Thursday, 26 January 2017

From Curt: Kablooey!! Exploding 'Star Wars' Rebel Starships (30 Points)

Ever since seeing 'Rogue One' over the holiday break I've been having a wonderful renaissance delving into all things 'Star Wars'. I feel like I'm eleven all over again (if only my hair follicles would follow suit)!

This resurgent interest made me dig-up my copy of 'Star Wars: Armada' by Fantasy Flight Games. For those who are not familiar with the game, 'Armada' is a fleet-level miniatures game, where players get to control the huge starships and fighter squadrons that are so iconic in the films. Rebel Blockade Runners, Star Destroyers, Mon Calamari 'Pickle Ships', swarms of TIE fighters, you got it, they're all a part of the game. It's super fun.

Our group is just about to start a campaign using the new 'Corellian Conflict' expansion that came out a few weeks ago. The guys are busy creating their fleets and so I thought I'd add some colour to the tabletop with some bits and bobs. What we have here is a pair of critically damaged ships for set dressing. With these models, victorious admirals will have the satisfaction of seeing their crippled adversaries drift across the table instead of the original models simply being removed from play.

The Rebel frigate is hit amidships and begins to break apart.
These two ships are from the Rebel Alliance. One is the famous Rebel Blockade Runner, or CR90 Corvette, that was seen carrying Princess Leia in 'A New Hope', and the other is a Nebulon-B Escort Frigate which was first glimpsed in 'The Empire Strikes Back'.

Both of these models were downloaded from Thingiverse (thanks Danesgift!), tweaked/re-scaled, printed off on my 3D printer and mercilessly bashed-up for effect. The stands are prints as well.

Below are a couple raw prints, with all the supports still needing to be removed and sanded down. Yes, they are SUPER orange when they first come off the printer.

The explosions are 3D fractal models, designed by Aeron203. 

I re-scaled and sliced the fractal models to make varying sizes and textures of explosions. I added some blown-out debris from thin plasticard, and for the Nebulon-B I gave it a turbo laser hit (with a bit of painted steel rod) for a bit of drama.

The raw 3D models above provides you a hint of the upcoming Imperial ships which will be getting the same treatment - but that will be for another post.

Points? Hmm, I would say they are the equivalent of 15-20mm vehicles?  So, 12-24 for the pair? I leave it to you Dave!

So, the Snow Lord managed to catch my shift with scant minutes to spare. And the Comm is currently crewed by a HUGE Star Wars Fan-atic!
Yup, I"m pretty much gobsmacked!

Those ships are even more wicked than the wrecks and scenery bits that I've seen when Battlefleet Gothic was all the rage. not to mention that your brushwork is waaay better than the factory paints that come with the game. The explosions could've just been left as is, but I noticed you even have chunks of hull flying off in the explosion. That is just as cool as I'm sure the game will be with these derelicts drifting.
 Just for that, we have no remorse for adding a few discretionary points for the sheer spectacle....Sith Lords are all about the spectacle after all. ;)

Ethan M - The Assembly of Legio IX (210 points)

Hello again everyone. This week brings about the end of painting for my Sertorian Romans, and am now able to finally begin work on the Spanish troops. To begin, I've added to Quintus Sertorius' retinue: his trusty steed.

Here, the noble Spanish warhorse is pictured next to his rider.

Additionally, the fifth and final cohort for Legio IX has been completed. This final cohort was also from the much lamented Wargames Factory box.

And a shot from an angle. Misery does love company, I suppose, and I'm glad to some extent I'm not the -only- one out there who has found them somewhat lacking. Still, I did appreciate the variety grab bag that could be assembled with their adaptability.

With the final cohort finished, I have Legio IX pictured in its entirety.

I can't really describe how glad I am to be finished with the Roman side of things. To express that, I decided to paint some Spanish cavalry to add to the big red blob. First up, a unit of six Spanish heavy cavalry.

I believe that these figures are also Old Glory, and from the Punic Wars line. Carthage made extensive use of a huge grab-bag of troops, something Sertorius himself emulated, and the Spanish didn't experience too much change prior to Imperial administration. I like these figures, as the sculpt still offers a very Romanized look to everything. I particularly enjoyed painting the large, rounded shields that give off something of a mounted hoplite vibe.

More shots of the heavy cav.

With those out of the way, I painted a similarly-sized unit of light cavalry.

These too are Old Glory figs, described as small-shield Spanish light cavalry.

I wanted something of an irregular feel to these, but wanted to avoid bland, earthy colours like those occupying most of my basing. They are a little brighter than I'd like, though when out of the light my poor photography work creates I think they look much grungier and more to my liking.

A wide-angle shot of Sertorius' army so far.

And a shot that leaves everything less blotted out by the light. Again, apologies for the photography work.

That'll be it for this week. Additions to Legio IX include 16 infantry, 12 cavalry, and Sertorius' steed. With any luck, next week will see the introduction of the first of the Scutarii. Until next time!

