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Monday, 30 April 2012

even more new stuff fom rebel

Rebel seem to be going trough a phase of rounding out their ranges but adding a few packs here and there. Most recently it was the Kurgen reviewed here. Now it is the turn for the Earth Federation Drop Troopers. They now have a heay weapons pack with six figures in three poses. For $3.99 you get two snipers, two launchers and two autocannons. I like these figures. They have some of the vibe of space above and beyond which is a favourite of mine.


Earth Force Drop Infantry Heavy Weapons
Whilst not an expansion of a current range, the Vott. There are twenty one figures in six poses. Although bipedal, they don't fit into an easy pigeon hole. For $10.95 it is not a bad deal. I suspect that if they do end up being popular that this range will be extended too.
Vott Infantry

Get your Geek on 3

Fallout. What a game. Everyone loves it.These people love it enough to have turned it into a series of vids called Nuka Break. This is the Pilot here and there are another six episodes with more planned.  It's not huge budget stuff but low budget is getting pretty good. If you like Fallout, these are a must see

Why 15mm?


The manufacturer of 15mm miniatures is booming at the moment. No doubt about it. People tell me it's all about money. For the £10 you pay for a character model from GW you can get 20-25 minis in 15mm. If that was really the case we would all be buying 6mm. I am a little cost sensitive but that is not what it is really about.

25/28mm projects are intimidating. If you have been to wargames shows and conventions you will have seen the massive games in larger scales with hundreds if not thousands of figures. They are works of art. You cannot help but look at them and say “I want one” just like a kid in a toy shop. When you talk to them it is either all pro-painted and has cost more than your car or it is a project of love which has taken every spare hour over five years.

It's stuff like this that inspires us as sells lots of magazines. For most of us we never get the scope of such a project, we want a game.

The truth is to do a decent job in 25/28mm takes a long time to paint. I spent a year painting a hundred 28mm zombies and it was a labour of love. I could paint 100 15mm zombies in a couple of weekends assuming SWIMBO lets me have the time. This has allowed me to paint more 15mm minis in the last six months that I have painted 28mm minis in the last five years.

15mm needs a lot less work. Most of the games I play there is a limited number of figures. This means in 15mm you can have many armies for more genres where you might only have one or two in 25mm. Variety being the spice of life, more is better. If you do a lot of solo gaming, like I do, then you have to use what you have. As there are fewer details things become a little less specific so they can often be used as looky-likeies.

Scenery also become more generic. In the same last 6 months I have produced more 15mm buildings and scenery than I have ever produced in all others scales. Again the secret is in the detail or the lack thereof. Like the minis, they become more generic.

Then there is the weight and size to consider. All of my 15mm scenery fits into a couple of Really Useful Boxes. Since SWIMBO moved in, the amount of space I have has reduced a lot. Also as anyone who has carried an army around a small lightweight army is easier to transport. I used to carry around a mechanised army and remembered fondly when I only had a infantry army to carry around. Imagine carrying a 28mm FOG army around? I am thinking time to invest in a handcart.

The increase in international trade because of the internet has also helped people. I couldn't imagine knowing who was producing figures in America twenty years ago. Blogging promotes what is out there and shows what can be done. The net has made me believe that I can do better and has given the the tools to improve my skills.

I think when you really get down to it there is a chicken and egg things going on. There has been a massive increase in ranges available which makes a 15mm more appealing. Battlefront has done a lot to popularise the scale but it has many champions. In my spheres of interest Peter Pig and Ground Zero have pushed 15mm for many years in the UK. Rebel and Khurasan have popularised the 15mm scene in the US. Rules have also caused a change. I played Command Decision for years. This was either 6mm or 20mm when I played it. The latest incarnation was geared up for 15mm. Many rule systems were out there for 6mm and 20mm. Blitzkrieg/Cold War/Future Commander caters for 15mm as well as smaller scales and these have largely superseded games like Spearhead and WRG which were exclusively 6mm. Systems like Force on Force and Tommorow's war have been a big influence as well.

Economics in action. Go figure.

Rant mode off.

Sunday, 29 April 2012

More stuff from Rebel coming

These are Shalur Mercenaries. They are due to be available from Rebel Minis some time soon.




