Review of the Year – 2016

One of these years I’m going to have a normal year and get lots of Hobby done, well I can hope can’t I!

2016 started off bad, I won’t go into details but the first half of the year was a right-off, the middle of the year got a lot better and the end of the year hasn’t been too bad.  Still I set out at the beginning of the year to:

  1. Paint 150 figures of any scale.
  2. Paint a lot of the laser cut stuff.
  3. Assemble everything that I get this year (kickstarters inbound!).

So how did I do?Golden Button

Paint 150 figures – I’ve lost track this year of what I have painted, but no where near 150 figures!  I am proud of the Nazombie that earned me a Golden Button on Beast of War!  I blogged about it on here, and it was the first miniature that I’ve worked on with my airbrush (tanks don’t count).  I did finish off some of my Enforcers for Deadzone to take to Broadsides.

Paint a lot fo the laser cut stuff – well I could say that this happened a lot of the stuff that I had cut at work and also the stuff I had purchased got painted and assembled this year, mostly so that it was ready to grace the table at Broadsides, more stuff has been cut recently and there is still stuff that has been cut/purchases that I need to finish (guess what I need some of it for Broadsides this year.

Assemble everything that I get this year – My Confederate figures for Wild West Exodus all got assembled and are in the process of being painted, but there is stuff I purchased this year that hasn’t been assembled.  I got into Beyond the Gates of Antares this year, but I’ve only managed to assembly about half of what I got (Polystyrene cement smells too much to use in the house, according to she who must be obeyed!).  Last week a parcelforce guy arrived with a worried look and asked if the parcel should rattle, that was the arrival of my Warpath kickstarter package (12 months after pledging) that won’t be assembled this year then.

All-in-all a pretty poor year for my aims.

Gaming wise I’ve played a few games of Frostgrave – love the ideas and the universe, not so sure on the system (or perhaps it’s me).  I’ve had a couple of games of Warmachine against Paul, it was nice to have another go at that game (sorry for playing the shooty army Paul).  I had a go at Gates of Antares and enjoyed a thoroughly good game against Joe – more of those to come.

Films – I can’t leave this year without mentioning Rogue One – A Star Wars Story, I went to see it on the opening Thursday and was blown away through the movie.  To say I was riveted to the screen was an understatement, all the things that The Force Awakens got wrong, this film seemed to get right.  Don’t get me wrong I enjoyed The Force Awakens and watched the DVD not long ago, it expanded the lives of the characters I grew up with and loved, Rogue One however gave us a view from a different perspective.  It might have helped that I had read Catalyst beforehand (thanks to a couple of train trips to London) as it meant that I had an emotional link to Jyn Erso.  If you haven’t seen it yet, you will enjoy it!

Well that was 2016 – the year that took so many famous people away that it was silly.

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Wild West Exodus – Nazombie

It has taken me a while to get this one finished but I have now finished my Nazombie for Wild West Exodus.  This zombie snake for the Confederate Rebellion is an amazing piece, I set out with the idea to make it look really pale and tried some new techniques.  First off I undercoated it grey and then sprayed white undercoat from the top to try to create a pre-shading, next I took my airbrush and Menoth White Base, unfortunately I lost the pre-shading.  I continued with the air brush to apply Menoth White Highligt to the top layers and then air brushed Waywatcher green, this turned out much brighter than I had hoped.  From here on I just went with it, so there are washes of Dark Angles Green, Dark Tone, Soft Tone and Strong Tone as well as highlights of White Base just for the skin of the snake.  The spine is two shades of silver and dots of red, the tongue has two red paints and then a wash of Red Tone, which was also applied to the ends of the metal bits.  The base is a twig from the garden and the grass is a bit of an old paint brush.  The brown on the base (yes there is some) is one of GW’s new technical paints, but I didn’t have enough room to really make use of it, look out for me using it again.  I’ve finished if off at the moment with some gloss varnish on the bits I’d like to be shiny, but I have yet to varnish the rest of the model, so they will most likely have to be redone.  Anyway enough rambling here is the finished piece:

 

Painting 2016

Time for a bit of an update on my painting for this year.  I’ve painted a lot of terrain for Broadsides (you can see much of it here), but I haven’t painted much in the way of figures and so haven’t made much progress on my target for the year, however I have been trying to improve my painting so here are some shots of what I have painted this year:

Enforcers for Broadside 2016
Enforcers for Broadside 2016
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Wolsung Hound of the Baskervilles – Warhound for my Frostgrave warband.
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Nerak the Bold a Confrontation figure, joining my Frostgrave warband.
Cygnar Charger
Cygnar Charger

Frostgrave Campaign – Game Three

Once more we ventured into the Snowy City of Frostgrave our merry band had been filled out by new arrivals including our new “warhound” Scooby.  Marching alongside Gimrin, our long time crossbowman, was a newcomer Volked Gemforger who also wielded the crossbow.  Ahead of us we spottted the ruins that Zedd had aimed for, with the hope that something useful could be found within.  We started to spread out across the ruins, Zedd with Gimrin and the Captain (Gruund Firmheart) in the centre, to the right was Volked, Thorin and Thorgrim, to the left Scooby, Skonmic and Thistori.  I stayed near to Zedd my skills had saved his life more than once.  Suddenly another warband appeared on the other side of the ruins and Zedd urged us forward to grab the treasure.  On the right Thorgrim grabbed the Treasure nearest to him and began to leg it back to our base, I wasn’t far behind with the central treasure and on the left Thistori was making off with that one.  Behind me I heard the twanging of the crossbows as bolts started to fly towards the enemy Wizard, spells sent shivers down my spine even from a safe distance, however only Scooby came home injured and that wasn’t too bad, the other warband made it home unscathed.

