Sunday 16 December 2012



Well I went to watch the Hobbit on Thursday and absolutely loved it and thought it was the best film I've seen in quite some time.

Arthur Dent goes on an Adventure...

Now this got me rather excited about the miniatures game produced by Games Workshop, especially as previous sets were around £30 which would have made a nice Christmas present for myself. How surprised was I when I took a peek at GWs website to find the Hobbit box set an astounding £75!

Miniatures Produced From Solid Gold...

I know its the big film of the year and therefore the must have toy for little Jimmy but at such an outstandingly stupidly high price, I find myself unable to spend such vast sums of cash! Its a real shame as I would love to play the game but at that money I just cant do it!
Its going to be interesting to see how the game goes for after Christmas once little Jimmy decides he doesnt like it...

It seems that its not just the starter set which is astronomically priced either as the Grey Council costs a stupid £45! 

I'm not one to usually bemoan companies pricing but I cant help but fume at it on this occasion, especially as it seems to have sneaked into their Lord of the Rings range too with the Dwarf Warriors for example seeming to have lost a few quantity but for the same price as before.

A plus to all this wailing and gnashing of teeth is that its re-awakened my interest in fantasy gaming and I am hoping to do something with the inspiration soon!

All the best!

Sunday 9 December 2012

Ponderings on the New Year...


Well its been an eventful year and sadly I've still not managed to keep to my plan of playing 52 games over the course of it!

Its getting to the point of the year when miniature companies have sales and thus far two especially have caught my eye, Brigade Models and Astro Miniatures!

BRIGADE always have a very tempting sale and as I now have a full time job I actually have a little disposable income and am sorely tempted to pick up some Aeronef goodness!

Brigade Nef

I've been pondering trying out Aeronef for quite some time now but every time they have a sale, I've been skint! I have a few ideas kicking around for some themed mini campaigns which could be fun. To top it off I still want to pick up some more 6mm and 15mm bits and bobs to round out various projects!

ASTRO MINIATURES does some nice pseudo Star Trek figures in 15mm scale and I must admit its tempting to pick up some so I can play some classic Trek skirmishes between the Federation and Klingons to name but a few!

Astroverse Set!

For $30 one cant go too far wrong and I may have to pick some up and they make excellent stand ins for Stainless Steel Rat games too!

Other than that I have to admit I have enjoyed working on the cars for my Forgotten Highways, post apocalyptic project but work always intrudes to stop me getting more done!

Post Apocalyptic Fun!

Finally theres my Rusty Robot project, which I've been beavering away with for quite some time now and am hoping to get a Kickstarter type of project up and running in the new year!

Red Tribe Robot

The plan is to get the Red Tribe sculpted and ready to cast and then get the Kickstarter going to see if anyone would be interested in picking up some robotic minions to game with and go from there. I've spent quite a lot of time and effort on the project between developing concept art and sculpting so hopefully it will all turn out in the end!

Heres a small preview of the work so far:

Red Tribe Forge

All the best!

Tuesday 27 November 2012

Road Wars!


Whee! Its been a very busy month here and I've been from one end of the country and back while holding down a full time job but I have managed to get a couple of bits and bobs done, in the form of the first model for a new project!

Road Warrior VW!

Its a bit of a conversion of a Hotwheels with a few gubbins stuck on! Hopefully I will be able to get some more done over the coming weeks too! For more information, please feel free to take a peek at FORGOTTEN HIGHWAYS, my post apocalyptic road warrior blog!

Alas I am having to make do without my girlfriends brilliant camera at the moment so the picture isn't brilliant...

All the best!

Tuesday 6 November 2012

Whats Happening!


Apologies for the lack of updates over the last few weeks folks!

I have taken full time employment to help pay the bills and its meant that I have absolutely no free time at present. As such my hobby time and sculpting time have been seriously put upon and as such I haven't so much as picked up a paintbrush or sculpting tool in almost three weeks.

Its not an ideal solution to say the least but it does mean I am able to keep my head above water so to speak until something better comes along and I must admit I am grateful to actually have a job in the present environment.

Even when I get a day off I find myself so knackered that working on my other job as a sculptor is proving difficult in the extreme.

Hopefully I will be able to summon up some energy and a day off to do something productive!

All the best!

Tuesday 9 October 2012

Still Here!


