|Figures for "Barons War: Outremer" - 28mm castings sculpted by the incredible Paul Hicks.|
My nineteenth - and as it turned out, final, submission to the 13th Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge turned away from the 30th millenium and on to some historical subjects. Here we have a group of Knights from the Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem - the Hospitallers. They are accompanied by a priest and a Turcopole scout. These 28mm metal figures were sculpted by the incredible and prolific Paul Hicks, and were released via the "Barons War: Outremer" Kickstarter run by Hicks and Andy Hobday.
|Mounted Hospitaller Master, accompanied by two Knights.|
|I wish I ordered more mounted figures. Or, just, more of everything, from this Kickstarter.|
For 98.8% of hobby participants, the arrival of figures from a Kickstarter is hardly remarkable. However, my close friends will surely laugh, having endured endless rants over many years about how much I hate Kickstarter
. With this in mind, let us imagine this group of figures represents a patrol on the highway to Damascus, escorting a Priest on his way to oversee a conversion...
|Another amazing sculpt. A veteran commander - wise, and dangerous...|
The prospect of acquiring figures for the Crusades sculpted by Paul Hicks was enough make my concerns over Kickstarter participation evaporate faster than Tony Blair's ethics around a 20 pound note. While the process certainly took a while, I can report that Andy and Paul ran a solid process. I did start to wonder a little bit as time went on whether the figures would ever arrive, but Paul and Andy kept in touch with the backers, and delivered 100% in the end. I also have to thank Byron for entertaining my multiple stupid questions regarding the general Kickstarter process throughout.
|A look at some of the foot knights...great sculpting!!|
When the box arrived, I handled it with my usual 10-year-old-on-Christmas-morning approach and was soon bothering Curt, Dallas, Byron and Jamie with pictures of this latest batch of toys. While my views of Kickstarter remain largely unchanged, the fact is that my only regret is that I did not order more stuff - or score one of the models of the Hospital in Jerusalem that were available to early backers! I invite all here to point, laugh, and take the piss at your leisure in the comments below.
|You would need faith to fight in the heat wearing this get-up! |
The sculpting of the figures is just...awesome. I love Paul Hicks' work, and wow did he deliver here! I thought I would start simple, working on some of the Hospitallers first, before moving on to the Saracen figures later on. I paused a little while to consider how I would base these, but in the end opted for the round bases for the foot models and pill-shaped bases for the cavalry. They came with the figures anyway, after all, and I have been inspired to at least give Andy Hobday's "Barons War" rules a shot using these figures, and those rules seem to work better with these bases.
|Armed to the teeth and ready for battle in the Holy Land.|
Painting was a lot of fun - sure, black is tricky, but the fact is that these figures are just SO nice, they are a joy to paint. Fortunately the symbols of the Hospitallers is pretty straightforward (although that did not always translate into "straight lines" on the shields...oh well) so all of the shields could be hand-painted with minimal trouble.
|Priest and Turcopole guide.|
|Tried to be a bit fancier with his shield.|
The priest and turcopole guide offered a chance to use some different colours, and it was fun to have a go at a fancier design for the shield the guide has strapped to his back. That said, the search will be on for decals that work on the shields of the Saracen warriors to come...
|Onward along the road to Damascus...|
This submission provided enough points to put me past my goal of 800, which was nice. It was not intended to be the final submission to this edition of the Challenge, but that is how it worked out due to the timing of my recent visit to Winnipeg, and the issues which can arise when one decides to drive on Canadian highways in March...anyway, it was a thrill to have these guys finished, and I'm pleased to have at least exceeded my goal of 800 "points" worth of painting for the Challenge.
Also, it seems Paul Hicks has another Kickstarter brewing...hmmm...just saying...anyway, thanks for reading, and congratulations to all Conscripts for knocking it out of the park during another Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge!