Mantic Terrain Crate – Roll out some Barrels.

Mantic Terrain Crate A few more bits of my Mantic Terrain Crate Kickstarter pledge today. Specifically three sets of barrels and three individual barrels alongside some dynamite sticks. You’ll also see another WarZone Undead Legionnaire there for scale. That particular Legionnaire is the one that was missing yesterday that I found after taking all of the photos. I spent a bit of time last night bringing it up to speed – fully repainting the boots and gaiters, most of the weapon and then adding some blood (after varnishing the bits). I’ll be going and editing him into yesterday’s post in just a few… In a way these are some of the better Terraincrate bits – they’re just fine. Not amazing. Just fine. I’ll probably go in and fix up those bits we can see here where the wash has missed some of the crevasses. More importantly, these six bring my monthly total up to 29. So I’ve got two more models I need to finish in the next 2 1/2 hours. Luckily, I have a trio that are almost done, so time to knuckle down and get it done.

Mantic Terrain Crate – First bits of painted scatter.

Mantic Terrain Crate
A few weeks ago I had my Mantic Terrain Crate Kickstarter pledge arrive. I basically got the “one of everything” pledge, so it was interesting to go through all of the bits and pieces, and see what came out nicely, what was warped and fixable, what was warped to hell, and what I could just start working on and knock out quickly and painlessly. Of course, I ended up mixing the pieces together without regard for which set they came from, since my intent was completely to work out which ones I wanted to paint first.
Mantic Terrain Crate Logs
Logs are pretty simple, but they work for what they are. Sure, you could do much nicer and more detailed logs with real wood, but these are nice enough and easy to paint. So they work for me.
Mantic Terrain Crate, Hay Bales, Boxes, Crates
Similarly, bales of hay and wooden crates are fine. These single crates are detailed on 5 sides rather than 6, so they’ll always have the “grate” side on the top. I’m fine with that, but it’s just worth noting. The hay bales on the other hand are detailed on all six sides.
Mantic Terrain Crate, Boxes, Crates
The multi-crate stacks are pretty decent as well. They’re like a similar but larger version of the old resin ones that were sold by Grendel (and probably others) since the 1990’s. They’re pretty solid bits of scatter and can be used as background stuff in many genres of game or even as objective markers. I gave some of the individual boxes in the stack some (very) subtle differentiation with extra glazes of Flesh, Soft and Strong Tone, but wanted to keep them all pretty similar. Just enough variation so that the viewer doesn’t notice the variation while also adding enough small difference so that you don’t consciously notice that they all look exactly the same. So while this might not be a super exciting post, and it’s certainly not a comprehensive review of the Terrain Crate stuff, but these pieces are the first that I’ve painted, and they’re all of solid quality – especially once painted. They’re not boutique resin-level quality, but for the price, they’re pretty nice. I’ll continue to offer my thoughts on the Terrain Crate stuff as I continue to work my way through them.

Star Saga: Tool Boxes and Tech Drawer Terminals

Star Saga: Tool Boxes and Tech Drawers Terminals Scatter Terrain

More Star Saga scatter terrain today. Like the doors and crates before, I’ve bumped these up in the painting queue to use in Imperial Assault. The little tool boxes I painted in three different overall shades using different washes, so three of each if I ever need some more differentiated boxes, but they can just as easily be used as the loot crates as the ones I finished recently. The other things are these weird terminal things that appear to have computer screens and drawers. I guess they could be storage for pretty much anything with type-in access. Whatever – doesn’t matter.

Star Saga: Tool Boxes and Tech Drawers Terminals Scatter Terrain Imperial Assault

The finish on these are a bit beaten up and a bit dirty, though not overly so. Trying to find that balance that fits into multiple locations in the worn Star Wars universe, basically.

IA has various red squares on the map that designate impassable terrain that also blocks line of sight. I thought these would work well for the “base/ship” style interiors to just 3-D the game up a little more. There’s also exterior ones that I’ll need to make something a bit more proper for, not to mention the interminable terminals that we need to use in every single mission. I’ll have to get started on some of those next.

