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.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Samurai heavy hitter

Is that club too big? It certainly is taking up a lot of space in the pic. Nah, It's not too big.
Well, this is my favorite from this group so far. I made the tetsubo club a couple months ago, patiently filing down a thick length of brass rod, and adding studs from cured/cut green stuff. This fellow will be a force to be reckoned with in a skirmish. I've always wanted to do a figure like this after seeing (years ago) an illustration of a samurai holding a club, standing among his victims. (The book was "Samurai Warriors" by Stephen Turnbull, 1987 -- not an Opsrey title.)

The rest of the figure came together nicely. The body is from one of Steve Barber's ronin figures, and the head is from the new bandit figure. The vest was made from green stuff (not my best, but I think the paint hides it nicely.)

I gave him the a colorful costume so that he fits in with the other bandits. I also gave him a pattern reminiscent of the Kaage buntai I put together last year (and which is still for sale.) The rocky base was done so that this fellow would also fit in with a group of mountain bandits, though, honestly, I'm also just trying out some different basing ideas for fun.

Machinas for sale!

"Machinas: Death Races in the Wasteland" is available now from Two Hour Wargames.

I wrote this more than a year ago after playing a game of Charioteer. This was also around the time when I was doing a lot of my post-apoc gladiators, so the fusion of the two was just a matter of putting pen to paper (really- I used ink-- then I typed it out on computer.)

So yes, my post-apoc gladiators and Machinas races share the same setting (Septimontium aka Seven Hills City.)

"Machinas" can also be used in conjunction with "Urban Renewal," "All Things Zombie," and "After the Horsemen." Check it out here!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

42mm Samurai: Yamabushi

The yamabushi were an ascetic group of Buddhist monks (with some elements of Tao and Shinto.) They would often be found wandering the mountains. To announce themselves, they would blow a conch horn (seen bound in brown netting). And when they needed to rest, they would simply find a rock and have a seat; the small animal hide worn behind served as a cushion. Yamabushi could be found in many of the armies during the Sengoku period, and also fought alongside the Ikko-Ikki.

This mini has a lot of different things going on, so it was a challenge to paint. But the patience pays off. The most difficult part was the area around the chest which has the little (green) poms, the conch horn strap, and some bows all vying for a little space. OK, those elements aren't THAT tightly packed but they were a challenge for me.

In the end, it's nice to have a figure that you just don't see in other ranges. If you get one, the bo staff is a separate piece; I replaced my bo with a length of brass rod. And it's difficult to see in these pics, but he is wearing wooden geta sandals.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Soldiers for the kabuki-mono

Here are the (slight) conversions of the previous bandit figure. These really aren't conversions; they're more either a new weapon and/or a new head.

I like this pose. It's a good generic pose that is easy to change up with the new heads and weapons. I'll probably be getting a few more of these to fill out the ranks of my street gangs (kabuki-mono.)

The kabuki-mono were known for their eccentric behavior and outlandish clothes (they would wear bright colors and women's kimonos, for example.) Other gangs on the streets of Edo included the Hatamoto yakko -- essentially bored samurai with nothing better to do than terrorize the populace -- and the Machi yakko, townsmen who banded together to protect themselves from the other gangs. I'll be using my peasants as a Machi yakko gang.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Bandit and Samurai

Here are a couple of the new samurai by Steve Barber.
The samurai/ronin drawing his sword brings some attitude to the range. I wanted to keep the paint job simple on him since I'll need him to double as either a poor samurai or a ronin.

I had Steve model the bandit as a generic version specifically of the bandits seen in Yojimbo. But the figure will do equally as well as a mountain bandit, machi yoko (street gang) member, or a wako pirate.

The heads on all these figures come as a separate piece so that you can rotate them to change up the look of the pose. You can also knock out the sword guard (the blade comes as a separate piece), drill out the hands and add a small yari/spear or naginata.

I also ordered a couple more of the recently released ronin. On one I added one of the new bandit heads. I gave him a haori/vest using green stuff, and armed him with the tetsubo I made a few weeks ago. He'll bring some major power to the street fights.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

New samurai arrived

My new 42mm samurai arrived from Steve Barber. I will thoroughly enjoy painting these over the next couple weeks. (The photo represents only a few of the figures I received.)

Most of the new figures will be used to form a couple street gangs. The new bandits will proved plenty of opportunity for some colorful palettes.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Pleasant Dreams

Just a quick note about a Kickstarter that'll be winding down here in a couple days. It's called "Pleasant Dreams: A Card Game of Nightmares."  The basic (and unique) concept is that you're trying to remain dreamily asleep, but nightmares are trying to build up enough to cause you to wake up screaming.

