Man, it has been a long time. To cut a long story short… my day job kept me more busy than ever and catching a Covid infection did. It help things much. That being said… work is finally slowing down and I have recovered from the plague itself (still struggling with some long term effects it seems) so I thought I should take the time to start posting again.
Last Friday Martin and I played our first game of Marvel Crisis Protocol since (I think October or November). Actually the first game of anything.
The game was set on a late 1990s Ney York street. Martin gave his Defenders another spin.
I had always refrained from trying out Guardians of the Galaxy. First since I had trouble laying my hands on the Starlord miniature. And once I got him, because I felt that faction ability was not matching up to others. So with the recent rules updates, I felt it was time to try.
I cannot really give a detailed game report since it was quite fast paced and we were very immersed in the game. But I felt the Guardians all punched way above their weight class and were a lot of fun to play.
Yes, I have been quite idle (again) lately. Mix of different things… being an essential worked the pandemic has kept me busy and while I have been painting a fair lot (the Fallschirmjäger army is progressing nicely, too), there was a long spell when the weather was to bad to spry varnish the minis. And once that had changed it was a case of ” I will only add a few more minis and then I will post them all on the blog”. Which as you all know turns into an endless circle.
Anyway, with regards to Marvel Crisis Protocol (MCP) the only things I have not painted are Starlord (who seems to be hard to get here in Europe unless you are willing to pay a premium) and the recently released Inhuman and She-Hulk (all in the mail as I type). So in other words… I have caught up with Atomic Mass´impressive release schedule. Which seemed to be a good moment to post the latest batch of an impressive 34 miniatures total. Some of these minis have been sitting around a while been being varnished and having their photos take. I noticed you can spot some dust on some minis (most noticeably on Valkyries hair) or even some spiderwebs on Toads chest. Sorry about that.
Lets start with the last mini actually finished… Thanos. I deleted painting him until last, since I had been in no mood to paint his throne, which essentially was a couple of hours work for something I would rarely put on the table. But I am happy with the results. Had to go back to him due to a freak accident. I varnished him on wednesday but forgot to take the mini back inside. We had some gale force winds during the night and he was blown off the table. He took some massive damage to one of his shoulders (on the level that sculpting was required). Oddly enough, while the throne disintegrated into four pieces no paint was damaged on it.
Up next is Gamora. Just like Drax I would have loved a Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) version of her and for a while i thought about converting her mini. But I decided that this would be too much effort and with Atomic Mass already having released two versions of Black Widow, who is to say they will not release an MCU version of her later on. In the end I really liked painting her, although all the fine black lines and the white armour were a huge pain in the behind.
And up next her adopted sister Nebula. There is lots of crisp detail on that mini which made her extremely fun to paint. Unfortunately the frontal photo of her was blurry, so just one shot of her.
And while we are talking Guardians of the Galaxy… there are Rocket and Groot. ASs long term followers of this blog know, I hate painting animals and Rocket was no different. But in the end I think he turned out OK and I was able to do the mini justice.
Groot on the other hand was right up my alley and I think the fasted MCP mini I painted (less than 45 minutes total including drying times).
What I really love is what they have done with these minis. Groot ramming his arm into the tarmac and Rocket riding on it, where it resurfaces.
The Kingpin is an interesting mini. It is very bleak in a way, after all it is just a bold, fat man in a suit with a cane, so there is not too much about it. But the pose just has so much character that I always love looking at it. Shame that the brush brush I applied the base coat with was no longer the best and left some chips on his chest.
Taskmaster is a cracking mini as well, especially the shield and cloak were lots of fun to paint. Not entirely happy with the face, but I am not going to redo that, since one of the paints was a bit too thick (which is part of the problem) and I fear I would loose too much detail geeing it another go.
Just like Kinpin, Bullseye is a simpler mini, that takes a lot of its looks from the pose. And I love how he hides the throwing knives behind his back.
