Tuesday, 14 March 2017

From CurtC - Tribute to Alan and Paul: Don Cossack Commander and Post-Apoc Survivor (15 points)

This Tribute is to Alan and Paul, our dedicated Tuesday duo.

Last year, when we were organizing the Minions of Challenge VI, Millsy had the great idea of grouping the Australians and Kiwi Challengers into a single day to better harmonize with their unique time zone (and funny-sounding accents). So this year I went cap-in-hand to Alan and Paul to ask if they would take on the responsibility of herding the Antipodean contingent along with their pals from other parts of the world and, thankfully, they kindly agreed.  I think they've done a terrific job and wanted to do-up something for them to show my thanks.

For Alan, I present a Don Cossack commander for his 1812 Russian Retreat collection. I was so impressed with his French that I thought I'd be Devil's Advocate and perhaps give him the beginnings of a Russian contingent. 

This is a Perry sculpt from their fabulous Retreat range, which I think is some of the best work they've done to-date. It's an interesting model as its all a one piece casting, wonderfully posed and rendered. 

Though I often like to put white 'socks' on my horses I've done this fellow as a full red chestnut so he'll stand out nicely against the snow, chasing down Alan's grognards.

For Paul, I've put together a post-apocalyptic survivor, fighting in the ash wastelands. Paul had contacted me last year to ask about my Metro 2033 stuff, saying that he was keen to get into the genre. I recently noticed that he had picked up some of the excellent Lead Adventure castings so I thought I'd kick-in with this small offering to help fuel this project.

This model is a resin multipart from Brother Vinni's Miniatures. While I find most of his offerings a little too, um, turgid, he does offer some wonderful Renaissance and Sci-Fi figures.

This fellow was a bit too cleanly kitted-out to my way of thinking, so I added a slung blanket roll and chest pack (made up from resin stowage bits from a 1/72 Sherman) to make him look a little more a seasoned Wasteland Wanderer. I did up the base similar to my Metro 2033 stuff, with hi-contrast A-bomb ash, shattered brick and a partially buried I-beam for him to trip over.

So there you have it, a Don Cossack Commander and a Don Trump Survivor. :)  

Alan and Paul, I hope you guys like them. Thank you so much for all your good humour and hard work. I know it was appreciated by both myself, the participants and the visitors to the Painting Challenge. Bravo!

...and that's another 15 points for moi. :)

Alan and Paul: Wow - thank you Curt! Speaking as Alan (since I am Alan), I love the Cossack Commander. He will definitely compel me to paint a whole Russian force for him to help lead. I look forward to studying your snowy base closely... Paul is still tied up at work, but I know he will love his figure as well.

It has been a great pleasure for both of us to help with the minioning this year. The Challenge is the highlight of my hobby year, and has been fantastic for our gaming group. I have never seen Paul so focused on his painting, and the sort of figures he has been producing have blown me away. Actually, they have pretty regularly blown my forces away on the tabletop as well. For my part, I finished last year in a very dodgy mental state, and the Challenge has helped me greatly in my recovery over the past couple of months. I have appreciated the friendly camaraderie from every corner of the globe, and it has been a privilege to take part in such a great and creative endeavour. Thank you Curt for making it all possible! Dux out.

And speaking as Paul (since I am not Alan), thanks so very much - he looks fantastic!  I did indeed buy some of those LAF figures but they have since languished without attention as we delved into the FIW and other fun. I just preordered the Post Apoc themed Frostgrave-esque game "Scrappers" and this guy is going to help me kick start into that project- thanks mate!

I have enjoyed AHPC VII more than ever.  I currently have the best productivity I have ever had and am doing some of the best 28mm I have ever done as a result.  More importantly, being part of "Curt's Crew" (we need T shirts) to help make it happen for 96 participants has been a real highlight for me.  And excuses to hang out more with Dux are always welcome :-)  Thanks indeed for including me in this awesomeness.  Paul out.

From PhillipK - Muskets und Panzer (120 Points)

Hey everyone,

Today I post for your consideration a rather eclectic mix of miniatures.

