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[unofficial weekender] Friday again!

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This topic contains 31 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  sundancer 3 days, 17 hours ago.

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    Cult of Games Member

    ### Start of shameless copy & paste ###

    Read all of this before you start as it will save any trouble later.

    First thing you must do is make your “pledge”. It can be anything gaming related, big or small, and you don’t even have to finish it. No, in here, happiness is the road. Have fun doing whatever it is, but it is not a race. Accompany your work with pictures or we might think you are do something sinister and just using us for cover.

    You are also presented with a few questions. It is to get the conversation started. Try and keep your answers ‘conversational’, no text speak, and certainly no “basically”. This is how we all get to know each other better. While you are here feel free to tell us a story, show a picture, joke, tales of love or woe, or just add your own little bit. This is the whole point…in here it is just us.

    If you have never taken part before we may bark and bite, but we also like a cuddle! It is all done in the best possible taste and it is character building. feel free to give as good as you get.

    A few other things to note: NO RELIGION & NO POLITICS! Glasgow pub rules are in effect. If you need to make a better point then it is fine, but don’t take the piss. And always keep it civil.

    Play plenty of music to go with your work. Loud and through proper speakers. Write us a playlist of things we might not have heard before.

    Now, after all of that there is only one ‘real’ rule in here and it cannot be broken: NO DICKS! (Exceptions may be made for little fighting men with little plastic/resin/metal wieners)

    And don’t forget the highlights of the weekend: The Weekender on Friday and XLBS on Sunday. And the little show that is the unofficial Hobby Hangout over at

    ### End of shameless copy & paste ###

    No questions of the week this week but a reminder:

    So, as an aftermath of the train wreck that was Hasbro’s “launch” of HeroQuest 2020 I watched a video on YouTube by some dude. (Not me) That was Geoff Solomon-Sims, owner of Oakbound Studio and The Propworkshop

    We had a small discussion in the comment section and via email where I asked him if he would be up to an interview with me. And he said yes. So obviously the interview will be about HeroQuest and the way miniatures are designed today and his standpoint on it. So that will be our main topic.

    But, if any of you lot have questions for him, please let me know. (Also I need a title for the show)

    This was the video that sparked it all:

    Original thread on that here: CLICK ME


    Cult of Games Member

    This week’s pledge is to apply the snow basing effect on my Dweghom milestone one. By then milestone two should have arrived so I’ll assemble them.


    Yesterday I finished painting the characters. The full project entry is here:




    Cult of Games Member

    Title for the show :  How is a dungeon a heroes’ quest ?

    or this

    I feel like Pinky & the Brain, ’cause I’m going to do what I do every week … try and take over the world.



    Cult of Games Member

    @sundancer – well that’s half an hour I’m never going to get back. And, obviously, I disagree with just about everything the guy in the video says. It just sounds like snobbery to me. We’ve had the old “analogue is better than digital” argument since the first CDs came out in 1984. It isn’t. Half an hour to say “I don’t like the style of art” then admit everything else in the game is pretty much the same, then moan about how sculptors aren’t as good – not because they’re not very good miniature sculptors but, because, somehow it’s the fault of the medium they’re using…. nah. (ok, 20 minutes then – I got so bored I put it on x 1.25 just to get it over more quickly).

    There are some amazing digital sculptors out there. Just two examples: compare Cyber Forge with Unit9. Cyber Forge (a spin-off from Titan Forge) are more “traditional” heroic-like minis – big heads, big hands, relatively simple details (but what details there are, are super-crisp and a joy to paint). Unit9 is still quite stylised (large-ish heads and hands but less “heroically scaled” than Cyber Forge) but their minis have infinitely more detail.

    But it’s *because* of digital sculpting we have a choice of types of sculpt to choose from. Both are excellent. Trying to recreate either of these using “traditional” modelling would result in lower quality sculpts with less detail. I’d take digital sculpting over “analogue” all day, every day. To try to pretend someone pushing sausages of greenstuff is a “better” way of making minis than digital sculpting is… well, misguided at best. “Analogue” can only result in “analogue-looking” minis.

    A good “analogue” sculptor with a ball of greenstuff can’t create the types of minis a digital sculptor can. But a good digital sculptor *can* create the same style of minis as the “analogue” sculptor. And then lots of other styles not available to the greenstuff guy.


    Maybe I’m just ranting.

    I hate people who claim vinyl is superior too – because I don’t believe they *can* “hear the digitisation” of the recording on digital recordings either.


    Cult of Games Member

    @limburger – at least one Bonnie Tyler song a week should be compulsory on the weekender 😉


    Cult of Games Member

    I hate people who claim vinyl is superior too – because I don’t believe they *can* “hear the digitisation” of the recording on digital recordings either.

