Tuesday, 25 June 2019

"Powerful Enchanters Created An Army Of Granite Golems..."

"...To tear stone from the mountains and shape it into great blocks..."
This 49mm tall model of a Stone Golem is produced by “Reaper Miniatures” and can be bought as Code 77171 from their “Bones” range. A “unique monster” with a deep hatred of Wizards who rampages through the ruins of the Frozen City, the Granite Golem is the focus of the 2015 “Frostgrave” mini-campaign supplement “The Hunt For The Golem” by Jospeh A. McCullough.

"Slowly rendered obsolete by more effective elemental magic that was both less expensive and less time-consuming", the creature was primed using an old out-of-production pot of "Citadel" Charadon Granite, shaded with Nuln Oil and dry-brushed using some (more) Charadon Granite. In order for the construct’s skirt to stand out somewhat from the rest of its body, I subsequently painted the area in "Vallejo" Steel Grey, washed it with "Citadel" Nuln Oil, and then dry-brushed it with (more) "Vallejo" Steel Grey.
"Reaper Miniatures" WIPs - A Clay Golem and (another) Mind-Eater
The Stone Golem's belt-buckle, bracelets and head-piece were pigmented with a combination of “Citadel” Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. Whilst the "lone survivor" had its eyes ‘picked out’ with a dollop of "Vallejo" Heavy Red and a little splash of "Citadel" Glaze Bloodletter. Lastly, the recently thawed out creature had its based flocked with “Citadel” Snow so as to better fit in with the rest of my painted “Frostgrave” collection.

Sticking with "Reaper Miniatures" and their “Bones” range, I have also made some significant progress on two more of the Fort Worth founded company’s Mind Eaters, and a Clay Golem. All three of these polymer plastic models are destined for my “Gamma World” tabletop and have rather motivated me to dig out many more figures from their “Chronoscope”, “Dark Heaven Legends” and “Reich Of The Dead” lines.
Pulp Apes WIPs - These hefty metal models have been undercoated and shaded
In addition, I have taken possession of four 44mm tall metal Pulp Apes from a private commission, which are perfect proxies for the Shadow Beasts depicted on the “He-Man And The Masters Of The Universe” animated television series. Despite being described on the “Wiki Grayskull” website as having dark brown fur, I’ve decided to paint the “fierce nocturnal creatures” in the dark purple palette shown during the episode “Night Of The Shadowbeasts”.

As with my recently returned interest in “Reaper Miniatures”, this latest arrival has also disconcertingly piqued my enthusiasm for all things Eternia and the secrets of Castle Greyskull. So perhaps unsurprisingly I have been rummaging around my substantial backlog looking for a number of figures I have previously purchased relating to Prince Adam’s alter-ego and his endless battle against the evil forces of Skeletor.

Sunday, 23 June 2019

"An Intellect Devourer Resembles A Walking Brain..."

"...Protected by a crusty covering and set on bestial clawed legs."
This 28mm model of a Mind Eater is manufactured by “Reaper Miniatures” and can be purchased as Code 77229 from their “Bones” range. Sculpted by Patrick Keith, and clearly inspired by Gary Gygax's Intellect Devourer, "this foul aberration feeds on the intelligence of sentient creatures" and first appeared in the 1976 "Dungeons & Dragons" game supplement "Eldritch Wizardry".

Bred by Mind Flayers "to serve as roaming hunters of the Underdark", the four-legged creature was primed with "Vallejo" Heavy Grey, doused in "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and later dry-brushed using some (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Grey. I then decided to pigment the monster's 'clawed feet' using a combination of "Vallejo" Iraqi Sand and Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter".
Hitler's Undead advance as Rocket Raccoon steps in to protect the Dark Knight
Finally, I painted the lawful evil aberration's brain with a couple of coats of "Vallejo" Squid Pink. This organ was subsequently shaded with "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson, as well as a little Strong Tone Quickshade around it's base, and enthusiastically dry-brushed with some (more) "Vallejo" Squid Pink.

Moving across from fantasy to science-fiction wargaming, I have managed to pay another visit to the LVL Up Gaming Store in Bournemouth so as to play a game of my homemade ruleset "M.I.S.S." and finally dust-down both my collection of "Secrets Of The Third Reich" Nazi Zombies by "West Wind Productions", as well as the somewhat comical-looking miniature of Adolf Hitler sold by "Crooked Dice Game Design Studio" under their "Danger 5" range. This cataclysmic confrontation would see Commissioner Jim Gordon take on the Fuhrer's Undead might, alongside the likes of Chewbacca, Lockjaw, Lobster Johnston, Rocket Raccoon and (of course) Godzilla.
Lobster Johnson and Jim Gordon are eaten alive by Nazi Zombies
Fought across a 3' x 3' swamp-inspired tabletop populated with a couple of forests and a pair of pools, both forces desperately attempted to seek arcane knowledge from a trio of gargoyle statues, a heavily-disguised Ben Grimm and the Batman. This resulted in Lockjaw arguably proving to be the most useful character of the afternoon, teleporting the likes of Lobster Johnson and Jim Gordon all over the show in a desperate attempt to cull the twenty-five walking dead models stumbling towards them.

Godzilla, certainly in the first battle at least, also proved to be a bastion of strength for the Forces of Good, holding the central objective [The Thing] despite being persistently peppered with bullets from Hitler's semi-automatic machine gun. Disappointingly for the heroes however, after a tensely-fought draw in the first fight, the rematch saw them fall beneath a seemingly relentless horde of zombies, with even the mighty Chewbacca's raking firepower failing to halt the march of Adolf's undead...

