Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Dropship Horizon painting competition and projects on the go

I hope all the budding 15mm Sci-Fi wargamers out there have spotted the Dropship Horizon painting competition!

I have various works in progress and this might give me the impetus to get some finished!  I do try to get things done but because I can't have a dedicated painting and modelling space set up, it isn't always easy to follow something all the way through.  At the moment I have a stack of things building up ready for spray paint undercoating but damp, wet days and dark evenings mean that I don't get more than one or two opportunities a month!

Here's a little preview of some of the vehicles I'm working on at present...

Old Crow Samson armoured engineering vehicle.

Old Crow Sabre heavy grav tank.

Old Crow Outrider scout vehicle.

The Scene junk.
All the armoured vehicles are getting lots of extra bits of stowage, one of the things that is taking so long!

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Old Crow Mule grav sled

Some more civilian transport has arrived in the from of an Old Crow grav sled.  The crewman has been replaced by a Peter Pig driver from the AK47 Republic range, whose head has, in turn, been replaced by that of a Hammer's Slammers figure from GZG (chopped off during a previous head-swapping exercise).  Being rather short, he's had a seat built up out of plasticard so that he can see out of the front of the vehicle!

Unloading cargo at a smuggler's camp (yes, that is Thunderbird 2 in the foreground!).

Delivering fuel drums through the freight depot gate.

Munitions transport.

Off through the shanty town for the next collection.

Base colour is GW sunburst yellow with a Vallejo sepia wash.  Dabs of rust colour have been added here and there with GW chainmail scuff marks along the leading edges of the grav-skids and the edges of the hull.  The transport bed was dabbed unevenly with assorted browns and greys, then given an extra wash of black ink.  A chainmail drybrush folowed by light drybrush of rusty colours has given it a suitably well-used appearance.  A few additional daubs of black ink show where chemicals have leaked out of the cargo and dribbled down the sides of the mule.

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Old Crow Slingshot AFV

I've been working on some Old Crow vehicles recently.  Here's the first one to be completed, a Slingshot AFV with a turret mounted missile launcher. As always, click on the pictures for a larger image!

Jungle patrol with the Slingshot.

The low afternoon sun shines through the jungle.

The basic model was simple to assemble - all parts were washed thoroughly and dried, top and bottom halves of hull were glued together with araldite epoxy resin.  Wheels were also attached with araldite, taking care to ensure they all touch the ground.  They vary slightly in size/shape, not very much but enough that you could end up with a vehicle that wobbles or has a middle wheel just off the ground!

I've added quite a few details to these.  Grab rails/handles have been fashioned out of 0.56mm 24swg tinned copper wire superglued into holes I've drilled in.  I find that this wire bends and cuts very easily so is ideal for making quick additions like this.  The resin is very easy to drill into.  A tarpaulin has been sculpted out of super fine white milliput to fill up an empty space on the side of the hull.

Safety rail around top hatch, sculpted tarpaulin stowage.
 As well as the rail around the top hatch and the handles on the front and side hatches, I added a couple of smaller wire loops on the front of the vehicle.  Before I glued them into place, I added a single link of chain to each loop which hopefully gives the appearance of a couple of u-shackles hanging down, as seen on many modern AFVs.

Front u-shackles and various hatch handles.
 A resin stowage box and a couple of jerry cans complete the rear of the vehicle.  After this I decided to add a radio aerial too, this was made from a guitar string glued into a short length of brass tube, inserted into a hole drilled in the top of the vehicle hull.

Stowage box and jerry cans.
The standard Old Crow missile box was enhanced with a few left-over parts from other Old Crow missile pods, giving it an additional top layer with another 16 missiles.  This vehicle is intended to supplement my Stoat patrol vehicles and Kamodo APCs, providing light rocket artillery support.

Tarpaulin finished in DPM to match my infantry.
After a coat of Wilkinson's light grey spray primer, I've painted it in the same UK temperate colours as my other vehicles.  Humbrol 75 matt bronze green provides the base colour with Vallejo matt black bands.  Humbrol 29 dark earth was painted onto the wheels and into the wheel arches as a base coat with the green or black drybrushed on afterwards, giving the appearance of ingrained dirt in the wheel treads and under the body of the vehicle (or so I hope!).

