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Rob Dean

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About Rob Dean

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  • Birthday 03/26/1961

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    Miniature Wargaming, historical and fantasy, roleplaying games

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  1. Hitting the big 40

    For me, 40 is getting to be quite a while ago. Use the time wisely; I was still adding new physical skills that decade, which came much more easily than they do now, but the good news is that there was still a lot of fun to be had.
  2. Roots of the Hobby

    While Reaper hasn’t sent me a Christmas card, I do appreciate the bottles of sample paints that get thrown in fairly often. Mine all go to my office set, along with any promo paints that I receive. I have a feeling that the sample miniatures inclusion used to be more common with actual mail order and marginally illustrated catalogs. Irregular Miniatures used to add quite a few things to their boxes, when I was regularly ordering from them, back around the turn of the millenium.
  3. Getting to Know You, Feb 2018

    I’ve played with toy soldiers longer than I can remember. In my mind’s eye, it has always looked something like this: Nowadays, by painting and stage setting, it mostly does. Here’s a table view from that game. Immersion is easier when you stay focussed on the closeup view. By the way, here’s the picture for the 16th, of my oldest Marx Viking serving as a Frostgrave statue:
  4. 77001: Skeletal Spearmen: I have returned

    They look fine as is, but you might consider adding a touch of corrosion (in green) to the bronze, if the spears were buried with the skeletons. When I did a bunch of these for RPG purposes, I added some decorations to the shields, one thing to the first, two to the second, and so on, so that they were unobtrusively numbered in case I needed to track damage or whatever.
  5. Getting to Know You, Feb 2018

    That’s a really complicated question. I was born in 1961, so my earliest figures were approximately 54mm toy soldiers from MPC, Marx, and so on. The oldest ones I can put my hands on are two survivors of a Marx Knights and Vikings Castle playset, received for Christmas around 1966. I have a picture (on a different device) of the Viking serving as a verdegrised statue in a Frostgrave game recently. My first wargaming sized figures were Airfix 1/72 scale plastics, bought before 1971 (in which year I discovered rules for the first time), but I have no idea which sets might have been bought when. My first painted figures were Airfix, done with enamels, so getting the paint to stay on was an exercise in frustration. Here is a recently painted Maid Marion from an Airfix Robin Hood set as an example, nowadays painted with a viable technique: My first metal figures were intended to supplement the Airfix figures, and were probably Hinton Hunt Napoleonics. They went in a sale with the vintage Airfix sometime in the late ‘80s. Somewhere around 1973 I first read The Lord of the Rings, so my first fantasy figures were Minifigs unlicensed Tolkien figures like this orc: These are what I’m now accumulating for a nostalgia project; a lot of about 70 of the various poses of these orcs (three! different ones) arrived yesterday, to round out most of my immediate wants for the project. Back in the day, I probably had no more than 100-150 figures from the range total, most of which have been lost to the mists of time. I was tallying things up yesterday and think that a couple of large lots I’ve come into have left me with about 500 now, including my ancient survivors.
  6. Randomness XIII: Cognitive Dissonance While You Wait

    If you can find the resources to do and your wife likes it, I would highly recommend lessons. After seven plus yers of miscellaneous ballroom styles, the more you can do, the more fun it is. I also find that a nice active hobby pairs well with the sedentary miniatures/gaming...
  7. Help with identification

    Here's a link to the Hobby Products/Metal Magic main fantasy collection at the Lost Minis Wiki, which might be helpful for identifying that line. Most of them came as multiple related poses under one catalog number, so that C1001 Fighters, for example, had 16 different figures under the one catalog number. My FLGS in 1990/91 stocked them for a while, and I cleaned up whatever they had at clearance and built a little Amazon war band from them, so I retain a soft spot for them, despite them being so late in my hobby life. http://www.miniatures-workshop.com/lostminiswiki/index.php?title=Fantasy_'C'_(Metal_Magic)
  8. A package from that auction site arrived from England yesterday, containing 60+ really vintage (i.e. pre-1975) orcs, rounding out my orcish legions for a super-retro Lord of the Rings project. These are from Minifigs Mythical Earth range, the first fantasy figures produced (at least commercially) starting in 1972. I only have a handful of survivors from my own original collection, but I’m now determined to do this homage to what I wanted to be able to do when I began...
  9. Randomness XIII: Cognitive Dissonance While You Wait

    While there is no reason not to paint whatever groups you like, I’ve always been an advocate of rules that aren’t manufacturer-exclusive. Sets like WRG’s Hordes of the Things or Osprey’s Dragon Rampant allow you plenty of scope for customization, and have army sizes under 60 figures (for the most part) making building them in pairs or sets practical. Any set’s basing guidelines become optional when you are providing all the troops. Solo play can be fun if opponents are a problem.... My next push is going to be a super-retro Tolkien thing with original 1972 vintage Minifigs like I started with a year or two later. I should start a running WIP thread...
  10. Getting to Know You, Feb 2018

    At work, more so all the time. I print things out for editing because it's easier for me to focus and think with a pen or pencil, but the edits get put back in electronically, and the record copies are the electronic ones. At home, about 50/50 these days. Game books and notes are on paper; I don't think I could run a game from the iPad very easily. Pleasure reading is usually Kindle format (3/4 of it, at least), but many of my reference books for historical gaming aren't available other than in paper.
  11. Getting to Know You, Feb 2018

    I intended to watch part of the opening ceremonies, but I fell asleep. I'll watch a bunch of the games, although my favorite is: Figure skating, particularly ice dance, because it's the only one I can make any attempt at doing myself: My son competed as a ice dancer from 2008 to 2012, getting as far as Nationals (as a novice team) that last year: I was hoping that this would be the year that some of the kids he skated against would make the Olympics, but advancement in ice dance is so slow that all three dance teams on the US Olympic Team were already competing at the Senior level six years ago in 2012, so, if any are left, perhaps his cohorts may be part of the 2022 team.
  12. I am in again... Maryland I’ll ship international this time if needed I have the box I started last time. By now, I could start a second...
  13. February 2018 Goals!

    There isn’t much miniatures-related that I could imagine doing at a treadmill desk, so you’re probably right. I have found, though, that being in better shape has generally improved my interest and engagement with my other activities. And I think about gaming projects during bike rides... For myself, January was a slow month, so my goal is to work on any of three ongoing projects and try not to be distracted by anything unrelated. (1/72 fantasy campaign, vintage science fiction, and vintage Minifigs Tolkien...)
  14. Getting to Know You, Feb 2018

    Watch/follow: My son was a competitive ice dancer until he retired in 2012 (??!), so I keep an eye on US figure skating, but I have a hard time calling any of the judged sports "sports"... Play any: In the sense of competing to win, no. I like some athletic activities (figure skating, bicycling) that are competed, but that's not why I do them.
  15. 03785 - Jakob Knochengard

    I was a fan of the Grimm TV show until it ended this past spring. With the severed head, the book and the vials of useful poisons or whatever, I feel like this guy has a historical Grimm vibe going. Nice work!