Friday, 2 June 2017

Journeyman Warcasters Explained

I have seen a lot of posts in various faction groups asking rules questions regarding Journeyman Warcasters (the term used to refer to solos which have focus and control Warjacks. For the rest of the article I will shorten this to Jr's) so I figured I would write a piece explaining their rules and interactions.
This article is aimed at all the Warmachine factions (except Convergence of Cyriss who don't have one) and mainly newer players - but veterans might pick up something here too.

(Ignore Sturgis... this was the best image I could find of all the Jr's together!)


They are not Warcasters
Even though they share a lot of rules, they are not Warcasters.
This means they can't dominate scenario elements, or be affected by effects that work on "friendly Warcaster" such as Reinholdt's reload ability or Gastone benefiting from Rocinante's "guard dog" ability.

They have to start the game with at least one Warjack under their control (unlike Jack marshals who can only control one jack) there is no limit on how many they can control. Its more of a risk/reward choice for you to make. They can't spend the main Warcaster's jack points on their Warjack.

They have the following rules, which I will simplify:

Battlegroup commander
This allows them to control Warjacks in the same way your main Warcaster does. This means that if the Warjack is in their control area it will gain power-up focus and they can allocate focus to it.

Focus manipulation
This works in the same way it does with your main Warcaster - they will replenish focus up to their Focus stat in the Control phase. They have a Control range, which is double their current focus stat and can boost attack and damage rolls, and buy melee attacks. They can also spend focus to shake effects.

Power field
Like a Warcaster they can spend focus during their activation to heal one point of damage per focus spent. They can also spend a focus point to negate 5 damage per attack.

Spellcaster
They can cast spells in the same way your main Warcaster can. So, unlike a solo which must use a star action or attack to cast a spell (for example, a War witch siren or a Greylord forge seer, who have to use their movement before they can cast a spell) a Jr can cast a spell and then advance/charge or advance/charge then cast a spell. (Note they still can't cast a spell and run or cast after failing a charge.)

Spells and battlegroups
Something to be aware of are which spells will or won't work with a Jack under the control of a Jr.
For example Malakov1's (Khador's Jr) spell 'Redline' can only be cast on a Jack he controls as it is limited to a Jack in his battlegroup. If Malakov is included in Irusk1's army, Irusk could cast 'Superiority' on a Jack that Malakov controls as this spell states that it affects "target friendly faction warjack" (though the Jack can't benefit from both Superiority and Redline at the same time as they are both upkeep spells)

Another example: the The Witch Coven can't cast Infernal Machine onto a Jack controlled by Aiakos1 (Cyrx's Jr) as it states "target warjack in the spellcaster's battlegroup"

It's therefore worth checking the spell interactions in your list to see what is possible.

They are affected by the spell 'Backlash' (when a Jack that is part of a battlegroup is damaged its controller suffers one damage point) and the ability feedback. This does the same effect but from a different method, so both happen for a total of two damage to your Jr per damaging attack on the Jack. Because of this you might need to be careful with the Jack your Jr controls when facing these abilities, as they will quickly die by them!

Death of a Jr
So what if the worst happens and your Jr gets killed? Well any Warjacks it was controlling become "inert".

While a Jack is inert it loses any focus it had and can't gain any more. It can't activate, has no melee range and can't engage or be engaged. This means that if an enemy model is in melee with your inert Jack they don't gain the +4 def against ranged and magic attacks for being in combat.

Your inert Jack is auto hit in melee and has def 5 against ranged and magic attacks. They don't gain the armour benefit of shields or bucklers. Inert Jacks don't contest scenario elements.

Reactivating inert Warjacks
You can reactivate your inert Warjack using a model with the Battlegroup commander special rule (your main Warcaster and any Jr's in your list, though currently only Cygnar has access to more than one) or a friendly faction Jack marshal.

A Warcaster or a Jr have to be base to base with the inert Jack and spend one focus, this will reactivate the Jack and put it into their battlegroup.

A Jack marshal has to be base to base with the inert Jack and forfeit their combat action. This will reactivate the Jack and bring it under the control of the Jack marshal (unless they are already in control of a Jack, in which case the reactivated Jack will become Autonomous).

If the Jack that went inert was a colossal then it will not come under the control of a Jack marshal as they can't control them, in this case it will become Autonomous.

When an inert Jack is reactivated it must forfeit its combat action that turn.

In later turns Autonomous Jack can activate as normal but does not benefit from being in a battlegroup or being Marshaled.

If you have an inert Jack that you would like to bring into your main Warcaster's control, but they are too far away to reactivate it, you could have a Jack marshal that already controls a Jack reactivate the inert Jack making it autonomous. Then, have the autonomous Jack advance towards your Warcaster (remembering to forfeit its combat action). Finally have your Warcaster advance into base to base and spend a focus to bring the autonomous Jack into its battlegroup.

