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Category Archives: Sci-Fi

My Combined Army for Infinity so far

My Combined Army for Infinity so far

I just realised, that this is my first post in over two months. I guess my new years resolution must definitely be to post more.

One thing that I spend some a good amount of time on recently is getting started on my Infinity minis, namely Combined Army / Onyx Contact force. So what did I paint so far? You already saw the Xeodrons and Sogarat recently and this is what followed (all based on the Deep Forest bases by Antenocitis Workshop):

Rodoks

First I started with some Rodoks. As I said in my last Infinity post, I was not too happy with the sand tones and the Large OSL areas on the Sogarat. So I shifted to slightly different colors for the sand brown and use the OSL only for the eyes. Much happier with that. As a result I will probably paint the OSL on he Sogarat over, to match him better to the units I have. I als went and painted some geometrical lines over the helmets and shoulder pads instead of just picking out some plates. That also enhanced those minis a lot and will be used on the next Combined Army minis as well.

Rodok squad

Rodok squad

Rodok squad

Rodok squad

Last month I played my first three games of Infinity at a small tournament in Münster Germany and these saw their first use there. I am still a bit unsure about them. Thy packed a lot of punch in their link team and at times this proved to be deadly, but I felt they had problems making up their points and were pretty fast to die. So those will definitely need more testing to see if I like them.

Umbra Legates

I have to say I really loved these minis. Very fun to paint and the animation and poses are great. With these I also diversified the colors for the army by painting the apron-like parts of their uniforms in a reddish leather. It keeps with the brown theme of the rest of the army, but still adds some color. Same goes for the orange accents on these aprons, for they go nicely with the sand colours.

Umbra Legate

Umbra Legate

Umbra Legate

Umbra Legate

Umbra Legate

Umbra Legate

Umbra Legate

Umbra Legate

I played this one (counted as being armed with a spitfire) as part of the Rodok squad / link team at the tournament. Usually the other elements of his team worked out better, but once the range of his spitfire paid off.

Umbra Legate Hacker

Umbra Legate Hacker

Umbra Legate Hacker

Umbra Legate Hacker

Umbra Legate Hacker

Umbra Legate Hacker

Umbra Legate Hacker

Umbra Legate Hacker

I really love this minis. Game wise he was hard to tell at the tournament. During the first game, he never got close to anything hackable, but did very well in close combat. The second game my opponent had nothing hackable, but again he did good in close combat and secured me some vital points at the right moment. During the third game he stood his ground vs. a superior hacker only to be killed by a lucky rifle shot before his first activation.

Dr. Worm and drones

First of all, I found these minis very boring. Not much animation in them and somewhat unimaginative. Th good thing though is, that I got two of the old Dr. Worms off the Internet the other day, which should give me some nice variation in my army (together with the two more drones I already have).

To me they looked like green reptilian skin and that is the way I painted them, again adding more variation to the army. I went somewhat experimental and used some filters on their skin, that I usually use on armoured vehicle models. Otherwise I kept the brown / sand theme for their armour to blend them in with the rest off the army.

Med-Tech Obsidian Medchanoid and drones

Med-Tech Obsidian Medchanoid and drones

Med-Tech Obsidian Medchanoid and drones

Med-Tech Obsidian Medchanoid and drones

The drones were a mixed bag at the tournament. When thy were close enough to an injured / damaged unit the did their job nicely. When they were further away and had to get there, they usually died. That being said, for the minimal price tag they have and the chance to heal / repair other units without getting the Worm in harms way, they seem like a must buy item.

Dr. Worm himself was odd. Only once was he in a position to actually repair one of my Xeodrons and did a good job a it. He too proved very vulnerable, so I found it was good to keep him out of harms way (and more reason for the drones). But  what he did really well was killing unit moving though his LOS with a quick reaction shot.

Unidrons

These kind of are the linking element between my big TAG and the normal infantry in my Combined army. I decided to paint the (Onyx) TAGs and remotes with black and grey armour to make them look more menacing. Obviously this is at odds with the brown and sand of the infantry. But since the Unidrons come from the same bio-engineering process as the TAGs, their skin colours provide the link.

Unidrons

Unidrons

Unidrons

Unidrons

Before the tournament I had only painted these, because they were part of my starter and were on my workbench. During the tournament I really liked these. Yes they were more fragile than the Rodoks, but thy cost far less and seemed to provide better value for points. Plus these could be upgraded to forward observers for one point, which allowed them to claim the objectives. In fact I liked them so much, i ordered their box set.

Overdron

It was the Xeodrons that drew me towards the Combined Army when I decided to start with Infinity, so the Overdron was another must have item for me. The Overdron itself follows the colour scheme of th Xeodrons, while the Tin Bots that are to protect him follow that of the Unidrons.

