Wrighty's Vanguard Campaign Log

Intro

Aftermath Gaming Club was lucky enough to be included in the Mantic Vanguard Community Campaign in 2019. Just recording my thoughts and progress here.

Bio

Hi, I've been a gamer for many years. In my early teens I was heavily into RPG's, got into painting some fantasy and sci-fi miniatures and dabbled in tabletop war games. Having had a break from gaming to meet girls, drink beer and then get married and have kids I fell back into the hobby again about 15 years ago.

Since getting back into gaming I have probably played most major tabletop miniature systems to some level or another with Warhammer Fantasy Battle being my go to game for many of the first few years. I have also been to tournaments for various systems including WHFB, Bloodbowl, Malifaux, Kings of War, Dreadball and more. I've won a few trophies for generalship and a few for painting.

I could be classed as a magpie gamer as I tend to get into and collect for many more systems that I can physically play, but I guess that just makes me the average gamer ha ha. I also have a board game collection of over 150 games and tinker with 3D printing.

Recently I've been slack on the painting front with only a handful of models completed so far this year (as of July 2019). One of the reasons for me to join this Vanguard campaign was to have a focus and goal for painting. At the same time getting to try this potentially awesome skirmish campaign game, a style which seems to be missing from my current gaming portfolio.

Day 0 - 16th July - Stuff has arrived

Goodies from Mantic have arrived at club and been kindly supplied with some Basileans. I have the warband set and the booster pack, that's 18 models which should keep me busy for a while.

I also received the rule book and power dice, all enough to get started nicely. I think the only thing I'm missing is a wizard to play with and some counters to help me in game. The former I will most likely purchase and the latter seems like a good excuse to practice some basic 3D modelling.

As I still know nothing about the games rules I guess I better read the book next, as well as get these unboxed and assembled. Although I haven't played this game before I have played Kings of War for a while so most of the fluff is familiar.

Painting Basileans could be interesting as I've not painted much clean bright colours before, I tend towards the gritty or organic forces in general. Could learn some things.

Day 1 - 17th July - Unboxed

So I've opened the box. There's a a mix of hard plastic and plastic-resin in the starter set and just resin in the booster. All look fine and will be all put together soon.

Day 3 - 19th July - Rules read

So I've now managed to read the book, everything except the campaign rules. Thankfully it looks good!

As it's based on Kings of War it is similar as expected with most of the same stats, keywords etc. There are some differences which may trip me up at some point but I think that will be the exception. I don't claim to have it all down pat yet but things make sense and I know how I want to assemble the models now.

It will probably be the campaign rules that make or break it though, those to be read soon.

Day 5 - 21st July - Assembled

It took a couple of evenings but everything is together now. As expected the resin models are really sharp, the plastics are good and the restics are fine.

There were some assembly options, mostly on the hard plastic men-at-arms sprue and I went for 3 spears and 2 crossbows. The other 10 models in the starter set are basically a duplicate set of 5 models with some options on most so all of those I have made to be different except the kitty cats which are single pose. The ogre in the booster set has a weapon option and just went for the biggest one.

Note that I have quite a bad reaction to CA glue. If I don't use the gel/low odour stuff I am literally bedridden for days after a couple of hours around it. Even still I'm going to have all the symptoms of a hay fever sufferer in a florists for the next few days. We all suffer for our art toy soldiers.

Day 7 - 23rd July - Demo games. It's hot.

The Aftermath Club members that are already familiar with the game put on some demos. There were 3 tables out and all were busy. But being rubbish as I am I didn't take any pictures...

I wasn't using my models, still being in production, but used Mark's Basileans in a demo scenario that he has used in the past. This was a 75 point game of "Secure The Portal" against his Nightstalkers.

Being only 75 points we didn't cover everything, neither of us had any spellcasters or even a leader. Regardless it was a great place to start for me with a half a dozen models a side. This allowed us to slowly cover off all the basics and I was quickly moving, bashing and earning VP's. It had helped that I had read the rules already but playing is certainly a more effective learning tool.

We ended up playing 2 games as at this small size they go incredibly quickly, especially when the portal is feeling very hungry as it seemed to be on the night! We took a win each in the end but not the important part as learning was the goal here and I think that went well.

