Saturday 2 April 2016

Stocking the dungeon: Citadel and Asgard Undead

As part of the ongoing dungeon stocking exercise, I turned my attention to the subject of Undead, particularly wights, wraiths, spectres and vampires. These are key components of most Undead based adventures, so they'll see plenty of tabletop time. I rummaged through the mountain and junk box, and found various figures that fitted the bill - mostly from Citadel, though the figure on the far left is an Asgard vampire - and repaired where necessary. For example, the figure second from the left was missing a lantern, and now brandishes a plastic sword. After that, a very simple, very basic paint job - base coat of white, then a wash of either GW Draaken Nightshade or GW Beltain Green, followed by dry brushing of the relevant colour. Really, really simple, and it brought up the detail beautifully, whilst the red eyes were added to make the figures look more sinister. The final touch was to do my usual trick of adding cotton wool wisps to suggest mist, and I think it works really well here. I think it goes to show just how good the early Citadel and some of the Asgard sculpts were - they still hold up after 30 years. Very pleased with the way these turned out!

Minifigs Valley Of The Four Winds VFW24 Tree with arms and face

And from Grenadier, to Minifigs, who were one of the earliest manufacturers of fantasy figures in the UK. As a consequence a lot of their sculpts are very basic, and whilst they sold well at first, they soon lost ground to Ral Partha, Citadel and Grenadier. The VFW range of figures was produced to supplement the Games Workshop game of the same name, and whilst a lot of the smaller figures are very basic, the larger ones - like this tree - look well detailed. To be honest, when this figure was extracted from the Lead Mountain, my immediate thought was that it would be ideal as an Ent or Treeman for a Fae/Sylvian Horde Of The Things army I am building, so it was painted with that in mind. The actual paint job was really simple - base coat of dark gray, then a dark Army Painter wash, then dry brushing with light gray and silver to bring out the details. Simples! The final touches were to use PVA glue on the base and on some of the upper branches to suggest moss and/or leaves, and I think that really worked well. Very pleased with the result from this one!

Grenadier Fantasy Lords 500 series Cloud Giant

And staying with Grenadier... this was next out of the Mountain. I obtained it as part of a job lot, and it was broken - the long scarf flying over the shoulder was snapped off and missing - so it was out with the Milliput to try and sculpt a replacement, which didn't come out too badly I think. However, it did flag why the scarf broke off in the first place, because with the scarf the figure had an annoying tendency to fall over, so it was glued on to a base for stability. Even with the missing scarf restored, it is still a very odd figure - what on earth is it holding/stroking? A dragon? A lion? A demonic cat? I worked on the theory that whatever it is, it was supposed to be some kind of familiar or pet for the Cloud Giant, and would therefore be made of the same elements as its owner. Again, we're dealing with large Grenadier sculpts, so keep it simple - a base coat of white primer, then a very thin wash of GW Draaken Nightshade, then lots of dry brushing with white. Much to my surprise this worked really well - it really brought out the detail, and gave the figure a definite ethereal look. I still thought the figure lacked something, so I did my usual trick of adding wisps of cotton wool to both the base and to the end of the scarf to suggest cloud and mist, and whilst I think it works on the base, I'm not too sure about it on the scarf - that may get removed later on. I actually like this figure a lot more than I was expecting to - it has a slightly sinister presence, a bit like a fantasy Blofeld stroking a cloud white cat. Now there is a hook line for a set of adventures...

Grenadier Fantasy Warriors 909 Ogre Mercenary

Well, it's been a while since I posted. I could list a number of reasons, but the truth is that I have been in hibernation. However, I have been painting in that period so - a catch-up set of posts. Next out of the Lead Mountain was this beastie from Grenadier from the Fantasy Warrior range. As with a lot of the later larger Grenadier sculpts, it is quite coarse sculpting (though not as bad as some of the Asgard minis), so I tried to keep the colour scheme as simple as possible - gray for the skin, dull brown for the furs, silver for most of the armour. After that, Army Painter soft tone wash on all non-skin areas, and GW Draaken Nightshade wash on the skin, followed up by highlighting on the skin areas. The base, as always, is just fine sand painted gray and then ink washed. It's an OK job - to be honest, I had great expectations for it, but oddly enough the washes brought out the coarseness of the sculpt - but I can see it getting plenty of table top time as a general boss guardian for treasure.