First up is a continuation of my Late War German forces for Bolt Action. Joining their brothers-in-arms is a second batch (this time of ten) Panzer Grenadiers with more Panzerfausts than you can shake a stick, or a T34, at.

To support their efforts I've also painted a second Panzer IV, this one in a radically different way to the first tank I submitted to the Challenge all those months ago. After some reading I discovered that the change over to the yellow paint happened in early '43, so I thought I'd paint one as such to differentiate the two otherwise identical vehicles.

Now this is where the submission turns a tad weird. To break up the WW2 block I've turned my eyes to two Sharp Practice projects and put together a few test models, some of which are finished.

The first project is a force to partake in a 1812 - Retreat from Moscow campaign alongside Mr AlanD and Mr AledC. The first models for the project are six Russian Jaegers in Winter gear from Perry Miniatures. I had so much fun painting the first test miniature, I started and finished the rest of the six man group the next day - no where near comparable to the volume of miniatures some folk in this Challenge have been pumping out but it was my fastest batch painting attempt in a very long time, so I'll count them as a personal victory.

 The final part of this submission is my humble Curtgeld offering to go alongside the joint submission of the ladies and gentlemen of my regular gaming group.

I wish everyone good luck and a steady hand as we enter this final stretch of the Challenge. I know I'll be cramming in as much painting as possible to reach my goal.


Alan and Paul: Congratulations Phill! What a great, and eclectic bunch. They are all great, but my faves are definitely the Russian Jaegers. I can't wait to see them along with our French on a big wintry table for a game of Sharp Practice. Brilliant work on the Landsknect as well - looks like I had better get on with basing the whole group. Five days to go! Get that Russian army finished!

(Tuesday - Ready) Anthony O - Last throw of the dice - German soldiers and sailors - 80 Points

Well this is my last entry and I must admit I ran out of steam with two weeks to go. This will put me over 2000 points and for the most part I really powered through but painting fatigue got me in the end and I have been taking a break with some well deserved time wasting on a computer game.

These guys are the German Kriegsmarine from Warlord Games and the 'Raus' blister pack with a Warlord Games Panther Coelian to demonstrate just how dynamic they are.

I have had a ball and I really appreciate the positive nature of this community, I will definitely be back!

Alan and Paul: Patch, I know we say this every week, but it has been a real treat to see the magnificent figures you have been churning out at such an alarming rate. I'm glad you have had such a positive experience of the Challenge. I'm also glad Paul isn't editing this post, as one glance at those Kriegsmarine would inspire him to get straight on the phone to War & Peace Games and start another project. I hadn't seen those 'Raus' figures before, and they are indeed a great set of dynamic and very believable poses. The Tuesday Minions salute you Sir! The camo on those Panzergrenadiers earns you a bonus five points.

From GregB - More Epic 30k (85 points)

In the grim darkness of the far future, we've got any size of equipment you might need for your war...
Well the end of this edition of the Challenge is in sight.  The countdown clock has been posted. Time to look at the huge pile of stuff I hoped to paint and realize that only some of it will be finished before the zero-hour arrives next week.  That means I have to focus, something I'm terrible at, but there are some external drivers helping me along.  One is that our group is hosting an Epic 30k demonstration game at a local hobby event here on the weekend, so it is a good time to get some stuff done for use on the table.  A further motivator along that line of thinking is that JamieM is once again tossing last minute sandbags in our 30k painting duel!

So with that motivation, I decided to continue on the painting path from last week - more Epic 30k stuff!  This week my submission covers almost every size available to that "scale" of game, running the gamut from foot sloggers to another pair of towering Titans!

Alpha Legion tactical marines - while my 6mm freehand is not quite as sharp as Byron's, I managed to get some markings on to most of the shoulders and vehicles!

We'll start with the smallest ones first - this is a Space Marine tactical detachment from the Alpha Legion.  During this edition of the Challenge I started painting a new force of Alpha Legion troops for my 28mm-sized forces, and I have enjoyed the colours and the backstory of that particular Legion so much I thought it would be great to have them for Epic as well. 

