26 Jul 2012

Eldritch horrors WIP


I've got my Strange Aeons book I was talking about on monday. My brother and I went to play few games on the first day, and played whole tuesday. He is 13 so he has problems being interested in one thing and I was surprised at his enthusiasm about the game. This, I think, is one of the best proofs about how good the game simply is. I'll write a review in one of my later posts, but in a nutshell, it has simple mechanics, which means everyone can get a hold of the rules pretty quickly. Yup, even a 13 years old with a limit knowledge of english. We've proxied all the miniatures, as I don't have any for the 1920's period the game is set in. This means that my zombies were played as zombies, as frankensteinish constructs, fishmen, giant vermins (well... :D) and so on. We did, however used two of my mostly done sculpts, that I'll be showing you today.

First, there is Shantak I've been working on for quite a while (and is still not done):

For those of you who aren't familiar with Lovecraft's tales, a Shantak is an elephant-sized, not entirely bat and not entirely bird thing with horse's head and scaly skin. I gave mine 4 eyes to get him a bit more nightmarish, but the head has this...wrong expression on it. He looks like if he'd been giggling. From the last time I've shown him, he got some work done on his tail, but mostly neck and a head done. I was having enormous problems with sculpting his feet (note for the future: sculpt those first), so I had to make a base first. Yes, make. A custom one, just for him. I gave him a rock of DAS putty, so he becomes bigger. Still not an elephant size, mind you.

I've made him modular now. I've glued his wings on the body, as I have to bulky the arms a bit and sculpt another few fingers on the bent part. His legs will probably be sculpted once I'll paint him and the body, because otherwise wings would make those parts pretty unreachable.
He was used as a "winged nightmare" monster in a game, which is a nice way of naming that allows you to use any remotely flying thing in its place. It might be good to add, that rules specifically let you play with any miniatures you'd want, not just with official range. In a game, my brother thought it'd be a good idea to grab my main character and carry him out table (to "nightmare's nest"), where my hero of the fairy tales was unheroicaly fed to little nightmares, efectivelly ending my campaign! Brave companions of my hero were unable to form searching party in attempt to save lost adventurer as they got beaten by the nightmarish beast as well.

Next is a formless thing that I could say, is finished:

It sits...or should I say in that given moment it occupies an area, as big as 50mm round base. Formless thing could be painted as one of the million formless things Lovecraft mentiones in his tales, or the "eyes" could be painted green and the body black to make a "shoggoth". I am pretty happy with how model turned out, but it is too one dimensional, so to say, and too low sitting. I'd need to add more layers of putty to make one parts of the monster higher. For putty, I've used milliput (yelow, not seen much as it was covered with other layers), greenstuff (darkest green areas) and a mix of both (my new favorite putty). It took me some courage to actually mix milliput and greenstuff (you mix 2 components of each first, so you got a ball of milliput and a ball of greenstuff, thne you mix those 2 balls together). You get a putty that isn't as sticky as greenstuff (which is way too sticky :P) and not as crumbly as milliput - its perfect. The eyes were made with balls that I've got from Carl at Grekwood miniatures (check the tab on the right, if you haven't yet ;) and holes and craters were simply made of sticking my homemade tool (a ball of GS ) into the fresh putty, varying the pressure from hole to hole. It gives monster's "ooze" or whatever the thing is made of, some more texture, making it more interesting. And, as you can see, I've made some a coulple of mouths I am not satisfied with and HAD TO make a tongue sticking out of one. I have to do something about those 5 little eyes, because they look too plain, but so far, wasn't lucky. Its too small area to work on and I'll probably just leave them as such. Maybe I should do something about those mouth under them to make something there a bit more interesting. Any ideas?

There's another WIP picture of the thing below:

Last thing I got to show today are three dollies that are slowly becoming monsters. I've only started working on them this week, so they're nowhere close the end. I'm sculpting them using "greystuff", or procreate Carl has kindly sent me to test. So far, I like the putty, but I've found out I keep mixing too much and that it cures way faster than other two putties I work with. As for stickiness it is less sticky than greenstuff and much nicer to work with.