Just  a quick update to confirm I am still here! Its been a really busy few weeks at Rancho Ricardo as I prepare for an exhibition in Bristol which is going to require me to drive down tomorrow morning to drop stuff off and attend the private view on Friday followed by a mad dash to get back up here before starting work at my new job on Monday!

I don't know what effect my job will have on my hobby time at present but its a much needed boost to the morale and it involves working in a bookshop once again!

Theres other things on the horizon too, which if they develop as I hope will mean a move of house and regular working hours which is something I really want to have as the last few years have been somewhat chaotic and involved living in 4 different cities at different ends of the country and serious strains put on my hobby budget and space. If said opportunity develops it will mean job security and somewhere to put down roots for a while which I really look forward to so fingers crossed!

Hobby wise, I am slowly putting together some Necromunda terrain but don't want to show it until I have a decent amount finished in the next couple of weeks. I am also working on clearing my last commissions so will hopefully have time to get on with some personal projects too before November.

I've also been sorting through my 15mm scale collection and am saddened to see that quite a few infantry figures are in need of a little TLC as they have been chipped so there will probably be a bit of a repair day on the horizon too.

I took the opportunity to take some pics of my Stainless Steel Rat villains, Count Cassitor of Rdunrundt!

 Power Armoured Henchmen

 Count Cassitor and Armed Underlings

 The Counts Personal Armoured Car

I really like the little fellows and need to expand the force to a full platoon at some point including some heavy weapons and some more illicit weapons tech and possibly a cavalry squad in true Flash Gordon style. Most figures are Peter Pig while the vehicle is QRF. The infantry are WW1 French Dragoons but the helmets make for a perfect low tech villain force!

Heres a couple more vehicles I have bodged together over the years:

 Automated Defence Vehicle

The Automated Defence Vehicle is the sort of thing that particularly security minded types use to protect their holdings and is originally a plastic Mechwarrior tank with the turret replaced.

Old Thunder, Farpoints Premier Armoured Vehicle

Old Thunder is the Farpoint Militias only heavily armoured vehicle and is so unreliable it tends to be used as a bunker more than an attack vehicle but its heavy plasma cannon can still kick quite a punch (even if it drains the vehicles fuel cells to do so!)

All the best!

Saturday 6 October 2012

Endless Fantasy Tactics Kickstarter


Just a quick heads up for a really interesting concept for a game currently on KICKSTARTER called Endless Fantasy Tactics.

Produced by On the Lamb Games its premise is to allow players to relive the classic 90s era RPG type of game on the tabletop. I must admit the premise is interesting and I have taken a peek at the quickstart rules and it is most intriguing so I will be interested to see how the game develops.

Heres a couple of preview concepts of the type of models one can expect to see:


Beastman, a race designed by committee!

I will be interested to see how the game develops but its got some really interesting concepts, with the only thing putting me off being the scale of 40mm for average figures. I may have a bash at sculpting some cartoony 15/18mm scale versions for my own enjoyment though!
All the best!

Thursday 4 October 2012

Pocket Necromunda?


While I was taking some pics of some of my sculpts I quickly threw together some quick concept shots for an idea which has been rattling around in my head for a while. Pocket Necromunda:

 Redemptionist Crazies!

 House Militia

Essentially the idea is to try out Necromunda or one of its offshoots such as Inquisimunda or In the Emperors Name in a different scale. I have a fair number of figures to choose from and quite a bit of plastic platformer scenery, not to mention lots of cardboard and other bits of detritus which would come in handy.

I do think that most figures I use will need to be heavily converted or sculpted individually as at present theres lots of military types and rifle wielding figures on the market but not too many with pistols, swords and other implements of violence so beloved in the classic game.

I would be interested to hear what other folks think and if they have tried anything similar themselves as I think it could be quite a bit of fun!

I also found these little fellows amongst my Stainless Steel Rat collection:


They are a bit of a mix of 6mm scale Epic stuff, 10mm Mechwarrior, Laserburn 15mm and even a scratch build too but they make decent robots in 15mm scale and could make even better objectives or NPCs in any game!

All the best!

Monday 1 October 2012

Redemptionist Fanatics!


Following on from my Laserburn kick of last week I have also finished basing some crazed Redemptionist cultist types.

 Red Redemptionists!

