21 March 2011

Toys and Ancients and Late Night Rambling


Iron Mitten has posted an amusing illustration regarding the state of ancients rules...


The saying, "fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me" keeps popping into my head in regard to WAB. Ten years after the game was released, I was still waiting for the promised supplements covering most of the popular ancient periods/armies -- many of my favorites. A year or so ago GW released a new edition of the rules, supposedly with a series of new army lists hot on its heels. Not only was the new edition barely a change from the old one -- I feel I paid a lot of money for a book that contained more errors than rule changes -- but we still have no lists.

I am looking forward to all of the new rules, and taking a second look at some already released rules.

Vinyl Toys

The opening reception for the vinyl toy show I previously posted about was this weekend. I had a long day Saturday, but managed to pop in the gallery for a few minutes. It was packed full of people and a decent variety of custom toys. There were a few I really wanted to buy, but alas, unemployment is taking its toll and I am really starting to feel the financial crunch -- it's no time for me to buy art toys.

Earlier in the week, I also started a new one...

...again, it's a Munny Mini. So far I'm pretty happy with it. I do have to admit to a certain amount of inspiration for this one. I'm working on painting up a set of the Armorcast Cinematic Effects for display, and was thinking about how much I really like they way that they capture a sense of action in our toy soldiers. The other inspirations were the fact that the Munny came with the baseball bat accessory and I wasn't certain what to do with it and earlier in the week I also saw a performance of Don Giovanni (in which my wife performs) and there's a lot of vengeance talk. Well, singing rather than talking, really. So mash that all together and I came up with the above. I'm hoping I've got some time to start painting it this week.

Hobby, Art and other Rambling

I've also been working on some 100% custom sculpted type things. I think the lines between my hobbies/creative outlets/work are starting to get a bit blurred. I'm not sure where those sculpts fall. For example I can trace my own process for two of them as coming from the vinyl toys, and two came from gaming & toy soldiers. Now all of them are converging into something that doesn't strictly fall into either of those categories -- at least not as I feel most people see it.

Painting and converting toy soldiers, painting and modifying vinyl toys, traditional sculpture, traditional painting, architecture, model building... there's always been a bit of crossover of skills & knowledge, but it's hit a point where I'm seeing far less boundaries. I feel like some of the toy stuff has completely left the realm of what most people do. When I've brought up 100% custom sculpts in the context of custom vinyl toys, it's like I was speaking a foreign language. I just didn't realize that what I viewed as a further evolution was something that they saw as "outside." I was recently talking about the fact that I sometimes like to see the obvious paint layers and brush strokes on some of my toy soldiers. That can be borderline taboo with many of the people who believe realism being the goal in figure painting (or any painting, for some people who only like realism in art!) I'm also (slowly) working on several larger "traditional" paintings based on one of the standards I painted on a WFB figure.

I feel like I can really appreciate the way that things I've learned in one media or interest has translated into some of the others. I think I've just had a few awkward moments recently where I've brought these up and they haven't fit into other people's narrower views of their hobby/art/job. But aside from the momentary awkwardness, I don't think this is a "bad" thing.

I've seen a few other similar cases on some of the blogs I follow, and I think that's great. I started this blog as a toy soldier and gaming blog -- and that's primarily what I follow as well. But I really enjoy seeing other people's sketches & drawings, paintings and other (even non-artistic) interests. It puts their toy soldier & gaming work into context.


  1. The fig with its eyes popping out, Reminds me of a Ramones song :-D

  2. It will be interesting to see what you go with as a WAB replacement. WAB was/is an obvious choice for most of the GW game players, and it will be difficult for something else to replace it throughly.

  3. @Paul: Ramones? I'll assume "Beat on the Brat."

    @Lasgunpacker: I actually came from the background of someone who not only played WFB, but was also playing the DBx games for ancients (and occasionally renaissance.) I also thought that part of the appeal of jumping on the WAB bandwagon would be attracting a lot of WFB players. But it never really turned out that way. In fact, I hear a lot of WFB players say that they have no interest in ancients because "everybody's the same" (just a bunch of regular humans) and that makes for a boring game, according to those same people. In 10 years I think I've got maybe one "convert."