Friday, February 16, 2024

Sláine 5 - Skull Swords Pack 3

Today we have YET MORE Skull Swords. This time carrying the feared repeater crossbow. These are my third and last pack of Skull Swords for now. Three packs of these murderous ruffians should be plenty for any scenario in the game. They'll be giving it a bit of this in a few weeks:

Now that I have enough troops and a couple of Skull Sword champions, I can start adding some of the more esoteric Drune units. One or two Badb to keep Feg safe might be the next port of call. 

But not right now. I have more than enough troops painted for the Slaine get-together myself and my gaming buddies have planned for March, where nine(!) warbands will clash on the sacred soil of The Land of the Young. Here's the whole warband:

So, that's two packs of Skull Swords with hand weapon and shield, one pack with repeater crossbows, two Skull Swords champions with hand weapon and shield, and Slough Feg. 

Let's take a look at them in a more natural setting eh? Chilling out at one of Drunemeton's many idyllic sacrificial circles.

So, with the Drune warband in the bag (unless I decide to add yet some more champions) it's onward to the next project!

Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Sláine 5 - Skull Swords Pack 2

The first three miniatures of 2024 come leaping into action! I've returned to my Drunes for Sláine, having neglected them for over a year. I've got a big Sláine  weekend coming up in a March, so it's time for reinforcements. You kind of need a few packs of skull swords for Sláine to hew through, in fairness.

These lay partially painted on my shelf for almost a year, so it's very nice to get them finished. 

I'm still using mostly Contrast paints over Wraithbone spray for these, as that's how I painted the others. The way I use Contrast has evolved a bit since I started my Sláine project, but I want these to stay consistent, so I'm sticking to the original technique for now.

This new pack of skull swords gives me nine Drunes in the warband, which is 62 points. Enough for a middling size game. I'm planning on another pack with repeater crossbows and then a couple of Babd to keep Feg safe. I'd like to have about 100 points to play with eventually, for a few options.

For Crom Cruach!

Monday, December 18, 2023

Silver Bayonet - Baba Zoya

This dark Winter's eve I bring you Baba Zoya, grandmother to all the lost souls of Morozov's command.

A devoted sister to the great mother, Baba Yaga, Zoya is nonetheless a powerful witch in her own right. The souls of the dead vie to light her way to the Sabbath, such is their love of Baba Zoya, for she makes the crops ripen and the cows give milk, and her wrath can wither the flesh from the bones of the impudent and the unfaithful.

Baba Zoya travels with Morozov and tends to the souls of his retinue. Her soft whispers and potent salves can bring precious relief to the damned, and they would no more offer her disrespect than a man would curse his own family. She is as the bones of the land, and so from the highest vampire to the lowliest walking corpse, they defer to her in all things, and would shield her from harm with the last scrap of their withered flesh.

Baba Zoya is, for now, the final member of my Silver Bayonet squad. She was a bit of a tricky mini to paint, and despite her small size, required me to paint her in three pieces, her arms and cloak being painted separately. She is a Reaper Bones mini, and the detail was soft in places, requiring a little improvisation, but she came out well I think.

There are quite a few doodahs under that cloak. A bird, some manner of banjo(?), what looked like mathematical instruments, and other bits. None of which you can see now, once the cloak was glued in. I spent a great deal of time on her face, which I enjoyed immensely. She's a creepy looking gal. I can't but think of Hellboy when I see any Baba Yaga reference.

So that's that! I'm looking forward to playing some more games with a full squad. I may come back to paint a mounted undead Cossack in time, if the whim strikes me, but for now, Morozov and his creaky crew are ready to take to the haunted fields of 19th century Europe, and at the rate the expansions are coming out, far beyond.

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Silver Bayonet - Serzhant Ursov's Bearform

On this most appropriate evening, I present Serzant Ursov's cadaverous were-form, the undead Russian bear. Amazing what niche rabbit holes you end of going down in this hobby.

The stinky giant is from Diehard Miniatures. He's a great sculpt, and has been lounging about morosely on my painting desk for months. He's big enough too, sitting on a 50mm base. I resolved to get him finished for Halloween, and lo, here he is.

Ursov's fur is drybrushing and thinned contrast paints, which is a very pleasant way to paint. Ratling Grime contrast makes for a great recess wash for mid-browns. Lots of red, purple and green washes on the flesh over a Rakharth Flesh basecoat, a Rakharth Flesh highlight, and the soggy bear flesh was done. The old exposed muscle was Khorne Red with purple, dark brown and red washes, highlighted with Khorne Red and a little Corax White. The usual bone recipe, some maggots and claws, and that was about it.

This fellow wraps up my my minimum required minis for my Russian Silver Bayonet squad. Huzzah! I have one more character I want to add for now though, and she'll be along presently.

Tuesday, October 10, 2023

Silver Bayonet - Serzhant Ursov

Good day to you all, I trust you're well? This day I have a strange fellow for you. Serzhant Ursov, undead shapechanger and hard-nosed (it's made of bone) sergeant. 

