Monday, 31 December 2018

From Curt: Fighting Fae - 'Tom Thumb' and his Furies (44 Points)

I first saw these figures last spring on the Eureka Miniatures' Facebook page (lurking under Sarah's profile) and knew I had to get a set. They immediately reminded me of Brian Frond and Alan Lee's illustrations in 'Faeries' published way back in the late 70s when I was just a kid.

These are about 20mm in height, but their very slight physiques make them look smaller. Even though they've been scaled to blend with the other 28mm figures in Eureka's fantasy range, I like to think of them at being 'true scale', 1:1. To reinforce this I have Tom leaping from a thimble (kindly sourced from Lynn, Peter's (infinitely) better half).

I love how dynamic the poses are. In my minds eye, their movement echos films like 'Peter Pan' and 'Princess Mononoke'.

The sculpts are very fine and intricate, with each figure's sword even having a unique basket/guard detail. Really lovely stuff.

So, how do you get these wonderful little gems? I'll be frank here: I absolutely love Eureka's stuff. It's creative, beautifully sculpted and masterfully cast. But don't ask me how to actually source these freakin' models (I finally had to send then a direct query as I was completely stumped). I find the Eureka website has been ingeniously designed to discourage people from actually purchasing their products. It's completely impenetrable and torturous - it's as if the site was designed by the Marquis de Sade and coded by Kafka. By the time you find something you've been looking for you feel like they should be paying you for the aggravation and waste of time. 

Sigh... , but I digress. 

Yes, I'll still be there, searching and clicking like a madman, when the next shiny thing emerges from Eureka...

I feel better now (rocks back and forth), no really, I do.

Points? Hmm, eleven 20mm fae folk should put me at 44 points. 

Happy New Year to you and yours, everyone!


Happy New Year, Curt! I feel that I am luckily close to Eureka's Australian-based operations, but I was unfamiliar with these gorgeous fey figures. The thimble is a lovely touch.


Elves are wonderful. They provoke wonder. Elves are marvellous. They cause marvels. Elves are fantastic. They create fantasies. Elves are glamorous. They project glamour. Elves are enchanting. They weave enchantment. Elves are terrific. They beget terror. The thing about words is that meanings can twist just like a snake, and if you want to find snakes look for them behind words that have changed their meaning. No one ever said elves are nice. Elves are bad.
Terry Pratchett, Lords and Ladies

From ScottM - Fantasy Monsters (41 points)

Greetings all! For my first submission for this year's paint challenge I'm going with a small handful of fantasy figures. All of these figures will get used in my groups' Frostgrave games. First up is a pair of larger monsters.

These two figures are an Umber Hulk from Wizkids and a Carrion Worm from Reaper's Bones line. Simple nice figures that were a breeze to paint up.

These three figures are a Reaper Bones Blood Demon and a pair of Wizkids Myconids. Really easy figures to paint up. And lastly are two packs of Reaper Dungeon Vermin.
Simple figs, not really much you can do when painting up small bugs.

Point wise, everything is 28mm so I think it's probably 5 points for all but the vermin and maybe 2 points per vermin base? So that should be about 37 points.

Hello Scott, great work on these hero-fodder. The umber hulk is a classic, and I do think we could all do with more fungus-men in our games. I've given you a few extra points for the larger monsters taking you to 41.


From MikeW - 28mm 17th Century Polish Hajduk Infantry - 100 Points

So here it is the first ever post to an AHPC event....

Assault Group Polish Hajduks

These are 28mm Assualt Group, Polish Hajduk Infantry who will make up a unit in the Polish intervention force in my Siege of Vienna (1683) project.

The infantry in Polish service at this time were very much considered to be second to the cavalry arm - with the famous Polish Winged Hussars, supported by Pancerni armoured cavalry and Cossack Irregulars.

The infantryman was considered a peasant - hence the name Hajduk, armed with a musket and a sword and dressed in simple coat.

Many units were however, well drilled and well dressed, this unit being one of those that helped liberate Vienna.
The raw figures!

The figures were source from eBay, without the optimum mix of musketeers, Command and NCOs armed with poleaxes! This this unit is painted as 5 bases of 4 figures, 20 in all.

