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  • #46036
    Mike
    Keymaster

    I was at a show today and was chatting to a couple of pals that run painting services.
    It was interesting that both of them get very few requests for sci-fi models to be painted.

    One was of the opinion that many of the younger gamers who come from the GW route are shown very impressive paintjobs early on, and are intimidated by the quality of them and are put off.
    He noted that at his club pretty much all the sci-fi and fantasy guys dont bother with painting their figures.

    Is this something you have encountered?

    #46037
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    I’ll be honest and have to say that I haven’t, but probably because I have only just started getting into SF and don’t know/encounter many/any players as yet.

    On the other hand I have experienced the Olympic experience with historicals. Ie: ‘that’s fantastic but beyond my reach.’

    I’ve known young and potential wargamers look at the display games at shows and come away thinking they’ll do something else.

    The intended effect of huge numbers of superbly painted historical figures on immaculate model railway quality terrain may be to inspire but it seems just as likely to intimidate younger and starter gamers. The perceived acceptable levels of skill, time and money required are too much for some.

    I’m not suggesting all shows should consist of games where 20 badly painted figures on a chalked board represent Waterloo but a half way house might be good.

    The message should be that you don’t have to be a brilliant painter or own several thousand pounds worth of lead to be a wargamer.

    Kids in particular need alternatives laid before them. They should be welcomed whether they choose the several thousand 28mm superbly painted figure rout,e or the good enough painted skirmish game avenue. The perfect should not be the enemy of the good.

    #46074
    Alya Sayer
    Participant

    I find there are loads of people who just don’t have the time to paint their armies but I agree a lot of people can be put off by the quality of professional painters, however there is a clear market for pre-painted miniatures and it’s a struggle for me to be found in order to make any sales

    #46081
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    No problem with the work of professional painters at all! More power to your/their elbows. I love looking at some of the work produced.*

    My only concern is that tyros think THEY have to paint like that when they start as an entry cost to the hobby.

    They don’t of course but some seem to take that message home from some of the shows.

    *I am also intrigued at changing fashions in styles of painting and why styles that were hailed as ‘the best’ 20 years ago are now passé. This isn’t simply technical or artistic development or improvement but is a definite stylistic change. I’m waiting for block painting in Humbrol gloss enamel to come back in fashion!

    #46083
    Mike
    Keymaster

    I’m waiting for block painting in Humbrol gloss enamel to come back in fashion!

    LOL 😀

    #49306
    Mike
    Keymaster

    I am bumping this, cos I can…

    #49328
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    I see it a fair deal with GW and PP players, not so much with “indie” sci-fi and fantasy figures (ie. no more than with historicals). I think being intimidated by pro paintjobs does indeed have something to do with it, and it doesn’t help that some of the figures from GW and PP have been sculpted in a “more is more” style intended to fit hand-in-glove with their own paid pro painters for marketing purposes as opposed to being feasible to paint with an intermediate amount of effort by a middling painter.

    But I think part of it is also that the GW and PP figures are the most accessible ones on the market (not counting pre-paints like X-Wing). If you’re “not all that serious” about the hobby (I don’t mean that in a derogatory way) and just want to play around a bit, there’s a good chance you’ll land on Warhammer, 40K or WarmaHordes out of reasons to do with sheer availability and brand awareness, unless of course you land on X-Wing for similar reasons.

    I suspect GW (and maybe even PP) are secretly wrestling with the whole pre-paints dilemma. They may just go ahead and make the switch once the technology has caught up (which won’t be in the very near future, I’m sure, and the limitations of Chinese labour as a method of producing painted miniatures have already been ascertained and found to be less than fully satisfactory). I honestly don’t believe GW want to be marketing a “hobby game” anymore, ie. one that necessarily involves a paint-it-yourself aspect. They’re on unstable ground right now, having moved away from where they used to be to a more quick-fix “pre-packaged” product line (selling board-miniature game hybrids, no longer encouraging players to scratchbuild their own terrain, etc) but not yet having the means to sell their miniatures satisfactorily pre-painted as would be the obvious logical next step. And so, unpainted grey plastic is where we’re at. I’m starting to think pre-paints may actually be an improvement on the present situation where Warhammer, 40K and possibly WarmaHordes are concerned.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 5 months ago by Rhoderic.
    #49339
    McKinstry
    Participant

    I play with folks who, including me, consider unpainted figures on a wargames table to be anathema worthy of mobs in the street brandishing torches and pitchforks screaming death to the heretic.

    That said, we would never criticize any attempt at painting and go out of our way to praise any and all efforts. I think if people get encouragement and positive reinforcement along with genuine helpful suggestions (if asked for) then painting/using painted figures can/should/will be a part of every game.

