Friday, September 22, 2017

Female Magic-user and yet another Goblin

Got the female magic-user I was talking about in the last post finished this week along with a test goblin.  I wanted to see if I could make a less "stocky" looking goblin out of the long beads, and a split long bead as it's body armor instead of the plug and split spool construction I used for my Moria goblins for my LotR miniatures game I put on at my gaming club a couple months ago.

I am pretty happy with both of them.  I think she looks great, and I wanted to paint her to be a more "seasoned" magic-user.  It seems like in miniatures we have young and old male magic-users, but only young female magic users.  So I decided to make her a more senior magic-user with her gray locks blowing back from the magical energy she is giving off.

Nothing new construction wise with her.  Tile spacer feet and arms.  Shaker peg body with the "nub" cut off the bottom of the peg.  Head is a long tapered bead that I painted to look like she is wearing a large rigid head covering of some type (a la Erol Otus).  I gave her a cloak with a big cowl, both made of paper, as is her hair.  The hole at the end of the bead made it easy to attach her hair.  Her wand is a toothpick cut to size, and she has a tile spacer piece on her chest as a large metal pin holding her cloak closed.  I actually even gave her a paper belt, so that is more than just paint, there is a bit of texture there with the belt even though you can't really tell that in the picture.

The goblin is a long tapered bead for a body, a split tapered bead for shoulders and chest, tile spacer cut to be shoulder armor pieces, tile spacer sword, arms, and feet, and a small round precut wooden craft piece for a shield.  His ears are also tile spacers and his head is a split bead.  I didn't do anything different on him as far as his head and ears go compared to the Moria goblins I did before, it's just that his body and shoulder pieces are different.  He isn't quite as "blocky" looking in person than the Moria goblins.  I decided to paint him in a scheme that would be familiar to current D&D players since of late they have been making the goblins have yellowish skin.

Here are some more pics, from the rear:

And from the side:

I've got a pretty good collection of female adventurers now.  Two magic-users, two fighter types, a cleric, a thief, a dwarf, an elf, and a halfling.  Here they are in a row.
Here are the magic-users and fighter types up close.
And here are the cleric, thief, and demi-humans up close.
I obviously fell in love with creating hair for them out of paper because only two of them are wearing anything close to a helmet. 

Now, onto their male counterparts!  I've already got a good head start, really I just need to do a second male wizard and the demi-humans.






Sunday, September 17, 2017

Female Fighter/Paladin

Sorry, it's been a while since I've added anything to the blog.  I've been working on painting some of the miniatures from the Conan board game.

I did, however, finally finish this female fighter/paladin this morning before my work out.  She, and also a female wizard that hopefully will be finished in a week, have been on my painting table for a while.  Here are some pics of her.

I wanted to make her "two-fisted" instead of having a shield, so I gave her a sword and a mace.  I also was more detailed than normal with the armor.  Not just tile spacer shoulder pieces, but also tile spacer thigh guards.  The only paper on this miniature is the surcoat (yellow) and her cloak (light brown, visible in the next pictures).  The mace in her left hand is just a toothpick handle with a small round bead glued on top.  Everything else is done with paint.

Rear shot, nothing new with the cloak, I wanted to keep it simple though so that a person's eyes would be drawn to her armor, the coolest part of the miniature.

I like how she turned out and she adds a lot to the other female figures I've done as I don't really have a heavily armored female character yet.  She could certainly serve as a fighter in her plate mail, but could equally stand in as a paladin.

I hope to post the pic of the female magic-user within the next week.



Saturday, July 29, 2017

Rounding out the Female Adventurers

I have been wanting to put together groupings of figures to fit a B/X or other old-school D&D game for a while now, sort of like the old Grenadier figure boxes you could buy in the early 80's.  One of their boxes was "Female Adventurers" so I decided to round out my collection of female adventures that I have done so far with a female dwarf and female halfling, giving me one each of all the possible B/X classes.  Unlike more modern games, where the halfling is almost always an achetypal thief, in B/X D&D the halfling wears the same heavy armor (or could wear) as a fighter or cleric.  I put mine in chainmail with leather shoulder pieces just for fun, and decided to go with a spear as this seems to make the most logical sense of melee weapon choice for one who is going to be shorter and have poorer reach than almost all the enemies she would face.  Of course for the dwarf, I had to go with an axe, but she is no dummy and wanted the benefit of a shield for defense, so I went with a one-handed axe.

