Tuesday, 27 December 2011

So, what did Santa have in his sack?

Well, Christmas has come and gone. I trust everyone had an enjoyable holiday. Actually, my holidays are not yet over - I won't be going back to work until January 3rd. I may even find some time to get some modelling or painting in between now and then, if I'm lucky. We shall see.

One of the gifts I received for Christmas was a 4kg mixed bundle of second-hand models and bits from my wonderful wife, which she had bought for me from a buy-swap-sell forum. I love getting random piles of models, with no idea what you're going to find in there. Digging through, sorting things out and discovering hidden treasures is great fun. Here are some pictures of some of the things I found when sorting through the pile...
Orc and Goblin goodies, including an old Azhag on Wyvern (minus the wings), half a Man Mangler catapult, a couple of retro Doom Divers, and a lot of Goblins from the 4th edition Warhammer stater box
High Elves, most of them again from the 4th edition starter set. There are also plenty of components from the  plastic commander and chariot sets, and a couple of White Lions
The odd bit of Undead, most of them Skeleton legs on bases. With no torsos. Go figure
Lots of Ogre Kingdoms bits, but only a single Ogre
Plenty of Bretonnians, this time presumably the contents of the 5th edition starter box
The odd Daemon, most notably a complete old Lord of Change except for his head. I think the pile of metal components come from 2 incomplete Beasts of Nurgle, but I may be wrong
A lot of Marauders, the odd old Chaos Warrior, and a couple of characters. There were 2 Beastmen in there too
And then the real reason this bundle weighed so much. 11 old school Chaos Steeds, with more recent metal Knights being used to ride them.
The Chaos Steed in question. All 11 of them are the same model
The Knights are the most recent metal ones. A far cry from their horses...
It will be interesting to see how many of these models I manage to find a use for. Some of them will probably end up being traded, given I have no real intentions of starting to collect any new armies. But some things, in particular these metal Chaos Steeds, might lend themselves to some sort of conversions to bring them in line with the armies I already have.

But apparently Christmas is not all about receiving presents (as much fun as that is). Each year a group of our friends do a Kris Kringle, and this year I drew one of our gaming friends. This guy is rather like me, in that he's hard to buy for. He has a ton of stuff, and tends to buy things when he realises he wants them - meaning it's difficult to find things you know he wants when Christmas and Birthdays come around.

For all that this friend owns mountains of figures, he simply does not paint them. He doesn't like to paint and would sooner do other things with his time. Eventually he acknowledged this and even started to buy painted models, or pay people to paint the stuff he already has. I decided that painted models were probably the way to go for the Kris Kringle gift. He has an Empire army, but can't field a proper painted force - he has a handful of painted models he bought years ago, backed up by the usual unpainted legions. My choice to buy him Empire models was partly dictated by the aim of turning a partly painted army into something usable, but also by what became available online. A $50 limit always makes things a bit harder...

In the end I handed over the models you can see in the pictures below. They are not presented exactly as they were when I got them in the mail. The paint jobs were very rough - too rough for me to be able to hand them over and treat them as a finished product. Everything ended up getting a touch up to their basecoats, a wash or two, and some highlights. The Cannon scored a bonus wheel (it only had 1), and some of the stuff got more attention than others. I didn't base anything because I wasn't sure what (if anything) I was trying to match.

In all, it was far more effort than I had hoped to put in. It brought home to me how much I dislike painting models for other people when I have so much stuff of my own waiting to be painted. This is perhaps an uncharitable attitude, but given it's something I don't really love doing anyway, it's probably to be expected. Now that it's done I don't resent the time I spent, but it felt very slow when it was happening. The painting is not what I would normally be happy with, but I don't think the recipient would really care if I'd put a ton more time into them for marginal improvements. A usable army would be a step up from where his Empire were previously. This may not be enough to make that happen, but it's definitely a step in the right direction. 
The Empire Gift Contingent
6 Reiksguard Knights
17 Handgunners including a standard bearer
5 Pistoliers with a musician and champion
And a little bit of firepower

1 comment:

  1. Always good to see the Benite hordes expand without me having to paint them :)