Friday, December 30, 2011

SAGA - Saxon Thegns from Gripping Beast Plastics

Well, if you are counting this is our third post in the SAGA series. Last time we showed you the new miniatures from Gripping Beast. This time we have a few of the Saxon Thegns painted for your viewing pleasure. Also had a chance to check out the rest of the rules and got a few test games in.

First off, the Thegns!

Here are the first four we have painted. In SAGA this would be 1 point of Hearthguard. These guys are the most powerful retainers in your warband so there are fewer of them.
These guys are 28mm and tough to get a grip on let alone paint! However, we never pass up a challenge. Here's a size comparison for those who are unfamiliar with the scale.

Joshua did the early Saxon Bear Claw design on this shield.

Here's a few more images of the axe wielding Saxon

Here's another Saxon wielding an axe.
His shield design is somewhat plain compared to the Bear Claws.
This swordsman has a red and white falcon motif on his shield.

The last guy is the leader from the box set, cape and all.

The shield was inspired by the gripping beast and Celtic knot designs. Probably not historically accurate, but it came out nice.
Here's the four finalists ready for action.

In our next post we'll review some basics in the SAGA game. We'll even give you a few reports on battles fought between the Vikings and Anglo-Danish warbands.

We'll try to have additional models painted too. In the staging area we have another 4 Hearthguard ready and 10 Warriors armed with spear and shield. That will make up 3 of the 4 points needed for a starting warband.

Until the next time, have a great battle!
The Old Crow

Saturday, December 24, 2011

SAGA - Saxon Thegns and Viking Hirdman from Gripping Beast Plastics

Well the Plastic Box sets of Saxon Thegns and Viking Hirdmen arrived and there was great joy! I was really looking forward to seeing these guys up close and personal. They did not disappoint me. There are enough components to make 44 figures from each set plus a ton of extra arms, weapons and heads to do a deal of customizing.

Let's break open the Saxon Thegns Box set which I'll probably be using for an Anglo-Danish Warband to play Saga.
Here's the box with its beautiful artwork and all.
There are four of the main sprue in the box. Here's the front..
and the back. As you can see, lots of extras for customizing.
Then there are two command sprues with pieces for a standard bearer and musician if you need them. SAGA currently doesn't make use of these guys but that won't stop me from putting them together!
Then the bases, in assorted sizes for building regiments.
 Next we took a couple hours to assemble ten of these guys. Here's a few shots of the various poses we came up with.
 The only trouble was in attaching a few of the arms, the belt on the torso pushed it out. A simple trim made everything go together great.
The command group came together nicely. As you can see, plenty of detail was applied to these miniatures. I fully recommend them based on cost, detail and quality.

Stay tuned for the next post, we'll get a few painted to show you how they look on the battleground!

Til then, Have a great battle
The Old Crow

Friday, December 16, 2011

SAGA game and miniatures from Gripping Beast

Saga is a new table top miniatures game from Gripping Beast! It was designed for model soldiers set in the Viking Age when strength and bravery were worth a thousand men!

The beautiful aspect of this game is the small amount of miniatures you need to get yourself playing. A good starting 4pt Viking Warband would contain a Warlord, 4 Hirdmen, 4 Berserkers, 8 Bondi and 8 Bondi. That's only 25 figures in total and gives you a great warband to start fighting! Other gaming systems would require that many figures for one regiment! Now you need an opposing force, how about a 4pt Danish warband.  You need a Warlord, 4 Huscarls with axes, 4 Huscarls with spears, 8 Ceorls and 8 more Ceorls. Once again, only 25 figures in total.

So I thought a great series would be to get the game started with some miniatures, the rule book and special dice needed for the game.

Officially there are four opposing forces. We already mentioned the Vikings and the Anglo-Danish warbands. The other two are the Normans and the Welsh. Units are given a point value as we mentioned above and a 4-6pt warband makes for good gaming. We just received some of the new plastic box sets made by Gripping Beast. In our next post we'll show them off to you, hopefully assembled and painted. Well we'll have to see how much we get done with Christmas right around the corner!

If nothing else we'll show you the new miniatures!

For now, have a great battle!
The Old Crow

Friday, December 9, 2011

Warhammer 40k - Space Marine Dreadnought

Here we go, back to Warhammer 40k! Let's base a Space Marine Dreadnought!

Josh over at Hendersonworks painted up this lovely Games Workshop Dreadnought for his Space Marines force and we customized a base for him.

Josh went with a gritty city fight feel for his Dreadnought. Lot's of battle damage and weathering,  including a good bit of mud on the lower extremities.

We started with some leftover plastic sprue. Two pieces were cut at approximately 3/4 to one inch. Using a hobby knife  we chipped them up and sharpened the one end to simulate metal beams being used as a makeshift defense.
We also chopped some smaller pieces to simulate cement blocks with our smaller chunks of rubble "rubble". A hole was drilled into each for our barbed wire. For this we used picture hanging wire. Add a couple pebbles and rocks to the base and we're ready to paint.

