Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Full Color Gamer

I love board games.

I love everything about them—the strategy of the mechanics, the competition of your opponents, the camaraderie of a good group of gaming friends, and yes, even the fickle nature of Luck as it makes or breaks a crucial dice roll, seemingly on a whim.

Everything from Chess to trivia, from Monopoly to Risk, and deep into the specialty board games that require a trip to the local game store—I love them all!

I’m a sucker for Meeples, and I’m down with chits, counters, cards, and colored resource cubes, but what I really love are miniatures. Lucky for me there are an ever-increasing number of publishers that are producing high-quality miniatures-based board games.

I only have one problem: I hate playing with unpainted miniatures!

Going back twenty years to the start of my tabletop gaming days, I’ve always hated the thought of fielding anything other than fully painted miniatures; cringing whenever I had to rush a figure onto the battlefield before I could give it its painting dues. And that notion has steadily crept into my board gaming life of today.

These days, I’m pretty much a strict board game player—miniatures board games especially. Mansions of Madness, Last Night on Earth, Mice and Mystics; if there’s a board and a figure to play on it, 9 times out of 10, I’m in. Now, if GW rebooted a skirmish game like Realm of Chaos with a genuine rulebook…I might come back to the table, but the best I can do within that particular share of the gaming market is Blood Bowl (one of my all-time favorite games).

It’s not that I won’t play with unpainted minis, it’s that I don’t like to play with them—and why would I want anything to get in the way of fully enjoying a gaming experience?

I won’t begrudge others with not sharing this viewpoint, and I don’t require other gamers to put in the time and effort it takes to fully paint their miniatures just to satisfy my lunacy, but for myself, I’ve become obsessed with the concept of playing with fully realized and finished figures.

So, I’ve decided to paint my way through my stack of miniatures board games.

I’ve always loved the visceral experience of painting, modeling, and converting gaming miniatures, and the fact that whether you’re a beginner or an expert, painting and customizing minis is a personal experience that connects you as a gamer, with the game itself.

But, not everyone feels the same, and I get that.

Some people just don’t have the time or the talent (I’m certainly no expert), and some purists might argue that a well-sculpted mini can stand on its own (because, after all, does Michelangelo’s David, or the Venus de Milo really need a paintjob to make them beautiful?).

I totally concede the point that for board games, painting minis is entirely unnecessary to enjoy the game. However, since I enjoy the hobby aspect of painting and modeling…for my own games, I’m on a mission.

So what will you find in this blog?

Well, if you decide to keep tuning in, you’ll basically find my exploits in painting and modeling miniatures from such games as Mansions of Madness, Mice and Mystics, Castle Ravenloft, and many more, but I also have plans to convert my way through a few Blood Bowl teams I’ve been wanting to play for a long time, plus a few surprises here and there which should prove to be an interesting list of projects.

I hope you’ll stick around and maybe pick up some tips, tricks, or just simple inspiration to take the brush to your own games, break out of the grey-toned world of unpainted miniatures, and be a Full Color Gamer along with me!


  1. What an awesome concept for a blog. I have felt that my painting interest is slowly sliding this way (although I haven't actually started blogging about it).

    About 2 years back, on a boring Sunday afternoon I started painting my Risk set. The Risk figures were a bit disappointing to paint so I started swapping them for 15mm Napoleonic figures - infantry, cannons and cavalry on there own bases like to original game. After a few games we found that because the models were slightly larger we needed a bigger board. lol, it turned into a project all of its own!

    I am totally looking forward to seeing what you do in this blog space. Good luck, and maybe you will inspire me to start blogging about my own panted boardgames too :)

  2. Col. Ackland! Good to see you again, Sir!

    I was just reading through your blog today - the hobby desk looks top notch.

    The Risk project sounds like a serious undertaking - I don't know if I would have the guts to try something that big.

    Good to have you on board!