Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Alfred

I started painting Alfred before switching to Swamp Thing, but ended up finishing the latter first, and chose both simply because I am struggling to paint a couple of other minis (Damian Wayne/Robin and Killer Frost). I felt I needed to get something finished as the most important thing, and so I am pretty pleased to have finished both of these minis.

Alfred is a Henchman for Batman crews, but not one I envision using much as he is very much predicated on a support role. For his Reputation value his Medic and Business Agent abilities in particular are simply not enough to make me want to use him.

There has been a little controversy about how Knight Models marketed and made available the Alfred miniature. Originally it was pitched as an 'exclusive' miniature available to pre-orders of the original BMG core rule-book; later it appeared as an occasional tournament prize, and later still it was made more widely available through a couple of sales promotions. As a consequence there is no regular Alfred alternative on sale at this time, and Bat-fans lacking the mini but wanting a list with Alfred may need to wait until the next sales promotion.

In the next couple of weeks i hope to get another couple of BMG minis painted and retain some momentum if I can.

BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 280 (added: nothing)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 23.2% (67 models)

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Swamp Thing

Swamp Thing is my latest painted BMG addition, and is yet another Sidekick. Swamp Thing primarily sits within the Poison Ivy crew, but his Affinity to Batman makes him a Free Agent in Batman crews. I am not especially looking to build up either crew right now, instead I wanted to get a mini painted very quickly and Swamp Thing seemed to fit the bill, once he was readied....

Assembly of the mini was straightforward and just required a bit of green-stuff filling at the various joins (none were a snug fit, and each join had a gap ). However, before that I had to remove the 'surf log' the mini was attached too. Knight Model's way of solving the fact that they sculpted the mini with a stance wider than their designated 'Large' model base size was to mount him standing on a log, which in no way fitted the urban basing style I have for the line - all my BMG minis are mounted on bases from the same range (Fraktured by Dragon Forge). That meant a lot of clipping, sawing and filing to remove the log, and with assembly included, meant that prepping the mini probably took longer than the painting.

The painting was intentionally quite rough to begin with, with a base layer, a variety of brown and green washes, with some dry-brushing, then picking out areas of colour, all of which made painting quite a big mini pretty simple.

Although I said I wasn't looking at developing my Poison Ivy or Batman crews right now, I like the thought of Swamp Thing coupled with either Clayface or Solomon Grundy. Swamp Thing is a costly but powerful, potentially hard-hitting and seemingly durable character, and could lead to lists quite unlike those I usually go for. Hmm, thinking hat on....


BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 280 (added: nothing further)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 23.6% (66 models)

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Alberto Falcone (BMG)

You wait several years to paint yourself a BMG Sidekick, then three come along seemingly at once! Alberto Falcone is a character who first surfaced in The Long Hallowe'en Batman story, and is a very recent addition to the BMG range.

I have been working on another mini (Damian Wayne) but stalled over some of the fiddly bits of painting that one, so decided I need to get something finished really quickly or risk hitting another slump.Looking in the painting queue I saw Falcone who I reckoned I could get finished quickly, and thankfully I was correct. A couple of brief painting sessions over the course of a day got him done, so I am very happy about that.

Alberto Falcone is part of the Organized Crime crew, but this does not mean I am embarking on Organized Crime any time soon, it was simply expedient to paint him up. He seems a decent and sneaky threat on the table, especially to more vulnerable Leaders with his Assassin Trait offering up extra Victory Points.

BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 280 (added: forgot to include the Batmobile in my last update)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 23.2% (65 models)

Friday, 5 May 2017

Who Will Save Us Now? Watchmen 'Homebrew' Update (BMG)

I like the Knight Models' Watchmen minis (missing detail on Nite Owl aside!), but found them somewhat lacking on the table (only one run out mind you, so hardly cast-iron evidence - I will accept!), a view which seems shared by many. Basically the game has moved on but Knight have never really addressed updating the Watchmen despite several recent opportunities.

Well it turns out that Knight can no longer produce the Watchmen - by which I take as the movie incarnations as the movie rights are a somewhat messy affair; Knight are not saying why they cannot produce them, just that they cannot do so.

So what to do with an underwhelming crew? Homebrew update of course! Several years working on a supers-based minis game has taught me that it is better to be cautious as it is easy to make things 'over-powered'. As a consequence I approached my personal update with a simple rule of thumb - each character got one new Trait, no more, and two characters each got a single Ammo weapon. Then it was a case of dusting off my GiMP skills to produce some cards - the downside meant retaining a certain level of Spanglish that was inherent on the source cards.

The Updates and Why I Chose Them
Working through in some kind of order:



Comedian - he had a hefty array of Traits as-was, and his greatest weakness was his relatively low Defense for a character of his Reputation value. I added Undercover to reflect that he stumbled on to Ozymandias' plan to an extent, was at the Kennedy assassination, may have murdered Hooded Justice and was generally very good at sneaking around as a special ops and spy. To cap this off I added a tear gas grenade which he is seen firing during the 1977 riots in the movie.


