Thursday, February 28, 2013

Wood Elf Tactica - The Eternal Guard

Wood Elf Tactica – The Eternal Guard
The Eternal Guard are the Guardians of the Forest in Athel Loren.  They defend the King’s Glade during the winter months and the court of the Queen during the summer.  They are the elite soldiers of the noble houses of Athel Loren, serving as the bodyguards for the Lords and Ladies of the Asrai court.  With their deadly spear-staves and unique fighting style, they have been stalwart defenders of Athel Loren for ages past and the frontline defense against the forces of Chaos.

The Eternal Guard are both a Special selection and a Core selection in the Wood Elf army.  If the army is led by a Highborn then the Eternal Guard becomes a Core choice otherwise they stay in the Special slot.  The Eternal Guard is the only rank and file close combat infantry unit in the Wood Elf army that is generally able to make use of a rank bonus. 

Eternal Guard 5 5 4 3 3 1 5 1 9
Guardian 5 5 4 3 3 1 5 2 9

The Eternal Guard stat line is fairly straight forward for an Elite infantry choice.  They have a Movement, Weapon Skill and Initiative of 5 so they are fast and quick and will be hitting most foes on 3’s.  They have a Strength and Toughness of 3 which is standard for most elves, it is not the most ideal toughness for a rank and file model but these are elves after all.  They sport one attack (before factoring in the spear-staves) and have one wound but have a Leadership of 9 so right off the bad they are rather easy to take LD tests with.  The unit is able to rank up and take a full command which also provides them with the opportunity to use a magical standard.

The unit has a few special rules and equipment of note; they have the Eternal Guard Fighting Style which provides each model with a 5+ armor save and their patented spear-staves function as both spears and having two hand weapons in close combat which makes their base attacks 2 rather than 1.  The last special rule about them is the Bodyguard special rule which means that when the unit is led by a Wood Elf Highborn or Noble, then the Eternal Guard become Stubborn. 

Let’s evaluate the Pros and Cons of this unit before going into the advanced tactica. 

The unit has a Weapon Skill of 5 – they are generally hitting on 3’s and being hit on 4’s.
The unit has two base attacks rather than 1.
The unit is Stubborn as long as there is a noble/highborn in unit.
The unit has a high initiative so they are striking first against most opponents.
The unit is able to gain ranks and negate steadfast as well as fight in 3 ranks when charged/2nd turn of combat.

The unit has elven strength and toughness which means they will need 5’s to wound toughness 4 opponents and will be wounded more often when attacked.
The unit does not have a parry save.
The unit costs 12 points a model.
The unit only has a 5+ armor save.
The unit is not immune to psychology like many of the elite Wood Elf units.
The unit requires a Highborn to lead the army in order to be a Core choice.
The unit requires a lot of synergy in order to get the optimal results.

The question now becomes, how do I use this unit? 

The Eternal Guard are considered by many to be a “sub-optimal” unit compared to the other selections in the Wood Elf army available to a general.  I personally don’t give a damn what many consider.  I think the unit is very versatile and effective. 

Eternal Guard may be configured in one of three main ways: Anvils, Bunkers, Hybrid, or Braveheart!

Anvils – when fielded as an Anvil, the Eternal Guard will have 4-6 ranks of 5-6 models each with a Noble or a Highborn in the unit.  You will want to field anywhere from 25-40 models in ranked formation to ensure not only a +3 rank bonus but also to prevent your opponent from getting Steadfast.  This runs 270 to 480ish points plus characters.
-Synergy: You will want to have a Highborn with a Rhymer’s Harp, Eternal Guard Kindred and the Annoyance of Netlings in this unit.  That will provide the unit with the ability to negate other enemy characters from wrecking the unit and will require that they Highborn is hit on 6’s in a duel.  This also will provide the unit with a 5+ ward save and Stubborn.  You will also want to augment the unit with either Wyssan’s Wildform or Flesh to Stone in order to increase the unit’s offensive and defensive capabilities.

