Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Survivor Elsa the cat burglar

I spent some time at the painting table and made great use of the magnifier to bring Elsa to life. I used the painting plan that I discussed in my previous post. I am quite happy with the result.

I got the facial detail without swamping the model with paint. The definition is retained. I did the eyes and got them on the first attempt. This has been a historic issue for me. I find the pupil very difficult. On this occasion I went with the small vertical black line over the white eyeball. I then covered the the over paint with flesh colour both under and over the eye.

The flesh tones worked out OK. I can do better on this front but that will be for another day.

I used grey paint with blue washes on the guns. There is a final highlight to pick up the top most edges.

I used the light grey layering technique on the cat suit and a black wash to knock it back. The wash worked really well. I was worried that is was all too grey at one point. I used the white hair line highlight very sparingly and it does draw the eye.

The hair was a mess and it took several attempts. I had over used the highlights at one point such that it was really distracting. I knocked it all back and just picked out some of the edges in the end.

I still have the Zombivor to do. I plan to follow a different route for the catsuit. Robert Audin commented that he paints the black areas dark grey, then adds highlights and finally knocks it back with black washes. I think that this sounds good and I am looking forward to trying it out.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Elsa, the cat burglar, the painting plan

I am an attack minded individual. It just seems to be the way I am wired. In 40k I play Orks and just love their fast moving approach to battle. Move quickly into position and plant a well placed choppa or two. You get used to the mind set.

In Zombicide I also like the fast moving characters. Wanda is a particular favourite, what with her being on roller skates and getting to move two squares instead of one.

I discussed the four new characters in Toxic City Mall on a previous post with the result that Elsa, the cat burglar has become a likely favourite for me. I like the free door opening action and later she gains Slippery and enhanced movement making her a potential game winner. Should suit my style of play. As a result she will be first to enter the painting arena.

All the models I have painted so far have had a basic paint job, good enough to get them onto the playing table. At tournaments this used to be defined as having 'at least colours on the model'. I have done a bit better than that and have applied washes and highlights but it is still fairly basic. Works well on the gaming table though.

With Elsa I plan to spend some more time and get some of the detail painted. I want to get some good detail on the face so eyes and lips etc. This will be tough as the model is so small but lets see. I am conscious that I need to get it right first time or I will lose the definition on the models face. Very light layers of paint is the plan.

I want to make a much better job of the skin and get some highlights on the raised surfaces.

The mad auburn hair will be a challenge. It should offset the black very nicely and frame the face perfectly. More reason to get the face right.

Finally I want to paint the catsuit black and achieve highlights. I am a great user of the 'wash' technique and this is much less effective on black. I contemplated 'copping out' and going for a blue cat suit but decided against that line of action. I think that using an extreme highlight might work better to give the effect of light bouncing from the black latex. The plan is to go for black with grey layered highlights. Then wash with a very watered down black for a shine. Follow this with a near white highlight.

Lets see how things pan out ;-)

Monday, 28 September 2015

Toxic City Mall, Zombicide expansion

After enjoying a fantastic day of Zombicide I decided that I 'needed' to get the expansion myself and explore the new characters, paint the zombivors for the the first survivors set and have a play with the new toxic zombies.

The zombivors are cool models and I am looking forward to spending some time with them. I have sorted out the paint set from the garage and am getting ready to make a start.

The zombivors for Phil, Ned, Amy, Wanda, Doug and Josh come with the expansion. I thought they could be bought separately but I couldn't find them for sale on their own. As usual the level of detail is really good and they will be a joy to have a go at.

There are also four new characters, each with their own zombivor.

We have Elsa, Neema, Raoul and Derek.

Lets start by having a look at Elsa, the cat burglar.

The model is super sexy with lots of curves to tackle as well a mountain of red hair. Should be really interesting to paint. I struggle to achieve a good look with black but I am determined to do a good job on the catsuit. She has that zipper a long way down which should provide some interesting contrast.

Elsa has the 'breaking' skill which is very appropriate. The rule allows Elsa a free move when opening doors and she does not have to have a piece of equipment with the door opening rule. Very handy indeed. As she advances her skills she gains Slippery at Orange level plus either 1 free Move Action or 2 zones per Move Action. This could be very useful towards the end of a game. The other options are to give her +1 free Ranged Action at Orange level and then +1 free Combat Action at Red level. I suppose that could depend on what the group needs and how she is armed. It does feel like the enhanced movement is the way to go though.

Next we have Neema, the executive.

Neema has the 'Born Leader' skill. This was discussed when I had a look at Chef Ramsay. A very good skill for the group as it gives one extra action to any member of the team.

At Orange level there are two directions that can be taken a) a free Combat Action which stacks with either a free Melee Action or free Ranged Action at Red level or b) she can be turned into a tank with 'Is that all you've got'. This allows her to discard equipment instead of getting wounds. At Red level this can be combined with Tough, where you ignore the first attack from a single Zombie.

Neema feels like she would be great for the group and the tank option means that she will play very differently from anyone else. I can't wait to try her out.

Next comes Raoul, the contractor.

His standard skill is Webbing. This means that everything he holds is as if it was in his hand. This could be handy to give options later in the game. He could be holding guns and still use hand to hand weapons or door opening weapons without loosing an Action.

At Orange level he gets Hoard or Medic. Hoard allows him to hold an extra piece of equipment whereas Medic allows him to Heal one survivor per turn by removing a Wound Card. They must be in the same zone though. Medic sounds like the way to go here. At Red level there is the option to get +1 free Melee Action, +1 Ranged Action or +1 to dice roll: Ranged. I suppose that will depend to what the group needs at that point in the game.

So he is an 'all rounder' with the Medic skill setting him apart.

Finally we have Derek, the locator.

Derek starts with +1 max range. This can be handy throughout the game. At Orange level there are again two main choices for the character a) go all out for Melee with +1 free Melee Action and combine this with +1 to dice roll: Combat at Red level or b) Toxic immunity and with +1 free Move Action or Slippery at Red level.  Toxic Immunity mean that Derek is not effected by Toxic Blood spray.

In fact there are a few possible combinations here. Toxic immunity could be combined with +1 to dice roll: Combat.

It is a bit of a confusion really. The base skill of +1 max Range means that Derek should be armed with guns and the like, so this does not really sit with Melee benefits or Combat skills. I think that the way to go here is Toxic immunity followed by +1 free Move Action. This should keep Derek mobile and allow him to operate shooting from maximum range.

So in Summary - Elsa is a movement specialist, Neema is a Tank, Raoul is a healer and Derek is a ranged weapons specialist. Different play styles should make for interesting Survivors groups. A good addition to the base game. I like it.

Now - lets get the paints out :-)