Saturday, 24 March 2018

Scaling Leviathan


I've been rather busy at work over the last week or so and I've had to sacrifice hobby time much to my frustration but I have been perusing my well thumbed copy of Leviathan and have been musing about how best to scale my efforts to play the game.

Looking back, I think this image showcases the sort of size of force I want to aim for:

Assorted Rabble (sadly mostly sold off years ago)

While Leviathan can cater towards massive armies and would look utterly amazing with vast numbers of giant warbeasts smashing each other on an epic scale, I can't help but notice that I don't have the space required for the suggested 8x4' board. 

 Goblin Archers (long lost)

At best, I think I can squeeze in a 4x4' or at a pinch a 6x4' which is a bit of an issue for full on clashes but I've settled on a more convenient sort of approach which will centre around skirmishes of infantry with the odd cavalry or warbeast for an initial period to give me the chance to actually play some games! 

I'm planning to then scale things up a bit to something more like 2nd edition 40k with decent sized warbands duking it out with several more warbeasts and artillery.

Sadly, I need to really get myself a decent amount of infantry to make this plan feasible as I'm currently sadly short of pretty much everything I need. While I've got a fair number of Dwarves to paint up, the other forces are rather puny at present and that needs sorting out soon.

I think I will be perusing the interwebs for some suitable figures and hope to get some updates going as I've lost a fair amount of time with work stuff so would like the chance to get back up to speed with something far more fun...

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Orc Necrodon Rider


As promised, here's the first of my Orcish horde Necrodon riders!

Necrodon Rider

I had this guy pretty much finished for some time but have been waiting for some bases to arrive from Warbases as he was rather prone to tipping over on a normal 40mm or even 50mm round. I ended up with a 60x40mm rounded edge base and with the addition of some Das Clay to bulk out the base, he's surprisingly steady.

The model is largely as is from the blister with the only addition being a plastic sword from GW's Ork box and a little bit of putty work to bulk out his jacket as he had a rather elfin waistline.

Heavy Cavalry!

I'm really pleased with how he's turned out and the whole figure was an absolute pleasure to paint and allowed me to experiment with washes quite a lot to get the nice warm yellow for the beasts hide. I may yet rework the shield but am rather sorted with it just now and will be starting a second model soon!

Looking at the size of the Orc rider, I do wonder if I need to try and source some of the larger Orcish sculpts to fit in but I like the idea of the Necrodon riders being the elite and reserved for the big guys who can manage.

I've given him a ruddy brown skin colour inkeeping with the artwork from the book and rather like it compared to a more typical greenskin and am rather looking forward to adding some more to make a unit.

Hopefully I'll be able to convert a few riders so they aren't all mono pose as well so watch this space!-

Friday, 2 March 2018

Pocket Leviathan


I've been pondering putting together a pocket version of Leviathan that will allow me to playtest the rules without needing to use the recommended 8'x4' table for a full game.

By simply halving ranges and using a 2'x3' board, combined with some handy cardboard counters, I tried a few games back in 2016 and had my first actual games of Leviathan. While it gives me the opportunity to try out the rules and get the hang of how each unit and force works, It does lack rather badly on the visual impact front.

I'll be painting my way through as much as I can over the coming months but I do want to have the chance to play some more games and give myself a thorough grounding in how the game mechanics work and the assorted forces strengths, weaknesses and quirks.

If anyone's interested, the battle reports can be found here:

Battle Report 1

Battle Report 2

Battle Report 3

Battle Report 4

Looking back at these early battle reports, I find myself remembering some of the good and bad points of the system and the odd element that needs tweaking to really be playable but I must admit that I am quite surprised that I managed to play four full 1000 point battle reports in less than a month. Surely this year I will do better!

Using a similar approach will also give me the opportunity to playtest some of the new units I want to introduce and dare I say it, Earthpower too!

Dur Zamor

I am hoping to post the first such report on Monday which is my next day off and will hopefully involve a rumble on the border between the Orcish Horde of Krull Dwarfslayer and the stalwart forces of Dur Zamor, the Dwarven frontier settlement.

Till then, All the best!

Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Taking Stock and Planning Ahead


I've been ruminating over what I'm hoping to achieve with my Leviathan project and how to keep my interest going.

On the one hand, I've been posting lots of reference articles from the assorted publications of the time which feature Leviathan and I am also slowly working through my old notes to see about putting together a fan supplement to cover Earthpower (more on that later). I'm also looking to paint my way through the assorted gubbins I have kicking around and really showcase what Leviathan can look like.

My last attempt at army building from 2011

With this in mind, I've settled on putting together a small force for each of the races. Each force will initially be aimed towards about 750 points using the classic armylists and should feature a couple of infantry units, a cavalry unit and a smattering of monsters or warengines.

Dwarf Infantry

To keep things interesting, I will rotate my way through the armies and paint a unit here, a warbeast there with the aim of having the whole lot done for the end of June. This will give me four months to paint around about 50 or so infantry, nine or ten cavalry and eight to ten larger resin pieces.

While this sounds quite a big job, I'm finding myself relishing the prospect as the large resin pieces that make up the majority of the Leviathan range are an actual joy to paint and while the unpainted resin can be both a little uninspiring and daunting, they do look brilliant once done.

I have ordered some suitable bases from WARBASES and once they arrive, I'll be able to really crack on and paint my way through the gubbins I have before moving onto picking up the odds and ends I will need to round out the project.

Once I have these forces done, I hope to spend the rest of the year expanding each force by a unit or warbeast here or there and see how things go.

I've also been in touch with John Robertson, head honcho of Grendel back in the day and he's been a font of information about the game and is checking his contacts to see if any of the old Earthpower supplement is still in existence. Fingers crossed for more information but I've managed to recover one or two tidbits of information already which could make for a very interesting concept in game!

