Sunday, 29 September 2013

Hobby Grab Bag: It's all about roleplaying

This week in the grab bag I'll show a bunch of the next batch of RPG figs I'll be working on for both my Pathfinder game and Strategies Games & Hobbies painting contest.

First up my Alexia Ciannor figure.  This is one of those things that will be doing double duty because she is both the central character in The Witchfire Trilogy and she is a unit leader (sort of) for Warmachine's Mercenary faction.  Although the Privateer Press model for Alexia is pretty cool I've had this great Confrontation figure for years (probably more than 10 years at this point) that I knew I wanted to use for something and she's a perfect fit for Alexia.  I can't remember her name (package is LONG gone) but she was a variant of a named character for the Griffin faction for Confrontation.

Next up 2 more Thralls for Alexia.  As much as I swore I'd get away from doing undead for RPGs for awhile Alexia has some power and control over them so when it comes to gaming The Witchfire Trilogy I will need a bunch of undead figures that fit with the look of the Iron Kingdoms and I'm trying not to have them look all piratey.

And last but not least, the start of my pig-faced-orcs.  I have the day off tomorrow so if all goes to plan these will get finished tomorrow and then I might, emphasis on 'might' have enough time to do a third entry for the Immortal Brush Competition.  I just started these guys but much like my gnolls the figures are so crisp and well textured that they are super easy to paint.

That's it for now, got to put a rush on the orcs but those other figs probably won't resurface again for several weeks, I've also got some more Blood Angels waiting for my attention around here somewhere.....


Saturday, 28 September 2013

A new thrall joins the fray

After typing my post the other day about starting work on some miniatures for The Witchfire Trilogy I decided to go digging through my figures to see what I already had on hand and what I would need to get ordered up.

I was quite pleased to find that I had 3 Reaper figs that would excellent Thralls for Alexia.  The first one of these got primed and painted in about an hour.

I'll show you the other 2 tomorrow in my next 'grab bag' installment and I also found an old Confrontation figure that is perfect for Alexia Ciannor herself.


Thursday, 26 September 2013

The Fourth Gnoll and thoughts on a Pathfinder game

Today I finished the fourth of my five gnolls, the fifth one is going to go on the back burner for a little while for two reasons; first I need to get moving on those pig-faced orcs if I want to get them done on-time and secondly because the final gnoll has some demonic elements on her and I want to get a corresponding demon figure of some sort and paint it to match.

Today's gnoll is the group's leader; the ranger.  I really enjoyed this figure because much like the other gnolls in this line (Chainmail) he has a lot of texture which makes more detailed figures incredibly easy to paint.  As I mentioned earlier I went for a slightly browner tone on his red fur but other than that his hair and fur are very similar to the gnoll cleric from a few days ago.

I have started collecting and painting figures for 2 separate Pathfinder projects.  The first as I mentioned is my 'classic monsters' game which will basically be a one-off dungeon crawl over the holidays featuring the who's who of classic D&D monsters.  In addition to that I have decided to get organised and commit to running a 12 part Pathfinder campaign in 2014.  I had the opportunity to do a lot of gaming this year but very little on the RPG side so I'm going to plot out a series of linked games and run them once a month next year.  For that I have decided to use The Witchfire Trilogy by Privateer Press as my foundation, played using the Pathfinder system.

This means that at some point (probably November-ish) the classic monsters will give way to some Warmahordes and pseudo-Warmahordes figures for role-playing.


Sunday, 22 September 2013

Walter The Wobot

One of the things I've recently been finding funny about both pop-culture fandom and the rise of nerd-culture in popularity is how some of us see (or remember) things we really liked in our youth.

The best example I can give from my younger days is when the first 'modern' Batman movie came out staring Michael Keaton and Jack Nicholson there were loads of people who were suddenly comic fans talking about how Tim Burton had finally given Batman the dark presentation the comics had always had, which was really ONLY true if your entire exposure to Batman at the time was the comics Frank Miller had written.  Fast forward a few years and I see the same thing applied all over the place, my personal favourite example being the unfortunately bad reception the movie Punisher: Warzone received.  That movie was very true to the tone of Punisher comics in the 80s and early 90s, the Punisher himself was incredibly violent and dark but almost everything that happened around him was pretty ridiculous.

