Tag Archives: lockdown

Hobby Progress (9th April)

Hi and welcome back to another progress update. Painting minis has been a fairly odd affair lately, as I’m really just painting whatever I feel like at the moment, rather than sticking to any one unit. I’ve drifted from the wild wargs to the Ringwraiths to the spectres on a whim. Again I find myself in the position of having lots of models nearly finished with very little actually completed.

The weather was reasonable last weekend so I was able to get my orcs primed without them blowing away. I reckon once I get the warg warband painted up then I can move onto the orc rabble for my Angmar force.

Painting the wraiths has been fairly straightforward, with only really the Tainted needing some extra work done to make him look slightly luminous and rotten. The Dwimmerlaik has been something of a test wraith for painting, but he’s endured the worst of it and come out looking alright so far. I’ve been priming them grey, drybrushing highlights and then using the Black Templar contrast paint on them, going back over with some light highlights afterwards. It’s the most painless way I can think of painting the riders in black!

Thanks for reading, take care.

WIPs for June

I’ve been interested in putting together some Possessed marines lately, as my Word Bearers could use a bit of a melee boost. The problem is that the Possessed kit badly needs an update, but GW have relapsed into Ultramarines again with the birth of the new edition.

I found maybe half of the Possessed kit to be usable at least, so mixed this with some current Chaos marines. I have a squad of 5 at the moment, but here’s a shot of the two I’ve painted the armour for, including a Greater Possessed:

The main area of focus has been trying to finish up the Terminator Lord and second squad of Word Bearers marines. I started with the champion and marine with plasma gun, aiming to get to get all the plasma done in one go. They are quite close to being finished overall, with just tiny details needing done. As for the Chaos Lord, he had to be worked on in chunks because of how awkwardly spiky the model is. I finished the back section of his armour along with his cape so he could be fully assembled at last!

In the coming week I hope to find the time to get these three brought up to speed and continue on their Possessed brethren. Painting tends to be relaxing and really enjoyable, it’s just getting started that’s the hard part. Hopefully we can return to some form of normality in the weeks and months to come.

Thanks for reading, and I hope you’re all staying safe.

Lockdown Gaming, pt4: Catherine: Full Body

These last few weeks have seen me resorting to gaming a lot in the evenings, as I’m finding it restorative in a way. After 12-hour days with the kids in lockdown, a few hours of video games tends to be the way to end the day, along with the usual bout of working on my Word Bearers.

I’ve been using this time to work through some of my backlog on the PS4 (though I’ve been bashing through a stack of games on Steam as well), but wanted to discuss a title that myself and one of my best friends found in a game shop by complete accident many years back. This was back when we shared a flat and would often pick up coop games to trawl through. We found the original Catherine and after reading the back of the box and seeing how insane it was, we bought it.

Catherine is a Japanese puzzle game with a bizarre story revolving around a guy who cheats on his girlfriend (Katherine) with this stranger he meets in a bar (also Catherine). During the night, he finds himself dragged into a nightmare where he must climb ever-disintegrating towers or die in the real world, a fate shared by many men in the story.

The premise is odd, granted. It was even stranger to find a game that we had never seen or heard of before, nestled amongst the standard fare of brown-filtered modern shooters. We were both mesmerised by it at the time, especially as it shifted from romance to horror and back again, complete with multiple different endings. I picked up Catherine: Full Body this year, which is a kind of rehash with some added story beats and a new character thrown into the mix.

So far, it’s as fantastic as the original was and it’s helped me to recapture that magic of playing it a few years back. It forever sticks in my head not just because it’s one of my favourite games but also because it’s one of those games that appeared out of the woodwork and forced you to take a chance on. For me, it sits alongside games like Deadly Premonition and Alan Wake as being a sleeper title that stuck around in my mind longer than I thought they would have.

That’s all for this instalment anyways. I hope you’re all well, and take care.

Lockdown Gaming, pt3: Final Fantasy VII Remake

I’ve been focusing on my uni work for the past few weeks, and only have maybe three weeks left of coursework to complete for this term. However, two crucial games were due to be released early April that were remakes of PS1 classics that my 11-year old self poured many hours into. The first was Resident Evil 3, the second being Final Fantasy VII.

Problems with mail meant that my copy of RE3 arrived nearly a week late and FFVII arrived a full week early, so I was lucky enough to get stuck into this from 3rd April. As interviews articles, videos and the back of the box have stated, this is only the first of what is the “Final Fantasy VII Remake project” and is meant to cover the section of the game in Midgar.

