No Siouxsie but definitely a Banshee

Here’s a quick and dirty paintwork I finished some weeks ago. A banshee produced by Ral Partha for the Ravenloft boxset released in the early 90’s for TSR. The minis in the box were all nicely sculpted by Dennis Mize in 25mm. For some reason however, the banshee in the set is rather large, 28mm in fact, which makes her fit perfectly with my other ethereal spirits.


I have had the set since it came out and the banshee was laying around in my lead mountain with her original 90’s paintjob from back then. I am soon to play a scenario with undeads and thus decided to revisit the model and include her among the ghosts featured in the game.
As I said, the model works well, and the sculpting is well-crafted. My only quibble with the mini is in fact her long hair down her back, which seems a bit underdeveloped. There is a lot of wasted potential here for some dynamism, enhancing the ethereal nature of the model.


As you can see I went with a more modern GW approach to the painting, which works well, I think. I really like this ghostly style and it is fast to produce, which only makes it better. It is, by the way, fun to see what happens to the model and how fast it looses its ghostly feel when painted with multiple colours.

Two bad guys

Here’s a quick little update with some slightly bad photos. Sorry. The first one on the right is of course a Necromunda ganger from the house of Cawdor. I often find the classic Necromunda minis slightly too cartoony for my tastes, but this model I rather like. There is something delightful in the mixture of grim bestiality and looney over the top violence in the model, which is quite catchy. He was also fun to paint. I attempted to keep the paintjob simple and to give him a sort of urban camo-feel, which I think works well with the model.

The heavy ganger’s partner in crime is one of the hybrids – this one a squat hybrid, I believe, sculpted by Bob Olley for Uscarl Miniatures. It’s a great little mini which almost, but not completely, catches the vibes of the original hybrids produced back in the day. I also here kept the painting simply and the colours fairly muted to give retain some of the down to earth feel of his squat background.

I also, obviously, took inspiration from the great work mr. Asslessman did on this little range.

There is more in the pipeline. Stay tuned if you are interested.

 

Cheers

Matin

Isle of Dread, Chapter 5: Grave robbing

Just before Christmas we managed to get in another session in our Isle of Dread campaign. This time the scenario had the character of an encounter, leaving it up to Malcom and his party for how long they wanted to stick around. The story went something like this:

Malcon and his group are still trekking northwards trough the steamy jungle, heading for what they suppose is an ancient temple ruin in the heart of the island. While some riches and much experience has been gained so far, the trip has also begun to take its toll on the party, and two members of the group have died so far.

While scouting ahead the little halfling thief Jolly Drake discovered what he believed to be some sort of old burial ground. He also found a cave in the rocky hills leading into a tunnel. Hurrying back with this message, it did not take long for Malcon to decide that it might be a worthwhile little detour. He thus decided to leave the barbarian Ghimar and two men-at-arms outside the cave, guarding the pack mules and Azza, an amazon the party has taken as a prisoner during the last encounter, and now bringing along as a potential information source or leverage.

In and down underground they went and things soon proved difficult, as the place was guarded by undead creatures. The group succeeded and plundering some treasure, but a host of walking skeletons caused problems and when a huge, undead creature all of a sudden awoke from its slumber, things looked dire. Nevertheless, Malcon and his group succeed in dissolving the undead giant in what only can be characterized as a very close shave. They had collected some gems, a scroll with some spells and a magic cloak, which they decided was enough. The group left the crypt, only to discover that another fight had taken place outside the cave opening, where small kobold-like creatures, armed with slings and clubs, had attacked the men guarding the entrance to the cave. Also here things went in favour of the group, but the pesky little creatures killed one of the men-at-arms, making it a bitter victory for the group, who now could continue their journey northwards. spelunking

So, this was the story in this session. A fun game, which took place at two different tables. This made things slights chaotic, but also fun, as the situations were very different.

As you can see, the “dungeon” was very primitive. It was really just pieces of painted cloth with some dirt here and their. Nothing fancy, but it worked, and may not win any prices for ingenuity, but it was an easy way to get the party below ground, without spending too much time prepping for the scenario. If you fancy sending your minis below ground, I would certainly recommend this type of dungeon, as it gives slightly more than merely painting the thing on paper, but only requires a minimum of extra effort.

This is how It all looked.

The table with the entrance to the cave

The “dungeon”

Malcon and his party going spelunking in the ancient crypt

Ghimar standing guard

Plundering an old grave

Kobold-like creatures sneak up on Ghimar and the two other guards

Ghimar defending the their equipment

More action in front of the cave

The restless dead rise

The dead are coming for the intruders

Peter the Melancholic looking for treasure

The dead are closing in

Still fighting outside the cave

The skeletons are putting the pressure on Malcon and his men

Something ancient stirs in the crypt

Ricco, Peter and Kenza run out to get Ghimar down underground but soon decide that there is no time and return to the cave

Malcon has no choice but to face the giant creature

The final battle in the crypt

More Moon-Age Miniatures

So it has been a while but December has a certain way of keeping everybody busy – myself included. At the moment I am painting wood elf cavalry but here we continue in the SF category with some old lead.

On the left we have one of Bob Olley’s enigmatic creations from the Rogue Trader era. While painting this guy I was more or less felling like I was doing it without knowing what I was painting – a feeling you sometimes get when working on his minis. It is rather hard to make sense of the head on this one and Mr. Olley kindly decided to help the painter by dotting the eyes of the model. This turned out slightly cross-eyed, adding to the bizarre appearance of this mutant(?). I like the mini, but frankly it is not one of my Olley favorites.

