Monday, 24 July 2017

"What Is The Doctor's Message?"

"Seal levels twelve, thirteen and fourteen. Prepare to engage."
This 40mm tall "exquisitely sculpted pewter" Cyberman figure is produced by “Warlord Games” and can be found within the company's excellent "Nightmares In Silver" Cybermen Collector's Set 1966-2013. Sculpted to replicate the fictional race of cyborgs as they appeared in Steven Moffat's 2011 television story "A Good Man Goes To War", these particular artificially modified Mondasians formed part of  the Twelfth Cyber Legion; a "Cyberman fleet that monitored their local galactic quadrant and was positioned twenty thousand light years away from Demon's Run."

The model was first undercoated with "Citadel" Abaddon Black, before being given a double layer of Ironbreaker and a liberal wash of Nuln Oil. The figure's eyes and mouth slit were then darkened with a small dab of Abaddon Black and the entire model subsequently dry-brushed with more Ironbreaker. As a final touch both its formidably-large cyber-gun, waist, neck, inner thighs and elbows were treated to a coat of Abaddon Black, and dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal so as to bring out the sculpts' detail in those areas.
Vashta Nerada WIPs - The figures have been primed, washed and dry-brushed
Alongside this latest addition to my completed "Nightmares In Silver" collection, I have plonked six Vashta Nerada miniatures from "Warlord Games" "Doctor Who" range into my painting queue as I'm hoping they'll be relatively straightforward paint-jobs. I've actually previously converted four Advancing ARC Astronauts by "Crooked Dice Game Design Studio" into versions of the "swarming, carnivorous beings" by removing all of their astronaut heads, and swapping them with some plastic skulls taken from the old 'out of production' "Games Workshop" PBS5 Skeleton Army Boxed Set.
Vashta Nerada - Converted in April 2011 from "Crooked Dice" and "Games Workshop" pieces 
Sadly, this particular project was soon side-lined when I encountered problems replacing some of the astronauts’ hands and limbs with skeletal variants. Ultimately, I did manage to ‘securely’ super-glue one plastic skeletal fist in place, but the arm's subsequent re-positioning left the model in a rather uninspiring pose, and shortly afterwards "Crooked Dice Game Design Studio" released their own metal 'sold on a sprue' version of the "microscopic beings" Astronaut Heads...

Finally, I have succumbed to the allure of "Warlord Games" one hundred and twenty-four page ‘What If?’ "Bolt Action" Campaign book "Operation Sea Lion"; which not only brings the Second World War to the shores of England and The Home Guard, but also contains the disconcertingly unpatriotic opportunity to field a Fifth Column Reinforced Platoon under the Anglo-Irish aristocrat Sir Oswald Mosely. 
Operation Sea Lion WIPs - These "Warlord Games" sculpts have simply been primed and dry-brushed
Quite delightfully, the publication also includes a free casting of "the most stalwart of British Prime Ministers" Sir Winston Churchill. Armed with "the .45 calibre Thompson Sub Machine Gun" its abundantly clear that the British statesman "isn't going down without a fight" and thus seems entirely appropriate to lead my British "Konflikt '47" force in some super-soldier conflicts inspired by the "Avatar Press" comic book series "Uber".

42 comments:

  1. Lovely Cyberman Simon. Nice start to the astronauts as well. I think they look good with just head swaps.

    I must admit there are some crackingly characterful sculpts amongst the Sea Lion range.

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    1. Thanks Simon. The "Warlord Games" Vashta Nerada are lovely sculpts and should be completed quite soon. I think my 2011 conversions certainly did the job. It's a pity they never saw any tabletop action though... The "Operation Sea Lion" stuff is good, isn't it :-)

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  2. Another great looking Cyberman, the Vashta Nerada sculpts look great, how are you planning to pick out the skull faces ? Great idea with the astronaught bodies. The last models should be some charactiful additions to your Konflikt 47

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    1. Cheers Andy. It was nice to paint a Cyberman with a big gun for a change. The skull faces are already done, as I lined them out with black, did a bone layer and washed with brown. Now they just need a bone highlight/dry-brush. I did think about doing some blue highlights as per their helmet's interior lighting. But as these are just for the tabletop, I'll probably stop before I get that far.

      Glad you like the conversions, I might use them for some "Crooked Dice" Blake's Seven antics now I've dusted them... and the "Operation Sea Lion" is certainly one of the most eye-catching of the "Bolt Action" range, imho.

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    2. You could always put a blue glaze over if you want to add that blue tinge, and that can be applied all over the skull just water it down 50/50 with water so it's not to heavy

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    3. That's certainly the way to go I think Dave :-) But if I go with the glow I'll be looking at the spacesuit's chest light too and I quite like the fact your eye is immediately drawn straight to the face because everything else is white... Haven't decided yet...

