Saturday, 27 February 2010

The Heroine - Rachel Drake

Painted this miniature a while back. Not extremely pleased with the face, but otherwise I think it's okey. I can imagen this lady in quite a few different game settings. Rachel can pass for an adventure in Traveller, the Tuffleyverse, Laserburn/Imperial Commander, close to the Pelagic Dominate or Garn Confederation or even the Protolene Khanate or Kaamados Dominion. I might even throw her into the post-apocalytic world in Mutants and Death Ray Guns (MDRG). I specially like the yellow stripes running down her pants, got the inspiration from Han Solo.

Imorian Crimson Rebel colour scheme

The Crimson Rebels are gathering. According to Imperial Intelligence the Imorian Crimson Rebels under command of Zakir the Mighty are wearing dark deep red robes and a brighter red armour. So far no reports have indicated where they are gathering or what their intentions are. There intentions will hopefully become known in my next game of Laserburn.

For my Crimson Rebels I have adopted a red colour painting scheme. Went for a Mechrite red basecoat for the robes, armour and boots. Gave the armour and boots 2nd coat of Ruby red. The boots looked wired so I changed them into Astronomican grey and gave them a Badab black wash. I like to focus my painting on washes followed by highlights, as my other painting techniques aren't up to the standard I'd like. Got a lot of inspiration for using washes from Dropship Horizon.

Anyway, continuing with the painting. After the red basecoat the robes were washed twice with Baal red wash. Although I have grown a bit tired of GW games, they do make very good paints and washes. The foundation paints are excellent as basecoats or as the base when mixing a coat. Furthermore their washes are very easy to use and give a very good result. The robes were also given a light higlight of Mechrite red, after the wash had dried.

The armour was, after being painted Ruby red, given an Astronomican grey highligt followed by a double Baal red wash. Was trying to get very light red areas on the armour. It didn't give the finish I hoped for, so I think I'll try using a Skull White highlight instead on the next miniature. The weapon was given a simple Badab black wash on the bare metal. Quite a handy little way of giving the weapon a metallic look.

Achtung! 1st Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia

After evening and a days painting the first Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia is finished. As I have been painting them some background fiction on the unit has started to appear in my mind. I have included their back-drop story below, including some pictures on them. I have come to realise that they need some transportation, as their story has evolved. I see the squads mounted in Old Crow Goanna scout and Gecko scout vehicles.

The Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia has recently been formed to protect the newly establish Neu Swabian League (NSL) colony. The primary function of the militia is to provide security for the central settlement, star port and the few farms close by. It's secondary function is to operate in a policing function supporting the Koloniekommissar who is in charge of legal issues in the colony. Neu Habsburg was established by Krupp, Skoda & Siemens (KSS), but the profitability of the colony has forced the corporation to open up the planet for further colonisation of non-employed NSL-citizens. As a result the planet has come under the jurisdiction of the Koloniebüro.

Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia has been issued a standard uniform in a blue-grey colour. It is recruited from local colonists and has been given basic military training. The militia is commanded by Kommendant-Oberst Herbert Eppstein. The militia unit consists of only 2 six-man patrol squads and a 4 man weapons support squad. The Kommendant-Oberst also has a Leutnant Schiller as his aide, who also functions as the newly formed units technical officer.

Attached to the Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia is Koloniekommissar Melissa von Stetten and her assisstant Kolonieinspektör Franz Kohl. Their main task is to act in a policing function in the colony, mainly conducting investigations. The pair also work for NSL Intelligence, but this is unknown by everyone. Usually the Kommendant on a newly established colony is given this responsability, but the current Kommendant-Oberst is considered to be incompetent by several high-ranking officials within both the Koloniebüro and NSL military. However, he has several high-ranking contacts within NSL politics, which has helped both his military career and earned him the Kommendant position on Neu Habsburg. His incompetence is one of several reasons why Koloniekommissar von Stetten and he often finds themselves on opposite sides of an issue.

The uniform of the Koloniekommissarat personnel is the same as the Colonial Militia, but with a red stripe runnig down the side of the pants. In all policing issues the Koloniekommissar has jurisdiction over the militia unit, but in military matters the Kommendant calls the shots. The dividing line of responsibility is clear when the Koloniekommissariat conducts investigations, but when it comes to matters concerning civil order or security issues of the colony conflicts in the chain of command arises. In military matters the Kommendant has final say, although Koloniekommissar von Stetten has more military experiance than Kommendant-Oberst Eppstein. To make matters even more complicated when it comes to issues concerning KSS, the jurisdiction of their corporate security takes preference over both the Colonial Militia and the Koloniebüro.

With all the conflicting jurisdictions concerning Neu Habsburgs security the colony is far from ready to defened itself from any outside threat. Although there is at least one circumstance that should be benefitial to the situation, since the colony was established by KSS, the CEO of Krupp, Skoda & Siemens on planet is also the acting Koloniegouverneur, Direktor Matthias Tann. The vunerability and riches of Neu Habsburg hasn't gone unnoticed by others interested in the planet.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Colour scheme Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia

This is the first trial run on the Neu Habsburg Colonial Militias colour scheme. The miniature is a 15mm GZG SG15-C1 Colonial Militia. Unfortuneatly the casting of the miniature isn't up to the normal standard of GZG's miniatures. A lot of preparation of the miniature had to be done before painting and still it felt like the edges of the two halfs of the miniature were slightly off, creating an edge along the casting line. But, I do like the concept of the Colonial Militia miniature, specially the combination of male and female militia. The gender mixing and the choice of uniform captures the feel of a citizense militia in a newly estabished colony or a growing colonial community.

