Wednesday, 15 March 2017

ACTA Starfleet - Federation Nebula Class

Recently I purchased three Furuta Star Trek Nebula class ships off eBay. They are a decently detailed model and, being plastic, are not too heavy when it comes to sitting them on a flight stand.

The original model is on the right, my painted one on the left.

The basic paintwork on the model is good enough, but I wanted to play around with the colours a little and also see if I could also make the saucer section detachable.

In painting the model I dry brushed it in a medium gray paint being careful not to paint over the registry number on both the upper and lower decks of the saucer section of the ship.

Then I inked it in black ink. Once dry I then gave it another dry brush in a lighter gray paint before picking out details and doing highlights along the lines and edges of the model.

I did a two step painting process for the warp glow of the nacelles buy using a darker red or blue followed by a lighter red or blue. The yellow was a golden yellow colour. The reflector dish was done with the same darker blue, highlighted by a light blue and then white dry brush.

When I constructed the model, I cut the pegs that are used to hold the saucer section to the secondary hull. I then glued a rare earth magnet to the secondary hull and one to the saucer section.

Top side of saucer section detached from secondary hull

Bottom of saucer section.

The rare earth magnets hold the saucer section nicely but I stuffed it a little by not aligning where the two magnets should go exactly. So if you look closely you will notice that the saucer is on a slight angle. Its not noticeable on the whole, so I didn't kick myself too much. But it is something to be careful of if you do this yourself.

There is a nice niche that can be exploited if your magnets are the right size. These niches are due to the holes where the lugs attach when you construct the model. I used 3mm round x 1mm thick rare earth magnets and the one on the secondary hull fitted almost exactly into the hole present there. But the magnet on the saucer section pushed the saucer downwards slightly on an angle. As a result it also means that the saucer can sit slightly to the left or right of the center line of the secondary hull. So just be aware of this.

So in the end this little experiment worked out nicely enough. The size of the model is a good match for both MicroMachine and Attack Wing / Hero Clix Star Trek miniatures, though they are bigger than the Nebula class ships of those two product lines. So this model may not be to the desired size for your games.

Saturday, 11 March 2017

ACTA Star Fleet - another Constellation Class Starship finished

The second repainted Constellation Class

Way back I posted on how I had a MicroMachines USS Stargazer miniature that I decided to paint up for ACTA Star Fleet. I was pretty happy with that result and so decided to troll eBay and buy a few more. In between painting the characters for our RPG group, I decided to quickly paint up the second of my Constellations.

I prefer the scale of the MicroMachines miniature to the Attack Wing version as I personally feel it is in the right proportions to the rest of my ACTA Federation fleet miniatures. Personally I feel the Attack Wing version to be too small and therefore out of scale.

From what I understand, the Constellations were a general workhorse ship designated as a light cruiser and were basically a replacement for the aging Constitution class vessels. Designed as an "all rounder" they were used in both deep space exploration and defensive patrol duties between 2285 and 2360's. By the 2360's these ships were being mothballed and slowly decommissioned. They were noted to be "overworked and underpowered" vessels, part of the weakness of being a jack-of-all-trades.

They did play a role in border conflicts with the Ferengi, Kzinti and Cardassians, seeing extensive action in particularly against the Cardassian during their war with the Federation. This puts this make of vessel in to a must have for any Federation fleet that goes up against the Cardassians in a replay of that conflict. So, naturally, I had to have more than just one.

With this one, I purposely left the identification number and name visible when I drybrushed to hull in White Scar. I also left the outer ring of windows unpainted in order to provide a differentiated colour scheme to the first ship of this class that I painted. So the two are easily discernible on the table top. The painting scheme is otherwise identical to the first one I painted.

I also did a highlight in White Scar around the top main hull in order to highlight the concentric circles of the deck plating on the upper hull. This provided a much nicer final effect in my opinion that my first attempt at this type of vessel.

I have two more left unpainted and I intend to only paint one more, leaving the other in its original yellowish colouring. I'll use that yellow version as a specialist Scout version of the Constellation and the other three as the workhorse version. Now, back to my other projects!

