Mornin’ all! just a super quick post while i’m enjoying some Dark Matter coffee…
Had a really fun game of Flames of War about a week ago against my arch nemesis Colin. Once again his German forces tried to overthrow the British lines, but to no avail. One thing that scares me witless are those bloody tanks that the Jerrys have, and they made short work of my Sherman armored divisions (I really need to try some other tanks!). I responded in kind with some ruthless artillery strikes (which weren’t always that great, but when they hit, they hit hard!). Also, infantry assaults on tanks are a lot of fun…
Infantry that are dug in are great for holding ground, and are a pain in the arse to get rid of. Colin did whittle down some of my rifle platoons, but true to their nickname of the British Bulldogs, they gave the Hun no quarter.
This was our first game in probably almost 2 years, and we were both relearning the game as the new rule set is out. I have to say that the game seems to flow a little better with this new set, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
In other news, I painted up Beastman that I received from Quest Miniatures. I went with the FILMation colors and am really pleased with the results. I used a white undercoat as the colors were going to be primarily brighter than I normally paint, and I forgot how much fun it is to be painting in a vibrant palette. Years and years of painting ‘mighty grimdark’ 40K stuff got me undercoating nearly everything in black. Anyway, here he is:
And finally, I finished another ORC Trooper for my PanOceania Infinity force. I was inspired by Priss from Bubblegum Crisis for the colors, and I think I’m going to get 3 more ORC troopers and paint them up in the other Knight Sabers colors. Infinity is basically a Manga skirmish game after all…
Today let’s look at some new minis that just landed in my mailbox!
Winging their way from our Canadian neighbors (or neighbours as we say in the UK), were a couple of figures from the new Masters of the Universe range by Quest Miniatures, which I had posted about originally HERE.
Inside the package were Teela and Beastman, and, much to my pleasant surprise, a third miniature which was noted as being a special rare chaser figure of Beastman wielding an axe, so huge shout out of THANKS to Quest for this lovely little extra!
Now as I had mentioned in the previous post, when two of my hobby worlds collide, then I am in geek heaven (or Valhalla, which is my preference). While I aim to (one day) own the vintage Grenadier miniatures (purely as a collector of Masters of the Universe items), these new figures really overshadow those old and rather stiff looking minis. Let’s take a quick look:
Teela – now Teela was a must-have for me as she is easily within the top 5 of my favorite Masters characters (the first probably being Stinkor, but they don’t make him, yet…) so picking her up to review was a no-brainer. Now I’m going to say that in my excitement of getting these, I totally forgot to take some pictures of them before assembly, so apologies for that!
Of the three miniatures I received, Teela was the only one who needed assembling outside of being glued to her base. There was also no cleanup required! Whaaaaat?? Well, OK, I had to file her shield a little. She comes in four pieces: main body, right hand holding her sword, left arm and her shield. So far, the one and only thing I can raise an eyebrow at (and it’s really minor) is that the slotta tabs are slightly too long to fit in the bases. This requires some delicate trimming, making sure you don’t get the feet or break/snap an ankle. Once that was sorted, putting her together was a breeze. The wrist/hand/sword has a small peg/hole set up which is superb. There are some miniature companies out there that still can’t seem to manage doing this, so this was a welcome relief when gluing these two pieces together. The left arm and shield attached with no problems at all, although I feel that it won’t take a lot to knock this piece off – it’s a super small area which makes it almost impossible to drill and pin. I’ll just have to make sure to handle her with kid gloves.
Her action pose is exactly how I would sculpt her, in a ready stance, ready to start swinging that sword or parry blows with her trusty shield. The pose reminds me of the Teela statue made by Pop Culture Shock toys (something I wish I could afford!!!).
