Deadzone Fortified Battlezone: City Walls and Compound

Looking at Mantic’s new Terrain Crate offerings, the Military Checkpoint and Compound, I started to think how cool it would be to have a long wall built from these kits. Why? I’m not 100% sure.

I’ve always loved castles since visiting some of the great Welsh castles on holiday with Mum n’ Dad when I was a nipper, so that’s a factor. Cool genre imagery like the bug attack on the base in the film Starship Troopers, the walls of Mega City One in 2000ad and the huge wall blocking in the people of Racoon City in the first Resident Evil film all spring to mind too.

I was idly browsing on E-bay later on the same evening I’d been looking at the new Military sets and unexpectedly found one of the old Fortified Sectors at pretty much RRP, including the P&P. I snapped it up! It arrived just before the Bank Holiday weekend and I spent a good few hours on Saturday and Sunday contentedly clipping off and cleaning up the pieces and planning what I was going to build.

I originally had in mind a four foot wide two cube high wall, with one central gate, but quickly realised that the gate section would look lost with the wall being the same height. A three cube high gate just didn’t quite look right and would be a bugger to store, so after a good few hours of building I had a wall:

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Here’s some Enforcers to give it a sense of scale.

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I realised around midnight on Sunday (I was happily clipping, filing and gluing away whilst enjoying some ale) that I could actually stretch to a six foot wide wall.

The Fortified Sector comes with three double cube sets of gates. I’d originally only wanted to use one of these in my build, as I thought multiple gates just weakened the fortified look of the structure. However… by using both sets of gates I would only need to find another four cubes-worth of wall.

Rummaging around in my box of assembled-but-not-painted-yet structures, I found several parts I needed, especially the elusive tread plate style half cube walkways (which I wanted all along the wall sections), so at 1am in the morning I was breaking apart old builds to get the parts I needed.

I had pretty much all day on Monday as hobby time and as I was used to what I was doing by now, after a heckuva lot of clipping and filing off and old connectors from my old builds I had a six foot wide wall:

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And it’s when I was looking at this that I had a eureka moment! I’d decided to use the wall pieces that fit along the diagonal of a cube (they came on the ‘Urban Expansion D’ sprues) to pad out the last two cubes worth of width I needed. I’d realised that I could finally use the odd shaped- tread plate walkways with them and thought the fat they angled back from the wall looked a little different. Hang on a minute! If I built two more, then I’d have four corners and that means I could create a…

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walled compound! AKA a Space Castle! (heh). I was blown away by how this looked. I hadn’t even considered making an enclosed compound when I started this build, and if anything, it looks even better than the four or six foot lengths of wall.  The Enforcers help show just how big this compound is!

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Sadly, with the gate sections being wider than the walls, at six cubes wide as opposed to four, I can’t incorporate them into the walled compound, as I’m two individual cubes worth of wall short… Curses!

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Although I can just about fudge it by plonking the walls atop one another… Nah, doesn’t look good enough. I’ll just have to use the gates for the four or six foot walls.

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So, here’s a look at everything I actually built that comprises the six foot length of wall or compound. (NB all of this did not come solely from the Fortified Sector set – I cannibalized quite a few other buildings to get the parts I needed to do this).

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Here’s a close up of the gates:

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And from the rear. I really wanted to build this as one piece, but decided to split the build into two, at the centre of the gate’s arch, as a six cube-long build is problematic fme to store. It irks me that the top of the gate isn’t quite level as a result, but I can live with that.

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I originally intended to have railings running along the back of the first floor of the gate houses and along the walkways on the walls, but realised that it wasn’t very practical, as it would mean models on 40mm bases (Enforcer Peacekeepers, Plague Stage 2As etc) would no longer fit onto the walkway. It would be aesthetically pleasing to me, but again, I can live without for game play’s sake.

I’m really pleased at finally putting to good use some of the huge number of these little buttress pieces I have. They really fit the fortified look and save the ordinary connectors for use elsewhere:

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I think the satellite/radar dishes look fun glued to either side of the gate house walls.

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I wanted to keep the doors so that they could be removed, so decided to glue each of the two door sections together with some kind of brace. I had several broken railings from pulling apart kits the night before and thought that they would pass as a kind of sophisticated interlocking mechanism, as well as being just wide enough to practically secure the two halves of gate together. So more clipping, trimming and filing later:

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I do need to add one of the little buttress pieces to each side of the door though to help them stay stood up. All three door sections love falling over and clattering as loudly as they can. (grr).

