Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Making Terrain Boards Part 7: Water Effects



I had some success with my foray into terrain boards last year, but I stopped short from finishing them, unsure how to proceed with the water effects the stream required for completion. I got some use out the boards, treating the muddy ditch as an inconsequential obstacle. A year and half on though, I knew I'd have to fill that ditch with an approximation of water so I could check this project off as complete.

Join me after the break to find out how you too can ruin your terrain boards!


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Crew of the Astropolis

I finished up a few more crew members of the good ship Astropolis from the recent Kickstarter. I love these figures: big and chunky and full of character, and I'm eagerly awaiting the release of the next batch in the upcoming Kickstarter sequel.






Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Cold Wars 2017




I managed to get to Cold Wars for a day of wargaming. While only played a few games, I did manage to scope out a number of great tables, chat with gamers and raid the vendor hall. Check out my photo dump:


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Fighters, Lancers and Layabouts

This post originally appeared on the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge.

Like many of you, I jump from project to project and this week's entries represent miniatures from three of my current projects.


Star Wars Armada

One of my goals for the Challenge was to get my Star Wars Armada ships finished off. I play Armada regularly, and we're gearing up to try a campaign this Spring. I couldn't field unpainted forces, so I've steadily been adding paint to these tiny ships as a break from 28mm figures.

These E-Wings were recently added to the pool of Rebel forces, while the brown Moldy Crow is an older release that I've finally managed to paint up. I enjoyed adding paint to the Armada scale X-Wings, Y-Wings and other squadrons seen in the films, but these E-Wings (designed for the comic books) lack the character and detail of the classic ships.




I don't tend to play Imperials, but for those rare occasions that I do I'll bring these bounty hunter vessels since they are sporting fresh paint jobs. Bossk's Hound's Tooth is a big garbage truck of a ship that gets deadlier as it receives damage, while Dengar's Punishing One has proven annoying when I've faced it in enemy fleets.


Blood and Plunder

I've recently returned from a family vacation to Disney World, and a visit to "Pirates of the Caribbean" has fired my enthusiasm to complete my Spanish forces from the recent "Blood and Plunder" kickstarter. Hoping to get all of these figures done so I can get cracking on their ships and some terrain.



Astropolis

Finally, I completed just two figures from the Astropolis kickstarter. I have a dozen, primed and ready to go, but each is so unique and full of character that I wind up spending far more time on each individual which has slowed my progress. Unlike the weak sculpts and soft detail of the "Blood and Plunder" figures, these detailed Astropolis figs are a joy to paint. I can easily picture these two slack jawed wrench monkeys banging on the innards of some huge, decrepit space freighter.



I'm hoping to sneak in a few more figures before the deadline, but with the Cold Wars convention approaching, that may be too optimistic.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Blood and Plunder Pirates: Indios y Lanceros


This post originally appeared on the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge.

Just a handful of figures this week as I make the first dent into the Blood and Plunder Kickstarter package I received a few weeks ago.



After visiting the fort at St. Augustine and watching the first season of Black Sails, I decided to go with a Spanish crew to face off against my opponent's English sea dogs. I'm excited to get in some games of Blood and Plunder (their example game videos convinced me to back the project), and I was thrilled with the ships, dice, coins, cards and rulebook I got from the Kickstarter. The figures on the other hand aren't quite up to snuff.

From a distance I think they'll look great. I appreciate the variety of poses and ethnicities, but there's just something off about them. I'm chalking it up to the conversion of 3D renders to physical metal minis. I love chunky models like Mark Copplestone's, and I've even had some success with model's that were either created as 3 ups or 3D rendered (the Perry and Fireforge plastic figures for example), but these Blood and Plunder figures are both overly large and have a lack of detail. Features are indistinct, hands are tiny, and clothing ripples and wrinkles react strangely to washes. They're just... odd. Not terrible, but different from what I'm used to.

Lanceros, spear armed Spanish troops


Indios, native islanders put to work
defending Spanish outposts in the New World.
Despite my reservations about the figures, I did have some unexpected success with some Vallejo paints. Using the paints and instructions from the Vallejo Leather and Wood paint set, the deck planking of the bases came out better than I'd hoped.



I also did a quick paint up of an Imperial Assault figure as we're sharing the burden of getting our game master's set finished up.


All told that's 8 pirates and 1 medical droid for 45 points by my calculations.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Medieval Archers

This post originally appeared on the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge.



I've had some plastic 5th edition Brettonian archers knocking around my lead pile for 20 years, but didn't have a reason to get them onto the table until I started playing Lion Rampant. I've been working on English army circa 1250-1315 and they desperately needed a missile contingent, but the monopose Brettonians didn't quite match the more dynamic modern Firefroge figures that made up my the bulk of my army.

Doing some research over the Summer I found that Front Rank's figures seemed to be the best match to Games Workshops old sculpting style, and had a variety of poses and equipment that would help break up the ranks of identical plastic Brettonians.



My English army uses a variety of red and yellow liveries for the knights and all of the troops they would have mustered. I don't believe soldiers would be fielding identical uniforms, as each was responsible for providing their own gear, so I'm depicting a rag tag look to these units, with some figures sporting more formal livery, while others making do with something vaguely red or yellow colored from their own meager clothing collection.

To help identify the units on the table I've grouped together figures into a red unit, a yellow unit and a neutral unit. Some of these figures are individually based so I can always mix the colors up if necessary, but in the end these are game pieces we need to keep track of on the table.

Red Unit

Yellow Unit

Neutral Earth Tones Unit


Three 16 man units give me 48 figures, which should give me a total of 240 points for the Painting Challenge!


Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Homer Jungle Statue

This post originally appeared on the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge.



With all of the responsibilities that come with being an adult, I haven't had a ton of time to paint over the last few weeks, but I did manage to steal a glance at this weeks theme challenge. I was pretty surprised to see it had something to do with "Homer Terrain". That was sure to be a unique set of entries, and I wracked my brain trying to figure out something that would stand out from the crowd.

Naturally, most entries will likely depict a terrain feature from one of Homer's epic poems. There were sure to be plenty of Trojan Horses, Gates of Troy, and Greek Beach Camps. I thought we might even see something pulled from the Odyssey (maybe a Cyclops cave or two?), but I decided to go a bit farther afield. I thought I could get a more liberal interpretation of the "Homer" theme for my terrain piece, and I considered doing Fenway Park, with a 28mm outfielder unable to snatch a "homer" as it sailed the Green Monster. That seemed beyond my skills though (and wouldn't really lend itself to a wargame), but I spotted a cheap plastic knick knack depicting Homer Simpson as a snack food Buddha. Inspired by his zen-like countenance, I decided to base my terrain on the toy. A perfect start for a conversion into a mysterious jungle idol, carved by some long dead civilization of peculiar lemon colored tribesmen!



I built a small dais from wood and foamcore, and gave the whole thing a stippled coat of spackle/dry wall compound to mimic the weathered stone of the idol.



A dark gray primer gave the whole piece a uniform, stone-like base to begin painting.



I used a variety of grays and browns, with the faintest hints of yellow, green and pink (no doubt remnants of the festive paintjob the idol once must have sported).

"Mmmmmm.... soft pretzel......"


I used numerous brown and gray washes to weather it, and added quite a bit of flock and tufts to represent the encroaching jungle foliage that will one day engulf the statue.

I don't like to take all of my wargaming so seriously, and plan on using this idol for some tongue-in-cheek Rogue Trader or Fantasy gaming. A unique subject for a unique category! Altogether, I was pretty pleased at how it turned out.

"None shall defile the Golden Emperor!"


Wait....

"Home" Terrain????

Doh!
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