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77014 Zombie Horde Base (WiP)


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Zombie Horde Base - Work in Progress:

2012-11-27-reaper-zombie-horde-base-wip.jpg

 

(Figures: Reaper Bones 77014 - "Zombies" (pack of 3) -- http://www.reapermin...ie/latest/77014)

(Base: War Cast Studios resin "industrial" 60mm base -- http://www.warcastst...l&product_id=46)

 

Grr. These are nowhere being near finished painting, but I didn't even SEE the mold lines until I took this picture. Ah well: WORK IN PROGRESS!

 

...

 

Anyway, to explain what's going on here, I have more than plenty plastic zombie minis for my zombie horde. (Reaper, Bag o' Zombies!!!, Wargames Factory Zombie Box, HorrorClix, Mage Knight, Doom Board Game, Warhammer Fantasy Battle zombies, Zombicide, and more.) The trouble is, it takes a while to MOVE them all when I want to make it clear that the horde is advancing upon our intrepid heroes and they'd really better carefully consider whether they should take their chances looting, or pack it up and RUN. The natural solution seemed to be to borrow a cue from my Warhammer Fantasy days and put zombies on a "movement tray," but that wouldn't necessarily pack them in quite the way I'd hoped -- I've got a lot of terrain to maneuver and squeeze the horde through.

 

My partial solution (a work in progress) is to try making a "horde base" with several zombies on it, pinned to the base in the usual manner -- except that the pin is not actually glued to the hole in the base. I still have a lot of painting detail work to do on the zombies and on the base (and I have plenty of room to cram more zombies in there), but here's a picture of the basic idea (with an overlay circle to highlight the piece of wire used as a "pin" inserted into the foot of one of the shamblers).

 

Savage Worlds Usage:

I was originally thinking of treating this as a Savage Worlds "swarm," except that, unlike the typical "swarm" of biting insects or rats, there should be a fairly finite number of zombies in here, and it seems unfair to treat it as if normal concentrated weapons fire hasn't even a chance of whittling it down.

 

Instead, I'm thinking of just treating this as a stand in for several individual zombies in a tight cluster, "spawning" individual zombies that break off from the horde to pursue the heroes down a tight corridor, etc. -- in which case I remove one "pinned" zombie from the base, and dig through my "box o' zombies" to put a self-standing model on the board to represent the straggler. If someone directs fire at the horde and succeeds at taking out one or more zombies, I can represent the casualties by simply removing figures from the base.

 

I think that one "special effect" of the horde base is that Shaken results will be inconsequential unless you have some area-effect means of Shaking the ENTIRE horde. An individual zombie that staggers for a moment under gunfire is just going to be shoved along by the rest of the pack.

 

Base Plans:

As for the base, I plan to give it a good dose of rust, caution stripes and distressed, flaking paint (plus the obligatory "zombie ick" splats and streaks) before this is done. I just base-coated it grey and gave it a black wash so it wouldn't look like a featureless grey blob for the photo.

 

If this works well, I'll probably make a few such bases. Scenarios that call for a large onslaught of zombies will have one or more of these bases to represent the tightly-packed horde with some of my more repetitive and less-detailed (and generally cheaper) zombie figures. My Doom and Zombicide minis will remain on their own bases (so I can use them for their respective board games), as will any "special" zombies (bloaters, zombie cops, "big bads," more carefully-painted novelty zombies, etc.). The Bones "zombie" pack works especially well as a cheap-but-still-close-to-32mm-scale source for the horde.

 

Zombie Plans:

As lamented about before, I'll need to go back and trim off those mold lines. Fortunately, that's pretty easy with a hobby knife and the Bones plastic.

 

I also want some variety, so they're not all in the same wacky "Hi there!" wave pose. Unlike pewter, I can't just bend the arms into new positions and expect them to stick. I may experiment with using wire to force them to new positions, or just cut and re-attach (or dig through the "bitz box" for replacement arms).

 

In addition to Reaper zombies, my Wargames Factory zombies are likely candidates for joining the horde. Wargames Factory plastic zombies (the original ones, that is, not the newer and larger female zombies) have very shallow features, and are also a bit on the shrimpy side compared to 32mm. When I'm putting a horde on the table, they're pretty much my last resort to add to the numbers. ;) I think they'll bulk out the horde bases a bit better, where it's mostly about numbers, not how tall or well-detailed they are.

 

I also look forward to the new Bones zombie ("George") being released, so I'll have another option. I'd thought of the Reaper Bones skeletons (very SKINNY zombies?) but it's a bit too much work, especially since removing the shields means ending up with part of the ribcage missing, and having to replace the left arms. Fortunately, I'm not exactly short on candidates at this point.

 

Since this is the REAPER forum, however, I'll focus on progress on my REAPER zombies. ;)

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Oh yeah. I almost forgot: If the "pop-off" zombies were going to be too much hassle (they didn't turn out to be -- the wire seems to hold pretty solidly, and the figures are lightweight enough not to be much trouble), Plan B was going to be to just glue them down but leave a gap in the middle of the horde for a place to put a die to serve as a counter. The counter would abstractly represent my "countdown" for how many zombies are in the horde. Optionally, once the counter reaches zero, I might replace the base with a smaller "horde" base (40mm) or X individual zombie markers (in which case the total number of zombies in the horde would be equal to X + (number displayed on die) ).

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I also am planning on doing something along these lines, though not for Savage Worlds. I've got several boxes of the male WGF Zombies and picked up a bunch of Secret Weapon Corpse Field bases to use as Horde Bases for what I'm refering to as "plague zombies". You say that the females are larger in scale to the males? I'm gonna have to get a box of them soon and see how the mix with the originals...

