Monday, May 29, 2017

Agent Daniel Sousa

You can't have an Agent Carter game without Daniel Sousa, especially if I'm going to set the story in America. So I had to find a figure that was close to character, but more importantly also in a pose that could accommodate a crutch.

I found the perfect proxy so the only thing that I needed to sort out was making the crutch. I grabbed a few different sizes of styrene rods and went to work, cutting the pieces to fit Sousa's arm.

The crutch went together really quick and the Ambroid Pro Weld glue worked brilliantly for the build - honestly that is what made this little piece so easy to create. Can't recommend this glue enough if you are doing any kind of work with plastics.

This was my first real custom piece and I was pretty surprised at how good it actually turned out! I think I had the whole thing cut, put together, and painted within 10 minutes. I also ended up adding a tie to the figure - I cut out the shape from a rug template I printed out ages ago. I think it looks really good and it's something that I'll definitely continue to do in the future whenever I have a figure with a tie.

And there you go, Daniel Sousa, all ready to lead the agents of the SSR against whatever bad guys I throw up against him!

One last quick photo - I'm messing about with possible lighting effects for the underground facility part of the board, and here are some containment units that I think will end up housing Zero Matter. That may change though, we'll see, all depends on what story I'm going with. But it looks pretty damn cool for just a rough throw together :)

Just a quick post this time around, so until next time (which will definitely be some underground facility goodness), thanks for looking!

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Details And Completion On The 4Ground Manor

Well, we're calling the manor and first board complete! I'd love to be able to get inside the ground floor and add some more details to the rooms, floors, and walls, but unlike the Rolling Stones, time is NOT on my side!! So next is to focus on the underground facility.

I thought it would be neat to have this recruitment poster at the table, it would both let everyone know which game this is, as well as tell everyone when the games are when I change "watch" to "play" and add the game times over the "Tuesdays". The only problem is the poster is pretty big, the frame is 16x20 - I'd love to get it to 9x11, so I'll see if I can get it to a copy store to shrink it a bit.

A quick photo of shingles going on the roof. The angles definitely caused some difficulty, as well as the all the windows - all sorts of cuts had to be made to make everything work correctly.

So, details - I went through all the buildings and painted the bricks to make them more realistic and give them a bit of life.

This was a decision I very quickly began to question, lol!

Seriously though, as painstaking of a task that it was, the end results were well worth it. I can't believe how much of a difference it makes, the improvement is pretty significant.

A couple of marble statues in the courtyard.

I printed some labels for the 4Ground cardboard boxes with the Isodyne Energy logo from Agent Carter season 2. I think it'll be neat to try to connect that company to my game somehow.

I used the same styrene I used on my old west buildings to add a bit more detail to the window roofs on the manor.

And the results. Just a small detail, but it definitely improves the look.

An early photo of the board before all the final details were completed.

And the final completion photo. All the photos that follow are close ups going around the entire manor complex.

Air vents behind the carriage house.

Trimmed bushes around the cookhouse.

I added some lights around the doors, as well as the car entrance.

Bushes around the balcony/patio sort of hide the plainness of the Styrofoam - probably should really revisit that though.

I added some styrene to the edges of the manor to represent rain gutters. Again, just a small detail to vary the look a bit.

I went over the fences with some orange paint to give them a rusted and oxidized look.

Close up of the brick detail, gutters, shingles, shutters, and bushes. Pretty happy overall, but I am wondering if the shingles look a bit too "new" and if some weathering should be done?

A few possible figures for SSR Agents - Agent Thompson and Agent Blackwell, with civilian attire Peggy Carter. I have a figure and an idea for a crutch for Agent Sousa, so stay tuned :)

Here is my field version of Agent Carter. I'm still undecided on whether or not I'm setting the game in Europe or in America. This will be the figure I use if I place the story in Europe. Just need to get her on a clear base.

Overall good post, but... I'll end on a bit of a low note. I had a bit of accident with my TinTin figure. Earlier in the day I had brought my TinTin figure (thank goodness I didn't bring a Carter figure or I'd be on suicide watch right now!!!) to a local hobby shop that carries a lot of die cast cars. I brought the figure along to scale it up against some of the vehicles because I wanted to try to find a few 1940's era cars for the game. Well I forgot I had him in my pocket when I took all the horses out in the pouring rain later that night. Ironically I actually took this photo coming back in and sent it to my wife, saying "See how much I love the horses? I'm risking pneumonia!"
*and apparently I'm ten feet tall*

When I got back inside I threw my pants in the dryer and heard a loud "knocking" coming from the dryer - I just thought it was the buttons on the pants since they were in there by themselves. Well by the time I figured out what it was, Tin Tin's nose had clearly lost the fight with the dryer! Looks like he took a punch square to the beak. Super disappointing, because I don't think that there is anyway to try to fix it.