Here’s the front and back of the four cube ‘solid’ wall sections:

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I really wish I had been able to use the same type of urban tile all the way along the bottom of each wall section but simply didn’t have enough of any one tile. It doesn’t really matter at all, but little details like that, where I know I could have done better, do irritate me. I do love the effect the angled braces at the bottom of the wall look, though. I had a bag with dozens of these in as I’d never really found any proper use for them, but they came into their own here. They look like they belong on a fortified structure and they serve the practical purpose of keeping each free standing section of all stood upright, even with miniatures on the walkway.

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Here’s the other section of wall, that incorporates the other gate sections

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And here’s the angled corner pieces. Makes me happy to finally put those angled bits of tread plate walkway to some use:

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You can see just how hey work here:

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And although I think they’d require some form of special scenario rule, the walls can fit on a standard Deadzone board in a variety of ways:

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Now all I’ve got to do is get all of them painted.. (agh!).

Thanks for reading, folks!

 

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Send in the Big Guns! Mantic Games Undead Army Balefire Catapults, Painted.

Here’s my Undead army’s artillery, in the form of a battery of three Balefire Catapults.

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There’s usually a good debate about how effective these are in games of Kings of War. With them only having a one in three chance of hitting, you really need to take a battery of three to stand a chance of doing damage each round (lines of sight etc permitting), and three Balefires is a lot of points to sink (300), so I only tend to select them for my army in bigger games , 2,000 points and upwards.

But rules aside, these are nicely detailed hard plastic kits that allow you to build some variety into the look of each Balefire and its crew by positioning each catapult’s arm differently and varying the look of the skeleton crew.

Here’s a look at all three from one side:

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And the other:

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In these photos you can see some of the nice little touches that come with this kit, such as the arm option with the telescope, giving one o he crew a good ‘spotter’ look and the pointing “There, fire over there!” arm.

A skull is sculpted as being loaded onto each catapult and you get a bag o’ ammo and arms clutching several skulls to make up a ‘loader’ crew member.

I’ve painted the catapult’s payload in a sickly glowing green, to match the look of necromantic energy I’ve used across other models and units in my army.

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I’ve added a white rose transfer to the protective shield son the front of each catapult, as this is my army’s sigil:

I painted the wood in a pale colour, thinking of cut wood rather than the darker browns of bark, and an Army Painter Strong Tone ink wash has brought all the nice detail in the sculpt, the wood grain and the rope and many bits of metal bolting and lashing the contraptions together.

Looking at them again whilst writing this blog, I think I’ll go back and hit each catapult with a little bit of the rust effect paint, to make them look really weathered!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Painted Gate for Cthulhu Wars

The one Cthulhu Wars miniature you know you’re going to need in each and every game are the gates. And lots of them.

After painting up a regiment of zombies for my Kings of War army, I needed  a break from panting rank and file so I decided to try out a test colour scheme ad techniques for a Cthulhu Wars gate.

Here’s how it turned out:

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The gates were originally 2D card counters, which work perfectly well, but as one of the stretch goals from the first Cthulhu Wars kickstarter campaign, fully sculpted plastic gates were unlocked. I think these are superb. The detail of the sculpt is great and the design is clever too, as you can fit both a Cultist on the gate to control it or one of the larger monsters (in the very rare circumstances that a monster can control a gate).

Here’s the original card gate and on the right, an unpainted plastic gate:

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I decided to try and replicate the blue/white glow of the card gate on the plastic version and I’m happy with how this has turned out. Some more photos from different angles first so you can see the effect I’ve achieved:

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I love the skull that’s been deposited in one of the four… ‘receptacles’ on the gate. Just had to paint that skull sitting in a pool of fresh blood for  a nice bit of contrast with the cold grey and blues.

The gate was quite simple to paint and I’m happy it didn’t take me too long to do, so I feel I’m able to paint all my gates (or enough for all the possibilities in a 3 to 5 player game, as I don’t have any of the larger sized Cthulhu Wars maps) to the same standard.

The gate was undercoated in black, with a Vallejo Dark Blue Grey #70.867 base coat. I then washed the whole miniature with Army Painter Strong Tone ink and applied two layers of drybrushing. First a 3:1 mix of the Dark Blue grey with white, then a 1:1 mix of the same.

I then picked out all the skulls (I didn’t realise just how many there are until I started painting ’em all!) in Army Painter Skeleton Bone and then washed them all with Army Painter Strong Tone ink, adding a bit more wash to any areas of the grey rocks where the drybrushing was a bit too heavy.

