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Avengers getting assembled (5)

The title holds no secrets, but I am a bit behind schedule.  I spent yesterday afternoon watching a movie with the kids so I likely won’t be able to finish Captain America this weekend.  But, I am sure you are here to see my work.

Captain America, twelfth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, twelfth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, thirteenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, thirteenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, thirteenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, thirteenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, thirteenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, thirteenth stage of sculpting.

Not shown yesterday, I did add some details to his helmet including the giant A.  It is out of scale with the actual helmet, but it is visible and clear from table distance away.  So I decided to keep it.  Way too long spent perfecting that.

Today I finished most of the details of his helmet.  I added in the chin-straps and the radio.  I also cleaned up a mistake I missed on the back of the helmet.  The next time I sculpt on the helmet it will be to smooth it out one more time and call that part finished.

I opted for hard ear covers that could be a radio headset or sound-dampeners.  Partly because I hate sculpting ears even more than eyes on a face.  Also because battlefields are noisy.  With a good headset he would still be able to hear around him and the radio, and a bit of noise-cancelling to prevent tinnitus from gunshots and loud blasts.

I have included the face in shadows so those who can’t filter out colours will see how well the sculpting does blend together to look like a real face (and not a black-face miniature).

Overall he looks more like a modern soldier than a guy in tights, but the heroic stance and shield will help identify him as Captain America.  Oh, the giant A on his forehead will help too.

Storm, third stage of sculpting.

Storm, third stage of sculpting.

Just getting a single pic to show the hours worth of work, I trimmed the seam from last time and added the next one.  Slowly but surely Storm will get finished.  Not a project I enjoy as much as it is simply transitions and blending and very little cool details to sculpt.

Mjolnir and amputated hands.

Mjolnir and amputated hands.

Who has also been getting some work is Thor.  The first pic I will show is his hammer.  I have been gradually working on it, and it will take several stages itself.  The flat surfaces are cured and then raised and beveled edges added very slowly.  This shows 2 of the 6 sides done.  The handle will likely get a bit more love too.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fifth stage of sculpting.

Today I did two stages of work on Thor.  First I did his left fist, well the first stage anyways.  There will be some more work and thumb added once it is fully cured.  What these pics showcase though is the start of his face.  I added in the eyes and nose, with a base putty to add the cheekbones and brow too.  Not my worst piece of work, I will try to make him look like Chris Hemsworth.  So far the eyes are right, but again the nose is a bit off.  I am thinking of going fully comic style with the helmet.  I will be doing tights for him.  And yes, the boots are taking shape too for the more astute readers.

While he does look like a commedia del arte actor right now, the basis of his face is there.  The chin of course will be built out quite a bit to reflect the rugged features of a son of Odin.

Lots of pics, a bit of progress, and hopefully a little inspirational for you.  If nothing else, for those who have seen my earlier work, this should inspire you to improve your skills too.

 

Avengers getting assembled (4)

This morning I decided to sneak downstairs to do some sculpting work.  There I was intently focused on getting the nose of Captain America exactly right…when a little voice piped up from my elbow and startled me.  I jumped a swore a little bit and my tool jumped with me.  The end result was the nose got moved.  So I went back to the drawing board and redid his nose and mouth.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eleventh stage of sculpting.

I decided I wanted to put the chin straps down his face, and I like the covered ear look of one of the helmets in the latest movies so I will go that route…and I will add a mouth-piece coming out of it.  What kind of officer doesn’t have his head glued to a radio?

The face was my vain attempt to copy Chris Evans.  I think I got his smirk/grimace down pat but the nose is a bit off.  I have to say I am pretty impressed with myself.  Faces have always been my weakness and this isn’t too bad.  I would say it actually turned out pretty good.

With it being a weekend, hopefully I can get some more work done on Captain America (Storm and Thor will get some work too).  My goal is to get him finished this weekend, but I don’t want to rush it.  I have decided to stay with the spandex look to his suit and see how it looks all finished.