Nothing too new construction wise.  The dwarf is made with a flat tapered plug and a split long bead as shoulders.  The head is a small bead, arms, feet, armor plates, and axe are tile spacers, shield is the small precut round wooden craft piece.  Halfling has a body made from a long bead, everything else is the same as the dwarf except no shoulder piece, the arms are tile spacers and so are the shoulder armor plates.  Both have paper skirts that flare out a bit representing the bottom of the chainmail shirts they are wearing.

I'm really happy with both figure's hair, though, especially the dwarf.  I wanted it to be more "flowing" like she was in mid swing, and I'm pretty happy with the results.  The paper can be hard to "tame," but like anything else, the more I work with it the better the results get.  There is a slight variation on the halfling figure for the feet.  If I left the tile spacer full thickness, it made the halfling too tall; she would have been as tall as the dwarf.  So I split the feet in half (which wasn't easy, but it wasn't too bad) to make her a little shorter.  This is actually easier to see in the last picture below.

The back of the figures is usually boring and this is no exception, but I wanted to show the figures from both sides.

And here are the three possible B/X female adventurers, a dwarf, elf, and halfling, ready for adventure!  When I get another female fighter done, I'll post a picture of the "boxed set" 8-figure version of these female adventurers, with one of each B/X class except for the fighter which will have two figures ... because you can't have too many fighter figures!



Saturday, July 22, 2017

Kobolds Take 2

I liked the first kobold that I did, but I wanted to have another go.  He was a bit too tall and stocky and I thought the problem was that I used a shoulder piece for him and that it was not needed.  I also wasn't a fan of the ears.  So I did two more test kobolds.  Here they are.

And from the other side.

The one with the swords left arm is a bit too short, but other than that I like how these guys came out. 

Now here they are compared to the original kobold test figure.


The only differences in construction are that I used tile spacers for the ears so that they were shorter, and I did not use the split bead for a shoulder piece.  As you can see with these guys, it just isn't needed, and the figure looks much more slight and it isn't nearly as tall as the first kobold figure I did.  I also came up with a better way to do the tails, which look a lot better I think.  I used a thin strip of paper, glued it into place, and then covered it with hot glue.  Gives a nice tail appearance, and now I think I'm going to do another otyugh at some point using this technique for the tentacles.

This is a good lesson though, meaning that it is not very often that I hit upon the ideal way to construct these guys first try.  Takes some practice and re-engineering often with all of these wooden figures.  But, that's a lot of the fun of it too.


Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Premade Trees

I think Dale may have already posted about this a while back, but today while I was randomly walking around Jo Ann Fabrics (waiting for another store to open) I found these premade wooden trees that are of a really good size for the figures I do (roughly 30mm or so tall).  Here is a picture of them in the package.
They appear to be made in China (shocker!) distributed by a company in Florida called Sparrow Innovations, Inc.  I haven't tried to find them online to see if they have other cool things or not.

They were a little pricey, about $2.25 per tree, but that's not so bad considering all you have to do is paint them and they are done.  They already have a serviceable base on them.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Two Games Over the Weekend

I ran two games this past weekend, one was the Balin's Tomb Lord of the Rings miniatures game, and the second was a playtest for a tabletop fantasy role-playing game I've been working on.  Only two pictures of the later I'm sorry to say, but I took quite a few of the Balin's Tomb game.

Balin's Tomb
I used the by the book GW Strategy Battle Game rules for this one, with my Balin's Tomb set up that I already posted pictures of before.  Standard winning conditions for the Good side, last 12 turns without Frodo being killed or any 5 Fellowship members being killed.  The rules, and this scenario, are pretty biased in favor of the Good side, so I thought they would probably win, I just wanted to see if the board I was using was too big for the game.

Turned out that three players showed up to the game store to play so I played the Evil side and each player took a set of heroes to play.  This turned out to be a very good thing and when I run this at a convention I'm going to make sure to play the Evil side and have all the players play the heroes.  It was just more fun for them.  And now the pics of the game.

