Wednesday, 14 March 2018

#workbenchWednesday 14/03/18

Woo, actually on time this week.  Won't be a huge amount to say, as I didn't update until the weekend, but still a lot of stuff done.

Currently, the workbench looks like this -

1pt of Norman Levy. 

Just the unit of Levy for SAGA taking up space right now.  I've finished all the base coats, washed them, and done 2 layers on the blue tunics and one on the grey, caught the feathers at the same time.  I don't think I'll take them up to pure white as they are the lowest rank of troops in the army, and I kinda want them to keep a more stealthy look.   Well, as stealthy as ou can be wearing a blue sack cloth...

I managed to get both my Mounted Heathguard units and the Mounted Warlord finished up on Sunday, which means I can now play a proper 6pt game of SAGA fully painted.  Feels good.  It also means I've painted 3pts this year, meaning that once the Levy are done, I'll have the minimum 4pts painted that I was aiming for this year.  I do want to add Crossbow armed Warriors at some point, and probably another unit of Warriors, which means the 3x8 for SAGA will be 2x12 for Dragon/Lion Rampant.  Still not sure what to do with the shields.  Not a fan of the "busy" historic ones, but I don't want to leave them plain either.  Doesn't help that some are flat and some have bosses...

Also, 10 weeks straight #hobbystreak!

Charge of the Knight Brigade

Full army so far.  7pts plus Warlord options.

Monday was getting the blue done on the tunics of the Levy, followed by an introductory game of Osprey's Gaslands at the club with another new opponent, Richard.  We started off easy with 2 vehicles each, one standard and one performance car, with machine guns by way of armament.

The "easy" start went straight out the window as we were blowing holes and ramming each other before we hit the first corner.  My standard car suffered an ignoble defeat, sliding off the edge of the table recovering from a ram, whilst my performance car managed to rear end Richard's, causing it to flip, and ultimately blow up, whilst I careened off the track, straight through a barricade, before getting back on the blacktop.  Things looked bad, as I was accruing hazard tokens and damage like nobodies business, however, I kept pushing as I didn't want to stay in range of Richard's Machine Gun.

He pushed his car to catch up with me, resulting in a slide that left him careening off the road straight to the table edge.  His speed meant he couldn't really recover before crashing out, much like my car had done earlier.

We carried on playing, as my performance car was limping along with one damage box remaining, and was still loaded up with hazard tokens.  I made it through the last corner, and gunned the engine to hit the finish line before the end of the turn.  Eyeballing the templates, and it looked like, even with a good run, I wouldn't fully cross the line, but, a fortuitous roll meant that I actually performed a Slide manoeuvre over the line as I filled up to 6 hazards.  Talk about finishing in style!

Pole Position Posing!

I definitely had fun and will have to check at work for some suitable vehicles to paint up my own crew.  It also put me to my planned 3 new games/editions, and halfway to my 6 new opponents for the year.  Chatting after the game, we spoke about the various Osprey rules, and having mentioned that my painted Frostgrave warband has been done for over 2 years and still hasn't seen a tabletop, we've arranged to play that next week.  Still got Malifaux and Hordes of the Things to play too, so well covered that part of my #hobbyresolution2018.

Tuesday was doing the grey on the Levy tunic's and a bunch of event co-ordination for APRIL FUEL DAZE 2!  Just getting prize support sorted and up people to submit their Factions/Lists.   Going well so far, we have prizes in from Games & Gears and stuff coming from Green Stuff World.  Still waiting to hear back from a bunch more places too.  I've also got the orders in for the event dice and Best in Faction trophies, and Best Painted Army Award.

So far today, it's been answering emails, and making a start on the player goody bags, also have the kids over, so hoping to sneak in some painting once they are asleep.

That's it for now then, see you in a week.  Hopefully.

Sunday, 11 March 2018

Another belated #workbenchWednesday post 07/03/18

Well, I kinda have an excuse this week, as my car got hit outside work and I've been running around getting it sorted.  No major damage, so it's fine, just took up a bit of time.