Hopefully this inspired you today, if nothing else to keep your attention on sneaky little foot-steps an not 100% on your work.

Avengers getting assembled (3)

As the title suggests, I did find a bit more sculpting time.  I squeezed in a bit yesterday morning and I did a bit while my daughter was painting.

Captain America, ninth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, ninth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, tenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, tenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, tenth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, tenth stage of sculpting.

Up first we have Captain America.  I added in the knee pads above the shin guards.  Originally I was considering a multi-part articulating set of knee pads like baseball catchers wear.  After looking at them more closely, I realized I didn’t like how those looked while walking and I remembered the weird gait of catchers.  So instead I added in the straps and called it done.  Right now I am also back to thinking on fabric types for his pants.  I may do some bunching in a few places, but I am back to thinking about spandex type pants again.

What has also begun to take shape are the final details.  I decided to just try sculpting the helmet and face over the face blank to see how it works out.  The front of his trademark mask is just taking shape now.  Yes, the bottom edge does need a bit more work, but as the nose will get sculpted in there I am not too concerned.  I also added the eyes about 1/3 of a millimeter too high.  If I add in a chin strap to the bottom of his face it might hide it a bit better.  Then again, it might not be too obvious anyways.

Behind his propped up form you will notice the hands.  The left hand looks terrible in the shield for a reason: I am bulking out the basic layer to give better adhesion.  I will add in the handle and the anchor points for a strap too.  The strap itself will get added on over his arm once it is attached.  The knuckles that will be most visible got all my attention and very much look the part.

Thor, third stage of sculpting.

Thor, third stage of sculpting.

Thor, third stage of sculpting.

Thor, third stage of sculpting.

Thor, fourth stage of sculpting.

Thor, fourth stage of sculpting.

Also getting a bit of attention has been Thor.  The third part of his armour was added yesterday, and I do have a couple of rough spots on the back.  This stage also had a small gap: I underestimated the height I needed to raise the middle layer to.  The back will likely not get tidied up.  It isn’t a hard fix, but the form is present.  The cape of course will cover all of this work, so it is the edges and sides that might be visible, so they are the parts I spent the most time on.

Today I started adding in the details of the armour.  Obviously the first four of the six discs have been cut from a styrene rod.  I blended them in with greenstuff, in fact the lower left one is a true circle…now.  I also added in a bit of a flame motif into the front of the breastplate.  I was going to do a series of angular overlaps much like the costume from the latest movies and decided against it.  I am pretty happy with how this has turned out so far.  I may add more details to the breastplate, I haven’t really decided yet.

With both of these sculpts I have had a big picture idea and the small details (and sometimes not so small) get decided on by whim.  I find taking the breaks between helps.  Besides the obvious part about the curing time, it also gives me a chance to reevaluate the project.

I might be biased, but I think the helmet and detailing are starting to make both of these come alive.

My usual rambling length, but hopefully equally inspiring today.  If nothing else, this should give you that nudge to experiment and be creative.  The nice thing about this hobby is nobody has a life on the line or any major risks if things go wrong…so don’t be afraid to push your boundaries and take the step into the unknown.

Avengers getting assembled (2)

After a pause to do my last post, eat supper, and get the kids to bed I was able to sit down with my tools and the now cured Avengers.

Captain America, eighth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eighth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eighth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, eighth stage of sculpting.

For Captain America very little progress since last update, just the first of his knee pads.  I say first as I want to incorporate segmented armour to cover the entire joint.  Once fully cured there will be another plate just above the knee pads.  This will give the illusion of him actually having protected legs, I hope.

Once the next plate is added (and cured) I will move on to his pants first then the straps for his pads.  After that it will be is sleeves and then the dreaded hands and head.

Thor, second stage of sculpting.

Thor, second stage of sculpting.

Thor, second stage of sculpting.

Thor, second stage of sculpting.

Thor, second stage of sculpting.

Thor, second stage of sculpting.