I was looking forward to causing carnage in the combat sections and exploring more of the world beyond the demo’s boundary. It’s breathtaking how much thought, detail and care have been put into the game. The industrial city of Midgar is both faithful to the original but also expanded upon, a welcome return to a game world that I’ve longed to explore once again.

I don’t want to say too much though. If you’re a fan of the original and are curious then give the demo a try and see. The game itself is a nugget of nostalgia that has reminded me of what it’s like to be excited about a game release again- in a sense it’s like feeling like I’m 11 years old all over again.

As always, let me know what your thoughts are. I hope you’re all well.

Lockdown Gaming, pt2: Fallout 4

I’m finding a lot of comfort in video games right now. With the state of the world at the moment, it’s quite difficult to focus on most things. I wanted to revisit a game that I put many hours into some years back, but never really tied up properly in terms of cleaning up side quests and exploring areas.

I didn’t really know what to write for Fallout 4; it’s a difficult game to digest. In my opinion it’s not as much fun as Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas, although it does regurgitate some things from these games. It feels more like a retread of 3 for those that missed it some years prior, with some sections (one piece of DLC in particular) seeming like they have been ripped from the previous game with tiny changes and a graphical upgrade.

Without comparing it too much to New Vegas, it’s definitely more of streamlined RPG experience in this outing. The shooting is certainly tighter, and the explosives pack one hell of a punch this time around too. The combat was an area of the older games that was the least polished, but in 4 it really shines.

The main protagonist having a voice was a huge change at the time, although a welcome one, and I forgot just how stunning the sound design is overall. It’s a breath of fresh air getting to see and hear your character come to life in such a way. The factions and supporting characters are varied too and inject some urgency into the story, and it all culminates pretty well.

At time of writing I am just about wrapped up with the Nuka World DLC, with the main storyline being long finished. It’s been fun for the most part exploring areas that I had not before and tying up some loose ends here and there. I’ve just never been that fond of it as a Fallout game. It’s not a bad game by a long shot, just that it lacks some of the charm, and even some of the soul, of its predecessors.

But there we have it for now. I hope you’re all well and taking care.

Word Bearers Squad

Just going to be a short update of hobby progress today.

This Word Bearers squad has been waiting in the wings for some time now. When things need based and decals applied they slip out of urgency and I end up drifting over to the next unit in line. It was time to give them the final push and get them done.

They are the first of my Chaos Space Marine squads, equipped with an icon and a plasma gun. I mixed in a couple of other bits and pieces, including some flesh parchment (as Word Bearers seem to favour this over paper) and other additional gubbins like bone shards.

I’m also intending on taking more group shots once I get a unit finished up, as it’s kinda cool watching the army grow and seeing things coming together. Here’s one of the squad backed up by Helga:

That’s all for this update. Take care and stay safe!

Lockdown Gaming, pt1: Left 4 Dead 2

This is a strange time in the world right now, and with so much time in lockdown we’re all having to entertain ourselves in our homes. My kids’ nursery has closed a few days ago so they are at home all day now, but there are occasions where I can pick up a game and crack on. I wanted to start a short series of posts to cover these games, writing mainly as a means to keep myself sane.

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Beginning ‘The Parish’ campaign, with a few alternate character skins.

Myself and a few friends have rediscovered a game from our past, the brilliant Left 4 Dead 2. If this one passed you by, it’s a first-person, team-based romp through zombie-infested areas riddled with elite infected creatures. Levels are grouped together in 4 or 5 part ‘episodes’ that tend to have a theme (rural areas during a monsoon, or a journey to a shopping mall). And those elite infected? They can ensnare a player in multiple ways, so teamwork is key.

Left 4 Dead 2 will teach you which of your friends is a loose cannon and which of them do a runner in a stressful situation. I had forgotten how much fun it is to wade through a cityscape packed with hundreds of zombies, trying carefully not to shoot car alarms for fear of triggering even more hordes of the undead. When a situation escalates it can be balls-to-the-wall gunfight or a heart-pounding sprint to the next saferoom.

In all honesty I’m more of a single-player gamer. I enjoy games that build an atmosphere slowly over time, whether they are stealth, horror, or RPG games, and coordinating a team of friends to get together online is harder in the present day than it was when we were eighteen. Suffice to say, I love the coop aspect of L4D2 and how you are just dumped in this post-apocalyptic world to deal with the zombie infection.

I’m still working on my Word Bearers when the kids turn in for the night, as well as studying. I have been finding it tricky to concentrate what with everything that has happened in the UK over the past week, as I imagine countless millions of folk have as well. If anyone wants to talk video games, models or whatever then feel free to leave a comment.

I hope you’re all well. Stay safe!