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Saturday, 29 April 2017

Too Much On The Workbench

My mum brought me up not to waste anything, especially paint. My usual painting process involves having something I am concentrating on and at least one more miniature project on the backburner that I call the background project. If, whilst painting, I have a little extra paint left over whilst working on the current project, I use it on the stuff in the background. The trouble is I have developed a number of background projects. The "main" background project is supposed to be the Blood Bowl Orc Linemen. The trouble has been that there is a prescribed colour scheme and a lot of what I have on the go uses a different colour palette altogether so I started a second background project. Then a third, then a fourth and so on.
My problem now is one of paralysis. There is so much on the workbench that I don't know what to do. I know some of these are more or less finished but..well there is always more to do. No project is ever finished, it's only abandoned. So to prevent the problem of not being able to focus on anything, I am going to have to have a bit of a cull.





Friday, 28 April 2017

Medium Constructs For Frostgrave

As well as finishing the heroes for The Walking Dead and the four Large constructs I have also finished the medium constructs. Everything I said about the Large Constructs here applies to these as well. I think of these in terms of golems so there are wood golems, does such a thing exist? I would like a few more constructs of different materials iron and clay spring to mind.
To me they have more of the magic of childhood stories that fantasy RPG but I like that. As they are nice figures I will find a way to make them fit into a game.

The New Cruelty demands five figures per week and I would kind of like to manage ten a week. This brings me up to twelve figures. I am expecting to finish another five smallish 28mm figures before the end of the weekend. This would put me at nineteen figures. I have also done a few bits on some other figures This is perhaps my most productive week for a very long time.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

This Will Soon Mean the Passing Of An Old Friend / The True Meaning Of Miniature Painting

A busy day again today, not much painting but there has been some and it has not gone well. I am contemplating big moves and changes and I am getting a bit of a mind f%&k because of it. Changes may be coming that make The New Cruelty  look like a trip to the sauna with a nice cup of tea afterwards.

It looks like I am about to part with another very old friend. This friend has been a part of my life for almost twenty years. He has certainly seen better days and the years have taken a significant toll. Which is a shame because for the last ten years or so we have worked very closely. This may be a bit of an odd eulogy for a t-shirt but it has been the one piece of clothing that I have used for painting in for donkey's years. It is covered with all types of paint, ink, pen and glue and has more than a couple of holes in it. Although I love it and as far as I am concerned it still has another ten years in it, my other half has decided it is time to go. This may have something to do with the egg stain on the front of it from a well deserved bacon and egg sandwich. There is something of the same feeling I had when I cleared out my paint brush collection/hoard.

So I have been looking for a replacement. I found a Star Wars Rouge One t-shirt today. It was cheap and I thought big enough. The major redeeming aspect of the shirt I have been using is that it has been washed so many times that it is big and baggy. I got a 2XL short and it just lacks the length and the ability to be worn over the clothes I wear underneath it. I also quite like it and I have what could almost be described as a collection of star wars t-shirts now.

The True Meaning Of Miniature Painting? No that's not just clickbait. I guess it's the closest thing to a passion that I have. My other half tells me it's a comfort thing. It's my comfort zone and this t-shirt has become part of the comfort. As The New Cruelty seems to be taking a firmer place in my life, the comfort of the old and familiar seems even more important.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Frostgrave Large Constructs

Ooops... something went wrong.

Somehow I ended up with four of them. Somewhere along the line I got a couple at a show then I forgot then I got a couple more. It will be a very bad day for some poor unfortunate party when they eventually come out to play.
Frostgrave Large Constructs
Not the most complicated paint job. I am debating doing some object source highlighting around the eyes. I should probably do a bit more edge highlighting but to be honest once they are on the table you don't notice it's absence.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

The Walking Dead: All Out War - The "Heroes"

Although I haven't quite finished the characters from The Walking Dead box set yet, I am about ready to call them done. There are a few details that need highlighting, like anything that is black or dark brown but that is a ten minute job. I will probably put a bit of flock on the bases before spray varnishing and then I'll put on a few finishing touches. That said, I have just looked at the pictures and I am thinking maybe there is a bit more work than I think.
Carl Rick and Derek
The only real problem I have with this is that I want the figures not the fluff but the game comes with fluff. When the game was coming out they were talking about producing around one hundred and thirty figures. I haven't worked it out but I am guessing the current figure is closer to thirty than it s to one hundred. So I am waiting for some more to come out.
Sandra, Patrick and Liam
I have run out of zombie figures from the game now and I'm unlikely to get any more until the next time I go to a show. I have a couple of quick projects that I want to do but I am thinking that I would like to do some more zombies. I have a few Cold War Miniatures zombies to do and some zombie crawlers from a manufacturer I can't remember.It has to be sad that I don't really need any more zombies but what the hell.

The New Cruelty is going well. I have to keep to it going but it's not proving too difficult so far.

Monday, 24 April 2017

Second Batch Off The Walking Dead Zombies - All Out War Are Done

Well with a bit more effort I have managed to get the last six of the zombies from The Walking Dead: All Out War box set done. They were finished before midnight so I guess that was in last weeks totals. Another quick post today because I have a busy schedule.
The Walking Dead All Out War part  2: The boys

The Walking Dead All Out War part 2: The girls
It looks like I am going to finish the heroes from The Walking Dead. Whilst working in the zombie I have done a bit of work on the survivors so getting through them this week should be no trouble at all. Although the Blood Bowl troll (and the last six orc linemen) are still looking like something I want to do, there is a bit of work to do on the troll. The orcs for Titansgrave would be nice but I can't find any bases and I have some Ratling snipers on the way which will do for what I want for Titansgrave. There is also a bit of Frostgrave stuff floating around, rats and constructs mainly. These would be a quick fix as they would be mostly brown so a quick paint job sounds easy. So I am still in a bit of a predicament.

Sunday, 23 April 2017

The New Cruelty

I have been using the phrase the New Cruelty a lot on the blog and in my life. The phrase comes from the film L.A. story, a Steve Martin film and a personal favourite. In the film there is a Nazi themed restaurant where the maitre'd, Mr Perdue (played by Patrick Stewart) used or referenced the phrase several times. It just seem appropriate for my current situation.

So rather than just taking a phrase and using it to give itself meaning I thought that I would write it down.

1) Paint five 28mm figures (minimum) in a week or the equivalent there of in other scales. Exceptions can be made for nothing.
2) Participate in at least one game of something per week.
3) Surf the net for less than four hours a day. Tough one but anything relating to my blog does not count.
4) Take some sort of vigorous exercise at least three times per week. The aim to be one hour sessions of running but for now I will do as much as I can.Take the dog for a good long walk every other day.
5) Write one blog post per day.
6) Stop intending to do things and do things instead.
7) Work out and stick to a morning and night time ritual.
8) Take vitamins etc.
9) If there is something that I need to do, write in a blog post so that it will get done (this is perhaps the most painful aspect of The New Cruelty).
10)
11)
12)
The New Cruelty in action
The trick to The New Cruelty is to carry a mental picture of the three men above. Whenever I think about wimping out on any of the above, I am to imagine being sat in front of these three men. Whenever I think of something else that should go on the list, The New Cruelty demands that it should do so (expect the list to get added to hence points 10-12). Over the years I have become a big believer in the fact that if I say that I am going to do something, it probably won't get done but if I write it down, it will happen. Maybe not today or tomorrow but it will happen soon.