Also getting some progress is Thor.  I am sure some movie fans and comic fanatics will be crying foul at what I am doing, but I am going with my own version of the armour inspired by both the movie and the battle armour from the comics.  The 6 discs that are the Thor trademark will remain…but I will actually give him a 3 piece set of armour.  His tunic and first layer of plate is visible now.  Over the top of his chest will be the final layer of armour with some interlocking triangular patterns.  I will go with some pauldrons that are incorporated into it too.  The final 2 discs of course will secure his cape right above the clavicle.

Although not shown, I am actually sculpting the back as well.  The bottom edge on the back is good and smooth, the layers above less so…I will be putting the next plate over what I cut corners on.  I am taking a page from Kevin White (Hasslefree Miniatures) for this guy: even sculpting what is hidden is sometimes necessary to get the most realistic final effect.

I am very impressed with how quickly he is progressing compared to Captain America.  Maybe it is the new project burst of energy, maybe it is that this is simple shapes than  the detailed very tiny plates and pads for Captain America.  Or maybe, and this is just crazy talk, I am actually improving.  To be honest I think 1 and 2 are probably the closest: I did the second layer of armour in about half the time it took to do one kneepad.

Anyhow, hopefully this quick update inspires you, if nothing else to take advantage of brief windows to help your projects progress.

Avengers getting assembled

With a weekend without houseguests or needing to go into work, I managed to make some progress on the 3 minis I am working on.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

Captain America, seventh stage of sculpting.

First up, Captain America has the start of his lower-leg protection.  I decided to do the basic shin-pad first then build up the knee protector on top of that.  Straps of course will go on once everything is cured.

Also finished are his belt-buckle and the small divot in his chest body armour I kept forgetting to fix.

 

Storm, second stage of sculpting.

Storm, second stage of sculpting.

Storm, second stage of sculpting.

Storm, second stage of sculpting.

Storm, second stage of sculpting.

Storm, second stage of sculpting.

Also getting some progress is Storm.  I added in the fabric bunching behind her bent left knee.  I also added in the piping to her pants leg.  In the Fox X-Men movie, her costume has a very unique set of piping/seam running up both legs, above her hips and down the back of the legs.  To keep with the costume my wife chose, this is one of the key features I think I need to replicate.  Other than that, her sculpt will simply consist of fabric bunching at the bulges and bends.  And I use fabric loosely…this costume is gortex or some other pleather…

Heroic Dolly by Reaper Miniatures.  Reposed to be Thor.

Heroic Dolly by Reaper Miniatures. Reposed to be Thor.

Thor and Captain America.  Notice the size differences and similarities.

Thor and Captain America. Notice the size differences and similarities.

Heroic Dolly by Reaper Miniatures.  Deano by Hasslefree Miniatures.

Heroic Dolly by Reaper Miniatures. Deano by Hasslefree Miniatures.

Thor, first stage of sculpting.

Thor, first stage of sculpting.

Thor, first stage of sculpting.

Thor, first stage of sculpting.

Finally, today also saw me coming up with a solution to a sculpting problem I was having.  I have been wasting green-stuff.  In the early stages of Captain America, I used excess to bulk up some of my larger monster bases.  But, they are all done right now.  I realized if I had another project on the go, I would waste less green-stuff.

One of the toughest Avengers to find a proxy for is Thor.  There are countless forums out there with vain attempts to find suggestions.  It seems a smooth-faced Viking is rare, let alone one who isn’t wearing enough fur to cause seizures in animal rights activists.

So I decided I would sculpt Thor.  For his pose I decided to go with a dynamic hero pose with Mjolnir hanging loosely down by his side and a slightly raised left fist.

As a base I used the Reaper Heroic Dolly.  For size comparison, it matches fairly well with the non-heroic, but a couple of body part ratios are a bit off.  For scale, he matches more or less with Deano.  For the first phase, I added the bottom of his tunic.  I will sculpt from the bottom up on his tunic to get the various layers and straps to get positioned properly.  I will keep his arms bare, and I am not sure if I want tights on his legs (like the comics) or leather-ish pants.  Naturally he will have a giant cape (sculpted last) with the giant round brooches.

