Work away from work.

Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve had time to add anything to the blog. I’m making it a point to get back to usual updates.

A project that I’m currently working on at home is a French Napoleonic army set in 1805-1812 in 1/72 scale.


These are made by HAT and are a project that I’ve been wanting to do for a while but lack of time due to life getting in the way has been prohibiting any progress.  It feels good to paint again!

The first batch are the Grenadiers. These were the veterans who were of a more elite status receiving a bit more pay.


Second are the Voltigeurs. They were specialized light infantry skilled at marksmanship.


Along with these are two 12 pounders with crew.


Next on the burner are two more cannon and crews along with 56 Fusiliers who make up the bulk of the army.


18 months later (…or what was I thinking?)


Although I tossed the idea around in my head for a long time it wasn’t until January of last year that I officially started this project.  A mix of Mage Knight, Mage Wars, BattleLore, Summoner Wars, etc. with miniatures. This week I wanted to zoom out and see where it currently is and take an assessment of what all I still need to do.  This is actually the first time I’ve gotten everything spread out at once and to be honest it’s kind of exciting and is re-energizing me to forge ahead with more.

I’m currently using some Heroscape hex terrain for the world map in order to get in more encounters and playtime.  I’m using the Hirst Arts cavern mold pieces for mountains and I’ve gutted a Disney monopoly board game that I picked up second-hand for cottages and castles along with some prototypes:


This is the look and flavor I’m trying to achieve:


The leaders enter the map where they battle to control cities in which they can purchase additional troops:


They will conquer and control mines, mills, temples, etc. which will allow them to gather resources such as gold, lumber, stone, faith, mana for spells, etc.:


They will encounter enemies as they explore:


When an encounter occurs the battle between the armies (Earth Tribe and Cloud Tribe below) takes place on another board representing the battlefield:





The cards keep track of individual troop statistics such as name and description, movement values, if they are melee or ranged, unit value (how many spaces they take up in the leaders army), attack rate and hit points.




At this point I have not come up with a name for this game and I’m still working on a few issues such as battle mechanics (we’re close), the logistics of gathering components to cast spells and how to balance and counter balance the elemental factors.  For instance, how will fire and ice interact?  How will clay and lightning interact?

I’m leaning towards giving each tribe a set of values that include all the elements present but that are stronger in some while weaker in others depending on where they fall on the spectrum.  In other words the Magma Tribe will be higher in fire and earth, the Divine Tribe will be higher in Arcane and Runic and the Air Tribe will be higher in Lightning and Frost.

The Fire Tribe will have an advantage over the Water Tribe with a high attack rate but low defense and vice-verse with the Water Tribe over the Fire Tribe.  All in all I’m trying to create some drama that will affect which enemies you have advantages and disadvantages against and who you choose to battle.


Thanks for dropping by,

Night Owl


1/72 WWWII?


For a while now I have been considering how to incorporate some Weird World War II elements in to my growing 1/72 WWII collection.  I thought about the Dust Studios walkers and some of the Bones CAV stuff that will be on the market soon.  I came to realize that what I really wanted were some BIG walkers towering over the troops below and to achieve this I was going to have to do some “scale jumping”.  I had an opportunity to pick up a few of the 28mm Scotia Grendel Biped walkers for a clearance price I couldn’t pass up.  They appeared to be generic enough in style that they could be brought in and modified with some smaller details.



I added some DIY styrene cannon barrels and a commander from a Plastic Soldier Company kit.


These kits are resin metal hybrids and the resin parts (not my favorite material) do require a bit of time and patience to clean up.  I gave it a quick paint up involving primer, some washes and drybrushing:





Here it is scaled up with a couple of Dust Studios German walkers:


While building this model I managed to pique the interest of my teenaged daughter and we before we knew it we were able to get a game in using some home-brew rules that utilized the charts from Akula’s Bad Ar:se skirmish rules and here are a few shots:



My German squad flanking:


Her Russian answer:


The result:





Although she started out with some weak dice rolls she ended up prevailing in the end and kept the invading regime at bay.  All in all a fun time to be had.

Thanks for dropping by!

Night Owl

Sylvan Elves Pt. 3


I’ve had a chance the last few days to get the elves to the point of “almost finished”.  For the display board I used an adhesive floor tile from my local home improvement store and glued it to a piece of cardboard for added stiffness.  This was coated with black sand from the dollar store and drybrushed a few different shades of green and yellow.



