RR18 – Eeza Ugezod’s Mother Crushers’ Standard and Musician (Nick Lund, 1985)

RR18 – Eeza Ugezod’s Mother Crushers’ Standard and Musician (Nick Lund, 1985), Oldhammer Citadel Miniatures

RR18 – Eeza Ugezod’s Mother Crushers’ Standard and Musician (Nick Lund, 1985), Oldhammer Citadel Miniatures

Here we have the only two of the Eeza Ugezod’s Mother Crushers that I managed to paint over the years, since purchasing them back in the late 1980’s. The motivation for painting them was actually my Blood Bowl team (Da Blak Flag) – which then became the name of my Orc Army/Tribe. Hence there’s a bit of appropriate iconography on his Black Flag.

RR18 – Eeza Ugezod’s Mother Crushers’ Standard and Musician (Nick Lund, 1985), Oldhammer Citadel Miniatures

Aside from obviously rebasing them onto 32mm round bases from their previous 25mm squares, there’s been a little bit of touch up. Dulling down some of the excessive colour, as I did some time ago with my other Regiment of Renown unit – Golfag’s (Golgfag’s) Ogres. Note the ogres also have the Black Flag iconography, since my Ogres were originally bought and painted to be part of the Orcish army. The slightly awkward twin moons on the top of the banner were originally painted in yellow – you know, how most Orc & Goblin moons are painted in that stylised manner. Unfortunately, they looked like a pair of bananas awkwardly perched on top of the banner. I repainted them in a silver-grey, though a beaten copper could also have looked good and appropriate. The skulls were also repainted from an overly-dark yellow-brown.

RR18 – Eeza Ugezod’s Mother Crushers’ Standard and Musician (Nick Lund, 1985), Oldhammer Citadel Miniatures

RR18 – Eeza Ugezod’s Mother Crushers’ Standard and Musician (Nick Lund, 1985), Oldhammer Citadel Miniatures

The musician with cymbals had similar treatment – overly bright pants toned down, and a bit of edge highlighting added to his instruments.

Oldhammer Orcs

I thought I’d throw in a group shot of all the orcs I’ve completed recently. Not quite an army, or even a proper unit for Kings of War yet, but a reasonable little gang so far, and there’s enough here to cause a little bit of bother using the AoS rules. I should dig out the rest of the Mother Crushers and get them painted, I guess. So much to paint, though…

Descent: Journeys in the Dark 1st Edition – Hellhounds

Descent 1.0 Hellhounds

Today’s models come from Descent: Journeys in the Dark 1st Edition. I picked it up secondhand several years ago, when I heard about how great a game it was, blurring the lines between RPG and miniatures boardgame. Shortly afterwards, the Second Edition came out, though I did pick up the official conversion kit, I’ve never gotten around to playing either of the things yet.

A month or so I got the idea to paint the Giant Spiders out of the 1e box. While I was poking around in there, I found these Hellhounds. Figuring that they’d paint up pretty quickly, I ended up putting the Spiders back and working on these instead. They didn’t take too long to get done, and being pretty rough figures I wan’t going to knock myself out over getting the absolute best paintjobs on them, either. Tabletop is good enough!

Descent 1.0 Hellhounds

Descent uses two different “types” of each monster: “White” ones, which are normal, or trooper-types and “Red” ones which are champion-level and tougher. So the sculpts come in two colours of plastic – Red and White (actually, more of a cream, but I digress). In order to be able to identify the two types, I painted the “White” ones with brighter orangey-red and red-to-yellow flame-fur, while the “Red” ones were painted in a slightly deeper, darker red and have yellow-to-black flame-fur. Enough to distinguish them when needed, but close enough that they still work in a pack for other games.

Descent 1.0 Hellhounds

Descent 1.0 Hellhounds

Speaking of other games, I knocked up a multi-base for them so that they can be used as a regiment in Kings of War. They’d be used as Proxy Hellhounds in my Khorne Chaos Daemons army, which in turn will be using the Forces of the Abyss/Hellhounds entry. Which I’ve just noticed while looking it up to write this only come in units of 5. And naturally, this base is made for a nominal unit of 10. Feck. That’s annoying, especially as they’re actual Hellhounds. Though the Mantic models also come on pissy little 25mm bases from Dungeon Saga, so perhaps the more appropriate proxy entry for these models will actually be a regiment of Abyssal Horsemen.

