The Comm Guild Maelstrom's Edge

Entries tagged [gaming]

Modeling Spotlight: Epirian Victory Point Tracker

Posted on Tuesday Jan 23, 2018 at 11:19AM in General

- by Iain Wilson

Victory. The elusive mistress that haunts our gaming hours. How do we capture her? Well, in Maelstrom's Edge, we do it by counting up Victory Points, and hopefully winding up with more of them than our opponents. The Battle for Zycanthus box includes Victory Point trackers along with the plethora of tokens and markers found within, but I decided that I wanted something with a little more spectacle, and so I built myself a VP tracker for my Epirian force.

This all started with a rough concept sketch, to get an idea of how things should fit together.

I then made a quick mockup in cardboard, as a sort of proof of concept, and to get a better feel for the size it needed to be.

The main body of the tracker is made from layers of 2mm thick plasticard. Each layer was marked out in pencil and then cut out and the edges smoothed down.

To show the current VP total, there are two dials with the numbers 0-9 marked around the edge. These are cut from thinner plasticard, with a spacer added on the top surface so that the face with the numbers on it doesn't rub against the inside of the tracker's front.

The windows for the VP display are made from a couple of trapezoid windows from the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue. I used a razor saw to slice through the windows just behind the interior bracing, to make them a little thinner and so that the bracing would sit flush against the front plate of the tracker.

From there, I cut a couple of trapezoid holes in the front plate to match up to the large openings in the windows, and then added a bunch of detail with various pieces of plasticard.

In the bottom corner, I added a rotary switch for tracking how many times the special faction objective has been tapped.

With detailing complete, it was time to paint!

I basecoated the tracker with Army Painter Army Green spray, and used some flat black spray on the VP dials and the rotary switch.

I wanted some metal detail on the tracker to break up the colour a little, so re-basecoated some appropriate spots with some black. I also added a little black inside the side openings for the dials, just to avoid having the white plastic showing through when it was assembled.

The metal parts then received a drybrush of P3 Pig Iron, and some weathering added with Vallejo Heavy Charcoal applied lightly with a sponge.

The numbers for the VP dials were drawn up on black circles in Gimp and then printed out, cut to shape and glued onto the plastic dials.

Finally, the front plate was glued in place, and the screen painted with some Ultramarine Blue and shaded with Army Painter Blue Tone.

My plan is to make up some smaller versions of the mission cards to sit in the screen cavity.

And then, of course, the next step will be to make some similarly themed trackers for my Karists and Broken!

Have you built anything unusual for your Maelstrom's Edge games? We would love to see your creations on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

You can find the entire Maelstrom's Edge range in the webstore here.

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the article roundup here.

'The Broken' Rules - Part 1: What Else is Coming?

Posted on Friday Oct 06, 2017 at 11:43AM in Gaming

If you haven't checked out the rules for our new Broken units yet, you can find them here. There's both unit cards and also a summary PDF that contains all the necessary info regarding the Broken's weapons, abilities and equipment.

The Broken represent a departure from how our previous two factions, the Epirian Foundation and the Karist Enclave, were developed. In the case of those two, upfront we had a solid road map of all of the units that were going to be included in the starter set, so we knew there was enough unit variety right out of the gate for a player to comfortably field an entire force. However, for the Broken, it become apparent that the basic Rabble infantry kit was going to be finished before any other models in the range, so the question then became: Do we sit on this infantry kit for several months in order to build up enough different types of Broken units to have more of a 'full faction' release, or do we instead release the kit as soon as we can, and just fill in the rest of the range as other models are finished being designed/sculpted? Once we saw how amazing the Broken Rabble kit turned out in its final form, the choice was easy. We knew both Maelstrom Edge players and general miniature game hobbyists everywhere were going to love it, so it just didn't make sense to hold its release back. Because of that, the Broken faction will continually evolve bit by bit, as we're able to add more models to the range. The good thing is that we're finally at a point where you'll be seeing much more regular model releases from us (the current target is once per month), which means that if you're a budding Broken player, you won't be waiting forever to get new reinforcements.

The next question we had to answer was: should we release rules for all the Broken units we plan on making in the future (even if there won't be models finished for those units for a while), or should we instead just put out rules piecemeal as we release new models? There are positive and negative aspects with either path, but ultimately the decision came down to the fact that the rules/options for a unit often need to be tweaked based upon how the sculptor turns out the final model(s), including how many optional bits they are able to fit onto the sprue. For example, if we were to put out rules for every Broken unit we plan to make in the future, invariably talented hobbyists would convert some of their existing models to create these 'future' units. But when the final production versions of those models are eventually finished, it might turn out that we needed to change the unit's rules and/or eliminate some equipment choices, thereby leaving those who took the time to make their own versions suddenly out in the cold. We ultimately decided to just release rules for the units that we currently have available, and we're exploring new ways to make publishing these rules both easy and convenient. We've just gotten an online unit card system up and running on our website, and we're pushing to get to a full force creation system integrated into this as well. Once we have a solid collection of Broken units available, we will be looking at avenues to create/publish a full faction book for the Broken, but for the time being, any rules we publish online are considered 'playtest' rules, and we absolutely welcome any feedback you guys might have. You can leave this feedback either in the Maelstrom's Edge forum on Dakka, or you can email us directly at rules-AT-spiralarmstudios-DOT-com.

One of the great things about the Broken is that the faction centres around a core of 'common man' infantry rabble units, that all pull from the same model kit. It's one of the big reasons that we made sure to include so many different options in the Rabble kit, because we knew that every Broken force will have quite a few Rabble units, and we wanted to make sure they all could be made to look quite different from each other. This one kit alone can be used to make 3 different types of Broken Rabble unit:

  • The basic Broken Rabble unit - used to fill out the Core unit selections of your force.
  • Rabble Assault - the close range specialist units, featuring more deadly short-ranged weaponry.
  • Rabble Fire Support - able to take lots of the longer ranged specialized weaponry.
Between just those 3 unit types, there's plenty of room for you to field a force designed to your particular tastes. What's even better, is that the Broken make use of a lot of aliens within their ranks. Yes, the Broken Rabble kit is filled with all kinds of xeno models, but these are all so close to human physiology that they don't have any special abilities associated with them. But coming soon, the Broken will start to get reinforcements in the form of really crazy 'Exotic Xenos', that, in some cases, can be added right into your existing Rabble units to totally change the way the unit is able to fight! Other Exotic Xenos are giant brutes (you might have spotted some of them in some of our artwork) that form a unit all to themselves, adding different tactical options for the way the entire Broken force fights.

For those of you chomping at the bit to give the Broken a test drive right now might be wondering about Command units for the Broken (because you need at least one Command unit to field a legal force). To fill that void, we've released temporary rules for the Forsaken Chieftain, which you can build using any model in the Broken Rabble kit. We have plans to release actual Forsaken Chieftain models in the future that will be equipped with new and different gear/weapon options, but if you take the time to convert a Chieftain out of your Rabble kit right now, you can rest assured that any weapon options you pick will remain part of its final rules.

Thanks for reading, and in the next instalment we'll be looking at how the Broken actually fare on the table!

We'd also like to take a moment to point out the next video in our Video Rulebook series is now up on youtube and we'll be continuing to add these videos until the entire rulebook is covered, making it much easier to learn to play Maelstrom's Edge.