I am still impressed with the look you brought out of the wargames factory romans, Ethan. They really do look impressive and the graffiti on the shields just adds to the elan! They are hard pressed t match the old glory cavalry though. I really like the Spanish heavy cavalry. The darker uniforms provide an excellent punch to the force. The light cavalry is also well done, the variety of tunics does make them seem adhoc, but the armor ties them in well to each other and the rest of the force.
Very well done, Ethan!
I considered Setorius's mount to be a completed cav trooper, but the extra points are for the excellent use of the wargames factory Romans, I really like those shields! ;)

From PeterD Tragardland Croats (30 points)

6 Croats plus one Lady (not painted for the Challenge)

It's been an odd day, I cancelled my first class this morning so that my students could get their selfies taken with Justin Trudeau.  He was on campus at the University of Regina this morning and buggered up the hallways with huge traffic jams.

A small post from me this week, as I've been delayed by real life and other distractions.  I have 6 Seven Years War Croats in 28mm.  I have based their uniform on the Banal-Grenzinfanterieregiment nr. 1 but named them in honour of their place of origin, The Duchy of Tragardland an Imagination on the Blogosphere.  I had  intended to have these be my East bonus round entry, but such is life.

Late last year Alan over at the Duchy posted on his blog, enquiring about the Westphalia Maria Theresa figure that he had seen various places. Challenge veterans will recall that this figure was supplied to Challenge participants a few years back.  I had actually painted my copy, but Curt had given me a second.  The original  (with orb and sceptre removed) was panted to act as a well to do civilian lady, and appeared in one of my Sharp Practice games set in the SYW.  Curt was so pleased to see her on table that he gave me a second (I could actually do with thirds if there's one going Curt).   So the replacement was offered up to Alan in exchange for something from his lace wars lead pile.  I didn't know what that would be until it arrived.

Shortly after New Years a strange package appeared with a Tragardland Postal Office return address, much to my wife's amusement.  Inside were these 6 Croats in payment for the Queen and Empress. They arrived painted in a tin soldier style in a mix of uniforms from several Grenzer regiments.  However, time in the lead pile and travel had taken their toll on the paintwork, so I decided to strip them down and repaint them.  Amusing my wife yet again with a request for Detol and a mason jar, I got them back to bare metal and painted them up as shown.  First time in a long time I'd stripped minis and the first time using Detol. It worked quite well with a little scrubbing using my daughter's toothbrush.

I didn't recognize the figures, but according to Alan they are Eagle Figures with the exception of a Front Rank Officer.  Eagle's minis date originally from the 80s but I had not encountered them before.  I found the sculpts rather muddy in detail and a bit of a chore to paint.  In the end I went kind of tin soldierish too and it seemed to suit them.

These don't officially fit in with any project that I am working on (or plan to), but I reckon there's wiggle room to field these in my SYW Kleine Krieg games which are focused on the Western campaigns.  First of all the Austians sent several columns into Western Germany during the SYW, far enough West that the British-Hanoverian-Allied armies had to make counter moves.  So one option is that they were in the advance guard of one of these columns and got detached so linked up with the French.  Another possibility if to have them acting as a unit of light Infantry Volontaires in the French army, some of which wore pretty colourful uniforms. 

So that's 6 28mm figures on foot for 30 points.  Next week I'll having something more to post.

Speaking of points I am amused by the fact that while I opted out of any side duels this year, I would be in first place of two duels that cover what I am doing. I've painted 255 points of SYW minis for Sharp Practice, more than anyone in the Sharp Practice or Seven Years War Duels.  I am thinking that these duels better heat up soon!

Tragardland it is! I rather like these fellows and the Tin-solderish route you took with them. They would make an excellent set of bully-boy, tag-a-longs for those wicked and unscrupulous officer types that assume command after taking liberties with the advisory role they initially claimed to have! Game of throne villians are clumsy in comparison to some of the wicked aristocrats of the lace war era....and those are just the fictional ones to say noting of actual historical personalities! ;)
I rather like the Lady whose clone paid the way for these fellows, perhaps she is haranguing them for trampling her prized garden? grand job, Peter!

From SimonM - "Wargames Terrain Workshop" Tweak (7 Points)

This 28mm resin model of Tweak was sculpted for me by the very generous Dave Stone of "Wargames Terrain Workshop" fame, and resultantly can't actually be bought from his company's webstore. A major character in the "Judge Dredd" epic "The Cursed Earth", which ran within the pages of "2000 A.D." from May to October 1978, this brown furry alien would help Mega-City One's toughest Lawman deliver a vaccine for the killer virus 2T(FRU)T to Mega City Two.
Tweak WIPS - From Initial wash and dry-brush, through to his lighter brown areas being picked out
Initially primed with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, the "noble and loyal creature" was heavily washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and subsequently dry-brushed with more "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna. I then painted his nose, hands and feet with the slightly lighter colour Heavy Brown, before applying a layer of Strong Tone Quickshade over these areas as well.
Tweak as seen in "2000 A.D."
Described by the "Judge Dredd Wiki" as having "large black eyes and a snout", as well as "donkey-like ears and large hands with three large claws", I 'picked out' Tweak's claws with a combination of "Vallejo" White and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade, and additionally highlighted his eyes with "Vallejo" Charred Brown and "Citadel" Nuln Oil.

