Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Underground With Pictures

I woke up with a few ideas for a game I have been working on for years. It's a post apocalyptic Savage Worlds game set in the ruins of London. Having finished work (for the time being at least) of the picture of my other half (see below) I had a bit of time to work on more artwork.
Since starting work on this idea I have done a few logos for the game. It seems like a good idea to have an image to attach to stuff I am working on. So I wanted to update it but I found that I had lost the original file. attacks to take it to pieces to start over again failed so I thought I'd start again. This time around I wanted something that looked a lot better so I have started out working on a few banner images. What do you think?
This is a picture of the other half last halloween. Almost done and although it doesn't look like much has changed I spent another two hours working on it. Needs a background doing.

Monday, 29 May 2017

Corel Draw Artwork - Not A Gaming Post

I am still trying to give my all to Corel at the moment. I spent the morning working on some post apocalyptic fencing ideas. One lot is done and I am working on the proportions for the next lot. harder than it sounds. I got a bit distracted this afternoon and started working on a picture of my other half. She is not amused. I guess Iprobably won't be allowed to post it on face book so I'll post it here.

It's not finished yet. Those may be the last words I get to type.

Sunday, 28 May 2017

End Of The Week & Modular House

My stated aim was to finish five figures a week on average. On average I am still ahead of my target. This is despite the fact that I haven't picked up a brush all week. Over the course of the week I have probably sat at my work bench for about an hour in total. So not a good week for painting.What I have achieved this week has been fairly substantial though.

Bank holiday tomorrow and half term for the kids as well. This will mean later nights and shorter mornings. Coupling this with the work I am doing I doubt much painting will get done in the coming week either. The biggest job tomorrow is going to be sorting out the garage. I have already done a fair bit of work in there. My immediate plan involves setting up a couple of workbenches in there. This will mean a big clear out.

The week ahead will see even more progress on the garage. My new laser cutter should be arriving at the end of the week. Somewhere along the line I need to get some raw materials to test out what I have got planned. To start with I think it's going to be used to make figure bases. I know that there are people out there that already do this but I think there is still some scope in the market.

I am working on a few more ideas but for the time being, this is an image of part of my idea for a modular house. Coming to an online store near you soon....

Saturday, 27 May 2017

Going Modular

The weather is still too damn hot. Despite hearing a pretty significant thunderstorm in the distance, I haven't seen much rain today. Family commitments have taken me out of the house for a fair chunk of the day so I haven't got too much done.

What time I have had today I have spent working on the business. I have ordered my laser cutter now and that should be with me at the end of next week. I have just found out the police that I intended to order mdf from only does pick up and will not deliver. It's a doable drive but still have a day of farting around to manage it.

Much of what I have been doing is working on a modular building idea. This seems to be taking an age. It's comlex but not that complicated. It's the little details that seem to be getting in the way. Every now and again I end up with something that is a little less than a tenth of a millimeter out. This is not in itself a problem. however, if you copy something that is out by a little bit and paste it into something else then the error compounds and suddenly everything is out of kilter. It has to be said that this seems very much like the rest of my life at the moment.

Friday, 26 May 2017

Too Damn Hot

It's 1am and it is still 18 degrees. Too hot to sleep and too tiring to do anything. Even my laptop has been overheating. Today has been draining. No energy for anything other than sleep and this has been difficult because of barking dogs and screaming kids.

When I have been awake I have been working on some designs for modular buildings. I have had some nice ideas but the geometry has been all wrong. This has lead to a few attempts, some variations and some starting over. I was hoping to have some stuff ready for the Fablab in the morning but I guess I am going to have to work on some other design ideas.

Should be going to a barbeque tomorrow. So as you might expect there is a severe weather warning with heavy rain and thunderstorms forecast. Yeah.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

FabLabs And Building Walls

I spent a good chunk of my evening at the FabLab. Much as I like everything to do with tabletop gaming, I do like making more practical things. The FabLab is a bit like my dream shed only it has even more toys.There is even a forge although I am not sure I have a great use for it.

