Posts Tagged ‘FU-UK’


Blood Bowl-a-rama #10 – an unkindness of Ravens

February 1, 2012

Did you know, that a flock of ravens is actually called an “unkindness”? Really! Read a column on the subject here.

Anyway, this curious piece of linguistics brings me to the main point of this post – namely my completed Blood Bowl team. There are a few extra models, and I have one werewolf pending a repaint. Other than that, here are the Drakwald Ravens in their gothic glory.

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As you may have noticed, there are some players in the photo that haven’t been introduced yet. They are:

Arthur Schopenhowler the werewolf. I simply love this model from West Wind, see the review here.

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A man can be himself only so long as he is alone. 

– Schopenhowler

Jürgen Habermassacre the flesh golem. The model’s a tank zombie from the FU-UK sculpting competition a few years back.

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 One never really knows who one’s enemy is. 

– Habermassacre

Georg Henrik von Wight the..wight. The model is a custom build from GW plastic parts.

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If one is satisfied with things, one doesn’t complain about the downsides that exist, either. 

– Von Wight

There you go! An actual, completed project. Should I need another werewolf, I’ll simply give the pants and base of a previously painted West Wind critter a quick repaint.


Blood Bowl-a-rama #6 – First peek at the Ravens

December 7, 2011

The Blood Bowl heat is still going strong. Earlier I showed you the pitch, now it’s time to take a peek at the team. As shown before, our Blood Bowl teams have mostly taken their inspiration from existing teams and this time’s no exception. My Necromantic team – the Drakwald Ravens – is modelled on the NFL team Baltimore Ravens. The black & purple theme fits perfectly into the undead look, so this was an obvious direction to go to.

In an effort to avoid buying too many new miniatures, I’ve tried to use miniatures I already own. The only exception to this are a bunch of Mantic zombies, which I’ve been wanting to get my hands on for a while. Even these I managed to buy second hand at a low price. The rest of my team consists of Mantic ghouls, West Wind werewolves, FU-UK tank zombies (as flesh golems) and two wights assembled from bits and pieces. As most readers should know, I’ve started a few projects along the years, mostly revolving around the undead and various related critters. It should come as no surprise, then, that I’ve more than enough minis to make a Blood Bowl team. Funnily enough the zombies were the one thing that I lacked! This is mainly due to actually converting all of my medieval-ish zeds into a more modern look.

Naming is always important in Blood Bowl (to me at least). The BB/Warhammer universe is filled with more or less succesful puns and bastardisations of existing contemporary and historical names. Never one to skip a chance for some groanworthy punning, I decided to name the Ravens after various philosophers of the German-speaking world. Enter such stars as Immortal Kant, Georg Henrik von Wight, Arthur Schopenhowler and Karl Eye-Popper. Oh, I had so much fun with these. If I ever need foreign additions to the team, I’ll be sure to include David Exhume and John Stuart Kill.

Anyway, I’ve already started painting my team and I’m happy to present you my first flesh golem, Max Hurtheimer. He’s a Left 4 Dead inspired tank zombie from the 2009 FU-UK sculpting competition. In Blood Bowl, the flesh golems are usually creatures styled after Frankenstein’s monster, but I’ve always wanted to find a good use for my two tanks, so I figured they fit the bill just fine. The paintjob’s a bit more messy than my usual fare, but I still like him as I think he manages to look pretty menacing and corpse-like. He was painted mostly following my general recipe for zombies.

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That’s it for now. Expect to see some more Ravens in the near future. I plan to grind through painting them in short order. After all, it’s just 14 or so models, one of which is already painted (as well as another, if I just repaint the pants and the base). How hard can it be?


FU-UK 2009 Sculpting Competition – review part 2

February 18, 2010

Welcome to the second part of the Frothers Unite! UK 2009 sculpting competion review. If you missed the first part dealing with the winning entries, read it here.

Just because the competition had its high quality winners, it doesn’t mean that the runners-up weren’t great as well. Let’s have a look at the minis that didn’t reach the highest podium, but were considered good enough to cast up.

Model #1 – Cosplay Zombie is a young cosplayer. To those not familiar with the term, cosplaying is where you dress up in a pop culture character costume and play him or her. As any hobby, it has its good and its bad sides. Anyway, this cosplayer’s excellently cosplaying a zombie now, with a brutally injured knee, classic pigeon toe posture and a vacant stare. And to satisfy the gaming crowd, her petticoat has ripped, revealing her panties. The model comes on a metal oval slotted base, and is sculpted by fellow Finn Vesa Mäkelä, mostly known for his amazing painting skills. Multi-talented, isn’t he?

