Yes, once again, it's another Empire thread.
If you make it to the end of this, take ten brownie points and sincere apologies for those ten minutes of your life you'll never get back (well not until Royal Mail get their finger out and deliver that proton accelerator so I can finally finish my time machine. Take that Mr Dolby! Who said my CSE grade 3 science would get me nowhere?!! )
The Backstory. Time - approximately ten months ago.
The basic premise was that I didn't want any more Fantasy Armies - I already have six; Skaven, Beastmen, Orcs 'n' Gobbos, Dark Elves, High Elves and Lizardmen - (yes, I've ranked them in order of preference - yeah Lizardmen, I'm talking to you - some help around the house once in a while wouldn't go amiss...). As anyone knows, six is more than enough (coincidentally, the amount of kids I have but I daren't rank them in order of love, not on here ).
Having so many armies means that every time some stonking new release comes out I end up getting it and consequently end up with 150 projects on the go at once.
The added downside to having this many armies meant I was never playing enough games so I started messing about with the skirmish rules. Whilst these scenarios were great, what I kept coming back to was that the best scenarios involved the Empire; Scurrilous Skaven infiltrating the sewers under Altdorf; Orcs and Goblins raiding a nearby village whilst an elector count just happens to be passing through; Templar Knights destroying a Beastman herdstone etc. Maybe if I had an Empire army?... The cursed idea took hold and I couldn't shake it. Right I said. One last army.
If I was going to do this, I was going to do it 'right'. I couldn't care less about a winning army. I'm all about the fluff (as my scratty attempts at a beard would bear witness to). It's horses for courses. Some people game to win and I'm not decrying that. I game (when I get round to it) purely for fun. I pick armies and figures that I like the look of and field probably the most rubbish army lists known to man, but I'm all for the aesthetic.
Normally when I choose an army, I adopt a somewhat scattergun approach. Basically I just buy and paint what I like and crowbar it into an army. Whilst I would adopt some of these techniques into my Empire force, I needed a more strategic plan - more in thinking with an Empire General you might say.
The first thing I did was sit down (get up, make a cup of coffee, procrastinate, make daughter a drink, make wife a drink, procrastinate some more) and finally try to decide where to start. But what Province to choose? Herein lies the problem. How about those strong but uncouth Middenlanders, with their love of the wolf? (I was lycan those); those haughty Reiklanders... well, if it's good enough for the Emperor; What about something left-field (literally) like Marienburg? A man could really go to town (sea?) with all that nautical frame of reference. Too many choices... but then it hit me (admittedly the bird wasn't looking where it was going but still...) why choose? Why not forge an army out of the entire empire? I could support this in the fluff; All the states rallying together under Karl Franz, coming together in time of need. I could have loads of fun with the skirmishes and I could even pit brother against brother if I wished.
That decided, I set upon devouring all the references I could. I gathered all my Empire sources and bought more. I had the old WFRP books plus many of the new ones (both of which I've never played ) so I read up on all the background. What proved to be the best sources were the excellent 'Blood On The Reik' and the 'History and Heraldry of The Empire'. The second book more than earned its cover price. It did however bring another headache. Contained within were lots of 'Regiments of Renown'. Loads of small forces who'd gone on to earn distinction through some feat or other. I knew I had to include most of these to give my army colour (as if an army made up from every province wasn't already a technicolor TM nightmare).
Plan pretty much set, I procrastinated; made a cup of coffee, played on the Wii then finally ordered the beginnings of my force.
As preparing the army is the most tedious thing to do (filing, cutting, cleaning, swearing when cutting etc) I put on my Wurzel Gummidge tunnel-vision head and blasted it all in one go. As this thread is more epic than Ben Hur (that's epic in 'tedious length sense' not 'awesomeness sense') I'd better post some pics. This was the initial horror that awaited me .
This was without all the metal stuff and the Forgeworld goodies - oh crikey, yes.