Wednesday, 14 June 2017

The Grimes Family

Rick, Lori and Carl grimes from Mantic Games The Walking Dead. 

Hard plastic figures which are great to paint and come with integral base. I've tried to stick to the colours from the comics except for Lori who should be wearing a check shirt. But since I really detest painting checks I bombed out and painted her in a dark blue overshirt/jacket.

Being a fan of the comic and TV series it was a no brainer that I was going to have to take a big bite out this franchise. (sorry... terrible puns).

Having visited the Games Expo at beginning of June, and chatted to the guys on the Mantic stand (who are always very pleasant), I have been informed that the licence has been renewed and new releases should be straight to retail, no more Kickstarters. So good news everyone....

Also had a gander at the 4Ground, Walking Dead demo game. Again very nice people and some great  modern American scenery. My long term goal is to build a couple of terrain boards. Nice looking buildings etc. can be had from 4ground, Sarissa and TTcombat. There may be others but those are the one's which have caught my eye so far.

That's it for now more to follow soon...


Friday, 9 June 2017

Shout Out for The BigRedBat...

Storage! What to put your hard painted figures in to keep them safe and then where to store the storage boxes. Woe to the pressures of wargaming, how do we cope!

Well sometimes lovely people like Simon Miller akaTheBigRedBat come to the rescue. It was apparent that storing the AvP miniatures was going to be problematic mainly due the long curly Xenomorph tails. I sort of experimented with foam trays but was not overly confident that was the best solution.

Then I recalled that in the bigredbatshop, Simon sold pre-cut steel sheet to fit in a Really Useful 4L Box. Now I had already bought some (for another project), but I thought this could be just the ticket!

So a quick test proved even the longest tailed Xenomorph will fit in the 4L box. Like so...

So I ordered some 3mmx1mm magnets from first4magnets. Then using a 3mm bit on the Dremel put two holes into each base and here you go....

I little bit of tape on the drill bit to mark the right depth meant I was not going to go straight through the base, and an already painted base at that. Not sure if they require two magnets and I did not want to use my larger hand drill on resin bases, hence a larger drill bit for a larger magnet. 3mm was the largest drill bit I could get to fit in the chuck on the Dremel.

I'm fairly confident the 4L box will not hold the Queen or Royal Guard models standing upright, but a 1.5L Really Useful box should suffice.

I little bit of un-scientific shaking proved they were not going to move around the box. The most important thing is that now I have secure storage place for them.

So ordered some more steel sheet, this may just become my favourite storage method...we shall see.

That's if for now more to follow soon......
P.S. Simon also sells 3mmx2mm magnets if you want to take up the challenge and drill deeper into your resin bases.    

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Habitat One Part5....and finished

Finally completed the first building for LV-537

Well it's almost finished. The base needs a little bit of work just to dirty it more. I decided that I did not like the internal wiring and pipes going nowhere so I added some 'junction boxes' to the outside. These were made from some off cuts of 2mm and 0.5 mm plasticard.

The living quarters. The bunk beds are from Ainsty Castings. The table, chairs and VDU are from Ainsty and EMA Model Supplies. The architectural furniture is 1/50th scale. All furniture has been glued in for ease of play and transport. The nice thing about this meant I did not have to paint the back of  items. Like so....

At the moment the back story for LV-537 is that it is a working colony. Perhaps mining or similar heavy industry. This means I can produce a dirty, grungy complex. So I''m taking inspiration from 'Hadleys Hope', the prison on Fury 361 and 'C' deck of the 'Nostromo'.

As you can see I have gone for a lived in look! It may be gathered from the 'posters' on the walls that I'm inferring this is male occupied habitat. Don't worry I will be adding in some female and family friendly accommodation. The lockers are also from Ainsty.

The other aspect I want to portray is the claustrophobic nature from the films. Particularly from the original 'Alien'. Don't want to many open fields of fire!

Next up will be a corridor section, which hopefully be slightly less work.

That's it for now more to follow soon.....


Wednesday, 10 May 2017


Xenomorph XX121

The first of the Xenomorph's are completed. I have so far two Infant Warriors, five Warriors and one Stalker. These are the terms used to identify them in the AvP board game.

Infant Warriors

These are essentially the Alien from 'Alien'. With the smooth domed head.


The Alien from 'Aliens'. With the ridged dome head.


The Alien from 'Alien3'

Hopefully you get a size comparison from the last photo. Depending on which source you read the Infants and Warriors can be referred to as Drones and the stalker as a Lurker. Personally I prefer Warrior for all of them. I do not like the suggestion that the XX121 is an insect like Drone. Even though terms like Hive/Drone/Queen are used I prefer to take the view that each creature has it's own intelligence and individuality. Makes it seem more lethal.

I'm also painting all my Xenomorph's black. The Alien from the third movie is described as having a reddish-brown colour but I like black. Makes them look more menacing. As they should!

