lauantai 31. toukokuuta 2014

Marines move out!

Well Modern May is drawing to an end and I haven't really made much progress considering my goals. I started a new job and it has really kept me busy with longer hours than previously and quite a bit more travel too so hobby time has been at a premium lately. So not much painting going on and I haven't even had time to read any blogs that I've been following. Running out of bases didn't help with these guys either as I normally paint the bases first and didn't want to start on some minis before putting them on their bases.

Anyways this is the last patch of Woodland camoflaged Marines, though I'm a bit tempted to paint the second bunch in the same camo too. This was the first time that I really tried painting darker skintones. I tried to go for a Latin American and African American look on them. I guess the African American skin turned out quite nicely, but the more reddish Latin skintone looks a bit off to my eye. Might have to try a really dark central African skintone sometime too. Maybe when I get back to my Warhammer Fantasy Chaos army.

 I've got the first Oshkosh finished with the main paintjob now. Preshading, dark yellow and then some colour modulation with a lighter yellowish colour. Next up painting the details and then weathering. My frogmen team is also more or less on the way. They are a bit difficult as their gear is 95% black in real life and trying to add contrast to the minis is a pain in the butt. I've now got them painted with a black base and a few shades of grey applied with an airbrush followed by a black wash to sharpen all edges. Looks good close up, but too monotone for gaming distances.

lauantai 24. toukokuuta 2014


Well Paul at Dog of War put me up for a Liebster award. Thank you for that!

A lot of the blogs I've been reading have already been nominated so I think I'll give up on trying to find 11 blogs and try to focus on a few interesting ones that need more exposure! And maybe throw in some Nordic flavor to spice things up a bit.

Jason Myers with two blogs actually! Both have been a quiet since last summer but have sprung back to life recently and will hopefully keep going strong! His main blog Der Feldmarschall has a lot of interesting history bits and a combined Immer Vorwärts blog contains an interesting 1813 Napoleonic project in 28mm.

Mazikainen is a fellow Finn with a blog containing some great looking games, especially in 6mm so go check it out. On Wargames and Such

Juha is one of the "Grand old men" at my gaming club and has a blog called Mentor. Mainly in Finnish only, but a lot of eye candy that seems to be universally comprehensible!

And another one from my club, this time by Mika. Femoral Head Ostectomy has crazy amounts of pictures from both Mika's own projects and from club events. Especially his Vietnam themed Ork army for 40k has some nice conversions to check out.

Burkhard has a great blog "dhcwargamesblog" with a lot of amazing eye candy too! And plenty of different projects so you can find something from everyone from there.

I guess I'll leave it at that at least for now! And now for the (trick) questions.

1. Why did you start blogging?
Mainly to chronicle my painting for myself and try to keep a track on my projects. Showcasing painting on the side never hurt either .)

2. If you could change one thing about the wargaming hobby, what would it be?
Probably the social status that comes with it. At least here in Finland it's usually seen as a little kids hobby by a lot of people and you don't necessarily want to advertise this as your main hobby. People mainly just see the small plastic and lead "toys" and don't realize that there is more to the hobby than just pushing them around while grinning like a madman.

3. What is best in life?

4. Do you want to live forever?
Who would? I'd imagine that it would be a bit boring. Plus the amount of space needed for all the wargaming stuff accumulated over that time would be crazy...

5. Fame or fortune?
Fortune naturally! It's better to rule from the shadows with your fortune than be the famous puppet who takes the fall when things go south :)

6. What miniatures are you most proud of having painted?
This is a difficult choice. I'd probably go with my Nurgle Daemon Prince or a Napoleonic casualty marker that both had quite a bit of conversion work done on them.

7. How do you deal with burnout?
Computer games and sports. Either going to the gym or riding one of my bikes or then playing World of Tanks or Battlefield 4 on my computer.

8. Why is a raven like a writing desk?
Both can be used to write a message, but neither can write one.

9. Star Wars or Star Trek?
Star Wars naturally! Though I'd probably put Battlestar Galactica quite high on the list too!

10. If you could only buy from one miniature company from now on, which one would it be?
Definately Warlord Games. The sheer amount of ranges would still give a nice selection of subjects.