Overdron and Tin Bots

Overdron and Tin Bots

Overdron and Tin Bots

Overdron and Tin Bots

Overdron and Tin Bots

Overdron and Tin Bots

Overdron

Overdron

Overdron and Tin Bots

Overdron and Tin Bots

Did not use him during the tournament, but on the grounds that he is even more expensive that the Xeodrons and that I had problems squeezing just one of them into 300 points, I daresay, I will rarely use him. Bit of a shame!

And that is it. Really like my force so far. So much so, that I felt a group shot was due:

Combined Army group shot

Combined Army group shot

Before anyone asks. I came last during the tournament, but I learned a lot. And I was quite happy with my result, since I managed to score a draw in one of my games. Not bad for my second game of Infinity ever.

 

 

 
3 Comments

Posted by on December 23, 2016 in Antenocities Workshop, Combined Army, Infinity, Sci-Fi

 

Infinity Combined Army Xeodrons and a Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Xeodrons and a Sogarat

Well I am off on holidays which gives me the time to finally post some pictures of the stuff I finished in recent weeks and months.

As some of you may have realised from my recent terrain posts, I have started to take an interest in Infinity. A lot of the armies do look interesting, but the one to fire up my interest the most is the Combined Army. Right now I am just painting up the minis I like the most. I have to admit, that I do not know yet which ones really are good or which role they fulfill in the game, so do not expect too much info on the units themselves. In the end, I will do just what I always did when it comes to SciFi games… paint what I like and learn to play them afterwards.

Anyway… here are the minis. Up first is a pair of Overdrons. I really like the models. They are huge, about twice as tall as a human miniature. They have a nice mix of external armoured plates with the musculature / skin underneath. The original studio miniatures were painted with very dark armour and orangey skin. This created a very dark and menacing look which I wanted to go for, even though I had something different in mind for the rest of the army.

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

I also wanted to try and see how close I could get to the looks of the official studio miniatures. Those had a black base colour, over which several shades of grey were airbrushed. The edges of the plates where highlit with even lighter greys, finishing with an almost white. I found the idea of the softer shading together with the strong contrast at the edges interesting, but while painting, I quickly found I did not like this. So I went with somewhat softer contrasts airbrushed onto the miniature and only did the edges in a medium grey. Not as striking as the original, but more to my taste.

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

Infinity Combined Army Xeodron

And here is the pair together. Most people base their Infinity minis in a very clean and modern way. But I wanted something different so I based mine on jungle bases, or rather the Deep Forest bases by Antenocities Workshop. I also painted some mud splashes on the lower legs to round everything off.

Infinity Combined Army Xeodrons

Infinity Combined Army Xeodrons

Antenocities Workshop deep forest bases

Antenocities Workshop deep forest bases

As I said before, I want something different for the rest of the army. Something that makes them blend in with their surroundings. So the rest of the army will be painted in a very dark brown with consecutive highlights to a mid-brown. Markings / sections of the armour will be in a sand colour.

I am not entirely happy with the way this one turned out. Somehow the sand colour itself and the fact that I picked out individual plates remind me, too much of 40K minis. Before I left for my holidays, also started with some Radoks. In their case I picked out fewer individual plates, but painted some patterns on the larger ones. I also used a different colour to highlight the sand parts. All of this created a look more to my taste. But you will see those in a few weeks time. The OSL lights on the arms and legs are also not completely my taste. So I guess I will use those less on the other minis.

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

Infinity Combined Army Sogarat

 

Forward Base, Habitat 4

Forward Base, Habitat 4

So it is time to upload the next Habitat from The Forward Bas Kickstarter. This time it is Habitat 4, which is the large L-shaped living quarters. All in all the general process on this one was the same as it was with the previous one. So a lot of the detailing was doing by using the masking film as a mask and airbrushing the habitat. But there are a few new things on this habitat and a few things and others I skipped on the previous one that I would like to go into more detail here.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

First of all, you can see that this is a massive habitat as well. Not as tall as the previous one, but the footprint is almost as large and due to its L-shape it offers some interesting LOS options compared to a square or rectangular building. Also, this being a living habitat it features more monitors and air con units that the workshop and I really like how this adds character to the model.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Now with the previous post, the solar panels on the roof were a little harder to make out. But there you get a clearer view of them, up on the roof. I really like the mirrored version you got with the KS. They are quite reflective and look the real deal as a result. If you look at the upper edge of the walls, you can see that the models come with solar panels etched into the MDF and I simply could not resist, but paint them up. But even though I airbrushed them with chrome paint, they are by far to as shiny as the moveable panels on the roof.

