Sunday, 29 April 2018

Vampifans Views 106 - Monthly Musings 76

Welcome to another of my Monthly Musings where I tell you what I've been up to and what my immediate plans are. As ever, I start with a picture of Vampirella. I'm showcasing the work of Spanish artist Manuel Sanjulian this year, who painted many a front cover of the old Warren Publications Vampirella monthly magazine in the 1970's. I have to admit that I have no idea who the woman with the sword standing behind Vampi is. She is not a character I recognise. Quite often the front cover illustrations bore no relationship to the comic strip inside the magazine, but this particular painting was never used as a front cover. Obviously I like it but I am curious to know more about what is going on here.

The most frustrating part of this past month was being without my computer for ten days after it developed a fault and had to be taken away to be repaired. However, as a result, my painting and modelling output increased considerably. Without the Internet to distract me, I got a heck of a lot of work done. My modelling output has been exceptionally prolific these past few weeks. I have been making more buildings for my Wild West projects, all from 4Ground. For sure, their buildings are expensive, but really, you're paying for quality. Plus, with them coming pre-coloured, the time saved not having to paint them is invaluable. I am now at the stage where I have enough buildings to post my first Wild West batrep, which I'll be playing soon. I'll be using the original Six Gun Sound: Blaze of Glory rules, playing a simple Confrontation scenario between two groups of outlaws. I have also been buying, painting and making furniture items for my buildings. I've bought some resin furniture packs from Great Escape Games for their Dead Man's Hand range, and some resin and MDF sets from TT Combat. In addition, I've been making lots of Stoelzel's Structures card furniture items.

Thanks to my good friend, Greg aka Wargame Addict, I've purchased four Corvus Belli Infinity scenery packs to use in my Judge Dredd Miniatures Game. Greg had used some of the items from the Neon Lotus set as a backdrop for a few of his Blade Runner figures and as soon as I saw them, I thought of Mega City One. Greg advised me to purchase them from eBay, which turned out to be good advice. Each of these four sets cost me just £7.65 from The Troll Trader, who has the Buy Now option, which I love. Post and packing was free and they arrived very promptly. Each set contains four rectangular buildings, six container units and a map made of paper. In each pack, the buildings come in two designs and the container units in three designs, so you do get duplicates of each one. The buildings and container units are made of thin card. Greg described them as "cheap and cheerful" which is spot on. However, I have reinforced my buildings and container units with 5mm thick foam-board, making them very strong and sturdy. I also made them so that the roofs are detachable, but none of them have any interior detail. I'm really not sure if it's worth the effort giving them interior detail or not. They work well enough as empty shells. The set above is the Hephaestus scenery pack, which is a research and/or science park.
 This set is the Mototronic scenery pack with a mixture of offices and power plant buildings.
 This next set is the Navajo Outpost scenery pack, which is a military outpost.
Finally, is the set that Greg has, the Neon Lotus scenery pack. This is obviously an urban set-up, with shopping centres and hotels. Instead of container units it came with four smaller, square buildings and two overhead walkways. From a gaming perspective, this is the most useful set. I have made all of the buildings and all of the container units, something I'd never have got done if my computer hadn't malfunctioned. That was time well spent and was incredibly productive. I do like the buildings and you can never have too many container units. The sets are well designed but I acknowledge that they won't be to everyone's taste. I'm glad I went the extra mile to reinforce them. However, my one major criticism of them is that the maps, whilst a nice size (about 2 feet by 3 feet) are very flimsy, being made of paper. I don't think I'll be using them very often.

As for figure painting, once again, I got a lot of figures finished this month, which is most pleasing given how many unpainted minis I have. Almost all of the figures I painted this month were Wild West themed. As well as humans I've also been painting scenery items (cacti and furniture) as well as animals and birds - dogs, buffalo, prairie wolves, rattlesnakes, a hawk and some vultures. I'm busy painting a bunch of bears - black, brown and grizzly. I feel I need more horses, both saddled and unsaddled, so they're high on my shopping list. I'll be showcasing all of these newly painted figures next month.

As many of you know, I am a huge fan of the Zombicide games. So it is an absolute no-brainer that I am backing the brand new Zombicide: Invader Kickstarter project. As you know, the original Zombicide was set in the contemporary era. It spawned four sequels. Next came Zombicide: Black Plague, which was set in a fantasy world. It spawned three sequels. Now, Zombicide: Invader takes the action into outer space with a sci-fi themed setting. I must admit that I am super excited about this game. I can see me using the figures in my Judge Dredd and N.E.W. games. The heroes are a combination of civilian and military types and the "zombies" are now alien creatures called Xenos but are still similar to the more traditional zombies with a combination of Walkers, Runners, Fatties and Abominations, which have been renamed Workers, Hunters, Tanks and Abominations respectively. Sci-fi has always been my favourite genre and I can see me getting a lot of use and enjoyment out of this game. Check out this picture to the left of the different figures that come with the starter boxed set. I think they are awesome! The only downside to backing this project is that it won't be released until May 2019, which is more than a year away. It's just as well I'm a patient person. You can check out this Kickstarter here - https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cmon/zombicide-invader
It still has a few days left to run and is fully funded. If you are interested in this game, you'll be pleased to know that it comes with a huge amount of free stretch goals, making it even better value for money. In addition, there are numerous add-ons as well, including two big expansion sets, which I will be buying. Did I mention how much I love Zombicide?