 

 

77191: Hydra (Reaper Bones)

77191: Hydra, Reaper Bones

Today’s model is the Reaper Bones Hydra, from their first Kickstarter. This model is one that I started about 14 months ago. I wanted it to work decently both as a display model as well as a wargaming piece. I used a few pieces of slate, carefully placed, including a nice sized piece in order to elevate the model – both literally and figuratively. During the process of painting this model and the time that it spent sitting on my desk waiting for some attention, I noticed that the heads of this Bones hydra tend to get a bit lost amongst one another.

77191: Hydra, Reaper Bones

These first two photographs serve well to illustrate a couple of things about how Games Workshop/Citadel paint and pose their multi-headed models. Workshop seem to either carefully split the heads, avoiding having any in almost-identical side-by-side poses as the two rear ones on the Bones model are. With other models, such as Archaon, GW design their models specifically to have the heads painted in different colours or styles – which again helps them to stand out from one another. Which isn’t to say that this sculpt, by Sandra Garrity is a bad one. Just that the way that the model is posed compared to other, more recent models which are sculpted perhaps it’s fair to say – with the finished, painted product more in mind became apparent. I think simply changing the pose of either the middle rear or middle left head head/neck would elevate this model further.

77191: Hydra, Reaper Bones

I’ve been painting for a long time now, and I’ve been able to turn out things to a nice standard for a lot of that time. I was commission painting when I was 16, and at 18 I won Best Figure and Best 40k figure at Cancon. (Before they gave trophies, unfortunately – assuming that they do now? I got a pair of certificates which are well lost at this point.) While that’s all well and good, what it really means is that as a painter I hit my plateau pretty early, and improving further from there has been a long, slow process.

77191: Hydra, Reaper Bones

Since I started blogging again as a way to share my models and motivate me to paint more, I’ve also been trying to improve and add new skills to my bow. Part of that is risk-taking and experimenting with new methods, materials and techniques. I have more than one of these models, since Bones 1 was in the days I went quite heavy on Kickstarters. Knowing that I had another one up my sleeve allowed me the freedom to try something I probably would not ordinarily have tried – that is instead of painting the Hydra in a shade of green, or even a turquoise/teal that fits my overall Dark Elf scheme, I went for what I wanted to be more naturalistic browns. I also played around with my airbrush (which I am awful with!) to try and achieve some nice looking gradients. While that actually worked(!), I felt that the rather deep scales sculpted onto this model demanded more contrast since the airbrushing was so smooth and the sculpted scales didn’t stand out at all.

77191: Hydra, Reaper Bones

A Dark Elf provides a comparison for our scale shot.

My (attempted) solution – which in my opinion didn’t work well – and is the reason that the model then spent a year (or two?) sitting on my desk unfinished until recently was to try a mix of Minitaire’s Airbrush Paints – specifically, their Ghost Tints. I’ve used them before, though never on a model this size. Now coming to the model for the first time and seeing it finished in these pics, it might look fine to the reader. But you know when you have a picture in your head about how you’d like something to look? Now imagine that, and imagine it coming along nicely, and then imagine it all coming undone once it dries. Now if I’d gone for Oil Washes, I probably could have removed it all due to the way that oil paints dry much more slowly and can still be removed and cleaned up with spirits.

I think the base worked out well, but in the end, the model fell short of what I’d envisioned for it. Could I go back and try to fix it up and redo elements of the model? Sure, but at the same time, I have another one to paint that would be a better use of my time than repainting this one, and my enthusiasm for this particular model waned to the point where it literally sat in front of me for over a year before I made myself finish it off. Sometimes you’ve just got to call something good enough for what it is, and call it done. In the end, the model looks decent and perfectly fine for a wargaming model.

In gaming terms, the model will have a home in the Pan-Elven army to start with (using the Dark Elf/Twilight Kin list), and eventually find a home with the Mythological Greek Army.

 

Dark Elf Assassins – 1995 and 2008

Dark Elf Assassins, WHFB 7th Edition Khainite Dark Elf Assassin #2, 4th Edition WHFB Dark Elf Assassin, 1995

The two models being shared today are a pair that have been around for some time. The older model on the right, skulking with the rather chunky sword is from WHFB 4th Edition, circa 1995 – just when huge chunks of WHFB were getting a bit too chunky and Morley. I never especially liked this model, having picked him up to use with my 3rd Edition Blood Bowl Dark Elf team (which I still haven’t painted) and so he sat in limbo for… you know… twenty years. (FUCK, I am getting old!)