This photo also shows the Habitat Logo that Angus designed for me. The design will be repeated on the other barracks building, just with other numbers. And as you can see, the font, general arrangement and simple icons are present in all the logos, which should give them all a unified look in the end.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

The ends of the habitats really live up with he clear acrylic windows and doors, as well the resin parts and the red markings. I was actually quite surprised how much light actually gets into the building. As you can see on the upper picture, the roof is in place and still you can see fairly far into it.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

As strange as it sounds, this corner is actually my favorite part of this building. I cut the edges of the corner panels off at 45° and the really sink into the wall. It is hard to explain, but in really live, this gives it a really homogenized look, that makes the whole building appear like it was not made from MDF. I would advise everyone to do the same, especially since the kit comes with twice as many corner panels as you need, so even if you do not like the results, you will always have a spare part.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

So as I promised in my last post, here is a better look at the Imperial (Warzone) / Ariadna unit logo that Angus  as kind enough to draw up for me. I am really happy with it. As you can see, after airbrushing it in red there is still a lot of work to do there, but it is worth the effort I think. And as you can see, I tried different colors for the keep clear area (the backdrop for the text is now white instead of red). I like this much better than the version I used on the other building an shall stick with this.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 4

One of the best thing about these buildings is the interior. There is the option for resin wall elements and furniture, both of which I decided to go for and they add so much to the building. I wanted a somewhat sterile look for the interior of the buildings. After al these are prefab buildings, serving as quick to deploy military or scientific outposts. If you look at SciFi movies, they usually convey this sterile look for these types of buildings and that is what I wanted to copy. So all the panels and furnitures are painted in an US Navy ghost grey and given slight highlights. Afterwards I accepted the buttons, handles and panels, painted the couches and seats as faux leather. The monitors simply received the printed screen provided with them. For the next couple of buildings, i really need to make sure the photos are more focused.

The one thing I am not too happy with yet is the double personal container unit standing on the floor on the bend of the L. It somehow does not seem to fit in. But I already have my sights set onto a set of consoles from AW that will probably replace them in due time. I just hope I will be able to remove them, without doing too much damage to the floor (already glued them to the model).

 

So, this is it for today… hope you liked it! Not 100% sure, when I will be able to post the next building. We did the test set-up for your game at Crisis the other week and found that we still needed more terrain than I I had though. Plus i sighed up for an Infinity tournament in November and I would like to play with a painted  army. But I will still try to mix one more habitat in from time to time.So please stay tuned!

 
 

Forward Base, Habitat 5

Forward Base, Habitat 5

As I indicated in my last post, I have started work on a massive Sci-Fi terrain project. essentially it is all based on the Forward Base Kickstarter from Antenocities Workshop. Now as usual with me, I went a little bit over the top here and went for everything, so there is a fair bit of work for me to do.

Before I get started, let me say a few words here. First of all, the models as they come out of the box are already great. They have lots of detail into the MDF and if you went with the extra resin parts they are even better. So essentially you could build them straight out of the box and get a real nice set of buildings. Now that being said, with all the extra detail, I felt it would just have been a waste not to go the extra mile paint the resin, pick out the details and accent the MDF a little more. This last part was actually made pretty easy, since I had gone with the pristine version of the buildings. Which meant the MDF is covered with a protective film / tape before cutting to prevent the paint from being burned. Now if you removed that film selectively and airbrushed those sections carefully, you could use it as a mask. For me this worked out like a charm and I am glad I did do so. But with all the extra detailing, I am still unsure, whether to weather the buildings or not. For now, I think I am going to finish them all first and make a decision, after I see how they look as set.

Now before I go on to the model itself, there is one more thing I need to mention. At the pledge level that I went for, I had the option to choose custom logos for my buildings. All I had to do was provide vector graphics for my custom logos. Now in my youthful ignorance (if you can call it that way at my age) I told myself “this cannot be that hard”! Well it turned out it was and I surrendered after about half a logo. At this time Angus, a very fine Scottish gentlemen, came to my rescue and drew me the logos. I have to say, I am really, really indebted to him. Without his selfless help, these buildings would not be the one-off pieces they are  and after having finished the first two, I am so happy they are!