So it's crunch time for the facility now, I'm giving myself until the end of June to have it 100% complete. Focus, focus, focus. Wish me luck, I'm definitely going to need it!

As always, thanks for looking!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

More Work On The 4Ground Carter Manor

Lots of work done on the manor board and I'd say I'm probably at about 70% or so complete on what I want done, so pretty happy overall. But that happiness quickly ended as you'll see way down at the bottom lol!

I began the daunting task of putting shingles on to the roofs of the buildings. Pretty easy overall, just time consuming - though the main houses do have some interesting angles that could pose some difficulty.

Here is an image of what I talked about in the last post about those sharp edges to the raised parts of the board. I'll be sure not to make that same mistake on future boards.

Again though, some creativity with tufts and foliage thankfully made those edges unrecognizable as you can see below.

An early mock up with trees and some bushes.

Magnets were added to all the trees for ease of play as well as transportation.

Another little narrative piece I added to the board were all these air vents.

I placed these around the manor to represent the vents coming from the underground facility.

Someone looking at the board, not knowing that there is another part to it, would probably ask "why are there air vents there?" - so it just adds a little bit to mystery :)

Priming and painting of all the vents is happening as this is being written!

A quick image of the edges of the foam painted black; which really makes the board pop.

As mentioned in the previous post, I really wanted to do something different with this entrance of the manor. So a patio was created out of pink foam. I just threw up some 4Ground fencing to see what it looked like - I think it might be ok, the bases will definitely need to come off though if I decide to use them, so we'll see. But I definitely like how it looks so far.

Just to give the carriage house a bit more flavor I added ivy vines around the walls.

Really pleased with the results.

I found these really neat bushes from JTT Scenery, so they are going to go around the cookhouse.

And these are from Woodland Scenics - these are also the bushes that are around the new patio in the photo above. The bases will all come off of them and be inserted directly into the foam - that will really improve the look.

I also threw some of the 4Ground telephone poles on the board just to see how they looked. I think I can use them as possible objectives - cutting the phone lines kind of thing.

I found some wood in the barn and cut it to size so I could use it to create a "box" for the foam squares to sit on. This will give me that elevation I'm looking for, so visually you can see that manor is higher above the facility, showing that it is underneath it.

Just like the sides of the foam I painted the sides black so that will give the board a nice finished look.

And now a couple of things not board related. Here's where I personally fall into the gaming trap - I have a ton of tabletop miniatures, figures, terrain, rules, etc. anyone who's read the blog knows that. Generally, I don't go crazy and buy stuff when it's newly released, it's the second hand sales and clearance racks that kill me. Case in point below. How could I possibly pass up both the main rulebook for Black Powder and the AWI supplement "Rebellion" for only $20.00!!?? So now I need to find bargains on the ACW and Zulu supplements :)

Now, as stated above, generally I don't buy stuff right at release... unless it's a 28mm German submarine! This is from Empress Miniatures and when I saw the preview photos I had to pre-order it. So here it is :) I'd love to be able to put it in the underground part of the Hydra facility for Historicon, but I just have way too many other things to tackle first.

And finally, would you believe I looked on the Warlord Games Facebook page just this very morning and they are sneak peaking a new figure - clearly that's Agent Carter. Just unbelievable!!! I spent a ton of time searching for proxies for Carter, even attempted conversions and then I see this - I'm not sure if I should be infuriated or ecstatic LOL!

As hinted in that first paragraph, I think the real thing that hit me early in the week is the fact that we're just over 8 weeks away from Historicon and up to this point, any real work involving more than an hour or two has been done on the weekends. So, looking ahead at the next 8 weekends I have mothers day, Jakob's graduation, Jakob's 18th birthday, father's day, Therese's sister and her family are coming in from Chile (not Chile, Wisconsin mind you, Chile on the west coast of South America Chile), and Jakob's graduation party has to be planned. I'm sure I'm forgetting something too. So am I in panic mode? Yeah, I'm in panic mode!!

Until next time, I'll be the guy breathing into the brown paper bag in the corner :)
Thanks for looking!