Bunkers – when fielded as a Bunker, the Eternal Guard will have 10-15 models and will house a Spellcaster such as the Spellweaver.  The point of this configuration is to provide a few ablative wounds to protect your caster while also having maneuverability to get across the field by marching 10”.  The primary purpose of this configuration is to prevent your Spellcaster from being sniped by war machines and to provide her with some defense against a charge.  This runs 180ish points plus characters.
-Synergy: You will want to give the Spellweaver the Ironcurse Icon to give this unit a 6+ ward save against war machines.  While buffing this unit with augments is not a bad thing, Wyssan’s Wildform or Flesh to Stone would not be terrible choices but I feel those augments would be better served on another offensive unit in the army.

Hybrids – this is actually the configuration I use the most in my own army lists.  When fielded in this fashion, you will have roughly 18-25 Eternal Guards with a full command and the Battle Standard Bearer and the Spellweaver in the unit.  The purpose of this configuration is to provide a unit that is both offensive and defensive and provides a reasonably safe bunker for the Spellweaver.  This configuration excels at being the hammer or the anvil.  You are able to move forward and engage the enemy while augmenting and assisting other units in the army. This runs 246 – 330ish points plus characters.
-Synergy: This configuration requires the most thought and synergy, not to mention finesse.  You will need to put the glittering scales and Annoyance of Netlings on your Battle Standard Bearer and then the Rhymer’s Harp on the Spellweaver (also the Luminescence Sprite if you have the spare 25 pts so the unit has Magical Attacks).  You will always declare challenges or accept challenges with the BSB so that your opponent needs 6’s to hit but then you have a 5+ ward save to fend off their attacks, otherwise most opponents will need a 5 to hit against your BSB due to the Glittering Scales.  The Rhymer’s Harp provides the unit with the 5+ ward save and then the Lore of Life spell  Flesh to Stone boosted with Throne of Vines will make this unit near impossible to destroy.  The Lore of Beasts is not the most optimal choice in this situation since you would need three spells: Wyssan’s Wildform, Savage Beast of Horros and Pann’s Pelt to really take advantage of your BSB and Spellweaver while minimally augmenting your rank and file.  This unit configuration works best when paired with a unit of Treekin to serve as the hammer.

Braveheart! – Of all the configurations, this is the most expensive and yet entertaining deployment.  This configuration is set up for pure offense and nothing else.  You will need to field around 40-50 Eternal Guard in a horde formation.  This configuration also requires a Battle Standard Bearer, a Highborn and a Spellweaver to be in the unit as well.  This unit marches forward and attacks everything in its path.  If the attacking general quotes Braveheart as he declares charges then the dice rolls will be obviously better.  This configuration runs 510-640ish points plus characters.
-Synergy: This is the most entertaining and expensive combination but the results are generally fun.  You need to have the Razor Standard on the unit’s Standard Bearer giving all attacks Armor Piercing.  The Highborn will need to be given the Annoyance of Netlings, the Other Trickster’s Shard and the Spirit Sword.  If he is to square off against anyone in a duel then they will need 6’s to hit him.  Should they not accept the duel, then the Spirit Sword will be able to wreak havoc on the unit.  The Spellweaver will need to be equipped with the Lore of Beasts and the Rhymer’s Harp.  She will need to cast on the unit Wyssan’s Wildform, Savage Beast of Horros and Pann’s Pelt in order to provide the unit +1 S/T while granting the characters +4 S/+4 T and +3 attacks.  Finally, the Battle Standard Bearer will need to have the Terrifying Mask of EEK! and the Glittering Scales to provide the unit with Terror and make him harder to be hit.  If you are able to properly get off all these spells and equip your characters in this fashion, you will be able to cut through just about anything since the Eternal Guard will get to attack with 4 ranks which will unload 44 attacks + 17 character attacks and the lowest initiative will be 5. 

As you are able to see, the Eternal Guard is a very versatile unit but require an investment in characters and equipment to reach the optimal results.  The Wood Elf player needs to not only augment this unit but use it in tandem with another.  Dependent upon configuration, you will need to decide how this unit is to be played.  I use the Hybrid for most of my lists and I play that rather defensively.  I will keep the Eternal Guard held back while augmenting units like Treekin or Wild Riders until I am able to augment my Eternal Guard in close combat.  This unit is able to weather abuse provide you have a Lore of Life caster that is able to bring back models you suffer from combat/shooting/magic.  The benefits to using Eternal Guard in this fashion is that not only do I have a unit with ranks in the army but it also it draws the attention of my opponent off the other units in my army. It also helps to provide a little variety to your army lists so that you are not fielding 5 units of Glade Guard that will ultimately get overrun when your opponent marches across the field.