Four man base, 3 x Musketeers plus
1 x NCO with Poleaxe
Eagle-eyed readers may note that I have painted 22 figures - optimally I would have liked a 6th base of four figures but only two suitable ones were available in  the lot! Thus I am waiting on some additional figures to be supplied to finally complete the unit to 24 in total - I will claim the points on these when I get these done!

I usually undercoat my figures with white paint, I did so with these, and began painting the blue coats, then the red trousers and coat linings. Red chest braiding was added by dry brushing over the raised detail.

Next was the leather work - belts and boots, followed by brown for the muskets and yellow/brown for the flag staffs and poleaxe shafts...

4 Musketeers in various marching poses
Metalwork next - first oily steel for musket mechanisms, barrels, sword scabbard fittings and poleaxe blades, followed by brass for buttons and sword hilts etc.

I usually paint on the flesh first, to bring the undercoated figures to life but this time for some reason, flesh was left to the end. Then hair was added for mustaches and forelocks.

The colour process is then repeated as I fix all the mistakes, smudges and other errors that I can spot before applying a coat of Dark Army Painter dip to provide shading. I always apply this by brush and work it into figures, I don't like getting too much on each figure as it would spoil the detail.

The command base was made-up pretty much as per the other bases, it consists of two standard bearers, a drummer and an officer.

The standards are made via help of Microsoft Paint and images taken form the internet.

The officers of the day were generally free to dress as they wished, I have kept this officer fairly well in tune with his unit in blue coat and red trousers

Bases are 40mm x 40mm 2mm MDF, covered with fine sand and then dry-brushed and sprinkled with electrostatic grass.
2nd NCO base

Spoiler Alert! So what's next? I have a couple options, a group of 15 foot and 2 mounted 28mm Foundry Mountain Men, these are already undercoated and will join the Texicans who are bravely fighting against Santa Anna's Mexican army. Again this batch came form eBay and strangely includes a Chinese gentleman armed with a Machette - I'm pretty sure there were no Chinese people at the Alamo but he can add colour to the Texan Independence campaign!

The other option is yet another group of eBay finds, 6 x 28mm Ottoman Light Cavalry - actually they are Mamelukes from the Reiver Castings range, with them came three Ottoman mounted officers. Again all are undercoated and awaiting a lick of paint, immediate foes to the just completed Polish Hajduks!

So Points tally: 20 x 28mm Infantry @5points each = 100 Points!

Nice work, Mike, great to have you aboard for your first Challenge! I like the details on the front of their jackets, and appreciate the description of your painting technique. A lovely first entry and a satisfying round number of points.


From MattK: First Submission - Blood and Plunder Natives and Epic 40k (100 points)

Hey everyone! This is my first time in the Challenge. Thanks for having me.

For the my first entry into the contest I wanted to paint my whole Native starter box for Blood and Plunder but Christmas got in the way of my plans. I got most of the box done but I figured it made more sense to post some progress rather than wait til next weekend to submit my first entry

First here's a shot of the whole entry.

This is the 8 Warrior Archers, 4 African Warriors and the 4 Musketeers.

And some close-ups.

In addition to getting this nice little force started I painted this Space Wolf figure as a Christmas Present for my Mom. I think he came in one of Horus Heresy boxes but I picked him up on eBay a while ago.

Finally I couldn't help myself and I broke into my stash of Epic stuff to do some test pieces for my next project. There's probably going to be a lot more of this from me through the Challenge. I bought the plastic figures and Rhinos off of eBay but the bases for the figures, dreadnaught and landraider were all 3D printed on my new printer (a Christmas present to myself).

I'm incredibly happy with how the freehanded Imperial Fist symbol turned out.

If I'm doing the math right,
  • 16 x 28mm Foot for 80 points
  • 1 x 28mm Foot for 5 more
  • 10 x 6mm foot for 5 points
  • 3 x 6mm Vehicle for 6 points
  • and whatever the dread is worth


G'day Matt and welcome to the Challenge!

I have to start by saying any Mom who would be happy with a Space Wolf painted up for Christmas must be truly one-of-a-kind! Does she actually play 40k or just like the miniatures? You have to give us more info than that mate...

Regards your entry, this is a cracking way to kick off. I'm stuck for which of your efforts I like best to be honest. The natives are really cool and the skin tone is great. I struggle with native tones so I really appreciate it when people get them right.

