Episode 4: Scenery with Steve!

We’re back! Apologies for the absence, but life sometimes bites you on the arse! We are definitely back however and will carry on bringing you little chunks of 40K goodness.

Tonight’s offering sees Joe and Simon talking to Steve Harder. A former GW scenery Guru, Steve was responsible for (amongst other things) the Warhammer World Minath Tirith display that many years ago was a centrepiece at Games Day, and many other pieces of scenery at Warhammer World that gamers still use and game on today.

Steve talks about materials to use when making scenery, gives us his thoughts on planning projects, speaks about a few models he’s made and gives us a few general handy tips.

NB: Apologies for sound issues this episode – Joe and Steve had a few mic issues at the start of the recording.


A gaming epiphany Part 3 – Conclusions and going forward!

An epiphany (from the ancient Greek ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, “manifestation, striking appearance”) is an experience of sudden and striking realization

Long time, no blog post (…or podcast, although that is soon to be rectified) – but life does get in the way sometimes. That, in a way, is what this blog post is all about.

So…this here epiphany of mine…

In the two previous blog posts about this, I spoke about changing armies too often, the problems that caused, and what I’d decided to TRY and do about it. The central tenants of it still hold true, i.e. I want to play an army that suits my playstyle and is straightforward, and has models I like / enjoy painting. However, the two armies I chose (Marines and tank heavy guard…TWO armies, to keep a bit of variety lurking to stimulate my hobby needs) are no longer “in the frame”. The OTHER big reason to stop “chasing the new shiny” – financial expediency – came into play, when I had to sell a few models to cover a big unexpected bill! **

(** i.e. I was in the **** money wise and needed cash fast!!)

So, for money reasons, time to reassess.

  • It’s still true that I need / want to suit my playstyle
  • It’s still true that I need as straightforward an army as possible, and that can be eased by playing more often and becoming more familiar with it
  • I want something I enjoy painting / hobbying with.

…but I need to, for now, spend as little as possible.

I have access to a large Blood Angels collection that was my son’s pride and joy. He still plays occasionally, but is certainly not as into the hobby side of things as he used to be. So, I get some no-nonsense Space Marines, but with great fluff / background and unique models. Sort of as originally planned, but in retrospect more so I’d say. There’s a few bits of it to finish off painting-wise, but for the most part it’s done. So, there’s my army to play regularly with and keep learning about (with a few bits of hobbying required thrown in). Certainly very straightforward, and not much money spent as I “had” it already!

I also have in my possession a VERY nicely painted Tyranid Army. I’m no 40K genius, but it doesn’t take much of one to know that they’re behind the curve a bit (!!) unless you load up on flying Hive Tyrants. That rules playing that regularly out, as I don’t want to have to invest a great deal, forgetting the fact I’d have a helluva job on my hands matching my friend Lewis Clarke’s paint job on them. So…as I have a lot of the guard / AM infantry I made a start on as well as a couple of the vehicles, an interesting side project / modelling project to go alongside the Blood Angels would be Genestealer Cult. I love the background and there’s some great rules.

So, in conclusion, it’s all worked out in the end…and actually for the better. Notably, it did so once I’d thought about ALL  factors that were ultimately bubbling under my thought process about all this; Playstyle that suits me /  models I like,  not following whatever the new hotness is (and thus avoiding half-started projects and wasted cash / time), BUT most importantly taken my financial circumstances into account as well.

My lad’s Blood Angels were there to be used, and ticked my boxes style, cash & hobby wise. I also had a lovely painted army (Tyranids) that together with some models (AM / Guard) I’d collected recently could form another I was interested in (Genestealer Cult) without having to spend lots of cash. Win win!

If my hobby roving eye is ever peering over the fence from where it currently resides with the above, my lad’s first love of Chaos marines and the (appropriately) chaotic nature of the collection lurks in boxes requiring some hobby love…as does his Eldar (that’s nearly all done but just needs playing with.
Gamers will always be enthusiastic about new releases in their hobby, and I’ve always enjoyed variety in my interests…but there’s more appropriate motivation behind all of it now. That motivation (playstyle, models / fluff I like, budgetary constraints…along with having most of the models to hand already) should lead to playing more often and in a focussed way. Getting to know your army is a way of getting better at the game. Getting better at the game, feeds into the hobby enthusiasm.


Episode 3: Back to School with Phil!

For Episode 3, Simon flies solo (without Joe’s dulcet tones and magnificent beard!!) and interviews Mr Philip Hook.

As well as being a gaming opponent of Simon’s, Phil is a teacher at a local High School and runs a 40K club for some of his pupils. Simon talks to Phil about how he went about setting it up, how he runs it and the challenges he faces in doing do…as well as a few anecdotes of gaming.

This is the first in a few episodes about wargaming 40K in the community, and what people are doing to spread the hobby!

A gaming epiphany: Part 2 – The plan!