You will also need to make your list work around the Eternal Guard.  Many Wood Elf players prefer fielding a Spellweaver and a Treeman Ancient at higher point levels.  This means that a lot of the synergy and effectiveness of the Eternal Guard is compromised and also they lose their Core choice option.  I do not recommend fielding Eternal Guard unless they are able to not only be augmented appropriately but given the appropriate unit support as well.  The unit is able to function on its own but it will not be as effective as it would be if it were being used in conjunction with another or had characters residing within it.  I mean the very nature of the unit’s special rules show that characters are supposed to be in this unit to provide it with Stubborn. 

In closing, the Eternal Guard unit is a great unit for the Wood Elf army.  It is an elite close combat unit that provides you with much needed banners, ranks and numbers to weather the ever increasing model counts that are seen on the table.  I hope this article has provided you with some ideas as to how to field and configure your Eternal Guard for play.





Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Preferred Enemies - High Elves, the White Lions of Chrace

Preferred Enemies - High Elves, the White Lions of Chrace

This installment of Preferred Enemies will deal with the Special choice for the High Elf army, the White Lions of Chrace.  They serve as the vaunted bodyguard of the Phoenix King and their Woodman’s Axes carve up their enemies with little difficulty.  Garbed in a lion’s pelt that the White Lion hunted and slew himself, this Lion’s pelt provides the warrior with additional protection and prestige.  A White Lion’s cloak excels at deflecting arrows and his axe slices through wood as easily as it would bone.  The White Lions are truly a fearsome opponent for the Wood Elves to face.
Let us evaluate the unit and its abilities.  The White Lions of Chrace are what I consider to both a hammer and an anvil unit.  They are clad in Heavy armor and wear a Lion cloak which affords them an additional +2 to their armor save against shooting attacks.  Their Woodman’s Axe is considered a great weapon so they are granted a +2 bonus to their Strength in close combat.  In addition to being Stubborn, the unit also has the Speed of Asuryan which provides every High Elf with the Always Strike First special rule. 

White Lion 5 5 4 4 3 1 5 1 8

So right off the bat we are facing an enemy with a Weapon Skill equal to or higher than most of the Wood Elf units and an initiative that also is just as fast so against most of the Wood Elf units, White Lions will be granted a reroll to their missed strikes.  The unit has a base Strength of 4 which becomes Strength 6 when in close combat.  So against even the Treeman this unit would hit on 4’s and wound on 4’s which is not a favorable situation for a Wood Elf general.

The unit is generally fielded in one of two ways; either the High elf player will field a unit of 20-25run them 5x4 or the High Elf general fields 40 and deploys them in horde formation with a flaming banner.  For the most part this unit will slaughter whatever they run into when horded out.  This unit functions as an exceptionally good Monster Hunter and Monstrous Cavalry/Infantry slaying unit.  When this unit is horded out, it can reasonably put out 31 attacks at WS5 and Str6.  With the Speed of Asuryan, this unit is also more than likely rerolling their misses which only adds to their already high combat effectiveness.  Monstrous Infantry like Treekin is suddenly being hit on 3’s and wounded on 3’s with only their 5+ ward save to rely on. 

Things are looking rather grim for Wood Elves…

With enemies that strike before we do with strength high enough to cancel out most of our armor saves, not to mention special rules that make them more difficult to wound with an arrow, how exactly are Wood Elves expected to be successful?

1.       Blacken the sky with arrows – While the White Lions of Chrace do gain a 3+ armor save against shooting, the unit is still only Toughness 3.  If you mass firing at the unit at short range the unit will be hit on 3’s and wounded on 3’s.  You will also reduce that 3+ to a 4+ armor save which never hurts.  If the unit is horded out, this will then require several rounds to whittle down to a size that they may be successfully engaged.