I am starting to realise that I have a life to live. It would be better for me if I actually went out there and did something a bit more fulfilling. Then, when my time comes around, I will be able to look back and smile.

First Batch Off The Walking Dead Zombies - All Out War Are Done

I have my six The Walking Dead All Out War zombies done so just a quick post today. I have worked on them a bit and I have made fairly rapid progress here and here. The New Cruelty dictates that I have to finish five figures a week. This is six miniatures down and with a bit of luck I will finish another six tonight. I will probably touch up the black of the bases and add some clump foliage when they have been spray varnished.
All Out War part 1: The boys
They look okay. Just to look at the original resin I would have said the detail was just a little bit soft but the end result says otherwise.
All Out  War part  2:  The girls
The obvious next project is the characters which is the next probably target. I got some Blood Bowl stuff this week. As well as finishing off the zombies I have been putting together the orc team troll but more about that in another post.

Saturday, 22 April 2017

Gnomes And Gnome Miniatures For RPGs

Gnomes? I mean gnomes? Well I suppose Tunnels and Trolls got away with leprechauns and faeries so gnomes can't be all bad as a player race. When I think back, I can only think of one gnome character ever being played in any D+D game. "No gnome characters" is usually rule three in my tabletop law (with rule one being no use of inappropriate quotes from star wars, hitch hikers, super hero movies star trek etc and rule two being no quotes from Gimli or Legolas). This rule three is there because there are no suitable figures in my collection.

I have two problems with gnomes in RPGs...

Gnomes, in my head, have no real image of what they look like. Dwarves are stubby and bearded, elves are lanky and hobbits are short, not so beardy and have stupid looking feet that won't feet into shoes. Gnomes seem to be be just short people who maybe have a big nose. Similarly there is no personality standard for gnomes. They are gem obsessed tinkerers and mages. That is about all she wrote for them. As NPCs they are difficult to make feel different than anyone else. When I have been forced to run them they end up like goblins from Harry Potter. Regardless, they always seem to be illusionists or assassins. In my head, all gnomes look like Tim The Enchanter (and yes someone does a figure).
All gnomes look like this...no really
My second problem has been that nobody does a good range of fantasy gnomes for RPG games. One of my biggest gripes about mini manufacturers is that it no one produces niche character figures. You can get an all but uncountable rage of human fighter figures, fewer mages, fewer still bards and clerics and even fewer thieves. That said, there is major no problem getting figures for both males and females. If you want a female dwarf mage, you have your work cut out for you and if you get lucky it won't cost six or even twelve pounds for the figure. Now being realistic there is little cause for a female halfling barbarian but on my tick list for all things RPG miniature figure related, I sneakily want one. This is not because I am an OCD nerd, it's just because. Obviously manufacturers want to make money and no one is going to make such a niche figure. It's a pressing thing for me as I want to do some stuff for Titansgravethat, I just cannot enough find figures for a lot of the races. The same goes for fantasy. But gnomes, gnomes are really hard work.

I have three gnome figures all are from the now ancient Games Workshop/Citadel C11 Gnome range I think. They were badly painted and oddly sized I would guess that they are about half the height of a contemporary human 28mm figure. A few manufacturers do odd figures most of which are variable in size and style Reaper being about the best of a bad lot. Brigade do loads of gnomes but only f you want the, in a 19th or 20th century style. In my Northmen Viking game it has been an easy thing to bypass them but they are one of the main races in Titansgrave and I have just had to cut them out for lack of figures just like I have done in fantasy games.

For the sake of argument, I suppose I should say until now. I noticed today that CP Models were doing some gnome figures. Not a huge range but perhaps the biggest I have seen and there are four female figures. There are definite gaps but I am pretty sure that I could work to fill them. A drill, my bits box and some green stuff and I could have a figure for almost every character class. With a bit more jigging around I could even have gnomes for Titansgrave. Who would have thought that it would be easier to get gnome figures that I can make fit for Titansgrave than elf figures.
Just in case you are asking yourself this, no I am not getting paid for this although I would dearly love to be. I am a gamer and absence of gnome figures and those for other D+D races just seems glaring. However, I would love to see some more. Clerics and wizards perhaps, some with swords and cloaks maybe even a bard....How will I get to sleep now (and no, I am not being serious).

Friday, 21 April 2017

Reading And Painting - Scrappers And The Walking Dead

At about six this morning I woke up and started reading the Scrappers Rulebook. I haven't read that much of it and I am reserving comment until I have read it through. Many of the Osprey rule books, with the exception of the Ambush Alley stuff has been okay (both Force On Force and Tomorrow's War being excellent pieces of work) could use a bit of polish. Frostgrave is okay and I have almost everything they have done but I still haven't played a game and I am not sure I will. The more traditional format for Osprey books (the ones with the dark blue covers in the standard Osprey size) have some nice ideas but I can always find big niggles with them. When I have read the Scrappers book, maybe played a game of it and had a chance to consider it, I will do a proper review.
I have continued with The Walking Dead miniatures. I have done a lot of work on the first batch of six and a little bit on the second batch. The New Cruelty demands five figures a week. If I can proceed at the pace I have managed today over the weekend I might get the full dozen zombies done. Maybe they might need some varnishing and some work done on the bases but the paint should be done. As simple models lacking a lot of equipment the number of colours required is limited. You can bet that the character figures will take much longer. As far as these figures go, I expect they are more likely to end up in a Savage Worlds RPG than their intended purpose first.

I can't find any round bases. I have a box of the things in my garage somewhere but I still can't find them. I would like to be doing the orks/orcs but without the bases this is not possible. Now that I have a troll for my orc bloodbowl team, I can see that my interest is peaked with that as well. I am guessing that I am going to side with anything I think I can get a game with.

I have tried to write this post a few times today. For some reason it is proving really difficult. There is obviously a lot going on in my head at the moment. Having had a terrible nights sleep and a busy day there has been no time to catch up with myself. Hopefully, tomorrow will prove to be a better day. There are a lot of calls to make so maybe not.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Shopping, Bloodbowl, The Walking Dead And Other Things

The New Cruelty continues and today it has involved going to a game shop, spending money in a game shop and doing some painting. So with a few other things that have made up the day, it's been a day of progress.

As part of The New Cruelty, I have to be a bit more proactive. Currently I am trying to put a figure on what that means. Ten figures a week is what I would like to achieve. That would be five hundred in a year. I am not sure that I have ever achieved this. Five figures a week seems more achievable. My current feeling is that if I make it a half a dozen figures that I would have a bit of grace. Plastic figures have some nice aspects to them but they do take an age to put together.