They are the fanatic figures but the sculpting on them is pretty dire so I reworked them as best as I could by adding more interesting pointy hoods and beefed up some of their guns.

To make matters worse they are on the larger end of the 15mm scale and have VERY thick bases so I incorporated some rock formations for the crazies to stand on so they dont look quite so bad.

 Fanatics with firepower!

I've always had a soft spot for the Redemptionists in Necromunda and took the opportunity to add some flames and checked leggings on them to liven things up a bit. I gave the two heavies a yellow hood to identify them more easily and their leader gets a fetching black one. He's actually a mercenary but I wanted a different sculpt and used him instead with just a head removal and pointy hat he looks ok!

Wile going through my miniatures collection I also rummaged these fellows out of a drawer:

6mm Scale Goblins!

I had originally painted them back in my Leviathan days as a possible way of playing the game on the cheap and in a limited space, sort of a travel Leviathan but never completed the project. I have several more bases of the little fellows kicking around and may yet expand them a little with one or two warbeasts to liven things up but we shall have to see!

Oddly enough, the sculpting quality, especially on faces is excellent and the Irregular Armies website really doesn't do the range justice as they have some lovely sculpts and I would recommend folks take another look at the range!

All the best!

Saturday 29 September 2012

It Came From the Deep!


Heres another piece I finished that has been sat almost finished for some time now:

 Giant Orca Mutation of Doom!

He's originally a plastic Gormiti figure but with a little bit of work, he looks rather good as a giant menace for 15mm scale or even 28mm scale too!

 League Troops in for a bit of a surprise

Heres a bit of a shot showing the scale of the beast next to a large 15mm scale figure for reference:

Orca and Gatorgore

Next up heres a piece of conversion work that I finished recently. Originally a truly rubbish model of some sort of robot with ridiculously short arms and legs with a long body, I reworked it as best as I could. Its not perfect but looks a lot more interesting and usable than it used to...

 Pink Cyborg

I have got a batch of cultist type figures kicking around too but doubt they will be finished any time soon as they need a load of work before painting as they are pretty dire too!

All the best!

Friday 28 September 2012

Blast From the Past


Well I am busily working my way through stuff for an upcoming exhibition but have managed to get a tiny bit of hobby stuff done too in the form of completing some figures that I bought way back at the start of my 15mm adventure almost four years ago.

Laserburn Ert Infantry Squad

They have been languishing part painted for pretty much the entire time I was at university and I thought it was high time I finished them.

I do like the Ert infantryman with his goggles and interesting gear, its a bit of a shame that they only have a couple of sculpts and the leader and heavy weapon troops aren't nearly as nice. Still once they are painted they don't look too bad.

 Ert Combat Patrol

I also had a couple of plastic Mechwarrior battle armour models kicking around so have painted one of them up to act as a mobile heavy weapon droid to support the Ert troops.

 Ert Mech and Troopers

I tried a bit of a different look on the bases and am still not sure about the finish but it fits a bit better than the dry desert finish of the rest of my collection.

Next up theres a bad guy who has likewise been sat half done for many a moon. 

 Gatorgore Mercenary 

He is a pretty poor sculpt to be honest and required a fair amount of work to get the best out of. I have tried to go for a sort of Aligator skin patterning but he still looks a bit like a guy in a rubber suit. Still he will make a decent thug or villain for games.

Last up heres a couple of pics of my Ert troopers in action against a marauding Carnosaur pack!

 Carnosaurs rush the Ert Patrol

Gatorgore Pack Master

I doubt I will be able to get much more done before heading off to Bristol in October but I shall see what I can do. I also have some possible employment coming up but we shall have to see what happens!

All the best!

Sunday 23 September 2012

Distraction Danger!


For some unknown reason I've spent the last few days sculpting to the backdrop of western movies and am beginning to hanker after trying out some wild west type games. Fortunately for me I still have a number of Peter Pig cowboys kicking around. Some were converted into a hick settler force for sci-fi but I find myself thinking of setting up a game and playing out a gunfight or two.

Thus far I've watched Silverado, The Assassination of Jesse James, The Sons of Katie Elder, Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid and Breakheart Pass and am about to put on Open Range before moving onto some more old favorites in the form of John Wayne.

I must admit that the era and the movies have lots of inspiration for both fantasy and science fiction gamers so maybe I will compromise and go for some sort of hybrid but we shall see!

