Friday, January 1, 2016

To Everything a Season - 2015 in Review

So, the coffin lid on another year in the hobby is nailed shut and a new year rises. 2015 was a big year in the hobby, both for my own efforts and the hobby in general. The grand old institution that was Warhammer was finally holed below the waterline, listing briefly before slipping below the waves. I'm still smarting over that one. Age of Sigmar continues to whisper soothing words that it's all fine, but the wounds keep opening. That said, I'm not dismissing it out of hand just because Games Workshop annihilated the entire Warhammer setting, with over thirty years of depth to it. No I'm NOT BIT- okay, sorry, sorry, deep breaths... deep breaths.

Anyhow. The explosion of boutique gaming companies continues apace, with almost every hobby taste catered for. Wanton destruction of venerable settings aside, we live in a hobby golden age. Even my own every increasingly niche tastes are overwhelmed with options. I crossed the counter over into miniature design myself this year, seeing my own concept art turn into finished models, both for small private commissions and production models. That's a big, big tick on the bucket list. More of that kind of thing.

So, here's a bit of a lowdown on the year in the Mumblings. First up, the painting.

With some Pulp Alley gaming kicking off the year in January, it gave me some new year mojo to continue my work on the genestealer cult. After an epic search, I managed to assemble a collection of Rogue Trader robots. I painted my favourite, the Castellan, along with brother Char here. I had initially planned to use those masks on my brood brothers, a plan I've since half abandoned, but I like it on Char here.

March saw me paint up Hierarch Mijur, a rare-ish Bob Olley sculpt. He will be the controller for the cult robots. The rest of the Rogue Trader robots are in storage awaiting some paint after furiously pursuing them all over the internet. An arm here, backpack there. After all that effort, I really need to paint the rest up.

I have so many magus' now they could form a darts team. I'm half thinking of running a magus only Pulp Alley league for funs, though I still have a lot of cult minis to paint before I can indulge such fancy.

I'm a big fan of the model range for All Quiet on the Martian Front, (more on that later) so I decided to start painting some stuff for that. Three drones kicked off my Martian forces. Really fun working on these guys. I used silver spray basecoat for the first time, a real time saver for my Martian colour scheme.

April saw me discover the rather splendid Macrocosm range. With so many useful models for the cult, it wasn't long before I purloined one to test my cult colour scheme on.

I've since procured a lot more of these lads, called 'The Malignancy' in Macrocosm. There are some special weapons hybrids on the table right now, in fact.

The end of April saw the start of a joint project between myself and Cheetor from Sho3box, Judgement Day.We're both avid 2000AD fans, in particular Judge Dredd. I had some Dredd minis, and I'd been eyeing several sets from the Judge Dredd miniatures game for some time, so it was decided we would dive in, posting a Dredd themed mini on alternate Mondays. So far this has worked out exceptionally well. Here's my work on the project for this year.

Karpov MF7 Sentenoid

Orlok the assassin

War Marshal Kazan

Sov Officer

Sov Force

Dark Judges

Undercity Scatter Terrain

Judge Williams

Undercity Werewolf

Bruce Campbell  Block Citi-Def
The project served to increase my output, which can be erratic, and give me a huge boost to my painting mojo. My initial objective was to paint as many Sov Judges as I could get my hands on. Having painted my way through the range (though there are new Sov sculpts coming soon, huzzah!) I then started an Undercity gang and an Apocalypse War resistance unit. These are just kicking off, but give me two good factions to paint during 2016, plus I hope to build a set of Undercity terrain.

There are plenty of minis in the Dredd setting to hold my attention for years. Gangster Ape? Mutant raider? Zombies? Cyborgs? It's all there kids. After a holiday break, Judgement Day returns in February.

With Judgement Day holding a great deal of my painting attention, I had little extra time on other projects, though I did manage a few.

This fellow is the start of a force of cylons for Pulp Alley. I have enough minis to paint up a decent amount of troopers and a centurion, plus a good stand-in for Baltar. I just need to convert up a Lucifer and I'm set. A definite to-do for 2016.

Sons of Anorky - Rubbaleg
This guy was a one-off for a game of Brewhouse Bash. See the post here. I converted up an ork brawler for the game. I don't paint many orks, but I can see I've been missing out. There may yet be additions to the Sons of Anorky.