So off we go. I decided to start with Habitat 5, aka the TAG hangar. Why? Well this is one of the habitats for which there are assembly instructions and I want to get a feel for the general idea behind the buildings, before I tackle those without instructions. And this seemed like a pretty straightforward building in the first place.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

As you can see this is a front view. The ramps can actually fold up infront of the bay doors and I have kept the parts for the bay doors loose, so I can depict them either closed or open as needed. As you can see there is a lot of resin pieces on this one. With most of the exterior resin parts (for all buildings) I decided to go with dark colours like Gunmetal Black and Panzer Grey. The buildings are all very light-colored and I chose the dark colors to create some contrast here and break up the looks. The ramps are actually a fine example of the airbrushing in combination with the masking tape. The ramp pieces were delivered in yellow. So I removed those sections I wanted in black and airbrushed them. Easy as that.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Now this is the top down look. Again all the red and yellow sections were airbrushed again. All the rest was done using a brush. On this one I decided to try how the text boxes on the hazard areas would look in red. But I have to say, I am not too happy with that, as I feel it looks too heavy, so this will not be duplicated on the other buildings. The logo you can see on the upper roof is one of those that Angus did for me. When I pledged for this Kickstarter I had planned to use these for Warzone and that one is the logo of the Imperial cooperation (and I am very happy that Prodos Games allowed me to use it, as long as it was only used on my models). But from the very beginning, I wanted to make sure, that these logos gave me extra mileage, in case I chose to play Infinity or to sell these off one day. Now the logos from the Adriadna faction in Infinity is based on variations of British and French rondels, just like the Imperial logo. No big surprise there, as I understand Infinity was created by some Warzone fans when the 2nd Edition of Warzone went belly up. With that in mind, I felt I could always claim, that this was the logo of some sub-unit within Adriadna. Unfortunately it can not be seen too well on this photo, but with so many more buildings, you will see it soon.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5


Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

With the removable roofs, it is now time to take a look inside. Now in this case, the floors were a little harder to paint. Antenocities made the decision not to cover the floors of the habitats with the protective mask, saying that these would get dirty in real life anyway and could do with some stains. And in general they are right. And they do look good with a little staining. But I would have much preferred to airbrush these piece and this way I had to paint them with a normal brush, which took about an afternoon.

Health and Safety would probably rant about the upper level having no railings. I am still a bit undecided here. I can understand why there are none. It is easier to move figures on the lower floor when your hands to not get entangled in the railings and as I understand it, the upper floor is essentially a workspace to work on the upper parts for the TAGs, but it still feels like something is missing. So I might still end up building one of my own in the future.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5


Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

A look inside through the open bay doors and I think it gives a very good idea of the size and lines of sight inside this baby. Again, all the gun metal lockers and grilles cut into the MDF were airbrushed.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Rear view, giving a nice view of the custom logos Angus did here. At first I was a bit undecided, since on this habitat, the logos is much larger than on the other ones, but once finished, it looks fitting on this large wall. There are actually resin fans that go over the round grills here, but I have to admit, I liked the looks of the grills so much once airbrushed, I did not want to glue them on. So I will rather keep them for some other building or even another project. The space above the mini will receive two holo screens. For some reason I put them in the box with the parts for habitat 4 and could not find them when assembling this one.

I think this shots also shows the clear acrylic doors and windows as well as the acrylic rods in the light fixtures quite well. And I really like them all. The light fixtures actually glow a little im the sunlight and having clear doors and windows that actually allow you to draw line of sight is great.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

And a view of the side. Again giving a nice impression of the acrylic parts. All the little details like the metal bolts were painted on using a brush. There are lots of little ports and connectors on the lower surface, which is a bit of a shame, since one can hardly make them out with the panels angled inwards.

The grill right above the door, does not come with the kit though. I had fitted the resin part that belongs there on the inside of the building and since there were marks on the outside here (the MDF also has imitations of the resin parts layered in for those who buy them without the resin) I needed something to cover that up. And this one did the job nicely.

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

Antenocities Workshop Forward Base Habitat 5

And I am going to leave you with this last shot of the other side, this time with the bay doors closed.

 

 
9 Comments

Posted by on August 12, 2016 in Sci-Fi, Terrain building

 

SciFi fast food container and other Sci-Fi scatter terrain

SciFi fast food container and other Sci-Fi scatter terrain

Well it seems this year I am utterly incapable of keeping a coherent chronology on this blog. Why? This model was finished around February.

It is a fast food stall / container by Laughing Jack Games here in Germany. Nice model all around. Easy to assemble and for the amount of parts actually quite fast, too.

Fast food container

Fast food container

The model itself is meant mainly for games like Infinity. Now back when I bought this model, I had planned to use it for Warzone, so I decided to do it with more of a run down look than what you usually see in Infinity. Now since then I have decided to play Infinity as well, but to be honest… I would not image the whole Infinity universe to be as shiny as you see in the concept art. There must be a social underbelly and there must be areas where those recently conquered do not live in the most shiny conditions. And this is what this container represents.

Fast food container

Fast food container

I wanted to try some new techniques. So I primed the whole thing in off-white and applied coats of green ink over it with my airbrush to get a faded paint look. I like the results, but it was a somewhat strange experience and definitely needs some getting used to. Otherwise the usual chipped off paint and rust marks and it was as good as done.
What I did not like was the looks of the billboard, since it simply looked too clean and new in its acrylic state. So I painted some rainwater streaks over and that did the job. Overall, I am really happy with the results.

