Monthly Archives: March 2015

Mother & Children: Figure 144 of 265

Chris Palmer

This week I painted the Mother & Children figure from the Townsfolk set.  That leaves just one more figure to go to complete that set.
     I prepped the figure in the usual way; soaking it in a dish of water with a couple drops of dish- soap added, then giving it a light scrub with a soft toothbrush, and then rinsing and drying.  I then glued the figure to a 1” black-primed fender washer with Aleene’s Tacky glue, and glued the washer to a tongue depressor with a couple drops of Elmer’s White Glue.

     I began by painting the mother’s dress with Folk art “Golden Harvest”.  I then painted the boy’s tunic with GW “Ice Blue”.   I then went back to the mother and painted her top and apron with White.

     Next, I painted the baby’s cloths with Americana “Dove Grey”. Then I painted the mother’s and boy’s skin with Americana “Mocha”, and the baby’s with Apple Barrel “Apple Flesh” I painted the boy’s shoes with Americana “Sable Brown”, and the baby’s booties and boy’s socks with Folk Art “Barn Wood”.  Lastly, I painted the mother’s shoes, and the integral white base, with accent “Real Umber”

     I painted the baby’s hair with Americana “Moon Yellow”, and then let the figure dry for a while.  After it was good and dry, I gave the entire figure a wash with GW “Agrax Earthshade” wash, using a wet brush.

     After the wash was dry, I painted the mother’s and boy’s hair Black.  I then drybrushed it with some Duncan “Slate Blue” to add highlights.  Next, I painted the eyes on all three figures, with Black sockets, White whites, an Black pupils. Doing those tiny baby eyes was quite a challenge, and he turned out a bit wobbly-eyed; but I could only paint over them so many times.   I then did skin highlights on the boy and mother with the “Mocha”, then added a little white to it to do further highlights.  The boy basically has no molded nose, so I tried as best I could to paint one in with highlights.  Same with the baby, who I did skin highlights on with the “Apple Flesh” with a little white added.  I then highlighted the boys tunic with the “Ice Blue” with a little white added, and the mother’s dress with the “Golden Harvest” with a little white added.  I highlighted her apron and top with plain white, and the baby’s clothes with the plain “Dove Grey”.   I highlighted the baby’s hair with Apple Barrel “Lemon Chiffon”.  Lastly, I painted the entire base with GW “Khemri Brown”.
      The next morning I gave the figure a coat of  Ceramcoat “Matt Varnish”.  The following day, I sprayed the figure with “Testor’s Dullcote”.

   I’m really please with how this little vignette turned out, despite the lack of detail on the kids’ faces.

Figure 144 of 265: Complete

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Slow Hobby Weekend

Buck

This was a busy weekend of activity with the kids, so I didn’t get much hobby work done.  My daughter’s First Robotics Team had a Cinderella moment at the DC Regional Competition on Saturday and is not qualified for the World Competition in St. Louis.  On Sunday I took my son to Frederick to a store where he could try out and purchase professional darts for the dart board we got them for Christmas.  The we took him to a local Italian Restaurant to celebrate his 18th birthday.

I found this figure in a box of unpainted lead a few weeks back and decided to knock him out.  I haven’t finished painting flocking the base, but the figure is done.

Except for the bases, I also completed these two figures (actually I finished two of each of them).  These are Laurel and Hardy in the French Foreign Legion as depicted in the movie Beau Hunks.  I don’t have any Foreign Legion figures, so I don’t know what I’ll do with them, but I really enjoy Laurel and Hardy movies, so I couldn’t resist these figures.

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Largish G.A.M.E.R. Game

Buck

A long shot of the table

A long shot of the table

Last night at HAWKs club night I ran a largish G.A.M.E.R. game.  Chris could only handle six players in his Bear Yourselves Valiantly game, so I too everyone else.  Most of the folks had played G.A.M.E.R. before, so we were able to jump right in.

Bill deciding on his next move

Bill deciding on his next move

The scenario featured four German infantry squads (with Panzerfausts and machine-guns) plus two Pz. IV H tanks and a Stug III trying to hold three buildings against three understrength platoons of British and American paratroopers supported by two Shermans and a Cromwell IV.  The initial setup was a bit chaotic with the paras entering two opposite corners, one German squad occupying each building, and the fourth German squad and the German tanks arriving as reinforcements.

Duncan's paras advance cautiously through the woods

Duncan’s paras advance cautiously through the woods

I was pretty happy that the rules were able to manage a ten-player gamer with lots of vehicles without bogging down.