11. What is your favourite takeaway?
I rarely eat any takeaway, but I guess I'd have to go with a very Finnish After-bar dish called 'Makkaraperunat'. Basically greasy sausages with fries and a lot of sauce!


torstai 22. toukokuuta 2014

Bolt Action AAR: Red Devils vs. Fallschirmjäger

We played a quick game of Bolt Action at the club yesterday with my Red Devils facing the Fallshirmjäger force of Juha. We opted to play the scenario "Hold until relieved" with the Fallschirmjäger defending a small group of buildings. We didn't have any preset points that we went with, instead just taking forces of approximately the same size from the figures that both of us had with us.

- Lieutenant with 2 men
- Medic with 2 men
- FOO with 2 men
- Medium Mortar
- 2 full infantry squads with 2 MG's and assault rifle in both of them

Red Devils
- Lieutenant with 2 men
- Medic with 2 men
- FOO with 2 men (free)
- Medium Mortar
- Vickers MG
- Sniper team
- 2 full infantry squads, 4 SMG's and Bren

Germans deployed one rifle squad next to the buildings and the FOO in the far end of the table out of harms way (which we actually messed up as the defending units should have been left within 6" of the objective).

I deployed my other rifle squad into the woods on one side of the small village, with the MG team covering them from a nearby hill and the medium mortar deployed behind some trees close to the village. Finally the sniper team was deployed on the other side of the village in cover ready to harass anything that tried to come from that way.

The preparatory bombardment proved quite devastating by taking out one man from the german FOO team and causing 2 pins on both teams on the table. This ended up causing the German observer team spending 4 turns trying to rally themselves and effectively putting them out of the fight.

I moved my infantry squads in cover towards the objectives while harassing the German rifle team with sniper fire. My mortar teams spotter moved quickly towards the buildings to take up positions to call fire upon any Germans advancing on the buildings. At the same time the artillery observer moved up on my left flank with the same intentions in mind.

After getting into position my spotter immediately called fire upon the German infantry squad out in the open. They had been unable to move due to unsuccessful command rolls thanks to the pinning cause by the preliminary bombardment. Luckily my first shot landed straight in the middle causing a casualty and additional pin markers.

 At the same time my reserve rifle squad had managed to move up to the same building occupied by the mortar spotter and were ready to move in to cover the other squads advance.

A german rifle squad moves into the objective building and immediately opens fire on my artillery observer who was hiding in a field close by. Luckily only one orderly was killed despite two MG's and a few riflemen opening up on them.

The other German squad finally rallies thanks to the shouts of their commander and moves into cover behind the final unoccupied building.

Things are starting to look bad for the Germans as my Red Devils start concentrated fire on them from all directions. Two squads firing with the help of my MG team on the hill manage to take out their NCO and both MG's and causing multiple pins which effectively put them out of the game. The rifle squad lurking in the forests moves up to finish the job by charging in the building and killing the remaining Germans and capturing the objective.

The remaining Germans move into position in the last house in the village, while their mortar lands a shell in the objective building.  With some lucky saves the Red Devils come through unscathed once again.

In the final turn my artillery strike comes in killing of a few Germans and adding 2 to 3 pin markers to all German squads. This meant that they couldn't really put up a fight anymore and we decided to end the game without playing the last round through.

The game ended with a clear victory for the British with only 2 dead and the objective safely in their hands. The Germans lost a complete rifle squad with the other one taking quite a beating in the end also. Most of their units had multiple pin markers on them and they were deemed ineffective.

My MG and sniper teams didn't really succeed in causing much damage, but they were enough of a threat on both flanks to hinder the German movement. With the British special rules the preparatory bombardment proved devastating as did the artillery strike that my free artillery observer ordered. Good use of cover and teams supporting each other really did win the game for me as I managed to tackle the highly deadly German squads one at a time before they managed to move into good positions and support each other.

All in all a much more positive experience from the game than last time. More scenery really does wonders for Bolt Action as you can really use cover to advance with your teams.

Red Devils reinforcements

Well I ran out of bases and had to resort to painting some remnants from last month instead of continuing with the Modern May theme. 16 more Red Devils to bolster the existing force. This included a complete infantry squad and a artillery observer team  with a couple of additional minis.

This time the stubble turned out a lot better as I added quite a bit of the medium fleshtone into the mix. Takes longer to do as I had to apply a few thin coats, but the results look a lot better too.

perjantai 16. toukokuuta 2014

Tutorial: USMC in Woodland MARPAT

Time for post #100! Hooray! I achieved that number a lot faster than I would have thought. To celebrate I have maybe a bit more meaningful post this time!