Nicely alien. What I assume is the alien commander almost loo.ks like a martial artist

The Scene - Special Forces

Amonst the first figures I started painting in 15mm were figures I had got from TheScene. I had seen some of the Authority figures at a show a few years back when that was all he had to offer.  They are really nice figures.


At the time I ordered them I was thinking about running a post-apocalypse game. When I saw these in the lead, I thought I could use them for SF or even in the 15mm zombie extravaganza that is coming. They have a great cinematic vibe. I think I have improved at painting  15mm minis a bit since then. I dipped these at the time and then inked the flesh. I have kind of gone of the idea of diping such small minis now favouring inks to fill in the gaps.

Mantis Men from Khurasan painted

Just a quick one today. I have finished eight of Khurasan's Mantoids. They were quick to paint. Like everything else, still needs to be based.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Alien plant life from Critical Mass

Most of my alien plants are plastic fish tank plants trimmed to fit the part. There isn't much out there. This stuff from Critcal mass is a nice change.

At £7.50 for 18 pieces of Alien Jungle Flora it's going to cost a lot to cover a large area but I guess it compares well to conventional trees.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Mecha, mecha everywhere

I have never been a big mecha combat fan. Battletech largely passed me by when it came out and don't get me started on adeptus titanicus. I think what put me off was that a lot of them looked fairly absurd. This is a review of what is out there. I may well amend this with a few more models as time goes by.

It seems that there is a fair bit of interest in mechs in 15mm at the moment. GZG released some for Salute. Big mechs that look like the mean business. A fair range of parts that can be played about with to get what you want. I can't put a link in here because they are not formally on sale although there are some details on the GZG website.
GZG mecha

Critical Mass have had a few mecha out for a while. This one is the Combat Support Walker. This was has the feel of the AT-ST from Star Wars. Somehow it lacks the vibe of the GZG suit which seems to have the combat walker vibe but hey I am no fan of the Battletech style which this seems to have.
Critical Mass combat support walker.
PA 3 Python Combat Armour
The most recently released of the three and a bit smaller than the others is from Khurasan. It's closer to the mech from Avatar than the full battlemech. A nice mini with a lot of choice to make up variety of poses. It reminds me of the first dreadnaught armour that GW produced during the 1980s but with a lot more attention to detail.

Rebel Minis have been producing small scale mech for a while. I look at them and think that they are a manned version of ED-209. I have seen some of these in the flesh and they are pretty good minis.

Rebel Minis Viper walkers
I am still not convinced that mecha/walkers are something I want to game although the GZG models and maybe the Khurasan combar armour may get some interest from me. These do seem to be the latest thing so expect to see some more of them on the web and on a tabletop near you soon.

Get your Geek on part 2


This is not strictly a minis post, but...Well it's about a fantasy board game and supporting soething that is going on. I know I mentioned something about posting stuff about boardgames.

I mentioned Wil Wheaton in the post Get your Geek on I did. I found this on YouTube for a show called TableTop. This is a great little video show about the board game Small World aand I think there is another one just out. Show it some support and they might make some more and make being a nerd a little cooler.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Khurasan new Taliban on sale

Khurasan have just released some Taliban fighters. This is more generally the territory of of Rebel minis and GZG. I have already got some Taliban stuck in a not insubstantial paint queue which are there to be one of the opponents for the modern US infantry I have painted.

The first set is 15mm Terrorist Leader, Western Hostage and Three Talib Guards. For $2.99 you get the five figures. The hostage is nice as is the leader.

 

 The next pack is more infantry 15mm Talib Fighters (two RPG-7, one PK, and three AK-47). This is a nice assortment of weapons for $3.99.


I am not sure that there is enough choices of figures to make an army up but if you add these into the mix of the figure from Rebel I think they would make a nice addition to any unit.

500 views

Not the biggest milestone ever but not bad for a two week old blog.

Crusties


Straight out of District 9 and we want more of them. My second biggest SF army to date. They are a nice idea put into practice very well. The Crusties are produced by Ground Zero Games in packs of 8 for £3.00.
Ground Zero Games Crusties
This was a few of the hoard. They are nice figures and I found them very easy to paint. I just need to get round to painting the heavy weapons and what I have is all done.