So I have done a bit more work on The Walking Dead figures today. They have a basic coat and some ink to give the paint a bit of depth. As they are zombies they need to look pretty battered. dust and dirt underneath blood and black bile give them some variety. These minis are pretty simple so only a few base colours are needed. Although there isn't much in the way of equipment or fashion accessories there is plenty of depth to the surface and textures. I have to say that I have found the flash to be a bit more present and more of a pain to get rid of than I was expecting.
I walked away with a lot of the newer bloodbowl stuff today. I will paste more of this over the next days and weeks (i.e. when I haven't managed to make any progress with achieving my five figures in a week pseudo goal). I have also got a copy of the Malifaux rules and the Osprey Books Scrappers rules. Again I will have a look at these but will give them a good reading first.

The other things, well they are not sure good but I guess that they mean progress. Steps have been made towards sorting things out for my mum and getting my home back to normal. Tomorrow is the day I speak to the funeral directors. I have a feeling that this is going to give me an uneasy night.

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

I Need A Post Title

Not a bad day, some painting and some failing to buy anything hobby related. I went out with the intention of spending money and managed to spend money on a pasty and nothing else. Despite wanting to spend the money I couldn't even talk myself into buying a wargames magazine. The last of the big spenders then went home and had a nap. Rock and roll.

I did manage to get a bit of painting done. The Walking Dead stuff is on the table so, as I am not really wanting to put myself to too much effort, they are the current project. I have been looking for some round bases for the plastic orks/orc I have for Titansgrave but I have no idea what I have done with the. I got some ratling snipers on eBay the other day which are in their way. Along with the ones I already have, the even older ones, this should be a good start for hobbits for Titasgrave.

It has been another hard day. Lots of phone calls from Doctors. Tomorrow is all about getting things collected. Then it's a trip to the Co-op and I am not going for a loaf of bread and some milk.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Changes Afoot - The New Cruelty

The first day of the rest of your life right? I have promises to keep to myself, or as I am putting it, The New Cruelty. I came across the phrase from watching (a rewatching multiple times) L.A. Story. Today, it seems sort of the right things to do. Sadly there is no rolling skating through galleries for me today.

I have spent most of the day on the phone. When I haven't been on the phone I have been trying to keep busy. By way of a distraction I thought I would do a bit of retail therapy. My other half drove me to a shop in St Helens. What a mistake that was. Possibly the worst gaming shop ever and the only thing that made it worse was the smell. It was like a heavily used gym bag with the damp gear, after a real beasting, having been left in the bag of a car over a long hot weekend. I got a pot of paint, as it also cost me a McDonalds for everyone, it was perhaps the most expensive pot of paint  have ever brought.

The New Cruelty involves a number of thing. This is basically a way of holding me to account. There will still be time for sitting around on the laptop, watching YouTube and playing on the X-Box (have just downloaded Frank Rising for Dead Rising 4 (which seems oddly appropriate). The new regime of cruelty involves getting some exercise and doing something practical everyday. The practical stuff means doing something I like doing and doing some jobs around the house that mean progress. It also means keeping up with the daily posts. The New Cruelty extends to you, my readers as well.
Work in progress
I got an hour to myself at the end of the day. I got a bit of time to work on the Titansgrave Saurians. These are almost finished. It's just detailing now. I have done a bit of painting on The Walking Dead Minis. This was just bits of paint that I had left over from the Saurians coupled with a bit of tidying them up (there is oddly a lot of flash) and putting some sand on the base. The models of the zombies do look nicely detailed and I am looking forward to painting them up.

Whilst I have done the calls to family today, there is more work to do tomorrow. It's odd that the next few days, even the next few weeks, are looking like very hard times. There are a lot of things in my life that need to be put to rest.

Monday, 17 April 2017

A Post I Have Not Been Looking Forward To

My mum died earlier today. She died from a secondary cancer from the bowel cancer that she fought off several years ago. I guess I am in shock and I have no idea what to do. People tell me that things are sent to try us but this is just a joke. Others are telling me that it's just a time of life thing. Your grandparents go, then your parent and then eventually so will you. This was meant to console me. The best that can be said is that my mum is no longer suffering. Now there will be family hell to look forward to after the funeral. I have been feeling numb for days because I knew it was coming. I guess that numbness is my best friend right now.

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Nothing To See Here

I have made an undertaking to post every day. This hasn't proven to be a problem so far. If you have been reading the blog you already know the situation I am in. Today has just been a day of sitting around waiting. It has been a day when things were to happen and they haven't. The day is nearly over. I'll have to see what tomorrow brings.

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Stranger Things (Than This)

There aren't many stranger days than this. I'm with my mum now whilst my sister has a break. I have had old friends over for a bit today which has helped me a bit. Nothing I can do so the day was looking mighty  long when I left earlier. We played Star Wars Rebellion for a  bit but my heart wasn't really in it. Don't really feel like talking about that now but maybe another time.

Although today is probably not my mum's last it, is probably the last time I will have spoken to her and for her to recognise me or my sister. This morning had a real sense of an end of things if not the final end. I have spoken to my Auntie as well today. My mum, who is a very private person, has not said much even to her so getting the news today was a bit of a shock for her. The two have not been on the best of terms for some time. I think my auntie was hoping to get a chance to sort things out as I know my mum was. Not going to happen now. I guess there is a lesson there for all of us. What else is there left to do but sit and wait.

Friday, 14 April 2017

A Mixed Bag Kind Of Day - With Boardgames

When it comes to boardgames, well today I rule. It started with two outright wins at splendour and Roll for the Galaxy. We played a bit of Castle Panic. The first game and the third game we did not do so well (the first game we gave up at the start of turn two). Then we played Dead Of Winter. I love this game, so much going on and competing for attention, it feels a least a little like a real world problem solving situation. We actually beat the game on the last turn. I made my objects so I was arguably a joint winner with Jim.

After years of playing boardgames I am never really sure why I like boardgames. It's not monopoly, cluedo or scrabble that got me started, maybe it was Escape From Colditz. The only thing that I can think of is that it is about seeing whether I can come up with a startergy that t is better than someone else's. Games with historical benchmarks like Quartermaster General 1914 tend to leave me cold. I did much worse than my historical counterparts did and still won and what it has to do with being a quartermaster is still a puzzle.

So on to the not so good stuff. My sister has been with my mum today. She seems to have failed to grasped the situation that my mum is very ill. I am getting blamed for this. it is really difficult to know what to tell people. None of the medics have a straight answer to give. the time keeps shortening. One month ago it was a year plus. Three weeks ago it was up  to a couple of months but probably not that long. The phrase weeks to months was being mentioned and this is what I have told my sister. She seems to have heard months not weeks and this is apparently my problem. So after arriving this morning, I got the attitude from her. Well she is supposed to be off tomorrow, I kind of hope she is.