Star Saga: Small Doors & Crates (Technical August ’18)

Star Saga: Small Doors & Crates

Today’s post features some more boardgame scenic items. We have the six smaller doors from Mantic’s Star Saga game, along with six rather generic looking crates. The crates are pretty simple. A couple of tones of grey and a bit of metallic on the corners for wear and tear. Lootable crates are very much a thing in Imperial Assault, so these got found in the Star Saga accessories and got bumped to the head of the queue.

Star Saga: Small Doors & Crates

Once again, the impetus for painting these was Star Wars: Imperial Assault. I don’t expect that the smaller doors will play a part, but I did start them at the same time as the larger doors, and so I managed to make myself finish them off. Four of them are pretty generic, but the final pair feature a window, so I tried something a bit different to the typical “black” effect. I painted the windows with Vallejo Model Air Steel, and then painted them in with slightly diluted Warcolours Turquoise Gemstone, finally giving that a gloss varnish to complete it – hoping to get a kind of variation in the tone of light coming through the “blue” of the turquoise. I’m counting them as a submission for Technical August. I think they worked out okay – certainly fit for the simple purpose, but they’re not all the way there yet!

Star Saga: Small Doors & Crates, Imperial Assault

Ghaarkhan protects temp-Jyn and temp-Fenn from a Probe Droid while they furiously open their Star Wars Battlefront II Loot Crates trying for a rare Star Card. Yong Out!

This stuff isn’t really exciting, but as I’m documenting everything that I complete at the moment – here they are. And more importantly, they (well, the crates) will be straight into active gaming use. So there’s always that!

Star Saga: Large Doors

Star Saga: Large Doors

Another post featuring some not-especially-exciting content today. We have the four large doors from Mantic’s Star Saga game, which I picked up on the cheap (50% off) not too long ago. It’s supposed to be a decent little game, actually, though we’re playing Imperial Assault right now, so it’ll have to wait for a place in the queue.

Star Saga: Large Doors

Imperial Assault being the actual reason I started on these. Simply to replace the card standees in our games with something a little more substantial and a little nicer – and they look quite Star-Wars-y, too! As I painted them with Star Wars in mind, I went for grey on all four, since grey and white are the two colours that we typically see in Star Wars Architecture. The only colour being some of the buttons, and a touch of brown in the weathering.

Star Saga: Large Doors

Banging on the exterior door – who could it be, now?

I did vary them a little bit by making the rounded-edge doors a bit cleaner – as interior doors, and the more angular set more weathered – as external doors. Pretty simple stuff, but just a little touch. I also started on the six smaller doors, but haven’t yet finished them, as the focus last week was to get these four done and so ready for gameplay.

That’s it for my July models now. If everything goes to plan, I’ll have my personal round-up tomorrow, and then the Community Round-Up will go up on Sunday (my time). Get those last-minute posts and links to me for Jewel of July up ASAP!

Mantic Games Undead Balefire Catapult

This update is slightly odd for me. Alongside the unit of skeleton infantry I shared with the previous update, I also managed to finally complete the two crew of Mantic’s Balefire Catapult. The odd part is that I painted the actual Catapult last year, and was sure I’d posted it here, but can’t for the life of me find it posted. This has of course been the final month of the first 6-month “Tale of Gamers” painting challenge that I’ve run over on Dakka.

As they were painted separately and at different times, the iconography of the Catapult is more than a little different to the plain freehand skulls and bones I’ve been giving the skellymans. I actually went for a stylised red eye. (hmm….) in order to allow the actual war machine (sans crew) to fit into several armies aside from solely belonging to the undeads.

The crew on the other hand, were started (well, assembled) at the same time as the Balefire, but only painted recently, more or less in concert with the infantry, so their livery is the more current, developed one that the army has taken on. Painting the crew does of course combine with the catapult to create another completed, finished unit – entirely the point of the ToG challenge!