The much nicer model on the left is from 7th Edition. Apparently known as Khainite Assassin #2. I probably got him secondhand from eBay as well, and Stuff of Legends becomes useless the further into the 2000’s you head. He’s pretty clearly the precursor to the current plastic kit of an Assassin (Shadowblade?) leaping off a spire-rock because dynamic posing.

4th Edition WHFB Dark Elf Assassin, 1995

Despite being purchased for Blood Bowl, this guy had actually gotten to the point of being almost-painted. I’d painted him with D&D/Pathfinder in mind, and so he had been given dark blue (Drow) skin, and deep red-browns for his leather gloves and boots. When he got reassigned to the Dark Elf army, I needed to redo the deep blue shading I’d started on his cloak with a more sea green, and change his leathergoods to Aqua/Turquoise shades – and obviously redo his face as well.

4th Edition WHFB Dark Elf Assassin, 1995

Nothing fancy on his cloak. He’s an assassin, after all – and his cloak is there for practical purposes. I think the Turquoie shades have worked better than the dark blues that were there originally, and having come up this pleasingly, I know of some other purposes I’ll be using the same highlights in the near-ish future.

4th Edition WHFB Dark Elf Assassin, 1995

The flowers are a feature that I intend to use on figures from all of my Elven armies, which will be a small, unifying factor across the Dark, High and Wood brethren. Despite my snide remarks about Gary Morley, this model is actually an Aly Morrison sculpt.

WHFB 7th Edition Khainite Dark Elf Assassin #2

The second model was started way back in 2013, shortly after we moved into this place and long before The War Room was converted into such, featuring a light box. A much more dynamic model, but without going to the point of ridiculousness, it was also a pleasure to paint – and the impetus for the repaint on the older model as well. I’m not 100% sure of the sculptor (Chris Fitzpatrick?), since GW stopped crediting their artists by this point. If anyone knows for sure, please do LMK and I’ll edit it in! Since he’s a 7th Edition figure, and GW released most of the models for an army alongside the Warhammer Armies volume, I’d say he’s pretty safely a 2008 release.

WHFB 7th Edition Khainite Dark Elf Assassin #2

Having said that, the two of them sat on my painting desk for literally years until earlier this month, when I looked at the pair of them, each three-quarters-painted and made myself pull my finger out and get them both done. Which I managed to do in a very reasonable amount of time. That’s the trouble – I’m not playing Warhammer or KoW, etc very much at all these days, and so then my desk is covered in models – none of which have a particular pressing “need” to get finished and so I flit between a few minutes on this or that, and taking the 30 minutes or hour to finish a particular model or two becomes “too hard”, despite the pleasure that comes from completing a model.

WHFB 7th Edition Khainite Dark Elf Assassin #2

Most of my Fantasy work over 2016 was focused on the Undead and Gondor armies – both of which now have tons of painted models and units, yet have tons still unpainted and unassembled – and two units of cavalry each half-painted). This year, I’ve made inroads on getting a Dwarf force to the point of functionality while mucking about with Orcs. I’ve got to get some lists written up again and focus on completing units to have more “finished” fantasy armies for Kings of War. Maybe then I can have the Elves up and running, even if only as a combined, pan-Elven force to start with.

In the meantime, if we need a Druchii or Drow Assassin for anything, at least we’re covered…

ORC1 Oldhammer Warrior Orc “Slyss” (1987?)

This time I have a very “Oldhammer” Warhammer Orc Warrior, known as “Slyss” from the 2nd-3rd Edition era, sculpted by Kev Adams. I bought this guy and started to paint him long, long ago and only recently found him in a Chessex case and made myself complete him.

As can be seen, he’s one of those models with the huge, spiky shield boss. A big part of getting this guy finished was simply deciding what to do with it. The easier option would have been to make it a big, nasty spike. The other obvious option, though a little more involved was to follow Oldhammer tradition and turn it into a 3-D shield, and use the boss as the basis for a nose. Obviously, I went with the latter. I built up very slight brow ridges, bridge of the nose, cheekbones, lower lip, teeth and nostrils with liquid greenstuff. Mostly so the shield wouldn’t look like a completely flat piece with a big spike sticking out of it. The Bridge of the nose and nostrils then, were the most important aspects.

The earliest reference I can find of this guy is in the 1987 Citadel Journal, which pretty safely dates the model to 1986-87. He’s an evil-looking bastard, alright – and a good example of the whole “older models have character” thing that people like to bandy around – and overuse at times. With such squinty eyes and a weird-as-hell mouth – he fits in here. He’d work okay these days as some sort of Chaos Mutant, painted in more human skin tones.