Once the bases arrive, I'll post some more pics of painters progress but until then, all the best!

Monday, 26 February 2018

Forge Magazine Articles 2


Issue two of Forge Magazine saw two articles on Leviathan featured. The first showcases two dragons and the cover artwork for the rulebook:

Leviathan Gubbins

On a personal note, I'm rather keen to pick up both the Red Dragon and Golden Wyvern for my collection in the coming months but it's great to see some painted samples of the big resin beasts. The Red Dragon would make a great addition to the Elven warhost while the Wyvern is just such a lovely looking beast!

Next up, they also feature a short story, The Battle of Axebite Pass alongside some more artwork for the game.

The Battle of Axebite Pass

The Battle between the Dwarven army and Orcish horde is really evocative, especially as the Axebite pass is one of the great strategic locations on Aeroth and is written by Bill King, the same chap who brought us Felix and Gotrek of Warhammer fame.

It's a great story and can be found in the Leviathan rulebook and is well worth a read to give a flavour of the world and its inhabitants as well as the way that two of the armies operate. The Dwarves are shown as a defensive force with emplaced artillery, stalwart infantry and the massed sounding of steam whistles as a challenge to the Orcs from their tanks is rather good.

Similarly, the Orcs are fleshed out in all their barbaric glory, their seemingly savage appearance and surprisingly advanced tactics. Their chanting of Gorath as they weather the fire of the Dwarven artillery is really fascinating to read as is the appearance of Dwarven suicide troops!

While the story can be seen in the rulebook as can most of the artwork, this guy is to my knowledge, only ever featured in this one article:

Necrosaur Harpoon

It's a Necrosaur featuring a bolt thrower or harpoon and gives a sense of the scale that Grendel was going for with the game. I find it fascinating to see the concepts of Leviathan taking shape and would have loved to see more of the games development. 

Next up, I'll cover the last two specifically Leviathan articles that can be found in Forge before covering some miniature reviews from the long defunct Arcane Magazine!

In the meantime, all the best!

Sunday, 25 February 2018

Setting the Scene

"Our world is a wasteland. The green fields of our forefathers are deserts. The mighty cities of our ancestors are tombs filled with the bones of millions. Everywhere we look we see only the bright glitter of blades, we hear only the ring of steel on steel, we smell only blood and decay. Our weapons are cold and hard in our fists. We take what bitter food we can find and it tastes like dust in our mouths. The ruddy skies are filled with carrion birds and hosts of winged monsters".

A view from the Axblades

"All the old races are locked in a death struggle. The Ironclad Legions of the Dwarves hold to their mountain fortresses. The decadent Elves unleash their Dragon Warriors from the sanctuary of the Obelisks. The clans of men skirmish endlessly with the brutal hordes of the Orc Khans. The spawn of Leviathan stalk the earth seeing to assuage their unending hunger for flesh. The Children of the Worm seek to grant the hideous gift of Death-In-Life to all who still breath. The Fallen lounge in the crumbling palaces of ancient kings and dream of ultimate conquest".

The Southern Desert

"The gates of Hell opened and Demon Gods entered our world. The continents trembled beneath the tread of monsters. The old civilisation was swept away leaving only barbarism and unending, savage warfare. The cities became charnel houses, their streets filled with putrefying corpses of merchants and mages. Fertile fields became wastelands of polychromatic salt and ash:.

Taken from The Druids Tale

The Elven Wastes

As you can see, the setting for Leviathan is a post apocalyptic one featuring a tortured landscape inhabited by savage races reduced to barbarism to survive the world they find themselves in. 

Having re-read the background, I am struck by how close it is to a more traditionally sci-fi or near future world as seen in the likes of Fallout and Mad Max. It's rather exciting and I've found myself wondering how I am going to represent such a setting.

In more typical Tolkienesque fantasy sets, everywhere tends to be a green and pleasant land (other than the evil doers domain which is inevitably a volcanic waste, usually hidden within a chain of mountains). With Leviathan, things are turned on their heads with only isolated islands of habitable land with the rest of the world choked with irradiated magical fallout, volcanic ash and ruins of once great cities.

Similarly, the typically good race of the Elves are bitter, twisted and degenerate while the Dwarves are more akin to survivalists who went to ground and are only now emerging to explore and are exploiting their technology to gain control of territory. The Orcs are much like the Mongol hordes with a surprising amount of savage culture whilst the Barbarians are a bit like the lawless crazies from Mad Max.

Diseased tree from 2010/11

Back in the day, I tried out a few ideas to represent the decaying wasteland but this time round I plan on really pushing my terrain building to showcase a fantastic world that's been warped by nature and magic into something rather more. 

Imagine dead forests, pools of toxic waste, jagged spires and ruined machinery. This is the sort of world that I'm going to have a bash at putting together. With this in mind, I'll need to collect some supplies before I get to building but I shall have to see what I can put together. 

In other news, I've been working on some Orcish cavalry and it's starting to look rather good but I'm badly in need of bases so will be placing a small order with Warbases to get suitable gubbins before I can show the finished models.

Hopefully said supplies will arrive in the next week!

Friday, 23 February 2018

Pictish War Bison Playtest Rules


I've got some playtest rules for the Pictish War Bison Riders from the Leviathan range!

Decidedly mercenary in nature, the Picts are a tribe of human barbarians who will work for anyone, even The Fallen if the price is right. Their light infantry and War Bisons make for a useful fast attack option to other forces.


I'm hoping to flesh out the Picts a bit so they are a more fully fleshed out force which can be added to the assorted factions of Leviathan. When combined with Barbarian Infantry, these guys make an interesting addition to any force!