Anyway, I will post again with some images of what I have done tonight and a bit more of an idea about what I have been doing. Tired now so off to bed.

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

The Joy Of Pets

I spent much of yesterday and today working on stuff for the business I am about to set up. I have learnt but seem to keep forgetting an awful lot of stuff about CorelDraw. When it comes to laying out a template for a laser cutter it seems to be second to none and then there are a load of skills I can use for other tasks. One thing I seem to fail to comprehend about the programme is how temperamental it seems to be.

Being tempermental is not normally a problem. Today however as I was transferring some documents around the dog knocked the laptop. I am not sure what happened but CorelDraw stopped working and all the files I was transferring just disappeared. All my work for the last three days is gone. A lot of the time spent was spent on learning how to do things, so that is not time wasted. These skills are now allowing me to do things again at a much quicker rate so I have got about half of it done already. The logo is lost, apart from the bitmaps I saved but I am hoping that I should be able to recreate these with relative ease.

Tomorrow is the big day. If I can get my ideas off the computer and onto the laser cutter at the Fab Lab tomorrow afternoon then when I get back I am ordering the laser cutter and the wood and hopefully by the beginning of next week I should be making a limited production run to see how things are going to work out. Then it's on to buying the stationary and some acrylic, not to mention setting up a bench in the garage so work can begin in earnest.

The dog on the other hand has a few days of sleeping and eating cat food ahead of it assuming I don't kill it first.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Manchester Bombing

I used to live ten minutes walk from where a terrorist killed himself and twenty two others, many of which were kids. This not to mention all the injured. Terrorists attacks are a hideously bad thing no matter what is going on but to target a concert which is really only going to appeal to kids and young girls, to me that is a new low.
I went through two bombings in the city when I lived in the area and was mercifully nowhere near what was going on either time. The arena where it happened was a place I used to go every few months at one point and the railway station it is part built on top of, well I used to use that station every working day so I guess  I have been within fifty meters of the spot well over a thousand times. A friend of mine who passed a few years ago used to have a flat in a block adjacent to the arena.

Although it has been a few years since I lived in the city there is a part of me that calls this place home. This event has deeply saddened me in a year that has not been full of a lot of high points.

Monday, 22 May 2017

Busy Day - Working On Designs

I have spent a bit of time today on what I laughably call product development. This has been mainly working out costings. More along the lines of what it will cost to produce something, wrap it up and put some packaging on it. So all in all a pretty dull day.

I haven't gor anywhere near the painting bench today. All day I can feel it calling me, Sadly i have been busy and tired. So tired that it looks like it's an early night for me. And speaking on which.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

End Of The Week

Another week has gone by and not much painting done. I have managed to do some painting today but my focus has been elsewhere most of the day. The painting that I did do cam as something as a relief and if I didn't need to go to bed now I would still be painting. I like the look of the figures, on line at least but up close there is a lot of flash on them. Come to think of it there is a lot of flash on most of them. for the most part though, the mould lines are pretty limited and easy to get rid of. I am pretty sure that I will finish them this week and hopefully a few more besides. I have a few easy figures to paint and a few that are part done so maybe I can catch up.

What I have been doing is working on business ideas. I have now done about three interactive courses on setting up a bussinnes and a basic accountancy course. Getting advice is proving to be a slow process. I am thinking that by the time I have set the thing up and operating for six months I might start getting the advice I need. Whilst doing some research online I have seen something that I think I can use as a really good idea.

I have reworked the logo last night after going to bed. My IT and graphic design skills have improved a lot over the last year or so. Oranage apparently is my signature colour. When I was researching logos it came across as the colour to choose, apparently it has the right mental associations. Craftlab might also have the right mad scientist vibe.
 What do you think? Any suggestions or ideas would help.

Saturday, 20 May 2017

FabLabs And Gnolls

FabLabs and gnolls is not my latest idea for a roleplaying game but it does some up my day. Having had a busy morning I was ready to get out of the house, desperate might even be a better word. For a while now may practical side has had to take a bit of a back seat. Power tools have been hidden away and I have no where to work anyway. There are no men's sheds in my area and the ones that are there, well I am usually too young to join believe it or not and all the others have fairly restrictive criteria and I just don't fit (apparently  am too normal).