A Night-gaunt:

Only made legs (keep in mind, no feet yet, I haven't learned a thing!) and started working on a body. If it goes as planned, he will end up "thin", rubbery, faceless and with wings. I'll go in more detail when I'll make more details!

A conglomerate:

...or, if you wish, a clump of human, animal and any other parts stiched together and given life.

 I will make this one up as I go, but here is anatomically uncorrect hoove:

(either the hoove or the knee is twisted around...or, now that I think about it, we could call it a back leg and everything ends up beign fine!)

And, for a femine touch, toes-walking human leg:
Probably borrowed from a fashion model!

The god-knows-what:

This started as another conglomerate (I just love the idea of those, pretty funny (and pretty deadly in a game), but I will probably make him a "dimensional shambler". I was thinking about making forearms two big tentacles, but now that I've coated one, I am thinking about cutting the other one and repositioning it in "reaching forward" position. I think I will, indeed, go that way to produce as wide range of different beings as possible, just for the fun of it. There is only 1 real reason to keep him as a conglomerate, his left "leg" (so right, watching the picture) is actually an arm. I thought it'd be funny to give him an arm to walk with...but I can do that again any time!

Lastly here is a group photo I took when I had them all nicely set up on table:

Overall, I must say I really enjoy sculpting those. Firstly, they're all made up so I am free to interpret everything, which means I can't do things wrong and I don't have to worry about proportions too much and secondly, it feels good to jump in a shoes of a reanimator! Muahahaha!

Well, thanks for reading and any comments, critics and ideas are warmly welcomed!


22 Jul 2012

Stone carving!

Among other resources at Strange Aeons homepage are beta rules for a game called (let me copy that :D) Von Unaussprechlichen Kulten. It is a game that uses Strange Aeons mechanics, profiles and much of everything else, but instead of the fight of good versus evil (like in SA game), evil fights evil here. There is a certain scenario in the book, where you put 3 obelisks on a table, to form a triangle of death and destruction. The miniatures that die in that triangle count as sacrificed for the certain gods and let you summon the daemons. Those 3 obelisks seemed as a good way to start working on scenery for the game. They will be used as a random scenery in all the games that don't use special rules for them, obviously.

I've made them out of blue foam. I had a little piece of it laying around for few years now. It's really a nice material! I've started by cutting 3 3x10 cm blocks and then rounded them a bit. When they seemed okay, I've sanded them and used a blunt pencil to draw the "sculptures". I went for basic protagonists; Cthulhu, Dagon (as my cult will probably be Dagonites, as in story The shadows over Inssmouth) and I was breaking my head for the third....I'd want to go with some of the real gods, but it would be hard to represent a galactic mist on a stone, hehe. I then went with an image of a Serpentman. There is a third cult archetype in the game, called the Serpentmen worshipers and it made sense to give them a stone of worship, as well.

Here are the 3 stones. First, dedicated to Cthulhu, has his profile on it. Second has a profile of Dagon, a fish-and-frog like humanoid (it is supposed to be a bigger Deep one). Third represents a Serpentman. I wanted to go with Mother Hydra, to make the water trio of the entities, but I couldn't figure of a good way to portrait it. Mostly, because I've heared she's supposed to look like Dagon, but mostly people portray it as a mythical creature of the same name...and that'd be just too onesided. I ma add, I quite like how the Serpentman came out, Dagon is way too boring and Cthulhu could always be better.

I've cut the edges of the plasticard I've based them on, because ordinary squares simply look boring and I can't cut a round shape out of so thick plasticard. I've added a bit od pavement details on the serpentman's obelisk, but I am not satisfied. I will add some grass and sand to hide the ugly shapes and I will use miliput on the other ones. I went with greenstuff because I wanted to keep texture as low as possible, but thicker brick would bring out texture way better.
 Here is a back shot:
On Cthulhu's obelisk, I've made a little "story", from top down: the stars are "right" on the sky, then you got an island with 2 palms (dont ask :D), water, and deep below there is an ancien city of R'lyeh, where Cthulhu was dreaming, waiting for that exact moment. Dagon, again, has the boring one. I've just made another image of him, even worse this time, wrote Father Dagon on it and cut the N away,  to make it look like it was written. I've started too wide and I couldn't fit a whole name on it :P. Below are 3 weird things that look like boiled eggs, but its supposed to be a fish...use your imagination! On third, again, I was pretty much without any good ideas, and I've just made a desert sun shinning on the ancient arab city of Valusia, where Serpentmen are supposed to be from.

