Tag Archives: monsters

Grim’s Dungeons of Doom: Monster Mini Makes: Giant Scorpion

8 Aug

minmonstermakes

Ok, still in the Grim’s Dungeons of Doom series, I’ve got a new sub series of articles, still dealing with my dungeon build, but focusing on making custom monsters to flesh out the denziens of the dungeon. I’ll be also popping up another sub series to fit them into the system, in an ode to Out of the Pit with: Dwellers of the Pit. Also I’ll be indexing them via the Grim’s Dungeons of Doom page up in the menu if you want to read all progress so far with the build.

Right, into the build. As you might be aware, I’m trying to stick as faithfully to the Old fighting fantasy system with as little deviation as possible, so therefore the same goes with my various monsters. One of the things I really wanted to capture is some of the creatures that were so striking art (unintentional pun, sorry) in the original books, and that reminded me so much of the original nostalgia from back in the day.

So, I’m starting with an old fave, the Giant Scorpion. Continue reading

Crowdfunding Spotlight: Michael Baird’s Folklore Monster Puppets Kickstarter

19 Jun

Puppets if done correctly can be quite brilliant, so with that in mind I’d like to bring this KS to your attention. Coming from a LARP background, big 3D puppets and bodysuits can add so much to the whole ambience of a live game and this kind of thing would be ideal. Although this is for an art display, the higher tears of funding actually get you a puppet of your own! What’s more the full body puppet options are a real bargain for the price (even including postage to the uk) and I should imagine that you might get a fair amount of creative input too.

Having worked in the LARP industry, I can tell you that custom stuff like this can cost an absolute fortune, with puppets and bodysuits costing in excess of £600 and up, so the $400 ($440 with postage is just over £280) is well below what you’d imagine to pay. Bargain!

There’s only a bit left before this is funded ($396 left) so with limited rewards available, they could quickly get snapped up. Ahh if only I had some funds!! Go and help out this project if it seems your thing (imagine the fun at Halloween scaring the neighbours….)

Peace out monster lovers….

Folklore Monsters and Art Puppets! by Michael Baird — Kickstarter.

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Stranger & stranger…Agnostic Giraffe Miniatures Kickstarter

22 Jan

Agnostic Giraffe Miniatures! by Tyler and Andrew — Kickstarter.

This is sure a strange one, a range of new miniatures by Agnostic Giraffe miniatures, it’s left me a tad puzzled! Even the promo vid is strange, everything about this is just confusing!

It seems that the intent of this KS is to get some of these weird creatures into production, in various sizes and forms from small, to large. What exactly these are intended for (Wargaming I assume) is a mystery, the funding levels are messed up and hard to quite understand, a good example being the level for getting all the small creatures, when there seems to be only one small design on offer.

As you know, I love strange and bizarre stuff like this, but it feels like these guys are on some acid trip, which in turn makes me feel quite trippy with all the confusion! I like the Mushroom guy, he’d go nice with my Orcs and Gobbo’s for Warhammer, the vulture thing is not great, as is a few of the others, but the Squig thing has promise (just needs to be bigger I reckon)

Still, they have some skill at 3D computer modelling, so maybe we are going to see some good things from these guys in the future. I would have like to see a sculpt or two, to give me some idea of scale etc.

Saying all that, they have made more money than I did on my Oggam campaign, so all power to them (I may back it for the  funky mushroom, hhmmm, thinking about it….)

Make up your own minds about these trippy minis, there’s plenty of time left to back them if you like what you see, go check it out….

Groovy….

 

 

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15mm Miniature Creature Design basics

