Wednesday, October 7, 2020

C is for Cockatrice!

An entirely inappropriate admixture of fowl, reptile and other, perhaps entirely unearthly elements, the Cockatrice frequents dismal bogs, moors and stony hill-crests, flapping about noisily and laying low prey items with their lethal gaze.
The one I call the hen, here, came out pretty good, I think.

Though not as mangy and hideous as, say, an urban Pigeon, the Cockatrice is still an altogether unappealing sight.  But that's one of the things we like about it.

The Rooster.  Both hen and rooster are Grenadier figures, one comes out of the Monster Manuscript series...They'll be going in to the mail soon, as we are getting ready to start packing things up around here, thank God.  They'll both be lurking in the passages of my dungeon, waiting for some bunch of dumb adventurers to come around the corner.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Dead Men Space Marines Assault Squad


A new squad for my Rogue Trader Space Marine fore, which is getting pretty close to being finished now.  11 mighty champions of the Emperor, ready to dive upon the unrighteous with wailing chainswords and buzzing power axes.  Heretics, beware! 
The Squad Leader, Big Sarge and some friends...
Oh my God!  Big Sarge, what happened to your face?!  One eye appears to be way lower than the other, or have I just mis-read this?  The sculptor dropped the ball here on what is otherwise a terrific mini.  Maybe it's supposed to be a mass of scar tissue around his right eye?  Or maybe he's a mutant...?
Plasma pistol conversion.  I couldn't find an assault marine with plasma pistol figure but Army list says you're supposed to have one in your assault squad so I converted this one.
Bloody big eighties hair!!  Motorhead hair!  Brian Ansell and Andy Chambers circa 1987 prepare their assault!
Andy attacks!
Chainsword brothers prepare to bound skyward!
"Die, Heretic!"
I still want one more tactical squad, a devastator squad, some scouts and a Thudd gun, and I have two Land Speeders at home waiting for me to put them together and paint them, but that should be about it for the Dead Men Space Marines. Dang, I want to get home!

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Pulp: The Rat River Boys

The story of Albert Johnson is one of the strangest and most fascinating episodes of Canadian history and was undoubtedly the inspiration for this pack of grizzled maniacs from Bob Murch's Pulp line, "The Mad Trappers of Rat River".  My Lieutenant told me the story of Albert Johnson the last time I was in Afghanistan and I sought out Dick North's book on the subject, read it and liked it so much that I bought a copy for my Dad as well.  He also loved it.  We all agreed the only thing we didn't like about the story is that the hero dies at the end.  Johnson was almost certainly crazy but by the end of the story you have to feel some real admiration for anybody who can survive for so long against such terrible odds.

These Mountain men types are destined for a role in my 'Canadian Cthulhu' skirmish/RP campaigns, which I intend to start running with friends soon after I get home.  They will be  putting their Winchesters and bear traps up against everything from Canadian Mounties to Sasquatches and Mi-Go
I think there was some sort of a problem with the casting of the face details on this fellow, none of it makes sense.  I had to just power through it in the end, so he doesn't look so hot.  I think the others look ok, though.
                              "Stay away from mah trap lines, eh?  Er I'll kill ya pretty good, there!"
"Ye won't be takin' me alive, Mi-Go!  Won't be takin' me brain back to the nighted gulfs beyond space in a damn jar!"
Watch where you put your feet, Mounties! (and Mi-go!)
                         Pretty happy at the thought of getting these guys back home and onto the table!

Monday, September 7, 2020

M is for Mummy!

Mummies!  Some deep-dwelling dungeon denizens to strike terror into the hearts of some of my D&D adventures.

Groping along the inky passages of his antediluvian tomb for all eternity, this snuffling, shuffling fellow should put the fear of the Gods into the first set of dungeon raiders to cross his path...
An old Ral Partha figure, I think...He's very simple but I like him.

This character looks terrifying, but I don't know how dangerous he is, what with his arms all strait-jacketed.  Might give somebody a heart attack, though.
He's a Grenadier figure and I really like his menacing expression and the detail on his wrappings.  Not just a bag of rags...some thought clearly went into the cross-over method of wrapping him up.  He's a bit bigger than my Ral Partha adventurers and the other mummies here, a smidge closer to 28mm than 25mm, but who knows?  Maybe he's a relic of some lost race from days when men were taller.  He'll fit in well with my Call of Cthulhu guys at any rate.
Last but not least, some Queen of the lightless depths, reminiscent of Robert Howard's unforgettable Akivasha...Who was she?  What are her powers?