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Stone Golems Are Formidable Opponents..."

"...Being physically powerful and difficult to harm."
This 49mm tall model of a Stone Golem is manufactured by “Reaper Miniatures” and can be purchased as Code 77171 from their “Bones” range. Sculpted by James Van Schaik, the magical construct first appeared in the original 1975 "Greyhawk" supplement written by Gary Gygax and Robert J. Kuntz, "and has since then become one of the most well-known creatures of the Dungeons & Dragons game."

"Made of stone and are twice as strong as Flesh Golems", the monster was undercoated using an old out-of-production pot of "Citadel" Charadon Granite, washed with Nuln Oil and later dry-brushed using some (more) Charadon Granite. As I wanted his skirt to somewhat stand out from the rest of his body, I subsequently painted the area in "Vallejo" Sombre Grey, shaded it with "Citadel" Nuln Oil, and then dry-brushed it with (more) "Vallejo" Sombre Grey.
"Reaper Miniatures" WIPs - The Mind-Eater is slowly having its giant brain layered and shaded
The Stone Golem's waist-band, bracelets and head-piece were initially layered in "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, before being treated to a combination of Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. These ornaments were later 'highlighted' using a smidgen more "Vallejo" Gold. Whilst the "physically powerful" creature had its eyes spotted with a dab of "Vallejo" Heavy Red and the "Citadel" Glaze Bloodletter.

Finally, I 'picked out' the large construct's belt-buckle with "Citadel" Ironbreaker, and then shaded it with a little Nuln Oil. Originally, when I first spotted this unaligned guardian I had planned to use it just for "Frostgrave" and subsequently had intended to flock its lipped base with snow. However, I eventually decided to purchase two figures, and use this particular model for "Gamma World" instead; quite possibly as a wandering party's magically resistant protector.  
"Games Workshop" Chaos Spawn - The brute has been covered in lengthy spikes and squishy tentacles
Having finished one of several "Reaper Miniatures" I currently have sat upon my painting table, I have also continued to make some steady progress on the first of my "Bones" Mind-Eaters. Clearly based upon the tiny "Dungeons & Dragons" aberration known as an Intellect Devourer, this literal 'brain on legs' will eventually form part of a three-figure strong pack for my gaming in the post-apocalyptic mid-25th century.

Lastly, I have glued together the last of the monstrous Chaos Spawn I intend to field as part of an "Age Of Sigmar" Slaves To Darkness warband. Absolutely covered in spikes, I actually tried to replicate one of the massively malformed creatures depicted upon the multi-part plastic kit's box art, and resultantly probably ended up using far more of the sprues' incredibly useful conversion bitz than I intended to...

Sunday, 16 June 2019

"He's Back! As Only Jack Kirby Can Do It!"

"T'Challa returns to his rightful realm.."
This 28mm plastic “Wizkids” model of the Black Panther is miniature number 086 from the Marvel "Heroclix" Infinity Challenge range and depicts "the first superhero of African descent in mainstream American comics" wearing the costume shown during his title's third volume of adventures in 1998. Created by Stan Lee and Jack "King" Kirby for the July 1966 issue of "Fantastic Four", T'Challa would subsequently join the Avengers before "receiving numerous urgent official letters requesting him to return to his increasingly troubled homeland" and defeat the "would-be usurper Erik Killmonger".

Originally conceived as the Coal Tiger, and then briefly called the Black Leopard, the pre-painted Chief of the Panther Tribe was primed using "Citadel" Abaddon Black, heavily dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal and washed with "Citadel" Nuln Oil. I then picked out the figure's belt, bracelets and necklace with a combination of "Vallejo" Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade, before applying a couple of spots of "Vallejo" Dead White to his eyes.
"Reaper Miniatures" WIPs - A Clay Golem, a Mind Eater and a Stone Golem
Whilst trying to clear myself a bit of space on my painting table, I have discovered a few partially-progressed polymer models produced by "Reaper Miniatures", and disconcertingly found myself once again somewhat distracted by the 'post-apocalyptic' background of "Gamma World". As a result I've spent a few hours applying a couple of layers to this odd assortment of "Bones" figures in the hope that I can somewhat quickly get the odd one finished off...

For starters I've got to work on a rather well-muscled Clay Golem, which as memory serves was at one point destined to be converted into General Thaddeus E. "Thunderbolt" Ross's alter-ego, the Red Hulk. However, as I now own an actual "Heroclix" model of A.I.M.'s co-creation, I plan to simply pigment the unaligned large construct in a brown colour scheme suitable for his involvement in a game of "Dungeons & Dragons".
"Games Workshop" Chaos Spawn - The brute has been covered in tentacles and sharp spikes
Likewise, I'm working on three plastic Mind Eaters and a (second) Stone Golem. It really is early days yet for the trio of "roaming hunters of the Underdark", but having previously half-completed one of "Reaper Miniatures" Stone Golems in the past, I have made some considerable in-roads on his slightly differently paletted brother; quite possibly because I may actually end up applying some snow to his base so as to use him in "Frostgrave".

Lastly, I have assembled one of two Chaos Spawn I hope to field for my "Age Of Sigmar" Slaves To Darkness warband. In all honesty, I actually purchased the kit so as to utilise some of its contents as conversion pieces for my Doom Lords "Blood Bowl" players. But before doing so wanted to ensure I didn't use the multi-part plastic 'bitz' I would need to build a pair of the "dangerous and unpredictable" monstrosities.

