Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Bloodreavers - Part 2

The puzzle have been solved!  Just a quick post to show off how my various conversions paid off and allowed me to rank up my Bloodreavers in an effort to make them serve as Chaos Marauders.

Certainly these chaps look a bit Chaotic, what with the arms going every which way...
As you can see from the photo, I numbered the bases with a pen, because they really only fit the one way!  

Most of my conversions are head and left arm swaps, with a few weapon or right arm changes too.  Being plastic, the figures were relatively easy to modify, and I fortunately had a bunch of Chaos bits to draw on for the conversion. 

I will show more of these figures later, but I was just excited that I was able to get it done at all. 

Monday, August 15, 2016

The Emperor's Railroad

I have been on vacation the last week, so have not had much hobby time, but I did get a chance to read a few books, including the Emperor's Railroad by Guy Haley.

Set roughly 1000 years past an apocalypse of some sort, this novella is a recounting of an experience a young boy has with the Knight Quinn as he helps the boy and his mother move from one town to another.  A knight is something of a paladin sort, with access to tools and technologies forbidden to the general population by the Angels. (Aliens? AI? Actual fallen/descended Angels?).  There are also technological artifacts and the undead, which makes for a dangerous trip.

Anyway, the book was good, and I liked its very gritty look at a post apocalyptic world. Characters were well written, and I got a grasp of their motivations and histories fairly quickly. Unfortunately the "book" was very short at 176 pages of fairly large type, and more, it felt a bit short too.  A longer version of this same story would have been very welcome.  That said, I am looking forward to reading the next volume in the series, The Ghoul King, which just was released a month ago.

Another part of this book that I enjoyed was thinking about how well it would fit for a sort of "gonzo" D&D campaign world.  Want to do dungeon crawls where you might fight Zombies/Robots/Dragons/AI/cultists?  Knights with swords and pistols? Well this setting could easily handle all of that, and plenty of detail is available from this book to give your future world a nice gloss. Just the sub title of "the dreaming cities" gets my brain working on ideas, and really that is the sign of a good setting.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Imperial Veterans

For my birthday this year, my sister and her family got me the new X-wing expansion Imperial Veterans.  A larger expansion box for the X-wing miniatures game, this box gives you two repainted miniatures (one TIE Bomber, and one TIE Defender), as well as an array of different upgrade cards, and a new scenerio.

Many trees died to bring us this information...
Probably the most interesting cards in this expansion are the new title cards, which substantially improve the TIE Defender, and add an interesting new option to the TIE Bomber. 

Of these, the TIE/D title is the most exciting, since it allows you to shoot a secondary and a primary at the same target, which when coupled with an ion cannon or the new tractor beam, allows you to damage and restrict the movement of a target in the same round. 

I had the chance to actually PLAY the game this weekend with my buddy, and now my head is awash with grand X-wing campaign ideas... we will see if any of that comes to fruition. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Night Goblin Wolf Rider

In what is a pretty obvious direct (yet inferior) copy of Sebastian's work over at Eastern Empire, I converted this chaos hound to be slightly more wolfy and mounted a night goblin on his back.  This required cutting off the original legs at the waist, using gnobler legs on either side of the wolf, a bit of sculpting, and then result.

I have a few more of these planned, so that I can have a tiny unit for use in some eventual far future Warhammer game (or for various other skirmish/RP usage) 

Monday, July 25, 2016

Warhammer Marauders from Bloodreavers

Recently I won an Ebay auction for the 20 Bloodreavers in the Age of Sigmar Starter set.  I had been bidding the same low price for approximately eight months, so I was pretty pleased!

The goal for these figures is to make a Khorne marked marauder regiment for Warhammer Fantasy Battle, which will mean some conversions are needed to get them to rank up.  The models actually fit rather well on 25mm squares, but as they were designed to be skirmishers, they have axes and swords and arms swinging around every which way and it will certainly be a puzzle to get them all into the regiment.

Comparison with my converted Reaper Chaos Champion
Speaking of puzzles, the figures are very cleanly cast (as one would expect from contemporary injection molded figures), but as they are designed with computers for molding, they have what seem to be unusual cut lines. For example the unit champion figure (you get two) has three pieces, body, arm, and unusually, a combined head/arm piece.  Receiving the figures stuffed in a small bag as I did made for a challenging cleaning session, as I tried to match up the various parts.

Comparison with a standard Marauder and between "Franz" and "Jean"
As compared to the older Warhammer Chaos Marauders, you can see that these figures are approximately the same height and mass, however, they are proportioned slightly differently, in that the newer figures have slightly shorter legs, smaller heads and hands, and broader chests... all of which makes them seem slightly more "realistic", at least as much as blood crazed cannibal barbarians can be realistic!

As compared to the older Warhammer Chaos Warriors, you can see that they are again around the same height and mass; however, the Bloodreaver is broader in the shoulder (making allowances for the armor and fur cape), and obviously more chaotic in pose!

Anyway, I will post more pictures when I get the regiment built up, and eventually painted.  With all of that skin, these figures seem suited for a cream colored zenithal highlight...

