Category Archives: Infinity

Official Infinity RPG

I’m not the sort of blogger who shares the latest news unless it interests me. Not much really does, and I find keeping up with gossip tiring to be honest.  But this interests me:

Official Infinity Role Playing Game almost ready for playtesting.

Especially since a while back in a discussion on the House of Paincakes Sinsynn asked readers to predict where Infinity would go next, and I predicted this.  So, being honour-bound not to ignore any opportunity for self-congratulations: I told you so! I probably won’t have time to playtest this amidst other projects I’m working on, and my RPG group is only just learning D&D, but still. Interesting news at any rate.

Infinity Asura

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Yesterday I finished painting my Asura armed with a spitfire for Infinity.  I’ve always wanted to paint this model and I wasn’t disappointed.  It just has so much character, she looks so powerful and coldly perfect.  Plus she’s not too heavy on the detail.

I was going to go with a Game of Death Bruce Lee tracksuit, but when I looked more closely at the model I discovered she had open sides on her leggings where I was going to put the stripes.  In fact, she could best be described as an armoured cyborg body with some spandex stretched over it.  This nearly always happens to me when I sit down to paint Infinity models: areas I thought at first glance were flat turn out to be covered in sculpted detail.

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I still wanted the yellow and black though, as it signals danger in the natural world and I thought it would look cool. So I thought why not give her black cyborg skin?  The ALEPH non-Greek troops are all named after Hindu beings after all, and I used to have a spooky and awesome poster of the death goddess Kali in my room when I was younger.  She had black skin, red eyes and skulls all over her.  I wonder what ever happened to that?  I don’t remember it much after I met my girlfriend come of think of it…

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Aaaanyway.  Asura “Kali.” Good code name I reckon. Also, is it my imagination or does this miniature’s face look a lot like Australia’s Sweetheart™ Miranda Kerr?

Gratuitous Miranda Kerr picture.

Gratuitous Miranda Kerr picture.

Exactly the same! Except for the glowing red eyes and armoured flesh. Image copyright Corvus Belli.

Exactly the same! Except for the glowing red eyes and armoured flesh (Image copyright Corvus Belli).

Next up are my Irish warlord and hearthguard for SAGA, and then maybe a Domaru or a Tau Hammerhead. I’m really enjoying just flitting around painting whatever I want right now and experimenting with different techniques and ideas. I used glaze medium on Kali for the first time ever and it made the yellow much easier to work with.

All the best,

James

Even more cyberpunk terrain: billboard + big building

Work continues on the terrain for my Infinity table.  I’m really enjoying it. Terrain is not something I’ve ever really turned my hand to before – I’ve always let other people take care of it.  I’m planning a table that’s partly MDF kits from the excellent BP Laser in Brisbane, and partly scavenged “termite” terrain as befits my roots in old school DIY wargaming.  I think they’ll combine well for a nice scummy-looking cyberpunk scene.

Last time I mentioned I needed to complete a billboard for the noodle shop, and I was going to use some of Aki Akane’s art.  I changed my mind about the specific piece I was going to use.  It was slightly too trippy. So I went for this one instead:07_141719141

And this is how it turned out. I’m really happy with it:

Apologies to Aki Akane.  Image used without permission.

Apologies to Aki Akane. Image modified without permission.

The revolutionary graffiti on the billboard above is specific to the Infinity setting. It says “Kempei,” with the English phrase “stand up.”  Years and years (and years) ago, I studied Mandarin Chinese at university before I realised philosophy was more my thing.  I may have mentioned this before. I don’t recall much spoken language, and I can’t read the characters, but strangely enough I can write them.  It’s amazing; a year of writing hundreds of the buggers repetitively has given me a muscle memory for making the strokes.

So I looked up the characters and I was a bit nervous, but I just took a deep breath and then copied them out before I could think. And it worked! $5000 in university course fees well-spent I say.

