We have Zack back again, this time writing a Battle Report for Star Wars: Legion, featuring some new releases for both Grand Army of the Republic with Commander Cody, and the Rebel Alliance with Ahsoka Tano.Continue reading
Zack’s X-Wing Corner – Rebel hopes and where we go from here…
Welcome to a new series where our Guest Author Zack Mathews talks about the X-Wing Miniatures Game, this time Zack talks about Rebels pre-points change and how the faction feels currently.Continue reading
Painting Demo Extra – Painting Faces
This time on Painting Demo Extra, Sue takes us through her process for painting faces!Continue reading
Painting Demo Extra – Asajj Ventress, for Star Wars: Legion
Today Sue takes us through a quick and easy way to paint up the newest addition to the ranks of the Separatist Alliance for Atomic Mass Games’ Star Wars: LegionContinue reading
D&D Onslaught – First Impressions
WizKids have recently released an exciting new miniatures skirmish game set in the Dungeons & Dragons Universe, and Sue and Kris sat down to give it a try and share their early thoughts!Continue reading
They Might Be Giants! A D&D Frameworks Hill Giant Review
D&D clubs all over the city are starting up again and you may be considering which minis to use in your campaign. Earlier this year, WizKids released their new line of Frameworks minis. These minis are the most detailed WizKids D&D minis on the market right now. They may be at a slightly higher price point than other D&D models, but these are beautiful, showpiece models that should not be overlooked. In this writer’s opinion, they are some of, if not the best D&D miniatures to date. And here’s a few reasons why:
- They are the most detailed officially licensed D&D minis on the market today
- You’ve got options! Personalize your character your way with a crazy amount of customization
- The fun accessories! Every kit comes with super fun accessories! (Heck, I would buy most of these kits *just* for the accessories!)
- Even if you don’t care about customizing your models, these are some really beautiful miniatures!
Sue & Sean each painted the Hill Giant. They both felt that this was a fantastic model and have summarized their thoughts on the project below:
I built both of the Hill Giants as I was originally going to do up 2 different Hill Giants myself, but I was really glad that Sean got involved because I love what he did with his model! I have assembled a few Frameworks minis now and I definitely recommend dry fitting your models before you commit to gluing them. Frameworks models have the option of painting accessories and hard to reach areas prior to gluing, which I like, or you can build the whole model and then paint. Really, there aren’t too many hard to reach places on this model so even though I glued the accessories on after, it really wasn’t necessary.
I liked all the options! It was tough choosing between them all! The Hill Giant comes with a bunch of fun accessories. The ham was definitely my favorite! Not shown: He also comes with the options of more furs, a cart for a backpack, and an alternate left hand that’s holding a cow!
If you’re interested in reading about how I ended up painting my model, you can read it here: https://sentrybox.wordpress.com/2022/09/19/what-have-the-sentry-box-staff-been-up-to-sept-12-18/
I love this model! There is just so much detail and so many options! As you can see from the photos, the D&D Frameworks minis let you get quite creative. You can really personalize your model and end up with something quite unique. Even if everybody in your campaign got the same model, they could all end up looking quite different! And I think that is very cool.
When Sue invited me into this project I was stoked. The Frameworks Hill Giant kit has an exceptional range of parts and options. The sculpt fired my imagination quite a bit and I saw some potential to it, really liking what WizKids is trying to do with this line even though I was a bit shy about the price sticker.
Sue presented me this half-built, half-painted lad that she had a start at and passed it to me to have a go.
I love Sue’s painting and ideas, but we approach painting methodology a bit differently and I had to change the base colours. I’m very much a ‘start dark and work up from there’ painter when it comes to flesh. And lemme tell ya folks, this guy has lots of flesh. So I covered with Vallejo Burnt Red, a smashing pigment for basing red toned skin colour on.
While doing that I started his eyes. I’m more typically a unit/army painter so I don’t do eyes. I’m pretty content with lots of dark shaded eye pits. But when I do eyes, I love what I call the Kabuki Eyes technique. Sue just did a sweet tutorial on it (link here) and it’s worth your time. The giant’s sculpt has tiny little piggy eyes, but I felt like he needed a bit more oomph.
In short you paint ridiculously exaggerated eyes and then using dark colours, shape and outline them. Hence the Kabuki look.
After that I started getting more ideas as to where I wanted to go with this guy. And before I did I had to address a wee issue with the kit. The big lad’s body is two hollow polystyrene parts. Assembling him is like a plastic model kit, tank or airplane. There will always be some variance with gaps and overlaps with plastic this size. This is a quality kit so there isn’t a lot, but there is some.
