The evolution of 3D printing has been amazing. Four years ago I was eyeing up resin models from Forgeworld and Ramshackle Games. Three years ago I dabbled in FDM printing, with my Ender 3, but wasn’t impressed by the quality. Just over a year ago I started scratch building models using laser cut parts. Six months ago I got my SLA (I will call it resin from now on) printer and I was blown away with the quality. And now I have started studying tutorials on how to model in Blender with a view to making my own 3D models.
There is, or appears to be, an arms race going on with resin printers, bigger build plates, higher quality light sources to expose the resin and faster print times. As a hobbyist/consumer this is good news.
So if you don’t 3D model yourself where do you go to get digital print files?
There are Patreons, where for a modest monthly fee you can support a creator who will make 3D models. There are of course some artists who are good, some ok and some meh. This is of course depending on your own personal preferences and requirements.
If you have a need for just one type of model and don’t want the commitment then you can purchase them from MyMiniFactory or Cults3D.
Maybe you just want to try something for free? Then Thingiverse is for you. A place where artists put out work to gauge reaction before starting a Patreon. If you like their work there is the option to donate a small amount. Thingiverse is great for the remix community, where people will take parts from different models and combine them to create something new. Sometimes you have to be quick if you like a particular design, because some artists skate very close, or over, the IP line of a famously litigious games manufacturer and if you blink it will be 404’d.
One could venture into the wild west of Telegram. Just about everything is there. I once had an invite and put my head above the parapets. I made my excuses and left.
This burgeoning of the 3D printing movement has breathed back life into many old game systems.
A bit of Heroquest?
The best thing about Heroquest is……
….Thingiverse. All the game parts are there. Someone has meticulously scanned all the character models and even left on the mold lines for that old school feel.
Warmaster now has beautifully sculpted armies for a fraction of the price you would pay on Fleabay for the original metal models. There has been a revamped set of rules (there has been some pooh-poohing in more traditionalist corners) with Warmaster Revolutions.
Adding to the mix is social media enabling previously isolated enthusiasts to get to know others and share. I am talking with people from America to Australia and points in between. Groups on Facebook have reignited interest in classic old games. One can gather galleries of well painted armies/figures of your choice to inspire you in Pinterest. The Blogosphere. Twitter and Instagram. Instructional videos on Youtube.
What a time to be a hobbyist!
What direction is this going to take Games Workshop/Forgeworld? There will always be people who will buy from them no matter the cost. And that is the sticking point for some.
There are arguments out there for and against their pricing strategy and I will let you make up your own mind on this. What I am saying is purely my personal opinion.
Let’s give an example: 40K. I haven’t played since the Eighties but I like the look of some of the models and with inspiration from some of the Black Libraries books (Gaunt’s Ghosts and Eisenhorn) I have always wanted an Imperial Guard Army.
Taking a pretty basic army composition:
4 Squads of Infantry
2 Command Squds
Roughly, I have been led to believe, a 1,000 points. Buying direct from G’Dub is €382.
Buying a printer, resin, sundries (gloves, cleaning accessories Isopropanol) and four months of Patreon (this is for the Makers Cult who do a lovely Guard army) takes me to just over €400.
I now have the printer, which was the biggest outlay, and the files for the army. For the cost of resin I can now keep on printing. Another four or five squads or a couple of armoured vehicles? Just under €20.
You would like another army?
Just buy the files and resin. So for about a €100 ish you have another army!
Owning one was not for us mere mortals.
Now it is a different story. You can find them for free on Thingiverse or buy them from various makers. For about €40 I can have a Warhound with all the weapon options I want. Compare that to €664 with four different weapon options Mars Pattern Warhound. Plus I know that I won’t be getting iffy FW resin casts.
There is going to have to be a radical rethink because in two years time 3D printing is going to be ubiquitous in the hobby.
This is going to impact on some of the smaller manufacturers. For the moment historical figures are pretty safe from this, but it is only time when people will figure out that there is a vast audience out there.
This is this week’s offering. A Chaos Hellbrute from G’Dub. Inperceptably the desk is starting to clear. Once I have decided on a unified basing scheme for my Dragon Rampant armies there will be three Spirit Hosts in very quick succession. The main project however, this month, is to paint up the Halflings I got for free from Wargames Atlantic. They are already glued, based and primed. I would like to paint them in a similar style to the Agincourt Salute figure I painted a while back.
Stand by for a picture heavy post on what I picked up in London on my recent visit. Some were eBay purchases delivered to my friend Seb and others were bought at SELWG.
