You'll find a little of everything here. Genres covered in this blog include (so far) prehistorics, fantasy, old west, swashbucklers, pulp, Blood Bowl, Ghostbusters, gladiators, nautical, science fiction and samurai in 6mm, 15mm, 28mm, 40mm, 42mm and 54mm sizes. You'll also find terrain, scenery, basing, gaming, modeling, tutorials, repaints, conversions, art and thoughts in general about the hobby.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Kickstarter: Space Cadets/Away Missions

So, I decided to pull the trigger on the Kickstarter for Space Cadets: Away Missions.

"But, Carmen, aren't you already a backer on the Conan Kickstarter??"
"Yes, MOM!"

But I got a generous tax refund, so it shouldn't be too much of a problem. A few things pulled me to this game: Unlike Conan (which I LOVE for the theme), Space Cadets can be played solo; It reminds me a bit about Zombicide but it feels a little more complex -- I can chain together a few more actions using one action point (depending on dice rolls); I'm a sucker for the 1950s retro theme; and since it's inspired by 1950s retro, I can paint all the minis in monochromatic black and white, so the painting will go fast.

Did I mention there's a pledge level if you just want the minis?

For painting, the plan is to not paint the heroes in full color (like I did in Zombicide), but to paint them in the monochromatic hue of their character (blue, red, yellow, purple etc.) I want them to stand out a little from the aliens, but I want to stick close to a pure monochromatic scheme for all the minis. Another option may be to do the heroes in black and white, but paint the rim of the bases in their proper colors.

Anyway, if you like 1950s retro scifi, solo/coop games, and fun (if not necessarily amazing) minis, check out Space Cadets: Away Missions. And if you're quick to pledge, you may still snag one of the "free shipping" pledge levels!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Steve Barber Models: New Samurai coming soon

Steve Barber finished sculpting my latest commission, and it looks lovely as always. In this samurai, I wanted a new pose of the classic unarmored samurai. I believe the specific name for this stance is hasso no kamae.

I'm guessing the blade is a separate piece (as is usual for Steve's samurai). If you like making your own weapons, this will allow you to add your own blades for katana, wakizashi or maybe even a nodachi. I bet I could probably even arm this guy with a kanabo with little trouble.

The head is also separate allowing you a lot of choices as to what you want this guy to look like. There are around a dozen heads to choose from among all the figures I've commissioned. I don't know if Steve has put it in his catalog yet, but you could probably ask to buy a "head pack" with your next samurai order.

My original thought with this figure was to have him wearing a Kataginu, which has the exaggerated shoulders you see on some samurai, but I decided to keep them off because it would be easier to add some with green stuff than to file off those that were already sculpted on (Steve Barber uses good metal.)

An unintended result of leaving the kataginu off was that the figure is nice and clean with very little clutter. The only thing breaking up the kimono being the sash and the folds; this leaves a nice large canvas for painters to spread color and to brush with a loose hand. The folds give you a chance to practice layering and highlighting, and the unbroken swaths of area leave plenty of space if you like to paint nice patterns on your kimonos. So I think this is a good figure for both beginner and advanced painters.

When he goes into production, I think this sculpt will be good fun to paint. And he will make a nice addition to the collection, guarding the halls, roads, and gardens of my table.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Zombicide: Survivor

I forget which character this is, but I'm too lazy to go look it up. For the basecoat, I approached this figure like I do the monochromatic zombies. For the zombies, I would start with a heavy drybrushing of the base color, followed by lighter drybrushings of the highlight colors (then picking out details and skin highlights.)

With this figure, I drybrushed the basecoat to help pick the details out of the black primer. This layer also helps to pick out which areas would need to be highlighted. For the trenchcoat, I actually just used the drybrushed base color as the color for the coat (followed up with a very light brushing of some highlight color.) The drybrush helps keep the colors stark and gritty.

I still have a couple more survivors to paint up, but they represent the last of my Rue Morgue survivors. Then it'll be on to some more monochromatic zombies!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Mouse and Dragon

I'm still having a little difficulty getting back into the groove of mins painting, but I'm working the watercolors pretty good. So, until I get some minis posted, here's a picture I painted of Mouse meeting Vermithrax Perjorative.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

I'm back

It's been a couple weeks since I've posted anything, but I'm back now. I still have some Zombicide survivors to paint (among others.) They're primed and ready to go, I just need to actually apply some paint.

In other news, if you haven't seen it, there is a new Conan (the Cimmerian) skirmish board game on Kickstarter. Typical big box game with lots of minis and great sculpts. The game itself also looks pretty decent. Though, honestly, the first thing that caught my eye was that the creators made the decision (and are sticking to it) that everything in the game would be taken directly from Robert E. Howard's original source material. So no Red Sonja, no Thulsa Doom, No Ahnold.

Check it out. The campaign has broken a half million in three days, so there should be plenty of extras before it's over. I'm happy with the base contents as it is, but there's nothing wrong with adding to the lead mountain (though, these figures are plastic.) Go here to see!

You can read more about the game and see more photos of the figures (and art) at Board Game Geek.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Zombicide Rue Morgue: Yet more survivors

Including another member of the Gypsy tribe.
A few more finished survivors from Zombicide Rue Morgue. They are all painting up fast; just three more survivors left to paint up, and then I'll move on to the skinner zombies.

It will be nice to have them all finished before the rest of my Zombicide stuff (Angry Neighbors and a few extras) arrives in a couple months. If that stuff arrives on time, I'll be able to get everything painted and ready to go for my friends' Zombie Jesus Day celebrations (Easter.) We go to a place called Zombie Burger in Des Moines, Iowa, and then we return home to play Zombicide. At least, that's what we've done the past couple years.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Zombicide Rue Morgue: Survivor Maddie

Here's another survivor from Zombicide Rue Morgue. Not my favorite, but at least she was easy to paint despite all the details (suspenders, stuffed bear, pins on her jacket.) I think the sculpts (and castings) keep on improving. I haven't had any difficulty painting any of these figures so far.

