Sunday, May 21, 2017

Time flies...and now so does my MHI team.

Jeez, I can't believe how quickly time flies.  It seems I just don't get enough time to update the blog or work on my hobby stuff.    I had shelved the Hind project for a few months, but was able to pick it back up again.  The model itself was a Revell 1/48th scale plastic model I nabbed off Ebay for a song.
It's Red!

I spray painted it flat red, and started trying to 'Orc'ise it.  In Monster Hunter International, the gang gets around quickly in style via the repurposed Mi-24d Russian Hind.  To avoid confusion, they had it painted red, similar to a Red Cross vehicle.   The super skilled pilot, Skippy, customized it from there.
Click to make bigger

It can be equipped with either extra fuel, missle pods, or a variety of other mission specific items.
Now boarding for Natchez Bottom.

Quite often blaring head banging Heavy metal and sacrificing chickens to the 'ro-tor' Gods, Skippy can do some amazing aerial acrobatics with the beefy copter.
No chickens were harmed in making this model (yet).

Honestly, I'm not too fond of the lettering/numbering on the tail piece.  I tried to freehand it, but it looks pretty crappy.  I plan on just painting over it, and getting a decal kit to put the ID number on properly.  I don't mind the 'rough' look of the shark teeth, and white stripes, as I figured Orcs aren't super particular about the overall look.

If I ever do manage to play some sort of game using the miniatures, I'd probably use the chopper as an objective point.  A 'GET TO THE CHOPPA' type scenario.

It's still a bit rough in spots, and I'll clean those areas up, but I was anxious to post pics to prove I hadn't totally abandoned the project!!

In the Monster Hunter International news, there is a bunch of new stuff in the pipeline.  

First up, hitting in July, will be a 'Weird Old West' anthology.  Larry Corriea has authored a short story dealing with Bubba Shackleford, the founder of MHI.  Sounds like fun, and it'll give me a chance to start working on some cowboy minis! 

The next in line in the overall continuing series will be called Monster Hunter Siege.  Sounds like the team is going to have it's hands full in this fight.  It's due out later this summer

In October, comes the Monster Hunter Files, an anthology from a variety of authors penning stories set in the MHI world.

Somewhere soon the third book in the Monster Hunter Memoirs (called Saints) will be released, but I've not seen a date on that yet.

All in all, should be plenty of character, monsters, and etc. for me to keep my project plugging along for the foreseeable future!!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Still plugging away...


Been a busy early start to the year.  Ice storms, overtime at work, dog sitting, home improvements, and of course miniatures!

On the MHI project front.  I have just been slowly painting some side characters, just to keep me moving.  I've been assembling many of the miniatures I got from my Hasslefree haul, but other than some primer, most of those haven't seen paint yet.

These are zombies from a company called King Zombie.  I've had them for a while, just never got around to painting any.  They are kinda goofy looking, with bobblehead sized noggins, but they were still fun to paint.  These are 'First Responders'.  The female zombie is in 'mid-shotgunned blast' mode.

The leg chomping Zed was something from Frothers Unite's zombie line years ago.  He's gruesome enough to be a great target for the other two fellows.  These are team members from Team Haven.  Since they look so similar, these two are going to represent a pair of brothers on that team.  I think they were called the Hate Brothers, and they operate mostly in the Rocky Mountain area.   I'll have to double check on those names though.  The miniatures I used were Spectre minis, and I have to say I wasn't too impressed with the quality of the sculpts.  The anatomy is a bit wonky, and they just don't have the attention to detail I find in other premium models.  But, they will work as a couple of automatic rifle toting Hunters!

Chompy and the Bros.

Last up for this installment is another pretty cool character from the Monster Hunter International world.  Grant Jefferson is a incredibly rich, incredibly talented hunter that we meet in the series' opening novel.  He is arrogant, cocky, and at the time Julie Shacklefords boyfriend.  Owen Pitt hates him for all of those reasons.  Add to the fact that Jefferson basically left Pitt to die during the first big mission, there is serious tension between the two.
Jefferson, Grant Jefferson

But, the brilliant thing Corriea does with many of his characters is that he makes you like them, despite their flaws.  During the series, we see Jefferson leave the premier team on Monster Hunter International to move onto a Hollywood career.  He eventually comes back into the world, but this time with the Monster Control Bureau.  By the time the lastest novel has come around (Monster Hunter International: Nemesis) he's a downright goodguy again.

