Ral Partha Dungeons and Dragons: Giant Spider (1995) (Jewel of July ’18)

Ral Partha Dungeons and Dragons Giant Spider (1995)

Time for a Spider! Today’s model is a Ral Partha Giant Spider from their licenced Dungeons and Dragons range in 1995. Which is why it has a “TSR 1995” on it’s underside. While some of you might wonder why RP felt the need to licence something as incredibly generic as a Giant Spider, where no copyrights or trademarks could possibly exist, the answer lies in it being part of a branded D&D range that stores would carry and purchase from.

Ral Partha Dungeons and Dragons Giant Spider (1995)

Friend of the Bitz Box, Mark Morin actually painted the same model a couple of years ago, along with some other old-school Grenadier Spiders.

I painted the thing in woody browns, inspired by our local Aussie heroes, the Huntsman Spider. Even though the Huntsman isn’t furry like our D&D model, I still wanted her to have the “feel” and “appearance” of a “real” spider. In order to do that, I followed the really simple, muted tones of real spiders rather than going all that crazy with bright colours, as it’s clearly not a tropical specimen. I also went with browns rather than blacks, since I wanted it to stand out a bit more, and perhaps be a little less creepy(?) The tiny, beady eyes were painted black, with a single dot of white for the highlight, and gloss varnished. Not that you can see them, they’re so bloody small!

Ral Partha Dungeons and Dragons Giant Spider (1995)

After trying to make the thing look kinda-realistic with the paint, I wanted to then draw it away from looking like a large spider had invaded my games room by using the basing to tie it in with the rest of my minis collection, and with that black rim separate it from the tabletop slightly. I also used some bits of slate to raise the front f the spider, since it’s rearing up (for some reason) and make it look that little bit more impressive when sat next to other models.

Ral Partha Dungeons and Dragons Giant Spider (1995)

Ral Partha Dungeons and Dragons Giant Spider (1995)

It really is a nice sculpt, and probably one that’s now lost to time. It wouldn’t take much for someone who owned the mould to scrape off the TSR from it (or probably most of that range) and sell it, and I’m sure that’s the case with at least a good chunk of the rest of the mid-90’s range. After all, no-one “owns” Orcs, or Kobolds or Elves – which is why we now have GW selling us “Orruks” and “Aelves”, but without knowing the intricacies of that particular licence agreement, who can tell? RPE don’t have it. Maybe Mirilton or someone else like that owns the sculpts now? (Well, not Mirilton – I just checked!)

Reaper Bones 77504: Death Star Lillies (Neglected Model May ’18)

Reaper Bones 77504: Death Star Lillies

Another pair of simple Bones models here – and yes, that’s really what they’re called. These ones work as both Neglected Models for this month as well as some potential Nurglesque Scenic items for 40k/AoS/Warhams. Beyond that, they also work as Deathworld plants in a more general 40k sense, or any kind of Pulp and/or D&D setting as giant carnivorous plants. One problem that …drew out their painting time was the fact that they got tacky when I painted them with normal paint, despite the layer of Liquid Greenstuff that I had applied. I’ve overpainted them this time using Reaper’s own HD paints, though there’s some Vallejo mixed into the highlights and some AP washes with Lahmian Medium for the purple shading. Sealed with Reaper’s own brush-on, so we’ll see if this shit can stop the figures from becoming tacky. edit – seems to work, but it’s very satin as most brush-on Matt varnish turns out to be.

Reaper Bones 77504: Death Star Lillies

A Plaguebearer provides a sense of scale. As you can see, these are neither tiny, nor huge.

Reaper Bones 77512: Flesh Golem (Neglected Model May ’18)

Reaper Bones 77512: Flesh Golem

This rather attractive figure is a Reaper Bones model that has been clogging up my desk for some time now. I’ve also seen it called “Obese Flesh Golem”, though I’m not sure if that’s ever been an official alternate title, since Reaper has a few figures that are just listed as “Flesh Golem”. I’ve got the other Bones figure as well, so perhaps I should also dig that one up to replace this guy on the paint desk. I picked this guy up as part of Reaper’s Bones III “Stoneskull” expansion.

Reaper Bones 77512: Flesh Golem

Rather obviously, I’ve gone for a yellow/ochre base to this guy’s flesh tones. Both because I like to vary my zombie-skin and also as a bit of a test run for a batch of my future plastic plaguebearers. I was tempted to paint sections of him in completely different skin tones, but going too patchwork runs the risk of making the figure look ridiculous. Also, I just wanted to finish the damned thing.

Reaper Bones 77512: Flesh Golem

A Celestial Lion Space Marine provides scale.

As far as gaming goes, this guy has a pretty wide set of potential uses. Obviously fantasy role-playing, but also the Undead army for Kings of War, and I’ve also got plans to put him to work in a Renegades and Heretics army for 40k. (Nurgle, natch!) Hell, he can potentially be an Abomination when we get back to Zombicide – especially Black Plague as he’s very much a reainimated kind of chappie.

Monster March Painting Challenge!

Another of the community’s painting challenges out there is something called Monster March. It, rather unsurprisingly deals with the painting of Monsters during – get this – the month of March!

I asked Swordmaster, who is running the challenge if it would be okay if instead of starting from scratch I could try to finish off a pair of models I’ve already started. He kindly said that it would be fine, and so I selected two (Neglected!) models that have been sitting around here, part-painted for literally years. Quite a few in one case!