Even more Crusties
This was a few of the hoard. They are nice figures and I found them very easy to paint. I just need to get round to painting the heavy weapons and what I have is all done.

I still need a few more of the infantry and some power armour and walkers. Should Jon Tuffley ever read this, please do some more of these. I really like them. What put people off is that there isn't a large range of infantry. Another three or fours pack and I think the market would take off.

I might get round to doing some background on them as I have had a few ideas about how they might work.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Crooked Dice's envoys and conch kin

At the top of the page it says something about 15mm but I am sure I put a bit of a catch all in there somewhere. I was looking at these and thought that these were brilliant post apocalyptic monsters.

In a 15mm game, these would be about double normal human size. I am a big Fallout fan as I have said before and I thought if ou were doing a post apocalypse game that these would be great as big monster. They have something of the deathclaw and mirelurk about them. I could even see them fitting into an SF game.

The Red Shiny Mechanoid Jaeger Riflebots of Vortis


I got these a while back. There are several manufacturers that do robot style infantry. I was after something that was kind of a cross of terminators, cylons, cybermen and a little of the robots from The Black Hole. It was a toss up between Mekanoid Jaeger Riflebots and the Sybots from Astro Miniatures. It would have been the ones from Astro if it had been easier to buy them.

When I got the minis I thought of the Red Shiny Robots of Vortis. The colour scheme was an easier choice then. If you haven't seen the TV series Hyperdrive, you have really missed out.

Now whilst I like the Red Shiny Robots of Vortis as a concept, I don't like shiny minis. They always look like someone couldn't be bothered to use matt varnish.

Jaeger Riflebots base-coated
A basic red. I just picked a colour I like which was ???????. I have gone off base coating I used the base colour for the mini as the base where I can. It saves a lot of time when you can do it. Base coats really affect the colour on smaller minis and the smaller you get the bigger the difference. If I was after minis that made people want to spend lots of money on them I probably would. As they are gaming minis they are going to get a cover of mat varnish which keeps the paint on without the need for a base coat.
Washed and pressed

They were washed with Baal Red. I have gotten into the habit of using Army Painter Quick Shade. In this case I felt that it would over power the red so I just stuck with the ink. 

Almost done
A few extra pieces for dressing. The hazard panel on the back was painted yellow and then I took a fine liner pen to make the hatch marks.

They were finally highlighted with some extremely cheap acrylic I have. It just brings out that little bit of extra colour. Based on washers rather than pennies or cents as they seem to over power the minis. The washers give enough stability. Still, M6 washers cost about 5p each so it makes sense to use pennies.

All i need to do now is spray them with some varnish and put some testure on the base.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

15mm.co.uk skeletons

These are part of a largish undead army I am working on. These are just four of the dozen or so bases I have done. There a a few more bits to come.
skeleton bows from 15mm.co.uk
skeleton general and spears
15mm.co.uk has one of the biggest ranges of 15mm fantasy figures around. I have a couple of their armies now and rate them quite highly. There is still not enough fantasy figures out there to convince me to start using 15mm as RPG minis but I am almost convinced.

Skeletons are an easy and quick army to paint and HOTT is a fun quick campaign system and it's free.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Brogs from Rebel Minis

Rebel minis are showing off some new greens for their up coming Brogs range.

The Brogs
These are to be an alien race that is planned for release in the next few weeks. I'll update the blog as and when they are out.

Elder Things

One of the first reasons for considering buying 15mm was to run a modern horror RPG. The first time around I considered it I passed on the idea because there wasn't enough minis out there.  Not only is there enough to do a modern horror game but increasingly there is enough to do a 1930s horror game. Maybe Cthulhu is on again.

It seems that there are many micro ranges cropping up, one such is Eldritch Empires. 

Elder Thing
Lovecraft was very good at coming up with descriptions of truely alien beings. I think this does some justice to them. Looking at some of the mutants from the early fallout games and even things from the likes of Stalker, these might also work in a post apocalyptic games.

I don't think they are available yet but they are the first of a planned range of figures.

15mm.co.uk wraith lord

This is my version Wraith Lord mounted as a flying hero for my undead HOTT army.
The Waith Lord - Flying Hero
In HOTT it's a flyoimg hero. A costly unit but part of my flying army plan.

