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Tuesday, 4 December 2018

A return to a once and future king. (don't ask just happened)

Since posting my purchased Late Roman SAGA army, I have played a number of games and have to say they are a delight. Simple and subtle at the same time and playable in a couple of hours.. Really loved them.. I was also in a bit of a stale period in that most of my planned projects were complete apart from scenery and its a tad cold in my garage for that. In a moment of fluttering butterfly wings I took a close look at my new army and weighed up the facts. The last time I painted anything bigger than 15mm was back in the 1970's. Humbrol was the order of the day and acrylics were a reflection in artists eyes. I have never used triple coats , or shading or toners in fact the most adventurous stuff I had tried was black lining detail.. Now as I said I was examining the troops I had purchased and in a moment of madness the thought struck me "I CAN DO THIS". As a result I looked for some old figures to experiment on. I found three I could do something with the first was a salute gift figure of "hereward the wake" he was an Anglo Saxon but with a bit of work could be worked up to a reasonable heroic dark age era warrior or even "KING ARTHUR" (we all know he was real right?). The next was a mithril figures Nazgul (yeah I did say Nazgul) again a bit of work and imagination and this one would become a warrior priest so enamored of the writers of fiction for this period. The third was a rather wonderful figure of Odin gathering up the dead to take them to Valhalla. A truly beautiful figure but of no use to me whatsoever. A bit of lateral thinking and there was Merlin searching for luck among the heather of the Welsh hills. Of course all weapons would be replaced and any ridiculous conversions that I thought of would be applied and I would experiment with as many new fangled painting techniques as possible. I also decided to use the wonderful shield decals from LBMS to make the figures really POP.

          Here is the result of the trial figures



L to R
Nazgul , hereward the wake, odin.

warrior priest, King Arthur, Merlin picking heather.





                     Now to say I was pleased with them is an understatement. Sure there are hundreds of guys who can do better but these were mine  heheheheh. So I decided to collect and paint an Arthurian SAGA force little bits at a time and treat it as a painting and modelling exercise rather than a must finish wargaming project. My first purchase was a few character figures from Footsore that caught my eye. They would form the start of a hearthguard. When they arrived , I LOVED them.. Figure makers really have improved way beyond my imaginations in the last century.. Lovely . Having said that I went to work with knives and files improving undercuts adding new weapons and generally tarting up. Here's how they turned out


 After these I was truly hooked .









I looked elsewhere  for figures and decided to try a pack of 5 characters from saxon miniatures.  Again lovely stuff. I attacked them with the same strategy as the previous ones. I now had a truly unique and varied hearthguard. Saxon miniatures as shown below


Nice figures but the animation is a bit overcooked for me but still nice.







So here I was. It was growing into a serious wargames army and though I say it myself , looking nice. I wasn't however prepared to spend copious amounts on similar looking metal figures. then I looked again at my purchased army (made from Gripping beast plastics), checked out the dark age warrior sprue and made the decision to buy a box of each, toss the bits in the air and use what came down. Well almost. I bought a box of each and started cutting and chopping.. Bloody great fun.  reminded me of those long afternoons model making with my dad some 60 years ago..
 the result is very satisfying and I am hugely proud of the end result. definitely pro standard . I have still got it hahahaha. I've never been the modest type .

my plastic warriors New weapons , swords and scabbards , extra javelins, new leather pouches. I really went to town.. So here you go


 On the table its hard to tell them from metal.. They are so nice to work with and hugely convertible.







I only need a dozen archers and slingers and they are good to go..


Oh BTW did I mention I bought a mounted figure of King Arthur (of course he's real) from footsore miniatures and had a go at that as well. Guess what?  I can paint horses too.  see next post lol
 .

8 comments:

  1. Great work Robert. I really enjoy converting figures, but as my games are 10mm these days, it's something I rarely do. I bought a new copy of the original SAGA rules recently for £5 but have yet to play them. They look good from a first read through and need to find a way to get some figures on the table...

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    1. I really enjoy the rules. They meet my 3 principles. Easy to lear, quick to play and yet detailed enough to feel ok.

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  2. Top job, the sentiment that the painting is done for its own sake rather than a means to an end to get the project quickly done is a routine that I would like to settle into.

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    1. yeah it's a promise I made myself when I retired . Only do what you want to and not what someone else tells you you have to. I now apply that to my wargaming too. Only paint what you enjoy and never gice youself deadlines

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  3. They look super, Robert. I cannot believe the amount of time and energy you used with the conversions - that's a path down which I rarely tread!

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    1. modelmaking was one of the skills my father passed on to me at a very early age. I have this "thing" about never having two identical figures in a wargames army.. it can be quite a challenge

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