Standard UK temperate camouflage scheme.
The green was given a thin wash of Vallejo black ink before drybrushing with the base colour.  Highlights were applied using Humbrol 86 light olive green on the main areas and Humbrol 67 tank grey on the black bands.

Extra layer of missile boxes added.
An overall drybrush of Humbrol 29 dark earth was applied across the vehicle, concentrating on the lower areas.  A second, lighter drybrush of Humbrol 93 desert yellow completed the weathering.

Rear stowage box and jerry cans.
The odd dab of GW chainmail was applied around the edge of hatches, on hinges etc.  The driver's vision block was painted Humbrol 25 blue with a GW enchanted blue highlight.  Sensor windows on the missile launcher are GW red gore and Vallejo black.  All these bits have subsequently been painted over with Pledge floor wax to give a glossy finish.

Size comparison - Matchbox Stoat, Old Crow Slingshot, DLD Kamodo.
 This will fit in nicely with my other vehicles and give some much needed fire support.

Infantry from Peter Pig (AK-47 professionals)

Sunday, 5 January 2014

The Scene US Special Forces

 I took a couple of photographs of my painted US Special Forces from The Scene.  Still a couple of extras to paint but I'm happy with these as a start.  I think I've probably posted some pictures of them before but they matched the Stoat gunners because of their DPM style camouflage.

Saturday, 4 January 2014

More Stoats - now with guns!

  I've been meaning to post these pictures for some time - my repainted Matchbox Stoat armoured cars have received gun mounts from Peter Pig.  These are designed for Hummers but fit nicely into the top of the Stoats.  A stack of 3 washers (the same ones that I use to base my figures) are glued inside the top hatch and the Peter Pig hatch gunner drops neatly into place.  Because they're glued to the old "rolamatic" rotating platform, the gun mounts are firmly attached to the vehicle but can still be rotated if desired.

Stoats on patrol.

.50 cals in the lead with a TOW bringing up the rear.

"The Scene" US special forces watch the convoy drive past.

This time I've remembered to paint the headlights!

Note ammo box added to far vehicle.

Jerry can added to rear.

TOW mounting provides extra anti-tank punch.

Gun mounts can swivel for added play value!
I think these gun mounts are great.  The detail is fantastic and they represent an extremely cheap and easy way to add interest to a vehicle.  They are also useful to help give a sense of scale to something like these Stoats which are not specifically designed as 15mm vehicles.  As a bonus, the heads of the .50 cal gunners come separately so it would be easy to use a set of GZG conversion heads or some of the many Peter pig conversion heads to create a post apocalyptic feel.  There is a socket in the neck of the figure so you don't even need to drill a hole!

Friday, 3 January 2014

More dungeon escapades

A couple more recent games of Heroquest in my Hirst Arts dungeon.  I usually manage to get an extra room or two built before each game.  This time I've added a new spiral entrance staircase tower and also the Dragon Throne - a large stone-built throne topped by a dragon skull, this gives control of the undead to whomsoever sits upon it.  I also sanded down the various doors and repainted them.  Now they actually fit inside the door frames!

First we have a recent game from the Old Buckenham Bone Crushers...

The wizard enters a room containing skeletons.

Dwarf fights a skeleton.

Evil Necromancer and undead horde pursue halfling with stolen spell book!

After him!

Halfling ascends the Dragon Throne and takes control of the undead.

Heroes charge along the corridor.

Controlled by the halfling, the undead storm in and defeat the minotaur.
Cunning use of spells enabled the heroes to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in this game.  The wizard cast "pass though rock" onto the halfling who was able to make an incredibly lucky movement die roll and get all the way into the throne room in a single move.  Once he took control of the vast undead horde, victory seemed assured - or was it?  "Right you evil bastards," he growled at the heroes, "now we'll see who's in charge!  This'll teach you all to be nasty to me!"  The halfling gave an ominous chuckle and rubbed his hands with glee...

Fortunately for the rest of the heroes the halfling managed to get a grip on himself and was persuaded to remain their ally!

