Thursday, 15 December 2016

Gates of Antares - New plastic Algoryn review

Hi,
      something a bit different for the blog tonight.  I was lucky enough to attend the first Gates of Antares Boot Camp at Warlord HQ and the goody bag given out to everyone contained a nice surprise, one of the brand new plastic Algoryn spru.  I thought you guys would like to see some close up pics of it so I have decided to write this quick review.

Algoryn AI Spru

Algoryn AI Spru
The spru contains enough parts to make a 5 man AI squad. Each model has 2 part bodies, legs, head and a weapons.  I don't have any AI troopers myself but the sculpts look to be very close to the metal figures.  The detail looks to be very crisp with recessed panel lines which should help with painting.
Algoryn Bodies

Algoryn Legs

Algoryn Legs
There are 7 head options, 5 fully helmeted, one without a face mask and one without any headgear.

Heads
There are plenty of weapon options with this kit, including 5 mag guns, a mag repeater, 2  micro-X launchers and a mag pistol.  The leader also has an X-sling built into his gauntlet.

Leaders options and a mag repeater

Micro X-launcher and Mag Gun

Mag guns
 To round things off the spru also contains a 2 part spotter drone which rounds off all of the options for an AI squad.
Spotter Drone
Over all I say this is an excellent kit from Warlord. Figures look well thought out including thicker wrists which should make construction a bit easier than the C3 strike troops.

So I hope you found this article and the pictures of use.  Feel free to ask any questions in the comments below.

I hope to be back week with another review but this time with a slightly bigger model.

Until then.

Thanks for reading.

Gary





Monday, 21 November 2016

The Antares Initiative - Part 3 - C3 Painting Guide


The Antares Initiative - Part 3 

C3 Painting Guide

 Hi guys,
               back again for the next part of our Antares journey and this time its my go to talk about painting.

Got to say it, but I did have a bit of a problem with the Gates of Antares figures.  Yes, the models look great, yes they were easy to put together, that wasn't the problem.  Where I had issues was actually just picking a colour scheme.

You see I've been playing historical games for a long time, be it WW2, Normans or Napoleonics. One good thing about painting them was that you just had to copy what they had on at the time.  Not much imagination required.

Gates of Antares is the first Sci Fi game to tempt me away and it has actually forced me to think for myself when it comes to colour schemes.  That was tough and slightly painful.

So 4 goes later I finally hit on the colour scheme that suited what I was looking for.  Our games are based on the frozen world of Exonnin where they will be a lot of fighting in rocky areas and underground. 

So I wanted something dark but still had the clean look of fresh C3 troopers.


Here what I cam up with.
  • AK Interactives  Xtreme metal AK471 Black Base was applied with an air brush.
  •  AK Interactives  Xtreme metal AK472 Gold was applied with an air brush.
  •   Any areas I was wanting to keep gold were masked off.  At this point I thought about putting a gold stripe down the shoulder pad and down one leg.  In my head it was going to look good but in reality it just didn't stand out enough so a change was made which I will explain later.
  •  Next AK Interactives  Xtreme metal AK474 Metalic Purple was applied with an air brush.
  •  The masking tape was then removed.
  • At this point I block painted in the rest of the base colours.  The shoulder and leg stripe I mentioned above were now painted over in white.  As I said this wasn't my intention but I'm glad I did it as it really helped with the winter look. The visor was painted in VMC 969 Park Green. Plasma coils in VGC 023 Electric Blue.  The gun and vents were painted in VMC 868 Dark Sea Green.  The armour joints and gloves were painted in VMC 992 Neutral Grey.
  •  The full model was given a wash with GWs Nuln Oil
  •   The base coats mentioned above were all re painted and then high lights were applied by adding a bit of white for each layer.  I wanted to keep the guns dark so then only had a single highlight layer.  The gloves and joins had 3 layers as I wanted then quite bright. Some of the gun details were picked out in white.
  • I did take a bit of extra time on the visors  as this would be the focal point of the model.  I always feel this helps with models where the face is covered as this is the area your eye is drawn too.  The high lights on the visor were painted brighter as you get to the edges and kept darker in the middle.  A very pale  green/white paint mix was then used to apply lines along the top, down one side and then diagonally across the visor.  This doesn't need to be exact on all the models, just keep the lines thin and going in the same direction.  This helps to make it look like glass.

  •  To give a glowing effect a small amount of Electric Blue was applied with an airbrush round the gun and reactor

  • As I wanted to keep the metallic shine of the armour I applied a coat of satin varnish for protection. The base was also painted with the VGC 023 Electric Blue.

  •  A thick coat of GWs Agrellan Earth crackle paint was applied.
  • Once dried this paint gives a very nice rock effect with the blue ice showing through.
  • This was then painted with VMC 992 Neutral Grey
  •  The base was then given a wash with GW Nuln oil.
  •  The base was then given a rough dry brush of VMC 992 Neutral Grey and then the same again in white.  I find it best if you are not too consistent with your dry brushing on bases.  A patchy uneven look is more natural. The edge of the base was painted in white.
  • To finish off some modelling snow and grass tufts were added.