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Necromunda Sniper

Back in the good old days of GW mail order bitz orders, my favorite thing to do was to build custom units created from scouring the catalogs for various alternate figures.  These were still aimed at the usual army book or codex entry, but might feature unique heads, or weapons or alternate figures.  Making the unit for cheaper than retail price was a particular thrill. (E.g. Empire pistoliers made from the Empire command sprue and bitz heads)  My first Steel Legion squad was built in this way, and consequently it featured the elusive Necromunda sniper figure as a regular guardsman.

At the time, I intended to have just the one Steel Legion squad, used as an Armored fist squad in my otherwise foot bound army (made mostly from Catachan plastics, Cadians not yet being available).  Consequently, rather than buy a Steel Legion boxed set, I ordered various blisters and bitz to build the squad, and ended up using the Necromunda sniper figure as an alternate guardsman.  Currently the figure goes for relatively silly amounts on Ebay (One auction in progress has it at £9), but I bought the figure for $4 or whatever the bitz price was.

Picture from Collecting Citadel Miniatures Wiki
If you examine the figure closely, as I have while painting it, it becomes clear that this figure was sculpted by someone other than a Perry, and further, that it was probably a trainee piece.  The conclusion can be reached by the somewhat uncomfortable pose of the figure, and because the equipment is clearly not the same as used on the other figures of the range, particularly the bedroll.

Comparison shot of the rear of the figure and some standard Steel Legion troopers.
(Photo from bcderue's bucket, found via Google)
Since the Fanatic range tended to release more dubious sculpts from trainees or hired sculptors, it makes sense then that the Necromunda Sniper came out under than banner (as a Necromunda Sniper) rather than as some sort of supplementary blister for the Steel Legion.  Indeed, at the time, the only snipers that the IG had were ratlings, which were later effectively replaced by regiment specific sniper sets, themselves replaced by the Catachan and Cadian command boxes (which includes sniper arms).

In any case, in this man's army, he is just a rifleman, and I have another figure converted from a heavy bolter gunner which I use as a sniper.

Friday, July 1, 2016

INQ28 - Venator part 2

Way back in December of 2014, I showed off a converted Venator figure I made after being inspired by JB the "Asslessman" of Leadplague (an excellent blog you should already be reading).

After quite some time, I finally finished painting the figure, and even better, this weekend I sprayed it with matte sealer so it can be shown off in all of its gritty glory.

Also of note is the base, which marks my first completed INQ28 base.  I decided to go with a fairly typical ruined industrial type of base, which you can see here.

I have a couple of others made up for other figures, but I think that I will be buying the new Sector Imperialis bases to save time.  Adding a few details on top of a base is much easier than creating them all from scratch!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Vinyl Sampling - Part Four Abdul Goldberg

As mentioned in Part One, following Suber's lead, I selected a few Star Wars Miniatures for conversion to use in 40k.

This final figure is special, because I chose him to become the most infamous of Rogue Trader Characters, Abdul Goldberg.  Abdul has been all over the internet lately because the facebook group The Emporium of Rogue Dreams had a contest to create the figure, and Rick Priestly even picked a winner. 

Anyway, my Abdul Goldberg is made from this figure:

I cut off the original head, added a belt and a dagger, and changed his mon calimari wrist into a controller of some kind.  I have liked the look of a keffiyeh scarf for a while, and it seemed in keeping with the background, so he got one. Abdul seemed like the sort of fellow that would have a big belt buckle, so he got one of those too (it is a little hard to see, but it has Alpha Gamma written on it in Attic Greek letters).  The white uniform was inspired by watching the trailer for Rogue One for the 100th time.

That concludes this round of Vinyl Sampling, but I am sure that there will eventually be more... I do after all, have a large number of excess SW figures...

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Vinyl Sampling - Part Three

As mentioned in Part One, following Suber's lead, I selected a few Star Wars Miniatures for conversion to use in 40k.

This time I used the following figures as a base:

The first guy is sort of a cheat, since all I did with him is repaint. The base figure is quite good, although a bit slender for 40k, being more "true scale".

The second guy got a new head and a scarf, which transformed him from an alien into a gangly pilot.  As I worked on his helmet, I was inspired by a fairly obvious source...

Bases are unfinished, but will eventually match all the other Inq28 figures.  I did go back and paint them black, which helps the figures look better in the short term (or given my project speed, long term) before they are rebased.

More to come in Part Four with a special character.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Vinyl Sampling - Part two

As mentioned in Part One, following Suber's lead, I selected a few Star Wars Miniatures for conversion to use in 40k.

The first figures I would like to show off are two "gangster" types I created from the following figures:

I cut the alien heads off of both of them, and in both cases replaced the left hand with a GW knife hand.

I also added a sort of a "purse" to the larger figure, as he needed to have something to carry his undoubtedly stolen goods in, and a shoulder pad.

The shorter guy got a new head, a sort of ribbed collar or closed hood, as well as a redone chest plate.

As you can see, neither has been based, and that will happen sometime in the future, and will follow my now standard basing scheme.

More to come in Part Three with the two pilot figures, and in Part Four a special character.