My latest trips round the internet found that there was now a FabLab in my town and today it was open. I have been down there and learnt a few things and will hopefully learn a few more things as the weeks goes on. Power and techie tool heaven. This is really just a way to learn a few things about laser cutting so hopefully I can develop a few new skills.

Having put my focus elsewhere this week I haven't done much painting but I got an hour or so in today. A bit more work on the gnolls that I started at the beginning of the week.

My Excuse Is

For the first time this year a day has gone by without a blog post. I wanted to do this every day for a year at least so I am a little disappointed in myself. That said, I worked hard yesterday and I fell asleep rather than opting not to post. It has been a busy week for me and I guess that I have spent well over forty hours working ion ideas and doing online courses to help me set up a business. This is on top of all the other stuff I have. Thursday was a forteen hour day for me and I haven't worked those kind of hours in ten years.  So excused over with and time to get on with some (more) work.

With a bit of luck I will be off to the local FabLab in a biot and see what I can learn from there.

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Starting A Business - Fun And Games

Today more than any other day I can feel that I am going to start up a business making laser cut stuff for gamers.Today more than ever I know how much fun this is going to be, i.e. not a huge amount of fun. My working day has been about eleven hours long, much like yesterday, All this and I haven't even started the real work yet.

I have spoken to two people about money today. Having done that, I kind of wish I hadn't. The money that I had been assured that would be available is likely to cut off other access to money so I don't end up any better off. This sucks.

The money also comes with support which would be useful. If I don't take the money then I don't get the support. I have gone looking for a grant and the only one that seems to cover my area actually misses where I live by about ten metres. This also sucks.

However, I have had some good news. I can find at least three and maybe four sources of support. This involves doing some business training and doing some training in the use of laser cutting. I have another lead to chase up to see about the first lot of money I thought I would get but we will see.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

New Skills

Well I guess if I want to create some terrain with a laser that I better be able to produce some templates. So I got back to learning some Corel Draw skills. I have been using this system on and off for a few years now but I can't say that I know it well enough to do everything I want to do.
The aim is to make things look like brick. It would be nice to get things to scale. The bricks are a little out of scale but they are close enough. Likewise the doors are a bit big but I would like the space to be big enough to move a figure through even on a 2p sized bases. Even more heroic scales (Malifaux Batman etc) all use even bigger figures so the scale to me looks even more odd.

With setting up the building to have a brick effect I am hoping that I can hide the tabs which to me ruin most laser cut buildings. The edges will still be there but I am working on the assumption that people will want to paint them.

It's one thing designing the template but I have to remember that really that this is the first stage in the prototyping process.My initial thought process is to set up, for want of a better expression, a number of boxes that work. Then use these boxes as templates and give them new skins. Obviously this is not a universal solution but I am hoping that it will cover most eventualities.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Hard Work

Hard work is not a phrase I have used a lot in recent years. Hard labour seems to be an even better description than that. Most of my day has been spent working on laser cutting or matters arising from it. To be honest there has not been a lot of physical labour but working with old technology whilst trying to relearn some old software. The phrase "First World problems" keeps going through my head and that seems to be the nature of the problem. I am more worried that I am going to have to get rid of Netflicks not how am I going to put food on the table.

There is a lot of stuff to do now. Hope I am up to the task.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Change Of Posting Plans

This morning I think I had a plan to do some painting ad post it on the blog. I was going to start painting up the gnolls and see how things went. At one point I did start the process off and I am still at the daubing stage so I didn't really want to post any pictures. There is definitely more paint on them than there was this morning.