Here is my last BP Laser building.  It’s just an indeterminate large building, again with revolutionary graffiti on the roof.  I’m getting cocky now it seems:

bigbuilding

 

phonebooth

And here is a BP Laser phone booth.  Keisotsu Yoshi is waiting for a call…

From here on in it’s deoderant cans and found objects, all the way.

Till next time,

James

More cyberpunk scenery: noodle bar + scatter terrain

I’ve been working on more scenery for Infinity, and I’m starting to realise that not only could it be used for any cyberpunk game, it could be used for any sci-fi game, period. Even though Warhammer 40,000 has its own range of hideously expensive skull-bedecked terrain these days, I’m imagining a game fought over my cyberpunk scenery and I’m thinking it would give it a nice, old-school feel.  You know, back when it was OK for an Imperial world to look like this:

Field_Police

Ha ha the punk is taller than the marines.

Anyway, I’ve made some stacks of boxes out of glued-together 1/2″ wooden blocks, and this Hello Kitty money-box from a dollar shop, suitably weathered and graffitied, will do nicely on the table. Or on top of a building even.

It even glows when I turn it on...

It even glows when I turn it on…

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The noodle shop is from BP Laser Terrain.  It was a bit of a challenge to put together, but it’s one of their hardest kits, so fair enough.  I’m particularly proud of the scrubbed-out “Kempei” written on the roof.

Below are the images I chose for the screens on top of the noodle bar, since you can’t really see them in the photo (not to mention one of them isn’t actually on yet).  The first one is by a Japanese singer/illustrator I have just discovered called Aki Akane:

I think her work is very cyberpunk, even down to the slight creepiness.

I think her work is very cyberpunk, even down to the slight creepiness.

 

Extra points if you can identify the 90's anime this screenshot is from.

Extra points if you can identify the 90’s anime this screenshot is from.

So that’s it for today.  Have a good one,

James

Finished Infinity building + Japanese soldiers

buiding+troopersI’m always promising to show photos and I rarely do, so I’m trying to make more of an effort. Way back I said I’d nearly finished a building for Infinity. So here it is – still nearly finished – along with all I have painted of my 300 point Japanese Sectorial army. I still need to paint a hacker on a bike, a doctor with a yaozao servant, a haramaki with a missile launcher (heh heh) and the second domaru with boarding shotgun.

Above you can see on the roof of the building (from L to R): a ninja standing in for a raiden sniper,* kempeitai, and a keisotsu. On the street are the oniwaban Shinobu Kitsune, a domaru, and Asuka Kisaragi (whose tattoos are looking pretty snazzy from this distance if I do say so myself).

The building uses some of the posters I made up a while ago and some cut-up bits of Chinese newspaper. I was going to LED the interior with help from Bush Craft but I’m thinking I might go full slum style and just nail some balsa wood over the windows so they look boarded-up instead.  Because I lack motivation.  And you want to know why I don’t take photos much?  I managed to drop Asuka and Kitsune onto the building when I was setting up, and they both smashed into a million pieces, as usual, and I had to glue them back together all over again.  As usual.

In other news, SAGA models are being built and primed (Irish and Vikings) and at Wintercon I finally bought this lady, one of my all-time favourite Infinity models.  She’s going to be wearing a yellow and black Game of Death tracksuit I think.  I guess this means my second faction is ALEPH…

*I hear it’s an immutable law of Infinity that if you convert a model they’ll release it straight afterwards, so I’m just going to proxy the ninja until a raiden sniper is released to avoid that fate.

Asuka Kisaragi (the insanity of 28mm cleavage tattoos II: the completening)

Here is my completed Asuka Kisaragi for Infinity, with yakuza tattoos and all.

asuka1

I wanted the bike to look like military hardware, not a racing bike. She has stuck some cheesy cherry blossom decals on it though and painted the rims pink.  Also, she is wearing too much make-up because that’s just the kind of girl she is.

 

asuka2

I messed about with several different designs for the patch on her jacket. When in doubt, go with an Akira reference I always say.

