Thursday, 30 April 2015

“…The Burning Hand Of Overdue Justice.”

"Taste justice, imposters!"
This 28mm plastic model of Lobster Johnson is made by “Wizkids. It is model 036 from the Indy “Heroclix” range. The 1930’s New York City vigilante was created by Mike Mignola in 1999 and has featured in a number of solo comic book adventures published by “Dark Horse Comics”, as well as fought alongside Hellboy and the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense.

Unsurprisingly given the miniature’s all-black pre-paint, I undercoated Lobster with “Citadel” Abaddon Black before giving the figure a dry-brush of “Vallejo” Heavy Charcoal. Having next washed the model with “Citadel” Nuln Oil I then repainted the crimefighter’s boots with more Abaddon Black. Johnson’s distinctive chest emblem was picked out using “Vallejo” Heavy Blue and washed with “Citadel” Asurmen Blue. The metal studs on his costume and his pistol were painted using “Citadel” Ironbreaker. This Layer was then washed with more Nuln Oil. Finally I gave his goggles a coat of “Vallejo” Heavy Ochre before applying some “Citadel” Agrax Earthshade over them.
Roger and Liz WIPs - The Homunculus's body armour and 'flesh' have been washed. Whilst Liz's flames are done
I still have a handful of "Heroclix" B.P.R.D. operatives to finish, but have managed to make some good progress this week on Roger the Homunculus and decided upon a 'quick and dirty' flame colour scheme for Liz Sherman. I was actually in two minds about whether to paint the pyrokinetic's flames blue (as depicted in the 2004 "Hellboy" movie) but in the end I've gone with one similar to the "Wizkids" pre-paint.
Man verses Dinosaur WIPs - Plenty of work yet to be done on all three of these "Wizkids" miniatures
I would also like to express my gratitude to both Roger from "Rantings From Under The Wargames Table" and Bryan from "Vampifan's World Of The Undead" for kindly sending me some much-appreciated new additions to my "Heroclix" plastic mountain. Being in a B.P.R.D. mood I have already based and started work on a Rasputin model. But many more of the models are in various stages for preparation, especially a number of "Horrorclix".

In addition I have got back out a number of models which sadly fell by the wayside in and around the start of the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge towards the end of 2014. Hopefully I can soon have this wonderful sculpt of "DC Comics" Sergeant Rock finished soon, as well as this rather large figure of Jack Kirby's Devil Dinosaur; which literally dwarves the 60mm round base he's super-glued to.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

10mm Battle Report: WW2 Przemysl 1941 - Russia Verses Germany

This game was played using some homemade rules and takes place upon my usual 2x2 gaming board. The battlefield was populated with a variety of painted scenery made by “Pendraken Miniatures”, most notably a couple of dwellings and a barn, as well as some areas of woodland. In addition a large ‘soggy’ field was placed in the centre of the table. The three buildings were each awarded an objective marker, ranging from values 1 – 5. The winner would be the side who held the most points at the end of the twelfth turn. However no-one would know how many points each objective was worth until the end of the battle. 

“The story so far… It is 1941 and as part of Operation Barbarossa Germany have launched an attack upon a small farmstead near Przemysl. Ordered to advance without any armour support, and waylaid by the snowy conditions, two Heer infantry divisions and a unit of Waffen-SS slowly approach their destination. But the Red Army won’t give up their territory without a fight, and have assembled a large force of conscripts to repel the invaders…”
The German forces are made up of the First Infantry Division including a Hauptmann and two Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun teams, the Second Infantry Division including a Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun team, and the Waffen-SS including a Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun team.

