Beer Review 148 // Farmageddon: Saskatoon Berry & Blackberry


Time for a beautiful beer from one of Ontario's finest. Farmageddon by Bellwoods is an ongoing series of beers all based on the same wild farmhouse ale base. As the different batches are blended, the unique flavours from the Brett are imparted into the beer. To this, they added Saskatoon Berries and BlackBerries. The final brew is a 6.3% treat.

On the pour, it is a rich, beautiful red pour with a gentle pink foam head, that is fluff and bountiful. The aromas are intense, and fresh berries mixing with a slight funk make the mouth water. On the first sip you know it is a winner. Big, bold, jammie flavours that are tart, lip-puckering good. It finishes dry and makes you want more. This beer drank so smooth and wonderfully, I really wish I could drink this every day of the week.


Let me know what you think in the comments below.

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Comic Review 143 // DC Batman vs Dark Horse Aliens Volume 2


Last week we delved into the joyous adventures of Batman vs Aliens, well we are back again this time with volume 2. Clocking in at 160 pages it was a quick read, but before the review here is the official comic book write up:

Featuring the deadly creatures from the Alien movie franchise, BATMAN/ALIENS TWO is an intense science fiction thriller that pits the universe's deadliest creatures against the world's greatest hero. When an unwitting construction crew accidentally uncovers an ancient sealed vault, Batman must defend Gotham City against a savage Alien killing spree. But as the Darknight Detective pursues his relentless quarry, he soon discovers a shocking government conspiracy and finds himself on a suicide mission up against Alien-hybrid versions of the Scarecrow, Poison Ivy, Killer Croc, Two-Face, and the Joker.

I don't know what to say, so I will begin at the start. This time we have left the jungles of South America and we have headed back to Gotham. As work crews dig up land for renovation, they discover a crash Alien ship, when inside they awaken a sleeping xenomorph, that soon starts to rack up an impressive kill tally. It is up to Bats to save the day, but whilst this is happening a secretive Black Ops group has moved in and captures Batman and a Xenomorph!

As Batman mounts an escape attempt, he discovers his captors had been combining xenomorph DNA with harden criminals to produce super-soldiers! What could possibly so wrong?

The comic really is a story of two halves. The first was a quirky and interesting piece, making for a good starting point for an adventure. The second half sadly destroyed all that work. The idea that Gotham Scientists can blend xenomorph DNA with some of the most horrific villains to create a suicide squad is just too far-fetched and ruined the entire story for me.

Let me know if you have read the comic and if you have, drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts.

Amazon Link: Batman/Aliens

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Miniature Monday // Craftworld Aringhe


Time for a long-overdue Craftworld model. If you wish to see the models I've completed so far use this link! For this model, I had reached Craftworld Aringhe, and when I googled it without the word Craftworld, I discovered it was a type of fish! What on earth? So I tried again and found what I was looking for.

Turns out there wasn't much information. It declares it is a craftworld and has a single image that appeared in an old article titled Colours of the Craftworld. But beyond that, there is zero information. So using the image I found I went to work. It was a pretty easy paint job, with the main colour being a dark red, with silver plates and some spots of orange. As I started painting I knew I had to swap out the silver, I personally dislike metallic and can't imagine aeldari using them, especially as most of their gear is grown. So I swapped it out for a grey colour instead. In all using contrasting paints, I slapped some colours down in 45 minutes and was pretty happy with the results. Is this not a scheme I particularly enjoyed, meaning I will not be delving any deeper into this paint scheme but it was a nice change of pace.

As always I thank you for your support of the project and please feel free to use the links to help out.

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Audio Review 39 // Klaw of Mork by Guy Haley


I'm sure for you regular readers, you would have noticed that I am on a short listen spree at the moment. I've been struggling to settle into a long-form story. Lucky enough for me, Black Library is full of short tales and adventures. Today's read is no different, clocking in at an epically long thirty-six minutes. Just the right amount of time to walk to and from work. Let's get the details:

Title: Klaw of Mork.
Author: Guy Haley.
Running Time: Thirty-six Minutes.
Performed by: Ben Allen, Jonathan Keeble, Kris Milnes and Peter Noble.
Fluff: Sanctus Reach

The Red Waaagh! has fallen on Alaric Prime and the mekboys are working on Big Mek Mogrok’s cunning and brutal plan – to pull a comet from space with the massive and dangerous ‘Klaw of Mork’ and bring it down on the heads of the world’s human defenders. But when the humans fight back, Uggrim and Snikgob, two mekboys of the Red Suns tribe, see a chance to finish a conflict with an old rival and take advantage of the human attack to exact revenge... even at the cost of the Klaw of Mork.

Review

First up let's embrace the fact that this was written to coincide with the release of the Sanctus Reach box set that included Evil Sun Orks fighting Space Wolves. Meaning it is a tie-in to a game and as such will have its faults. This book focuses on a trio of Mekboys, who all have a similar accent, making it tough to work out who is who. But it would seem two are allies and one an outsider who must not learn the secrets of the Klaw of Mork. Then to this mix, they are attacked by dirty humans giving them the chance to attack each other.

