Monday, 30 April 2012

Monthly Mini Porn Issue 4

Each month I spend far too much time browsing minis on the web, most of which I will never have the time or money required to buy and paint them. But that doesn't stop me from compiling them into a kind of wish list.

Let's start at the bottom, or rather the bases. Here are some excellent scenic bits that could be used on unit filler bases, on terrain pieces, or as decorative bases for a single figure painting project. These dwarf bits from Scibor miniatures are really tempting, I would love to integrate these into my dwarf army.

More dwarf goodness from Black Scorpion miniatures, of the "fantasy football " variety. They have a good selection of pirate skirmish figures too, these are just a couple of examples from that range. 


Perry Miniatures have finally released plastic mounted men at arms for medieval forces, though Warhammer Empire players might be interested too. 

Another company well worth checking out is Historic Art miniatures. As well as a very fine range of historical figures, they produce some excellent fantasy figures, such as this Alice and Merlin. 


Here's another wizard that would grace any glass cabinet, a Gandalf from Knight Models

Finally, an absolutely beautiful piece of terrain, a blacksmith's forge from Tabletop World. If you have never visited their website, click the link and prepare to be amazed!

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Dwarf Engineer paint in progress again

And the dwarf's back. I know, that's so punny!

Another little update to show more progress on the engineer. Quite often I get asked how I paint my figures, so hopefully this will be of interest to some. This shows the cloak not quite complete. I started with a mid green base, then I gave it a wash with the same green with a little black added, or rather I painted this into the creases. I did this a couple of times, adding a little more black each time, and painting deeper into the crease. That's the shading done.

For the highlighting I took the original mid green colour and painted just the raised areas. Then I added a little yellow and painted a slightly smaller raised area. I did this a couple of times. Finally I used pure yellow and a finer brush for the final highlights. That's the very pronounced bit at the top of the cloak. It looks a bit stark, a green glaze will blend it in a bit more.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Dwarf Engineer in Progress

Just a very short update to show the work in progress on the Dwarf Engineer. Progress is pretty slow as I have had little spare time recently, but I am hoping to get him finished for the coming weekend. Still a lot to be done on the little chappy!

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Treekin painted

I finally got around to finishing the second unit of treekin, they had been 90% done for a while. I based the colours on a piece of bark I found in a nearby wood, which saved me the job of trying to make up my own scheme. I often turn to real life/nature when I am stuck for inspiration. Adding this unit to the army brings it up to almost 2000 points painted, just an army standard to build and paint. That's not too bad considering I started the project on a whim, after a visit to a museum (full story here).

The picture below shows all my "treeish" elements together. There's over 600 points in this one shot, which goes some way to explaining how quick the army can (ahem) grow. It also shows that the colours of the three units, by coincidence more than planning, seem to fit together.

Finally, I have added pictures to the post showing the whole army, so you can check out the rest of the army if you feel that way inclined. 

Monday, 9 April 2012

Easter Eggs Part Three

The third and final easter egg is the one I will relish the most. It's a box of War of the Roses infantry by Perry Miniatures. They have been available for a couple of years at least, but I have resisted for a long time because I figured I just did not need to add to the piles of unpainted plastics I already have. And I don't need to start another army, right? On the other hand, these would look great in a Bretonnian army! As the GW releases become more targeted at a younger audience, I find myself attracted by these more accurate, historical ranges.

The box is an absolute bargain in terms of quantity. There are enough parts to make 44 figures, up to 30 of which can be archers, up to 20 billmen (halberdiers). There are also plastic bases and paper flags. The scale is small, roughly Lord of the Rings size rather than Warhammer Fantasy. I couldn't resist having a play with the bits and ended up assembling a whole regiment in less than 2 hours - there are only four parts per figure and minimal mould lines.

While this is a legal regiment, I will probably add another two figures to make the regiment 12 strong. In this way I can make, from the one box, two regiments of 12 archers and one regiment of 20 billmen. I realise these numbers are more like 7th edition play style, but I have decided to try MSU with most of my armies in the future, the big-regiment-grinding of 8th edition has become stale very quickly. 

EDIT It seems I got a little carried away by the excitement of this boxset, or maybe I just ate too much chocolate. The number of figures in the box is 40. So back to the original plan, two units of 10 archers and one unit of 20 billmen. 

Saturday, 7 April 2012

ForgeWorld New Warhammer Book?