Short post today, but hopefully inspiring.  If nothing else, hopefully you try fooling yourself that biting off more is the best way to fix a figurative mouth full of food.

hosercanadian goes commercial

Or at least my urban terrain can show a commercial district.

Over the past couple of weeks I have been slowly chipping away at a three new buildings and finishing off the bus shelters I have.  But rather than showing them individually, I figured the best way to show them would be laid-out with the other buildings.

The wooden board is approximately 2’x2′ (it is a few inches bigger on one side) and I have laid out the buildings as I have seen in this type of area in many cities: as a tight little maze of alleys with wider streets.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

I think the signs add the bit of colour and variety to make the area seem more real.  I do need to figure out how to lay down a road mat I think to really make it look great.  I am not sure how to do a road mat that will give me versatility while still showing off a nice roadway.

The large anchor building on the intersection is the largest building I have done in this style.  In addition, I had the most fun with the signs.  For those reasons, I have a couple of detailed shots below.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

While this building has no new concepts or ideas, the large commercial signs really make it stand out I think.  I have three ways of doing signs now.  I think the next big building like this may get a third type, the nominal roll type sign that just lists all the businesses in addition to the normal storefront signs.  I realize this will require a fairly large blank space on the building, especially if I do a corner building like this.

Anyhow, with all these buildings laid-out I thought it would be a shame not to include a couple of action shots.

Hulk and Iron Man facing off against Dr. Doom, Whiplash, the Silver Samurai and Spider Woman.

Hulk and Iron Man facing off against Dr. Doom, Whiplash, the Silver Samurai and Spider Woman.

Hulk and Iron Man facing off against Dr. Doom, Whiplash, the Silver Samurai and Spider Woman.

Hulk and Iron Man facing off against Dr. Doom, Whiplash, the Silver Samurai and Spider Woman.

As shown the Hulk and Iron Man find themselves hopelessly outnumbered.  Facing off against so many foes, even Hulk is at risk.  Barely even visible is the White Huntress ready to drop either Hulk or Iron Man.

Is there anybody that can help save these heroes from certain death?

Batman vs Dr. Doom.

Batman vs Dr. Doom.

Did somebody say Marvel/DC cross-over?

Hopefully this short post inspired you today.  If nothing else to take time to pause and consider how much work you have done on a larger project to give you that motivation to keep going.  Next up will hopefully be more progress on Captain America…and maybe even the start of Thor.

Sir Darkness

Or the Dark Knight.

One of the birthday gifts I got from my wife was the gorgeous Batman (Arkham Knight) by Knight Models.  If you have never heard of Knight models, search them on the web and max out your credit cards.  They have done some spectacular comic book models.  They have a Batman Miniatures game, and now Spiderman and Marvel heroes.  The models are 32mm scale so they are a bit bigger than most models on the market.

Well in theory.  If you have been collecting and painting miniatures for even a little while you have realized that scale is very subjective, even within a single company.  Considering most 28mm models are a bit bigger, and some measure the 28mm to eye level instead of height.  These models also incorporate scenic bases for the most part so they tower over other models.  But, the gargoyle does actually reduce the scale creep because mentally you recognize he is standing on something.

Anyhow, on to the miniature.

Batman by Knight Models.

Batman by Knight Models.

I sat down and painted him in a single evening.  The clean-up I did the night before.  Not the cleanest cast model I have ever held, the was flash but very subtle mold lines.  The clean-up tool was exclusively a scalpel, I didn’t even touch my files.

I painted him using a successive wet-blend and highlighting to the lightest grey I went to.  Unfortunately I primed him by hand with acrylic paint so the paint kept rubbing off.  So I chose to seal him with my gloss sealer and hopefully tone it down with a matte sealer at a later time.  There is a lot more subtlety in the blending that the sealer just masks.

Batman by Knight Models.

Batman by Knight Models.