Model #2 – Rising Zombie is in a fairly large scale (30-32 mm). This doesn’t matter too much, though, since he’s only visible to about chest level as he climbs out from his grave. He looks like a fairly chunky fellow, with a torn burial suit. I love the expression on this miniature’s face, with one of his eyes bulging and his tongue lolling out. The model has no separate base, but I’ve mounted him on 25mm plastic slottabase as usual. The Rising Zombie is sculpted by Sjoerd Trouwee.

Model #3 – A Shambler with a Snack is one happy zombie. Why? Because he’s got a nice, juicy leg to chew. He’s barefoot and his clothes have some rips and tears, but other than that he’s doing pretty well for a zombie. This model wasn’t really one of my favourites, but mainly just because he’s a pretty basic, simple miniature. He’s not bad by any means, I’m just not very into him. As is the norm with the FU-UK sets, this model comes with a oval metal slottabase. He is sculpted by Snuurg, who also did the next two.

Model #4 – Tank Zombie 1 is immediately familiar to anyone who has played either of the two Left 4 Dead games. What he basically is, is a zombified version of the Hulk, with huge bulging muscles all over his body. This particular tank is wearing lovely tighty whities and looks like he’s about to bring down a world of hurt upon some poor survivor-until-now. The tank’s jaw is distended and his slavering tongue is hanging out.  There’s huge damage to its abdomen, with entrails coming out and ribs showing. I absolutely love this model, as it captures the L4D tank image perfectly. Basing as above.

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Model #5 – Tank Zombie 2 is another rendition of the same theme. This one’s wearing shorts or ripped jeans. The model’s hunched over a bit, and looks like it’s charging. The arms are two separate castings. Tank #2’s face makes it perfectly clear that he’s one of the undead, as it’s emaciated with one of the eyes hanging on his cheek by the optic nerve. This tank’s just as nice as the first one, and a worthy addition to any zombie horde. There is, however, one tiny detail. Namely, this model is a terrible, terrible example of how to do a multipart metal miniature. The fit of the arms is more than a bit dubious, and once you have them glued on, you will notice some glaring gaps which need loving greenstuff treatment. I really would’ve settled for a different pose and a single part casting, like the first tank zombie.

Model #6 – Zombie Raven looks just like a regular raven, actually. It’s still very raveny, in a raven kind of way. If ravens are your thing, you’re on to a winner. No base included, and sculpted by Ben Parker.

Model #7 – Reporter is a young female. She’s holding a large news mic in a dynamic pose suggesting that she’s talking into it. She’s apparently reporting direct from a hot zone, as she wears a bulletproof vest. Biteproof clothing and covered arms might be a better alternative here. Since there’s nothing here to make this model specifically zombie related, she’s a fine civilian reporter to be used in any modern game. A beautiful sculpt from Andrew Rae, one of my favourite artists. Standard slot tab on the mini.

Model #8 – Cameraman is the reporter’s trusty companion, keeping that camera on rec even in quarantine (groan). Like the reporter, the cameraman is wearing a bulletproof vest. He carries a camera on his right shoulder, and I assume it’s running and capturing whatever happy situation these two find themselves in. This is a very smooth, clean, no-nonsense sculpt that complements the reporter perfectly. What I said about the reporter holds true here as well.

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Unlike the first batch, this set was riddled with heavy mould lines and plenty of flash. The models took a lot of filing, and I know that I didn’t get all the trash off.

That’s it, folks. Let’s start crossing those fingers and hoping that these minis come out through one company or another. Anything else’d be a crying shame.


FU-UK 2009 Sculpting Competition – review part 1

February 2, 2010

Note: At the moment these miniatures are not available to buy. I still wanted to review them for the simple fact that there is some brilliant stuff here, and some – hopefully most – of these will be picked up by one manufacturer or another.

The competition held by the Frothers Unite! UK web community, which was open to professionals and amateurs alike had Zombie Apocalypse as the theme. Needless to say, I couldn’t have been happier with the choice. While my own humble entry didn’t make the podium, I was more than happy to not only buy the winning sets but also pimp them. Actually receiving the miniatures turned out to be a bit more difficult than ordering them, with the sets finally arriving some two months after the ordering date. For all that juicy drama and gossip, feel free to browse through this thread.