These are all Prodos Games models and are full of detail. The bases are from Fenris Games from the aptly named 'Sulaco' range.

Have not got round to fully reading the rules yet for AvP but I'm also thinking of using the Ganesha Games 'Mutants and Death Ray Guns' rules with maybe some of the 'Flying Lead' rules throw in. Check out Fantorical blog for the M&DRG games and my buddies The Secret Wargamer blog for our on going Zombie campaign set in peaceful rural Midshire, using the Flying Lead rules. Which is run by our other gaming buddy affectionately known as Mr. Grumpy.

Last couple of photos to give an idea of the size of the Xenomorph to the USCM or a human!

That's it for now more too follow soon.....

Monday, 24 April 2017

"We Endanger Species"

First USCM Squad completed. These are beautiful figures by Prodos Games. Apologies that my heavy handed painting style and poor photography do not do them justice.

Five figures in an add on box or five with the 1st edition boxed game. So you get three marines with pulse rifle, one using a scanner, one with flamethrower also holding a medic bag and one smart gunner. All of these come in three parts, body and two arms. Technically the smart gun is in two parts since both arms are 'fixed' to the gun. Needed to do a bit of filling on the joints once arms were in position but nothing to tedious.

I have gone for a WW2/Vietnam faded OD utilities look. Leaning more towards WW2. Inspiration mainly coming of the USMC colour film of the landings on Tarawa, Iwo Jima and everywhere else. Plus the paintings by Tom Lea who landed on Peleliu.

The WW2 look was further influenced by the fact that the USCM are wearing modified MI helmets,  the M41A Pulse Rifle is based around the Thompson Submachine Gun and the Smart Gun around the MG42.

The bases are from Fenris Games. I did initially want to give them a grey colour reminiscent of the grey used on US warships. But I was not happy with result so used Tamiya light blue over medium blue. With chipping and weathering I think it looks effective.

'Wot no camo?' No, nor will there be. I am well aware that the scheme is not 'accurate' to the film but 'In Space no need for will not help any'.

Will be adding at least one more squad, at least. So in the words of Pfc Vasquez 'LETS ROCK'

That's it for now more to follow soon....


Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Habitat one ... Part 4

Moving on. Adding more weathering to the structure. To begin with I used AK Interactive Afrika Korp wash and MIG Ammo Dark Wash on some of the roof and side panels to give variations in shade. These were thinned so to build up a gradual shade. Also used MIG Ammo Light Rust Wash around the 'nut and bolts'. On the side panels a used a brush dampened with thinner to drag on down. The handrails have been added. These have been chipped using the sponge method. The same rust wash applied all over but thinned and then applied in selected areas neat.

Next I began by using Dark Brown oil paint to streaks down the side and on selected areas on the roof. Then AK Interactive Afrika Korp Streaking Grime on the side panels only. Then finally a wash of black pigment, from Forge World, mixed with water.

The Pigment wash was again applied in certain areas and then stippled and pulled down to give streaks of dirt. The Humbrol stippling brushes were good for this.  

At this point I have also added some MIG Ammo Dark Earth pigment with the black to the roof to give the appearance of a build up of grime in selected areas.


Finally. Started work on the furniture for the interior.

These are Ainsty Castings bunk beds. I've used lead foil to represent blankets. Picked that up from Scale Link

That's it for now more to follow soon...

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Habitat One....Part3


So in the last post the habitat had three walls and here are the three pieces for the missing wall plus the two windows I've made to fill in the open window gaps(!).

Weathered with MIG Ammo Track Wash and chipping with sponge using MIG Ammo 'Chipping' colour. The pipe conduits are just lengths of plastic square and rod. With plastic channel for the brackets. The exposed wire is copper jewellery wire about 1mm thick.

The windows are clear plastic sheet with 0.5mm strip for the surrounds on both sides. Not sure how thick the clear styrene is; 0.5mm or less. I picked it up at the local hobby store and I did not see any dimensions. I've chipped both sides of the window frame and put a thinned Track Wash around what will be in the internal part of the frame. Though the windows will probably be the last part to be added.

Starting to take shape now. Some of the details will be hidden once the furniture goes in. Once that is in place I will probably do some more weathering to tie everything together. 

You can just make out in this photo the gap between the two wall pieces. Again once furniture goes in some of that will be hidden. It's not down to a bad fit by Sarissa, but because I added paint layers before assembly and clearly in this case did not rub the paint off the lugs enough to get a good connection. So to remedy I added strips of plasticard to the outside.

Next was to paint. Masked off the surrounded area and airbrushed a coat of paint on. Thinking about it now maybe I should have done it in a different colour?  Anyway will leave as is. The hatch on the roof is from Zinge Industries.

The frame fits the hole cut into the MDF on the basic model perfectly. But this is the best part.

Yep it opens. Just a case of pushing the hatch top onto the frame and it clicks in place. Hinge built into the model piece. I think it's the 🐕's 🍒's.

That's it for now more to follow soon.....