Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Frontline Gamer: the Imperium of Man as a metaphor for Games Workshop.

Blogging will be sparse these days as I am constantly distracted by Space Marine's fantastic multiplayer and unimportant things like job-hunting, but also because my paint station isn't the most convenient here at home:

It's a tad cramped, is what I'm saying, and no room to set up my laptop to watch the Thundercats reboot while I apply bloodstains to my Druchii.

So, I'm compromising a bit, by resorting to plagiarism.  Well, not really, but kinda.  I recently came along a fantastic article about the current state of Games Workshop, which can be read here.  It compares GW to the Imperium of man; massive, dogmatic and fanatical, beset on all sides by heretics and aliens (both old and new) and decaying away.  I thought it was a well thought out and provoking extended metaphor/theory/argument, and I'd urge you all to take a peek at the very least.  Just pop over to see what the fuss is, in a way.

That's all for now folks.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Cauldron of Blood WIP and Greenstuffed-Guardsman Test.

Yay for experimentation!  Today I tried a non-harmful substance - Green Stuff, and the poor recipient of my attention was a single Imperial Guardsman that my brother had gained as a freebie from one of GW's 'Paint a Mini in Store and take it home with you free!' things they do to hook in naive youngsters.

Now, to be in this hobby you need to have some level of a creative streak in you, and of course that comes in all shapes and sizes and varying levels of skill and so forth.  Mine is specifically 2D-oriented, what I call doodling, what others may call drawing or artistry (but I tend to do it when I'm bored or supposed to do something else, so doodling seems more accurate).

Having exalted myself as some kind of Leonardo da Vinci reborn (more like Picasso or whichever caveman first began spreading his own feces on the wall of his cave in the shape of a bison), I now must upload said blueprint, otherwise there was no point in mentioning it...

Soz for low quality.

Looks like Magneto with a cold, now that I think of it...
Anyways, I probably came up with this as a some kind of a divergence from the old Guard style, which is "Take a Real Life army and put it ... IN SPAAAAAAACE!!!!!!!"   Now, I'm not saying that the classic GW IG style doesn't work, au contraire, I do enjoy the Imperial Guard's style and background very much.  The Vostroyans and Kriegsmen especially.  However, I did think that in an Universe as large and varied as 40K, there would be space for a planet whose culture had diverged slightly more than usual away from what had existed before.  So, enter the Abraxians.  No real reason why they look different, and there's no evidence to contradict the theory that their planet was simply left with libraries full of Cyberpunk comics and that they decorated their armour accordingly, so we must assume that's how it was.

The scarves/ heavy clothing are from the fact that Abraxia is a Storm World, constantly covered in gales, storms and hurricanes that are home to some of the largest mammals in the galaxy.  The hunting these monsters provides the planet with its main export, foodstuffs.  The heavy armour is to protect the Abraxians from flying pebbles and such that can strike with the force of slingstones when the squalls come again.

Anyway, here's my Guardsman:

 I should mention that this Guardsman was already assembled when I wangled him from my brother, and so I had to knife him a bit to apply green stuff completely.  Bits affected are the head, the forearms and the legs.  And I'm really not used to Green Stuff.  I wouldn't mind doing an actual Guard army like this at some point, so tell me what you think before I commit my savings into large orders of modelling putty.

Finally, some more Dark Elf goodness, I've been building a Cauldron of Blood from scratch since Easter or so, and I wanted to show it here.

I want it to look like it's made of white and black marble; black because of the obvious sinister reasons, and the white will be good as contrast to the splatterings of blood that will eventually decorate it.  For the crew I'm using the Witch Elves Command models, because the only way to get the official models is to buy the entire cauldron set, which defeats the point of scratch-building, aye?

And yes, it floats.  Since it can actually move along the battlefields in the game (preferably right behind an unit so as to give it lovely bonuses), making it a static object seems daft.  Now, I have seen a Cauldron which was mounted on a chariot drawn by Cold Ones, but I though it looked far too bulky and un-sleek.  Not elfy.  So, according to the Malus Darkblade novels, the temple of Khaine has its own magicks and tricks.  So, floating Khainite Cauldron ho!  Thinking of mounting some Empire flagellant heads on top of those white pillars if I'm honest, and have the blood dribble down the sides...

Anyways, tell me what you think!

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

INFINITY and beyond

Ah, Toy Story...

Good times...  Incidentally, Paint Shop Pro = hours of fun.

Anyway, back to business.  Job hunting is currently a process akin to mining coal using a pick made of marshmallows and glitter, so I though "Sod it" for a day, and went back to painting my INFINITY models.  I briefly explained what Infinity is in a previous post, and repeating myself would technically be redundant.  However, as our minds eagerly accumulate new information every day and only some of it useful I'm sure, we do have a tendency to forget.

Suffice to say that Infinity is a skirmish game in an alternate future that is for once, not dystopian.  Which of course isn't unique in itself by a long shot, but considering how Warhammer "there is only war" 40,000 dominates the field at the moment, and how the second-runner, Warhammer "there is pretty much only war and witchcraft and burning witches" Fantasy Battle is also a bit morally... vague.  In contrast, Infinity is all bright and sparkly with anime-esque artwork and design, with stock futuristic weapons and anti-gothicness (well, the Teutonic Knights are quite gothic I suppose).  If lack of grimdark doesn't rock your boat, that's all good.

In Infinity, war isn't something humanity does because it's survival is under threat, war is something they do because... well that's what humanity does.  Eat, drink, poo, watch rubbish reality TV shows and wage war.  The lines are drawn along pretty neat and possibly unsurprising lines; Panoceania, the advanced, rich Western culture; Yu Jing, its far-eastern rival; Ariadne, separatist colonists; Haqqislam, the "New Islam" which is more of a desert army/ Islam *before* the fundamentalist mindset became prevalent.  Then there's the Nomads, a religious space-station-dwelling lot; the Combined army, who are the game's only aliens; and ALEPH, a supercomputer that essentially runs all of humanity's advanced technology.  Lastly, you have mercenaries, which can be hired by any faction, and (maybe? possibly) fielded as a separate army.

Now, I have meandered enough.  If you want to know moar about Infinity, here is a post by dicerolla which itself links to several other posts by Frontline Gamer who is an unashamed convert to the Hispanic venture.

And now... Keisotsu Butai!  Essentially an ethnic minority (well, the Japanese) that the Yu Jing empire uses as cannon fodder in high-risk operations.

Painting them was a complete and truly joyful experience.  Darren Latham, formerly of 'Eavy Metal, said of Seb Perbert's Deathmaster Snikch model that it was a beautiful model that seemed to be begging to be married to an equally beautiful paintjob.  Well, I don't know if I've done them justice.  But it was also good to paint models that have 'True Scale' proportions instead of GW/PP's 'Hero Scale' proportions.  Something refreshing about it somehow.

The Mustachio

The Female


 Please remember to comment, click on pics to see the full size and have a happy hobbying day.

That's all folks!