Next up the blue glow. I airbrushed on Vallejo Andrea Blue #70.841, working from the centre of the gate outwards and working my ‘around the clock’ so all the gate was bathed in a blue colour emitting from its centre. I gave  a quick blast of this blue onto the sigils on each of the gate’s four raised columns. I mixed white in with the Andrea Blue in a 4:1 mix and then carefully airbrushed this much brighter blue around the circle in the centre of the gate and over the pentagram, with a quick blast again around the clock so the lighter blue was spilling out from the centre too.

Lastly, I used a fine detail brush to paint pure white into the central circle, pentagram, and various sigils and then drybrushed pure white onto the rest of the gate, again working from the centre outwards.

A quick retouch of bone colour here and there to the skulls and a daubing of my blood effect onto the skull in the receptacle ( a 1:1 mix of Tamiya X27 clear red and Army Painter Strong Tone ink) and the painting is done.

I need to varnish the whole thing, but will use my tried and tested method of using spray gloss varnish followed by a coat of spray matt varnish to dull down the shine. I’ll cover the bloody skull with a blob of blu-tack so that the fresh blood effect isn’t ruined by the matt  varnish.

I can see me losing the will to live a little when it comes to picking out all the skulls when I come to batch paint a large number of these gates in one sitting, but looking forward to playing with the glow effect with the airbrush should keep me going.

I briefly considered painting a few gates with the light effect of the colours of the different Cthulhu Wars factions (green for Great Cthulhu, red for Dark Goat etc) but then this would mean having to sift through the box of gates to find the correct colour to use and then doing so again should a rival faction take over that gate and frankly, that all seems to be too much of pain to bother. I’m pleased with how this gate looks, so will paint all of them in the same way, although I will (eventually) paint the Colour Out of Space gates in their respective colours, so those gates still work with those additional rules.

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Zombie Regiment for Kings of War

Hot off the painting table is this regiment of Zombies for my Undead army in Kings of War:

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The striking big fella dominating the unit is a Flesh Golem by Minion Miniatures. I backed their Kickstarter a couple of years ago to get this model, as I thought it looked just plain cool! You can see the model unassembled and unpainted in an earlier bog post.

The gravestones are by Renedra, with a couple of GW ones from the Garden of Morr set which I had in my bitz box. There are a couple of other GW bitz in there too, such as the body of the Zombie on the far left of he front rank.

The gravestones tie this regiment in with my Zombie Horde and my Ghouls, which feature more gravestones and tombs.

The Flesh golem is a great, patchwork monster. here’s a few more shots showing off his ‘Jhn Carpenter’s The Thing’ inspired face, hideous tentacle arm, flesh shredding shoulder spikes ans clawed arm:

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I love the carapace on the back on the tentacle arm. I painted the Flesh Golem to try and emphasise its patchwork nature, like it had been sewn together from several different beasts, so the legs, torso and face are a more normal skin tone, the clawed arm a rotten green and the tentacle a noisome, ruddy  flesh colour.

There are a few details on the base, like a Zombie head popping up from the ground, a zombie in the process of devouring a victim, a severed arm crawling about and a raven perched on one of the gravestones -I’ll get photos of these too and post them up here. Got to dash now as I’m playing a game of Kings of war tonight and need to get the battlefield ready!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Mummy Regiment for Kings of War

Here’s my regiment of Mummies for use in my Kings of War Undead Army. It’s comprised of two Troops so I have good flexibility in choosing my army, but the vast majority of the time, I field them as a regiment.

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The unit is predominantly made up of Mantic’s mummies. I found two Tomb Kings miniatures in a bitz box at  a wargames show (the standard bearer and musician) and thought they would add some variety to the unit. I made up two champion figures from other Tomb Kings pieces I have.

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I do feel it makes the unit look a bit more Gee Dubs than Mantic, as the command models are what you see first, but I’m happy with the overall effect. I had a spare carrion model from GW’s Warmaster range and added that for  bit of extra ‘colour’.

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Here’s a close up of one of the Mantic Mummies:

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From research for an old 15mm Egyptian army I started but never finished, I vaguely remember reading that Egyptian marines wore red and blue. Now, I know these Mummies aren’t Egyptian, but using red for their main colour contrasts nicely with my Skeleton units (whose main colours are green and brown) and compliments other elite units such as my Soul Reaver infantry.

