Saturday, April 30, 2011

... in which I inventory my workload.

I am resolved now to hit that 50%, and to do it quickly. The first step in this challenge is to take inventory of what I have, and come up with a plan.

I'm just waiting for the glue to dry on the frame for the army board, then it will be 100%. I'll post on that probably later tonight or tomorrow.

Here's where I stand, all models included, even those partially done:

1 Witchfate Tor - top floor
1 Bretonnian Damsel on Horse
1 Hook Mountain Ogre
1 LotR Ent
52 Greatcoat Troopers
10 Vampire Counts Skeletons
1 Necron Destroyer
1 Araknarok Spider
3 Leman Russ Tanks
4 Discworld minis (nobby, Death w/guitar, Carrot, and Moist)
4 "Fighter" Knights
1 Pegasus Knight
31 Knights of the Realm
11 Archers
6 Battle Pilgrims
6 Grail Knights
2 Questing Knights
14 Men at Arms
21 Mouselings
1 Chaos Death Knight
4 Bretonnian Lords
1 Battle Standard Bearer
1 Succubus
3 Orcs
1 Warlord Crom
1 Storm Lord
1 Prince Altharin
1 Warlord Spinetail
1 Chupacabra
1 Zomie Hitler
1 Xanthos Mech
5 "Old" Knights of the Realm
1 Wolflord Marraig
3 Horsemen of the Apocalypse (War, Pestilence, and Famine)
2 Phoenix Hawks
1 Construction Mech
8 Scout Cars
2 Tanks
9 DnD Heroes
1 Wyvern
1 Rotpatch
1 Space Captain
1 Action Jackson
4 Trebuchet Crew
1 Mantis Assassin
1 High Elf Prince on Griffin
1 Elf Mage
10 Sea Guard
10 sword masters of Hoeth
5 Reavers
1 Skaven Warlord
1 Warlock Engineer
40 Clanrats
1 Master Moulder
2 Rat Ogres
1 Warfire Thrower
1 Poison Wind Mortar
12 Dwarf Warriors
10 THunderers
8 Miners
1 Thane
1 Dragonslayer
1 Cannon
3 Crew
40 Night Goblins
20 Archers Goblins
10 SPider riders
1 Big Boss
1 Shaman
1 Troll

*AND* 1 Custom Bretonnian Lord Mod

For a sickening total of:

wait for it.........


Sheesh. I see her point. That's a bit more than I expected. Let's see.... 1/2 of that would be 206.... and if I do that over 30 days, that's an average of 6.86666~ a day... Just to get to my mods.

Let the challenge begin! Painting will start at 5 pm, April 30th. I'll post regularly my progress.

Friday, April 29, 2011

... in which I seriously have the best ideas!

I got hit with the creative billyclub hard this week. Now that all the pressure is off from school, I'm finding more time to relax and do hobby stuff.

Unfortunately, I'm also the most forgetful person in the world, I meant to upload some pics of my army board as a WIP, but I left the camera out in the car.  Basically, I finished off the third floor of Witchfate Tor, and put it on hold while I did an army board for my Necrons. It went relatively quick. I am putting the finishing touches on it as we speak. I'll post a big "how I did this" when it is completed. I really put forth a lot of effort and multiple techniques, from carving, sculpting, casting, painting, and even carpentry. (I made the frame for it myself) and I am really proud of the results.

I had 3 ideas floating around in my head today for custom minis and mods. First, since I now have experience with casting clear resin now, I want to do a couple of Gelatinous Cubes for my DnD game, cause I think it would be hilarious. Next, I had a great vision for a custom Necron Lord. Let's just say I am super anxious to get to that one. Finally, I had an idea for a completely over the top pimp daddy mod. I don't want to go into it too much before its finished. I seriously think it is so good that some of the trollers out there may steal the idea and beat me to the punch. I will keep my ideas to myself for now, but I WILL be finishing that up by the end of May... well maybe...

The caveat with all of this is that my unpainted minis are getting out of control. I made a promise to my wife (and to myself) not to buy any more minis until I have 50% of what I have painted. So, I have to paint roughly 150 minis before I get to my mods. Heh. Maybe I'll actually go thru and inventory what I have so I can track my progress over the blog. Maybe have a few "Iron Man" painting sessions with SeerK, Mr. O, and the DFG crew and record a podcast while we paint the night away.

