It is though the Plaguefather himself has set his sights on Holy Terra for his next incursion, right? In all seriousness though, these are some interesting times we’re all currently living in. First and foremost, I hope that you are all happy and healthy, and observing the guidelines we’ve all been issued regarding social distancing and whatnot. We can all get through this together, and get through it we shall.
As tabletop wargaming is a very social hobby, spending weeks shut in can be a very daunting prospect, but that’s where we’re at.
So how are we focusing on the hobby at the moment?
Welcome friends! As I sit and write, I can’t quite get my head round that we are already two thirds the way through January! The last several weeks have been somewhat of a whirlwind with the holidays, family coming in from overseas and the onset of a frigid winter. While we have retired to winter quarters for the cold months, I’ve had little time for picking up a brush. I don’t know about any of you lot, but if I don’t get at least a couple hours a week at the painting table, I get cranky.
Last week I visited my FLGS, Grognard Games, to meet up with my buddy Greg to play second ever game of Bushido. Since my last game, I had constructed a board to play games over, so this was a great opportunity to try it out!
Welcome all, on this rainy, dark, and somewhat humid July afternoon. After my last session of D&D, I felt compelled to paint up one of my many Reaper miniatures. Now, I’m a little on the fence with the Reaper stuff. Some of the larger models look great, and the price point vs their metal counterparts sure makes it an attractive prospect to be able to pick up some great models without breaking the bank. I feel that some of the smaller miniatures suffer (a little bit) with the translation from the metal to the plastic, but again, It can be overlooked as you’re generally only going to be buying singles for characters or for beasties to populate your dungeon with.
Hello fiends! As I sit here with the tempestuous skies closing in on Chicago, and the tumultuous rumblings of thunder, what better to get into the spirit than to post up my newly completed Ikiryo, one of the miniatures from the Cult of Yurei starter set for Bushido?
I have to say, that I’m really excited about the prospect of getting a painted warband for Bushido. Each of these miniatures has a lot of personality, and I’ll confess that more than once while I was painting Ikiryo, I wondered what her story was. On a whim, this was what popped in my head:
“Many nights she wonders alone with her thoughts, lamenting the day she gave herself to the Cult of Yurei. With each passing Autumn she loses a little more of what humanity she had left. Ikiryo serves a different master now.”
Now while the Bushido rule book is rich with background of the Jwar Isles, and of the different factions overall stories, there’s no actual details of the individual characters. I suppose this is a good and a bad thing, good if you want to create your own narrative for the characters, bad if you don’t, and would be happy using the supplied ‘fluff’. Your mileage may vary.
All that aside, I agonized for a while on what colors to use. I decided to keep the palette limited, with two main colors – jade and another whose name escapes me right now, but a very complimentary pink color.
I did toy with the idea of putting a pattern on her kimono, but decided against it, and opted for simplicity, and just going for a design on her parasol instead. I made her face slightly paler than the rest of her skin, as a sort of ‘it could be makeup or could be a mask’ feel, emphasizing the facial wounds and stitches. I painted the eyes completely over with a pale blue, and highlights white to give that supernatural feel to her.
I love that the miniature and the posing is so demure, but looking at her face you know that she is quite possibly terrifying to be up against on the field.
A few moments of tomfoolery on my phone and I added some fog for atmosphere:
Completing Ikiryo also knocked another dent in my D20 painting table. I also painted up a Deep Wars figured as well from the table, but haven’t had chance to get any pictures yet. Stay tuned, and thanks, as always, for reading!
I was in Chinatown over the weekend with the family, and I picked up a handful of the little red Buddha figurines, thinking that they may work quite well as objectives or just straight up scenery for Bushido.
A mere $6 later and i’d picked up these little fellas. I washed them in warm soapy water and then based them up with some cork and MDF bases I had kicking around:
After the glue had dried, I textured the base with some modelling pumice and left overnight to dry (I prefer using this than the PVA/sand option, as I feel this has more resilience).
