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Where and how did it all began for you???

Catman Jim

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So how did collecting minis became a hobby (or maybe an obsession)for you?


For me, my very first mini collection was the Genadier Action Art set which came with a brush, paint, an instruction booklet, and 12 figures. I brought the set primarily because the twelve figures coincidentally fit what I needed at the time (several figthers, a mage, a cleric, a dwarf (in this case the gnome in the set will do), and two females, one human and one a half-elf (the one in the set was an elf, but close enough). In time my little collection grew...with the addition of a female illusionist and a female bard....


When Julie Guthrie's Fantasy Personalities came out, that is when my collection sort of took off. My brother collected too, he mainly stick to monsters while I stick with characters.


Somehow along the way, with college and all that stuff, my interest waned....until 1998. By that time my brother had found a job upstate and have moved out of the house. But he still collect from time to time. And that Christmas, he came to stay with us for a week and brought his unpainted minis with him with the plans of painting them during vacation. When I saw what he has, my eyes popped out! Wow! Then I looked at my paltry collection of 3 dozens or so....How pathetic....


So I started again....beefing the ranks of my minis....I first buy from Ral Partha, and when Julie Guthrie's line was revived, I was in heaven. And then along came Reaper.


I also extended my collection to monsters, namely fiends...and I have like a dozen or so succubi gracing a display shelf (2 from Guthrie, several from Ral Partha, all the succubi from Reaper, and a couple from other places).


My brother brought me some brushes....and luckily for me, a new art store was opening up where he lives in upstate New York and they were selling bottles of acrylic paint for a mere 30 cents (limited time only of course)! He also got two or so dozen small one once plastic paint containers (for 15 cents each) into which he would pour some of his paint from his paint collection for me. So in no time at all, I had quite a range of colors with fancy names like rotting flesh, country rose, cinnamon red, camel, jupiter pink, regency blue, spring green, royal red, etc Not to mention my penchant for mixing them to get homebrew colors such as "midnight mithral", "shimmering puce" and "stygian black" (which is black mixed with silver), "prismatic purple".


I have to check them like once every two weeks to prevent them from drying out....could get tedious.


Anyway, my collection is around, conservatively speaking in the 300+ range. I'm not surprise it is in the 400s. My brother, on the other hand, had started collecting only female figures.


SOmetimes when I looked at my collection, I can't believe I actually painted them. They looked too good....


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good thread...


i was role playing for 10 years b4 being introduced to minis. At first I was very suspicious, but as a gamemaster found them VERY valuable. ("No, you can't split your multiple attacks between two monsters 100 yards apart? Yes they're 100 yards apart. Well I said so!")


so eventually, i started collecting monsters. When most of my role playing friends moved away, I stopped playing (and collecting) for a long time, maybe 9 years. When I started playing again w/ one of my old friends, I started thinking about painting again, & getting characters this time to represent my PC & his NPC allies...


So, now I'm picking up monsters & characters, but monsters mostly to "fill holes". I've got TONS of monsters. I mostly need only the hard-to-finds now, though that's probably another 100 all told...

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Well, I sort of cross posted a bit on this one I think.  (My humble beginnings are mentioned in the "Bullfinch vs. Some Other Guy" thread.)  


IIRC, I entered my Cuzzes place again one day, hauling my graph paper (or was it hex paper... can't recall) and he had just returned from a trip out of town with the Air Cadets.  He had brought back some little lead things that sort of looked like people.  (I can't recall which company did them, but one had a pointy hat.)  


Again, I was hooked, but DESPAIR!  The mini market was but a babe in arms, and not so available yet, especially so far north.  Searched the town I did.  Quested I did.  And then finally one day, the local toy store recieved a shoe box size shipment of minis.  Citadel (before Evil Empire days) and Greandier box sets (the old Thieves & Rogues, yellow box set I recall foundly!  Loved that chick with the big poofy feather hat!)  Needless to say, I bought as many as my meager paper route money would allow (which was alot actually, since the figs were $1.25 and the evil G.S.T. had not yet been invented by the Canuckian Government.)


Anyway, I played with them (and no, they weren't primed or painted, I handled raw lead like it was silly putty!)  


::twitch twitch:::


Then, somehow or other, we fell upon the idea of actually painting these little things (which were by now, broken and patched at least dozen times.)  So, out came the little bottles of Testor Model paints.




