Thursday, 21 February 2019

From Curt: Sisters of Battle Tactical Squad, Immolator and Tribute Figure for Iain (75 Points)

The first 40K army I collected was Sisters of Battle way back in 1997. They were an all-metal range and so quite expensive to create a viable force (though I understand new plastics are now on the horizon). Nonetheless, I slowly amassed a decent sized 'army' and spent many hours painstakingly converting and painting them. 

I had a real soft spot for those gals, even though they almost always got zapped on the tabletop - I think the sculpts are still some of the best GW has produced and they just fit so well with the whole grim-dark 40K backstory.

A few years later, Lady Sarah and I were planning to take our first European vacation together as a married couple. At that time we were poor as church mice and were struggling to save our pennies for the trip. Anyway, some unforeseen expense came up that pretty much ate the piggy bank and threatened to force us to cancel our plans. Well, I did something that I'm sure a few of us have done and that's look at what's in the collection could be let go for fast, ready cash. 

After some hand-wringing I sold my Sisters collection on eBay. I remember they fetched a fairly decent price, which allowed us to have a wonderful couple of weeks loafing around France. While I wouldn't change my decision for the world, I've keenly missed those figures ever since. 

C'est la vie. 

During Challenge VII DavidB posted a wonderful force of Sisters to which I waxed nostalgia for my long-lost collection. IainW commented on the same post, complimenting Dave and saying that he had a box of unpainted Sisters that had been sitting in storage for years - I  quipped that he was a lucky sod.

Well, to my great surprise, this past summer, out of the blue, I received a large parcel from Iain containing not only his Curtgeld, but also a sizeable collection of unpainted Sisters of Battle and their attendant vehicles. Yeah, I know, wow. Iain refused to take a penny for them - he said he just wanted to see them painted up. As you can imagine I was pretty humbled by his generosity and so was committed to getting some of them done for this Challenge - and so here we are.

Here is a Tactical Squad with an Immolator APC tagging along as support.

When cleaning up these figures for painting I was considering what colours to go with. While perusing the web I found many very interesting and vibrant schemes, but you know, I have to say that I still prefer the bog classic black and red livery. It just seems to work so well with the figures. 

I based the troops on 32mm MDF rounds, with a square base reserved for the Sister Superior (thanks Byron!). I then glopped on some GW texture medium to give the parched ground effect and then coloured and drybrushed to taste.

In order to give the black armour a bit of contrast I did a highlight with P3 Denim and then applied a wash mix of diluted GW Drakenhof Nightshade and Vallejo armour grey wash. 

The Immolator was good fun to put together, but I still find I'm very much hit-and-miss with vehicles, so I'd call this clanker 'functional'.

Finally, as a HUGE THANK YOU to Iain, I painted up another Sister Superior for him to have as a memento of both his minioning this year and as a nod to his generous gesture. Thanks again, Iain! 


My pleasure and I have to say they look a lot better now than they did in my loft! They're great sculpts and I'm glad to see them in their classic colours ,the immolator is far more than functional and I'm terribly impressed that you've painted them so rapidly, usually I have to lay figures down for at least a year and alright usually more! I can't wait to see what you do with the jet pack squad and all the rest!
Scoring is a 28mm vehicle, 10 28mm figures plus crewman and flag so lets say 75 points for these really delightful Sisters!

All the best Iain 

From NoelW (Thursday): More Austrians (327 points):

Meanwhile, I've been pushing on with the 15mm Austrian, in the hope I can complete the entire army before 20th March. I'm posting a couple of Hungarian infantry regiments (one understrength), a regiment of Dragoons, 10 artillery pieces and 14 command stands. This still leaves me quite a few cavalry (hussars and uhlans) and a handful of infantry to complete. Most of the figures are early Minifigs, though there are some that aren't, which I've been unable to identify.

Firstly the infantry (35 figs):

Then the dragoons (20 figs):

Now the command stands (15 mounted figs and 3 foot):

And  the artillery (10 guns and 23 crew):

And finally this mini-army as a whole:

Oh!  did you just see that bushy-tailed rodent dash past?

