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A New Beginning…

Tinkering with Artwork and Ideas!

The more complex the mind, the more the need for the simplicity of play.

— James T. Kirk
Let‘s go on an adventure!

This is the first post on my new blog. I’m just getting this new blog going, so stay tuned for more. Subscribe below to get notified when I post new updates.

More sci-fi distractions…

So yeah, I have not been the most focused of late. In addition to trying to finish some holiday minis, I got sidetracked with the power armor which can be put to dual purposes and some Mon Calamari…. oh, and my first Core Space…

First, a couple of old Wizards of the Coast Star Wars Miniatures, technically a mercenary and medic.

Not a lot of work to repaint and rebase them. I changed to uniform colors to match each other. No idea what I will use them for, perhaps Core Space. I just think Mon Calamari are cool.

One thing I did take away from doing these, it is not hard to get a decent looking mini even from what many may consider a rather poorly detailed or inexpensive mini.

Whilst I have not started any of the Core Space minis yet, I did decide to do a quick paintjob on one of our turn counters.

It is interesting to see how a simple bit of paint can drastically improve the apparence.

I finished the next Honor Harrington book… a great read, quite the page turner….

… and I stumbled across this interesting video with the author himself talking about a number of interesting topics. Seems his background is that of a military historian rather than being a veteran. I find this interesting because my mother wanted me to be a military historian instead of a veteran.

As for movie news, I saw Hunter Killer with Gerard Butler and a number of other good actors.

Sadly the film felt a bit flat, formulaic even. Everything by the numbers making a predictable but watchable movie. Gary Oldman yelling is always fun. I am an old grunt, but part of me wonders how I would have done if I had joined the Navy instead, perhaps as an officer. I suppose I would have ended up like Denzel Washington in Crimson Tide….

Endzeit?

No, I am not quitting the blog… nor is it meant to be a clickbait post title. I just like the German term Endzeit better than Post-Apoc, End Times, End of Days, Ragnarok or Post-Apocalypse (which I usually spell incorrectly).

I am a big fan of the genre and the Fallout games as part of it. In fact I put in over 1000 hours on Fallout 4 before I gave up computer gaming to focus on tabletop gaming.

My wife is however not a big fan of the genre. She prefers more hopeful and optimistic settings. We had considered the Fallout tabletop game from Modiphius when it was announced but their delays in delivery gave my wife ammunition to convince me to shelve that project to focus on Middle Earth.

However, I fell foul of the slippery slope of broadening genres and opening the door to sci-fi got me thinking some Endzeit minis, particularly Fallout, could work in a sci-fi setting.

Above you can see a Modiphius power armor suit unpainted, next to a Brother Vinni resin mini I just finished. A difference in scale but I am hoping when I rebased the Modiphius Mini on a thinner clear base it will not be so pronounced.

The Modiphius model is from the Fallout 4 artwork but the model from Brother Vinni looks more Fallout 3. Since I am thinking of cross purposing the power armor for sci-fi I skipped rust, dust and The Brotherhood of Steel logo I would have probably put on it otherwise.

I did pick up some urban wasteland Battle Systems terrain on eBay for a great price so who knows, maybe one day I will convince my wife to walk the Wasteland…

The faces of Legolas…

I just finished some reworking on the three Legolas models I did a few months back.

First up, the GW plastic Legolas.

Then a GW metal Legolas.

And finally, a second GW metal Legolas. I had painted this one up to proxy as a generic Wood Elf and was going to repaint it to matchthe other Legolas models but my wife liked the idea of Legolas having a change of clothes.

I also did some reworking so on some GW Warhammer Fantasy plastic Wood Elves. These I won in auction already painted o a decent standard. I just rebased them, converted their weapons and did some washes.

They are a bit overly uniform for my taste but when I get around to painting the other GW WHFB Wood Elves I have they should mix in and look less uniform.

I was recently disappointed to have lost a good auction on a Mercs: Recon Kickstarter package. I am on the lookout for things to help create Core Space Expansion missions.

TV wise I decided to give Mars another try… I love the subject material but the part documentary part drama format can get a bit wearing. I do love the aesthetics of their environmental suits and wonder how I can incorporate that into future Core Space minis….

Elves…but not Santa’s helpers…

So this weekend saw the completion of a few minis, some for our table and some destined for elsewhere.

