Zombicide: Black Plague

•March 10, 2016 • 1 Comment

I have finished painting my Zombicide: Black Plague models.

This project was a bit challenging for me: basically, I’m getting tired of painting gaming models… I love painting, and I really want to do the best work that I can – if I’m not going to try to do my best, then what’s the point of even bothering to paint? – but painting to a high standard takes a very very long time… and is simply unrealistic for hordes of zombies (or, bad guys in other games) – seeing how fast CMON pushes out Zombicide expansions, I would end up painting nothing but Zombicide… which is pretty much what is happening.

I want to start painting other things – busts, large scale pieces, and even 2D artwork – and I cant do that when I am constantly rushing to finish off the next boardgame I’ve gotten.

I spent over 80 hours painting the zombie horde, and they look… alright. If I spent the same amount of time painting large scale pieces, I’d have 2-3 beautiful pieces of art. That kind of puts the investment and the return into perspective…

It’s a vicious web of Catch-22’s: I like co-op boardgames, but co-op boardgames have a huge model count; I love painting, but I’m not getting any better as a painter when I am rushing to finish models in a reasonable timeframe. So I made the decision last month that I am going to paint fewer gaming pieces – maybe one big boardgame every year or two, and perhaps a force for a skirmish game or a Blood Bowl team a couple times a year.

Anyway… back to realistic timeframes… for the zombies, I was really focusing on speed. I tried to work efficiently, and kept careful logs of my time – I ended up spending around 75 minutes per zombies, including base treatments, varnishing and effects.

For the characters (heroes, necromancer and abomination), on the other hand, I really took my time. I didnt bother keeping a log because speed or efficiency were simply not factors… they would be finished when they were finished. That said, I spent around 8-10 hours a model – in my usual range for gaming pieces – be sure to click ‘View full size’

As everyone who knows me knows that I am very particular about my Zombicide: the model you choose to use is your avatar, for all intents and purposes, it’s you… and, unfortunately, restricted choices in the core that presented me with a bit of dilemma: who would I choose to represent me!??!?

I’m not smart enough to play a wizard; I’m far too tall to play a dwarf; I’m no where near secure enough in my masculinity to play a woman or an elf… which leaves me with the warrior. But, how do I ensure that I can always play the warrior, without resorting to ‘my game, my rules’ (that isnt really fair when there is such a limited selection of models… only the core set is available to Kickstarter backers, the hero packs are still to come). We’ve already established the precedent that if a model looks like you, then only you can use it… luckily, I happen to have a supply of 35mm head sculpts of myself. 🙂

Seeing as the warrior model would now become my avatar in no uncertain terms, I wanted to make sure I really pushed the envelope with him, and try things I havent done before.

The first new technique I tried is the patterning on the cloak. I have been a fan of Bohun for a while, and I am in awe of the results he achieves, so I wanted to try something similar for this. The other technique I tried was quite a bit simpler – I used chipping medium on his shield. I’m pleased to say that I am satisfied with how both turned out. 🙂

I didnt track my time too carefully on the warrior, but I spent at least 13 hours on him – at least 5 just on the cloak – but it might even be closer to 20 hours: I painted his face, armour, weapons and tabard when I was using the same colours on other models, and then gave myself a further 5 days to focus on just him.

In all cases, the cobblestone bases are hand painted – around 7-10 minutes for each base. I figured that people would want to know how I did them, so I had the foresight to take some step-by-step photos with my phone camera – I’ll make a tutorial post probably early next week.

Looking back at the previous batch of Zombicide models, I noticed that I neglected my on-going comparison shot – which is completely unacceptable. 🙂 I used the dwarf instead of the warrior because being a narcissist and taking the extra time painting myself wouldnt be a fair comparison to my previous work.

 

 

Lastly, the obligatory group shots:


I have to say, even though the individual zombies arent that special, they are fairly impressive when viewed as a group. 🙂

AvP: The Hunt Begins – The Marines

•January 27, 2016 • 4 Comments

Stop your grinnin’ and drop your linen – some real tough hombre’s have arrived! 😀

Normally, I like to present my models in their paint order – the paint order for AvP were the Aliens, the Marines, the Predators, the Hellhounds, and the Berserker (the Hellhounds and Berserker were painted in the same ‘batch’ but the Berserker was the very last model) – so people can see how things have evolved over the course of any given project. Granted, for shorter term projects, there wont be much of a difference, but for ones of a larger scope that take place over a few months, there can be quite a difference from start to finish.