I have heard tonight that one of my mates dad's is in hospital in a coma, Steve if you do read this I am thinking of you and your family. Stuff seems to be going around.

So I think I am going to lay awake for a bit wondering how my mum is.

Thursday, 13 April 2017

A Better Bad Day

I feel a bit more positive today and I have managed to get some gaming stuff done. I am gradually working on my Viking game's finishing touches. I have worked on the National and Regional maps for the game. I made a map when I set the game it up. This has changed a lot because I changed by idea for the world map. My national map now looks like a slightly warped Denmark (some would says that the place is pretty warped already).

This is causing me a lot of problems as I have had to requite the description of the areas a bit. This is a major pain. As I have also written some legendary sagas. These too will need to be looked at. This is causing a lot of retcon. Always a bad thing. Progress is always good but it is hard work.

There is just a possibility that I might have an evening off tomorrow. There is also a possibility that I might get a game in. We will see.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Slump Day

A bad day all round. I guess in part it seems worse because I thought things were going to be better. Initially I was hoping my sister was going to be here today to help look after my mum. She was supposed to be here for the Easter weekend. As she appears to have misread a text message this has been shortened to twenty four hours. I had already predicted that there would be some sort of problem as she has spat her dummy out already. So I guess I have broken one of my rules about expecting the worst and preparing for it.

The reason for her spitting her dummy out is that she wants her to go into a home near her. This is not what my mum wants but that seems to be an inconvenience to my sister. Specifically my mum does not want the pain of a big trip. She is already looking at anyone wearing green with suspicion (the colour of paramedic's uniform) and this obviously means that they are going to carrying her off.

I have spent some time talking to staff about getting her home. Last week I wasn't expecting her back as she seemed to be on the decline. After a few days of rallying, her coming home seemed more likely and someone has come round today to see what can be done to make it happen. If it is going to happen it will take a week to organise because of the Easter weekend. Today however she has declined even more, so the prospect of her getting back home seems remote and the hope that she will make it through the next week seems faint.

This post has just about taken it out of me so it's time for bed.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

RPG Players Tin

As I have  kind of taken up gaming, as a player at least, I need something to keep all the bits together so I thought I would find a tin to put all the bits in that would easily fit in a pocket.I added to what my other half refers to my collection of tins (which she says in a boring Monty Python esque voice that I taught her how to do, the phrase hoist on my own petard springs to mind). Anyway,  I was talking about this the other day I was expecting it to be a project I would get into eventually. There is a lot going on at the moment, not least of which involves spending 12 hours a day is hospital with my mum. Getting anything done was probably not on the cards.
When I got in at 11pm last night I needed to find down. I thought the tin would be a nice easy project. It's not an old tin but it does have a few  memories. The thin foam liner is more about noise reduction. Dice make a he'll of a racket in a tin evey time you move. The slats are fixed in. I thought I'd have a play about with the tin to make sure the proportions are right. A little more padding around the figure is also called for.

This is a project I am going to revisit in the next few months.

Monday, 10 April 2017

I Know What Ash Wants For Christmas

Or I (potentially) know something you don't know. Steve Jackson has something in the pipeline and it probably doesn't come in a Ziploc bag or a blister pack.

My guess is that you are going to like it

Another Week, Another Milestone - Five Years Of Blogging

For some reason I seem to be hitting a lot of milestones this year. This is another bigger, the fifth birthday of the blog. Like new year It is an opportunity to reflect. Maybe not plan as things never seem to work as I plan them at the moment.

It was five years ago today that I started blogging but I had been thinking about it for a while. The phrase "What better place than here, what better time than now" kept apearing in my head. Although I hoped I would keep going I never thought I would.  It seems like a hell of a long time ago and it also seemed like a good idea at the time.

As far as it goes things are going well. Things as they are suggest that this is going to be the best year yet for the blog. There will be more posts and more hits than ever before at least. So everything on the blogging front is pretty upbeat. I have been doing the daily blog for a shade less than four months and I have the will to keep that going.

If you like what I have been doing, please follow the blog or follow me on Google +.

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Short And Sweet

I'm with my mum today. She is doing better today than she has been all week but still not so good. I did get out of the house for a while this morning curtosey of the kids oddly wanting to see the smurfs movie. so being a man of a certain age I ended up in an antiques shop. Gamers out there don't click on another page just yet. I need a new dice and bits box for gaming. I was hoping to get an old tobacco tin. So I found an Old Holborn tin. My grandad was a pipe smoker and this was his brand so I guess it will do the job and maybe bring back a few good memories  (which will not be the smell of the stuff ).

So the plan is to pad it out with some thin foam. If I can make a space for a figure or two, a small pen and some dice. I am still thinking if there is anything else I should put in there. If you have any comments let me know. 

Being a natural hoarder I got a few more boxes as well and a hneftafl set for no really good reason. I thought I could use it in a game. I even saw some old dwarf miner minis but they seemed to be too expensive badly painted and a little bit shiny for my taste.

Saturday, 8 April 2017

No Plan Survives Contact With The Weekend Or Titansgrave

I had a plan and at least in part to work on the Titansgrave figures today. I have managed to stick with the plan and there was a fallback for something to say if I didn't. Of course I never expected things to run smoothly, smoothly is for single people with no plans. I did have greater expectations of the morning and hoped that I might even manage to get some painting done before people started moving around. I mean what self respecting teenager gets out of bed before midday when they are on holiday?

So when I had got that done after the various jobs of the day done I got to do a bit of work on the figures. It's all about detailing. A spot of paint here and there. I takes ages. Worse still, I have made a lot of mistake that I don't think even the inking up will hide so that means that there is going to be some retouching to do which is my personal pet hate.
I had a few bits of paint left over so I ended up doing a few bits and pieces on other figures. A spot here and there, again. A couple of bits on The Walking Dead figures and even the few remaining half done Bloodbowl orcs. Nothing too strenuous but a step closer to being finished. The plan is to work on either The Walking Dead or the orcs for Titansgrave next. If no plan is going to survive the weekend then no much point planning for next week.

Friday, 7 April 2017

Titansgrave, The Walking Dead And Not Google Home

I was expecting to be talking about my new Google Home but I actually got some painting done, some Saurians for Titansgrave and I managed to get The Walking Dead stuff I got yesterday primed up. I wanted to work on The Walking Dead stuff but I needed more primer and when I got that the primer seems to have a massively long drying time. This is despite coughing up a lung all day.
The saurians / saurus / lizardmen are nice figures as GW goes. They are not the easiest to get the maximum of variety out the poses (I think the Imperial Guard holds that prize) but with a bit of work (chopping and changing with a bit of green stuff) they can be made to look pretty good.  

Although they are still a little bit off being complete, it should be quite easy to get them finished off. If I get a chance I would like to see them done by the end of the weekend, there are only five of them at the moment after all.
Then it will be on to The Walking Dead.

