Friday, 17 January 2020

Friendly Reminder - Post Formatting (Again)

Memo To Passengers

Good evening all. As per last week, just a quick reminder about formatting your posts (yes, there have been posts submitted today which have needed my corrective attentions).

Post Titles

Please include your name as it appears in the Challenge Roster, eg "TamsinP".


Please can you make sure all your pictures are:

  • Ideally 800-1000 pixels in one direction (and no larger in the other direction)
  • Set to "Large";
  • Centred; and
  • Separated from text before and after by a blank line

Failure to observe the above may result in the Minions remarking it as "Draft".

Thanks for your help,

Senior Flight Attendant

Mudry's Messa - From Mike W. 28mm Imperial Guard Walker and crew (60 Points)

I've wandered over to Murdy's Messa
I'm loving this Grand Tour of the Challenge Island, it's really getting me to drag out old lead and plastic from the mountain to create new entries.

One of Greg's inspirational Titans
This is a case in point, moving to Mudry's Mesa the challenge is to use an inspiration from last year's challenge to create an entry for this year.

When I saw GregB's Titans <here> I thought wow! How Cool!

These Titans were something I'd liked the idea of years ago when they came out bit never got around to doing anything about.

The nearest I got to doing my own Titans, back in the day, was to do some Imperial Guard Walkers, modelled straight out of the box, and painted to conform from my view on the Cadian forces that I had raised for 40K games.

Some of the 'spare' parts used.
Later I found some cheap generic Sci-Fi figures that included two out of scale 'Titan' like models - these where handed over to my sons, 20+ years ago to play with they were battered beyond recognition. Luckily, when it came to throw away the battered toys, I put a few spare parts in my spares box where they have languished for many, many years.

On seeing Greg's entry last year I dug out these parts but decided that I did not have enough other 'spares' to build a Titan of my own.

This year round I thought - why not do a new 'Locally built' Imperial Walker rather than a Titan scale model. With that change in perspective I was able to pull in other Imperial Guard arts form the 'Spares Box'

So the basic generic figure this was built on stands about 65mm tall, it was missing it's right arm, back and head.

Finished scratch built Imperial Walker
To this base figure I have been able to add an armoured cockpit from an Imperial Walker model, to replace the head, this is perched upon a box like body, made from an old Warhammer 40K Supply box kit and the lower body and back is a re-visited Oil Drum from the same kit. Final model is around 90mm tall, and nearly as wide!

Rear view, showing reconstructed
back of the model
Left side view, not sure what this weapon or
equipment represents, possibly high powered
search lights?!
To this was added weaponry from spares that I have for an Imperial Guard Heavy Weapons section, the pre-existing left Arm Weaponry was removed at the shoulder and fixed to make a new right Arm, whilst an Auto Cannon was deployed under the left shoulder, with a rocket launcher inserted into the left shoulder its-self - for some extra punch.

Top down view, showing base details
Additional power packs, ammunition boxes, cable and chains were added to taste before painting the whole model charcoal grey. I highlighted the figure with a couple of progressively lighter shades of grey and added wear and tear to the model on the form of silver lines along joints and edges.

The shoulder pad was painted a muted yellow - to tie in with the colourings I use on my Cadian troops, decals from an old Imperial tank were added to taste before washing in Army Painter Dark tone.

The base was created in my usual manner with sand, static grass and tufts plus - as it is bigger than usual - some other bits and pieces I found in the spares box to give a view of some wire defences and a hint of destruction beyond.

A quick note on the crewman. He is one of the toy figures that came in the toy Sci-Fi set mentioned above, he is wearing some sort of body hugging number that suggested he might be inserted into the cramped cockpit of such an Imperial Monster. Painted grey and with similar muted yellow webbing and washed to give definition and shading.

Another view - showing the waist line articulation on the model
still works plus a view on the Auto-cannon and rocket launcher
in the right shoulder housing.
I found his friend in the box at the same time and painted him up as well, whilst i was at it! I have included one of my previously painted Cadian Guardsmen for reference and hopefully it 'explains' why the colours are not usual Cadian colours - I'm just akward that way!

Crewman, his friend and old Cadian Model,
to show colour scheme I was tying into...
I remember for the first ten users or so playing Warhammer 40K I had a Space Marine Chapter called the 'Imperial Tigers', they had lime green armour with a blue and black tiger stripe - a nightmare to paint and on reflection, pretty horrible to look at!

