woensdag 30 november 2011

What to do in London when your stuck...

... so there you are, `stuck` in London as your return flight has been cancelled and you suddenly have hours to spare.

You take the DLR and the metro to disappear into the centre of town and go shopping for goodies. I managed to get me some nice thingies like a few PS3 games, a couple of manga and marvel comics, and a nice set of Gashapon models I only paid 5 pounds, the `Heroines of Gundam` series

zondag 27 november 2011

Doctor Doom

The Daytime Story of a Latverian Dictator

"Is there a doctor in the room"
"YES, I am DOCTOOORRR DOOOOOM and I'm in your rooooom"
"Em right... can you give me a hand soon?"
"NO, but I will lead you... to DOOOOOOOOOM"

... I`ll just get my coat now

vrijdag 25 november 2011

The Real Blondes

So, I`m a Marvel man in the first place, and barely have any Dc stable comics. I don`t know how that happened exactly, as both have their real strong stories, and both have their ultimate crap stories.
But I guess I like the X-Men just a lot more then I like the Justice League I think.

However, when i was shopping for Heroclix`s half a year ago in bulk lots, I managed to scoop up a couple of DC models as well, and I repainted two of them the last week. Both being minor characters, I would estimate B, or even C until recently, listers, Animal Man and Booster Gold have joined my ranks of future SuperSystem combattants.

"Buddy" Baker, aka Animal Man, has the power to copy abilities of animals. He didn`t have to high a mainstay in the comic line, until Mark Miller (of Ultimate Marvel`s universe fame) gave him a make-over and sales rised high.

Michael Jon Carter, aka Booster Gold, is a 25th century thief / timetraveller gone hero, kind of like Cpt Harkness of the Who-niverse. SyFy just recently ordered a pilot for a series involving Booster, so chances are if this takes of he will become a lot more popular in the not so far future...

woensdag 23 november 2011

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 28: Shiryu of Dragon God Cloth

The final instalment of the first batch of nine, but not the last cloth I have standing in my cabinet at all though.

When the bronze saints entered Elysium, and their cloths and the gold cloths send to help them where shattered, they managed to awaken their ultimate cosmo. This resulted in their bronze clothes, which had been repaired with blood of the godess Athena, to awaken to their divine state, equalling the kamuii armours of the gods themselves.

Shiryu`s cloth awakened together with Hyoga`s in the fight against Hypnos, and their combined attack defeated the God of Sleep easily, as they had observed his attack earlier and a Saint of Athena cannot be harmed by an attack he already witnessed.

The cloth is like the Hypnos cloth I reviewed earlier this week, sheer awesomeness, even though I`m not a fan of those God clothes at all. The downside on Shiryu is the same as on his normal bronze cloth, the click in claws to keep the shoulder guards in place. This can result in some frustrating balancing when assembling the model until it literally `all falls into place`.

The facial sculpt however is completely spot on, and the colouring of the cloth is absolutely gorgeous in it`s rich and vibrant light green and silver with golden details.

It also comes with a tail for the headpiece, using the same principle of interlocking pieces like Milo of Scorpio to give it flexibility. It is a heavy model with the large pieces cast in metal, but it is, just like Hypnos, perfectly balanced for display.

The God Cloths are top of the line in the series, both anime and manga alike, and after now reviewing two it also goes for the Myth Cloths. I am however only granting Shiryu a 4 due to the bloody shoulder lock system, but mind you, it is worth having this model in your collection!

maandag 21 november 2011

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 27: Hypnos, God of Sleep

Roight, let me put this straight, I don`t like the twins. Not one bid at all. In fact, the best moment for me was when the injured Manigoldo (and not only because of him, that was a bonus) smacked Thanatos on the cheek to fulfill his statement that he as a mortal could lay a hand on a god.

Glad I was when they where sealed away / defeated, depending if you watch The Lost Canvas or the Elysium chapter of the original series.

The twin Gods are the servants of Hades, protecting his body in Elysium and grooming the host for the next incarnation of Hades. They run many plots over a long period of years in order to achieve this goal, and Hypnos is the more relaxed and subtle of the two.

He focusses on manipulating people and his main attack is to put people, and even the Godess Athena, in a deep sleep they cannot awaken from (although Shun proves otherwise) except by his willing.

He is finally defeated by Hyoga and Shiryu when their cloths, having reached the divine state, combine their Cosmo to shatter the Eternal Drowsiness, then detroy his Kamuii.

The cloth on the other hand, I like...

It comes in a box the size of the God bornze cloths, but is even fatter, and it contains a LOT of parts, including even small rings to lock pieces in place like on the front of the chest piece.

The option of the white cloak is also included to wear over the kamuii, but then you cannot attach the whole `butterfly wing` construction, so I opted to not use the robe. It also contains a lot of metal pieces, so the model is quite heavy once completed.

An example of the incredible detail on this model is the waist section, as the robe is three layers of interlocking pieces over each other, with an `under robe`, then the large parts with all the moveable flaps at the bottom, and then on top of that hip guards. The helmet piece consists also of seperate wings attached to the headband.

Facial and hair sculpt are spot on (no glasses though for the Lost Canvas fans) and to top it all off, the model even is well balanced when not using the special Bandai stands.