Command troopers in the (blurry) front

Alpha Legion motor pool - a pair of Rhino APCs, each capable of carrying two stands of infantry
Two more APCs, along with a command variant in the left of the photo
 The tactical detachment is the basic building block for any Epic Space Marine force, so I thought it would be a good element to paint first.  There are 40 little marines here, as well as transport for them - four Rhino APCs.  There is also a command-variant Rhino to provide some command & control assistance and serve as a ride for the command figures which I hope to paint further down the road.

Moving up in the size department we have a group of four Knights.  The 30k/40k setting does not lack for large walking things with guns, and the Knights have their place on the spectrum of those vehicles.  As you can see, they loom over the infantry, but pale in size compared to the Titans, so they are on the smaller-end of the walking-terror-scale of the dark future.

Four Knights - walkers with a nice assortment of weapons to choose from
Knights are organized into semi-feudal households, with a backstory that is too lame to even try to explain.  The bottom line is that, as with the rest of the Imperium, the Knight households divided during the Horus Heresy, with some embracing hope and change with the Warmaster, and others sticking with the so-called "Emperor".

"Paladin" variant on the left, "Errant" variant on the right

I had no specific Knight household in mind, just wanted some different colours from my first bunch, so they could be opponents on the table

Even though they are "small" (you know, relatively), Knights still provide a big punch on the table, forming an extremely mobile and versatile force that hits pretty hard.  While GW has made these available as models in 28mm scale (and it is one of the nicest new kits GW has ever issued, just beautiful) the Epic setting provides the room, scope and proper context required for these things to really be fun on the table.  There is an astonishing variety of weapons assortments, and whatever you choose, these things will have a good time stalking around, terrorizing enemy tanks and infantry.  But they will have to watch out, because in the grim darkness of the far future, there is always something bigger...

And that would include the Titans!  I painted two more to add to the group from last week (see that post for explanations on the colours and Legions involved).  To maintain rough strategic parity in my Epic 30k collection, there is one for the rebel side and one for the loyalist side.

Reaver class Titan from Legio Mortis

Reaver class Titan from Legio Gryphonicus
These are Reaver class "medium" battle titans.  In addition to a slightly more artful carapace than the ones from last week, these ones are also sporting close combat weapons! Because in the grim darkness of the far future, it doesn't matter if you are 10 stories tall and armed with weapons which can level entire city blocks in one shot - you STILL might have to PUNCH something...the engineers of Mars have got you covered! Behold, the titan-sized power fist - it's silly, and I love it!

Large close combat fist for extra-smashing duties

Still sporting a big laser cannon and "apocalypse" launcher for more conventional fun
Equipping your titans with close combat weapon systems is something of a gamble in the Epic game.  The power fist comes at the expense of mounting one of the other, very useful and terrifying weapon systems.  This sucks early in the game when you wish you had one more volcano cannon shot to bombard the enemy.  A further consideration is that the fist is only useful if you are close enough to punch the other titan, so you have to basically charge forward and get to grips for it to be worthwhile...

A view of another close combat attachment

This Titan is also sporting a scary-as-hell plasma cannon...it can only fire every other turn, so the crew can spend that time moving the Titan closer to whatever needs to be punched while it powers up between shots
On the plus side, if you bring your titan into close combat with another one and succeed, the results tend to be immediate and rewarding, as a Titan that is unsuccessful in a "close combat" tends disappear in some manner of spectacular explosion - indeed, so spectacular the Titan which defeated it risks serious damage itself! Did I mention I love how warped all of this is...?

Titan maniple from Legio Mortisi now ready for action! The big guns for a better universe! Horus for hope!
I felt both sides should have one Titan sporting a close combat power fist.  There are several gamers in our group who display the proper level of aggression to make the most of them on the table!

Titan maniple from Legion Gryphonicus, ready to defend the so-called "Emperor" to the bitter end...deluded fools...
So, in total this includes two Titans, four Knights, five 6mm sized vehicles and 40 6mm sized infantry.  I will leave it to the minions to score the thing properly, and I bow to their infinite wisdom as to the worth of this in terms of points...hope to have more to share as the finish line arrives!

