Sunday, March 10, 2024

Space 1889: Kraag Warriors unboxing

Hopefully I don't scare off any potential readers with the term unboxing. I must say that I find the genre (notably on youtube) to be enormously boring and uninteresting. When I popped open this box I could feel the vintage leaking from the plastic wrap and disappearing into the sky so I thought I should take some photos.

Space 1889 is, of course, the colonial/victorian adventures on mars where everybody wants 'liftwood' that only grows there to allow for playing naval vessels. I played in a RPG campaign that was fun, and there are a lot of wargaming aspects that predate the rpg. 

The martians come in 3 flavors (which I suspect match the general racist categorizing that happened around egypt/sudan at that period of history): canal martians (civilized), hill martians (nomads) and mountain martians (feral/slavers/flyers). These are the latter, and live in fortified vertically oriented mountains fastnesses that they raid for slaves from. Easy fodder for villains. The Belgians are also the canonical bad guys resulting from their rapacious activities in Congo that are duplicated on mars. 


 The castings are quite clean with respect to mold lines. There is an alright amount of variation. One thing I quite like is all of them are duplicated in flying and non flying poses. Even better, they come with stout flying base equipment (metal bases! precut wire!)

Perhaps the most nostalgic part of this was the booklet that came enclosed. It gave information about martians in general and mountain martians in particular. And then it gave painting directions! They even describe various techniques like washes and glazes without formally calling them that. How retro. How useful in the age pre internet.

These figs are still available through RAFM, a Canadian company. I suspect RAFM has a bit of a twilight existence, but they still have some old minis with charm (including 15mm traveller stuff, and 25mm fantasy). They had a bit of a resurgence a decade or two ago with some sort of modern rule set.

My interest in 1889 was piqued by some photos and reading some war game reports. It's already slipped to the backburner again, but hopefully these charming figs will see some paint before too much time passes.


Monday, March 4, 2024

15mm bug aliens XCOM Sigma Event (Eye Candy)

A random post on facebook about looking for starship trooper bugs had me respond with a suggestion. Surely I have a picture I thought to myself.......nope. So quickly I created a eye candy shot. The real pictures will have to wait, but this felt cool enough I ought to post it without much to add. 

Blue/orange guys, and yellow/green flyers are from the Sigma Event 2077 kickstarter (still available from Clear Event Horizon). I went for colours that lined up with XCOM Chrysalis. 

The big all mouth no head guy is from CP minis (checkpoint minis is the recent name change/revision). Painted as a XCOM reaper. The streamlined head on tentacles from the same vendor. Painted as a Seeker.

Monday, February 12, 2024

Signs of life...


What does one do when they are on the road with no kids to take care of, no hobby materials, and waiting for a meeting to start? Well, in this case one begins to resuscitate his blog. 8 months is a long time of silence...but I have noticed some other folks getting a kick in the shorts at the beginning of the year to restart their blogging.

I have been making more of an effort to comment on blog posts which I read lately. I really do believe this is the glue that makes up the social web of blogging. Much digital ink has been cast on this topic but the latest post is here (Somewhere the Tea's getting cold.....State of the Blogosphere). Thanks to Thantsants for prompting me to do more. 

In the interests of not being boring I'll throw up some photos of various works in progress while I babble. Notably the lack of noise on the blog is not lack of hobby work. I'm very lucky to have cultivated a few nerds to meet and paint weekly....on a discord channel. There are two rules, you need to work on something nerdy (lego assembly meets the criteria) and you need to post a picture by the end of the sessions showing what you were working on. 

This fellow channels 2023 very well. What a terrible year. I'm convinced lots of things were dying in 2023 and it's going to be 2024 when we see it finally happen. In related news I had a friend get diagnosed with ALS and pass away 7 months later in January.

This non proprietary demon of no particular denomination is from satyr studios. It was a limited release like 3 others. I managed to get 4....unfortunately due to a screw up I have a duplicate and a missing lobster claw demon. Le sigh.



more after the jump break....

Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Enfilade 2023 Picture dump

As per my last post, I headed down to Olympia, WA at the end of may for Enfilade. A lovely convention held each year on memorial day weekend. I hadn't been since before covid, so this was literal the most people I have seen in a room for 3 a long shot. 

It was great to see familiar faces, and get some gaming in. I did a fair amount of running around taking pictures of various cool looking games. I thereby present them in a pictorial essay to follow. Minimal comments will follow as mostly I didn't know what the games were (or bother to spent time to figure out). 


The theme was 'War in the Desert'.

Blogger was cursed me by loading the pictures in reverse chronological order and I'm not willing to reorganize them....enjoy!

Friday, June 2, 2023

Enfilade 2023: Friday Easy Play Trafalgar (sails of glory)

Once again I made the pilgrimage down to Olympia, WA for enfilade. My organizational skills were miserable this year and I was punished by terrible traffic, and limited options for gaming (the best games get scooped early via pre registration). I found myself playing Trafalgar on Friday night with a gaming friend, Bob, who I mostly see at Enfilade yearly. Bob prefers to play the French, and notes that if you lose it's historical, and if you win you get to gloat.


 The setup for the game narrowed the action to where the British were cutting the French line. A significant chunk of the French line ended up out of the battle due to the wind and the remaining French got pasted by the better British ships with local superiority.

To add insult to injury the French are sailing VERY close to the wind and can't make a left/port turn without having a very good chance (~70%) of stalling (caught in irons). Problematically the French were so close to the edge of the table that they couldn't really turn to the right/starboard much either, or they'd run off the board. Easy play indeed....the scope for decisions was VERY limited. It might have been better to have the french run on auto pilot in some way. 

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Frostgrave AAR: Dark Alchemy mini campaign 3: The spreading flames


 Racing through the burning and collapsing factory the two warbands notice movement down an adjacent wing.....and the glint of arcane treasures. 

The 3rd game in our (mostly) cooperative campaign has the crews on a time limit to get in, grab what they can, and get out before the complex is finally consumed/explodes. 


 Notably, within this wing are some automatons, whose purpose somehow involves flaming nearby objects with arcane heat. 

I loved the artwork from the book, and apparantly someone with real skills did as well because I was able to find an stl of a flame flinger and print out a couple for the game. A pretty basic copper paint job went on them. I'll probably return to it one day and add some additional colour and basing.

 A pictorial essay of the game to follow...



Thursday, May 4, 2023

Frostgrave AAR: Dark Alchemy mini campaign 2: Skeletal Run

 Part two of our Dark Alchemy campaign sees the two warbands working together to escape the Alchemical Factory. It's been established that a fire has started which is driving the warbands, and various wandering monsters, out. This second adventure sees the warbands needing to traverse a wide area infested with undead.....who are strangely on fire. Is this some sort of petrochemical greek fire concoction fueled by magic to burn eternally? I'm sure our wizards would love to know!

Cleverly Garret matched the tower we escaped into last game as the starting location for this one.

 The two wizards cast their appraising eye over the terrain and spy the exit. The greedy nature of wizards in general see our natural antagonism develop as we start trying to sneak the treasures that 'ought' to belong to one another away from them.



 The exit resides between the two statues. Largely this is a pictorial essay with brief notes after this. Enjoy.