My other half started talking to me about money earlier. Conversations about money in my house usually go along the lines of my other half wants to spend money and me not wanting to. More than ever I have been trying to cut back because I know our income has dropped a bit in recent months. Despite this, my other half has decided to book a holiday because she really needs a break. her going off the deep end because she thought the dog had Alabama rot and taking the dog to the vet (the dog did have an infection but it's the kind of thing dogs get all the while) has not helped either. She has then realised not only how much this holiday is going to cost (about £800 for four days away) but how much money we are going to lose if we do it. She has yet to comprehend that last year I had to spend money for tax purposes and this year not only have we had a cut in income but our costs are going up all the while. When I sat down to work it out even I was surprised (shocked might be more like it and the air around my inner monologue turned blue). So something needs to be done.

So I am looking back at the possibility of setting up a small scale laser cutting business. It has to be said I am not looking forward to this. My life has become quite comfortable and I like it the way things are going. This is a big part of why setting up a business was put on the shelf on the first place. I should have some money from an inheritance coming through but that might take a while. This would mean buying a house and maybe a fixer upper to try and make some money back. So in the meantime, I need the money. Setting up a business has always been part of the plan but that plan was quite long term. It has been something I want to do but obviously it's a little terrifying. My plan is also going to have to be cut back. I seem to recall my initial setup was going to be at around the £4000 mark. Whilst I do have that kind of money, it seems to be a big chance to take and that money could make a difference elsewhere.

Sunday, 14 May 2017

End Of The Week - Miniature Painting Update

It's actually been a better week for painting than I was expecting. It started with having to finish off 5 Ratling/Hobbit snipers. My urge is to say that they are finished but I am guessing this is not really the case. There is stuff that I can do on them but the truth is that I am never really going to be happy with them. For the time being I am going to keep them on the table and play about with them until I am happy with the final result.
This should really screw up my timetable. Last week I was supposed to finish them and move on and I set myself a goal of finishing them and do another five figures. At the beginning of the week I thought that there was going to be no chance of that happening. Then I started the dryads. I have a dozen of these and I was expecting to finish six of them so that I could be caught up with my goals. Instead I managed to get all twelve of them done, based, varnished and even managed to get some extra bits on the bases.
The week's work didn't end there. I have based and primed a load of figures including seven gnolls and another figure that I thought was a gnoll for a while. It turns out it's actually a beast crafter and to be honest, although I like the figure, it's probably of no use to me at all. There are a few other figures primed and based. There are a couple of earth golems and a genie ready to go too. These should be easy to get done.

I was a little unhappy with the way the bases on The Walking Dead Miniatures bases had turned out. As well as varnishing them, I put a few tufts on the bases to hide the worst of it. I'll put these back in the box now, it seems like a good place to put them. I was looking at the new releases for the game. There are another 24 figures due out. Whilst very nice they work out at around £4 per figure. Now I know you get some other bits with them but they are not much use to me. Whilst I like them I am not sure I like them that much.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Painting On Saturday

Having a few other things to keep me busy this afternoon, I did a good bit of painting today but not as much as I would like. Having seen how far I got yesterday I am fairly confident on finishing the dryads this weekend. So I decided that there was a need to do a bit of prep for next week. As there is not much prepped and ready to go I thought I should do something to make sure I could hit the ground running next week.

So I went through the draws that I have that are full of figures and dug out what I wanted. I had been thinking about doing the plastic Frostgrave gnolls. This was not going to get done as I don't think I have the patience to cut them out and glue them together. Plastic figures have a lot going for them but they take ages to put together which is putting me off at the moment. Then I found a few other bits that I was thinking abut painting.

Then the weather did not look promising so I am going to have to spray in the morning when hopefully it's sunny. From there it's on to the finishing off this week's work.

I like to put a good portion of the basing before I start painting the figures. The easiest way I have found is to glue the figure to the base with super glue after making sure the base is smooth enough. When that has dried cover the base and figures base with PVA. It normally works out better to do this as a batch process. Then cover them with sand or whatever I am using. I leave them for a bit before clearing the area around the feet so they don't dissappear.

