How to Paint an Army Before You Die

The greatest enjoyment in miniature gaming for me is visual.

Other types of games can match the scale or strategy or worldbuilding you’ll find in miniatures games, but no board game matches the spectacle of two lovingly-painted armies of figures battling over well-crafted terrain. No RTS video game will give you the feeling of accomplishment and ownership that an army of models you carefully crafted and painted yourself can.

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What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – June 15-21

Greg and Tracy played Escape Room: The Game: Jumanji, “This is a themed version of the regular Escape Room: The Game and comes with it’s own Chrono Decoder, a short 15 minute introductory scenario and two full scenarios, which are all linked together in one big (Jumanji) story. Tracy and I played through the Introduction and the the first of the two full scenarios. We pretty much raced through without any issues, so I’m not sure if the puzzles were easy or if we’re getting used to the style. One of the puzzles was basically the same as one in The Magician, which we did last week, so that helped too. I’m looking forward to trying the last part of this soon!”

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What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – June 8-14

Danielle painted three old Ral Partha miniatures. “A demon, a mummy, and what I originally thought was a ghoul but turned out to be a cave man. This was my first time doing skin since I’ve only painted mouslings so far.”


Meet the Viper Syndicate, Chris’ House Delaque Gang for Necromunda. “We had a local campaign that had been planned to kick off at the end of March, before the pandemic put paid to our plans. The restart should be coming soon so it’s just about time for the Vipers to take a shot at ruling the Underhive. The Delaque gang models look sufficiently disturbing and mysterious, but the price you pay is how spindly the models are. Combined with the way GW has elected to handle which weapons go into the box set, it took some extra fiddling to build the starting gang I wanted. Fortunately painting is fairly straightforward – standard base, wash and highlight methods are all that was needed here. One touch that did work out really well was the creepy pallid skin, where all I did was a basecoat of Citadel Wraithbone washed with Army Painter Soft Tone. Super easy and exactly the effect I wanted!”

Greg and Tracy played Escape Room: The Game: The Magician, “This one had a difficulty rating of 3.5 out of 5, but we actually found it pretty straight forward and finished with over 15 minutes to spare. I’ve found that this range of Escape Room games can vary in enjoyment quite a lot, as they do have some fun puzzles, but if you don’t understand what you need to do you have to wait for the timed clues, and sometimes they don’t help and you can get stuck. In this case we pretty quickly figured out what we needed to do, and then just had to go about actually solving them. Tracy’s biggest complaint is actually the noise the Chrono Decoder makes as it’s counting down as she finds it loud and distracting.”

Renee and family assembled and played the free print and play Ticket to Ride: Stay at Home. “The map is a floor plan of a house, with destination tickets between places like couch, half bath, and kitchen island. The map was surprisingly tight with 4 players; areas of the house would have limited routes in and out. They did introduce ‘family routes’, routes where any player could place one train car per turn and when the route was completed, any player with at least one train on the route could use it for their destination tickets. We enjoyed it and it was fun to play Ticket to Ride with Christopher.”

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Tracy and Greg brought out the classic game Heroquest to play live on the stream. “It had been a while for both of us but it’s a pretty simple game and easy to get back into. We did have a few distractions from little munchkins but managed to get through it. Despite losing her wizard Tracy successfully managed to save Sir Ragnar and win the game. Hopefully we can keep playing and go through some of the other scenarios because it’s a nice fun, light dungeon crawler.”


Watching Greg play Heroquest reminded Sue how much she likes it! “Here are two of my Heroquest Heroes. I like the Heroquest models, (and GW models in general), because they have a lot of character.”


Edward ‘unearthed’ a box of Going Cardboard: A Board Game Documentary DVDs while going through the storage areas so Renee grabbed a copy to check it out.

This was a documentary filmed in 2009, released in 2011, that took a look at the expanding board game community in the US, exploring Essen and how the German board game market had made its way across the pond. I thought it would be interesting to see what the hobby was like in the years just before I discovered modern board gaming myself.

They spoke with designers, publishers, owners of board game stores and other folks in the industry about their experiences bringing games to the market, playing games, explaining their hobby to folks outside the community and about watching people get to discover what board gaming had to offer. It opened with a shot of the doors being opened at Essen and folks streaming into the hall. And it hit me; it was a huge see of white people. Thousands of them. As I watched the documentary I realized that almost everybody that was being interviewed was a white man. The rest? White women.

I know that the board gaming business is very white and has been for a long time, but it made me wonder: if this documentary was made today, how much would have changed? I’m excited that at the store we see more and more women getting into the hobby, and that there is some diversity at our Monday Board Gaming nights (when we had them!), but I wonder what it will take and how long it will be for us to see real change in the hobby as a whole.

Kickstarter Update June 9

Today we bring you another update on our Kickstarters. During the last 5 weeks we’ve backed 3 more projects and received 2 backed projects in the store.  If you want to be updated when new products – including Kickstarters – arrive at Sentry Box, follow us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.  And if you see a project you want, just contact us at the store to be added to the pre-orders list for the project. It works just like any other order at the store, you only pay when you pick up the game. This is a great way to get your hands on some of the most popular kickstarter games without having to pay upfront and you don’t have to pay for shipping! Plus you get double points on all pre-orders!

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What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – June 1-7


We open this week’s blog with Greg’s play of his last Deckscape game, The Mystery of Eldorado, “This is the last of our Deckscape games and it took us a bit longer than the others, clocking in around 80 minutes total. We did manage to end with no penalties though (we earned a few but were able to get rid of them) so that was our final time and was fairly respectable. Sometimes we have a tendency to overthink things when there is a simple solution, but overall we did pretty well. I hate building a house of cards though! We must have spent over five minutes just on that.”

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What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – May 25-31

Hey Greg’s playing another Escape Room game! Escape Room The Game: Welcome to Funland. “This one has a creepy clown in it, which is always exciting, and a monkey who eats [spoilers]. There was one kind of tricky puzzle, partly down to a slight dexterity element, but for the most part we were able to figure them out ok and we ended with over 9 minutes to spare!”

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