These were eBay’d. I got them mainly for the pictures. The Fantasy Warlord for the old skool Gary Chalk Iillustration and the fluff is supposed the be interesting. The rules allegedly a bit cack. The High Elves for painting inspiration. I have fallen under the spell of High Elves since the G’Dub boxed set The Island of Blood. The new plastics are superb and lovely to paint.
Airbrush cleaning pot, gradually getting tooled up in this department.
This was and end of day purchase at SELWG and a bargain at £3.50.
It is about time I replace my current painting brush, it has about three bristles left but I can’t stop using it. There should be enough for me and Son Number Two who is interested in painting figures.
This was a gift from Seb. These are some Halflings from a recent Kickstarter run by TT Combat. I can see a use for most of them.
This is the final part of a Renaissance Army Kickstarter that I backed a couple of years ago.
This was something I picked up at Forbidden Planet. I have started collecting a Chaos Army and I quite liked this figure, Typhus Herald of Nurgle. To pick it up on it’s own was silly money. To buy it with the WH 40K Conquest magazine was a more reasonable £6.99.
I mail ordered these figures to have a peek and see if I liked the material. These are the new Bones Black from Reaper. The original Bones was a horrible bendy white plastic lacking in detail. The new Black is more like a resin and at first glance seems very good. I will report back on this, because it means figures within my budget.
This was in a bargain box for 50p and I think I have a use for them to make some alien tribesmen with some Perry plastics.
This little guy is from Warploque Miniatures and is going to be the musician in an Albionnican unit.
Some chickens, ducks and pigs from Redoubt. I am slowly building up my livestock.
A bit T&A but she’ll go nicely with the bowman that was a freebie from Salute a couple of years back.
From the bargain box at Colonel Bills. He is destined to be a statue in my Italianate castle.
I have a little diarama in mind for these guys. I have a Churchill and a Hitler to go with them.
Again a bit T&A, she is to go with my Albion Army.
I have, in a box, a couple of marching Roman units complete with carts. These will help flesh it out a bit.
Pre ordered from Essex, some more Bob Olley goodness for my slowly growing Dwarf army.
Another Essex Dwarf. This guy is destined to be chopped at the waist and nailed to the lower half of a Dwarven rider.
This is from Crooked dice. He will be part of my Beastman Unit in my Not Imperial Guard 40K army.
Crooked Dice from their recent Colony 87 Kickstarter. Adding to my sci fi civilians.
Stetch goals from the Colony 87 Kickstarter. Some are useful, others …….
There you have it! More toys that won’t get painted and just added to the Lead Mountain.
This is the second board that I made for the Tabletop Knights gaming day. My kind Daughter gave me a copy of Destiny 2 when she gifted me her old PS4. One of the worlds you visit is Nessus.
I fell in love with the visuals and wanted to recreate them. In the small space of a Kill Team board I wouldn’t be able to do it justice, but maybe I could give a taste.
First up was to make flocking, My local DIY store gave me a small piece of pure white foam and the poundshop provided cheap paint to colour it.
Planning out the board
Laying down 10mm of foam under the “metal” floor plates. I wanted them raised so there was some variations in the floor level.
Adding the sides for extra strength.
Glueing parts into position
Adding colour and weathering.
Some of the columns in place with vegetation.
Over all I wasn’t so happy with this board. There were a few tiny mistakes. I didn’t like the colour scheme on the buildings. I would have approached it differently next time. I have no idea where I am going to store it now. I did offer it up for sale at the event, but no interest.
This is the first post of three regarding the Tabletop Knights show in Germany.
This will be about the first display board, Gone?
I saw this image, credit to whoever did this (if you let me know I will credit that person here) and thought, “I want this!” If you are interested I have a Pinterest page devoted to scenery. Look for Nik Green. I highly recommend Pinterest as a resource for keeping ideas from all over the interweb neat and tidy and in one place.
I got the dimensions of a Kill Team board, thirty by twenty two inches, and got two sheets of chipboard cut.
Clamping the sides
Burning the splinters off the cheap wood frame
Trimming the foam for the inserts with my Proxxon
Foam inserts fitted
Playing around with ideas
Track chopped out and starting to detail the edges with strips of cork tile
A Lego wheel being used for detailing
Gravel from Walersee and fine river silt used for detailing
Building before and after painting
Starting to build up the layers
I made a pipeline out of some scrap pipe from a skip and some laser cut supports. I magnetised the feet so it could be removed for transportation.
Everything in situ
Silt! Silt everywhere!