And there you have it.  I am very pleased with the figure and the basing.  It keeps the clean appearance I wanted for my C3 troops and has the rocky winter look I wanted for Exonnin.

Please feel free to add any questions in the comments below.

I'll leave you with some pics of a few complete figures.

Until next time.

Gazza




Tuesday, 1 November 2016

The Antares Initiative – part 2.

 Hi guys,
               welcome to part 2 of my Antares Initiative coverage. In this part we have updates from  Kenny and Richard on how we are getting on painting our figures.  More from Lorne and myself next time.

Kenny - Algoryn



Now that I've got my lovely Algoryn models courtesy of Warlord Games, I wanted to paint them in a similar colour to the studio scheme. Red is just such a great martial colour and really fits the background of the Algoryn – I also know it'll stand out well against the icy background of the planet Exonnin.

I'm lucky enough to have an airbrush (Harder & Steenbeck Evolution Silverline), so I knew I would be able to get my base colours down fairly quickly, something that's essential for a painter of my ponderous pace. I use a combination of Army Painter and P3 paints for most of my painting, with a few GW and Vallejo Game Air colours thrown in for specific applications.

Once my models were cleaned up (minimal effort here, Warlord metals seem to have almost no flash or mould lines), assembled, and based (Golden pumice gel is a godsend) I primed them using black Vallejo Surface Primer as I don’t want a really bright red when finished.

Next step was to apply a solid base coat of Army Painter Chaotic Red, followed by Dragon Red, Pure Red, and Lava Orange in successively lighter layers, all applied from an increasingly acute angle. This method, known as zenithal highlighting, replicates the effect of an overhead light source, shaped as a halo above the model.

I then blocked out the undersuit on the legs and the pipes on the upper chest with Army Painter Uniform Grey, before applying a liberal wash of Army Painter Dark Tone wash. These washes really are the speed painters best friend and are a simple way of getting deep shading on a model in a hurry.

At this point, I've knocked back a lot of the stark contrast in the red layers, so I reapply these with a light drybrush, starting at Dragon Red and building up again to Lava Orange.  If I feel that the drybrush hasn't provided enough contrast, I'll apply some edge highlights with a detail brush, but the red is basically finished now.

Finishing touches include applying Army Painter Matt Black to the lower areas of the weapons, then edge highlighting with Uniform Grey, picking out the unit insignia on the shoulder pad and helmet in Army Painter Shining Silver, and then lining in P3 Necrotite Green to the helmet visor. 


Moving on to the base, I applied a fairly heavy drybrush of P3 Frostbite (a great substitute for pure white paints, it looks much more realistic on a model than brilliant white) to the now dried and primed pumice gel, then a very liberal wash of GW Nihilak Oxide straight from the pot. This provides a lovely icy blue tone to the base, perfect for a world where the ice probably isn't just frozen water, but all sorts of noxious gases as well. A final drybrush with Frostbite to reset the white, then just apply static grass tufts (suitably bleached and wintry) and some snow flock and it's done.

I hope the above helps people to get more red Algoryn on the table, after all red armour doesn't show the blood to your enemies, assuming of course that you do bleed red…???

The Army so far.
I've also been working on some of the great given to the group by Warlord.  I've painted these rocks up to match the same scheme I have used on my bases.  Looking forward to getting them and my Algoryn on the gaming table.

Resin rocks.

 Richard - Isorian

Hello
Well, since the last article we have played the drone integration scenario a few times and even managed a couple of games with the forces we chose ourselves.

Now every gamer has a to do list, longer than the span of their natural life. But with all the excitement and buzz created by the Antates Initiative, not to mention a deadline looming. The Isorians are gladly pushed to the front of that list.


I started with basing them on the round based supplied and building up the base to an even level with some modelling paste. Cheap as chips and in plentiful supply from any art store.

Once this dried, its on to the undercoat.


At this stage, I still wasn't 100% sure on my colour scheme. I wanted it similar to the art work, but not identical. Partially due to my own inability to paint black the way I would like it looking. It seems to end up looking too grey or blueish. But either way, a black undercoat was the place to start.
Now its official, paint has hit miniatures, it has begun!
Spending a while looking through my paints, I decided on a scheme, so set about working on a test mini.
Starting with a fairly liberal dry brush over most of the model with Khorne Red, followed by a second lighter more select highlight of evil sunz scarlett. The entire mini was then given a wash with Nuln oil to darken it again and bring the colours together.


The vents and plasma carbine were painted orange, highlighted up to yellow. The mask and a few spurs were painted to look bone like.

Happy with the result, the rest of the squad and phase rifle were painted the same.
Next I decided to work on some drones, I'm painting 2 separate drone shards, however during games I'm only likely to use one shard and have the other split amongst the squads as targeting drones.
These weren't finished as I am writing this, but should be, by the start of next week.




That about sums things up from me for this month. If you are still awake, thank you.


Next month, I should have the 500 point force finished and even some terrain done.
I will leave you with a couple of tester ideas for a board and an individual piece.

Thank you all.

Richard