My ten favourite mini manufacturers - part 2


Following on from last weeks post I thought it was time to finish off my top ten mini manufacturers. Again in no particular order.
Another company I have had a long relationship with. They have an excellent range of WW2 figures. When I used to be into Spanish Civil War, the Pig was the place to go. They have a lot of nice civilian types and a wider range of 15mm Modern US than Rebel Minis in their AK47 range. They also have a lot of seated figures, casualties, and character types in multiple poses. I have seen some of their Hey You in the Jail (Wild West) converted into some nice Firefly/Serenity types. They have several nice ranges for American War of independence, (American)Civil War Battles, WW1, War in the Age of Magic (mainly fantasy but a few SF and the best Arabic fantasy figures out there), English Civil War, War of the Roses and Samurai. These are another good company and they produce regular updates for most of their ranges. They also produce a lot of spare heads and odds (the biggest out there) which is useful for conversations. They do some nice modern vehicles. Not a massive range but some would be harsh to source anywhere else.

Whilst mainly a manufacturer in larger scales, Eureka have some nice figures in 15mm which are of interest to the 15mm fraternity. They do some unusual ranges of historical stuff such as Hawaiians and Amazonian Indians and few other North American Indian tribes. More of interest are the SF Germans and more significantly 15mm Ventaurans. The Ventaurans were originally a race designed by Denizen Miniatures in 25mm and have been done in 6mm as well. The Ventaurans are a very nice range of figures which evoke the feel of Zhodani Commandos from Traveller. These were my choice for a force in Future War Commander and look the part of very high-tech power armour.

A rapidly growing range of 15mm SF figures. They have a lot of nice alien figures and their human figures are a must for all fans of HALO. They still have a way to go to catch up with some of the other players in the field. If you are looking to set up the cantina scene from Star Wars take a look at the Mercenary Range which have some very nice and a few unusual aliens. Also in this range are the Blockhead battle suits which are very nice robotic infantry. There are also some nice snake like warriors that would work for any X-Com game as Snakemen. The jackal like Protelene Kahnate figures and nice light power armoured figures much beloved by Gruntz. The Kammados are a nicely supported alien bipedal race based on snakes with a nice range of vehicles and terrain. I am not sure where the Presentia range of figures get their inspiration from but they are figures equipped with staff like weapons. Not as big as the other ranges but currently growing. Their Human ARC fleet are very nice figures which are very reminiscent of the troops in the HALO computer games. A huge range with figures for just about every occasion. I have talked to them at shows a few times and they seem like very nice people who are driven to get their range of the ground in a big way.

Alternative Armies hived off their 15mm figures into 15mm.co.uk some years ago. They had their own fantasy figures and SF figures based on their Ion Age background. They also picked up the moulds for the old Laserburn range which are very space opera. The range is expanding with some intersting figures as and when they pick them up. I have been buying their fantasy stuff for a long time for HOTT and they do some nice army packs. I particularly liked their undead figures and have a large army of their orcs/goblins as well. If you are looking for an unusual figure 15mm.co.uk probably have it somewhere.

Astro are a fledgling company who have a nice but small range of miniatures availble. They make a nice range of starship crew in uniforms which are very similar to the kinds of uniforms in Star Trek:TOS. I am no Trekkie (or was that Treker I forget) but these are nice figures. There is also a range of Sybots which look enough like old school Cylons. One of the nicest things about the range is that they have some conversion packs something that 15mm sadly lacks a lot of.

Comments are gratefully received.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

War Hounds of Sirius - Not Vargr


Another reverential tip of the hat to Traveller. The old Citadel Vargr minis are now the War Hounds of Sirius from RAFM.


There are ten in the Warhounds pack a few more in the Support Staff from pack. At $5.95 for ten figure in the main pack and another two from the Support Staff pack they are not badly priced with eight different poses. Just about enough for the crew of a Vargr Corsair.
War Hounds of Sirius out of the blister
The set, short of basing is now just about finished. These to my mind are the nicest of the Traveller aliens and in some of the most animated poses of all of the range.

