Monday, 15 January 2018

From SamuliS: Roquefort Rodents (95 points)

After a quick start to the challenge I faded out a bit, but finally it's time to get my second entry and first weekly submission in! In early December I made the mistake of starting on some Napoleonics before the challenge and not surprisingly I failed to get them done until New Years Eve. So my painting progress towards the challenge goal was a bit lacking due to having to finish them. But with 2018 dawning I could finally get started on my first real entry.

For 2018 I have a few main projects and themes, with plenty of Skaven, 40k and Napoleonics in the pipeline. I decided to start off with a soft start to my Age of Sigmar Skaven by painting up my Willy Miniatures Skaven Blood Bowl team that I had gotten late last summer from their Kickstarter.

2 Throwers and 2 Blitzers

These guys represent the first half of my team with all the core players and a few special linemen to represent players who've already picked up some skills. I still have all the star players, plenty of different mutations and all the supporting staff to paint up, but they'll have to wait for sometime while I get other projects going forward as well. Considering that a team can have a maximum of 16 players it could be said that I might have gone a bit over the top as the final player and support staff count will come up closer to 30...

4 Gutter Runners

These Willy Miniatures sculpts are quite nice, but the casting quality did let the minis down a bit with massive flash and some slipped mould lines on them. And the sculpts are clearly done by at least two different sculptors with the style changing quite a bit between different minis. The difference is already quite clear between the normal linemen and the special ones like the kicker and fat rat, but with the star players and mutated players it's even more pronounced.

6 basic Linemen

I actually had the miniatures themselves painted up for last week already, but ended up trying to do some water effects on the bases in the form of puddles, which caused some issues and a bust schedule. I'd bought a bottle of AK Interactive Still Water that I decided to use on these guys. And to be honest the product was quite a disappointment. The end result was quite nice, but to get there required way too much effort to be really worthwhile if doing large batches of miniatures. It's supposed to be usable with layer thickness of up to 3mm, but even with 1-2mm thickness shrinkage was a major issue already on puddles as small as the ones I have on the bases. All the liquid would pull to the sides and I'd have a massive hole in the middle. 

In the end I ended up doing 5 layers of the stuff on the worst bases and 3 on even shallowest one to get the whole thing even. And with long drying times this whole process took ages to go through and I only managed to get them completely finished on Friday evening.

Kicker, Fatty and another Lineman

Another new product I used on them was Warcolours paints. I've had them for a while, but never really used them too much. There's bit of a learning curve to them as they don't exactly work like other acrylics, but rather have much longer drying times, are a bit gel like before thinning and are extremely translucent. But for doing smooth highlights and blending different paint layers they are just amazing! 

My photography doesn't really show things well enough, but even with my skills achieving really clean highlights and semi-borderless colour transitions was easy to achieve. The paints definitely aren't that great for painting large armies, but I can definitely see use for them with heroes and some more special minis.

Rat Ogre

With that my wall of text is over. 17 28mm infantry and 1 Rat Ogre who comes at around 60mm tall so should be about the same as 54mm infantry should amount to 95 points. Next up some Napoleonics in the form of a few Saxon battalions for my 1813 project. Hopefully they won't take as long to get finished up as these guys did.


Yaaaaay….go Skaven…! These are terrific, Samuli! I’ve been harbouring a secret Skaven admiration for many years – probably linked to their slightly insane, warpstone-fixated mindset – so this team is doubly welcome to the Challenge in my book!

They’re a perfect way to kickstart a project, leading on to hopefully many more gnawing, long fanged fanatical vermin during the rest of your Challenge entries. And I really like the way that you’ve covered the base of the team, and then gone on to add more, and more – a true gamer, bringing along the ‘kitchen sink’ (or ‘circular spinning wheel’, as older Skaven grandmothers would say) to the game.

I have to say, I can’t see the problem on the casting that you’ve mentioned. If the mould lines are there, I think they’re more than masked by your super brushwork. I do, however, share your pain on the AK Interactive Still Water. That stuff can be very tricky to work with. Have you tried ‘Solid Water’, which is a two part resin? It’s a little fiddly to mix, but it applies quite well, and you only need one coat. Worth a look for at some point, maybe.

And thanks for the heads up on the Warcolours paints. That’s news to me, but if your fantastic Rat Ogre is anything to go by, I can guess we’ll all be getting some soon!

This most excellent work will gain you a Skaven-skittering 95 points to scamper you up the Challenge ladder. Tremendous work, Samuli, and we can’t wait for more.


  1. Thanks Sidney! Never heard of the Solid Water product, but will have to give it a try. I'd been looking into some two part resins for larger dioramas, but never bought any yet as I haven't had any real need for them. For single bases they are maybe a bit annoying so some similar ready product like the Still Water would be nice and easy.

    And trust me there were massive seam lines and tons of flash ;) Couple of evenings of sanding luckily got rid of most, though there is still some evident between the fingers of the Rat Ogre

  2. Lovely bunch of skaven!
    Best Iain

  3. Great work Samuli - the effort in dealing with the flash and mold lines etc was worth it! Looks fantastic.

    And your post confirms my established bias regarding water effects - the best technique for applying them is to never bother with them in the first place :)

  4. Awesome looking skaven Samuli! I love all the realistic shading and shadows and scars.

    I am with Sidney on the two part resin. I have used a 2 part furniture resin in the past on several water effects (rivers, sewers, oil spills, and more) that I got at home depot. I am sure they are all similar though, mix it up, add some ink or wash for transparent colour if you want (for sewers I did them with a green/black tint) and then pour it in. It hardens in about an hour. Since its meant for furniture refinishing you can find it anywhere.

    1. Thanks!

      I might have to try some of those. Would be nice to find one that's more or less usable for deep features as well. Would help when building dioramas if I could just pour a few centimeters without any issue.

  5. Great work on the vermin Samuli. The minis are dynamic with lots of movement and the brushwork looks great to me.

  6. Terrific work Samuli! I really like the shading and blending on their musculature. I'm definitely going to have to keep an eye out for these Warcolour paints - they sound intriguing.

    1. Thanks Curt! I definitely recommend giving them a try. Haven't seen any other acrylics that work like they do. They are bit of a specialist paint line, but great at what they are designed for. I'm now using them together with Vallejo paint. Base layer with the Vallejos that cover mostly with 1-2 layers and then highlights with the more translucent Warcolours stuff that's easier to blend smoothly

  7. Ace work Samuli! I‘ve never really warmed to Skavens as a faction but your painting definitely makes these stand out.

  8. love love LOVE Skaven in BB and you've done them proud with this team Samuli! I've won more games with Rats than any other team and you can pull off some crazy stuff with them. Just dont get attached to any of the players - they die fairly frequently! Lovely job.

    1. Yeah I've learned their fragile nature while playing BB on the computer. I quit using Rat Ogres when one got killed by a darn halfling...

  9. My kids just got a bunch of blood bowl for Christmas. Ironically the Dolphins or Vikings are to be the colors for the skaven.
    I hope they turn out half as good as yours did!
    I rely like the fatty and the rat ogre!

  10. Great looking bunch of rat men sporty types. Top stuff . Cheers

  11. Very nice, the purple and skin tones work very well together.

  12. An awesome team, Samuli, fit to grace any pitch!

  13. Very nice! I’ve seen this quality sculpt shift within a team in other Willy teams as well.