I honestly haven't read the rules in detail (well, I've skimmed them), but I backed the game for a few other reasons: It has a good entry price point ($15 for the game,) it can be played solitaire, and I love the art! Nice and grim with a victorian influence.

Check it out before it's too late!

A little from column A, a little from column Z

Not as many I as had imagined, but more than enough to choose from.
I think I will use the Dude (center) and Red Cap Ben to form the core
of Hobo Strike force. Need more hobo survivors!
A couple things here; first off, I finished the last of my Zombicide survivors. Now, I have a nice horde of them. I also finished painting the zombies that came with Jeff's copy of the game that I recently purchased, so now ALL of my zombies are actually painted. Last thing left to paint for Zombicide are the zombivors. I don't plan on playing with those anytime soon, so they can wait.

With this kind of variety, you'd think
I was arming some bandits or something.
Steve Barber let me know that my latest samurai order is on its way! I'm excited for this one because it includes three new sculpts I commissioned. Having this order in transit helped drive me to finish the stragglers from Zombicide.

After they were done, I cleaned the painting table, got some fresh water, dug out the anvil and started to make some weapons to arm the new samurai recruits coming in.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Zombicide: Angry Mary, Achilles and Achy-Breaky

Nothing special here -- well, OK, I do kind of like the Angry Mary sculpt; finally, a lady who looks like she's been kicking ass since before the apocalypse, and without having to show too much skin or boobage.
I enjoyed painting her leathers, which was quite easy. Just paint blacks like you would usually do, but go through the layers all the way to white (which should be a very thin highlight on the ridges next to folds.) This represents light reflecting off the glossy leather. It doesn't always look great up close, but on the table, the effect works well.

Achilles: Gave him some prison orange, seemed an easy enough decision.

Achy-Breaky: I know who it's "supposed" to be, but with that mullet, I prefer this figure to represent Billy Ray Cyrus. That way, we can all cheer every time he gets eaten by zombies.

Been a busy week in the office (newspaper) what with the drunken riots in my town. Hopefully, this weekend, I'll be able to plow through the final few survivors on the table. New samurai will soon be coming!

Machinas friends

I hope you're enjoying the game. For those who didn't order the cars, I hope the cards are working out for you (or, even better, I hope you're making your own little death racers.)

For those who ordered cars -- Thanks for your patience, FedEx was delayed and should be getting me the remainder of your stuff (rules and cards) in on Monday (and I'll still need to repack everything along with your cars).

The Oak Street Priests will say a blessing to his Greatness on your behalf for your understanding. Many in the Known Wasteland can quickly enter a Waste Race for a few moments of brief glory, but those who are patient become true Brother Pilots and their glory last forever!

Monday, April 7, 2014

42mm Samurai: It's about to get all ascetic in here

(The head is just tacked in here; but it is a separate piece, so it can be
placed and rotated as you see fit.)
Here's the (soon-to-be) latest addition to Steve Barber's 42mm samurai range. He's a yamabushi monk who partook in battle just as much as the sohei. This one is armed with a staff, but can also be armed with a naginata.

This figure looks like it will be loads of fun to paint with all the costume details -- the bows and tassles, the geta sandals, the yuigesa (those fluffly balls on his chest), the small black tokin hat; behind him is an animal fur that served as a soft seat for when the monk rested on mountain rocks.
And that netted baggy item to his front is a conch shell horn, which was used during ceremonies and to signal a monk's presence to other solitairy yamabushi in the mountains.

I think this figure will look great paint, and he'll be a nice addition to the growing range (and my own collection.)

Friday, April 4, 2014

Zombicide: Hobo with a shotgun

I'll need to start matt varnishing these guys before I photograph them. This fella is wearing a nice olive drab coat, but the light reflection has washed out the color a bit.

I know that the background to this character (Red Cap Ben) is supposed to be that he is a survivalist, but I love the sculpt because it reminds me of Rutger Hauer's character in "Hobo with a Shotgun." I like the colors from the concept art, so I kept those, but I gave him a blonde beard as an hommage to Hauer.

I took a little more time to paint this one, trying out just a little bit of blending with OK results. Though, by simply slowing down and adding more in-between layers using the English (layering) system, I find it easier to control the paint and color than if I were to blend. I think a blended figure looks fantastic, but, in all honesty, I don't aspire to paint my figures to a Golden Demon quality; I want the figures to look good on the table, not on the shelf.

Based on the nice sculpting on this figure (and its companion Angry Mary,) I'll probably pick up the other artist boxes. I'm also kicking myself for not picking up the Mustache Pack (especially for that Magnum PI figure). And I'm certainly not going to pay eBay prices to get it now. But oh well, I have more than enough survivor figures, and there'll be plenty more when Season 3 rolls around.