Friday 28 August 2015

Shambling Zombie (Tooth & Sword)

A first for me - painting a Chibi-style mini!

I backed the Tooth & Sword Kickstarter by Meridian Miniatures last year, completely enchanted by the style of the range. After quite some time, I have now finally found some to start tackling the minis with some tickling of the hairy sticks. Consequently, I decided to start down the 'easier' (in my own mind) path of painting a Shambling Zombie, using my usual Zombie skin recipe. The various other characters will follow after painting the first few Shambling Zombies.

Painting wise this was easier than I though, all I had to do was simplify what I do to suit the appropriate raised surfaces. The eyes are a little more complex than my usual zeds (who get flat VMC Silvergrey) - here I worked down from a more grey colour to the Silvergrey to create a slight sense of depth across the flat surface of the eye. The Chibi style will take a little getting used to in terms of technique. I think I will tackle more Shambling Zombies first just to get me in the right mode of thinking for painting for Tooth & Sword!

The base is by Fenris, and was chosen as round shoulder is my preference over slotta-style chamfered edge. These are 25 mm round shoulders to fit in the design for the Tooth & Sword game (more on that in a future post...).

On a side note, finishing this mini means that in July and August I have matched my painting output for January to March and April to June. :)

Monday 24 August 2015

Bank Of Baltar (TTCombat)

The Bank of Baltar is part of TTCombat's Dark City Scenics range. Ideal for superhero style gaming such as Pulp City, Supersystem and BMG, this piece is pretty large and seems to reflect a recent trend towards bigger MDF buildings intended to create a modern city-scape. I like the art deco-esque style and I am pretty chuffed with the piece. The painting isn't great, but I am still getting to grips with painting MDF stuff.

The model is so big my usual backdrop was too small! The figures used for scale are from my Pulp City collection; the large red one at the entrance is Amok, who is around 65 mm tall.

The basics
  • Footprint: 32 cm x 32 cm (base), 26.5 cm x 26.5 cm (building)
  • Height: 46 cm approximately
  • Build time: It took me around 4.5 to 5 hours, split over a few sessions
  • Price: I got this for £30, and have seen it between £30 to £40 depending on seller

The building is not really designed to have accessible interiors, simply because the lug and slots between levels are so tight and so not conducive to easy removal, and also because there are only three internal floors (of five stories). Really, the building is designed for exterior vertical movement and model positioning.

  • Value - honestly I think this is great value for its size
  • Simplicity - despite the lack of part numbers, it is actually straightforward to identify what parts are used and where
  • Size - for certain gaming environments/needs, size is good
  • Cuts - the laser cutting is very neat on the whole

  • Lugs - some are very slightly out of line in the middle section, meaning that the complex array of sections do not line up quite as neatly as desired, and some walls would have benefited from better-placed lugs to ensure everything lined up correctly
  • Interlocks - these are not really designed to fit sequentially - there was some forcing of the final wall piece of each 'box' assembly
Despite the identified cons, I am very pleased with this as a piece and would recommend it. Allow at least one 500 ml spray can for it though! I can say I will be buying more Dark City Scenics stuff in future.

Thursday 13 August 2015

Clock Tower (TTCombat)

A new terrain piece for me that did not take long to assemble or paint, and was excellent value in my humble opinion.

The Clock Tower is produced as part of the TTCombat range, which I think is part of the Troll Trader company. I bought it a few months ago and assembled it soon after purchase; if I remember correctly, it took around 30-45 minutes to assemble, and assembly was largely unproblematic. It was left awaiting time for painting, and the painting was finally done this month. After a grey spray undercoat, the actual painting only took 45 minutes.

The TTCombat range looks to lack some of the elegant construction of Sarissa and 4Ground, but it is great value and is pretty well cut, so that to me makes it a range i would go back to. This piece was a bargain at £3.95 including shipping!

I am most likely to use this for Freebooter's Fate or Anima Tactics games, but I could see it fitting Victorian-era settings and could probably sneak onto a Pulp City or BMG table. The models included for size reference are from the Freebooter's Fate (Trucco) and Anima Tactics (Kira) ranges.