I’m really happy with how she turned out.  I’m less happy with how she looks in the photos.

I’m always hesitant to put up photos, because a) I don’t enjoy taking them, b) it’s a hassle to get them from the camera to the computer, and c) I’m never happy with how my stuff looks in photos.

Photos are like looking at the model through a magnifying glass.  With the resolution of modern cameras, there is just so much information that when you zoom in (or even when you don’t) it’s like looking at the model from far closer than you comfortably could in real life.  So I know this sounds like whining, but I simply don’t have the skills to take photos that do my painting style justice.  I paint too impressionistically.  These ones were taken with a good camera (Canon EOS 6D) and a standard lens.  A macro lens (which we had on our old camera) is even worse.  At this point I’m assuming that all of the people who’s work looks great in photos paint in that perfectly smooth airbrush style that doesn’t show any brush strokes or, indeed, paint texture.

For example, here is Asuka’s face at the actual size the camera took the photo:

Asuka face

This is actually what it looks like in real life… if you have a magnifying glass.

The main pictures above are as close as I could get to how it looks to the naked eye.  Any photography tips would be welcome; it actually bums me out quite a bit.

The insanity of 28mm cleavage tattoos

Right.  So that’s got to be my most attention-grabbing headline ever.  Am I crazy for attempting such a thing?  Turns out yeah.  Pretty much.

In case you’re wondering what I’m referring to, I’ve finally started on my Asuka Kisaragi model.  It’s probably not controversial to say that this miniature is very sexy.  When I sat down to think about how best to paint her, I couldn’t help but feel she’s maybe a bit too sexy.

That could mean a bunch of things, so to clarify: the thing with Asuka is… well… she has extremely bounteous cleavage.  And for some reason she has decided to unzip her leathers between the neck and breastbone so that said cleavage pops out.  This is obviously not a bad thing in and of itself; but I like my models to look a bit like soldiers, since they’re going to be fighting in, you know, a wargame.

The real issue is aesthetic: I’ve looked at a lot of Asukas online, and there seems to be no way to avoid the boobs becoming the focal point of the model.  It’s been designed that way.  But I think she’s sexy enough – and a great model besides – without boobs being her face, as it were.  So how do I tone down the cleavage and bring the rest of the model out?  Well, I have this habit of biting off more than I can chew and trying things beyond my abilities when it comes to miniatures.  So I decided to tattoo her cleavage with ridiculously intricate traditional Japanese designs.

First I did some legitimate research on Yakuza and Bosozuku tattoos, since Asuka is basically a Bosozuku bikie who’s become a soldier.  Then, I did entirely too much “just as legitimate research” looking at pics like this:

From YAKUZA WOMEN on Pinterest.  Not safe for work...

From YAKUZA WOMEN on Pinterest. Not safe for work.

Then I started to paint her, and that’s when it all went horribly wrong.  Infinity models are just so fine and tiny in general, and Asuka’s impressive cleavage is approximately the size of half a grain of raw sushi rice.  The model is so fine that the skin had to be painted first, and then the tattoos added in thin layers.  My first attempt looked like a dirty green stain on her skin.  I had to use alcohol to clean it off.  Oh, and I swear my eyesight is going.  Because my eyes kept unfocusing at the wrong moment, like I had to force them to look and stay focused.

What I learned is basically this: if you’re going to attempt something in this vein, go for the impression of intricate designs rather than actually trying to do them.  The lines of a tattoo in 28mm scale are finer than any brush that exists, and maybe finer than the human eye can see.  So go for outlines (I used a .03mm pen) filled in with thin washes, and a single highlight to make it look like there’s more going on than there actually is.  Oh and bright colours – orange, pale blue – work better than dark ones.

It doesn’t look as good as it did in my head, but you can see it’s meant to be tattoos.  And I think my aim has been achieved: you can tell she has her boobs out, but it might not be the first thing you notice. Depending on how boob-attuned you are I guess.