That’s pretty much it. It has made for a good, strong finish to the final month of the painting challenge for the undead. Especially so, considering I had the painting doldrums and didn’t finish anything at all until almost three weeks in.

June’s “Tale of Gamers” Undead painting contingent.

I’ll get some “6-months worth of Undead” and “6 months worth of Gondor” posts up soon, and then follow them with a few “Army Showcase so far.” posts for my various army projects. Should be a bit of fun, or at least keep me interested for a little while…




The First Unit of Mantic Skeletons

A slightly odd title, I know. But the fact is that I’ve got quite a few more of these suckers to paint at some stage, so I’m simply future-proofing this (series of) post(s) now.

I haven’t posted for awhile – a combination of being perma-fatigued from work and personal life issues, and the onset of the winter doldrums. I did bugger-all from the end of last month until about the middle of last week, when I finally got back to work. The end of the first 6-month “Tale of Gamers” challenge I’ve been running over on Dakka is coming to a close in a few days, and I need(ed) to get my skates on. I still need to get something finished for Gondor, the boring bastards!

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

These models were actually started several years ago, shortly after I purchased Mantic Games’ Dwarf King’s Hold: Dead Rising. Seeing as the game came with a dozen or so of Mantic’s Skellymans, and I had none painted or assembled at the time, I took a sprue or two from my (at the time) recent purchase of Kings of War 1st Edition: Morgoth’s Revenge (aka the one with the awful dwarves and a tiny A5 pamphlet for a rulebook) and built them up for the game.

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

I can’t remember if DKH has a skeleton hero or not – or if I just built the guy with the two swords to keep myself interested. The feather-plumed skeleton also has a unit leader feel to him, though. Perhaps when I do another dozen of these guys one of this pair will remain here as the unit leader while the other moves on to lead the second unit.

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

I only have three spears in this unit, as it was built for the boardgame. At some stage, I’ll build a spear-heavy contingent to combine with these guys (and one of those leaders up above) to make a spear unit. I’ll also do a few more with hand weapons to fill out a unit with regular weapons.

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

All of the shields on these models have freehand designs. I’ll have to think of some other designs that are both simple to paint and suitable for this sort of undead models. Any ideas? Nothing too creative or exciting for these guys, though!

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

The difficulty with these models is as nice as these have come up – honestly, to my surprise – they were a real bastard to paint. Not fun at all. The issue I have is that the details are very shallow. I don’t mind fine detail, but it’s all very shallow on these guys, and as such, not simple and easy to paint in my style. Skeletons with well-defined details and bones are usually a joy to paint, but these aren’t it.

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

While Mantic’s Undead are often cited as their best range – certainly before the latest batch of KoW plastics came onto the scene recently – and I do agree that the Zombies (and Ghouls, I guess – I’ve used a ton of Ghoul parts on my Zombies) are great models. The differences are that the Zombies are a real pleasure to paint, but are severely limited in their components and require a fair bit of work to get differentiation once you go beyond the first few models (hence using all those Ghoul parts on mine). The Skeletons on the other hand have a lot more components to choose from to make the models more varied, and like the Zombies, they look pretty good once done – but they’re the opposite of the pleasure to paint that the Zombies are.

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

Will I paint some more? Well, I feel obliged to do another dozen in order to split the spears and hand weapons, so I’m sure I’ll do those this year. After that, it’ll be a second dozen of each to bring each of them to horde-size, though that’s less likely to happen this year. I also have a few sprues of Mantic’s Skeleton Revenants, though again, no real plans to do those anytime soon. Maybe I’ll paint my Mantic Skeleton Cavalry first…

Mantic Games Undead Skeletons

Still, I have to give this painting challenge credit – It motivated me to sort out these guys who had been assembled and nothing more but sat aside for around four years or more, and now we have another finished unit of models, and while they’re not going to win any Crystal Brushes, I reckon they make a very nice unit for the table.