Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Misunderstood Orcs and a Big Score

Found this video quite by accident today and just had to share.  Enjoy!

Oh, and I was finally able to find the Defenders of Rohan boxed set on eBay.  Actually, after months of no luck in my search, I was able to find not one, but three sets.  The first was selling overseas and I tried my best to win the auction but was outbid at the last minute.  My losing bid was £95.63, which comes out to around $150 for me.  I was saddened by the outcome since I had been watching and waiting all week for the close and could almost feel the miniatures in my hand.  In the end however, I came out ahead.  Just a little over a week later, another box appeared on eBay, this time on my side of the pond.  I thought for sure I would lose out on this one as well but luck was on my side.  I won the auction for a little over $80....a savings of almost half if I had won the original auction. That's not cheap of course, but for seven hard to find miniatures, it was more than acceptable to me.

As I mentioned, I found three boxes.  The third is still up for auction but the price is a bit on the high side.  The seller is asking $184 for the Buy It Now price (item #130748462298).  As an aside, for some reason the same seller has a few other boxed sets that are not all that rare, but offered at high prices.  For example, the Breaking of the Fellowship set is listed at $144.99.  I've seen a few of these sets here and there and they went for much less.  Plus, with just a bit of patience and searching, the minis in the set can be found individually for a fraction of the total cost.  I'm not sure why the price is set so high.  Am I missing something here?

Anyway, now that I finally have the Defenders of Rohan in my possession, it's time to start yet another project.....painting every Aragorn pose at the same time.  That should keep me pumped up and excited for the upcoming Hobbit movies.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Two Minis and a Hurricane

Sorry about the lack of updates this past week.  I had several posts planned but mother nature had different plans for me.  Isaac, though uninvited, decided to come pay my island home a visit.  Since the highest point on the island is only eight feet above sea level, any tropical system deserves my full attention. I've spent the last week pulling my personal boat out of the water, prepping and tying lines on the two work boats, and getting the house ready for a good blow.  Now that all the hard work is done, I'm sitting in my shutter-darkened office, having a nice cold adult beverage, and enjoying the calm before the storm.  And while I still have power, I though I'd just combine a few of the posts I had in mind to form a quick update.

This Isaac

  Not this Isaac

Now for the update. The sweet little lass below is a great mini from Hasslefree Miniatures (Barwench HFV001).  She is part of the villagers line, of which I have several others.  As is usually the case from Hasslefree, the sculpt is wonderful, the details are sharp, and the mini came in with very little prep work to perform.

She is destined to mainly serve in my Legends of the High Seas campaign but like some of the other miniatures I'm using as inhabitants of Port Largo, she is pretty much genera-neutral.  She would be equally at home in the Golden Age of Piracy, medieval Europe, or any fantasy setting. 

I've painted her up to be a fairly young serving lass.  I tried to invoke a bit of innocence in the color scheme instead of the bawdiness I emphasized on most of my other "ladies" of Port Largo.  I also moved away from my normal female skin tone and used slightly darker colors.  I was attempting to portray an islander of mixed descent but I'm not sure how well I succeeded.

I was also able to complete another pirate/privateer (I'm still undecided) from Black Scorpion Miniatures.  There's not much to say about him except I'm rather pleased with the gaunt look I was able to achieve on his facial features.  I wanted him to look hungry and a bit desperate.  I may have done that with his face but I failed to factor in his clothing.  He's a bit well-dressed for a man with nothing to lose.  Oh well...

I've also finished off three fantasy miniatures, with an additional four almost completed, but they will have to wait.  My frosty adult beverage is now empty and I just felt another early outer rain band hit.  Time to go and watch the wind blow.  See you all on the other side.

"Squalls out on the Gulf Stream, big storm's coming soon..." -- Jimmy Buffett

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

A Merchant Captain for Legends of the High Seas

I've been super busy with the last of the summer tourists and have not had much time for painting or blogging.  Despite the hectic Dog Days of Summer, I have been able to complete a few minis lately.  Since I only have time for a quick update I'll focus on one of them....a merchant captain for my Legends of the High Seas campaign.