Work in progress
I picked a fairly neutral colour palette (for the most part). The fur I wanted keep to the same as regular dogs. Having chosen very bright colours for the Car Leonis and striking colours for the Dracos Warriors, I picked a earth tones and white, greys and black. There are a few brighter colours for contrast. I looked at the few colour pictures from my Traveller days for my inspiration for this.
first six Warhounds of Sirius
another six Warhounds of Sirius
For speed I used the fur colour as the base coat. This was later picked out in the paint job by using a mix of washes and highlighting.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Space Demons

This is just a quick post about what I have been working on.
Space Demons from Khurasan. A simple low-tech species of truly ultimate badasses. Who does not alike Alien or Aliens. Sporting this years fashionable purple colour scheme.
Khurasan Space Demons
This is a simple and effective scheme. The main body is Warlock Purple washed with Leviathan Purple highlighted with Tentacle Pink. The mouth parts are Bleached Bone with a wash of Devlan Mud. I could churn these out by the barrow load.


I plan to get some more, well a lot more. The plan is to use them in a Future War Commander game. The plan is to pit the against some Eureka Ventaurans painted for a teleporting Zhodani Commando team.


As they are larger figures, I can get away with penny bases. I really must get some basing done.

Friday, 20 April 2012

Still working this out

I haven't been doing this for all that long. Just a couple of weeks and I am really starting to enjoy it.

I look at my Blog and the Blogs of others and see that some have much nicer toys. The form of some of them just feels better. It's not about template. It's something else. Blog envy? Perhaps.

If anyone has any suggestions that would help me out, please speak up. Constructive criticism and feedback would be appreciated.

Get your Geek on 1

I have always been a bit uncertain about putting my inner nerd on display. If it's good enough for Wil Wheaton then it's good enough for me. I think that this is one of the reason I have got into blogging.

Every time a subject relating to my inner nerd comes up in someone else's conversation I always feel a little uneasy. How much to reveal? I work in a sector fairly unforgiving of weakness and I have always thought that this was a hard on me. I mean it's not like I am destroying the environment (much) or maiming small animals. Most of my mates are computer types so they don't know what I am talking about.

I am not the sort that goes to conventions. Maybe the odd wargames show but nothing much more than that. I had a chance to go to a zombie LARP last year and I bailed and I kind of regret that now. Perhaps I am a little too old to to change but maybe not. Nerd is the new black. Or something like that. When I go to gaming shops and even places like forbidden planet, I am starting to see women. I am not just talking the ageing overweight Goth types either. The sort who game because it is the only way to see their badly dressed and slightly malodorous other half. I haven't seen any tens yet but there are plenty of sixes and sevens and even an eight.

What am I trying to say here? Well the world is changing. For the better. Maybe it's shows like The Big Bang Theory in the US or The IT Crowd in the UK. Nerd is cool.

Make the most of it whilst it lasts :-)


Rebel Minis modern US infantry inked up

Had a bit of time today to do some painting so thought I would finish up the Rebel Minis Modern US Infantry I previously posted. They were originally purchased for the 15mm zombie project but I have since started playing Force on Force with them.
Rebel Minis Modern US Infantry
The Devlan mud wash brings out the colours and difuses any of the side effects from the stippling process (hopefully).

Just need to add some base texture. Think I need to get a better camera.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Eureka Seem to be Releasing Some Modern Russians



Having moved into 15mm one of things I started playing was Force on Force. There is no shortage of American, Arabs and Africans, but people seem to have forgotten to cold war and even the CIS' current forces. Spetznaz are done by Rebel and QRF who also do a small range of Russians in highly specialised units with only a few variants. The figures are okay but I have always found QRF to be closer to 18mm than 15 and tend to dwarf most 15mm products. 

Eureka have produced a range of 15mm Russian through their 300 club arrangements. I've not physically seen any of the 15mm stuff but their 25/28mm modern stuff and their zombies are very nice.

The range is quite broad, about thirty minis with a variety of headgear. I know they have been on the go for a while and they are not on the website yet.

