Wednesday, 16 September 2020

Van Saar Spice Enthusiasts

 As a change from all the Carnevale stuff, I painted a couple of science fiction guys I've had lying about for a while. This week, the trailer for the new film of Dune came out (I refuse to say "dropped", as I'm old), which reminded me that I had a few potentially deserty types in the heap of unpainted lead.

The first is an old Van Saar Necromunda model. I got this ages ago, minus its head and one arm. I gave it a female head from Statuesque Miniatures and a knife that looks as if it was made from bone (in Dune, the knives are made from the teeth of sandworms). After all the Carnevale models, her head looks huge compared to her body - it's actually pretty standard for 28mm. She got a black suit, with heavy weathering on the lower legs. The eyes were washed blue to reflect the effect of eating space spice.

The second fighter was an old Privateer Press Khardor marksman. I've had this model for ages: an identical miniature from the same set was in my first Necromunda gang, the Terror Bird Cavalry. His long coat looks like the sort of loose thing that might help with desert camouflage, and the bits of his outfit that can be seen have a suitably complex look. While everything in Dune looks a bit retro to my mind, I gave him a glowing bit on his rifle to show that he's a science fiction person, and to draw the eye.

These are very much test models. I've got some more old Van Saars coming in from ebay, so I reckon I'll paint them in a similar fashion.

Friday, 11 September 2020

Vampires of Venice, Part 2

This week, more of the undead have flocked to the Serene Republic of Venice, thirsting for blood and Conettos. First up, we have a "standard" vampire.

I really like the movement in this model, although I'm slightly puzzled as to why she's only got one sleeve. The miniature originally had the coat partly open, to reveal enormous cleavage. Now, I've no problem with Ingrid Pitt and all that, but if your principal weakness is in your chest, it seems foolish to give people a really good shot at it. So, I closed the coat up with a bit of green stuff, prude that I am.

It's hard to see, but her coat was painted with a stippling technique to suggest old, cracked leather. I like the technique, invisible as it is!

The next guy is a slightly drab thrall with a crossbow. He came with the Kickstarter. As with all these models, he's nice, but I've painted him in rather muted colours to show his low ranking in the vampiric hierarchy. Lucky him.

And finally, some terrain. For the first time in about six months, I went to the local gaming shop, where they have a lot of the Nolzur's Marvellous Miniatures models for Dungeons & Dragons. These are cheap and pretty decent, and the terrain they make is very nice. I bought, among other things, a very nice fountain. It had a few mould lines, and I had to cut off the trident of the man on top (Neptune?) because it was so bent, but overall I really like the model and think it will do well for both Frostgrave and Carnevale.

Thursday, 3 September 2020

Vampires of Venice, Part 1

 Magical Venice is a dangerous place. As well as violent criminals, deranged aristocrats and hungry fishmen, there are vampires and their minions. I painted up four of the vampires as the start of a new gang. I've had most of the models for a very long time.

This is a "standard" vampire. She's a really nice model. For the reddish-purple of the dress, I used a black undercoat and successive thin layers of a Privateer Press paint called Malevolent Magenta (seriously). For the very top highlight, I mixed a little red into the colour. I'm not sure what the model is doing: perhaps shrugging. 

"Yeah, I'm a vampire. So what?"

Next up is a human minion called a thrall, who the vampires can drain for additional hit points in the game. This one has a crossbow for a bit of ranged support.

Like all the others, she has rather unwholesome, sickly skin. I mixed a medium-level grey into the base flesh colour, and added a lighter flesh tone for highlighting. 

The next model is one of the three brides of Dracula. In Carnivale's background, the three brides explored the world, learning magic from different places, and this is the one who went to the mysterious East. She's called Miriam, which doesn't really suggest being a vampire or from the East, but what the heck. She's equipped for combat with, er, a robe that she's only just wearing and some flip flops. 

And finally, I painted one of the very old metal models left over from when Carnivale was owned by Vesper-On games (the others are resin). This little guy (at least compared to the others) is a Newborn Strigoi, a vampire who has only recently turned undead and has gone somewhat feral. It's a nice sculpt, but was hard to assemble and paint. He should provide some additional cheap punch to the gang.

So that's where we are with the Venetian vampires. More to follow soon!

Sunday, 30 August 2020

Six Citizens From A Sick City

About three years ago, I signed up for the Kickstarter of TT Combat's skirmish game, Carnevale. A while later, I was sent a large amount of miniatures and, well, I suppose you can probably guess what happened next. That's right: I didn't paint them. 

Well, I decided to paint a group of Venetian Citizens. They're low-ranking minions of The Guild, the organised crime syndicate / "normal people" faction of the game. The citizens aren't much good on their own, but they're cheap in terms of points and they have a rule that improves them a bit if they're acting in a mob.

TT Combat's models for Carnevale are consistently excellent sculpts. They're resin, and a tad brittle, but the detailing is great. Also, because of the setting, one model can easily be used to proxy another.