All the best!

Friday 21 September 2012

Squats So Far


Heres a quick pic of my Squats so far!

 Squat force investigate an abandoned Ork settlement

I've finally finished a couple of bikers which have been kicking around but needing based for a while which is good but still need to get another few stands of warriors and some berserkers sorted out too!

I have also finished basing the first of my Space Wolves too!

Space Wolf Grey Hunters

I now have some specialist troops for all my forces so need to crack on with some painting done and hopefully will have some decent updates to add in a few days!

All the best!

Monday 17 September 2012

Robotic Minions


A while back I got sent a few robots from Mike at THE SCENE and have had a bash at painting up the little fellows!

Robots by The Scene

They are rather quirky little fellows and would fit in with any Outland settlement. I painted up two as mining/construction machines and the third as an info bot.

I made some of my own robots from bits I had lying around a while back and heres what they look like next to the Scene ones:


My robots were made from an old Ork boter with some cocktail sticks and a small tank wheel and wire but they fit in rather nicely with the Scene stuff and I am thinking of making some more to add some more interest to games as objectives, hinderance or even rogue robots set to kill mode...

Next up heres my all time favorite 15mm scale sculpt!

League Scout with light utility vehicle

He's from the old Laserburn range but I can't seem to spot him on the companies website anymore but hes a lovely sculpt with tons of character, even if he is true 15mm scale rather than the newer 18mms. The vehicle is a JES missile carrier from the clicky Mechwarrior game with its missile racks removed and makes a decent light utility vehicle for any frontier colony and is armed with a pintle mounted blaster to deter villains.

UPDATE! He is still available under the Starship Crews section and is a Space Scout!

Robots unload cargo under the watchful eye of the scout

I am still rummaging around for more buildings so I can play some games based in a settlement and hope to get some more sorted out soonish!

Sadly I am going to be off down south for most of October so there probably won't be too much in the way of updates over that time but I shall see what I can come up with on the run up to departure!
All the best!

Thursday 13 September 2012

Stainless Steel Skullduggery!


As promised heres the battle report for my recent Stainless Steel Rat game. I used the old Rogue Trader rules, slightly modified to speed things up a bit.

The Background

Soon after Jim is inducted into the Special Corps he discovers a plot to build a secret battleship but the culprit manages to evade him along with the nearly complete ship. After some digging, Jim finds that his foe is a girl called Angelina and sets out to find her before she manages to set her deadly scheme into action.

Looking through the blueprints of the ship, Professor Coypu, the Corps most brilliant, if somewhat eccentric scientist discovers that the ship needs a very rare mineral called Harrissinium to complete a deadly laser weapon that will make the ship all but unstoppable. Hearing this Jim sets out to the Planet Plunder, a one time haven for space pirates where archaeologists have been digging for lost treasure only to find a meteorite made from solid Harrissinium!

Now Jim is in a race against time to get to the dig before his nemesis!

The Scenario

Jim has just arrived at the site and is discussing the best way ahead with the local League Naval commander when Angelina attacks along with the dregs of several systems. Now Jim must stay alive and stop Angelina from carrying out the raid successfully!

The Forces

The Heroes

Jim has not had much chance to raise an armed party to defend the place and is totally unprepared for the attack when it comes.

Slippery Jim and Co

Aside from Jim theres the defence detail, consisting of Sergeant Fung and ranger Kreedo who have been guarding the site. He has managed to bring the League Naval Captain Chard along with able crewman Pooloo. The site also has access to Bertha, an aged and at present dysfunctional armoured car.

The Villains

Angelina has been busy since making off with the battleship and has managed to collect all the worst sort of villains to do her bidding and has turned up at the dig site with some of them to steal the Harrissium and slaughter the archaeologists and anyone else who stands in her way!

Angelinas Raiders

Her force is split into two squads, a more able group with an assortment of pistols and rifles and a group of thugs to do the heavy lifting and armed with knives, pistols and clubs.

Angelina herself is armed to the teeth but prefers to keep out of the action when possible allowing her minons to take the heat.

The Civilians

The archaeologists on the site have been working at clearing the Harrissinium and are still hard at work when the raid starts.

The Dig Site

Professor Churn, his assistant Bunko and a pair of robots along with the film drone are busily working when the shooting begins.