Ursov is a were-bear, and as soon as I read about this entry in the Silver Bayonet Russian list, I knew this was my guy. Technically an undead dogman from Flintloque's 666th foot box, he's just the ticket for my particularly eccentric unit. 

Trudging up the snow-laden hillside, the jerky, ungainly infantry were having a hard time of it. Though indefatigable, they were making slow progress as they stumbled and occasionally fell, vanishing into the white drifts with undignified puffs of snow.

Morozov would have been hugely entertained if it wasn't costing them so much time. They'd never make it to the forest by dawn at this rate. 

Near the base of the rise, Ursov sighed heavily as he righted a groaning private and barked orders at the flailing soldiers nearby. It was taking too long. Far too long. Desperate measures were called for. Handing his rifle and sword to his ensign, a sudden ripping sound exclaimed his drastic solution. 

Morozov's eyebrows raised slightly as he beheld the huge cadaverous bear bounding up the hillside, several zombified line infantry gripping it's flanks or simply riding on its back. A novel solution to be sure, but one that would see them make the cover of the forest eaves with time to spare. As the huge Ursa thundered past, Morozov was certain he heard one of the privates make a 'Wooo!' noise. 

Just the wind, he reassured himself.

The sculpt is surprisingly detailed, so took me EVEN LONGER than normal to paint. It does suffer from Bob Olley syndrome (and I love Olley sculpts) of wondering, is that bit a fold of cloth, or flesh, or billowing smoke. Or all three? I acquired a new love for the Contrast paint Garaghak's Sewer painting Ursov. Duly thinned with medium it makes for a fine weathering wash.

Finishing Ursov gives me, finally, a full unit. Almost. I still need the bear form for Ursov. 'Where will you get an undead bear, eh Dave?' Hah I would say to you. HAH. In this age of miniature abundance, undead bears are no challenge. It is on the painting desk as we speak. But, here is the final unit for your interwebby judgement.

Do svidaniya!

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Silver Bayonet - Gunner Three

Another member of the unit rises from the cold Russian soil. Gunner three, my artillerist.

Three is another Flintloque miniature, this time from the Corpseov line artillery set. The set has quite a few crew, bit this guy, with his ramrod, (which doubles as a handy two-handed weapon) looked like the very fellow for the job.

Gunner Three had no memory of his former life, he was named for his function once raised to undeath, that of servicing the mighty cannon to which he and his companions were bound. To say he performed this function dutifully would be to give him too much credit. It was no more dutiful than a mill wheel turning. He had little awareness of the tasks he performed, and no sense of  the passage of time.

This was all to change one bitter morning as their line was raked by enemy fire. The baleful metal monster he and his fellows were slaved to took a direct hit, and as it was blasted to spinning shrapnel the grim hold it had exerted over its crew simply ceased. Along with many of the crew, it must be said.

Gunner Three was released from his fugue, his senses and thoughts boiling back up to fill his mind in a wave of renewed self-awareness. Skills long forgotten crept back into his remembrance, there to augment his now expert knowledge of artillery and explosives. Such a useful soldier was not left idle long, and soon he was sequestered to Morozov's retinue.

He never could remember his name though.

Once again, I dove into the historical internet ocean for info on the correct uniform for a Napoleonic artilleryman, and applied… elements of it to the artillerist’s ragged gear. 

For painting, I continue to work contrast into my style, especially on the skin. I’ve recently taken more to dry-brushing again, after listening to Byron from Atris Opus on The Painting Phase podcast. I really need some better dry brushes. Mine are a disgrace.

This guy brings me up to almost unit strength. One more character and they are good to go, though they have already seen action in reduced unit co-op games, which were excellent.

So, next up, the Russian were-bear!

Friday, July 21, 2023

Silver Bayonet - Rasputrid

Continuing on my Silver Bayonet buzz for the moment, I've finished another member of the squad. Morozov's second, the liche Rasputrid. I’m using him as a champion of faith in the game. 

Rasputrid is ostensibly under Morozov’s command, but in reality they are more partners serving a common cause. His knowledge of the esoteric is profound, and his great red book contains the accumulated knowledge of generations of masters of the arcane arts. He can call back undead soldiers that have suffered the most grievous damage, bone and sinew re-knitting as he extorts them to heroic feats in service to the Tzar. 

Rasputrid’s necromantic powers take the form of rousing oratory. Such is his fiery conviction that it can invigorate the dead and still the hearts of his enemies. Little wonder that Morozov places such worth in his counsel. 

For his part, Rasputrid sees great potential in the vampire, if he can reconcile his past and learn to tame his demons

Rasputrid is another Flintloque miniature, from the Deadloque set. (God damn I love that set.) Despite being mostly greatcoat, I’m very fond of this guy, and it was a treat to finally paint him.  

This brings the squad to six. I have two more to paint, the were-bear and the artillerist to bring the squad up to full strength. I do plan on adding a couple more though. Maybe a mounted Cossack or the Baba Yaga herself.  

Wayland Games

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