Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Amidst the pools and sinking mud

I've done a bit more work on the modelling of the test base - a dry brushing (slightly heavier than I has originally intended), some tufts of scorched grass glued on, and some water effect added to the pools. Overall I'm really happy with the current result. If I can reproduce this on each of the other bases for the prospective army I'll be really bloody happy! I'm thinking of possibly adding in some bark pieces to represent fallen and decaying trees in the marshland, I think that would look quite cool and give another nice aspect to the scene.

'Facing' the challenge head on

Okay, so it has been a little while since updating the blog. The trouble with being a teacher is that work tends to take over, especially when its the final run to exam season; but this week is half term and the 6th formers I teach have gone on study leave - I make that pimms o'clock, well at least modelling time!

I am a green stuff virgin, but it's time to break out the putty and moulding tools. For the 'regiments of renown' list that I am planning (only 200 points!) I need three fimir models, this seems like a nice amount for me to start with and check if my skills are up to the challenge of then going on to model an entire army. I've previously posted some pics of one model that I started doing some work on - a musician, well I have continued working on that model, plus adding another two to it.

So this is the original musician test figure that I made. I found the green stuff a bit tricky to work with to be honest, and it's going to be a challenge to do that for an entire army, but I know that it'll get easier as I get more familiar with it. I'm actually rather proud with how the head turned out seeing as it was my very first attempt. I think it sticks to the ideology well and actually looks like a fimir (well, it will do once it's been painted anyway). I also tried to cover the scales along the back with liquid green stuff. I'm not convinced with how well this has turned out though. I think it has made them less prominent, so perhaps once painted I can make it just look like a leathery, tough hide rather than actual scales.

This is the model that will be the leader of my regiment of renown, armed with a morningstar and shield. Obviously the shield is a special magic, invisible shield - or alternatively I haven't got the ones that I want to use yet, so that will be something that I'll have to come back to at some point. The morningstar is taken from the GW tomb kings range (a friend of mine collects the skeles and has a load of spare bits that she has, incredibly kindly, passed my way - I'm using them for this project, but also as additional bits to help stylise my black templar crusade for 40k). It's supposed to look like the morningstar is being swung down, about to crush the head of some unfortunate victim. I'm not convinced that it looks right, but hopefully the finished model will give a bit more of an idea. I haven't got around to covering the scales on the back with liquid green stuff, that's next on the list of things to do. The face on this one is alright, but I don't think it is as good as the first one I did on the musician - think it was really beginners luck. Generally this one is just lacking a bit of definition I think, but hopefully some paint and washes will help get the desired look.

These photos show the model I'm using as a champion, dual wielding hand weapons to boost the attack output, hopefully this guy will be all about dealing damage. The head on this one took quite a while to do, the green stuff just wasn't doing what I wanted it to do. However, I eventually got something that I think is pretty cool, including some nice bony ridges along the skull. Again tried the liquid green stuff along the back scales, hopefully when painted it will look as I want it to, not convinced at the moment - think I might need to get the filing tools out.

Having done all of this now I'm getting quite excited about the project, but also realising just how much work is going to be involved!

Sunday, 12 May 2013

In the depths of the marshes

Fimir live in the marshes and I want to show that in my models, so for once I thought I'd spend a decent amount of time on the bases and really try to get a decent level of scenery into them. Normally I just go for something pretty simple (if I've even got around to basing the model at all!), but this time I'm going to do it properly.

So I've had an experiment, well at least started an experiment to get me into the marsh frame of mind to then develop my fimir properly. Firstly I covered part of the base in filler in an abstract kind of pattern to begin to represent the slopping mud, leaving some 'holes' to become pools of water.

Next I used some 'ultramarine blue' paint on the water parts and 'blackfire earth' (from the citadel textured paint range - first time I've used it and, whilst I'm not sure what I was expecting it to be like to use, I certainly didn't expect it as it was) to cover the filler and start to build the marshy earth.

A very liberal wash of 'coelia greenshade' over everything has helped to get the basis of a nice dark rotten green look to everything.

This is as far as I got today (as I was mainly focusing on painting some of my Black Templars seeing as I'm currently playing a 40k campaign). Plenty left to do - drybrushing the mud to pick out the texture, add some static grass in a few tufts, and pour in some water effect. Here's hoping that the scenic base will look pretty good and really help boost the whole visual theme of the fimir.

Those of you with eagle-eyes will have noticed that I have modelled a cavalry base rather than an infantry base - well, the fimir aren't the only things in the marshes!

Thursday, 9 May 2013

A little bit of drive

I've had the idea for starting the fimir army for quite a while now - I found the fan-made army book at least a
year ago now, yet I hadn't got around to doing anything with it. I'd pretty much planned the army I wanted to get, knew which models I needed to buy and what I was gong to do to them in order to convert them and make them suitable. Yet there was always the issue of time and money - having all the ideas in the world is well and good, but there's only so much anyone can do in the free time they have and with the financial constraints (I am after all getting married this summer and weddings are rather expense affairs). Besides I also have my Dwarf army for Warhammer fantasy and my Black Templars army for 40k.