The Russian forces are made up of the First Rifle Division including a Captain and a Degtyaryov light machine gun team, the Third Rifle Division including a Degtyaryov light machine gun team, and the Guards Rifle Division which comprises of Veteran and regular soviet soldiers and a Degtyaryov light machine gun team.
The Russian forces immediately moved to try and take the two closest buildings, by pushing the Third Rifle Division west past the small wooded area towards the red-tiled dwelling [Objective 2]. In the centre a few regulars of the Guards Rifle Division emerged onto the battlefield, along with one of their light machine gun teams. Whilst to the north the Captain lead the spearhead of the First Infantry Division towards the stone-walled building [Objective 1]. In similar fashion the Germans also advanced to try and take control of their nearest objectives, with the Waffen-SS actually entering the thatched barn [Objective 3]. While the Hauptmann split his First Infantry Division around the woodland in the south-west in order to better attack both the red-tiled building [Objective 2] and the central field. Finally the few units of Heer which arrived in the north-west moved forward towards some trees.
The conscripts of the Third Rifle Division poured into the red-tiled building [Objective 2]. Whilst Soviet reinforcements emerged to reinforce the Guards Rifle Division. However the Captain still only had a single unit of conscripts with him in north-east, so ordered one of his commissars to start shooting some soldiers if the rest of the First Rifle Division didn’t soon arrive. Despite this poor showing the Russians still have troops enough to capture the stone-walled building [Objective 1]. Meanwhile the German’s First Infantry Division began forming up in order to assault the red-tiled building [Objective 2] with the Hauptmann and Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun team in support. The Waffen-SS had completely taken the thatched barn [Objective 3] and started to push on in order to repel any Russians planning on crossing the central field.
The German First Infantry Division began their assault upon the Soviet forces occupying the red-tiled building [Objective 1] and destroyed the Russian Degtyaryov light machine gun team holed up inside, despite the dwelling providing the Red Army with some additional cover. In the centre the Waffen-SS exchanged shots with the closest soldiers of the Guards Rifle Division and destroyed one of the Russian Degtyaryov light machine gun teams. In the north-east ‘inspired’ by the threats issuing from the commissar’s mega-phone the First Rifle Division suddenly found itself swamped with wayward conscripts and up to its full-strength. As a result the German Second Infantry Division momentarily paused to allow some of its stragglers to form up. It was going to need as many Heer as possible if it was going to charge and take the stone-walled dwelling [Objective 1].
In the centre of the battlefield a real scrap was starting to brew over the field, as the Guards Rifle Division’s firepower started to take its toll upon the Waffen-SS. But the elite German regiment were far from beaten yet and were slowly grinding down the Russian soldiers as well. In the north, despite still being badly understrength, and without any sign of their Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun team, the German Second Infantry Division pushed on towards the Soviet Mosin-Nagant Bolt-action rifles pointing at them from within the stone-walled building [Objective 1]. At the opposite side of the battlefield, things were looking better for the Germans as one of the Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun teams, encouraged by their Hauptmann, clattered the red-tiled dwelling with bullets and sent the majority of the Soviet conscripts inside running for home. Those few who did remain urgently called for more of their comrades to come help man the beleaguered objective.
The battle was now starting to fast reach a climax, and as the Heer sporadically approached the stone-walled dwelling, they began feeling the sting of the Soviet conscripts housed inside. The radio of the Second Infantry Division crackled to life to report that more Heer and a Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun team was en route. But disappointingly the fight was now far too well advanced for them to play any part in the proceedings.  From the red-tiled building [Objective 2] the conscripts were reinforced with fresh fodder and actually started to repel some of the German soldiers who had overconfidently approached the dwelling. But suddenly both of the machine gun teams from the First Infantry Division opened fire upon the Russians and cleared the entire front of the building of Soviet troops. The homestead was ripe for the taking.
With the end in sight, the Guards Rifle Division suddenly pushed forwards and managed to break the majority of the Waffen-SS units in front of them, including the elite unit’s Maschinengewehr 34 machine gun team. In addition the Russians were also able to direct a portion of their firepower towards the German Heer approaching the stone-walled building [Objective 1], and astoundingly wiped out two of the Second Infantry Division’s units. Before dispatching their Degtyaryov light machine gun team south to support the few remaining conscripts holed up in the red-tiled dwelling [Objective 2]. The Soviets trapped in the homestead needed all the help they could get as the Germans determinedly fought to oust them from its walls. The First Infantry Division’s machine gun teams finished off most of the remaining conscripts, allowing a unit of Heer to charge into the building and challenge any survivors. Picking their way through the battered walls the Germans badly mauled the Russians they found. But amazingly just failed to break the grim-faced soldiers of the Red Army; clearly another Guard Rifle Division in the making. To the north the German Second Infantry Division was now so anaemic that he couldn’t hope to best the Soviet stronghold of a stone-walled building [Objective 1] and failed to mount any sort of challenge to its occupants.
Having finished the game, it was very clear that the Russians securely held the stone-walled building [Objective 1], whilst the remnants of the Waffen-SS had just managed to retain the thatched barn [Objective 3]. Finally despite the Heer of the First Infantry Division almost besting the conscripts inside the red-tiled building [Objective 2], the building was still controlled by the Russians… just. However when the objectives’ values were revealed the Red Army had only accrued four victory points and the Wehrmacht five, giving the Germans a rather marginal somewhat unbelievable victory.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

"Pendraken Miniatures" - WW2 Russian DP LMG Team

"The Degtyarev DP light machine gun has proven her worth over countless Twentieth Century conflicts..."
These four stands of 10mm models predominantly contain the figures from code SV3 DP LMG Team by “Pendraken Miniatures” and come from their World War Two range of Russian infantry. As I thought my 30 x 40mm plastic bases would look a little barren with just two of the prone soldiers lying upon them, I also added a single model from code SV20 Riflemen, winter equipment. This extra figure also provided the added bonus of allowing me to more easily pick the Degtyaryov machine gun team up off the battlefield and reposition it during a wargame.

