Tuesday, 22 February 2011


Another item of scenery - the gateway of one of the settlements on the colony world of "Gordon's Gamble". Most of the first settlements were surrounded by protective enclosures. Although most of these have since been dismantled, the odd gateway remains, acting as a sort of "official" entrance to the settlement. Mayor Hokum is standing in the gateway to give it a sense of scale. Big enough for small civilian vehicles and pedestrians, but armoured vehicles will have to drive around it!
As usual, this is Hirst Arts blocks and Inscribe acrylics, with GW chainmail on the metal parts. It's currently a bit of standalone scenery, but may get incorporated into something larger as the settlement develops.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Processing station

The Planet "Gordon's Gamble" is littered with the remnants of failed mining operations. This processing station is but one of them. It consists of a high-temperature processing unit sitting on a concrete base. This particular one is still used by some of the remaining colonists, so it's in pretty good condition.

You can see the soot-coated waste heat outlet on the top. The high temperatures have also caused this part to oxodise more quickly, hence the rustier finish on this part.

This is built from more of my Hirst Arts blocks, mainly from the Starship Wall Mould #301 and Starship Deck Mould #270. Colonists from Ground Zero Games (SG15-V4 techs/crew and SG15-V2 colonists B).

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Ground Zero Games OUDF Review

I love these little figures from GZG. It was the overhanging helmets on the kneeling/prone figures that caught my eye on the web site, and I assumed the standing figures would have the same design. I was not disappointed!

As you can see below, there are two standard riflemen, one aiming and the other in a more relaxed pose. You also get a squad automatic weapon, a LAW-style missile launcher and a commander shouting into his radio.

A rear view (I've missed out the duplicates) shows you their backpacks and webbing. You can see the missileman has his bullpup pattern assault rifle slung over his shoulder. I've used GW goblin green for the fatigues, Humbrol 186 brown for the armour, helmets & boots. The whole figure has been washed with watered down Vallejo sepia ink, before highlights were drybrushed with the original base colours. Visors are GW red gore highlighted with a drop of white, then glazed with GW red ink. Weapons are black with Humbrol grey. The whole lot were painted in a single evening, surprisingly quick for me!

I realised that my 15mm forces are looking very pale at present, so I've been experimenting with some different skin tones. All start with a base coat of my standard flesh mix. On the left we have an undiluted Vallejo sepia ink wash for an African appearance (depending upon hairstyle, it looks more Indian on other figures). The middle figure has a GW yellow/Vallejo sepia wash, highlighted with basic flesh plus a drop of GW sunburst yellow. I'm not suer whether this looks oriental, or perhaps just jaundiced. On the right we have a watered down Vallejo sepia wash with flash highlights for my standard finish.

Overall grade for these figures: A - a fantastic little set of figures with loads of character and excellent poses. All we need is another couple of packs please Jon!

To finish (and on a different topic entirely): a picture of my work-in-progress NAC dropship skimming the tree-tops on the planet "Gordon's Gamble" whilst hunting for rebels.

Saturday, 12 February 2011


What do all settlements need? Lots of power! While solar panels and wind turbines are all very well, you can't beat a decent reactor, and here is mine.

As with my machinery tower, this is built from plaster blocks from a Hirst Arts mould. I've used curving corridor wall sections from the starship wall mould #301 for the main reactor casing, with a small statue plinth from the gothic dungeon accessories mould #41 for the end caps. For the cable run covers between the reactors I've used some tiny curved blocks from the Cargo Bay Accessory Mould # 302. Here you can see a few NAC Marines and a technician from GZG to give a sense of scale. The Rebel Alliance reactor destroyed by the AT-AT assault on Hoth was the inspiration for this piece of scenery. I haven't decided whether it's going to have a fence or wall around it, or remain a standalone item that can be dropped inside a larger building.

Some of the outer colonies have rather battered old reactors. You can see that this one is rather rusty with the odd hole in the outer casing, but the healthy blue glow shows that it's still working just fine. The technician regularly checks it, and the armoured inner reactor vessel is in very good condition. Mayor Hokum (GZG colonist on the left with a headswap) wouldn't be standing this close to it if there was any chance getting irradiated!

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Another day, another shack...

Another battered old shack to add to my developing shanty-town. I spend far too long making these little buildings because of all the little details I keep adding. "Why do they all have to be so run down and grotty?" asks Laura. "Because that's what gives them character," I reply.

The main structure is 5mm foamcore with thick cardboard roof panels. The tarpaulin on the roof is kitchen roll soaked in PVA, painted with Inscribe olive drab acrylic. Corrugated panels are corrugated craft board scraps painted with GW enchanted blue & Inscribe burnt umber/burnt sienna rust. Oil drum from Continental Model Supply Company. Also featuring here are a few balsa scraps (Inscribe burnt umber drybrushed with taupe), rocks (sieved from a bag of sharp sand), GW static grass and some reindeer moss foliage. Windows are scraps of clear plastic packaging.

Round the back it's just as untidy - more balsa, reindeer moss and static grass plus a small patch of shredded foam undergrowth. Grumpy really needs to have a tidy up.

The attached garage is where Grumpy the colonist worked on his "Z-Wagon" zombie-proof transport. (Pretend that you can't notice how I didn't build the walls high enough for it to fit in with the garage roof on!)

I've tried to have a few places where characters can hide or get some cover. Looks like Grumpy has spotted this masked felon lurking outside though.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Rebel Minis mercenary

Just a single person to add to the blog this time; a Rebel Minis civilian contractor.

There was a mould line running down the body, but it cleaned up fairly well, except on the face - fortunately his wide-brimmed hat and gun sight hide the face pretty well! I like these figures, much better than the SWAT team I got from Rebel in the same order. You can actually see what their weapons are supposed to be!

This mercenary is mounted on an M6 washer. Grey undercoat was followed by Humbrol 186 brown trousers, Humbrol 86 light olive for the hat & webbing belt, Humbrol 93 desert yellow for the t-shirt. Trousers received a wash of Vallejo sepia ink and a drybrush of the brown base coat. The green areas had a quick highlight of desert yellow, the t-shirt a highlight of Vallejo bonewhite. Flesh is my own flesh mix, shaded with GW flesh wash. Boots and M16/M4 are Humbrol 33 black, shades are black with GW enchanted blue lenses.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Machinery tower scenery

I've been busy with my plaster building blocks cast from Hirst Arts moulds. One of the planets in my fictional universe has a lot of abandoned mining machinery scattered near the small human settlements. This is one such piece.

This was something of a test piece, so I used some of my miscast blocks with air bubbles (I was in a rush when I cast this lot and forgot to tap the bubbles out before it set!).

This is some sort of processing tower. You can see a conveyor rising up the side.

Painting is with Inscribe acrylics, a mixture of ultramarine blue & raven black highlighted by adding a few drops of white. GW chainmail was used for the metallic areas. Rust is Inscribe burnt umber for the dark brown with edges highlighted in a brighter burnt sienna.

Technician and robot assistant from Ground Zero Games. Unfortunately, I think this old bit of equipment is beyond their ability to repair...

Thursday, 3 February 2011

HEEV nearly finished

This is the stage that my Hostile Environment Exploration Vehicle has reached...

A couple of GZG spacesuits for comparison. I've gone for a similar paint scheme to my Eagle Transporter; grey/white with black anti-glare panel.

The other side of the HEEV.

A close-up of some of the added detail, mainly watch parts plus a couple of bits of brass rod painted as ranging rods - just what any survey vehicle needs!