I'm also really impressed by your Imperial Fists. It's great to see the old plastic Rhinos still getting painted up. They are such an iconic looking vehicle and the mustard yellow really suits them. Well done on the Fists symbol too. Freehand at 6mm is never easy!

Your math looks pretty good to me. Let's call the Epic Dread a vehicle too and you get an extra point for the freehand symbol AND another for having the coolest of Moms. All up that's a neat 100 points to start you off. Well done indeed and keep the good stuff coming!


From FranL: Scenery of many scales (80 Points)

- Sorry folks, Curt here. I'm horning in on Barks' turf so we can clear the decks for this past week. Just a couple Holiday Challengers to go...


It's been a while...

You see this lollipop collection before you with a selection of 28mm, HO scale and 15mm pieces of plastic, resin and metal from a host of manufactures (somethings can be used for 15mm from many scales)...

You can see windows from GZG which will be used for video monitor screens...

Barrels and containers of every size...

Planning boards, pallets, vents, furniture and computers on desks...

A majority will end up in this MDF day!

I have more to come possibly, and I apologise for leaving them on the lollipops but handy for storage until needed.

They are 1/72 items, but unaware how to score them though!


First, welcome back to the Challenge, Fran! It's been a few years, so it's terrific to have you in the scrum again.

Wow, this is a treasure heap of 1/72 scale goodness. That MDF complex in the last shot looks very impressive. Is there a scenario you have in mind for it? What rules will you be using? Can I play? :) I like your use of the window frames to simulate panels of flat-screen monitors - very clever, that. 

Fran, you tell me that these roughly fill four 6x6 cubes so that puts it at 80 points. Well done Mr. Lee. And for you, the best thing about your entry is that you have twice as many points done as Ray. :)


Welcome to Monday, Farewell 2018

I'm here, bushy eyed and keen tailed on my first day as a minion! It's been a pleasant 40C in my antipodean painting bunker recently, and I am yet to submit my first entry for your consideration.

I've been binge-watching The Crown Season 2 over the last 48h. I squee'd when HM's fixer Tommy Lascelle was shown refighting Salamanca, and pointedly repositioned his troops after Liz had carelessly moved them.
Barks envisions his perfect retirement

I'm heading in to Sydney tonight for New Year's Eve celebrations, I shall report back next Monday. There may be a bit of a delay in getting some posts up, but fear not, all will be done before next year (Canada time).

Happy New Year, everyone!

Sunday, 30 December 2018

From MilesR: 15mm Napoleonic Ships - 4 of 'em (208 Points)

More 15mm Napoleonics for this submission but the miniatures are in the form of boats - four of them to be specific. All of the models are from Thoroughbred Miniatures Sea Eagles line and are true 15mm scale (vs the 18mm of Old Glory and AB miniatures).  Each model kit does require a good bit of effort to assemble and paint up but I think are well worth the effort.

First up is a French Polacre.  A Polacre is a frigate design that is a cross between a Xebec (lateen sails on the front and back) and a square rigger (the center main mast).  The ships were found in the Mediterrain and were very manoeuvrable but not the fastest of hulls - in confined waters they were very dangerous opponents.  The total length of the model is 18 inches

Next up is a standard Brig - In the this case the model is the USS Onieda but she'll be used as a French ship this summer.  She mounts 16, 9 pounders and a big 32 pounder on the bow - This ship can cause some problems for our British friends.  The Onieda is 15 inches long.

The third ship is perhaps my favorite of the group - a 12 gun British Cutter - super fast with reasonable firepower. This one comes in at 9 inches in length.

Lastly, we have a 18 gun British Brig.  She's armed with 16, 32 pound carronades and 2, 18 pound long guns.  This ship can inflict a devastating broadside up close.  The model is 18 inches long.

Some of you may have noticed 3 of the ships lack rigging - I wanted to do a little play testing before final rigging.

Next up is - hey what's the yelling in the background....

I turn my back on these kids for just a second and they start fighting - incorrigible!

I've got two more ships to build - a three masted Frigate for the French and a large Xebec for the Brits - and, yes, in my upcoming game the British will be employing some Barbary pirates as mercenaries.  What gaming experience isn't made better with Pirates?

Ship building is very messy work.  My work space will need a tidy-up before proceeding.

As for points - I leave that up to Curt and his minions.  It's 60 total inches of 15mm Napoleonic Naval fun.  As for effort - these were actual a lot more work that the 28mm frigate that was submitted a few years ago.