Once superglued upon their stand (or upon a piece of wood in the case of the riflemen) all of the miniatures were undercoated with “Citadel” Calthan Brown and then washed with “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade. The models were then dry-brushed with more “Citadel” Calthan Brown in order to ‘pick out’ the detail of each sculpt. I then applied a layer of Abaddon Black to the heads, hands, feet, weapons and equipment before I started to ‘colour’ them in. I used Knarloc Green with a Thrakka Green wash for the soldier’s helmets, and “Vallejo” Heavy Sienna with more “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade for their rifles, bags and straps. All of the light machine guns, their circular ammo clips, water canteens and Mosin-Nagant barrels were painted with “Citadel” Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. 
DP LMG Team WIPs - Phase (1) black lining and flesh, Phase (2) brown and metal, and Phase (3) green and tan 
Finally I gave all their faces and hands a ‘touch’ of “Vallejo” Heavy Skintone and was planning on then using an old pot of “Citadel” Flesh Wash. But having applied some to one ‘unlucky’ soldier I found the ink to be far too strong despite having considerably watered it down. As a result I ordered a pot of the Reikland Fleshshade. This Shade isn’t as good as the company’s Ogryn Flesh but it will suffice for now. Finally, having based, flocked and varnished each stand I applied a double coat of “Citadel” Snow. I like to do this in two phases as I try to make it look as if some of it has turned to sludge on the outer edges, yet is still heaped in other places.
Werewolves WIPs - Undercoated with Adeptus Battlegrey, Khemri Brown and Dark Flesh
Unsurprisingly I’m still currently working on this fortnight’s personal painting challenge. I have though finished gluing together the eight 28mm metal He-Wolf figures by “SLAP Miniatures” I need to paint, and undercoated the final three lycanthropes. I’ve actually nicknamed this trio ‘The Brothers Oop’ as I’ve decided to paint them using three old out of production pots previously sold by “Citadel”; Khemri Brown, Adeptus Battlegrey and Dark Flesh.

Thursday, 23 April 2015

"He Can Defeat An Army! You Haven't A Chance!!"

"They're using the Android as a last resort!!"
This 28mm plastic model of the Awesome Android is made by “Wizkids”. It is model 014 from the Marvel Fantastic Forces “Heroclix” range. Built by the Mad Thinker, he was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in 1963, and first appeared in Issue 15 of the “Fantastic Four” comic book published by “Marvel Comics”.

Because the model stands an impressive 64mm in height, he was first super-glued to a 40mm circular base before I undercoated him with some “Vallejo” Heavy Bluegrey. I then used some Heavy Sienna to paint his loincloth and washed the entire area with “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade. As the artificial being is made of unstable molecules I wanted to dry and give his grey coloured flesh a slightly different look to how I ordinarily paint such a bleak skin tone, so applied a watered down ash of “Citadel” Nuln Oil over his torso, head and limbs and tried to let the thinned wash pool within all the excellent sculpt’s recesses.

Once dry I was in something of two minds as to whether to dry-brush move “Vallejo” Heavy Bluegrey over the Android as the figure’s detail is rather soft and I was also concerned that my heavy-handedness with the brush might ‘rub off’ some of the Shade. In the end I decided to coat the miniature with a layer of “Coat D’arms” Gloss Varnish, and once that had dried, I then delicately and slowly dry-brushed all the detail on the model. 
Assorted WIPs - The Silver Samurai, Robotman and The Men In Black
Having finished this operative of the super-villain group Intelligencia I have been concentrating on finishing a few more “Heroclix” models; many of which I actually started to paint during the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge last year. To be honest the Silver Samurai simply needs a little tidying up work done on his armour and his flesh highlights to be applied and he should be finished. I have a little bit more work to do on Robotman. But having now dry-brushed the “DC Comics” hero with Copper, I just need to ‘pick out’ a few details on his armour for him to be done as well.
Just undercoated - Blade, a U-Man and Cyborg from the Teen Titans
I’ve had a few miniatures arrive from ‘across the Pond’ recently, including these three wonderfully thin Men In Black from “Wizkids” “Horrorclix” range. In addition they were accompanied by some more U-Men models (which I use as minions for the Black Manta), so I have started to rebase and undercoat these sinister scuba-divers. I’ve also taken the opportunity to get some preparation work done on both Blade and Cyborg. I especially like the vampire killer, even if one of his swords is rather bent and the sculpting somewhat soft. But the plasma-drinker’s pose is very well done, and I’m rather glad to have painted over the rather ghastly blue paintjob the plastic model originally came with.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Painting Challenge 2015: Fortnight Two - 28mm The Hyena And Her He-Wolves By "Heroclix" and "SLAP Miniatures"