22 comments:

  1. Interesting that you should mention the Zombicide Kickstarter Bryan, as Jez is talking about Kickstarters over on his blog as we speak (or write). Though it looks pretty enough and is a no brainer for a Zombie junkie such as your good self, I don't think I'll be looking at it, much as I enjoy Zombicide as a game, I'm happy with just the basic box version, and as we only play it occasionally that does me. Also I not a fan of the whole Kickstarter thing anyway, I can see the point of them but perhaps I'm old fashioned in that if I pay for something I like it in my hand ASAP, It always amazes me when you read "my XXX kickstarter dropped through my letterbox this morning, I'd forgotten I backed this", How much money do these people have!!!

    Sorry rant over, best of luck with all your future projects.

    Cheers Roger.

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    1. Thanks, Roger. Don't worry about your rant. I know many people who dislike Kickstarters and will never back them. I have to say that I am a fan of them. The Zombicide franchise is a proven winner that always does well and always delivers on time. I absolutely love all of the Zombicide games and I play them a lot. For me, this was a must have purchase.

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  2. Interesting card scenery Bryan, the zombicide figures look good but don't need any other distractions at the moment

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  3. An interesting posting indeed, Bryan. I own some of the Corvus Belli Infinity scenery packs and wasn't very impressed their flimsy card at all, so will be interested to know how you reinforced them.

    Ah... kickstarter. I'm still ticking over the "Rail Raiders" debacle tbh, so trying to steer clear of them presently. The latest "Zombicide" one does look superb imho, but I haven't yet exhausted my interest in the very first boxed game, so will be waiting for it to hit the shelves before I dip my toe in the sci-fi version. Great posting :-)

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    1. Thank you kindly, Simon. As I mentioned above I used 5mm thick foam-board to reinforce my "Infinity" buildings and container units. I'll post some photos of them on my blog to show you how exactly I've reinforced them. Believe me, it makes a world of difference and is well worth the extra effort.

      Soda Pop Miniatures and Ninja Division have angered a lot of people with their recent Kickstarters, including myself. It's not just "Rail Raiders" but also "Relic Knights", "Super Dungeon Explore: Legends" and "Way of the Fighter", not all of which I backed (thank God), but it is wrong to tar all Kickstarters with the same brush. Apart from the aforementioned RR and SDE:L I've never had any problems with any Kickstarter I've backed.

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    2. Some pictures of the Infinity scenery would be greatly appreciated Bryan, as the only time I've used mine recently was for some background shots of my re-based space marines.

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    3. No problem whatsoever, Simon.

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  4. I always enjoy your monthly musings. Card scenery does not work at the club (reinforced or not) so I shall not be dabbling in it. However always good to see what is available. As for Zombiecide, I do like it but I cannot (at the moment) have more distractions but again more than happy to see what you do with the figures.

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    1. Many thanks, Clint. I hear what you're saying.

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  5. Ah the KS debate on here too... I’m not backing this project, mostly because of money! I’ve sadly never played a single game of Zombicide so couldn’t invest in it

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    1. Thanks, Andy. I guess if you've never played "Zombicide" before it's probably a bit too late to start now. I find it a very addictive game.

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  6. Vampifan, that was a great purchase, those Infinity scenery look AWESOME!!! :O)

    Looking forward to see them in your next JD AARs! ;O)

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    1. Much appreciated, Edu. The main reason for buying these four scenery sets was to use them in my JDMG campaign. I know it's been awhile since I last played a scenario for this game but I haven't forgotten about it.

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  7. Hi Bryan the card scenery looks pretty good, a combination of the paper map from the 1st set and the buildings from the 3rd one might work as well.
    From what you said it looks like you can't use the paper on a regular basis, what about if you paste I onto foam board as you've done in the past, or do you have enough ground tiles not to need these?

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    1. Hi, John. Pasting the paper mats onto foam-board or mounting card is certainly an option, but as you have surmised I have loads of ground tiles that I can use in their place. I've become a big fan of maps made of the mouse-mat material and I have quite a collection of them for numerous genres and settings.

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    2. I agree with you the mouse mat material is an extremely good option. Just wish I could afford them :)

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    3. No question about it, John, if you're going to get a battle-map, the mouse-mat option is the most expensive. As ever, it all comes down to making do with what you can afford.

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  8. http://www.vampilore.co.uk/history02.html the figure with the sword might be `then the story starts to blur. It appears that Vampirella's memories are all false, placed into her mind by her evil brother and sister - Madek and Magdalene - but even this is false!'

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    1. Good call, Phil and a fine bit of Google-fu. :-)

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  9. Blessings in disguise. I have to determinedly not go on my laptop or phone otherwise I end up just scrolling for hours!

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