Wednesday, 12 June 2019

"Eyes On The Pies!"

"Wipe those greasy little fingers on your trousers..." 
"Greetings sports fans. I'm Jim Maddenberg, and welcome to another Mid-Week Football special. This time round we'll be taking a look at the latest club to put their name in the hat for the upcoming season, the Greenfield Grasshuggers, as well as catching up on all the news from the Doom Lords locker room too. But first my fellow presenter, Thom Grassyglade, has a tasty treat for you... Eh? Is that a pastry of some kind, Thom..!?!"

"Right you are Jim. This pastie was freshly baked by Bartweed Crumbleberry's missus just an hour ago, and is almost certain to end the Halfing's opening match inside one of their portly player's bellies rather than in their opponent's score zone. Indeed, it smells so good I'm not sure Head Coach Drago Foodcraver is going to be able to keep his hands off of his own team's game-ball before the starting whistle has even blown."
"Blood Bowl" WIPs - A Catcher, a Hopeful and a Halfling Hefty
"One of three plastic well-baked balls found within The Greenfield Grasshuggers boxed set, the tatty oggy was super-glued onto a 25mm circular base and primed using "Vallejo" Heavy Brown. It was then shaded using a little Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter" and dry-brushed with more "Vallejo" Heavy Brown."

"Fascinating stuff, Thom, and with such match benefits it's easy to see just how club owner Ricard Whalloper II has already announced the imminent signing of his side's first three players... Lumpin Hoop, Ernald Spiritburner and Jingo Merrychap. What more can you tell us about these Halfling Hopefuls, Thom?"
The Doom Lords WIPs - A Chosen Blocker and Beastman Runner
"Well its early days for the Landlord of the Tumble Down Dick's Coaching Inn yet, Jim, with all three participants still needing a considerable amount of work before they'll be match ready. For now however, there's the promise of a well-stocked food hamper for any halfling who survives a game, plus the rumour of a Treeman having been sighted at the Greenfield training ground..."

"Thanks Thom, that certainly sounds like some marvellous nosh will be on the table whenever the six-time Thimble Cup Winners take to the pitch. But before we wrap up there's just enough time to confirm that Harry the Idolator has stated that he still intends to bring at least one more Beastman Runner and a third Chosen Blocker to the Doom Lords within the next few days. Hopefully we'll be able to cover this story in further detail in our next broadcast."

Monday, 10 June 2019

"But No Matter Where You Run, I'll Find You --"

"-- And slay you without mercy!"
This 28mm pre-painted plastic “Wizkids” model of Firefall is miniature number 007a from the Avengers Infinity "Marvel" "Heroclix" range, and depicts "one of Rom's best friends", Karas, wearing his Galadorian plandanium armour. "One of the Galadorian volunteers that became the First Generation of Spaceknights to battle the Dire Wraiths", Firefall was created by Bill Mantlo and Sal Buscema, and was first mentioned in the February 1990 issue of "Rom".

Cut from its 'clicky-base', the figure was super-glued on to a 25mm circular stand, before being undercoated using two layers of "Vallejo" Heavy Orange. I then shaded the Living Fire of Galador about the sculpt's shoulders with "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson and dry-brushed them with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Orange.
"Black Tree Design" WIPs - An android, Sharaz Jek and Drathro
These flames were subsequently highlighted using a little "Vallejo" Heavy Ochre and some Iraqi Sand. Finally, Firefall's heavily armoured body was treated to a coat of "Vallejo" Heavy Red, drenched in "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson and later dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Red.

Sticking with science fiction I have been busily beavering away at my second squad of Sharaz Jek Androids, along with the robots' physically disfigured creator himself. These "Black Tree Design" figures took a considerable time to arrive once ordered, and their castings aren't as smooth in places as I would have liked, so they've taken a tad longer than I would have liked filing down their casting flaws.
"Toon Realms" WIPS - One of King Victor's Men-At-Arms and Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot
However, I've just started a rather large "Doctor Who" campaign using just my "Black Tree Design" miniatures along with some home-made rules, and the latest scenario rolled concerns the scarred Spectrox dealer attempting to expand his nefarious operations by establishing a base within the Nimon Empire. Should his gun-toting androids be successful in their endeavours then I thought it would be nice to be able to field their infamous masked master in future battles.   

Lastly, having recently finished painting my Game Kastle Knight Mascot by "Lucid Eye Publications", I have started slowly working my way through some more of King Victor's Men-At-Arms. My momentum to pigment enough models from the "Toon Realms" range for a 'Lord Of The Toons' themed game of "Dragon Rampant" seems to have waned recently, so I'm especially keen to get both these armoured knights and the Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot completed toot sweet.

Saturday, 8 June 2019

"A Chance For Faramir, Captain Of Gondor, To Show His Quality."

"There goes a lord who tamed a wild shieldmaiden of the North!"
This "cartoon scale" white metal figure of the Game Kastle Knight Mascot is produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and can be bought from the company's "Toon Realms" range as a single casting. Sculpted by Steve Saleh, I have sanded off the prominent letters 'GK' on the warrior's shield, and painted him so he can be used to proxy the second son of Denethor II as a Gondorian Heavy Foot Character for “Dragon Rampant” by "Osprey Games".