However, I am well-aware of how popular the Colonial Marine Corp is, so it seemed fitting to show them as the last batch of images.

Also, I think I am alright at painting 35mm humans – very much due to the sheer amount of Zombicide I’ve painted 😉 – so these might be the best models out of all the AvP miniatures I’ve painted so far.

Anyway, enough rambling… photos!

 

I spent around 10 hours per model – which is on par with the Zombicide Survivors I paint – so I spent around 50-60 hours painting this squad.

Make sure to click ‘View full size’ to see them in glorious Marine Corp high resolution. 😉

I’m currently in the midst of another big painting project – Zombicide: Black Plague – so the next big blog post I make will be of those photos, and probably wont be until sometime at the end of February. Until then… cbag out!

AvP: The Hunt Begins – Berserker Predator and Hellhounds

•January 26, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Allow me to introduce you to the Berserker Predator and his Hellhounds. 🙂

 

These models are not actually part of the boxed set – the basic set is only the 3 Predators, the Aliens and the Marines – but are extra models I purchased during the Kickstarter.

The Berserker Predator is one of the Super Predators from the 2010 Robert Rodriguez film, and the model was a Kickstarter exclusive. The Hellhounds were also introduced in the same film.

While the Berserker is painted accurately to his depiction in the film, I took some creative license with the Hellhounds… they are actually supposed to be green and tan, but I wanted them to more closely match with the Berserker, as, in the vision of my games, the Berserker and his hunting beasts are a separate faction that hunts the Predators, Marines and Aliens. My plan is to paint up my other 3 Hellhounds and another of my Kickstarter Exclusive Berserkers in a green/tan scheme, and that group can form yet another faction to facilitate a 5 player game.

I also added the spots – I felt they looked a bit bare with just the red and grey patterns… they needed something to add a further layer of detail.

The insets on the Berserker show a top-down view of the head – to better see the patterning – and his grisly trophy… which, of course, is me again. 🙂

I get around. 😀

Speaking of which: David, Ernie and Mark have all been so helpful to me reading rules and helping me learn how to play everything I was interested in playing (reading rules is time taken away from painting!) that I gave each of them a sprue of five heads when we got together before the holidays – you could say I gave them head for Christmas! *chuckle* – I’m looking forward to seeing what horrible atrocities have befallen my likeness, and the indignities my decapitated has to suffer… like an orc or a troll using my head as a codpiece. 😀

I rarely do sub-assembles when painting models, but in the case of the Hellhounds I felt it would be the best approach. I assembled the bodies but left all the horns on the sprue and painted them separately, then attached the horns after everything was finished (which ended up being New Years Eve – I’m such a party animal 🙂 ).

I spent around 7 hours per Hellhound and about 15 hours on the Berserker, so between 35-40 hours for this group.

Be sure to click ‘View full size’ to see larger versions!

Only one group of models left to go. 😉

AvP: The Hunt Begins – The Predators

•January 25, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Today, I’m showing the Predators from AvP: The Hunt Begins… as the title of this post hints at. 😉

 

I based the colour scheme and patterning of the Spear Predator on the ‘Classic Predator’ from the original film – I realize that Predator did not use a spear, but this was the first time I was ever painting a Predator and I wanted a good photographic reference of one without a mask. The inset on the first image is a top-down view of the face, so you have a better view of the patterning on the head.

The Predator with the plasma caster uses the same patterning as the Spear Predator, but I went with a different colour combination – I really want every Predator to be unique. Also, I made a slight conversion to this model: the actual one in the set does *not* come with a trophy head on it’s waist… so I added one. Of myself. 😀

For the AvP Kickstarter, I actually pledged at the vanity level, where Prodos will sculpt your head, and provide you with 100 (!!!) copies. 😀

I have always regretted not backing at the vanity pledge levels during the Zombicide Season 1 and Season 2 Kickstarters – in one they sculpted you as a survivor, in the other they sculpted you as a zombie – and I wasnt going to let the AvP one slip by as well (there *always* seems to be a model that closely resembles my friend Ernie in any game we get into… and, well, I’m sick of him having all the fun of always being able to have his likeness in miniature form… ;).