I still remember those poor flooded faces... buried under layers and layers of thickly poured on flesh tone....  




The rest is history.  Miniatures became popular and more readily availble in that small northern town.  Then I moved to mail order, and finally, travelled 9.5 hours to the nearest Hobby Lobby of the time.  


Gads, those were the days.....

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I won a radio contest back in 1980 when I was a junior in college (University of New Hampshire); the prize was a gift certificate to a local bookstore. I saw the original (was it blue or red box? It's been a long time..) D&D boxed set and bought it. I rapidly progressed to the hardcover AD&D series and bought each of those as they came out. In late 1982/early 1983, I graduated and got married & moved to Seattle. There I first discovered minis when exploring the game & hobby stores. I bought just the basics on my first trip; a fighter, a cleric, a wizard, a dwarf, and an elf. Then I picked up all those Grenadier official D&D boxed sets when they were released. I had a total of several hundred minis when I drifted away from D&D Second edition in the '90's (and moved to Kansas City) and took a six-year detour into Magic: The Gathering. Thankfully, I am now done with that, and have re-discovered D&D in Third Edition. I have been actively making up for lost time & products through Ebay, and have about 50 new minis primed & waiting paint on my game table.
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I agree, great thread...


Back in the early-'80's or so I came into a red boxed set of basic D&D. Although this may be dating me a little, also note I was not an ordinary kid and definitely of the above intelligence group, so I started playing D&D when I was 7 or so. During this period I also built models, so when I went to the local hobby store to look around with my dad sometime in the mid-'80s I spotted a pack of Citadel Norse Dwarfs and immediately snapped them up, my Dad oblidgingly paying. Like a lot of people my first paint jobs were with Testors paints and not the greatest (actually over bare metal, but at least I used flat paints rather than glosses!). I off and on bought more Norse dwarfs (most of which I still have...and most of which I still feel are some of the finest dwarfs ever produced!) as well as figures from Grenadier and Ral Partha. For some reason the scale differences didn't really matter much...


I kept gaming and painting until about 1994, my Freshman year of college. I quit when I went and found other means of spending money (girls, beer, and the Fraternity) and explored the complexities of Medieval Europe, or otherwise preoccupied with Military Service. Then about my super-senior year (uhhh...1998 I think), I hopped down to the local off-campus hobby store and started buying D&D stuff again. Along with it I got into WHFB and WH40K. SHortly after I got into historical wargames (college degree in History...very conductive...). In a short time I built up my minis collection, almost from scratch. I now have probably close to 2000+ minis in my collection and its still growing (bought the Reaper Basilisk today...).


I don;t have any immediate plans to stop as I'm with a great gaming group and my current GF is understanding enough that she doesn't mind my hobbies (she even sometimes BUYS minis for me!!! I've started to teach her to paint). I've also encouraged the group to graduate from plastic Heroquest figures to metal Reaper ones...and they're starting to paint too! Unfortunately my gaming hobby has to share time with my modelling hobby (as in plastic models of tanks...not GQing...) so sometimes its hard to decide what to spend money on!



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Let's see. I actually have three starts in miniatures painting.


My first start was picking up some painted minis, goodness knows who made them, when I was just starting out in red-box D&D (Erol Otus cover, not your Elmore stuff) and then in AD&D. I had collected and played with Airfix 1/72 scale models and soldiers when I was even younger, so metal wizards was not a big change.


Years later, while I was in junior high, I was given the Grenadier starter box that came with a bunch of monsters and I painted my first mini - a Drider (which I still have, albiet long-broken). My friends and I all did some painting and traded minis, so I ended up with a mixed bag of Grenadier minis and later some TSR minis. Then the paints ran out and I stopped painting but continued to collect minis. I moved on to buying miniatures, basing them, and playing with the bare lead the times we used minis.


A couple years later I got another supply of paints - another starter kit, maybe from TSR - and did another batch of painting. That did not last long, either. I had too little money for paints and brushes on top of normal gaming materials and everything else I spent money on. So, more minis on occasion but few paint jobs.