2.       Death from below – Dweller’s Below is still probably one of the best options for capsizing a unit such as the White Lions.  Their base strength is 4 which means that you have a good chance of crippling the unit with a successful casting.

3.       Strangling Annoyance – If you tend to use Treemen in your lists, it never hurts to position one of two of them to the flank of the unit and strangleroot attack them.  Granted they still receive a 4+ armor save but it will still inflict casualties.

4.       Axes! You dare! – The axes that the White Lions wield are not magical therefore they do not negate the Forest Spirit Ward Save so engaging with units like Dryads is not a bad idea since this negates the White Lion rerolls on misses and the Ward Save is a 5+ regardless of the Strength of the attack.

5.       Petrified Forest – While the White Lion’s may be Strength 6, augmenting the Wood Elf close combat units like the Dryads, Treekin and Treemen with Flesh to Stone and increasing their Toughness by +2 or +4 will require the White Lions to need 6’s to wound.  While any wounds that get through will negate an armor save, the Ward Save is still there and functional.

6.       Dragonflame! – The Forest Dragon Breath Weapon in close combat and ranged is strangely effective against White Lions.  It is not however recommended to change into combat against White Lions without augmenting your Forest Dragon with Flesh to Stone.

7.       Misdirection and Redirection – this is a difficult approach to pull off with White Lions due to their high combat effectiveness and high leadership.  It is very useful if you are able to draw the unit away from the front lines but you don’t want to engage the unit with a chaff roadbump and negate a round of shooting at the unit.

The standard configurations you will see for the White Lions of Chrace are as follows:
1.       20-25 White Lions fielded 5x5 or 5x4.  This is a mobile and effective bunker for a hero or lord that allows the High elf player to maneuver and position his hard hitting unit easily.  Options 1,2 and 3 work very well against this smaller unit while Options 6 and 7 do not.

2.       40 White Lions fielded 10x4.  This horde formation is an effective blender for the High Elf army.  Anything it runs into dies unless lucky, and the sheer number of attacks this unit can unload makes front charges on this unit extremely unwise.  The best method to handle this unit is Option 1 and 2.  If you are to engage this unit in close combat is must absolutely be either in the flank or rear in order to minimize the number of attacks coming back at you.  So if resorting to close combat against this Cuisinart, use option 4, 5 or 6.  It is recommended that if you are exercising Option 4 or 5, Treeman and Dryads are the best option since Dryads negate their ASF rerolls and Treeman will be able to Thunderstomp and will require them to hit on 4’s rather than 3’s.     

3.       2 units of 20-25 fielded 5x5 or 5x4.  When your opponent fields 2 White Lion units, you are going to have a tough time ahead of you.  You will need to make the decision to either:
a. focus fire on one unit until it is destroyed or fled

b. split fire where one unit eats up all your arrow fire while the second unit suffers Dweller’s below.

Optimal Units to combat the White Lions of Chrace:
1. Glade Guard – short range Glade Guard will generate so many wounds upon the Toughness 3 White Lions that you will force casualties upon them.  But you must maintain proper range and charge arc movement.

2.  Treeman – I recommend the Treeman because he is able to not only use Strangleroot but also handle himself quite well in close combat – provided he is augmented with Flesh to Stone.  He will cause many wounds against the White Lions and more importantly reduce their combat effectiveness.

3.  Dryads – normally Dryads I use for defense to protect my archers, however in this instance I would be using them to flank charge and tie up the White Lions.  I chose Dryads over Treekin because Treekin will garner too many wounds unless augmented and will be hit on 3’s.

4.  Waywatchers – their Lethal Shot going off on a 6 to wound is amazing and will drop White Lions without the benefit of a save.

5.  Spellweavers w/ Lore of Life – Dweller’s Below. Sup

Treekin, Wild Riders, Eternal Guard and Great Eagles will garner too many wounds in order to make them effective against the White Lions of Chrace.  It is not recommended to engage the White Lions with those units.

