Something borrowed, nothing blue.

Today will see quite the bit of activity on the blog.  Now I won’t say I have been busy (vacation from work, no kids and wife at work means lots of free time) but a few of these are actually finished versions of stuff that has been sitting on my hobby desk.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures.  Embedded LED in full light.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures. Embedded LED in full light.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures.  Embedded LED in half light.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures. Embedded LED in half light.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures.  Embedded LED in the dark.

Bones Ball of Fire by Reaper Miniatures. Embedded LED in the dark.

To start off with, I borrowed (shamefully stole) an idea using the translucent Bones to create a functional fire effect.

I’ll be honest when I say I was giddy with delight and couldn’t stop playing with it.  When the wife came home I broke her brain a bit when I showed it to her.  But, once she figured it out she thought is was cool but I saw her get a bit disappointed.  As for myself, the more I played with it the less cool it became and I had concerns about how to improve it.

What I have done here is drilled a hole in the bottom of the fireball and added an LED.  I drilled holes in the base for the wire and threw together a quick insulator/switch with paper breaking the circuit and pressure down closing the circuit.

The LED I bought wasn’t the best choice.  They were thick and round and I even cut down the size a bit to make it work.  I have several more of these LEDs and I will try trimming them down even more.  If you can buy the smaller lights (or ideally the fibre optic lights) they are easier to work with.  If I were to do something like a bigger fire elemental I would take it further and put multiple thin lights in different spots and then build a simple circuit to do fading/flickering and inconsistent patterns.  It has been maybe 30 years since I built electronics but the schematics are easy to find.  Parts not so easy in a small town like I live in.

Hirst Arts modular dungeon.  Party slain by goblins.

Hirst Arts modular dungeon. Party slain by goblins.

I did also wrangle a couple of the local 40K players into a game of Dungeon Down.  Most of the pictures didn’t turn out, but the total party kill by the goblins in the boss fight turned out great.  I had some great feedback on how to adjust experience as the thief player racked up tons of experience from disarming traps.

The miniatures that got some attention though are quite diverse (but nothing is blue).

Elia Shadowfeet by Reaper Miniatures.

Elia Shadowfeet by Reaper Miniatures.

Elia Shadowfeet and Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures.

Elia Shadowfeet and Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures.

First we have Elia Shadowfeet by Sandra Garrity.  This is an amazing sculpt with a lot of personality.  This is a newly painted model but I have been slowly working away on her for a while now.  So she isn’t new per se, just newly finished.

Sadly my photographic skills have muted out most of my brushwork.  The expression is very vibrant, and more than a little cheeky.  As shown beside Jolie, she is quite short.  I didn’t cut her integral base all the way flat as her feet are very delicate and each toenail sculpted…so she is a bit taller than she should be.

As an Aside, I notice I have been using Jolie as a size comparison model which is funny since yellow is so tough for me to photograph and she never matches the same shade from picture to picture.

Cave Troll by Reaper Miniatures.

Cave Troll by Reaper Miniatures.

Cave Troll by Reaper Miniatures.

Cave Troll by Reaper Miniatures.

Cave Troll by Reaper Miniatures.

Cave Troll by Reaper Miniatures.

The Cave Troll has caught my eye since I first saw it in Bones.  Sadly, it has been sold out of the Reaper online store for a long time.  My trip to Sentry Box gave me a chance to grab this little guy.  I went with the “traditional” green for a troll and did his various boils and warts in yellow which I blended back to green.  His belly blending turned out much better than the Squog I did a few weeks ago so I am quite happy with that.  Despite not being much taller than a regular miniature, his bulk makes him seem much more threatening.  All in all, I think he will be a great addition to the little goblins.

Bone Fiend by Reaper Miniatures.

Bone Fiend by Reaper Miniatures.

Bone Fiend by Reaper Miniatures.

Bone Fiend by Reaper Miniatures.

The Bone Fiend is a miniature I am not too sure about.  Some of the details are a bit soft.

I am not sure if this is due to it being Bones, the nature of the sculpt, a bad casting I have, or even my spray paint leaving residue.  It is worth noting this guy is 25-28mm scale, not 28mm heroic scale so it is a bit smaller than the other Reaper Miniatures.  That said, it is in scale with the cowboys they make, my Hasslefree special ops team, and my historic minis.  I may grab more of these when they are released in the store to use in other games like HOTT.

Seeing this reminds me of an old fantasy novel I read (that may have been written by Gygax) that had the undead melding together.  It also described undead in a hideous fashion I had not seen before or since.  The graphic description of twitching nodules of flesh and the grasping fingers and hands of severed limbs as they were hacked apart was quite ghastly.  As they were on a ship they couldn’t burn the morass of undead remains after the fight and instead they were mashed to pulp to be rinsed off the deck with buckets.  Yeah, a bit more graphic than most fantasy out there, and no neatly de-animated corpses after “killed”.

Dragoth by Reaper Miniatures.

Dragoth by Reaper Miniatures.

Dragoth by Reaper Miniatures.

Dragoth by Reaper Miniatures.

Dragoth by Reaper Miniatures.

Dragoth by Reaper Miniatures.

Dragoth was another work in progress that took a long time for me to finish.

First shown in the background of a Dungeon Down game, I have 99% finished him (I still need to add the bricks to his base).  I opted for a verdigris bronze armour and a rusty sword reminiscent of the undead king in the original Conan movie: Conan the Barbarian (1982).

I did try marble on the stone throne and wasn’t too happy with the result.  I will go back and try again after a lot of practice.  I was aiming for black marble with green and white veins.  With time I am sure I can capture this effect.

Desert Thing by Reaper Miniatures.

Desert Thing by Reaper Miniatures.

Desert Thing by Reaper Miniatures.

Desert Thing by Reaper Miniatures.

Desert Thing by Reaper Miniatures.

Desert Thing by Reaper Miniatures.

The last miniature to get showcased is probably the one with the effect I am happiest with.  I did wet blending across the board to make the gums, fingers and tentacles all read as different colours without any harsh transitions.  Although I did a quick and easy paint job, the effect is very good.

I am sure you noticed none of the bases match my dungeon.  Sadly my final highlight shade actually went moldy in the paint pot.  As I mixed the shade myself, I tried mixing it again.  So far, I have my shade too dark.  Then again, I did also rush the final drybrush so it was more of a wet blend than drybrush.  Again, something for the to do list.

Troll comes to bring tribute...with his fists.

Troll comes to bring tribute…with his fists.

Troll comes to bring tribute...with his fists.

Troll comes to bring tribute…with his fists.

Of course an action shot is required to close the post.  Here we see an angry troll storming into the throne room of the eternal king.  A bit out of the ordinary for my action shots I know, but I wanted to do something more in character for the finished minis.

Elia Shadowfeet hiding in the throne room.

Elia Shadowfeet hiding in the throne room.

Elia Shadowfeet hiding in the throne room.

Elia Shadowfeet hiding in the throne room.

If you missed it in the shots above, that more characterful approach includes having the thief hiding and looting the treasure.  The whole implied backstory is the halfling antagonizing the troll until it could do her dirty work.  I really like the sly smirk I managed to capture in the last picture.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else to try some new techniques to give a different effect to your minis.

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