Archive for the ‘A Tale of Gamers’ Category

Now hang on a sec   1 comment



Challenge to my fellow Tale of Gamers editors   2 comments

So 2012 wasn’t a great year for gaming for me. I was distracted  with work and family so painting/gaming took a back seat (as it should when matched against those 2). Here we are in 2013 and the first thing we always talk about in a new year is our resolutions. Every year I say I’m going to paint more and gaming more but I’m thinking to myself … what’s going to move me to honor these goals?

Let me tackle painting first. I love collecting miniatures and thinking about how cool a model will look when it’s all assembled and painted. Unfortunately, that process between opening the package and putting it on the table full painted is a bit tough. I’m a decent painter but it does take me a long time to finish a model. Assembling and priming is not a problem for me but I’m somewhat of a picky person when it comes to painting. I’m not satisfied with a bare bones paint job … mostly due to the fact that once I say I’m finished a model, my wife picks it up and brings it two inches from her face and looks at all the detail.

Going off topic a bit, my buddy two summers ago convinced me to be his running buddy and join his fitness challenge. I don’t like running and I wasn’t in really any big need of losing weight or improving my health. But somehow he convinced me to join and I went along with this regiment for quite a few months.

So back to painting, my idea is to challenge all my fellow “Tale of Gamers” or anyone else out there who’s in a similar boat to do the following with me:

At the start of each month, take a picture of one or more minis that you plan to finish by the end of that month. It doesn’t have to be a brand new mini in an unopened box/blister. Let’s face it, we all have a ton of unpainted, partially painted, almost finished, and/or finished but on a plain base minis … we need to finish these minis to make room on our workbenches for all the other minis we have piling up.

At then end of month, post again with the finished product and I mean FINISHED (which includes a completed base … that’s my crutch). Plus post a picture of the next month plan.

Who’s with me?

My January plan is to finish my Malifaux Neverborn crew. Lilith is finished except for her base. All the other minis are in some stage of painting so this shouldn’t be a tough month for me.


Posted January 4, 2013 by loychan in A Tale of Gamers, Malifaux

Enter the Trollbloods   3 comments

Looks like the Warmachine Tale of Gamers is well underway and I’m already seeing some Hordes discrimination.  Yes, Hordes is the the ugly younger brother of shiny well established Warmachine.

I’ve played a good amount of WM with my Khador army, so Hordes is a new thing for me.  Just before taking a trip to Vancouver, I picked up the Hordes Mk2 rules and gave them a good read on the plane.

The real difference I’ve found so far is that Hordes is more of a pay as you go system rather than a pay up front system.

So here are a couple of challenges I’m tackling with the Trollbloods:

  1. Trolls are pretty low priority for me (below Orks, High Elves, Khador & Tomb Kings)
  2. I find the color scheme of the Troll clothing pretty bland
  3. The Trolls are very detailed models and deserve a lot of attention to get them right.

All three of these challenges really lead to just one thing…

How do you paint models you don’t really want to paint?

It’s a question that everyone in the hobby eventually has to deal with.  Sometimes there’s a unit that’s essential to your army that you’re just not fond of the look of.  Sometimes your group wants to play something different from what you want to paint…and other times the models just look too daunting that you don’t want to take up that mountain of work.

Yes, I guess you could just play with primed models or bare metal, but here’s a couple of tricks i’ve used to get the tough jobs done.

Paint flesh first

Miniatures painting is all about bringing a tiny sculpture to life and the fastest way to get that life going is to paint the flesh first.  So the first color that went down on the Trollbloods was a base blue for their skin.  Sometimes just that first color is enough to get a miniature going.

Ignore Details

Most miniatures have 3-5 large areas of color.  By ignoring things like eyes, jewelery, belts, runes, etc. you can kickstart a miniature and get them on the table faster.  Modern paints are such high quality that you can easily go back and add details without overpainting.  Just be sure to keep your coats thin.  For the trolls, I used blue for flesh, leather for clothing and metal for armor.  I also painted the base green and black.