I decided to use a limited set of colours on them, to tie the group together. Looking back, I think some of the colours, especially the dark blue, are a tad drab, but it does unite them as a unified furious mob instead of a, er, messy one.

These two seem to be a sailor and a fairly prosperous-looking gent.

Here we have two ladies, who look like what happens when you cross Jane Austen. I really like the sculpting of the folds in their dresses.

The man in this picture was a freebie in the Kickstarter and is very angry about it. The girl is actually a metal model from the game Bushido, and was an animal tamer. I cut her whip off: I think the remaining handle would work as a cosh. My detailed research (ie playing Assassin's Creed 2) tells me that her outfit isn't that different from some European peasant gear. She's slightly smaller than the others, so I expect that she's a teenager who picks pockets and runs errands. Because the model is so spindly, I added a rock to give her a bit more support. (I've also noticed that I've forgotten to paint a flask on her belt. Damn.

I've still got the leopard that the Bushido lady came with, and sometime I'll get around to painting it. But for now, they are a small horde, who will hopefully one day come in useful on the canalside.

Thursday, 27 August 2020

More Oddities from the Box of Unpainted Models

I've been rooting about in my huge box of unpainted miniatures - specifically, the huge box of stuff I bought discounted because it looked cool. Today, we've got a Privateer Press miniature - a character model for the Trollblood faction in Hordes, named Captain Gunnbjorn. 

Normally, he'd be blue, but I decided to paint him the same greenish-pink colour as my ork commandos, as he looks as if he might be from a similar species, and he's got the same caricatured military style of clothing. I assembled him as usual, although I stuck the missile launcher at a slightly different angle, so that the model was a bit more "open", and left off an axe, because I'd lost it.

Here, out of interest, is a rear view. It's hard to see here but he's full of good details.

I also painted an old Necromunda wyrd model. He's a renegade psyker, but as he's a telekinetic (I think) he's very muscular. He'll fit with the Goliath cultists I've painted, probably as a champion. To be honest, I don't especially like the model, but he'll do fine. He was missing weapons when I got him, so I added a bolter and an axe from a fantasy Khorne model.

Wednesday, 19 August 2020

Bad Times In The City

The heroes disappeared into the city streets, pursued by the authorities. They needed to know why they had been ambushed by the security forces, and quick. The best thing for it was to speak to their contacts in the underworld. But with the governor's corrupt minions in hot pursuit, they needed to work fast.

This was a mission of my own devising. The five heroes needed to speak to (ie move into base contact) with four informants. Each informant was in the middle of a quarter of the board. They were up against their own points value of gangers with lasguns. 

The governor's troops move in

I was expecting this to be a tough fight. As it happened, it was brutal. On the left flank, the combination of Doombot X-7 and Maria Poppinata disposed of three troopers, with Doombot stunning the enemy with a frag grenade and Maria rushing in with her sword to polish off anyone still standing. The governor's thugs went down quicker than a spoonful of sugar.

Maria Poppinata gets the lowdown from Disco Sue

On the right, Dave and Captain Fancy supported Dr Apocalypse in a more cautious advance. Dave made good use of his hipshooting skill to pick off one of the enemy, and the mad doctor knocked down three men with a frag and finished off the last of the team with his blade. Unsurprisingly, the remaining few troopers took a good look around and fled the field!

Doctor Apocalypse raises hell next to the Robot Repair booth

The heroes had driven the enemy off the field. At last, they were able to question their informants and find out what was going on. I wish I knew!

Willy the Fish protests his innocence

Tuesday, 11 August 2020

Confrontation Tech Gangers

 Well, it's been a while. For various reasons, I've not done much recently. The combination of the ongoing pandemic and awful heat in the UK hasn't made for ideal painting conditions. Hopefully, the weather will improve soon, by which I mean it will rain for a month non-stop.

Anyway, ages ago I stripped two very old models from GW's pre-Necromunda game, Confrontation. They're tech gangers, and are absolutely excellent sculpts. They've got a very cyberpunky feel, and have all sorts of great details. In fact, they're so nice that I didn't want to hide the details by giving them two-handed weapons that they'd carry across their bodies.

One of the gangers got a pair of arms from the ever-useful Genestealer Acolytes kit. The other's arms came from the Skittari Rangers set. I converted a sword and a sensor-type device into a torch for him to hold. The modern arms work well with the old models, and give them a bit of character: one guy is brandishing his weapons dramatically, while the other is creeping forwards. The bases were made out of textured plasticard and a Warlord Games base cut in half. Here's a WIP:

For painting, I wanted to use fairly bright colours to show off the details and stop them looking drab. The guy with the torch got a red jacket, which makes him look oddly like he stole it from either a British Empire soldier or a low-ranking minion from Star Trek. Oh well. 

And here's a rear view. As you can see, both of them have implanted head-sockets, and breathing apparatus. The guy with the autogun also has an electric drill and a spanner for last-minute repairs!

And here's a final pic.

I'd love to get hold of some more of these guys, incidentally. If anyone's got any spare, do let me know!