Sunday, 25 March 2018

GregB - That's a Wrap, Thanks Everyone!

Look at the mess I make in my wife Linda is a saint...but it's time to cheer for the Jets!
Thanks to all for another wonderful Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge.  I did not get to do a final wrap-up post last year due to work, and this year has been more of the same, but I thought I would try and cram one in anyway...

So many folks have these nice light boxes and other frilly photography nonsense...I just don't have the time. Maybe one day. But here are a few blurry pics of the different subjects I managed to cover in this past Challenge.

For the Emperor! 28mm Second Empire French infantry and cavalry

For the King! 28mm Prussians for the Franco-Prussian war.
In all it worked out to:

- Franco-Prussian War: 57 foot and seven cavalry in 28mm (I might have that count many months ago, it was...)
- Cold War-era Bundeswehr: Nine MBTs, four recon vehicles, six AFVs, two SPAA vehicles and two attack helicopters
- Cold War-era Canadian Forces: 12 MBTs, four APCs, four AFVs, three SPGs and a platoon of mechanized infantry, about 29 castings strong 
- Byzantines - 16 cavalry

Paltry theme submission production

For themes, I managed one 15mm tank destroyer, one 15mm AA gun team and one 28mm mounted First-Crusade-era musician. 

Looking back, there is a shocking amount of focus in my submissions this year, and a shocking lack of science fiction and 30k material.  I haven't been this "locked in" to historical themes in many years...but I loved all of it.  The least "planned" aspect was all of the 15mm Cold War material.  Once I started the one vehicle, before long, I was off and...well, you know how that goes.

Some armoured might for the Budeswehr!
Highs? So many! I'm proud to have whipped together a Canadian battlegroup for 15mm Cold War - that's fun. I'm chuffed about the Franco-Prussian war stuff, and the more I paint for, and read about, that period, the more I love it.  But most of all I'm probably excited to finally have painted some Byzantines in 28mm...I hope more will follow!

Leopard C1 squadron
RCHA's big guns!

Support elements for the 15mm Canadians

The Canadian foot-sloggers, ready to move out and defend NATO allies...or just get some beer, whatever...

Any disappointments? Sure. The theme submissions just didn't work out this year, and that was a downer, after a couple years in a row of managing to hit each theme round.  I gave it a genuine effort, but some of themes were just too far off the mark for my fading lizard brain, and I had to take a pass just to save some stress. 

Byzantine kataphractoi cavalry - hope to have more of these along next year...

Thanks again to Jamie for his fantastic minion efforts.  I also want to acknowledge the consistent support of so many Challengers, too many to name them all.  But MartinN in particular continues to inspire with his mind-blowing brushwork.  My friend Byron from right here in Winnipeg rolled out whole new forces (one of which we have already gamed with - so cool!) and that was really something to watch. Alex over in Russia managed to have me smiling with every single submission, but especially some of that terrain.  And Tamsin was there with a supportive comment every time - I hope she knows how much that counts - thanks Tamsin!

Big thanks most of all to my great friend Curt.  I miss you my friend, and I look forward to seeing you again soon.  I owe you a trip or three to Regina, and I'm working on that...

The NHL playoffs loom.  And shockingly, the Winnipeg Jets look to be a part of it...I know heart break will be found there, but regardless - GO JETS GO! See you all next winter!

RossM - Challenge VIII Group Shot

This is my 7th Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge and I have enjoyed this as much as each of the previous challenges I have taken part in. The challenge to me has always been about having fun with a hobby and past time that I am both interested in and passionate about. Its also about learning through participation in what has become a calendar event in the blogosphere of miniature painting.

Each year is different and this year saw me pass my challenge point total by a huge 2% coming in at 306 against a challenge total of 300 points. Had planned on passing this total by far more this year and have several different projects that were originally planned for completion in the challenge that will see their time later rather than sooner.

As has become a part of the challenge here are my group shots which where taken earlier today and I forgot to take one with me at their side.

The whole 306 points
My favourite piece this year has been the MKIII in 20mm from Britannia/Grubby Tanks shown top left below.

28mm and 20mm  - 86 points

15mm Undead - 220 points

Below shows where it all happens now and if you look closely you will see some of the unfinished miniatures that were mentioned throughout the challenge.

The mug shot and the great unfinished at the painting desk
Over the last few challenges I have returned to the miniatures that brought me into this hobby and as I am already planning for next year's challenge here are some more retro figures from the early eighties  - DL2 Aly Morrison's Hobgoblins. If anyone out there has anymore of these please leave a message on current post on my blog

For this year's Curtgeld I opted to donate to charity and as Diabetes has been in my family for several generations I have donated to Diabetes UK.

Looking forward to following everyones progress throughout the year and the calling to the challenge  in October/November.

