Saturday, 30 November 2019

Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge X

Tomorrow is December 1st and that means just one thing... the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge is just around the corner once again. OK actually two things, that AND fruit mince pies are also back on the menu! This is edition TEN if you can believe it and my eighth participation. Evan is also on board for I think his third or maybe fourth.

Looking back I can only thank Curt yet again for all the amazing friendships that have come from my involvement (of which his is right at the top of the pile!), never mind the huge pile of painted minis that have come about as a consequence.

Last year saw me sneak over the 10,000 point mark total in painted minis from the last 7 editions of the Challenge. To put that into perspective that equates to 2,000 x 28mm miniatures painted in a period of roughly 21 months, or around 95 per month. Not bad given that spans Christmas, New Year, my birthday and Australia Day all of which distract from the painting focus. I hope you enjoyed that little statistical diversion Miles, I know I did...

More lead (OK mistakes were made, a LOT more lead) is on the way and the prep has already begun on material at hand. Bring it on!


Monday, 21 October 2019

Portable Wargame Fantasy rules

I mentioned in my last blog post that I've been formulating plans for a solo fantasy campaign using Bob Cordery's Portable Wargame rules to fight the tabletop battles. There is no current "official" fantasy version of the rules but a few people have drafted some tentative rules of their own.

I've also had a go, especially given I intend to use these as mentioned above. I've created a new Portable Wargame Fantasy blog page to capture my thinking on troop types, special abilities and spells.

Painting is going very well with the Orcs & Goblins and Empire of Man forces complete. More on that soon once I have had time to take some decent pics.


Friday, 27 September 2019

Have You Tried Turning it Off and Back On Again?

And..... I'm back! I could give you all sorts of quite lengthy, detailed and for the most part genuine excuses for where I have been for the last few months but that just seems like a lot of effort.

Instead I'm going to pretend the blog was misbehaving technically somehow and we can all go back to doing whatever seems fun and pretend that never happened. Sound good? Excellent! In the words of Mel Bose the Terrain Tutor... Lets crack on!

So anyway, I actually have been doing quite a bit, it just hasn't made it as far as the computer and consequently not onto the blog. Of late I have become quite frustrated by the lack of face-to-face gaming time.

Consequently I've embarked on a pretty in-depth solo project using 15mm fantasy armies and Bob Cordery's excellent Portable Wargame rules which I have now read several times over, plus the accompanying volumes.

There is currently no PW fantasy variant documented by Bob, although a few fellow enthusiasts have done some bits and bobs (no pun intended). To fill the gap I've pinched bits from theirs and then had a stab for myself which I will share in due course.

Along with the rules I've also developed some troop type definitions by extending Bob's ancient period ones. I've also put together some army selectors along the lines of the old Warmaster Armies ones which fit the idea of the various armies I intend to paint and play with e.g. Warhammer Fantasy-esqe.

From a campaign perspective I've been really enjoying the ECW campaign material of Peter from Grid based wargaming - but not always and have shamelessy appropriated his campaign style including maps, terrain generation and much more. It's wonderfully compact, well thought out system and looks like a load of fun so I can't wait to start using it.

That's enough from me for now. Its good to be back in the saddle and there's more to come over the weekend including a bunch of painted 15mm orcs from the superb Ral Partha Demonworld stable.


Saturday, 6 April 2019

Ev's Challenge - The One That Got Away

Greetings, paint fans! Here's what I was working on when time ran out and the 9th Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge came to an end. 

Reaper Bones again (keeping my hobby expenditure within reasonable bounds); it's a Blue Dragon, a stalwart of Old Skool AD&D monsterdom.

He stands 100mm from the base of his feet to the top of his head, and measures 160mm from wingtip to wingtip, so he really is a monster! Wish I'd gotten started on this one earlier, since he's a pretty impressive model, and would undoubtedly have put me over the line for the 500 point target I'd set myself.

