Sunday 29 October 2023

Zomtober 2023, Week 5

<== Go here for Week 4


It's the last week of Zomtober, at least for 2023.  As is required by the rules of that competition, I've completed another model - or rather two models.  My self-imposed extra goal is to finish figures for both a zombie and a survivor, then present the pair as a "duel".  The idea is that readers can then speculate on the likely outcome 😁.

Logan vs Old Man Zombie (OMZ)

This week sees Logan facing off against "Old Man" zombie (OMZ for short).  Logan is a fairly average-looking man, wearing an (army surplus?) sweater and a woolen hat.  He's wielding a very big tyre iron, so maybe he's a driver for some large vehicle (truck?  tractor?  excavator?).  Or perhaps it's a piece of plumbing instead - a bent pipe with a connector on the end of it?  Either way, it looks solid and heavy - as long as Logan keeps his grip then it ought to do some real damage when wielded.

The model of Logan comes from Offensive Miniatures "modern rioters" range; the traffic cone on his base is from the same pack.

OMZ is a straight build of a Studio Miniatures plastic zombie.  As such, he's not especially animated; swaying or shambling rather than anything else.  In fact, he's the epitome of the "crowd filler", back-rank zombie - there's nothing much to distinguish him from the rest of the horde.

I'm going to be blunt: I think that this week's models are some of the most generic, bland figures I've painted in a while.  Neither of them is especially exciting, though I have tried to add a bit of interest by placing the traffic cone on Logan's base and by painting a slightly more complex jacket on OMZ.  Still, neither model is especially memorable.


The eternal question is this: what happens next?

In my opinion, Logan is healthy, alert and armed, while OMZ doesn't look especially threatening.  I'd say that Logan is probably about to pulp the zombie's skull and carry on with the rest of his day as if the encounter had never happened?

On the other hand, what about that traffic cone?  Was Logan carrying it - and forced to drop it in order to defend himself?  If so then for what purpose?  Either way, Logan had better be careful not to step backwards as he makes his swing.  Tripping over such an obstacle would put him at a considerable disadvantage and could give OMZ the opening needed for the zombie to bite the man.

Saturday 21 October 2023

Zomtober 2023, Week 4

<== Week 3 is this way


Right, so Zomtober 2023 is in progress and my self-appointed goal for this event is to finish off one survivor and one zombie model each week, presenting them as a 'duel' on the Sunday.  This week it's going to be a day early because I'll be busy all day on Sunday - so here's a Saturday duel instead!

Alicia vs. "Shirley Temple" Zombie (STZ)


My pairing this week sees "Alicia" facing off against "Shirley Temple" zombie?  I've given the zombie this name because of her flowing golden locks and short stature - she has a (slight!) resemblance to the famous child actress.  STZ has lost one hand and at least part of her clothing, though her tartan miniskirt seems to have survived.  She's also carrying some shopping bags; I imagine that these are an indicator of the last thing she was doing before becoming infected.

Alicia looks like a fit, healthy woman, perhaps in her 30s or 40s.  She's dressed in decent, comfortable clothes and seems completely at ease with the situation - or perhaps she is day-dreaming and hasn't noticed the zombie approaching?  Alicia also has a pistol, though she hasn't raised it yet.

This picture from behind shows just how ragged is STZ's top.  It (and the missing right hand) suggest a significant trauma in her recent past.  Is that - and her waif-like frame - a significant disadvantage if it comes to a physical struggle?

Both models are straight builds from old, Wargames Factory sets - the Female Survivors and Zombie Vixens (sic!) kits.  Although that company is long gone, I believe Warlord Games own the moulds now and still produce the sprues.


What happens next?   Is Alicia just sizing up the situation, ready to shoot or run as appropriate?  Or has she been caught unawares, in the middle of an unrelated train of thought?  Will the lack of a right hand (and the use of her left hand to hold shopping bags) hinder STZ's attack?  Indeed, will STZ even attack Alicia - the zombie seems to be heading in slightly the wrong direction?  If Alicia freezes on the spot, will STZ fail to notice her and just carry on down the street?