Here they are painted this time, but still WIP, as Ihave to work on their bases:

 They're simply primed black, drybrushed grey. But I am horrible at it (don't know what i do wrong, really :D), so I had to wash them, drybrush them some more.Then I've washed the "carved" space around the monster's profiles to make them stand out more. For the final touch, I've painted their eyes to give them some constrast. Dagon is still meh, Cthulhu is okay and I'm really happy how Serpentman's profile came out.

Here are the boring backsides, I was actually sorry I haven't left them blank a bit :P

On the SA front, I am still sculpting that Shantak. His legs are giving me problems, as does his face. And when I get there, as will little fingers on his wings. But I've made him a cool custom base and well, working on it slowly. I am also working on some other monster, but I will show you the sculpts in my next post. I am really trying to give out one thing a t a time, hehe.

On the NMRIH front, I'm painting my bodies now. For a teaser, here's a pic of them still green, but taken off their bases. Bases were too thick and when I tried carving around them, they were just silly, so I took them of and some of the minies broke:
To be honest, they're kinda awful, but I figured I should call them finished and work on other things. They look as they look so I'll be able to say "damn I made some progress!" next time I'll work on some! :P

Thanks for looking,

20 Jul 2012



today, I've got some pictures of the (satin! :( ) zeds I was talking about.

They're, again, nothing special, another 6 of WGF zombies. They're a rush job, actually, I'm using washes on them more and more. I didn't even bother with painting bare chest of the "corporate" one. Not too proud of them, to be honest. Well, they're fillers and here they are:

 The one in a red robe is supposed to be in slippers, he has just waken up, put a bathing robe over his pajamas and went to check his COOL NEW BLUEBERRY PHONE (no, that is not kind of phone I use. My is (by sheer luck) recylced and worh 1 euro and a year of subscription, I really don't need anything more than ability to call and send messages around). Well, he obviosuly got bitten and now he stares at his phone, not knowing what the thing is about. He's a zombie, after all! And no, I am not satisfied with his red, I should use some other color.

Below are some close up pics on the tattoo from the guy I've shown last time.  I took some shots with old couple from the Hasslefree, to show off brand new 20mm bases I've got from Carl. I've also got some bigger bases for my monsters and some ball bearings for the sculpts. He kindly added few extras and today I feel special again! :P 

Well, I got lost again...here are the pics:

As you can see, there is really no art in it. I've just drawn some lines with "german grey" mixed with base colour for skin, and then used skin colour again to "fix it". Up close it looks like a blob it is, but from further away, I think it looks like a tattoo would look from that distance. I was planning on doing one little motive, but figured whole tattooed arm would look a bit cooler, to add to the contrast a bit.

I've also taken pictures of some pillars I'm making for Strange Aeons and a progress on Shantak (well, more like "progress", all I've done is cut his legs, replace them and sanded his wings), but I've figured I should seriously make my posts a bit more thematic and more frequent instead of posting once a week and just throwing bunch of things in the posts.

Well, let that then be it for today,


16 Jul 2012



I got dragged down a black hole that wargaming produces to trap poor souls (again)!

...last few days my little brother and I playtested the test version of Strane Aeons (that you can try yourself by clicking here)

The ruleset is pretty simple, game is skirmish oriented (but don't be fooled about how you only need 3-5 miniatures per side, it gets costly if you want every single bad guy out there, lol), games can easily be played at home with table being just 2x3 feet. Plus the games are obviously short, then, which is good as my little brother runs out of interest fast, lol.

I wanted to get in the game even before I joined the zombies gamers and I've just crossed my rule about "not starting anything new before you run a NMRIH campaign". I really tried to hold back, but just couldn't do it. Again, the price is quite high, I ordered a main rulebook and an expansion, Morbid adventures. I figured I might as well buy them boght while I'm at it.

