Although I like my Vornid infantry (15mm sci-fi: homicidal plants with thorn guns from Khurasan), I haven’t used them very much because, up to now, they have been based a singles and the way that the figures are made means that the bases don’t fit into any of my sabots. That means that using them involves moving lots of single figures round the table individually: a right pain!
I therefore decided to re-base them: each squad of ten Vornid based individually converting to six bases of five Vornid each. That gives me the same three squads, but the capacity to field ten fireteams if needed for another system.
I had two four-squad platoons (i.e. eight squads) but they proved a bit unwieldy. I therefore painted another squad up and now have three platoons of three squads each, all efficiently based for moving round the table.
Here’s my revised Vornid company, plus one of the individual platoons. You can see the detail of the entire force in the Vornid gallery.
One of my more unusual scifi armies are the Vornid. These comprise a base of Khurasan’s plant infantry supported by a variety of Ravenstar’s Horrid bio-vehicles. You can see the gallery by clicking here (opens in a new window).
As you’ll see, I’ve been using Slishians (from Hydra Miniatures) as Big Men, but have now found a rather amusing alternative:
The enemy sure looks like plant food to me!
Not sure who the manufacturer is (I bought these on impulse some time ago and have only just got around to their layer of the lead mountain) but these are, of course, models loosely based on Audrey II, the “villain” of the musical comedy A Little Shop of Horrors.
Great fun, and have encouraged me to expand and re-base my Vornid army: but more on that later…
Last bit of painting from my latest delivery from Ravenstar: some rather fun figures that I have christened "artillery toads".
The Vornid already have some stolen artillery manned by Fungoid mushroom men, but these are like giant, well, toads, with a hinged armour plate on their back under which is a rather useful looking howitzer. Fits in very nicely with the whole Horrid bio-weapon look.
Another unit of Horrid APCs finished at the weekend.
These rather turd-like tanks from Ravenstar's Horrid range are actually minelayers: the flaps just behind their 'heads' can disgorge patches of larvae that, with Chrome, I have defined as being the equivalent of mines i.e. they attack any enemy men or machines that enter their ambit.
I haven't painted up the 'mines' themselves yet, but you do get a rather pleasing number of them with your tanks. I've also defined the horn thing on the front as a sort of natural mortar that can also lay down the equivalent of smoke.
All in all a very useful squad of vehicles, despite their appearance!
Ravenstar have expanded their range of sci-fi monstrosities, the Horrid. As I'm using the range to provide AFVs for my Vornid army, this was a perfect opportunity to buy the new stuff and to fill in the gaps of what I hadn't got already.
First off the painting table is the "Grandmother" Command Tank: a solid lump of resin that takes the paint very nicely indeed.
The gun stalks are removable i.e can be replaced by hatch covers. The wing bits on the side can also be glued in place ajar as Granny can lay eggs - and plenty are provided with the model - but more on that at a later date when I reveal my Horrid minelayers!
Granny was painted using my new GW brushes: they've revamped the whole range and although I expect them to gradually get as rubbish as the old range, I thought I'd get a new dry brush and base brush and see how they went. Quite well, is the answer: I certainly found the base brush covered the model in paint very easily (it is assymetric in that it has a pointy bit to get into the cracks) and the dry brush is big and shaped just right. Good texture as well. Anyway, we'll see how long the quality is sustained...
So, new additions to the Ravenstar range, new additions to the Horrid Army List. Either go through to the Q13 Army List page, or click here to see the updated list.
Great game of Q13 on Saturday night against long-time opponent Neil.
We used a variation of the 'Down on the Farm' scenario from the Five Planets campaign pack: moving the action from the planet Three to Earth as part of a series of Invasion Earth games that we are fighting.
Click here or on the picture below to see the full report.
My first game of the year was an epic 15mm sci-fi clash between my newly painted Gitungi army, using figures mostly from Micropanzer’s Gitungi range, and an ‘evil vegetable’ army comprising figures from a number of different manufacturers but principally Khurasan’s Vornid plant-men and Ravenstar’s Horrids.
Click here or on the picture to see how the action unfolded...
I've mentioned before that one of the frustrations of 15mm sci-fi gaming is the fact that some brilliant ranges are incomplete, in that they might have a good selection of infantry, but they have no support weapons or vehicles.
One range that is a case in point is Khurasan's Vornid range of plantmen. Great infantry, nothing else. People weren't buying them, so the range wasn't expanded. Fair enough, but it means it's difficult to use them on the tabletop, as more rounded opponents take them apart too easily.
I've already expanded the Vornid army list with the addition of GZG support weapons crewed by Fungoid mushroom men (also from Khurasan), and Slishian Big Men and gunners from Hydra, and can now report I've found a source of vehicles as well in the form of Ravenstar Studio's Horrid range.
These are, well, horrid, as you'll see from the first additions, below. Ordering them involves e-mailing Ravenstar, but if you want a source of most unpleasant sci-fi creatures, with guns, then the Horrid are worth the trouble. Just to give you an idea of scale, the tanks below are over six inches long: this is Starship Troopers territory!
To the left are links to the updated Vornid Army List, the updated Vornid Gallery, and the updated 15mm Sci-Fi Manufacturers list (where you'll find a link to Ravenstar Studio's blog). Below are the Chitin Two-Gun tanks!
One of the great things about gaming in 15mm is that you can fit more toys onto the tabletop. This is especially relevant when talking about any game involving modern day guns: a quick comparison between ground scale and effective weapon ranges should give all guns (from sidearms to anti-tank to artillery) the ability to shoot the length of the table and more.
More toys on the tabletop means that you can fight company-sized games with ease, so it's quite annoying that many ranges of 15mm sci-fi figures still seem to be designed for squad-level skirmish games: yes, they have infantry squads; but no, they don't have support weapons, higher level command figures etc. Try playing a WW2 game using only the figures available in many sci-fi ranges as proxies...it doesn't work!
So you have to work round this, which is why Khurasan's Vornids, already supported by their Fungoids as artillerymen, are now commanded and up-gunned by Hydra Miniatures Slishians. Seven foot of malevolent vegetation: what's not to love?
The first of the Vornid: ambulatory plants from Khurasan Miniatures.
I haven't had a chance to photograph the infantry yet, but the Figure Review section shows how they paint up.
In the meantime, here are a couple of Vornid support weapons. Being pirates (and as the range, in common with too many 15mm sci-fi ranges, currently only includes infantry) they have acquired their support weapons from non-Vornid sources. The guns come from Ground Zero Games, and the toadstool crew are from Khurasan's Mystri Island range.
Some pictures of Khurasan's new Vornids: ambulatory, thorn-gun wielding plants in 15mm!
Vis Lardica is a website devoted to wargaming and military history, with a special emphasis on the company-sized rulesets produced by the TooFatLardies: I Ain't Been Shot Mum (WW2); Charlie Don't Surf (Vietnam); and Quadrant 13 (science fiction)
Welcome to Vis Lardica, a not-for-profit website mostly dedicated to the company-sized wargaming rules produced by the TooFatLardies, but encompassing my other gaming interests as well.