Thanks to Liam for a gentlemanly game of Frostgrave in which neither warband (with the exception of my warhound) made it into melee combat.  I made it off with three treasures as did Liam.

Frostgrave Campaign – Game Two

The snowy city of Frostgrave called to us once more and Zedd prepared us to go forth into the the city to see if we could have a more successful advenure than last time.  The merry band marched forth, Nathan the new apprentice speaking quietly with the Captain about battle.  Nathan wasn’t the only new member of the band as Thorgrim Lightfingers a well trained thief had jounryed to the city with Nathan and now looked for treasure alongside us.  Zedd had spotted an old church on the map and whilst the thought of graveyards and bone didn’t bring back happy memories there might well be treasure over there.  As we approached the churchwe started to spreadout, I joined Thorin and the crossbowman in guarding Zedd on the left of our band.  Nathan and the Captain moved forward together in the centre, which left Thistur, Skonmic Kragrock and Thorgrim on the right.  As the mist of the morning cleared it became clear we weren’t the only one looking for treasure at the church and the twang of a bowstring soon confirmed the appearance of another warband looking for valuable loot.  Two quarrels flew in rapid succession and were followed by a serious thump as one of the enemy warband fell dead from the second floor of a ruined building.  Nathan was showing off his skills on the far side as he used magic to move of the treasures in our direction.  Thorgrim got the first treasure, Throin got the second and the Captain grabbed a third one.  Moments later though the Captain handed the treasure he’d picked up to me and told me to leg it, which I did.  Sitting at base sharing a beer it seems the battle had raged on behind me with Magical bolts and grenades flying across the battlefield.  Skonmic had dealt with the enemy warhound and one of their fighters before grabbing a fourth treasure and moving towards home.  It seems the other warband had decided not to push their luck and had retired off towards their base with a few piece of treasure and some bodies.  Back a base Zedd was enjoying checking out the treasure, it looks like he got some potions, at least that’s what I assume the glowing bottles of liquid were, a couple of old dusty books and more gold.  Whilst he was checking that out Skonmic had gone hunting in the back of the brewery and had been surprised to find a kennel buried in the snow, he’d been hoping for some treasure of course.

A great game last night, thanks to James, we both grabbed treasure and I certainly saw the huge advantage of the leap spell to get moving with the treasure.  I managed to get hold of four treasures, whilst James grabbed three.  All-in-all it was another great game, although I now need to find a warhound figure that fits in with my Confrontation dwarfs and looks little steampunky (Wolsung’s Hound of the Baskervilles is the best I could spot last night but seems rather expensive for one figure!).

Broadside 2016 – Prepartion Part 2

Since my last update I have been busy painting the terrain, we also managed to playtest it one Friday evening.

The rules are a modification of Mantic’s Deadzone v1 rules (I didn’t have v2 at the time) and I’ve tried to make everything as simple and straight forward as possible.  We need to have a second playtest at some point and once we have completed the show I will post the rules up here for anyone to get hold of.  The stats for the teams that the participation players will run along with the rules fit onto half a sheet of A4, so you can tell how short they are.

In terms of painting the terrain, I’ve been making progress with containers, buildings and some scatter terrain.  I’ve cut the missing walkway piece and the replacement corner piece, whilst doing so I cut a food stand and some bins.  Containers are nearly all painted now, just two to finish off and if I have time I need to put a logo on the side of some of them.  Metal barriers are my current job, they don’t take long to finish off.

Broadside 2016 is getting closer just over a month to go now so I need to get on with it.  More photos later on and I promise to use a camera and not my phone next time:

AC Unit and Barrier painted and rusted up, some containers in the background.
AC Unit and Barrier painted and rusted up, some containers in the background.

Frostgrave Campaign – Game one

The Undead advanced across the ruins of the city of Frostgrave as we moved forward in our first adventure, the Enchanter Zed wanted to get his hands on some new treasure and we’d been hired to help him out.  Our Captain, in his blue armour, had told us to grab the treasure run back to our base.  No problem there the base was an old brewery with plenty of beer to keep us going after the battle.  I moved forward with the others the chill in the air seeping into my body was nothing compared to the chill of seeing old dead bones walking towards you with swords in hand.  Our crossbowman climbed up into the ruins to get a better view of the battlefield, his quarrel loaded and ready to be shot at something.  I felt a brief tinkle across my body as the Enchanter cast a spell on my armour, my  axe was ready to taste bone.  Thorin got to the first treasure chest and started to leg it back to base, Thisturi moved towards the second one, and our Treasure Hunter, Skonmic Kragrock rushed to the third.  Myself and the captain moved forward with Zed and his apprentice Richard, our aim was to cover the retreat of the others, the Necromancer had other ideas and sent his undead minions forward to kill us all.