Time to kick it into high gear!!! Yippee Kai-yay MF!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

... in which I continue Witchfate Tor, and ruminate more on army boards.

Thank god the end is in sight!! A few more details and then the third floor will be complete. That's on the slate for tomorrow morning before work. Here's some WIP photos, mostly to show off what I've done so far, and to complain a little bit more about the model.

The pieces so far...

Top of the tower, only base coated

The first two floors that are totally finished. Notice the gap between the pillar on the right and the tower. If I take it closer to the tower, then I can't get the second floor off and on.

Another angle

Opposite side

Last angle

Tower base

Another angle of the base. I included this so you could see the detail in the eye in the wall.

2nd Floor

3rd Floor - WIP

Tower, mostly assembled.

Men-at-Arms next to tower for size comparison

M-a-A on top of tower

If you look closely, you can see by the staircase where the wall just doesn't line up right. This is the piece I had to reshape.
It's definitely coming together, but it is taking a lot more effort than I expected.

So, I spent my "painting" time tonight cleaning up my hobby area rather than actually painting. I put away all the minis SeerK snagged for me from Adepticon and all the miscellany I've picked up. While I was doing this, I really got to thinking about doing an army board for OST's tourney in June. 

I'm kicking around the idea of magnetizing the board. I like the thought of the pieces being that much more stable. However, I think I decided against cutting out impressions in the board. This would mean that I could not modify the board easily if I changed or expanded that army.

I started experimenting with rare earth magnets for this. I have some sitting around that I use for making parts of minis interchangeable. They have a really strong pull, and stick to metal really well. The magnets I have are only 1/8", so not ideal for basing purposes, but enough for me to get a feel for how this is gonna work. I put the foam board up against the duct work in the basement to see if the magnet would be strong enough to pull all the way thru the board. Unfortunately, it wasn't. I'm not sure if it was because to the tiny size of the magnet, or because it wasn't close enough to the metal.  I'm gonna take a trip to the hardware store to see if I can find a piece of sheet metal. I'll also have to see about getting some larger magnets, and if they can pull thru the foam board. If they can't perhaps I can just paint and flock the metal. I can get some plaster cloth from the art supply store, and then I can craft a full piece of terrain.

I started considering what to do for a good Necron board. I think I'm gonna go look to see if I can find some green crystals, and cut up some left over rod sprues to make rock outcroppings. I'll cut some foam up for some larger crystals... maybe run some lights underneath the clear crystal parts so that they flicker and glow. I'm also contemplating about making holes in a hill for the Flayed ones to be clawing their way up out of.. Just thoughts right now, I don't want to start another project until I finish at least 3 of all the WIP pieces I have going.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

... in which I come out to play.

 I managed to squeak out after work last night to go meet up with SeerK, Old School Terminator, Farseerrerolls, and Mr. O out at the FLGS. I witnessed one of the bloodiest games ever between SeerK and OST. By the bottom of turn 2, about 70% of both armies were annihilated. OST's 'nids came out swingin', and SeerK's Dark Eldar didn't stand a chance. OST didn't get to table him, I believe SeerK had 1 unit left on the board when turn 5 ended. One of the most amusing games to watch, I'm glad I got to see it.

After, we journeyed out to the local watering hole like normal to discuss game, strategy, and modeling. I got a much clearer concept of what to do for SeerK's army board, and I probably will start working on it soon. I got a year till next Adepticon, and I promise it will be sweet.

OST mentioned that he was going to be running a Tournament out in Fowlerville. I don't know any of the specifics yet, check for details. It's still a ways off, June 4th in fact. But, I am actually considering bringing the Necrons out to play. Now, I am realistic. A Necron army is not exactly tourney winning material, but I love to play for fun. And this sounds like it will be pretty cool. It sounds like most of the crew will be there, so I couldn't imagine it turning out poorly. Mr. O and I started bouncing ideas off of each other, and we are going to draw up tourney lists this week to throw down against each other next week. Last time I threw down with Mr. O's Black Templars we ended up tying, so I think he'll be ideal for playtesting and fine tuning a list.