The beast was base coated in GW Caledor Blue, and highlighted with increasing amounts of Vallejo Sky Blue. Blue ink was applied to the shaded recesses. The armour plates on the limbs and belly were worked up from a base of Vallejo Sombre Grey up to Wolf Grey, and inked in GW Asurmen Blue.

The wings were painted with the same set of greys as the armour plates, but without the blue ink.

He's been stuck to a 100mm Warbases MDF round, built up with white pumice paste to disguise the original moulded plastic base of the model. A bit of trimming was needed for it to fit on the MDF base.

The ancient scrolls (OK, the 1st Edition AD&D Monster Manual, but it's from 1977, so it counts) tell us that Blue Dragons live in arid or desert environments. With this in mind, I went for an appropriate basing combo.

The usual mix of slate chips, sand, and a couple of larger pebbles was painted with a basecoat of Vallejo Game Colour Leather Brown, and inked with GW Agrax Earthshade. Once this had dried, the base was worked up through Khaki and Desert Yellow, with a final drybrush of Citadel Bleached Bone to pick out the detail. Tajima Tufts Desert Diorama Elements put the icing on the desolate cake.

And just think, if I'd been better organised, this bad boy would have seen the light of day a couple of weeks ago!

I may not put my paints away just yet - there are other also-rans left over on the painting table, and it would be a shame to let them lie fallow for another year.

What's next then? Stay tuned...


Friday, 22 March 2019

Ev's Challenge - The Final Chapter

So the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge has come to an end for another year. And what a ride it's been! I've minioned for the first time (big shout-out to the Wednesday Warriors!), and I've produced a varied assembly of fantasy figures.

So what have I learned?

  • Preparation, above all. While I could get away with doing things on the fly in previous years, work commitments plus the weekly minioning meant that I really should have gone in with a proper plan. I'm severely ADHD and a worrier by nature, so lack of preparation really is the enemy.
  • Try and vary the subject matter. I have so many historical, 40K and horror figs still in the lead mountain, yet this time round it was almost all fantasy, and I think this got me in a bit of a rut. 
  • Realistic targets. After last year, when I actually cracked 500 points, I thought I could do the same again. Not so, topped out at 479, worse luck! Time and resources are limited, and I have to take this into account next time.
Anyway, enough of the self-reproach, here's the last of my submissions for Challenge IX!

 An Oldhammer-ish Witch Hunter, a figure from the old Warhammer Quest boardgame. I have a lot of affection for these old sculpts.

A command section for a unit of Sun Dome Templars, the elite pikemen of RuneQuest's cult of Yelmalio. Aventine Miniatures Tarentine Phalanx, repurposed for Glorantha.

A terrain entry, a ruined Gloranthan temple to the River God Zola Fel. Despite its desolate and desert appearance, it was entered in the 'Water Feature' bonus round on the basis of its frescoes.

The remainder of the Sun Dome unit. I do like how they turned out!

A Reaper Bones Griffin - Reaper has given price-conscious gamers a cheap and easy way to get big flashy monsters onto the tabletop, and I am very happy with this big guy.

Here's the last of my Dwarven Blood Bowl team, the Durinhold Tectonics. Finally, they can compete in the big leagues! 1990s sculpts from Citadel's Gary Morley, loads of character.

Reaper Bones Brain-In-A-Jar™, aka Mr Akeley. This one, and the Mi-Go, were the only non-fantasy entries in my Challenge. Really have to mix things up a bit more next time...

Following up from the unfortunate Mr Akeley, my Curtgeld submission, Gazzzz, the Fungi From Gorgoroth. A cosplaying cosmic horror mashup from the pages of Lovecraft and Tolkien. In keeping with the Challenge's theme, 'Fellowship', he's a Tolkien villain as well as a constant trial to his long-suffering co-worker Bazzzz. Reaper Bones again, with some GW Black Orc and Gripping Beast add-ons!

And that's it from me for this year's Challenge. Will I still be painting and modelling outside Challenge times? I only produced one figure between Challenges VIII and IX; I think I should try and increase my output a bit and see if I can maintain some momentum. It's just wasteful having so many unpainted figs lying around!

So stay tuned...


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