Initially primed with two coats of "Citadel" Abaddon Black, the Captain of the Rangers of Ithilien was layered in "Citadel" Ironbreaker, enthusiastically washed in "Citadel" Nuln Oil, and eventually dry-brushed using some "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal. The “the younger brother of Boromir” then had his belt, sheath, straps and tuft of hair 'picked out' with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, whilst his belt buckle and sword-hilt were spotted in Gold. All of these areas were subsequently washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
MSM-07 'Z-GOK' WIPs - The giant robot's feet and ankles have been primed. shaded and dry-brushed
Finally, the future Lord of Emyn Arnen had his 'bruised' shield pigmented with "Citadel" Abaddon Black, and his face painted using a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Skintone and "Citadel" Reikland Fleshshade. The captain's nose, cheeks and lips were highlighted with a few additional lines of "Vallejo" Heavy Skintone.

Stepping away from fantasy wargaming, and focusing upon the somewhat new genre of Gundam, at least for me, I have been slowly working my way up the MSM-07 'Z-GOK' 1/144th scale "Bandai" model kit I recently purchased from "MCM London Comic Con". "The most successful amphibious mobile suit line produced by the Principality of Zeon during the One Year War" I thought it actually best to start painting this robot from the feet up, and resultantly have been working on a few sub-assemblies.
"Wizkids" WIPs - The Scourge, Firefall and the Black Panther
Disconcertingly, this "HG Universal Century" figure is clearly designed to be repeatedly re-positioned, courtesy of numerous articulation points, so has proved a tricky painting subject with some of the flex in its joints. Indeed, even having super-glued the feet to its ankles, the two parts still provide plenty of movement due to some internal rubberised 'ball and socket' fittings which are rather difficult to permanently fix in position.

Lastly, I've made some significant progress on three "Heroclix" models I recently restored to my painting queue having partially-pigmented them some moons ago. The "Wizkids" Spaceknight Firefall has unsurprisingly taken up the majority of my attention, owing to Tarn's flame-covered shoulders, but the entire trio now just need some washes, a little dry-brushing and tidying up before they'll be ready for the tabletop...

Thursday, 6 June 2019

"I Am Death, Not Taxes. I Turn Up Only Once."

"I take life as it comes."
This 44mm tall plastic “Wizkids” model of the Reaper Of Souls is miniature number 090 from the “Horrorclix” base set, and depicts the “personified force” both donned in his instantly recognisable black shroud and carrying his famous scythe. Released in August 2006 as part of an initial 96 figure-strong range, this miniature was a most welcome gift from Bryan Scott of “Vampifan’s World Of The Undead” blog fame.

Following the removal of the over-sized skeleton from his 'clicky-base', the figure was super-glued on to a 40mm circular stand, and originally primed using two coats of "Citadel" Abaddon Black. Death was then dry-brushed with “Vallejo” Heavy Charcoal before being enthusiastically drenched in “Citadel” Nuln Oil. With hindsight however, I felt this usually reliable combination made the model appear a little too light for my tastes, so I later re-pigmented his great cloak pure “Citadel” Abaddon Black, and simply relied upon the grease from my fingers whilst I handled the figure to provide any highlights.
"Heroclix" WIPs - The Black Panther, Firefall and the Scourge (currently minus hat)
The model’s bare bones and skull were layered with two coats of "Vallejo" Iraqi Sand, and shaded in "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. These areas were subsequently dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Iraqi Sand, and later lightly dusted with some Dead White, so as to bring out the skeleton’s finer details.

As a last step I painted the Reaper Of Souls’ scythe shaft using a mixture of “Vallejo” Heavy Sienna and “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade. Whilst his somewhat disconcertingly wobbly blade was ‘picked out’ with plenty of “Citadel” Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. The weapon’s edge was finished with a rough dry-brush of (more) “Vallejo” Ironbreaker.
"Toon Realms" WIPs - The Game Kastle Knight Mascot and Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot
Sticking with "Wizkids", I have started work on a few more "Heroclix" models so as to help bolster my "Marvel" forces in their ever-continuing Dire Wraith invasion campaign. Resultantly, I've finally started work on the first of my Spaceknight's Firefall, as well as 'dusted off' both the Scourge and (a second) Black Panther. 

In addition I've made some progress on my two recently arrived "Toon Realms" knights from "Lucid Eye Publications". I'm hoping to have the Game Kastle Knight Mascot finished reasonably soon, but still need to 'pick out' and shade a number of pieces of gold on the range's Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot...

Monday, 3 June 2019

(Lead) Mountain Musings - "Blood Bowl" June 2019

"Blood Bowl" WIPs - These Greenfield Grasshuggers have been assembled and primed
This month's themed attempt to desperately diminish my mountain of unpainted metal, plastic and resin models will see hopefully me progressing a number of "Games Workshop" plastic figures from their fantasy football game "Blood Bowl" range. Currently I'm working on a number of partially-painted Chaos Chosen players for the Doom Lords, but in addition to finishing some of these Beastmen off, I am also determined to pigment a number of figures from the newly-released Greenfield Grasshuggers Halfling Team.

Indeed, my aim is to actually try and complete a half-dozen miniatures from the two opposing clubs, so as to start a small-scale league which will ultimately feature representatives from the Champions Of Death, Reikland Reavers, Nurgle's Rotters and Gouged Eye. To begin with though, I have merely assembled and primed a pint-sized Hopeful, a Catcher and a Hefty from "one of the most esteemed teams in the game", with the aspiration that an additional three more Hopefuls will join my painting queue once the initial trio are completed. 
"Bandai" WIP - The 'Z-GOK' has been assembled and had its feet primed with "Vallejo" Turquoise
An element of this hobby which has never really captured my imagination before has to the science fiction media franchise known as Gundam, and its almost fanatical obsession with giant robots. As a result, no-one was arguably more surprised than myself when I walked out of the latest "MCM London Comic Con" carrying a 1/144th scale "HG Universal Century" model kit of the MSM-07 'Z-GOK' amphibious mobile suit.

