Saturday 28 June 2014


As we prepare to say goodbye to June there is just time to sneak in one more post making this a hugely successful month with regards to offsetting the negative terms of miniatures bought to miniatures painted.  So then, the next requirement for my first scenario of 'Witchfinder' is the angry mob or more accurately the Clubmen.  I have to confess that is a term that I had not heard of before flirting on the periphery of the English Civil War, but I understand that Clubman would band together to protect common interests in time of war, utilising their peace time skills to good effect.  To quote from the rules:

A good poacher can shoot a rabbit with ease and a man, after all, is a much bigger and slower target.  a butcher keeps a razor sharp blade and knows how to quickly dispatch any creature with blood in its veins.

Now I was going to have a bit of a rant about 'Warlord Games', perhaps mentioning that this particularly batch of miniatures took an age to arrive or that they were badly cast resulting in me having to add green stuff to repair them.  Possibly I would bemoan the amount of cast lines and flash that needed to be removed resulting in enough scrap metal to cast an additional miniature or I might even mention the diminutive stature of some of the miniatures that do not compare favourable with the 'giants' from 'Redoubt Enterprises'.  

All of this, of course, is true, but the reality is that I rather like their product, the sculpts are interesting and characterful, the details crisp and plentiful, in fact once I finally stated painting them, I couldn't have wished for better.

This then the first four of an eight pack blister and perhaps my favourite miniatures of the group with a great mixture characters from the Mayoral candidate to the torch wielding matriarch clutching a ferocious looking cleaver.  I did have a go at some Object Source Lighting on the old crone's bonnet, but rather bottled it for fear of over doing it, maybe next time, but for now it's on with the other half!

Wednesday 25 June 2014

When shall we three meet again?

In thunder, lightning, or in rain?

More supernatural shenanigans for the 'Witchfinder' project; once again, I seem to be taking things out of sequence, but these proved just too difficult to resist.  I believe that they are 'Wargames Foundry' sculpts from their Undead range, now available through 'Flyte of Fantasy' on eBay.

Fabulous fun to paint, these John Pickford sculpts are quite sizeable and will dwarf 'Warlord Games' miniatures, but should fit perfectly with the 'Redoubt Enterprises' ranges, I will eventually get around to posting a comparison shot at some time.

In other news, I'm struggling with Blogger again; having lost my blog roll, I am now reduced to only seeing one blog at a time in my reading list.  I have tried reloading the page and opening it it a different web browser, but to no avail.  This is most infuriating as I know I must be missing an awful lot of posts, in fact I am not sure that this will be seen by anyone!  

If anyone does know of a fix, do please let me know!

Saturday 21 June 2014

An 'ickle' battery

Whilst I was waiting to get my eager hands on the required miniatures for the first encounter in my ‘Witchfinder General’ rule book, I took the opportunity to delve into the wondrous assortment of English Civil War miniatures generously donated to the cause by the ‘Provost Marshal’.  

With a myriad of possibilities, fate smiled on this small artillery piece from ‘Redoubt Enterprises’.  The gun on its wheeled carriage was relatively straightforward to paint and once again I was able to have a bit of freedom with the palette for the crew of three. 

Although some way off requiring artillery for any of the encounters in the rule book, I found this little group hard to resist, hence its promotion to the head of the queue.  In my naivety, I am probably making a terrible faux pas by basing the group on a ‘Warbases’ 100mm x 50mm MDF stand,  but I just like the way they look and the fact that it keep the all neat and tidy!

Monday 16 June 2014

Keeping the wolf from the door!

What I love about this most wholesome of hobbies that we all share is the sense of community that pervades around our cosy corner of the infoweb.   This will often manifest itself through the generosity of others, whether it is in the time devoted to leaving comments or perhaps in a more physical, tangible sense with items freely given away in order to celebrate any number of impressive milestones.  I, myself have been a grateful recipient of a good many treasures and this odd couple is one such case. 

David Docherty Esq. of ‘One man and his brushes’ fame, is one of these splendid generous types, for when he is not giving freely of his time in the case of running the much lauded Serenity games at ‘Blog-Con’ he is putting random miniatures in the post to lucky and yet unsuspecting recipients. 

I say random, but Dave knows only too well of my penchant for weird and wonderful miniatures and so this mixed bag of Weird West miniatures from ‘Ainsty Castings’ was only ever going to be favourably received.  That said, I am somewhat embarrassed to admit, that I had all but forgotten them until just the other day when flicking through the ‘Witchfinder General’ rules, I realised that I would need to get my hands on some werewolves; faster than a speeding silver bullet, I went in search of Dave’s gift that I knew contained a likely lycanthrope.   

It is always the way with such things that the last place you look is exactly where you will find what you are searching for, but finally after covering the entire dining room table in lead* I stumbled upon the elusive packet.  Although it was the Werewolf that I was after, it seemed churlish not to paint his companion, who is a good likeness for a certain American President and wielding a fearsome looking axe, not unlike the title character in the wonderfully absurd, 'Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter'. 

*I sensibly waited until the Saintly Mrs. Awdry had left the building!

