Wednesday, 29 June 2011

AOW vs GW dwarfs

I managed to get through one sprue of the new berserkers. The hair bits are optional and have not yet been attached, I am wondering if a unit of bald dwarfs would look good? The figures are very easy to assemble, each sprue will make up 3 dwarfs armed with two weapons and a single dwarf with a great axe. There are also spare hands giving the finger (very rude, my dwarfs are far too polite for that kind of thing), body piercings and bits of chain. Note that even though dwarfs are small in height, they are bulky and you will need to be careful to assemble them so that they rank up together.

Here's a comparison shot with a plastic GW dwarf, from my artillery crew, chosen as he also has a bald head and is quite close in pose to the AOW dwarf. Note the similarity in height and proprotions, with the AOW dwarf having possibly slightly finer facial details in a slimmer nose and head width. Note also that the AOW dwarf legs and torso are separate components, so it is possible to introduce a side on pose with a little twist of the hips.

And the final comparison with a conventional plastic dwarf warrior, again chosen with similar weaponry in mind. Note that the AOW dwarf is raised by a couple of mm as I have stood him on slithers of plastic, to prevent the "help I'm sinking into the ground" effect that can happen when the basing material is added to the plastic base. Speaking of bases, one little oddity in the AOW box is that the bases supplied are slotted, while the plastic legs are not tabbed, so solid bases would have been better. Luckily I have stacks of both variety, if you don't have then be prepared to cover the slot with bits of card or whatever.

So that's a quick rundown on the new AOW dwarfs, I want to get the whole box assembled before I give a full review, hopefully later in the week.

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Avatars of War Dwarf Berserkers are here!

My wait is over! I ordered a box of the Avatars of War Berserkers as soon as they went on pre-order, which was a about 2 or 3 months ago. And then I had to sit back and put them out of my mind. Until now.

The box is just lovely, nicely laid out with a very nice piece of art on the front. Notice that the hair is not orange, for me this enhances the overall look of figures.

Flipping the box over there is a very clear list of the components included, a diagram on assembly and a picture of an assembled regiment. The quality of the box art is a thing of beauty in itself, let's hope that we can judge this book by the cover.

So what is included in the box, assuming you are too impatient to read the list of the contents on the box? You get this little lot - 5 sprues containing the berserkers, 1 sprue containing the command pieces and a few extras, one packet of 20mm square bases and one green movement tray.

The final photo shows the two different sprue types in more detail (click on the picture to see it bigger). You don't need me to tell you how good they look. I am hoping to get a sample snipped and assembled just as soon as I can and will be comparing them with my existing dwarf figures in the next post.

Monday, 20 June 2011

Nurgle Marines WIP

These figures have been lying around in my cupboard for a long time, I think I sculpted the greenstuff on to them about 5 years ago. Back then I did not play WH40K, they were just some models I had left over from a commission and were suitable fodder for practising my sculpting. When I eventually took up WH40K as a game, I plumped for orks.

Recently, I have been frustrated by a lack of progress on some of my armies, they all seem too big! So I wanted to switch to a smaller force, one that I might conceivably finish in a few months. And then I remembered about the chaos marines. Things have changed in five years, I now use grey stuff rather than green stuff, it's a little more pliabe and better suited to organic sculting like rotting torsoes.

The metal figure is not mine, it's on loan so I can copy it while trying to sculpt on to the plastic bodies. I have also added to some of the earlier green work. This is the first of a planned three squads of Death Guard, chosen because they are fairly easy to sculpt, they are very expensive in points and thus small in number, and let's be honest they are far better than Chaos Marines with a mark of Nurgle. I am aiming to get one squad complete each month, it should be all over by Christmas. Where have we heard that before?

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Grotesque WIP

I am tinkering on a number of projects at the moment, one of which is the grotesque I featured a couple of weeks ago. This picture shows the progress so far. The skin is being built up using multiple glazes of thinned paints. The colour at the moment is a bit too rotten/green, I intend to make some of it look a bit more healthy, which should (bizarrely) enhance the diseased look of the model. I want him to look afflicted, not undead. The base is a temporary holder and will be rebuilt and landscaped in some way.

I have also started to build a regiment of beastmen gors. I have had these in my collection for many years, some of them were bought back in the days when the chaos army list covered men, beasts and daemons, some are the newer versions. Inspired by historical gamers, I am trying out a slightly different basing technique. In gaming terms I will use them in friendly games as part of my chaos warriors army, longer term I have enough models to build a complete army. I can't quite settle into a groove on my painting at the moment, so expect more random updates in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011


I am taking a break from Warhammer Fantasy for a while, I think I have overdosed on it, so the greenskins are on the back burner for the time being. It was a nice change of pace to paint up these plaguebearers, with virtually no green paint needed.

Just a minute, are those round bases? Does that mean, surely not another army? Well, yes and no. Yes, in that these plaguebearers will be part of my new 40k army, which has specifically been chosen as it's small (in number of models) and will allow me to try out lots of new techniques. And no, not a new army, these will also be used in my fantasy daemon army, with the use of some clever movement tray building. Well, not that clever, think of the War of the Ring movement trays and you will know what I hope to achieve.

These are the first models I have painted that are not highlighted in any way. It's a technique I have been experimenting with for some time. Over a light basecoat, glazes and washes are used to build up some subtle colour and shade. Some of the skin colour is achieved through the stippling of thinned paint. The metals and bases are quickly and easily coloured using a mix of brown paints and MIG pigments. It's a system that works particularly well on models such as these.

The next regiment in the army will be chaos marines, which I am currently building and converting with my limited sculpting skills. More on that in a future post. I will also be trying out a few new games over the coming weeks, having decided that there's more to this hobby than just WHFB. So a hotch potch of posts coming up in the summer months.

Saturday, 4 June 2011


It's a historic day here at Hobby Horse. Check out the amazing detail on this incredibly finely cast model. It's lightweight, it was an absolute breeze to clean off the minimal mould lines and the parts glued together easily with a little super glue. It's a revolutionary step forward in miniature design and manufacture, one that will echo down the centuries.....

Or maybe it's just a resin model from a few years back, now sadly no longer available (unless you are lucky on ebay as I was). It was produced by a French company, Ilyad Games, which produced a small range of fine figures like this one, but then folded about 3 or 4 years ago. On this 50 mm base, it will make a fine addition to a number of armies. For me, it will be a Nurgle giant, sometimes a Nurgle Daemon Prince, or maybe even a unit filler in a horde of zombies.

It's also as good a model as I have put together, resin really does hold fine detail far better than metal, cleans up a treat and glues together very quickly and easily with super glue. I will be buying more resin figures in the future, but not necessarily from the leading miniatures company. It's all part of my mid-year resolution to steer away from the most trodden paths, to look into alternatives that might just offer the same quality I want in my collection, but at more reasonable costs. Or maybe just offer something a little bit different.
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