Sunday, 14 February 2021

Oathmark Army Update - Peter the Giant

Here's an update on a little bit of progress on troops for my Oathmark Army currently under construction. Namely 'Peter the Giant'.

The model is, for those who don't recognise it, one of the 'Giants of Albion' set from the OOP Citadel Dogs of War range. I have a couple of the box sets from years ago and the other model from this set will be the next giant for the army, but won't join the ranks until the army list is due for expansion.

The model has a number of firsts to it for me. First model completed this year, first model I have completely painted using a wet palette, first to be varnished using spray varnish, first use of pigments on a model and first model I've named after a family member.

He's named after my father-in-law, who it has to be said it closely resembles, even down to the one good eye. Peter is no longer with us as he sadly passed away last year, but a wee bit of a memorium for him, (which I'm sure he would appreciate).

The model is all in all a bit of an experiment in many ways and I found I had to learn things all over again but I will perservere, as most of the experience was positive and reasonably happy with the end result, but with lots to learn.

I really liked using the pigments on the base as I was sure I would be and will be looking to experiement with them more in the future and see if I can get a bit more proficient in their use.

I did have an issue with the spray varnish, a matt one from MigAMMO. I sure the issue was not with the product, but my use of it, as the final coat ended up pretty shiny, which I don't like. So I ended up applying a brush coat of my trusty Windsor & Newton Matt Varnish to finish up. The fact that most of the model has had four varnish coats has had a slight blurring effect on some of the detail but nothing too worrying.

Next unit up on the Oathmark painting front will likely be the first Human Infantry Spear unit, with the Human Bowmen unit currently under construction, but next on the painting queue are some fantasy skirmish figures to be finished off hopefully soon.


Monday, 25 January 2021

(Not) Planning 2021

I've been having a bit of a look forward (and a look back) for hobby activities for the coming year and seeing if anything is looking probable given the current climate under which we are all living in at the moment.

I know many in the wargaming fraternity have had more oppurtunity to get a dent into their lead mountains, with the enforced lockdown meaning many have had more free time forced on them to get painting and modelling done. I unfortunately (or fortunately depending on your point of view) haven't and for the second half of last year particularly, work was even more hectic than normal which meant the few rumblings of intentions I had had didn't even get a thought hobbywise, not even having time to pick up a brush since August. (I think I've glued one figure togerther in the last four months or so).

So although I have stopped 'planning' my hobby year ahead sometime ago, as the best laid plans never really materialised anyway, I had turned this activity into more of making up a mental wish list of stuff I'd like to do. This tending to be an amorphous and malleable thing at the best of times. But last year was even more unexpected than previously, with the total suspension of any gaming firstly, and then the expectation of getting more painting and modelling done never really materialising as my work activity (working from home) didn't really slow at all, to be superceded with a total lack of any free time at all as things picked up (as well as 'her-in-doors' having more time to plan extra diy projects since I had 'all this time on my hands').

So, although I'm not going to 'plan' the year ahead, I am going to have a bit of a wishlist of some stuff I would like to do or see done during the coming year. If it happens, good. If not, it'll move into the following year's probabilities.

In no particular order;

* First off is the hope to get some real gaming done. This could be anything really, but I would like to get the next Mordheim Campaign underway as I was looking forward to this.The first game of the campaign co-incided with the March Lockdown last year so nipped in the bud as it were. Otherwise a game or two of anything would be a welcome entertainment. This one I think is on everyone's list.

* Next up is continuing my build for my Oathmark Army I started putting together last year. This hasn't changed much since I managed to post a July WIP - Oathmark last year but all the bits for the army are sitting ready to be painted, assembled or completed, so would be nice to progress this to see how it turns out.

* The next one on my wishlist is to do a few extra's for my Future Wars project. Though I didn't get much modelled or painted last year, I did find the time to buy a few bits and bobs over the period (adding something like a hundred models to my lead and plastic mountain mainly in the form of Kickstarter projects coming to fruition, but not entirely of course) including some nice resin models of APC's and a buggy from Mortiontanks. I'll hopefully finish off the Future Wars WIP I posted last year too. I'd like to get around to playing the next planned game of my Future Wars campaign too.