So after I finished painting Maddie here, I realized I was going to paint up some of my survivors as members of a tribe (and if you're a fan, yes, the tribe I'm using are the Gypsies from the movie Bounty Killers.) It was just a matter of painting over her face and then doing a rudimentary skull-esque pattern.

It'll be a while until I get the whole tribe finished (I plan on doing 6 or 7) because a couple of the figures I want to use are in the Angry Neighbors box. But once they're done, it'll be fun to run the tribe through the Badlands (I'll have to houserule some radiation rules and use lots of Toxic zombies.)

Monday, December 22, 2014

Zombicide Rue Morgue: Some survivors

Here are my first survivors from the recent release of Zombicide: Rue Morgue. I think the figures have just been getting better and better with each new season of Zombicide. These have some great detail and were easy to paint. I love the cowgirl figure; she's a tall drink of water. Even without the hat, she's a millimeter or two taller than most of the other figures.

Something new I'm trying to help tone down the colors and unify the survivors is to drybrush all of the figures with a grayish-sand color. This weathers the figure and pulls all of the colors together.

Computer note

So the gamma on my computer monitor is a little out of whack (this is the setting that controls the intensity/saturation of white/color(?) on the monitor. I was able to readjust it to compensate, but I'm not sure if I've adequately recompensated the toning of my minis photos. If you leave a comment here, could you also mention if these photos were too dark or too light? It'll help me recalibrate everything. Thanks much!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Mice and Mystics: Ditty

Here's the last of the heroes from Downwood Tales, Ditty the shrew. I took a little extra time with her since she had a couple details that needed a patient brush (the fiddle and the flower.)

After Christmas, I plan on getting the Heart of Glorm expansion so I can complete the full set of heroes by adding Nere the shaman(?) I've began painting a couple of the bullfroglodytes.

I also return to work tomorrow after a week off, so the painting might slow down a bit. (Though, I seem to be more productive with my painting sometimes when I'm busiest at work; we'll see.)

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Rogue Planet: The Gunslinger

Here's another of my 54mm figures. Of all the conversions, this one was my least favorite, but after applying this alien-esque camouflage, her stock has risen, and she will be readily welcomed into the collection.

Just a couple more 54mmm Rogue Planet figures to go. I also have some Mice and Mystics figures in progress, and I'm in the process of priming my new Zombicide figures. As long as I don't get any new Kickstarter boxes in early, I should be set for projects for the next couple months.


I finished another one this evening. I added the tail and the head fin using green stuff. Simple enough.

Zombicide skinner zombies (+Mice and Mystics)

My early shipment of Zombicide: Rue Morgue arrived today, so I primed up a few volunteer figures and did a quick, monochrome color test. The original plastic has an interesting color; the color -- to me -- looked almost yellow ochre in the KS photos (as well as under certain lights at home,) but are actually a subtle light green (not as neon as the Toxic zombies from Toxic City Mall.)

Instead of fighting with my greens to find a palette that would differ enough from the TCM zombies, I went ahead and chose the more ochre/beige palette. The colors here are actually Foundry's Buff Leather triad with a final highlight of Linen (on the skin.) I like the colors, and they contrast nicely against my other monochromatic zombies.

When the Seeker zombies arrive, I plan on doing them in either purple or blue (probably blue.) They come molded in black, but that would be too close to my gray zombies. I thought about using Foundry's Storm Blue, but that might also stray a little close to the gray palette. As for the skinners, I may try one or two more ideas along the lines of light brown, but I very much like my first choice here.

Mice and Mystics: Downwood Tales
Molox the mole; he's a big'un.
I got a nice start on my Downwood Tales figures, finishing heroes Ansel and Jakobe, and the minion Molox. I kept the colors consistent with the illustrations on the cards and in the book, except for Jakobe. Jakobe is a gecko and is described as having bright green skin, but I chose ochre (must be my ochre week) for his skin, copying the color scheme of a gecko owned by a friend of mine (Jeff, who commissions a bunch of my minis painting.)

I've started a couple other figures, but I imagine my Mice and Mystics figures will be my filler figures (I rarely get to play, so there is no hurry to paint them.) I should be able to get my zombies done in one or two settings, so I may return to the Mice and Mystics before too long. And yes, I still have a few Rogue Planet figures, but that's all -- just three projects.

Mouse hero Ansel.
Gecko hero Jakobe (done with ochre skin instead of green.)

Monday, December 15, 2014

Mice and Mystics: Heroes again

A while back, I purchased an extra set of Mice and Mystics miniatures (available direct from Plaid Hat Games.) I only purchased them to get some more minions (so as to try out some conversion work and to make myself a Captain Vurst.)

I've had these extra heroes from that set sitting about, so I went ahead and painted them up in some alternates colors -- colors different than from the game illustrations. These were fun to paint as usual but I have no use for more heroes (I'm sure I COULD find a use), so I'll probably sell these to fund the purchase of the Mice and Mystics: Heart of Glorm expansion.

These were somewhat rushed (the Downwood Tales box shipped quicker than expected,) but they still look great, and will certainly look fine on someone's table.

The urge to paint these was triggered with my purchase of the Downwood Tales expansion; as if I needed yet another distraction from finishing up my Rogue Planet figures. And I will get back to Rogue Planet -- I'll also need to somehow not let the early delivery of Zombicide 3 distract me, because I will certainly be eager to paint some more monochromatic zombies.