So there it is, not worth very many points in the challenge but a huge amount of fun building this beast and adding to my Cadian forces, shame is I haven't used them for years now, maybe I should dust them off

1 x 28mm Vehicle = 20 Points
2 x 28mm Crewmen = 10 Points
Mudry's Mesa Bonus = 30 Points
TOTAL 20+10+30 = 60 Points

Your second splendid entry of the day! Nice going Mike!


From TomG - "Whistling Dixie" - 31pts

Here begins my foray in to the American Civil War (ACW), on the heels of my local gamers, we've been picking up some games of Sharp Practice, and it was precisely that which gave me the final impetus to join the challenge, under the careful shoving of fellow Challengee DaveS. For Christmas I had ordered myself a selection of minis from the Perry and Wargames Foundry ranges, which I believe are both sculpted by the Perry twins anyway, as they just looked the part to me. 

So here is my gallery of Confederate Officers, I hope you enjoy. 

I wanted these two to stand out as they will be my level 1 leader option for Sharp Practice, and the models lend themselves to a narrative of disdain with the infantry officer (front, denoted by red sash) is being shouted at by the general staff officer (back, with buff colour dash) behind. 

I've always been fascinated by the political officers, and their influences on the war effort for both sides, so I jumped at the opportunity to include my little part of that. 

Below is what will become my cavalry officer, but for now will be leading my second infantry group. This model was a real joy to play with as his moustache reminded me of Lemmy from Motorhead. 

Sorry for the lack of written content this time, I just wanted to share some minis I'm super proud of. They were great fun to paint and were painted with a mix of Vallejo, Foundry, Scale 75 and Citadel products. 

Points: 3x 28mm mounted = 30pts.

Excellent painting Tom, and a Motorhead reference as well - that's got to be worth a bonus point, even if it does take you away from a nice, neat 30.


From BenitoM: Legatus Cebigbosus Curtgeld Entry (35 points)

At the speed at which I'm cruising  this year's Challenge I doubt very much that I'm gonna get a ticket by the Challenge police. It's been some time now since I submitted my last entry and finally today I can present my Curtgeld fee entry to the competition and just in the limit to be out of the compeition (uuuf!).

This is a Legatus or Legion supreme commander and inspired by the Asterix comics series I have christened him as Cebigbosus. I think a very appropriate name considering his top position in the food commanding chain. I expect Cebigbosus to lead the Roman forces in any Infamy! Infamy! game in the future.

This is a plastic model from the Victrix Early Imperial mounted commanders box. As in the case of the Auxilia in my workbench, the sculpting is outstanding, noting in this specific case the high quality of the faces.

The Legatus wears muscle cuirass and white cloak. There is some debate on whether the cloak was scarlet instead, but not definitive conclusions. I chose the white and tried for the first time the (in?)famous Citadel contrast paints on it. This don't look bad ata all but I see very little difference between these paints and the old-fashioned inks... we'll see.

With this entry I should earn 35 points
10 points for a mounted figure + 25 Curtgeld bonus

Now, time to get back to work in my island safari tour and get ready my second entry for Millsy's Millpond (wish me luck this weekend!) 


Beautiful figure and painting Benito. I'm sure he'll take pride of place in the army of whoever receives him. And if they don't have a Roman force, I'm sure he'll inspire the purchase of one.


From ByronM - O'Gradys Gulch - Kingdom Death Archer (37 points)

As I continue my ill-planned adventure around the island, I find myself at O'Grady's Gulch where the requirement is to paint up a figure for someone other than yourself.  Hmmmm.....

I have been playing Kingdom Death pretty regularly (every other Tuesday) with some friends for about 2 years, and last year I painted up the Gimp (a model in Gorm armour for my friend Mike), so I figured this year I would paint up one for my friend Steve.

While, I spend a lot of time on the monsters for Kingdom Death, since they are used over and over again, I tend to spend less time on the characters, so this is nothing too fancy.  This is for the simple reason that they die like crazy....  You do not play a specific character, you play as a community, since you never get a chance to get attached to any specific person.  The last campaign we did was 30 games long and we have over 25 characters die during those games!

Regardless, there are archetypes and those characters get used a bit more.  Steve tends to play ranged support characters in our games, and I never really had one done up before.  So, this character is so that Steve actually has an archer model to play, even though it may not remain his current character for long.