Her likeness is spot on to the FILMation (cartoon) version of the character. There is a mold line that runs down the left side of her face, but some careful cleaning took care of that (we’ll see when she gets undercoated). I just hope I can do her justice with a good paint job! It’s all there though, the bikini, the boots, the bob, and the attitude, bravo Quest!!! Now… onto the next:
Beastman – My other choice for this initial score was Skeletors’ flea-bitten henchman. On a side note, Beastman (in the early comic books) was quite the scary brute. Why the cartoon version had him merely as a punching bag for Skeletor I will never really understand but hey ho I guess that’s the cartoon archetype of the underdog…
A much simpler set up than Teela, Beastman was a single piece casting, again with no cleanup required but also having the slotta base tab issue. It’s interesting to note, that Quest have gone for the FILMation look again, as Beastman has the boots that were seen in the cartoon, but never on the toy version, though this does open up the options down the road to do alternate versions of these characters.
His pose has him slightly crouched, looking as though he’s ready to press the attack with his trusty bullwhip. My one thing I would say about Beastman is his size, I’d have probably made the sculpt a little bigger so he’s more intimidating, but this is not a make or break thing for me at all, just an observation 😉
So in conclusion, I’m beyond happy with my initial purchase from Quest. They were quick to respond, quick to ship and very friendly to deal with and I highly recommend them. I’ll be picking up the rest of the first wave for sure, as I’m already imagining a diorama I want to build. Even those of you out there who really aren’t into MOTU could still use these in your RPG’s or tabletop battles for something a little different. Tonight these will be undercoated and then off they go to the painting table! I’ll post them up as soon as they are done.
Well, that’s another check off the list! Here is a heavy hitter for my Deepwars Dark Mariners faction. Amazingly, it only took two nights to complete, which for me is supersonic. First I hit all the areas with the base colors:
Once I had a good foundation and was happy with the coverage, then came several washes:
Then the application of highlights. As I’d mentioned in a previous post with my Dark Mariner Vanguard – I like to be a little bit ‘sloppy’ with the highlighting as these miniatures have such an organic feel to them, it seems to work quite well:
These undersea monsters need to look weathered and algae covered, so washes of greens and purples really help with that look I feel. I really need to figure out a better camera as my phone one seems to be getting worse, but still, hopefully you can see the work here OK.
I’ve been making some scenery for my Deepwars gaming table, which I’ll be posting up soon 😉
So anyone that knows me knows my love of toy collecting and especially collecting all things He-Man related. Anyone out there remember the old rubber M.U.S.C.L.E. figures? well San Francisco based collector company Super7 have bought the license and have created several properties under the rubber keshi M.U.S.C.L.E. style, including the Alien franchise, Street Fighter, Mega Man and of course Masters of the Universe.
Why am I talking about this on my wargaming blog? Well, that’s a good question, but MOTU has in fact has a link with wargaming waaaay back in the 80s. Grenadier Miniatures released several box sets under the moniker of ‘paint and play’, which had a bunch of Masters of the Universe characters that would come in a box set with a vac-form bit of terrain to display the minis on, and (i’m assuming) some basic colors to paint your warriors of Eternia.
Now, I would love nothing more than owning these miniatures but they go for a phenomenal amount of money on EvilBay, so unless I find some at a flea market or garage sale, I won’t be getting any of these any time soon. (Hell, I’d even just paint some for someone out there just so I can say I’ve painted them!).
Step in Quest Miniatures, a Canadian based miniature manufacturer who are (from what I can understand) relatively new to the game. Their site is a little sparse right now, but they did debut a first wave of a new MOTU range of miniatures at this year’s PowerCon – a fan run convention of all things Masters of the Universe related. To say I was giddy is an understatement – the first wave has the core characters (including my beloved TEELA!!) with the mention of more waves to come AND and core game system in the works too – hurrah!
The miniatures aren’t ‘officially’ available just yet but apparently if you send a nice message to them, they will sell you a set, or individuals which I believe are $12 a pop, bargain!