 The main thing to remember when facing this type of unit is to keep calm and keep track of how your opponent handles them.  If your opponent is keeping them in the back field for a later in the game charge, then that allows you to deal with the other units first.  If your opponent is ramming them down your throat turn 1 then you have no choice but to deal with that unit first.  My advice is to maneuver your army away from the core of your opponent’s army and hit this unit with surgical precision.  Many players will depend on the stat line to carry this unit rather than appropriate movement and charges.  While this unit has some serious firepower it can be defeated if properly handled in all 4 phases of the game.

I hope this Preferred Enemies edition provides helpful advice and an accurate and effective method of handling and dealing with the Special selection from the High Elf army book, the White Lions of Chrace.


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Preferred Enemies – Warriors of Chaos - Skullcrushers of Khorne

Preferred Enemies – Warriors of Chaos - Skullcrushers of Khorne

This installment of Preferred Enemies will deal with the Rare choice for the Warriors of Chaos army, the Skullcrushers of Khorne.  Only Chaos Knights who have given themselves over fully to the Lord of Slaughter are allowed to become these living engines of death and carnage.  These hellish monstrous cavalry spell certain doom for anything that crosses their path on the field of battle.  These mountains of metal and death are able to crash through the thick undergrowth of Athel Loren reaping death and destruction for the Asrai.  How are Wood Elves supposed to counter these unholy death dealers of the Blood God?

You aim for the eyes…

But in all seriousness, there is not a perfect solution for dealing with this absolutely brutal unit.  Wood Elf generals will have to be both canny and conservative in order to ensure that this unit does not get past the front line and rampage his backfield. 

Let’s evaluate the actual unit and its abilities.  The Skullcrushers of Khorne are the elite of the elite as far as cavalry and monstrous cavalry go, with the exception of the Rhinox Riders there is not a harder hitting monstrous cavalry unit out there.  The unit has a Chaos Knight using the standard statline of WS:5 S:4 T:4 I:5 and A2 with LD:8 mounted on a Juggernaut with the monstrous statline of WS:5 S:5 T:4 W:3 I:2 and the together they have a 1+ armor save.  Immediately you are faced with a unit with a Weapon Skill of 5 which is equal to or better than the normal Wood Elf unit and an Initiative on the rider of 5 which also is equal to or better. 

Skullcrusher of Khorne

Skullcrusher of Khorne453441528
Skullhunter of Khorne453441538
Juggernaut of Khorne750543237

Special Abilities:Brass Behemoth, Daemonic Attacks, Fear, Eye of the Gods, Mark of Khorne, Murderous Charge

The unit may also take Ensorcelled weapons for 3 points each or Lances for 2 points. 

The unit is able to unleash on a charge 3 Str 5 attacks and 3 Str 6 attacks per model (provided they bought Ensorcelled weapons but like who wouldn’t?) and at a Weapon Skill of 5.  Do not forget that even after the barrage of attacks and the insanely difficult time of getting a wound through due to their armor save, you have to suffer a Stomp attack as well if you are infantry, swarms or warbeasts.  On average you are going to be facing a unit of 3 since that will encompass 234 points of your opponent’s army which means if you will have to deal with 18 attacks with strength of at least 5 from this troublesome unit.  They will be immune to psychology which means Fear and Terror do not play into reducing their weapon skill.  Also, the unit will have magical attacks which will negate our outdated army books Ward Save.  

So facing an enemy as daunting as this one, how do Wood Elves combat such a foe?

There are several methods, some of them are good and others are chancy at best but we’ll describe my methods of handling such an outright beatstick unit. 