No doubt we got a few things wrong, as is the norm when playing new games, but a quick read of the rules again now with a bit more context should straighten them out.

Looking forward to more, though hopefully next time not in the middle of a heatwave (30 degress in the UK , it's like the end of the world), much more fun when your brains not cooking.

Day 8 - 24th July - Basing. Still hot.

I've never been the most ambitious baser and I want to get these models to the table quickly so just went the basic sand route and will add a bit of grass later. Will look decent enough.

With the weather being what it is it was still a struggle to get these done in the heat. At least it wan't actual painting which would have been a complete no-go. Hopefully it will cool off enough in the next few days to get these undercoated and then start to get some base coats down.

Apart from the painting that needs doing I still need to look at the campaign rules and start putting together some form of warband I guess.

Day 9 - 25th July - Campaign Rules and Thunderstorms

Too hot and muggy to do anything around painting but I did read up on the campaign rules instead. Rudely interrupted by the thunder and lightning, though probably the most impressive and consistent electric storm I've ever witnessed, so pretty cool.

So the campaign rules look pretty good with decent progression and individuality and potential for characters aplenty. Unless they're grunts, no-one cares about grunts. Skills and stats upgrades available, special skills for leaders and spellcasters all sound rather interesting.

Looking forward to trying Retinue rules where you can essentially give jobs to company members for bonuses, should give another dimension to decision making.

Next I should look at some point values and see what company can make with the models I have available then, obviously don't need to cover all units listed on the roster just those I can field at a time.

Day 12 - 28th July - Undercoating Stage 1

Weather has almost subsided into its usual UK state, kind of raining, so easier to paint at least. With that I thought to get my models undercoated. I'm using my airbrush for this and this is still pretty new to me plus I have very cheap kit so undercoating is probably the best it can cope with. Have done a few dozen models with it before but still feel like a complete noob. To be fair I wouldn't have achieved much at all without it so all good. First stage in the black using Vallejo surface primer.

All went well apart from on the resin models from the booster set. I did wash these well before assembly but still looked like the paint had trouble adhering, especially in the recesses. This has slowed me down a bit as it means I'm going to have to finish the black coat by brush, which I also can't do until this is properly dry. Which means I have to properly clean the airbrush now before it gets gunked up. Something I could have avoided if I could have gone straight to stage 2, zenithal highlighting, which will now have to wait as I can't being dealing with cleaning the airbrush twice in one day as lazy as I am.

I should get the black touched up and zentithal done in the next couple of days though, that process is super quick, apart from the airbrush cleaning which is always a bit of a pain.


Day 13 - 29th July - Undercoat Highlights

Managed to quickly finish the undercoating with some Vallejo Air White from 45-60 degrees.

Day 25 - 9th August - Bases Painted. Too long of a break.

It's been a little while but have been busy with various things, mostly gaming related including some board games, some RPG and preparing for and playing in an Infinity tournament. Schedule is looking a little lighter over the next couple of weeks so might actually make some progress though that's probably just wishful thinking.

I'm a bit of a weirdo in that I paint my bases first, especially when just doing a dirty drybrush job.

All done, bar the grass which will be added as the final step of the model, after varnishing, probably a way off yet.

This is the colour palette used, shown here primarily so I can remember it.

Base of brown and two layers of drybrushing.

Next to actual put some paint on a model I guess.

Contrary to current fashion I will not be using Citadel Contrast paints. I know I wanted to paint quickly and they should theoretically help but does fancy learning them at the moment. Plus these models have a fair bit of armour so some quick metallics should be a win anyway.

Will do some spears first, as no-one's likely to look too hard at them on the table so not an issue if I screw them up. As I think I mentioned before I've not painted much recently and nothing at all for months so may need to get my hand back in again.

Ready and waiting like all good grunts should be.

Day 30 - 16th August - Look at me I'm painting!

Slapped some colours on some things, nearly finished too.

Quick job (for me). They look a boring but they're spods so meh. Just need to do finish off the tabards then they're ready for a varnish. Varnishing means done, no more fiddling, move on.

Paint palette used for reference

Also seems I have my first actual game next week so I guess I better put together a company roster. Back to the book then.