But what does this have to do with miniatures I've been painting?

Well, here's the thing, earlier this year Judge Dredd fans like myself got to enjoy the awesome Dredd 3D (by the way you should all go out and buy a copy of Dredd 3D) and almost immediately everyone began spitting on the grave of the 90s Stallone Judge Dredd movie.  First up, let me be perfectly honest as a movie goer and a Judge Dredd fan I did (and still do) think that movie was (and still is) awful, but having said that it gets beat up a lot for things that really weren't wrong.  Case in point; Rob Schneider.  A lot of things in that movie just didn't belong (romantic side-story, ABC Warriors, Dredd not wearing his helmet, etc) but as an ACTUAL fan of Judge Dredd and 2000AD comics I thought Rob Schneider was great.  Most people forget that Judge Dredd is not a dark, gritty view into the's a satire of those exact things, and as such it has certain characters who highlight the ridiculousness of the setting as a whole.

Enter Walter The Wobot.
Walter The Wobot is a robot with a speech impediment that functions as Judge Dredd's valet and provides some comic relief.  Walter frequently tries to do the right thing but it turns out wrong due to either his own ineptitude or the unfairness of the world in which he operates (sound like any movie character we were just talking about?)   I don't know how necessary a miniature of Walter is for gaming Judge Dredd but he's an awesome character and a great fig so I had to paint him up.

Also, it means I didn't technically break my own rule about skipping ahead on new Judge Dredd models.


Saturday, 21 September 2013

The Third Gnoll

(I bet you thought I forgot about these guys)

There can be a lot of different motivators to get a hobby project done.  Sometimes people rush to get something done for a tournament or campaign, sometimes people are trying to get something done for a painting contest, sometimes it's an RPG and sometimes it's because you can't let yourself start "the next thing" until you finish "the last thing".  And so I circle back around to my gnolls.

Just the other day I received the next batch of figures for my planned 'classic monsters' fantasy RPG (I've firmly decided I'm definitely going to use the Pathfinder rules) which consisted of 6 Pig-Faced Orcs and 2 Rust Monsters from Otherworld Miniatures.  These figs look AMAZING and I can't wait to get started on them but I can't bring myself to get going on them until my gnolls are done.

To that end I painted the third of my 5 gnolls, this one is the cleric of the group.  Following my friend Darren's suggestion I went with grey skin and red fur for a straight from the Monster Manual look.

I think it turned out pretty well, but for the next fig I'm definitely going to go for more of a brown-red for the fur.

If I can get the other 2 gnolls done this weekend I think I'll take a crack at doing the Pig-Faced Orcs as my fantasy unit entry in the Immortal Brush Competition!


...oh, and one other thing.  In the same order as the Otherworld fantasy figs I also got 4 of the new Judges on Lawmasters from Mongoose/Warlord.  That means that the same fire that got lit under my butt to finish those gnolls might also get me to finish my last 10 Judges on Lawmasters from the previous generation of Mongoose miniatures.

Friday, 20 September 2013

Immortal Brush Entry 1: DONE!

Part 1 of my 3 part plan to enter Strategies Games & Hobbies Immortal Brush Tournament has gone according to plan (which is great because part 2 fell apart.. literally, more on that later).  I did some touch-ups and changed the colour of the body armour on 5 of my space fascists and I'm quite satisfied.

I added highlights to the eye-lenses on the gas masks, cleaned up the bases a bit and repainted the body armour a MUCH lighter shade of gray (Dawnstone vs Skavenblight Dinge).  The overall effect is quite striking but unfortunately doesn't photograph particularly well (still being multiple shades of gray).  This will now be my new paint scheme for my space fascists and when time presents itself I will be going back and bringing my other finished figs from this collection up to date with these colour changes.