As shown with Deano, he isn’t really out of scale with the other figures.  And yes, Deano is getting some paint.  I got frustrated the other day as I painted over his left eye while adding in his eyelid.  I also really buggered up the eyes on another miniature I was painting at the same time so they will wait until I feel like doing the last salvage before stripping.

Batman by Knight Models.  Deano by Hasslefree Miniatures.

Batman by Knight Models. Deano by Hasslefree Miniatures.

Now the tough part comes: how to figure out his stats in my game.  I love Batman.  Mostly because he is just a man with a will to do more.  Sadly, this means his stats will put him at a critical disadvantage against the super-powered heroes.  I am at a loss on how to figure out how to balance him out without making him over-powered.

Hopefully this short post was inspirational, if nothing else to try your hand at something pretty that is on your shelf.

Super Hero first game

For those who don’t care about my ramblings on the games I design, feel free to scroll down…oooh pretty pictures.  For the rest of you (and I will pretend there still are readers), my wife and I played the first game of the super hero project I have been working on.  Although I do intend to produce scenarios down the road (I have 4-5 in my head that need tweaking), we just played a straight up fight.

To play this scenario, both players select models up to the agree on total level and play until the first model is removed.  The first game was played at 6 points – that means 2x level 3 heroes.  A model has 1 wound for each level and their attributes drop in level for each wound inflicted.  On the side of good (played by my wife) we have Black Widow and Iron Man facing off against Whiplash and White Huntress.

Urban terrain at a corner. Soon to be site of an epic conflict.

Urban terrain at a corner. Soon to be site of an epic conflict.

The table itself is quite small (approximately 2’x2′) and it is intentional.  This is a fast and dirty skirmish game.

The first couple of opening turns were quite boring.  Both Black Widow and White Huntress made use of Stealth and due to lucky die rolls, neither one was spotted by the other side.  This meant that each was effectively hidden until an action other than a move was taken.

White Huntress lurking in an alley.

White Huntress lurking in an alley.

Iron Man lands on a balcony to survey the scene from cover.

Iron Man lands on a balcony to survey the scene from cover.

The initial probing moves left Iron Man trusting to his suit to protect him as he led the way to draw out Whiplash.

Player cards. Move from left to right, top to bottom.

Player cards. Move from left to right, top to bottom.

The initiative system is a different type of inter-twined turns.  Turn order is based first on the Cunning level, then by Rating.  As shown, Black Widow always went first, then White Huntress, Iron Man and finally Whiplash.  At any time, a player can have his model delay their turn.  Simply move them to the top of the next stack.  Why would somebody do that?  Normally to avoid attacks or wait in ambush.  If a model is wounded before their turn, the move in the initiative order based on the modified attribute level.  To activate a model, the player picks up the card and places it beside them to clearly indicate who is left to act.

Iron Man hovers and takes aim at Whiplash.

Iron Man hovers and takes aim at Whiplash.

White Huntress Lures Iron Man to the ground.

White Huntress Lures Iron Man to the ground.

After the initial cat and mouse, Iron Man flew low to take aim at Whiplash.  His blasters streaked blue energy across the sheet-metal fence, keeping Whiplash safe from harm.

When-ever any obstacle is in the way, there is a chance it is struck instead.  After rolling the attack, the attack is re-rolled to check if the obstacle is in the way.  A result of 1 on the die or a total less than 5 will strike the object.  In this case, Iron Man rolled a 1 and the otherwise critical hit harmlessly scorched the fence.

Following his attack, Whiplash moved forward and started over-charging his whip.  The next attack he made would be devastating.  Meanwhile, Black Widow was able to Distract Whiplash and leave him idle.

White Huntress reached out with her mind and Lured Iron-Man to the ground.  With the critical success she rolled she was able to move Iron Man twice and effectively cancel his next turn.  She then took careful aim at his conveniently exposed back.

Iron Man has the Vehicle ability.  This means only the most powerful attacks (with Anti-Tank) can hurt him.  White Huntress has a character attribute she can use to choose an item, and she chose her next attack to have Anti-Tank.  So she effectively had 1 chance to take out Iron Man.