15 Minutes Only

Getting to the point where miniatures look great takes a lot of time.  A single miniature probably takes about 6 hours.  Some of this time is saved by painting like an assembly line, but the amount of work is still heavy at best.  To trick your mind into thinking it’s a shorter time, what i like to do is start by painting in 15 minute sessions.  By sitting only for 15 minutes, I generally have an appetite for more painting rather than being burned out by a long session.  Also, 15 mins per day for week adds up to almost 2 hrs!

Read the Lore

By reading the story behind the miniatures and understanding the personality of them, you get additional inspiration to paint em.  Reading lore is a fast way to increase that emotional drive behind painting.  From what I gather, the Trolls are a fading race, much like the Wood elves or the High Elves.  They are slowly being forced off their lands and are having to band together to survive.  After my game against the Menoth, I can see why…

Play more!

By far, the most effective way to get rid of the painting blahs is to play a game with them.  After my recent clobbering by Azmzero’s Menoth i cannot think of anything except getting these blueskins painted and back on the table.

Give a couple of these tips a try and let me know what works for you.


Rob needs to learn to give his posts titles so that someone like me doesn’t log in and give them silly titles like this one.   3 comments

It’s been a while since I’ve touched brushed to paint so it was nice this morning when i finally got to start on the Aurlocks. Going through the figures, only five belong to the starter. I don’t really know the names of the figures as I don’t have the rules or the stat information, but i’ll try to describe them and the current state they are in.

Slender Skeksis-like naked hunter with a spear “SlimJim”

SlimJim was painted over with a very rich blue and then inked with the older GW blue ink. While I loved using the older GW inks, the did tend to leave a very high gloss on the figure. So Jimmy looks like a sweaty hunter or plastic skin hunter. On of the hopeful results of this repaint will be to eliminate this sheen from the figures.

Frog Shaman mixing weeds “YahMan”

Yahman looks like only the skin is painted on this one. A few other broad areas are blocked in including loin cloth and mortar / pestle.

Axe spinning Wolf-like dude “Wolfgang”

Wolfie is the least completed. looks like I through a Space Wolf grey on this one and a quick wash. Again there is a slight gloss to his finish. I think this may be also due to the high shine of the plastic that was used to create the figures.

Big Ogre with club and dreads “Bubba”

Like Wolfie, Bubba was a quick coat of what looks like that dark lizard man green and another wash. He’s so dark, that I’ll probably try and highlight him to a more middle tone green / brown.

Another Skeksis-like shaman with a staff “IceIceBaby”

The Ice man is closest to completion. Again he’s got that plastic like skin and the same color scheme as Jimmy. He also has the most detail completed on him, including a nicely done tooth necklace.  You can’t see the shiny skin below as i snapped this after i completed the skin repaint.  You can see the effect in the feathers though; that’s pretty much how the whole model looked.


After reading Justin’s posts, I really liked the way he’s painting on figure at a time. So, i started this morning by working on IceIce.

First task was to lighten the tone of the blue to an almost pale grey. Along with this, I covered up the high gloss ink with a matte reaper blue that’s the approximate colour of denim. While painting I recalled using the ink technique because it’s a nice fast way to get shades and contours. With this attempt I decided to go back to the roots of painting. No drybrush, glazing, inking, scumbling, etc. Just pure painting…just like Bob Ross.

The second task was to add a bit more color depth to the leather clothing Ice is sporting. The first attempt was simply a commando khaki base with some chestnut ink for shading. I started by painting with Dev mud…not inking. I find the new line of GW inks work very well as paints as well as for washing. Middle highlights were done with Iyanden darksun. The Middle shade was good ol snakebite leather. Finally, upper highlights were done with desert yellow.

Sounds like a lot of work, but the whole thing only took about 15 minutes. It’s such a small area you’re working with, so the layering is really just touching the model in a few key places. The result is not a huge change, but definitelybetter than the flat original job.

