Monday, December 31, 2012

Monday Miniatures - Umber Hulk

I've been painting quite a bit over the last couple weeks. I still haven't finished the Dark Emissary, but I have painted quite a few other models.

I finished all the remaining bits - some highlights on the armor and decals - on a couple dozen Black Templars space marines. I also painted twenty-three Necromunda gangers and gave them a coat of Army Painter Quick Shade. Once that dries and I have knocked down a bit of the gloss on them with some matt spray, I'll post some pics.

In all, I've finished about sixty models in the past month or so, just by going through my cases, grabbing whatever model comes up next and getting to work.

The model I finished off this morning was a simple one - a Dungeons and Dragons Chainmail Umber Hulk. I picked this up when I was running my 3E Shackled City game, so it's been sitting around for close to a decade. That's a little annoying to think, since it only took an hour or so paint it.

Chainmail Umber Hulk

The model is basically one color, the umber in its name. I started with a black undercoat and drybrushed the whole model with Americana Raw Umber craft paint. Then I mixed the Raw Umber with some Folk Art Teddy Bear Tan and drybrushed it again. Finally, I picked out the edges if the plates with thinned Teddy Bear Tan.

The base was inked with Games Workshop Brown Ink while the glue was still wet on the sand and then drybrushed with Ceramcoat Quaker Grey once the ink was dry.

And here is a shot of all the models waiting to be sealed. Once the weather cooperates on a day off, I'll get these all sealed and back in their cases.

Waiting for sealer

Friday, December 28, 2012


I've been reading through some of my old boxes wargames on my breaks at work. Earlier I found this in one of them:

"Should you have any difficulty interpreting the rules, please write to XXXX, phrasing your questions so that they can be answered by a single word or sentence. You must enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope."

How's that for a reminder that a game was produced before the widespread use of the Internet? And this is one of the newer games on my shelf!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Mordheim warband

Here's a pic I took with my phone of the completed Mordheim warband. Like I mentioned in my last post, I started painting these years ago and set them aside. When I picked them back up, all of the blue on their clothing was done, but not much else. One had been painted through to give me a sample to work from, and a couple others had some base coats on the brown areas.

The blue (if I remember correctly) was painted with a base of Citadel Ultramarines Blue, a wash of Citadel Blue Wash, and a highlight with Citadel Enchanted Blue. To finish the white areas, I base coated them with Ceramcoat Quaker Grey and highlighted them with white. The leather bits were base coated with Games Workshop Bestial Brown and highlighted with Citadel Bubonic Brown. The metal was all base coated black and finished with Citadel Chainmail and Citadel Mithril Silver. The horn was painted with Bestial Brown and Citadel Burnished Gold, highlighted with Citadel Mithril Silver. The bases were painted Bestial Brown, washed with Games Workshop Devlan Mud wash, and drybrushed with Games Workshop Bleached Bone.

Happy Christmas

This was my first Christmas in California, and I spent the day just hanging around the house. I chatted a bit with some friends and family online, called some other friends and family, and otherwise enjoyed a quiet holiday. I got an extra day off on Monday, so I've had four days off in a row. Tomorrow is probably going to be hard going getting back into work mode.

Since the move, things have slacked off quite a bit on the gaming front. Last weekend I created a character for a 2E AD&D game. I rolled high enough stats, so I put together a paladin. I was hoping to play him in a game on Saturday, but I got pulled away by some family stuff. Hopefully I'll get him into action after the turn of the year.

Aside from that, I dove into a few different gaming projects over the weekend to get things started again.

I played a couple games of Blood & Steel. Overall, I like the mechanics and the game. There are a few things there that took me a minute to figure out, because they are different than what I am used to in most other wargames. Once I got them down, though, I was able to play through the game very quickly. Altogether I was able to play through the main scenario in a little over an hour. The game has some replayability, and I am going to give it a few more plays soon.

I am still painting away on the Dark Emissary, but I hit a bit of a crossroads with the figure. I'm trying to work out the best way to paint the cloak and haven't decided on a color scheme yet. Once I do, I'll get working on him again. Until then, though, he's just sitting on my painting table waiting.