Have a look at Wargaming with Barks for a review. I don't see the point in rehashing something someone has already done :-)

In general, choices in 15mm are a bit limited. Peter Pig do some nice minis for their AK47 game. There is a huge range of generic minis but only a few would really look like Russians. Their modern range of nationalities is limited to Americans, Israeli and French Foreign Legion (have they seen any action since Vietnam?). Rebel do nice ranges of Americans and Chinese with British and German special forces. These figures are very playable. QRF do several ranges but they can't hold a candle to the stuff from Rebel. One thing I will say about QRF, their vehicles are pretty much perfect. I had
a look around and can't

Put it another way. We need more modern 15mm modern figures and some Brits would be nice.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Kittens

My other half has just discovered that I have started blogging. I have put a picture of kittens here so that hopefully she will be so distracted.



 For those of you who think I am kidding, you are wrong :-)

The Infected - Transhuman Savages from Khurasan

I am a big post apocalyse fan. You can only be games with zombies by having games with radioactive zombies. After I had finished Fallout: New Vegas (for the second time) I moved on to RAGE. Think Car Wars with mutants. If you have played the game you will get the idea.
the infected - transhuman savages

The infected are like a subhuman mutant who has been out the wastes too long. Most of the PA backgrounds have something like these in the bestiary. These are nice scary looking things that would work in the right SF or fantasy game.

Monday, 16 April 2012

Khurasan Chewk Cavalry

Chewk cavalry? Cavalry?


This is  for an SF game? I guess that GZG have a couple of cavalry ranges. People have apparently asked for it. Human life in all it's requisite varieties I guess. The Chewk are a popular range and I am sure that any expansion to it would be welcome. Khurasan are good at making ranges broad enough to be useful for war gaming. An odd looking race. A kind of cross between Jawas and squid.


The Khurasan website has just shown a Chewk figure riding a creature that looks something like a giant flea with long legs. This is one of several minis planned.
Chewk riding a Munga
Now I am a little dubious about the idea but I like the mini. I had planned to do a Chewk army at some point and I like the Chewk as an idea for a race. They are a unique concept in any scale. Correct me if I'm wrong.

The riding beast is called a Munga. I like the creature and the model is up to the usual high standard. There is a nice background for them on Khurasan's blog. I wonder if he is going to sell the Munga as a separate blister.




Whilst they are designed as a hard SF race, I could see them in a post apocalyptic game I could also see them in some sort of Martian fantasy/SF crossover.


Goes to show that he listens to his customers.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

My ten favourite mini manufacturers - part 1


I was originally going to do this as a one article but decided that it was too long for even me to read so I have split it up into two sections. These represent my favourite minis in no particular order.

This is where a lot of my mini money has been spent in the last year or so. There have a broad range of figure genres. I have posted about parts of the Modern range already as they do some nice modern US troops. They do a good range of modern nationalist and some, like the Chinese, that you would be hard pressed to find anywhere else. They have a nice range of insurgents and paramilitary types. They are probably have the biggest range of modern zombies out there and a nice range of WWW2 zombies in 15mm. My paint queue currently has some of the Sahadeen SF infantry. A nice low tech-ish force that kind of evoke the Fremen from Dune to my mind. The 15mm Gangs, Gunmen, Hostages and More do some nice civilians and post apocalyptic minis. They also have several nice range of police types.


Khurasan have some of the nicest figures on the market at the moment in my humble opinion. The range of genres the cover is also quite impressive. Like many others, some of the ranges have been inspired by film and TV which allows you fulfil some gaming fantasies. Their SF ranges tend to be just about the right sizes and have enough figures to make a decent force out of. I have mentioned their Alien/Aliens figures before which I like. Again HALO fans will find something in their ranges for them. Their Lhurgg make nice tribal aliens with high tech weapons. The felids are a great (and growing) range of feline aliens which have brought a lot of attention to them as a manufacturer. This is just a taste of what they offer in the SF line. They also have a sizeable fantasy range with some nice lizardmen and the Getinmahbeli HOTT army. They also have a largish post apocalyptic range which is inspired by the Fallout series of games and have moved onto zombies and survivors recently. As a big fan of Fallout, I have to say I like them a lot. They also do a lot of pulp figures that would not look out of place in a Doug McClure film. They also do a sizeable range of historical figures in more eras and nationalities than I care to mention.