The last big change is the feathers. Most of the figures have some well sculpted feather details. The studio models have these feathers painted black. I think thematically they represent crow feathers. Unfortunately with black feathers, so much detail is lost. With a quick google search on Native American Regalia, most of the feather designs have a light color root with a dark colored tip.  I used both Ogryn flesh and devlin mud to paint in the shading for the white feathers.  The tips were just a simple reddish brown.

So with Ice done, I was really surprised at how much the feathers made a difference.  The model went from being a very dark sinsister looking shaman, to a much more in tune with nature shaman.



Next up is SlimJim the hunter…

Posted June 4, 2012 by coffeedream in A Tale of Gamers, Alkemy, Aurlock Nation

In the Shadow of the Beathacrann   Leave a comment

We have started our next Tale of Gamers focusing on Alkemy originally by Kraken Editions, now continued by Studio 38.  I originally encountered this game at Origins in 2008 or 2009.  A friend and I then direct ordered the whole line from Kraken  and managed to get the game played a few times.  As is the way with these things interest in the game dwindled, likely due to no one else having any models.  Fast forward to 2011 and Kraken has gone bust.  My FLGS has the entire line on clearance so I grab one of everything and dump it in my basement.  During the very brief interest in Heavy Gear Blitz I had traded the Jade and Khaliman portion of my Alkemy to Justin.  Justin and I get talking about the various things we have purchased and left to languish and the idea comes up to try to make use of the Alkemy stuff as a Tale of Gamers challenge.  And here we are finally starting.

Alkemy is a fairly run-of-the-mill fantasy Skirmish game with a few notable exceptions.  1) It is action point driven (gaining popularity now but at the time most games were IGOUGO or alternating), 2) reserving AP for your opponents turn is often critical, 3) Ranged shooting is quirky in that you need to guess the distance to be able to get a “boosted” hit, and 4) Close combat efficiency is determined by a rock-paper-scissors type card selection mechanic (this ties in to saving AP as the defender must pay AP to do something other than just take the hit).  I’ll get into more details about the rules in later posts when we get our first few games played.

I have taken the Kingdom of Avalon as my faction.  A quick synopsis of their fluff is that they were a people who were once under the banner of the Jade Triad and they declared their independence.  They gain their power through a diabolical pact with an ancient entity known as The Beathacrann, some form of Demonic Tree-God.  The Beathacrann infects the populace with spores that grow inside the people giving them unusual powers.  Most of the models in the faction seem to have limbs that have been partly replaced by tree limbs or vines.  I normally do not select the evil faction but in my previous plays a few years ago I focused on the Aurlocks (a somewhat “good” faction) so I wanted to try something different.

For the first phase of this Tale of Gamers we are all just working on the starters.  In addition to that I have a second starter (in french) and everything released up to Wave 3.  That is:  Lodegarius, Templar Novices, the Starter add-on, Lotharius and Retiari.  The point values in the starters do not match so when we start playing our first games we will have to figure out, as a group, what we should do to reconcile that.  I think the starters were intended to be played against each other ignoring point values, but I am not 100% sure.

When I first picked up these models I was in a painting mood and I got quite a ways through painting my original starter.  Due to work and family constraints the guys agreed that I could just continue where I left off to give me a bit of a head start (I tend to fall behind very easily).

Countryside Priest and Garlan at the start of this ToG

Recruits and Crossbowman

As you can see I am a fair ways along with the models.  The big problem I see is that I painted these years ago and will probably have a tough time matching the look.  My painting hasn’t really improved over that time but I definitely use different techniques and a completely different paint line.  I will probably need to touch up all the models to get them to look like they are part of the same army.

Aside from getting the models onto the workbench and starting to put some paint on them the next thing I need to do is sit down with the revised rules (“Genesis”) and give them a really good read.

Hopefully a rules overview will be my next post…and hopefully soon!

Thanks for reading!

Khaliman Sorhna Oracle – Complete! (2 of 13)   1 comment

Tonight I finished up a second model from the Khaliman starter, the Sorhna Oracle.