After a few request I decided to write up a tutorial about how I paint the MARPAT on my USMC forces. It's actually a lot simpler than it seems at first as the goal isn't to replicate the camo pattern, but rather to achieve something that looks similar from a distance.

From the close up picture you can see that the pixels form stripes and rather large patches of paint with the colour distribution being roughly 45% brown, 45% green, 7% black and 3% grey. The individual colour patches are also pretty large and can go around the whole arm for example. If you look at the picture below it's pretty clear that even from a distance of around 10-15 meters the pattern is pretty much indistinguishable and the only thing that's visible is the general shade. This is  pretty much what you should go for as the distances you normally view the mini from are going to be something like 40 meters in real life.

Colours used (Vallejo Model Colour unless otherwise stated):
  • 70824 German Camo Orange Ochre
  • 70890 Reflective Green
  • 79894 Russian Green
  • 70886 Green Grey
  • 70995 German Grey (or black if you like)
  • 70992 Neutral Grey
  • 70921 English Uniform
  • 70998 Khaki
  • 70917 Beige
  •  70825 German Camo Pale Brown
  • 70815 Basic Skintone
  • 70860 Medium Fleshtone
  • Games Workshop Devlan Mud/Army Painter Strong Tone Ink, or any other dark brown wash/ink
Painting the camo pattern
Start by painting the whole uniform with German Camo Orange Ochre. This is the base colour on the real uniform and being the lightest colour it is also best to paint it first so you won't have any issues with coverage.

The base colour is followed by Reflective Green. This should be applied with horizontal and vertical brushstrokes to simulate the sharp edges in the camouflage pattern. Cover roughly half of the whole uniform and try to make all the patches a bit irregular. Leave some holes in the green to let the original base colour show through.

Next comes German Grey that should be applied in a similar way to the green, except in much smaller patches. This layer should cover around 10 percent or slightly less of the uniform. Try to cover a bit of both previous layers and connect a few patches of green with this dark grey. This layer could also be painted black, but personally I dislike using a pure black colour in miniatures as it is too dark for the scale effect.

Final camo layer is Green Grey that should be applied very sparingly. Add small dots and lines here and there on the uniform. This only covers a small portion of the uniform so try to keep it to only a few percent of the whole area.

The strap on his boonie should be painted with Russian Green. It could also be painted with the same green as used on the uniform, but I wanted it to be a slightly different shade to add at least some variation to the model. Any dark green is fine.

Painting equipment
The webbing and shoes on the model are basecoated with English Uniform. These are then highlighted with a 50/50 mix of English Uniform and Khaki. Remember to paint all straps on leg panels and kneepads too as these are very easily forgotten.

The plastic parts of any kneepads are painted with Russian Green. I don't really bother highlighting them as they are such a small detail and a wash is enough to bring out detail.

Gloves are painted with Khaki and highlighted first with a 50/50 mix of Khaki and Beige followed by a final highlight of Beige. These could also be painted black, but I've chosen to have them a light colour to give a bit of contrast between the weapons and their hands.

All black items like the weapons, radios, hydration system chords etc. are painted with German Grey and highlighted with Neutral Grey. Once again I feel that pure black would make the items too dark. Also in real life dust would quickly give a light cover for all equipment so lighter colours can simulate that too.

Finally I finish painting the skin on the models. I've basecoated them with German Camo Pale Brown. From there I progressively work through Medium Fleshtone and Basic Skintone using around 5 layers. One layer of all the three paints as a pure layer and then 50/50 mixes in between.

I personally use GW's Devlan Mud and sometimes the new army painter ink versions of their popular quickshade dips. Nothing special about the job here, but remember not to go overboard when applying it over the uniform and webbing. The whole point of a camouflage uniform is to hide body contours and shadows, so having the paint pool in crevasses can really start to look bad. What you want to achieve is to add contrast to pockets, straps etc.

So just remember less is more when using a wash. It's always better to use a few light layers than a single thick one.

torstai 15. toukokuuta 2014

More USMC Fireteams

Finished up another two fireteams of USMC from Empress. Only two more to go and then to some other Modern subjects. I've run out of bases so I can't get started on more infantry yet, but I guess I can start to paint the first M-ATV next.

I have a tutorial on painting the uniforms coming up soon. I just have to finalize the text and should have it up at latest tomorrow.

I also got some new basing materials mainly in the form of Army Painter 'Poison Ivy' and some MiniNatur tufts. Especially the poison ivy seems to work quite nicely as small bushes.