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Some Talk, Some Action The Walking Dead: All Out War And Google Home

I went and actually did something today, amongst other things I got a Google Home but I also got a box set of The Walking Dead: All Out War. I will talk about the Google Home another time. Although I am a bit psyched about both, it's All Out War that has the bigger pull. Having just watched the end of Series 7 I guess I am pretty fired up for it all.
The figures are nice enough. I can say that even though they are plastics. They are on par with a lot of the metal figures from about ten years ago. The character figures are pretty close to the drawings in the comic. There could always be more detail but there s nothing superfluous about the design. The zombies are all nicely posed. There is a lot of animation there which is an odd thing to say about the reanimated dead. although there are only a dozen of them in the box they give a good variety of poses. the only downside from my perspective is they come on pre-cast bases. I know this is the way things are but it's a pet peeve. It might mean that I will rebase some of the figures I already have to fit with them as the older zombie I have are not that well base anyway.
The other components are also pretty good. The counters and terrain, of which there are plenty, are all on solid, thick card. The cards are pretty standard too. Nothing out of the ordinary in terms of material they are made from, the look however is pretty nice. The play mat could be a bit more robust though but is is made of fairly heavy paper. I would have liked more equipment cards but I think the schtick is to include cards with the expansion sets.

All in all, the is a nice box set and I am looking to find out what the other sets are like. I guess this is a bit of a diversion for me but what the hell. The next post is going to be about my new Google Home which is really not a good topic for the blog.

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

I Want To Talk About The Global Conspiracy That Is Crippling Me

I'm sure it must be a global conspiracy. Maybe it's God or Loki or gremlins or something. There is no way that so many things could happen at random so often. It must be a conspiracy.

I had a plan to go to all the gaming shops in town today and then come home at do some stuff. I was expecting to be free around 2pm but things transpired that it became 3pm. SO then it's off to do the school run. I got home and just had to deal with stuff. By the time I had dealt with that I was so tired I fell asleep and woke up just before 9pm. Time to eat, get the kids to bed and then move on to getting ready for bed after watching a bit of TV.

I really miss my old workspace or the man cave as just about everyone calls it. The background image for my blog is my old man cave. I probably should have changed it as it has had to change a number of times since. I keep it because it reminds of what I had and what I want. As a gamer I think it's important to keep one eye on the future. I want a workspace, not the pokey little thing I have, but a decent space where I can work on a slightly bigger picture. Somewhere I can put up tools and keep things out whilst I am working on.

More importantly, as I am a bloke, who is a gamer and a tinkerer, I want somewhere to hide. I keep looking at this post on One Man And His Brushes and think envious thoughts.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Tommorrow And Today

Tomorrow  I get a day off, well half a day at least. Getting a day off never  seemed so unappealing. The time has gone all too quickly today. I am typing this whilst watching the Create and Craft TV channel with the sound off whilst my mum doses off. This has been her favourite pastime for a few years now (without the dozing off bit). She loves it because of all the card making ideas it gives her. Oddly I am not so keen.

Today has not  been so bad. My diet has consisted pretty much of nothing but sausage rolls and tea. A proper wargamers diet if ever there was one. If this keeps up my belly will get so big I  Will no longer be able to use my laptop. I will have to get a bellytop instead. On the plus side the cold is on it's way out and I have got better pain killers today.

Having failed to win anything on eBay I guess I am going to have to go to a shop and actually buy something. I think I might get some painting done tomorrow too. As 10pm (or now as I am typing this) is my peak time for output at the moment I am resigned to not  getting anything done today.

Monday, 3 April 2017

Negan - Still Not Dead Or The First Day Of The Rest Of Your Life

Negan Lives...Shock Horror...The man has more lives than a dozen cats nailed together. No matter how hard you try somethings just don't end up the way you want them to. I have enjoyed this season of The Walking Dead as much as any other. This is odd for a show that has been going on for seven seasons. A bit like the comic, it keeps coming back with enough original ideas to keep me coming back for more.

After the last season you were expecting a big finale. Who is about to go out? Well who knows. I won't say. But schemes, betrayals and the cavalry for one side or another. Although I hate the season break, it does allow for a change in flow, mid season.

I hear that Andrew Lincoln did a jig  when he read the season's final script. I think I can understand why. There was a lot of stuff set up in the last few shows. The payoff comes out well enough to completely blindsided me a few times. It made for an enjoyable evening. Given that all out war is now on the way, I hope that season eight comes a lot earlier this year.

Sunday, 2 April 2017

What I Have Taken From Today...

...I'll get to the ... bit in a moment. Another not so good day. All the stuff to help my mum out seems to be arriving just a day or two to late to be of any use at all. If it had been here a week ago or better still a month ago it would have helped but not now. Doing the best with what I have has been something that I have always tried to look at achieving. I don't always hit the mark but today I have tried and if not failed, I haven't walked away with what I wanted. Due to the delieveries I have had to close up the workbench to make space. Worse still, due to the fact I am coughing up a lung, I have had to stay away from my mum for fear of giving her what I have. Hell. I even failed to win a load of stuff on eBay.

My heart was just not in the day.

So the ... bit. Sleep appears to be optional. Between the coughing and the worrying it's okay not to sleep. I'll get there is the end. There is no point in worrying but you just have to do it anyway. Without wanting to sound too zen about it what else can you do, worrying is not going to change a damn thing. So tomorrow I will spend in the present and make the most of that present and enjoy some time with my mum.

Tomorrow there is another plan. Not a gaming plan just a getting through the day kind of a plan.

Saturday, 1 April 2017

Kind Of Missed It

Although it's technically the 2nd of April here, thanks to blogger I am still posting on the first. I had got to a hundred posts this year yesterday and I was afraid that was going to be that when I realised that time had passed me by. Still I managed to get there in the end.

Today has been a day where I have slept nearly as much as my mum today This is down to a terrible nights sleep and a heavy cold. Coughing really does keep you awake. I won't call it flu because I will get stick for that.

All this means that there has been no work done today. I have been searching eBay for something to buy but with no joy.  I have done a bit of work on the stuff for my post apocalypse game. I am thinking that as soon as I feel better I might do some work on the Titansgrave minis. I have a found a few more that I can use. SOme of the first and second generation of Imperial Guard have turned up. These I plan to make the core of my human forces. There is enough variation in the minis that they will do well painted up as armed civilians rather than a military force. It also includes a few ratling snipers which might do well as hobbits in the game. Throw in a few old Judge Dread and Paranoia figures should do fine. Apart from the need for female figure and elves although I am tempted to do away with elves altogether.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Taking Your Hobby Too Far

It is possible to take things too far. I like my models in scale. Somehow over the years I have become deeply suspicious of anyone who is in the reenactment side of things. I can just about cope with the idea of the English Civil War reenactors. When it gets to American Civil War reenactors (in the UK at least, I am sure that in the USA ACW reenactment it's fairly normal, ish). What I found the most odd of all is the World War 2 reenactors. I went to Tankfest a few years ago. There was much less than a platoon of British reenactors. There were about a platoon of Americans (made up of infantry and marines). It was the number of German reenactors that came as a shock. There was almost a company of them. There were a few SS reenactors that I have seen at other shows to. This just seems wrong.