    There are two sides (pun intended) to this. A) There is a measurable advantage of analog recordings (I recall a comparison in a Hifi magazine using Nirvana –  Smells like teen spirit for all things). The emphasis being “measurable”. Because I too think most people have neither the perfect hearing nor equipment for it. B) I don’t really think most vinyl lover really do say “it’s superior” but “it’s better” but meaning “I prefer to listen to it that way because als the crackling and noise that comes with vinyl comforts me”. It’s a bit of a difference like instant coffee/pad machine vs. brewing by hand. One is the quick fix (CD, MP3, Stream) and the other is the conscious act of hearing music. Preparing the Stereo, cleaning the record, sitting down and enjoying it for 30 minutes.

    Also, some of the sentiment “vinyl is better” originates from a time where digital (lossless) recording wasn’t at the point it is today. So my personal take is: I like vinyl more because it makes you take your time with it but I use digital more because of the convenience.



    Cult of Games Member

    I agree with the ritual of playing vinyl – the smell as you take it out of the album cover, taking it out of the paper wallet, wiping with alcohol to clean it, preparing the needle/arm etc. It’s a ritual and it can be comforting. But that doesn’t make it “better” (to those who insist a lower-fidelity makes it sound “warmer” they’re talking about *limitations* in playback hardware that filter out higher frequencies – that’s the exact opposite of “better *quality*”; poorer quality for a preferable sound, but definitely not “better”).

    But the “I prefer analogue modelling and playing vinyl preferable” analogy falls apart when comparing to 3d modelling. Because the guy in the video is reviewing *the finished product*. He hasn’t been part to the “ritual” – the sculpting, pushing the putty around – the process of creating the mini is like the the ritual of preparing the vinyl for playing.

    But in his review video, his argument is that the finished mini, sculpted by hand, is better than a mini sculpted digitally. Having had no input into the preceeding steps, he’s sitting there listening to a crackly crap recording of his dad’s favourite skiffle band *that someone else put on the record player* and insisting the sound coming out of the speakers is “better” than the pin-sharp clarity of the latest remastered [insert band name here] album.

    I just disagree with almost every sentiment in the video (both on digital scuplting and the idea that the original HeroQuest artwork was “better” just because it was an oil painting). But maybe that’s because I work with technology and embrace it – and in doing so recognise that the failures in “modern” technology-driven art are with the artist, not the technology?

    When this track first came on my CD player, I didn’t listen to it and think “wow, that sounds much better” – nor did it fill me with comfort. I just thought “god, that’s annoying”



    Cult of Games Member

    There have been blind A/B tests for lossy audio formats by experts and even they couldn’t tell them apart with anything approaching reliable predictions …

    However the problem is that when someone choses the wrong compression settings for lossy formats then you can see (or hear) the artifacts without too much effort if you’ve got semi-decent equipment (and if the choice is really bad even that isn’t needed).

    I’d argue that it is the same with digital sculpting vs ‘traditional’.
    If you have crappy sketches and an incompetent digital sculptor then you’re not going to have the same end result as a traditional sculpt.
    Part of the reason is that even an entry level traditional sculptor has had to work hard just to understand the basics of the medium, whereas a digital sculptor can simply download the software and start.

    I bet that getting from no skill to entry level skill in the digital medium is faster than the traditional method because there are lots of conveniences (like an undo options and infinite sculpt time) that allow for faster learning.
    You still need to have an artist talent to get the most out of either medium.


    Cult of Games Member

    It’s annoying because you don’t expect it on a CD 😉 Like pouring salt into your coffee or tea just because it looks the same as sugar *g*

    I’m going to try to keep your words in mind for the interview as I am going to be a bit of an Advocatus Diaboli. 😉



    Nostalgia is a hell of a drug! I still have some of my Dad’s old cassettes lying around somewhere… Anyway, my Reading Week is nearing an end and I have done no bloody schoolwork at all during it…that is very bad… I have done mini painting, but that won’t get me good grades… Anyway, the last one of this week is Brienne of Tarth and after this weekend I may very well disappear for a month or two again…though I will try to drop in from time to time to see how things are.

    Anyway, here’s Brienne:


    Project post incoming.


    Cult of Games Member

    I played some of my old cassettes a few years back – and was amazed at how “slow” the songs sounded when played through a streaming service – it turns out the cassette player on my old hi-fi had always played the tapes ever-so-slightly too quickly! But I’d just got used to hearing the songs that way and came to accept that was the tempo they should have been.

    As an aside, a lot of songs in the 80s/90s were played in Eb tuning on a guitar (many people believed it was so the guitar players could hit widdly-widdly note-squealing guitar solos, but it’s just as likely to be it’s easier for an alto sax to play in concert pitch Eb – and a *lot* of rock songs in the 80s had saxophone on them too) but my slightly-sped-up tape player effectively put them in E which made it easier to play along to on the guitar in standard tuning. I just assumed they were playing at the correct tempo/pitch because I could play along!

    @limburger makes the point:

    If you have crappy sketches and an incompetent digital sculptor then you’re not going to have the same end result as a traditional sculpt

    But this is a bit like comparing apples to oranges. Because if you’ve an incompetent digital sculptor, you’re never going to get the same result as a *competent* traditional sculptor – but you might get close to an incompetent traditional sculptor, working from the same crappy sketches.