I airbrushed and drybrushed some sandy-coloured dirt onto the tattered ends of the red cloaks. The armour is a bronze colour with a grimey green wash to try and give a verdigris effect. The weapons look fat to uniform to me now, looking at these photos, so I think I’ll add a little rust effect to them.

I painted the Mummies flesh a dark grey, based on actual Mummies I’ve seem in museums.

The icon on the banner and shields is the White Rose motif I’ve chosen for my army. I imagine that the mummies have allied themselves with /been pressed into service for the Lady Melantha, my Vampire  Countess and army general and have adopted her White Rose sigil to show allegiance.

This painted regiment will see action for the first time during any games I play as part of Mantic’s Edge of the abyss summer campaign. Fingers crossed that they don’t suffer the curse of the freshly painted miniatures.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

Minion Miniatures Zombie Hulk

The Zombie Hulk is a ‘miniature’ that was originally intended to be part of Minion Miniature’s first kickstarter, but sadly it was not unlocked as not enough money was raised.

Many folk, such as myself, were very keen to see this unlocked; so I was very happy when Minion Miniatures announced a second kickstarter , with the express aim of creating the Zombie Hulk. Suffice to say, the second kickstarter was also a success and after nine month’s wait, a package arrived in the post yesterday with some rather interesting resin parts in it..

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Long story short; y’put ’em all together and you get this!

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This is one big fella. To be honest, when I first assembled it, as much as I like the miniature, I did think to myself, “Well, it’s not really THAT big…”  However, putting it alongside a troop of Mantic 30mm skeletons gives more perspective 🙂

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Yep, he’s a whopper!

This is a resin kit and it’s very well cast. There’s going to be some filling required at the joints and there are mold lines to remove, but all in all, I’m very pleased with the quality.

There are lots of great gruesome details too. The Hulk is literally crawling with corpses. Some are impaled on its ‘trophy rack’:

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And others are bursting from its body ready to attack:

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Still more are helping to hold its guts in:

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And others are just tearing themselves free:

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Yes, that is the Hulk’s ass. The attention to detail with the cellulite is almost exquisite *barf*.

On the whole, the Zombie Hulk went together easily. Some of he corpses coming out of it were tricky to assemble simply because of how small the parts are, but it’s nothing that couldn’t be dealt with by a combination of patience and pinning.

The trickiest part to assemble is the corpse on the trophy rack that is impaled through the back of the head and the gut. I had to drill out the holes in the corpse to make them big enough for the spikes to fit and then drill some more for them to fit in level so both spikes were at the same height ready to attach to the Hulk’s shoulders. And then both the arms needed gluing on separately. Gah! Again, pinning and patience were the way forward (ably assisted by some green stuff).

Here’s the corpse parts, so you get more of an idea of the assembly required;

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In addition to the corpses, there are other nice details like armour plates bolted directly into the Hulk’s flesh, a pair of vestigial (dragon?) wings which I guess the Necromancer had knocking around. As part of the kickstarter you also received a second, cyclopean head:

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The fangs on this are particularly good. I think I’ll magnetise the neck and heads so I can use either one for a bit of variety.

I’m most likely going to use the Hulk as a proxy for a regiment of Zombies in my games of Kings of War. If Mantic ever revise the fan-made colossal monsters list which included an Undead Titan, then the Hulk can serve as one of these too. I’m going to carefully base him so he will work in either role.

I’m planning on assembling two or three new regiments of Zombies ready for Mantic’s summer campaign this year. One will incorporate a GW Corpse Cart I have spare and the other the Minion Miniature Flesh Golem I acquired in their first Kickstarter.

Once I’ve had more practise painting these zombies and trying out a few colour palettes and combinations for flesh tones, I’ll tackle the Hulk. So I don’t realistically see me painting him until the back of this year, but photos will go here when I do.

I hope Richard, the creative force behind Minion Miniatures, is able to expand his model line and get the rules published. I’m very interested to see what other miniatures might be in the range, given the quality of the two I already have.

And it’s gotta be said- this boy has guts…!

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Thanks for reading, folks 🙂

 

Revenant King Takes First Place in Painting Competition

My friendly local gaming store here in Huddersfield, IQ Games, announced the results of their painting competition today.

There were four categories, three of which I entered; ‘Single Miniature’; ‘Bigature’ and ‘Diorama’. The fourth category was ‘My First Painted Miniature’, which I couldn’t enter, as I’ve been painting for some time now! I entered my Revenant King into the ‘Single Miniature’, Kaladrax into the ‘Bigature’ and my Zombie Horde into the ‘Diorama’.