This Principality of Zeon mass produced robot by "Bandai" will potentially be one of a 'handful' of miniatures I would like to build and paint over the next few months, in the hope that I can eventually field a couple of small forces to battle across a 15mm scale tabletop. Astonishingly, considering the sheer number of components which the figure comes in, I have already assembled the brute and super-glued its feet on a plastic 120mm oval stand produced by "Games Workshop".
"Toon Realms" WIPs - Grunt the Boar, the Frog Prince and Grimm the Wolf have been under-coated
However, my problems have actually only really now started, as the 'Z-GOK' is clearly multi-pose toy with numerous points of articulation. So I am clearly going to have to permanently fix its joints together whilst I apply a brush to its numerous sub-assemblies; two things I have very little experience of at this present moment in time. Plus, it'll be interesting to see how its pre-coloured plastic will take to "Vallejo" and "Citadel" paints... 

Lastly, I have managed to prime a few more "Toon Realms" models by "Lucid Eye Publications" with the emphasis being on some of the range's large(ish) animal-based characters. Grunt the Boar, the Frog Prince and Grimm the Wolf are absolutely packed full of detail, with the formidably-sized Canis lupus potentially being the first of a Warg pack scouring Middle Earth.

Thursday, 30 May 2019

“Slay Without Pity; Triumph Without Remorse.”

"You are the legions of Khorne, his favourite warriors."
This 28mm Bloodhunter is one of the plastic multi-part models which can be assembled using some of the sprue pieces found inside the “Games Workshop” Daemons Of Khorne “Start Collecting!” boxed set. Primarily assembled so as to provide my Blades of Khorne “Age Of Sigmar” warband to field two minimum-strength units of ten Bloodletters, this figure will also allow me to similarly split my chaos daemons in “Warhammer 40K”.

The miniature was initially given an undercoat of “Vallejo” Heavy Red before being copiously washed with "The Army painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. The “Chosen of Khorne” was then dry-brushed with more “Vallejo” Heavy Red and had details such as its horn, hands, hooves, back spines and sword hilt base-coated with “Citadel” Abaddon Black.
Heretic Astartes WIPs - The World Eaters are slowly having their numerous details 'picked out'
As I have previously painted a version of this model with ‘pinkish’ horns, I decided to leave this particular Bloodhunter’s formidable-looking curved outgrowths black, and subsequently used more of the “Citadel” Base colour to gently blend the daemon's dark hands and trotters in with the Slaughter-kin's red limbs. In addition the unit leader’s Hellblade was undercoated with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna before being treated to at least two coats of Gold.

The great two-handed weapon, which can "cut effortlessly though any armour crafted by mortals", was later washed with "The Army painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and dry-brushed with more "Vallejo" Gold. Lastly I picked out the Warmonger of Khorne's "sharp, needle-like teeth" with “Vallejo” White and its "serpentine tongue" with Heavy Ochre. The blood-soaked beast’s "slavering jaws" were washed with "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade and its tongue, with Reikland Fleshshade.
"Toon Realms" WIPs - The two knights had been primed, washed and dry-brushed
Staying with the “Lord Of Skulls” I have slowly made some more progress on the Aspiring Champion I recently assembled to lead my squad of World Eater space marines for “Warhammer 40K”. This Heretic Astartes is a great example of how carried away I can sometimes get when super-gluing a miniature together from a plethora of pieces, without ever considering just how I am ever going to paint all the guns, icons and elaborately-detailed shoulder-pad whilst retaining my sanity.

Far more straightforward has been my pigmentation of some recently-arrived “Toon Realms” reinforcements from "Lucid Eye Publications". Whilst it would have been very tempting to just provide the knights with black straps, belts and sheaths, I ultimately felt their sculpts’ excellent detail deserved a more colourful palette, and therefore opted to apply some gold and brown to the two warriors’ armour and leatherwork…

Tuesday, 28 May 2019

"A Supernatural Blade That Cleaves Through Enemy Units."

"Forged from pure rancour, a Wrath-axe is Khorne's hatred incarnate."
This huge four-piece hard plastic 28mm scale model of a Wrath-Axe can be bought as part of the Judgements Of Khorne boxed set by "Games Workshop", and "is a manifestation of Khorne’s otherworldly anger." Summoned by a Khornate priest, "should their fury be worthy of the Blood God’s favour",  the "supernatural blade scrapes across the ground" hitting enemy units on a 2+ and causing them to suffer either D3 and D6 mortal wounds (potentially both).

Initially undercoated with two layers of "Vallejo" Heavy Orange, "Khorne’s hatred incarnate" was washed with "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson and dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Orange. The skull-infested flames were then highlighted using "Vallejo" Heavy Ochre and later on, some Iraqi Sand.
Sharaz Jek Android WIPs - The robots have been primed and dry-brushed
The axe itself, whose shaft proved particularly difficult to reach with a brush-tip due to my naive decision to fully assemble the model prior to painting it, was primed in "Citadel" Abaddon Black, and subsequently treated to a combination of Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. The giant supernatural weapon was finished by dry-brushing "its razor edge" using some (more) "Citadel" Ironbreaker, and having its iconography 'picked out' with "Vallejo" Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.

