Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Conquest Games Normans

I am currently painting up three boxes of Conquest Games Plastic Norman Knights.

They are brilliant. The Horses look better than any 28mm horses I have painted before. Well proportioned, nice poses.

The riders fit perfectly and have a good range of options.

The horses need something to eliminate the seam between the head and body. My usual glue for plastics is Revell Contacta with a paint brush. This is accurate and fast, but it doesn't fill gaps. After a few attempts with fillers I went back to the way I used to construct airfix kits 35 years ago. I bought some old-fashioned polystyrene cement in a tube. I used this to cover the surface on the body where the head is attached and then squashed the head on, letting the glue ooze out of the gap. I then left this to try for 24 hours. I then chipped off the excess glue with a modelling blade. The gap no longer existed.

I have painted the figures using a mix of techniques. All were sprayed with black primer.

The "brown" horses have been base coated with Cote-d'arms Horse Tones, then washed with Citadel washes (Devlan Mun or Gryphon Sepia), then highlighted with the base colour.

White horses have been painted with a triad of Valejo Sky Grey, Silver Grey and Off-White.

Black Horses with Valejo Black-Gray highlight over the black primer.

The knights were dry-brushed with Valejo natural steel, then washed with GW Badab-Black. Then I gave them a lighter drybrush with the natural steel.

Flesh (not much to actually paint here) was base-coated with Valejo cavalry-brown, then painted with Valejo flesh-base. I then gave it a wash of GW Ogryn-flesh and highlighted with the flesh-base.

For the small areas of cloth I used a two-colour (diad?) technique of a base coat and highlight. The exception to this was red. I do my reds by base coating with VJ Cavalry-brown, then VJ Red and finally VJ Scarlet.

Leather was done with VJ Flat-Brown, GW Devlan Mud wash and then high-light with the Flat-Brown.

I varied the leather by doing some areas in VJ German Camouflage Orange Ochre (my favourite Valejo light brown) or VJ Buff with GW washes and a highlight in the base colour.

For the sheilds I went for hand-painting. This is for a couple of reasons. Firstly, there are no transfers in the Conquest boxes. Secondly, I couldn't be bothered to try and find transfres that would fit, Third, I love the look of the painted crusaders on the Perry web-site, with hand painted sheilds. Finally, I like the idea of the shields looking like the ones on the Bayeux Tapestry (styalised and simple). I assume that real shield designs were more sophisticated than those rendered on the tapestry, but as my painting skills are on a par with the art on the tapestry (on a good day) this level would suite.

So I used triads to paint the shields. My triad painting is usually rather subtle and doesn't stand out much. For these shields I went rather more extreme than my usual style (greater variation between shades and larger areas of shade). It seems to have worked.

Basing was a challenge. I have not decided on rules for these yet (or even if they will become an army). The box includes a set of Renadra cavalry bases. These or 25mmx50mm and 50mmx50mm. I based all of the figures individually on 25x50's. I have found that these bases will glue together using Contacta so I can make them into 50x50 or 75x50 later.

The basing will work for Warhammer Ancient Battles and the Crusader rules. I think it will be OK for the planned Warlord Games Ancient Rules. With a movement tray I can get four figures onto an Impetus base (120x80). I don't expect to use these figures for DBA/M/MM.

Conclusion: Great figures, will mix with Perry Crusades. Good value. I am really enjoying painting them.

Pictures: Just realised my camera isn't available. I will try and do some soon.

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