Volcán de Fuego, Guatemala by Andrew Shepard
Volcán de Fuego, Guatemala by Andrew Shepard
This is a new mini I just finished painting this past week. So a bit of backstory. I had bought this figure way, way back (as I did with most minis) as part of a Warhammer Fantasy Dark Elf command group, because I liked the leader (who had a big two handed axe and was holding a severed head). As part of the command group I also got a standard bearer and musician. The musician sat unused in my “to paint” box for years, until recently I noticed him when re-organizing.
As you might have seen in the upcoming v2.6 rules, there is a new weapon added called the War Horn. This is a 1A-3D range weapon with the “Motivate” special ability (basically lifesteal). So for once a mini with a musical instrument was useful (outside of being a Bard in D&D).
The downside was, being Warhammer Fantasy, this mini had a sword. But I easily converted that by chopping off his hand and using an autopistol from my Necromunda parts. The best part is this particular Dark Elf mini is meant to have a reptile skin as a cloak, which is a perfect dinosaur looking skin.
As you can see the arm conversion turned out quite well, I think. For the paint scheme I went with a traditional dinosaur skin color of green. When it comes to painting I generally do a few washes but very little drybrushing. Those are both painting techniques, with “washing” meaning adding water to a darker color and painting it on, and the watered down paint creeps into all the recesses and crevices of the mini. Drybrushing is using a lighter color than what you’re painting onto, wiping off almost all the paint from the brush, and then lightly stroking the brush over the top to pick out the raised areas. Basically think of washing as adding shadows, and drybrushing as adding highlights.
Anyway I normally prefer rich, basic colors instead of the style of drybrushing. However the dinosaur cloak for this mini was the perfect use case for both techniques, as the scales had lots of recesses between them, and I could also pick out the edges with some drybrushing. So I did a green base, then washed with a teal color, then drybrushed some bright green over that. In the end the cloak looks nice and realistic.
Otherwise a simple reddish pink and gold scheme, with the horn being a natural bone color, and the gun (for once) not having steel/metal coloring and instead just being wood and black. I opted to paint the helmet visor pure black instead of a flesh tone because I find it more menacing to look like a completely shadowed face (think of a cheesy 1990s cartoon villain).
All in all I’m happy with the result.
As part of the upcoming v2.6 rules I ended up doing some re-organization of the table of contents/objects, which cleared up the following page and left me with a big blank spot. To fill that spot I put in a new gameplay image, actually from the recent Mountie Chase of Samurai Jack battle report.
This is the image:
The problem is the existing gameplay picture in the “Game Overview” section has a lot of similar features, specifically a T-Rex and the road sections. I didn’t think that reflected very well on the game, to have such duplication, so I recently re-took a gameplay photo to replace the old Game Overview one.
This is the result:
I made a concentrated effort to not use any minis or terrain from the Samurai Jack gameplay photo. The downside is I staged the photo, whereas the previous gameplay photos were taken during actual games. Either way I’m happy with the result, and I think showing the green table in the first and desert table in the second is a nice way to break them up.
So anyway v2.6 will get a nice facelift with these new photos. As I mentioned before, you can check out the latest, non-released rules on the Bleeding Edge Dropbox which is synced with my computer.
A while back I randomly stumbled across some model cacti (in a nearly empty hobby shop I had never been to before). They were great, perfect scale, prepainted, and so I picked them up immediately. The only downside was they had tiny bases, and some were quite top heavy and wouldn’t sit very well on my desert cloth for the gaming table.
So I glued the cacti to 1-cent pennies. Then recently I finally got around to filling in the gap with glue (to make the transition from old base to penny less visible), painting the penny bases, and spraying the whole setup with protective coating.
Here are the results, which you can expect to see in a desert themed game of Dinosaur Cowboy soon:
Now this terrain goes even farther back. I’ve had these little model trees, the same as what were used in White Dwarf battle reports waaaay back in the day. The problem was they were meant to be stuck into foam terrain or the like. Initially I had done exactly that, but over the years the trees had fallen out (and left little holes in the terrain, a few of which you might even notice from previous battle reports).
So what I set out to do was properly base the trees on standard square mini bases, so they could be moved around freely instead of being stuck to the terrain. This involved cutting the metal stick at the center of the tree to shorten it. Then I drilled a hole into a series of bases and glued the trees in. I don’t think I’ll paint the bases, so after adding a second layer of glue (to ensure they don’t come loose with rough handling) I had 5 new small trees to use. They match the color of my larger trees, which is an added bonus.
“What an Unbranded Cow Has Cost” by Frederic Remington. He was a terrific artist from the late 1800s who did many paintings that evoke the loneliness and desolation of the wild west (at least in my opinion).
Straight from the cabinet, here’s my miniature collection from the past, well, probably 15-17 years:
The top shelf is pretty much entirely fantasy minis from my years playing Horizon (my own game), Advanced Heroquest, Mordheim, and more recently D&D (the majority of the front row were painted in the last ~3 years when I was going to D&D Encounters at my local shop. For example the purple and green Mordheim cultist was a Binder. The pirate looking guy with the red scarf was a ranged Thief. The big red Minotaur was a Battlemind I think…some kind of psionic guy regardless). Also I loved little goblin figures growing up so I have a wide variety of those. So much character and zaniness in those early GW sculpts. Anyway some of these actually made appearances in Dinosaur Cowboys battle reports, such as the repeat usage of the far front, far left Dark Sun Mul as some kind of axe wielding Savage.
