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.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Urban Debris

Suber showed off his finished multi-building block a while back, and in commenting on the painting and weathering (which is seriously good, go check it out), I suggested "you could make a mix of paper bits, sand, and some baking soda with glue, and just sort of smear it into the corners and edges."

Now, afterwards I got to thinking.  Was it fair to suggest that he do something to his lovely buildings without first hand knowledge of the results?  After all, I imagined that it would go well, but I had never done it myself.

So, the next day at lunch, I knocked together a little photo background using some super glue and various paper and card found in my office.  I then painted it, and like all projects of mine, it sat waiting for some free time to appear.
Here is the background without the added litter
When that time arrived, I printed out some collected posters and newspapers to mix with some sand, baking soda, paint, and glue to apply to the photo background, just as suggested to Suber.

As it turned out, I did need to repaint the litter concoction, which is why it took me so long to get this posted.  Adding a bit of paint, ink, and pastels on the top of the litter really helped, although I could have probably mixed those in the beginning to save time.

I think that it took about an hour worth of time to build and paint the photo-background (most of that agonizing over the graffiti), and about 10 minutes to do the litter.  I think it adds to the look of the piece though, but what do you think?

Pound Pounded

Well, in light of the surprising results of the referendum on Thursday, it is unsurprising to find that the Pound to USD exchange rate has collapsed. ($1.37 to the £ as of this writing [and a similar collapse against the Euro])

Here are some great British companies you should patronize in a show of solidarity (and to get some great deals on great figures)

Perry Miniatures Home of the fabulous Perry Brothers.

GZG Astounding 15mm scifi, as well as 6mm and space ships

Pendraken Miniatures 10mm

Hasslefree miniatures  fantastic 28mm figures

Brigade Models 6mm/space/15mm

I know that there are ton of smaller companies out there, so let me know in comments where you plan to shop.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Vinyl sampling - Part one

At the beginning of March 2016, Suber had a great post on his blog Old School Workshop about using Star Wars miniatures as bodies for Inquisitor 28/Rogue Trader/Necromunda conversions.  For those of you not in the know, Star Wars miniatures was a collectible miniatures game from Wizards of the Coast, which used a similar system to the Star Wars D20 system roll playing game, and allowed for quick, point based skirmished on a gridded board.  The "common" figures from the collectible packs were available cheaply on Ebay, and I ended up with a few figures.  Well, maybe more than a few...
Collection status as of ~2008
On ebay, the Star Wars figures were often sold in "x4" lots, where more than one of the common or uncommon figures were grouped together in lots, meaning that I ended up with quite a few duplicates, often far in excess of what I needed or wanted. The figures themselves are often well sculpted, if a bit thin in comparison to the rather "heroic" GW figures. After reviewing Suber's success with chopping and repainting the figures, I got out my miniatures and the bitz box, and set to work.

The first five, prior to sculpting and painting
Over the next couple days, I will be showing the results off, which I think went quite nicely.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Weekend Basics - flock and tufts

I had a three day weekend this weekend due to a work holiday, and managed to get a bit of time while the kids were asleep to finally flock and add tufts to these figures.

Monday I sprayed them with matte sealer, so we are inching so very close to completion.  On that happy day, I will post a review of the whole project, and also try and feature some of the various conversions present here. (Might be useful to someone, since, last I checked anyway, GW still sells these figures!)