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Single Miniature Entries: My Revenant King is in the 2nd column form the left, at the back.

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Diaoramas: My Zombie Horde is on the far left.

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Bigatures: I think you can spot the Giant Undead Dragon!

The competition was judged by artist Ralph Horsley, who has painted many Magic the Gathering cards and also the cover for the latest Kings of War rulebook.

When all the prize winning miniatures were set out on display I  was initially a little disappointed when I saw that Kaladrax wasn’t amongst them, but then I clocked that my Revenant King was! And a few minutes later, it was announced as the winner of the Single Miniature category. :p

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The Revenant King (WINNER!) 🙂

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Revenant King & The Other One

This was the first painting competition I’ve ever entered, so I’m properly chuffed to have won something! First prize was five pots of paint of my choice , so I was able to get some of the new Citadel Air paints ready to use on my Deadzone battlezones (and as I spent £6 entering three categories, I’m quids in too 🙂 )

Plus I had fun chatting with the other painters who were waiting alongside me in the FLGS for the results and also Ralph; who mentioned that he started off by painting miniatures and first did his ‘2d’ paintings using the acrylics he had for his miniatures.

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Several of the Winners (Yours truly 2nd left) with Ralph Horsley Stood on the Right

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Background Fluff for My Kings of War Undead Army

Here’s the background fluff I’ve concocted to tie together the White Rose and Yorkshire Stone thematic elements of my Undead Army. Given that I live in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, maybe the lost Kingdon of Odersfelt may sound a little familiar..?

***

The Kingdom of Odersfelt flourished during the millennia after the God War and before the coming of Winter.

Located in what at the time was one of the nine richest provinces of Primovantor, Odersfelt lay to the West of the mysterious Forest of Galahir, home to Sylvan kind for thousands of years.

Odersfelt was a beautiful land with fertile fields well suited to agriculture and livestock and steep-sided valleys where water power could be harnessed. The Kingdom grew wealthy from textile manufacture, with thousands of clothier families in the rural settlements supported by good crops of grain and the production of milk and meat.

The King wisely saw to the construction of good roads to compliment the traditional packhorse routes, enabling trade to take place far and wide. Odersfelt subsequently became an important centre for commerce within Primovantor.

Odersfelt’s adopted sigil was that of a White Rose, a particular four petalled bloom which grew plentifully in the rich soils of the Kingdom, especially those close to Galahir.

Such a Kingdom was the envy of many, not the least marauding Orcs and Abyssals that now troubled the land. A strong army protected Odersfelt, utilising a series of watchtowers, stone forts and beacons on hilltops to warn of any incursions.

The colours of the militia were natural tones of green and brown, reflecting Odersfelt’s connections to the earth, the people’s pride in the beauty of their Kingdom and their proximity to the forest. And so for many a year Odersfelt flourished. Yet all good things come to an end…

Odersfelt fell to the ice as Winter escaped her prison and the unnatural cooling of Mantica saw her glaciers inexorably advance. Odersfelt was invaded by colossal armies of Orcs, icy Abyssal Dwarves and other hideous monsters, surging South ahead of Winter’s glaciers.

The armies of the Kingdom initially stood shoulder to shoulder against the threat of the Wicked ones with the Elves of the Forest of Galahir, but the Sylvans began to look inwards, becoming more concerned about their own survival than their alliances with Men. Calling upon the power of the Green Lady to save their realm from icy doom, the Elves withdrew their alliance, knowing they were ultimately powerless to help Odersfelt avoid its fate. The Kingdom was subsequently sacked by Abyssals and then crushed under ice.

Over the near half millennia in which Winter held the land in her grip, Odersfelt faded from memory. Yet with Winter’s defeat and the retreat of the glaciers, the rich soils of the former Kingdom were fed by rainfall and warmed once again by the sun. Within a year of the ice melting, white blooms began to appear in hidden parts of the land…

***

The man who would eventually become the blight on the world known as Belial Crepitus was, a long, long time ago; Edmund Gaunt – Head Gardener for a local Lord in a rural area of the Ardovikian Plains, close to the former Kingdom of Odersfelt.

Lord Lister valued the ornate gardens of his estate as a symbol of his wealth and position and so showed much favour to his Head Gardener. Edmund lived contentedly with his wife Anna, in an idyllic cottage on the grounds of the estate.