I'm glad part 1 went well because as I mentioned part 2 fell apart, those Celt figures actually fell apart while they were sitting untouched on my painting table.  I had assembled 3 units last week (5 Celts, 5 Sanguinary Guard and 6 new Greatcoat troopers) and when I came home from work that night I found them standing stock still with various arms, weapons and upper torsos just lying next to them.  The culprit appears to be my plastic cement because all the damaged figures had globs of the stuff crusted on the busted joints but none of it appears to have actually melted and fused the plastic.

I'm undecided at this point if I'm going to build another 5 Celts using a different glue, or if I might just pick a different unit altogether.

Stay tuned and find out!


Thursday, 19 September 2013


I got some more Teen Titans Heroclix packs today so I thought before I go full bore into my paint contest entries I'd do a bit of touch-up work to knock out a quick project.

One of the Wildstorm characters that has found a new home in DCs New 52 is Caitlin Fairchild; formerly of Gen13, currently of The Ravagers.  One of the things that is cool about the Teen Titans set is that it includes both a "classic" Gen13 version of Fairchild as well as a New 52 version in new costume.  In addition one of the things that worked out well for me is that I got 2 of the Gen13 version (which I prefer) and 1 of The Ravagers version, so I can have one of each for Heroclix games while still having an extra one to chop up and re-paint for my other superhero games.

I'm fairly happy with how my repaint turned out, although I wish I had noticed that rough spot on her leg before I took the picture instead of afterwards.  This will give me another "brick" type hero for my games.


Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Hobby Grab Bag - Painting Contest & Another Blood Angel!

Hi all,

I've been a bit scatter shot hobby-wise again but I'm doing 2 (maybe 3) projects with a hard deadline of October 1st.

I've decided to participate in the Immortal Brush Competition at Strategies Games & Hobbies in Vancouver BC.  I'll be entering 2 categories for sure (5 man squad sci-fi/modern and 5 man squad fantasy/historical) and hopefully a 3rd (one of the large model categories time permitting).

For my sci-fi/modern entry I've decided to go a slightly different route than usual.  I'm going to take some figs that I speed painted awhile back and fix them up to a higher standard of painting.  I'll be starting with 5 of my space fascists from Wargames Factory's Greatcoat Troopers box.  I've been planning on these multi-use figures standing in for Bauhaus in Warzone and Viridians in VOID/Urban War, they could also work as Imperial Guard in Warhammer 40,000.
The picture below is how they looked when I pulled them out of my figure case this morning...not bad but definitely not paint contest worthy.  They'll probably get finished first because they represent the least amount of work.

Next up are 5 Celt Warriors from Warlord Games Celts box.  I've wanted to do historical gaming of this era forever but the amount of stuff I would have to paint has always seemed quite daunting.  Lately a few of my friends have discovered some skirmish level games that might work so and old idea has become new again!  These will get done second because I do want to get them finished and I think my best shot in a paint competition will always be "unit" categories because that doesn't seem to be where the elite painters enter.

And last up I am 90% done my next Blood Angel, the Librarian from Space Hulk.  This is just a continuation of my ongoing effort to get an actual Blood Angels army done in 2013.  I might actually also use the large model category in the painting competition to get a larger Blood Angels model done (like a dreadnought) but if that's the case I'll definitely have to run out and buy one this week.

There you have it, bit of a mess but I'm enjoying it!


Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Commander Dante

My first special character (do they still call them that anymore?) for my Blood Angels is done; Commander Dante.

I've always really liked the Dante and Tycho figures with their angelic gold battle armour and Blood Angels iconography but I have to admit in this case I painted the figure because I wanted one of the benefits he provides to the army list.  By taking Dante as an HQ choice Sanguinary Guard become Troops which gives me access to more jump pack equipped forces to fill my Troops slots while also allowing me to take more Terminators in my Elite slots.

This particular Dante is one of the Citadel Finecast line.  The great thing about Finecast is it's nice and light but captures deep and subtle details really well.


Monday, 2 September 2013

Sgt Lorenzo and 1st squad finished!

Sgt Lorenzo ended up taking me almost as long as the 4 troopers under his command to paint but I think he was worth it.  The sarge is a great looking figure with tons of fantastic Blood Angels iconography and I think he'll look amazing on the table top.

Now that his entire squad is done I thought I'd get them to all pose together for a group shot.