This representation of him is in that MCB guise.  Tactical battles, public confusion on the subject of monsters, and political manuevering seem to fit him as well as his tailored suits do.

I used a Hasslefree miniature for this called 'Codename: Alexander' but he's very obviously a Daniel Craig version of James Bond.  I can't get over what a talented sculpted that Hasslefree guy is (Kev White).

Anyhow, as with many of the bigger characters in the series, I'll be doing another version of Grant Jefferson, this time in tactical gear.

Until next time!!

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Happy New Year!

2017 already.  Just seems weird.

I've kicked off the year right by working on some more great characters from the MHI world.

First up is Heather Kerkonan.  She's the feisty deputy we first meet in MHI:ALPHA.

SPOILER ALERT (storylines will be discussed below.)

She has quite a trying time in that story, but develops a relationship with Earl Harbinger, who helps her through her new found 'change'.

Heather also becomes conscripted into a secretive Government called Special Task Force: Unicorn (yeah, that acronym is STFU), which was led by probably the coolest bad guy in all the MHI series, Agent Stricken.  I'm still struggling to find a miniature that will fit his odd demeanor, but I've not given up yet.

Here's Heather and her alternate ego, a red haired werewolf.  Since Heather was infected during the Vulkodlak (see earlier blog posts for that), it has somehow imbued her with control over her monstrous form.

I used a Hasslefree miniature for the basis of Heather, and a Reaper miniature for the wolf form. 

Next up, and my 2nd painted miniature of the year, is a character known as Rick Armstrong.  He makes his first appearance in MHI: Legion.  He's the cocksure CEO of a competitive hunter group that calls themselves Paranormal Tactical Consulting.   The rivalry heats up throughout the Legion storyline, and hopefully continues in future installments.

I used a miniature from Fenris Games to help represent the leader.  There's a few more figures I have already painted that I may add to the PT (potato tasters?) crew.   More will follow on this.

The last miniature I painted up today was another Hasslefree miniature.  He is obviously mutating into something else, so I thought I'd use him as a Nemesis soldier.  The Nemesis soldiers are first mentioned in MHI: Nemesis.  It's the novel that tells an Agent Franks story.  In a nutshell, Stricken has began to build slave type troops using Agent Franks' blueprint as a starting point.  Since evil entities are always looking for empty bodies to inhabit, some of the Fallen (as in demons from Hell) have staked their claim on these super soldiers.

Later in the story, the demons gain control and are able to mutate themselves into their more demonic forms...Thus, this mini seems to fit the bill for a generic Nemesis soldier.

For Christmas, I received a very cool rulebook called Fear and Faith.  It's a compact little set of rules that are based off the popular Fantasy skirmish rules called Song of Blades and Heroes. I think I'll use this to try to actually play a game in the MHI setting.

A couple of other cool Christmas gifts that pertain to my hobby.  First is a magnifying visor.

Yes, I look like a complete dork while wearing this, but the fact that I can see the details on the miniatures again will make it all worth it.    I've used reading glasses, and those do help, the these changeable magnifier lenses will make a huge difference.  Add the fact that it has an ultra bright LED headlamp, and this will be a great tool to improve my painting, sculpting, and even just cleaning mold lines off the miniatures.

The next uber cool give is the MHI Limited Edition Leather bound hardcover.  

And, it's signed by the author, Larry Corriea!  At least I think it's signed, it's just kinda a scribble, but the Monster smiley face is all the confirmation I need. 

I'm still working on that HIND from last blog post, and it'll be updated sometime soon.  I think the building part is over, but I got to now paint the beast...Yikes!

Anyhow, thanks for reading my rather lengthy New Years blog post.  I'm hoping to keep this rolling for a while, and would love to hear comments, criticisms, or suggestions for the project.

See you soon.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Works In Progress!

Merry Christmas Monster Hunters!

I'm desperately trying to get this little goodie built before my wife orders me out of the Dining room.  We're having Christmas Eve Dinner with our kids, who'll be coming home for Christmas, and I doubt they'll want to share space with this.

Please pass the salt, hey is that a Hind?