As always, I'd be delighted to hear your thoughts on the matter!

Follow this for week 5 ==>

Sunday 15 October 2023

Zomtober 2023, Week 3

<== Go back to last week's duel


Another week, another duel!  At least, that's how I'm marking Zomtober - by finishing some survivor and zombie models.  It's customary for me to present a pair of such models and ask my readers: what happens next?  Here you go...

Marion vs Emaciated Female Zombie (EFZ)

This week's survivor is called Marion.  She's a sporty-looking woman with a modern compound bow, but it seems that she has very little other equipment: only a single arrow and no knife or other reserve weapon.  She is also lacking a bracer or even thick clothes to protect her arm, so I imagine she'll end up with a bad burn from the bowstring when she does release the arrow.

It seems slightly unfair to call this zombie "emaciated", but I chose that title on account of her upraised arm.  At the very least, this looks quite thin, even to the point of being withered.  Does EFZ have any strength in that hand, or is it too weak to be useful?  The rest of her appears to be fairly sturdy, if now somewhat damaged.

Like Marion, EFZ appears to be dressed for some athletic activity, or partly so.  Maybe she was changing before or after exercise when she was turned into a zombie?

So, what's the scene?  Were these two both at the same sports club when the plague struck?  Or are they total strangers; just a chance encounter in the street?

Both Marion and EMZ are straight builds of old Wargames Factory models - respectively from the Female Survivors and Zombie Vixens kits.  I'm quite pleased with how they both look.  They're nothing very complex; just nice, simple figures.

The only minor quibble I'd have is that the female zombies kit from Wargames Factory had far too many very thin arms.  This is especially irritating when the bodies from that kit are reasonably well-proportioned (for healthy, good-looking young women, at least.  Not much diversity of body shapes here!)


What happens next?

On the one hand:

  • Marion has a weapon which is probably very effective
  • She seems to be able to wield it
  • She hasn't been taken by surprise.

On the other hand:

  • It looks as if she's aiming high (perhaps going for a riskier head shot?)
  • I do wonder if she really knows how to use the bow properly (lack of a bracer, spare arrows and not drawing quite to the chin - as is modern practice in Western archery).

If Marion hits her target then it should finish the zombie off, no question.  But if she misses then does EFZ have enough strength in her outstretched arm to grapple with the survivor?  Or is this relevant - does the zombie need anything other than teeth?

Forward to Week 4! ==>

Sunday 8 October 2023

Zomtober 2023, Week 2

<== Go here for the previous Zomtober article


It's been a while since I last did a Zomtober post - I missed the whole of 2022 as well as the first week of 2023.  But here we are again!

As before, I'm presenting the initial stage of a duel or encounter between a zombie and a survivor.  The important question is "what happens next"?  There's no "right" answer, just use your imagination (but try to stay within the bounds of possibility 😀).

Harvey vs Dead Average Zombie

This week's survivor is called "Harvey".  He's well-armed, with twin automatic pistols - though he appears to be waving these in the air as if trying to scare off the zombie rather than destroying it.  Maybe Harvey has been taken by surprise - he is twisting his body in a manner that might suggest being off balance?

I've designated this week's zombie as "Dead Average Zombie" ("DAZ" for short).  DAZ is really quite unremarkable.  He's not particularly animated or rotten, though he does seem to have lost most of his shirt somehow.

Harvey is a straight build from the old Wargames Factory "Apocalypse Survivors" kit.  I'm not completely happy with my choice of parts for him, though.  In particular, the baseball cap doesn't really go with the shirt-and-tie body.  Hmm, maybe I should have given him a cowboy hat?

DAZ is a simple build from the Studio Miniatures zombie sprue.  As such, he's not particularly animated, but would be good filler for a crowd scene.


So, what happens next?  Is Harvey merely readying his weapons to blow the zombie away?  Or is he firing into the air as an intimidation tactic (which probably wouldn't work)?  If the latter, will he realise his mistake in time to take another, more fruitful course of action?  After all, DAZ doesn't look particularly fast-moving or tricky to deal with.

Look ahead to next week's entry ==>