19 Jan
English: Thinking, bright idea.

English: Thinking, bright idea. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ok, lately I’ve been toying with some new concepts for creature design for a new alien race or two, for use in 15mm Sci-fi wargaming. Everytime I start this creative process, regardless of what the creature is going to be used for, a large sculpture or mask, an ornament or miniature, the brainstorm begins.
This post isn’t so much a show and tell, rather it’s fundamental questions you have to ask yourself in the embryonic stage, where the idea is still just an idea. It’s something that will blend and mutate with each answer, the seed if its evolution. I just want to share some thoughts with you and let you into how my creative process works.
I’ll get to showing you what I came up with another time, for now I just want to talk about just what can, would and should be to the creator, and ultimately its audience and final consumer.
What you have to think at the start, is what it is you want to achieve at the end of the process, be it a mini or an ornamental object, in this example since we are talking about 15mm miniature aliens and monsters, so we first might look at inspiration for a new and interesting creation.
I prefer to keep as original as possible, but with so much that has gone before us, originality is truly hard to achieve without the end result looking like a formless mess. That’s fine if your making some kind of chaos spawn beast, but its far too random and mutable to pin down to a specific look and style that one might want for a race of creatures.
It is a help if you take a look at what’s already been done, there’s nothing worse than taking time to make something up, taken time to get a fixed form, only to find that it’s been done before, and your design is percieved as a mimic or a bad copy of anothers work. Best to do your homework on that one!
Another question you should consider is realism verses the fantastic. Sure it can be both, but depending on different amounts of both these attributes when applied to your information you are gathering, will produce totally different beasts! It’s a matter of personal taste of how you will execute the idea on this level, as is how it will be recieved by your peers, so it’s worth thinking carefully about it.
Where you will get your initial inspiration from could come from anywhere and anything, so take a walk, look at books, films, comics, talk to people or listen to music, fill your surroundings with inspiring things and something good will pop in your mind and create a seed.
So, as it is, we are creating an alien race for a set miniatures. We are now with purpose, we know that it is an alien, so it comes from another world, but how different is it from what we are used to? It’s a case of the realistic Vs the fantastic again, so if it was more realistic and believable, we might follow our own planets rules of nature as a start, which might be almost human, semi human hybrids, animal, or plant, man made or machine, while on the other end of the fantastical spectrum might be elemental beings, ghostly or energy, unusual objects or even number based ideas, or the bizarre, we then just slot in any inspirational thoughts and cool bits we like to one of these brackets and follow with the next questions. Many times the next stages will be a style, or influence that will change the design, such as tech levels and intelligence of said race. A primitive race won’t have tech if it doesn’t have intelligence to make or use stuff, but if it does will how its insectoid or birdlike apendages affect what it uses or prefers to use? Or has it adopted found or stolen tech? Like wise a higher intelligence and developed race might have adapted another race’s idea or concentrated upon an idea and took it to extremes, like grav or electro-magnetic technology, try to look at how you alien race had evolved from and why the tech has developed in this way, trying where ever to apply the realism vs fantastic, as you go. A race evolved from a starfish for example would have a central mouth and face, with five or more limbs, how pronounced these features are would be dependent on the realism v fantastic levels, with a realistic version appearing to follow a more scientific shape and movement, and an emphasis on the dexterity or tool use with the limbs, to the fantastic being an upright walking starfish with a gun in each hand! Both concepts identical, but the sliders at opposite ends of the scale of believability.
My best advice is to keep your influences simple, just add extra themes and ideas only when really needed, remember you can redo and chop and change as you need. Try to use the realism sliders to change the info you amass in the brainstorming sessions, always remember to keep a jotter or notepad with you to make notes so you don’t forget any great ideas you get as well, you might get inspired further down the line and be able to use a defunct design again, but with additional principles from another.
A you add more questions to the design like what its diet’s like?, how does it see? What influences its society, how it procreates, are there significances to male/female forms for breeding? Whats the homeworld’s gravity, ecology, atmosphere and terrain like? Things like this will influence how the creature acts, looks and does in your design, so even so you might think just having five limbs would just look cool, maybe the race would have a mathematics system based around the number five (rather than human binary and us having two limbs) over time the maths languages of the aliens would eventually become very complex. This complexity might lead to them being excellent strategists or technicians. Just by applying these simple details will lead to more diverse visual ideas.
With these outlines in mind, I will talk you through some of my latest concepts and reasons for and why, but not today!
I’d like to know your thoughts and ideas on creature creation, so as usual, all comments and discussion are welcome.
What’s your opinions on the realism verses fantastic theory?
Let’s stir the ideas pot people!

Peace out….

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Release date for Jurassic Park 4 confirmed

14 Jan

BBC – Newsbeat – Release date for Jurassic Park 4 confirmed by Universal.

Fans of Jurassic park should be stoked at this news, as another film is in the works. Its about time they finally got off their butts and got around to it after years of faffing about.

No real details of cast or plot, but as long as we have dinos Vs humans, that’ll do for me!

13th June 2014 is slated for its release (no doubt in 3D as is the trend nowadays) and with the involvement of Kathleen Kennedy, who is now Lucasfilm head, we can expect heavy involvement by them too.

Lets hope with the likes of Spielberg, Lucasfilm and now Disney, they can refresh the saga, and give us some more great monster movies!

TTFN

 

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