Friday, May 30, 2014

Snake Eyes - Commando (V2)

So, Snake Eyes again...

I've done Version1. I've done a Renegades version. I've even done one from his days Pre-G.I.Joe.

But I hadn't done Version 2, which might be his most iconic look.

What more can be said about Snake Eyes?

I started with the Heroclix Red Hood and added the visor and his ankle and bicep pouches with green stuff. I didn't add his grenade bandoleer and I forgot to paint on his wrist dart thing. Oh well, I'll save that for the next time I do repaints.


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Eels - Cobra Frogman

The name Eels has always been kind of a problem for me. Most no-name Cobra soldiers have names that can be singular (Viper) or plural (Vipers). But Eels are just...Eels. It wasn't until the 90's that the name changed to Cobra Eel. Until then, Eels' name was kind of hive mind-y.

Name issues aside, the Eels were some of the coolest looking Cobra troops out there. The Black\Gray\Red combo is striking and their equipment always looked top notch. I know from the beginning that finding a good Eels miniature would not be easy.

I finally settled on the Heroclix U-Men miniature. I tweaked the helmet a little with green stuff to add an antenna, but otherwise just tried to match the Eels paint. The result is OK I think. It's too bad I can't show the eyes through the mask, but I have no idea how to pull that kind painting off.

Now, Torpedo finally has someone to fight!


Liebster - Award Nomination

No, it's not another obscure G.I.Joe figure, I was nominated for a Liebster by Stylus over at The Woffboot Chronicles. Thanks!

As I understand it, when you are nominated, you answer the questions below and link to 11 blogs you follow, so here goes:

1. Why did you start blogging?

I first started a writing site to get out some of my creative impulses, but that wasn't enough. I was looking for another hobby and had always been interested in miniature painting. I gave it a try and quickly came up with the idea of painting miniature G.I. Joes and it all when downhill from there.

2. If you could change one thing about the wargaming hobby, what would it be?

I'll be honest: I like painting minis and I collect old issues of Dragon magazine, but I've really never played more than a couple of games of D&D or anything similar. Most of the games seem to time consuming and rules oriented for me. I'm much more of a casual board game type player.

3. What is best in life?

Family first, but in the context of my blog, when I put that final touch on a miniature that makes it really look like the Joe or M.A.S.K. or  whatever miniature it's supposed to be.

4. Do you want to live forever?

Nah, where's the fun in that?  

5. Fame or Fortune?

Is it a cheat if I say I wouldn't mind being modestly famous, with a modest fortune?

6. What miniatures are you most proud of having painted?

I think all my Dungeons and Dragons Cartoon miniatures came out pretty good, but the one I'm probably most proud of is Dr. Mindbender. I think I managed to get his look just right with a minor amount of customization. 

7. How do you deal with burnout?

I try to always have several miniatures I'm working on from different properties at the same time. If I get tired of G.I.Joe, I can switch over to Jem and the Holograms or M.A.S.K. and back when I feel like it. It also helps that there are multiple "versions" of G.I. Joe, so I can draw from the comics and cartoon for different minis. 

8. Why is a raven like a writing desk?

I could google the answer but I'll stick with this one: because I don't have either one. 

9. Star Wars or Star Trek?

I've gotten kind of bored of both properties over the years. Lucas damaged most of Star Wars for me to the point where I only recognize the KOTOR games as Star Wars anymore. And while I liked Star Trek back when Next Generation started, I have trouble getting into it now. So, if I had to pick a Sci-Fi space franchise to hang my hat on, I'd pick Battlestar Galactica (the original series.) 

10. If you could only buy from one miniature company from now on, which one would it be?

Does Heroclix count? That's what most of mine are. If not, then Reaper Miniatures, but I'd be longing for Heroclix.

11. What is your favourite takeaway?

Fast food? I guess...Subway, in that it's at least edible.

OK, now on with my Liebster Nominations:

1. Joe A Day
Every day, another G.I.Joe is reviewed. Considering the subject matter of most of my miniatures, hardly a surprising choice.

2. The Toy Museum 
More toys and such great attention to details.

3. Little Weirdos
Just tons of colorful little weird toys like you might get out of a vending machine. Love it!

4. Why Did I Buy That Toy?
I think we've all thought the same thing.

5. Colgar6 and the Infinite Legion of Toy Soldiers
I honestly don't know what half the games he's playing are, but the pictures are always fun to look at.