I totally and unreservedly recommend this piece if it could fit your needs.

Saturday 8 August 2015

Pavilion A Subject (BMG Henchman)

Pavilion A Subject is the 27th BMG character mini I have painted, and the 23rd painted this year. the model comes in the same pack as File No. 08923, as well as Pavilion A Subject and the more famous Zsasz.

The main reason for tackling this mini at this time was that I wanted to try and maintain some painting momentum from last month's peak, and Pavilion A Subject seemed a fairly easy option. That said, the minis was not as enjoyable to paint as minis such as Hush, Nite Owl or Ozymandias, and it may be that I find painting Henchmen a bit of a drudge in comparison to the more recognisable heroes and villains of the range. The various mould lines and casting didn't help either, especially as I kept fining mould lines I had missed as painting progressed. Consequently my painting of this felt a bit scrappy while I was tackling it, but to be honest it is good enough for the table.

Unlike File No. 08923, there is a chance Pavilion A will make it into some of my crew line-ups. He is the joint cheapest model to field at 10 Reputation (along with Prisoner 01). I initially dismissed using Pavilion A out of hand, but reading comments of others has changed my mind due to one Trait - Unpredictable. Unpredictable allows the model to use Special Counters as wild cards, moving them into other Skills and not subject to the usual Skill maxima. Theoretically he could have 4 Attacks, 4 Defense or 4 Movement (5 or 6 Movement from Inspire and/or Follow Me); not all at the same time, but he can push the usual limits of counter allocation and then some, which suggests a lot of utility for such a cheap model. Of course the downside is that he is far from hard-hitting, and he does not benefit from Recovery rolls. Still, a cheap filler option, especially if I revisit the prospect of trying to create a true swarm list.

BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 132 (added: nothing)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 20.5% (27 models)

Sunday 2 August 2015


Hush is a mini I liked the look of straight-away, and was eager to paint. I have read Batman stories on and off for over 35 years, but have not read any Hush tales, but I understand the background to the character (childhood friend of Bruce Wayne turned bad - so a mirror to Batman in some ways) - and I really like his visual.

I painted Hush over a few sessions in a couple of days, and as the hairy-sticking progressed well, I was glad to see him through. A while ago, I planned and stated that after painting Prisoner 01, I would likely finish off Ozymandias and maybe add Hush. In the mean-time I painted File No. 08923, and now that Hush is finished, I may rethink how long a lay-off of BMG stuff I have - not least because some of them have felt fairly quick (by my standards) to paint. Hush rounds out my Poison Ivy crew options for now. My Black Mask crew is almost where I want it and maybe needs either Catwoman or Mr. Freeze purely for Loot grabs. That leaves the option of finishing off the Watchmen, and I admit if Court of Owls gets to 350 Reputation, they will likely jump to near the top of the painting queue.

By the standards of some Knight Models minis, Hush was easy to put together which was nice. It was also nice to get the mini painted pretty quickly, especially to maintain some impetus after a productive July. The painting was pretty painless all told which was very pleasant, and may cause me to carry on adding some more BMG each month while I continue to have momentum with the range, if only because of the dent it makes in the 'lead mountain'!

Hush is primarily intended to go with my Poison Ivy crew, offering a combination of threat and 'game management': the latter aspect through his Mastermind, Persuasive and Scheming Traits.

Hush can only go with a few crews, and not Black Mask which disappoints me. One of the crews he can join is Joker: the thought of Joker, Riddler and Hush removing 1 opposing Take the Lead counter and adding 2 for their crew seems an intriguing strategy - for a 6 Round game that would give 5 counters to Joker and 2 to the opponent, meaning Joker will win 4 or 5 initiative draws. Add the Early Bird or Perfect Plan Strategies, and if  not countered, it is entirely possible that your opponent may not win the Take The Lead draw at all.

BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 132 (added: nothing)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 19.7% (26 models)