This means my blog will branch out a little more, but I will keep it a "horror wargaming blog" nontheless. I will proxy my first few games with my zombie miniatures and I will still paint what I got to paint before I...err..I'll try to paint what I got to paint before I buy anything for SA. The part I see most fun, however, is that I will be able to sculpt some more monster and actually use them in the game, which should give me a bit of a drive to finally finish my shantak (which will end up waaay to small :( ) and start some new ones, namely a night gaunt and a shoggot or other formelss demon and a hound of tindalos. I got quite few ideas, especially for the hound, but sadly, those never come out as planned.

Further blog related, I've played with a design a bit more, still going for a "scap book" look, but I've ditched the font, because I found it (albeit very nice) too hard to read. Also took my time to find a better background. What do you guys think?

Well, thats actually all I had to say. I'm getting some bases and ball bearings from Carl at Grekwood miniatures, which I will use for my little sculpts, I've painted 2 of the brummbars I was talking about and I've managed to try my matte varnish spray on them, soaked one.

Because blog post without a picture looks silly and nobody  bother reading it, here is a nice picture of Wilbur's twin brother, the Dunwich horror:

See you in few days with some real pictures,

14 Jul 2012

TAG Deltas in civilian clothes


I am a bit "late" with my post, but the good thing is, I got "my" camera back. And few litres of desert sand for the figures, lol.

I haven't been idle while this week at all. I got some more zombies painted (will show them next time, I can't give you guys everything at once :P), I am moddeling some FOW minefield counters and I am curretnly painting 2 of 4 Brummbar assault tanks. Those are last miniatures for FOW that have remained unpainted and I am pretty sure haven't seen a game yet. I ordered them because I've needed them on a torunament, but they came late, so my friend borrowed me his. When I got them, plastic parts really killed my joy and I've put them together and primed them. Then new edition came and brummbars are not as useful as they were (which is, to be honest, good, because now they can't be used to hunt tanks, which wasn't their historical role anyways). I'll surely put them in my next army, just so I get a go with them. I really, really need to play FOW more again. And painting those is a hope to get me in.

Well, my interest in zombie wargaming is not as stagnant, I've painted those two TAG's Delta operatives in civilian clothes:

The guy on the left is THE most characterful figure I own, imo. He's really awesome. Its hard to see on that photo, but I've covered his left arm in tattooes. Its nothing more but a bit of german grey (that I lately use instead of black, it just feels better), mixed with flesh tone, just slapped on without any real pattern, then I've patched it a bit with skin base colour, washed, and did skin as I usualy do it. That dulled the tatto and I think it made it a bit more realistic. The other guy is nothing special, compared to him, lol. Theyre both nice, I really enjoyed painting them, but there is one problem....my 60ml (!) bottle of vallejo matte varnish is somewhat "satin". You know, glossy, but not gloss. And I hate it. Seriously, the 17mm bottle was fine, but this annoys me way to much. I'll shake the bottle next time, to see if the problem gets fixed. I am by no means a perfectionist, but that really annoys me. If I'd want satin, I'd get myself satin -.-.

Sculpting wise, Im making some little progress with the bodies. I'll speed it up and call them done pretty fast. I am not satisfied with them, but well, they're supposed to be crappy as those are my first TRULY finished miniatures. But let that be a topic for another post.

The interesting fact: First to comment will post 400th comment on this blog! Thanks for that, too!


6 Jul 2012

The night of the updates!

I've actually wanted to make a post few days back, posting pictures of my little sculpting progress that I took when I've been taking pictures for my last AAR.

However, the thing is I've made so much progress I couldn't post those pics and I couldn't get myself to take the new ones. Sorry :P. But now I'm doing it!

Hobby-wise, I did quite somethings about half way. I'm currently painting 6 WGF zeds and Im having problems with the yellow and a brown wash, so I hardly get myself to paint them more. I'll just sit one day behind the table and finish them. Looks like I really can't do 6 of them at once...unless I'd want them all in same colours, which I do not want. That is one of the reasons you can paint more mantic zeds at once, but not WGF's ones. Or well, I can't. I think I won't paint any miniatures for a week or two then, to get my interest back, and will model and sculpt in the mean time.