This model is a survivor in armour made from the phoenix armour set.  Normally the phoenix is a bright and colourful creature in the game (one of the few) but when I painted it for the challenge a few years back, I did it more like a vulture , so it was all dark browns and greys.  Hence her very dark coloured armour to match the materials she would have made it from after killing the phoenix.

The bow looked a little bare, so I added a string to it, which I think works well here since KD models are bigger than most figures out there, being pretty much 40 to 45mm tall.

Well, there you go, my 7th space on the challenge map!  Not bad for a man with no plan, eh?

With that, I think I am going to scale the Snow Lord's Peak next to get it done with now that the FAQ has been released and I know that I can continue to explore the island afterwards.... so onward and upward!

Nice painting Byron, and a great gift for Steve. Good luck with your ascent!


From NoelW: O’Grady’s Gulch: Fallout on the Pelennor Fields (200 points)

We keep seeing a balloon flying over our heads, and try to flag it down, but for some reason they don't see us. So we plod further westwards, with the Snowlord's Peak temptingly taunting the horizon to the South - but no roads lead there.

We find ourselves following a small stream. On both sides of us sheer cliffs gradually rise till we're travelling a canyon, the perfect place for an unexpected ambush. 

But we're expecting an ambush, so it can't work, can it? 

Well, it wouldn't've if we'd remembered we weren't traversing a Canyon but that completely different geographical entity, a Gulch. Gulchs, of course, are renowned as sites of treachery, deceit, trickery, rattlesnakes and men in black hats with variable ethical standards. So the last thing we expect is a little man with a patch over one eye, a steely glint in the other, a cigar dipped in paint behind his ear and a smouldering paintbrush in his mouth, who stumbles from behind a cactus and demands we explain why we're tresspassing in the Brady Bunch. (I believe that's what he said). He waves a loaded paintspray menacingly in our direction.

Thinking quickly, I said: "We were told this is the home of an expert master-painter. We're looking to commission some difficult painting. There could be a few euros/roubles/dollars in it, if so. Do you know any brilliant painters?"

A subtle gleam appeared in the gentleman's eye, if I may call him a gentleman.

“I may do,” he said. “What’s the job? Napoleonics? Space armour? Awkward Orcs from Auckland? Armoured space trolls from the Fallout universe (second edition)?”

“The inside of a Lady Sarah’s balloon basket,” I said. “It’s got dusty, so she wants it redecorated.” He squinted suspiciously. “By a professional.” I added. “For real money.”

“Real money?”

“The realest. Absolutely real. Couldn't be realer.”

At that moment, the balloon appears in the narrow sky above the canyon, almost as if blown on the winds of narrative expedience. Dropping his paintgun, his stogie and his attitude, the man waves frantically, chasing the balloon as it heads down the valley and screams excitedly as he runs. His cries are shredded by the wind, but I'm pretty sure he's invoking a personal divinity of some puissance: “bargain rates”, “three colour highlights” and “secret varnish recipe” were all I can hear, before he disappears in the distance.


My submission has two, unconnected, parts. The first, for O'Grady's Gulch, consists of two Fallout figures. I've a friend who is too ill to paint figures any more, but still likes collecting, and will game with them when he's able to. His most recent passion is Fallout, so here are two of his figures.

The rest of my offering this time come from Middle Earth. They're Gondor cavalry and bolt throwers from GW's Lord of the Rings range. LOTR has been a passion of mine ever since I first found the trilogy in my school library, around 55 years ago, and I've a long history of buying LOTR figures, then doing nothing with them. I could name at least 7 different ranges bought at various times, and any number of half-stupid plans around them that never came to anything. I bought the GW figures almost the moment they were released (was that 2003?), undercoated them and left them. 

I’ve never really liked these figures – in fact, was not too keen on the 
Weta conceptualisation, though it’s not too far from Tolkien’s description. But it’s mainly that they don’t seem an interesting prospect to paint. They’ve perpetually languished in the back of the cupboard, whilst other LOTR figures jumped the queue. Then, in Challenge IX I painted up most of my orcs, meaning that Pelennor Fields looked like an actual possibility, so I’ve decided this time round I’ll finish as many Gondorians as I can, and at last get that spectacular game on the table.

Firstly, eight cavalry:

And three repeating crossbows:

Finally, the lot together:

I’ve still left the infantry out, though! Hopefully they’ll be in a later post. 

