Saturday, 25 March 2017

Iannick's challenge postmortem

Well, it was a fantastic Challenge for me, finally! My last few challenges have been plagued by a house flood, health issues and a house move, but this year I was ready and all in, and I managed by far my very best total, with 704 pts. My previous best was 510 pts, so I can safely say this was my most successful challenge (I participated in the last 5 challenges).

Here I am, proud owner of 150 new painted figures!

I really worked on my productivity this year, my main goal to make good progress on various gaming projects, and I achieved that. I was completely burned out at the end, so that was a pretty good sign I worked my butt off during three months! I also managed to participate in all bonus theme round, terrain excepted, so that was also a good accomplishment for me.

It wasn't all perfect, of course, as I manage to lose the 30K duel quite badly, lost my race to the finish with Curt and got into a tie with Sander for the 80s GI Joe duel! Of course, these duels were mainly there for fun, and they achieved their objectives! Although I do owe some figures to some people!

A better view at 3 months work
What I really liked this challenge is that I managed to finish or almost finish 4 sides for my gaming projects : an Emperor's Children force (2/3 done), a Sci-Fi Skirmish force (done), a Pulp Cobra side (almost done) and a Halfling force (more than I need!).

The Emperor's Children :

The Vordania II Insurrectio

The Halflings

And the Cobra 

As well as a few Oldhammer figures, Zombicide and more!

Special thanks to :

- Greg, for his help on the Epic project and the Curtgeld, the Hockey banter and the general camaraderie throughout the challenge. The challenge is great like that for making new friends.

- Jamie for the 30K duel. Next year we have to do a 6mm 30K challenge! I might have a chance. Probably not...

- Byron, for being a very helpful Minion. Loved your pep-talk emails!

- Sander : For convincing me to plunge into the GI Joe project, for the duel which was really great fun, it was a high point of my challenge. Can't wait to get that Breaker!

- Curt, obviously, for doing his thing for the last 7 years. The Challenge has become a must for me, and it highlights every one of my winters! And God knows we Canadians need it! 

- The guys from the Facebook group, it's lots of fun to keep touch.

And a BIG thank you to all those who left comments on my entries, it really is super motivating and I thank you for taking the time to read my post and look at the pictures! (special shout out to Michael Peterson, loved your comments man).

See you all next Winter, it's been a blast!

JamesM - Challenge Output!

Hi Folks,

Just responding to the request for a pic of the whole amount painted during the Challenge, and a piccy of me!

Lots of smaller scale stuff from me this year, so it looks like a good amount! No where near the laden tables full that others have completed though. My painted stuff ranges from 3mm and 6mm Moderns and 10mm ACW to 15mm WW2 - and a 28mm Lion! I did miss one truck from the picture... but it's all packed away now.

I had also done a quick video, which can be found here:

And as for a pic of me, here I am sporting yet another tin hat...

Thanks everyone for the comments and support throughout the challenge!

AaronH - Challenge retrospective

Another one is down in the books. For the first time I didn't make my goal. I just had too many other things vying for my attention this year. Still, it was a very productive Challenge and I'm happy with my progress.

The whole bunch, blurry but all there.

EIR Command and velites along with Blood Bowl team.
6mm Sci/Fi and 3mm X-Wings for Star Wars Armada.
Dwarfs (not the cannon).
Two Celt warbands and some Javeliners in front of Uruk-Hai and Trolls.
ECW Pike & Shotte regiment, two extra stands and command.
Role playing characters. There's a nice variety now.
My ugly mug. I'm even wearing my UK sweatshirt in the spirit of cross Atlantic cooperation.
While I didn't manage to make my goal I did enjoy this year a great deal. As always my fellow Challengers blew me away with the quality of their work. I am also not feeling burned out from all of the painting, so hopefully I can keep the momentum going now that the Challenge is over.

Thank you as well to Curt and the Minions for doing all of the hard work that makes this possible. It really is the high point of my blogging year, being able to participate in this amazing thing.

EvanH: My Challenge Roundup, or "Déjà Who?"

You know, it was almost a year ago to the day that I posted a roundup of my first ever Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge. 241 points, and I was well pleased.

Well, things are a little more competitive this year, with unprecedented levels of participation. 96 painters! Tens of thousands of points!

And here's me, with a princely 325 points, thanks mainly to getting a few Bonus Rounds in (at least 50 a pop for those bad boys, and that adds up even if you're not a painting machine). Participation in the Bonus Rounds would therefore seem to be a good move for lazy painters like myself.

So, let's review; last year, I turned out a massive total of 22 figures. This time out, a mere 19 figs (counting half a skeleton and a tank commander as 0.5 of a fig each), plus one vehicle, i,e., one (1) M3 Honey Tank, Eighth Army for the use of, and a single piece of terrain, namely a Frostgrave mausoleum.

They're all there, bar one; the Curtgeld figure.

I'm very pleased with how this chap turned out, especially given the beautiful basework and flag provided by my friend and blolleague Mr Mills. A true communal effort! I hope that he finds favour with his new commander, the Snowlord Himself.

