This is the story of the second game set that my daughter Ellen and her fiancé Chris got me for Settlers of Catan®. RAFM in Canada makes these and you can see their offerings here.
The first one I completed was the Egyptian set (1202), and this is the Viking set (1200). There are 25 pieces in each set – 15 roads, 5 settlements, 4 cities, and one themed robber. These would take the place of the generic wooden pieces that come with the game.
I saw these on the RAFM website before when I was looking through their offerings there Egyptian, Bavarian, and Chinese set in addition to the Viking one. Interestingly, the box cover shows incorrect game play – each city or settlement needs to be separated by two or more roads, and there is only one road here.
There was very little flash on the robber, and none on the other pieces. I did the robber last, so I will show that work after the others. I cleaned them up with a quick scrub, then primed them with Krylon “Ultra-Flat Black” matte spray paint when I did my Slag Mound priming.
The first challenge I had was in figuring out how to mount these for painting. Normally, I mount the figures on a washer and then mount the combination to a popsicle stick. Here, I was only going to use a washer for the robber as the other pieces were not really configured for mounting. I mounted each lightly to a popsicle stick with white glue. In the end, this procedure forced me to retouch all the figures’ sides as well as deal with painting and varnishing the undersides.
I decided to try to keep a blue theme to these pieces to match the box and for ease of play.
In the set, the roads were much more road-like than the sand dunes in the Egyptian set. The settlements and cities had a Viking row house look to them.
I needed to have a consistent color scheme as these are game pieces – and not traditional miniatures. I wanted them to be very bluish but have some details.
I used another old 1987 Deka Lack paint – “Blau” (blue) as my base color on all of the pieces. This made the roads look a bit like rivers, but for use as game pieces this is not a problem.
I used Americana “Zinc” on the rocks and steps, and Citadel “Caliban Green” on the foliage. For the pathways on the towns and cities, I used Citadel “Balor Brown”. I needed some highlighting for the structural parts of the buildings, so I used Citadel “Dryad Bark” to good effect. Following this, I used Secret Weapons Washes “Blue” to wash all the pieces. Then I added highlights to the foliage with “Dryad Bark” and Citadel “Niblet Green”. I removed the figures, touched up any bare spots, and moved to varnishing. I first varnished the set with Krylon “Clear Glossy” spray paint. I then varnished the topsides with two coats and the underside with one coat of Testors “Dull Coat”. I did this because they are board game pieces, with more need of paint protection.
After this I moved on to the robber. It is a 28mm figure, dressed as a Viking berserker, armed with an spiked club. The first thing I did was to glue the figure to a larger 1.25″ steel washer with wood glue. Once that had dried, I used Apoxie Sculpt to create a base. I decided here as well that flocking the robbers would be messy and not useful.
I primed the robber with Krylon “Ultra-Flat Black” matte spray paint. I then covered the whole figure and base with Americana “Ebony”. This was done in order to try a new dry brushing technique for armor that I saw Chris Palmer use in his blog. You can see his entry here.
I first dry brushed the robber’s shield and shoulder guards with FolkArt “Gunmetal Grey”. I drybrushed the base with Americana “Slate” which had a slight bluish hue to it.
I then worked on base coating the details. The club handle got a coat of Americana “Bittersweet Chocolate” with the spikes getting “Gunmetal Gray”. For the leather armor and gloves, I used my 1996 Armory “Leather Brown”. For his shield I used “Gunmetal Gray” and “Blau” to tie into the color theme for the set. His headband also got “Blau” for the same reason. I used “Bittersweet Chocolate” on the boots and his rope.
I then applied P3 “Midland Flesh” on the face and arms. For the hair, eyebrows, and beard, I used P3 “Sulfuric Yellow”. I did the sclera of the eyes with Americana “Snow” and “Blau” for the pupils (he is Scandinavian after all). I painted the lower lip with 1984 Polly-S “Demon Deep Red”. The boots got a coat of Americana “Raw Sienna”. I then used “Agrax Earthshade” on the blond areas and P3 “Flesh Wash” on the skin, and let the figure dry.
For his shirt, I chose another 1987 paint, Deka Lack “Dunkelblau” (dark blue). To highlight the club spikes and the bolts on the shield, I used Tamiya “Chrome Silver”. I highlighted his nose and cheekbones with FolkArt “Light Flesh”, then used P3 “Flesh Wash” again to make his arm muscles more pronounced and defined. I also used FolkArt “Light Flesh” to lighten his nose and forehead, and to highlight his arm musculature.
I used “Sulfuric Yellow” on the hair to highlight it. I darkened the leather armor and the base with Citadel “Nuln Oil”.
I then went around the figure and highlighted all the areas that I thought needed more “pop”. Lastly, once the figure was dry I then varnished it with two coats of Testors “Dull Coat”. I did this because they are board game pieces, with more need of paint protection.
Overall, I am satisfied with the work – they are after all game pieces. I hope to get these into a game of Catan soon.