Fast food container

Fast food container

What else? I recently bought some bicycle booths from Antenocities Workshop. Nice little models. They come in their pristine MDF version, which means the MDF is covered by a protective mask while cutting. This also helped painting them, since I removed the mask over the company logos and airbrushed them before removing the rest of the mask. This was fast and created a great result. The only downside I had was this: Usually this mask is only on one side of the MDF. Since the inside of the booths looked somewhat ungainly, I airbrushed them in the base-colour. Only after assembly did I realise, that this side had been masked as well. I hope the mask never decides to come off, since that will be a royal mess to remove with everything being glued together.

Bycicle booths

Bicycle booths

Bycicle booths

Bicycle booths

Last I also wanted some cars for Infinity. There are lots of really nice resin models for Infinity out there, some of which I have in queue, so I wanted something different, too. I looked at some of the 1:43rd scale models of concept cars from the big car companies.

Up first is the 2004 concept for the Renault Laguna. Really liked the sleek low looks of it. But I had to laugh. Last year Renault closed the Laguna line and replaced it with a new model, the Talisman. Looking at the last Laguna (photo included as a reference, since I know Renault does not sell in many parts of the world, including the USA), it is striking how far it still is from this concept.

Renault Laguna III

Renault Laguna concept

Renault Laguna concept

Renault Laguna concept

Renault Laguna concept

The other one is the Peugeot Moonster. This is a concept from 2000, trying to envision what Peugeots might look like in 2020. Suffice to say, I doubt that this is what cars will look like in 4 years time. But I really liked its organic, chrome looks for a Sci-Fi setting.

Peugeot Moonster

Peugeot Moonster

Peugeot Moonster

Peugeot Moonster

This is it for today. But this also is kind of a prelude to more Sci-Fi buildings. A couple of weeks ago my Forward Base Kickstarter models have arrived and after slaving away for a couple of weeks preparing all the details to get them assembled, I have now started. so there should be more to present.

 
4 Comments

Posted by on July 11, 2016 in Sci-Fi, Terrain building, Vehicles

 

Endoskeletons for Terminator Genesys (3rd Entry, 6th AHPC)

Endoskeletons for Terminator Genesys (3rd Entry, 6th AHPC)

As I put it last week… Ei will be bäck. So here I am. Nothing special this week, actually very simple fare. 20 Endoskeletons for the Terminator Genesys game.

Terminators

Terminators

All in all these were a very simple paint job. I airbrushed a coat of Chrome paint on and a airbrush blue wash over the weapons, for a very light OSL effect. Red eyes, light grey teeth a satin varnish and they were done.

Terminators

Terminators

I kept the bases very simple and bare to depict a ground with nuclear fall-out and no feels and whistles.

Terminators (heavy and support)

Terminators (heavy and support)

As I said very simple. Cleaning them up, basing them and preparing them, took longer than painting. Why repairing them, you ask? Well some genius decided to do the heavy and support Endos (the picture above) in metal. The models for Terminator are 28mm. Since the Ednos would have to fit inside the human skin (if used as infiltrators) they are essentially very slim skeletons. with the plastic minis that is fine… they are a bit thicker and robust, but the metal ones are not. One broke off at the ankles during painting, with another the arm broke in half. The legs and arms are so thin, that I could not pin them, even with a .1mm wire. So I had to glue the wires to the outside. I guess the game would have been better served in 32mm. I hope they survive a couple of games!

Terminators (crawlers)

Terminators (crawlers)

 

Warzone Resurrection, Imperial Young Guards / Life Dragoons (1.3rd Entry, 6th AHPC)

Warzone Resurrection, Imperial Young Guards / Life Dragoons (1.3rd Entry, 6th AHPC)

And last are some minis for Warzone, to complement my already large Imperial force. In this case some Life Dragoons from the Young Guards Regiment. Since these are the Imperial Serenity (= the head of state) and Imperial is based on modern-day Britain, I felt I should rather go with a classic paint job (both in a historic British sense as well as in the sense that they are depicted this way in all the classic artwork). So it was scarlet jackets and dark blue trousers with red piping.

Young Guards - Life Dragoons

Young Guards – Life Dragoons

I have to say… this is where the problems began. They are always depicted with black armour and berets, so I kept those. The big problem was, that this made a large area of the minis rather dark and the colors did not really contrast each other. About the only part of the minis to provide some contrast was the gas masks, but they looked rather strange with their large napkin like collars.