Fast forward until 1999. Still collecting minis, but not painting. I saw a mini gallery posted by a fellow Pyramid magazine subscriber and decided to ask about painting minis. I was certain that you did not need to blow $2.25 a bottle for 12 ml of paint, or buy $5 brushes to paint with, or anything like that. But I did not know where to start. Happily, I was guided to my nearest AC Moore looking for craft paints and on-sale brushes. I bought a bunch of paints, dug up my old painting guides and got started. My first minis in years were a couple of TSR female fighters (one with a kite shield and broken-off sword, another a druid with a big and ugly spear) and the Evil Commander from my Battlesystem boxed set. I started with very basic painting techniques and quickly moved on to more advanced ones. Although occasionally I go back to very basic techniques just as a refresher and to bang out some of my really old and otherwise  never to be painted lead.


Now I paint regularly, and have been since 1999. I noticed a dramatic improvement in my painting - my best stuff from my junior high days was better than my first paint jobs in 1999, but my painting now is superior to what I was doing only a year or two ago. The trick, I found, is to just paint a lot. :)

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Orginally got into minis many years ago and started useing my Grandma's acrylic stains to paint them. the when 1st ed shifted to 2nd ed D & D I dropped out of gaming for awhile. It was about this time my current gaming group was going seperate directions too. Move the time machine forward to the "new" 3rd ed D & D. Tired of playing Rifts my freinds and I decided to give third ed a swing.  This got me interested in my miniatures again. And next thing I know I am buying them faster than I can paint them! And that's it in a nut shell.

Lady Tam

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Long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...


lstormhammer v1.0 was out, and it was a basic model (You now speak with lstormhammer v2.5, or so) This version 1.0 didn't know much, but knew some things were interesting. Now, understand, v1.0 was in highschool at that point, and unlike the v2.8 you babble to on a regular basis, 1.0 couldn't join two words together and make a short sentance to a complete stranger.


But v1.0 knew someone who knew someone. So every friday afternoon, instead of going home to the Shebeast of a mom, and jerkoff of a dad, v1.0 would go off to another highschool /across/ /town/ just to meet a bunch of strangers, strangers much like v1.0, but coooooler....


They had dice like v1.0 had never seen, they talked in a strange language that was musical to my tone-deaf ears. They looked at me, and said 'cool, a new player!'. Now v1.0 didn't know if he was going to be sacraficed, tortured, told to worship Satan, or what have you. v1.0 had some pretty ignorant co-producers, and was on his own.


v1.0 said things like 'Um, what's that dice?' and 'Hey, can I play a guy who zaps people?'. Soon words that became common parlance to v2.8 would be programmed into him.


v1.0 had to keep this new, strange and wonderful thing away from the co-producers, for they would look down on it. Co-producers had talked to other co-producers, and came to the opinion that This Is Not Something I Want To Have In My World.


v1.0 became v1.2 before the co-producers caught on. They Forbade It. It was not wholesome. v1.2 told the co-producers where they could stick it, and continued anyways.


v1.2 began hanging around different people. Strange people who the co-producers feared. The co-producers asked v1.2 to stop being around these people, to stay at the home, safe from the world. But v1.2 persevered, v1.2 told them that this was fun, that v1.2 didn't do drugs, but sat around, telling stories. It was harmless fun, and kept v1.2 off the streets.


v1.2 realised that this is a serious hobby, and needed funding for it. Co-producers had thier petty revenge by not letting v1.2 have more money to buy books and dice and photocopies. So v1.2 became v1.5, now with income-generation patches!


Then the co-producers split up, each taking what they wanted, leaving v1.5 to be on his own. v1.5 went a lot of crazy at this point, but did his best to make money to do things, like eat.


Long, long afterwards, v1.8 is sitting around, talking to his friends when one of them says to v1.8 'Ya know, you're pretty cool, you're a very forward and outgoing individual, I really like you'. v1.8 said 'I like you, too...' But this is when the last major patch was included, making v1.8 into a full-fledged 2.0, now with Relationship Patches.


v2.0 didn't remember much of that time, but thankfully, hardcoded commands were already in place for such contingencies, so it wasn't as bad as it could be.


v2.0 was dumped painfully by friend, for a Bigger, Better, Faster (and richer) model, and it was at that point when v2.0 got one of the last patches, this time including 'I am the freekin' Alpha-Male' subcommands and personality interfacing. This was v2.3, or so.


v2.3 wasn't fun to be around, as v2.3 had this tendancy to dominate all conversations, and any other situation. v2.3's friends stopped hanging around v2.3, for who wants to hang around something that's trying to eat your head.