A long shot of the table

A long shot of the table

The Allied forces did a good job of focusing on the objectives (the three buildings).  The Germans had a good initial deployment with two machine-guns covering the approaches to the buildings.  (Unfortunately for the Germans, Don didn’t seem to be able to hit anything all day with his machine-guns, so the Paras got pretty close to the building in the foreground of the above picture.

Duncan's paras advancing toward a German-held building

Duncan’s paras advancing toward a German-held building

Kevin's American paras rushing toward the German-held building

Kevin’s American paras rushing toward the German-held building.

Dave’s “die rolling” was typically abysmal.  At one point, all three weapons on one of Dave’s Pz. IVs were jammed.  He did manage to machine-gun Kevin’s American bazooka crew.  Kevin got off two bazooka shots first: one bounced, the other missed.  Dave traded shots with Jim’s Shermans.  When the smoke cleared both Pz IVs had brewed up, as did one of the Shermans.

Jacob's paras preparing to assault a building

Jacob’s paras preparing to assault a building

In the end, while the Allies were very close to capturing the buildings, but time ran out.  Jacob had nearly captured the building pictured above.  Kevin was inside the first floor of the larger, central building that Kurt had softened up with HE from his Cromwell.  Duncan was just outside the third building, and had killed the Germans defending the wall.  Despite heavy casualties, with another hour of game time, the Allies would probably have taken all three buildings.

Chris running is BYV caverns game

Chris running is BYV caverns game

Chris experimented with a new idea for Bear Yourselves Valiantly in which the units were battling in the Mines of Moria.  Also, I made a deck of cards for Chris to replace the various special dice.  While Chris said the scenario experiment didn’t go well, he said the cards were well received.  Apparently the limited ability to pivot and move didn’t play well with the limited mobility of the caverns.

A closeup of Chris' cavern game

A closeup of Chris’ cavern game

Below is an example of some of the cards that potentially replace the special dice.  I was able to get more information on the cards and also make the font significantly larger.  I am thinking about making these available on the Look, Sarge Yahoo group for people to download and print for their own use.

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Star Wars Miniatures

Buck

Last night Tommy and I played Star Wars miniatures.  He was once again the Rebels, and I was the Empire.  This time we used figures from the battle on Hoth.  We each took 100 points.

Tom had Han and Luke on Ton-Tons, Leah, some kind of snow machine-gun thing, and some troopers.  I had Darth Vader and seven snow troopers.  The snow troopers were significantly harder to kill than the Storm Troopers from the other day, having twice the hit points and better defense values.

Tom had really cold dice, and we learned that Darth Vader is a BEAST in hand-to-hand combat.  Though it was touch and go for a while, my Imperial forces eventually prevailed.  I was down to Vader and one snow trooper, but I finally took down Han and his Ton-Ton.

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Correction to Previous Post on Dice Progression

Buck

I found the error in my Excel workbook for this.  The table above is the corrected version.  Everything sums to 100% properly now.  Yay!

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Musings on a Dice Progression Mechanic

Buck

For many years I have had interest in implementing an opposed-die roll dice progression mechanic in a game.  Many years ago Cory Ring and I wrote a small set of rules for the HMGS MidSouth Dispatch (newsletter) that featured such a mechanic.  The problem is that there isn’t enough variance between a d4 and a d12 and then there is the big gap between d12 and d20.  The gap can be filled with two dice, but then you don’t get the same uniform distribution of results than a single die achieves.

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Recently, I found a company (http://ift.tt/1FMHWjz)  that sells d14, d16, d18, d22, and d24.  I wrote to them, and they were able to sell me 10 of each such that each type of die was a unique color.  Since these are uncommon shapes I wanted to be able to say, “roll the blue one and always mean the d14 — or whatever shape was blue.  They arrived recently, and I have begun to think about how to employ them.

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The basic notion is that abilities would have a base die as a part point.   Modifiers would then change the die rolled.  The attacker and defender would each roll a die, with the higher roll winning.  I have also thought it might be interesting if the difference in the rolls somehow indicated the level of success.  For instance if the attacker’s roll is three times the defender’s that might indicate some sort of critical hit.

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On a recent flight for work, I began to wonder about the probabilities of winning under these types of rules.  One of the reasons that this die progression approach appeals to me is that someone rolling a d4 COULD defeat someone rolling a d24.  But what is that probability?  So out came Excel.  The table below shows the chance of the attacker (rolling the dice along the left of the table) defeating a defender (rolling the dice across the top of the table). 