6. Always Board, Never Boring
He collects (and reviews) the games so I don't have to.

7. Fantalonia
Solo gaming and papercraft. Again, not always sure what he's playing, but the pictures are funto look at.

8. Miniature Review
A nice variety of miniatures in many scales. Look at the pictures!

9. Nathan "Ironworker" Miller's Miniature Games
Even more gaming that I don't understand but love to witness.

10. Fantasy Quest
I started following this blog because of the mods for the D&D Adventure System board games, which are pretty neat (the games and the mods.)

11. The Daily Figure Fix
Every day, photos of action figures. Several times I've been reminded of toys I used to have through this blog.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Grand Slam - Laser Artillery Soldier (Original)

Sure, I've done Grand Slam before, but that was Silver Pads Grand Slam, not version 1.

Nothing really new about this one: still the Star Wars Human Soldier of Fortune. Still Grand Slam.



Friday, May 23, 2014

Miles Mayhem - V.E.N.O.M. Leader

What a difference a week makes. At the beginning of the week, I said I wouldn't be making masked versions of the M.A.S.K. characters, and now here I am with Miles with and without his Viper mask.

Whenever artists do mash-ups of 80's cartoon villains, Miles Mayhem is usually not on the list, and I think I know why. In the cartoon, Miles seemed too buffoonish to be a real threat. To me, he came across more like a Hanna Barbara villain. He should be chasing after Penelope Pitstop.

In the comics though, he seemed more intimidating. It's been a while since I read them, but I recall feeling a bit unsettled because of how he was done in the comics. If I read them now, I might have a different opinion.

I had already done Miles without the mask using the Heroclix Intergang Underboss, and had another of the same mini sitting around that I had planned to use for his tan costume. But, instead, I used some green stuff and made Viper.

As a kid (and even now) I wonder if there is a Battlestar Galactica influence on Viper's design. I feel like it has a similar feeling to the Colonial Viper pilot helmets.

Just me?


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Sly Rax - V.E.N.O.M. Agent

I'm not really sure what to call Sly Rax (or any of the V.E.N.O.M. members actually.) Unlike teams with specific titles, they mostly seem to be just thugs and goons.

When I think of the M.A.S.K. toys and cartoon though, Sly Rax is usually the first one that comes to mind. He wasn't the leader, but he had a lot of personality. And he talked like Jack Nicholson...because every cartoon had to have a character that talked like Nicholson. (I'm talking about you, Shipwreck.)

I used the John Jameson Heroclix for Sly Rax, mostly because I happened to have one around. I used green stuff to add shades, chains, and boots. I see now that my coloring is a little off. Maybe he just bought some new jeans.

As crazy as it sounds, I hadn't planned to do masked versions of the M.A.S.K.characters...but then realized something: that's a great excuse to buy more miniatures!

So, will I make masked versions? Maybe!


Monday, May 19, 2014

Matt Trakker - M.A.S.K. Leader

Let's talk about scale for a minute.

When I was a kid, G.I. Joe was my measuring stick for toys. Anything that was too big or too small to match up with my Joes was...problematic.

M.A.S.K. was one of those toy lines that caused such problems. I loved the toys and the characters, but they were like half the size of my Joes. That kind of sucked.

But at least nowadays I can do something about it.

Matt Trakker was the leader of the M.A.S.K. team and, if you watch the first episode of the cartoon, he comes across as a HUGE creep. He's like a Bond villain: watching the rescued female scientist though a secret window. Yikes! Other than that, he's kind of a generic leader guy.

For Matt Trakker, I used a Heroclix Red Robin with the cape removed.

"But what about his Spectrum mask?" you might be asking.

I actually found the masks to be kind of annoying. So I'm skipping them...even though they are the namesake of the toys!


Friday, May 16, 2014

Schrage - Oktober Guard Infantryman

Where Daina is the hot-headed member of the Oktober Guard, Schrage is the laconic, cool-headed one. He seems almost lazy, but he still does his part.

Maybe it's fitting that I don't have to much to say about Schrage since he is a man of few words himself.