And that's the rules that you might need to know about Jr's. I only play Cygnar so I will likely write a tactica for their Jr's at some point. If there is enough interest I could write one about a Jr in another faction but bear in mind that I have no practical experience using the other factions' Jr's so it would be totally theory based!

I hope you found this article helpful.If you did, please share it with your local clubs or drop a comment below - feedback is always welcome, as are suggestions for future articles!

(The OG and most used Jr!)

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Magnetising Aradus Soldier/Sentinel

My latest commission was to assemble and magnetise a Skorne Aradus Soldier/Sentinel.

I had not magnetised a warbeast before so I was interested to see how it would turn out.
Warbeasts having more natural and curved shapes they can often be more in need of gap filling at the joints you want to be magnetised.



The claw arms I drilled into with a 1mm drill bit to make a pilot hole then drilled in with a 3mm drill bit. Before gluing any magnet check, check and triple check that they are all the same polarity! 
I used 3mm x 1mm magnets for the claw arms.


Left and right shoulder magnets drilled into the torso. I did a small amount of gap filling with green stuff where the body comes together in it three main parts.



The tail for the Sentinel seemed like a 3mm magnet would not be enough so I used a 5mm x 2mm magnet for the magnet inside the back half of the body and the Sentinel's tail. The Soldiers tail is much smaller so I just used a 3mm x 1mm magnet.



Here it is set up as a Sentinel


And here as a Soldier. 

The thing I learnt about on this one was that the claw arms on the Soldier are really pushing the limit of what a 3mm magnet can hold. I found you have to push the arm into place rather than let the power of the magnet pull the arm into place as with the Sentinels arms.

If there was room in the arm piece I would like to have used a 5mm magnet but there wasn't the space.

Even with this the arms hold on well enough that I can shake the model gently and the arms stay on and violent shaking only makes one arm fall off. I'm calling that a win! 

I'm glad I used 5mm magnets for the Sentinels tail it is quite a heavy piece that has a high center of gravity so I doubt it would stay on with a smaller magnet.

Its worth mentioning that the client didn't want the head magentised he picked the one he liked the look of best and its glued on, but it could easily be magnetised with a 3mm magnet. 



If you would like me to magnetise something for you drop me an email at
thomasgbell84@googlemail.com
(I'm based in the UK)

Monday, 24 April 2017

Magnetising Stormwall/Hurricane

 I got hold of my Stormwall/Hurricane kit and got straight to work assembling and magnetising it!

A few people have done similar and shared their work on facebook but the temporary nature of facebook groups makes it harder for people to find out how to magnetise theirs.

A few people asked me to write this post detailing how I went about it, so here it is!


Sprues! So glad to see, made the kit so much easier to assemble.

The size magnets I used in this kit are 10mm x 3mm for the waist and arms - body connection.
3mm x 1mm this size was for all the weapons and changeable parts that make the model either a Stormwall or a Hurricane.


These are a few of the tools I used.
The tool on the far left is just essentially a spike (it might have a proper name but I have no clue!) I use it to put a small dent where I want to drill into a model.
The drill bit in the hand drill is a 1mm drill bit. I used this to drill a hole where the previous tool made a dent.
The Dremel has a 3mm drill bit which I use to drill into the 1mm hole I hand drilled this keeps the Dremel from slipping.


These are the wrist covers the ones on the left are for Hurricane they just needed gluing in place.
The Stormwalls needed drilling in place with the 3mm drill bit, and carving away the two line parts that guide the part into place. I found they made the wrist cover not fit flush to the arm unless I did this.


I cut the bar the wrist guard attaches to and made a place the magnet can sit then carved the bar down a bit to help the Stormwalls piece fit better


The Arc node and Stormpod launcher needed a bit of green stuff to make their magnet reach the one I drilled into the body (as seen below) make sure not to use too much green stuff or they will end up "floating" and look bad.


The big guns fit on the rail like sections, I drilled into the body to make that magnet fit. Then cut into the bar on the weapons to make room for a magnet. I tried to make the gap I cut snug to help keep the magnet in place. I also trimmed down the bar to make the weapons look less like they where floating.



I drilled in the neck hole on the body and the neck on the heads to attach these magnets.



The secondary guns seem to be the ones people have had problems with.
I put a blob of green stuff on the inside of that section of the torso before gluing it together.
I drilled into each different gun and glued a magnet into them all. When the glue was dry I put a second magnet on and pushed it into place on the torso which embedded the second magnet into the green stuff.



For the hips I glued a 10mm x 3mm magnet inside before gluing the two halves together.
The bottom to the torso I had to cut off the round pin like part that is meant to go down into the hips.

I carved away at it to create a hole big enough to fit the magnet then filled the part with green stuff and pressed in the magnet. I spread a layer of the green stuff over the magnet thinly to help hold it in place. Don't put the two pieces together while the green stuff is still soft or the magnet will be pulled out of the model. 
The magnet in the legs being inside them and making the two magnets never actually able to touch means that there is less of a connection so when you go to pull them apart the magnet is less likely to be pulled out of the model. The connection is still really strong though, I can pick up the whole model by the top half with no worries about it falling apart.