There was plenty to like especially the humour aspect of the Orks themselves, but the cons won out sadly for me. As mentioned I lost track of who was talking way too much, the voices were just too similar, and the story as a whole was too clean and tidy, it lacked something but I'm not sure what. For me, this was the middle of the road. Not bad, but not great either.

Amazon Link: Klaw of Mork

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Book Review 136 // Broken by Rachel Caine

Look at this, book three of the Alien's short stories from Bug Hunt. If you haven't read the first two please follow these handy links (Story One, Story Two). So far the tales have been great and really helped to fill out a greater section of the galaxy. So with this, I felt energized to be heading into this tale, titled: Broken.

Straight away I was excited by the opening paragraph. Seems we have ourselves an origin story for the AI character Bishop (made famous in Aliens). At construction, he was deemed flawed and strange more prone to emotional responses. But the Company being the company, didn't want to waste him so attached Bishop to a Colonial Marine unit led by Lt. Lew "Lucky" Larsen. This then becomes the focal point of the story and we join them on a mission is to free a group of colonists taken hostage by a pirate group simply known as F Company. This group has pissed off the company enough to warrant their utter destruction and the marines are tasked with trapping the pirates in the base before using toxic gas to poison the site and remove the problem of F Company. Colonists are to be saved if possible, but are completely expendable if that is easier (good old company).

Of course, guns start blazing, and casualties are taken on both sides. With Bishop being a non-combat unit,  he is tasked with checking the wounded and deeming who stays and who goes. Ultimately forced to chose who will live and die, a task a normal AI would struggle with but due to Bishop's flaw, he is calmly able to make the discussions. After completing the task Bishop discovers the plan to gas the base and is unable to follow the orders to leave the hostages to die. Instead, Bishop grabs some gas masks and attempts to locate the last hostages, before the gas is activated.

A lot goes down in a surprisingly short space of time, we discover another droid working for the F Company, we also get another gunfight which doesn't end well for anyone (especially Bishop who ends up paralyzed), but more worryingly we see Bishop override his programming and kill two F Company pirates on purpose by deactivating their gas masks. Bishop's last act is to aid the hostages of the world by remotely piloting a dropship before he shuts down his main power in the hopes of getting rescued himself.

Seems like years have past but when Bishop reactivates, finding himself once more in a Colonial Marine Medbay. But he is fully repaired and tended by Private Hudson and Sergeant Apone, who tell him that they recovered him to replace their destroyed droid. As it was easier to grab him than head all the way home. The book finishes with Hudson teaching Bishop the infamous knife game (excellent finish).

Another solid read, not as interesting as the first two stories. But it does fill out Bishop's back story explaining why he became so attached to Newt and Ripley. I also found it a nice touch to have Hudson teaching the knife game, this actually made me smile.

As always, thanks for checking in and I hope you enjoyed my review?

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Beer Review 147 // Tropical Vacation by Bicycle Craft Brewery

Hey, welcome to today's beer review. It's been a busy week, so I was ready for a brew. Today I am drinking Tropical Vacation by Bicycle Craft Brewing. They are a great family own local brewery located on the outskirts of Ottawa, and they just enjoy producing beer for people to drink. Simple right!

Here are some official details:

Hit the beach with this hazy IPA. Brewed with Citra and Mosaic hops, big grapefruit, mango, and pineapple flavors. Massively dry-hopped to take you on a tropical vacation one sip at a time.

ABV: 6.2%
Style: NEIPA (New England India Pale Ale)

Let's start off with the pour, look at it! It is a bold, hazy orange pour and looks stunning with the tidy white cap of foam on top. Leaning in to get a hit of the aroma, I get that classic tropical fruit notes, like pineapple, mango, a little bit of grapefruit and I think some floral grassy notes. It is a beautiful smelling brew.

The first sip is impressive, big citrus hit straight away. This is a mouthwatering juicy beer, which makes you want more. Think canned pineapples, mango, stone fruits and you will be on the right path. The taste definitely lingers and builds into a tanginess on the back of the tongue.

It was a solid brew and one I will try again. I am happy to say with patios and spaces opening up again, Bicycle Craft will be a go-to brewery this summer. What breweries are you excited about this summer? Let me know in the comments below.

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Comic Review 142 // Batman/Aliens DC vs Dark Horse


Seems like an age ago when we did some xenomorph fun, so I thought it might be time to dive back in. Sat on my shelf with way too much dust is the collected volume of Batman vs Aliens. The first story is the feature of today's post and is originally called Batman/Aliens. Yep, great start already. Here are the details

Title: Batman/Aliens
The hook: After leaving Gotham City for the Amazon forest, Batman faces his newest challenge among the Mayan ruins as he encounters an intergalactic infestation of bloodthirsty Aliens, in a graphic-novel science fiction adventure.
Written by: Ron Marz
Artwork by: Bernie Wrightson

Well, who doesn't love a crossover? I actually enjoyed the Judge Dredd versions, so I have high hopes. I am definitely intrigued by how they will go about this, does seem weird to throw Batman into the jungle but let us see what happens.