Peace and health to everyone

Cheers, Ross

RayR - Group Shot

Hi All

My rather meager haul for this years Challenge. All 25mm figures from me this year apart from 2 figures. Here we have
11 x Horse ( 1 not in the pic)
39 x foot figures
1 x Wagon
10 x Pigs
12 x Geese
1 x Artillery Piece
6 x small terrain pieces
2 1/72 scale figures

With these figures a managed to get to the dizzy heights of 40th place, which is my lowest placing in the Challenge so far. Next year I'll be aiming for a top 20 place, which is gonna be some going as 20th place this year made 1220 points!!!!

Changing the Mrs hates that T-Shirt!

Last of the Mohicans

Flight Bonus Round

Donnybrook Horse

Mounted Civvies

BFG Bonus Round

Ollie Cromwell


Musician Bonus Round

Childhood Bonus Round

King Louis

French Grenadiers

Monstrous Bonus Round

All for One

Cardinal's Guard

A Wagon!

Cheers everyone!!

A Statisitcal Reckoning for "The Ocho" DRAFT

Here-Ye, Here-Ye, It is time to call the annual convocation os Mathamagical Statistics to order. All of you are fortunate to be called to witness the quantitative beauty that is the Statistical Wrap Up for Challenge VIII - "The OCHO!"

A word of caution before we delve into the under world of mathamagics - you enter at your own risk, as clearly stated in the terms of use for the Challenge (Thank you Google!).  Your brains are about to be exercised in ways they may not be ready for.  If you sense a Chuthulu like madness descending upon yourself you must act quickly or face doom.  The best defense once beset by mathamagical madness syndrome (MMS) is to quickly rest ones eyes upon one of the graphs spread liberally through out this missive.  Obviously, graphics are meant as mental "safe places" for the quantitatively frail and are now required due to revisions to the ADA regulations.  Those of us who are "Alpha-Quants" will be responsible for shepherding our "New Math" brethren to a safe harbor.  You have been warned.

Are we ready to descend into the Stats dungeon like a proper dungeon party?  Lets us go forward into the statistical night armed with slide rules and hand calculators.  What wonders await us in the mathamagical depths of the OCHO.

Lets find out.

First of all a high level comparison between VIII and VII

The OCHO Summary
Total Points78,03883,200
Avg per Participant1,027867
Avg per Submission10191

While total points are down a tad, that's due to 20 less participants making submissions.  If viewed on a relative basis the average points per participant was significant higher at 1,027 vs 867 last year.  That's a major increase in productivity!  We also saw one of the longest standing records for a challenge fall in a dramatic way but more on that later....

First a look at how Challenge 8 compares to it's 7 predecessors - quite favorably if you ask my opinion especially when one takes into account the percentage dip in participants (-21%) was far greater than the actual decline in total points (-6%).  As a group we tried admirably to take up the slack.

28mm remained, by far, the preferred scale of our pigmenting protagonists in this year's winter passion play.  There was a decline in 15mm production from the historic highs of Challenge VII.

The new Terrain category didn't really move the needle that much also as only a total of 2,740 points was awarded for terrain submissions this year.  In the past challenge we did have a terrain themed bonus round that that generated a total of 845 points (excluding the theme round bound points) so really only a 1,900 point increase in total terrain points.  Still I really liked the inclusion of terrain and hope it stays as a permanent category going forward.

One are that did see an material change during Challenge 8 was the concentration of points in the upper end of the point generators.  In part I think it can be due to Kent's amazing productivity but he was not alone.  Maybe the painting world mirrors the real life Trumpian one where tax savings and painting totals accrue more to the upper end - who knows how these crazy economics work?

Percent of Total PointsIVVVIVIIVIII
Top 525%26%20%22%29%
Top 1041%42%33%35%44%
Top 2062%63%56%53%62%

And just because I can (the concept of "should" never entered my mind) lets take a look at the pace of submissions and their size over time.

ooooo  - look at all the pretty dots

And how does this daily look compare to last year - glad you asked 'cause here it is:  The only real difference his there were a lot more "mega days" during 8.  Also the end of challenge rush was a bit more muted than last year.  Still it's a lot of pretty red and blue dots so that's got to mean something.

Lets leave the snowflake world of graphics and look and lean and hard data tables - the kind your grandfather used to memorize while walking uphill to and from school in howling snowstorms during the summer.

Weeks Completed24791113
Weeks Remaining1196520
Participants w/ a Submission526776767676
Total Submissions118238420531633770
Total Points7,18418,71636,56248,55259,55378,038
Participation Rate65%84%100%100%100%100%
Average per Submitter1382794816397841,027
Avg per Submission6179879194101
Submitter % of Target Completed15%41%59%79%97%127%
Projected Points
Remaining Bouns Rounds7,5009,0003,500000
Non Submitters (Discounted)6,7691,0900000
Projected Total Points60,96570,91771,40179,04581,09778,038
Figures Painted
Cav / Art47128300432476678
Cav / Art1625184209259598
Cav / Art225256116116133
Score Distribution
Bonus Round "Bonus Points"0%12%16%16%16%12%
Other Scales15%10%8%9%10%10%

