23 January, 2015

Along Came a Spider

I BOUGHT this chap shortly before Christmas, although I've had my eye on him for some years. I don't think it's an exaggeration to write that Otherworld Miniatures have one of the most comprehensive and well-sculpted ranges of fantasy gribblies one could hope to find. He's a satisfyingly hefty piece of metal, although obviously the legs and pedipalps came separately, with five of each attached to a metal sprue. Although each limb carried a lug designed to fit into an associated indentation on the abdomen it was nevertheless necessary to resort to pinning to achieve a reliable union and, of course, peace-of-mind. As usual I utilised paperclips as the 'pins'. There's also a length of black florist wire which extends from the base into the abdomen for increased stability.

I was also a little concerned about basing: did anyone make massive hex bases? A quick scouring of the Warbases site soon revealed that they manufacturer hexagonal bases up to a whopping 120mm in diameter. I ordered a pack of 100mm bases and, as can be seen from the attached images, these suited my needs admirably. 

Quick comparison shot with Grashak Kra.

In other news I am overhauling my gaming boards and have purchased five 620x600x20mm insulation boards for less than 17 smackers on the Ebay for this purpose. I've already begun texturing them and hope to get the lot done by the close of the weekend. I'm painting them with an undiluted, but thin coat of PVA onto which aquarium sand is liberally sprinkled. Once dry I'm making a black acrylic paint/PVA/water mix which shall be thinly applied as an undercoat/primer/sealer. When set, dry-brushing and flocking can commence. Despite their meagre thickness the boards are incredibly rigid (and obviously very light), although I may reinforce them with some wooden strips at some point. Hopefully I will have something to show you next week. Enjoy your weekend, manlings!

Oh yeah, this ain't gonna stop until I've made enough money to retire:

18 January, 2015

The Return!

IT'S been about six months give-or-take since I've attacked a fantasy miniature with the old bristly rod (and attack is a spot-on verb with which to characterise my painting 'style'), a deficit I recently thought should better be remedied (more later). Returning to and looking back over this blog I am disconcerted by the trail of unfinished projects which it catalogues. Admittedly my record in this regard is not nearly as hopeless as that of some gamers/bloggers I know/follow (names withheld!), but for a completist it is irksome to say the least. So what is to be done? I noticed and read with interest the proliferation of new year 'to do' lists across the wargaming blogosphere over the preceding fortnight and, although I am somewhat late to the party (or, rather, have missed it altogether), I shall set my own itinerary down here for posterity; it will be interesting to look back in a year's time and assess my level of achievement if nothing else!
  1. Continue collecting vintage and comparable 28mm fantasy miniatures for both dungeon crawling and skirmish gaming. I have got reasonably far building both a small Chaos and greenskin force, however I need to crack-on with painting and give some thought to the final composition of these hordes. On the horizon are a human warband mostly using Foundry ex-Citadel Feudals and a Dwarf force using ex-Grenadier sculpts (now sold by Forlorn Hope Games). I have, incidentally, already purchased a few miniatures for the latter.
  2. Collect a 15mm fantasy human army to oppose my 15mm greenskins, which I finished back in 2013! This will probably be made up of miniatures from Legio Heroica's Feudal Age and Holy Land: Crusader Kingdoms ranges, which look damn nice (readers are naturally welcome to suggest alternatives). If I knuckle-down this shouldn't take me more than two months, but I need to buy the models first! Selecting and costing up the army is obviously something I need to sit down and do beforehand.
  3. Finish off my 15mm Conan project. I need to paint up some stands of Pictish archers and wolves, which I already have the models for. I would also like to add to this project a mammoth and a couple of coelodonta/woolly rhinoceros from Primaeval Designs. Could all be done in a month or less, so there's no excuse to not get this one 'in the can' before summer comes along. 
  4. Play more games! I need to hook up with the Oldhammer Exeter guys (a FB group) and have a stab at some regular gaming. One of the reasons I virtually abandoned this blog was chronic boredom/exasperation with the hobby engendered by a lack of actual gaming, so fulfilling this target is rather important (as I'm sure readers will concur). Anyone who has seen my painting knows I ain't doing this for art's sake! As I currently work afternoons/evenings mon-fri changing my job might also help in this regard (I'm only a lowly FLT operative, so this wouldn't prove too much of an upheaval).
On reflection it's not insurmountable, really. Currently I'm casually painting models for '1', but in February or March I will probably focus on getting project '3' finished, as it is the closest to completion. Hopefully I won't be eating a big slice of humble pie when I look back over these words in half-a-year's time...

With that out of the way, here are some miniatures I've painted over the last fortnight (actually the ogre was done last summer, but hey-ho):

Jes Goodwin Chaos Ogre. Niiice.
More Orcs.
Grashak Kra! The defining orc model from this period
in my modest view.

Not wishing to break with established tradition, the shields obviously aren't done. I have no meaningful excuse for this omission as I have managed to amass a decent-sized pile of ye olde Citadel shields over the last year and instead solemnly promise that I will sit down soon and make good this shortcoming. 

Oh yeah, did I mention that I recently vanity published a set of dungeon crawl rules? No? Well here you go, you lucky beggars:

11 December, 2014

Trapdoor Rules Officially Released!

AS regulars will know over the last few years I have been sporadically working on a set of dungeon crawl rules. Initially known as Cavern Crawl they have since been changed to Trapdoor and are finally now available for purchase as either pdf or print copy (b&w, softcover) from Wargames Vault. In true old-school tradition I have fashioned a flyer to advertise the occasion:  

Readers interested in procuring a copy are directed HERE. Note that unless you live in Timbuktu the hard copies are printed to order in the country you are having it shipped to, so postage is very reasonable. If you have any queries feel free to leave a comment below and I will respond forthwith.