Here's some Victorian gentlemen:

For many years - many years - I've toyed with the idea of a time travelling game. The idea is that it's a way of linking different parts of the figure collection together, and reviving some figures that have been languishing. True. Any suggestion that it's just an excuse for buying random figures from any odd source I fancy is simply fake news.

I rediscovered these Victorian figures in a drawer. I think they're all by Wargames Foundry. I decided on the spur of the moment to add them to the painting pile. I'm glad I did, because they were fun to paint.

Unfortunately, the flash in the photos doesn't represent them as well as I'd like. It's emphasised the colour contrasts much more than they seem in natural daylight. But this photo has shown me that there's one of these I really haven't done well (the brown figure, second from the right). I probably need to repaint him. Whereas (as we wargamers say) I'm really pleased with Henry Morton Stanley (the middle figure):

and the "Ripper" figure:

whilst the other two, which I intend as a detective and an undertaker, are certainly game-worthy:

Unfortunately, this little dabble has made me want to paint more of these, so I suspect I will be diving into the deeper archaeological layers of the lead pile to see what other treasures can be unearthed. Be prepared.

That's a total of:
15mm: 35 mounted @ 4pts (140), 10 guns @ 4pts (40) and 61 foot @2 pts (122),
28mm: 5 figs = 25pts
making 327 pts overall.

Gosh, that's a lot of Austrians! In fact it's almost the same points as my entire output so far! The white coated infantry and the brown coated artillery with their distinctive yellow gun carriages are fab, your collection of Victorian types are very dapper and I agree 327 points it is!

All the best Iain

From PeterD Bridges and 28mm SYW Battalion Gun 36points

Grenadiers de France and Nassau Prince Louis meet at a river crossing. 

After nearly three weeks of not posting, I finally have a couple of small items ready to go.  I've been distracted by the return of my wife after she spent a few weeks looking after her mum post surgery and then by the man flu.  The annoying thing is that I've got a number of figures and units almost complete but just didn't have the energy to get to them.

First up are two wooden railed bridges from Sarissa Precision.  These have been finished and in my terrain box for about a month.  Originally the plan was to post these as part of a larger group for the Water Feature bonus round.  But the rest of the larger group is still bare arse to the world without a lick of paint.  I could have posted these as a points grab with the bonus round but got hit with a case of self respect so figured they could go today,

As with all of the Sarissa kits I've assemble, these went together nicely and look like they'll work well on the table.  I went with a simple heavy wash paint job and some terraforming around the ends.
After working on Front Rank figures all challenge, these Perry's seemed very fine boned.  However, there is good precedent for slightly built French artillery corporals

Newly finished is this Perry gun and crew for my French SYW project.  Perry doesn't do any SYW stuff, but I've morphed and fudged several SYW units out of their AWI range (which is gorgeous).  These guys are sold as a French gun crew in fatigues with "Swedish" 4 pounder.  A quick check on the references showed that the Swedish 4 lber was used by the French as a battalion gun in the SYW complete, with the big crochet hook rammer/loader tool carried by the crew.  I've already got one serving as a Hessian battalion gun in the opposing army (this appeared in challenge 7 or 8), again there's history on the use of captured peices.  Also the fatigues look a lot like a SYW gun crew who've discarded their coats and are fighting in the sleeved waistcoats, complete with "pokalem" forage caps.  Three of the crew are artillerymen in their red waist coats and breeches, with the fourth being a borrowed infantryman from Tourraine regiment (featured in challenge 8) in blue waistcoat and white breeches.
It took me a while to work out that the bent back bit on the bottom of the rammer was not a heavy bit of Perry flash!

Battalion guns are an interesting problem for Lace Wars gamers, and various approaches exist to handle them.  In Honours of War for instance, no battalion guns are fielded but the infantry firing ranges and factors vary according to the presence of battalion guns.  These seems like a good idea for larger battles, but I'm more likely to field smaller forces and want to retain these guns.  The best treatment that I've seen so far comes from a set of BP scenarios available from Wargames Vault, where one piece is fielded per 3 battalions but they are "small" BP units with lesser firepower and stamina.  
I do love the movement in some of these Perry figures.  I almost want to block my ears against the upcoming boom.

