Friday 15 December 2023

Rangers of Shadow Deep: A Gathering of Heroes

Rangers of Shadow Deep is getting a glorious new hardback from Modiphius including both new and collected material! You can pre-order now and immediately get the PDF for free. 

With the evils of the Shadow Deep clawing at his borders, the King of Alladore sent out a call to every realm, a summoning of heroes to come and stand against the darkness. In truth, he had little hope that his plea would be answered, and it is true that no large armies have come to Alladore’s aid, but help has come! Mainly they came in ones and twos, or small unassuming groups, but they came. Spellcasters, mercenaries, knights-errant, desert nomads… heroes from the lands surrounding Alladore have come to stand with their brothers and sisters. Individually, they seem an insignificant force, but with their skills and special abilities added to those of the rangers, they might just tip the balance!
  • Advanced Character Creation including new Traits and Limitations that players can use to bring greater tactical and narrative variation to their rangers.
  • Ten ‘Archetypes’ that players can use to create new characters, representing the heroes that have come from the lands around Alladore to join the fight against the Shadow Deep.
  • Collects five previously stand-alone supplements for the game: Blood Moon, Temple of Madness, Ghost Stone, Incinerator, and Menagerie.
  • Fifty-two unique enchanted weapons.
  • A bestiary featuring all the creatures from the core rulebook and all the collected supplements.
  • Copious new artwork from the visionary of the Shadow Deep, Barrett Stanley.
One of the best parts about working on this book was getting to write a bit about the lands surrounding Alladore. While this is far from a gazetteer, and there are no maps, the backgrounds of the different hero Archetypes talk about their history and the land form which they come. When I originally talked to Modiphius about doing this book, I was worried about collecting older material that some people have already purchased. I asked if we could release the Advanced Character Creation as a separate PDF. Standing alone, it would have been the largest supplement to date. Modiphius agreed to this, but as we worked on the price, we decided to just release the whole book in PDF for nearly the same price that we would have sold just that section. So, if you already have the old material, you can just wait for release and pick up the cheaper PDF.


Thursday 14 December 2023

Space Hulk: Genestealer

For many years, I have been looking to complete my Space Hulk, 1st Edition collection. I bought the basic box, the first supplement, Deathwing, and the Campaign Book in my youth, and have carried them all over the world, but I never acquired the second, and rarer, supplement, Genestealer. (Which is essential to use most of the Campaign Book). I have kept a close eye on ebay, and while there are usually a couple of copies there, they go for around £300 - significantly more than I was willing to pay.

Recently, it occurred to me that what I really wanted wasn't the expansion per se, but just a lot of the components in it. I didn't particularly care about the miniatures, as I plan to use my own, and the box itself would just take up space that I don't have. Really, I just wanted all of the cardboard! Perhaps if I adjusted my parameters, I could find what I wanted.

It took several months of looking, but then a big lot of Space Hulk stuff came up on ebay. The seller wasn't sure what it contained, but from the photos I could tell that it included most of what I was looking for (plus a lot of other stuff!). So, I took a chance. I maxed out my budget, but I won the auction.

When the package arrived, I realized I had a slight problem - I wasn't exactly sure what was supposed to be in the Genestealer set. After a bit of searching online, I was  able to find a detailed breakdown. Sorting through all of the stuff, I discovered that I had all of the cardboard from the box except one blip token! Blip Token D was missing. Thankfully, the lot came with a bunch of extra blip tokens so I converted one by sticking a label on it! Also, the 'Psychic Suit Tracker' was a bit mangled, but I made a replacement by photocopying it and gluing the copy onto some heavy card.

So, there we go! My collection is complete! Hopefully this means more Space Hulk in my future.

Also, I now possess a lot of spare pieces from the basic game and Deathwing. While it is tempting to keep them for some 'mega-game', I know that will likely never happen and they just take up space. So, if you are missing any pieces from your set, drop me a line. Otherwise, they'll probably go back on ebay at some point!

Wednesday 13 December 2023

So it Begins


Six years ago, my wife and I moved our little family from Oxford down to the Kentish coast to be nearer her family. We had some money from the sale of our house in Oxford, but neither of us had a full-time job. I was still working part-time for Osprey, but hoping to become completely freelance as soon as possible. So, after a lot of searching, we bought a small house in a great location, that was cheap enough to keep the mortgage payments low (a real good idea if you are planning to go freelance!). The downside - with only two bedrooms - we knew our son and daughter would eventually outgrow sharing a room.

Fourteen months ago, we seriously started searching for solutions to the issue. Things have improved financially. My wife works full-time at the moment and my transition to being a full-time, freelance, writer and game designer has so far been successful. That said, one of the best ways I can continue that success is to keep expenses low. Eventually, we ruled out moving as we couldn't afford anywhere bigger with as good a location, so instead, we decided to expand. Little did we know just how long a process that can be!

Architects, planning permission, surveys, water company approval and about £10,000 later, ground has been broken. We are adding a bedroom, a second toilet, and upgrading our utility room into a proper room. It still won't be a 'large' house, even by British standards, but hopefully it'll be enough for us.

I honestly have no idea how long it will all take from here. The first goal is to get the 'ground works' done before Christmas, and then look at the rest in the new year. For the moment, I'm just glad that it is underway! (Though jackhammers and diggers in your back garden do not make the best environment for working.)

Ironically, the scaffolding in the photo has nothing to do with the expansion. That is for some roofing work that became necessary due to the torrential rains we've had over the last month. 

Wednesday 6 December 2023

Cpl. Singh

Here is Cpl. Singh, the latest addition to my Colonial Marine force. I've decided that, among other things, I'd like to be able to use my colonial marines for Space Hulk. That being the case, I reorganized them into 5-man fireteams, but realized I was at least one flamer short. So, I pulled out the bits box and put this guy together. The body is from the Stargrave Mercenaries set, and the left arm is from the Scavengers set. The arm with the flame thrower is from the Mercenaries II set, which actually means it is meant for a female body, but I don't think you can really tell.

I found the head rolling around in the bits box. I think it comes from a WWII sprue from Warlord Games, that I suspect came free with an issue of Wargames Illustrated. It caught my attention because of a recent episode of Doctor Who which included a cameo by 'Sgt. Singh'. I thought he looked really cool in his UNIT black body armour and Sihk turban, so I decided to give it a go. My daughter walked in after I had primed the figure and said - 'I recognize that guy from Doctor Who', so I guess it worked!

This figure is also the first time I attempted using a magnifying glass to paint eyes on a miniature. It certainly helped, though they probably still came out a bit too big - though that is much less noticeable in person than it is in the photograph. I don't know if I will try it again or not. 

Cpl. Singh means I have completed 4 fireteams in my Colonial Marine platoon. I just want to add a command team to call it finished.

Tuesday 5 December 2023

Force Wielders


I was playing around with some Stargrave plastic bits over the weekend, and ended up creating a new Jedi. I've shown my squid-Jedi before, but I thought the two looked great together. 

The new guy is constructed out of pieces from the Stargrave: Scavengers box. The arms are actually meant to be zombie arms, but with the right paint job you can't tell. I love the pose. You just know he's about to unleash something big! Either that, or he's holding up some kind of psychic shield to protect everyone else! I made his lightsaber simply buy cutting the handle off one of the tools in the box. 

These guys will be in support of my colonial marines. Also, since I'm planning to use my colonial marines for Space Hulk, I thought these guys could take the place of librarians with their 'force axes' and psychic powers.

I really should construct a light box for mini photos...