Right now my biggest concerns are if ForgeWorld is allowed (I still have yet to REALLY get the Tomb Stalker to come out and play), and I absolutely hate running Destroyer spam. I don't even have enough destroyers to run that type of list. I am curious to try out my Heavy Destroyers and Pariahs. I'm still iffy about Destroyers, but I may pick up a few so I could field a minimum squad. Then again, maybe not. I'd have to buy 2... and I reeeaaaallllyyy don't want to do the Destroyer spam thing.

I think I came up with a fairly solid list, I'm anxious to try it out and see how it fairs...I think strategy will play largely into the list, just as much as the pieces. I am definitely working with a handicap here, the new Necron codex needs to hurry up and come out.

Anyway, just a few thoughts while I procrastinate on working on Witchfate Tor. Floor 3 is going, and the end is finally in sight....

Friday, April 15, 2011

Thoughts about army boards.

First, my frustrations with Witchfate Tor continue.  Painting is going slow, I ended up cutting a few brushes so I could actually reach in to do the detail work on floor #2. I ran into another issue with floor #1, There are 4 pillars that surround the tower, and extend up to floor #2. Thankfully, they did mention to only glue the pillars to the base, so you can take to floors apart.... Wonderful. Too bad that the pillars do NOT fit on the base, I had to add some green stuff to make them butt up against the wall, then secure them with a very loose glue joint, because there was no real area for the glue to hold...Once I got all of that worked out, I went to put on the second floor, and....Yup, the pillars are now too tight, and didn't fit around the tower... all because that one wall was warped and the base of the tower is not circular... OY.  I did get it resolved, but this is seriously turning out to be the most frustrating model I've ever built. One of the reasons for that is the thickness of the pieces. It is not like other models, where add a little heat and/or pressure and presto! The walls are seriously over 1/4" thick, and heavy duty.

Anyway, I should finish floor #2 up this weekend, and I'll try to post some pics. This is a real labor of love at this point. I am really putting a lot into this.


Last night, Old School Terminator, Vogrin and the Judge from DFG and I went out to dinner to celebrate SeerKarandras' birthday. Over dinner there was much booze and gaming talk. Good times. Anyhow, with all of the terrain I've been building lately, SeerK had asked me to assist with an army board sometime in the future before next year's adepticon. I must say I am totally on board for this. 

Army boards are a new concept for me, I only just recently found out about them from the tourney circuit. (Yeah, I know.... I'm a little behind the times) But, I have always enjoyed doing terrain and scenery, and doing something like an army board really appeals to me.

Just in case you don't know what I'm talking about, an army board is, well, a board decked out like a piece of terrain to show off your painted army. Here's a couple of images I stole off the web so you can see what I'm talking about.

I've seen some amazing boards, (Like Bob-Tan's) and I've seen some incredibly lame ones. (Sorry, SeerK, a flocked piece of styrofoam? Really? LOL!)

My brain instantly goes into how to build one of these.  Not bout the terrain, that's the easy part. I'm talking about the board.  What type of features do I want it to have? Do I want a frame around it? Should I cut out places for bases?

For my first attempt, I picked up two foam boards from the office supply store. What I think I am going to do is lay out my army on one board, and outline where the units will be. I'll cut those pieces out, so that when the model is placed in the hole, the top of the base will be flush with the board, looking more like an actual army, rather than a bunch of miniatures. Past that, glue both boards together, and prime it. I think the added stability of a frame would be great too.

Another idea I've been toying around with is magnetizing the army board. With the depressions already cut in, it would make it really easy to do, and also really stable and secure. The downside to this, not really conducive to army expansion... Where as if it was a flat board, you could always add to it. Hmmm.... I wonder if I get a thin sheet of metal that the rare earth magnets would be strong enough to adhere THRU the foamboard... and if not, could I paint and flock the metal??????? Hmmmmmmm.....

Just some ideas I'm tossing around now... feel free to chime in with any input or advice. :)

Now, back to Witchfate Tor.....