Who would these fine gentlemen be without someone to contest them. Someone like Daredevil. A lovely dynamic mini, but what I did not like is that he is propelling himself off a headstone. Apparently the idea was to tie in with the Christian motif of the character, but I simply felt it was at odds with the basing in MCP, which is all urban streets and not parks or graveyards. So I took the newspaper box from Superman (Miles Morales) and put him on that. And a little graffiti also gave it a Christian motif.
So what is Spiderman (Miles Morales) jumping over these days? Well the bin from the core set seemed like a good choice. I sculpted some trash into it and positioned it like it is tumbling over. The trash bag next to it is from Spectre Miniatures (only took me about three years to catch a moment when they actually had it in stock).
Ghost Spider did not do that much for me, but still the very bright pinks and blues were a nice contrast to the black (which actually has a lot more nuances than the photos make it look) and white of her suit.
So what would Spiderman, although that is rather the Peter Parker version, be without his arch nemesis Green Goblin? While I absolutely love Willem Dafoe playing him in the movie, I like the fact that they went with a more comic version, allowing for brighter greens and oranges on the mini.
Between priming and painting him, I actually managed to rip the pumpkin bomb from his right hand off. Since I have no idea when or where it had happened, I assumed that it had found its way into the vacuum cleaner and thus the bin. So I was quite happy when early February we found it between the leg of the kitchen table and the wall. So the mini is complete after all.
And to keep in the Spiderman setting, there is also Venom. Did not expect this mini to be much fun to paint, but the face and tongue actually made up for all the black.
And while we are talking about big minis… there is always the Hulk. I did not want to go the bright green route Crome the comics with him so I went for the more subdued olives from the MCU. Turned out larked than I had wanted, but still I am going to keep him this way.
Again with Vision, I wanted to give him colours based on the MCU rather than the comics. Unfortunately they turned out different shades than I had wanted. And in this case I am rather unhappy about it. Especially since it is such a nice sculpt.
By contrast I am rather happy with the colours on Ant-Man. What does strike me as strange though is the sculpts on this one. I can understand, that they went with the MCU suit, which has become rather iconic, but why did they use different suits for the normal and tiny sized versions?
I made a small change to the tiny version and that it is running up a pin from a soda can (real life one). I felt this emphasised his small scale better than some cracked tarmac that is supplied with the mini.
With Wasp I rather went for a more comic style look, since her suit was not that close to the movies. Again, the tiny version was placed on a huge nut to emphasise her small size.
Before I move on to the Asgardians, I have to say that while I love MCP for the nice sculpts, the Asgardings are very much on top of it all. Both Thor and Hela are absolutely stunning sculpts and Angela… I have been painting mini since the early 1990´s and she must be amongst the top ten to top five sculpts i have painted in all those years.
So let’s start with Thors. Went with a grey rather than a black tunic on him since I felt it complimented the mini better and painted the scales onto his legs that were not there on the sculpt itself. I had long thought about doing some lightning effect on his hammer and in the end went for it… what would he be without some thunder and lighting? I decided to do without some OSL, since I really liked him as he was and felt that it might overdo it.
Hela is an absolutely gorgeous sculpt and the dark greens of her suit combined with the light greens of her “magic” just make her pop! I extended the magic mists onto the base by sculpting some more tendrils. adding the skulls that actually came with Thanos felt right for her and like it or not… six skulls would have been lost on his throne (as they say in 40K… needs more skulls!).
So Angela… such a lovely animation, pose and crisp details. In a way I wish I had read her comics before I painted her and I would have done the ribbons differently and would have given her warpaint around the eyes. But I am still so happy with the paint job, I am not going back.
You can almost feel sorry for the other Asgardians, since they are nice sculpts by all means, but simply pale before the other three. Loki is a really nice sculpt, although I struggled with his face that simply captures the grandeur of the character in ints pose.
Enchantress was a bit monotone with all the green (should have gone black pants as she has in some comics) so I simply had to give her red mists for contrast.
And last of the Asgardians is Valkyrie. I flipped the left hand sword around into a defensive pose (which most sword masters with tell you is daft). Once painted I found , that I should also have changed the pose of the hand to bring it closer to her lower arm, but alas… it will stay this way.