Werewolves WIPs - The three main undercoat colours have been applied
This fortnight’s personal painting challenge is to complete nine 28mm models. Something of a big ask bearing in mind I usually only manage to actually finish one or two miniatures in this scale per week. However ever since December last year, thanks to an excellent review by Bryan on his “Vampifan’s World of the Undead” blog, I have owned two sets of He-Wolf figures by “SLAP Miniatures”.
'Armless Monsters WIPs - Three of the models still needs their arms and tails glued on to their main body
These rather unique-looking 40mm tall multi-part metal figures are absolutely full of character and should make a great-looking were-wolf pack for the “DC Comics” Super-villain the Hyena; a former member of the Peace Corps who was bitten by a were-hyena. As a result I have started assembling and undercoating eight of the figures as well as ‘dug out’ my “Heroclix” plastic model of the criminal lycanthrope Summer Day.
Super-Villain WIP - Due to her model's wide stance The Hyena has been glued on to a 40mm circular base
To try and mix up the colour scheme of my wolfmen I have undercoated some brown, some dark brown and a few grey. I have also undercoated my Hyena reddish brown, and washed the model with brown ink in preparation for dry-brushing her fur.

If you want to know more about these models, or indeed anything to do with werewolves, then please follow the link to Bryan’s posting here: SLAP Miniatures Werewolves 01

Friday, 17 April 2015

28mm Battle Report: Rocket Raccoon, Groot and Rogue Trooper Verses Nazi Zombies

This game was played using some homemade rules and takes place upon my usual 2x2 gaming board. The battlefield was populated with a variety of pre-painted scenery made by “Tablescape”, most notably a few earthworks, some crates and barrels. In addition a large fuel silo was placed in the centre of the table. The objective was simple, as the winner would be the side which controlled the most territory by the end of Turn Six.