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    4. ah yes decissions, decissions, decissions

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  3. Best bit about "Operation Sea Lion" is, you get to use the home guard... namely the Dad`s Army personality set (both in civvies and in uniform) which are so well sculpted, they walk right off the tv set and onto the game table. I always hoped one day Warlord would make the "Aint Half Hot Mum" set too. But for now, the Walmington-on-Sea Home Guard platoon will do nicely. "Operation Sea Lion" is an amazing book isnt it, as are all the Bolt Action add ons, I find.

    The Vashta Nerada look great. I will probably just convert/repaint the Clix Astronauts to make mine, as they are smply MADE to be converted into this DW terror. But yours does looks pretty darn cool Simon. As for the Cyber-guy, hes pretty darn awesome too :-)

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    1. Thanks very much Steve. Home Guard are certainly on my 'to paint' list at some point. I also thought the "Horrorclix" Zombie Astronauts would make cool Vashta Nerada proxies, though would you be tempted to keep the models' glowing green plastic bitz as is or would you paint them?

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    2. to butt in here a sec(as I saw it first), we`re both fans of the clear colour plastic bitz you get on some minis, whether D&D minis, Clix or Chibis. So I would assume where ever possible, we`d try to incorporate this in.

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    3. Butt in whenever, Hils :-) I thought as much. I'm not actually a fan of such things, but I really do like the effect it gives with the "Horrorclix" Zombie Astronaut.

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    4. {{I'm not actually a fan of such things,}}

      Oh I know I know, its just our thing, we love that `toy soldier` look in our wargames and rpg minis, and whenever a company gives us this look for free without us having to work on it, its a cool free bonus for us haha. I know most will just paint over any plastic bits like this they don`t want, but hey, that`s the beauty of our wonderful shared hobby... diversity, Wooohooo!!

      That being said I absolutely adore your Vashta Nerada.

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    5. Thanks again, Steve. The Vashta Nerada are now almost finished, so I might post up some final WIPs of them soon. They're nice sculpts imho.

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  4. when you finally get round to taking the cellophane off the Dads Army set, I bagsies paint the ones in their civilian clothes. I just HAVE to, they`re so cool. You`ve had them years, I dont know how you always keep unused stuff so pristine, but it does keep them special guess, so when you go to use them, they feel as new as the day you get them.

    I really like your Vashta Nerada Simon.

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    1. Cheers Tarot. In the past I bought a lot of stuff I simply 'hid away' when it arrived. These days I try and be much more frugal but it isn't easy at all!! :-)

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  5. Very nicely done with the Cyberman Blaxkleric, excellent work. :)

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    1. Thanks Leon. I am definitely in a silver mood currently :-)

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  6. I have no idea what "Vashta Nerada" are more nu-who rubbish I guess, I do however really like those Zombie spacemen you made up reminded me of a book I read ages ago (cant remember the title) that had something very similar in it. Much more interesting than those "official" sculpts IMHO.

    Like the WW2 stuff too, who doesn't love Churchill with a machine gun!

    Cheers Roger.

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    1. Cheers Roger. I think the Vashta Nerada are excellent monsters imho, which is why I was so inspired to make my own up after they first appeared on the TV screen. But to each their own :-) Churchill's mini is awesome and I already have some ideas concerning a team-up BatRep with a certain Austrian once I've painted him ;-)

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  7. My favourite Cyberman yet...great work. I like the Vashta Nerada sculpts. I may have to pick up the Churchill with SMG just for the hell of it. Taken from the famous 'Gangster' photo so loved by the Nazi's.

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    1. Thanks Mark. Each of the Cybermen from the Collector's Set are awesome imho and bring their own delight to a "Doctor Who" fan such as myself :-) The Vashta Nerada are now finished, so I'm hoping to post them up soon. That 1940 Gangster photo is a great pic imho, but I don't plan on painting the pin-striped suit Churchill was wearing at the time it was taken ;-)

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  8. Great work on your Doctor Who stuff. I'll be showcasing my own painted "Nightmares in Silver" figures on Thursday.

    Regarding the Vashta Nerada I want them for "Shadows in Brimstone". Huh? I can hear you saying. Just check out this link for the latest expansion set I recently bought -
    http://flyingfrogproductions.mybigcommerce.com/shadows-of-brimstone-derelict-ship-otherworld-expansion/
    Zombie astronauts! Or if you prefer, reinforcements for the Vashta Nerada!

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    1. Cheers Bryan. I knew exactly what you meant when you said you wanted the Vashta Nerada for "Shadows of Brimstone", as I've had my eye on the Necronauts since that expansion was first announced; albeit I like the B.E.A.C.O.N. drones, as I thought they'd be good for "Metamorphosis Alpha". Hopefully you'll do a review at some point soon, as I'm still a bit undecided about it...

