Friday, March 15, 2019

Dreadful Target

A bit more than a year ago I picked up a pair of strange resin robots on a friendly deal at a convention. At the time I'd no idea what these were or who made them. Assorted friends telling me followed by forgetting, followed by considerable research leads me to the conclusion that they are Armorcast steampunk robots called Frank n' Steam and Frank n' Track. There were two, with different propulsion variants: legs vs. tank treads. As per usual I forgot to take pictures of the process until it was done, so the before and after paint versions are not the same. I chose to build the version with the treads first. The picture below isn't the best but you get the idea. It's a sort of steam-punk mechanized unit in the usual upright anime sci-fi "robot" configuration; what we might in Oldhammer terms call a dreadnought. This one is a bit unusual for having the driver apparently looking out a large opening smack in the center of the largest mass of the thing. To approximately quote the Nigel Wood, who engineered the sale, "It's just so bloody ridiculous! The driver is poking his head out right in the middle where he's going to draw fire." I think this might have been followed by "I love it!" but I can't be sure. (I surely said something like that.)

But I have a soft spot for that sort of shenanigan:

The casting was decent enough: no funny bubbles or voids, but quite a lot of flash, as is common of smaller companies and older resin. Still, lots of character and that makes me happy. Of course, when it finally came to painting the thing I decided the "driver" didn't look remotely orky . . . er . . . precise enough. It's really quite flat and rather stylized. So I decided the head was a bas relief figurehead rather than the actual driver, and I almost serendipitously chose red and white target colors and a lovely quartered pattern, as you see below.

No oldhammer object is complete without some checks, of course.

Making the face sculptural rather than literal makes this miniature somewhat flexible. It could become a part of most any force, but . . . Let's be honest. He belongs with Doc Hobble and Mr. Burne's Delightful Dreadlies. (Dread Mobs are a real thing in Rogue Trader. Look 'em up. There's rules and even point costs, in that random "take a roll of this table" way.)

Anyway, he does look delightful, so it's only appropriate.

Welcome to the mob, Mr Targit. Please, have the honor of the next charge.

As always, thank you for reading along. I hope you've had half as much fun as I. And Nigel . . . thank you! :)

The Composer

Friday, March 1, 2019

Uncivil Servant

A year or two ago I backed a kickstarter by a company called Blind Beggar Miniatures. Like so many things I've purchased over the years the set of miniatures thus acquired is . . . not yet fully in paint. But slowly, bit by bit, it's getting closer. This is the story of one miniature in that set: They Mayor. Quite a few of the miniatures in the range seem to refer to a property called "Outlanders." As best as I can figure this might be related to a movie and its novelization from the late seventies or early eighties by the same name. (Could also be a novel and its dramatization. Not quite sure which way the two fall there.) Most of the miniatures have a sort of space western feel to them. There was quite a lot of that going around thirty years ago, and it's an ethos that appeals to me particularly. I'm not really sure who "The Mayor" is, or how he fits into the Outlanders story, whatever that might be. But he clearly has a rather ominous vibe, with his almost plague doctor like mask and his villainous tophat and umbrella.

He's clearly a rather affluent fellow, given his somewhat antique business garb, so I've decked him out in pinstripes and an ascot that probably refers to some lair where the children of similar fat cats grow into the maneaters they ultimately become. (No evil overlord is complete without a good evil overschooling, right?)

Like so many Blind Beggar miniatures the Mayor's details run a little to the softer end of the spectrum and the scale to the larger. Not everyone will appreciate this, but I feel it gives him a very nice comic-book kind of style that stands him well on the gaming table. Below you can see him next to another unusually tall and slightly ominous sort, in this case one of the Society of Intrepid Explorers from Curtis Fell's Ramshackle Miniatures.

And below you can see him with a variety of other upper crust sorts from various manufacturers: two leftmost from the Space Lords adventurers range now available from Moonraker, two from Ramshackle, our Mayor, and three from Colony 87.

 All in all, I'd say he stands in good stead. He's clearly a little bigger than some of the older models, but not so much so as to seem inappropriate. (We humans are, after all, quite variable in our own size and shape.) And his style of dress fits in quite well with the other sculpts, both modern and historic. And if his details provide a most interesting canvas for a painter to express themself.

Lastly, below I give you the Mayor with the other miniatures from the range: assorted civilians, colonists, aliens, and mysterious strangers wandering about the wastelands. Blind Beggar may be a bit of an acquired taste, but . . . I do believe I have acquired it. Lovely stuff.

As always, thank you for reading along. And have fun gaming out there, whatever miniatures and rules you care to use.

The Composer