The story is actually rather simple. A Wayne Tech geologist has gone missing in the jungle and as part of the rescue, Bruce Wayne has travelled south to give aid. This then allows Batman to sneak off and parachute into the jungle. Here the fun starts as he discovers a group of mercenaries searching a strange (instantly recognizable) spacecraft that is nicely parked by a ruined Mayan Temple.

We then enter the classic Alien horror story arc, the characters are picked off one by one, they all have dark secrets they are hiding, and you end up rooting for the xenomorphs to win! Unfortunately, Batman's plot armour is too thick and he of course survives. Overall a suspenseful story that takes a while before we even see a Xenomorph. But when they appear, they are being sneaky bastards, leading the writing to feel more in kin with the original film, as you start to fear the shadows behind the epic characters.
The best part and stand-out highlight for me has to be the final monster. The Xeno/croc hybrid. I mean move over Killer Croc as this thing will kick ass! I hope you enjoyed my review and thanks for checking in. As always check out these links to help support the blog and me, it means a lot.

Cheers.

Amazon Link: Batman/Aliens

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Miniature Monday // Warlord Games - Strontium Dog: Blubberlips


Hey everyone, time for an update! I've only gone and painted up another model. What on earth is happening? I've managed to get back into painting and painted more so far this year than I have in the last three years. Today I dip my toe back into the works of Warlord Games and 2000 AD and showcase Blubberlips from the Strontium Dog franchise.

Had a lot of fun painting this model, I started off with a black prime, followed by a zenith highlight to help show me shadows etc. Then using contrast paints I built up the colours until I had something tabletop ready.



Looking at the model I realized I had played too safe on the jumpsuit and instead went back in and built it up to a bold striking orange. I'm pretty happy with the final result and feel when I am ready I will go back and highlight the crap out of him. But for about an hour of painting, I am really pleased with the result. Here is a quick 360 video I posted on Tik-Tok of the final model. I hope you have enjoyed it and will possibly click one of the links after the video to support the blog. As always thanks for checking in.


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Audio Review 38 // Asurmen: The Darker Road by Gav Thorpe


Hitting you with more Aeldari audiobooks this week. Sticking with Gav Thorpe, we delve into his Phoenix Lord with a short tale following Asurmen. Let's get the details before we dive in.

Author: Gav Thorpe
Performed by: Gareth Armstrong, John Banks, Steve Conlin, Toby Longworth, Penelope Rawlins, and Genevieve Swallow.
Running time: 71 minutes
Details: It is said the Phoenix Lords arrive on the eve of great moments... Guided by fate, Asurmen the Hand of Asuryan comes to the Craftworld of Ulthwé. At the behest of the head of the seer council, he joins the warriors of Ulthwé and the young seer Eldrad on a quest to the Crone Worlds in search of the oracle Hiron-athela. It is believed that this being, holds an artifact that could safeguard Ulthwé's future, but to obtain it, the Eldar must travel a dark road...

Review

This is a follow-up tale from the Phoenix Lord novel Asurmen. With this novel, we join Asurmen as he travels to the Craftworld Ulthwe. Here he joins forces with the Black Guardians led by Eldard Ulthran and together they travel to a Crone World. Their goal is to claim an artifact that once belonged to the Exodites. The Oracle was created by the Exodites and was then locked away behind some mysterious traps.

Of course, the main characters are Asurmen and a Dire Avenger Exarch who between the pair take charge and lead the Aeldari to their goal. Now like all good novels there is a twist that I will not ruin. But for a 1 hour listen this was great, it had the classic high production values of Black Library and a strong cast of actors killing it. The music was interesting at times but mostly lent to the atmosphere of the tale. I really hope we get more of these in the future. I need more than Asurmen and Jain Zar.

As always thanks for stopping by and reading. Use any of these links to help support the blog and thank you.

Book Review 135 // The Unremembered Empire by Dan Abnett

It's been a few weeks since Vulkan's Lives, and with the help of some Alien short stories, my mind was refreshed enough to hop back into the 30k verse of Horus Heresy. Now I am lucky to head back into series with a Dan Abnett book, I was expecting a good story that hopefully progressed the story and I was not disappointed. Here are the book's details:

Author: Dan Abnett
Page Count: 416
Commercial Fluff:
Believing Terra has already fallen to the Warmaster, Primarch Roboute Guilliman founds the Imperium Secundus.

The unthinkable has happened – Terra has fallen to the traitor forces of Warmaster Horus! Nothing else could explain the sudden disappearance of the Astronomican’s guiding light at the heart of the Imperium, or so Roboute Guilliman would believe. Ever the pragmatist, he has drawn all his forces to Ultramar and begun construction of the new empire known as Imperium Secundus. Even with many of his Primarch brothers at his side, he still faces war from without and intrigue from within – with the best of intentions, was the full truth to be known it would likely damn them all as traitors for all eternity.

Review

So let's get the timeline sorted first. Calth has burned, Lorgar has created the Ruinstorm, and with the help of his brother Angron, their combine might lays siege to the 500 worlds of Ultramar. Vulkan has died and come back before disappearing once more, and Sanguinius and his chapter have survived a trap sprung by Horus. Then finally Johnson and Curze have played a game of cat and mouse in an attempt to kill each other. Sounds like a lot right?