And here I am with the assembled multitude my bijou collection.

It says something for my productivity that this is the second year I've been able to fit all my Challenge figs in one shot. Gotta pick up the pace!

That's all from me for this year then. Time to pull down the shutters, stow the paintbrushes, and put away the unpainted models for another nine or so months.

See you later!


MilesR: Challenge VII Stats Round Up: "The Reckoning"

Rejoice my friends, for the we are about to embark upon a magical mathematically themed mystery tour of Challenge VII.  Gather round the digitally enhanced campfire and prepare yourselves for to be astonished by tales of algebraic deering-do, trigonomic terrors and captivating calculus.

First, a word of caution.  We, we happy few, we band of paint-stained brothers and sisters, stand upon a precipice of mathemagical divination.  We can choose to go forward bravely in the darkness of the statistical night or meekly cry out for my aid and hand calculators.  Anyone who fears long division may freely depart, for I would not have them in my company on this day:

Maybe a little over the top?  Nah, I think it's spot on.  Who knew that Batman was at Agincourt?

The mathematical rituals have been performed, the appropriate sacrifices to the dark arithmetical gods have been made and the results have materialized before our eyes.

The simplest answer is Challenge VII broke all the records.  No, that isn't quite right.  Challenge seven treated the records like Godzilla would treat Tokyo after stepping on a giant lego piece.  The terms squashed, obliterated, annihilated may be more appropriate.

Lets us examine some graphs (sigh).  First up compares Challenge VII to it's previous 6 ancestors

Wow - VII's 96 painting participants and 83.2K points are both new records.  VII also set record for number of submission (919), average score per Challenger (867) and many more.

Want to go into more detail on VII?  Well, we're going to do it anyway.

Lets take a gander at the score distribution

Percent of Total PointsIVVVIVII
Top 525%26%20%22%
Top 1041%42%33%35%
Top 2062%63%56%53%

It seems that Challenge VII has continued the recent trend of Challenges of being more socially progressive with the share of score for the top 20 participants declining steadily.  Somewhere Bernie Sanders is smiling.  As a staunch capitalist, I find this trend disturbing and a wake up call to re-double the nefarious efforts of my fellow "financial services professionals".  We've gotten complacent since our triumph of 2008.

Lets look at even more meaningless eye candy graph.

First up is the distribution of sales we painted:

28mm was the dominate scale again this year, but 15mm staged a nice comeback.  I am particularly proud that the unallocated portion of this years trend graph is much smaller than last years, where it was closer to 20%.  How did we eliminate the "Purple Stain"?  By bringing the snow Lord into line and getting him to enter the figure detail for the bonus rounds.  Curt may have started his Challenge hosting career as a care free bon vivant but statistics bring us all to heel in the end.  Prepare to be assimilated.

So what do 919 individual submission look like over 3 months of painting combat?

Very pretty, but not all that meaningful.  Lets try taking that same data and aggregating by day:

Interesting - we see what is referred to by professional painting challenge commentators as the "two humped" camel - a slow start then a binge in January followed by a dip and then a mad rush at the end.  That last day looks pretty hectic - there were 56 rubmissionfor 5,455 points!

Enough of this graph stuff, lets get to some data tables where the real geeking can get going.

It is my great pleasure to present to you the final KPI table of Challenge VII:

(Please note that I do grant a limited purpose non-commercial license to use the KPI table if any of you want a new tattoo to impress your friends, your welcome.) 

Weeks Completed24681113
Weeks Remaining1197520
Participants w/ a Submission478196969696
Total Submissions89239417540715919
Total Points7,71121,90636,63248,90563,12783,200
Participation Rate47%81%100%100%100%100%
Average per Submitter164270382509658867
Avg per Submission879288918891
Submitter % of Target Completed16%32%48%65%83%110%
Projected Points
Remaining Bouns Rounds9,2616,7875,8514,2551,7500
Non Submitters @ 25%13,3581,6570000
Projected Total Points72,74178,39484,68782,72075,88583,200
Figures Painted
Cav / Art69155305425545719
Cav / Art28178285361513817
Cav / Art1118108187195195
Score Distribution
Bonus Round "Bonus Points"0%11%13%9%9%12%
Other Scales4%9%17%15%15%9%

So what nuggets of insight can we derive from this most impressive of data tables?  First off, the collective participants of Challenge VII achieved 110% of their initial target - that hasn't happened before.  We painted a lot of 28mm figures but 15 mm staged a comeback from Challenge VI as the table below points out:

15MM ProductivityVIIVI
Figures Painted
Cavalry / Guns817294

As with past challenges, the "Point-O-Projector" was eerily accurate in forecasting points at the mid point of the Challenge, forecasting 84,687 points during week 6 and 82,720 at week 8 versus the final score of 83,200

Week 11's abysmal forecast of 75,885 is due to operator error as the knucklehead who runs this spreadsheet forgot to adjust to tempering equation for the shorter duration left in the Challenge.

Don't you hate it when you do that?