So, if an attacker roll d4 and the defender rolled d24, the attacker would have just a 6% of winning.  Note that the attacker must roll higher than the defender to get a hit, so ties go to the defender.  On the other hand, if the attacker rolled d24 and the defender rolled d4, the attacker would have a 905 chance of winning.  Again, ties go to the defender.

Looking at this chart, I was pretty happy with the way the probabilities laid out.  Then I stated wondering why things weren’t summing to 100%.  For instance, why was P(Victory, d4 vs. d24) + P(Victory, d24 vs. d4) not equal to 1?  Then Duncan made a comment that helped me figure it out.  It’s those ties.  Since some rolls are losses for both d4 vs. d24 and d24 vs. d4 those were the missing percentages.

The table (above) shows the probabilities of ties that are always failures.  For a d4 vs. anything, there are 4 rolls that are always ties: 1:1, 2:2, 3:3, and 4:4.  For d4 vs. d4, this is 25% of the total rolls possible (16).  To check my math, I then inverted the first table…

so the defender is down the left and the attacker is across the top.  Then I added all three tables together, yielding this:

Except for one cell (it looks like two, but this table is symmetrical about its diagonal) at 99%, all the math adds up.  I rechecked all the math and didn’t find an error, so I’m chalking it up to round-off errors.

18-sided dice

So, if anyone has stayed with me this far, I think the math shows that from a probability standpoint, the die progression mechanic is viable.

I am planning to implement this with something melee heavy so that weapons get a base attack die and skill and circumstances modify the die.  The defender’s armor gets a base defense die, with skill and circumstances modifying it.  I may try this in a couple of weeks with some Robin Hood figures.

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10mm Pendraken Lizardmen Units

Chris Palmer      This past week I completed some more units for my planned 10mm Lizardman Army for “Bear Yourselves Valiantly” mass combat fantasy rules.  Some of my readers will remember that a few weeks ago I posted the Giant Turtles that were the first Lizardman units I painted.
   So far, I did three stands of spear-armed troops, one of archers, and a Battlegroup leader, Wing Commander, and a Shaman.  Next up I hope to finish some cavalry and other assorted troops.

Three spear wielding Warbands and one of archers

The Wing Commander on his personal war-turtle “Pooky”, a Battlegroup leader with banner, and a wise old shaman 

A close up of the regal Wing Commander

Battlegroup leader

Shaman

Spear close-up….

..and archers.

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Water Wierd Translucent from Bones II

Chris Palmer

     This week I also completed the blue translucent Water Weird figure from Bones II.  I prepped the figure in the usual way; soaking it in a dish of water with a couple drops of dish- soap added, then giving it a light scrub with a soft toothbrush, and then rinsing and drying.  I then glued it to a 1” black-primed fender washer with Aleene’s Tacky glue, and glued the washers to a tongue depressor with a couple drops of Elmer’s White Glue.

     First, I gave the “creature” part of the figure a heavy wash with Iron Wind Metals “Dark Blue” ink.  I used a brush I had dipped in water, to help thin the ink slightly.

       When the ink was good and dry, I drybrushed the figure with plain white. I then painted the vessel and washer with Apple Barrel “Rock Grey”.

     When the grey paint was thoroughly dry, I gave the vessel a wash with thinned Black ink. When the ink was dry, I gave the vessel a good drybrushing with the base “Rock Grey”, and then some lighter highlights with Americana “Dove Grey”.
     The next morning I gave the figure a coat of  Ceramcoat “Mate Varnish”.  The following day, I sprayed the figure with “Testor’s Dullcote”.  After the Dullcote had had  a day to dry, I painted the “water” part with Americana “DuraClear Gloss Varnish”.

    I’m really pleased with how this figure turned out.  I really like the texture juxtaposition between the wet water and the gritty old vessel.

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Innkeeper and Wench: Figures 142 and 143 of 265

Chris Palmer

     This week I painted the Innkeeper and Wench from the Townsfolk set.  Since they were both such basically simple straightforward figures, I thought I’d work on both of them at the same time.
     I prepped the couple in the usual way; soaking them in a dish of water with a couple drops of dish- soap added, then giving them a light scrub with a soft toothbrush, and then rinsing and drying.  I then glued each figure to a 1” black-primed fender washer with Aleene’s Tacky glue, and glued the washers to a tongue depressor with a couple drops of Elmer’s White Glue.