By the way, I realise I’ve written a few painting articles without any pictures of models!  Sorry.  I’m not much for work in progress shots, because taking decent photos is hard for me, and time-consuming.  So you’ll have to wait a bit to see the finished product, because I’m still working on the bike.  But I’m proud to say that she looks quite different from any Asukas I’ve seen online.

Till next time,

James

Driving and Smashing

I just finished painting and weathering an MDF building I got from BP Laser Terrain.  It looks pretty damn good if do say so myself, but unfortunately I dropped it on the way to photograph it, and it smashed.

So as soon as I rebuild it I’ll put up some pictures.  This happens to me so often I just have to laugh, really.  I hold my finished model up to the light, basking in the fruits of my labour, and then suddenly it’s on the floor in pain-stakingly painted bits.  Tragic.

Also, I’ve made a resolution to finally get my driver’s license.  Not having one may not seem all that strange to anyone reading this who lives in Europe or even the US, but in Australia it’s a rite of passage to learn to drive.  A lot of people do it as soon as they legally can (16) and pretty much everyone can drive by the time they are in their mid-twenties.  The distances between our towns (and within them) make it difficult to just up and go somewhere when you feel like it unless you can drive.

There are lots of reasons I never learned, and for once “being contrary” isn’t actually one of them.  I’ve always felt it was a sort of discipline to have to rely on my own two feet and my wits to get to places.  And I’m certainly fitter than many people my age, without ever setting foot in a gym or playing sport.

But it’s starting to seem a bit selfish to rely on my not-wife to drive me when necessary, now that we have a kid and a busier life.

More importantly, I never get to play Infinity because my local store is an hour-long bus ride away and my gamer friends only want to play Warhammer 40k.  Although one of them just announced that he’s quitting, so that’s a good sign.  If I could drive I could go and join in, and even entice others perhaps…

Infinity Terrain Update

I’ve gotten a bit more serious lately with my terrain project for Infinity.  The Infinity Australia facebook group is inspiring me.  People there tend to go all-out with their terrain and it encourages you to step up to the challenge.  But also it’s a little daunting.  I’ve never made terrain, except perhaps a few crumby cardboard buildings as a boy.  I initially wanted to make the whole table, but as a wise person once said: make it if you have more time than money, buy it if you have more money than time.  I don’t have much of either but I have less time, and I was moving slowly and not having much fun trying to build it all.  Best to prise open the wallet then.

This table for example, by Michael Hurrell and Clayton Teschward, is a dishearteningly fantastic example of the sort of table I'm aiming to build.

This table for example, by Michael Hurrell and Clayton Teschward, is a dishearteningly fantastic example of the sort of table I’m aiming to build.

It was my birthday recently, and with the spoils I have made an order from the excellent people at BP Laser Terrain in Brisbane.  It should be enough, combined with the odds and ends I have, to make a full table – some bought, some built.

Now, on to concept.  I’d like to make a cyberpunk/dystopian slum area of a megacity.  So for inspiration I’m thinking Judge Dredd crossed with the dingier parts of the city in Blade Runner.  Since I play Yu Jing, it will be a Yu Jing city, and since it’s a slum that means probably lots of Japanese people.  I’m thinking that they’ll be largely ateks (people without advanced tech; in this case, people too poor to own it).  I’ll need wrecked hi-tech vehicles, signs in Chinese and rebellious graffiti in Japanese.  Planned structures include a noodle shop, a yuan-yuan pirate hideout and storage warehouse, shabby dwellings, and some public toilets (because I’ve never seen toilets on a table).

I’m mostly looking forward to the painting and weathering stage, as that is the area where I actually feel comfortable!  But first, it must be buillt…

Till next time,

James

Painted Shang Ji

Here is a Shang Ji heavy infantryman from the game Infinity.  I think the rear of this model is almost as interesting as the front, which is unusual.

Questions and comments welcome as always,

James