An epiphany (from the ancient Greek ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, “manifestation, striking appearance”) is an experience of sudden and striking realization

So, last time I said “I’ve had an epiphany”, and then just banged on for ages about how I used to play one particular army for years but have been chopping and changing since I stopped doing so…etc. There was also a moan or two about not playing very often, and talking generally about advice re choosing armies. What I didn’t explain very well was the “epiphany” itself, which was very simple:

I’ve not settled on an army…this is due to hobby magpie syndrome (“oooh…new shiny…” etc) and my habit of listening to competitive focussed 40K podcasts, where the “new hotness” is often discussed. This is a waste of time and money, and leads to half-started modelling projects and a lack of army knowledge…poorer play being a result, as well as a less than brill hobby experience. So…stop it! I’ve decided to simply pick an army that (1) I like for fluff / model / cool reasons, (2) that suits my play style, (3) I will enjoy modelling / hobbying of, and (4) suits my pocket / wallet.

So…nice models / models I like, cool fluff, suits my playing style, not too expensive…what’s trendy be damned.

Now, I mentioned last time that the ONE truly good thing about having chopped / changed armies so much was a variety of things to work on…so what I lost in gaming mojo I sort of kept up in modelling painting mojo. So, two armies will be chosen. And they are…

  1. Tank-heavy guard / mech armoured company
  2. Space Marines (vanilla)

Yes…very boring I know…and with sufficient tweaking, the SMs could be deemed cheesy and competitive (Gladius and free transports anyone?)…but my reasons explained above fit these two perfectly, in several ways! They could also ally with each other for larger games…so effectively I’m building one army (!).

I also have my lads armies that he occasionally wants my help with, so that should beat down the variety cravings too!

So yes…stop following what I think I ought to play or whats the new trendy kid on the block, and play / model what I WANT to!

I came to this decision earlier in the summer and made a big start on the Guard / Astra Miltarum / Whatever GW call them this week, and just of late have started on the Marines. Pics soon…along with details of the Guard’s first outing, and how exactly these two fit my wallet!

Episode 2 – Commission Panting

For episode 2 of 40K Bitesize, Simon and Joe talk to Marcus of Dice Skull Studios, a commission painting service based in Bristol.

We talk to Marcus about the challenges he faces as a commission painter, how he approaches his work, likes and dislikes and things like his charges and turnaround time. We also find out a little more about him as a gamer.

Marcus can be contacted on Facebook (@DiceSkullStudios) or via email (diceskull_studios@hotmail.com).

If you liked this episode, let us know! Leave us an iTunes review, comment on our Facebook page (@40kbitesize), follow us on Twitter (@40kbitesize) or email us on 40kbitesize@gmail.com. Check out our website on 40kbitesize.wordpress.com!

A gaming epiphany: Part 1 – Theory!

An epiphany (from the ancient Greek ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, “manifestation, striking appearance”) is an experience of sudden and striking realization


So, I had a gaming epiphany (in 40K terms)…

Some history:

For the last 6 or 7 years, I’ve changed armies more often than some change underwear – almost! Listeners of our previous podcasting efforts (40KForOldMen / 6s2hit) will know how I’ve lambasted myself (and been ridiculed by others) for this. Coming into into GW gaming from historicals in the 90s, I was originally a Fantasy / Blood Bowl player, but I did collect a Rogue Trader Slaanesh force (original Realm of Chaos books) and I bought some Space Wolves when the metal ones first came out in the mid 90s. That was just collecting really – I didn’t play 40K at all in 2nd ed. When 3rd ed and the simplification of the rules came about, I  got into 40K and used the Dark Eldar from the boxed set, which I expanded upon into a feared by many Wych Cult at the local GW games night on a  Thursday evening. The occasional dabble with Eldar, and combat patrol with those Space Wolves I’d bought years before, but I was “Mr Dark Eldar”. I had a little dabble with the old Daemonhunters codex and won a few games, which sewed the seed of changing armies after long time of the same thing.

A redundancy and return to Higher Education saw me sell most of my collection to reboot it and raise some cash.

Since then I’ve tried Necrons (3rd ed codex…my fails with Veil of Darkness were legendary), various flavours of Space Marines, Chaos (Daemons & CSM) and others. Most recently I’ve painted a bunch of Astra Militarum tanks and have had a mate’s lovely painted ‘nids on long term loan. The effect all this chopping and changing (as well as a notable decrease in how often I find time to play) has had, is that my understanding of rules and how my army works is ‘less than optimal’ shall we say! So…how to fix this?

It’s an often handed out piece of advice that when those new to the hobby ask what army they should choose, they are advised to go for something that excites and interests them…i.e. motivates them to collect the army. For some, competing in tournaments is the buzz, so a smash face / competitive cutting edge army is where its at. For others, it may be the visual appeal, or for others they may really dig the fluff behind an army. I find myself somewhere between the latter two; Regardless of their effectiveness, I like models that look cool on the table and that I dig the background of.

Another handed out piece of advice for beginners is to find an army that suits your play style. I am devoid of anything that resembles subtlety…not just on the rugby pitch. Rush in and hit hard!! Any Dk Eldar guile I must have had, which would have come from familiarity with the old 3rd ed codex and through frequent play, out the window. Then again, I was a Wych Cult via webway portal kind of chap…not overly subtle! I also have a burning desire to keep things as simple as possible.

So…I need

  1. an army that is simple to play or has a straight forward premise
  2. that suits my play style
  3. contains models I like and would enjoy painting / modelling
  4. …and I have to confess that my frequent changes have kept my hobby interest up so I’d like some variety – perhaps two armies, one as a modelling project and another to play with more regularly?

Two have been chosen for exactly the reasons described above!  Part 2 coming soon…