombie's Lair

What Friederik's griphs had found was not a cursed artifact stirring the dead back to life, but just an ancient tome. Lothar spent an entire day poring over its crumbling pages, hoping to find a clue to his quest to rid the Harrowmark of its curse and possibly locate Nagash. The book told of an ancient Necromancer, his mansion and of the realm of terror that had spread from there in ages past. Was the Necromancer back? They had to investigate the mansion, but to do it at ease they had to steal a march on the orruks, even if that meant travelling at night.

As the sun was setting, the Church of Sigmar's Retribution prepared for a long treck.

Jacob Finster split from the main group and moved towards Deathwatch Manor.

Lothar muttered a curse as the orruks stomped into view. It seemed impossible to avoid them, even at night. And now they were reinforced by a gang of hulking Black Orcs.

Ludvig Mannhaft led the Penitent Brotherhood to meet the Black Orcs while Lothar ordered the Militia to stop the boyz.

The orruk Shaman rushed into the courtyard of Deathwatch Manor while the warboss and the crossbow boyz moved to bar access to the building.

In the growing darkness, the orruks sprang forth and crushed most of the Church men before they had a chance to land a blow.

The Penitent Brotherhood fared a little better and some Flagellants survived the initial onslaught, just to see their fellows rise again as Deadwalkers. The Militia, and Jakob who had run to support them, fell to the last men.

But suddenly the boyz were swamped by the reanimated militiamen.

Ludvig and Sharpbeak joined the fight against the Black Orcs.

They too felled and more Deadwalkers rose. Lothar had to reconsider his plans. Better to retreat and find a way to the Necromancer's mansion while the orruks were bogged down by the Deadwalkers.

As the Excelsior Warpriest and a few battered survivors backtracked, the manic laughter of the orruk shaman rung from the top of Deathwatch Manor. What had the orruk found in the arcane building?