Getting back to earth… there is is Winter Solidier. Went with a bleak colour scheme to give him a cold war movie Russian feel.
With the Punisher I gave him woodlands MARPAT pants as a nod to his Marine heritage (and to break up all the black). Really happy with how they turned out. Same for the blood on his shirt. Big shame I struggled with his face.
And up last are the X-Men and Mutants. I was not really looking forward to these. Especially the X-Men as I was in no mood for blue and yellow spandex. So I decided to approach them like a band aid… one quick pull and be done with them. Man was I mistaken as they were all huge fun to paint.
But starting with the Brotherhood of Mutants, namely Magneto. I was not really happy with going the plum / purple route of many comics or the blacks and greys of the movies. Jesse E. from the Furios Finest Podcast (BTW… if you are interested in MCP, really go and give it a listen, while I have given the link to Apple podcasts, they are available on virtually any platform) suggested white. So I went with 2019 X-men comes books run looks. While there is hardly anything except white on the mini now, it looks cracking on the tabletop.
Mystique has a nice pose but I have to admit, she is somewhat bare. Simply went with the Surf look.
Toad put me a but between a rock and a hard place. Really liked the sculpt, but did not like the jester looks I found in the comics. Then someone posted a picture from a comic (I must have missed) on Facebook the other week showing him in greens with greenish skin and I absolutely loved it.
With Sabretooth I went for fairly classic colours again, although I gave the fur and his hair different colours.
Moving on to the X-Men, Cyclops was the prime offender when it came to blue spandex. While I would have loved to go for the 2019 X-Men looks on him as well, his suit simply was too different, so it was more of a classic scheme. But once I painted him, I really liked how the colours played out.
With Storm I went for the 2019 X-Men looks and I like how that complements the skin. While I used the exact some colours on her lightning bolts as I did on Thors hammer, they came out far darker, but I still think the look fine.
Again Wolverine was a prime offender for the yellow spandex, but starting off with ochres instead of yellows toned that down. The yellows and blues are actually more nuanced in real life than on the photos.
And bringing it all to a close is Beast. Absolutely love sculpt and it is only when you start painting him that you realise how detailed it is. I went for the hand option with the book, since… what is more frightening than your opponent being so calm that he is taking the time to read a book while fighting you.
So this brings the total to some 60+ minis as of now.
For those interested… I have also included a slideshow of the previous minis below so you do not have to click through the old posts.
Right now I am immensely enjoying painting minis for Marvel Crisis Protocol so this is the batch I started before our holidays and finished afterwards.
As promised in my last post, I took some better photos. Unfortunately I forgot that this meant I should rather dust them off before taking photos. So if some of them show fibres and the like… those are not baked into the paint job.
Up first is Black Widow, Agent of Shield. This is her second version in the game. Having painted the first one on classic colours (black suit with yellow trim and red hair) I wanted this one to look different. So I went with the look from the movie Avengers: Endgame. And I have to say… I like how that turned out.
The mini for Hawkeye is based on the comics, but I felt the bright purples did not really fit it. So I went with dark purples going burgundy, like they did in the movies to give him a more subdued look.
Up next is Killmonger. First things first… I did away with the Panther statue he comes with, since I could see absolutely no reason, why that would be standing in the middle of the road. Resting his foot on the curb only makes him lean forward to slightly, so that was an acceptable alternative for me. The mini is pretty bare, except for the weapons and necklace, so I gave him Multicam pants. Makes him look a little more interesting and gave me a chance to try out a new paint set.
I have to say, I really loved this mini. Again it is based more on the comics than the movies, making the details a little bare at times, but the cape was a joy to paint. And I was feverishly awaiting the right time to fit those aftermarket spell rings to the mini.
The other mini from that box, Wong, left me a bit struggling. I envisioned him in bright, but otherwise bare clothing. In the end I feel he is a little too bare. But I am unsure if I should really crank it up. Maybe a few mystic flames embroiled into his sleeves and legs?