Friday, 12 May 2017

Spriggans Or Ents Or Dryads 2

I painted some very old metal GW dryads about three years ago when the world seemed a lot more in focus. It does seem a very long time ago etc etc. I got some of the plastic ones last year that fall into the "well there were cheap" category. The game I have in mind for the my dark age background uses a lot of nature spirit monsters so I figured a few more dryads that looked different from the ones I had wouldn't go amiss.
I glued them together a little while ago and they have been sat gathering dust ever since. Whilst I have been sat around complaining about not wanting to finish what I have started, these have been just sat there.

So having wasted a lot of time waiting for the rain to stop so that I could spray them brown, I eventually got going. When I did get started I got quite a lot done. These were always going to be an easy paint job. It's a fairly simple colour scheme and limited colour palette figures are quick work. So aside from some details (an owl and a skeleton for instance) they should be a quick deal. There is a dozen of them so I should be up to date on the figure painting schedule. I still need to find something to paint next week now.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Next +1

I sat down at my workbench at the usual time today. At this stage, I was a little vexed when I got there. A lot has gone on this evening and I haven't got a clue whether or not it amounts to something or nothing at all. By the time I got to the workbench I was at sixes and sevens.
I have picked out some plastic GW dryads. These are based, primed and ready to go as far as starting the paint job goes. They should be easy to paint as well. Basically brown paint, ink and a few details. This should make the process a quick one and I should make it through to the end of the week on target.

When my other half told me it was Thursday today I was shocked. Somewhere along the way I have lost a day. This also occurred to me when I was being told I had some money I could spend. So I spent a bit of time looking for something to buy but I struck a barrier or two. Gnomes maybe?

Wednesday, 10 May 2017


The end of the day, usually after 9pm, is when I get most of my gaming stuff done and I have spent my day wanting to paint so I should have found it easy to do. By the time 9pm came around I was tired. So I forced myself to get something done but spent less than an hour at work. The hobbits/ratlings are coming on at a pace and are pretty close to being finished or at least as finished as they are going to be. I guess that I am finding the figures uninspiring. This is what the delay is but I am not feeling the pull of anything else either.

At times like this, I refer to The Plan. X-Com, the Viking game, Titansgrave, Frostgrave and Bloodbowl were my main areas of interest at the beginning of the year. None of these are grabbing me / have suitable figures to paint. So maybe one of the other alternative might be better (zombies, weird war two, super heroes, 15mm mecha, 6mm Napoleonics, ECW, Conan ish and VBCW are all prospects).

I have some Frostgrave stuff on the go. I have a load of rats to do. The figures look great on the web but are not feeling too good to painting. There are another half dozen or so figures part way done. These are the new background project and I have on the go.

My mind keeps turning to the post apocalyptic (other than zombies) as well. I have a number of post apocalypses open to me at the moment. I started on Summerland a few years ago. I don't have the figures for this but it would be an easy game to do. A few trays of figures would be enough then there are places to go with it after that. For a while I have been working on things for a London version of Metro 2033 and I have a fair bit of background for that.

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Work Begins, Well At Least There Is A Paintbrush In My Hand

I have spent a couple of hours painting the hobbits/ratlings this evening. My overall level of progress has not been too bad but I would still like to have done a bit more. The plan for the week is to paint ten figures. Whilst I am ahead of my painting target I did not paint as much as I was hoping last week so I feel a little bit behind.
A big part of this is that I am not enjoying painting these figures. After painting The Walking Dead: All Out figures, which were really easy and enjoyable to paint, I guess I am on the rebound. I am definitely not enjoying the work on these figures. They are part of an overall project and one that I would like to get done. I still need a near future project and this is still not apparent to me so I will stick withe what I am doing..

Monday, 8 May 2017

Star Wars Rebellion

The day has been a little slow for my liking and I haven't got much to say about the day so I thought I'd talk about playing Star Wars Rebellion. I last played this a few weeks ago now and I have played it once before that. Both times I have ended up playing the Imperials. Obviously, I need to wear black and start breathing heavily more, you know, just to get into character.