Ozymandias - was given Precise Blow; I saw this on another gamer's homebrew update (credit to Liam Callebout). Based on the source material, especially the Before Watchmen comics, this just seemed very fitting for a man who always plans every single move he makes, and who has the coordination to parry a bullet with a piece of furniture and later catch one in his hand.


Nite Owl - I chose something simple for Nite Owl, Master Fighter. Functionally this is worse than the rerolls Silk Spectre gets from Unarmed Combat Master, but I didn't want to duplicate what she had, and at a similar Reputation cost Damian Wayne has the same Trait. With Bonebreaker, Brutal and Arrest already I feel it is a fair trade-off and upgrade.


Rorschach - I felt Cruel fit his efficient way of putting foes down; while the character has some nobility about him, he is incredibly brutal and the rule functionally fit with his existing repertoire. On top of this I added a one-shot attack based on firing his grapple gun at a hapless target.


Silk Spectre II - I had a few thoughts about stuff that could fit, but a lot came down to 'gamey-ness', and so when I thought about Silk Spectre I recalled two sequences in the movie in particular (the street gang fight and the prison raid) when she just mows through hordes of mooks, and Devastating Blow seemed the nearest representation of that.


Let me know what you think, comments and critique welcome!

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Emperor Penguin

In painting Emperor Penguin, I have now finished six BMG minis in just under two weeks, putting me well on target for the annual target I set for the range, as well as helping me get back on track with my painting overall. I am pretty happy with the results as I set out to paint up a mini in a day (well, an afternoon in reality); I am not planning a Penguin crew any time soon - no, I chose the mini as I thought I had a good chance of starting and finishing it in a single day. That said, I quite like what I see in game terms...

Emperor Penguin (also known as Emperor Blackgate in the comics) is a fairly recent addition to the batman rogues gallery. He starts off as a number-two to the Penguin himself, then sets his boss up in order to take control of his crime operation. Soon after he took a combination of Bat-verse serums (venom - Bane's stuff and Man-bat serum) with some help from Poison Ivy to become superhumanly powerful - as you do - and later takes the name Emperor Blackgate following his incarceration.

Which brings me onto his game rules, and I have to say, I like what I see. As far as Leaders go, Emperor Penguin offers very good durability with Defense 4, Endurance 9, Tough Skin and Regeneration. This makes the fact that he is geared up for close combat a much more palatable option, and makes him a less vulnerable option than Penguin, but at higher Rep cost and at the loss of some Funding.

BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 280 (added: new Penguin crew, Penguin Lieutenant, Reaper, new Catwoman, Arkham Knight Sniper, Arkham Knight Nightwing)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 22.9% (64 models)

Friday, 28 April 2017

Talia (Arkham City)

This Arkham City version of Talia was started at the same time as the comics version, and both were set aside together. It is one of the older sculpts in the range and wasn't the greatest cast, with some of the detail shown on the 'studio' picture that was simply not visible on the copy I had. Therefore I am happy with the mini being 'done' more than what I have achieved with it - I did a better job on the comics version Talia than this one; for example the highlighting on the face is a bit sharp to my eye in the picture.

The hair colour I chose is pretty atypical for Talia in comics and movies, but looking at screenshots of Arkham City it looks like she had a kind of 'dark blonde' colour so that is what I opted for, even though the studio paint-job has her a a red-head. It also helps differentiate her from comics Talia.

In rules terms, I prefer this Talia to the comics alternative. Both are Sidekicks, but this one is simply a better combatant in my view, and as there is an alternative tournament card set of rules for her, that one may be better again as the cheapest option able to cover ranged and close combat offering greater flexibility. If I did field a League of Shadows crew I would be more tempted with the tournament card profile, but time will tell if I ever get around to playing that crew.

In all it has been a productive couple of weeks for me with my BMG painting, and I have even made a start on yet another mini I hope to complete soon - Robin (Damian Wayne), probably inspired by painting up two version of his mum!

BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 271 (added: Alberto Falcone, and I have a bundle of stuff on order)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 23.2% (63 models)

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Talia Al Ghul (comics)

Talia is my 62nd painted BMG character, and oddly enough, only the first Sidekick I have painted in the range. For readers unfamiliar with the game there are several main character ranks: Leader, Sidekick, Free Agent and Henchman. Out of 270 character models (and rising....) almost 40 are Sidekicks, so in other words, I am long overdue actually painting one...

This is one of currently two versions of Talia, both of which I started a while back and both were subsequently sidelined to finish other stuff prior to my recent painting slump. Regaining BMG momentum helped get me on track to finish this mini and do a little more work on the Arkham City version of Talia. I have seen Talia depicted with an array of hair colours over the years, so decided on painting her as something of a red-head. Probably a lighter hair colour than she has been depicted with, but I am happy with the contrast to all the dark parts of her costume.

I don't have painted League of Shadows or LexCorp crews yet (Talia is the only dedicated LexCorp mini released so far), so I don't expect to use this Talia anytime soon, or indeed ever. However, even if I was using either crew, she does not wow me with her character design in game terms, so she may be destined to forever remain in the cabinet. Still, the most important bit is another mini done, and my first Sidekick to boot!


BMG Painting Summary
BMG characters owned: 270 (added: nothing)
Percentage of owned characters painted: 23.0% (62 models)