With the Ruinstorm in full effect and the knowledge that most of his loyal brothers lay dead on Istavaan, Guilliman is forced to assume the worst. With the light of the Astronomicon hidden, Guilliman fears Terra has fallen and he attempts to hold his 500 worlds together. As time passes Guilliman starts making some questionable decisions. Firstly allows psykers within his legion once more (a crime Magnus was punished for), he uses Xeno tech to create a fake Astronomicon (heresy) and creates his own Empire called Imperium Secundus. All sounds a bit traitorous in my opinion.

With his beacon lit, soon Space Marines of various legion start to arrive, mostly the survivors of Istavaan. But then a pack of Space Wolves arrives at the request of Leman Russ and the Malcador and they question Guilliman and his motives (which is a great part of the book). During this section, we see an attempted assassination attempt on Guilliman and the return of a Crisom Fisted Imperial Fist (eeek).

The story only truly ramps up with the arrival of the Dark Angels. Here we get The Lion arriving and also questioning Guilliman's motives, Curze makes planetfall and solo kicks everyone arse, Vulkan for some reason falls from the sky and becomes Jerky, before showcasing his regeneration to everyone by waking up and chasing Curze across the city, and then final Sanguinius arrives in the last two chapters to say hi!

Overall a lot happens in 416 pages and we didn't even touch the story of the Iron Warrior Warsmith, the Cabal, John, and Eldrad. Wow, great book I am back in Horus mode!

As always thanks for checking in on me. Let me know in the comments what you want me to read next. Until then thank you for reading and use some of these links to help support the blog.

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Beer Review 146 // Echo DIPA by Fine Balance Brewing


Look at me, following up last week's brew with another DIPA from the same brewery. This time we adventure into Echo. This DIPA was made in a similar way to last week's brew but this time it uses Mosaic. Here are the details:

Details

Name: Echo
Brewery: Fine Balance
Style: DIPA
ABV: 8%
Brewery Notes: Echo DIPA was brewed with a healthy percentage of Oat Malt, White Wheat Malt, and Flaked Wheat & Oats to achieve a full-body, as well as an underlying creamy profile. Echo was dry-hopped, with a healthy dosage of Mosaic hops and finished with even more Mosaic Cryo hops.

Echo presents everything you would expect and desire from Mosaic hops. Expect notes of mango, citrus, pine, tropical fruits, as well as stone fruit characteristics.

Review

First, up the pour, it is a bold yellow, opaque to look at, and no floaties. It is capped with a pillowy, white head, that clings to glass all the way to the end. Big upfront mango hit in the aroma straight away, smells great. On the first sip, you get that mango and tropical fruit punch flavour, which doesn't let go! The mango stays with you all the way to the last drop, but as you progress you start getting a citrus pith finish in the bitterness. I have to say this drank way too easy for a double and I found it surprisingly sweet towards the end of the glass.

All together another great beer from them, I can't wait to be able to travel again and hopefully visit the Brewery in Kingston soon. As always thanks for checking in and I hope you enjoyed my beer review?

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Comic Review 141 // Durham Red: Empty Suns by Dan Abnett


Just like that, I am on the final 162 pages of Durham Red! It's been a blast and I know there are some e-books for me to enjoy, but I am going to miss Red. Here are the details of the final comic of Durham Red:

Title: Durham Red - Empty Suns
Page Count: 162
Write up: Awakening after 1200 years in suspended animation Durham Red found herself worshipped by the mutants as Saint Scarlet. Persecuted by the human iconoclasts, the mutants entreated her to lead them in a galaxy-spanning holy war against mankind, but Red refused the responsibility.

Collects:

- The Empty Suns Book I (Prog #1362-#1368)
- The Empty Suns Book II (Prog #1382-#1386)
- Necrocultura (Meg #4.12)
- Semblance (Meg #4.13)
- The Spirit and the Gaki (Meg #4.14)
- Children of the Night 1 episode (Meg #4.15)
- Genegun SD (Meg #4.16)
- Red Menace (Meg #4.17)
- In the Flesh (Meg #4.18)

Review

The final chapter has come. Set further into the future the galaxy has now gone to pieces. After being tricked by the super mutant Offspring, Red watched as he used his powers to make the human race sterile. Now, only a few pockets of humanity survive, and where they no longer live, mutants now reign. Sadly now these planets seem to be falling into disrepair or entered weird feudal law systems. Watching the galaxy fall to 
pieces Matteus Godolkin and a group of the last humans seek out Durham Red in hopes of rescuing the human race.

Of course shit doesn't go to plan. They discover a crazy, feral Durham Red, who with Godolkin has had a son! After restoring her sanity they start tracking down the Offspring's chosen and killing them forcing the Offspring to hunt them down. Then Durham using a Time distortion faces off against the Offspring killing it, but not before the Humans completely die out. Now the galaxy belongs to the mutant!