Cleverly most of the joins are covered by other parts like his furry cape. But there is a visible seem from behind his thick neck down to wrist. It really popped when the red dried. So I called up my old friend, Tamiya Putty and went to work. Sure green stuff or gap filler would work just as fine, but I’ve been using Tamiya for ages and I know its properties. There were two other visible joins on his side, but we’ll get to those later. Consider yourself forewarned, extra time dry fitting and shaping the parts will pay off later.
I am a big proponent of limiting your palette when you paint. I like a unity of shades. I picked two of my favourite shades as my base paints, GW Jokaero Orange and Vallejo Game Colours Heavy Goldbrown.
These two shades where mixed in to all pigments I used on the big guy, who I now had named Buster after the singular Buster Bloodvessel of the great Second Wave Ska band Bad Manners.
Using a large brush, wet palette and judicious use of Vallejo Matt Medium I started mixing, layering and blending. As I lightened up I introduced Vallejo Heavy Skin Tone. Together with the orange it created a skin shade I thought really popped.
Let’s go back to the visible seem on the sides I previously referred to. So halfway through painting I sort of recycled the box and part diagrams. So I sort of glued things where I felt looked cool and didn’t really consider that their job was to disguise the join. So I improvised and dug out a bunch of shields from various fantasy and historical sprues I had kicking around.
Buster now has a very decorative belt with shields and a severed head from Warlord, Northstar, and Wargames Atlantic.
As you see we’re getting close to finishing up. And I really had to stop myself painting, if there wasn’t a deadline to this project I might still be going. As I said this guy has a lot of surface area and there is an agreeable amount of detail to paint and play with. I had fun painting his finger and toe nails, picking out patches on the banners that make up his breach cloth and his nifty skull necklace. Best feature by far was his cap. It fits snug on his head without gluing. So I painted both his shiny skull and the cap. The cap I finished with white polka dots over a faded red. It adds a whimsical extra pop of colour to his very fleshy and angry bulk.
For shadows I mixed up a wash with Army Painter Strong Tone and Sepia Wash. I used this blend in the deep folds. For lighter shadows I really like Tamiya Panel Liner.
It’s alcohol based and as such it flows differently than the water based inks and shading products, pooling deeper and not really staining the colours next to it. The stuff is magic. I finished with spraying two coats of Testor’s Gloss and one of Vallejo Matt Acrylic, I find this combo provides an excellent protection and look. I finish all minis as if they are going on the tabletop and get pushed around by potentially nasty fingers. I finished up the terrain base that came with the figure, using some washes and a grey for the rocks then adding Gamer’s Grass and Army Painter Tufts for the finishing touch.
So is this ‘The Last Hill Giant You’ll Ever Need?’ Very well could be. This kit is worthy of a major villain character as Sue suggests, naming hers after the Big Boss of the first Against The Giants modules. The customization potential gives a miniature building game master the chance to spring a mini on the group that is WYSIWYG. Table-top wargamers should take advantage of this guy as you can configure him for either melee or artillery capacities. The sheer size of the model is quite intimidating and would be splendid for smashing up a unit of silly elves.
Maximum Arbitration Part 8: ‘Game Week Five’, The Big Show
Gang violence has brought YYC Hive to it’s knees! Industry stands on the brink of collapse! Is there any solution!?! And…will the solution simply be more violence?
Yes. That is correct.Continue reading
Maximum Arbitration Part 7: ‘Game Week Four’, What’s Yours Is Mine…The Takeover Phase Begins!
YYC Hive is dangerous and ill-spirited, just like it’s citizenry. The potential to become a great factory hive was there, but the population could never rise past the petty rivalries and infighting that mark this spire as a lawless outland encampment.
Many come to this hive seeking nothing more than a place to try their fortunes by direct action. Not a place, then, for the faint of heart or the mind clouded by conscience. There are riches here, but none so easily claimed as those simply removed from the possession of another.Continue reading
Maximum Arbitration Part 6: Downtime
You are getting the hang of the rules. You are learning when to shoot and when to stab. Most (if not all) of the territories in your hive have been claimed. These things can only mean that one event is about to happen. Downtime. But what is it? And what do you do now?Continue reading
Maximum Arbitration Part 5: ‘Game Week Three’, The Colours of Tithing Season
After a harsh cold cycle where YYC Hive was often cut off due to static storms and desperate raiders along key supply routes, hivers rejoice as Tithing Season brings warmer weather…perhaps ‘rejoice’ is too strong a word. As the season progresses and the temperature rises it is not uncommon to see Barbed Venomgorse and other carnivorous plants growing in the disused sections of the Hive.Continue reading