Sunday, January 31, 2010

Temple of the East

Here I have my finished hero's for the Temple of the East. With both Temple of the North and Temple of the West Hero's out now I wanted to finish off my griffin army and get the rest of the hero's finished. I kept Archo's color scheme similar to the one shown in his artwork as he heads the temple and his "thematic" coloring is the bases for the rest of the Temple of the East. Also he fits well with the prepainted templars already. With these colors in mind I redesigned Mira's coloring to match. Leaving her hair alone as that is a focus of her as a character. So I opted for a white robe to match her older borthers as well as gold colored trim to her armor to match his as well. I spent some time applying a red/orange/yellow wash to the base of her blade Hauteclaire to help give the sense of heat to the object without having it become the focus of the whole blade and thus apply to much color not on the minature itself and draw your eyes away from Mira to her blade. I think the effect came off alright, its a bit chalky looking. Still for my first real attempt at that kind of effect I think it worked. Also her white robe didn't work as well as I would have liked. The black wash just dosn't work with it and provides to much contrast making the robes themselves look to flat. I think in the future I will water down a midtone grey to wash with white. I think that will provide a better transition than black does. sadly although I do pretty good with the faces of men.... Mira comes out looking a bit like a crossdresser rather than a woman. Maybe it is the skulpt but I think not (based on some future posts with women figures you will see soon.)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Work in Progress: Tarascus

I've gotten my Tarascus in the mail recently and after spending some time cleaning it up and doing a bit of repair to the figure, some of the parts had a few chipped of part from shipping/storage that need to be reattached. I primed this baby and began the long work of basecoating it. This thing is very impressive in size and I have to say I can't wait to field it against my opponents. It will be a lot of fun to see the look on their face as this Titan arrives ont he table to lay waste to their army.

After getting a good start at basecoating most of the figure I got stuck on deciding what colors to paint the leather bits of the figure. So while I was deciding on that I decided to do a more extensive paint job on the face and get a good feel for how it would come out in the end. So I painted up the mouth and face as well as the eyes. Now this isn't a finished job with the head but it's mostly their. None of the metal has any weathering effects yet (or highlighting/washing). I have to say this thing has been both a joy and a bit annoying to paint. I always hate the first steps of the paint process. Base coating a miniature to me is less about art and so much about just working, and this thing is huge. I have been taking breaks from it to keep myself from burning out on it. I mean you can only paint the same brown for some long before you want to pull your eyes out.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Valley of Divine Tears

I wanted to drop this up here so you could all see what I was working on right now. I'm designing this to work similarly to the campaign system for Operation Frostbite, another of Rackham's products for AT-43 their Sci-Fi miniature game. One of the things I have felt for some time that Confrontation really lacked was a campaign system to help gamers organize a story and theme around their games. Being a long time tabletop RPG player I ahve always tried to come up with a story for my miniature games. It's part of what I love about the playing them. Beyond just the enjoyment I get from painting my own miniatures.

So let this be the official announcment of a work in progress the Campaign book Valley of Divine Tears. So far its shapping up to include ten missions. I wanted to use a larger mission map than Operation Frostbite uses. Being a fantasy game I didn't feel that three zones spread far appart was appropriate. Also Frostbite makes use of the future tech of aircraft to allow players to drop ship their armies from one of the campaign zones to the others. This would be inappropriate for Confrontation so I opted for a larger single campaign area. The upswing is their is more area to fight over. One down swing to the campaign system so far is that week 1 is effectivly a paperwork week with no games. (You simply can't move enough to get to an opponent.) However it's also designed with a certain timing in mind to seperate phase 1 from phase 2. So I think the loss of the first week is not an issue. It is like the deployment phase of a regular game of Confrontation anyway. So effectivly the campaign is a game over the game. Each of the 7 weeks corresponding to a game round of a regular game of confrontation, (the first round being deployment then 6 regular rounds).

I have basic themes set up for all 10 missions, as well as some basic design done on about half of them, couple are pretty wel wrapped up. The campaign will also use an MP system, although no RP will be used within the missions themselves the MP gained will be used to replenish lost troops, re-organize units, and purchase extra's to boost performance at various missions on the map. The campaign will use a slightly modified deployment rules to allow for more variety and intresting extra's for MP purchase. Deployment will utilize face down unit cards rather than the unit's themselves. The cards will be placed a minimum of 20cm from enemy units, mostly important for scouts. Once the full deployment phase, including scouts, is completed the players replace the cards with the units representing them. This will allow for example the use of campaign effects like... SPIES!: Choose one mission for the upcoming week, for that mission your opponent will deploy his units rather than cards during deployment as your spies provide intelligence for your commander.
Well I hope you all are finding something here to look forward to. I will keep you all abreast of my progress on this campaign book as the work goes forward.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Griffin Conscripts: Part 3

Just a group shot of the unit together to give a feel for them on the table. Nothing really much more than that to say.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Griffin Conscripts: Part 2

Here are the last 4 griffin Conscripts. Similar comments as last time really. Shaded them with various metal tones to give the metal armor a better look, while still not resorting to NMM. I used a Gold/Brass trim although more in style with the Lion army I found very appealing on these guys. Nothing much more to add here honestly.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Griffin Conscripts: Part 1

As stated earlier I completed these guys at the same time as the Exorcist and the Tiger's of Dirz. I went for a little bit of excess on the brass trim, and even though it seems to make them look a little more like they belong in the Lion army, rather than in the Griffin, I couldn't help myself as it really seemed to bring out the details on these guys. I found the faces to be extremly annoying as the heads are one part witht he body. Making it very difficult to apply the brush to them in any detailed maner. The face and neck of the armor was constantly in the way.