* A piece of solo gaming is in my mind still as I would like to play my planned lockdown sanity-clause game ' Bad Day at Ganish-Aer'. I had completed most of the preparation work for this and I only have to complete one of the Warbands to play this (and base one other) so should be relatively do-able. This is just a 'because' kind of thing but has stuck in my mind, so would like to see it through.

* Next item on the wishlist is to post more on this blog. Last year saw the lowest activity (from me) for all the reasons above but I am keen to keep this going as it is a rewarding thing all in all but is obviously depandant on my gaming and modelling activities, so here's to more of that and the blog will follow on.

As a small aside to the last wishlist item; is it me or everybody else too, but does the blogging universe seem to be getting quieter recently? There are still a good number of stalwarts that keep posting regularly but an awful lot seemed to have dropped off and those still posting seem to be getting fewer comments. There was always a high drop off rate for this but new blogs took their place but this doesn't seem to be happening as much. Not sure if this is the case or just my perception as I've had less time to browse recently but I do get the impression that blogging seems to be 'moving-on' possibly to other platforms and people keeping to FB posts possibly.

* Trying out some of the new rule sets purchased over the last months. There are a few sets of rules that I picked up over the last year or more that I've still to try out in anger. Oathmark and Realities Edge being at the top of this list, but there are a couple of others that were planned for the beginning of last year that didn't happen including Grimdark Freebie rules and I had thought about giving Age of Sigmar another try. I haven't been tempted by any of the newer historical rule sets recently out but may give one or more an airing to see if they add anything to the mix or are just the next iteration of the ongoing search for the ultimate quick play.

Although not 'new', I have a hankering to get more LotR gaming done with the latest version of the rules having only had one game right at the end of 2019 with the latest version of the rules and either in person PvP (when this is allowed to happen again), online PvP (if anyone will have me) or even a wee bit of solo gaming would be most welcome. Always enjoyed all the games we've had and still a favourite rule set. 

* Trying out some old rules. I have had a few thoughts to play a couple of games using favourite rule sets from the dim and distant past. Just for a bit of nostalgia really but I would like to compare some of the old rules with their current counterparts and see if they were actually better or just different or indeed not as good as you remember. Maybe a bit of WAB, WRG or Middle Earth old skool gaming on the cards. This one I'd really like to get into this year.

* Reducing the Mountain. Too many figures and ranges to mention individually and other those than posted above, but just generally make a bit more of chip off the block than I managed last year. I'd like to try and get a nett gain on completed to purchased this year but there's always more shiny's in this hobby.

* Modelling, this is always terrain, terrain and more terrain. I enjoy the making process immensely and have a few pieces I would like to progress. I have also had a hankering to do some display pieces for their own sake. I used to do a lot of this back in the day and produced some decent 54mm and 75mm models plus a couple of vignettes and such.

I think this type of activity is very indulgant and just the kind of thing to lift yourself up with finishing a display piece your proud of, keeps you sane and improves the spirits. I have a couple of larger models secreted away somewehere which I hope to look out and put together and see if this list item is a goer.

The foregoing wish list is not exhaustive nor entirely fixed, and I have no expectation of managing it all but being a wishlist it has a lot of flexibility and no compulsion, just the wish and the hope of some quality time with friends in gaming and some hobby activities to come.

Things are still busy but not as manic as they were before the festives and hopefully will level out a bit allowing me to get a bit of TLC applied to my hobby. Here's hoping for future posts.

Friday, 1 January 2021

Happy New Year


A Happy New Year to all and best wishes for the coming year.

Wednesday, 5 August 2020

A couple of Adventurers

A couple of random figures in the form of two of the Artizan Design Adventurers, which I think they no longer do.

The figures have been sitting in the painting queue three quarters complete for a while and I decided to finish them off and get them out of the queue.

Simple deserty bases for tboth figures, which in hindsight could do with a bit of interest and might add a couple of dry tufts or a small stone or two just to lift them a bit.

Nice and slightly unusual subjects for adventurers, Artizan didn't do very many and don't think they sold well but have the Artizan look which I like right across their catalogue.