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    2. There is a lot of great stuff in this set, Simon, that is begging to be used in other games. Both the figures and the derelict spaceship tiles are highly usable in other games.

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    3. Well that's certainly encouraging to know Bryan. I may well put it on my wish list then.

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    4. hmmmmm, interesting comments. We do similar things too. Like, use the Warlord Games Doctor(s) and companions and use them as Heroes/survivors in Last night on earth (simply by making up our own Hero stat cards, its dead easy and takes only moments), and we take elements from all across Shadows of Brimstone and its many expansions, and use them in Frostgrave and occasionally even in Zombicide Black Plague (same way, by making up our own simple stat cards). Likewise all the minis from any of these games can be added and lumped together to form the most amazing bestiary for other rpg games (like you are already doing in your Barrier Peaks Simon). Brimstone`s Derelict Ship is just one such example of great game expansion components which can be cannibalised to be used for multiple game purposes: mind you SoB is a great game in its own right anyway and a big club favourite here (I must play it at least once a week), and the new expansion will be a cool addition to the official game played as is. I now we plan to do lots of SoB articles over the coming months, as well as Last Night on earth and Invasion from Outer Space hehe. fun fun fun.

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    5. I must confess to owning SoB but never playing it, Tarot. I clearly need to do so as I'm clearly missing out on chicks of fun [blush].

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    6. yes, if you like Barrier Peaks, Frostgrave, Cowboys and Aliens, Cthulhu, Hellboy, Tannhauser, and gritty westerns (like HBO`s "Deadwood" with just a touch of tongue in cheek) SoB is for you. We`ve been slowly picking off all the expansions one by one for ages now.

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    7. Righto Tarot. I've opened the "SoB" box and will give it a try over the weekend :-)

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  9. Great Cyberman and he's huge to boot - he'll be very intimidating on the table.
    Undead astronauts ? And why not ? They too look suitably menacing.
    I see a lot of use in other genres with the Operation Sea-Lion stuff that's coming out and there's got to be a way of utilising it with VBCW games too (and vice versa)

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    1. Thanks Joe. Lots of great sculpts in the latest warlord games releases; both for Doctor who and bolt action imho. I certainly see a lot of VBCW potential in their Operation Sealion releases too :-)

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    1. Very British civil war; alternate history stuff :-)

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  11. OOoooh, I didnt get that at first. Now I seeeeeee. Thats something thats always seemed rather fun to get into.

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    1. Have a look here: http://solwaycraftsandminiatures.webs.com/vbcwpage.htm and here if interested, Tarot: http://www.northstarfigures.com/list.php?man=21

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  12. Ah yes, the number of times I have poured over "Northstar" and these blogs in general (it was the abbreviation VBCW which threw me at first: there are so many out there and all assume the reader has knowledge of it all, otherwise it can be really hard to remember what means what). Its a subject I could really get into.. but wont. Id be crazy to put more on my plate, which is already laden. But never the less, it really does interest me.

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    1. "But never the less, it really does interest me." - Well if I find the time to paint up some British Facists, I'll certainly be pitting them against the Home Guard in a despicable act of treachery :-)

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  13. OOooooh you`re peeking my interest here, more and more all the time hehe.

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  14. Whilst I always appreciate a bit of Who (although the Vashta Nerada sculpts kind of look like they're indulged in some Michael Jackson-esque funking...), the models that piqued my interest here was Mosley and his bodyguards. Just what I've been after, so onto my wish list they went. Plans are afoot...

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    1. There's some nice sculpts in the "Operation Sea Lion" range, Jez, so I'm not surprised you're so taken with them. I'm looking forward to seeing what you have in store for us, perhaps some "Inferno" shenanigans?

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  15. SO much good stuff in this post! :)

    The new Cyberman looks smashing. I don't recall them toting rifles, but I like the look very much on this mini.

    Those skull-faced buggers were creepy as heck in the series. A shame your planned conversions didn't work out as you'd planned.

    Sea Lion got my all excited too, even to the point of picking up the Kindle version of the expansion. But then reality kicked me in the soft parts and reminded me that I have enough to get on with (And finish!) already. Maybe a project for the future. Mosely's lot are a dirty bunch, but a fun project - looking forward to seeing what you do here mate.

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    1. Thanks ever so much Dai, much appreciated :-) It'll be good if "Warlord Games" make some plastic versions of the Cyber Twelfth Legion at some point, so I can get some more. The parallel world blaster actually comes from the episode "Doomsday", but for some reason "Warlord Games" seem to have given it to this incarnation of the Cybermen...

      Its hard to believe my Vashta Nerada conversions are over six years of age already... Who'd have thought!?! But the "Official" versions are great sculpts.

      "Operation Sea Lion" is very tempting, so don't be at all surprised to see me suddenly dedicating a month to painting up some of Mosely's blackshirts for "Konflikt '47" or "Bolt Action" ;-)

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