A great final entry for Durham, it finished off everything very satisfactory, though it felt a little rushed. The artwork was stunning and I enjoyed the story for the space opera it was. Well worth reading if you can find it.

After this, we get seven one-shot stories of Durham Red throughout time. Some are great, some good and some miss the mark for me. But they all add in their unique ways and I hope there will be Durham Red from 2000 AD soon. A great spin-off series.

But what is next? I feel it is time to ease back into Judge Dredd or possibly Anderson. Who knows?

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Miniature Monday // Unboxing Strontium Dog - SD Agents by Warlord Games

Hey, welcome to some more Warlord Games Strontium Dog content. This time it is a simple Youtube unboxing of the SD Agent Set. More of my content can be found at Adventures with Peps, I would love it if you stopped by to say hi.


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Strontium Dog: Repo Men

The Game: The Good, the Bad and the Mutie - Worth it for the miniatures alone.


Audio Review 37 // Hand of Darkness by Gav Thorpe


I'm rather happy to announce that I got my hands on some Aeldari short stories by the one and only Gav Thorpe. I've read rather a few of his stories, and I know he can spin a good one, so let us dive on in.

Title: Hand of Darkness
Author: Gav Thorpe
Actors: Gareth Armstrong, Cliff Chapman, Steve Conlin, Emma Gregory, Matt Hunt, Jonathan Keeble, Toby Longworth, Penelope Rawlins, Melvyn Rawlinson.
Run time: 61 minutes

THE STORY:

Fell is the Hand of Darkness, a relic of great evil. Seeking to rob the powers of Chaos of this relic and bend fate to the favor of order, Yvraine of the Ynnari and the mysterious yet deadly Visarch lead a host of Aeldari on a quest to steal it. To reach it, however, they must first beseech the aid of the Black Library. Only then will Yvraine and her warriors have even the slightest chance to slip through the Garden of Nurgle and from there to the Plague Planet and the Whispering Tower of Mortarion, where the Hand of Darkness surely resides.

Before diving in deep, this title was well acted and absorbed me into the story. This is what I've come to expect from Black Library titles. Set in the aftermath of the galaxy ripping apart, we join the Ynnari on a quest to recover an old artifact. The story is broken into three parts.

Part 1

We are informed what the Hand of Darkness actually is; basically, a world-destroying device that should never see the light of day. We then also listen in as Primarch Guilliman, speaks with Eldard of Ulthwe and Yvraine of the Ynnari, about the object. He sets the Aeldari the task of hunting out the relic, which seems to be hidden away on the Plague Planet.

Review
Good opening - slightly annoys me that old Guilliman is bossing everyone around these days.

Part 2

With a trip to the Black Library in search of a way to get to the plague planet. The Aeldari host discovers the ancient Library besieged by Ahriman and his forces. The Ynnari fight their way in and are greeted by the White Seers. The object they need unfortunately lies behind a sealed door that leads to a zone ruled by the Chaos God Slaanesh. As a small force explores this region the rest of the forces join the battle against Ahriman.

Review

Deserved a full book for this section. It is such an amazing story that could have been so much more! Stepping into the Black Library alone was amazing!

Part 3

Now the real action. Happens pretty quickly son hang on! Yvraine having escaped Slaanesh with her prize, leads the Ynnari against Ahriman. Rapidly crushing their attack and routing the invaders. Using the foul Sorcerer's escape route the Ynnari main characters and some Harliquinns infiltrate the Garden of Nurgle, using it as a shortcut to the Plague planet. From here it is a quick jump to the Hand and the completion of the mission.

Review

Completely rushed and deserved a better ending. Left a little disappointed. Would love for Thorpe to do a rewrite and make a proper novel out of this story as it deserves it.

Overall a solid story but definitely could be better! As always thanks for stopping by and reading. Use any of these links to help support the blog and thank you.

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Book Review 134 // Reaper by Dan Abnett


Got to be honest everyone, struggling to read long stories at the moment. Not sure if it is the weather or I am in a slump. But luckily for me, I had the Bug Hunt novel filled with eighteen short stories.

This is the second story in the line-up and is by everyone's favorite author and comic book writer: Dan Abnett. Love me some Sinister Dexter and Gaunt's Ghosts, so I have high hope for this one.

We join a group of Colonial Marines from the USS Montoro as they are sent to investigate LV-KR 115. It seems like this planet was once a giant farm, with colossal machines processing the world. But now it seems like a dust bowl. The force of Marines separates into two fighting forces, the first is led by Captain Broome and the second by Lieutenant Teller. The story then follows Teller's group and we discover that his group is heading the main target as the Marine Corps is testing Teller's leadership skills.

Soon Teller and his team are inside and discover the machine in complete disrepair. Following some investigation, they found the outer doors had been sealed shut, they also keep finding pieces of metal like belt buckles just laying around. The mystery deepens once Teller's team reaches the control room. Here they discover the viewing windows have been scratched opaqued by something, and that the machine lost control about three weeks ago. As the team digs further they discover the machine had hit a buried object, damaging it. Turns out it was some weird locust lifeform that once freed discovered a world full of life, and when on a reproduction/eating surge until all life was devoured.

