Saturday, February 21, 2015

15mm Scale(s)

For a long time I have wanted to get into 15mm gaming.

If you have been doing 28mm gaming for essentially your entire gaming career, this can be a difficult thing to get into. A significant portion of your gaming investment goes to waste. Your terrain is almost all the wrong size, unless you imagine your little soldiers as fighting their battles in a land of giants. And your 28mm miniatures are titanic next to their smaller brethren. You might find one or two humans that could be hill giants, skeletons that could be bone giants, some rats and spiders that could be, well, giant rats and spiders. You see the common theme. Unless your collection is fairly scale generic, you can't use much.

I'm lucky in that, a while back, I made a small gaming board for Lord of the Rings skirmish, but it also doubles fantastically as a cave themed 15mm skirmish board for Song of Blades & Heroes. Add in a few rocky outcroppings and smaller ruin pieces and you have a nice underground (or ash waste) playing surface.

So that's terrain sorted, as least until I get inspired and build some more pieces. I do have a green grass board the same size, but I'd be pretty much just using the same pieces on that, plus a couple smaller trees. And the board is very old and showing some large bare patches in its outdated bright green flock. My goal is to someday refurbish that board but for now we'll stick to the underground.

Of course next I need some warbands. Like I said, I've been wanting to do something like this for a long time. Like years. Like a couple years ago when was offering some of their lizardmen as a free sample. For the cost of shipping, I got 10 or so lizardmen, of which I have painted up five.

I also added a Reaper cobra familiar as a giant cave cobra. Buying it as a single piece actually cost me as much as the lizardmen, but I needed a small point filler. They aren't the most detailed, but I like these guys because they have a sort of Gorn/Trandoshan/Godzilla rubber-suit quality to them. They are quite charming.

You can find their warband roster right here.

Next I needed a suitable nemesis for my cave-dwelling lizardmen, a nemesis that also frequented the underground tunnels of the world. My answer came when Splintered Light put out some warbands of their dark elf line. Suitably painted they make some excellent Drow.

And Drow them up I did, with traditional dark armor, purple cloth, black skin and white hair. These guys were fun and super easy to paint, as were the lizardmen. At the smaller scales, drybrushing and washing goes even further than on 28mm, I think. I'm very pleased with the result on both warbands.

The dark elves also have a roster by the way, which you can find here.

And of course I cant leave off without giving you and action shot in their natural environment:

I have so enjoyed painting up these warbands that I have taken the liberty of picking up a couple more. Ral Partha Europe has a line of Blighthaven warbands, and I have purchased the dwarf and beastman packages. I can't wait to get them painted up, but lets face it, at my pace that may be a while.

In the meantime, though, happy gaming!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Bits & Bobs

I've had a bit of free time lately (read as "unemployed") and while I haven't done much in the way of big projects, I have had the chance to knock out a few mini-bits to enhance the games I play. I want to apologize for the photography here and in the last few months. The lighting in my new game room is atrocious and I'm trying to find a better way to do things. Right now these are taken in a small spot on my desk with my painting light.

The first thing I made up were a few treasure/magic item counters. Ostensibly they were made for use in Song of Blades & Heroes but they could also be used as generic objective tokens or to mark dropped equipment, or just as setting enhancers.

I had a lot of fun painting these up. The enchanted skull is may favorite and I think the freehand rune on top came out nicely. The shield is my least favorite because I really couldn't think of anything to make it seem really magical. I went with green, glowing eyes and another rune, but honestly it feels too subtle. Still, I'm happy with my work.

Next came a set of super-generic objective counters. It's just a set of scrolls based on pennies, and I didn't feel the need to spruce them up too much. They do the job though.

Finally, I wanted to add a couple of spell effect markers to my D&D adventures.

The ball of flame is a Reaper Bones orange translucent flame. It's going to be used to show the position of our gnome druid's flaming sphere spell, but it could also be used for a campfire or brazier in a pinch. Being orange already, I just drybrushed yellow, painted the base dungeon-y and called it finished.

The other marker is for my barbarian/cleric's spiritual weapon, and it is a scratch built piece. It consists of a Warhammer skeleton hand mounted on a paperclip. It got drybrushed for a ghostly effect and to give it some more character, I added a fallen branch to the base. The branch is a leftover Warhammer dryad arm. I'm really happy with how it came out and can't wait to use it to smite some foes!

And I will end things with an action shot...

Happy gaming!