Scoring: the two Fallout figs are 40mm tall, so I guess that's 14 pts. 8x 28mm cav = 80, 9x 28mm foot = 45, 3 crewed weapons = 30, O'Grady's Gulch = 30. Total: 199 pts, I think.

Magnificent! For some reason, 200 points sounds much better than 199 points, so I'm going to add a point to your total.


From MikeW: 5 x 1/144 (10mm) Israeli Super Sherman Tanks (15 Points)

A cheeky group of Israeli Super Shermans.
Extracted from my Lead Mountain were these 5 Sherman M4A4 tanks that where the basis for the Israeli M50/51 Super Shermans that paid an important role in both the 1967 and 1973 Wars.

Undercoated and awaiting attention!

I think these models were from Minifgs - though I may well be wrong!

So very quick job to build and to undercoat in white before leaving to dry overnight.

I've always had problems getting the correct shade for my Israeli vehicles - it seems to range from too brown to too green, too light to too dark. These were no exception!

I guess it would be easiest to go and buy a pot of paint that is the right colour - but as I do these figures in such a sporadic manner - I have never done that. So this time I painted a base colour of mid brown and then mixed a greenish, greyish colour to use to wash over.

Not overly happy with final colours
Unfortunately the paint dried very quickly and the wash became pretty much another coat - it seems about right when I added the white combat markings.

I usually get all OCD about having straight lines when doing vehicle markings - until I found out that the Israelis actually painted these markings on by hand and literally scrubbed them off and repainted on a fairly regular basis to keep everyone guessing what they meant. Clever!

So I use a white pen to literally draw on the markings and then I outline with an ultra-fine black pen, before varnishing the markings to keep them in place.

Lots of stowage on each tank
I then gave the models a wash of Dark tone - which was a bit of a mistake, as they got - well - very much darker!

I had to go in and do some dry brushing to lighten the models up again, end result is passable but probably not very Israeli looking - too grey and dark.

When mixed with other Shermans in my collection - they will stand out. Maybe I'll say that they are brand new off the production line and haven't had time to fade yet....

5 x 10mm Vehicles @ 3 Points each = 15 Points

Nice little tanks Mike!


From PeterD 18th Century Nobles for Sarah's Balloon Ride (70 points)

I have two 28mm figures from Front Rank to serve as both my balloon ticket and my entry fee.  I don't have a whole bunch to say about these.  I really like Front Rank's figures, they paint up really nicely, and I had fun doing picture searches of Reynolds and Gainsborough portraits doing research on them. 

I'm not sure that Mademoiselle is having any of Monsieur's nonsense.

I intended these to be any generic Europeans.  However my better half (who has costume knowledge) informed me that the gold was more likely to be found on the French.

Funny perspective here.  It looks like M. is down on one knee from this angle.

Another stop on my island tour.

And another merit badge for my sash

I offer the above proof that my wife and I had a glass of prosecco last night in honour of the balloon ride, and because it was dang cold.  Unlike others in the Challenge I know where the champagne flutes are kept.

Points wise I believe this scores as
  • 2 28mm foot figures = 10 points
  • Curtgeld bonus =25 points
  • Sarah's Balloon Service =30 points
  • Bonus for prosecco =5 points
  • Total 70 points
Two other notes.  I will leave it to Curt to choose the short straw to see who gets these figures.  Also I would like balloon transport to Sanders' Sanddunes please.

That's a great vignette to pay your fare for the balloon ride and your entry fee for the Challenge. 


AdamC- Black Seas Gun Boats (20 Points)

After building my frigates I found I had several boats left over so I decided to convert them into gun boats. 

 The two larger boats got home made masts made from some plastic spears I opted for lanteen sails rather than the square sails of the Warlord ones have.  Cannons are simply made form bits and pieces of sprue and other plastic bits.

The smaller boats are under oars only only the largest of them has a gun the others would be loaded with men for boarding (and possibly musket fire).  

Points the official Warlord gunboats have been scored a 12 points per base.  I'm going to count mine as half that as I have only five boats here instead of the nine so 18 point seems fair.  If the Minion wants to adjust that up or down I'm fine with that.

Nice boats and sea bases Adam. As 5/9ths of 3 x 12 comes out as 20 points, I'm going to round your suggested score up to that!