With the last of my Judgements of Khorne completed, I have turned my attention to the much more straightforward subject of pigmenting another batch of Sharaz Jek Androids by "Black Tree Design". Disappointingly, these'll probably be the last of the company's "Doctor Who" miniatures range that I will be purchasing, as the last few orders I have made with them have proved troublesome at best. This particular array of robots, along with some armoured Sea Devils and a pair of Myrka, were purchased at the start of March and seemingly required a few prompts before they finally arrived over two months later...
Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot, Game Kastle Knight Mascot, and Gruf The Bear WIPs
In addition I have been busy basing and priming some more "Toon Realms" miniatures by "Lucid Eye Publications". I've currently got a fair few of King Victor's armoured knights on my painting table, so thought I'd add a couple of characters to their number in the shape of the Game Kastle Knight Mascot (n.b. I have filed away the G.K. on his shield) and Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot.

As I'm basing my Men of the West army upon J.R.R. Tolkien's Gondor, I aim to have one of these two heroes 'play the role' of Faramir, with the other probably representing Captain Ingold; who guarded the northern gate of the Rammas Echor. I also couldn't resist applying some paint to Grüf The Bear, whose hulking size and marvellous pose made me immediately think of Beorn the Skin-changer in his bestial form.

Friday, 24 May 2019

"This Slaughterpriest Is So Dedicated To The Howling Devotion To The Blood God..."

"...That even his enemies begin to fall to blind, bezerker rage."
This 42mm tall multi-part plastic kit of a Slaughterpriest with Hackblade and Wrath-hammer is produced by “Games Workshop” for their “Age Of Sigmar” range, and was 'originally' available as a as a freebie figure from the September 2016 edition of "White Dwarf". Consisting of ten pieces, this miniature was 'reasonably simple to assemble', albeit I did end up removing a skull which was jutting out from one of his shoulders on account of its slim spike disconcertingly bending to even the slightest of touches.

Super-glued onto a "Citadel" 40mm round base and "swollen with the power of Chaos", the model was primed using two coats of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna. His numerous golden surfaces, comprising of boot toe-caps, shin-guards, knee-pads, thigh-plates, stomach icon, shoulder-pad and helmet, were then treated to a combination of "Vallejo" Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
"Such are the priests of the Blood God, mighty warriors whose holy powers are bound to their prowess in battle."
Having decided that the Bloodbound was going to be dark-skinned, I painted his leather boots and linen undergarment with "Citadel" Abaddon Black, and the numerous straps holding his armour in place with "Vallejo" Heavy Brown. In addition I 'picked out' the horns of the "favoured champion of Khorne" using a little Iraqi Sand, then later shaded these, alongside all the leather fastenings, with a dab of Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter".

The demagogue of "Khorne’s wrathful will" next had his loincloth, breeches, and skirt layered in "Vallejo" Heavy Red and washed with some "Citadel" Nuln Oil. This clothing was subsequently dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Red. I also applied some Heavy Red to the Slaughterpriest's left hand, highlighted his fingers with Dark Vermilion, and then generously washed the grisly fist with "Citadel" Crimson Carroburg.
Reaper Of Souls WIPs - The "Horrorclix" figure has had its skeleton layered, shaded and dry-brushed
With my 'grotesque slab of muscle' almost completed, I pigmented the "hulking" priest's Hackblade and Wrath-hammer with "Citadel" Ironbreaker, along with his belt's numerous metal adornments and painful-looking shoulder-spike, before treating all of these areas with a healthy splash of Nuln Oil. Then, as a final touch I dry-brushed the maniac's weapons with more Ironbreaker and his horns with some additional "Vallejo" Iraqi Sand.

With such a highly-detailed miniature 'under my belt' I have settled down to painting something far more straightforward in the shape of a "Horroclix" Reaper Of Souls by "Wizkids". This formidably-sized monster is a much-appreciated gift from Bryan Scott of "Vampifan's World Of The Undead" fame, and has been desperately waiting in the wings of my painting queue for far too long...

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

"We Are Truth-Speakers, We Men Of Gondor."

"We boast seldom, and then perform, or die in the attempt."
This "cartoon scale" white metal figure of one of King Victor's Royal Guard is produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and can be bought from the company's "Toon Realms" range as a pack of four miniatures. Sculpted by Steve Saleh, I have painted the warrior in the colours of the Guards of the Tower of Gondor so as to field a unit of (Elite Foot) Guards of the Citadel for “Dragon Rampant” by "Osprey Games".

Initially primed with two coats of "Citadel" Abaddon Black, this personal bodyguard to the Stewards of Gondor was dry-brushed using some "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal and subsequently washed in "Citadel" Nuln Oil. The “mainly… stationary guard” then had his boots and spear shaft layered with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, and his belt buckle, spear and helmet delicately dabbed in Gold. All of these areas were later washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
"On very rare occasions a mortal has bested one of these daemons..."
The Tower Guard’s helmet, armour, chain-mail, shield emblem and spear-tip were pigmented using a combination of "Citadel" Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. These parts were later delicately dry-brushed with (more) Ironbreaker. Finally, the knight’s linen surcoat was ‘picked out’ in “Vallejo” White and ‘shaded’ with a tiny amount of Pale Grey.