How was the workbench looking then?

Wednesday 07/13/018 Workbench

So, I'm going back a bit now to the beginning of March.  Thursday, I started all the base coats on my SAGA Levy unit, clipped out the remaining Oathmark Dwarfs and organized them into units for SAGA, and finally, played my first game of Warhammer 40,000 in about 15 years.  I was just using the Deathguard from the new starter box.  Victory went to the Deathguard vs. Sarah's Thousand Sons.  Figured it was time to give them an outing and gave me an excuse to get my new scatter terrain on the table, along with a long Out of Production Forgeworld Chaos Temple.

Needs more terrain, but getting there.

Friday saw me finish the base coats on the Levy, and give them a Strong Tone wash, plus we replayed the game from the day before, Deathguard winning again, although, lessons were learned for the future.  Back to work at this point.

Don't take any chances boys.

Saturday I didn't have much time due to snow, so just cleaned up a few models as I didn't fancy sitting painting in a cold room.  Put together the two blisters of Oathmark Dwarfs from Northstar, the new Dracula's America Werewolves and a Faceless Horror.

Sunday I braved the cold (turned the radiator up) and did some work on the horses for my 2pts of mounted Hearthguard and mounted Warlord.  This was my 9 week #hobbystreak day!

Yes, those are green horses...

I had a game of Gaslands lined up for Monday, but it was rescheduled due to the weather and should go ahead next week, so I finished off the horses and got them varnished, varnished the bases of the Levy to save having to do it later, and painted and varnished one of the casualty models as a makeshift objective.

Tuesday was spent adding base effects to the horses and objective, as well as a lot of blood effects on the objective before starting the base coats on the riders.

It's just a flesh wound...

Happy with the variety of markings and colours.
Wednesday, I started the base coats on the mounted hearthguard and organized a few older models to sell off.  Some did immediately, so that's £20 towards to £500 total.

Thursday was finishing the base coats and wash on the riders, adding all my Citadel paints into the mobile app (realised they had released more) and sorted out more old lead.  Ended up grabbing another pack of sleeves to fully sleeve the Ironskull's Boyz set, and 2 of the paints I was missing from Games Workshop when I was in Stirling picking up parts for the car.

Friday was mainly event co-ordination for APRIL FUEL DAZE, looks like we hit 24 players so it makes grouping a lot easier.  I also assembled a Biologus Putrifier that Sarah picked up for me.  She said it was a gift, but I think it is more to give me more to do to hit my #hobbyresolution2018 project targets.

Saturday I glued the hearthguard to their horses and managed to get a few highlight layers on them.

Sunday, I did the final highlights on the metals and skin and got the Heathguard varnished.  Another 2pts of SAGA completed, plus a mounted Warlord option, putting me to 3/4pts minimum for the year.

Not sure what my plans are for the rest of the day, need to get some stuff done as I'll hopefully be back on track to get this updated again i a couple of days.

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

#workbenchWednesday 28/02/18 and Month in Review February 2018

That time again huh?  Another double-whammy post kicking off with the obligatory workbench shot.

They don't take up mushroom.   Baddum Tish.

Just a few pieces of Fungi scatter terrain I picked up a while back from Ral Partha Europe, who don't seem to stock them any more, but they can be found on the Scotia Grendel website.  I figured they would be relatively quick to do.  And any excuse for loads of tufts and clumps is a good one, right?

Been a busy week since my last update, part of which you will have seen from yesterday's post, and here is how it went.  You did read yesterday's post right?  Because apparently almost 800 people have already, which is equal parts amazing and humbling.

Thursday - Continued working on the Frostgrave Barbarians for my Dacian Broken Legions warband, and also grabbed a Foundry Monk that I was planning for SAGA that was part done, as I was using the same colours.  Finished the Monk as it was really just a few highlights he needed and got him varnished.

Also spent most of the day through at Common Ground Games for WTC practice which went well, trying out new list ideas.

Cheated with a Veni Vidi Vici shield transfer.