The miniature is part of the Pirate Captains pack from Old Glory Miniatures. The scale is a bit off from the vast majority of the miniatures I'm using (25mm compared to 28-30) but the addition of the base evened out most the difference.  Of all the miniatures in the pack, this guy is my favorite.  Although he is not armed with a cutlass and only a hint of his pistol is visible, he still strikes me as an opposing figure.  However, since he does not exactly fit the popular image of a pirate captain, I decided to use him as one of the non-pirate citizens of Port Largo.

Though I do not have his background fully fleshed out as of this post, I know he will be serving as a merchant captain on the island.  A pirates plunder is only as good as the coin it can be sold for and that is where this gentleman will play a role.  I envision him as a law abiding mostly law abiding citizen trying to make a living in a port town infested with pirates. He will purchase their ill-gotten gains and sell them to colonists in Charles Towne or some of the other islands.

To set him apart from the mostly colorful pirates I've been painting, I decided upon a fairly muted color scheme.  His britches, boots, hat, and stockings are low key and blend in with the mini.  The blue for the coat was chosen to make him stand out just a bit without being overwhelming.  The grey for the vest was my own private little joke representing his ambiguous position in a pirate society.  The best feature is his chubby cheeks.  Though my iPhone photo does not show it very well since everything is washed out (I had camera troubles with my Nikon on the day of the photo), I worked hard to accentuate that feature and make them stand out while still giving his cheeks and bald head a bit of sunburn/tan from working in the tropical sun.  Now that I have the camera sorted out, I'll try to snap another photo and add it below to illustrate the skin tone I'm describing.

Well, that's it for now.  I have miniatures to paint......

Closing text

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

From The Ashes A Fire Shall Be Woken???

I've been thinking lately about letting my White Dwarf subscription run out.  It's expensive, full of GW propaganda, and in my humble opinion, is mostly a monthly company catalog.  I no longer play WFB or 40K (although I still collect some of the models) so what little useable text within the pages there is, it's rather useless to me.  Even the well-painted models are less of an attraction these days.  The painting is still absolutely gorgeous but for the most part, the models themselves are getting ridiculous.  What's all this crap sticking out of them lately?  How do these guys walk around, much less fight?  To be completely honest, it was only the Lord of the Rings content that kept me hanging on, and even that has been pretty much nonexistent for some time now.

My August copy of White Dwarf arrived today (it takes forever for it to make it down here) and any thought of letting my subscription lapse suddenly vanished like a certain Hobbit placing a magical ring on his finger.  It seems after a long absence (beyond just fluff articles), LotR SBG content is coming back!

My heart raced as I glanced lovingly at the two page spread graced by Bilbo, Gandalf, and Thorin and company.  Sudden memories of the glory days of LotR rushed through my brain and the long defeat seemed to be coming to an end.  Indeed, hope did remain while the company was true...

Of course I knew, or strongly suspected, that GW would cash in on The Hobbit money making machine.  I was pretty sure we would see new models and possibly a revamped game.  But I didn't begin to think that this one photo, this little tease of things to come, would reignite so strongly the feelings of those blissful early days of the game and the LotR films.  I'm as giddy as a schoolgirl right now and cannot wait for the upcoming monthly content in White Dwarf, the pending miniature releases, and the general resurgence (hopefully) of a game I dearly love.

For those of us lonely collectors and gamers that never gave up on the forlorn system, now is our time to rejoice.  Though GW may try to weave a spell and force me to purchase Finecast models, at least there is now light for the world of men and LotR gamers.  As Hurin once yelled long ago in the years of the First Age, "Aure enteluva! Day shall come again."  And so it shall be for us....collectors, players, and lovers of this game.

I'll be waiting with bated breath for the upcoming issues.  No chance of me cancelling my subscription now. Who knows what treasures lie within the golden horde that GW has slept upon for these long years.....

Damn you GW, you had me at "In a hole in the ground...."

If you are not a subscriber and cannot read the text in the ad, here is what it says...

Unless you have been hiding in a Hobbit-hole, you'll know the epic movie, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, reaches cinemas in December.  We are tremendously excited about the forthcoming tabletop battle game and range of new miniatures based on The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, and the opportunity to continue the exploration of Middle-earth that began with The Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game.

Keep up to date with all the movie news and trailers at, and find out all about Games Workshop's new releases in the months to come in the pages of White Dwarf and the Games Workshop website,