The second game was another of our regular Scout games days.  The dungeon proved so popular with the Scouts that I had to add a second level into the dungeon so that they could continue the adventure for the entire day!

Dungeon level 1 - heroes enter from spiral stair on left.

Level 2 - Bloodthirster and his retinue!

A lone dwarf takes on the Chaos Beastmen.

Dungeon Level 2

Elf takes on the Necromancer in his lair.

Lone dwarf shortly before his demise.

Bloodthirster, beastmen and Chaos warriors swarm out of their chamber.

"Byeee!"  Wizard decides that discretion is the better part of valour.
An exciting game, in the end 4 of the 5 heroes had been slain and the sole survivor (master of swords) was down to a single body point when his final blow slew the Bloodthirster.  The Bloodthirster was a fearsome beast, rolling 10 dice to attack and defend while the heroes only tended to roll a maximum of 4 dice to attack or defend.  The poor lone dwarf was sliced in half from head to groin by the Bloodthirster's mighty blow!

The master of swords drank deep from the nearby fountain of healing and felt re-energised.  Now he would drag the bodies of his comrades back to the fountain and try to heal them too.  Perhaps if he dunked the two halves of the dwarf's body into the fountain and pressed them back together that might work?

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Necromunda game

Something a little different today. While my friend Howard was home to see his parents I was able to pop over for a couple of games.  Our second game of the evening was Necromunda, the old GW small unit skirmish game using a modified version of the 2nd edition WH40K rules.  Click on the photographs for a larger view.  I took lots, mainly to show off Howard's fantastic scenery!  Of particular note is the monument covered with tiny notices, all individually painted and glued on.

Scenery is a mixture of foamcore, GW Cities of Death bits, IMEX platformer, Hirst Arts (plaster moulded doors, lots of the crates, barrels etc.), Ramshackle Games (vehicles), Black Cat Bases (vending machines and other scatter scenery) and assorted bits of wire, old electronics parts, steel mesh, toilet ballcock and more...

Howard's army was the (better painted) Scavvies, mine were the outnumbered Cawdors.  The scenario: Scavengers (pp.154-155 of the hardback rulebook), 5 glass beads are scattered around the table representing loot that gangers can pick up...
Scavvies rush forward on multiple levels.

Cawdor gangers make their way up one of the towers.

Cawdor boss dashes forward to pick up the first loot.

Another Cawdor grabs the second loot.

Scavvies approach their first loot marker.

Cawdor Juve takes cover behind a vending machine.

Cawdor heavy (old Kryomek figure) and Juve with invisible pistol.

Cawdor gangers watch for the Scavvies.

Scavvies cautiously creep forwards...

Scavvy Scaly looks out over the underhive...

Scavvy spots a Cawdor in the distance!

Scavvies cross the bridge towards two Cawdor gangers.

Plague zombies shamble towards a Cawdor ganger.

View across the table.

Howard's fantastic scenery and Scavvies.

Aaaaagh!  Plague zombie attack!  As the Cawdor fights for his life...

Scavvies lurk below him - and they've found a ladder!

Zombie and 2 additional Scavvies taken down - but look out!

Cawdor Juve has the loot - but Scavvies close in!

Cawdor ganger gives covering fire.

Cawdor heavy and his woefully ineffective heavy stubber.

Scary Scaly thunders across the bridge towards the Cawdors!

Scavvy boss and one of his minions are down!

There's too many of them!  Scavvies attack from all sides.

Scavvies, zombies and Scalies everywhere you look!

Down goes the Cawdor.

My Cawdor gang - boss, heavy, 4 gangers, 3 juves.

Howard's excellently painted Scavvy horde

Plague zombies on left, Scavvies on right.

Scavvy boss flanked by Scalies.

More Scavvies, inluding a 3-armed mutant.
A fun game, although the Cawdors were hugely outnumbered the majority managed to survive, mainly thanks to very flukey die rolls!  We didn't play the game to its conclusion but I had 3 of the 5 loot counters and had taken down the Scavvy boss, a zombie or two - but there were still plenty out there!