Rear view shows the slightly crude, but still detailed sculpting of Kev Adams’ early Warhammer Orcs. Along with the crocodillian mouth and face that is oddly reminiscent of some renditions of trollface. Also, my awesome handpainted woodgrain shieldback. :p

This pic is the money shot – my show-off pic for the freehanded Ogre-Face shield design. No radiating black sun lines or chequerboard on this one. Just the nasty face, scowling at the world in front.

“…and My Axe!” Battle for Skull Pass Dwarf Warriors

Battle for Skull Pass - AKA the Warhammer Fantasy Battle 7th Edition.

Battle for Skull Pass – AKA the Warhammer Fantasy Battle 7th Edition Starter Box.

In November last year, for some reason I got it into my head to delve into one of my figure boxes and paint up a bunch of Dwarves. Specifically, to go through and paint a bunch of the Battle for Skull pass plastics that I’d picked up from eBay, WargamerAU and my mate, Damo. I think the idea popped into my brain since I’d been painting and finishing a few Slayers around the time and getting stuck into other random dwarves (which I’ve been sharing recently).

Citadel Games Workshop Battle for Skull Pass Dwarf Warriors

Skull Pass Dwarves in Horde Mode.

By mid-November, I’d actually gathered them up, and selected the figures I was going to paint, and then got into them properly over December. Batch painted, they’re no works of art, but since there were 40 of them and work cranks itself up around November into December, I didn’t get them finished before work broke up for Christmas, as was the plan. All because of their overly-complex sculpted shields. After a few days of rest, I got stuck back into them again, but Marouda bought me Watch Dogs 2 which then proceeded to eat all of my time after I installed it and started playing it. I seriously played for near-17 hours the day I properly started it. From 8am until 1am. Sure, that’s with breaks, but still… I’m almost done with the game now, and I don’t even play it every day to get it done. A couple more hours and it should be done.

Citadel Games Workshop Battle for Skull Pass Dwarf Warriors

Skull Pass Dwarves ranked on movement trays. With a few spares for later…

These were a pretty quick and simple job for me, though every element is still highlighted and shaded, I did so with an intent of making a solid tabletop standard, rather than my usual care. At one point, I decided that I wanted them to look more work and war-weary than some of the others. Like they’ve been on campaign rather than having just left the keep in freshly washed uniforms. This was because I’d been looking at my unassembled boxes of Warlord’s Napoleonic French Line Lancers while washing my brushes (which I’d bought to turn into some sort of not-Brettonian army).

Napoleonics with helmets instead of big hats? Colour me slightly interested...

Napoleonics with helmets instead of big hats? Colour me slightly interested…

I got to thinking about how Napoleonic uniforms in miniature form always seem so bright, perfect and pristine when the actuality would have been much more filthy and worn. Like in that Napoleon show with Boromir Stark in it. With that percolating in my mind, I decided to hit them all with a brown wash, but then brighten up their axes, helms and paint the shields last – as I felt that Dwarves would always look after their wargear above all else.

Alec Trevelyan and friends, showing off the pristine uniforms of the period.

Alec Trevelyan and friends, showing off the always-pristine uniforms of the period.

I mentioned the shields earlier. They were a hassle, and basically the reason these figures weren’t finished in December 2016, which would have broken my 2015 record/target and not caused me to fail to submit in the final month of the Tale of Gamers challenge I ran on Dakka. Of course there were other reasons. Watch Dogs 2 and burnout/exhaustion from working every day of the week for a period at the end of the year, but the shields were the final hurdle.

The Old and the New, united by a colour scheme and shield design.

The Old and the New, united by a colour scheme and shield design.

If I were painting these models with no “history”, I’d probably have simply painted the Hammer-and-Anvil motif a nice bronze, much like the Dwarf-Mask bling on the Standard bearers. The thing is, when I started to paint the models, I realised that the same design was much older, and is featured on the (Marauder Miniatures) Dwarf Shields that one of my old, Oldhammer Norse dwarves has (and I have a few of these shields left to break out). Since I wanted the new to fit in with the old, being from the same clan(s), I wanted to make sure that they matched. Which meant going from a simple paint/wash/drybrush scheme to one that needed 10 different colours/applications. While keeping it simple. When doing it to almost 40 models, that takes time. Bleugh.

Citadel Games Workshop Battle for Skull Pass Dwarf Warriors, Oldhammer Norse Dwarf

My freshly painted BFSP Dwarves, led by an Oldhammerer Dwarf.

