Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Year in Painting: 2015

At the end of last year I did a summary of my year in painting, and I set some goals for myself for 2015.  It is time to check and see how I did with my self imposed goals.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Reinforcements En Route

This weekend I got together with one of my longtime friends for an afternoon of assembling, converting, and beer.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Quantity vs Quality: A Mathematical Approach

Over the past several articles I have been looking at when to give units toughness bonuses and when to buff units with psychic abilities.  These have been dancing around the edges of a much bigger question, "When it comes to units is quality better than quantity?"  I have been working on this problem directly, and I'm finally able to share these results.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Shambling Horde

It has been a while since my last painting update.  Even though things slowed down for the past few months; I have not been entirely unproductive.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Divination and Optimization

Conventional internet wisdom says that Divination is a gift from the emperor himself.  Let's look at some numbers and figure out when divination is going to be useful.  Not all units are created equal, so not everyone is going to get the same benefit.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Toughness Bonuses: Obliterators

Over the past two articles I have talked about the benefits of a mark of Nurgle from a purely defensive standpoint as well as when we take offensive power into account.  Both times I have left Obliterators out of the equations, but now I bring them back into the fold.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Toughness Bonuses: Offense Vs. Defense

With all things being equal, how does an increase in defensive power from a mark of Nurgle balance out with the offensive and defensive power of additional models?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Toughness Bonuses: When to take or Pass

One of my favorite things about playing Chaos Marines is their customizable options.  When working with marines and cultists Chaos has the option to buy an additional toughness with a mark of Nurgle.  The difficult part is determining when this is a good idea vs when should you add more models.  I am here with math to help you all figure things out.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Tuesday, September 22, 2015


Apocalypse is a form of 40k that draws quite a few strong opinions.  Some people love it because it lets them bring their toys that don't normally see much game time, but others hate it because it doesn't let normal units do much before getting blasted off the table.  I have never played an apocalypse game, but now my friends have begun organizing to have one in October.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Blast From the Past

Recently some of my friends have started getting back into Mordheim.  I loved this game as a kid, but up until last weekend I had not played any games for probably twelve years.

Now there has been some stir of excitement, and I have been working to organize a small campaign amongst friends.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Mortarion Completed

After a month of solid work dedicated to painting Mortarion he is finally finished.  I can say without a doubt that every ounce of my skills went into this model.  This was also an incredibly fun model to paint.  It was a great break from churning out squads of guardsmen and tanks.  Most of the time I am concerned about pushing models out in a relatively quick manner because guardsmen are expendable, but it was very refreshing being able to take all of the time I needed in order to make this model look perfect.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

An Initial Game of Age of Sigmar

I played my first game of Age of Sigmar.  When the rules were release I poured over them as well as the war-scrolls, but I wanted to reserve any real judgement until I played a game.  Upon an initial assessment, this game is fun.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Mortarion: A Brief Update

I have started working on painting Mortarion and I wanted to give you all an update.  

The original body, the one with too much mold release agent, has been acting as an excellent test piece.  The bone white and gold have turned out magnificently!  When I work the mud splatter on the actual model things are likely going to be toned back a bit.  I don't normally do this kind of effect and I went a bit overboard.  

Also it appears that spraying a model with dull coat helps primer bind to a model.  This leg was particularly shiny, and I was worried that this would be a troublesome spot.  After spraying the model with dull coat, followed by primer, I have had no issues with paint flaking.

I have begun work on my main Mortarion model and I am incredibly excited about this project.  Stay tuned for more updates!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Painting In The Heat

One of the worst things about summer is that spray painting models is more or less off limits.  Anything above 80 degrees (26 for people with a decent system of measurements) results in models with a sandpaper texture.  As of today I have a tip for helping alleviate this problem.

Friday, July 24, 2015

An Adventure in Forge World: Customer Service and Assembly

Recently I made my first forge world order.  I had been wanting to make one for years, and nearly pulled the trigger several times.  Real life issues have always prevented me from following through with an order.  Until now!  This series of articles is going to catalog all my experiences working with a Forge World product for the first time.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Trying Out Renegades

I finally managed to get a couple of games in with Imperial Armor 13 renegades, and I was very pleased with the results.  Two of my oldest friends, Alex and Phil, wanted to get a couple of games in.  Alex and I decided to play The first game

Friday, July 10, 2015

Plague Tank

Hey!  I have some completed work!  Much of the past few weeks has been dedicated to me assembling models (not exciting) rather than actually painting them (much more exciting).  Finally I have some work worth showing off.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Meat for the Meat Grinder: A Khorne Daemonkin Battle Report