Stepping across into the much more serious fantasy-based universe of the Mortal Realms and “Age Of Sigmar” by “Games Workshop”, I have completed another two Bloodletters for my Blades of Khorne war-host. This pair of daemonic warriors, armed with fearsome Hellblades, were painted in my usual “Vallejo” Heavy Red and “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade palette, and takes my infantry unit’s total to twenty-two “Slaughter-kin”.
Aspiring Champion WIPs - The World Eater leader is slowly having all his detail 'picked out'
Sticking with the Chaos Gods of “Games Workshop”, but shifting my attention forwards into the Forty-First Millennium, I am making some steady progress on the first of five World Eaters I recently assembled from an old Chaos Space Marine boxed set. These Heretic Astartes will be predominantly black and silver in colour, but in order to show their allegiance to Khorne, I plan on painting their shoulder-pads and helmets in the Blood God’s instantly recognisable red and gold colour scheme.

In addition, as this first figure will be the squad’s plasma pistol-wielding leader I thought I’d take the extra time in applying “Vallejo” Gold to all of the Aspiring Champion’s trim and adornments, rather than use the “Citadel” Ironbreaker I plan on using for the rest of the figures. Hopefully this will allow the model to stand out that bit more on the tabletop amidst his men, and yet still prevent the veteran warrior from blending in with the all-red and gold Khorne Bezerkers I intend to build once my initial corrupted Astartes are completed.

Monday, 20 May 2019

"The Space Marines Are Humanity's Finest Warriors."

"The Adeptus Astartes are genetically modified superhuman warrior-monks
This 28mm scale plastic model of an Adeptus Astartes was produced by “Games Workshop” way back in 1988, and could be created from the numerous parts found within the (original) RTB-01 Imperial Space Marines boxed set. Produced by Jes Goodwin, Aly Morrison and Bob Naismith, this particular iconic miniature has been assembled so as to carry a missile launcher, and was originally going to join my recently completed Black Templar tactical squad as an additional heavy weapons option.

However, having dusted the old sculpt down and determined just how disconcertingly thick its "Citadel" Chaos Black undercoat was, I felt it would probably better serve the Emperor as a bronze statue placed atop a square-shaped resin plinth sold by "Telfer Model Design". Resultantly, the miniature was treated to a double layer of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, before being treated to two coats of Brass.
Interceptor Justicar WIPs - The Grey Knight has been primed, shaded and dry-brushed
The Mk VI Corvus suited Space Marine was then heavily washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and heavily dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Brass. Later I applied some generous dabs of the "Citadel" Technical paint Nihilakh Oxide to the vast majority of the figure's numerous nooks and crannies, such as his riveted shoulder-pad, in order to denote the statue's great age, and subsequently blended this in with a second dry-brush of "Vallejo" Brass.

The model's plinth was initially pigmented using a few applications of "Vallejo" Heavy Bluegrey, and then enthusiastically shaded with "Citadel" Nuln Oil. Finally, the detail in the stonework was 'highlighted' courtesy of a "Vallejo" Heavy Bluegrey dry-brush.
Wrath-axe WIPs - The Judgement of Khorne has had its flames finally finished
Sticking with the futuristic universe of "Warhammer 40K", I have made some progress on the leader of my Grey Knight Interceptor unit. The Justicar has had a couple of additional adornments glued in place, and then been primed, washed and dry-brushed in line with his silver-coloured brethren.

Lastly, I have almost completed the last of my Judgements of Khorne for "Age Of Sigmar", the formidable Wrath-axe. This multi-part plastic model was unfortunately super-glued together before I realised just how difficult it was going to be to get my paint-brush to reach into certain areas of the ensemble. However, having rethought my palette for the "supernatural blade that cleaves through enemy units" I believe it should still look rather imposing as part of my Blades of Khorne warhost...

Saturday, 18 May 2019

"Many A Doer Of Great Deeds Might Say No More."

"But what is a hobbit?"
This "cartoon scale" white metal figure of one of King Victor's Men-at-Arms is produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and can be bought from the company's "Toon Realms" range as a pack of four miniatures. Sculpted by Steve Saleh, I have painted the warrior in the colours of Gondor so as to hopefully field a unit of (Heavy Foot) Minas Tirith Knights for “Dragon Rampant” by "Osprey Games".

Originally undercoated with two layers of "Citadel" Abaddon Black, Denethor's warrior was dry-brushed using some "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal and subsequently washed in "Citadel" Nuln Oil. The soldier's boots were then treated to a touch of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, whilst his sword hilt was given a lick of Gold. Both of these areas were later washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
Slaughterpriest WIPs - The Khorne warrior now just needs his helmet and shoulder-pad to be finished
I 'picked out' the Man-at-Arms' helmet, armour, chain-mail and shield emblem using a combination of "Citadel" Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil, before dry-brushing these parts with (more) Ironbreaker. Lastly, I spotted the model's belt-buckle with a dab of "Vallejo" Gold and a little Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter".

Sticking with fantasy I have continued to make some additional progress on my Slaughterpriest with Hackblade and Wrath-hammer for "Age Of Sigmar" by "Games Workshop". Somewhat frustratingly my decision to paint the "favoured champion of Khorne" as being dark-skinned has caused me a few minor issues in painting all the warrior's different-coloured leathers in sufficiently contrasting browns.
Space Marine WIPs - The Adeptus Astartes statue just needs to be dry-brushed with more "Vallejo" Brass
Admittedly, most of these leg and armour straps can't actually be seen unless you pick the miniature up and look beneath his loin-cloth. But the 'Eavy Metal' fanboy in me wouldn't let me rest until I'd at least done a tabletop standard job using a mixture of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, Heavy Brown, "Citadel" Abaddon Black and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. Fortunately, since completing these areas I've found the Bloodbound warrior a lot more fun to paint, especially after deciding to pigment one of his hands as if it was drenched in gore.