You can really see here how I tend to base coat metal with a dark metal color, apply a black wash over all of it then highlight my way back up with the original metal paint and a shade or two lighter from their. I am not one for NMM, but I feel adding this 3-4 tone metalic seems to add a lot to elements painted in metal. I kept he shields metal free. I felt those elements would be more of a painted wood or steel, insteed of exposed metals like their armor.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Griffin Exorcist

I painted this figure in the same week as the Tigers of Dirz as well as the Griffin Conscripts I will be putting up next. Again I was trying to get as many minaitures done in my few days of painting as I could. When I started out I would get one miniature done over weeks, with hours and hours spent on them. I want to say something along the lines of 10-15 hours a miniature. Now I tend to get them done in 3-5 hours of work. A big improvment, and yet my painting quality has also rissen even with that decreased time. This piece took perhaps 3 hours in total. It was a bit simplistic in sceme, but then again its not a character piece but rather a specialist for units. Once again I felt the red cloth came out really well. As did the holy relic on the front of the miniature.

As always you can click the images to see full size photo's.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Tiger of Dirz

Worked on a set of Tiger's of Dirz this week. I wanted to go for a more tiger feel so I used a more orange tone for their skin rather than the light blue green seen on the prepainted miniatures. Since I am going ot be playing some Dogs of War I wanted to keep them usable for the Tiger Event card for Dogs of War. I painted their tails in flesh tones becouse they seemed so very rat like to me. Painted creatures just feels so more more relzxing to me. I think its the lack of any real "edge" to paint to for the most part your just painting faster as a bit of randomness to color changes actually improves the look of these as their more natural in appearance that way. As always you can click the image for a full size photo.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Undead Skeleton

I took a shortbreak from the more complicated miniatures I've been working on and worked ona skeleton for the Archon army instead. I havn't done any undead since I got my new paint set last christmas as a present. I enjoyed working with the new paint trios of the reaper master paints. That along with dropper bottles seem to make the work so much easier and help me improve my painting as well. I like the more grey tones that I got on this miniature than the last few skeletons I've worked one.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Dasyatis Clone

My second attempt at one of the large Dirz creations. I went for a diffrent skin shading on this one. Mostly due to the fact that I wanted this piece to fit in onthe table with the new pre-painted army sceme. (They all have more of a blue gree tone to their skin.) Once more I am continuing to use the gold/scorpion green color combination to do the metalic green looking effect that I have been using to highlight specific metals actost the Dirz metals when I work on them. I really liked the way the skin came out on this one. After first painting it up with a pinkish skin tone much akin to the Aberation I applied a black wash and dry brushed over that a nice purple/blue color to get the skin result you see. I was extremly pleased with the results. I ended like all Dirz creatures by applying a bit of a scorpion green wash to various places to represent the use of mutagens by the Alchemists of Dirz.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Venerable Ambrosius

I started on this miniature to finish off my Hybrid board game miniatures so I could field a wholy painted game. He was a surprisingly simple minature to paint. I took me only part of a day to finish him up from start to finish. I felt that his face came out surprisingly well. The eyes really made it. He just seems to be glaring slightly to the side like a stuborn old man would. I've not tried any form of free hand so I am leary to put brush to the banner to free hand in MERIN down the banner. I might try it again later, once I've tried my hand at some practice. Especially now that he's all sealed up. For now though I'm just going to leave him as is.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Griffin Cannon: Part 3

Finished the last two members of the cannon crew, the last ammunition carrier, and the loader. With them completed I have my cannon's crew and with just on proxy mini I can even field a second cannon for say a Temple of the North list. Considering they are the only hero box that I have so far I do tend to use that faction list from time to time. I played my first game of the new Confrontation game with my current gaming group. My opponent enjoys the fluff of the Wolfen so he picked them as his army. He is using mine until his own army shows up. I love the Griffin so that was my choice. I fielded one cannon unit and had a... well I didn't get to shoot them much and when I did casualties to the Wolfen was minimal. Their howls do a great job of reducing the effectivness of my ranged units. I think I will do my best to limit the number of guns in my future lists. As always click the image for a full size photo.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Griffin Cannon's: Part 2

Next I worked on the crew of the cannons. Sadly the C4 rules require 3 crewmen per cannon, while the Third edition metal cannons came with 5 crew for two cannons. So I'm one crew shot of the second cannon. Although with a second cannon box, I could field another 5 crew for three cannons worth of cannon and crew. This was my first attempt at a non flat painting of red cloth. I started with a very dark red as the base coat. I then base coated the entire miniature before applying a black wash to the whole piece. Then I went back and in the case of the red, applied the base coat once again except into the deepest recesses and cracks. I find black wash looks terrable on red of any shade. From their I built up successive layers of red until I had hit my brightest red for the teps of the clothing. Also The fire I think came out really well. It was my first attempt at painting fire. I worked from the bottom up, starting with a bright yellow, and working my way up the fire to a deep red. Then I mixed some black wash in with some red in successive amounts to get that smokey look at the top. I was lucky to have so much skin work on these mini's. I don't know why but I have always been pretty satisfied with the results I get while painting skin. Perhaps I am simply more aware of the way shading on skin works than with other substances.