Drowned Earth: Mad Max with Dinos

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , on September 29, 2018 by Sean

I’m working on a small commission of the Drowned Earth skirmish game. It’s a post-apocalyptic game based around small teams of soldiers in ruins and water-logged jungles. I’ll be working on a few of the starter sets of different factions, along with some extra dinosaurs. This game has dinosaurs!

The first group is the Militia starter set. I’m not up on the lore, so to keep it simple I’m following the sample color schemes I’ve found around online. I went for a common uniform color of a deep green with black boots. The ad hoc nature of the setting means their bags, web gear, holsters, etc. could have a variety of finishes.

The sniper, Hove, has a nice dark color scheme, befitting a stealthy fighter. His dark skin and overall darker uniform is offset by his Rambo bandana and a blue shoulder pad for accent.

Forek, apparently some sort of dwarf (or the setting’s equivalent), has a squat body built of pure muscle. He definitely is inspired by Dutch from Predator.

The Oviraptors are nicely sculpted, with some plumage along their tails and arms. I painted them to resemble tropical birds.

A note on their bases- I wanted the bases to the models for the game to look like overgrown jungle terrain, with a mix of flocks, stones, and junk. Some bases got patches of water to represent the rivers and lakes common on the battlefields for the game.

More to come from this game: the rest of the Militia starter and even better, more dinos!


Chaos Wars: Goblins!

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , on September 25, 2018 by Sean

I’ve started up a small force of Goblins and Gnolls for a Chaos Wars army. The Goblins minatures are all from the North Star Military Figures Oathmark line, while the Gnolls are from Frostgrave.

This is the first unit, a mob of Goblins with spears and shields. They are arranged in 3 ranks of 4. I’m not familiar with Chaos Wars rules, but I presume the units are much smaller than games like Warhammer 8th ed and Kings of War. The models are all plastic, with plenty of variety of poses, arms, and heads. The Goblins have nice feral designs, and a good mix of gear and armor. They hearken back to a more Tolkeinesque vibe of Orcs and Goblins- squat bodies, bandy legs, and rough gear.

I followed the box art for the Goblins set to a certain extant. I designed them to have no uniform, reflecting their scavenged gear. I picked 6 colors (plus grey and yellow metals), and distributed them at random over each grouping of models. This gave them a little unity of theme, without uniformity of look. Their bases were done in a standard ‘wasteland’ look, with dull brown dirt and scattered dead grass flock.

Their skin was painted to look ‘realistic’ compared to other Goblins I’ve done, so no bright greens. Instead I painted the skin with a base of MSP Dusky Skin, a really dull grey-brown. This then got a wash of Nuln Oil followed by a highlight of Dusky Skin/Rakarth Flesh. Finally they got a glaze of GW Athonian Camoshade to give them a dull green color.

More to come, next time mixed sword/axe/club Goblins.

Saga: The Saga(s) Continue(s)

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , , on September 7, 2018 by Sean


I’ve been working on various and sundry projects lately. Between larger blocks of units and such I’ve been working on a couple minies for Saga: Age of Crusades. I’ve finished all I need for The Age of Vikings era (for now), and now I’m turning my eye to Crusade-era factions.

The Warlord here is for the Pagan Peoples, the Slavic tribes and nations of the Baltic region of Europe. These peoples faced the onslaught of the Baltic Crusades. I can field my Anglo-Saxons to sub in as Pagans (Curonians, Prussians, or Latvians, etc.), but I plan on adding models painted up specifically as proper 12th Century tribal warriors. I wanted an appropriately ferocious model for the Warlord. I picked the Gripping Beast Viking special character of Njal, swapping a throwing axe for the spear in his left hand. The spear instead got planted in the ground to decorate the base, festooned with a pennant.

The model is a head taller than other figures of this scale so he has a suitable presence on the table. His lack of armor also helps differentiate him from my other Warlords, some of whom are covered head to toe in mail. His yellow shield has a stylized sun-burst symbol I found online; another shield with interlocking rectangles lies at his feet.

Next is a pair of Polish warriors, armed with great weapons. These models are from the Fireforge Russian infantry plastic kit. I plan on adding Polish units to my existing models- these are my test models. The warband will be a mix of Eastern gear (via Russia and Lithuania) and Western gear (Germany and similar). These guys definitely follow the Eastern fashion. The Polish warband would also allow me to play as Crusaders or Eastern Princes.

Last is an odd addition, straining the ‘historical’ nature of this post. The Mongols faction features in Age of Crusades rules, allowing me to use my Goblin Wolfriders models. The Gobbos already get fielded as any army made up of mounted troops, like the Huns, Spanish, and Moors. The models will once again ride forth. This time they will be accompanied by their Drummer, a hero-type of unit. In game he activates units nearby for free, allowing for amazing maneuverability for the Mongol warband. By the rules, the Drummer rides a camel instead of a horse. Since my Gobbos ride wolves, I figured a boar would be an obvious outlier to represent the difference.

I am going to go forward on the new warbands soon, either Polish or Pagans first. More to come.

Arena Rex: Morituri

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , on August 23, 2018 by Sean



Arena Rex, the fantasy gladiator game, came out some time ago. I chose the Egyptian-themed ludus, the Morituri, purely off the look of the models. Luckily for me the rules seem to be good for them too.

When it first came out, I painted up two of the Morituri starter set, leaving the third to wait on the shelf for a while. With renewed interest in the game at my FLGS, I decided to push through and finish the set.

The starter set is a great variety of body types and fighting styles. I decided on a basic red/white/blue color scheme, contrasted by linen, bandages, and of course lots of gold.

