Friday, 23 December 2016

Infinity: Yu Jing-le Bells

Hi folks,

This year I have been dipping my toes into Infinity. It is an attractive option for my gaming group due to the relatively low model count and the incredibly beautiful sculpts on offer. The rule set has its highs and lows, but all of the games we have played so far have been fun: the proof is in the pudding.

At our age, the main difficulty in starting a new gaming system is Hobby Inertia. That gravely voice in your gut that asks: "Do you really want to learn another rule-set? Do you really want to buy another two Core troop choices? Do you really want to paint another army?" and invariably "Do you really want to try and fit another game into your gaming sessions?"

To ease us through the Hobby Inertia, Sgt Waz has bought some starter armies for us during the past 12 months. For Christmas, Sgt Waz and I teamed up to paint a 300 pt army of Yu Jing (Japanese Sectorial Army) for The Trooper. The Trooper and I have traveled to Japan together twice, including a pilgrimage to many sites that Miyamoto Musashi is known to have visited, the highlight of which was Reigando Cave, where Musashi wrote The Book of Five Rings:

We kicked off the project with an epic construction session, putting everything together and laying down the undercoat and first glazes together. After that we parted ways for a week, Sgt Waz taking a special character to work on with his prodigious painting ability, leaving the bulk of the force to be speed-painted by myself.

Miyamoto Musashi

When it came to picking a special character to lead the army, Musashi was an obvious choice. I can only claim credit for the base, which I kept as simple as possible. At that stage I was wielding a brush in one hand and a hair dryer in the other! I used Astrogranite Debris textured paint that has been washed with Nuln Oil and highlighted with Dawnstone, followed by Seraphim Sepia wash on the flatter surfaces. Here is the finished model, painted by Sgt Waz:


For a second character we chose a Shikami; very handy for completing objectives. The Shikami doesn't actually have a model yet, so we had to improvise! We used a Kempeitai model as a proxy, which I had been holding onto for an occasion such as this. The model was undercoated white, followed by a heavy Nuln Oil wash. "Hakama"/pants were painted in US Grey (Vallejo Model Air range). White details were picked out using several thin white coats. Grey areas were glazed with Eshin Grey, leaving the edges clear to provide a highlight. Red areas were painted Mephiston Red, then given a liberal Biel-Tan green wash. Mephiston Red and Blood Red were then added to provide depth.

After completing all of that at a blistering pace, I slowed down and blended the sword (Kabalite Green) and painted/highlighted the combi-rifle carefully, to give wandering eyes something to latch on to. There is a fine line between detailing a speed-painted miniature and painting lipstick on a dog; I think I have done alright here. Finally,  I am not great at painting eyes, having avoided them to a great extent during my 20 years of collecting Space Marines, Tyranids and Battlemechs. This was my first go at "manga eyes"; I still have a lot of practicing to do:

To bulk out the force we chose two groups of heavy infantry with a distinct samurai style: Haramaki Zensenbutai and Domaru Butai. Both were undercoated white and washed with a light grey to provide subtle shading. This was followed by a selective Nuln Oil Gloss wash to pick out the tubing, which is a major design feature of both infantry sculpts. Details were picked out using Mephiston Red and the procedure described above. The eyes were all painted Kabalite Green and highlighted with a lighter shade (1:3 Kabalite Green/White Scar White). 

Haramaki Zensenbutai

"Haramaki" is a type of armour that a Samurai (or retainer) would wear on their chest, which encloses their sides and back as well.

Haramaki armour

 "Zensen" is sometimes used to mean front-line. Butai is used as we would use the word "force". Roughly translated, Haramaki Zensenbutai are an "armoured front-line force". I liked the sound of that! The swords on these guys are all Kabalite Green wet blends. Hakama"/pants and blitzen were painted in US Grey (Vallejo Model Air range).

 Haramaki Zensenbutai with DA CCW


Haramaki Zensenbutai with Contender 


Haramaki Zensenbutai with Combi-rifle 


Haramaki Zensenbutai with DA CCW



Domaru Butai

"Domaru" is another type of chest armour worn by Samurai and their retainers in the 11th century.

Domaru Armour

I painted the "Haidate" (thigh armour) Tank Ochre (Vallejo Model Air range), followed by an Athonian Camoshade wash to add shading and a Biel-Tan green glaze to alter the colour slightly. The E/M swords were represented by Liche Purple/White Scar wet blends. The small exhaust ports/thrusters at the back were painted Kabalite Green, maintaining the limited pallet.

Domaru Butai with E/M CCW 


Domaru Butai with E/M CCW


Domaru Butai with Boarding Shotgun 


Domaru Butai with Spitfire


I would like to thank Sgt Waz for letting me be his wing-man on this project; we got a lot more done than I ever would have expected. I delivered the Christmas gift yesterday to a very happy Trooper, who will soon be unleashing them upon us on the table top!

Check out those ALDI Christmas trees :o)

See you across the table,


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