Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Sithmas! er... Christmas!

I want to wish everyone a safe and happy holidays!  Merry Christmas!

Last year at our house we had a village under zombie attack.  This year, with the release of the new Star Wars film, we decided to recreate a special edition scene from the Battle of Hoth.  (I think this was in the special edition...)
Everyone has fun in the snow!
Han and Leia have a snowball fight as Chewie skis by
A rebel trooper finds out why not to throw a snowball at a wampa!
Vader has some father - son time with Luke
I'll be spending some time with my family, I hope to have some gaming related posts up soon.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Scenery: Street Lights and a Billboard

A real quick project, this is a 4 pack of Street lamps from JTT model parts.  I found them at a model railroading/scale model shop and figured they would make a decent addition to any tabletop.  The lights are pretty simple, and are the "T" shape that is pretty common everywhere (at least in the USA).
Ready to work
I snagged 4 steel slugs to use as bases, they would be heavy enough to keep the lights from tipping over.  They presented a couple of problems, not the least of which was actually mounting the posts to the bases.  I changed my mind from the steel slugs and switched to a standard 30mm base from some Dark Heaven miniatures I didn't have any use for.
Poles mounted on the bases
Textured filler
The bases have a recessed top, and I fill this in with a spackle compound I use for finishing my bases.  It is easy to give a concrete finish to.  After basing, I give them a basic paint job.  The posts are a dark brown/black and the base is finished like concrete.  Pretty simple and quick.

Finished lights
Dawn shows the scale
JTT has other products, and I plan on trying out some of their other offerings.  If you are looking for reasonably priced modern street accessories, you could do a lot worse than these.
Part of the Christmas clearance at Menards (a DIY store mostly in the midwest US) were these Lemax billboards.  They come with an advertisment for Menards paint, which would be fine, but they are easy to customize.  I have customized one with an ad for an online game/geek product site.
The original billboard
Some paint, a bit of flock, a heavy black wash and the winter theme is easily changed.  I just added a business card from a recent game order (More Kittens in a Blender if I recall correctly...)
New ad for the board
Dawn checks out the advertisement
I have a couple more billboards, once I find some good artwork, I plan to convert them as well.  Finding them on sale makes them pretty cost effective for quick conversion.  I may grab some more if I see them.

Between Star Wars and starting Fallout 4, I didn't get much done this weekend... 

Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Burned!

More zombies!  Well, a few more anyway.  During Zomtober, I painted three "George" zombies from Dark Heaven Bones.  As I painted them, an idea occurred to me to make them look like they had been burned.  Mostly because they have just some rags on, and not much detail.  I had already painted them as 'normal' zombies, so I shelved the idea for the future.
A Walking Dead inspiration
I found another pack of "George" zombies, then I managed to find a second pack from the Bones line of zombies, with (in my opinion) a goofy hand waving pose.  They will work for what I want though.  Some quick advice for painting the Bones figs, make sure to wash them.  You should always prep figs with a quick wash anyway to get rid of mold release residue and such, but I figured I'd mention it.
"Zombie" being prepped
After primer, I did a basecoat of bright red on all the skin areas.  Then did dry brushing of various shades of red oxide and dark grey up to black.  After the black, I did a bit of white/grey just to bring out some detail.
Basic colors
I was pretty happy with the results.  The deeper red color came through the darker burn/ash colors, much like I had wanted.  The bright red shows up pretty well, and on the tabletop, you can actually see it.  Close up it doesn't look quite as nice, but good enough for play.  After I did the first zombie, I went ahead with the remaining figs.
Red Skin base
Red covered with grey/black
The rags the zombies are wearing are bit more difficult to paint up, I tried painting them as if they had burned, but it just looks too sloppy.  Instead, I picked some generic colors and just go with it.
Who wants candy?
Just shorts?
Overall the effect is pretty much what I wanted, I may go back and add some details to the bases, maybe some burned/melted details to reinforce the idea that these zombies had been hit with a flamethrower or just caught in a fire somewhere.
Shambling hand wavers
They could be drawing pistols...
Dawn checks out the new zeds
 Thanks for looking, comments always welcomed!