Yesterday I played a game against one of my good friends, Phil, who has recently gotten back into 40k.  He was trying out a Dark Eldar list and I decided to play around with Khorne Daemonkin.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Toxic Warp

After a solid month of painting, and several seasons of Game of Thrones, I have another batch of Nurgle deamons.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

The Corruption Spreads

The weather this last month really cut into my painting.  It was either raining, or too hot/humid to spray models.  After enough time I finally got a chance to clear-coat my models.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Battlereport: Crimson Slaughter Vs Blood Angels

I played against my good friend Cameron this weekend.  He brought Blood Angels with allied Skitarii and I brought Crimson Slaughter with allied Daemons.  This time around I wanted to try something out of the ordinary, so I settled on a list that was pretty much just a horde or Nurgle.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Summer Painting

Now that school is out I have free time again.  Time that can be spent painting, and watching netflix.  Every summer I come up with a plan for what I want to accomplish.  Last summer I painted my entire Fallen Angels army and this summer I am going to try and finish up my Traitor Guard.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Optimizing the Psychic Phase

I have had a request for information comparing psychic shooting and traditional shooting.  As I was working the probabilities I thought to myself, "Oh the number of warp charges per power easily falls into a game theory problem.  That means it can be optimized!"  Instead of the planned 'psychic shooting vs traditional shooting' I give you 'How you should plan your psychic phase.'

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Deep Striking Safety: Part 4 (Large Oval Bases)

This was by far the most work of any of the warhammer related probabilities to date.  After several rounds of incorrect formulas I started using excel to check my work.  I discovered that my formulas were incorrect (again) and that excel was insufficient to do the work that I needed.  Fortunately I found a free online course for MATLAB.  The past couple of weeks I have been learning how to program in MATLAB, and have come up with some conclusive results.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Khorne Daemonkin Battlereport

I finally got to play a game with the new Khorne Daemonkin.  It was a bloodbath, so both Khorne and myself were pleased.

Sunday, May 3, 2015


After four weeks of regular season games we started out single elimination tournament this week.

Monday, April 27, 2015

League Week 4: End of the Regular Season

This last week was the final week of the regular season of our league.  This week will start the single elimination tournament.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Monday, April 13, 2015


My scheduled games got cancelled this weekend.  Sometimes life happens.  Khorne is angry, but I will get a game with the new codex in soon.  To appease you all I took some pictures of one of my favorite models, my Nurgle corrupted vendetta.

Friday, April 10, 2015

League Week 2: The end of the beginning

This week I wanted to switch up my list a bit.  Specifically, I wanted to try out the crazy idea of using Wyrdvane Psyker squads to try and summon daemons.  My vision was to have enough lesser daemons summoned to prevent the rest of my army from being charged.  While I was not successful in the way I envisioned, I still managed to be successful overall.

Friday, April 3, 2015

A New League

Wednesday night marked the start of my local gaming store's semi-annual league.  This is always a ton of fun and a great way to learn a new army because of the sheer volume of low point games.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Khorne Daemonkin: Formations and a Sample List

I hope that this codex is a snapshot of things to come.  The combination of a unique detachment with multiple formations adds an incredible amount of flavor to an army.  I want this same kind of treatment for the armies I actually play.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Khorne Daemonkin: Unit Reviews

I have had a chance to read over the unit descriptions a few times, and I have compiled my thoughts on the matter.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Khorne Daemonkin: Initial Impressions

Yesterday I picked up Codex Khorne Daemonkin.  I have no desire to start a Khorne army (praise be to Nurgle).  If this book is any indication of things to come, then I am excited for the future of chaos.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Math By Request: Bloodthirster Vs Imperial Knight

One of the regular readers, Mundo, made a request for some calculations related to the new bloodthirster of insensate rage fighting an Imperial Knight.  When I took this on I thought, "Oh this is going to be easy."  After a few hours days all I can say is that destroyer weapons are painful for more than just their target.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

A Pox to the Loyalists!

With my spring break coming to an end, and a heightened sense of urgency, I sat down and finished up my tank commander.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Race is On!

I found out yesterday that my friendly local gaming store will be hosting its spring 40k league!  This time around things are going to run fast.  The games will be 850 points and there will be a one hour time limit, so we can get three games done in an evening.  The small points and large number of games mean that this is the perfect opportunity for me to learn how to play Astra Militarum.  Now when I say Astra Militarum what I really mean is despicable traitor legion dedicated to Nurgle.  I can't play as true loyalists.

