Thursday 29 April 2010

Regular gaming buddy Leon and I went to Salute 2010 last weekend, in London. Salute is the biggest war gaming exhibition in England. This was the first time we have been ,and I have to say I had an excellent day. I spent a LOT of money on figures, and had a great day. Leon was pleased to get to meet the creative force behind the excellent Pulp City superhero skirmish game, while I was content to engage in a lot of 'retail therapy', adding 74 figures and 3 buildings to my growing pile of unpainted stuff. Amongst the seemingly random collection of figures I bought were some Hasslefree Mutants (great for supers), some GZG spaceships (don't know why, but I have always liked them since I saw them at the Birmingham's Games Expo last year), a lost of 1930's figures for my new project (A Very British Civil War- I will discuss this in more depth in a future blog), some cowboy buildings, and a Mexican to lead my posse of banditos, some 'Grey' aliens, some deep ones (for Conan? Or perhaps for Supers- haven't decided yet).
We saw lots of nice gaming tables, and I did take a few picture, for inspiration. Here's a couple of my favorites.
A lovely 20mm scale WW2 Poland board, featuring Germans vs Poles. I really like the buildings and all the trees. Not too many to make gaming difficult, but enough to make the battlefield look natural.

The insanity of using Lego Star Wars instead of the more traditional 'lead soldiers'. It has it's pros and cons. Pros- it looks good, its fun and you don't have to paint them. Cons- You really can't get around the fact that you playing with toy soldiers. Any pretence that this is some kind of intellectual exercise, or that its a 'grown up' hobby, just don't stand up to accusations of "Your playing with Lego!"
Griffin is one of Team Metro, London's premier super team. He claims to be the embodiment of Britain's martial prowess, and protector of the Isles of Britain, but most experts speculate that this pseudo-mythical origin is nothing but far-fetched fantasy, and that he is really just a mutant. What is beyond doubt is that he is a superb fighter, wielding his twin blades with deadly skill and accuracy.

This beautiful models is by Hassle Free, and is in quite an unusual style for them. It is obviously supposed to be a fantasy figure, but I think it makes a superb Superhero, reminiscent of Hawk Man, Black Condor and alike. Great for adding a bit of mobile fightyness to the Team Metro mix.

Friday 23 April 2010

Monarch is the leader of Team Metro, London's premier Super Team. Super strong, bullet proof and able to fly, he is the archetypal superhero. He is also an insufferable chauvinistic bore, and a glory-mad media-hound, addicted to the celebrity lifestyle his hero status brings with it. While the liberal classes might despair of his coarse behaviour, the tabloid media, and the vast majority of the everyday folks in the streets of London can't get enough of him. Pictures of Monarch beating up a villain, meeting the Queen, or coming out of a night club with a brace of glamour models on his arms are guaranteed to sell more papers.

This figure is a bit unusual, because it came from a blister pack of Judge Dread figures. It's slightly over scaled for the figures I normally use, but I think that adds to his heroic stature. I also positioned him on the curb to accentuate the height difference.

The red and blue colour scheme is a motif for Team Metro. More pictures of the other four team members will follow shortly, so keep checking.

I realise that it has been a long time since I blogged anything, but I have been very busy with the things that get in the way of blogging: holidays, trips to hospital, work and grocery shopping. You I have also been very buys with the Lead Painters League competition. I have just dispatched my finally entry, an odd collection of Steampunk/Victorian Scifi figures and vehicles, including a scratch built stream tank.
It's a relief to get it over with, as it had been a long haul, but I have really enjoyed it, and I have painted a large number of figures (41 and two vehicles) that I otherwise wouldn't have got round to for some time, if ever. Over all, I think it was a positive experience.

For round 8 of the LPL, I was forced to 'cheat' a little, and posted some more of the Pulp figures I painted a while back. This bought me more time to work on my superhero team for round 9. This lot are a motley collection of spies, femme fatale and dastardly henchmen. The majority of the figures are from Artizan Designs, one of my favorite companies, but the ravishing redhead is by Pulp Figures, a Canadian company who have a wonderful range of pulp era figures that is always expanding.
The superhero team will be unveiled individual of the next week or so- with better pictures than on the LPL site (Again I struggled to get a good picture). The Team has a tight 'uniform' look, similar to X-men or Fantastic Four. I think that visually this makes them work better together, something that my super villains were lacking.
Leon and I are off to Salute 2010 in London tomorrow. I have got to get up at 0520 to get the train. Salute is the largest Wargamming Expo in the UK, and just about everybody is going to be there. This is my first year, and I have a long shopping list of things I am after.

Monday 5 April 2010

Since I started my Blog, I have come across a number of other blogs with a similar theme (ie 28mm superheros and villains). I thought I might share them with my readers.