Friday saw me finish painting and varnishing the Barbarians, and basing them up along with the Monk.  I also cleaned up and assembled the first 4 plastic Oathmark Dwarfs to use for Dragon Rampant/Fantasy SAGA, with hand weapons and shields to represent Hearthguard.  Finally I primed the first 4 Warband Elements for my Hordes of the Things force, painted the earth around their feet, and made a start of the Tiny World's rock piles I posted up yesterday.

Impressive, right? 

Really love the fur, so, here's an extra picture of it.

So long, and Falx for all the fish.

He is Dabbing according to kiddo number 3...

On Saturday I assembled the last 7 models from the Frostgrave Barbarian box, along with all 3 blisters of Savage Core Corelocks I had picked up at Vapnartak.  I switched out the base on the leader for a 40mm one, as he looked just a bit cramped on a 30, and it shouldn't have a huge difference in game.  Also inked and did some drybrushing on the rock piles.

Sunday saw me finish off the rock piles (this was when I realised that I had only done 7 of the 8 from the set) and got the 20 picts painted for my Warband elements.  I also cleaned up and primed a spare figure to use as a Hero (along with another standing stone) as well as 2 spearmen (spearPicts?) and 4 more Heresy Giant Slugs (which were metal when I picked them up) to use as Beast elements.  Thinking behind this was it was less work than cleaning up the next 20 for Warband elements, and would push the army over the 24 AP mark.  One thing to note was that this marked my completion of 8 weeks of #hobbystreak activity.

The colour scheme is so simple it almost feels like cheating.  Almost.

Monday was spent texturing and inking the Hordes of the Things bases, doing the highlights on the Hero and Beasts, basecoating the last rock pile as well as the last Hidden Lairs from Copplestone, and then heading to the club for a game before work.  

Doesn't look as much when you get 5 on a base...

Sarah and I dropped in on Sharp Practice, to get a feel for the rules, expertly umpired by John E, with me taking command of the main French line, attempting to burn out a village in the search for a British commander, being protected by a band of Guerrillas played by Sarah.  John P took command of the French reinforcements, and the Guerrilla's were backed up by Peter's British, who were also hunting for their injured leader.  We had to bow out early to get to work, but the AAR basically came down to "France wins by way of not having to endure Sarah's janky dice skills " or something to that effect.   I enjoyed the game (as I tend to do with all John's umpired excursions) and it was a definite change of pace from what I normally play, whilst still being well paced and not the 14 day extravaganza my mind imagines when I think of proper historical gaming.  I guess it is more "Napoleonics Lite" in that it is more based on novels and television than actual historic events.  Which is probably best for someone like me, who has always been mainly interested in the fantastical side of the hobby.

Napoleonics.  Apparently it's bad for to ask for coffee instead of tea mid game...

Tuesday was spent finishing off the 7 various Hordes of the Things elements, the 3 pieces of scatter terrain. and writing up my blog post about it.  So, yeah, got another project crossed off the list and a project that wasn't even on it to begin with...

Full army shot.

Well, they fit the bill for a mass of warriors.

Holding out for a Hero...

Not sure there is a best end to be stood at...

Today, well, I just wrote this.  No plans on what I am going to do exactly, might assemble some more Oathmark Dwarfs, or make a start on another unit for SAGA, seeing as the Bishop put me to 5pts fully painted.

Which only really leaves me to go over how February panned out as a whole.  Well, at time of writing, and bearing in mind I might get more done today, here is how things currently look on the progress list.  Despite knocking off two projects, the numbers are still pretty small, mainly because the paint transfer and selling stuff is such a big number combined.  Guess it is time to raid the lead pile for stuff to shift...  Overall, #hobbystreak has been a success, having continued up to 58 days straight and I've played 7 games, with at least 1 new ruleset and opponent, painted 52 miniatures or elements (pretty good for the shortest month) as well as 10 pieces of scatter terrain.  Blog has been kept updated, and am down to 8 WIP models on my workstation, along with 3 pieces of scatter terrain.

