Thursday, January 27, 2011

Ork Warboss.

Well, after a hiatus of something like a decade...some friends of mine convinced me to play Warhammer 40,000 again. I have always loved the Orks (as one of my first wargaming armies ever when I was a kid), and since I somehow managed to hold onto a box of assorted Ork parts that allowed me to cobble together around 20 Ork models I figured why not? My friend Jeff and I split the Black Reach boxed set which gave me a Warboss, some boys, and Nobs to go with the rest. Oh, and some Orky choppers, which I think look dumb as hell. I don't care how "shooty" they are in the game, they just look silly to me, so I won't be using them. My boys will keep their feet on the ground thankyouverymuch.

So far, it is a small force (for Orks), but a good start. This past few snow days gave me time to prime the Warboss and paint him. This is the first time in 10 years I have spent 1. This much money on a single model, 2. This much time painting one, and 3. Painted anything other than various shades of khaki and army green or field green and camo. I like the change of pace.

I chose the Deathskull Clan as the theme for this (eventual) army. I always played a combination of Deathskulls and Snakebites when I played Orks. I loved the looting and superstitious aspects of the Deathskulls and the savage and Native appeal of the Snakebites.

As a side note: the rules for Warhammer 40,000 still suck after all these years. And I mean boy do they suck (sorry Jeff). Talk about a system full of ridiculously overcomplicated and open for powergaming rules. So I decided to finish up my Disposable Heroes Warhammer 40,000 conversion. This is PURELY a personal side project and nothing from this will ever see the light of day beyond my own game table. So don't ask unless you want to pay the legal fees of taking on the Games Workshop lawyer's team. I should have the rules done and ready for the table by the time I get a few of these Ork mobs done...perhaps in another decade?

Anyway, here is the result. My Ork Deathskull Warboss. Hope you enjoy.

(should I yell WAAAGH!? isn't that what GW fans do these days?).

Here are some detail shots. Just for Jeff, I painted the Space Marine trophy helmet and shoulder pad as Dark Angels. You are welcome.

And one last shot of the face with warpaint.

(tongue planted firmly in cheek).

Man, I thought I would never play this stupid game a historical gamer (much higher on the geek totem pole you see), I feel kind of dirty. It's kind of hard to take all of this fantasy/sci-fi made up stuff seriously after you spend so much time gaming real conflicts. Well, it's kind of hard to take gaming itself seriously most of the time, seeing as how it is just a fun hobby, but that's beside the point.

Historicals is serious business.

As a Warhammer 40,000 aside. I get a kick out of the descriptions of the Imperium and the Imperial Guard where they describe what must be, to Games Workshop, the "Epic universe of Warhammer 40,000."

With descriptions such as "Imperial Guard Regiments number in the thousands with hundred's of thousands of men each." I guess that is supposed to sound galaxy spanning epic. But I can't help but think..."a couple hundred thousand? That's it? Pfff, the Soviets had several million at Kursk alone, and that was a fraction of their total forces in the East."

To modify a quote by Stalin and apply it to the Warhammer 40,000 universe:

"The Emperor? How many divisions does he have?" -Stalin

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

People's Army of Vietnam.

I just finished a squad of 28mm PAVN for Vietnam. The miniatures are from Baker Company's 28mm Vietnam Range I picked up a few years back but never got around to. This was my first attempt at using a modification of the "Dip" technique and I think I finally arrived at a result I am happy with. The Dip never produced enough contrast for me before, and I never seemed to get the results other people were able to get. I tried the Minwax method on a test PAVN model and it came out ok, but I decided against the tone I had used (Tudor).

Instead, I found the best results by spray painting the miniatures flat Dark camo Brown from Krylon, followed by a light covering with their flat Khaki camo. After that I painted the uniforms with a lighter shade of the khaki uniform color I wanted to end up with, followed by the pouches and equipment in a lighter, but different tone of Khaki. After the skin and guns were blocked in with color I washed the whole thing with Games Workshop's new Sepia tone wash. When this was dry details and some highlights were done on certain spots and details were added such as the gun stock and hat badges etc. The whole thing was based and static grass was added. Overall, a fast job and a result I am happy with.

I am not 100% sold on the dip, but I like the way these came out and will complete the whole platoon this way with plans to pick up a platoon of Baker Company's U.S. Airborne so I can do some LZ X-Ray games. A similar technique will be used on those models as well.

Baker Company minis have some really nice character and the sculpts are clean cast with nice crisp detail. The only complaint I have is they are only available from the U.K. and the cost of exchange rate and postage kind of puts me off.

Edit: Ordered the U.S. platoon for my birthday and they should be here soon. Looking forward to getting them on the painting table. Also, I have been looking for a die cast 1:50 scale Huey or two (both Corgi and Forces of Valor make one), but have only found them for $50 and up. Might just have to bite the bullet. Can't do LZ X-Ray with nothing for the PAVN to shoot at...

I want to take some better pics of the whole lot when it is done.

Anyway, hope you like them!