At this stage, Teller attempts to abort the mission, but it is too late the outer doors are opening and a buzzing noise heads their way.

Overall a great story had a small team of easy-to-follow characters. With Teller being the important one to remember. It had some nerve-wracking moments, and a surprise by the lack of xenomorph. It did show off that there are other threats out there in the galaxy and that for once Humans aren't the apex predators.

Highly recommend.

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Beer Review 145 // Reflection by Fine Balance Brewing

New brewery on the blog!! Fine Balance is new to me brewery from Kingston and I was given a couple of cans by a good friend who orders some treats. Let us not waste time and crack open this can.

Details

Name: Reflection
Brewery: Fine Balance
Style: DIPA
ABV: 8%
Brewery Notes: Reflection DIPA was brewed with a healthy percentage of Oat Malt, White Wheat Malt, and Flaked Wheat & Oats to achieve a full-body as well as an underlying creamy profile. Reflection is brewed with Citra hops and Citra Cryo hops.

Reflection delves deep into the world of Citra. Expect to find bright flavors of tropical fruits and citrus, as well as aromas to match.

Review

First impressions of this new to me brewery...amazing. This is a solid DIPA. It pours this opaque orange, whilst being capped by a stunning white head. In the aroma, the Citra hop shines offering up grapefruit goodness, and general citrus aroma merriment. On drinking it is silky smooth and surprisingly sweet. It suffers like all DIPA's though if left too long, as mouthfeel became more sicky towards the end, which is my error for not crushing it (damn kids distracting me lol).

But what a great intro! These "Fine" folks ship across Ontario so check them out! Thanks for checking in and I hope you enjoyed my beer review?

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WIP Wednesday // Aeldari Bonesinger Part 2


Welcome back to a follow-up edition of WIP Wednesday. A couple of weeks back I introduced my Aeldari Bonesinger (follow the link), along with stating I was going to paint it up as Iyanden. Now of course the world never goes smoothly, so I didn't complete the model yet. I did however get the basecoat on. So that is your lot.

As you may be able to see, I started with a black prime and a classic Zenithal Highlight. From here I started applying contrast paints using brown, yellow, and blue shades. Overall rather happy with this quick paint job. My next step will be some highlights to make things pop and then hopefully get the base sorted.

Well, it was a quick check-in and I hope you enjoyed it. As always thanks for stopping by and reading. 

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Comic Review 140 // Durham Red: The Vermin Stars


Continuing the Durham Red fun with The Vermin Stars. Set five years after the first comic Scarlet Cantos, Durham Red, and her crew have arrived back in normal space and are starting to cause trouble again. Here are the official details: 

Title: Durham Red: The Vermin Stars
Author: Dan Abnett
Illustrator: Mark Harrison
Starring vampire mutant Durham Red, this science fiction graphic novel from the pen of "Sinister Dexter" author, Dan Abnett, features a bold mixture of painted and computer-assisted artwork by Mark Harrison.

As far as the story goes, it is very similar to Cantos, in the idea of Mutant vs Mankind. This time though after her five-year adventure in the Vermin Stars, Red seems pro-fighting. She is seeking out mutant terrorist groups to team up with, she is also assassinating high-ranking humans. In her quest to reignite the war, she is destabilizing the galaxy and seems to be getting a following of enemies eager to take her out. But what has caused the change of heart? Well, it would seem that Red has discovered Earth, the original Earth that for some reason was moved and hidden away to be forgotten about during the Dark Age. She also seems to have picked up a new sidekick/mentor but who is this being?

 It is a very good sequel, it keeps up the grim, darkness of the first collection, but manages to keep itself entertaining. The ending to this tale is slightly depressing you have been warned. It shows just how willing Abnett is to sacrifice parts/characters/species to push the story in a new and exciting direction. I am excited to start book three to see where we go next.

Unsurprisingly Harrison continues the beautiful computer-assisted artwork, which is just inspiring. I just love how he makes realistic mutants. They aren't comical looking, they are just mutants, plain and simple, no heads of ducks or eyes from a fly, they are just straight up down on their luck mutants.

Well worth the read!

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Durham Red: The Vermin Stars - but shop around as this is not cheap. This is like gold dust!

Miniature Monday // Judge Dredd: SJS Judge Quincy


Welcome, to a fun new edition to my growing Judge Dredd miniature collection. Today I have SJS Judge Quincy by Mongoose Publishing, a part of their short-lived Kickstarter Miniature game. This came in a Judge Cal set so expect more of this set soon. Until then here is the low down.

Name: SJS Judge Quincy

Vital statistics

Position: SJS Judge

First Appearance: The Day the Law Died

SJS Judge Quincy was one of the many that were placed under mind control by the tyrant Cal. Under orders, he came incredibly close to killing Dredd and killed Chief Judge Goodman.

History

SJS Judge Quincy was among the many that were placed under Judge Cal's mind control. Due to this, he carried out the madman's orders without question. He led the arresting squad for Judge Dredd after he had been framed for the killing of a newspaper editor and photographer. Then alongside three other cloaked Judges, he was involved in the stabbing of the Chief Judge, after he left a rejuvenation clinic. During this conflict, the Chief Judge tore a button from Judge Quincy's uniform which he then passed to Judge Dredd before he died.