So my first game of Frostgrave was on Friday night, I decided to use my Confrontation Dwarfs as my warband as they were the only really suitable figures in my collection.  Without the rulebook I had to sort everything out on the night, thankfully Frostgrave doesn’t take too long to organise with a limit on the number of figures you can take.  My warband consisted of an Enchanter, his apprentice, a Captain, a Treasure Hunter, a Crossbowman and three thugs.  I was up against Lee’s Necromancer and his warband.  The game was fun and the balance provided by a d20 saw both of us make spectacular rolls and amazing failures, the contest was in the balance for quite a long time.  I was one point short of killing the Necromancer and had cleared out most of the rest of the warband by the end of the game.  The downside was that I only had one poor thug left to continue to fight.

I was in front of Zed as the Undead’s Captain and a Barbarian, strange how you can tell what a collection of bones use to be, bore down on us.  The Captain had left me alone as Zed’s guard as he moved to defend the apprentice and Thisturi.  I thought I was done for and about to become more bones for the Necromancer to command, the two shambling undead attacked with swords, my axe whirled around blocking each thrust.  An opening in the captain’s guard saw him fall his bones dropping to the floor with his armour, the next second the barbarian is there again the duel could have gone on and on until my axe slipped through his defences and dropped his bones to the ground with a satisfying clunk.  As the battle quietened around me I realised that I was the only one standing, even Zed was out for the count behind me.  I moved to check on the others as the Undead gathered the remaining treasure and headed for home, only one didn’t stir as I checked for a pulse – Richard poor Richard, no longer would he seek the truths of the way of the Enchanter.

Broadsides 2016 – Preparation Part 1

Is it nearly the end of March already, what happened – actually lots but I’m not blogging about it as it is all real life.  Still the Easter holidays are here for me, whilst my eldest is still at school!  Time to start double checking the game for Broadsides 2016, this is the Sittingbourne Wargames show on Sunday 12th June.  At some point last year I had the crazy idea of arranging the game for this year and so starting thinking.  The idea is a variant of “Get to the chopper”, in this case it is a Sci-Fi setting so “Get to the lander” seems more appropriate.  The game is set in the Mantic Deadzone universe and the figures making up both sides are from that game with Enforcers trying to get to the lander and a bunch of plague trying to stop them.  This is a participation game with the players taking control of the Enforcers.  Beyond this I haven’t finished details although I intend using a cut down version of the Deadzone rules (need to see the new v2 yet though).  The terrain is the biggest issue and so I set out with this in mind when starting to play with the laser cutter, Rorke’s Drift that was shown at Cavalier last month was one of the earliest cuts.  I thought today that I better actually try laying out the terrain and check how much more I need to cut, we have a 6’x5′ table, but to leave space to organise figures etc we are planning on a 5’x4′ gaming space.  I put down the 6’x4′ green mat that I picked up at SELWEG last year and foled a foot over to give me the right size space, I then started laying out the terrain and this is where I got to:

Terrain for Broadsides
Terrain for Broadsides
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From the opposite side
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A view from one end.

Having put it out I need to build one more Habitat (the flat L-shape represents the last habitiat) and cut two pieces to fill the missing walkway space and I need to replace the corner piece as it doesn’t work with the straights.  Now who thought I couldn’t fill the board?

That was the year that was…

Well I tried hard to set myself a target to paint 365 28mm miniatures this year, and at one point thought I was well on target and going to get it done.  I managed 97 in the end, not even a third of my initial target I could blame all sorts of things, but the house move threw me entirely.  In the old house I had my own space and could leave my paints and  figure out to pick up the next moment of spare time, now I have to get my paint table out of the cupboard and set up on the dining room table.

On the upside I did manage to get 97 figures painted which was much more than I had managed in 2014.  I also took the opportunity to get to grips with laser cutting, I must thank the guys at work (not that they’ll read this) for letting me play.  I cut a lot of things, some you’ve seen, some that is still to be photographs.  I also purchased an Airbrush in exchange for all my Comics, most of my DVDs and a lot of my RPG books.

During the year I did manage to get in a number of games, less than I’d like.  A lot of Bolt Action was played in 2015, the Summer Campaign was fun.

Still it is now 2016 and so far I’ve managed to finish one book (okay I started it before Christmas and was given it in September!), and put together some of my most recent laser cutting pieces.  So what do I intend doing this year:

  1. Paint 150 figures of any scale.
  2. Paint a lot of the laser cut stuff.
  3. Assemble everything that I get this year (kickstarters inbound!).

Nothing major really!