The Middle-eastern moor type is nice but I particularly like the fighter. Not sure why, but makes me think of a Greek/Byzantine type somewhere in Egypt or India doing the Alexander TG thing in far away places.

I've another couple of the adventurers to be done from the pack which are an elf wizard type and a female thief which are both unfussy and generic of their type and will be added to the paint queue in due course.

Tuesday, 4 August 2020

Future Wars Update 008 - WIP

Another small update on things that have I have been working on, on and off over the lockdown, and this time a few bits that are for my on going 'Future Wars' project which continues to grow as the whim takes me.

First up is the Heavy Hulk Battlesuit from Nuclear Shrimp games that I picked up as part of their Black Earth Kickstarter last year. Received a couple of vehicles and several troop models all of which are very nice and characterful and I'm resisting the urge to get more before I get whats already on the bench, particularly the vehicles.

The resin model was a wee bit fiddly to assemble and the only way seemed to drill and pin the legs together and then to the body, but once together it's very stable and the parts went together pretty well with minimal alteration. I've decided on the paint job it'll receive and is due to join the ranks of the European Federation troops in due course. What I haven't definitely decided yet is whether to base the piece or leave free standing as it were. I'm tending towards the base idea but the model would be more utilitarian if I leave free standing. The scenic base idea will probably win out.

Next up are a quad of Anvil Industries Robot types (C-48 Autonomous Mechs) from their Afterlife range which is easily their best range to date. Sadly the Afterlife range looks to be unavailable now which is a pity as there are lots of bits I would like to get more of there too, 

Really nice models to assemble and they have been put of some constructed bases to try out a roller that I recently got with selective terrain rubble added. All that done so far painting wise is the base paint scheme which was to paint a graded metal/silver finish with an all over blue wash to give an all over sheen to the figures which worked pretty well and turned out haw I was looking for. Pretty simple now to pick out the details and finish off the bases.

Lastly for this trio of Future Wars WIP are a duo of fighters/skimmers for the Kra'uul, which take the form of GW Forge World Tau Piranha, which have been assembled in a non-40K cannon way as I preferred the look. These are still partially glued until I complete the crew cockpits when they'll be finally assembled. 

Again, a fairly simple paint scheme planned for these guys with the Kra'uul generally going for an off white with red/gray/ochre detail. Might try a touch of air brushing for these models as I've never tried airbrush for models even though I've had the airbrush for a good few years and only ever used it for art work. Should be fine for vehicles or so I believe. I'll probably go for my own home made decals for them too.

I've a few other bits are on the table in various states of assembly including a fair amount of Anvil Industries gun tractors and Grenadiers which I like lots and I succumbed to another Kickstarter, this time Mordian Tanks and their current buggy goodness. Lots to keep me going on this project.

Friday, 17 July 2020

WIP July - Oathmark Troops

As promised in my last post, I have here some of my WIP that I've been working on during the lockdown. This time around it's the first of the troops I intend to use for games of Oathmark when we are allowed to get to the clubs again.

Infantry unit is based on the Fireforge Forgotten World Infantry that I picked up in the kickstarter tale end of last year, or the first two of the three boxes I picked up anyway. Took a bit of construction and a reasonable amount of mould line removal plus the heads that I used from the box sets don't fit very well (sitting very high on the torso) and required cutting down to sit correctly to my eye anyway.

I used a selection of GW heads from Empire and Bretonnian sets and altered a few of the Fireforge heads adding greenstuff caps to match the look I was going for. I ended up using about half a dozen or so of the historical heads from a Fireforge Scandinavian box set to add some more variety but these had to be drilled and pinned with gaps at the neck filled as the location method between the kits is completely different (historical the socket is on the head, fantasy the socket is on the torso).

I'll add the other box set to the unit some time in the future for use of the unit in other rule sets but they're not required for Oathmark. In fact only 20 of the figs are needed for Oathmark and I'll probably sabot the figs so they fit the base frontages for use in the rules.