White Huntress aimed wide with her shot and missed.  With no actions remaining to use Stealth, she was left in the open and vulnerable.

White Huntress tries killing Black Widow while Whiplash is dumb-founded.

White Huntress tries killing Black Widow while Whiplash is dumb-founded.

Black Widow, meanwhile was not idle.  She managed to Distract Whiplash, effectively ending his turn.  Distract removes an action, if the roll is double the defense, then the victim loses two actions.  Black Widow was just too Cunning for Whiplash.  As he stood there stupefied, she snapped off a shot with her pistol and missed.

White Huntress instead moved in to target Black Widow.  She dove past Iron Man and snapped a quick shot at Black Widow’s back, nearly dropping the super-spy as she inflicted 2 wounds.

White Huntress’ ability Ambush inflicts an extra wound when she attacks from behind or from Stealth.

White Huntress is struck down by Iron Man.

White Huntress is struck down by Iron Man.

With her attack failing to win the game, Iron Man quickly took off into the air again and fired a blast at White Huntress.  As the energy bolts struck the ruthless mercenary, the game was won.  Iron Man rolled a critical that was 3 times the defense roll of White Huntress, inflicting 3 wounds with one attack.  This ended the game.  All together, the game lasted maybe 15 minutes.  A very quick and easy to play game.

But wait, there’s more.  At that point, we decided to play a second game with 3 models per side.  Now the Avengers had the most powerful threat I have assembled: Hulk.

The Avengers stage on either side of the street.

The Avengers stage on either side of the street.

To the forces of evil I added the Silver Samurai.  Knowing he was the only guy I have (other than Dr. Doom) who had any sort of chance against the Hulk, and would be very tough to wound by either Black Widow or Iron Man.

Hulk measure...

Hulk measure…

The Silver Samurai has Armour that doubles his Defense rating against all attacks (except those with Anti-Tank).  Both Black Widow and Iron Man gained Anti-Tank when they scored a critical hit…a tough prospect with the modifiers in this case.

The first round saw Hulk showing off.  With Leap he is able to ignore terrain that is under his move value in height and distance.  The small gap between buildings saw Hulk leap to the next roof…

...Hulk land!

…Hulk land!

…and use a second move to land on top of the car parked out front.

Iron Man flanks the villains and unleashes volley after volley.

Iron Man flanks the villains and unleashes volley after volley.

The other initial moves saw the two sneaky ladies again roll very well on Stealth and Iron Man use his Afterburners to move to the far corner.

As he zoomed into range of Silver Samurai, his shots were deflected by the nearly indestructible armour of the villain.  In ominous preparation for the melee with Hulk, both Whiplash and Silver Samurai began to Overcharge their weapons as they slowly advanced.

Overcharge is an ability shared by both Whiplash and Silver Samurai.  This lets the model spend an action to increase the die roll of the next attack by +2 and it gains Anti-Tank.  Oh, and it stacks so they are able to spend multiple turns increasing the lethality of the eventual attack.  After doing this twice, both had a good chance of hurting the Hulk, even if Iron Man stayed out of reach of their whip and sword.

White Huntress tries to psychically control Hulk.

White Huntress tries to psychically control Hulk.

Whiplash and Silver Samurai squaring off against the Hulk.

Whiplash and Silver Samurai squaring off against the Hulk.

As the Hulk sprinted across the street, White Huntress reached out with her mind to Lure Hulk away from the fight.

My cunning plan was to pull Hulk away from the fight and let both of my fighters keep Overcharge build-up going until they could finish Hulk with a couple of quick swings.

The strong-willed Hulk shook off both attempts to Lure him away.  Iron Man saw that even Hulk could have trouble with two and fired at Whiplash, inflicting a wound on his nemesis.  Seeing the only option for victory was slipping away, Silver Samurai teleported beside Hulk and swung with his sword…and barely scratched the unstoppable beast.

Tough is one of the nastiest abilities I developed.  The model ignores the first wound each turn.  Since Hulk has a very high Defense, this makes him very dangerous.  Had Silver Samurai rolled anything but a 1, the Hulk would have at least taken a wound.