Cal then goes on to order Judge Quincy to kill Judge Dredd, which he very nearly does as he shoots him in the head with a sniper rifle, putting Dredd under intensive care. When reporting back to Cal, however, the newly instated Chief Judge notices a button missing from Quincy's uniform, Cal proclaims that if he can't dress properly he won't be dressed at all and so Quincy is forced to carry out his duties wearing only his boots, helmet and boxer shorts for the rest of the story.

His status after this story is unknown, I would presume dead or in exile.

The Model

It's a pretty comical model. Made of metal the figure is clothed in a helmet, boots, gloves, and is carrying the mark 1 lawgiver. As you'll see in the next photo the scale is pretty close to Warlord Games and passable for gaming. Given a quick basecoat of black primer, I highlight key points before using just contrast paints on him. From start to finish I spent about 1 hour and 30 minutes, I am rather happy with the results.

Would love to hear your thoughts. Please do drop me a comment below or use any of these links to help support the blog and thank you for reading.


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Audio Review 36 // Prophet's of Waaagh! by Guy Haley


Got a fun audiobook this week. Prophets of Waaagh! by Guy Haley. A story from the point of view of the Orks and Grots.

Dumped on a nowhere world by the opening of the Cicatrix Maledictum, the Red Sunz Mek mob are struggling to survive. When a call to Waaagh! rings out across the planet, the chance at survival, as well as some shooty-fun, beckons. But all is not what it seems. Only an ork with real orky know-wots can hope to overcome the False Waaagh…!

Written by Guy Haley

CONTENTS
The End of Daze
Bozgat's Big Adventure
The Waaagh! Faker

At just over one hour long, I was surprised to find out it was three separate stories. The three tales follow the adventures of Uggrim, Snikgob, Bozgat, and Frikk. 

The opening story, The End of Daze, introduces us to a band of meks. They are having issues getting their stomper "Fat Mog" going and to make matters worst their weirdboy, Talker has gone on a solo wander. A good quick intro to the boyz but it seems to not reference why they crashed or the fact that they are linked to another book by Guy Haley. Overall good opening, needed more time.

Bozgrat's Big Adventure, sees Bozgrat and Frikks searching for the missing Weirdboy, Talker. As they search the desert, they discover a crashed ship once in control by the Blood Axe klan. As Bozgat investigates he discovers that the Grots had killed the Boyz off and are starting a Grot revolution! A fun nod to the old GorkaMorka game and the voice acting was amazing on this story. Hugely enjoyable and Grots rules.

The third and final tale, The Waaagh! Faker, is heavier on the action as we finally have a lot of fighting going on. We have the Red Sunz vs Bad Moons vs Mechanicus (the Red Guys) vs Astartes (Tinboys). In this mix, we also have some Imperial psyker tricks happening, as the Mechanicus and Astartes attempt to set a trap for the growing ork force. It was a solid tale with some comedy thrown in. I do feel the Space Marines are not needed. The Mechanicus would have been enough of an opponent for the orks, but it is 40k so I guess we need some of the poster boys.
 
Overall a fun solid audio drama. I understand at only an hour, time was tight and parts felt rushed, but this deserved more time, maybe 45 minutes apart to just flesh out things. I hope more of the Red Sunz happens in my future. The story is worth the listen purely for the voice acting.

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Book Review 133 // Chance Encounter by Paul Kupperberg


I felt like I needed a refresher from the Horus Heresy after weeks novel (left a bad taste in my mouth). With this in mind, I treated myself to a $10 kindle Alien book titled: Aliens: Bug Hunt (Amazon Link). Filled with 18 short stories, I felt at 56 cents a story I couldn't go wrong.

The first is called Chance Encounter and is by Paul Kupperberg.

A bit of a classic story arc. The USCSS Typhoon is forced to land on a previously uncharted planet for repairs. They are surprised to find a living biosphere here with low gravity. There are even these weird floating jellyfish that get originally called "Floaters". It is at this stage that the two main characters: London and Warrant Officer Gilmore, discover their first Xenomorph. Which they call a "Leaper". Of course, once reports are filed with Weyland-Yutani, the company demands that the team investigates further and gather samples. Worst yet for the team is when the term "at any cost" is used, causing me some stress, as I know what they mean is: the crew is expendable if a sample can be caught.

It is at this point that the tension goes through the roof. As these un-trained space travelers arm themselves and then head off into the forest in search of Leapers. Of course, our ragtag team is soon ambushed by multiple Leapers. London is captured before being dragged away to a nearby nest. Whilst his future is uncertain, the rest of the team fights off the Leapers, clearing a path out to the somewhat safety of the ship. Forced to leave London behind, the team fights to secure the ship but soon finds themselves besieged by the aliens. As things look most bleak, we discover London still alive in the nest. Rigging his last oxygen tank, London creates an explosion, setting fire to the main nest. With the hive fully alight, the Leapers stop their attack on the ship, before rushing back to rescue their burning nest. During this confusion, the team recovers London and flees the planet. They believe they are empty-handed but safe. Unknown to the rest of the crew though, London had recovered an Egg from the hive, and now dreams of the "bonus money" he will get as he stores the egg in his locker.