My mate Leon, who I am always going on about because he gives me his hand-me-down figs from his lead mountain, and because he is my regular gaming opponent/role playing buddy, has his own super hero blog, largely dedicated to Pulp City, as superhero skirmish game. He blog is called Pulp Citizen, and it includes lots of lovely pictures, tips on scenery making, and random mutterings about obscure comics (he is a comics book geek by the way).

Scott Pyle, aka Fourcolorfigs, has a blog called Four-Color Figures, which is dedicated to all manner of figures, both in 28mm and 15mm. As far as I know he is also the driving force behind the Superfigs range of figures, and SuperSystem, another skirmish system for superheros.

A brand spanky new site I have just found is Bubba242, all the way from Oz, called Super Small Supers. So far he has only posted one link, with three nice pics, but he has already picked up four followers. It took me about six months to do that! Check him out, and hopefully he will be encouraged to do more.

EDIT: I just realised I forgot Molotov's blog, Paragons. Molotov's primary interest seems to be in converting figures to make them into superheros and villains. He doesn't update that often, which is a shame, because he has come up with some really smart conversions.

I am sure there are more out there, and if anyone knows of any, please let me know. Hope you enjoy these!

Saturday 3 April 2010

This picture is my latest Lead Painters League entry, and features five gangsters I painted for my Spirit of the Century campaign. SoC is a pulp role playing game, ideal for these one off adventures when someone can't make it, or between campaigns. Pulp is a genre of adventure gaming based on the trashy stories that came out in the twenties, thirties and forties, featuring heroic adventures, dastardly villains, evil Nazi scientists, rocket men and so forth. I have included it because, while not strictly speaking Four Colour, many of the heroes of pulp stories were kind of proto-superheroes, like the Shadow, and the Phantom. It's easy to see their influence on the older heroes, especially the likes of Batman. Others influenced well known movies like Indian Jones, The Mummy, and Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.

The male figures are by Copplestone Castings, and the lady is from Pulp Figures. I painted them in a sort of sepia pallet in homage to my favorite gangster film, Last Man Standing. I love the way that film is shot in colour, but feels like it is sepia.

Next weeks LPL will be five crewmen from a pan-galactic trading vessel, then it will be back to four colour with a London-based team of Superheroes.

Thursday 1 April 2010

This is Hallow Eve, a self styled witch. She claims to be the reincarnation of a witch Red Toothed Gin, supposedly executed my Mathew Hopkins, Witchfinder General. She even tries to reinforce this image by spouting pseudo-Shakespearean English all the time. No evidence has been found of the existence of Red Toothed Gin as a historical figure, and experts speculate that Hallow Eve is in fact a mutant with some degree of telepathic and telekinetic powers.

I painted this one for my Lead Painters League entry- Supernatural Super Villains. It is a Superfigs mini- and I have to say, not one of my favorites. The sculpt on the face is poor, and it took a lot of time and effort just to get it looking half decent. That said, I am happy with the colour scheme of Halloween orange and black- I think it looks nice and four colour comic book, and not at all Gothic.
It's the 1st of April, and today it is my birthday. Thirty seven years old! So here is just a quick blog to let you know what I'm up too, because this is my first proper day off for some time, and i an acutely aware that I haven't been able to blog for some time.

Firstly, let me say thanks to my mate Leon, who sent me a very cool moonpig card featuring a picture of Hellsmith, from Pulp City, that he painted himself- and the Kick-Ass graphic novel. I have read a few pages of the novel already, and I am very impressed- very funny. We're all off to see the movie next Thursday, instead of our usual fix of Conan RPG (can't go out tonight- I'm off to the theatre with my wife to see the Hobbit- a birthday treat).

Leon and I got together last week for a couple of games of the excellent Pulp City, and this time I remembered to take my camera to record the event for my Blog. I am supposed to be posting them on Lead Adventure Forum, but I have been having problems with Photobucket's Bulk Uploader, which means I have to upload each image one at a time, which takes ages, but he's a few pics to wet your appetite.

The Bad Guys -Sister Bedlam and a couple of sentry 'bots, Mourn, Hellsmith and Nuke.

The Good Guys, Howler, Nuclear Jones, Six Feet Under and Harrier.
All the figures and scenery are Leon's (check out his Pulp Citizen Blog)
I was going to write a battle report for one of the games, but sadly I have lost the scrap of paper I wrote it on, so I will have to just write a summary from memory- I will post it in a few days (hopefully).
I also what to add a big Hi to James, who is my new follower- hope you like what you see here, and please feel free to comment etc- this makes me feel that there is more than just me and Leon reading the Blog.