I have been a GZG customer from twenty years and have nothing but nice things to say about them and they have a big range of minis. They do listen to their customers and produce what people want. Mainly an SF manufacturer but they do a interesting range of other figures. I think they have the biggest range of SF vehicles and several of them have compatible looks. They have some nice buildings in a couple of styles which look nice on the table. They are currently well known for their 15mm work but have extensive range of 25mm, 6mm and SF star fleets. One of their biggest selling points for me is that they supplement their military ranges with plenty of civilian types including some fireflyesque miniatures. If you were interested in firefly their Free Cal Tex figures look a lot like Alliance (and the film version of starship troopers for that matter). They have a fantastic turn around time (most of the time just not when they have an offer on or when Salute is coming up). They are good attenders at UK shows and Jon can usually be engaged in conversation about what his plans are. They know their market and excellent customer service.

This is a smaller manufacturers out there. That said it is one of the reasons I was able to make the switch to 15mm. They do not have a huge range but what they have is very nice with lots of character. They tend to be useful for contemporary games. They have some nice secret agent types which fit in well with the minis from Rebel and some special forces types that would work well against Khurasan's vacation aliens. Much of what they do would work well with post apocalyptic games and their robots evoke Fallout 3 quite nicely. Although they don't do zombies they do some nice zombie hunters and some of the body bag figures would be nice as zombies. The Scene also do a lot of nice scenery and hard to source items. What I like about The Scene is that sell figures individually so you can get exactly what you want and don't end up a pile of useless lead that you can't even get rid of on eBay. 

If you are looking for 15mm fantasy figures look no further than Splintered Light. The have a vast range of races and even a few you have never heard of. When I was considering doing a Narnia army, this was the place to go. There seems to be some sort of obsession with fantasy mice (maybe something to do with Mouseguard) and SL have a nice range of fantasy armed mice and other woodland creatures. They have some nice Pulp figures (currently only just represented by a few manufacturers) and a range of SF ships crew which would work well for firefly/Serenity. They also carry a limited range of ancient medieval figures.

I'll finish this off shortly.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

The Walking not so Dead


The first time I read a comic in ten years was to read The Walking Dead. I am a bit of a zombie fanboy. Something to do the illicit watching of the Dawn of the Dead when I was fourteen I think. The original is still the best zombie film in my opinion. Although the competition for the best zombie TV series is a bit limited you can't argue with the ratings of The Walking Dead.

It has inspired people to run some zombie games and Khurasan to make some minis. Zombies as a genre are popular at the moment. I understand that the Zombie Hunters Guide from Osprey is their best selling book from traders at shows,

I reviewed the zombies a few days ago and thought I should move on to the survivors. The bag contains eleven figures in differnt poses for £8.99 which is pretty good value.

The walking alive/bait

If you wanted to play the game there are figures out there that with the right paint job would just about handle but would not be perfect. I had been thinking of doing some conversions one of which was a character with a crossbow. I don't have to do that one now.

There nice minis for all the main characters from the TV show. There is a nice Rick Grimes like character. I had to work out which is Shane as it is not quite as obvious but then he isn't wearing an obvious uniform. The Dale figure is great but lacks the signature hat. The Glenn character is nicely animated. I wont blind you with all the details but all the cast from series 1 that made it through are here.

Maybe it would be nice to have some of the other character. A Merle Dixon figure would be great and some more of the recurring cast members would also be welcome.

Rebel Minis is the biggest player in 15mm zombies so far. With the release of one pack, Khurasan has nearly caught up. Throwing the gauntlet down for Rebel to pick up.

Friday, 13 April 2012

My Workbench

Setting up a decent workspace in the eventual aim of most painters. It's important to me. You can tell by the fact that my workbench is the background of my Blog how important it is. It is my "oasis of calm" away from SWIMBO or just the man cave.
The workbench never normally looks this clear

A small area is all that many of us have so we make the most of it. For a long time I had about three feet on window sill and a box to put my paints in. This wasn't ideal but it worked for me. Over time, this got to be inadequate for my needs in not an outright hindrance when I paint.

The central feature is the mug. Tea not coffee. I'm English but don't hold that against me. I was thinking of giving all my project a brew rating from one to five.  depending on how lon they take.

When I eventually acquired too much stuff just to leave it on the table, I had to look for something better.

There are a number of systems for sale. These seem relatively expensive for what they are. Many are geared up to the paints of a particular manufacturer. If this works for you, fantastic. My advice would be to go with what work for you, every time but this wasn't for me.