I believe this entire submission should count towards the Nautical side duel.


Some people produce a ship, Miles rolls out with a flotilla. I dunno folks, I think he's compensating for something. :) Seriously, amazing work Miles. These Thoroughbred models are just terrific and I know I'll be visiting them soon after I wrap this up. What are they made up of? Resin and white metal, or do they have some laser-cut wood as well? I'm eager to see how you get on with the rigging. What are your plans for crew? These will look even more glorious with loads of sea dogs capering on their decks. Very, very cool.

Points? Hmm. Well let's make them into the equivalent of 15mm vehicles in their rough dimensions. A 15mm tank would approximately fit across their decks, so 60 inches  (we're assuming that number is just the hull and not including the bowsprit) would equate to around 30 tanks. We'll round down due to the narrowing of the prow so let's say 26 vehicles worth. That times 8 and we have 208 points. 

Well done Mr. Reidy. Now, let's see this frigate and xebec you have in the wings.

From RayR: Donnybrook - Boobs! (30 Points)

My first entry into this years Challenge and I'm off with a Bang!!

I tried to think of a better title for this post, but all I could come up with was Boobs? So apologies to all you ladies out there.

These luvvly ladies were undercoated for last years Challenge but never made it on the table. I wish I'd held off on them, I could have used them for the Sport Bonus round!!!

Naughty, naughty Raymond!!!!

These will of course be used sometime or another in a Donnybrook game, rescue the poor damsel in distress (or undress) kinda thing, although some of them don't really look in distress at all?!?

Four are from GZG Gentleman's Collectibles range. The other 2 figures front centre and left, I can't remember what company they come from.

I do not expect any of these damsels to be included in Sarah's Best female figure...

My damsels should give me 30 points?


Welcome back to the Challenge, Ray!

I'm somehow not surprised by your first entry, Mr. Rousell. After all this is the same chap who tried to sell us that a dancing bear he submitted was demonstrably female and should be considered for 'Sarah's Choice'.

The less I say about these the better so I'll just keep it to, 'That's a very nice flesh tone you've come up with, Ray. Well done!'

I still marked this one as a 'Sarah's Choice' candidate, but I wouldn't hold your breath there, buddy. ;)

30 points to break the ice. Good work, Mr. Hefner. 

From NoelW: A quick second post - Libyan Javelinmen (70 points)

My first post was to complete an army. My second, to start one.

As a Christmas present I was given this:

I've wanted a Roman army for some while. This will be the start of their opponents.

I've been collecting Romans for the last few months whenever I've come across them second hand or in sales. In this way I've now 48 Caesarian Romans, around 100 Imperial Romans, enough Late Romans to start an army of them - and not a single Republican Roman. So I guess my Carthaginians will face non-historical opponents. But I'm not that concerned. Romans are Romans, surely?

This Victrix box is a great start for Carthage: 62 figures for less than £30 (and quite a bit less, if you shop around). These consist of 24 Veterans, 24 Liby-Phoenician heavy infantry and 14 Libyan javelin men. So here are the javelinmen, my first foray in this direction:

A close up:

(I've just noticed the red spot on his chin. I think that's an artefact of the photo, but I'll have to get the figure back out of the box and check. Maybe I'm repainting already!)

I rather like the hide shields that I've seen on some other gamers' Libyans, so that's what I've gone for here. Some work better than others. The brown and white in the next photo is probably a bit more pleasing than this black and white, but from a distance they all look quite convincing.

And the whole mob of fourteen.

I was quite pleased with these. And, thanks to Curt's advice, I think the photos this time are a tad better.

Fourteen figures at 5 = 70 points. And that's my first Squirrel point, too.

G'day Noel,

Wow that was quick getting a second post in so soon after your first. You'll be making serious inroads into your target in short order if you can keep this pace up!

I'm a huge fan of *anything* Carthaginian so you've hit a sweet spot for me with this entry. I'm also really pleased to see you've painted the flesh tones in an appropriate shade as opposed to the darker tones you sometimes see for Libyans.

Your colour scheme is also really appealing with the block of red/brown tunics to tie everything together paired with a mix of animal hide shields. Very effective indeed!

These speedy chaps earn you a further 70 points. Looking forward to seeing the next batch of troops for the new army.