Thursday, April 7, 2011

... in which I discuss my frustrations at Witchfate Tor.

I'll go into way more detail when I do a product review on GWs Witchfate Tor, but I found this piece so frustrating that I had to vent before hand. I finished the first floor of it last night, after a good 3 hour marathon of painting, which is more time than I've been able to devote in the past month... Thanks Michigan State University, you do wonders for my free time. :p Anyhow, Witchfate Tor should come with a huge warning on the box:

"Citadel Miniatures is an incompetent company, who has no quality control. Our directions for building this piece of terrain were written by a drunk monkey, and should not be followed. Build at your own risk to experience anger, frustration, hair loss, and sudden fits of rage. Caution: Use of this product in the specified way my cause you to punch small children."

Now that I've got the insults out, lets get to the meat of what I'm bitching about.

1) Do NOT build the tower before painting it. It is impossible to get your brush in there to get to the fine details.

2) Test fit all your pieces. I did this, but one of my walls was warped, so it went together extremely bad. I had to heat the piece up, and bend it to the correct shape. Something I should not have to do when I pay that much for a model. Now, because the wall was misshaped, the bottom floor of the tower is not circular, but you can't tell by the naked eye. You can tell, however, when you go to put on the second floor, and the piece will not fit. I had to do some HEAVY cutting with the Dremmel to pare down the floor so that it would fit on top. Now, it only fits on one way, but at least it fits.

3) The wall panels are a lie. The directions tell you to put a rubber band around them to hold them together while gluing. .............. Ok, except for even the loosest rubber band collapsed the tower every time, because you have to trim so much off the walls to be able to FORCE them together. Half of the time I was swearing at the thing because I was hurting my hands forcing the pieces together, then getting glue on my hands, then while trying to force the last part into the circle, having the forst two parts collapse.... all in all, a horrible design. There could have been a better way to support the walls.

4) Even with the walls "fitted" together properly, there are visible gaps between the pieces, be prepared to break out the green stuff.

Sorry folks, I just had to get that all out of my system. This is seriously the worst model I've put together. I think I still made the 1st floor look amazing, but the amount of effort I had to put into it was WAAAAAAYYYYYYYYY too much for what it was. It would have been easier sculpting and casting a tower myself.

I'll post pictures soon, when I finish the tower. The 1st floor is by far the hardest and largest. The other floors went together ok, since there there was such a learning curve on the first. Hopefully I'll get this done this weekend, so I can finish some of the other projects on the bench, and get to all those minis from Adepticon.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Sweet Jeebus, make the hurting stop!!!

Damnyoos GW! Damnyoos to HEEEELLLLL!!!!
I am far behind enough in my modeling. I have an Araknarok taunting me to build, a whole Death Korps of Krieg army, and a slew of Bretonnians. Now you have to go and taunt me with pictures from the new Tomb Kings releases!?!?!?

Khemrian War Sphinx

Necropolis Knights
I say, gone are the days of the Tomb Kings being the red-headed step-child of WFB. The pictures speak for themselves. Take a peek. I'll post more when I'm outta class.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Conscripting the forces of the Imperial planet of Krieg.

I blame SeerK.

Not only am I insanely jealous of him and all those out there that went to Adepticon this past weekend, he was able to get 3 Leman Russ tanks cheap from the dealer room for me. Looks like I need to either get to painting those pesky Bretonnians or put them on hold, cause the Death Korps are coming.

I did  bunch of research this morning on the forces of Krieg. I could be wrong on some of this, so please correct me if I am. As standard Imperial Guard troops, they have access to all of the Imp Guard Armory. (ie. Leman Russ, Manticore, Valkyrie, Sentinels etc...) but by that same token, Krieg also has access to the Reaver Titan, according to Imperial Armour 6. *-*

Really, a Reaver Titan?

Good God! I can't really fathom spending ~$840.00 on a model, but DAMN! that's impressive.

So, here I am, still a 40K n00b with the task of building a new army. I have ~50 infantry and 3 Leman Russ tanks already. Now I just need to go get a codex and figure out the command structure and who should be equipped with what. LOL 1 HQ, 2 troops.. I got the troops, now to find a HQ.