Having spent my last two blog posts on the "serious" subject of Napoleonic wargaming, I thought it was time for something a little more whimsical. Some of my fondest memories growing up are playing role playing games with my friends from high school. Unfortunately, unlike the kids from the "Stranger Things" Netflix series, I didn't discover this joy until I was a little older. While I really only played for three or four years, the memories have stuck and are a constant reminder of the importance of friends and great relationships.
When one of the role-playing games we played was recently re-released and updated via Kickstarter, I couldn't help myself. This was the first and only Kickstarter I have ever backed, but oh what a joy to receive!
While the cover art was updated the counters and maps still are reminiscent of the originals. Though the game is meant to be played with cardboard counters on a hex grid, it can also be played with miniatures, so of course I couldn't help the excuse to paint up a few more of the 40mm quasi-historical figures I purchased when the Mindstalkers game fell on its face. The game looked terribly cumbersome and complex, but the figures were beautifully sculpted and cast. At one point they were selling for a couple bucks a piece, so I bought a box full of them.
Just because a figure is beautifully cast doesn't mean the painter has talent, and here is an example of a face only a mother could love. I tried to salvage the expression, but alas it was either a complete re-paint or accept that not everyone is handsome, so here is a warrior with a charisma score of 3...
Despite the paint job the pose is dynamic and this is actually one of my favorite figures. Can't wait to try him out in the dungeon!
Slender and beautifully proportioned, the Mindstalker figures were some of the best I have seen.
The sorceress was a bit of a conversion figure. I added some hair, the staff, and trim around the bodice of her dress to make her less like an adolescent fantasy figure, but once again I think she came out with a face of a hardened warrior sorceress. I'll pretend that is the look I was going for and get on with it.
Casting a spell clearly calls for a stiff headwind, as that cloak is really blowing!
While I can't say it is some of my best work, I really wanted to have some female warriors and wizards so my wife and daughter could play a game. They were kind enough to give it a try last Christmas with some friends, but let's just say the dungeon master was a bit rusty. I had killed the whole adventuring party within a couple of hours. The Fantasy Trip always was a tough game to survive, but the fault in this case was mine, as I made a couple of nasty bears, twice as tough as they were supposed to be.
This is another minor conversion of a female standard bearer given a new hand with a longsword.
I do like the way the wind is blowing from behind on this figure, causing the cloak to billow forward and her hair to fly forward rather than back from this angle.
That's a big honking sword to be using one handed!
Let's hope next time I get around to hosting a game she survives! As a parting shot, a look at the dungeon I have been preparing for the games. Fortunately all of the rooms in the "Death Test" scenarios are the same size, so I can just use the same room for different encounters.