1.       Ranged firepower – Choosing this unit to fire upon in the Warriors of Chaos army is a problem since the new army book provides so many viable options that a Wood Elf general will need to deal with intelligently.  Given that this unit has 3 wounds per model with a 1+ save, even at short range the best you can hope for is a 2+ armor save which doesn’t help that much.  Sadly with the exception of using a highborn with the Arcane Bodkins/Bow of Loren combo, this is the only method for dealing with the unit via ranged.
2.       Magical Might – I have found that augmenting the Wood Elf army accomplishes more than attempting to direct damage the enemy.  Giving the unit that is engaging the Skullcrushers (or will be engaging next turn) the Throne of Vines/Flesh to Stone combo and giving them +4 Toughness is a huge boost, especially if its your Treekin or Treemen doing the fighting.  You could also augment your dryads and Wild Riders but that seems to be less than optimal choice for engaging this unit in close combat.
3.       Redirection and Misdirection – while I dislike using redirectors since it generally means I am sacrificing my Great Eagles rather than using them for rear charges, using them to redirect Skullcrushers is ok!  A good tactic is to redirect the Skullcrushers that are frenzied into exposing their flank and charging in with a Treeman or Treekin. 
4.       Going toe to toe – Slamming your heavy armor/high toughness units like Treekin and Treeman into the front of a Skullcrusher unit is not the most optimal option but sometimes the only option available.  When this happens, you will want to engage the unit with at least 2 others and a flank charge as well.  Overwhelming force to force those 1’s to be rolled for armor saves is sometimes the only option.
5.       Catch me if you can – by employing Glade Riders, you are able to feigned flight drag the Skullcrusher unit off to the far corners of the board but that is often a chancy gamble at best since the unit moves 7 and the chances of catching you are not unreasonable.
6.       What the hell? – If your opponent decides to take enough Skullcrushers to rank up at least 3x2 or 4x2, then your only recourse is to Dweller’s Below, Ranged Fire and redirect that unit to the far reaches of the cosmos and avoid it until you absolutely have to.

My preferred method is to shoot the unit down to nothing and slam into it’s flank with an augmented close combat unit.  The main issue with this unit is that it cannot be ignored.  The unit can be pushed forward until it slams into your important units and then it goes berserk killing off your army.  The optimal units to face these guys in close combat are Treemen, Treekin and Eternal Guard (only if you are able to get a flank charge AND augment the unit with Throne of Vines and Flesh to Stone and you have a model with the Rhymer’s Harp in the unit – read: properly equipped combo unit).  Your other units like Dryads and Wild Riders will just garner too many wounds with little or no armor saves.

Let’s evaluate the weaknesses of the unit also.  The unit is only Toughness 4 which means some of the Wood Elf units can wound it easily and force armor saves (Glade Guard bows at short range, Dryads, Treekin, Treemen, Wild Riders on a charge, etc.).  The unit is subject to Frenzy which means it can be lead off the board to odd locations to prevent it from being used effectively.  The unit is very expensive, 3 models cost 234 points and they have a fairly wide footprint which makes maneuvering difficult. 

Here are the standard configurations that are being used for Skullcrushers:

1.       1 unit of 3-4 Skullcrushers.  - Options 1 and 3 are a pretty good course of action.
2.       2 units of 3-4 Skullcrushers.  – When your opponent fields this configuration you first off throat punch them for being a dick then you will have to work very hard on focus firing one unit down with ranged firepower while devoting your heavy hitters with augments in Option 2 to dealing with the other unit.  This configuration is hard because these models are no joke and can rampage through the army if unchecked.
3.       1 unit of 6-8 Skullcrushers – You need to Option 1 and 6 that shit, this is a ton of points and if you break this unit you are probably going to win the game since it will encompass anywhere from 500 to 700 points.  Redirecting with Option 3 after unloading with Option 1 will open you up to a more favorable flank charge on that unit.  Disrupting their ranks is key, especially if you want to make sure they don’t get Steadfast.  Bring a unit of Eternal Guard into the other flank and augment the unit appropriately.

The main thing to remember when facing this type of unit is to keep calm and keep track of how your opponent handles them.  If your opponent is keeping them in the back field for a later in the game charge, then that allows you to deal with the other units first.  If your opponent is ramming them down your throat turn 1 then you have no choice but to deal with that unit first.  My advice is to maneuver your army away from the core of your opponent’s army and hit this unit with surgical precision.  Many players will depend on the stat line to carry this unit rather than appropriate movement and charges.  While this unit has some serious firepower it can be defeated if properly handled in all 4 phases of the game.