Ghost Rider was a bit of a conversion effort. While the original pose of him doing a wheelie was not bad, I felt him sliding his bike was more iconic. So I converted the mini until one leg was resting on the ground and added more flames. Contemplated keeping the chain metal in some spots, but he end decided to make it flaming hot. I also thought about painting on some OSL, but there is so many flames on this mini that a lot of it would have been covered in OSL and I felt that this would be overdoing it.
This minis seems to be a hybrid look between the comics and the movies somewhat leaning towards the later. But with the colour contrasts it was rather nice to paint. I know a lot of people have gone really elaborate on this basing, making him hover inside a whirlwind of debris, but I rather liked him just hovering.
Up next is his brother Black Dwarf. Again I converted this mini a little bit, sculpting on a pair of abs to raise him from the hunched over pose. I struggled a bit finding a good colour for him and went for an orange brown on him. Unfortunately, after filters and oil paint washes he turned out rather orange for my taste. By a twist of fate I have a second Black Dwarf (first pack I bought was misplaced), so I might eventually end up converting and painting another one.
The next member of the Black Order is Corvus Glaive. Great mini and a magnificent pose. I decided to go with a very dark green, which is almost black to the naked eye. Looking at pictures from the comics, I often had a feeling, that was rather painted in greens, so that felt right to me.
And last in this batch is his wife, Proxima Midnight. Again great mini, although it took me a while till I had the shading the way I wanted it.
And that is actually the last mini from this batch. But… there is already 13 more finished minis on my workbench, just awaiting their basing and varnish. So there will be more.
As some of the long term followers of this blog will know, this is actually not my first venture into superheroes, but my second one. But when Knight Models returned the Marvel license that game essentially went dead (for me), IMHO mostly due to the fact that there was virtually only the good guys and that I found the sculpts somewhat flimsy.
The license was sold on and last year Atomic Mass Games released a new Marvel miniatures game. The rules are sound, easy and fresh, so this should be fun to play even in the long run. And best of all… the sculpts are great and the minis are a real joy to paint. So let’s see what I got finished so far….
Tried to go for the more classic comic colours on him, instead of the darker colours seen in the later MCU movies. For some weeks I was not really happy with his shield which I had done in quite a plain manner. So I went back to it recently, adding some light effects and now I am really happy with the overall result.
I am usually not a big fan of OSL, but with Red Skull and the Tesseract, this seemed mandatory. The mimi is still missing its varnish, but once that is applied, I will add some satin varnish to the Tesseract, which should really make it pop.
All in all I am happy with how this one turned out, maybe except for her skin, which turned out a little dark.
Ultron was a bit hard to paint, with the metal / Vibranium skin being a bit hard to contrast, but with the orange glow, that mini still provided an interesting result.
Iron Man has me struggling. He definitely needs more contrast and I am quite unhappy with the result. Right now I am just unsure if I should go and continue work on this one, since I feel that artistically I have moved myself into a dead end. Or, and this being more likely, I will simply start from scratch.
Now this mini is absolutely lovely. He is based more on the comics, which is a shame, since a different helmet and an armoured plate to his chest would have allowed for the white crosses on them, giving a break to the monotony of an virtually all black mini. So I decided to borrow from the movie and give him camo pants. It is subtle on the mini, ut really makes a difference.
Very flimsy to paint, but still a real joy. Did not like the way the mini was positioned on the original iron girder provided for the mini (now being used on Ultrons base), so I placed him on a fire hydrant I had lying around (as we all do).
Did not really have any big ideas about this mini. So I decided to paint this mini first to get a feel for these minis. In the end he was the sixth mini I painted. But no matter where he was in line, I am really happy with how he turned out.
Not much to say about her. Tried to break up all that black with an olive holster and the belt. Atomic Mass have already released a second version of her (which was delivered to my home address a day after we had left for our holidays) and I am really looking forward to painting that version. This time in the white suit you can see in the trailer to the upcoming Black Widow movie.
Went for some classic colours on him. While it finally gave me a reason to use those five purple colours I have, I still find I am struggling with that colour. The leather bomber hecket was fun to paint though. He also finishes off the ten minis from the core set, so now on to the minis for the single packs I have painted, too.