Amount Task Completed

517 Transfer Paint to dropper bottles 8 2%
1 Run April Fuel Daze 2018 0 0%
500 Make £500 selling old models 0 0%
61 Maintain Blog 10 16%
2 Go to 2 shows or conventions 1 50%
6 Play 6 New Opponents 2 33%
100 Play 100 Games 13 13%
6 Play 6 different Boardgames 2 33%
3 Play 3 New Games (or new editions) 1 33%
29 Paint 4+ points of Saga Normans 1 3%
3 Paint Guildball Butchers 0 0%
49 Paint remaining Deathguard 0 0%
26 Paint Waiqar starter for Runewars 0 0%
14 Paint 15mm army for HotT 14 100%
65 Paint 75pt Warmahordes list 0 0%
6 Paint Malifaux Crew 6 100%

Tuesday, 27 February 2018

We will, we will, rock you!

So, punny title aside, what's with the unscheduled post you may be asking?

Well, alongside getting stuff done, it occurred to me that, having mainly played Warmahordes for the last few years, I have almost exclusively been using 2d terrain.  Now, don't get me wrong, it is ideal for a precise and competitive wargame such as Warmachine, but, for someone that mainly became involved in the hobby due to the aesthetics, it lacks a certain visual imagery.  There are multiple sets of very nice mouse mat style 2d terrain packs available, but for my own events, I was using mdf shapes, colour primed, with a basic outline of terrain on it, alongside the text denoting what it was.  Fit for purpose, and functional, especially when you have a number of tables to set up, but just not visually appealing to the casual passer-by.

So, I figured it was time to add some scenery to my collection.  By that, I mean painted stuff, not hidden boxes of untouched plastic and resin.

Way back in the mists of time (the late 80's, for the uninitiated) terrain was either scratch built or repurposed from model railway stores.  The issue there is that, the former tends to look rubbish when you don't really know what you are doing, and the latter seems like a bad idea when you have limited funds and those are earmarked for more shiny models.  I'm sure most people of a certain age will remember water towers made from old bean tins or juice cans (and flying tanks made from deodorant,nt bottles.  SURE you do...) and slightly later than that, good old Games Workshop, in their big box games (2nd edition 40k, 4th edition WHFB) started putting out card-stock buildings, and more followed in various expansions and in the pages of White Dwarf.

Nevermind 2D terrain, 2D models used to be a thing...

Whilst relatively simple to put together, they suffered the problems of being all shiny, and well, flat looking.  Yeah, there were ways to emboss them, car mesh for leaded windows, matchstick windowsills and so on, but, nothing like the stuff that was appearing in magazines, that people who had much more experience than my 9 year old self could manage...  We made do with them back then, it's not like they looked out of place alongside the massed ranks of unpainted or primed troops.

So, fast forward over the years, and it was still the same, despite hard plastic terrain appearing, and really taking battlefields to the next level, the funds almost always went towards filling the lead pile, rather than enhancing the battlefield.  That's not to say that I didn't buy any terrain, just that, like the majority of the backlog, I didn't do anything with it.

The last few days ( gets there eventually by way of a huge ramble) I grabbed the Tiny World's Rocky Outcrops Resin Scenery Set that I had had lying about for a number of years and set to work, figuring, I've painted numerous Wolds for my Circle Orboros army, rocks are obviously the easiest and quickest place to start.  Despite being scaled purely for 15mm, I also grabbed the remains of the Copplestone Casting's Hidden Lairs pack that I had used for my Hordes of the Things Stronghold..

There are 8 pieces in the Tiny World's set, although, I originally only found 7 of them, and had to quickly go back and paint up the last one, luckily they had already been washed, sanded and primed. 