        First, I painted the Wench’s dress, and the Innkeeper’s pants with Americana “Wedgwood Blue”  I then painted the Innkeeper’s shirt with Americana “Khaki Tan”.  Next, I did the aprons on both of them, and the Wench’s shirt, with White. I worked on their skin next, painting the Innkeeper with Americana “Mocha”, and the Wench with Apple Barrel “Apple Flesh”

     Next, I painted the beer mugs with Duncan “Slate Grey”.  I then painted the Innkeeper’s hair and eyebrows with Folk Art “Medium Grey”. I moved on to painting the Wench’s hair Crafter’s Edition “Spice Brown”.  I used the “Spice Brown” to also paint the Innkeeper’s belt and shoes.   I painted the Innkeeper’s cleaning rag with Folk Art “Barn Wood”.  I finished up with painting the foam in the beer mugs with Americana “Buttermilk”.

     After everything had a chance to dry, I then gave both figures a head to toe wash with GW “Agrax Earthshade” wash, using a wet brush.

      When the wash was good and dry,  I began the detailing.  I started with the eyes, doing both sets with White whites and then Black pupils.  Next, I did their hair highlights, using the “Slate Grey” for the Innkeeper, and Americana “Sable Brown” for the Wench.  Skin highlights were next with the base skin colors I had used.  I followed with doing highlights on the pants and dress with the base “Wedgwood Blue”, I then mixed in a little Folk Art “Settlers Blue” to the “Wedgwood Blue”to lighten it, and did some further highlights. I then used the base “Khaki Tan” to highlight the Innkeeper’s shirt. The aprons were next, and I used plain white to do their highlights, along with the Wench’s shirt as well.  I highlighted the cleaning rag with the base “Barn Wood”, and the beer foam with the base “Buttermilk”. I wrapped up the figures with doing small designs on each of the mugs with a mix of the “Wegdewood” and “Settlers” blues.  lastly, I painted the bases and washers with GW “Khemri Brown”.
     I let the figures sit overnight, and the next morning I gave them a coat of Ceramcoat “Matte Varnish”.  That afternoon I gave the figure a coat of Testor’s “Dullcote” spray varnish.

     Well, file these with figures that might have been great.  I unfortunately do not often notice the flashing on these bright white Bones figures until after I’ve started, and by then it’s too late; much to the detriment of these figures.  It seems I do a figure like these with the bad flashing, then become hyper about checking, then get several flash free figures and get lazy and start not checking, then get surprised with another like these…it’s a bad cycle.  Granted these are “background scenery’ figures in most cases, so it’s not the worst that could happen.  I also was a little heavy handed with the wash on the Innkeeper’s face, and it left a bit of a splotch by his nose on the left, I tried my best to hide it, but you can still see a bit of it. Oh, well. So, I move on to the figure next in line…

   Be sure to tune in Thursday for another Bones II figure.

Figures 142 & 143 of 265: Complete

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This Weekend’s Accomplishments

Buck

Five of ten US Cavalrymen mounted on "Death Jaws"

Five of ten US Cavalrymen mounted on “Death Jaws”

I have been working on these for a couple of weeks.  In a much earlier post, I showed some pictures of these old Ral Partha “Death Jaws” on which I mounted some female hussars.  I bought a second set of the creatures when we got Iron Wind Metals to pull these mold out of mothballs for us.  I have been waiting to figure out what to mount on them.

A closer view of the Death Jaws

A closer view of the Death Jaws

Many years ago, I built up a nice collection of Pass of the North figures for the Mexican Punitive Expedition and Americans vs. the Moros.  I learned recently that the Pass of the North figures are still available.  I ordered some of them and mounted them on the Death Jaws.  I like they way they turned out and look forward to seeing how they do against a bunch of crazed Moros.

The front of Granville National Bank

The front of Granville National Bank

Sometime before Christmas I finally got my hands on this Plasticville kit.  Greg, one of the HAWKs, had one in one of his “Dr. Who does something wild and crazy” games.  Since then, I have been coveting it.  My dad found it somewhere — he knows a lot of model train people — and I finally got it assembled in a painted.

The side of Granville National Bank

The side of Granville National Bank

The bank has a sign molded to it that says “Plasticville Bank.”  I made a “Granville National Bank” sign with PowerPoint.

Recently completed dog sled

Recently completed dog sled

Several years ago, I found a box with this sled in a “blow out” sale from RLBPS.  The box said a piece was missing, but when I tried to assemble it, all the parts seemed to be there.  Anyway, I had this partially finished on my painting table and completed it this weekend.

Another view of the dog sled

Another view of the dog sled

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