As both Hulk and Whiplash had the same Cunning they roll each turn to see who goes first, with Hulk having the initiative, he grabbed Silver Samurai to Throw him at Whiplash.  Missing the car, the Silver Samurai was thrown with tremendous force and took out both himself and Whiplash on his flight.

Whiplash and Silver Samurai after the Hulk was done.

Whiplash and Silver Samurai after the Hulk was done.

Throw enables a model to throw, a distance determined by the margin of success.  If something else is hit by the throw, then the new target also is attacked.  Since the car was avoided by the attack, Whiplash was also attacked and suffered two wounds.

This of course ended the second game, but Hulk not finished.  Hulk use second action to throw car.  Hulk happy.

Hulk rage!

Hulk rage!

Both my wife and I enjoyed ourselves.  She commented that each of the heroes definitely fit in the genre and played like their characters do.  She did comment that Hulk was fun, and kind of hinted that maybe he was a bit over the top.  So I showed her who could stop him dead…Dr. Doom.

I dropped him down only a short distance from Hulk.  In initiative order, Dr. Doom lashed out at Hulk with lightning and inflicted a wound.  Hulk ran in and used Smash (yes I went there, it is actually a melee attack with Anti-Tank).  At that point she rolled a ridiculously large number and laughed.  Then I showed her that Dr. Doom can ignore fatal attacks with his ability Escape DeathEscape Death negates fatal attacks by using a character trait or equipment, Dr. Doom has two character traits so essentially can ignore the first two times he is killed.

In scenarios, Hulk will be less valuable, as he can do two things well: smash and survive.  If the objective is to disarm a bomb or close a portal spawning endless enemies his Might will be of questionable value.  All around heroes like Nick Fury, Iron Man or Dr. Doom then prove to be much more valuable.

The next play scenario may see the trial of the handicap system: if a player chooses fewer levels of models, they get additional character traits in a pool they can use on any of their models.  As these give access to the key abilities needed to target a specific ability, a lone hero like Batman would be quite dangerous.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else to give those crazy ideas you have a try on the tabletop.

The Controversial Spiderwoman

Although this particular character has had a bit of controversy when her first solo comic series was started, I won’t delve into it too deeply.  If you are interested in researching the topic, I encourage you to do your own research.  It took a lot of delving to find both sides of the story and sufficient evidence for me to make up my opinion.  I do have strong opinions about one-sided reporting with skewed facts, so I encourage my readers to do their own research.  Not just on this, but on any sensationalized story.  You would be amazed how easily facts can be shifted to evoke emotional responses.

Enough ranting, on with the miniature.  The model was fairly well cast but I see I missed a mold-line in her hair until I was doing the highlights.  As it is not blatantly obvious, I chose to leave it.

Although the lining on the eyes, gloves, and boots was cast, the remainder of the black-lining was freehand.  Not the best and in giant scale I see a couple of spots that are a bit shaky.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.

Believe me when I say I highlighted the red…but it just blends in too much.  The red was glazed over my brown-base coat and went on much too smooth…none of the creases are visible.

To top it off, I did a bright red blend with this dark red to do wet-blending to bright red on the raised/tensioned body parts…and have nothing really noticeable.  Well, I know where to look and I see it.  In the bright lights, completely faded out.

As a change of pace for this post, I thought I would talk about how the abilities function in the game I am working out.

spiderwoman_card

Most of the abilities of Spider Woman are fairly transparent.  She can climb, she can jump, and she can shoot venom.  All taken directly from the comics.

But what is the Acrobat?  Well the attributes and skills combine to give effects.  The spidey sense of finding ambushes and hidden enemies ties to the Cunning attribute.  Stealth is an opposed roll vs Cunning.  She is very hard to hide from.  Or distract.  However, it further plays out her spidey sense with the Acrobat ability: she can use her Cunning to defend against attacks.  In comparison, a different character with similar abilities would have a different shtick.  For example, Black Widow has Acrobat as well, but it covers off her rolls, jumps, and other darting about.  As another example, Hulk has Leap, but it refers more to the ability to jump when you are a gamma radiation monster than any spider-linked powers.