Edmund sought a means by which to grow brighter and bigger blooms and to increase the longevity of flowers after they had been cut; so that the beautiful flower beds, borders and bouquets he would create could bring his Lord, Lady and dear wife even greater pleasure.

To achieve this innocent goal he experimented with herbs and other, now-forgotten, ingredients and during his research and explorations, rediscovered the long forgotten White Roses that grew centuries ago on the plains around Odersfelt before Winter scoured Mantica.

These beautiful White Roses were soon the talk of the land. Life for the Edmund became even better, as to complement his success with the White Rose and increased status with his Lord and peers, Anna announced that she was with child.

Lord Lister carefully limited growth of the White Roses solely to his estate in order to increase their value and allure. Edmund redoubled his efforts to find a way help them grow even more beautifully and to preserve them when cut. The future seemed bright for all, yet tragedy was to strike in the cruelest of manners…

Edmund’s wife and unborn child died at their cottage during childbirth. Once the maids had left him alone to grieve, a distraught Edmund flew into a heartbroken fit of rage, smashing everything within reach. Hurling his now pointless experiments against the walls, a combination of elixirs splashed onto his wife’s corpse and several hours later, in a terrible moment of revelation, Edmund discovered his experiments worked better on dead flesh than living flora…

Some say that it was in this moment of utter horror that Edmund lost his mind; others that this happened more slowly over the long years of terrible sights and deeds which followed.

Edmund left his Lord’s estate that very night, never to return. There’s no accurate account of his travels in the years after Anna’s death, other than that they were far and wide as Edmund attempted to leave far behind him the horrors of what he had seen and the implications of what he could potentially accomplish.

***

During Edmund’s long period of wandering, word reached the Vampire Lady Melantha of Ophidia of White Roses in a far away land which rivalled the beauty of her own pale, ivory skin.

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Distractions, no matter how trivial they may initially seem, can be very welcoming when you have all eternity to fill and the White Roses piqued Lady Melantha’s curiosity. Almost all of Ophidia, bar the rich river valley, is desert and dry savannah and a bloom such as the White Rose does not flower in the native flora. Melantha was doubly taken with tales of this flower, both in its reflection of her pale, physical beauty and the stark contrast to her own dark heart.

Through twists of kismet Edmund became known to Lady Melantha as the grower of these pale blooms. Intrigued, she sent her servants to locate the wandering madman and bring him before her to tell his tale of the White Roses of Odersfelt.

Lady Melantha’s servants eventually found Edmund and, whether of his own free will or under coercion, he shared the tales of the White Roses and in doing so; the terrible effect of his elixirs. Greatly pleased and seeing a dark potential in the broken man before her, Melantha offered to share her knowledge of magics and necromancy.

This sparked in Edmund Gaunt’s ravaged mind the first real interest for years in anything at all. Before long, Edmund had thrown himself into a study of the dark arts, relishing the opportunity to preserve life (after a manner) and fascinated by Lady Melantha; his new, immortal dark flower.

Over a few, dangerous, depraved years, Edmund become well versed in the Necromantic arts, taking the name Belial Crepitus and swearing his fealty and allegiance to Lady Melantha for all time. All traces of Edmund Gaunt were now gone and in his place the horror of Belial Crepitus stood ready to commit dark acts that would plague the world….

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Armed with knowledge from Lady Melantha of the location of many battles fought on the Ardovikian plains against Winter, Belial Crepitus returned to the lands he once called home. After ‘acquiring’ undead servants to act as workmen and earning the allegiance of a local pack of Ghouls, Crepitus quietly and swiftly carried out excavations at the sites of several battlegrounds.

Months later Belial returned to Ophidia and presented Lady Melantha with a cache of unearthed arms and armour bearing the White Rose motif. Even better, he also brought samples of the rare White Roses themselves which he was able to grow in the palace of his dark mistress.

Lady Melantha found herself so taken with the pale blooms that she decreed the White Rose to be her new sigil and before the week was out, it was fully adopted into her heraldry and banners. Melantha bade Crepitus to return to the Ardovikian Plains and raise an army under her new banner. The opportunities of conquest and inflicting misery that the northern lands presented looked fully capable of entertaining Melantha for oh, a decade or two.