So, how did I go about it?   Basic technique is (all colours are Army Painter)

1.  After washing and sanding, prime with Uniform Grey.

2.  Paint earth areas Leather Brown.

3. Cover entire thing with Strong Tone wash.

4.  Over/drybrush rock with Uniform Grey.

5. Drybrush rock with Ash Grey.

6.  Over/drybrush earth with Leather Brown.

7.  Drybrush entire thing with Skeleton Bone.

8. Apply Anti-shine Matt Varnish (I brushed it on, but you could easily spray it)

With that, the rocky outcrops are pretty much done, it isn't time or labour intensive, and only requires some basic work to really improve the final look.

I use a combination of mininatur/siflor grass tufts and mossy patches, alongside 2 shades of clump foliage that I picked up in a model railway store to finish off the pieces, using the colours that correspond to the majority of my painted models.

The Rock of (not) Ages.

 The only extra steps with the Copplestone pieces are a final layer of Skeleton Bone on the skulls on them, and painting the entrance interiors with Necromancer Cloak.  Only a couple of bits of clump foliage to represent bushes for the smaller scale, and some dead static grass to match my Warmaster and Hordes of the Things forces.

Not sure if I'd rather have based them up, rather than being stand alone.

And that, is basically it.  I used to do a more detailed process of painting rock, involving various green washes, but I didn't really think it was necessary here, this was essentially just a quick project between other ones.  One thing I have been asked about is using Bone to drybrush the rocks, and I've found that, in combination with the Strong wash, it adds a more natural look to them, and avoids the harsh contrast of a dark wash and just grey drybrushing.

Final thoughts on this little side project is that, mostly being devoid of skulls (mentioning no names) these pieces are scale agnostic, and I can see myself getting use out of them with my 6mm, 15m and 28-30mm figures.  The Copplestone pieces will probably be limited to 6-15mm gaming, as a 15mm Human skull is probably a good 6mm Ogre skull.  The smaller pieces will provide basic cover and obstructions at larger scales, and should prove to be impassable areas when I go down to 6mm.  I've added a number of images for scale with  6mm, 15mm and a couple of various sizes of 30mm scale figures for comparison.

6mm Beastmen (Microworld Games) - 15mm Picts (Copplestone Castings)

15mm Picts - 30mm Baldur the Stonesoul (Privateer Press)
Megalith (50mm base) - Baldur (30mm base)

Large Cave or Tunnel Entrance?

Savage badgers around here...

So, that's it really, just a little distraction for myself between projects that has given me a number of scenery pieces to kickstart my collection (of painted stuff), and they are generic enough that I can see myself using them for multiple game systems.  As little more than giant rocks, they will fit in with both fantastic and historical games, and will break up the flat expanse of table.   It is definitely a project that anyone could attempt, and, even if you don't want to spring for resin pieces, you could get a very similar result with rocks out the garden stuck in some polyfilla.  Oh, we are back to the late 80's again...

It would be remiss of me to only have one stone based pun in this article considering the amount of typing, so I'll leave you with the words of Primal Scream frontman Bobby Gillespie -

"Get yer rocks off, get yer rocks off honey, paint 'em now-now, get 'em on the table*"

Cheers Bobby, obviously advocating getting that terrain painted since 1994.

*editted for effect.  Obviously.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

#workbenchWednesday 21/02/18

That time again folks, how's the workbench looking?

Got my Northstar Frostgrave Barbarians as Dacians for Broken Legions coming along nicely.  Still have to layer up the flesh, metal, hair and wraps/straps/details, but getting very close to being finished.  Fur took a while, 3 layers of highlights after the wash, so...  the next 15 should be fun...

Just off the back of a 5 night stint at work, so not managed to get any games in the last week, but, painting progress has been pretty good.

Thursday I finished up Ironskull's Boyz for Shadespire, figure I'll pick up the dice and card sleeves as a wee treat for getting them done, I should probably pick up the base game at some point, as I fancy painting up the Stormcast Eternals, but I'm also tempted by the new Fyreslayers warband. 

Ironskull's Boyz (Shadespire)

Friday, Saturday and Sunday was spent painting a full unit of Trenchers, 3 Weapon Attachments and the Unit Attachment, along with sorting out all the Copplestone Picts for my Hordes of the Things Warband Elements, and the first 4 have been cleaned up and glued to lolly sticks for priming.