Waiting for minis for two months instead of the usual week or two didn’t really get on my nerves that much. FU-UK is primarily a hobby community instead of a “true” miniature manufacturer, and I honestly have too many zombies on the painting backlog  as it is. Even with that long long wait, I’m happy to say the models were worth it. There are lots of minis to review, so I’ll get on with it. This is the first part of the review, and includes the winning set as well as a few extras.

First up is the Winners set:

Model #1 – Intensive Care is a continuation of the popular theme of hospital zombies. These seem to have popped up all over the place, with companies such as Recreational Conflict and Studio Miniatures producing their own sets. However, I don’t think I’ve seen this good a take on the subject yet. The miniature is of a bald zombie in a hospital gown, leaning on his IV stand. The IV line is still attached to his arm, while a rat sits on top of the stand, adding to the feeling of corruption. The zombie is very zombie-ish, with a very emaciated – almost skeletal – appearance, an exposed  spine, a missing cheek and strange pustules on his shoulder and buttock along with injuries all over his legs and arms. I almost forgot to mention, that he carries the severed head of a doctor in his left hand. By the poor doctor’s eye socket, no less. To make some room for the zombie’s fingers, the doctor’s eyeball is hanging on his cheek. Wonderfully gross! The model comes on a separate scenic base depicting a hospital floor with a rat crawling out from the floor drain. I unfortunately had to ditch the base to keep the basing consistent with my other zombies. The model is sculpted by Filin.

Model #2 – Zombie Girl is creepy, like children (and circus folk) in general. Child zombies are luckily making their way into miniature lines in growing numbers, which is a fine thing since their small stature helps to create a more varied zombie horde. This girl has pretty pigtails and a somewhat tattered dress. These combine with a seriously vicious look on her face to make a miniature reminiscent of Vivian, the horrible zombie girl from 2004’s Dawn of the Dead. The zombie sports very light injuries to her arms, legs and face. The model comes with a small oval slotted base, and is sculpted by Sylvain Quirion, who reigned in this year’s competition.

Model #3 – Male Zombiehunter with Axe is…well, a man with an axe, who I assume from the name hunts zombies. This model is one of those that manage to deliver a lot with very little. It’s very plain, with the man standing in a fairly neutral pose, wearing an open shirt with the sleeves rolled up, trousers and shoes and carrying an axe. There’s no extra clutter. No generic belt pouches, canteens, bags, bedrolls, anything. Just a regular guy with an axe, looking very very determined to survive a zombie apocalypse. In this case, less is more. The sculpt is wonderfully crisp and characterful and deservedly won the category for survivor miniatures. Like the zombie girl, the zombiehunter is sculpted by Sylvain Quirion and is similarly based.

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And the extras:

Model #4 – Colonel Marbles with Chainsaw is the favourite fat little fellow of the Frothers community. In his tweed jacket, waistcoat (complete with pocket watch) and deerstalker hat and wearing a monocle, he’s the perfect picture of an English gentleman. This makes an excellent contrast with the large chainsaw he’s starting up. Some zombies are really going to be sorry that they wandered on to the good Colonel’s estates. I absolutely love this miniature, it’s probably one of my alltime favourites. The model is really characterful and brought to life by the fine sculpting. Even the herringbone pattern on his tweed jacket has been sculpted. Colonel Marbles comes on a small integral base and is sculpted by Kev White of Hasslefree Miniatures. This model wasn’t originally a part of the ordered deal, but I believe it was added to compensate for the long wait. Since this model has been – and still is – available pretty exclusively, this is a very nice way of saying “sorry”.

Model #5 – Zombie Marbles is an unfortunate debunking of the myth of a chainsaw being the ultimate zombie killing weapon. The poor Colonel is staggering around with his entrails pouring out from his considerable belly, and his left arm has disturbingly been twisted around. There are rips and tears in his clothing and mild injuries to his face – which I assume is still keeping a rigor mortis stiff upper lip despite all this living dead tomfoolery. A wonderful, wonderful miniature. I also like the fact that while this miniature is by a different sculptor (Mr. Quirion, again) than the living version, it is easily recognizable and as such a skillful zombification of a model. This model is based just like models #2 & #3, above. The zombified Colonel was a special miniature offered to people who ordered both sculpting competition sets.

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This concludes part one of the FU-UK 2009 sculpting competition review. In part two we take a look at the runners up, and let me tell you, there’s some really good stuff up ahead. Stay tuned, dear readers!

Oh, one more thing. I’ve been thinking about my practice of splashing black ink on the models to bring out depth and detail. It sometimes tends to obscure some detail, however. From now on, do you want to see the reviewed models in clear metal, inked, or inked, but more carefully?

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