If you are familiar with the MHI books, you'll probably be able to guess what this will be (and who'll be flying it!)  If not, I think I'll just tease it here to say STAY TUNED!!  It's just such a cool addition to the Hunters arsenal.  It's a MI-24 Hind, the Russian workhorse Helicopter.  It's a 1/48th scale model by Revell (which works pretty nicely with 28mm minis)

I was able to score it seriously cheap off of Ebay (10 bucks!) so, it's well worth the investment in time to stick it all together.   I've not built a proper military model kit in probably 30 years, I forgot how fiddly they can be.  Still, actually kinda fun!

Also got a nice bunch of Hasslefree miniatures from their Halloween sale.

Metal for the Metal God.

I have specific plans for some, and they will represent the missing Characters I have from the MHI world. Others, I just got cuz they were cool, and I have the 'shiny new toy' syndrome that is so rampant in our hobby.  I'm supervike, and I have a problem.

Lots of prep work before they'll see paint, however.

Hopefully, 2017 will be a bit more productive on working on lessening the 'unpainted' pile.  My hobby room has been a shambles for some time (thus, me working on the Dining room table).  I am slowly redoing our Family room, so a lot of the furniture got pushed into the hobby room, making it an unusable mess.

I will definitely be revamping the entire hobby room as well, setting it up to more more productive, and less....tornado damage-ish.  Plus, I need to invest in a bunch of real lights, and get a proper lighting setup for both painting and photography.

Thanks for reading.  I'd love to hear comments, or suggestions!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Chad 'Ironhand' Gardenier, A. Martin Hood, A combat exorcist.

Seasons Greetings!

With Monster Hunter: Memoirs, SINNERS hitting the shelves last week, I decided to work on the main character from the books.

Oliver Chadwick Gardenier, retired Marine, friend of Sasquatches, zombie killer, and victim of an Elf Curse.  He goes by Chad in the books, and has picked up the nickname Ironhand.

Mono Ken takes center stage.

Watch your step!


Honestly, he's kinda an annoying character, but has enough likable traits to make me want to keep reading about him.  I'm only part way into SINNERS, where the action changes from the Seattle area to the Big Easy of New Orleans.  I am liking his character more in this second book.  However, all and all, it's all still incredibly fun because the world of MHI is so enjoyable.

One thing I have learned from the new book is that I'm going to need more werewolf models...or as they call them in Nawleans "Loup Garous".

I used a Hasslefree figure for the basis, and added a katana strapped on his back.  His Katana, known as Mono Ken (Sword Of Mourning) actually plays a big part in the series, and I'm glad I had one floating around the bits box.  The spider was a leftover from an old GW sprue, and works well with the first book of Grunge.  The base was a scrap piece of plastic, also in that bits box that I thought looked like a sewer grate or drain.

Next up is A Martin Hood, the big bad from MHI:Vendetta.  He's such a great bad guy, which has become a real hallmark of all the Corriea written MHI books.  A Martin Hood is a Necromancer as well as some sort of Shadow Elemental/Demon.  If he is in shadow, he can take an ethereal form at will.  That makes him rather hard to hit.  However, if a light is on him, he's as vulnerable as any other human.

Another Hasslefree mini fits the bill!

I don't really like the transitions from light to dark on the side profile..I'll have to rework them.

 So, to represent this ability, I tried to paint him as if he's got a light on him, and he's caught a bit off guard by it.  I also plan on a few other versions of him, one as the complete shadow demon, one as his 'former' self, and one as a decked out cult leader.

Hood commands all kinds of dead and undead things, and only wants to make a deal with the old ones, until that mean MHI team keeps trying to thwart him.  So, I'm going to have to make him a small zombie army as well...

Lastly, is a character that really only gets a mention in Monster Hunter International: Nemesis.  During the finale of that book, there is a big battle with a shedload of demons.  The 'good guys, led by Agent Franks' also employ help from the Vatican's own Swiss Guard, Demon fighters, and Combat Exorcists.
So, taking a cue from the idea of "Combat Exorcists, I slightly converted an Artizan Priest by adding a small machine gun.

I like the dichotomy it sets up.  He's trying his faith first, but has the gun at the ready, just in case.  The Combat Exorcists weren't really described in the story, but my take on it is what makes this project fun for me.  I think a squad of Vatican Monster Hunters will be a must do at some point into this project...