The first step was to rebuild some shelves to get the paints of the table, this quickly turned into two shelves. The second shelf was designed to work a bit differently. As well as having some space for paints, it became a space to store other resources, big paint pots and a place where half completed projects could hide in plain sight.

My main workspace is a 45cm (18”) x 60cm (24”) cutting mat so I decided to work everything around it. Over the years I have replaced the mat twice and something consistently at the core of what I do is always a bonus. I looked for a commercial alternatives and decided that they were still not for me.

Given the dimensions of the mat I opted to buy some wood and get it cut to fit around it. I mainly use Games Workshop paints which have many incarnations in pot size. I also use Revel, Vallejo and Humberol acrylics. Privateer P3 paints and those in similar jars should nicely along side the older GW paints. If you use paints from Vallejo or battleground or any squeeze pot paint they are all identical in shape the shelves are marginally smaller. The bases are all fairly close in terms of absolute dimensions.

Either way you require pieces of wood that fit the shapes needed. I have found that 34mm x 44mm or 44mm x 44mm work well and they have a pretty much uninterrupted view of the colours in the pots. 44mm x 44mm even allow the revel paints to be laid on their side so the labels can be seen and even Tamiya fit on well. These are also the sizes you will find available at all good DIY shops.

A word from the wise, think big when you build your own workbench. Use all the space you have. I put this set up together a few years ago and I am already looking to expand the set-up. When I get round to improving my workbench, I'll publish some pictures.

Men in parkas and rednecks

Khurasan have published details of some more figures I thought people might be interested in. Firstly there are two packs of Armed Men in Parkas. The first pack has six different poses all armed with hunting rifles, shown below.
Armed men in parkas
The second pack has just three models, a leader, a man with a M249 (I think) and finally man with a flame thrower who could double for MacReady. I think Crooked Dice are looking at doing something using figures like this in one of their 7TV games.

More armed men in parkas
These make great modern and post apocalyptic figures and I could see some SF use for them as well.


Redneck welcoming committee

Here is the first of two sets of rednecks, the Redneck Welcoming Committee. Lovely looking figures and the kind of stuff GZG used to do in 25mm.



New Releases From Ground Zero Games


GZG have been feeding their fans again and have some new 15mm infantry releases. There are two new releases for the NAC and there are two new releases are I am told one of the most popular ranges for 15mm SF. Speaking for myself I have more NAC figures (well over 100) than I do of any other type. As the range has increased I have built up my collection.


The first pack is medics with wounded . The pack contains ten figures four of which are mounted as pairs. There is a marine helping a wounded marine, a casualty sat up, a medic attending to them and a separate standing medic. I am not sure how I would use the double mounted figures but they have objective marker all over them. The medics will make a useful character type for NAC in Tomorrow’s War and I always like casualty figures to represent wounded and dead on the board.

In the NAC casualties pack there are nine figures in a total of three poses for the casualty figures which the blurb said will be supplied randomly. These look fairly well posed and like the wounded figure in the first pack would be great for Tomorrow’s War and even in the venerable Stargrunt II which is still a favourite of mine.

My only complaint about the 15mm range is that it does favour the NAC in a big way. Whilst I like the NAC, I would have preferred to buy the NSL and have had a 25mm NSL for a very long time. The UN and the New Israelis have nice powered armour (still want to call it battle dress) but the NSL have really nice un-powered combat armour. The NSL power armour is what sold the rest of the infantry to me but with only two pack of regular infantry and one pack of power armour, I will wait and see what comes.

In the Civilians, Colonists, Cops, etc range the have released more figures in light duty vac suits, called Survey Team in Vac Suits. The pack has eight figures in four poses. These include standing with vision enhancer, standing with datapad, kneeling with datapad, kneeling with open equipment box.

These are nice figures and match well with the existing vac suited figures. These round out the armed and unarmed figures nicely. I got them for their role playing appeal. They look a lot higher tech than the suits from RAFM and would fit into most space opera style games.





Thursday, 12 April 2012

Ti-Monhid Intruder Spacewhale

I was going to do a blog entry about this but I thought the entry on Khurasan's blog summed it up nicely. It's a nicely alien looking APC. I can't find it in the shop at the moment so I am guessing it should be released soon.