Anyway someone brought this to my attention. I know it might be a little out of date but I thought it was funny. But speaking of collecting, but in one to one scale.

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Dead Robot

I was farting about  with some green stuff really. I found this Paranoia figure a while back. I was one of the robots that was released by Games Workshop when it was a proper company. That always winds the staff up in the shop.
The X-Com project is still on the cards. I have a plan still, not a very good one but it is still there. My mind has also been on post apocalyptic stuff and Fallout. This robot is too valuable to me to waste as a piece of terrain so the thought occurred I could take a mould of it and see what happens. I don't think it turned out too badly.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Bad News Day

Today has not been a day for good news. That said you get on with it. Hump or die as Steve says. There is a day when the future starts to look even worse when family members are ill. Four interruptions on my sleep and what is starting to feel like a chest infection are perhaps the icing on the cake today. I have talked about focus a lot lately. Today has not been a day for focus either. Tomorrow will be a better day.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Another Busy One - Every Day In The Post Apocalyptic World

I have spent most of the day typing and doing stuff around the house. Typing was easy. I am working on some post apocalyptic stuff and, as the post apocalyptic world much more appealing, I will stick with that world.

I watched something about dust storms on the TV the other day. This set me on the road of doing some post apocalyptic environmental effects. A lot of them would be quite portable to other backgrounds. I did a little bit of work for the bestiary. This is the thing with doing design work, everything is interconnect. If you do one bit on something, it begs some work on something else. So the page count gets bigger and bigger. I am quite proud of the work I have done on that and I might put a couple of samples up of the work.

I have eventually got round to doing a bit of painting. Once I had cleaned up my work bench and played about with some greenstuff copying bits of an old paranoia robot which I am going to use in a trash heap, I had time to paint a conjouring table and use some of the left over paint to put some colour on an Imperial Guard/X-Com medic.

Again this has not been my greatest day but I have made some progress. Who needs therapy when you have a blog to write

Monday, 27 March 2017

Spiders Are Done

Anyway I have finished off the Reaper Bones Spider Swarms for Savage Worlds and Dungeon and Dragons. It's good to have something else finished. All the time consuming drying has been done already so it was a fairly quick process.

Maybe I am getting work done because I am naffed off that I am finding the urge to do something. The house is generally never cleaner that when I am naffed off and it is pretty clean today not to mention getting a load of jobs done around the house. The truth is probably that I am a bit naffed off with myself because of what I am doing or not doing. Decisions to be made I think.

I went with brown as the main colour with a little bit of a wash and a highlight. Perhaps it's not as menacing as black but I have just done the beetle swarm in black, blue wash and grey and I didn't want the two  bases turning out like carbon copies of each other (I am not sure that I like the phrase carbon copy any more, it makes me sound older than I feel). When I think back this model this is actually quite a pricey model. £7 of figures and a £1 of bases plus a few bits and pieces. It's certainly the biggest base I have ever used. Now I just need to figure out a way to transport them.

I have also done a bit more written work on some post apocalyptic stuff I have been working on. I have been working on it for a good long time now, you would hope it would be finished by now.

Still, I am tired now.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

A Little Bit Of Work

This is the closest I have come to missing my deadline with only minutes to go before midnight. I have been an hour behind all day after the clocks went forward last night. That's my excuse and I am sticking with it.

Today was Mother's Day. I got to spend some quality time with my mum which was nice. I am feeling lousy still and my other half is still ill. Not a great recipe for me to get things done. I eventually got everything done at about 9:30 this evening. Rather than reaching for the laptop, which I really wanted to, and instead I went to the paint table. I got about an hour painting up the spider swarm bases and then hitting them with a wash. This was a bit if a wet blend and the overall colour has come out quite nicely. I wasn't aiming to we blend I just ran out of patience. Whilst I was waiting for things to dry I had a play about with some of the scatter terrain I was working on.

I quickly ran out of time as I have to be up in the morning for the school run. Again.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Spider Swarms And Making Progress

I have come very close to missing the post tonight. Having posted at least daily for three months now I really didn't want to miss the deadline. My other half tells me the clocks are going forward as well which really would have cut into me time to post. So I just made the deadline which still counts.
Time is never on my side and I haven't had much time today. My other half has been hit by another illness which has meant she has been out of commission most of the day. Worse still she has needed a huge amount of attention along with family commitments. I did manage to find the time to sleep through two films. No great shakes as I have seen both of them already. This is after another night of sleep broken by outside forces. My current plan is to put the dog on tranquilisers and lock the cat in the kitchen.

Despite all that I have done a bit of work. The spider swarm base and it's two sub bases is just about finished. The texture I have used on the base is now curing and when that is done, I will get it painted. I am still not feeling the love for this model but it has been sat around, in kit form at least, for a while now.

Once I have finished that I have done a bit of policing up of stuff on the desk. I have done some trimming on another one of the X-Com Cyberdiscs and played around with a couple of the cars. Small steps but definitely progress. The blog is helping me focus.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Not My Most Successful Day

I feel like I have spent most of the day battling the NHS. My problem has been I have been stuck with staff sickness (four doctors were off sick today) and the practices exemplary record on safety (they are not going to get sued for negligence but we won't always do what we are supposed to either). Due to privatisation the NHS is no longer able to transfer medical records within a fortnight. Now that Capita are involved GPs are lucky to get medical records withing six months if they do indeed arrive at all.

I have spent over four hours today trying to get her prescriptions. It reminds me of the last week of my fathers life when I spent seventeen hours correcting the thirteen separate mistakes made by the same doctor like prescribing 100 times the lethal dose,not signing the form, not dating the form, not proving enough doses and of course prescribing drugs that the NHS and the suppliers no longer seem to have in stock in this country.

So here is hoping that Saturday will be a better day.

Thursday, 23 March 2017

End Of The Swarm

I think this is just about finished. Add some more highlighting, a little more texturing and a bit of flock later and this is about it. It looks okay to me.
Looking back at the process I think I got things pretty much right. Maybe I could have built the lip up around the smaller bases a bit more. If I had a laser cutter I would probably cut out to layers of thinner MDF. If I was more into playing D+D I would probably made a couple of 25mm/1" bases in the gaps. This would allow the D+D bases to be made up of 1" bases so that it could morph shape.
With a 28mm X-Com trooper for scale
The next task is probably going to be making the next swarm base which is spiders. I have said a couple of times that I am not so struck by the models. This is kind of putting me off the idea but I have already half started the base. I am still looking for some Reaper Bones rats but I am guessing that I will have moved on to something else.


Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Swarms Again

Today has been hard work but at the eleventh hour (well the tenth hour to be accurate) I decided that I had to do something. This is probably down to the power of the blog. If I am going to post every day then I should have something to post especially as I figured that tomorrow is going to leave me a little bit discouraged.
I looked back at yesterday's post and I think I have achieved everything I thought I would but nothing more. Actually thinking about it I added an extra step. I didn't think I was going to like the end result on the bugs so I decided to give them a blue ink wash hoping that it will give them a bit more depth of colour.