It`s a great model. Sure, it is one of the more expensive clothes out there, going around the 100 euros mark on most websites, but it is worthwhile each and every penny for the collector and fan alike.

I`m rating this one no less then the 5 out of 5, for even though as I said I don`t like the character of Hypnos, there isn`t much not to like on the Myth cloth of Hypnos!

zondag 20 november 2011

Hero of the Empire

No, I`m not starting an Empire army at all.

I do however, plan to make a voyage to my personal holy land, Japan, in the second half of 2013, and I know myself. Aikiba district, the walhalla of all things anime, manga and videogame, is going to be my candy store, and I`ll be a very happy kid rabbling through it.

But that is going to cost buckets full of that lovely thing called money, so I`m gearing up to start saving some funds together with all my overdue, bought for some project I for the love of God can`t remember anymore, wargame thingies.

This bloke will be the first, I have some more Empire models and once they all are done, I`ll probably throw them on some barter forum or something, or even the evil bay. So if I can manage to get some regiments tweaked in between all the `regular` to do stuff, my goal of having around 5k `shopping pocket money` should be doable.

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 26: Krishna of Chrysaor

One of the Marina Generals of Poseidon, Krishna defended the Indian Ocean Pillar against Shiryu.

The scales come with the Golden Lance, a weapon said to be able to pierce the hardest material, it quickly makes short work of the Dragon cloth and the fabled Dragon shield. Shiryu finds himself grotesquely overpowered when the soul of Shura reaches out to him and tells him of the weapon hidden now in the Dragon Saint`s right arm: Excalibur.

Shiryu manages to break the lance with this fabled attack and the power of the Gold saints running in his cloth. Krishna then, like Shaka, starts using his spiritual energy to battle the dragon saint, but Shiryu manages to defeat him by hitting his chakra points.

The Chrysaor cloth was a welcome suprise to me. I`m not all that fond of the Poseidon designs, and didn`t had to many warm feelings when I added this gy to the collection, but assembly proved me wrong.

The combination of the colouring, together with the `halo` like device behind Krishna`s head, gives this model a certain regal look, dignified as it may.

The assembly itself doesn`t give to much problems, it follows the pattern we have gotten used to with the generals with thier chest locking over waist armour, and the usual parts are in metal. He also comes with two `zen` hands, for those who want to build him in his barechested pose as he fights once the Golden Lance had been destroyed.

Facial sculpt and hair sculpt are finely executed, the only drawback is, like I said with others before, a drawback generated by me not using the special stands Bandai has for the line. If you want to stabilize him for display without the clamp stands, you have to spread his legs just a bit to far open resulting in the waist armour not nicely closing together. But that isn`t an influence on his rating, and against even my own expectations, I`m granting this model a royal 4 out of 5, it is definitly worth the buy!

zaterdag 19 november 2011

Tribute to First of Many

No, this isn`t a tribute to the Borg or some other mass alien invasion race from movie X or serie Y.

This is a tribute to the single most important figure in any wargames army, wether it be fantasy, sci-fi or historical.

He is included in every force, or enjoy a happy old day in a relegated borderpost called display cabinet.

No, I`m not talking about the General. Nor the Standard Bearer, and it ain`t the Mythical Hero either.

First of Many is the valiant soul that fights shoulder to shoulder with the troops. A Thousand Death's are his destiny, he will march many miles, and run many more.

He will face off against cavalry, dragon or tank alike. He will dodge bullets, evade laser beams, survive artillery barrages and block sword strokes.

He will gather around his flag, and will be prepared to lay down his life for the ultimate goal in order to secure victory for your forces.

He is First of Many, he is that very first Rank and File model you paint up in order to test the colour scheme of the army to come...

Magic The Gathering - What Bulk...?

With the Library of Blue project now 3 / 4 ths done, I started to gather together all the various Magic Cards cluttering around and put them orderly together in boxes... and then you realise that they start to tally up together quite massively

All this was gathered together SINCE Crisis, where I dumped the previous lot, the size of the plastic case in the picture, on the Bring and Buy, so this is what I managed to get together in only 2 weeks time. Yes, buying joblots tends to do this to a collection, as well as playing in sanctioned and non-sanctioned draft events.

So now it is time to start loosing some of those cards. Quite a lot in fact, so i`m going to trade them off for things outside the Library. I realise that the cards needed there aren`t around in my gaming groups, so I`ll be buying the missing pieces off from sites like MTG.be and such. These boxes full of commons, uncommons and rares will get till like new year to be traded away, otherwise I`ll just have to look around for a way to get them to go somewhere, but those are worries I`m not worrying about for now.

Of course, Magic blue isn`t the only card sets I collect. Last week, i FINALLY completed my Saint Seiya english version collection so I now have each and every card of that game printed in english (2 starter series and 1 set of boosters)...

... so the time has come to complete another of my card collections. Yes, i`m a collector first and a player second.

The second edition of Decipher`s Star Trek CCG, black borders. And probably after the core set of 400+ cards, I`m starting the various expansions of this now long defunct game, so it shouldn`t be to expensive to get them, though it might prove a challenge to actually find the ones I still need.