Paint and weathering applied
And then scatter
I think the scatter needs to be more yellow to match the tufts. Added to this was some water effects. Overall I am very happy with this board. Some minor tweeks as noted are required.
I think I have found some ideal figures to represent Abhuman Beastmen in my Not Imperial Guard army.
Moonraker Miniatures Phagons were in the running, but these popped up in my news feed this morning.
This comes from Albedo Combat Patrol Miniatures Game http://acp164.com/
There will be a Kickstarter later this month so I will keep updating with more information.
So now the search is on for this miniature to be the squad Leader.
A really quick and dirty job. These are from Dreamforge Games and I’ll be using them as Storm Troopers in my Not-Imperial Guard Army. It was a quick hose with the airbrush and a few little brush additions. Not my best work, but I just wanted to knock one out and have something on the table in a couple of days.
These figures actually deserve a bit more time and attention as they have some lovely detail.
I’m somewhat late on this one as I’ve been laid low with a rather unpleasant flu-like lurgy.
A quick catch-up on a couple of pieces from my last post.
Here is the Barbarian from the OS Miniatures Company. This was a challenge that I undertook to have him painted before Christmas. Nobody else took up the challenge which was a pity.
This was from Warmonger Miniatures, again painted up for Christmas.
There is one more figure which was supposed to be my last figure of 2017, but the lurgy stopped that. I’ll post when it is finished.
Old age seems to have telescoped the year. Blink and I’ll miss it.
The first three months were taken up with making the Rogue Stars display board. April/May I did some landscaping in the garden converting a be-shrubbed steep slope into a flat grassy terrace.
June/July/August were at Electric Love. I had a great time and it gave me enough money to buy my own small laser cutter.
The rest of the year seemed to evaporate, lttle jobs around the house and making bits with my loot from the summer.
Here is a group shot of what I finished painting. There is a lot more half finished and the 2018 goal is to finish all the half started jobs from the past few years, the Heresy Dragon being the main target, get all that out of the way so I have a clean slate. Then one project at a time, start it and finish it.
Yeah right! Product of the Year 2017
On reflection it has to be the laser cutter. It’s small and slow but it has enabled me to prototype ideas and to make stuff on the fly. Christmas cards, party invites, party bag goodies, cake icing molds and gift tags just to name a few bits and bobs. Heroes and Zeroes
Firstly the Heroes.
At the top of the list are the Facebook friends; EvH, DW, SR, ME and CF. They have been a constant source (sauce?) of inspiration, advice and encouragement. I might actually meet some of them in RL oneday.
Then comes the figure manufacturers who have gifted me with lovely toys this last year.
Ramshackle Games http://shop.ramshacklegames.co.uk/index.php
The OS Miniatures Company https://www.facebook.com/OldSchoolMinis1985/
Avatars of War http://www.avatars-of-war.com/eng/web/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=59&Itemid=51
Warmonger Miniatures https://www.warmongerminiatures.com/
Finally Revolution Events https://www.revolutionevent.com/
For fun, education and loot.
Now to the Zeroes
Wayland Games for lengthy delays, poor communication and their unwillingness (or inability) to combine orders.
TNT for their lack of customer service and making life just that little bit harder.
Games Workshop for tantalising me with the new rules for 40K, promises of fewer books and then conveniently forgetting about all that.
The new plastics are beautiful though.
This, I expect most of you know this already, is the eighth iteration of the Warhammer 40K rule-set. I hadn’t played since Rogue Trader, the first iteration, back in the eighties.
I was lured to this by a new streamlined ruleset and the promise of not having to lug around armfuls of codices like the previous editions.
Something simple for me and the Boys.
I used the money earned from gardening towards this coupled with a discount from my “Local” (ha ha) gaming store.
The box is rather beautifully presented and it feels value for money. Fifty odd figures, thick rulebook and dice etc.
No complaints there.
A unit of Pox Walkers from the box
Top left, an old Chaos Marine from the eighties. Centre three figures from the Death Guard “push-fit” box. Rear right, a plastic Chaos Marine from the nineties?
Also purchased were three Index books with the stats for the new rules. Had I have known that G’Dub were going to publish new codices immediately I wouldn’t have bothered and saved myself some money.
I visited my local WARHAMMER store to introduce myself to the new Red-Shirt and in chatting mentioned that I was a bit peeved about the time gap between Indices and Codices. “Well I knew that!” I was helpfully informed. “But I didn’t. Me customer, me spend money. Peeved customer not spend money.”
That didn’t go down too well.