With Christmas coming up, I'll probably have to put my minis aside for a little bit.  I also have some other painting to attend to (painting the family room).  That's not nearly as fun, but at least I can use a big brush for that!

Thanks for reading, and I'd love to hear comments or any feedback.

You can also 'like' my facebook page, if you'd want.

I post most all my minis there as well, but I like to give a more detailed rundown here on the old bloggy blog!

Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!!

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Earl Harbinger Redo.

Seasons Greetings!

Christmas is quickly moving in on us, but I still found a few spare moments to work on my MHI Project, so I wanted to do a quick update.

From my last post, I had decided to do a reboot of the Earl Harbinger character, using a HeroClix as the basis.  I added a Tommy gun and a cigarette to the mouth.

I think it came out more 'cartoony' than I intended, but it works for me.  I will eventually do a decal for the MHI patch on the back, so for right now it's just a placeholder.

I like this version more than the Hasslefree one I had finished earlier.

And, as I still wait for more Hasslefree minis to show up, I have began to prep and convert some others to represent various characters throughout the series.

In this motely crew is going to be the main character from MHI Memoirs: Grunge, A recurring character (and Earl's favorite gal), a version of the Big Bad from Vendetta, and a couple of side characters from MHI: Nemesis.

I'll share more about these cool characters as I get them worked up.

Thanks for reading, and head over to my 'Super Hero' blog to see some of the other things I've been working on lately.

Have a great Holiday season!!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Earl Harbinger and a few others.

As I've mentioned before, I'm using Hasslefree Miniatures' Capt Isseki as Earl Harbinger, CEO of Monster Hunter International.  I've finally finished him, and here's proof!

Yes, that is a werewolf penis.  I didn't have the heart to cut it off.

I've also finally finished Tripp Jones, adding a place for the MHI patch and doing some touchup.  I attached a little blob of putty to make a patch, and have only painted it green so far.  My other freehand attempts at the patch have been poor, so I'm thinking of making a few decals to use.  Earl has the same putty patch on his sleeve, which isn't too obvious in the pics.

Earl and Tripp, coming and going.

Also, I did get my hands on a Heroclix 'Rick Jones' to do a second version of Earl Harbinger.  (really a third if you count the Werewolf).   I think that mini 'fits' better with the description of Earl.  I found a few images online of Earl.  The first is from the book/game called 'The Monster Hunter International Employee Handbook and Role Playing Game"  I'm not really a role player but I did buy the book, mostly for the art and fiction scattered throughout it.  Plus, it has fantastic character descriptions in it, which have been pretty handy for my project.

The second image here is from Larry Corriea himself.  He posted this on his Monster Hunter Nation blog.  Larry likes to model and paint little miniatures (yeah, it's a weird hobby) and he's actually a pretty decent painter.  He's mostly into Infinity and Privateer Press stuff.  Anyhow, this is a GI JOE sized 'action figure' he converted into his version of Earl.  Pretty nifty.

Larry Corriea's Gi Joe converted Earl.

So, as I was saying, I got a Rick Jones Heroclix and began to convert it.  I added a little cigarette butt to the corner of his mouth, and added a tommy gun.  But, then for some weird reason I primed it black.  I hate painting over black, and I'm not entirely sure of what I was thinking.

I see a mini and I want to paint it black.

The details were pretty soft, and I hope I can salvage this with paint.  We'll see, and I'll keep you posted.

The Monster Hunter Memoirs: Sinners is now available for Pre-order at Audible, and much to my delight, Oliver Wyman is back as narrator.  Although the first installment of John Ringo Co-authored story wasn't quite as good as Corriea's solo stuff, I still enjoyed it, and am working on a mini for the lead character, Chad 'Iron Hand' Gardenier.  I'm looking forward to listening/reading the newest effort.

Hopefully, I can stay focused on this project, as I have many other mini related projects cooking right now.  Painting Zombicide minis, assembling a Batmobile, sorting through my Conan Kickstarter.

Lastly, I just wanted to post up the Wolfman from the Monster Squad I had been doing.  It only seems fitting he appears in Earl's post.

Bark at the Moon

As always, thanks very much for taking the time to read this!!  I hope you find some enjoyment out of my ramblings.