Well if you’ve been following this blog for a while, you might know I’m a bit exhausted of painting. I did a ton of mini painting as a kid, then kind of burned out on it, and now only do the odd character figure. So I’m excited to say I have THREE new minis to show you, all fully based, painted, and sprayed. That must be a new record for minis shown at once on here, right?!
Before you look at this first miniature, I want to confess something. When I made the Neotechnoist allegiance I had a lot of imagery in my mind, and some of that was from Games Workshop’s Necromunda faction called the Van Saar. They are basically high tech nobles with super cool suits and laser weaponry. I’ve have this mini for a while, since I bought a few Necromunda figures off Ebay a long while back. But I finally sat down and painted him.
I used one of my favorite new paints that is basically a clear sparkle/shimmer that can be added to any other color. In this case I added it to an (already) sparkly blue to get what I call “Crest Blue” (like the toothpaste!). I used this color for his undersuit, and then copper for the raised plates. Pretty standard weapon (black, gold, green) and wiring/cabling of a nice washed green. One thoughtful touch is his backpack has a few squares on it, which I painted to represent a charging level (red to green).
Anyway a picture is worth a thousand words, so here’s the first mini, the de-facto Neotechnoist:
Next up is, well, what I can best describe as a samurai with a shotgun (who I’m calling Samurai Jack for now). I got this figure, um, maybe 15 years ago? I had spray painted him gold for whatever reason, and so he sat for the last decade and beyond. He’s a cool and unique mini though, so I thought it was time to finally paint him. I have a painting night with friends to thank for motivation for this one, as I painted the entire mini while hanging out hunched over a table with other painters.
Anyway first of all I went for a nice and classic scheme, which is purple + green with some bright gold to tie him together and make him look pretty noble. There are some pretty cool touches as well, like the central chest plate being a yin yang and the “kill scratches” on his shotgun. And I actually painted the Japanese kanji for “strength” on his sword sheath. Definitely happy with the result! I haven’t done kanji work since I wrote “Hyena” on the back of a Battlemech for Battletech about 7 years ago (I should post a picture of that!)
Also you might have noticed the strange egg ball shapes on his base. What could they be? Well it’s actually trick from the oddest of places: my mom! Normally moms are great for saying “That looks good dear!” but coming up with a genius hobby idea is even better. In this case the eggs are unground black pepper glued onto the stand (in this case mostly unpainted). Really has a great texture with the lines, and the size is perfect. If no one told you it was pepper you’d probably just think it was some cool “green stuff” sculpting.
And finally is another Games Workshop mini, of course not even remotely recent (screw those prices!). Best I can tell this guy is a Rogue Trader (ie: Warhammer 40,000 first edition) era mini, some kind of Imperial settler or colonist. Either way he basically looks like a farmer Han Solo, and certainly has a dated look to his sculpting (such as his bulgy jacket and squat stature). Great pistol though, and I decided to paint him like an RCMP / Mountie, which just semeed to fit for some reason. So that meant a blue stripe on the pants and a red jacket. His shirt, while not a wild color, turned out nicely with the copper buttons.
I also like his base, which is sort of snowy/ashy looking like Canada is in Dinosaur Cowboys.
Unfortunately I didn’t have as much luck with the pictures for him (also he has an annoying piece of fluff stuck to his hat), but I can guarantee you’ll see him again in a battle report soon.
I recently did some overtime at work, and my wife and I decided to spend some of the extra income on fun stuff. So I headed to my local hobby shop and browsed around for an hour. Oh man I love good hobby stores. I ended up with some new paints, but more importantly some new terrain!
Anyway I have been extremely pleased with Pegasus Hobbies in the past, since I bought pre-painted barrels and crates (image here) from them in the past.
Now I bought their pre-painted fence set and stone wall set. The fence set is so thematic and fitting to this game that I might go back and pick up another! Definitely going to be a dinosaur corral in the future. The walls are great as well, especially if I ever do some fantasy gaming again in the future. All I need now is the oil barrel set and I’m golden.
(Funnily enough this is actually a pretty good picture of the Mountie Duster…)
Next up are two resin pieces from a company called Novus Terrain. The first is a really cool looking propane tank (“Exploding Crates” feature in the game much?!) and the second is a nice sci-fi looking ruined building. Both of these will require some painting, but I figure a bit of spraypaint and highlighting the details should do it.
I mean just look how cool the camera shots will be when someone is sniping from the building with a Lever-Action Rifle!
(For once my old trusted camera really came through on this shot, look at that sick autofocus)
Upcoming Battle Report
Obviously three minis and new terrain means a battle report is necessary to try it all out! I had actually hoped to play tonight, but finishing up the bases and protective coating everything took longer than I expected.
But I’m thinking Samurai Jack is some kind of bandit raider near the Canadian border, and the Mountie is dispatched (with his Neotechnoist hireling) to stop the problem. Walls and fences will be involved just because! I won’t use the resin terrain yet since I want to paint it before the tabletop debut. Anyway pretty exciting times!
I still have probably 12-15 minis I’ve dogeared for Dinosaur Cowboys, so I’ll slowly work through those. And no offense to my friends at the painting night, but I don’t know how they can paint rank and file troops the same color scheme for 80+ minis. I’d blow my brains out (or just stop halfway through). Even having to do consistent bases would be a drag, since as you can see I had quite the variety in my recent works. Anyway I think I’m pretty much going to stick to single character models, be they for Dinosaur Cowboys or some RPG or whatever. Just way easier to think up your own paint scheme, inject some spice (like yin yangs, power meters, etc.), and end up with a diverse crew of people.