Belial carried out his lady’s wishes with the full fervor of his new found purpose. Within a few months, regiments of skeletal warriors, revenants and troops of terrifying Wights had been raised from remains of Odersfelt’s forces and hordes of zombies created from slain villagers. Yet more ghouls flocked to Melantha’s new banner, and shortly after, massive lycanthropes. Crepitus also bound terrifying Wraiths and other nightmarish creatures to his service.

Warbands of Crepitus’ undead have struck settlements and townships across the plains and into the Successor Kingdoms. The White Rose has become known once more; albeit feared and reviled as a portent of not only death, but of grisly servitude beyond that not-so-final veil.

There have even been reports of an achingly beautiful, terrible woman at the head of Crepitus’ hordes, her skin the colour of ivory, her long hair black as night. It would seem that the Lady Melantha has accompanied her chosen thralls on the long journey across the Infant Sea and Dragon Teeth Mountains so that she may personally rejoice in the slaughter and add her claim alongside that of other undead fiends such as Mhorgoth the Faceless and Lord Malak of Dol Eragos as masters of horror and true terrors of the night

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Thanks for reading! 🙂

Painted Undead Army for Kings of War

Happy Birthday to Me,

Happy Birthday to Me,

Happy Birthday Dear Vault of the Undead,

Happy Birthday to Me!

It just struck me the other day that I created this Vault of the Undead blog in September 2015, so it’s just celebrated its 1st birthday. Crikey, tempus fugit indeed.

By way of a minor celebration, I’ve done a quick photo shoot of all of the painted units that comprise my Undead army for Kings of War. This is the first time I’ve actually laid them all out to take a photo of the whole army – ta -dah!:

undead-army

Here’s a closer look at all of the units in turn.

First up, some heroes. From left to right below you have a Necromancer, my Vampire army general Lady Melantha and a Revenant King:

heroes-1

A Cursed Pharoah, Mounted Standard Bearer and Mounted Necromancer:

heroes-2

And a second Mounted Necromancer and a Mounted Revenant King:

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Next, we’re into the regiments. Skeletons with hand weapons:

skeletons

Skeletons Spearmen:

skeleton-spears

Revenants:

revenants

And Revenants with Two-Handed Weapons (converted from Basilean Paladins):

revenants-2-handed

Revenant Cavalry:

soul-reaver-cavalry

Wraiths:

wraiths

Wights (Reaper Barrow Warden miniatures):

wights

Zombie Trolls:

zombie-trolls

First regiment of Werewolves:

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And a second:

werewolves-2

Tarpit time! A Hordeof Zombies:

zombie-horde

And a horde of Ghouls:

ghoul-horde

Hang on! Who does that whoppin’ great big tail behind the Ghouls belong to? Kaladrax, my army centre piece (aka flippin’ huge) Undead Dragon:

kaladrax

From the huge to a small, but nonetheless deadly; troop of Soul Reaver Infantry:

soul-reaver-infantry

And their support; a battery of Balefire Catapults:

balefie-catapults

And a Vampire on Undead Dragon:

vampire-on-dragon

And lastly, because I realise haven’t posted any pictures of her on this blog before- my Undead Army General; The Lady Melantha:

vampire-hero-1

Hey, when your skin is nearly as hard as iron, you don’t need to wear lots of heavy armour. And if you’ve got it, flaunt it; right? May distract the enemy. Besides – who says the Undead can’t be at least kinda sexy..?

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She does look rather disapproving, eh?

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Hopefully, seeing a whole army image and then one unit after another, you’ll notice some of the unifying themes of the army.

I’ve chosen a vibrant, sickly green as the colour for the necromantic energies. Of my two Mounted  Necromancers; one is covered in green flames and wields a and carried this colour over in a paler tint, to the colour of my unit of Wraiths and two-handed staff with necromantic fire in a skull at the end. The other is surfin’ zombie style, with two lanterns behind him fuelled by the same green energy.The payload of the Balefire Catapults, the Revennat King’s Orb and the standards of both the Skeleton  regiments also utilise the same necromantic energy. The runes on Lady Melantha’s sword glow with it too, as do the eyes of the Revenant cavalry’s mounts.

The army sigil is a white rose (which there’s a story behind), so you’ll see the motif on shields and the standard bearer. Also, if you look closely, you’ll see some white roses on the bases of the Ghoul and especially on the Zombie Horde.

Thirdly, the stonework is all (kinda) a  Yorkshire stone colour; golden rather than grey. You see this most on the Zombies and Ghouls, but also on the bases of the Werewolves, Wights, Wraith, Vampire Queen and Revenant King.

Well, I think this post is now long enough.