Now the red terms under equipment (including Spidey Sense) are kind of like the genre abilities that allows free choice of options.  Either one can be used to get a specific single use piece of equipment to take an extra action, heal a wound, or detect hidden models.  Another use is to fuel abilities.  For example, Dr. Doom’s uncanny ability to escape danger is reflected in his ability to spend these “items” to completely nullify an otherwise fatal attack.

Hopefully this insight to where I am going with this game makes sense to folks.  Any feedback would be appreciated on that.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy.  Dr Dread by Reaper Miniatures.  Proxy for Dr. Doom.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures as Spiderwoman proxy. Dr Dread by Reaper Miniatures. Proxy for Dr. Doom.

In closing we see Spider Woman facing off against Dr. Doom.  Is it a deadly battle royal?  A nefarious plot to have her switch sides?  A stark contrast of opposite spectrums of the colour wheel?  Tune in next time to find out.

Hopefully something was inspiring for you today, if nothing else to try finding out the truth behind the headlines.  I find myself often referring to the old adage:  Knowledge for what (purpose), knowledge for whom?

Avengers and X-Men and Spiders, oh my

I had a bit of free time this morning and was able to make a bit of progress on a few figs.

Captain America, sixth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, sixth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, sixth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, sixth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, sixth stage of sculpting.

Captain America, sixth stage of sculpting.

First off, Captain America’s boots got a bit of progress.

As shown, I have added in the laces to the front and the edge flaps that hold the boots together.  Yes, the entire top will get blended down, but the laces were my priority for this morning.  I stopped the laces from going the full way up as I am putting the shin guard on and there is little reason to do work that will not be visible.  In fact, most of the laces I did sculpt likely won’t be visible.  Oh well.  Slowly but surely he is taking shape.

I have decided I will add a bit of fabric bunching on his knees, at his boots, and butt…in short the places that would show the difference between spandex and fabric.  But now I need to stop my half-ass periodic sculpting of hands and heads…the time for those parts is coming fast.

Storm, first stage of sculpting.

Storm, first stage of sculpting.

Storm, first stage of sculpting.

Storm, first stage of sculpting.

Storm, first stage of sculpting.

Storm, first stage of sculpting.

Second, we have my second sculpt shown.  My wife’s favorite super hero is Storm from X-Men.  Now, she has had a variety of costumes over the comics and movies so I asked her which one she wanted, and it is Halle Berry as Storm from the first two X-Men movies.

So far I have added the join between her breasts (including the zipper) and the flared bottom of her pants.  The zipper does go all the way up to her collar but her collar will have to wait for the head so I will leave room to blend and tie it in and carry on once her head is done.  After trying a few different poses, including a walking pose, I decided to have her flying.  Her left hand will be a fist and the direct of her focus.  A flying Storm ready to call down lightning.  Again, I am sure there are better pics that could be taken, but these are the ones I needed to see my work.  I am still not 100% with the right pant bottom but I will leave it for now.  At normal scale it looks good.  I did resculpt these 4 times (and her chest twice because of fat fingers).

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures.  Deano by Hasslefree Miniatures.

Blood Widow by Reaper Miniatures. Deano by Hasslefree Miniatures.

Last up today we have a very simple conversion.  I am taking Blood Widow from Reaper and converting her to Spider Woman.  That consists of…well to be honest paint.  She is a bit taller than Deano, but she is standing on her tip toes, so she is actually a bit shorter than him.  And yes, for the hard-core comic nerds, yes she was an Avenger too.  And a Hydra Agent.  And a freelancer.  And has worked with multiple heroes and villains.  So overall, she deserves her own category and can be used by any side in the game I am working on.

A short post today, but hopefully inspiring.  If nothing else I hope to inspire you to tackle those bigger projects as smaller bite-sized stages.