All those above are GW metal, and destined for our game world… but the Gil-Galad and Elrond going elsewhere, hence the black edging on their bases, are resin. Those for our table are all fresh paint work where as the other three are all complete repaints where I painted over the paint work of the original owner.

And my wife also finished a Ranger for her armies….

I did the basing, the matt clear coat and a tiny adjustment to one eyebrow but otherwise all her own work. If she had more free time I believe she could quite competently paint all her armies to a quality standard…. which would give me more time to paint mine!

We did spend some time with light entertainment… Jumanji, the version with The Rock…

It was better than I expected… popcorn fun with the Rock being his usual charming self.

In other light entertainment news we finally got around the seeing the first episode of the Orville.

Many people recommended this to me but the trailers put me off, it looked too slapstick silly for my taste. But having seen it, whilst it had some annoying bits it also had some good bits. It definitely seems a complete 180 from Star Trek Discovery in some ways but I feel like both very much reflect our contemporary society. The Orville for the exaggerated casual liberal feel good atmosphere and Discovery for the bitter, grimdark desire to be edgy.

Numenoreans… in the Service of Sauron!

So I finally finished a bunch of Numenoreans that I have converted to Black Numenoreans. It was just a case of waiting for a dry enough day to clear coat them.

It started with the test piece awhile back…

He did get a bit of minor improvements when I was working on his colleagues. I know some Tolkien purists will wonder on the pale skin and blue eyes. My wife and I decided to be inspired by Jackson’s take on the Mouth of Sauron as well as GW´s take on them being supernaturally long lived as a gift from Sauron.

While I may have made some progress on my backlog of work, it was a case of one step forward and two steps back as I won an auction for a game of Endure the Stars. The plan being to lift from it what I can for future Core Space Adventures…

In addition I finished book 4 of the Honor Harrington series. I am amazed at how much I am enjoying these books. Whilst I was never as skilled as Honor, I very much identify with her moral decisions and disposition. It is a bit like reading a story of one of my descendants.

I also caught Pacific Rim 2….

Whilst it was not a great film it was entertaining, in fact much better than I expected but that could be because I had very, very low expectations.

I also finally finished Z Nation.

Season 5, now the final season, felt strangely unattached to the previous seasons in my opinion. It was watchable but not great and I was somewhat relieved when it was finally over. I did feel better than I did at the end of season 4, when I thought that would be the end of the show. At least season 5 does not end as depressing as season 4 did!

Of interest to me are the two versions of War of the Worlds….

The BBC version looks like a nice historical piece.

The SBS version looks contemporary and I noticed something surprising about it….

…. where are the American military forces? Interesting to see French troops in the spotlight for a change in an English language show.

Should they stay or should they go…

These three miniatures were won as part of a larger auction and already painted pretty well. My wife was not a fan though so the plan was to put them on eBay.

I tidied them up and rebased them, then listed them on eBay. As Chaos stuff seems pretty popular I thought they would go quick. They didn‘t. I dropped the price… still no interest. A few weeks of this and I decided to keep them.

I do not know who sculpted them but they are metal and I think they were intended to be Chaos warriors of some sort.

As you can see in the picture above, one I have discussed before. He was my favorite of the lot so I decided to keep him earlier. These others, not so much… but they are ok.

My wife agreed with the idea of adding them to our game world since no buyers seem interested. The question then was Orc, Black Numenorean or something else? My wife suggested Orc…

The first one I changed his skin from a common human skin tone to something I thought looked more Orc. I toned down the brighter colors on it, trying to make it look more Orc and less Chaos.

With this one I added the plastic GW shield. It is a bit busy I know, and rather Chaos or Undead themed but I liked it with this metal mini and thought I would be unlikely to use it elsewhere.

The final one… I was unsure about which color to use for the discs on his armor but in the end just went with a slightly brighter silvery metallic than his maille armor.

In the end both my wife and I have ended up more satisfied with these minis than we expected.

As always please feel free to comment with feedback, suggestions and advice. Comments help keep me motivated!

Sci-fi distractions…

One of the agreements I made with my wife when I got back into the miniatures and tabletop gaming hobby last year is that we would focus on our Middle Earth project and not get distracted by the other genres I love… like post-apoc, Western Frontier, French and Indian War…and sci-fi.

Somewhere I fell down a slippery slope and got first into Dropfleet Commander starship combat gaming… and then into 28mm sci-fi gaming, primarily Core Space.