Brother Scivello
This chap came about from a competition to convert the Aenur model from Mordheim. I fancied a doctor/mechanic type for my cult, and so brother Scrivello was born. God bless those Adeptus Mechanicus plastic kits.

Brother Faust
Faust here is from a private commission. There are so few of this miniature it barely exists. Working on him was a huge tick on my bucket list, and I am very happy with how he turned out.

Deadites - Sheila
Sheila here begins my Frostgrave Deadite warband. I have VERY specific models in mind for the rest of the warband, Bob Olley for the most part. I even have a Necronomicon treasure token on the way. I'm really excited about getting into this project this year, I haven't done anything fantasy in a while.

That's it for the year's painting. 32 minis in total. Not as much as I'd like, but better than 2014. My aim is to double that this year.

Gaming was pretty hot this year. I am lucky enough to have a few circles of gaming buddies, gents and saints to a man. At this stage I've distilled down to the die-hards. Good folks, and whose company pretty much guarantees big funs and tons of laughs. Here's to them.

A selection of gaming photos to prove I'm not a loner in a cave in the mountains follows.

Yup. Good times. Here's to more of that in 2016.

Okay, so, this year. Well, with the death of Warhammer and the fracturing of the Warhammer community, it'll be an interesting year to see how things settle. I've been keeping a somewhat heartbroken interest in Age of Sigmar developments, and I must say some of the models coming out interest me, especially the terrain. Some not so much. There seems to be a fairly strong dollop of the Warmachine/Hordes aesthetic creeping into the design. The new Varanguard are a prime example. I'm interested to see how they treat races like the dwarves and undead with new releases. Once again my chaos dwarves are out in the cold, with a half-hearted set of warscrolls.

The Oldhammer scene is still as strong as ever, and continues to offer inspiration and entertainment to the lovers of the lead. It has spawned all kinds of sub-groups and projects, which is much to be lauded. Long may it reign.

This year I hope to add some more Judge Dredd minis to the collection, try out some new fantasy rules and get some more Rogue Trader minis painted. I'm intrigued by both Frostgrave and Dragon Rampant on the fantasy side of things. I need to get those fimir back on the table.

For Sci-Fi, Pulp Alley still holds the top spot, and I have several new leagues planned, as well as adding to my genestealer cult. I'm also going to try to get some more All Quiet on the Martian Front models done this year. Sadly the company seems to have ceased trading, but hopefully someone will pick up the game. In the meantime I have plenty of All Quiet models to get on with. The first model of 2016 will be a Martian assault tripod in fact. A bigger model than I was anticipating, but fun to work on.

So, with that I leave ye. A thank you to all the readers of the Mumblings, I hope you are enjoying  my meanderings as much as I am.

Happy new year to you all, may your bristles never become unseated.


  1. Some pretty great achievements in 2015. I feel glad to be able to share a little of that along you. Here's to an even more brilliant new year !

    1. Thanks indeed, I feel the need to shift up a gear this year, perhaps it's from hanging about with you guys in the Lounge.

  2. A big thanks Dave for all the great stuff you shared with us over the last year & I look forward to see what this year brings, but for now Happy Newyear mate.

    1. Cheers Frank, a happy new year to you too. The first mini for 2016 is a big one!

  3. A pretty fantastic year I think! Looking forward to seeing much more in 2016.

    1. Thanks Ross. The plan is to up the output this year!

  4. If every hobby year was like 2015, then that would be grand wouldn't it?

    Fab work Mr Saturday!

    1. Thanks my dear. 2015 was a solid year, now to make 2016 super solid.

  5. What's your take on the GW specialist games Assassination Force and Betrayal at Calth? A lot were pleasantly surprised by these after Dreadfleet.

    1. Execution Force was fun, but has limited replay I think. Calth looks like rattling good fun. I picked it up, but without minis, as I plan to paint up Rogue Trader versions of the protagonists. It's a nice neatly defined project.

      Dreadfleet gets overly criticised I think.It's a huge box of great minis, and the game is really quite good, though quite linear. One of the potential projects this year for a gaming group of mine is to paint up a set of Dreadfleet and play it through.


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