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Maybe Its Safer Near the River... (Part 2)

"Careful you idiot, don't spill so much!"  Tina yelled as Ron sloshed his first fuel container, spilling gasoline out onto the dock.  "We need this to get away!"
"Calm down!  There's plenty here and I'm just making sure the cap is on!"  Ron yelled back, looking nervously at the river.  "I hope those things stay in the water..."
A loud splash told Ron his hopes were dashed.  "Get that fuel you two and get moving towards the SUV!"  Dawn yelled as she shot at the first zombie crawling out of the water.  "Chris and I will keep them busy!"
Dawn watches Ron and Tina grab the fuel
As we resume, Ron and Tina are gathering the fuel from the tanks on the docks.  They can each get 1 unit per turn, and there are 4 units to take.  Zombies are starting to emerge from the water, appearing at one of the 'swimmers' each turn.  The number of zombies that appear increase each turn until 6 per turn are spawning, they will stop spawning once no living model is within 18" of any swimmer.  This means the group needs to get back to land before they will stop...

The zombies go first, winning initiative for the first turn.  At least the survivors are stuck getting the fuel anyway.
Two zeds crawl out of the water
The zombies appear at the end of their turn, but one comes out right into melee with Dawn, who fights to a stand off.  The survivors get to go next, Ron and Tina gather two units of fuel, Chris fires on the zombie right in front of him.  Dawn continues to fight the zombie she is facing.  Gotta hate it when the dice go cold...
Dawn continues to fight on the dock
Two more zombies appear on the docks from the shooting
The next turn, the survivors win initiative, Ron and Tina finish gathering the fuel, Chris takes three shots at the zombies on the docks towards shore, but hits nothing.  Dawn continues to be locked in combat with the lone zed.  Then the zombies go...
Zombies swarm the dock
Dawn couldn't shake off the zombies steely death grip on her machete.  They spun around each other as she struggled to avoid the snapping jaws of the undead swimmer.  No matter how she tried, Dawn couldn't get a solid blow on the zombies head.  Splashing and dull thumps alerted her that more zombies were pulling themselves onto the docks.
"We got the gas!"  Ron yelled.  "Now what?"
"Chris, lead the way.  As soon as you can, you two make a run for the SUV."  Dawn finally wrenched her machete free and with a backhand swing decapitated the zombie.  "I'll follow as soon as I can!"
Dawn finally defeats the zombie
On the next turn, the zombies go first, with four more coming out of the water.  Dawn hasn't been able to move and one of the zombies goes straight to melee.  The zombies on the dock charge Chris, luckily Ron and Tina are out of the reach of the dead...for now.
Zombies press the group
Dawn is surrounded
Being charged, both Dawn and Chris pass more dice than the zombies (who only get 1d pass automatically) and get to fire.  Dawn gets 1 shot, Chris fires his weapons rating (3).  Chris hits both zombies charging him and kills them.  Nice shooting!  Dawn kills one zombie before facing the rest in hand to hand...
Dawn still has troubles
Dawn starts cutting down the undead
Dawn slashed at the zombie swaying in front of her, trying to fight past the group on the docks.  The water around the platform was churning into a white froth and grey hands reached out of the water, trying to grab the living or pull the rotten dead from the depths.  "Chris!  GO, we have to move!" Dawn yelled, trying to escape the dead...
The survivors start their escape
Chris fires three more times and kills the zombie right in front of him.  He moves forward towards the SUV, staying between the zombies up on the dock and the two citizens carrying the gas.  They all move forward, Dawn finishes off the zombie she is fighting and takes a swing at the two prone zombies, killing one of them.  The she moves up to cover the escape.  All the shooting summons four more zombies, one in the water and three on the dock.
Chris looks at the oncoming zombies
For once, the survivors manage to get initiative on a turn they could really use it.  Chris fires, killing the two zombies near the blue barrels.  He then moves forward to his left, opening a path for Ron and Tina, who move as fast as they can towards the SUV.  Dawn moves up and shoots twice, but misses both zeds.  At least she is in position for the zombies to attack instead of Ron and Tina.