“The story so far… In a desperate gamble to push back the American Third Army from their encampment alongside the Rhine, the German Heer have unleashed a horde of flesh-eating zombies upon the Allies. Desperate to help stave off this supernatural threat General Eisenhower has dispatched the living legend of Nu Earth, Rogue Trooper, to fight alongside his soldiers on the front line. But the Commander’s radio communications have also been overheard in outer space, and it seems like this could be a job for ‘The Guardians of the Galaxy’… well, for two of them at least.”
Turn One unsurprisingly saw the first wave of zombies shamble south towards the Allied emplacements. Realising he needed to get into a strong firing position straight away, Rogue Trooper rushed east to some oil barrels. Rocket Raccoon and Groot headed north-west, with the Monarch of Planet X taking the lead as his little friend’s bodyguard. Alpha Team headed north splitting up around the piping directly in front of them. Whilst Bravo team also deployed two soldiers north up to a large group of wooden crates. The other two privates hunkered down into a nearby bunker. In the distance a low groan could be heard as a second wave of zombies appeared, most notably containing an exploding cadaver in the north east.
Turn Two started with the two members of Bravo Team by the crates shooting down two of the walking dead shuffling south from the north-western corner. Two soldiers from Alpha Team moved towards the large fuel silo in preparation for climbing its single ladder. Their colleagues opened fire at an exploding zombie clambering over some sandbags in the north-east corner. But despite a bellow of encouragement from Groot, they missed. Rocket had no such issues and caught the TNT wearing corpse full in the chest. The explosion obliterated an additional two nearby zombies, including a deadly mustard-gas cadaver from the Eastern Front. Rogue Trooper also pointed Gunnar at the nearest ghoul and took it down, thinning the line of swaying zombies approaching their position quite considerably.  But with a load groan the horizon suddenly filled with another ten of the living dead, including more of the gas-mask wearing Soviet corpses and others with explosives strapped to their chests.
Turn Three saw the horde of zombies move south towards the middle of the battlefield. Three of them broke away from the main force and heading down the western side of the central silo. Eager to put an end to any zed threat from the east, Rogue Trooper and Rocket Raccoon tried to pick off the stragglers before them, but only one fell to the ground. Sensing his furry friend wasn’t in any immediate danger of attack, Groot moved to the south-west corner of the silo, and put himself between the approaching ghouls and the soldiers of Alpha Team. Meanwhile three members of Bravo Team now huddled together in their south-western bunker, with just soldier stood by the crates. Some of the previously shot zombies in the north-western corner were picking themselves back up off the ground and this was starting to rattle the Allies. Two of Alpha Team reached the walkway on top of the central fuel silo. Their colleagues gave them covering fire and took down a zombie.
Turn Four saw more of the walking dead arrive in the north east corner. Bravo Team once again fired in to the mass of zombies approaching them along the western table edge. The soldier by the crates took down the closest shambling corpse. Whilst the others in the bunker struck a gas-masked zombie. The Allies stood on top of the silo started to pick their shots and another cadaver was down and out. But by now the zombies in the centre of the battlefield were starting to pour around the silo. Their numbers started to swell as some of the cadavers the Americans had previously shot, got to their decaying feet. With a snarl a zombie launched itself at the private from Bravo Team stood by the crates and sunk its teeth into the man’s brains. Realising the Allied western flank was starting to buckle Groot charged into the nearest ghoul by the central silo, and with a bellow struck the mustard-gas zombie to the ground. On the eastern flank, Rocket Raccoon and Rogue Trooper continued to bring down any living dead unwise enough to enter their sights, including an explosive zombie, whose ‘Ka-boom’ also decimated two nearby shuffling cadavers.
The penultimate turn saw a number of the living dead rise to their feet across the battlefield. This was especially impactive on events in the centre of the battlefield as Groot suddenly found himself fending off a zombie charge. Three times the Flora Colossus was injured, but his bulk allowed the Monarch of Planet X to keep going despite his wounds. Having tasted human flesh the walking dead in the west shuffled further south and reached the edge of Bravo Team’s bunker. Frozen with terror the three Allied soldiers missed with their weapons. Alpha Team were almost as ineffective, with only the two privates on top of the silo hitting any of the undead. Groot pounded the zombie attacking him into the ground and Rocket Raccoon, eager to go to the assistance of his large friend, took down another ghoul to the east of the silo.
The last turn saw Bravo Team completely lose their wits and despite the closeness of the zombies clambering over sandbags towards them, missed with all their carbine shots. Alpha Team were not so dire and reduced the undead presence in the east to just two walking cadavers. Suddenly though a ticking zombie rounded the western side of the silo, wrapped itself around one of Groot’s legs and exploded. The Guardian of the Galaxy was no more… despite a desperate plea from Rocket. In the north-west a third ghoul appeared, lifting itself off of the floor. Stunned by the apparent demise of the Monarch from the Planet X, neither Rocket Raccoon nor Rogue Trooper hit anything despite pouring numerous shots into their ever-hungry flesh-eating foe. Worse to the west, they could hear the sound of flesh being chomped by hungry zombies as the undead assailed Bravo Team and brought one of the soldiers down. With things looking decidedly dodgy on the Allied western flank, we brought the game to an end and determined a winner.
As there were still a few zombies in the east and the two heroes hadn’t pushed very far north, it was agreed this part of the board was still being fought over. Whilst the central third was clearly in the hands of the Allies due to their impressive shooting from atop the central fuel silo. Although Bravo Team were still just alive in their bunker, it was clear that the entire western side of the battlefield belonged to the undead. So in the end we went with a tied game… though I get the distinct impression the zombies would probably have rolled the Allies over within two or three more turns. Especially if a few more of the walking dead returned to their feet in the west.

For those interested in finding out a bit more as to what Rocket Raccoon, Groot and Rogue Trooper are about I have reviewed some issues from their latest comic book series here:

Thursday, 16 April 2015

"I'm Tired Of Monkeyin' Around."