Young Guards - Life Dragoons

Young Guards – Life Dragoons

And it continued with the rest of their equipment. Begin a guard unit that is always depicted in their colorful uniforms even if in the field, I felt that their belts, pouches, webbing and so on should not be green. Them wearing backpacks in white did not seem right either, so I went with a light grey. Which while keeping with the theme, did not really improve the contrast either.

Young Guards - Life Dragoons

Young Guards – Life Dragoons

But the minis were plagued with other problems from the beginning. They are made from resin and when I bought those three packs the resin with the weapon sprue on all three packs was extremely soft. I contacted the manufacturer and got replacement sprue without any argument. But unfortunately those replacement sprue were suffering from lots of flash. So there was lots of work to put into these in the first place. Another problem is the weapons in the set. Two in five men may be armed with either an automatic shotgun, a mortar and / or a sniper rifle. The set only comes with an optional mortar and sniper rifle and both for the kneeling mini. So some conversion work was required anyway. To men were converted to shotguns (from another set) and one of the standing guys became a loader for a mortar as well. Since I did not like the pose of the trooper spreading his arms out, I converted one of those to a firing pose. And while I was on it, most minis also received bi-pods, optics and laser designators to make them look better geared out.

All in all not the most fun unit to paint and with those many details hidden on the figures it took a good while. 😦 Anyway… here are some close-ups of the minis I like best:

Young Guard - Life Dragoon

Young Guard – Life Dragoon


Young Guard - Life Dragoon

Young Guard – Life Dragoon


Young Guard - Life Dragoon

Young Guard – Life Dragoon

 

Star Wars, X-Wing repaints (1.1st Entry, 6th AHPC)

Star Wars, X-Wing repaints (1.1st Entry, 6th AHPC)

First of all let me say that I am sorry for me taking so long for my first (non theme round) post of the Challenge. When Curt asked if I wanted to take part this year, I already knew that I would be hard pressed between the day job, learning for university and this. Never did I know how hard.

X-Wing Millenium Falcon and a-Wings

X-Wing Millenium Falcon and a-Wings

While I was able to get some minis painted, (spray) varnishing them was another matter, with the weather here in Germany being either very cold or very humid. But I finally managed to get some varnish on these minis last week and thus do the bases so here is the first of a couple of entries, a few Star Wars X-Wing re-paints. To be honest, I have not played a single game of X-Wing in recent year and while I did play a couple of space combat games lately, we have rather taken a fancy to Armada. But since I had already repainted (to rather added to the paint job) of my other X-wing minis, I felt the remaining few should get that treatment as well. That left me with a couple of A-Wings and the Millennium Falcon. With the former I decided to change their colour from red to green. I never liked the fact the all Rebel fighters in the game had the same colour coding, so the only ones that still sport their red are the X-Wings. I the case I simply painted the red markings over and added some engine glow to them.

X-Wing Millenium Falcon and a-Wings

X-Wing Millenium Falcon and a-Wings

The other one is the Millennium Falcon. Now in this case I guess I got a pretty sloppy pre-painted model. Many of the panels that were painted in a darker grey or ochre were painted over the panels themselves and the black wash had been applied rather heavy. So I found a grey that matched the base tone and corrected those overpainted panels. I also dry brushed the whole model in this grey to lessen the looks of the black wash. Afterwards I set more panels apart in ochre and grey to give the Falcon a more motley look and added an engine glow. And that was it.

X-Wing Millenium Falcon and a-Wings

X-Wing Millenium Falcon and a-Wings

More to follow tomorrow.

 
 

Some SciFi Terrain

Some SciFi Terrain

While last years terrain building efforts went quite well, I am still not where I want to be. So this year will see more terrain building. This will include but historic terrain (mostly terrain for both WWII and ultra modern) and SciFi terrain. I am especially lacking in the later department and with us playing a lot of Warzone and the like, more SciFi terrain will be needed. Last month I did a few pieces and here they are.

Up first is a workers hut / small site office. I got the building together with my monorail cargo terminal from Mad Mecha Guy last year. It is a very simple building with three rooms (not shown) inside. Judging from the size, layout and windows I would guess that one is the office, while the other two are the toilet and a vestibule for the toilet. As a add-on to the terminal it is OK. It serves as a decent sized low-level LOS blocker, you can have minis on the roof if you want and it offers enough room for a squad or two. And with the few windows it only allows a few minis to fire out of it, so it does not become a “must use” strong point either.

Workers hut

Workers hut

I went for a pretty simple paint job here. Most of these construction site / cargo terminal office buildings that I have seen in real life look a bit shabby. Mostly tan, yellow, greenish or blue, partly faded, partly dirty. And that is the look I wanted to achieve here as well. So I airbrushed the insides off white and the side in a German camo green (which already looks like a yellowish paint that is well beyond its prime). The floor was airbrushed in a concrete colour. Over that I airbrush a sepia wash to give it a dirty look. Unfortunately this also kind of blended the concrete into the walls. Window frames and doors done in grey, hinges in metal and it was done. All in all less than 10 minutes and for the amount of time spend, it looks fine.