A quick blast with some grey car primer and a wash with some Agrax Earthshade, then random washes of the GW green wash (forgot the name!) and we’re on the way:
I used a splash of green to simulate the weathering and discoloration of stone through being left out in the elements. I didn’t want to get too crazy with the paint job on these, just something quick and easy. I grabbed a couple of different shades of grey and drybrushed the little fella, followed up with a last light drybrush of white.
After painting the soil and drybrushing that up too, I hit the base up with some static grass and added some flowers, and voila! a quick piece of terrain to dress my Bushido board. I’ve put my Cult of Yurei Ikiryo figure next to it for size comparison. I didn’t want a huge statue, just something that could be like a roadside shrine or something.
I think it goes without saying that being in this hobby we all come to that point sooner or later where we have amassed a ‘Pile of Shame’ – that drawer/box/cupboard/closet/storage unit that has a literal mound of unpainted miniatures and vehicle and scenery kits. This is not to say that you don’t have plans for them and that you’re just buying up lots of plastic or metal for the sake of it (or maybe some of you do? hey, I’m not here to judge). We as gamers (for the most part) suffer from the OITNS or “Ooooh, It’s The New Shiny”, and it’s very easy to fall into this. With the number of new games, companies, Kickstarter campaigns, new releases etc growing exponentially it’s very easy to get blown around by the winds of change (maybe Tzeentch has a hand in this?). There is SO MUCH cool stuff on the market now, it’s hard to turn around and walk away (I’m guilty of this for sure).
All this aside, I was watching a Tabletop Minions video on YouTube on the train ride home from work the other day, and Uncle Atom hit on this very subject. Take a few minutes out and watch the video below >pa-CHOW<
Uncle Atom certainly hits on some interesting points for sure. I’ve recently been on a bit of a purge through my Pile of Shame and took a bunch of stuff to my FLGS to trade in for store credit (Sisters of Battle – 2019, remember? Speculating to accumulate baby!). I had begun to feel a level of anxiety every time I went into the Nerd Closet, being greeted by lots and lots and lots of unpainted or undercoated miniatures staring back at me. It was then I realized that this is a hobby, and it shouldn’t be making me feel crappy and down about having so much gathering dust. So, as well as cashing in a bunch of Forge World items and some other guff, I thought to myself “how can I start chugging through and get some momentum going with painting this stuff?”. It presented a set of challenges in that I needed to prioritize what games I was playing and the frequency of those games. At the moment I play almost exclusively Infinity, but then I thought “well, I’m going to get burnout if I’m painting nothing but Infinity miniatures”. So with this in mind I approached it from a different angle.
And thus the ‘D20 table was born’.
The D20 Table was basically an idea I had to make the selection process for my painting a little bit more fun, and to enforce some variation to keep the interest going. It’s a simple idea, I created a table in Excel with twenty line items which are all minis from games that I play/are about to play. The 1-20 obviously corresponds to the dice roll that randomly selects what i’ll be painting next. I’ve been using it for the last few weeks, and here is what I have struck from the list so far:
I’m currently working on number 8 – three PanOceania Fusiliers, which are almost done:
It’s given me a hand with wanting to get my minis painted, and it feels good to strike another line off the list. I get either my son or my wife to roll the dice, so they actually become a little invested how their ‘selection’ is coming along. The other thing that has helped is to make a conscious decision to paint to a decent tabletop standard. The Fusiliers above have taken maybe about 5 hours from start to this point, with maybe a half hour left in them to paint the bases and varnish them. It almost felt like a weight being lifted from my shoulders when I told myself that not every single miniature needs to have 10-15 hours spent on it, as that would be when the hammer blow came in and I’d get the burnout when I look at the tons of other stuff I had to wade through.
I feel that stocking up (I won’t use the term hoarder) and burnout/fatigue can go hand in hand, so I’m really trying to make an effort to knock some effing great holes in my inventory over the coming year, so this will be an ongoing saga. I hope that you’ll join me on my journey.
I’d love to hear any comments on how any of you combat the burnout, or the Pile of Shame in the comments below. Thanks for reading!