Miniature Ordnance Review looks at the world of historical and fantasy miniatures wargaming and model building. From 15mm Flames of War, to Warhammer 40K, to 1/35th scale tanks, with some potential surprises on the horizon - you'll find them here!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Call the Exterminator - Tyranid Paint Scheme First Pass

With my son interested in Warhammer 40K, I've been working on a secondary army to give him something to fight other than another Space Marine chapter (see my previous Space Wolves discussion). The Tyranids are an army that has grown and changed a lot from their original incarnations, and I must say I really love the look of the current range of models. So I took the plunge.

At this point I've been building a lot to get something on the table to play against my son - which should be fun. I'm incrementally teaching him the rules to the game, and we'll actually start pointed list building (as opposed to "just pile it all on the table and we'll work it out from there"). Though it wasn't my intention, the match-up will be the very representative Ultramarines vs. Tyranids, so there's that aspect to the fight as well.

As with any new army, I spend a fair amount of time on one of the basic troops trying to get the color scheme right. At this point I have a grand total of one (1) Termagant pretty much painted.

I'm using Vallejo paints and Ammo of MIG washes at this point. Overall I'm pretty happy with the scheme, but I may want to pick out the eyes a bit more with a red or orange as the purple seems to be getting lost. The base is 72.034 Bonewhite (from the Game Color line) with a brown wash (which is still in flux - I'll post final washes in my next buggy installment). All of the other colors are from the Model Color range. I highlight the Bonewhite with 70.918 Ivory. The green basecoat is 70.833 German Camouflage Bright Green highlighted with 70.891 Intermediate Green and 70.942 Light Green. I add purple to the recesses and simply highlight it by blending a lighter version by adding white.

I'll post more pictures as I get more miniatures painted. Building this army on our table has led to many bad jokes about any food being left out attracting bugs... and I expect the hilarity to continue.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Of Game Scale and Ground Scale - Part II

Recently the owner of GHQ published a lengthy post on The Miniatures Page providing some company background and extolling the virtues of GHQ's 1/285th product line. Honestly they do have some nice miniatures, but I personally found the post more than a bit troublesome on many levels as it represents yet another fairly absolutist position in the ongoing discussion regarding what is the proper scale for company level tabletop gaming. What follows is an edited version of the post I made to that thread, but as this is an issue that seems to come around quite often, I thought it was worthy of a deeper look.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Plans for the Second Half of 2016

Given we're well into August at this point, I figured it was time to do a "state of the hobby" update for where I am with my various projects at this point... and the plan for the rest of the year.

My painting table is still straining under the weight of my Japanese force from Banzai. I'm hoping to have some pictures of the progress (or sadly at this point, lack of progress) on those guys by the end of the weekend. At this point the base coat and wash is on all of the infantry and gun crews, so now I have to go through and start doing the uniform highlights and details. I'm hoping to have these guys ready for a tournament about a month from now at Guardian Games in Portland.

The next list I'll be painting up is my 761st Tank Battalion list from the upcoming Battle of the Bulge compilation. I'm planning on taking this army to the Tanksgiving event at Guardian games on November 12. This event is a little different in that it is a true TANK event - no squishy infantry or gun teams allowed. That will drastically change the meta of the game. You also need a "warrior" team. This doesn't have to be an official warrior special character per the rules, but can be a historical figure or even a Hollywood character. I'm going to paint up a tank dedicated to Ruben Rivers of the 761st.

Past that I still have several Flames of War and Team Yankee projects I'd like to get back to. For Team Yankee, I may go ahead and finish the Americans first as I'd really like to do the Eastern Bloc miniatures as a non-Soviet satellite state. I also have several Flames of War armies I'd like to work on, including some mid-War Italians - both for North Africa and Sicily. I have several German forces half started as well that I really need to get back to.

I've still been slowly working on Warhammer 40K miniatures with my son. I've gotten a lot more of my Space Wolves built than painted at this point - honestly I just have base coats on one of the Grey Hunter squads. Fortunately I've found some Vallejo paints that work well as a substitute for Space Wolves Grey - as I've had too many bad experiences with Citadel paints to walk that road again (not to mention the fact that I have controlling interest in Vallejo paints at this point and buying a redundant set of paints makes no sense!). I may also resurrect my old Tyranid army for fun and flavor.

I've also picked up the rules to a miniatures game from Osprey called Frostgrave. This is a skirmish level game played with fairly standard 25-28mm fantasy miniatures, though you can get miniatures designed for the game from North Star Miniatures. The game itself follows your primary character, a wizard, his or her apprentice, and a warband generally numbering no more than 10 or 11 figures as they work their way through a ruined city in search of treasure facing perils and other players. They even have a few modular plastic sets for Soldiers and Cultists which are pretty good. A game like this is appealing because it uses fairly normal fantasy miniatures, and therefore has a fairly low painting overhead.

Chances are I won't get a all of this done before things need to be packed up and start moving over to the new house. The nice thing about the new house will be I'll have a game room and full workshop dedicated to my model-building and miniature painting hobbies. Once I get everything up and running next year I hope to be able to start busting more projects out on a regular basis.