Well, that is a really cool miniature. Never had a custom sculpt and a esoteric one at that!
Although I never read that arc the inclusion of the comic pages brings me back to those hot summer days of my youth eating candy and drinking fizzy drinks while reading comics with my friends in the woods. No AC or electronics then! ;)
He seems to be a rather robust beast, and I do  like the providence of him! A small bonus for that! 

From AaronH - Celts, another Uruk-Hai, Dwarfs and more RPG Characters.(35 points)

This entry is an eclectic mix of models that have been getting bits of paint here and there and were close to finished. I like to keep spare models on the painting desk to soak up the bits of paint that are left after working on a unit. At a certain point they reach critical mass and I just finish them off.

The first entry does not count for today. It's the Celt unit from a week (2 weeks?) ago. I went back and finished the backs of the shields, since if I don't do it now it'll never happen.

No points, but well and truly done now.
Next up are the three dwarf crewmen (crewdwarfs?) from the flame canon I inexplicably completed right before the challenge.

These are GW metals and very nice sculpts. Like all GW dwarfs they are, in reality, hover automatons, since they don't have legs. That aside, they are characterful sculpts.

I really like the big shell full of fire this guy is carrying around. I don't know why but it tickles my fancy.

The Dwarfs all seem to have a mug on them at all times. I approve.

I'm not really sure why he needs a signal flag since the flame canon's range is shorter than the stature of its crew.

This lad is the one actually opening the valves to unleash the fire. He will be glued to the canon, so is only blu-tac'd to a base for the photo op.

And here he is at home on the back platform.

Next up are three RPG characters. These are all Bones miniatures from their first Kickstarter. I'm slowly working my way through them, mostly as I need them in games.

The three intrepid warriors.

First up is Fulko Headtaker. He collects heads. This is my 9 year old's character. He's a fighter who usually ends up missing his attacks until the last second, when he crits his opponent.

I'm pretty sure this is supposed to be a paladin, but it's the one that Owyn wanted, so there you go.

Next up is Morna, the cleric. She's an NPC since no one in the party likes playing a healer. Weird, I know.

I wanted her to be grimy since she's been crawling around in caves and fighting unspeakable things.

Last up is Ellisven. Ellisven was my elder son's character. She was an elf fighter, but more a berserker the way he played her. She made poor choices when captured by orcs and had to be replaced with a character that wasn't dead.

This is a very tall model, as you can see if you go back to the first shot of the three together. She's got better detail in her face than a lot of the Bones models but the stuff on her waist baffled me and I ended up deciding it was a pouch and painting it brown.

This last shot is an attempt to show her base. She was falling down a lot so she needed a base, but her built on one is wood patterned. I thought of cutting it off but then I decided on some artistic license and painted it as water. I really couldn't get a good shot of it, since it's shiny, but there are little waves on it and everything. The water is done with Mod Podge. The key is to do several layers and to dab it on, not paint it on.

The last model is another Uruk-Hai captain. I have no idea where this guy came from. I suspect my eldest is actually Saruman and has a captive breeding program under his desk. This guy just appeared on my desk last weekend.

This is my least favorite captain pose, since he doesn't have a shield. I can't imagine a circumstance where I would not want my captain to have a shield. He'll be able to eat an arrow during the Siege of Helm's Deep though.

Good detail on the back of the model. These metals are really nice figures. Much better than the plastics.

The last shot is a head shot of one of last week's pikemen. He doesn't count for this but I was trying to capture the S rune on his helmet; with mixed results.

There you have it.  A lot of pictures for seven lousy models. Next week should be much more homogeneous.

Very fine work on the lot, Aaron! I do like the GW dwarves, they may be naught but beard and chainmail over boots, but they do have a charm of their own. (nice detail on the flame cannon BTW)
I like your reaper bone figures too. The Elven pirate on the boogie board is a nice effect(I made bad choices when captured by orcs too!) The dirty look on the cleric(totally unappreciated too as a NPC ambulance I am sure). I really like the paladin with what must be a holy defender with the blue fire. Your nine year old has excellent taste in avatars! Then a lonely Urk to bring up the rear. I have that sculpt and he is the captain of the second group of scouts! ;)
Grand work Aaron!  I am sure that you will paste me with a bomb shortly where I will need to track how many times I've counted my toes!