My initial impression was that this was Star Wars Risk. This wasn't fair and as I began to play the game I started to get a better idea of the game. Although it's got a Death Star in the game, it plays more like the plan to find the rebellion during the Empire Strikes Back rather than A New Hope. The Empire are sending out drones and playing cunning rouses to find their opposition. You are also looking to capture rebel heroes and if you can get Luke, you can even convert him to the Dark Side.
There is some production management involved. Although it plays a role, really the name of the game is get-em. Cards and territory determine how much kit you get and more developed planets get you the resources quicker. Really the need to concentrate on this aspect is secondary. Resources are going to happen as neither side can really stop the other from acquiring resources. From mid game on you main problem seems to be not that you haven't got resources but that you are running out of tokens. Speaking of tokens, the game comes with plenty of them. The quality is also pretty good.None of them are in any particular scale although the infantry could probably just about work as 15mm miniatures. Nothing else seems to fit together.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

End Of The Week

The New Cruelty calls for painting five 28mm miniatures and playing at least one game, either an RPG or a board game per week. I had hopes for the week but honestly, giving the nature of this week, I did not have much in the way of expectations. It has been oddly busy with stuff I hadn't really considered at the beginning of the week. No bad thing really, at least if I take the most postive view of what is going on.

Throughout the week I have had time on most days to do some figure painting and I was kind of hoping to play a board game today. The time I have had has not been as much as I was expecting and I have been a little half hearted in what I have been doing. At one point I was expecting to pack it all up, even the blogging, for at least a little while. Despite this bit of moping around, I have managed to keep going and I am feeling the urge again.
So I have been working on these ratlings as hobbits for the Titansgrave game. Whilst they are nice characterful sculpts but they are busy models. The lots of additional details on them means lots of extra painting. One of them has a sack with a couple of apples in it and an apple core on the floor as well for instance. As they are not being planned as a military unit, I wanted the clothing colours to have a bit of variety. This is all taking time.
Zombie Crawlers
I have however finished my zombie crawlers. These have just had a few finishing touches done. As simple models, they were an easy model to paint. This has meant that whilst I haven't reach the totals required by The New Cruelty, I have managed five half figures and I think I finished the Small Constructs for Frostgrave.

As part of the week I had planned to get a game in. I did manage to buy a game I have been after for a while which was Tokaido. I got a new edition which came with a few extra bits including the first expansion. This is what i was hoping to play today. This comes with a load of plastic miniatures. I am tempted to paint them but nt sure they are a priority. Although I had planned a play date, my mate is pretty sick so I didn't pursue the idea.
The other aspects of The New Cruelty have been achieved, with perhaps the exception of exercise. I have yet to come up with an exercise regime.  The dog also needs a bit more walking. After three good weeks of painting I am well ahead of the curve on the figure painting target so I am not too disappointed.

Next week is looking a little less busy. There is still plenty to do but there will be time to do it. The aim is to finish the ratlings and finish another five figures. This is a bit more of an ask especially as I don't have an idea about what to paint next.

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Brian Cox

I have a love hate relationship with Brian Cox. I like science and I like staring at the stars so  should really like Brian Cox. The trouble I have with him is that he gets to places and do things that I can only dream of. So I hate him. I hate him so much that I am happy to spend a hundred pounds plus on an evening out to watch him talk about the universe. I am not sure I learned anything new but I enjoyed the presentation and afew funny anecdotes.
Yes it is Brian Cox
This is my first proper night out for ages. It's been booked for about a year so I guess it has been a welcome break for me after yesterday. 

Friday, 5 May 2017

End Of An Era

Nothing gaming related today as I haven't done anything at all. Funerals eh. Not a lot to say really...

Thursday, 4 May 2017

May The Fourth Be With You

It is Star Wars Day. It always brings the thrill of going to see Star Wars at my local cinema as a little boy. Little has grabbed me in the same way since. It was more than just a film, it was a way of life. I have played a lot of Star Wars games over the years and I have mixed feelings about them. My main gripe is that they just aren't Star Wars and that they become a pale imitation of the real thing. That however maybe that they game was using the d20 system which is always a bit of a pain.