Does she at whiles disguise her withered limbs in illusions of nubile flesh with which to entice unwary men into everlasting imprisonment within her nighted sepulcher?  I'll bet she does... 
The classic Monster Manual illustration.  Every time I see a Trampier illustration I wish he had done more stuff.  It would be nice to see a printed collection of his D&D work...
Tomb raiders beware!

H.P. Lovecraft: The Outsider

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Staff and Clientele at the Mos Eisley Cantina

"Ey!  We don't serve your kind here!"

It's been a very long time since I added anything new to my Star Wars collection.  That's almost certainly because the new movies sucked a lot of the joy out of it for me.  Eventually I'll have to wade into them and try to find things about them that I can bear because my little one likes them and to have something I loved so much in my own childhood that I can share with my son in his seems like a great opportunity.  
Space hotties fishing for some free drinks...too bad they didn't make minis of them...

In that spirit, I picked this crew of Cantina folks to bring with me thinking that I'd enjoy working on them over here and Lo, this month I got them out and started working on them.

Good old Mr. Hammerhead!  I loved my Hammerhead action figure I had when I was about my son's age.  He was just alien!  I painted my lead Hammerhead's shirt the same blue as my plastic Kenner Hammerhead's baby onesie just for nostalgia reasons.  In later years I found out that some busy body had come up with a proper name for Hammerhead and given his species a long back story.  Apparently they are a bunch of stupid boring pacifists or something.  Some people have a need to take the fun out of everything.  Well, they'll always be the Hammerheads to me.  I have a bunch more Hammerhead castings and because the model has such nice limb separation, I plan to chop them up a bit and give them pirate cutlasses and Storm Trooper blasters and what not, as I think the Hammerheads should be a bit treacherous and troublesome, eh?  I mean, just look at the shifty eyes on this fellow below!
Lost my Kenner Hammerhead so long ago.  I need to acquire another one.

Hammerhead with the Cantina's Luddite bartender..."Your Droids!  They'll have to wait outside, we don't want them here!"

I actually ordered these guys for my Rogue Trader campaign.  They are the 'Bar Patrons' pack from Kryomek miniatures.  When they showed up I was surprised to find that they were much closer to 25mm than 28mm.  No worries!  They fit in perfectly with my Star Wars guys!

Kabe, the Chadra Fan who can be seen squeakily demanding her drink from the bartender, although she seems to have been sculpted in a different outfit than she wears in the movie.

Pig Face and Chadra Fan.  I love pigface's don't give a damn, hand in the pocket pose.

Bar Fly.  Probably my favorite of the group.  Because he's a bar fly. 

Horn headed fellow on the right bears more than a passing resemblance to one of the briefly glimpsed figures in the Cantina...
Looks like I painted his 'horn' a different color, though.
Shady Kryomek character.  Blends right in in the Cantina, though.

The infamous amateur surgeon Dr. Evazan.  The movie doesn't give you the impression that Walrus Man's partner would be a surgeon of any kind, but whatever.  I remember the character in the film being dressed in what seemed like mostly rags instead of this more Han Solo type outfit, but there you go.

"Ey!  He doesn't like you!  I don't like you eevah!  You just watch yourself!  I got da deff sentence on twelve systems!"  My wife hates it when I quote from Star Wars ad nauseam so I'm teaching our son to do it with me.
"Ooorrkk!  Yoork Oork urgk!"

These are probably my favorite figures of the lot.  Painting ol' Walrus Man stirred sharp memories of playing with my brand new Walrus man figure that my Mom had just bought for me in our TV room.  I couldn't have been more than 6 or so then, but I remember that chilly evening so well.  Funny, the things that stick with you.  Dr. Evazan is a nice figure.  The figure was originally armed with a very slender scalpel, but it was so thin that no matter what I did it would always break off so I replaced it with a more robust knife which I think looks better anyway.

Later I grew up, sorta, and found out his name is Ponda Baba.  Sorta like Mr. Hammerhead.  

The Modal Nodes get down...
"You will never find a more wretched hive..."

Some interesting raw footage of the Cantina scene

And then, in some even weirder, alternate universe that none of us will ever be able to understand, there was...somehow...this.  Yeah.  Walrus Man gettin' down with Bea Arthur.  Yes.  It happened. I'm sorry.  But not nearly as sorry as I am about The Force Awakens.  No, that was much, much worse than this.  I actually saw this when it came out on Network TV when I was maybe 5 or 6.  It was a pretty big deal to me at the time...