Before all this came to light, I had based and painted one of my rubber keshi figures, Teela, which actually came out pretty well! She was a bright luminous green before I went to work:
I see an awful lot of potential in the new miniature line from Quest, and the fact that two of my hobby worlds are colliding has me super excited. Hopefully I can pick up some and do a review soon. Watch this space!
Going through my drawers the other day (not my pants) I found an old back issue copy of White Dwarf. And by old, I don’t mean from the time in the mid-late 90s when GW were painting everything in various shades of red, no I’m talking about an issue from the 80s, July 1986 to be precise, so I thought I would take a look through and do a retrospective of sorts. Sit back in your armchair by the fire and grab a cup of hot chocolate while we fire up the WayBackWhen machine >cue TARDIS like noises<.
Right off the bat: The cover. There is the silhouette of the White Dwarf next to the title, then the subtitle: “The Role-Playing Games Monthly”, say whaaaat? Haha!
Then the artwork… I must say that this painting has always been a favorite of mine, right from when I first saw it in the Warhammer Fantasy Battle book. Titled ‘Amazonia Gothique’ by Games Workshop alumni John Blanche; it is a glorious, over-the-top image of a female chaos warrior, beautiful but deadly, and with some stunning, well maintained hair… I remember when I was in secondary school I painstakingly copied this image onto my art folder, not in full color, but lovingly shaded with pencil. I always loved the contrast of the green armor, the shock of white hair and the deep oranges in the sky. This remains a favorite of mine, and I would love to own a print of it so I could frame it.
Which reminds me… I must try and track down the miniature GW made of this, there were two versions IIRC? Actually, never mind, I just saw how much they are going for on EvilBay… ugh!
Now anyone here who’s old enough will remember that GeeDubya used to make miniatures and games for a whole plethora of other licenses. Judge Dredd? Yep! Doctor Who? Yep! Random assorted characters and beasties for roleplaying games? Well.. yep! As the risk of sounding like a totally old fart, I’ll go ahead and say that those were the “good old days” – back when a pack of 4 or 5 metal miniatures would set you back a whopping £1.95 (nearly $3?). But anyway, I’m not here to talk about prices! This issue of WD (which was typical of the magazine at the time) has a veritable mountain of stuff inside, including:
Call of Cthulhu scenario ‘Ghost Jackal Kill’ (with lots of Hound of Tindalos shenanigans inside!).
Psionics in Advanced Dungeons and Dragons.
The Uses of Intelligence in Role-Playing Games (for the characters, not the people playing the games!)
Using PSI Judges in the Judge Dredd role-playing games.
Cartoon strips – anyone remember Thrud the Barbarian and Gobbledigook? Me too!!
Letters page (and y’know, nerd rage really isn’t a new thing, is it?).
Adverts out the ya-ya!
Reviews of some films and games (yes, really!).
‘Eavy Metal – This is a real treat as it’s with Kev ‘Goblinmaster’ Adams and has some beautiful pictures of his work on some of those gorgeous vintage Citadel Minatures. I need a bib.
I LOVE looking through the old ads in the vintage WD magazines. These were the times that you would see an ad for Grenadier Miniatures on one page and then a GW ad on the next page touting their new releases, which where, in this issue, new figures for AD&D, Judge Dredd, their Samurai/Oriental Heroes range and then of course, the Machineries of Destruction:
Very sheckshy, yesh Mish Moneypenny? I remember the first war machine I ever had was the Goblobber. There was something to be said about those old box sets and figures, so I’ll post these up as well for you to all drool over:
Looking at White Dwarf now compared to then, well, there really is no comparison. They are similar in name alone. Over the years Games Workshop moved from a small indie business finding its feet and it’s fanbase to one of, if not the miniature gaming powerhouse it is today. Gone is the need to pay for the magazine through selling ad space to other competitors, or giving prime real estate to games systems that belonged to other companies, or even making figures for those systems. No, they have severed their ties to all that and become a hulking behemoth that only needs to worry about pushing their new goodies on the masses. I’m not knocking that at all, I mean, let’s face it, it’s a testament to their success, right? I just like to look back in time when it was obvious that the crew that ran GW at that time wore their influences on their sleeves, and supported all the things that they were interested in through their mouthpiece which was White Dwarf. (On a side note, I saw an ad for Bolt Thrower’s album ‘Realm of Chaos’ in another back issue. Those were the days!!!)