With a big long list of uninspiring Star Wars cartoons, this has become less of a thing. Rogue One has proven to me that you can work RPG characters into a story that really works. You can take something epic from the media and make it your own yet keep it in touch with the original.

I had a huge number of Star Wars figures when I was younger. Sadly using the old Palitoy figures (which I think are the same as the ones made by Kenner in the USA) probably would not be much use now. In the last Star Wars RPG I played, Lego figures were used a lot and I still have a lot of time for the idea of using Lego figures in games. These are not things that most people want to use in games.

As a Games Master that believes that games are better with figures, Star Wars has always been a bit of a pig. WEG sold a good range of figures produced by Grenadier (which passed over to Simtac another long since gone company). These sometimes turn up on eBay and I have about thirty stormtroopers. Whilst some do turn up on eBay they are greatly tied into the movies so getty a range of characters, especially for alien races, is a problem. They are also 25mm figures which would make them hard work to match these days.
The Imperial Assault figures by Fantasy Flight Games are very nice and they are quite a few of them but the scope of the range is not as great as the WEG. The range of poses for the stormtroopers is extremely limited for instance but they do have a good place to start. Some of the figures have more use than others for instance, I am not sure how useful a Jabba the Hutt and rancor figures would be for a table top but they do look nice. FFG also do plenty of smaller scale ships which are very nice. Another advantage is that they are in around the 28mm scale and it is possible to get plenty of figures in a similar scale from other ranges to use with them.
Back when WOTC had the games franchise they produced a huge number of figures from both eras. I am a little uncertain what scale to class them as but they don't seem to fit with anything else. The sculpts to my mind are not as good as the other ranges and being early plastic miniatures were a little on the bendy side. I am not sure I would want to stick with them. On the plus side they are painted and freely available but I couldn't bring myself to buy them.
I had a few Star Wars games as a kid and even the more modern games still do not lose their allure. Every now and again I keep reminding myself that I should post a review of Star Wars Rebellion after playing it again last month.

Wednesday, 3 May 2017


I think I am prepared to do some long shots of these. Trust me, I have seen them close up and the look is not good. They are repaints so I am not expecting brilliance. Hopefully by the end of the week the first coat will be finished. I am not sure about finishing the, as tomorrow is the day before the big day.
I like the look of the models but they are busy miniatures. Lots of extra bits on the bases that make it look good but have to be painted. This is going to take an age. The plan is to make them look a little less military. They thought of a hobbit as a private military contractor or bodyguard seems to give me the giggles.

Tidying Up My Blog

My typing is terrible and as a blogger who would like people to take him at least a little bit seriously I should really have done something about it. Every time I look, which isn't that often, I find a typing error, usually where I have managed to hit an adjacent key by mistake. Proofreading is something I should do more and especially in any post where the word "proofreading" is used in it. I have also taken a look at the pages and decided that I want to change the look a bit, especially with the pictures. Wherever possible I have tried to make things funky and interesting but looking back it just means that there are a lot of small pictures. When looking at pages on the phone, I have noticed that there can be a few things that make the page look a little out of kilter.

So I have gone through some of them and there are more to do. I made pictures a bit bigger and and centred them on the page. There have been a few readability issues taken care of mainly around my colloquial use of English. A few commas here and a bit of capitalisation there. Where I haven't put labels in, I have done so.

With a bit of luck, there will be a more game related later today.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Overwhelmed By Indifference?

The Conan game I have been playing on the PC has caused me to think about running a game. I kind of like aspects of Conan but in a more bronze age biblical style. Personally, I am more struck by the Scorpion King and Conan crossover.

When I first started thinking about running a game I was thinking that I wouldn't need many figures but then I couldn't find many figures. I can muster up quite a few barbarian types. Conan was supposed to come from a celtic type race but it is difficult to get past the Arnie Schwarzenegger style. The old grenadier stuff seems to suit the vibe and then a few of the Northstar barbarians would cover all the barbarian types.  A couple of boxes of plastic barbarians would be plenty. Throw in some Egyptians, Hebrews, Sea People, Hittities etc and that would be plenty of people. Maybe even a few dark age arabs would be okay too.