Economic Value Add

Ok enough of this statistical mumbo-jumbo and lets get into the real protein and tubers of the statistical roundup - economic mumbo-jumbo.  What is the economic value add of this year's event?

First a word on methodology.  This has been a controversial aspect of my statistical work as there are many opinions on the both the assumptions and methodology that have been voiced.  Rest assured, dear stats fans, that I listen very conscientiously to each of your opinions, carefully weight the pros and cons and look deep into my soul to ensure I'm doing the right thing.  I'm very proud to say that those concepts that advance whatever agenda I have are quickly adopted into the methodologies.  Any other changes that accurately contradict my agenda are discarded as fake news.  I think we can all agree that's the right way to approach both tracking miniature painting as well as setting public policy.

So how do we calculate Economic Value Add (or "EVA" as it's known on the streets)

(1) The total points of the completion is translated into the equivalent number of 28mm infantry figures by dividing by "5" - 83,200 points is the equivalent of 16,640 28mm infantry figures.

(2) We then calculate the cost of acquiring and painting the individual figure based on cost per mini, cost of paint and the value of the painters time.  I've made some changes this year  and have increased the costs for all three categories to reflect a higher cost environment.  There is still some controversy of the value of a painters time but I'm worried that raising the hourly rate any higher will just force management to replace painters with robots and we wouldn't want that would we?  The total cost per figure (see table below) is $13.50

(3) The sum total of the cost to create a painted and based mini is then multiplied by an economic velocity factor to reflect the fact that when we replace a painted figure in our collective lead piles we, on average, buy 4 figures for every one painted.  At least I do.

So what's the EVA of Challenge VII?

Ecomonic Value Add (EVA)
Total Points83,200
Equivalent 28mm Inf Minis16,640Economic
Value Add
Cost per Mini$2.50$41,600
Paints & Basing Materials$1.00$16,640
Painting TIme$10.00$166,400
Sub Total$224,640

Just under $900K - that's big time money and a economic stimulus package in 28mm scale.


Over time, the Challenge has truly become a financial juggernaut in the miniatures industry

EVA TrendlineCummulative
Total Points2,24530,56542,07959,93565,10564,69083,200347,819
Equivalent 28mm figures4496,1138,41611,98713,02112,93816,64069,564
Economic Value Created$14,211$193,476$266,360$379,389$500,000$569,272$898,560$2,821,268

Close the $3MM in EVA created to date.  Mr Campbell, I would expect some compensation form the wargaming manufactures is due to you.

The Hall of Heroes
As with every Challenge we do take some time to recognize the lifetime to date performance of our challengers - the Legendary Painteristas.  Through challenge VII there have been a total of 384 participation events, with many individuals participating multiple times.

RankNameLieftime Points# of Challenges

I'm very excited to announce that we are welcoming a new member into the 10,000 club - Tamsin!  Welcome Tamsin, your membership card and secret decoder ring will be sent to you shortly.  Please remember to use your newly granted social status only for good, not evil.

DaveD still reigns supreme as the "Points-Progenator".  It should be pointed out that MartinC is coming fast on our heels and will likely become the person to attain "10,000 Club" membership the fastest after next years Challenge.

Top ten Individual performances


In term of top ten individual performances, we saw 3 from Challenge VII crack the top ten this year.  Sadly none of us came close nor are we likely to ever exceed RayR's majestic score of 4,940 points from Challenge II.  That's a mark for the ages and all of us need to come to grips with the fact that the Challenge's future statue in Trafalgar Square will likely have Ray's visage starting down upon us like a Elephant Seal baking in the sun wearing a speedo.

Lastly, there's one burning question that I am sure all of you thirst for the answer to - which day of the week reigned supreme during Challenge VII?

Minion# ChallengersTarget PtsActual Pts% Target Met% of Total PointsPts/ChallengerOvr/Undr Index
Grand Total11,00073773.70%0.89%737.000.85
Grand Total9675,95083,200109.55%100.00%866.671.00

Shockingly, Monday stand out as the best day of the week in just about every category, including self pro-motion.  Who knew?

MONDAY - for the WIN!

Monday looks cooler in a pie chart - cooler cause it's blue.

There you have it, Stats fans.  Another Challenge has come and gone but like a hot branding iron, it left a mark.  As I close this overly long and pompous post, I would like to sincerely thank a few people:

Curt - for organizing this madness and proving that Tom Sawyer was a brilliant management visionary - painting this fence sure is fun....

Sarah - for putting up with Curt and not killing him due to annoyance.  As we've discussed many times, thinking about doing so doesn't count.

My fellow Minioneers - Excellent job and somebody else take Monday - it's too much work.  Sorry about making you wade through my silly spreadsheet of doom

Challenge VII participants - thanks for making this such a fun event.  Special shout out to MatinC for pushing me as my points rival.  I do wonder if he's just playing me like at an auction - just bidding up the ante to see if I'll bite and I always do.   I look forward to our AWI Challenge next year.

Lets go make some terrain now.

Calc-On, Dudes