For the arms I glued a 10mm magnet to the inside of the torso exactly opposite the curved hole the arm fits into. I then built up green stuff up around the magnet to help keep it in place as shown in the picture above. I actually covered the magnet over completely with green stuff after I took this picture to be extra safe. 
It was at this stage that I put in the green stuff that would hold the secondary weapons magnet.


The magnets in the arms themselves I was unsure how to attach them. I was thinking about drilling into the ball joint to fit the magnet as I have done on my heavy warjacks. 

The problem was that the 10mm magnets are a lot stronger than the 5mm I use on heavy kits so I was worried it would pop out. 

I hadn't assembled the arms yet so I tried putting the magnet into the ball joint with out gluing it and found that the 10mm magnets where strong enough to hold the arms on even through two layers of plastic.

This came with an unexpected bonus... 
Pose-able arms!




The magnets do struggle more with higher poses but still hold really well! The magnet rattles around in the ball joint of the arm if its not attached to the body (in transport for example) but as soon as I attach the arm they don't move at all. When I move the arm to pose it you can hear a clicking noise as the magnet has to move to compensate which reminds me of old jointed toys I had as a kid!


So here it is set up as a Stormwall


And here it is as a Hurricane.

I can't wait to get it painted up so I can try out Hurricane (I have been "play it painted" only for over a year now so haven't tried it out yet)
When this guy is done I will be retiring my old resin/metal Stormwall unless I run double colossal, this kit is just so much lighter and will be easier to transport being magnetised. 


I am wondering how I should base it, seeing as it is a center piece model in my army I want to do something for it. My old Stormwall has two Sword knight defending him.



And here is one of my Stormstriders which is walking over a trench.



So I'm unsure of what to do for this one... I like the idea of another trench
What do you think I should do for basing??

I hope you found this guide helpful, if you did or you have any constructive feedback for me drop a comment below and let me know!

If you would like me to just do yours for you drop me an email at
thomasgbell84@googlemail.com
(I'm based in the UK)

Monday, 17 April 2017

Protectorate of Menoth custom damage tracker

I made this custom damage/soul tracker for a Protectorate of Menoth player.


Made using a Templars shield and the zealots Severius2 normally stands on.



He said that it will be used to track Harbingers health, the battle engines health or the High Reclaimers souls.


I can't wait to see how he paints it! 
What do you think of this custom tracker?

If you would like me to make something similar for your army feel free to contact me at
thomasgbell84@googlemail.com
(I'm based in the UK)

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Custom Cygnar Objective and Flags

Here are my flags and objective for my Cygnar army



I thought seeing as I have been showcasing my non model based hobby stuff lately I would also share my Cygnar Objective and Flags

The objective I made using Stryker3's flag. There was no way I was happy to have the flag increase the space he would take up in my case. Plus it would be so likely to bend or break. I have seen this happen to so many other players versions of him. So I decided to convert him to be holding a shield instead


So I decided to use it to make an objective. I pinned the flag to a brass rod which was tricky to do with how thin they both are.
Then I added some sandbags and a barrel for added detail, these are from Renedra

My flags are made using the banners that come with Stormclads. There was no way I was adding that much height and therefore space in my case for a flag. So I left them off and green stuffed over the hole.
I added a few details to the base of each one and pinned them onto a brass rod.


Here they are in action against my regular Protectorate of Menoth foe

I like the way they tie together with my army and its really nice to turn up to a tournament and put nice looking flags on the table rather than proxy bases which are easy to forget.
It helps me remember that they are there and pushes me a little more to play for scenario.
What do you think of my flags and objective?

Monday, 3 April 2017

Custom painted AOE templates

I realised that I hadn't shared these on the blog the other day when I showed them to one of the guys at my club


I bought a set of mdf laser cut aoe templates and decided that I wanted to paint them to match various effects in my Cygnar army


(How they looked when I got them)


For the 5" aoe I painted one for Foxhole, Magesight and Electroconduction (the gun from Silverline Stormguard)

Foxhole

Mage sight

Electroconduction 

For the 4" aoe I painted an area to represent the rough terrain from Siege'e Rift spell
And also Ryan from the Black 13th Mage storm attack, which is sadly no longer in the game...

Image result for how dare you meme
(PP invalidating my purchases!!!)

Rift

Magestorm (now gets used for the cloud generated by the Fuel Cache objective)

The 3" aoe I painted electrical storms that will work with either Styker2, Sturgis or Jakes2's electrical storm spell or the aoe which remains in play from the reliants gun.

I might need a few more of these if I ever choose to spam Reliants (not too likely at the moment)

What do you think of the painted aoe templates? I think they add a level of detail and make it easier to remind both players of what effect the aoe has.