The raid begins soon after Jim arrives and Angelina gets the first turn.

The battlefield

Angelinas raiders begin on the southern edge of the board, the thugs on the left to capture the meteorite while Angelina and the trained gunmen deploy in the centre.

 Angelina and the Gunmen

Thug Deployment

Jim begins the game in the prefab that doubles as the digs headquarters along with Chard and Kreedo, Fung is standing guard on top of the storage shed and Pooloo is tinkering with the armoured car and enjoying an illicit cigarette.

The  Headquarters

The Storage Shed

Pooloo enjoys a sneaky smoke while trying to repair the armoured car.

The Game

Turn One sees Angelina and the Gunmen moving towards the headquarters and the thugs moving toward the dig.

Angelina and the Gunmen take cover behind some puffballs and rock formations

 The Thugs thunder forward swinging their clubs in belligerent glee 

Obviously asleep at his post, Sergeant Fung fails to see the raiders and does absolutely nothing while the archaeologists continue working and Jim and co are still deep in discussion in the headquarters.

Turn Two sees the action hot up a bit, the thugs charge at the dig site causing the archaeologists and their robotic sidekicks to panic and scatter. 

 Thuggish Attack!

Run Away!

The archaeologists and their robots panic and scatter. The Drone camera unit manages to fly directly into a tree but survives with only chipped paintwork. Churn follows the robots but Bunko flees into the wilderness and spends much of the remainder of the game hiding behind a cactus.

Bunko behind said cactus

The Gunmen clamber over the rocks and into the clearing (something they would soon come to regret) and begin shooting wildly at Fung but failing to hit. 

Hearing the gunfire, Chard hurls himself out of the headquarters and opens fire with his pistol, dropping one of the raiders in his tracks. Kreelo climbs onto the roof of the building and returns fire but fails to hit anything while Jim radios for the League Navy to send re-enforcements.

Pooloo drops his smoke in panic and desperately tries to start up Bertha but the aged machine refuses to start and Pooloo can do nothing but sweat uncomfortably and wait for the engine to turn over.

 Chard Attacks!

One of the Gunmen Goes Down!

Turn Three sees the thugs chase the professor and robots into the edge of the copse of pines before turning back towards their objective, the meteorite.

 The Thugs chase the Prof

The Camera Drone, obviously malfunctioning, careens off the tree and into an ancient statue, exploding spectacularly and reducing the priceless artefact to rubble.


The Gunmen, incensed by the death of their compatriot blaze away at Chard but the stalwart captain returns their fire, winging another assailant. Meanwhile Fung finally gets his act together and manages to put down another attacker with a well aimed burst from his autopistol. Jim springs into action and dives out of the building and adds to the shooting but his needle pistol fails to cause any damage, its tranquilizer darts shredding clothing but failing to find skin.

 The Heroes attack

Chard adds another notch to his gun

Pooloo finally manages to get the armoured car going and cackling maniacally sets off from the rear of the building in search of targets.

MWAHAHA! Bertha rumbles into action!

Turn 4 and things are hotting up, once again fire is exchanged between the heroes and villains but Chards luck runs out and he spins and falls as a gunmans shotgun blast knocks him sprawling. Fung, seeing the heroic captain fall, moves to cover him but Kreelos autogun proves more effective and punches another gunman off his feet. 

Chard goes down

At this point things are looking grim for the raiders and they start pulling back just in time to see the cackling Pooloo at the controls of Bertha open fire, incinerating another gunman with a well aimed shot from the plasma gun in the turret.

 Angelina looks on as her gunmen are shot up

 The gunmen die to a man

Despite the losses, Angelina's gunmen have done their job and held up the heroes and as Angelina retreats she sees her thugs lugging the meteor towards a waiting hovertruck.

Jim spots Angelina and moves off in pursuit


Jim spares his compatriots an anxious glance and is relieved to see Chard is still alive as Chud brings the first aid kit and heads off in pursuit of the villainous Angelina hoping to stop her before she can put her diabolical plan into effect.

Whee! Well that was a fun game to play out! I think in future I need to get Jim more involved early on as he didn't act suitably heroically. Still it provides lots of opportunity for a follow on game!

Hopefully I will be able to get some more games played out soon as its been great to get back into the swing of things!

All the best!