The Dracoliche comes from the Dungeons & Dragons: Castle Ravenloft Boardgame, though I’ve also puttied up a wargaming base for it to slot into. It’s been part-painted for quite a few years. The second model is Reaper’s Colossal Skeleton from the Bones line of models, specifically their first Kickstarter. I’m hopeful that Monster March can Motivate Me to get both of these damned things done and out of my way. I’ve also got another Monster who I started Months ago that I’d like to get completed as well, but we’ll see…

D&D Monster Manual 12: Castle Ravenloft Howling Hag, Dark World Haunter

Another one of the Dungeons and Dragons Boardgame models today. The “Hag” from the Castle Ravenloft boxed boardgame was probably my least favourite model to paint from the entire set, which is why she’s taken this long to complete. At first she looked an easy model, and I attempted to knock it out quickly, but the soft detail and general …I dunno, unlikability? of the model led it to sit in half-painted limbo for literally years, including one (failed) attempt to try and get it out and just get it done.

Dungeons and Dragons Castle Ravenloft – “Howling Hag”

Ironically, it’s been the “Tale of Gamers Painting Challenge” that led me to fish the model out of one of the tubs it had been banished to in order to complete it. When I saw it, I thought “yeah, that’s undead” and with April being a very difficult month for me to to various personal reasons, I felt that it might be a way to achieve my self-imposed monthly target on the undead side. After all, I painted two units from scratch last month… Initially, my thought was to potentially use her as a character of some kind, as it’s essentially a boss character in the D&D boardgame, but the model just doesn’t deserve to be a character in a wargame. Not with so many other, better models at my disposal.

Dungeons and Dragons Castle Ravenloft - "Howling Hag"

Rear view of the Howling Hag

As you can see, I’ve really just tried to get a “good enough” tabletop level on the model. Looking at it in these photos, I can see how I’ve completely skipped higher level highlights on the edges of the robes and clothing. But meh. I dislike this model with it’s muddy, soft “detail” and so I’m calling it good enough. the reddish and black shawl is an attempt to add a little bit of colour to the model, and is also “good enough” should it ever be used as …something in the KoW army. Perhaps she could be stuck in amongst the Zombies. It’d work well enough with that giant gob. Perhaps as an (extra?) Necromancer in Zombicide: Black Plague.

Dark World – “Haunter”

Next up, a model started back in the early 1990’s, “finished” to a standard I was unhappy with for a long time, buried in a figure case, and recently exhumed and finished to what is again, a “good enough” tabletop standard. I’ve gone for what has become the more or less default “ethereal” paint style ever since the LotR Army of the Dead became a thing back in the early 2000’s.

This guy is the “Haunter” from the 1992 board game, “Dark World“. I managed to either save up my money or get gifted this HeroQuest-alike boardgame in my youth. It had to be awesome, right? Look at the cover art!

Look at the miniatures! There’s a definite Games Workshop stylistic thing happening there, which was very exciting back in ’92. The Mummies and, well, one of the Skeletons I still have, painted and set up with the undead army. No idea what became of much of the rest of the set, including the large temple that came as scenery in the set, which I started converting way back decades ago but never finished. If I ever do find it, I’ll finish it and show it here. Sadly, I never actually played the game. So, um.. yeah.

Dark World Haunter – Original “Official” paintjob (not mine!)

The Haunter is a relatively simple figure. Even back in the day I didn’t like the goofy face that they gave it, so I promptly threw it away and left what I thought was a much more evil looking ringwraith-style empty hood.

My version of the Dark World “Haunter”

The base made it a little awkward when renovating the old model recently but instead of cutting it off and mounting it on a normal GW style base, I just put the whole thing onto a Warmachine-style “rolled edge” base and built up around the rim with acrylic paste. Like the Howling Hag, I’m seeing this as more of a boardgame model, or perhaps role-playing or skirmish gaming than something that will go into a Kings of War army. In this case mostly because I have no idea what profile to use…

Haunter and Howling Hag

So these models might end up being April’s Undead entry into the Tale of Gamers challenge unless I can finish off something else. I guess I still have a couple of weeks, but I need a break from painting skeletons, so we’ll see what transpires. In any case, I’ve got another couple of monsters for D&D/Pathfinder/WFRP/etc.

Ral Partha: 02-951 Ki-rin

Azazel: Another Guest Post from Marouda. Hopefully we can keep her interested in painting models and these can be a more regular thing!

Ral Partha: 02-951 Ki-rin

I painted this model about 4 years ago. This figure is a very nice model sculpted by Julie Guthrie as part of the ‘All Things Dark and Dangerous‘ range for Ral Partha, probably in the late ’80s.

Ral Partha: 02-951 Ki-rin

The model is a Kirin which is a creature that looks similar to a unicorn with the scales of a dragon. I remember that I enjoyed painting it as I particularly like mythological creatures such as unicorns and pegasi. I chose to paint the Kirin in a turquoise palette of colours. The model was fairly easy to paint except for the fine detail of the eyes which require a very steady hand so I asked Azazel if he could help by painting the eyes. To provide a shimmer effect to the scales I used a white opalescent paint over the turquoise paint. I am really happy with how the mane and hair turned out. Azazel helped me with painting the base for the model. I wanted the Kirin to be running through waves. To make the waves of the water on the base ‘water effects’ was used.

Ral Partha: 02-951 Ki-rin

Ral Partha: 02-951 Ki-rin