Starting point for the Fellowship, as close as I could get it out of the movie.

At the start of the first turn of the game.  One unit of goblins with a goblin leader (I used an orc figure so it was easy to tell who the leader was in the chaos of the melee to come) has made its way through the door.  This is the only thing I think I will change.  I gave the Good side priority (initiative) like the rules say to do for the first turn, but I'm going to give the evil side priority next time I run the game.  It will allow the goblins to put more immediate pressure on the heroes, and this is a good thing.

Two goblin units in now, this is the end of the second turn.  You can see that the Fellowship are setting up for a bottle neck to the goblin's left of Balin's tomb to try and limit the rushing advance.  It actually worked pretty well.

Third turn.  All three goblin units on the board at this point.  Basically it's a contest of exchanged missile fire between Legolas and Aragorn shooting arrows and a lot of goblins shooting arrows.  Every now and then Gandalf would cast a spell as well.

The big boy makes his entrance and you can see we've got some melee's going on now.  All forces are on the board at this point.

The cave troll makes a go of moving around the open side of the tomb to get to Gandalf and the hobbits on the other side.

He made the turn and was heading for home but the Fellowship won priority and Gimli moved into melee with the cave troll to stop his advance.  You can see Aragorn and Boromir also fighting in a ferocious melee, greatly outnumbered.


Gimli has managed to keep pinning the cave troll and you can see that the hobbits have made their way to the stairs, with Gandalf and Legolas covering their retreat.


Evil won priority for this turn and the cave troll tried to finish off Gimli with one goblin each charging in to occupy Boromir and Aragorn, with a rush of three getting to Gandalf.  Nail biting time!

But, Gimli killed the cave troll, Gandalf survived, and eventually the Fellowship took out all the goblins.  However, Pippin was killed in the process.  The game was a Good victory!

The cave troll is just not tough enough in the game, I'm giving him another wound next time.  Also, I'm going to put some rubble on the floor which will serve as rough terrain for the Fellowship, but not for the goblins or cave troll, so that should liven the game up as well.  But all in all, it was great fun, I love the rules (and I am not a GW fanboy by any stretch), and am looking forward to running this game again in the future.

Dungeon Crawl RPG Playtest
I've been working on a retro-inspired (not a retro-clone) set of tabletop fantasy rpg rules and wanted to test them out.  I won't go into details about the rules, but here are a couple of pictures of the game.  My plan is to run this dungeon (it's about 15 rooms total) at a convention as a rpg-lite type game.  It is sort of like a cross between Heroquest and old-school theater-of-the-mind D&D in that it is played on the tabletop, but the actions of the characters are not really constrained at all, so they can do whatever their player describes.





I had to put the idol from the cover of the AD&D Players Handbook in the game, didn't I!?  He looks too cool not to include.  The thief in this case is climbing up on the brazier to disarm a trap on it before removing the gem eyes.  If you do not disarm this trap, when you go to pry out the gem eyes the brazier shoots a huge blast of flame straight up burning the would-be tomb raider.  You can see many of the heroes I completed yesterday serving as the PCs for the game.

The cave troll is standing in for a demon in the game (I didn't get the demon figure finished).  The party managed to complete the dungeon with only the barbarian dying, so it was pretty successful.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

2 New Adventurers, 3 New Doors

I've been hard at work churning out a couple new heroes, another human fighter but the first with a crossbow, and the other a female elf ranger/fighter/archer.  Here they are.
Not much new construction wise, but I decided to try and paint some scale mail on the human fighter, and I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.  Every now and then I put in a gold scale to break it up a bit.

Now an action shot with the three new doors.
Two human fighters and a human cleric coming up behind the two new heroes to provide support.  There is a new door in the background.  I painted a brick pattern on this one, and put a couple of split bead torch slots on for decoration.
Second new door, this one with the split lady bugs serving as skulls flanking the door.  I'll probably do another one where I put the skull on the door itself.
Third new door behind the troll.  I used the same thin pre-cut wooden small circles as shields as decorations on each side of the doorway. 

And finally a larger scale action shot.  The two new heroes blundered into this room of drow and a troll, with a gray ooze sneaking up on the elf.



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