*cue obligatory bad photo*

Yeah, this is one of the worst photos I’ve taken and put up, but I had to rush the shot before helping my son get back to bed.  Or crib, rather.

I’ll be setting up my photobooth in the (bright) kitchen probably on Monday (tomorrow is my son’s 1st birthday party, with gaming afterwards), and will get some good pictures taken.

Anyway, the Sorhna Oracle is the Alchemist in the starter, and uses the power of Water.  I don’t have the card with me right now, but I believe her spells are buff spells for the rest of her team, so having her nearby is good.  This reminds me, I need to play a game or two so I can write a review on the models based on their stats and in-game roles.

This is how I painted her:

  • White prime (gesso).
  • Fur: Rucksack Tan base, Gryphonne Sepia wash, Rucksack Tan/’Jack Bone highlight, ‘Jack Bone highlight.
  • Dress: Light Gryphonne Sepia wash, Morrow White highlight.
  • Jewelry: Pig Iron with Badab Black wash.
  • Staff: Glorious Gold base with Gryphonne Sepia wash; Pig Iron icon back, Asurmen Blue wash with Morrow White highlight front.
  • Knife: Pig Iron blade; Glorious Gold hilt with Gryphonne Sepia wash.

This is another simple paintjob.  I want these models to look good from a foot or more away, and great when on the tabletop.  I think I’ve done this with both models so far.  But the other three models from the starter are going to require a little more work and attention, what with tiger stripes and jaguar spots, and whatnot.

I think Andrew and Ilan are going to get a game in this Tuesday, which will hopefully get our ToG gaming ball rolling, and inspire the other guys to work on their models and post about them.

I’m going to switch gears a touch and start working on my Dark Age Outcasts.  I’ll probably do a trio of them before coming back to my third Alkemy model.  As we’re already well past the mid-month mark of May, I had better get a move on if I’m going to meet my first goal of completing the starter by the end.  Stay tuned for more progress.

Thanks for reading.

Posted May 19, 2012 by mrborges in A Tale of Gamers, Alkemy, Khaliman Republic

Khaliman Malikh Jaraya #1 – Complete! (1 of 13)   1 comment

Khaliman model #1 is complete!  I present to you, a Malikh Jaraya, 1 of 2 from the starter box.

Yeah yeah, I know, not ‘complete’ complete.  I’m debating what colour to do the eyes, and I might add some colour to the snout, and I need to do her base.  But she’s done right now, so I can start on something else.

I believe she is either a panther-based catperson.  Either way, she’s a ‘ferocious warrior,’ or at least that’s what the back of her stat card says, hidden by her ‘voluptuous grace and feline beauty.’

Well, to capture her feline beauty, I used the following:

  • White prime (gesso)
  • Fur: Ironhull Grey base, Badab Black wash, Trollblood Highlight highlight.
  • Pants: Gryphonne Sepia wash, Morrow White highlight,Skorne Redlines.
  • Sash/tubetop: Cygnar Blue Base base, Cygnar Blue Highlight layer, Frostbite highlight.
  • Headress: Gryphonne Sepia wash.
  • Sword: Pig Iron blade, Babad Black wash; Battlefield Brown hilt, Glorious Gold layer, Devlan Mud wash.
  • Scabbard: Battlefield Brown base, Bloodtracker Brown highlight; Glorious Gold/Devlan Mud metals.
  • Straps: Bloodtracker Brown base, Devlan Mud wash.

The picture doesn’t do her justice, of course.  The good news is, I just ordered a little light tent (I know I could make my own, but I have other things to do with my time!), so pictures should hopefully be getting better soon.

What’s up next?  Well, likely another Khaliman model, but with such great weather these days, hopefully I can get started on my Outcasts for Dark Age.  I also have a new Malifaux crew, the Showgirls, that I bought off Scott.  I’m excited to use them, as, well, I’m too good with my other crews! Hah.  Watch this blog or 10-4 to see what I end up doing next.

Thanks for reading.

Posted May 13, 2012 by mrborges in A Tale of Gamers, Alkemy, Khaliman Republic