These three 28mm metal miniatures are made by “Pulp Figures” and can be bought as code PLT10 Killer Apes from the manufacturer's Lost Worlds and Lost Tribes range. Having superglued them all on to “Games Workshop” 40mm round bases I gave each model a double undercoat of “Citadel” Abaddon Black before heavily dry-brushing each with “Vallejo” Heavy Charcoal. This off-black paint really helped to highlight all the wonderful detail of Bob Murch’s sculpting.
"Lay the secret on me of Man's Red Fire"
I also used this colour to pick out all the dark areas of flesh on the primates’ hands, feet, chests and face. Once dry the Heavy Charcoal was a little too contrastingly stark to the ‘pure’ black undercoat I’d used, so I washed the models with “Citadel” Nuln Oil to help blend it all in together. Finally I ‘picked out’ the fingers, toes and brows with some more “Vallejo” Heavy Charcoal and finished off the ‘classic pulp monsters’ by highlighting their eyes with a spot of “Citadel” Abaddon Black.
Tarzan WIP - Flesh undercoat followed by black undercoat over loincloth, bow and arrows
In addition I have managed to pay a bit more attention to another of the models from the “Pulp Figures” collection PLT09 Kojar Of The Forest Tribe. Inspired by “Tarzan, Lord of the Jungle” from the late Seventies run of books by “Marvel Comics”, I plan to use this particular black-haired knife-wielding ‘jungle native’ to represent John Clayton, Viscount Greystoke.

Monday, 13 April 2015

"Just what I Needed... Annuder Mystery."

 "First guy to ask me ta make a speech gets a fat lip."
This 28mm plastic model of The Thing from the Fantastic Four is made by “Wizkids”. It is model 003 from the Marvel Tenth Anniversary range. The rocky human mutate was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in 1961 and features in the “Fantastic Four” comic book by “Marvel Worldwide”.

As I already own a Ben Grimm, and felt this figure’s rather static pose better suit a non-moving gaming piece, I decided to base the miniature on a thin-lipped 40mm circular base so I could use him as an objective marker. Having initially hidden the model’s (frankly) awful pre-paint job with a coat of “Citadel” Abaddon Black I then painted the super-hero’s mackintosh with “Vallejo” Heavy Brown before applying a heavy wash of “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade all over the coat in order to make it look a bit dank and grubby. For Benjamin’s fedora, I simply painted it “Vallejo” Heavy Bluegrey, picked out the hat band with “Citadel” Abaddon Black and then washed it all with Nuln Oil.
"Vallejo" Brass WIPs - Girder needs a black wash applied to his hair. Whilst Robotman requires dry-brushing 
The hardest part to paint on the model was the brute’s rocky hide. As I wanted The Thing to be the same colour as my other painted model of him I used a combination of “Vallejo” Heavy Orange and Umber Shade. I really like the effect left when the transparent acrylic wash dries. But unfortunately the ‘Lavado Sombra’ has a nasty habit of flowing everywhere when applied. Which it did on this occasion and necessitated some major repainting. I plan at some point to try and fit the sign post with some actual place names as decals, such as Yancy Street. But for now I simply painted it with “Gunmetal Grey” and gave it a wash of “Citadel” Nuln Oil.

My other painted "Heroclix" model of The Thing can be found here:

Moving away from “Marvel Comics Group” and instead turning to some characters from “DC Comics”, I have now washed this “Heroclix” model of Girder and subsequently dry-brushed him with Brass. Despite being a nicely sculpted figure of the super-villain, the detail is quite soft so I’ve only been able to apply a very light touch to the figure. I have though managed to paint his hair and beard with a nice dull steel colour, which once inked should help break up the miniature’s monotone look. Speaking of “Vallejo” Brass, having now applied a second layer over this Robotman miniature, I have washed the hero with Umber Shade and now just need to dry-brush the member of The Doom Patrol before starting to paint out some of his metallic body’s details.
Clayface WIP - Some rather roughly applied black separation lines are on show
Finally I thought it was about time I turned my attention to another of Batman’s Rogue Gallery, and although I dislike this particular model as it’s a bit too cartoony for my taste, I do rather like Clayface as a super-villain. The rather squat-sized miniature has for now just been undercoated brown. Though I have started to base coat both the safe and iron girder which Basil Karlo is carrying. 

Saturday, 11 April 2015

"Are You Threatening Me? Because I Think I Can Take You."

"You will learn to obey me, follow protocol and stay focused at all times" 
This 28mm plastic model of Johann Kraus from the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense is made by “Wizkids. It is model 005 from the Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. “Heroclix” Action Pack. The disembodied ectoplasmic spirit with psychic abilities was created by Mike Mignola in 2003 and features in the “B.P.R.D.” comic book by “Dark Horse Comics”.

In order to ‘cover-up’ the miniature’s pre-paint the entire figure was undercoated with “Vallejo” Heavy Brown. I then painted his containment suit’s body armour with Heavy Sienna before washing both areas with “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade. The West German’s head was given a coat of “Vallejo” White and then washed with Pale Grey.
Roger and Liz WIPS - The Homunculus is almost finished but just started painting Sherman's flames 
As the “Heroclix” model also came with a small grave marker on its ‘clicky base’ I decided to glue the small tombstone onto a circular 40mm base and use it as an objective marker. This was easily accomplished by simply painting the plastic head piece with “Vallejo” Heavy Bluegrey, washing it with “Citadel” Nuln Oil” and then dry-brushing it with more “Vallejo” Heavy Bluegrey.