The survivors make a break for the SUV
Dawn jogged along the dock, firing her pistol at the zombies stumbling through the pallets ahead of her.  All the moving spoiled her aim and her shots went over their heads.  Cursing, Dawn set herself to face the charging zombies.  "Get to the Hummer!  Let's get out of here!"  She yelled.
Ron paused as he ran forward, looking back at the end of the docks "There's so many of them!"  Ron paled, clearly scared.  "Maybe we should just run for it!"
"You idiot."  Tina yelled, shifting the gas cans she was carrying to give her access to her shotgun.  "We're armed and we've seen these things before.  Man up already."
Zombies swarm out of the water
The zombies charge, one at Chris and two at Dawn.  Both of them get to fire before melee.
Zombies move on the survivors
The zombies don't fare well
Dawn and Chris both shoot and kill one zombie each.  Dawn faces a lone zed in melee, and only manages to knock it down.  Zombies are moving steadily up the dock behind them, and two more spawn in front of the group.
More zombies
Next turn starts with a random event, apparently Dawn can be quite eloquent.
Forward, to Victory!
Everyone is within the distance needed, and gains a +1 rep for the next turn.  They're going to need it, the zombies go first this turn.
More zombies come out of the water
Zombies surge towards land
Some of the zeds get to the survivors
Even with Dawn's speech, this is a tough turn for the survivors.  Chris manages to get a shot off, and kills one zombie.  Unfortunately the lone zombie he faces in melee wins the combat, knocking him down and stunning him.  (Chris looses by 1, the zombie doesn't kill him and Chris passes 2d on his knock down check.)  Dawn easily finishes off her opponent, but can only watch a zombie crash into Ron.  Ron fails his citizen brown pants roll and freezes when the zombie charges him.  This is a very poor defensive tactic against the undead, which proceeds to kill Ron outright.  Ouch.
Things start to go bad.
Dawn slashed the zombies face, splitting the head open and flipping the now lifeless body back into the wooden pallets.  Looking to her left, Dawn could see Chris struggling with a zombie and falling over thumping into the empty barrels on the dock.  Tina screaming grabbed her attention as a zombie stumbled into Ron.
Tina saw the zombie as it moved towards Ron, it's nearly skeletal hands reaching out to grab Ron.  "Shoot him!  Run!  RON!"  She screamed.
Ron stood frozen in terror and watched the zombie come at him.  His hands shaking, All he could do was stare at the blank dead eyes as the desiccated teenager grabbed him and sank its teeth into Ron's throat.  With a choking gurgle, Ron slumped to the dock, his lifeblood pumping out in a deep red fan around his head as he died.

Everyone passes their man down checks, Tina benefiting from Dawn's leadership die.  It's the survivors turn and Dawn kicks into action, firing on the zombie in front of Tina, killing it.  She then charges the zombie trying to eat Chris, preventing the zombies from getting a free meal!
Dawn attacks!
Tina lets loose with the shotgun, killing a zombie before moving to the SUV.  She runs out of ammo for the shotgun, but at least the zombies are not too close to her any longer.
Things don't seem so bad...
Dawn kills one zombie and knocks the other down.  At least only two more zombies appear...
Dawn clearing the dock
Dawn slashed at the zombies, one headless body pitching into the marina water.  Kicking out the legs of the other zombie, she knocked it to the ground.  "Chris!  You gotta get up and get back into the fight man!"  She yelled as Chris rolled on the ground, slowly getting up.
"Well this is a shit day."  Ron growled, pulling the tatters of his jacket on his left arm.  Blood ran down and started pooling at his feet.  Pulling back his sleeve revealed a large bite mark, the skin already darkening around it.  "I knew I should have just stayed in bed."  Chris snorted with little humor.
"Chris, I'm..."  Dawn started to say as she kicked at the zombie trying to get up.
"Don't say it.  Just get the gas and get the hell outta here with the girl."  Chris checked his rifle, making sure a round was chambered.  "I'll stay here and finish this dance with these bastards.  Honk when you're clear so I know this was worth something."