As always; thanks for reading! 🙂

 

Greebo Games Un-Renaissance Undead Miniatures

I’d never heard of Greebo Games until a few months ago. They’re an Italian company who manufacture a wide range of Fantasy Football miniatures and several other lines for other companies. Then one day, whilst browsing on Kickstarter, their ‘Un-Renaissance’ line came up as a recommendation. The concept art and CG sculpts looked amazing and I immediately saw use for many of their miniatures in my Kings of War Undead army.

Take a look for yourself and quite possibly prepare to be blown away by some amazing miniatures. You may want to go and make a cuppa to enjoy whilst you read this. It’s a bumper blog post!

WARNING one of these sculpts involves nudity and has a sexual element to it. (Bet you’re scrolling down to find that one first now, aintcha..?)

First up, the concept art for Savonarola, from Greebo’s  Kickstarter campaign:

savonarola-art

And the finished metal figure:

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And from the back…

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And side. This superb figure is going to be used as a Necromancer for my Kings of War Undead army. The flames will be the sickly green colour I use for necromantic energy.

savonarola-3

Next – ‘The Pope’. This was the first figure I saw in Greebo’s Kickstarter campaign and I instantly knew i wanted it. Firstly, the concept art:

pope-artwork

And the finished miniature. I think a great job has been done in making a 2D concept to 3D ‘life’ (or undeath). He’ll make a superb Liche King for my army.

pope-1

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Next up is a real triumph, and my second favourite miniature of the campaign: Copernico:

copernico-art

Now, this was a sunovabitch to assemble, but well worth the work (bit of green stiff required here n’ there, but ignore the gaps and look at the glory!)

copernico-1

My gut instinct is to use him as a Standard Bearer (possibly classed as mounted due to all the swirling magical energy) but he’d make a great Necromancer too. No reason why I can’t use him as either from one game to another.

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I took some step by step photos as I assembled Copernico, so they’ll make their way onto the vault as their own blog post in the not too distant future.

Next, my flat out favourite miniature (well, more of a bigature really) and the one I made the warning about earlier:  Lucrezia Borgia:

lucrezia-art

I think this beautifully rendered miniature is very disturbing with it’s blend of eroticism and horror. (Lucrezia is bare breasted, the naked zombies are entwined together; one is clearly sucking the breast of another and it appears that one is performing an act of fellatio…). This is going to be… interesting to paint!

lucrezia-1

Due to the footprint of the model, Lucrezia isn’t very practical as a Hero miniature for my army, but she would make a superb Vampire or Lady Ilona. practically she may be better in a regiment or horde of Zombies. Decisions, decisions…

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Next, a Necromancer, who will ‘do what it says on the tin’ in my army:

necromancer-art

You’ll see by now how consistently good Greebo are at realising their concept art. I did get a sprue of arms (as per the concept art above) with this figure; I forgot to put them in the photo.

necromancer-1necromancer-2

The Vitruvian golem, who will be front and centre of a regiment or horde of Zombies:

vitruvian-golem-art

vitruvian-golem-1

vitruvian-golem-2

Alexander, who will of course be a Vampire for my army (I love the clothing on this sculpt)

alexander-cg-sculpt

alexander-1

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Dante, who would have been great as part of one of my regiments of Wraiths, but who will instead serve as a Revenant King.

dante-art

dante-1

I like the gribblies on his base.

dante-2

Giotto, who will make a fine Necromancer for my army:

giotto-art

giotto

And finally, some Cheerleaders, or as they’ve come to be nicknamed ‘Cheerlewders’. Not really sure I have a use for these in my army, but they’re fun sculpts.

cheerleader-artcheerleader-3

cheerleader-2

cheerleader-1

Just realised that I also have two little ‘Dead Dudes’ and two markers as well, which I haven’t photographed yet. The Dead Dudes will make good fillers for a unit of zombies. The markers, like the Cheerlewders, are lovely, but I don’t really have a use for them in my army.

But what a great selection of new miniatures I do have for my Undead Army. It’ll take me a long time to get round to painting all of them, but Lucrezia, Copernico and Savonarola will be amongst the first up on the paint table. More blog posts as they get painted 🙂

You can visit Greebo’s website here. However, I don’t think these Un -Renaissance miniatures are in their shop just yet. You can see their Kickstarter campaign here. I didn’t buy all of the miniatures available through the Kickstarter, so there’s many more for you to discover there.

Thanks for reading! 🙂