Saturday, 24 December 2011

Vampifan's Views 17 Best Gift Ever?

Although the story I'm about to tell you happened in mid-November of this year, I feel that now is the best time to tell it., as it such a heart-warming story and perfectly captures the spirit of Christmas.
On Monday 14th of November I received an unexpected e-mail message from one of my followers. It was Robert from Germany, aka Cherno (or Chernoskill as he's known on the WWG forum) and he had an offer for me that, quite frankly, just blew me away! He wanted me to have his complete collection of WWG Mayhem City models, free of charge, with the stipulation that I paid the postage and packing costs, which turned out to be roughly £25.00. The reason why he wanted to get rid of them is one that I'm sure many of us are familiar with - a lack of storage space at home. The reason he contacted me was that he knew I'd give them a good home. Remember, he is a follower of my  blog, so he knew that I was a huge fan of WWG and their range of card models. Plus, I'd also commented on how much I liked his work when he showed off his builds on the WWG forum. What could I say, but yes, I accept your offer?
A few days later, these two boxes arrived via parcel post. The larger box measures 18" by 18" and is 14" deep. The smaller box measures 10" by 8" and is 6" deep. The smaller box contained various props, whilst the big box contained everything else. And, my God, what a lot Robert had packed into it! Alas, a few days after the parcels arrived my father died and I was unable to give the parcels anything more than a cursory glance at their contents. My father's funeral arrangements and the aftermath left me with little spare time for the next three weeks. So it was with great anticipation that I finally revealed just exactly what was in the two boxes a couple of weeks ago.
Robert suggested that when I did open the big box and remove its contents that I photograph them. So, I cleared my dining room table, figuring that would give me enough room to lay eveything out. It worked, but you'll notice I still had to keep some stuff in their plastic bags or smaller boxes.
Robert also included some extra items, which you can see to the left of the above photo. There is a pack of plastic piping, three packs of magnets (more of which later) and, rather hard to see given that they are white against a pale pink table cloth, a sprue of 1/48 scale plastic civilians. The items in the blue and white box and in the plastic bags are walls for a TLX apartment block. The floors for the same TLX apartment block are in the plastic bag to the immediate left of the blue and white box.
Moving on, we have a collection of ground tiles, road tiles, and floor tiles, all mounted on foamboard.
This photo shows lots of wall pieces, some roof tiles and a few of the larger props for the Mayhem Petrol Station (propane tank, kiosk and petrol pumps). There's also a set of stairs from the Mayhem Armoury.
This final photo of the box contents shows the smaller of the two boxes I received, which you can see at the top of the photo. This contains lots of props like a foot bridge, street lamps, walls, a billboard and sundry pieces of street furniture. The second box, shown at the bottom of the photo, contains Robert's collection of card vehicles. I noticed that he'd made a couple of tractors and trailers, and some police cars, all stuff that I've yet to get round to making.
You have to admit, that's an impressive amount of gear. But, I'm sure you're wondering what it looks like when it's made up. Sadly, I haven't had the time to make any of these models but have no fear, because I've copied some of Robert's photos of his models from the WWG forum. Here we see the TLX (Terrainlinx) Mayhem Apartments, five storeys high.
This is the only TLX model that Robert made. Its footprint measures 12" by 15" and as you can see from this back view it isn't strictly rectangular in shape. It's more of a square with an extra bit added to it.
The floors come apart to reveal their interior detail. There is no furniture in any of the rooms but I'm not complaining about that. I must tell you about Robert's method of constructing his buildings and ground tiles. He does not use any glue at all. Everything is joined together by magnets. It's a clever method of construction and not something that I would have thought of. It also explains why he was able to take his models apart so easily and flat pack them in the way he has. If you'd like to see more pictures of the apartment block and Robert's notes on its construction then click on the following link 
Now we come to the meat of the package - Robert's Mayhem City project. Once again, I have copied these pictures of Robert's from the WWG forum. Everything you see in the picture above and the following two photos were made up from the stuff you saw on my table top. Absolutely remarkable!
Once again, Robert has made all of his buildings with magnets holding them together. The street props, like the streetlamps are fixed in place with magnets. Only his vehicles and the railings surrounded two of the upper floor patios have been glued.
Awesome! Robert posted lots of photos of this project on the WWG forum, from its inception up until the finished product you see in the three photos I've shown above. Be warned this link is very picture heavy but is well worth a look. Go here to read about Robert's creative process and view lots of his models as his version of Mayhem City grows.
I have often commented on my blog about the kindness of others in regards to gifts I have received since I started blogging. When I clicked on to the two links that Robert provided to see just exactly what it was that he was offering me I had to double check that this was not an April Fool's Day prank. But, of course, the offer was genuine. I am extremely grateful to Robert for contacting me and even now, I am staggered by his generosity. I did pay him more than the £25.00 he wanted for postage, but I still feel I ended up with the best part of the deal. I really am a very happy bunny and I look forward to constructing Robert's models for my own use.
Stories like this are few and far between, which is why I wanted to post this tale. As I said at the beginning, this seems like such an appropriate time to share this with you. Peace and goodwill to you all and I hope you have a very happy Christmas.


  1. Merry x-mas indeed! My god a huge city you are able to do now!!!!

    The joy of giving!!!