Workers hut

Workers hut

Up next is a pedestrian bridge from Maki Games. The terrain is from their Kickstarter, so it seems most parts are not available for general sale yet (which is kind of strange, since this was delivered a little over a year ago). Anyway it is their Pedestrian bridge set (with some different floors) and the addition of some SciFi corridor walls. Essentially I wanted a bridge that provided some cover to the troops at the top. I guess this could already have been achieved by the railings used for the low platforms, but this way it looks a bit more imposing.

Pedestrian overpass

Pedestrian overpass

Some parts were glued together, but the pylons that support the mains bridge and the stairs are separate. While the main reason was ease of storage (this actually takes less than a shoebox to store) it has the added benefit the central pylon can be moved left or right, or being left off all together. This is great if I want to place it over a road where the pylon would be in the way or if I want to have it span both a road and monorail, where I need an odd spacing.

Pedestrian overpass

Pedestrian overpass

Over all the paint job is quite simple again. German Panzergrau base coat, with two progressively lighter airbrush coats of grey and a spray of black wash. Again very fast and simple, but it works. I am still contemplating dry-brushing the stairs and handrail in a gun-metal tone to depict worn paint, but I am not yet certain about that. I guess I will have to see how it fits in when I have more SciFi building for the table finished.

Pedestrian overpass

Pedestrian overpass

And last comes the highlight (at lest in my opinion) for this post. Some containers from Antenocities Workshop “Designed for Infinity” line. Before any asks… no there are not from my Kickstarter pledge, which should arrive some time this month, but I bought these from one of their German distributors. I had read that they had produced too many pristine containers for the Kickstarter, so that surplus had gone into general retail, while stocks lasted. Since my pledge was all pristine (which means the MDF is covered with a masking tape like material during cutting to prevent the fumes from the lasers blackening the paint), it seemed like a good choice to try to get some more containers this way.

SciFi Cargo Containers

SciFi Cargo Containers

All kits are delivered with this masking material still on and you have to remove it yourself. Antenocities actually advise not to use this as a mask for airbrushing, but I thought I should give it a try anyway. I removed the mask over the logos, the writing on the cargo clamps and the ladder-like slots on the bottom of the containers (which do show when the containers are clamped together and placed upright). What can I say… applied a few light coats with the airbrush. No paint soaked under the mask and they were easy to remove afterwards. It was a great way to add extra character to the containers fast and easy.

SciFi Cargo Containers

SciFi Cargo Containers [stacked]

The hinges, locks and blots on the containers were painted by hand later on. In case of the hinges and locks I simply wanted to prevent any overspray with the logos and in case of the bolts, it would just have been too much effort.

SciFi Cargo Containers

SciFi Cargo Containers [stacked]

SciFi Cargo Containers [stacked]

SciFi Cargo Containers [clamped]

SciFi Cargo Containers [stacked]

SciFi Cargo Containers [clamped]

As you can see, I think they are quite versatile. You can use them either as single containers (on the ground or loaded onto a truck or train), stacked in a number of ways or clamped together (either lying prone or upright). Also mixing containers of different colour adds additional variety. I have one more set of three containers coming up with my Kickstarter pledge and that should give me a really nice selection there.

 

 
6 Comments

Posted by on February 10, 2016 in Sci-Fi, Terrain building

 

Gamemat.eu review

Gamemat.eu review

I guess it has been an awfully long time since I wrote my last review, but I guess it is time for another one. This time it is a gamemat from gamemat.eu or namely their 6´x4´G-Mat: Quarantine Zone.

Those who know me, will know that gamemats of any kind are something new for me. In the past I have not been too fond of them. I always liked the ability to have rivers, trenchers, hill and so on in 3D on my table. Also, my table is obscenely large (3,5m x 2m maximum) and I never found any mat that could cover this. So I always went with my own modular game boards. So far so good.

But last year in the run up to our Battle for Berlin game I came to a point where this did not make sense. What if you do not need such a large table (as you will with most SciFi and Fantasy games, where a 4´x4´ table is the norm)? What if that table does not even require any rivers, trenches and the like (like urban terrain or many deserts)? Does this warrant the use of game boards that are larger & heavier and therefore more complicated to store and transport? What if, even if you wanted to say yes, you do not have the space to do so?