I was hoping for a good nights sleep. The situation has conspired against me and now it's an early start followed by a long day. It looks increasingly like I am not going to get much done tomorrow. I hope that is not the case.

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Swarming All Over The Tabletop and #Pet Shaming

Although I should have done more with the day I had the urge to play Fallout 4. I have all but finished Far Harbor and I am enjoying running down the last parts of the adventure. There have been the usual distractions and my other half is ill so there has been more to do about the house.

I did a bit of touching up on the beetles. I now need to get round to washing the base and then dry-brushing the base and the beetles. My hope is to get that done tomorrow. With a bit of luck I am hoping to get something of a paint job done on the beetles and then add a bit of variation to the base. The next move will be to sort the spider swarm out. I am a lot less struck on these miniatures. The other obvious bases are rats and bats but I still can't find any of these in the U.K.

Tomorrow is also looking like a busy day. I have to take my mum to see the nurses and work might actually rear it's ugly head on me as well as all the usual day to day stuff to contend with.
The dog was fun today as she has managed to get herself stuck. I have a three year old Hungarian Viszla called Leelu. A beautiful dog but not the sharpest tool in the box (more of a mallet in fact). When I was asked what take away I fancied last week, I said Hungarian. This fell on especially stony ground. She has taken a liking to the cat's food in preference to her own food. This is the fifth time she has managed to eat the cat food in two days and the second time she has gotten stuck there. I am not sure how she got stuck as there was an easy way out the back. She has a similar problem getting past doors that are slightly ajar. that is one other thing to do tommorrow as we are now out of cat food.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Swarm Bases For Savage Worlds And D&D

Swarm bases have been on my mind for a while, mainly for Savage Worlds and although I don't really play D&D it would be nice to cover as many possibilities as possible. Swarms are one monster types that you don't see a lot as models. It's not that there aren't figures out there it's just that people don't seem to buy them and use them. Despite this being a really busy day and my other half being Ill, I managed to make some progress.
 I have a number of possibilities in mind but I thought I would start out and see what happens. The first attempt is what I see as the easiest. i was worried that there were going to be gaps texturing and gaps there are. I will see how this ends up. Bases for swarms in Savage Worlds are supposed to be four inches but I had a lot of difficulty finding four inch bases so I found some 100mm bases. If there are gaps when I am getting a bit closer to the finished product some more texturing could go around  the rim and not really cause a problem, In Savage Worlds bigger bases can split up into smaller ones of 2" which is close enough to 50mm for me.
I have avoided putting any significant bits on the bases. The aim was to make these bases as generic as possible. Whilst mainly a fantasy thing, swarms also have a place in post-apocalyptic games (go an watch Damnation Alley I am pretty sure the creators of Fallout did). The two styles have different trappings so I'll just dispense with them.

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Quartermaster General 1914

I have played the original Quartermaster General game a couple of times. It was okay as a group game but playing the game as a two player game can be a bit too much. I was promised that this was a better game. I was a bit dubious as I get told stuff like this all the while to get me to play in the game.
Not my picture but it might as well have been
So the gameplay is alright. It has learned a few lessons from the original game. The board is nice the cards are alright and it even has some plastic figures instead of counters. I fought the battles and did okay as the central powers. I did eventually win in 1917 but breaking the victory point margin but I still felt a bit unsatisfied. I didn't really manage to take any territory in fact I seem to have a lot less space that the Germans started with in the real world. I got into Belgium in the first round but never got close to it after that and invading France was never on the cards.  Russia always seemed to be a long way away and the was a lot of Russians between me and them. The French seemed to do well, the British struggle to do anything at all, the Americans never arrive and the Russians never go away. I felt like I had no chance from the get go. I had assumed that the game was all about territory when in fact that it was all about getting bonus victory points, as the central powers at least. As each national group has a deck with a different amount of cards, it becomes a game of making your opponent use his cards. Some nations run out of cards very quickly. When I did win the game I had one playable card left out of about and there were two more turns to go.

This is a game about scoring points. You can lose the war and still win the game. This is supposed to say something about the skill of the player but I never felt very skillful. World War One. to me at least was a bit of a bloodbath. This was not a war about how much you won but how much you lost. This should be a game about losing points no gaining them.

It's not a bad game. I would play it again but think it is more a game about the interaction of personalities on a side and that this would make it a more fun game than the two handed version I played.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Insomnia , In Your Face And Some Work In Progress

Insomnia no, miniatures and stuff yes. Swarm bases are going to be the next project.  I got to spend last night in an actual bed and a bed big enough for me to fit in. I had a great nights sleep and have been full of beans all day. I have hardly spent any time sat down. The House is much tidier and a load of jobs have been done.
I got some reaper bones swarms a while back. Nice and cheap but I still wanted more. After I got these I needed some bases for them. The aim is to do them for savage worlds. This means that they start as a medium burst template of 100mm/4" and can divde into two small burst templates 50mm/2". 50mm is also the same size as a basic d+d swarms, well kind of so I might need to make some smaller bases as well.
So what you can see here is a couple of test layouts. The plan is to have two small template with two bases in each. The main base would have a couple of single bases to fill in the gaps. My original plan was to have just one cut out withe no extra bases on the, but now I have some cheap bases so what the hell. The plan calls for some moulds to be made with some green stuff impressions. These are to be cut up and spread around the base. So far I have beetles and spiders. I am not sure I like the spiders.

If the concept works out I will get rats next. There are a few possibilities for these models and I can use them in just about every genre. I would like to do bats but I have had a lot of problems finding them. Birds, like ravens, would also be nice for a horror post apocalypse game. The same go for bats.

On the wish list but I have no idea how to make it happen are: flying and none flying cockroaches; I would like a mixed base of creepy crawlies (something along the lines of of Indiana Jones and The Temple Of Doom); piranhas; and ants.  I guess when you have the figures you make sure that they can fit in with the genre of games you play.
So before I did anything, I tidied the workbench as well. It's the cleanest it's been all year. Around the edges of this I tied up and sorted out stuff. I may have just made more space to fill it up again but that's progress?

Focus - And How To get It

Having just managed to delete my most popular recent post from the 14th, I thought I'd better re-post it. Sorry if you have already read it. I am hoping that this doesn't invalidate my stream of blog posting.

Today is probably a crazy day for me as a miniature painter to talk about focus. I have been dragged every which way since early morning. I have made a gaming related purchased today but for someone else. They were looking for some really useful box storage trays over the weekend and I found some. Seems like common sense.

Focus...Today I have flitted from thing to thing. Snatching a few minutes here and there. I have one eye on the future and another on the past. So when it comes to the present, I am looking the opposite of cross eyed. It's a hard look to hold without getting eye strain. Focus should be easy as I have set out a plan which involves doing figures for X-Com and Titansgrave, not to mention the Viking Game.