Alan and Paul: Unlike Paul, Alan has never played anything 'K', and has never really seen the appeal. However, even he, grizzled old Grognard that he is, has been enjoying seeing your Epic force coming together, and particularly the affection and good humour with which you describe the silliness which is one of the hallmarks of the Far Future. These guys just look great - beautifully colourful, but also a bit grimy from all that trudging around through lots of Orkz or Skullz or Bogz or whatever. I've scored the Knights as 28mm figures and the Titans as 28mm vehicles, and thrown in a few extra points for the loely detail.

From Sean M - The race is almost run (120 points)

No idleness before the Ides!

With Spring Break and a Mid-March freeze settling in, it's a good time to make the final push on the Challenge. Nothing bad ever comes of leaving some nine and six year old boys unsupervised while painting, amirite? More on that later...

The Challenge has certainly inspired me to put a dent in the old leadpile, and I think I can claim I did not buy a single new mini for the Challenge. And here is the culmination of my second oldest ongoing project.

The last of the Celts are done, a Warband of 24 dudes. These are the bourgeois cats who can afford armour! They will either be fielded as an uber unit at the centre of the line, or split amongst the other units to make three more homogeneous units. The bulk of the figures are Warlord Games, with a good seasoning of Old Glory and the last 4 from Wargames Factory. That was the payoff from this unit, as I expended most of the WF minis as slingers, this unit was mercifully free of them. My experiments with the Magic Wash have progressed, so that the overly muddy tones of the earlier minis have been evened out, although they still have the dirty peasant look Hollywood has primed us to expect.

The hardest part of these figures is still hand cutting out the shield transfers around the shield bosses, although the application process is getting to be old hat. However, shield choice at this point in the project has curtailed by the remaining unspoiled decals, which meant a certain amount had to be javelin/shield pieces. The Warlord (above) is using one of the ceremonial gold shields, like the one they found in the Thames. While it is acknowledged that the shield would be too fragile to take into battle, how, as a modeler, could I pass it up. This unit also got the largest carnyx of the lot.

I've been hacking on the Wargames Factory minis a bit since the dreaded slinger entry, but to be fair, they did what they were bought for, which was pad out the units and add an option that the other manufacturers did not offer - money cheap slingers. Each WF mini is less than a dollar, and their rub on decals are pretty easy to put on once you cut them in half.

So here's one last WF Celt, who had an epic journey of a sorts. I came home from the Kill Team league yesterday, prepared to flock up the warband then snap some pics. However, 24 Celts had become 23. It seems the youngest of the brood had been watching You Tube on daddy's computer, and had shoved all of the minis into a pile on the side of the desk, and one last WF Celt went walkies. He was later found safely ensconced in a mukluk, all warm and toasty, with his spear only a little bent.

So here I am, with about a week left to go, wondering what to try to top up my points with now that the CurtGeld is off to my partner in the tender care of Canada Post. I think I will bash onto my Grymkin proxy army made of odds and sods from the basement leadpile.


Alan and Paul: Great to hear that the missing spearman turned up, and wasn't sacrificed in a bog to guarantee success for the rest of the warband! This is a great looking bunch, and the mix of manufacturers will just add to the personality of the army as a whole. Five more days! What will you paint up next? 

Tuesday Minions coming in for final landing!

Its been another wild ride and your Team Tuesday minions are ready to bring you in for a final AHPC VII landing!
"Job's a good 'un!"
After waiting ages for the event to start (its the equivalent of waiting for Christmas, but you get to file and prime your presents early!) its hard to believe that AHPC VII almost over.

Its time to paint like the wind to grab those last few points.  Then kickback, enjoy a celebratory libation or seven and contemplate the detritus of your painting bench and how you are going to store all those newly painted figures.  Then brace yourself for being forcible reacquaintance with more mundane things like family, pets, and painting in that most dreaded of mandated scales- 1:1 :-(

Its been fun, its been real... its been Tuesday.  And Tuesday has been awesome fun to Minion.  We did the first week together with beers in hand and it was all good times from then on in.

Thanks to all of Team Tuesday and our visitors!

Paul & Alan