Now, of course, this is an Alien story so it needs a twist at the end. But I won't spoil it for you, it is a great classic ending mind.

As always, thanks for checking in and I hope you enjoyed my review?

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Beer Review 144 // Peche Mortel Termopilas by Dieu Du Ciel

Adventures with Peps: Peche Mortel Termopilas - Imperial Stout
I've finally been getting into some of more aged stouts of late. This beer that I cracked yesterday was from 2018 (maybe left it a bit too long). It was a part of a Peche Mortel day 2018, four-pack special release. Titled Peche Mortel Termopilas: The Termopilas Péché is an Imperial Stout brewed with the coffee of the same name! The light roast softens the roasted flavors to let the nutty flavors shine through. The beer is also slightly more acidic than the classic Péché Mortel.

As you can see it poured a deep black color as you would expect from a Peche. I found the head faded very fast on this brew, but had a slight mocha hint about it. It wasn't as lively as a lot of Peche's I've had in the past, this may be down to me aging it though. As I lent in for a big sniff, I was greeted by coffee front and center. I personally didn't get a nutty aspect as they describe (most likely lost with age). Ultimately though this smells like a solid stout.

The first sip was enjoyable! I got the nutty aspect straight away, whilst the finish was like a good cup of brewed coffee. Easy to drink and rather smooth for a 9.5%. A found it a little on the thinner side of stouts, but damn was it tasty, the only bitterness seemed to come from the coffee and it just made you want to drink more!

Absolutely delicious and I hope they make it again! Thanks for checking in and I hope you enjoyed my beer review?

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Brewery: Dieu Du Ciel
Peche Mortel Review: Orignial
Peche Mortel Review: Jameson

WIP // Wednesday Eldar Guardian (or Aeldari) Aringhe Craftworld

Feel like I have fallen behind on my Eldar Craftworld Project. I got heavily distracted by the Strontium Dogs. So here I am declaring that I am going to paint an Aringhe Craftworld guardian. 'Aringhe?' you say. Who the hell are they? This is a very good question. When I googled Aringhe all I got was the word Herring, it is Italian for Herring. Turns out it appeared once in the colours of the Craftworlds article back in 2007, since then it has never had any additional background entered. All that is known is they are red and silver in colour. An interesting choice as you rarely if ever see metallic Eldar. Anyways, with it being a lesser Craftworld I thought I would keep it simple and just go straight up guardian model. There isn't anything that jumps out at me so I don't wish to use a fancier model on this project.


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Comic Review 139 // Durham Red: The Scarlet Cantos


What do you do when you run out of Strontium Dogs? Well here is the answer: Durham Red. For those who don't remember Red was a popular cameo character in the later issues. She has the mutant abilities of a Vampire and none of their weaknesses (apart from carving blood). Now lucky for me she got her spin-off series written by Dan Abnett and I just so happen to have the bundle!

Let us dive in.

Title: Durham Red: The Scarlet Cantos

Written by Dan Abnett and illustrated by Mark Harrison.

Durham Red is a mutant unlike any other. Radioactive fallout from atomic wars gave Durham a unique gift - vampirism. She must drink blood to survive, but her vampirism is metabolic, not supernatural. As a result, she is fearless in the face of crosses, not afraid of sunlight or running water, and just loves the taste of garlic.

Set way into the future of Strontium Dog, we are transported into a dark, grim future that you can't help but draw a 40k parallel with. Within this dark setting we a strange truce between Humans and mutants, but in this new society, the mutants are still deemed lower than the mutants. This has led to a terrorist group of mutants forming, creating an element of fear and distrust. This group called the Tenebrae also worships the Scarlet Cantos aka Durham Red. They see her as a figurehead to their cause, as she feasted on the blood of humans. It is believed she will return to mutant-kind, unite them, and lead them against their enemies.

Well, as it turns out Durham had put herself in stasis for 100 years to have a good sleep. The only problem is no one woke her up! She laid asleep for 1200 years instead. Waking from a long sleep is one thing, but to discover 1000's have died in your name must be a hard thing to swallow. Soon she is caught in the thick of the action and has to decide not only her destiny but that of all mutant kind.

The story was well written unsurprisingly as it Dan Abnett. The setting as mention is grim, dark with a lot of 40k vibes to it, genetically enhanced soldiers who fear the unclean. With hatred of the non-human species high on the agenda. The artwork is stunningly beautiful and Durham Red looks kickass in the comic panels. After reading this I am excited to delve further into the stories and I feel we will be completing this series rather quickly. 

Going to show a few more panels as the artwork is truly great. As always thanks for stopping by and reading. Use any of these links to help support the blog and thank you.

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Book Review 150 // Sharpe's Triumph (Sharpe #2) by Bernard Cornwell

Time to revisit a series that captured my interest, then I failed to find this book in a thrift store for months! But I finally found the se...