Focus...Is about deeds not words. That is doing something active rather than walking about it or worse still watching someone else talking about it. I blame Google and especially YouTube for this, in the nicest possible way. Despite how it appears to most of us most of the time, the natural position for the human body is vertical. It's only supposed to be horizontal when it is asleep. For me this means that there should be a significant part of my body in the vertical plane. Specifically, it should be in a chair in front of a work bench.

Focus...It should be about having a plan and working to it. It should not be about mentally wandering off and taking the easy choice. For me the blog is actually a distraction at the moment. It's doing well but I am sure that this is not down to people actually reading it, sadly if I am being honest it's probably down to kids in Russia and China doing god knows what. Most importantly, I am blogging not painting.

Focus...I am going to quote Patton. Probably a stupid thing to do and bound to upset Martin, who is a big fan. Or was that Rimmer dressed up as Patton? But I digress. The quote is "A good plan, violently executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week". Now this might be a bit obscure but it's important. I have a plan but I keep playing about with the plan. I, like many others, get distracted by whatever appears to be shiny. In the past when I have been short of money I just wouldn't go near shops. It's not that I couldn't resist things at the time, it's more that the idea would sit and fester in my mind and I would dwell on it too much. YouTube, as good as it is, is making this problem reoccur in a new and interesting way. The See It, Want It, Buy It thing is common to most of us. An old trope for mini gamers is the lead mountain. This is because we easily get distracted by what is going on here and now instead of violently executing what we have already started.

Focus...For gamers at least, the process should be See It, Want It, Buy It, Prime It, Base It, Put It In  A Box Until Needed. Rinse, repeat. Thinking about it wastes time. By the time you have your plan, something else will have come along and taken over.

Every year I start with The Plan. I write it down and publish it. I use it to shame myself, and only when no one is looking but it has helped me keep on track in the past..

Friday, 17 March 2017

It's Insomnia Apparently

I was told today that I suffer from insomnia. This is why I have be so tired lately. This made me pause to think for a minute. Not "do I suffer from insomnia" but rather has this person had a, listened to a word I had said and b, if this person had any concept of what insomnia actually is.

They don't seem to know what insomnia is so I looked it up. Rather than going straight into rant mode I checked my facts first. According to the NHS if you have insomnia, you may:

  • find it difficult to fall asleep
  • lie awake for long periods at night
  • wake up several times during the night
  • wake up early in the morning and not be able to get back to sleep
  • not feel refreshed when you get up
  • find it hard to nap during the day, despite feeling tired
  • feel tired and irritable during the day and have difficulty concentrating
So back tracking through the symptoms, "I don't feel refreshed when I get up" and "I feel tired and irritable during the day". This qualifies as insomnia apparently. The fact that I have been sleeping on a sofa to give my mum somewhere to sleep since September and people seem to want to wake me up when I do fall asleep (this happened six times yesterday not to mention the dog, the cat and two phone calls). 

Apparently I definitely suffer from insomnia because I couldn't fall asleep when I tried to get a mid morning nap today. Apparently, the fact that there was a house alarm going on a dustcart going around the estate where I live and people shooting rabbits with a shotgun was not relevant.

I am pretty sure that I don't suffer from insomnia. I am also pretty sure that being irritable during the day is not a side effect of the insomnia. Sadly it's a personality trait apparently.

For various reasons I have been beating myself up lately for not getting stuff done. Focus is a hard thing to maintain when you can't keep your eyes open. I keep blaming tiredness. This is probably fair enough. This is not proving to be the best years of my life. There is too much going on and at the moment I need a bit of a break. Every time I think that there is a chance of something good happening, the situation conspires against me. The phrase I have used a number of times lately is that I feel like a second class citizen in what should be my first class life.

Tomorrow I should have a day off. I know this isn't going to happen but I can hope. So, with a bit of luck and assuming the weather is so bad that we can't go out, I might get some time to do.

Thursday, 16 March 2017

More Titansgrave RPG Miniatures

Well the title should be More Titansgrave RPG Orcs it's more orcs really but I have put up enough posts with the word "Orcs" in the title already this year. So I can safely say I have my focus back. Having put four of them together yesterday I wanted to finish gluing up the rest of them off today.
Unlike the way they are intended, these figures need to show a lot of variety of poses and gear. These are figures for role playing not wargaming so there is no unity integrity. The box set is geared up to make a unit of ten but you can actually get eleven figures out of the box. I need about eighteen to twenty figures to cover most of the bases for each race, ten female and ten male. There are only three character classes in the game but those classes cover a wide range of figures. Whilst twenty ish figures is nice (I have more than twenty eight magic users for instances and I would have more clerics and thieves if I could find stuff appropriate to the dark ages), more would be nice. I plan things in terms of trays of 28 figures so that was the number I want to aim for for most of the races. Lizardmen have two genders but they look the same in my mind although I could use slightly bigger temple guard figures as male rather than as wild saurus. Humans are easy, dwarves are a bit harder and elves, well I might just get rid of elves altogether for lack of figures.
The plan involves a bit more work being done. There are always a few games that need filling in and I will put a bit more equipment on the figures. This will give them even more variety. An emphasis on variation in the paint job on the skin and the clothing should push this even further. A variation in skin tone, if only a slightly different green, seems appropriate.

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Focus, One Hour, Orcs / Orks And Titansgrave

Titansgrave -  Ashes of Valkana caught my attention this morning. It popped up on YouTube and has been on my mind since. It is something I would like to be able to play by the end of the year and if that is the case, I would like to get something underway now. Along with X-Com these were things I was looking at doing at in The Plan at the beginning of the year so I had better get on and do something about it,
I wrote about Focus last night after a day when I pretty much didn't have any. Today has been a day on constant interruptions. Despite that I found a way to make some time. It may only have been an hour but it was an hour more than yesterday and the day before that. The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step.

I wanted an easy win. What is easier than gluing figures together. It still takes time and in the hour that I had I managed to glue together only four figures. A while back I got some plastic space orcs from a popular high street manufacturer. For a while now I have been trying to figure out how to do female orcs. As this is a game of characters people are going to want to play female orcs. I don't need a huge number but I need some. My man idea had been to give them greenstuff boobs and redder lips. As part of the plan I was going to get some wild orcs. Most would make another opfor but a few were going to be wild orc characters. I got to thinking (whilst I was doing something) that the heads for some of this were flowing locks as it were. Doing a mix and match of the two would be okay for females. The plan calls for about thirty figures at most so this will mean I have a few spares but I am sure that I can always find a use for them.

A single step is all well and good. What I have to keep focussing on is the next step and the step after tha. I would have been happier if I had got more figures done and that the ones that were done were a bit further down the line. That said I am happy that I have done something. So now I need more plastic orcs, more plastic lizardmen, female dwarves, some halflings and elves (and I have no idea where I am going to find space elves that don't look like Eldar in power armour)