I have entirely too many projects for my currently limited time but I just can not seem to help myself. Great deals appear and I loathe missing out on something to later regret it.

Above you can see a Wizards of the Coast Star Wars Miniatures Figuren I picked up for a Euro at Spiel in Essen. I repainted it from the factory original painting and rebased it as a trial for my idea to use clear bases for the sci-fi project.

First I tried the clear bases from Greenstuff World as the most cost effective but I was not keen on the slightly blue tone to the clear base. Nor did like the thickness. The whole point was to have an immersive base for multiple types of settings, from spaceships to exotic alien worlds.

I switched over to the more expensive Litko bases but much preferred the result.

You can see the Battle Systems terrain and mat to good effect. The mini is a generic Human Mercenary according to WotC, so he should work fine as an NPC in Core Space.

Speaking of NPCs for Core Space…

Above are some bits I won very, very good deals on with luck on Ebay. Crazy good deals to be honest. I almost felt guilty. Almost. The monsters are an obscure set of sculpts but the humanoids are heroes from Deep Madness.

EDIT: Thanks to Hobby Services for identifying the monsters as sculpts from the Assimilation: Alin Host Kickstarter from Troll Forged. More information is available on his blog…

https://brokenstarsburningships.blogspot.com/2019/04/assimilation-alien-host-gallery.html

I also got a good deal on some monsters and heroes from Zombicide Invaders.

It will be some time before I get around to painting all these! Especially has I have been struggling to get a paint scheme I am happy with for my Mantic Marines.

I tried all grey… too Starship Troopers the Movie… and that is not a good thing in m opinion. I am a huge fan of the book by Heinlein but the movie was rubbish.

Then I tried all green. I was thinking of this look…

But I was just not happy with it, I felt it looked too contemporary and not futuristic enough.

So then I tried the Green grey mix of the Mantic Warpath official artwork… not finished yet of course but still not quite satisfied.

So I may try something else. Perhaps the red and black of the Mantic Marines in their Star Saga official artwork, although that will likely give a MCR Marine vibe from the Expanse and therefore not compliment my current spacefleet color scheme. Sigh.

One thing I have been doing when I can not paint is read.

Enjoying Weber’s Honor Harrington books…

And trying out the Cinnabar books by Drake.

Whilst I enjoy the Slammers books by Drake the first of his Cinnabar books was a bit underwhelming. Perhaps because I am comparing them too closely to Weber’s work.

Both series have an Age of Sail vibe to their space flight mechanics. And both have echoes of Napoleonic era politics as well as culture. For some reason the Honorverse feels better thought out, more immersive. But that could be because I have read several books now from the Honorverse and the Cinnaverse is new to me.

Either way, I still recommend both series to people looking for engaging military sci-fi reading.

Now if only we could get some good Honor Harrington movies!

The faces of Stri… er I mean Aragorn…

Today we are looking at some Aragorns that I finished a couple of months ago. Three metal GW on the left and one plastic GW on the right.

There are plenty of started projects on my work table. It is that time of year again where winter holiday decorations and gifts need to get done. Photos of gifts will have to wait until after the holidays though!

The faces of Gimli…

A few months back I finished a couple of Gimli miniatures. The left one is GW plastic, the right GW metal. I have at least one more GW version in metal I need to paint. And a Mithril version in metal that will likely end up just being a rank and file dwarf.

Speaking of dwarves, I also finished a plastic GW Balin.

I have more of Thorin’s dwarves won in a lucky bits box sprue jumble auction but have not painted them up yet…

…. but I did get Frodo done.

And I see Angry Joe continues to love the Mandalorian… check out his episode 2 review.

The faces of Boromir…

I have three Boromirs currently finished for our table, on the left a plastic GW one whilst the other two are metal GW ones. As you can see, the Boromir in the middle is having a bad day…

Also, I recently finished a Frodo and Sam… destined for a table other than ours.

Both are repaints. I redid the eyes on Sam but left the original eyes on Frodo.

We finished Carnival Row… it was brilliant except for the last episode which was terrible. It seemed as clumsy as the final episode of Game of Thrones. Very disappointing reveals and it just felt like a big let down considering all the potential of the previous episodes.

I started watching season 2 of The Purge… I expected to hate the Purge movies and tv series but so far enjoying the social commentaries being made about our contemporary dystopian culture.

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