First up is Ur-Kek, the heavy hitter (fat joke unintentional). He towers over the other members, with a bladed staff as big as a person. The whole game’s line of miniatures has a ton of skin on display, and Ur-Kek is no exception. I game him a nice healthy glow, the complexion of a heavy-set giant in the middle of exerting himself. A few scars and stretch marks finish him off. I like the sculpting, especially his face. This is one smug bastard.

Next is Mago, who carries the net/trident combination of the Retiarius type of gladiator. He seems to also wear a Secutor-style helmet. I gave him a warm black skin for more variety of tones.¬† His skulking posture (the better to defend with that trident) makes him look tiny, especially compared to Ur-Kek’s bulk and Zahra’s extended height.

The last member is Zahra, the spear and whip carrying member. She was the hardest to paint, due to the projecting spear and (very) flexible whip, whip constantly got in the way. A liked the swirling tassels (?) on her headdress, giving them a black stripe like the character artwork. The color scheme plays out on her with a red torso armor, white skirt, and blue edging. The skirt, being an Egyptian-style shendyt, would in theory be translucent. With that in mind, I added a little flesh tone into some parts to suggest the skin underneath. As I was painting her, I realized I was dangerously close to painting Wonder Women (the costume and whip didn’t help), but I managed to pull back. The only addition to her model was a rock for her to be launching off of. I figured she could use more height.

I’ll be getting more of the Morituri soon, so there will be posts with them soon enough.

The Romans on Parade

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , , on August 18, 2018 by Sean

This is a follow-up to the previous post about the Roman army for Field of Glory. I took some pics of the whole force arrayed to show off its grandeur. I love to see a completed army on the table.

The force is 600 points, so has potential for expansion later.

Field Commander (CinC), 2 Troop Commanders, 4 x4 Hastati & Principes, 2 x4 Velites, 2 x2 Triarii, 1 x4 Roman Cavalry, 1 x4 Numidian Cavalry, 1 x8 Allied Italians, and a Fortified Camp.

Field of Glory: SPQR

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , on August 16, 2018 by Sean

The Mid-Republican Roman army for Field of Glory has been finished! Another notch on the old army belt…

The last batch included the army’s commanders. The Commander-in-Chief represents the legions’ Legatus legionis, a member of the senate and senior commander. Next down is his second, the Tribunus laticlavius. Also a member of the senate, he most likely is related to the Legatus (nephew, son?). The third commander is a Praefecti, a member of the equestrian class, acting as a sub-commander for a small contingent.

The commander models once again fall prey to the Essex Miniatures ‘one pose’ problem. With that in mind I had to use their bodyguard and personal color schemes to tell them apart. The Legatus is the officer with two mounted bodyguards, the Tribunus has a small foot guard, and the Praefecti has just a single bodyguard model. I painted white lines on the rear of their bases to make spotting them on the table during a game easier.



Next is a unit of Italian Allies for the Romans. These might represent Campanions or Samnites. They fight in a loose version of the Greek/Etruscan style of hoplites or thureophoroi, giving the Roman heavy foot some support in rough ground. Most bare shields with a common sunburst symbol. A good unit to add some color to the serried sameness of the Legions.

These models had a good variety, with 5 poses and good details. They do have the problem of separate metal spears, which required a lot of work to straighten (see my rant about this in my post about the Triarii).

Finally, rounding out the army is the very important camp. The Romans built everywhere they went, so this included their camp. Every night they fortified their camp with stockades, stakes, ditches, and gates. Given time, especially if the army was staying in one place for a while, the fort would build up with more ditches and towers. Here though it’s pretty stylized and simple, with enough detail to suggest a broader structure.

The front gate is guarded by a Triarius, as was custom. Slaves and reserve Legionnaires prepare the defenses. I liked the detail of the camp fire and the little dog. I painted him like a Roman mastiff. He even has a bone to chew on!


With that project done, I move on to something new. There’s already more Romans, as well as Gauls and Carthaginians, on the horizon…

By Fire & Sword!

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , on August 5, 2018 by Sean

As I draw other projects to their conclusion, I get started on others. Never ending, really.

The next project for a client is a shift in time periods and games. We move from Ancient Rome in Field of Glory to The Northern Wars in By Fire & Sword. By Fire & Sword covers the late 17th to mid-18th centuries, in the grand clusterf**k that was Central and Eastern Europe. It’s not a period of history I’m too knowledgeable about, but it never hurts to learn right?

The army I’m working on is the basic skirmish box of the Kingdom of Sweden. The Swede box comes with a Commander, a unit of 4 Reiters (mounted pistoliers), a unit of Dragoons (mounted riflemen, with dismounted versions), and an attached Regimental Gun.

The first stands finished are some of the dismounted Dragoons. On foot, they arranged themselves into lines of riflemen. Alongside the Dragoons we have the Regiment’s Gun, a light cannon with crew.

On a painting note, I have to say I’m not totally up on uniforms of the Swedish Kingdom during this period, though research seems to show lots of blue. The Dragoons here are not in uniforms per se, so it allowed a bit of variety of color.

Now for a bit of editorializing: I’m not a fan of the sculpts I’ve seen. The miniatures are 15mm, but really technically close to 18, being oversized compared to other 15mm sculpts like Old Glory and Essex. The detail on them varies a lot- some have nice sculpts¬† with crisp detail, while others’ sculpts have really ‘soft’ casting, some details sort of lost in the recesses or simply terminating in rounded edges. I’m sure some of this comes from a poor casting, but it could stand to be better. It will get worse when I get to the horses. Still, they look good massed on a table.