Wednesday, 17 October 2018

7TV Apocalypse - Crooked Dice

These days my blog is mostly for my own projects but every now and again I think it's worth posting some of the commission work I do, especially when in this case there's a little plug for Crooked Dice's latest Kickstarter. Not everybody's a Kickstarter fan so if that's the case just enjoy the pictures (hopefully).

7TV Apocalypse is the new themed game box from Crooked Dice and the Kickstarter has a bunch of models available representing all sorts of familiar characters. I've painted a good number of the new models and here are some of them.


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1039850061/7tv-apocalypse-skirmish-rules-and-28mm-miniatures?ref=project_link&fbclid=IwAR0YYI_P2wRtNNxleLsjJoIpgkWU53jWiDl92dKW5SBeyzNSM8vPLTvCezY

Saturday, 13 October 2018

Alternative Armies Crystal Elf Empire Dragoon

Just a quick post here. Wanted to show the first of my Alternative Armies Crystal Elf Empire models painted up. This is one of the dragoons and I'm quite chuffed with how it's turned out. Got another two to do. Being dragoons I'm tempted to get the mounted versions too but I should probably focus on getting the handful of models I already have painted.



https://www.alternative-armies.com/collections/crystal-elf-empire

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Grenadier Foot Knights

A quick post to show a couple of old Grenadier Miniatures foot knights that I recently painted up. The one on the right was painted a while back, possibly over a year ago at this point. I've had four other knights base coated and gathering dust ever since. The other week I decided it was time to change that sorry state of affairs and get another painted. That rapidly turned into me getting two done thanks to these being pretty straight forward models.


I originally bought these back in the early 90's on the strength of a review in Games Master International magazine. They made up a full unit of 15 knights and were a part of my poorly thought out Bretonnian army. It's really nice to see these few given a new lease of life. Two more waiting in the wings but for now I have other things I want to work on.

Saturday, 15 September 2018

Alternative Armies Crystal Elf Empire Miniatures Review

I recently acquired a handful of Crystal Elf Empire models from Alternative Armies and thought they deserved a little review. I remember these models being released in 1991 and being advertised and reviewed in Games Master International. Here's ye olde full page ad in GMI issue 15 from October 1991, the last issue of the magazine sadly.



These models stood out at the time because they had a Napoleonic influence to their design, not to be confused with AA's Flintloque range though which are fantasy Nappys. The Crystal Elves certainly stood out next to the competition and I rather liked them although I never bought any given my limited pocket money. Too many toys, not enough money. Completely forgot about them as time went by until a couple of  years ago when I re-collected all the old issues of GMI and saw the ads again. Thankfully Alternative Armies still have them in production and the range features more models than I was aware of.

Moving onto the models I've actually got here it's just a small selection that I'm going to make into a Frostgrave inspired warband. First up is a set of Garde Infantry.



Two spearmen (spearelves?) and an officer. I was actually pleasantly surprised by the size of them and how much heft they have. From the pictures I thought they might be quite slender and with older figure ranges there's always the possibility that they might be on the smaller side of 28mm. They're very much 28mm from foot to eye and are actually a bit bigger than some of the competition at the time. All very satisfying. Lovely clean sculpts, nice clear detail and the officer is just a fantastic looking figure. My only criticism is that his sword is a little short so I might try and rectify that before painting him. The faces are quite caricatured but I love that and it gives them a pompous arrogance that sits so well with the finery of their uniforms.

Next is a set of dismounted Dragoons.



Being dragoons they have mounted versions but I was keen to get the foot versions. Slightly more practical uniforms here than on the Garde Infantry, much more suited to skirmishing. Their helmets are a nice touch of finery though and the officer with sword and shield certainly looks the part. I really like the poses of these models. I'd be tempted to extend the length of their quivers a little though. I think casting limitations may have lead to the rather short length.

Finally there's an elf warrior and a sorceress.



I really like the elf warrior, the pose and clothing look great. He's a little less Napoleonic inspired I'd say but fits in really well. The face makes it for me though. There's a hint of cruelty there along with the arrogance which just screams Melnibonean. The sorceress also has that similar look to her face and is one of the models from the range that is a more traditional fantasy looking elf. There are some subtle patterns on her robes that will need careful painting to make the most of. She comes with a staff that I'd say is optional as she looks great as is. If fitting the staff though the hands aren't quite designed for it so I'd be inclined to cut the thumb off and add a new one with putty to make the hand actually grasp it properly.

And a few pics to show them alongside a few other models from the day to see how they size up.


Here's a 1980's Citadel elf and an early 90's Bretonnian foot knight.