Roight, off to make a checklist for the Trekkie cards then it is, ciao ciao

donderdag 17 november 2011

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 25: Shun of Andromeda v2

Sweet Shun, gentle Shun... girly Shun. This impression of Shun being a girl at first wasn`t helped for my generation of Club Dorothee viewers, when the saint was initially portrayed with a female voice. After a few episodes, the frenchies saw their mistake and he got a more manly voice, but the fact that he sported a double D equipped pink cloth didn`t help either of course.

Shun is a pacifist, not happy to kill his opponents and trying to force them to surrender with the use of his Nebula Chains, but he has on the other hand the most deadly, not lethal to himself, attack of the fabulous five with his Nebula Storm. This attack was first seen in his battle vs Pisces Aphrodite as he can raise the power of the attack indefinitly.

Shun fights out of loyalty. Loyalty to Athena, to his frieds and most of all, out of a loyalty to prove himself to his brother, the Phoenix saint Ikki, who had taken his place as an orphan as Shun was first picked to go after the Phoenix cloth.

When the other bronze saints frequently gotten the aid of their master`s gold cloths in times of severe peril, Shun can pull a better a rabbit out of his hat, the incredibly strong Ikki, a man who cannot be more different then his brother as Nachi once remarked.

Now, I don`t like this cloth at all. The facial sculpt is not accurate, and for some reason it just looks `wrong` in an out of scale way, not really representing the delicate nature of Shun. I can`t quite put my finger on it why this is the case, it is just something that caught my eye when placing him in the display cabinet after assembly.

The cloth does come with three sets of chains, two metal and one plastic. One of the metal versions is the longer one that winds across the cloth when in object mode, the shorter one is the one I used around the arms. The third, a plastic one, can be bend and positioned to represent attacks like the Rolling Defense, but as it is normal with plastics, looks not shiny and rather out of place if added to the model.

The legs, underarms and chest of the model are also metal parts, and it is a very simple assembly to make a cloth out of a humanoid object, not to much this or that`s to go around. But still, not really a top cloth for my tastes, so I`m going to have to rate this one only a measly 1 out of 5 on my `Tomsche Scale of Subjective Saint Ratings` or `TSSSR` for short ;)

Ciao ciao

dinsdag 15 november 2011

To find my Spiritia Competitia back...

I had it burried for years. My `competitive spirit` was burried deep down together with the last tournament I played, when I witnessed some disgusting rulings and plays by `the local team`.

I founded `the Far Side` then, it`s goal to play other things in a friendly campaing like spirit and I managed for years to take the units that i found that looked `cool` over the units that are worth their points in gold.

But I feel my `Spiritia Competitia` reawekening recently. Partly fired back up by Magic: The Gathering (though I still only play mono Blue over the more effective decks possible), partly by the planned return to Games Workshop games.

I don`t blame those games per se though, I blame myself as I start to feel that gnawing feeling underneath to play competitively again, see some fresh opponents and rumble a bit around in smaller tournaments.

I played my very first sanctioned DCI last week, ending 7th out of 12. I`m rebuilding and repainting my Warhammer and Warhammer 40.000 forces.

Mind you, when i was younger, I played sports (korfball, soccer, some other thingies) and I am the first to admit I had to have it more of my `grinta` (that`s bulldoggy determination for those not knowing) then of talent. The same went with wargames, the refusal to just give up if things started to go sour netted me a good amount of `come back against all odds` wins.

So I`m appologising in advance to my regular game group. I know myself, I know that if it blazes back to it`s old heights, I`ll be building my forces again with the `destruction above all else` philosophy in mind.

Yes, I`m going to come after you, your asses will all be owned. I am after all, the leader in the alltime Far Side board!


Editorial: yes, this was pure psych propaganda to scare the heck out of you for the 6mm Future War Commander campaign starting friday

maandag 14 november 2011

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 24: Milo of Scorpio

Another day, another episode in my Myth cloth marathon... and this time another of the Gold saints, Milo of Scorpio.

I never quite liked the `silent assassin` of the Sanctuary, even though in the anime he was the first one to be revealed by rank and fully armoured, showing the audience a glimpse of the `ultimate` saint class of Athena.

Since his main technique inflicts immense pain to its victims, Milo always gives his opponents the option to either surrender, or become insane due to the unbearable pain. He also sees great importance in the pride of the Gold Saints and seems to be always ready to clean the name of his companions. Even so, he is a noble warrior who can admit defeat even against a weaker or inferior enemy. Since Milo fought Hyoga, he spoke to Aquarius Camus in a way that led the fans to believe they were close friends. This is something we`re also starting to see in the Lost Canvas anime, where he and the Aquarius saint stand before Hades`s Castle right before the end of season 2, and will be explored more in season 3 when it comes out apparently. yes, I read spoilers and fanscans of the manga`s...

I always thought of Milo as one of the weakest Gold saints, as his main attack, the Scarlett Needle, hits the opponent 12 times before the final blow, Antares, makes the 13th hit and kills the enemy. In many a Saint Seiya fight, I can`t imagine you even getting the time to attack 13 times...