I decided to go with the angled design as I did with the Undead Legions of Shadow and framed it with a few pieces of stained decorative wood trim.

Last summer when I was visiting my local Rock & Gem show I came a cross a vendor selling Lucite flower jewelry and picked up a few bags:


I started the bases by gluing down some coffee grounds which i then drybrushed green and yellow before adding flower colored flock and a few leaves from a GW wood elves kit:



These were followed by the Lucite flowers:









Eventually I’ll add the Forest Spirit miniature and base the statue and pillars but I think I’ll save that for rainy day when I need to break off from something else (I can’t have all my projects completed – I wouldn’t know what to do with myself!).

Thanks for taking a look!

Night Owl

Sylvan Elves Pt.2


I was able to get a bit more done on the elves this weekend and wanted to share an update.  In the last post I spoke of having to choose between the elves of Disciples and HOMM and I came to realize that it doesn’t have to be one or the other so I took a little from both and came up with a happy compromise.

On the back row from left to right we have an Oracle (healer), a Scout (archer – ranged) and Mage (ranged):


Next we have another Scout, another Oracle and a third Scout:


Front row left to right is a Centaur Lancer and a Sprite:


Middle are a War Dancer that had his sword replaced with a pole (a la Shaolin monk) and the Hero:



The Hero is a bash of a GW wood elf torso and head, a set of WF Persian legs and a Reaper Bones unicorn.  I took some antlers off a plastic deer to add a little decor to the headset:




Lastly the other Centaur Lancer and Sprite:


For decor I found a dollar statue and some wedding cake decorations that were painted up and weathered:


Hopefully this week I’ll some spare time to get them based,  set on a display board and work on the Spirit of the Forest Miniature.

Thanks for taking a look,

Night Owl


Sylvan Elves


It’s been a while since I’ve worked on the Elemental Tribes project and the excitement of the upcoming Frostgrave release has inspired me to work on another clan.  Now while I wouldn’t consider “life” to be an element I would consider it to be a source of magic.  I really had trouble deciding how to do the elves.  On one hand I had the lovely inspiration of the darker autumn elves from the Disciples franchise:



On the other I had the vibrant spring themed elves of Heroes of Might & Magic:


Because of the Reaper Bones miniatures I have on hand I decided to go with the latter.

So without further ado I introduce Sylvan Elves of the Life Tribe.


I picked up some Hero clix  faeries a while back when I first started the idea of doing Elemental Tribes, so long ago in fact that I don’t remember what they were originally.  I think Hornet or something along those lines.  After unsuccessfully trying all kinds of methods to strip the paint from these gals I finally gave up and just painted over them.  The detail is pretty blurry but they serve their purpose.  They are based on the sprites from Heroes of Might & Magic.


This week I’ve been working on a healer and a couple of archers:


I was able to add a mage and another archer this weekend:


I really wanted to gather and paint up a tribe of elves that represented a wilder and more tribal Druid-like feel than what I have seen available on the market.  Yes, GW does make some nice Woodies but the entire genesis of this idea stemmed from the idea of “using the miniatures I already have lying around with minimal additional purchases”.  I also didn’t want them to be armored or using any metal weapons as they would obtain all their resources from the forest so there will be some modifications coming up with the mage and a ranger who are both wielding swords.

More to come…


Night Owl


Hirst Arts Bridge Inspired by Video Game


Last week while I was working on the sewer tiles in the den my wife was playing a PC game called Divinity – Original Sin.  Occasionally I would look up and see what was going on when things start getting a little excited.  At one point I looked up and saw this bridge and said “Whoa – I need to build that!”  So…

The inspiration:


I started by using some of the balcony support blocks from the 3″ Tower mold #79 and floor tiles from the Egyptian Floor Tile mold #290:


I wanted to give the bridge a little more length so I extended the middle a couple of inches.  This build was a challenge because I actually had to assemble the entire piece upside down:


I added pillars from the Gothic Arena Mold #42 and let it dry overnight before flipping back over:


I built a stair case based on Ruined Field stone Tower tutorial on the Hirst Arts website:



This bridge will align itself with the castle project, the Narthrax tower and give the dungeon set some vertical interest.


I added a few details to the ledges just to break up the flatness:



I can’t comment on the game play and although it appears that most of the PC game is outdoors it is still full of inspiration for terrain builders and every time I look up I see something else I “need to build”!

Here are a few screenshots I found on Google:





Night Owl