So v2.3 became v2.5, and lots and lots of people liked being around him. He told it like it is, and had some deep, insiteful ideas of his own.


Now, while all these patches were being added to the lstormhammer model, he kept up his gaming. Collecting dice, books, papers. Continuing his games, coming up with gems, and others he'd rather forget. He's had all kinds of players from 'sits there and does nothing' to 'why is he playing here, he should be on Broadway'. v2.5 also came with the 'can sustain himself with his own income' feature, which is always a good thing. Hard to buy stuff when you can't afford to eat.


So, there you have it, kind'a long and drawn out, but that's how I got into the Game.


--lstormhammer, version 2.5

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Can I order an istormahammer v2.5? Sounds like a great program to have around. And I will admit it brings out my 1.1 "need to take care of " program. (This is my single male freinds favorite program as it makes lots of food for self and co-program then sends tasty home cooked left-overs home with them. Also does minor sewing for them, makes cookies on request, etc, etc.)

Lady Tam

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It's all my brother's fault. Blame him.


He got into D&D in high school. I was in Jr. High. He comes home one day and says "I'm going to teach you to play this game." And he proceeded to do just that.


Then he introduced me to his friends. One of said friends gave me TWO boxes of Julie Guthries Grenadiers models. I still have those minis. I prize those minis. MINE MINE MINE !! So Ms. Guthrie, if you're reading this, know I've been with you for a LONG time. I started gaming in late 1980.


In fact, Guen was in one of those boxes even though she didn't belong. Still don't know where she originally came from.


I've been addicted ever since.

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I used to work as a consultant, subject to the whims of evil-minded partners that liked to send their underlings on long quests out of town for months on end.  The truly evil part was that they were never clear on when you would be through so you took it month to month thinking it'd all be over soon.


Except it never was.  You just made the critical error of not treating the assignment as your temporary "new home" and failed to get involved locally.  You basically work all day, eat too much at night, drink too much, and watch too much TV alone in your corporate apartment.


Except the Brooding Paladin has a defiant streak in him and began a quest of his own:  kill the TV (I cut back on the eating and drinking too, but let's not get crazy).  As an avid D&D-er I'd visit the FLGS in the town where I was assigned and saw the figures.


For whatever reason, I thought I'd give the trapped inner artist a moment of fresh air and bought some figures, paints, and brushes.  I'd work on them at night to decompress from the manufactured stress of the day and got to where I'd fly back and forth with my figs.


That sure drew some interesting looks at the airport x-ray machine, but the 'Paladin wouldn't be forced off his quest so easily.  The rest is a history still writing itself.  :)

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I think Iwas somewhere arund 9 or 10 years of age when I 1st started, and it was with alot of the Grenadier and Ral Partha minis of the time (all of those minis are gone now, lost to time and the seveal times I've moved over the years, which really sucks...).   I painted for several years after that, then I hit my teens, and pretty much stoped role-playing with minis on the board and forgot about painting them all together.


Then, about 3 years ago during a brief stint in Kent, Ohio, I was flipping through one of my old roomates Dragon magazines and saw a page of painted Silver Anniversary &D mnis, and it struck a chord.  Memories of a simpler time flooded in, and I said to myself "ya know, you used to be really good at that"  So, I took a short walk to the local hobby store, picked up a few of those WOTC Silver Anniversary's, a few GW's, and a few Reapers.  Got some basic colors (A few Citadel colors, and a bunch of old Parha Paints.  God I miss that store.  If you're ever in Kent, I heartily recommend that you visit Spellbinder's.  It's a pretty kickin lil' shop...(not that I don't like the places up here in Lansing, mind you...butu there's somethin to be said about a place that keeps some of the more "vintage" stuff around...)


Anyway, it's ll been downhill from there!

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You know kelcore, you should take a look under the stairs.  I found an ice cream pail full of ancient old minis under my friends stairs one time.




These guys were priceless originals, some painted in a haphazard "Testor dip and shake method", others bare lead.  And shoved so carelessly into what has become to be known as the "Infamous Bucket Incident."


When my firend was reprimanded by myself and a fellow obssessed mini nutball, his only defence was "I forgot about them!"


So, you never know what you'll find under the stairs.

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