For the Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia I have opted for an Astronomican Grey coat followed by a Asurmen Blue wash and a highlight of Space Wolf Grey. This gives the uniform a blue-grey feel, that I even might use for my 15mm WW1 Austro-Hungarians. I imagine the Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia only being issued with one type of uniform, a standard uniform and without any terrain specific camouflage. The standard uniform is mainly to be used within the colonial settlement, and the militia's main task is to uphold security and policing functions within the colony, not conduct military combat.

Hopefully, my current vacation will make it possible to have the 16 miniatures I own painted and based before bedtime today. The miniatures will be organised into 2 patrol squads and 1 heavy support squad.

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

It's all about the brush

It still amazes me how important the brush is when your painting. This evening my painting has centred on the faces and hands of my Neu Habsburg Colonial Militia and Imorian Crimson Rebels. Applying a simple Tallarn flesh basecoat, an Ogryn flesh wash followed by a drybrush of Tallarn flesh turns out to take all evening, although I only have 23 faces to paint.

The quality and speed of your painting is strongly dependent on the point of the brush. Even though I know this, I always find myself painting with the same brush for far to long after I should have replaced it. Today is one of those days when the brush needs to get replaced. After finishing the faces and hands on the 23 miniatures I threw away the brush on the left and replaced it with the one on the right.

Knowing that it was a while since I went through all my brushes, I decided to do just that. The brushes I have saved... A tip to all miniature painters out there: Make sure you take a good look at your brushes on a regular basis and throw away the really bad ones. Three of the brushes I found in my hobby tools box were the sadest sight. The left brush is a detail brush, the middle a small drybrush and, my personal favourite, the one on the right is a fine detail brush. Yes, you are right, there isn't a single straw on the brush and still I have saved it. One could definitely wonder why I have save it... I certainly wonder why. Well, these brushes are history.

Got to get back to my painting now.

Converting and Painting Survey Expedition Arctos

One of my initial Sci-fi projects is Survey Expedition Arctos. The scientific expedition consists of a couple of explorers and scientist set on surveying an arctic region of a newly colonised planet. As of yet it is undecided if the team is going to be sent to survey the northern pole of Neu Habsburg or if they are going to be sent on a pre-colonisation phase survey of the iceplanet XZD-6897, maybe both...

The team is made up of 6 miniatures all of which are from the GZG range. All of them has been modified to fit into an arctic or at least winter environment. The conversions are pretty simple, but being that they still are some of my first ones I am happy with the result.

The miniatures have been painted in an individual colour scheme to personalize them. The expeditionary team consists of free-lance scientist not affiliate with any university, but rather for hire by a corporation. Which corporation will change depending on setting, I can imagene them both in the Tuffleyverse and in a Traveller setting, probably in the Spinward Marches in the vincinity of the Sword Worlds and Darrian Confederation.

A Surveyor II will be added as their transport vehicle in a flashy scientist orange colour. That way there will be no doubt about them shining on an all white snowy ground. A perfect target for space pirates in a nearby hideout, landing Kra'vak forces, Sword Worlder gunrunners or anything else that might be lurking under the icecap....

The first ever...

So I guess the time have come for me to take the first step into the blogging community. This is my first post ever and I am happy to be writing about miniature gaming.

For me it all started in the late 80's. I was playing roleplaying games and was looking for miniatures to use with them, when I found a lot of interesting little lead figures. I bought a bunch of 15mm sci-fi miniatures as they were the cheapest ones. But as I was standing in the store I got very interested in a rulesbook with the words 'Rouge Trader' in the title. A couple of weeks later I had saved enough money to buy the book and a blister with three Space Marines and that is how it all started. My gaming interest would accelarate with the boxed edition of WH40K, Epic Space Marine and WHFB in the early 90s.

My GW addiction faded as the new millenium approached and I slowly matured, only to find historical miniaturegames fascinating. As the first decade of the 21st century started to come to a close a google-search helped me discover Dropship Horizon. Little did I know what impact it would have on my gaming. 15mm had been an interesting scale as far as my historical miniaturegaming interest was concerned...

All of a sudden I found out that 15mm Sci-fi miniatures were thriving, I instantly got hooked on Sci-fi gaming again. This time I found myself looking att GZG, Critical Mass Games,, Khurasan Miniatures, Rebel minis, Old Crow and so on. The miniatures were, and still are, excellent in quality and in quantity. To make things even better a bunch of rules to play with were available and the constraints of the WH40K setting were no more. I sat out to try as many rulessystems as I possibly could. My only concern is: I am unsure if I can find an oppenent...

However, being hooked I remembered a bag of old 15mm miniatures laying around somewhere. I had used them for a roleplaying game in the late 80s and early 90s. As it turned out I still had them. When I had a good look at them I realised that they were old Tabletop Games miniatures for Laserburn. I had owned them for 20 years not knowing that there was a Sci-fi rulesset to go along with them. Not only that, it was one of the oldest Sci-fi rulessets (30 years old), that accually had inspired Rouge Trader and it was still available. What a twist of fate. It had all started with 15mm Sci-fi miniatures and now my intrest got a new kick-start with the very same miniatures and a whole lot more.