Initially I was planning on even buying M.O.D.O.K., but I had so much fun painting the minis from the core set and since everything was sold out at the time I bought him anyway. And to be honest he was great fun to paint. This huge face of his was a completely different experience to paint.
Ronan put me through some problems. I was very torn between the comic and movie colours since the sculpt is close to the comic version I went that way. Compared to the other minis for the game he seems to lack detail and the contours are a little soft.
In my opinion Drax is suffering from the same problem as Ronan (the both come in the same box, so it might be a question of the designers style)… lack of detail and soft contours. He is also sculpted closer to the comic version than the movie version. Since I found the comic version quite boring, I tried to bring him closer to the movie looks. Not entirely happy with him (or Ronan) so I might go back to them later. A part of me is also hoping, that Atomic Mass releases a version based on Dave Bautista, so I could simply repaint him comic style and have a more detailed version.
Now Black Panther was a real joy to paint. I painted him on the weekend the news of Chadwick Bosemans death was released and it seemed to be the right mini to paint that weekend. The purple energy effects on his suit look better to the naked eye, but I guess I will still blend these in a little more later.
Up next is Black Panthers sister Shuri. Again top mini to paint with lots of details and crisp contours.
Continuing on the Wakanda theme, here is Okoye. Just like Shuri, this was an absolute joy to paint.
And this finishes this post. I still have a few minis at home that are assembled and still unpainted and as I said, there should be another parcel when we get back home, so there will be more to come soon.
For those interested in the terrain… I will cover that in my next post.
Well superheroes are liked by almost everyone and I am no exception. So I started being into Knight Models Marvel line. Now if your are more used to the prices of historical minis (like me) and not to Games Workshop, the minis were quite expensive, so I took my sweet time. Only to be surprised by the fact, that Knight models decided to let go of the license, discontinue the line and have retailers hand back their stock. I have to admit, that this decision really surprised me. Yes I know that Disney are asking a lot more for their licenses than DC does, but with all the hype around the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) this could have been a gold mine for them. But for some reason the line had always been handled like the black sheep of the herd, with too many holes in the line, especially the villains.
Be that as it may, I still managed to get a nice collection together, with only a few minis missing. Last year I painted the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy as well as Deadpool (hope you all got the reference in the title). The X-Men, Brotherhood of Mutants, The Punisher, Dark Avengers, Dr Doom and Thanos will have to follow in coming months.
What gave me a bit of a headache with these was the basing. As you will see, some of them have their feet placed on rocks. Some of these are natural rocks, others pieces of rubble. From the very beginning I was sure, that I wanted a unified basing scheme on all minis and this made it harder. My first idea had been to do the bases in a rubble look, but in the end, I went against it. As superheroes the are very colourful and rubble would have been colourful as well. So I though rubble would have been too much and made the whole collection too hectic and went with simple soil and grass tufts in the end. Which I think worked out fine. Please excuse the dust visible on some of the darker minis, there is lots of pollen in the air right now and if was a superhuman task trying to keep them clean for the photo session.
I am a great fan of the movies released over the past decade and wanted my minis to look as much as the movies as possible. Which was not always easy, since most of the minis are rather based on the comics than the movies, but I think by taking some liberties, this still worked out. With the Avengers I wanted the darker more sinister look introduced with Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War. Especially with Captain America this was a tough one, as his uniform / costume is rather earlier. But I think it worked out. With the two Iron Men I decided to try something new. They were painted in Chrome and Aluminium and then given an overspray with thinned Clear Red. It does not come out in the photos but in natural light, they look really good.
With the Guardians of the Galaxy this proved much easier, since their looks match those of the movies much closer.
Guardians of the Galaxy
Drax the Destroyer
I have to say though, that the females in both teams (Black Widow and Gamora) really left me struggling. These minis are so slim and tiny, that they really left me struggling not to break them while painting and to get some details on Gamora.
And last there is Deadpool. I know he rather fits the X-Men storyline (which for now is still separated from the MCU storyline), but I rather love his character and had to paint him before I started with the X-Men.