A Citadel Empire hero from around 1992 and a Grenadier foot knight from the early 90's.

The whole Crystal Elf Empire range has 20 odd packs of models, just under half are the Napoleonic inspired types and the rest are more traditional fantasy elves which look like they mix together pretty well to be honest. What's rather useful is that you can also buy all the models individually so you can build up full units of identical models quite easily. Prices are pretty good in this day and age working out at £2 a figure for most infantry (the sorceress is £3) and cavalry are £3 or £4 each depending on the model. There are also discounts for multiple pack purchases. Well worth checking out.

https://www.alternative-armies.com/collections/crystal-elf-empire



Monday, 27 August 2018

Bretonnian standard bearer - revisited!

More shameless copy and pasting from my Facebook page because it's late and I can't be arsed to rewrite everything. There are two posts cobbled together here so let's get into it:

PART ONE

Anybody remember this chap?



I must have painted him a couple of years ago as part of my Bretonnian foot knight command but I never got around to painting the banner. I hate painting banners as I find it awkward in comparison to painting figures. Anyway, having decided to move onto getting some more fantasy stuff painted I thought I'd better try and finish this off and fill that empty slot in my unit.

Just base coats at the moment but thought I'd show how I've got a nice clean edge to the quarters. I use Scotch Magic Tape to mask the area. It's easy to tear by hand and isn't horribly sticky which means it's great for masking. I made sure to press the tape down hard along the edge to be painted to avoid it bleeding under. Got to make sure the painted areas are good and dry though as they can still lift off when removing the tape. It makes the process quite slow going and only once did I have to retouch a small area that peeled after not following my own advice. Make sure the paint isn't too watery to also help reduce the chance of it bleeding through but don't apply it too thickly either or you'll leave a ridge when the tape comes off.




I'll shape the banner before I highlight it. It's a piece of sheet metal (tomato puree tube) and the paint copes perfectly well with the flexing. Then I'll have to print off some decals for the lions and go through all that rigmarole. This might all get done fairly quickly or it could take a while, I've no idea but I am going to get it finished this time.

PART TWO

I'm slowly progressing with my Bretonnian foot knight standard bearer. I needed a little decoration to pop on the end of the flag pole so I decided to replicate the fleur-de-lis that I used on another Bretonnian standard.

This is the green stuff press mould that I made a few years ago. The original part was cut from a 5th edition Bretonnian standard. I used a mix of green stuff and Milliput white in the mould. A little cooking oil stops the putty sticking.



Once dry pop it out of the mould and clean up the flash. It's not a bad reproduction. If I'd used just Milliput I could have filed the edges a bit sharper but it'll look fine once painted up.



There's a quick snap of a little of the painting I've been doing on the flag too. Unfortunately the highlighting and shading that should give some added shape to the flag is completely washed out in the photo. But it's evidence that I've not dumped it in favour of doing something easier again. Still need to work on the front of the flag before printing off some lion rampant decals.

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

Ion Age Retained Knight Noble

Quick and lazy post here, mostly copy/pasted from my Facebook page.

Found this part finished and stuffed in a tray of models recently. It's an Alternative Armies/Ion Age Retained Knight Noble in 28mm. I started it perhaps a couple of years ago, wasn't entirely happy with it and just put it to one side. Decided it was time to give him a new lease of life and get it finished off. I repainted a few things and retouched some scratches and chips.This model is a bit bigger than the regular knights and a fair lump of metal in comparison to a space marine of pretty much the same era (yeah, I know MK7 marine armour was in by then).





 I remember these models first being released in the very early 90's when they were sold as Free Company Crusaders. Loved the look of the armour but never got around to buying any until I bagged a bunch on Ebay a few years back.

At some point I'd like to paint up a full squad of these but I've got plans to paint more fantasy stuff so that will have to wait.

Monday, 20 August 2018

Urban War Viridian Strike Team

With the more recent additions to my Urban War strike team I thought it would be worth showing a photo of the whole lot together. Now unfortunately I don't have a nice table top to photograph them on, nor do I have any terrain to at least use as a backdrop so it's just a crappy display cabinet pic.


This seems like a good point to leave the project at for now. I really want to get some fantasy stuff painted up for a change so I'm quite happy with how the strike team looks and if I were to ever get a game in I'd have plenty of troops here to choose from. It's not done though and I do plan at some point to add some additional bits and pieces. I've got a bazooka team that would be nice to add as a different support weapon, a few more snipers, a 3 man squad of urban interdict drop troops, 2 more named characters and of course that saurian rider at the back could do with a couple of chums. And beyond that I could still add more troops to give even more options or bulk the force out into a full army for Metropolis.