Finally, I've almost finished an old Eighties plastic Space Marine I have 'rescued' from my 'Bitz Bin'. Now destined to forever stand upon my Forty-First Millennium battlefield as an aged Adeptus Astartes statue, I have completed the model's stone plinth and much of its brass-work, and am now working on its verdigris.

Wednesday, 15 May 2019

“They Call Him Baba Yaga.”

"It's personal."
This 28mm scale resin model of Baba Yaga was produced by “Spectre Miniatures” and was only available as a special limited edition figure for a short time on the company’s website following “Salute” 2019.  Obviously influenced by Chad Stahelski’s 2014 American neo-noir action thriller film “John Wick”, the sculpt bares an uncannily strong resemblance to leading actor Keane Reeves.

The “retired but deadly hitman seeking vengeance” was initially cleaned of all his disconcertingly visible mould lines and ‘flash’ prior to being undercoated using two layers of "Citadel" Abaddon Black. The paid killer was then roughly dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal before being almost drowned in "Citadel" Nuln Oil.
Slaughterpriest WIPs - The Khorne warrior is slowing having all of his detail 'picked out'
Hoping to provide at least a little contrast to the all-black attired anti-hero, I subsequently ‘picked out’ Yaga’s shoes, hair, firearms and shoulder-strap with pure “Citadel” Abaddon Black, and unsurprisingly applied a coat of “Vallejo” Heavy Skintone to his face and hands. These areas of flesh were later washed using a little “Citadel” Reikland Fleshshade, before being ‘lightened’ with a tad more “Vallejo” Heavy Skintone. Finally, some watered-down “Citadel” Abaddon Black was applied to Baba’s cheeks to (hopefully) provide the impression of his beard.

In addition to finishing my first ever figure from “Spectre Miniatures”, I have been slowly progressing the Slaughterpriest with Hackblade and Wrath-hammer I recently assembled in order to allow my “Age Of Sigmar” Chaos Army to utilise the Judgements of Khorne. This “Games Workshop” plastic model is absolutely packed full of detail, and resultantly has proved somewhat tough-going in comparison to my warhost’s more daemonic units.
Space Marine Statue WIPs - The Eighties plastic model has been re-based, primed and layered
In particular, the demagogue of Khorne’s wrathful will has a myriad of leg straps all hidden beneath his loincloth which have taken an age to carefully ‘pick-out’, shade and then paint around. To make matters worse though, I was rather keen on colouring the cloth protecting the dark prophet’s bare legs from their armour-plating in red rather than simple black, so have had to repeatedly return to these areas to ensure enough of the pigmentation is showing through to distinguish it from the hulking priest’s black boots and shorts.

Finally, I have ‘dug out’ one of the original plastic Adeptus Astartes I assembled from the Eighties Imperial Space Marine boxed set. Armed with a missile launcher, and unhappily thickly undercoated in black, I thought the model might enjoy a new lease of life on my tabletop as a bronze statue…

Sunday, 12 May 2019

"Imperial Death Troopers Are A Terrifying Sight."

"It's the trooper you don't see that will get you."
These six 40mm tall hard plastic elite soldiers of the Tarkin Initiative are produced by “Fantasy Flight Games” and can be found inside the company's Imperial Death Troopers Unit Expansion for "Star Wars: Legion". "Hand-selected from the Stormtroopers Corps by Imperial Intelligence itself", these  jet black armoured commandos made their debut in Gareth Edwards' 2016 motion picture "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story".

The "elite variant of the Galactic Empire's stormtroopers" were all primed using two coats of "Citadel" Abaddon Black and mercilessly dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal to really bring out all of the sculpts' meticulous details. Each figure was then treated to a more than generous splash of "Citadel" Nuln Oil, so as to help blend the slightly contrasting undercoat and highlight together.
"They served as protective details and bodyguards for important Imperial officers..."
With the majority of the miniatures finished, at least in my tabletop standard books, I decided to 'pick out' all their helmet lights with a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Grey and "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green and some of their pouches' fasteners with a small dab of "Vallejo" White. I did consider painting all of their eye lenses a deep green as well, but to be honest some of these 'sunken' areas were so tiny that I felt it ultimately wouldn't be worth the effort.

However, having had a good look at DT-F16's figure, I was inclined to break away from the 'official imperial palette' and pigment her main armament's thick leather strap in "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and "Citadel" Nuln Oil, in order to make the commander stand out that little bit more on the battlefield. In addition, I 'picked out' all of the Death Troopers' belt buckles and E-11D blaster rifle barrels with "Citadel" Ironbreaker and (more) "Nuln Oil.
Skull Altar WIP - The "dread monument" has been assembled using twenty-one plastic components
Moving across to the Mortal Realms of "Age Of Sigmar" by "Games Workshop" I have rather impulsively purchased a Skull Altar for my Blades of Khorne warhost. This "great centrepiece to your Khorne collection" is truly a gigantic piece of terrain, so I was somewhat disappointed to discover that it didn't actually come with any sort of base, and instead relied upon my skills as a modeller to ensure I positioned every since tiny part of its lower segment into the perfect position so as to ensure it stood flat on my tabletop.

As you can probably imagine, I somewhat balked at such a task and have been patiently awaiting for the Nottingham-based company to send me a "citadel" 160mm circular stand for it to sit upon. Now that has arrived, I have not only assembled the brutish building, but both primed it with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna" and gritted its base...