Priming everything in black is par for the course.

We then added a healthy dose of Burnt Umber in the recessed areas for a "muddy" base coat. Successive coats of medium and light brown were added to the rubble in the lower muddy areas.

The next areas were the concrete rubble. We added successive coats of grays from dark to light similar to the troll bases we showed you back in November.

For the beams and wire, they too was based in black. Dark gray was dry brushed over them both and then gunmetal a dark metallic was added. A final dry brush of aluminium gave it a final high light. We couldn't leave it all shiny so a wash of black was added over both. After it was thoroughly dried a wash of red oxide was added in the lower curls of the wire and where the wire meets the beams, to simulate rust. The one smooth rock in the back was painted in brown tones for a splash of color.

Last but not least, add one nicely detailed Dreadnought!

There are a few more images on the Hendersonworks Blog.

Get that baby in the game, and have a great battle!
The Old Crow

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

New Napoleonic Early Russian Dragoons released by Victrix

Had to do a midweek update when I saw Victrix announced the release of their new Napoleonic Early Russian Dragoons.

These awesome Dragoons were sculpted by the talented Paul Hicks. He has sculpted all of Victix's metals and has done an outstanding job on the Dragoons with a lovely attention to detail, character and dynamism.  
Each of the trooper packs comes with six separate arm variants to add a real sense of individuality to your Dragoon units. Victrix also added a Dragoon deal so you can get these great figures at nice discount.

Have a Great Battle,
The Old Crow

Sunday, December 4, 2011

The Chaos Dwarf Skullcracker released from Forge World

Forge World describes the Chaos Dwarf Skullcracker as a hissing and grinding arcane-mechanical conglomeration of iron hammers, hacking blades and brutal picks. Designed to smash down walls and tear fortifications asunder.

I imagine, even without seeing the stats on this bad boy, it would rip through a unit of infantry just as well. As always, Forge World releases a beautifully detailed resin kit, designed by Tim Adcock, and is accompanied with three chaos dwarf crew figures designed by Thais Mariblanca Lopez.

Have a Great Battle,
The Old Crow

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Painting Warhammer Stone Trolls

Welcome, today we’re going to move back to the realm of fantasy miniature wargames and paint a Warhammer Stone Troll.

Here he is in all his glory. Let's run through the step by step process of painting this beast. 

We started as usual by priming the model in black. 

The next 3 steps are successive coats of dark gray, medium gray and finally barn wood.

After its set for a few minutes, we added a dry-brush coat of country grey to pull out all of the details.

The stone troll model also has a great deal of detail on his back. Here it is with the highlights. 

Next we added a wash of olive green to simulate mosses growing in the crevices of the stones.

Making sure the olive has dried and we dry-brushed warm white on selected areas of bumps and stones. This adds some additional warm tones to the otherwise cool tones on the troll.

Now back to the front and starting on the details. We used clay bisque to base the skulls and trolls teeth. Next a highlight of titanium white was added to those same items. 

We based the ropes, hair and cloth with burnt umber and the chain mail with metallic gun metal.

A highlight of light aluminum was applied to the chain mail bringing out the links nicely. Then apply a wash of red oxide to simulate rust on parts of the trolls chain mail. Be careful not to overdo it.
Onto other details, we used antique gold on the rings, a dry-brush of linen on the ropes, mushroom dry-brush on the cloth and sand on the belly button bone to set it off from the surrounding cool tones.
The dwarf trophy head received coats of red oxide and a light dry-brush of pure orange to the hair. For the skin tone we used mushroom, linen and a final light wash of olive in so it looks like its been hanging there for a while. A slight wash of heritage red in the trolls wound makes it appear irritated and in the process of regenerating.
The club was painted with mushroom, clay bisque and a wash of heritage red was added into the recesses. After drying a dry-brush of warm white finished it off.

Now onto the bases! I typically mark the base with where the model attaches to keep the area clear of sand, ballast or rock. Here we have added the chunky rocks and gravel. The chunky material is “Lizard Litter” made from crushed walnut shells. The smaller gravel is Woodland Scenics medium ballast. Skeleton bits and a small aquarium rock were added for detail.

REMEMBER SAFETY! Halogen lights get really hot and if the adjustable lamp you are using slips lower while your bases are drying it can have disastrous results. Thankfully a plastic model was not attached to the base.

OK, now lets add a liberal wash of dark gray.
After it thoroughly dries, under your halogen light, dry-brush on medium gray and finally country gray.

We touched up the skeleton pieces with successive dry-brushed coats of clay bisque and sand.

Final touches of brown and green flock with a few bits of ballast mixed in were added. Make sure to randomize the patches in size and spacing.

Repeat all the steps above and you’ll have two lovely Warhammer stone trolls ready to add to your orc and goblin horde!  With the eighth edition rules these guys now benefit from an added stomp attack making them tougher than ever.

Have a great battle,
The Old Crow