I hope this Preferred Enemies edition provides helpful advice and an accurate and effective method of handling and dealing with the Warriors of Chaos Rare selection of the Skullcrushers of Khorne.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Hobby Zone Product Review – Professional Paint Station and Large Paint Stand

Hobby Zone Product Review – Professional Paint Station and Large Paint Stand
I recently saw an article on BoLS about a company named HobbyZone that made “accessories for modelers and hobbyists”.  The article then showed this pretty nice paint station this group had obtained to organize their hobby space.
This company makes hobby and paint accessories out of MDF board that are meant to organize and clean up your hobby space.  This instantly appealed to me since I have been struggling for months to find a worthwhile solution for my desk to organize my paints and hobby materials.  I had been throwing around ideas to design and build my own paint rack and hobby area for months, each time ending up frustrated because the entire solution would require more time and effort to build than I was willing to devote.  Also, I had been very frustrated because I wanted a portable solution to do my hobby.  Being a new father, it is nigh impossible to sneak away upstairs for one or two hours to paint while my wife is downstairs with my twin daughters.  I needed something that would allow me to move my projects up and downstairs without disrupting my entire hobby desk upstairs.  So when I visited their site, I was very excited about what I found.
So let me take a moment to talk about the products I purchased.  I obtained the Professional Paint Station which is their large 60cm wide painting station and the Large Paint Stand.
The Large Paint Stand was a fantastic purchase; it comes in two different holder types.  The dropper bottle sized cut outs and the citadel paint pot sized cut outs.  I purchased the citadel sized which has an 84 bottle capacity (dropper bottle has a larger capacity).  The paint stand is very light weight and comes in several well cut and easy to assemble pieces.  The entire thing took me less than 2 minutes to assemble without touching glue.  I’ve already tested its weight capacity and it will easily hold the 84 paint pots without strain or bending. 
Large Paint Stand:
Cost:  $15.48
Assembly: Very easy
Materials: MDF – well cut
Overall: Very Pleased

The Professional Paint Station is Hobby Zone’s largest portable paint station.  I wanted the largest so that in case it was smaller than my initial measurements had shown, I would not have a paint station that was cramped.  This Professional Paint Station is fantastic.  It holds about 50 pots of paint as well as most of my brushes, knives and files.  It has two cup holders for water or mixing solution.  It has a bright white workspace that will reflect light back further illuminating the work area and it is amazingly lightweight.  The shelves and structure is pretty solid once built, as you can see in one of the pictures however one of the rear corners got a bit munched during shipment but it still turned out well.  The assembly was fairly simple, I ran into an issue when placing the unit onto the bottom workspace slab.  The bottom cut sections did not match up 100% but that may have been due to poor assembly on my part.  Once assembled (with Wood Glue) it is solid and sturdy.  It even has little wings you can attach on the side for when you want a model to dry.  I loaded it up with metal models, paints and few cans of Coke and it did not even so much as bend under the weight. 

Professional Paint Station
Cost: $34.44
Assembly: Easy
Materials: MDF – well cut
Overall: Pleased – I would have been Very Pleased but the bottom section not 100% lining up despite my best efforts disappointed me slightly.

I could not believe how remarkably cheap these organizers were.  I was able to reorganize my entire workstation for 50 bucks which replaced 2 shelving units, 3 boxes and a clumsy array of partial projects that were cluttering my work area.  It is also lightweight enough to where you can paint at your workstation upstairs then grab it by the handles and move it downstairs to paint at the dinner table.

I will be ordering yet another Paint Station from Hobby Zone soon – the Paint Station (40mm) which only has two levels vs. the Professionals 4 levels but it is smaller and is ideal to be taken to places like the game store to work on projects. 

In closing, Hobby Zone has done an excellent job of making an inexpensive, lightweight and quality product for hobbyists.  They are based out of Poland so the only downside to doing business with them is that shipping will cost you.

This hobbyist recommends Hobby Zone to anyone that needs a cheap and affordable organizational solution for their hobby.

Here are some of the initial images of the unassembled product and the assembly process.

As you can see the package it came in was nice and lightweight and both the Paint Station and the Paint Stand came in many pre-cut pieces. 

Munched corner =( 

As you can see here the initial assembly of the Paint Station required some paper tape to keep things together while the Wood Glue dried.  The Paint Stand fitted together nicely and you can see the size and design of it from the various angles.

Finally you have the finished product complete with little wings on the side that are removable. 

That completes my product review on Hobby Zone's Professional Paint Station and Large Paint Stand.