  2. Wow... WOW

    That is amazing, and well, wow!

    Merry Christmas to you and your family, and to Robert :-D

  3. @Johnny, Admittedly, some of the stuff Robert gave me duplicates models I already have, but even so, I can build a HUGE Mayhem City now. Oh joy!

  4. @Shelldrake. Wow pretty much sums up my thoughts as well!

  5. So Santa Claus exists ultimately (and his name is Robert)!

  6. @Kobayachimaru. It would certainly seem so!

  7. What an excellent gift! It couldn't go to a better recipient, either. I hope someday you post a picture of a giant layout you'll be able to make with your original buildings and Robert's generous gift. Merry Christmas indeed.

  8. Thanks, Luckyjoe. I do indeed plan on combining my set with Robert's. A very Merry Christmas to you too!

  9. Madness.
    Amazing brilliant madness.

    Merry winter solstice to you all!

  10. Wow thats amazing Merry Christmas Bryan

  11. @Ajsalium. Thanks and thank you for such an original greeting. Right back at you, my friend!

    @Simon. Thanks and Merry Christmas to you too!

  12. I somehow knew you would post this report on Christmas Eve ;)

    I hope you have as much fun playing around with all that stuff as I had building it. I'm sure you can make use of most of the stuff, especially the vehicles... You can never have enough vehicles, right?

    The plastic civilians could be made into half-chewed zombie victims or just painted up as normal, I guess. They were quite cheap so I just threw them in, too, for I had no use for them.

    Those plastic rods are meant to support the spiral stair pieces that should be somewhere in that pile, too. The go through the tiny holes in the stairs, in case you want to build it. Might be a good alternative for the TLX stairs if you don't have much space in a building. There's a plastic ladder included too.

    I think that should cover some of the questions you might have when taking a closer look at some of the things in the package. Just play around with it! :)

    Merry Christmas all!

  13. Happy holidays and Merry Christmas to Bryan and all the zed bloggers here. It proves what a generous and close group we are. Much like a pack of zeds cruising down mainstreet, lol. But who deserves a box of stuff more than Bryan, the man who puts the z in zombie! Enjoy Vampifan, you deserve it. Lots of great paint jobs lately btw, sorry I haven't been participating, the move took a lot out of me :)

  14. Great story and thanks to Robert, eh? !!!

    Well done and keep it up :)


  15. How great is that? Happy Christmas Vampi & Cherno what a good guy. All te best fellers.

  16. @Robert. I wanted to tell this story as close to Christmas as I could, so yeah, no surprise at its timing.

    Too true about the vehicles and I was especially pleased to see the big rigs. I just that WWG made more wrecked vehicles. Every apocalypse needs them.

    The plastic civilians will get painted up as they are. Civilians are something else you can never have too many of.

    Thanks for the info regarding the plastic piping. When I get some free time next year I plan to have quite a session putting your stuff together. I can guarantee you that it will get used. Once again, my most heartfelt thanks for your exceedingly generous gift.

  17. @Roger. Aw shucks! Thanks for your enthusiastic support, Roger. I hope you're settling into your new home by now and that 2012 turns out to be a far less stressful year for you.

    @Colonel Shofer. I'm glad you liked the story.

    @Irqan. It is great, isn't it? Robert/Cherno is certainly one of the good guys.

  18. WOW, what an awesome collection of stuff, cant wait to see the next batrep, and what goodwill from Cherno ! Merry Christmas Lads !

  19. @The Extraordinarii. You're absolutely right and if you'll pardon my pun, it is extraordinary!

  20. This is one of those stories that you'd think would never happen, but leaves you with a warm feeling inside when it comes to pass.

    Merry Xmas everyone.

  21. wow, what a great and kind guy robert is, i cant wait to see it all in action, you should make a huge city up and show us some pics

  22. @Joe. You're so right, my friend. It certainly left me feeling very warm inside.

    @Shintokamikaze. I fully intend to do just that.

  23. Bryan- Great score. We all know you will make use of the stuff from Robert in up coming games. Cant wait to see everything in action.

  24. Thanks, Doug. Of course I'm going to use Robert's stuff. As my brother just said to me yesterday, "it'd be rude not to!"

  25. W. O. W.

    No words... apart Merry Xmas & happy new year!! :D

  26. @Zerloon. Don't worry, my friend, that's a common reaction!

    All the best to you, too.

  27. What a fantastic gift indeed!
    That is an impressive amount of pre made terrain. I'm envious.
    Putting them together with magnets sounds genius. I may have to look into it when I begin construction.

  28. Damn it, Robert. I guess I could have walked over to you and take that stuff off your hands if you wanted to get rid of it any time ;)
    Just kidding. No-one deserves this gift more than, Bryan. He definitely will make the best use of it for all of us to enjoy.

    A very late Merry Christmas to all of you.

  29. @Adam. The idea of using magnets is not something I would have thought of either, but I'm keen to see how the models go together. Fun times ahead!

    @Stefan. I'm very grateful that Robert singled me out to make his first offer but I know there are many others who would have jumped at the chance to accept this amazing gift. I do feel lucky.

  30. That really is the best gift ever!

    Thank you Robert. Not only is that a very generous gift, but we all will get to enjoy it for years to come too.

  31. @Zombie Ad. Ain't that the truth, Adam!