Good to go Tabletop - not bad for about 8hrs.

Monday saw me hit day 50 of my #hobbystreak, and I was really keen to have something finished to mark the occasion, so I put some time into finishing off the Reaper Ghoul I am planning to use as a Strigoi in my Dacian Warband.   I really like the sculpt, the exaggerated features and "chunkiness" of the model really complement my painting style, and I've been looking for an excuse to paint her up since I picked up the model.

03453 - Ghoul Witch on Cauldron (Reaper Miniatures)

Tuesday and today were spent working on the Barbarians, and I'm hoping to have them finished off in the next few days.  Got a WTC training session tomorrow at Common Ground Games, so, at least I can bump up games played.

As an aside, I'm really enjoying the whole #hobbystreak movement, my desk hasn't looked so clear in ages, currently down to these 5 guys mid paint, and 8 on the sideboard.  I have 9 models to assemble for the Farrow army, and most of my painting projects for the year are all assembled, and in a lot of cases primed, with the exception of the last few HotT Elements, and my Warmachine list.

Until next week then, unless I have something exceptional to talk about.



Thursday, 15 February 2018

#workbenchWednesday 14/02/18

Back again, and updating on time this week!

So, how's the workbench looking?

Ironskull's Boyz Shadespire Warband is basecoated and inked ready for layers and highlights.  I'd started with a silver primer, black washed the entire model, then added the basecoats before washing black again, making the metal really dark.

Basecoats done, before black wash.
After black wash.

I've been particularly productive since my last update, now up to #hobbystreakday45 which is keeping me ticking over.

Friday, after my last update, managed to squeeze in a game of Warmachine (12/100) and finished painting and basing Dr. Arkadius for Mike's army.  So, really, it is a playable force now that I've added in a Warlock, and with the units finished last week, I'm getting closer to the finish line on this.

"Rick?  Never heard of him?  Must be a new guy..."

Farrow army coming along nicely.

Saturday and Sunday saw me tackle the Rider and Shooter elements for my Hordes of the Things army, which is basically just washes over primer, and a few highlights.  Finished up all 4 elements on Sunday evening before work, meaning I just have 8 elements of Warbands to assemble and paint now.  It was also my 6 week straight Hobbystreak, so was good to actually finish up models for that.

Not sure Worms make the best mounts.  Probably quicker walking.

Coming together nicely. 
Monday was basically catching up on sleep, and I'd grabbed the Foundry Minotaur as I hadn't drybrushed his base at the same time as the Barbarians for Broken Legions, and, I just went with it and got him finished up too.   he was real fun to paint (except the horns) and as well as being an encounter for Broken Legions, could probably find himself pulling double-duty for some Fantasy Saga, Dragon Rampant or Frostgrave.

Bull in sheep's clothing...

Don't mind me big man, just out for a new cloak.  Hold still would ya?

Tuesday saw me finish up Nora, the Female Sole Survivor from Fallout: Wasteland Warfare (look out for a review of her soon), so I won't say too much about her now, save, it was a lot easier to get her done once I'd dug out a decent brush.  Most of the brushes I use regularly are anywhere from 5-20 years old...   but having something that wasn't designed for drybrushing or painting tanks meant I could work quickly without worrying about paint slopping everywhere (YMMV).

Vault you lookin' at?

So that's it for another week.   Been a rather hefty photo-dump considering I'd posted late on Friday last week, but it has been good to clear a lot of the WIP models from the side of my workstation.   Down to about 14 now.  Planning on getting the Shadespire guys done over the next few days, then probably back to more Farrow if my hand allows it.  Changed blade in my scalpel meant I slit the end of my thumb open cleaning up a mini.  Doesn't hurt, but it is right through, and manual work has left the edges ragged as it is healing.  Not really big on Health & Safety, but I don't particularly want it full of metal filings either...

Catch you next week, with hopefully another productive update.