So I personally came to the decision to look at gamemats after all. The cobblestone mat we used for the Battle of Berlin vindicated that idea. It looked good, was easy to transport to the show in Antwerp and only took minimum space to store (which was a huge plus, taking into account, that the buildings were taking up a lot of said space). So I began to look at other options. With us playing a lot of Warzone lately (which also recommends a table size of 4´x4´or 4´x6´for larger games) and me wanting to play in some more futuristic urban settings, this was the natural choice as well. Looking around the mats from gamemat.eu looked quite pleasing to me and that was what I chose.

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone

Now this mat is made from neoprene with a cloth covering (to those non divers out there… this is often referred to as “mouse mat material”). The neoprene is about 2mm thick. If used for a wetsuit this would only be fine for warm waters, but I felt for a gamemat this was more than enough. It is so soft, that the dice settle fast after rolling (even with a D20), but hard enough that you will not get dice that are cogged. The big plus is that the neoprene will cover minor bumps in your table, giving you a flat surface. It also means that the mat is non slip, so it will not easily shift or wrinkle during a game.

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone

The cloth itself is printed with the design, in this case a somewhat damaged and dirty futuristic urban environment. Looking up close at the cloth the paint is soaked into the fibers, which should mean that is will be robust and should last a long time, if not forever (well not in a sense of “some alien archaeologists will be able to dig this up in a couple millennia and instantly play on it”, but you know what I mean). I cloth as a matt to slight satin gloss finish, which looks good when playing on it and does not look shiny on some photos. If you look very closely, you will be able to see the structure of the cloth, but during normal gameplay or on photos you will not notice it. The bond between the neoprene and the cloth seems to be very good. Better than most mousemats I have seen and about en par with good expensive wetsuits. So that should last you a good while, too.

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone

The corners of the mat are rounded. At fist this might seem strange, after all we play on a square playing field, but then again… when did you ever place a mini right in a corner? But I feel this is an added benefit. With a rounded corner the wear on the corners during play, storage and transport will be less, so combined with the good bond between the neoprene and cloth, this should enhance the lifespan of the mat as well.

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone [Detail with car]

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone
[Detail with car]

What I really liked about the mat is the design itself. For one it could fit both ultra modern, as well as SciFi settings. Some elements look futuristic, others present day. In the end this means it is a bit futuristic, but not so much, that it look out of place in a modern city. At the same time it is not so present day that it would not fit a city of the future. This is a very fine balance, that I think they met well.

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone [Detail with building]

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone
[Detail with building]

Also, if you look that the two photos above and the one below, many of the details are sublime. It does not matter if you place a building over them. It will not scream in your face “but there are markings for cars on the floor, your building looks out of place”, but still when you place a car there, it will fit the table. With many mats I have seen, the designs are pretty straight in your face and if people place a building over them it will look wrong. So I feel this mat gives you a lot of flexibility placing your models.

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone [Detail with building and miniature]

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone
[Detail with building and miniature]

There might be one slight exception here and that is the streets itself. Any mat that has a street design printed on, will inevitably force you to place your buildings where there are no streets. On this mat, the streets all run parallel to the edges. So if the game you play is very strict about having fire lanes that run diagonally to the edges, this might not be the mat for you (although they did release a 4´x4´ version of this mat last week that has the streets run diagonally). But to be fair…it is hard to do diagonal streets on a rectangular mat, without creating open areas in the wrong spot and without knowing the size of people’s buildings. And the streets leading onto the table from the long edges do not line up, so there is no fire lane from one long edge to the other.

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone [Detail with miniature]

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone
[Detail with miniature]

In this context there is another thing that I liked (and that I think might have been impossible with diagonal streets). The city blocks are actually well sized. They are big enough to allow for buildings with a large footprint without making them look  squeezed in (sorry no photos of that, since I am still awaiting my SciFi buildings and only tested it with some historic buildings that would have looked ridiculous, but there should be some of that in coming weeks!). But they will also accommodate small buildings without making them look lost. Some of the areas are also large enough to allow for multiple buildings, allowing you to create small alleys off the main roads or small plazas besides the buildings.

So here are some photos of some of the details I really liked on the mat:

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone [Detail with miniature]

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone
[Detail with miniature]

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone [Detail with miniature]

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone
[Detail with miniature]

6'x4' G-Mat- Quarantine Zone [Detail with miniature]

6’x4′ G-Mat- Quarantine Zone
[Detail with miniature]

So final verdict on this one?

Well I really like it. The design is good and it should come in handy for anything from modern to SciFi. The quality of the mat itself is really good and should last me a long time.

Official retail for this mat is 69,00 Euro / 52,00 GB£ (or 62,00 US$ without VAT) and I personally feel this is worth every cent.

 

P.S.: I will be posting some pictures of a few terrain items I painted recently later this week and since I took those pictures on the mat as well, you can see a few more pictures in the next post once it is up.

 

 
7 Comments

Posted by on February 8, 2016 in Modern, Sci-Fi, Terrain building