    Which brings us full circle back to the main point – it’s not “digital sculpting” that is to blame for poorly sculpted models; it poor design and/or poor execution. For me, well executed digitally sculpted models are far superior in every way to even the best “traditionally” sculpted minis – simply because they can be more precise and include more detail: the “character” of a model is down to the sculptor, not the tools they use.




    Cult of Games Member

    @crazyredcoat – just seen your photo on a big screen – that is some beautiful painting right there. Drop by any time with photos like this!


    Cult of Games Member

    Another advantage of digital sculpts : they never degrade …

    Try creating moulds from an ancient ‘traditional’ sculpt and see where that gets you. Unless you’ve kept the original in a perfectly isolated environment chances are the thing has degraded.

    Or heck … try to make a few variants while keeping the rest of the details exactly as the first model.

    That sort of stuff is either impossible or so time consuming for it to effectively be impossible.

    And let’s not forget what things like Heroforge bring.
    Yes, you are limited to what the developers of that tool give you.
    However the possibilities are as close to infinite as possible and you don’t even need to be a great artist to get something useful out of that.

    There isn’t anything even remotely close to that for traditional sculpting methods.

    @blinky465 my point was more that to get a basic model by traditional methods you will have to have more experience (and thus be more skilled) than someone trying digital sculpting for the first time. You might have to learn the program, but unless the thing is user hostile even a basic human form should be a piece of cake.

    Get two equally talented sculptors and allow them equivalent tools and prep time (ie : count the creation of a skeleton as part of prep for traditional). And the only difference is how fast either of them is.


    Cult of Games Member

    Managed to get as far as priming my next lot of British line infantry, and then immediately got started on a samurai model by Steelfist Miniatures for a bit of a change in scale and colours. I’ll try and get him painted up this week, although I’m undecided on a basing scheme, so he’ll linger uncompleted for a while. I was wondering about something autumnal considering the current season.

    For me, digital and traditional sculpting are just different media for producing the same end product, much in the same way as digital vs physical (pen/paint/paper etc.) art. Those who understand the media to the fullest get the best results, and I don’t think that the highest quality sculpts produced via either method are better than the other.

    One thing that I have no experience with is the casting/printing of models, and I do wonder if there is a difference in the realisation of the sculpts in model form. I roughly know the process, and I’m aware that you can have a sculpt that looks fantastic, but is a pain to cast/print. Part of the skill of the sculptor is produce figure that can easy be cast/printed. For my non-existent personal experience of 3D printing, I get the impression that there can be a lot of user input to ensure that you get decent prints. How thoroughly do digital sculptors practice the ease/reliability of their prints? My understanding is that most traditional sculptors will be making a master for a mould which will get a pretty decent testing for repeat results. From a place of large ignorance over these processes, I would suspect that traditional methods might be more effective in getting a repeat result of the end model than a digital sculpt. But as stated, I have pretty much zero experience on which to base that impression.


    @limburger You brought this on yourself… and the rest of the thread, my friend

    @blinky465 Catching up on the threads I am glad to have read your review before watching the video. I was stuck into the XLBS and wondered if I should set it aside and get caught up.

    By the by I got the police mini assembled and painting will commence right after I get the current gob project done.

    @sundancer Advocatus diaboli? When did you start taking an interest in Italian cuisine?(j/k)

    @crazyredcoat There will always be minis to paint. Grades… meh. Doing work and getting experience helps so much when you pick the brains of greybeards (not actual lobotomies, atleast officially).

    So much talk about music I think I need to go and dig back some more into stuff I listened to.

    On the topic of digi sculpts I agree with @limburger . The deterioration factor is quite a difficult issue with traditional methods. Thinking about the present technology available I see Privateer Press in a difficult place for keeping their exclusivity for Minicrate. Chinese recasters are too numerous to count for knockoffs for producers like KD that manufacture there. The again there’s the anime garage kit market that suffers the same way when you look into the Thai casters.

    Trying to find originals in metal OOP figures from yesteryear is great as a ‘hero’s quest” (tying this back to the OP topic) but doomed to fail unless to dig up troves the likes of Gerry’s when gamers and hobbyists like us take our dirt naps. 3D files have become the new medium and its unfortunate that there is little to no appreciation outside of our niche for the physical process. Look to the incident of the boys who destroyed table setups at a model train convention being hit with minimal measure against the time/effort put into the hobbyists and this bears out in personal value versus financial.

    I’ve tossed the thought out @sundancer and I think the abbreviation of variable return hobby investment (VRHI) is what we might consider. Marie Kondo is mentioned when the value of objects get overtake by the need to make space. Well, when minis and hobby start to become more emotional and physical liability than asset it might be time to pass them on. This is a problem for the physical producer that must make with all material manually. The digital is just limited by storage space o a hard drive and potential corruption of data. Perhaps this is the time where we hobbyists re-evaluate the hobby as physical medium and what we do with it. I’d say that the social implications of ‘The Rona’ has definitely made us all the more aware of our interactions as “high functioning social retards”.

    Whoo… I actually can still write long and present real thought. I’ll not make this a habit. I need a nap.

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