After the battle in the Twelve Houses ended, to atone for his actions, Milo used his own blood to repair the Cygnus Bronze Cloth.

In the Hades arc, he faces off against an unarmoured and non defending Kanon, the Sea Dragon general of the Poseidon arc, who has come to help Athena and don the Gemini cloth of his deceased twin Saga.
After he finished, Kanon fell into a bloody mess in the ground. Milo apologized to Athena and walked to the exit, but before he could exit, Kanon rose and asked him if he would leave Athena with an enemy. Milo only said that in that room there was no enemy, only a fellow Gold Saint, Gemini Kanon. After Milo finally returned to the Scorpio house, Kanon told Athena that Milo had only been testing his loyalty, and that the last attack was not Antares, but a fake hit which stopped his hemorrhage (similar to what he did to cure Hyoga in the Sanctuary Arc).

After Milo was defeated by Rhadamantys, he escaped from Cocytus to finally fall before the Wailing Wall, when he and his brothers-in-arms made the ultimate sacrifice for the Gold Saints of Athena, breeching the obstacle and allowing the bronze saints passage to Elysium.

The cloth itself, like all the Gold saints, is one of the older sculpts in the range, and has some weaknesses, but I must say they aren`t to big on Milo. His facial sculpt is okay, the hair has a nice flowing aspect to them including the `ruffed` looking pieces at the front of his head, and it comes with a right hand with red fingernail for the Scarlett Needle attack.

The blessing (and curse if your all thumbs like me) comes in the tail of the headpiece, which is made up of small, connecting links to make it able to `flow` as the builder wishes. It`s a bit of tieny wieny work to get those all nicely lined up, and I suggest to future buyers that you do it onto the head piece right untill it would reach the neck of the model, then put the headpiece, and if you want alos the cloak, onto the model. After that, continue linking up till you get to the bauble at the end.

The usual parts are metal with the legs, chestpiece, under arms, etcetera. It`s not to shabby a model at all, and certainly the better of the three Gold saints that i got with this huge lot. I as such would rate it 3.5 out of 5, and he makes a nice addition to any collector`s collection... but since your a collection, the saints are like Pokemon, you gotta catch `em all is it not ;)

zondag 13 november 2011

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 23: Aiolia of Leo

The Golden Lion! Burning with a fierce Cosmo, Aiolia is certainly one of the most fierce fighters amongst the Gold saints, possessing the fastest attack amongst the twelve constellations of the Zodiac with his Lightning Plasma, an attack exceeding the speed of light.

Aiolia is shown as a reference in the Sanctuary due to his righteousness and strength. He is the young brother of Sagittarius Aiolos, considered a traitor that attempted to kill Athena when she was still a baby. Due to this, Aiolia works hard to prove his loyalty to the goddess and erase the shame his brother's actions bestowed upon them. Even during the time Aiolia thought Aiolos was a traitor, he showed immense respect toward his memory.

He is one of the first Gold saints revealed in the series, even though he works along Marin in the Sanctuary without the audience being told he is one of the strongest saints of Athena, comming over as just a `good, strong and dependable` guy. I can only imagine how he wanted to don the Leo cloth when Argol of Perseus slaughtered those three children trying to escape from Sanctuary, and I doubt that Medusa shield would have stood up against the mighty warrior.

He is later in the series brainwashed by the Pope and defends the Leo house against Seiya, only to be freed from the Emperor`s Demon Punch when Cassios, love stricken by Shaina and helping Seiya as he can`t see his beloved mistress in pain over the Pegasus saint, sacrifices himself.

When Poseidon awakens, Aiolia wanted to travel to the underwater Sanctuary to help out the bronze saints, but is stopped as the remaining Gold saints have to prepare for the war to come... the return of Hades. While fighting the Spectres, we get to see a fraction of his power as he easily swaps away a dozen of the dark warriors in a single attack, before the Worm spectre raimi caught him in his tentacles.

he is later defeated by Rhadamantys together with Mu and Milo due to the aura of Hades, and eventually perishes in front of the Wailing Wall together with all the other Gold saints as they use the ultimate attack to breach it, granting the bronze saints a way into Elysium.

So we move onwards to the cloth. First of all, it is one of the older Gold models, and the sculpting shows. His face isn`t really that great, and the helmet is just, well, goofy looking. I know they made him as an EX, and he certainly looks an awful lot better, but as I said with Mu yesterday, the waist of those models is just over the top for my taste.

The cloth assembles pretty straightforward though, and the usual suspects are cast in metal. You ceratinly don`t need a degree in rocket science to put this bloke together, and apart from the helmet - it really is oversized - is a nice representation of the anime cloth`s version.

As with most of the Gold saints, I chose to include the cloak as well, it just makes them look more `regal` and it will only be with two or three that I`m leaving it off, namely the `older` blokes that don`t fight personally in the Sanctuary assault in their houses.

It ain`t a shabby buy to get this version of Aiolia, as you can grab it all over the net and on fairs for a real cheap price, certainly now with the EX on the market, but I cannot honestly rate this model very highly even though I kinda like the fella`s spirit. He might have been born in Greece according to the background story, I bet it was from Irish immigrants ;) but I can only give him a 1 out of 5, the face and helmet are just to wrong. A shame, but inderstandable if you see the age of the model compared to a lot of the newer ones.