So what has given me the kick up the backside to start this project in amongst all these other things going on in my life? Quite simple really - I found the rules that games workshop released for the special game at games day this year called 'regiments of renown'. It's a small skirmish game for Warhammer using only a very limited points allowance and each model acting individually. I love this idea (always fancied playing Mordheim but never got the chance and never will now it has been withdrawn), with a small selection of troops, building up a back story for these personalities and developing them as games progress. I've shown the rules to a couple of my friends and we're gong to organise a 'regiments of renown' day where we all bring our small troop and play a selection of mini skirmish games over the day, eventually deciding upon a champion (along with possibly a few other conciliatory prizes). So I thought that rather than bring my dwarves who people are fairly familiar with fighting against, why not use this as the perfect opportunity to build and test out some fimirs? Especially as I'm probably only going to need less than 10 models which means I should be able to find some time to 'experiment' with my modelling.

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

The initial problem

So, it's all well and good wanting to start converting a fimir army using the lizardmen models, but this is where we start the initial difficulties - how?

How do you do about turning one of these games workshop saurus warriors into a fimir, like the old heroquest models?

Well the answer is going to involve a fair amount of green stuff. The basic plan is that the belly will be bulked out and covered with a small shield (almost a buckler) from the Dwarf thunderer kit. This will serve nicely as the traditional fimir bellyshield and add to a distinctive look, definitely taking away from the lizardmen aesthetic. Next the head angle will be changed so that it is less horizontal than it is now, more to around 45 degrees. The crest and top of the head will be cut off to give a nice oblong-ish kind of shape. Then the singular eye will be sculpted on top, with some ridges/folds in the flesh similar to the old heroquest miniature. The scales along the back of the lizardman will also be filed down and covered in some liquid green stuff. The warriors will be equipped with a variety of different weapons - some will keep the lizardmen ones, others will get axes from dwarf kits of random assortments of swords or picks that I have lying around. I also want to change the shields for something a bit less scaly; I've got some ideas, but not quite decided on that yet. This is really quite a large amount of work to be doing for every individual model. Especially when you think that this is only for the standard fimir warriors, the shearls will be made from the lizardmen skinks to highlight the difference in stature and importance. Think I'll need to be buying a fair amount of green-stuff!

Well...I've had a quick play around with my concept - just cutting the plastic around a bit to see how feasible it would be and whether the pose would look fimir-ish, not graduated to green-stuff experimentation yet. Hopefully I'll find some time to make some headway soon, but I'm a teacher and teacher's free time is rather hard to come by!

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

First things first...

Well it's time for the lost fimir to introduce himself and explain what this blog is all about. My name is John and I've been playing a variety of different geeky games for the majority of my life . I have fond recollections of my young childhood playing heroquest; this was the first time I encountered the fimir and also the first step towards developing my fondness for dwarves. My current warhammer army is affectionately known as 'The Hold of the Ebon Hand' after its Dwarven Lord who himself was initially a character in a dungeons and dragons game.

This is Ovak Werrik - The Ebon Handed Dwarf, in his gleaming golden bronze armour. Alongside him is Ortwin Thyssen, his Rune Lord, and Daven, his loyal battle standard bearer. This isn't a great photo to be honest as Ovak isn't finished, but it gives you an idea at least. His hand is black from where evil magic seeped into him from a cursed hand axe, luckily he was saved by a holy bracer that constantly pumps holy water into the affected hand!

Anyway, on with the main purpose of this blog.
I was thinking about a second army for warhammer and fancied something to contrast with the dwarves, so a strong magic base and minimal shooting were required. I came across a fan-made army book that really caught my interest - obviously it was the fimir, otherwise there wouldn't be much point in this blog! The army book is fantastically written, collating huge amounts of back story to this forgotten race from all manner of sources. Take a look for yourself, maybe you'll get a few ideas!

The fimir were a race for warhammer that were dreamt up as something completely new and different from the familiar fantasy races, yet they were based on Celtic origins - a period of history and culture that is sorely lacking representation in gaming worlds. I remembered how much fun and frankly brutal they were in hero quest so I started reading the history to them. The whole idea of a forgotten race, lost in the mists of time, that is always on the verge of extinction and literally battling to survive sounded really rather cool. Then add in the bizarre story that the fimir females are unable to reproduce so the males go out in raiding parties to steal women and rape them just to ensure their race can keep living. My friends think it's very funny but slightly disturbing that I'm drawn to this race - especially as I featured rape fairly heavily in the d&d game I run! My excuse was that I needed something absolutely horrific to convey just how brutal the big boss baddie really was!

So I started thinking about how I could model a fimir army. I know that games workshop released some models many many years ago when they still supported the race. You can still get hold of some of these models on eBay, but they tend to be rather pricey! I also spotted that forge world released some fimir warriors that are quite simply stunning! However these are monstrous creature sized so can represent the largest of the types of fimir, but what about the shear and fimm warriors?

Then I stumbled across someone else's blog - the wonderful work of Mr Saturday, take a look! The way that he has brought the fimir to life using the savage orc kit is amazing. Clearly he is annoyingly talented. Then this got me thinking about converting my own fimir. The savage orcs clearly make a great base model, but (and I realise that I'm being massively picky here) they have too many fingers and toes. This led to the idea of using the lizardmen range from games workshop - three fingers and a thumb is exactly what I'm looking for, but they'd definitely need some work on to get the complete fimir look.
Hence this blog is born. I invite you all to follow my progress and hopeful success at converting and developing my army - rediscovering the lost fimir.