I have also managed to progress several more of my models of the B.P.R.D., including Roger the Homunculus. I’ve now finished tidying up all the humanoid’s areas of flesh, and painted his body armour. The ‘creature of Alchemy’ now just basically needs to have a couple of washes applied. I have also re-based the ‘Easter Island’ head sculpture which accompanies Roger’s miniature onto another round 40mm base, as I want to use it as another objective marker.
More B.P.R.D. WIPs - Daimio just needs his skin painted, whilst Lobster is essentially finished 
Finally I have started to paint the flames on Liz Sherman’s miniature by applying a red wash over an orange undercoat, and completed the brown jacket of were-jaguar Ben Daimio. I’ve also finished tidying up Lobster Johnson’s goggles and face, so the Thirties vigilante just needs to be varnished and have his base flocked with static grass to be finished.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Painting Challenge 2015: Fortnight One - 10mm World War Two By "Pendraken Miniatures"

Soviet Light Machine Gun Team WIP - The base colours have all been blocked in
This time last year I began a three-month long personal painting challenge where every week, at the turn of a playing card, I had to paint a small number of figures which I already owned. This year I thought I’d do it again but with a couple of amendments so as not to too badly hamper my current painting projects and ensure I get a least one game in every fortnight.
More WIPs - The models are initially undercoated tan, washed and then dry-brushed with more tan  
As before the models will range in scale from 6mm – 28mm and consist of anything from one to ten figures or stands (depending upon the miniatures’ size). But this time I plan to try and accomplish my goal every two weeks, and also post up a Battle Report using the newly painted minis.

For this first fortnightly target I’ll be working on some 10mm World War Two models by “Pendraken Miniatures”. As I actually drew a picture card then I get to choose how many bases I have to complete, and thought just four Russian Degtyaryov machine gun teams would ensure a simple start to this rather long-term undertaking. In addition it will also hopefully get me reacquainted as to how I used to paint these well-detailed little guys. 
Soviet Infantry WIPS - As the LMG bases look a little bare I'll be adding at least one foot soldier to each stand
I actually own quite a considerable collection of finished Winter War German and Soviet figures, so thought my choice would also provide a good excuse to dust some of them off and get them table top ready for a ‘proper historical’ game.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

28mm Battle Report: Hellbaby And Jesus Of Nazareth Verses Nazi Zombies

This game was played using some homemade rules and takes place upon my usual 2x2 gaming board. The battlefield was populated with a variety of pre-painted scenery made by “Tablescape”, most notably a number of earthworks and some barbed wire. In addition three objective markers were dotted about the landscape representing a canister of radioactive slush, a couple of oil barrels and a radio transmitter. The goal was simple, as the winner would be the side which had control of the most objectives by the end of Turn Six.