Now I just hope that kitty ain`t comming back to avenge this poor score and smack me around...

zaterdag 12 november 2011

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 22: Mu of Aries

After the master, it is time for the pupil. Gold Saint Mu of Jamir, cloth repairer and Aries saint.

Under the tutelage of Shion, the Pope of the Sanctuary, Mu was able to become the Gold Saint of Aries at a young age. While all gold saints have a base of psychic powers to some degree, Mu has been stated to possess the strongest raw psychic talent among all living gold saints.

Mu is very soft spoken, with a scholarly-like personality: his demeanor is very tranquil and logical, almost as if he is a professor of the Sanctuary.

Before the start of the series, Mu removed himself from Sanctuary after suspecting that his mentor (and then-Pope), Aries Shion, had been quietly assassinated. He relocated to Jamir, a mystical land that only those with a high level of either psychic or Cosmo power can enter. From here, Mu severed all ties to Sanctuary and lived a life of solitude with his apprentice, the young psychic Kiki. It wasn't until years later, when he met Dragon Shiryu and Pegasus Seiya, that he began to become involved in the affairs of Sanctuary again.

Although he has left Sanctuary many years ago, Mu was bound by duty to return to Sanctuary when Saori Kido declares that she is Athena, and challenges the Pope for leadership of Sanctuary. When the Bronze Saints were sent to make their run through the 12 Temples, they see that Aries Mu was the guardian of the first temple. Instead of fighting them, Mu tells the Bronze Saints that their Cloth withstood small amounts of damage over the past battles, and asks them to spend 1 hour here so he could repair them. He also reveals to the Bronze Saints about the "Seventh Sense," the strongest cosmo that is mastered by the Gold Saints.

During the war against Poseidon's Marine Generals, Leo Aiolia wanted to join the Bronze Saints to save Athena. Unable to stand still, with the knowledge that the weaker Bronze Saints are battling overwhelming odds, enemies powerful than them, and even confronting a God - decides to leave the House of Leo and head off to Atlantis to help the Bronze saints. However, Mu reveals that under orders of Roshi (who acts as second-in-command of Sanctuary due to the death of the Grand Pope, and the absence of Athena - and him being the Eldest of the Gold Saints) all the Gold Saints must remain in Sanctuary, to prepare themselves for "the war that is ahead."

Not to much can be said about this cloth that I didn`t say in the review of Shion yesterday, as the cloths are almost identical. The surplice is a `dark version` of the gold cloth, differing only in details of `pointiness`. What is the case however, is that Shion`s face, being one of the recenter sculpts, is a bit better done then Mu, but Mu has the long flowing ponytail he sports in the series.

One nice little gimmick though, and which I included in my pose of the model, is the fact that Mu`s tools are included in the set to repair damaged cloths. it`s a nice touch in my opinion, reflecting his role in the series pre- Hades - Sanctuary arc, where he rises more to the front like the other gold saints.

It`s certainly not a bad model to have in your display cabinets, and you won`t pay exurberant prices to find his classic version like I have on the net, even though there is now also an EX version of him out. I don`t really like those though, even if they are more detailed and articulated, I have issues with that`s line uberthin waists, so I`ll stick with the classic Myth cloths. But at the end of the road, I`m rating Mu a 2.5 / 5 for the above mentioned reasons, nothing spectacular, nothing really wrong, just a `one of the boys` set.

vrijdag 11 november 2011

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 21: Shion of Aries

Remember my surplice question from Garuda... still waiting for an answer?

The second of the huge lot I talked about that I won is another surplice, this time one of the `undercover` dead gold saints, Shion of Aries.

Survivor of the last Holy War together with Dohko of Libra, Shion went on to become the new pope of Sanctuary. After he became pope, he started training an apprentice cloth repairer who would become the new Aries saint, and he found this disciple in Mu, also hailing from Jamir.

After Athena had once again reincarnated as a human infant after more than two centuries, Shion began preparations for the inevitable war. He understood that, due to old age, his own time would soon be up, and therefore needed to choose a successor for his seat. With the exception of Sagittarius Aiolos and Gemini Saga, all of the Gold Saints were too young and inexperienced to take up the responsibilities. After a lengthy time of consideration, Shion eventually settled on the Gold Saint of Sagittarius. While Aiolos was not as powerful as Saga, Shion felt confident in his choice because he knew of Aiolos' undying loyalty to Athena and undeniable devotion to virtue.

Unfortunately, Shion was confronted by Saga in regards to his decision shortly after the announcement. It seems Saga felt discontent at Shion's choice, and demanded an explanation for it. Shion revealed that, while he acknowledged that Saga had a heavenly reputation and was the more powerful of the two, he could not help but sense something terrifyingly dark within the Gemini Saint. It is at this point that Saga confirmed Shion's suspicions, and assaulted the weary Pope with a deathblow.