As a side note, for anyone else that wants to experience the joy of pushing themselves around on the table, Prodos now offers the sculpting service on it’s own. I highly recommend it. 🙂

Lastly, the disc Predator uses the same colours and patterns as the Predator in the second film – where we were introduced to the awesome throwing disc. 🙂

I spent around 15 hours a model, so about 45-50 hours for this set.

The caution striping on the bases were done by masking out the areas with Tamiya masking tape, and airbrushing the yellow and orange. The Tamiya tape is absolutely fantastic – it didnt damage the dried paint at all, and almost no paint new paint bled underneath. The yellow and orange I used were Sol Yellow and Mars Orange from ScaleColor – I think these are my go-to orange and yellow now: great coverage, great finish.

Make sure to click ‘View full size’ to see the models in larger-than-life high resolution. 🙂

AvP: The Hunt Begins – The Aliens

•January 23, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Oh my goodness, this is an exciting day for me: today is the day I start posting photos of my AvP: The Hunt Begins models!

When this first appeared on Kickstarter, I was all over it, like stink on a monkey (or, more appropriately, slime on a Xeno). There has been a number of ‘issues’ with fulfillment that I wont bother going into here, but my set(s) finally arrived in late 2015! (Though, I had already picked up a retail copy from Meeplemart – once I realized that retail were getting the same high-quality resin models as the Kickstarter version, I wanted to make sure I supported my FLGS 🙂 )

My original plan was to ‘clear the decks’ of models and get onto AvP as soon as I had it in my hands, so i actually spent all of 2015 only working on projects that would take me no more than 2 weeks to complete. Now, as I said in my previous posts, I did take an extended break from painting last year, but this was bumped to the front of my (ever-growing) painting queue once I completed the Zombicide Season 2 Exclusives… ahead of stuff that has been sitting around for months (if not years!). 😉

I have been a huge fan of the AvP universe for years… I had the old Leading Edge Aliens models, as well as the Horrorclix AvP. I also collected the Aliens Predator CCG when it was out back in the 90s.

There has been a huge void in the miniatures gaming market for AvP (and the Colonial Marines), so much so that many manufacturers make ‘Not Predators’ and ‘Not Aliens’, and you can see the USCM DNA *all over* models from other companies… not the least of which is the design of the Cadians for WH40K.

The time for proper, licensed, AvP models has finally arrived… and, I am more than thrilled to say, the models are *spectacular*.

Shown here are the Infant Aliens (otherwise known as ‘Drones’ in AvP vernacular) and the Stalker Aliens.

I also have a group shot of all 10 Infants together. They have such a nice impact as a swarm. 🙂

 

Normally, I reduce the size of the images when I process my photos – deficiencies show up more the larger the image is, and I happen to have very low self-esteem, so… yeah 😉 – in this case, however, I am quite pleased with the results, so I have uploaded the images at the full size of the shot… make sure to click ‘View full size’ to see them in all their glory. I have nothing to hide here. 😉

I spent about 5 hours a model on these, so around 65-70 hours for the set.

The bases are from Fenris Games  – their Sulaco and Hived Sulaco lines.

Obviously, as I’ve painted the Aliens, that means I’ve also painted the Predators… and the Marines. Check back soon for more updates. 😉

Relic busts

•January 22, 2016 • Leave a Comment

I finished the last of the Relic busts in 2015, but never got around to photographing them until now.

I photographed the first batch again as well so that they match, as I am now using the Foldio as my photo booth.

I debated on modifying the marine to be a Dark Angel – my chapter 🙂 – but in the end, I kept him as an Ultramarine. I dont like the common bright blue colour scheme used on most Ultramarine models, so I went with something much more dark and brooding. I think the end result was pretty good.

 

Feel free to click on ‘View full size’ – I have nothing to hide. 🙂

Zombicide Season 2 – Kickstarter Exclusive Survivors

•January 19, 2016 • 1 Comment

In addition to the Zombie Dogz, I also finished up the last of the Season 2 Kickstarter Exclusive Survivors (and the Game Night kit #3 🙂 ).


The images are presented in the order they were painted. 🙂