What’s next for the Dorfs? Well, I appear to (almost) have a complete BFSP set between the various secondhand sets I’ve purchased. I’m just short the Dwarven rifles, so I’m going to see if I can get another unit or two painted before I burn out on Dwarves…

Battle For Skull Pass Dwarves.

The Battle For Skull Pass Dwarves.

(Yet another unit of) Mantic Zombies! (6-Month Tale of Gamers Challenge)

This is what I’d planned for my Spooky Halloween post! Zombies! Yes, I finished these that long ago. Instead, it’s my Christmas Eve post, because… Zombies?

In any case, best wishes for Christmas to all the regular readers of this blog, and people who stumble across this post later on down the line will simply have to accept them as a snapshot in time.

Now that I have some time off work, I’ll be able to take photos more frequently, and so once the small backlog of painted stuff is gotten rid of, I’ll be much more up to date. I’ve got a couple of mat reviews I’m keen to get onto as well, but it won’t be until next week that I get a chance to go out to the War Room and start cleaning it up (which it needs, bigtime!)

So anyway, these guys were started right on the heels of the second dozen zombies I painted for KoW, back around May. While the plan originally called for a fourth set to follow these – making either 4 regiments or 2 hordes in KoW terms, my Zombienthusiasm is pretty much completely sapped now, as opposed to fired up after finishing the first dozen Zombies. The Mantic figures are nice ones, but there are so few interesting combinations, even with Mantic’s Ghoul parts thrown into the mix.

Mantic Games Zombies, WGF Warlord Zombie Vixens

As you can see, I went even further afield for kitbash parts on these guys. The additional parts beyond the Mantic Ghouls this time came from Mantic’s Sci-Fi zombie sprue, the new(ish) Citadel Ghouls, and two crawlers drawn from Wargames Factory’s Zombie Vixen set who can be seen at either extreme of the crawlers above. I wanted a little bit of gender representation, and the closest I could really find were the WGF set, which is, well, a little average. The figures are a little bit too sexualised overall, but more importantly are verrry spindly compared to even the Mantic models, so the only ones that really were able to fit in were a couple of crawlers.

Mantic Games Zombies, WGF Warlord Zombie Vixens

As you can see above, I finally found that errant model that went missing from the very first dozen, and so he got finished as well alongside these guys – next to his twin. I guess the next batch will only need to be 11 zombies, then. My favourite amongst these 5 has to be the one reaching for the sky. I rotated the “base” and added a bloodied femur out front this time to give a different “sitting down” look rather than just going with the usual crawler setup as I did with the wonder twins next to him.

Mantic Games Zombies

The second rank has what are probably two of my favourite zombies of all the ones I’ve painted. The gruesome fellow dragging along half of a well-chewed corpse, and one I call “go home zombie, you’re drunk!”. The stein comes from a plastic GW dwarf kit while the arm-with-meal comes from the current GW zombie kit, as does the ruined face which fits zombies much more than ghouls for me at least.

Mantic Games Zombies

The legs on the two leftmost models both come from Mantic’s sci-fi zombies kit, but they’re generic enough to fit in here. I’ve continued to simply use dark grey/black rags for my zombies rather than a more realistic option of mixed clothing for equal parts “night horror” and “army colours” reasons.

Mantic Games Zombies

Finally, we have the rear rank. An overly-hunched over female sci-fi zombie torso and head, another dismembered pair of legs (because I am nothing if not economical with my model parts!), another sci-fi zombie torso mounted on fantasy legs and super-dynamic zombie. Unfortunately I couldn’t get the camera low enough to really capture the details of all their heads and faces. The sci-fi model chewing on …something is an odd duck, with poorly-defined details, so you’re not quite sure if he has a gigantic mutant mouth or has a normal one and is simply pulling the sinewy muscle up from his hands. I just covered the whole mess in blood in the end and stopped worrying about it.

Mantic Games Zombies

He looks pretty decent from the back, though. Nice bit of spinal detail that once properly gored up makes him a good choice for the rear rank.

Mantic Games Zombies

And now we finish up in the usual manner. Group shot and unit shots. Once I get at least another dozen zombies done, I’ll take another big group shot of the two hordes. After doing a fourth dozen Mantic zombies, I’ll probably do some Citadel zombies and see how a couple dozen of that very different style of model turns out.

Mantic Games Zombies Kings of War Regiment

Mantic Games Zombies Kings of War Regiment

Mantic Games Zombies Kings of War Regiment