    I honestly cannot fathom what is in it for anyone using unpainted figures. The hobby is per se visual. If I just wanted to play a wargame, boardgames or computer games are cheaper, easier play with far less preparation and effort and provide all the competitive/game experience I could want. If the visuals of miniature gaming are not the core thing, why bother?

     

     

    Never wrestle with a pig. You both get muddy and the pig just likes it.

    #49343
    John D Salt
    Participant

    Are we quite sure the figures are unpainted?

    Or are they Cylons, Mechanoids, Cybermen, Daleks, Robbie, Marvin, Gort, the Silver Surfer, or the liquid phase of Terminator, and therefore correctly represented as being largely or entirely silver in colour?

    All the best,

    John.

    #49346
    willz
    Participant

    I see this a fair bit, 40k players spend hundreds of pounds on figures but don’t want to paint them.  Normal answer is I can’t paint as good as we see in the magazines so what’s the point?  I point out that we all have to start somewhere and over time with practice and more practice your skills get better.

    Seems a waste of money not to have a go at painting your figures.

    #49347
    PatG
    Participant

    I will paraphrase Sue Barker of WRG fame – If you don’t care enough to paint them – why should they fight for you?

    #49350
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    Are we quite sure the figures are unpainted? Or are they Cylons, Mechanoids, Cybermen, Daleks, Robbie, Marvin, Gort, the Silver Surfer, or the liquid phase of Terminator, and therefore correctly represented as being largely or entirely silver in colour?

    A lot of 40K players actually did something like that with the old metal Necrons. They just gave the unprimed figures a black wash, painted the gun barrels in a suitably cartoonish “energy weapon” colour, and picked out the eyes in red. An extremely fast way to bring an overpowered army to the table.

    Come to think of it, the Terminators in the recent Terminator Genisys miniatures game come in a silvery plastic for that same reason.

    #49363
    Victoria Dickson
    Participant

    I sometimes wish I could play with unpainted figures, but I can’t bring myself to.  When I was a kid I was happy to play with unpainted Airfix figures, why can’t I now?  Same with basing and terain, I can’t just stick figures on bare bits of card or call a scrap of felt with 3 trees on it a wood anymore.  Not that my standards are exactly high, but I seem to have developed some minimum standard over the years and it does cut down considerably on how much I can actually play.

    So I’m sort of jealous of people who can buy unpainted figures and play with them straight away.

    #49364
    PatG
    Participant

    So I’m sort of jealous of people who can buy unpainted figures and play with them straight away.

    And some of us are a little jealous of those who can sculpt and cast up entire ranges of unique figures. 😉

    #49366
    Steve Johnson
    Participant

    At the club we used to see a fair amount of unpainted figures, mainly when people were trying out different set ups for their ‘Armies’. I’m sure the sheer level of detail put many club members off painting GW figures, coupled with a few club members whose painting was superb. This not only applied to sci-fi, but to fantasy a;so and rarely to historical games.

    #49367
    kyoteblue
    Participant

    I’ve seen one painted 40K army in real life….

    #49368
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    At the club we used to see a fair amount of unpainted figures, mainly when people were trying out different set ups for their ‘Armies’.

    That rings a bell, now you mention it. Back when I moved in WHFB and 40K circles, a big part of “the hobby” consisted of building army lists and experimenting with force composition. It’s that whole meta-gaming thing, which wasn’t always entirely undesirable (it could be fun designing army lists!) but which I’m mostly glad to have left behind now. It seemed that to a lot of people, painting had to go on the back burner because of that. It wasn’t that they didn’t want to paint their figures, they just ran out of energy and enthusiasm building their armies on paper, then constantly modifying those armies with new purchases. By the time they felt they had their force compositions locked down, along came a new codex. It didn’t even have to be a codex for one’s own army. One could be a Space Marine player and feel the need to modify one’s army when the new Tyranid codex came out because suddenly there were new threats that needed countering.

    Really, this discussion is starting to give me a newfound appreciation for pre-paints. I’m not necessarily interested in pre-paints for myself, but rather more for other parts of the community. From a community-minded hobbyist’s point of view, the present situation with 40K, AoS and a few of the other big-brand games is a bit absurd with all that grey plastic populating a hundred thousand battlefields (probably). X-Wing gets a lot of flak (suitable metaphor!) for being a quick-fix game, but a lot of 40K players are effectively treating 40K as a quick-fix game anyway. I suspect that if we were to take a random game of X-Wing and a random game of 40K being played anywhere in the world right now, the X-Wing game would look better because, ultimately, everything on the table is painted.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 5 months ago by Rhoderic.
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