In the Underworld, the realm of the dead, it was announced that Hades would attack the Sanctuary and unleash the Greatest Eclipse on Earth, this left the dead Saints in a predicament, because they were dead and unable to do anything, but opportunity rose when Hades told them that, if they killed Athena they would live again then, not even death could keep Shion away from aiding Athena in her Holy War against Hades. Even after years since his assassination, Shion returned from death to help Athena and the current Saints with a way to get into the realm of the Dead. Originally, it was assumed that Shion, along with other deceased Saints such as Saga, Shura, Camus, Deathmask, and Aphrodite, had sold their soul to Hades in exchange of resurrection and returned to Sanctuary to kill Athena. It turned out that this was a grand scheme by the former Pope and the dead Saints in order to get a message to Athena — that she must die and awaken her 8th sense if she hoped to successfully defeat Hades within his domain.

After the message had been delivered, Shion met with the Bronze Saints Seiya, Shiryū, Hyōga, and Shun to inform them of the truth of what had taken place with the Gold Saints and Athena. Perhaps as a nod to his apprentice's talents for armor reparation, Shion instantly restored all four Saints' individual Cloths using the blood of Athena. Finally, with his last act as the Grand Pope, Shion commanded the young Bronze Saints to invade the realm of the dead — they shall not stop until every Specter had been killed, and Hades himself was on his knees.

In the manga, it is at this point that Shion's restored body gave way and the former Aries perished into dust. In the anime adaptation the event is depicted in the same way, although Shion lasted until near sun rise; prior to disappearing for good, Shion once more united with his old friend Dohko to share past times for a brief moment.

The cloth itself comes in a deep and rich purple, but as the popquiz goes, it keeps eluding me what colour they really are. I still tend to vote to go with the scheme used on the Athena Exclamation limited edition statues, where they are a grey overal with purple details.

But, this is one beautiful model. Shion`s face is spot on and eminates the regality he had in the Hades arc, with his waving green mane of hair completely possible to recreate IF one uses the helmetless set. I however prefer to not do this, as all my cloths are `fully armoured` and wearing their headpieces for display.

The usual parts come in metal, like leg pieces, underarm, chest etc etc, and the colour is consignent between metal and plastic parts. The model assembles really nicely and doesn`t suffer from balance issues to pose it, as I went for the outstretched arm pose from the moment the Hades Surplice Gold Saints (is that even a term?) revealed themselves to Mu from under their cloaks.

There is one detail you should really pay attention to: the eyes. This models eyes colouring job is so greatly done I thought I would just mention it on the go along.

I`m rating this a 4 out of 5 stars Myth cloth, as one of the `new generation` aka the people that got into Saint Seiya through Next Dimension or Lost Canvas, iconic characters looks great in his `evil` incarnation!

Ciao Ciao

2012... the year my PS3 will go overdrive

Why oh why did I preorder Star Wars the Old Republic and Guild Wars 2? Just kidding of course, because the former has light sabers and the latter is just a cool game - at least the first was - and setting. And it has Mesmers.

But there is going to be so much more on the digital gaming horizon for little ol` me, as two of my all time favorite franchises - heck, make that THE two franchises period - from animeverse are on the roll.

The first, and if you peek around my blog that should be no suprise at all, is Saint Seiya: Samctuary. A Dynasty Warriors style game where you take the `fab 5` through Sanctuary and past the Gold Saints in order to save Athena, just like the original series.
Take a look here for pictures and trailers. Yes it is in japanese, but it is very simple to understand: click on a character and then on the movie icon when one is already available.
The asian release is next week, but european release is estimated half of february, I just HOPE we europeans get a chance to get the limited edition set that comes with a myth cloth. I`m so going to be scouring Play Asia for this.

But there`s more, on a blog I follow, Gundam Guy, there was a post yesterday about the release of Unicorn for PS3. Playing the same style as ACE, this is going to give me some more mecha power after Gundam 3 to enjoy!

2012, the year my Playstation will be doing looooong hours...

donderdag 10 november 2011

Building an Arcane Fulcrum

About a month ago, a combination of several factors made me start dusting off my old chaos dwarfs again. At that same time, I joined the Chaos Dwarf Online forum, where I`d been a lurker for quite a few years but never bothered to register before. You know, one more forum to check up upon every evening etc.

That day, I also discovered a tread for what is called the Artisan`s Competition, edition 11, in which the participants build something / write something or the likes, and this theme was building an Arcane Fulcrum from the Warhammer Storms of Magic supplement. I decided to enter!

And then realisation dawned... First of all, I`mm all thumbs in building, converting, sculpting etc department. Second of all, I had one week to build, paint and picture something, so the race was on.

The idea I had was a geyser of magma upon which floated an obsidian platform.

The base materials I could rummage out of my bits and junk boxes for this where a pedestal from the old Klingon AMT bird of prey kit (the vessel I trashed to create a Pulp scenery piece for about 1.5 years ago), an empty package of a roll of silk tape, a plate of resin tiled roof of about 2 inch square and a new package of standard yellow grey Miliput I bought once (unnecessary) for a piece of home improvement works...

Once all this was added together, the `sculpting` part started with greenstuff, the idea being to sculpt on flames to surround the ring, and to add an idol of Hashut in the magma to break up the monotonous look.