This is a hugely enjoyable romp through the life of, arguable, America's greatest President and reveals just how the battle of Gettysburg was really won!  Dressed in his overcoat and resplendent with his bow tie and waistcoat, Abe may well find himself pressed into action with my other Victorian misfits, perhaps even in the somewhat stalled, 'secret project'.  The werewolf, however will certainly see service in the new ruleset of choice or might even inspire me to take a closer look at the Gothic supplement for 'In Her Majesty's Name'.  He has a wonderful, Big, Bad, Wolf feel to him, but I'm not overly sure about the tail; even so he is based on a 'Warbases' 30mm MDF disc, decorated to match those of the Noctelinger.

Friday 13 June 2014

The Noctelinger!

To quote from the 'Witchfinder General' rulebook, 

"Noctelinger are neither man nor vampire; but are deranged hybrid killers.  The noctelinger are used by the vampires to spread fear amongst the unruly and to dispense retribution to the enemy.  Without self-will or rational thought a noctelinger's blood lust is second only to following orders of its evil master."

Given this description the 'Hersey Miniatures' ghouls were the obvious selection given their pointed ears and sinewy frames.  Images of them also feature heavily in the rule set, actually making them very difficult not to consider as the creature of choice.  If truth be told I had been looking for an excuse to order these fine miniatures for a while now and although a little on the expensive side I knew that there was also the possibility that I would be able to use them for the ZombieTv rules as well - you see every purchase can be justified! 

I hadn’t really taken on board just how much construction they would require until they arrived, but set to the task with file, side cutters and green stuff and before long they were starting to take shape.

With regards to detailing, I stole most of my ideas from the company’s website, choosing to base them on ‘Warbases’ 30mm MDF discs, a little larger than I would normally use, but the dynamic poses and collected detritus I was loading onto the bases seemed to demand more space.  

So taken, was I, with the images on the 'Hersey Miniatures' site that when it came to painting, I was keen to try and emulate them if I could.  That said, when it came to colour palette it was Mr Finch, of 'Minis by Finch' fame that proved to be of most use.  His work on a Heresy cyclops was truly inspirational and although not a patch on his, I was glad to have his work as a reference or starting point if you will. 

The layering of paint and use of glazes obviously added to the production time and I was surprised just how long the six took me to complete, probably one of the reasons that the remaining miniatures (a Ghoul king and rather grisly mother and child) will just have to wait for the time being.

I had been looking forward to, but at the same time quite fearful of, the application of the gore; after all who spends hours painting a miniature only to shroud them in red paint?  Fortunately Tamiya Clear Red is a wonderful product and mixed with a little black to take the edge of the colour really does the job of representing the remains of some poor unfortunate!

I have to say that I’m thrilled with the results and much of that is due to the quality of the sculpts from Heresy, it was certainly worth the effort to put them together properly, now it is time to get to grips with Mr. Andy Foster's Hellhounds so we can start the next phase - The Barguests!

Tuesday 10 June 2014

It’s a Dog’s Life!

Nothing screams Puritan louder than a preacher quoting from the Good Book and this diminutive chap certainly has the pose down pat!  We are not entirely sure who produces him, coming as he did from the fantastically generous haul of English Civil War miniatures donated by that fine fellow, the ‘Provost Marshal’.  

More a generous 25mm than a true 28mm miniature, this Preacher is a welcome addition to the forces of good and is painted in the typical black attire associated with the stout of heart at the time.  

In order to bring a little colour to the piece, I thought that he warranted the company of yet another member of the ‘Warbases’ menagerie, this time their Bloodhound.  A splendid beast with a nose for sniffing out the denizens of the night, regardless of which form they might adopt.

Finally a group shot of the assembled cast to date; (the pigs are just visible rooting under the trees on the right of the page.) next up the first additions to the forces of evil, if I every get around to finishing them.

Saturday 7 June 2014

Pearls before swine!

Once again these Iron Age Pigs proved too hard to resist after seeing them expertly painted by the talented Andrew Saunders on his weblog.  I had toyed with the idea of painting them in a more commonly recognised pig pink, but the adorable stripes down the back of the piglets just had to be done – streaky bacon anyone?

  I have to say that of the new ‘Warbases’ range that I’ve tried, these have been the best realised sculpts so far.  That’s not to suggest that the others have been poor, far from it, in fact given the scale of the individual pieces ‘Warbases’ should be justly proud of the range, it was just that these stood out as been that bit better than the others.  

Once again based on a variety of sizes of MDF discs and a little less static grass was used to give the illusion of mud for them to root in.

Thursday 5 June 2014

28mm Sheep

More from the ‘Warbases’ menagerie, this time their Soay Sheep.  Now I’d not heard of Soay sheep before now, but I’m reliably informed that they a primitive breed of domestic sheep descended from a population of feral sheep on the 250-acre island of Soay in the St. Kilda Archipelago, about 65 kilometres from the Western Isles of Scotland.*  Perfect, one imagines, for all those Viking raiding parties that seem to be very popular in our miniature world at the moment.**  
*isn’t Google wonderful?
**Every time I hear SAGA mentioned now, I think of elderly Norsemen on a cruise liner!

With the ‘Witchfinder General’ rules not set in medieval Scotland, I decided mine would be Jacob’s sheep, albeit missing a couple of horns!  These are lovely little additions to the growing livestock collection and bizarrely firm favourites of the Saintly Mrs. Awdry.

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