Points wise the gun crew is pretty easy to tote up - 4 foot figures and a gun = 30  points.  Using the dimensions from Sarissa, my math puts each bridge at 15% of a 6" cube so two of them make  whopping 6 points.  I'm inching towards my 500 point goal with enough in progress to get me past the tape next week.

Nice looking bridges! You can never have enough,I really like your battalion gun and am entirely convinced by your sleight of hand, substituting AWI for SYW!
I agree on your points total,36 points it is!
All the best Iain

DaveS - Northern Alliance Vanguard Forces

I recently had a test game of Vanguard, and really liked it.  I've already painted one of the trolls from my starter, and so now I've been working on some of the troops.  These are all made from Mantic's hard plastic, and frankly, the material is horrible.  It tears if you scrape mold lines, it bends, and it has casting lines through detail.  Enough whining though.

These have been painted with an aim of using a small palette and sharing the blues with the troll.  They have also given me an opportunity to test out some ideas for winter themed bases.

I started with Huscarls.  These will form the backbone of my line in the game.  Reasonably good fighters, with spears.  I've painted them using a single shaded and highlighted shade of brown for all of the fabrics and fur, and then picked out details in metal and gold.

The bases are done with sand, and then have a mix of white paint, PVA and Army Painter snow applied to give the snow piles.  These are then covered with more army painter snow.  The Ice is made using Vallejo crackle medium over blue, and then overpainted white and gloss varnish.

These are the Half-Elf fighters from the starter.  Same palette and the hair is a lighter shade of the fur on the Troll.

Finally, the Half-Elf Berserker.  This is painted in the same manner as the other models.  I'm not sure of the effectiveness of these in the game.  This, coupled with the fact that I am not keen on the sculpt, and that the model keeps falling off its base, mean that I have only painted one of them so far.

By my reckoning, this is 6 28mm models, so 30 points.  While this is a slowdown from my rates with my earlier models, I have just started a 15mm Roman Army, so with any luck there will be a lot of points from that coming soon.

Lovely looking frozen waste fantasy types,I particularly like the blue on the spears, the range of browns are great and your basing is excellent,30 points it is!

All the best Iain

From NoelW (Thursday): A trio of buildings (82 points):

At the beginning of the challenge I  promised myself I'd use it to develop my terrain collection. But so far I've not really done this. Each time I pick up a brush, it's miniatures that grab my attention. For the rest of the challenge, I'm going to try and balance the two a little.

So here are a trio of buildings. First off, a couple of desert buildings, to go with the small one I submitted for the Reconnaisance theme. These are a light resin, though I'm not sure who they're made by:

I'm never quite sure how to assess irregular shapes in terms of the 6" cube. The small building is 3.5"x5"x3", so 52.5 cu ins. The larger building is 6"x6"x5", so 180 cu is, making a total of 232.5, so perhaps 22 points?

The third building is a massive terrace block from Charlie Foxtrot models. I'll be using this in Sealion and Victorian adventures.

There's not much to say about this, apart from the fact that the three layer structure means the building can be turned into a terrace of bungalows, if so desired.

Painting of this was greatly eased by the discovery of a spraypaint for home decoration which gives a spackled, pebble-dash effect. You can see it pretty well in this image of the corner:

I used it neat, but because it gives a granular finish, it could be repainted and used as the basis for a different rough surface, which may be a reason for a little experiment.

The points for this one are easy to calculate, as it's 6"x12"x9", so exactly three cubes, or 60 points.

Total for the post: 82 points

Well that's not what I was expecting, nice resin models that cover a wide range of periods and a massive terrace! I like the spatter finish you found,I think it works really well, 82 points it is!
All the best Iain

Toby Thursday

There is now less than a month left of the challenge,which is as sobering as the unseasonably warm weather, T shirts, in February? Are you mad? Apparently not!
 But aside from indulging in the National pastime of talking about the weather, what do we have today? 40K ,terrain ,an artillery piece and maybe more?
Peter asked for more photos of Toby so here he is, he has a low opinion of my shed, firstly it lacks a sofa,there's no food and I don't think it's warm enough for him!
Luckily he has no taste for miniatures and if there is no one in the house and he can't get into my bed he might join me in the shed, for which I am grateful!
So relax and I will send along the posts of those members of Toby Team Thursday who aren't too ill to paint ,plus a special guest!

All the best Iain