“The story so far… Having detected a supernatural threat fast approaching the Allied lines near the Rhine, Professor Trevor Bruttenholm has sent Hellbaby to support the American soldiers encamped at the Leine River. The young demon arrives just as the groans of the German Undead can be heard ‘fast’ approaching the men of the Third Army… and early reports suggest some of the zombies have high explosives strapped to their chests. But at this Easter Time will the Americans and an infant Anung Un Rama really face such a grisly foe alone, or is the central figure of Christianity about to step into the fray..?”
Turn One started with Jesus of Nazareth, accompanied by two soldiers moving north in order to better protect the oil barrels, and make best use of the prophet’s ability to influence dice rolls (i.e. any friendly model within 15” can reroll one die per turn). To the south west Hellbaby and two more Americans headed north so as to take the radio transmitter. Finally Bravo Team, consisting of four soldiers who had been tasked to capture the canister near the northern table edge, also leapt over the sandbags in front of them and pushed forwards. As a shambling horde the zombies started to emerge from the north, with the majority appearing directly ahead of Bravo Team [Point 2] including one with something tied to its torso. Soon any sight of the canister by the Allies was blocked by the bodies of the Walking Dead and to make matters worse another four appeared in the north east corner [Point 1].
Turn Two Bravo Team immediately tried to ‘thin down’ the zombies swarming around the canister, and brought one down. Whilst Hellbaby, letting his childish exuberance get the better of him, leapt over an earthwork to challenge the Undead starting to approach from the north-west [Point 3]. One of the soldiers with him followed behind. Whilst the other took a shot at the nearest living corpse… and missed. Spotting the tiny red demon the zombies eagerly clambered their way over the sandbags in front of them. In the north east [Point 1] the Undead there similarly shambled south. Those zombies in the centre [Point 2] also sauntered forwards but one fell to a shot by one of the soldiers accompanying Jesus of Nazareth. A second shot rang out from the prophet’s group and one of the ghouls in the north east also crumpled to the earth.
Worryingly Turn Three began with another eleven zombies emerging onto the battlefield. The northern edge was now a sea of hungry corpses, including a handful of explosive zombies. To make matters worse one of the zombies lying ‘dead’ by the canister, got back up and started to stalk the living once again. Another, once a German Officer, foolishly charged towards Hellbaby and came up short. Bravo team, realising they currently had no hope of pushing forwards, simply stood their ground and opened fire with their carbines. The zombie next to the small demon was felled, as was one of the undead carrying explosives from the central horde. With a “Boom” the cadaver was blown apart, and one of the living dead behind him also fell having been caught in the blast. Calming the soldier beside him, Jesus directed the private’s attention to another zombie adorned with T.N.T. which was stood amongst a group by the canister. The bullet ignited the explosive, not only destroying the carrier but two adjacent walking dead as well. Inspired by the diminishing numbers in front of him, Bruttenholm’s adopted son charged into a zombie moving in from the north west and introduced his maggoty head to ‘The Right Hand of Doom’.
The situation was starting to look decidedly encouraging for the Allies, as the vast majority of zombies which had emerged from the north-west [Point 3] and the north [Point 2] had been eliminated and only a large horde of undead in the north east really posed any significant threat. As a result Turn Four saw Bravo Team slowly edge northwards towards the canister. One of the soldiers even managed to ‘down’ one of the zombies in the north east. Hellbaby meanwhile gave a “Yipee” and skipped further north-west. His accompanying soldiers fired at the zombies by the canister and ‘killed’ another cadaver, leaving just one of the undead remaining by the objective. Unfortunately the gathering of corpses stumbling south from the north east started to swell in number as a couple more zombies joined its ranks. As one vast decaying body of maggot-filled flesh they started to stumbled over the intervening earthworks between them and the oil barrels. With one of his group’s soldiers providing (ineffective) covering fire, Jesus of Nazareth retreated back behind a second earthwork. Suddenly the dead started to rise up right across the battlefield, with one emerging directly beneath the hooves of Hellbaby. Another dragged the soldier beside the demonling back down underground to his death. Whilst a third pulled themselves up out of the earth and charged into one of the privates belonging to Bravo Team, tearing him apart. 
The penultimate Turn suddenly saw the Allied forces suddenly in danger of routing, as the undead infiltrated their defensive line. The surviving soldier protecting Hellbaby suddenly felt the clawing hands of a zombie upon him, as did a second member of Bravo Team. Nether of the men lived very long as they were eaten by the hungry cadavers. Mad with rage at the sudden horrible deaths of their compatriots, Bravo team charged into the still feasting ghouls and bashed them back to the ground. Unfortunately more of the zombies from the north-west, once felled, were now returning to their feet and attacking. Having successfully revenged his fallen comrade, another of Bravo team was attacked and killed and even Hellbaby was wounded fending off the rising undead. Despite the soothing words of Jesus of Nazareth, the two soldiers beside him failed to hit any of the heaving mass of zombies slowly approaching their position on the southern edge. The living dead had by now reached the oil barrels and Military Intelligence had awarded them the warning sign of ‘Horde Certain Death’.
Despite such a considerable shift in their fortunes, the Allies could still win the day if Hellbaby could return to the radio transmitter, and Bravo Team skirt the enormous body of zombies in the east and reach the canister in the north. But as the gigantic horde shambled past the oil barrels heading south, two zombies broke off west and brought the final member of Bravo team down to a grisly demise.
The demonling faired equally as poorly, as three corpses rose to their feet around him and dragged him down to… hell? Only the prophet and the two soldiers beside him remained, and they faced the full fury of ‘Horde Certain Death’. With a wry smile Jesus of Nazareth leapt amongst the zombies but failed to take any down despite a flurry of blows. Worse, the two soldiers shaking behind their sandbags failed to hit any of the walking dead either.
With things looking decidedly dire for the Allies we brought the game to a close, and with the oil barrels in the hands of the zombies it seemed clear that the Axis powers may well have held the Americans off from crossing the Rhine for at least another day.