So there I was, browsing the Bugman's Brewery to catch up on dwarfish gossip, when I stumbled across a most interesting little titbit. It seems that the next Warhammer source book from the Warhammer Forge will be The Battle of Black Fire Pass. A few details came out from the recent Forgeworld open day and have been posted up on Warseer. The book will be similar to the Tamurkhan offering and will feature the Empire, Dwarfs and Orcs and Goblins. I downloaded the image posted on the forum and tidied/enhanced it a little, though it's pretty blurry. Head on over to Warseer to get the full details, such as they are.

Easter Eggs Part Two

Can you tell what is it yet? No, it's not some new super mutant Empire chicken, but a slightly more realistically proportioned member of the avian family. It's an eagle from the Gamezone range of figures. I have liked their figures for some time, but I have always been a little wary due to various reports on the web about them being difficult to construct due to gaps. Well, I'm an experienced modeller and have had a lot of construction problems recently on resin figures (no prizes for guessing who makes those), so I decided to take the plunge. How much worse could it be?

The sculpt is nice, there is a good level of detail, with little flash and just the usual mould line to clean. The body comes in two hollow parts and there is a sizeable gap to fill. You can see on the photo the grey stuff I have used to do this, it's much too big a job for liquid green stuff. You can also see the gap between the wing and the body, still to be tackled. So the stories are, I'm afraid, true to an extent. There are gaps to contend with. In the past I would have been annoyed at this, but recently I have found that many of my figures have required more preparation than I am accustomed to. Despite all the advances in the hobby, this is one area that is sadly lacking in some miniatures. I cannot decide which is the biggest pain, the filling of gaps in metal models, or the million bubbles of some of the resin figures.

Assembly gripes aside, I am really looking forward to painting up this figure. It will make a very striking character model to lead my Wood Elves into battle. I am still looking for a suitable army standard model and am starting to think that a plastic kitbash will be the best solution. More little jobs to keep me busy over the Easter weekend.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Easter Eggs Part One

Easter is a great time of year when you are a kid. You get time off school and lots of chocolate to eat. For even bigger kids like us gamers it can be a good time too. It's a long weekend and maybe, if you can escape the inevitable list of chores that seem to always crop up on bank holidays, you can get some quality hobby time. Perhaps a big game, or an extended painting session, or maybe make a bit of terrain. I have fixed myself up with three Easter eggs to play with over the weekend.

The first of these is a model I have been coveting for a long time and finally I managed to pick one up from ebay. It's an Avatars of War dwarf thunderlord, though if you are having a hard time seeing that from the photo then google will help you out. I originally intended using the model as a thane, as there is an option to use an axe in the left hand. However, I much preferred the pistol option, but looking through the army book thought a pistol was quite a poor idea for a thane. Then it struck me, this model will be ideal as a master engineer. I don't like the GW engineer models, but this figure with a handgun slung over one shoulder and firing his pistol will be perfect. I should really also take advantage of the fact that he can entrench a war machine and make some kind of terrain to represent this - the king's wall from the Battle for Skull Pass boxset would be ideal fodder for this little project. That should keep me amused for a few hours.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Studio McVey Pan painted

A month ago I mentioned that it was a leap year and that any undertakings started on that day would be successful (if you believe in such tales). I decided that I would try to up my painting to a better level, or at least to paint a few individual models to a higher level that I normally do for gaming.

The first model in this new undertaking is this lovely figure from Studio McVey. It's a resin figure of around 30mm scale, a little bit larger than GW beastmen at any rate. The quality of the sculpting and casting was superb, it was the easiest figure to prepare, though the fairies are tiny and very delicate (he says, pretending he did not snap off one teeny weeny foot and spent 10 minutes searching for it on the floor).

At first glance it's a sweet woodland scene, with Pan playing with a pair of fairies. But take a closer look and you will see that he is reaching to his hip, where a sickle hangs at his belt. The fairy on the ground can see this and is looking concerned, but the one in his hand remains oblivious to the imminent danger. That was my interpretation of the scene and I chose to paint it in a darker palette, with red washes on the hands and muzzle, to hint at the bloodshed to come.

I am reasonably pleased with the end result, there are a few areas that could perhaps be a bit smoother, but I think the overall mood of the piece is what I was aiming for. I discovered a couple of new things while working on it. Firstly, that fine roots from woody plants from the garden make excellent branches. And secondly, that photographing against a black background is not as hard as I had expected and helps to show more detail than a grey background.

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