A Site for Sore Eyes

by on Apr.13, 2012, under Fiction, Misc.


Well, clearly, I haven’t been doing much with this site for some time – campaigns that’ve required other armies to pop up have pre-empted work here. No promises on when/if updating will resume (much as it’s ever existed…), but there’ll be one hell of a makeover for the occasion.

Anyway, it’s been known for a bit that the Aurora Chapter – along with several others – would be getting a set of official decals from GW, and now they’ve arrived! More, they’ve taken over the GW home page today! Fun little thing to see. Between this, the newly-available Storm Eagle and a big expansion of greens in GW’s new paint range, it’s a pretty good time for anyone looking to play the Boys From Firestorm.

One more tidbit – the Aurora Chapter has a cameo in Aaron Dembski-Bowden’s Void Stalker, which was just released in e-book form, and will be in bookstores soon. Besides the Aurora action, it’s the closer to one of the most amazing pieces of fiction to ever be set in the 40K universe. Cannot recommend them enough, and the same goes for A D-B’s other works.

Stay green, boys and girls.

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For the Love of the Game

by on Feb.09, 2011, under Community


Chances are, you don’t read The Four Strands. That’s fine. Chances are, you also don’t read this blog, so it’s hard to be offended, you know? However, if you want a little bit of inspiration, you could do worse than this entry of his.

I am a teacher. I currently teach science in a nice little DOOMED middle school. Tonight our fate will be decided, and safe money says I won’t have a job next year. However, it is my ambition to teach high school, and to start a wargaming club in that high school.

To that end, I did not want students limited to 40K or Warmachine, so I expanded. I’m trying to get at least 2 playable forces for each game, along with the neccesary terrain dice, etc. to put on demo games. Hopefully once students are interested in one (or more) games they wil have their own armies and play with their friends. It is my wish to give these kids the support of a local gaming group, and a place to play that is easily accessible.

Groups. Communities. Friendships. They’re important, everyone.

Having been a member of the Studio 40K club he writes of, I can confirm his assessment that the group was something special. Tabletop gaming was a means by which we forged a social group that stuck together throughout times both good and bad, and though geographic distances have separated us, I still count many of them – Madman included – among my best friends in the world. The hobby/competitive rage-wars across the internet can come to whatever conclusion they like, but if the best thing you’ve ever gotten out of this game was the fleeting taste of victory, I can only offer you my condolences.

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Winging It

by on Feb.06, 2011, under Modelling

Well. It’s been…some time, yes?

As is, perhaps, to be expected, I managed to forget that whole “concentrate on an army” promise within a month of committing it to electronic record, and toddled off to the loving arms of a newly-invigorated WARMACHINE, and have spent the intervening years pinging between games, systems and armies in a way that’s disturbingly par for my particular course.

Back I am, though, starting with a little conversion on the hot-off-the-molds Stormraven kit. I know, I know, “Blood Angels and Grey Knights only” and all, but almost all of my play experience takes place within the looser framework Apocalypse, and I wanted a Stormraven, damnit. Despite the initially ugly “leaked” picture, the kit’s grown on me to the point wherein the questionable nature of its in-game effectiveness is hardly an afterthought. This is something to play with.

The kit’s most obvious issue is the fact that it’s supposed to be able to transport a Dreadnought, which the kit itself seems to resolve by making a Chapter’s oldest and most venerated members windsurf behind a combat shuttle, but that’s a matter I’ll be getting to later. For tonight, I’m actually addressing something that only seems to nag me, which is the fact that having a servitor manning the main guns of a Stormraven seems a tad ridiculous. When you’re zooming through a combat zone, dodging mountain-shattering ballistics, you really don’t want your gunner to be a third-rate hive criminal whose grey matter’s been replaced with a Mac SEII and some recycled Star Wars targeting software. You are a Space Marine, and you damn well want another Space Marine putting holes in the enemy.

With that in mind, I took these bits from the Rhino sprue (if you play Space Marines, you have over three-thousand of these sitting around. It’s the law), and with a bit of chopping, fit him snugly into the space that the Servitor used to take up. A small job, but someone’s got to do it.

Here’s a little gallery/instruction manual. Enjoy!

More updates as they come in. Projects on the horizon, surprises in store. Stay tuned.

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Baby Steps

by on Apr.19, 2009, under Painting

So, here are some work-in-progress pictures of my first Aurora Chapter squad – their Company and Squad Number have yet to be decided.

Bases are next, along with Aurora Chapter decals, which should hopefully be forthcoming.

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But It Was A Beginning…

by on Apr.18, 2009, under Misc.


As you may have already noted from the extensive coverage elsewhere, Adepticon 2009 came and went a couple of weekends ago, and with it, the flurry of tournaments, schwag, promotion and general geekery that comes with the event. The event seemed successful by any measure, and the crew and I pulled out of the Westin Lombard parking lot sore, more than a little exhausted, and gorged with three days of uninterrupted amusement.

Ours was a trip of observation, rather than participation, in the main events. The tournament scene’s still one we avoid, though there’ve been promises to return and test our mettle against the various participants in of at least one event next year.

For mere con-going cleti, we made out fairly well. Besides the legendary Adepticon swag bag, two of us won various items at the Adepticon Raffle, including memberships to the 40K Radio Freebootaz program. I also managed to walk away with a free copy of the Dark Heresy RPG Creatures Anathema book from the game’s lead developer as a prize for knowing a particularly fiddly bit of background from a twelve-year old game.

So, why, you might ask, am I kicking off an Aurora Chapter website with a post about Adepticon? Well, besides the copious amounts of schwag and winnings, Adepticon left me with a really positive feeling towards the hobby as a whole. Like many cranky old grognards, I’m known to get twisted up into a foul mood over certain aspects of the game that just don’t seem as vital as when I was a youngblood, but the con really helped me get into a pretty good headspace as far as my attitude towards the game. Less complaining, less stewing, less nostalgia, more doing. That’s my outlook these days.

In that spirit, I’ve decided to focus on an army and do it, something that’s been a problem for some time – mine eye, she wanders. New armies spring up and replace the old well before they’ve had time to prove themselves. No more of that. My pledge, here and now, is to make a reality out of the Aurora Chapter army that’s been whirring around my head for so many years now. No promises on a schedule, but there’ll be no other armies or distractions – all my painting and modeling efforts will go towards the Aurora Chapter, until I’m well and satisfied with the army.

With that in mind, it’s time to get some painting done!

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The Aurora Chapter