I used a Sith Trooper Commander and file the sides of this hat down to match Schrage's hat. I based my coloring off the Oktober Guard pinup of the back of a yearbook, rather than the figure they issued in 2012.


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Daina - Oktober Guard Sniper

There are a lot of similarities between Daina and Scarlett: they're both smart, deadly, and often serve as second-in-command. However, where Scarlett is normally cool and calculating, Daina is bad tempered and prone to biting.

For Daina, I first considered the Reaper Miniatures Russian Sniper, but it just didn't feel right. Daina needed to be a bit...rougher. So, instead I went with Reaper's Evie, Post-Apocalyptic Heroine. I cut the brim of her cap off and used green stuff to make her trademark hat. I also filled in the missing midriff part of her shirt. I left the ponytail which, now that I look at it, does look a little weird.

Might have to rethink that choice...


Monday, May 12, 2014

Colonel Brekhov - Oktober Guard Officer

I've mentioned the Oktober Guard before and how much I would have liked having them as a kid. Having a Russian equivalent to the Joe team, who they could work with or against depending on the mission, would have been a blast. It worked well in the comics, after all.

Every team needs a leader and Brekhov was the perfect Russian stereo-type. He could have been in any James Bond movie as the person leading Russia's troops against some threat that winds up reluctantly teaming up with Bond. Now that I think about it, that sure happened a lot in those movies.

Anyway, didn't need any modifications for Brekhov. Just a Reaper Miniatures General Drake with the right paint job.

I guess it is a little sad that the miniature got demoted from General to Colonel.


Friday, May 9, 2014

Road Pig - Dreadnok

Each one of the Dreadnoks had a certain niche they filled in the gang and Road Pigs niche was to be the ugly one. Or possibly the smelly one. Or maybe the big one.

OK, maybe Road Pig is an exception.

In the comics, Road Pig had a dual identity disorder that caused him to switch back and forth between personalities. That being said, for a Dreadnok, he was actually pretty effective. He seemed less prone to random destruction and better at specific destruction.

I can't say for sure, but I'm just about convinced that the Reaper Miniatures Mega-Mutant is based off Road Pig. He's got the big hammer, the wrist crossbow, the weird shoulder armor. Even the boots look similar. All I had to do was add a flat top and a ball at the end of the crossbow and he was done.

On a side note, since this is a metal miniature, he's HEAVY. He is prone to tipping over, which might also be similar to Road Pip.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Duke - Squad Leader

I once said I wouldn't paint a miniature of Duke, but if I *did*, that it would be the version from Renegades.'s Duke from Renegades...

I think most versions of Duke are kind of bland, and the Renegades version has some moments like that, but overall I think he's a more interesting character. Probably because he's a flawed character who doubts his abilities, rather than just being a square-jawed hero.

For Duke, I just did a simple repaint of the Heroclix Extremis Soldier. No real modifying necessary.

Works for me.


Monday, May 5, 2014

Cobra Commander - With Battle Armor

Is this the only Joe figure that, instead of having a military specialty listed, has a "With _____"? If not, I think it might be the first. Why didn't they at least put "Cobra Leader with Battle Armor" or something?

There's a whole big discussion you can get into about who is *really* in the battle armor, but no matter who it is, suddenly Cobra Commander is even more menacing.

I wasn't sure when I picked the Heroclix Taskmaster how it would come out, but I'm pleased that it works as well as it does. I altered the head a little and added the hose with green stuff. The shoulder holster works wells as a variation on the hip holster of the original figure. And Cobra Commander with a sword? How awesome is that?

Very awesome.


Friday, May 2, 2014

Recondo - Jungle Trooper

Recondo was not used as much as some of the other Joes like Roadblock or Duke, but when he did show up, it was usually to do something bad-ass.

Recondo might have one of the best introductions of all the Joes in the Marvel comics run.Instead of just having him show up at the base and introduce himself, a small team meets up with him while on a mission in the jungle. Turns out, he joined up and was shipped to the jungles and had been there ever since, hanging out with the natives. He then goes on to be the baddest MF'er on the team, which includes Gung Ho, Stalker, and Roadblock.

When I first started this project, I knew which mini I was going to use for Recondo: Reaper Miniatures Jonathan Kincaide, Big Game Hunter. All it took was some paint.

I went ahead and painted his rifle green instead of a normal color to match his figure's rifle.

Why not?