The guy on the right is of an older vintage. It is an 25mm Andorian from the Star Trek universe produced by Ral Partha around 1979. The mini is very cool and he works perfectly as some sort of diminutive space alien next to my Citadel minis. Ral Partha produced three of these Andorians. I have them all in the collection and after having painted this one I am looking forward to finishing the two others.

 

Stay tuned.

Martin

Mercenaries

Here we have my take on two models from Krakon Games’ fine Star Grind range. I really like the range for all its eclectic, Sci-Fi oddness with just the right amount of old school feel in the mix. And this, without a doubt, also goes for the two models here.

The big chap is clearly a riff on the beloved Ludo from Labyrinth and what a great idea. The mini is slightly crude in the sculpting; the fur seems a bit basic and the face is very flat, but somehow it nevertheless all works. It is a two-part model and I’m not sure if the tail, despite being pinned to the body, will stay put during the frenzy of gaming I plan to put him through at some future point. We will have to see about that.

Ludo from the movie Labyrinth

Hammerhead, the other mini, is another delightful fellow with clean sculpting and crisp details. I am very pleased how he turned out. The alien feel is great and I love the deadpan, inscrutable expression on his face.

Now I’m looking forward to more goodies from Krakon Games.

A few more goblins

Here is the last batch of goblins I finished before we played the Blood in the Mud scenario. They are all of a very nice vintage, however, I must admit that the star among them is the standard-bearer. He is, of course, sculpted by the always enigmatic Bob Olley. I love this mini and the two-faced banner, which Goblin Lee rightly has pointed out, is very reminiscent of something Ian miller could have created.

As with the other orcs and gobbos I finished over the last months, I changed the skin tone slightly to make them more diverse. There is really no plan to the colours I choose, which is a bit of a gamble, but in the end, I mostly like the result and I really appreciate the diversity this adds to the gobbos.

Now it is time to work on new painting projects, which I am fairly excited about, as greenskins have started to bore me rather much.

 

Blood on the Snow… or the mud

A few weeks ago we had the chance to play the 2nd ed. WFB scenario called “Blood on the Snow” by Matt Connell, published in White Dwarf 91 (1987). It is a four player story which, at least on the surface, pitches dwarfs and humans against a band of respectively orcs and goblins. It is a rather fun scenario with lots of potential as each player has objectives, which very likely will run contrary to otherwise obvious alliances.

The backstory is basically that a keep, built to guard a cave connected with the cult of Sigmar, has fallen into the hands of vile greenskins. The keep was manned by dwarfs, when it was overrun, and now two small armies of men and dwarfs trying to reclaim the place from the invaders.

My battered copy of White Dwarf 91 (1987)

The scenario takes place during the early winter and it thus suggests the use of snow terrain, which is cool, but I did not have any and we therefore renamed the scenario “Blood in the Mud” and placed the story during the early spring instead, when the valley was filled with mud, not snow.

Beyond this change I also added a few components to the individual armies in order to create a bit more diversity and invest the game with further dynamics. A few simple things, such as giving the orcs an owlbear for instance. Otherwise we ran the thing more or less as written. With some banter, beer drinking and smoke breaks it took us roughly seven hours to play, which was longer than expected, but perfectly doable for a Saturday where we began around noon.

The table lay-out as depicted in White Dwarf

It was a close shave, but in the end the dwarfs and humans conquered the keep and kicked the orcs and goblins out of the valley. This was by no means a given and the game thus had a lot of great tension. The overall winner was the human fraction, who succeed in gaining most of their objectives, and the bigtime loser was the orcs who undoubtedly have the toughest task in the scenario, as they pretty much are left to defend the keep while the goblins are allowed to roam the battlefield as they please.

If interested, you can find the individual rosters here:

Blood in the mud_dwarf roster

Blood in the mud_human roster

Blood in the mud_orc roster

Blood in the mud_goblin roster

And here you can see the checklists for the individual objectives:

Blood in the Mud_Victory Points

For the whole backstory you will have to dig out the old issue of WD.

This is what the game looked like. I am sorry for the slightly dark pictures. We played in a somewhat murky room, which did not allow for good photos.

The battlefield as it looked in our interpretation

The armies are advanciong

 

Singing pilgrims on their way to free the captured Cave of Sigmar

Dwarfs marching into the valley

 

The goblins rushing out from their Winter camp in Sigmar’s sacred cave which probably would need a reconsecration after having housed the little gobbos for an entire winter

Wolf riders were the first to leave the cave. Note the stone thrower in the background. This machine really proved lethal during the game

Wolf riders again

Humans moving into the valley

Orc archers leaving the keep to take up a position outside the walls

Humans advancing through the small farm established by the dwarfs in the valley

Orcs with spear ready to defend the bridge

Wolf riders fleeing in panic through the farm after having been hit with a stone from their own stone thrower…

Goblins fleeing towards the advancing dwarfs after having seen their wolf ridring friends on the run

The owlbear slowly moves across the bridge

The dwarfs have to make up their mind – should they face the owlbear or go straight for the bridge?

The troll, a part of the goblin army, was more or less stupid the whole game, but it still managed to hassle the human troops quite a lot.

The dwarfs ready to cross the bridge

Humans and goblins clashing

Human Archers and men-at-arms fighting the stupid troll who kept regenerating wounds

Enemies facing each other while arrow flew both ways

Goblins approaching the dwarfs

The dwarf crossbows succeeded in killing enough orcs to make them flee back into the keep, which inflicted more panic and thus dissolving the orc force, leaving the keep wide open.

The final combat ends. The pious monks ran the last goblin unit off the table and thereby the cave and the keep was recaptured from greenskins