The league starts on April 1st (not a joke) which means I have a LOT of work to do in the next week and a half.  Right now I have 20 guardsmen, a couple of command squads, vendetta, and manticore all painted.  In the unpainted pile I have a vanquisher tank commander, chimera, 10 more guardsmen, and 10 scions (to be used as veterans).  Fortunately I am on spring break for the next week, so hopefully I will be able to get a lot of painting done.

Stay tuned for painting updates followed by battle reports.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Trapdoor Spider

Over the past six months I have started using a little used combo I call 'The Trapdoor Spider'.  This involves a squad of three terminators with a single chainfist in a landraider.  Neither termintators nor landraiders are considered to be top tier performers for the forces of Chaos, but together they seem to work well.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Deep Striking Safety: Part 3 Squads

So far I have talked about deep striking against a wall of troops and lone monstrous creatures.  These seem to be the two opposite ends of the spectrum.  This time around I tackle a single ten man infantry squad (not literally).

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Landraider Complete

With one day of decent weather this week, I managed to get my landraider clear-coated.  The finishing touchers were added, and everything is complete.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Nerd-Bowl Party 2015

Yesterday was the final day of the Las Vegas Open tournament.  Frontline Gaming decided to stream the matches at the head table, so some of my friends decided to host a watch party complete with pizza, beer, and a whole lot of warhammer.

Monday, February 16, 2015

A Vile Creation

These past two weeks have lit a fire in my painting.  I am finally *finished* with my landraider!  *Almost.  I still have to clear coat the model and use the dry pigments, but all of the major legwork is done.  However, with the way the weather is looking I may not be able to clear coat for another week.

Here is a preview shot.

Once I am done with everything including the dry pigments I will post more pictures.

With this completed I am now one squad of Kroot (for a friend) away from expanding my traitor guard force.  I am hoping to have them done by Friday when we get together for a game.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Deep Striking Safety: Part 2 (Monstrous Creatures Edition)

In the previous post we looked at the probabilities when deep striking against a wall of troops.  What we saw was pretty straightforward; the farther you are from your target the less likely you are to mishap.  This time around we are deep striking by a large round base such as a daemon prince or dreadnought, and the results show something interesting.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Teaching 40k

A couple weeks back a friend of mine said that she was interested in learning 40k.  I have people tell me this on a somewhat frequent basis, but rarely does anyone ever take me up on the offer.  This weekend we got together for a couple of beginner games.  I have done this in the past for a couple of friends, but I haven't ever gone into this from the perspective of a teacher (my chosen profession).  Here is my perspective on how to teach someone 40k.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Deep Striking Safety: Part 1 (The Gunline)

A reader recently posed the question on the safety of deep striking.  Scattering is a difficult thing to account for, and can either leave you in an amazing position or dead.  No one wants their deathstar (pop-star) to die to a deep strike mishap.  This will be the first of a series of posts dedicated to the probabilities related to deep striking.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Accuracy of Blasts

This is a post I wrote nearly a year ago for 40k Daemons.  The discussion on scattering and deep striking made me think I should revive this post.  Enjoy while I work on new calculations for deep striking.

One question that I have been pondering for ages has been, "How accurate are blast weapons?"  The scatter die has always been a wild card.  I finally decided to sit down, do a pile of trigonometry, and figure this out once and for all.  Let it be known; I do math so you don't have to.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Re-roll vs. Roll Two Pick the Highest

There are a couple of situations that many people think are exactly the same (mathematically), but are actually quite different.  Most of these situations derive from rolling multiple dice and picking, presumably the highest result, vs rolling once with the option to re-roll the result.  Thinking back to my first post about math I am going to use expected value to try and maximize the various situations.

Monday, January 19, 2015


This weekend I got together with my regular gaming group, and any time this group gets together there is significant drinking.  This occasion was no exception.  So with my six pack of PBR tall boys I was set for the afternoon.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Math by Request: An Introduction to Combinatorics

Jon Glas has requested that I give a bit more background information on how I have been calculating probabilities.  This area of mathematics is known as combinatorics, and with its relation to 40k one of my favorite areas of mathematics.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Building a Better Tournament

I have been to many 40k tournaments throughout the years.  Most of them have been small but I did attend a grand tournament (bugeater) a few years back.  If you have never been to a grand tournament I would recommend it, as it was an enlightening experience.

As many 40k tournaments I have been to, I have actually been to more debate tournaments.  Over the past few years I have been inducted (suckered) into judging debate for the high school team my wife coaches.  While most of it is completely unrelated to 40k, the format of most debate tournaments are very similar to the format of most 40k tournaments.