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Basic Rolepaying (BRP) with miniatures - part 3 - Liara Kartaran, Dark Elf Sorceress

I've posted twice now about the roleplaying project I have been working on for my RPG group. So far I've introduced two of the four character. For this post meet the third member of the party, Liara Kartaran.

Like Meraung introduced previously, Liara also is a dark elf.

From an early age, she was sold off to a sorcerer as domestic help. Over time she learnt the basics of the trade from her owner.

When she was old enough her owner took an interest in her that was not to her liking. Not long afterwards she killed her owner in his sleep, stole some supplies, gold and a few magic items and escaped to a port where she hired herself on to a corsair ship and sailed eastwards to the Old World.

From there she jumped ship during a coastal raid and joined the refugees escaping inland to hide from the raiders. Thereon after, she claimed she was a High Elf Sorceress and has been selling her skills as a mercenary.

This miniature is also from Reaper Miniatures (reference 03193 Carinth, Dark Elf Sorceress). Again its another really nice metal miniature. A few more images below have been included to give you an idea of the full miniature.

Liara has a dark secret that manifests itself wherever she is about to die (and which is a source of great amusement for the other players). But better save that for a future post.

Saturday, 4 February 2017

Basic Rolepaying (BRP) with miniatures - part 2 - Meraung the Elf Rogue

In the last post I mentioned that I have been painting the main characters for my roleplaying group's player characters. The first one finished was "Bullseye" Berry, the human ranger.

Meraung skulking in the shadows

This post is for the second player character, Meraung the Elf Rogue.

Meraung, rogue, at your service!

In truth, Meraung is an escaped Dark Elf.

Having been in servitude back in his homeland since childhood, Meraung managed to flee his master and make a life for himself on the streets, eventually making his way to the Old World. From the day he arrived in the Old World to this day, he has been mistaken for a High Elf and Meraung is keeping it that way.

Spying out the enemy lines, Meraung earns his keep..

Leaving his life as a cut purse behind, Meraung has taken to selling his services as a mercenary for hire, often finding himself hired on as a guardsman to many a merchant caravan. Its in this capacity that he began his life as an adventurer.

Dangerous work! Still, it beats life where he was born. And in the Old World there is little chance of him running in to anyone he knew in his former life.

This miniature is another from Reaper Miniatures called Elladan, Elf (product 02543). Another nicely detailed mini from Reaper.

Not sure if you can see it, but even managed to paint his eye's yellow! Below are some final shots with different contrasts. Only two more (actually three more) to go!

Yellow eyes... creepy....

Friday, 27 January 2017

Basic Rolepaying (BRP) with miniatures - "Bullseye" Berry

My favourite role playing system is Chaosium's Basic Roleplaying, also known as BRP.

"Bullseye" hunting orcs

BRP has been around as a system since the late 70's in its precursor form Runequest. A few years back Chaosium updated the system synergising their various games (Runequest, Call of Cthulhu, Superworld, Elfquest, Elric Stormbringer, etc) into the one system (BRP) with a stack of optional rules such as hit locations, strike ranks, sanity etc.

My role playing group have for some time now been asking that I bring in the use of miniatures for combat situational awareness rather than just relying on roughly drawn maps and descriptions. I finally relented and decided to find some miniatures that look like the pictures they chose to use for their characters.

The first character I needed to find a miniature for was this girl, "Bullseye" Berry...

Miss Berry herself

Good ol' "Bullseye" is a young ranger lass and she got her nickname through more than one famous critical hit that rescued the party from certain death in the game. So the problem was that I needed to find a nice miniature that looked like it could pass for Miss Berry.

Well Reaper Miniatures to the rescue! They have a nice miniature called Nienna, Elf Ranger (02909 in their catalog). Over the Christmas / New Year break I was finally able to start painting the miniature. And I am proud to say that she made her recent debut on the role playing table only a week ago.

"Bullseye" Berry

So here she is in all her adventuring splendor.

I'll post images of the other three member's of the adventuring team as I complete each one.

To finish off, here's some last pictures of Lady Berry. Enjoy!