The next turn the zombies don't activate.  I should be grateful for the small things I guess.  Chris fails his 'Harry are you okay' check and will turn into a zombie four turns.  Dawn finishes off the zombie at her feet and moves to pick up the fuel dropped by Ron, who coincidentally, will turn into a zombie in five turns.  Chris steps forward and starts firing at the mass of zombies moving on the dock.  Wouldn't you know it, now he rolls very well, killing three zombies.  *sigh*  Better late than never I guess.
Chris moves forward to hold off the zombies
The survivors go first, and Dawn grabs the second fuel and moves to the SUV.  Tina fails her roll for the out of ammo shotgun, and is out of ammo for the remainder of the game.  Dawn shoots and kills the nearby zombie, making it easier to start the SUV when she gets in.
Dawn and Tina get the SUV ready
Chris moves further down the dock
His left arm was agony, but Chris kept firing.  "I'll be damned if you get past me!"  He yelled at the stumbling forms in front of him.  Each time he fired, the recoil made his arm feel like glass shards were moving through the veins and arteries.  Chris fired shot after shot, intent on eliminated the undead.  With a clank, his rifle ran out of ammo.
The zombies surged forward, their numbers no longer being reduced by the gunfire.  "Oh no you bastards, I still got a trick or two."  Chris yelled, pulling out and fixing a bayonet to his now empty rifle.  "Come on!"
Chris kills one last zombie before running out of ammo
Two zombies charge Chris, but he knocks one down and stays locked in combat with the other.  He holds the docks for now.
Chris sees a horde of zombies coming towards him
One zombie spawns from the gunfire near Dawn and Tina.  The next turn starts out with the survivors going first, Dawn fires twice and kills the nearest zombie.  (My photography missed this...oops.)  As she hops in the Hummer, she and Tina start driving away.  I choose to back up heading towards the main road, it should be easier to keep moving if I plan it correctly.
Dawn kills the last zombie nearby
Dawn backs out of the parking lot
Chris fights and kills the two zombies he was facing.  He's almost out of time, and I should have him move back, but there's no point.  He fails his tight ammo check and his rifle is out of ammo.  Chris will make his final stand right where he is.
Chris kills two zombies, and waits for more
Chris doesn't have to wait for long
Dawn slammed the brake as she spun the lumbering SUV into the road.  Shifting into drive, the SUV slowly started rolling ahead.  "The road looks clear."  She said to Tina.  "Stay alert, we don't know what we may run into."
Tina had a blank look, staring back at the marina.  "He was a pain in the ass.  He still didn't deserve this though."  She whispered, turning to Dawn.  "Ron went first, acting like he was protecting me.  If I had been leading the way..."
"Don't think about that."  Dawn cut Tina off.  "Don't start.  We need to stay strong or both of their sacrifices will be for nothing."  
Tina looked back out the window at the receding Marina.  The road was open and quiet.
Dawn honked the horn twice breaking the silence.  "Hopefully Chris can still hear us.  Let's get across the river."
Dawn and Tina drive away
The zombies go first this turn, but as Dawn is in a moving vehicle, she goes first instead.  There are no zombies anywhere near their vehicle, and she and Tina can easily drive away.
Chris makes his last stand
Time runs out for Chris, the infection claims him as the zombies flood past him.  At least he goes out making a difference.

I do a 'keeping it together' for Dawn and Tina, even with two deaths, Tina decides to stay with Dawn.  I had hoped for more people to form a band around Dawn, but everything starts with the first step.  Let's hope Tina can grow into a survivor!