I've also decided I will rush on with my campaign and I will start it eventhough I don't have all the minies and scenery built, nor painted. I will also drop my standards and won't have (too many) bloggers as my heroes. Well, I got me, but not civilian version...it was out of stock and I've changed my mind. And I got three other bloggers. Okay, plus Shelldrake, lol. Sorry mate! I will probably just paint the main heroes and make another post, showing the brave guys to you....and asking the real guys if they mind being glorified for eternity!

Well, let me save the rambligns about the campaign for some other day and get to the pictury stuff:

The bodies:

 Five of them, only one "sort of" female. After I've learned most of the people dislike bases, I've sadly figured my bodies would fall apart if I'd take them off the plasticard I've modeled them on :P. They're a bit more advanced now with rundamentary shoes, faces and some hands done.

 Above is a close up on probably the best hand I've sculpted so far. You can see he is supposed to get blown skull. If you guys own NMRIH, check the Events table for a hint ;)

Below, four of the body bags. Again, the third from the left is a bit more detailed now. The extra putty at the zip was cleaned and I've sculpted hands. If it is unclear, it is supposed to represent a dead body reanimating, tearing open his bag :P.

A close up on the face...you can't see much because the camera on my phone realyl isn't the best. Therefore, I pronounce this pic useless. 
 Another try?

Moving on, we got a little conversion. It is an Urban war miniature (you can see raw mini here ), Male with a pistol. The converted part is his right hand, now sporting a bad ass revolver, kindly donated by Lord Siwoc. I've positioned a gun a bit angled, as if he'd have problems holding it. We're talking about .44 magnum here, guys!

 Next is another one of my 50 unfinished projects, a sculpt of Cthulhu mythos monster, a little shantak. The things are described as bigger than elephants, but also as "growing larger every moment". I've sculpted mine as being in the earliest of those moments, obviously, as it isn't really the biggest one around.

Here are the early pics:

 It is a skeleton of wire and miliput base. Below is the first part of the details. Not the most detailed belly you'd seen, I'm affraid.

 I was working more on the sculpt later, the bottom itself is nothing spectacular, but here is the top:
Shantak's skin is supposed to be scaly. Scales on this side of the mini ended up quite nice, but are horrible on the other side. The problem is I was so lost in how could I do it, I went for hexes, of a kind. The tail and legs still need a lot of work. Included is a start of his head, but I'm lost on this one as well and it will take me a while to figure it out. 

Shantak is supposed to be something between the bird and the bat, here are its wings:
One turned out quite nicely, the other one not as much, so thats more like half-way done. He is supposed to be "sitting", which explains the wing's form. I've included a pic of assembled beast below, so it can give you a better picture of the idea.

So, seen from here, it needs work on the tail, on the legs, on the neck (I'll probably bend it a bit or something), the face and the wings. I will include few more fingers on the bends at the wings, something like Pterodaktyl's had. I planned on making a smaller one, but he ended up even smaller than I planned, so I could probably make a scenic base for him to sit on, to make him stand a bit higher. On the comparison pic below, you can see my yelow work in progress zombie (but he has been ruined with old brown wash by now). If you'd put a shantak on a round slotta base as well, he'd be a bit higher, to that might not be the best comparison.
 The reason I'm sculpting the beast is to work on my sculpting skills some more. I figured it might be easier to do something imaginatory, where I can't blow everything just because I've failed proportions. And I REALLY want to get into Strange Aeons game. I was looking at it before I started all this zombie project, but got turned away because rulebook was hard to get. Now it is a bit easier and I'm fighting great battles with myself, lol. I don't think people who aren't gamers know how dangerous hobby this really is!

 And if you thought thats all I've got...never! Here are some plank fences:

 Made of popsickle sticks I've been collecting for few years (yes, I wanted to get in the hobby for a while lol). I've cut the round pieces away, cut them on halves and scored them with "wired brush". Except it wasn't a brush but a circular add on for a bigger dremel. I kept poking my fingers on the stray wires...annoying. You can't see the marks, I guess, but hopefuly those are deep enough to stand out when I'll drybrush the planks.

Below, a size comparison pick with TAG headhunter mini:

...and now thats all for today.

Thanks for taking the time to read,