ChallengeChallenge+/- Var+/- Var
Weeks Completed1313
Weeks Remaining00
Participants w/ a Submission7696-20-21%
Total Submissions770919-149-16%
Total Points78,03883,200-5,162-6%
Participation Rate100%100%0%
Average per Submitter1,02786716018%
Avg per Submission101911112%
Submitter % of Target Completed127%132%-4.77%-4%
Projected Points
Remaining Bouns RoundsN/AN/AN/AN/A
Non Submitters @ 50%N/AN/AN/AN/A
Projected Total PointsN/AN/AN/AN/A
Figures Painted
Cav / Art678719-41-6%
Cav / Art598817-219-27%
Cav / Art133195-62-32%
Score Distribution
Bonus Round "Bonus Points"12%12%0.11%
Other Scales10%8%1.49%

Economic Value Add
One of my favorite parts of this post is estimating the economic impact that Challenge has on the miniatures industry.  I'm using our standard estimating methodology which consists of:

1) Equating the total points produced into an equivalent number of 28mm infantry figures - this is done by dividing the total score by 5, since we award 5 points per figure.

2) I then break down the cost of submitting a figure by estimating unit costs for (i) the cost of the mini and base, (ii) the cost of paints, glue and other supplies and finally (iii) an estimate of the value of labor form painting time.  I've raised the unit charges for both Paints, etc and Painting Time to reflect the inclusion of terrain as a category and the fact that most of our economies are entering a period of sustained rising rates - which will drive some form of cost inflation.

The base value add is then the product of multiplying the unit costs times the equivalent number of 28mm figures - in this case $16.00 times 15,608, which equals $249,722

but we're not done....

3) The last step is to factor in velocity of spending.  It is a scientific fact that when miniature painters replace a figure, we don't simply do so on a one for one basis.  No, the heresy of "paint one / buy one" hasn't infected out happy society.  In fact we are much more likely to replace a painted figure with a number of new and shiny unpainted figures.  In truth, there are likely some scientific studies that have estimated this replacement velocity at 4 - for every one figure painted, one buys 4.  Personally, I find that number very conservative but lets go with the sake of science.

Using the "4" velocity factor and the base EVA of $249,722 , one gets a total economic impact of just under $1MM bucks.  A tidy little sum, indeed.

Ecomonic Value Add (EVA)
Total Points78,038
Equivalent 28mm Inf Minis15,608Economic
Value Add
Cost per Mini$2.50$39,019
Painte etc$2.50$39,019
Painting TIme$11.00$171,684
Sub Total$249,722

Even more impressive is the the lifetime total of EVA for the Challenge is approaching $4MM dollars.  I think we can get that value past $5MM by the end of Challenge !

EVA TrendlineLifetime
Total Points2,24530,56542,07959,93565,10564,69083,20078,038425,857
Equivalent 28mm figures4496,1138,41611,98713,02112,93816,64015,60885,172
Economic Value Created (000's)$14.2$193.5$266.4$379.4$500.0$569.3$898.6$998.9$3,820.2

Hall of Heroes:

It's now time to take a trip to the Hall of Heroes, where we can gave upon the visages of our painting champions as they bask in the sun.  Word to the wise - knock before you enter.  Ray's become obsessed with avoiding tan lines and well umm some things just can't be unseen.  I think he's watching to much of "Keeping Up with the Kardassians".  Anyway, through challenge 8 there have been a total of 471 entrants, with many people participating multiple times.

First, I'm very happy to announce that the exclusive "10,000 Club" is welcoming two new members this year as both Martin C and Kent G have amassed more than 10,000 lifetime Challenge posts.  They will soon be joining DaveD, Tamsin, RayR and yours truly in our swanky walnut paneled painting room.  Gentlemen, your club painting jackets should arrive in the mail any day now.  Please remember to wear them at all club functions.  Please don't listen to anything Ray might say about club attire protocols and pants are definitely required.  Oh, one last thing, - any rumors you might hear about club funds being inappropriately diverted to building a "20,000 club annex" are greatly exaggerated....

RankNameLieftime Points# of Challenges

Perhaps the most astonishing accomplishment of this year's challenge is the setting of a new individual challenge painting total - KentG managed to paint an astonishing 5,343 points which eclipsed the previous mark held by Ray since Challenge 2.  I'm gobsmacked by Kent's productivity and amazing quality.  Hat's off to Kent!

Challenge 8 was also remarkable as it set 5 of the top 15 lifetime scores - a most productive Challenge if ever there was one.


Well there you have - the story of the Challenge in Stats.

I think some thanks are in order:

Curt: Thanks again for organizing this madness and letting it take over your winter months up there in Canadia-Land

Sarah: Thanks for putting up with this silliness

My fellow Minioneers: Thanks for surviving yet another encounter with the spreadsheet of doom.  I'm thinking of redesigning the thing from scratch next year so we can make all sorts of new mistakes together.

My Fellow Challengers: Thanks for a wonderful 3 months and a reminder that this hobby is filled with great people and fellowship.

Now it's time for us all to emerge from the basement and figure out what that round yellow thing in the sky is.