Monsters and bad guys were also a problem but I am beginning to think that even this might be a possibility. There are plenty of wild animal monsters. There are bestial men which I could use the gnolls I already have (all the metal ones with half the plastic ones, the others being used for Titansgrave with a bit of modification). The cultist box set would also make a nice opposition force. Today I have seen that Northstar are about to release some snake men which I seem to remember are a bad guy in the books. I could probably run the game with about one hundred figures. This could probably be achieved in around three months. There more I think about it, the more them Conan (ish) and Titansgrave concept are fairly similar.

Aside from playing around with Conan: Exiles today has been pretty game free. Not much going on for me today because there was so much else going on for everyone else. I would love to say something nice and hopeful but the next few days are looking pretty bloody awful. That said, I am hoping that tomorrow will be a better day.

Monday, 1 May 2017

Start Of A New Week Of Figure Painting Cruelty And A Day To Remember

Not a day for much progress but there has been some miniature painting done as well as prepping for the week ahead. There are still too many projects to list but I thought I would show you the edited highlights. As The New Cruelty is keeping me on my toes, the good work can't stop.

The first offering is my latest eBay win. These are GW ratling snipers or hobbits for Titansgrave. My goal was to start them today but as I have been a bit distracted I didn't get the bases sorted until much later than I had planned. I have done a bit of chopping up of the guns. I want RPG characters so I don't need a whole load of snipers. Some are harder to convert than others so I thought I would just leave them be. I can see one as carrying a shotgun or carbine and another with a regular rifle. I liked these figures when I looked at them the first time but it strikes me that with the added terrain features these are going to be a pain to paint. As they are for an RPG they are not all going to be in the same colour uniforms so this will add a bit more time to the process. One of them seems pretty close to completion so even though it is not to my taste I might just tart it up a bit and use it. The five are still nowhere near enough for my purposes but I guess they will have to do.  I still need to paint and base the orcs/orks that I have. With the human I have and the gnomes that I will get from CP Models and convert, I more or less have a place to start the game.This will hopefully constitute my five figures for the week.

I have been playing around with some Cold War Miniatures zombies in the last week or so. Nice sculpts that look a little like zombies that are wasting away. Not that I have anything against Dominoes apart from the fact they charge too much. It's a little way off yet and there are several more on the bench at the moment. There is still some detailing to do on this one but I would hope he'll be finished before the end of the week.
Rats from Frostgrave. They look very nice on the website but I am beginning to think that they ar going to be a pain to paint. There has been a huge amount of flash to come off. This is sad because the rest of the stuff from Northstar for Frostgrave and their other stuff is fantastic. As they are small figures on small bases I am only going to count these as a half figure each. There are nine of them (honest) so I could round these up to five and the target for a week. I am not sure that these will get finished this week but maybe next week.
 Speaking of Frostgrave, I have a few Frostgrave Soldiers and the bits on the go. There is still a bit to do on this one though. The three figures will not be a priority this week but maybe next week or the week after that.
What little time I have had painting has been spent on these. I have no idea of the manufacturer if anyone knows I would love to know. I got them at Triples several years ago now as I always wanted more zombie crawlers. Nice figures, well nice enough, and an easy paint job and there is another five to paint. I would expect to finish these this week.

It has been a busy day today. Far busier than what I was originally expecting. Anyway, if you are wondering what the day to remember thing is all about, it's not a good thing. My sister, who has had a fortnight to get stuff to me for my mums funeral, has tried to get hold of me over the weekend and I didn't pick up her text message. I wasn't looking as I have asked her to phone me on the landline and mobile reception is awful here. So this morning, a few days before the funeral she has threatened me with an injunction to stop the funeral. She has gone on to say that she can't wait for the funeral so she won't have to see me or speak to me again. The prospect of having to sit in a car with her on Friday, well it's just not going to happen. So today is going to go down as the last day I spoke to my sister. If by some freak turn of events I do speak to her, I don't imagine the words are going to be long or quiet. Cheers sis.