Nostalgia is a strong emotion, and looking through these old back issues is a trip down memory lane for sure. I hope you enjoy these images (used without permission) as much as I do!
“Most curious, the morphology of these creatures. I have dissected one of the recovered bodies and found that its structure has a basic skeletal form of calcareous bone, but replaced in some sections by soft tissue, supported by a surgically embedded alloy lattice. The techniques used in this type of surgical work is far beyond anything I have witnessed, and the alloy is much stronger and lighter than any we can produce. I must determine the origins of these technologies if we are to repel these creatures…
Research Journal – Pilny the Aged, 1689″
Finally, after what seemed to be an age, I managed to finish up this underwater lurking creep. I had a lot of fun painting him as I wasn’t as ‘tidy’ as I am on other miniatures, and that was mainly due to the fact that I wanted a more organic feel to his look. This guy does, after all, live under the sea and his armor is going to be rusted and barnacle covered, and worn down with the elements, so I wasn’t looking to have a ‘clean cut’ paint job like I would do on say Infinity miniatures for example.
I’m pretty pleased with the lighting effects I have on the ether crystals, I always dread doing that stuff as if it looks crap, it’s hard to rectify it without repainting the area!
I’m looking to get two starter warbands painted up so that I can start running some demo games of Deepwars, and now i’m a step closer to that goal. I’m actually really looking forward to making the gaming surface (more on that later).
I’ve started a painting tracker spreadsheet which is (hopefully) going to help me rage through the Heavy Metal and Plastic Pile of Shame that I have accrued (I’ll be writing an article about that shortly too, that’s going to run for several posts). So, first entry is completed, it felt good to fill the first line in lol!
I’m excited to work on these figures, it certainly gives me something a little different to go at, and I love the fact that it’s a game set underwater (cue JAWS music…). You should all really do yourselves a favor and check out the Antimatter Games website/store and take a look at the worlds of Shadowsea and it’s sister game Deepwars (most miniatures are compatible for both games).
I had made an unofficial rule a while back that I wouldn’t be posting miniatures on here unless they were completed, but I’m breaking my own rule today as I wanted to share my WIP picture of a tentacled, barnacle encrusted beastie from Deepwars by Antimatter Games. The Dark Mariners faction have a very obvious Elder Gods/Cthulhu connection which is pretty darn cool. He’s looking very orangey brown right now but I’ll be adding a few green patches here and there to break it up a bit. So far what you’re looking at are a basecoat and a few washes. The only part that has received highlights are the helmet and the ether crystals on the shoulder and the weapon:
I’m going to try some of the OSL on this (hopefully I won’t cock it up!) because I love the idea of these creatures skulking around in the abyssal depths, eerily outlined in the gloom by the light from the ether crystals.
When this guy is done, that will be 2 of the 4 miniatures for the Dark Mariners warband that I have for playing Deepwars. Then I can start on the Ancients of Atalan! I’m hoping to run a few demo games of this soon to try and garner some interest at the FLGS’s in the area. The setting for Deepwars and the fluff and the miniatures are all really great, and deserve to have a lot more exposure, especially since the low buy in costs can be very appealing. Couple that with the RPG elements and different play styles that you can opt for, this really is a hidden gem in the depths that more people should know about!
I have lots planned for upcoming articles: Deepwars demo game terrain, some long overdue fan fiction and also another international paint pledge/reducing the unpainted pile of shame project. In fact, I’m considering opening this up to other people who may be interested in participating. Drop a comment below and we’ll see what happens!