The whole contraption was then sprayed black, so that can of Chaos Black that stands here for more then 3 years got some use as well. You see, I usually undercoat with a brush and a variety of colors depending what overall color the models have to become.

The first base color was painted on, and the lines for the obsidian / black marble on the ring added

First highlights are then added to the whole shaboodle. At this point, I read the Dreadfleet issue of WD detailing the lava in one of the scenery pieces, and I thought to give that a try to contrast more with the still hot burning flames.

The whole Fulcrum was then painted, the flames taking the longest time of the model as it where 6 colours over each other.

Steam was added to the inner ring, and the base sanded for painting. The rune of Clan Vongalazthag, a stylised `V` that represents a bulls horns in a kind of way topped of the tile on the top for the wizard to stand on during the battles.

The base was then painted gray with a lava effect to go with the rest of my army, and the steam got some black and red inks dispersed through it to make it look a bit nicer. With that, the whole thing was complete and ready to be entered into the competition.

It ended up in the end an unexpected 4th out of 9 entries, netting 2 votes (and I never vote for myself mind you, in not one competition), which is more then I expected. There where some awesome entries in the thing, the winner was well deserved (Who that was? Just head over to CDO then and admire it on the front page, it`s worth it I assure you) and I was glad to do a small drop for all the Dawi Zharr out there!

Ciao Ciao

Saint Seiya Myth Cloth review # 20: Dragon Shiryu v3

As some might have read on other more related fora like Saint Seiya Fan or the home of my gamegroup, the Tin Soldiers of Antwerp, I managed to get my hands on a sweet deal from ebay for Myth cloths.
The person I bought my Lionet saint from a while ago offered no less then 38 clothes, all starting at 1 euro opening bid, and I made a bid on each and every one of them (that I didn`t yet have), centered around 5 to 10 euros under the price they cost me if I have to get them from `my regular sources` and since they come from belgium, shipping was not going to kill me this time over.
In the end, I won 9 of them knocking me back including postage around 350 euros, and even though it killed my intended budget for Crisis (which, in the end, I didn`t need as I didn`t had shopping time anyways) I was a very happy camper.
The cloths I got from this deal where Dragon v3 and Andromeda 2, Dragon God, Hypnos, the gold Aries, Leo and Scorpio, Aries Shion and Marina general Chrysaor.

So let`s have a look of the first of those I assembled, Dragon Shiryu in his 3rd anime version of the cloth, which is the version he receives at the beginning of the Hades: Sanctuary chapter when the cloths are once more repaired, this time with the blood of Athena herself.

He is considered the most mature of the five heroes, and thus the wisest. As the Bronze Saint of the Dragon constellation, Shiryu dons the emerald Dragon Bronze Cloth, a jewel among the Cloths due to its legendary defense properties. Out of all five main characters, Shiryu is known as the calmest and most collected. His sheer physical strength is the greatest of the Bronze Saints, with the possible exception of Phoenix Ikki. This is reflected in his ability to win numerous battles without his Dragon Cloth. Shiryu trained at the Five Peaks in China to obtain the Bronze Cloth of the Dragon constellation, and his mentor was none other than the senior Gold Saint, Libra Dohko.
The Bronze Cloth of Dragon is legendary for the large shield on its left arm guard. Its reputation is unmatched by any other Cloth among Athena's Saints, and only very few have ever shattered it. The Dragon Cloth itself is noted for its ultimate durability, as it spent the last 200 years bathed under the mineral-rich waterfall of the Rozan mountains, which made it harder than diamonds. This is the origin of its nickname "The strongest Fist and Shield".

So let`s put this guy together then. First of, I wanna point out that there is something I don`t like at all on the Dragon saint, and that is the way the shoulder pads are attached. You `lock` them in place by putting them rather loosely on the shoulders of the model, then the small dragon arms from the object are attached to the back of the model and `click` the armour in place.
I can imagine what a nightmare this should become once the wear starts to set in from assembling the cloth and object a few times as some like to do every so often. Not the best of systems in my book.

Secondly, I`m a bit biased about Shiryu. First time he did the `eye thing` against Argol of Perseus it was quite spectacular, but since then they have been going on and off like a lightbulb, and the gimmick really gets annoying. He`s one of the most popular of the fab five, yet he never really did anything to me to make him like him.

The cloth itself is otherwise easy to assemble, like most bronze saints, there aren`t that much parts due to the cloths being `lighter` in protection then the full plated Gold Saints or Marina Generals, class difference et all.
The `traditional` pieces are in metal like the legs and arms, the chest main piece and the likes, as is the case for most clothes. It also comes with an `Excalibur` hand, which I used for his pose, and I wanted to raise the shield arm a tat more upwards so the `sword` and the shield would be crossing each other, but see above for the shoulder issue, this kept popping loose then if I raised the arm to high.

The cloth is a beautiful green colouring though, but I`m not rating it to high due to the shoulder issue, which made it a bit disappointing overal for me, so I`m going to put this guy down in my glass cabinet with a 3 out of 5 after his name, points mainly gained due to the colouring of the cloth, and a nice facial sculpt.