 

Anyhoo, I have identified three variety of zombie so far:

 

[Fantasy] Grave Zombies (necromantic) - Dried up/desicated looking (Greys, browns, some green)

[Fantasy/Sci-Fi] Plauge Zombies (viral, demonic) - The drippy, crunchy, juicy, melty stuff you crave (lots of 'wet' greens, reds, and yellows)

[sci-Fi] Biohazard Zombies (viral) - more or less freshly dead with a handful with advanced rot or mutation (lots of blood and gory reds/browns)

 

The Plauge Zombies so far have been the most fun to paint. My wife wandered by my desk while I was finishing one of them up and made the "ewww" face and walked away shaking her head. :devil:

 

EDIT: are you using other size bases or just 60mm? how many Zeds per base(and size) were you planning on usin? I haven't decanted my WGFZs yet so I'm not sure how many I'm gonna get on each base size yet.

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You say that the females are larger in scale to the males?

 

The Wargames Factory (male) zombies are either "25mm heroic" or "true 28mm scale," measuring 1 inch (or about 25mm) from bottom of feet right up to eye level, and about 28mm from bottom of feet to top of head (with some variance due to lurching and leaning, and depending upon how you attach the head). Zombie vixens are "true 32mm scale," measuring about 30mm from bottom of feet to eye level, and 32mm from bottom of feet to top of head.

 

The WGF "Zombie Vixens" therefore look about right next to my Zombicide, Dust Tactics, HorrorClix, or newer Chronoscope minis (32mm "heroic" -- measured to eye level), but the WGF male zombies are noticeably short compared to same. (On the other hand, the WGF male zombies look to be within a reasonable "margin of error" next to the original Reaper "Reich of the Dead" Kroids, in my opinion.)

 

I don't really anticipate this making a significant difference in terms of "footprint" for each zombie, however. Pose is more likely to have an impact on that than slight variances in scale.

 

Re: Bases:

At first, my goal was to cram 12 zombies onto a single 60mm base, but I'd have to really pack them in tightly for that. 3 is far too sparse, I can easily manage 6, but by the time I cram in 9, I predict that zombies will be stepping on each others' toes, and I'll have to carefully consider in what order I plug in the zombies (since depending on the sculpt I might have the pin in the left or right foot). I don't know if I can manage 12, but I suppose I can feel accomplished enough if I can manage 10 (nice, round, metric number as it is). Basically, I'll just keep putting them in, and see how many I can fit on a single base. I'm sure that zombies have no consideration for "personal space."

 

I have a large selection of resin bases I got in bulk from War Cast Studios, as I got a number of "mis-casts" on the cheap (and by "mis-casts," I mean, "a few too many bubbles, or in need of a bit of grinding on the base to make sure it sits even on the table" -- pretty minor stuff, mostly), and I had mostly planned on using the 60mm bases simply because I rarely have use for such large bases for my figures. (That's more the scale for things like mounting an entire heavy weapons team on a single base -- something useful for specific war-games, but not so much for the RPGs I usually run.)

 

I might try making a few 40mm "mini-horde" bases for variety, for squeezing down those two-square-wide corridors (common in my Hirst Arts corridors, or my "Doom Board Game" puzzle-lock passage-way tiles), or a cavalry base for a "conga line" of zombies bottle-necked an even narrower passage.

 

Right now, it's just a matter of experimentation to see what looks good, and what might ever-so-slightly be more convenient for my games than moving around a bunch of individual minis. Making the bases is just a matter of painting up a resin base and hand-drilling a bunch of holes in it for plugging in pinned figures. I don't plan on anything so fancy or particular that each zombie will have its own specific assigned hole; I'll just plug them in where needed.

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Rock on. I did one of the "All Our Base Are Belong To You" deals and got a bunch. I'm pretty sure I can cram up to two WGF MZs on a 25mm and they'll go up exponentially as I get up to the 120mm oval base. I'm gonna try to cram at least 15-20 of them on that thing.

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I might steal this idea but use magnets instead of the pins that way the base is reuaseable as a horde of anything.

 

I'm not sure how that would improve the flexibility (magnets would probably require a bigger "footprint" on the model), as I could have any number of models with pins on bottom -- but it would most probably be a firmer connection than un-glued pins in any case.

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I finally got around to further work on the zombie bases.

 

Zombie Horde!

2013-01-23-zombie-horde-medium.jpg

 

Reaper miniatures include:

* http://www.reapermini.com/OnlineStore/77014/sku-down/77014'>77014 Bones Zombies

* http://www.reapermini.com/OnlineStore/charlie/sku-down/50222'>50222 Charlie, Zombie

* http://www.reapermini.com/OnlineStore/linus/sku-down/50223'>50223 Linus, Zombie

 

I put these zombies on 60mm round "industrial" scenic resin bases from War Cast Studios (http://www.warcaststudios.com), supplemented with a few HorrorClix minis (since they're about the same scale, and I've got plenty of them to spare), with enough room that I can fit a d20 on the base as a counter.

 

In the background of the picture, I have two 50mm square plastic bases with as many Wargames Factory zombies as I could cram on there ... mostly just because I don't like those figures very much, and wanted to retire them from my main "zombie horde" box. (These were among the earlier releases from Wargames Factory; their later releases have gotten much better in terms of detail and casting quality.) They're "true" 28mm scale and very shallow-featured, so they don't look very good at all next to the Reaper or Clix minis; I hoped that with their own bases they wouldn't look as jarring by direct comparison.

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