I did manage to put the finishing touches to my old Mordheim warband. The group is mostly swordsmen with a handful of crossbowmen thrown in for support. I started painting them several years ago, anticipating playing a quick campaign with some friends in Chicago. The campaign never happened, and they got shoved into a case and never finished. I pulled them out and started working on them a little before work every day. That gave me about twenty to thirty minutes a day on them for a week or so. Altogether, I spent probably three or four hours to finish them off. I'll get some pics posted as soon as I get them sealed and can get some good pictures of them.

After the Mordheim figs, I wanted to work on some figures that I can use as a test for the Army Painter Quick Shade. The next unfinished models out of the cases, though, were my old Black Templars space marines. I started painting them for a mini tournament at the Games Workshop store in Gurnee, Illinois back in 2000. I got them all finished except for the final highlights on their armor and some chapter symbol decals on the shoulder pads. Obviously, they're not good models for the Quick Shade, so I set them up on the painting table as one project to work on and dug into the next case.

The next case turned out to have my old Necromunda Cawdor figures. These have been painted and stripped a couple times, and I really want to give them a simple paint job and leave them alone. I've got twenty-three of these models, including two of each kind of heavy, a healthy mix of gangers, and a handful of juves. I decided to go with light khaki for the leggings, dark red for the tabards and cloaks, and basic browns for the pouches, boots, belts, and masks. These guys will be a perfect test for the Quick Shade.

Over the weekend, I managed to base coat and highlight all of the red, the pants, and the flesh on all of the models and started in on the basecoat for the brown. For each color, I paint a base color and then do simple, high-contrast highlighting. I'm going back to some techniques I used to use when I was taking tips from some of the historical painters back in the day. This is basically the same technique I used to use when I was using oil washes and ink glazes for quick shading. I'm hoping it works as well with the Quick Shade.

In between painting lots of models, I've also been reading quite a bit and trying to figure out how to make time to run another game. It looks like my old Borderlands game hasn't survived the move, so I have been trying to start something new. A couple of my players asked me to start a 1E AD&D game, so I am looking through the Players Handbook and Dungeon Masters Guide and digging through all of the adventures I have on hand to see what I can do. I'm hoping to work something out to get running in the beginning of the year.

Getting back to work has meant a lot of changes for me lately, and I haven't been posting as often as I would like. As I get more into a routine, I'll try to keep things up a bit better and get more things posted here. I plan to keep trying to paint a little every morning before work, and I have been taking gaming books to work to read at lunch.

In the meantime, though, I hope everyone had a happy Christmas (or whatever holiday or non-holiday you're celebrating this time of year). I got a few presents for myself in the mail during the last week or so and ordered a couple others, and I'll show them off in a post soon.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Sale ending soon

I got a message from Lembit at L2 following last night's post. He reminded me that the warehouse consolidation sale is only happening through December 24th. If you want a great deal on some war games, check it out before it's too late!

Thanks to a lot of time waiting for HR this morning, I've had time to read through all if the rules for all three Blood & Steel games. The rules are very simple and straightforward. Tonight I'll be starting a round with the original game when I get home.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Some new toys

I have been slowly getting things unpacked and organized in the new place. Unfortunately, that has left me with little to no time for painting or gaming. I have started chatting with a few people about playing in a 2E game online, and I may be getting a 1E game going after the beginning of the year. In the meantime, though, I'm settling in for the holidays and trying to get used to the new place and schedule.

I did order a few things to try to speed things along when I get some more time with the paint brushes. Based on the review of the Army Painter Quickshade on Doctor Faust's Painting Clinic on YouTube, I decided to pick up a can and see how it works. I should get it sometime late in the week, so I'll hopefully be able to give it a try next weekend. Once I do, I'll let you know how it works.

I also picked up a couple of new hex-and-counter wargames from L2 Design Group. They're having a sale to clear out some stock as they consolidate their warehouses. I picked up all three titles in the Blood & Steel series. Yesterday I punched and sorted all the counters, clipped the corners, and started reading through the rules. I'm hoping to play through them solo on nights when I'm too tired to paint. I'll let you know how they play.