Ciao ciao and till the next time!

woensdag 9 november 2011

Zargath of the Burning Flame

Zargath is the gatekeeper of the Obsidian Stringhold, the home ziggurat of the Clan Vongalazthag. For as long as anyone can remember, when he is not on the battlefield he stands above the gatehouse, peering over the desolate plains in search or threads to his clan.
Some invaders rumour he has long been petrified and that his body only serves as a repellant symbol, but when he unleashes his martial prowess on the battlefield, hefting his obsidian bladed axe, many of those rumours come to a brusk end... often together with the rumourspreaders.

Accompanying are a pair of pet Firespitters, vicious creatures born from the plains of lava. Their bodies are pure magma, topped with obsidian carapaces.
Thoug if caught by an early age, they can be domesticated and trained to become the equivalent of a pair of strong hunting dogs, though it is generally advised to always keep a pair of them, they tend to engage in fireball spitting games which if they ain`t shooting at each other can make a mess of anyone`s furniture.
They are also totally sucked out of my thumb because I had those beasts lying around from the Monsterpocalypse game, and I won`t be knocking up any rules for them.
When Zargath will do duty as the champion in a blunderbuss regiment, these fella`s will be placed right behind him as a unit filler and `count as` a normal warrior armed with the `buss.

zaterdag 5 november 2011

Crisis 2011: the aftermath

So it was upon us Tin Soldiers again, the annual Crisis show in Antwerp. Two hectic days of running around, loading and unloading and basically doing `stuff`. Friday started with the set up and unloading of traders unot the premises, saturday I spended most of my time in the BnS to end with the annual buffet, and with the `big news` for the futre editions, which of course will only be revealed here as well as soon as it is officially official.

So lets have a look at this years show, step by step as I worked my way around the halls at slightly after midday. The TSA news service presents you: Crisis 2011, the walk about!

A view from the trenches.

So we start in the back corner of the BnS, a view I had most day as it has been so far the most succesful show ever, clocking of apparently around 1200 paying entrants. Yes, once more it got very hot in there, but as TSA member I can only once more appologise for this, being a centre in the cinema complex, we have no influence on the climate control.

Now that bend forward guy has always been one of my `Hobby Heroes`. Mike McVey still owns me a villa with tennis court and swimming pool, for it was his gorgeously wood elf army waaaay back in WD 160 something that sparked my warhammer intrest as a 15 year old. I told him as such, he appologised for it (okay, that was tongue in cheeck for those taking it all to literally). Still, it is kinda special really getting a chat in with people you admired, which during unloading on friday is way easier then the hectics of saturday or other shows in full swing.

The main hall was crowded, and I had the impression that people stayed longer then other years, instead of doing the fast buy, they tended to give their eyes a feasting. And probably their wallet a depression...

Busy trade stands and crowded corridors, a lot of money seemed to be changing hands and I think quit a lot of people have serious loot stashes.

But of course a wargame convention is so much more then trades, shopping sprees, bring and buyes, meeting people and the likes, it is also about the centre piece of many a show: the Eye Candy

One thing I noticed in this years `trend` seems to be a return of the French - Indian wars, or FIW for short, with a couple of games on display, while there seemed to be procentually far less world war 2 Flames of War based games on display.

This game I really liked a lot due to it`s simplicity in design. `Papierslag` by Schild en Vriend (literally translating as Paper Battle) was played with cut out two diminesional models. It`s is not because I count Phil Dutré as one of my `convention chaps` that I`m in any way biased. I just loved the `bordering` of the playing table with those paper rows of scenery, I thought it gave a GREAT effect.

Now I must confess, I saw all the tables, but I can`t give any information on who ran the games for my report this time. It was a hectic two days, and I had to `do` the whole hall in about 15 minutes, taking the snapshots for the TSA unofficial blog report, which you are reading right now by the way, and didn`t even went on a serious shopping trip, more of that in my conclusion later on... but boy, did I forget to grab things!

So, the Loot then...

In hindsight, I forgot way to much things I wanted to get... so after show orders will be made soonish

From Black Cat, I did get their very cute limited edition model this year, the cat rolling on her back, but forgot to get that crate with hands comming out, I thought that would be a cool `filler` in a unit of Chaos Dwarfs. One mail order comming up soonish...

I also forgot to get to dax Magic, there was a heap of stuff I needed for painting and converting, inks and the likes. I`ll have to catch up with them probably at the Red Barons show in the first part of 2012 then.

I also forgot to grab me the smaller of the two different army deals for Mantic`s Abysmal Dwarfs, as well as some packs of Green Stuff from Army Painter.

And I forgot to get me a copy of the Storm of Magic wfb supplement.

But I`m happy with what I DID get though, a Great Taurus and 2 Hobgoblin command group blisters for 20 euros, and a very old Citadel (1988 series) Azakil Bonecrusher Chaos Dwarf. I also got some paints from Coat D`Arms, and the above mentioned Black Cat limited model as well as the Mercator limited edition for the Crisis show give away. I also grabbed me some dice, but they are actually under the box in the picture, a 10 piece set of burgundy and gold d6s, excellent for my Dawi Zharr...

And so the show ends for me, with in about 5 minutes from now a load snoaring and hopefully more then the 4 hours average sleep of the past days.

Ciao Ciao for now!