The Cavalry follow the same basic premise of the Infantry being from the Fireforge Forgotten World Kickstarter bundle I picked up but this time using only GW heads principally Bretonnian for a slightly diffent look. Again, there's another box to be constructed to make up a larger unit but not required for initial small Oathmark games planned. The Infantry and Cavalry units are destined, in their full sized capacity, to also be used in my ongoing Alba Campaign as Northern states militia types.

Finally in this WIP trio is the first of the giants planned. Probably easily recognisable as one of the GW Giants of Albion from the defunct Dogs of War range which I have multitudes of in the 'to do' list.

Picked up a couple of the Giants boxes when they were current but never really had a use for them until now so they've finally managed to see the light of day.

Bit of a pig to assemble with much drilling and pinning and still to finish off filling in the gaps with greenstuff to finish off the assembly and will move onto painting up this bad boy once I've finished a couple of other figures that are nearing completion.

I'll post again and report on progress for this project including other troops in construction for this army.

Next up, a wee bit of WIP on my Future Wars project progress from during lockdown.

Monday, 6 July 2020

Bad Day at Ganish Aer - The Celesterale

Back at the beginning of April (doesn't time fly when you're having fun) I posted up a small project that was planned to keep me busy during lockdown, 'Isolation Excercise' in painting up the terrain and figures for playing a Thud & Blunder based skirmish game.

As fate would have it, lockdown didn't seem to have as much free time available as I thought it may and with working from home and my better half thinking up lots of 'odd jobs' that suddenly required doing, the last three months have positively flown by. This being a good thing really.

Don't get me wrong, I have managed to get through much hobby goodness over the period, probably more than I would have normally, just not as much as I thought (or hoped) I may. Lots's of WIP to post about, some of which I'll do over the next couple of days, over several projects and not least 'Bad Day at Ganish Aer' which this update is around with the first of the three warbands finally getting completed.

A brief background for the Celesterale are that they are a Radical splinter group of the Magus Preceptory, which are the Magister faction of the ruling elite from the declining Celebrian Empire. The representative's of the Celesterale is the warband led by Graven, who is an 'agent at large' attempting to further the machinations of the Preceptory by any means he deems necessary.

Graven - Magister
A lot of you may recognise the figure here being the long OOP pre-slotta base Citadel Chaos Wizard which I've had rolling around for 35 years or more unpainted and un-loved, so he got picked as part of the project to do some. I found the figure quite hard to paint and couldn't settle on a paint scheme that I was happy with but ended up going for a dark blue and red scheme which didn't end up as dark as intended. Should of gone for a standard bad guy black and red with gold bits scheme but hey, turned out alright I suppose.

Ademar Vinx and his 'pet' Wraith
Ademar is the bad wizard type 'Vonatar' from the old Lone Wolf mid 80's Ciadel range and is a figure I'd already painted for a Mordheim campaign we had a couple of years ago, but received a touch up and a re-painted base. Ademars Wraith is a fairly newly acquired figure from one of the Northstar Frostgrave Nickstarter's a couple of years ago. This is a pretty easy figure to paint having a single colour or so to paint and highlight. One of the first to be put to bed.

Sooni Khawn and Vengtar U'Bharunn
Corrindessian Mercenaries

The two Corrindessian Mercenaries, Sooni Khawn and Vengtar U'Bharunn, hailing from much sunnier and distant climes, the figures are again from Northstar's Frostgrave range Cultist knights which I picked up as soon as they were released as they really fitted my idea of what Corrindessian's would look like as soon as I saw them. They took a considerable amount of time to paint, mainly due to the amount of detail on them but quite happy with how they tuned out.

Skeleton Bodyguards
The cannon fodder of the warband, the ubiquitous skeletons, are again figures which I had previously painted but again received a facelift and brightened up bases. They are early-ish citadel armoured skeletons which I picked up a pack of somewhere in a bring and buy and are some of my favourite skeleton figures. I would like to track down some more of these as they are full of character.

So, a small update this time and the next warband now moving into the WIP pile are Elspeth and Melinda, commonly known in adventuring circles of Northern Tir-mor as 'the Glitter Twins' and their band of colourful 'Toughs'.

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