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Monday, January 29, 2024

Ogre: Command Post


The ultimate objective for an Ogre in the original game. Very easy to paint: It's essentially just Contrast Ultra Marine Blue with various other colors to highlight some of the instruments and sensors.

And don't worry - there is no hair stuck to the model. After I took the pictures I thought there was but they easily brushed off.

Thursday, January 25, 2024

The Search for Charlie Episode 1.6: Seriously? The Joker?

"Why so serious?"

From Sam's Journal: "There are maniacs out there . . . tough guys who want to prove who is boss. My usual sources of informants, some reliable, some criminal, and all expensive, are now spreading tales of a clown. Seriously. A clown. How hard would it be to hide and not be seen if you were a clown. What I'm being told though is bone chilling . . . if real this clown guy would be probably the greatest threat I faced - even greater than Lo Pan. And now they are talking about some guy dressed as a bat . . . 

Key, and dangerous, "associates" of the Joker.

The Joker is a supervillain; though he has no super powers. The Joker is a criminal mastermind and a psychopath with a warped, sadistic sense of humor. As mentioned, the Joker possesses no superhuman abilities, instead his expertise in chemical engineering is used to develop poisonous or lethal concoctions and thematic weaponry, including razor-tipped playing cards, deadly joy buzzers, and acid-spraying lapel flowers. No one knows where this homicidal genius comes from, although a number of theories have been proposed but a definitive one has never been established for the Joker. According to an unreliable source, the Joker is uncertain of who he was before and how he became the Joker: "Sometimes I remember it one way, sometimes another . . . if I'm going to have a past, I prefer it to be multiple choice!" The Joker commits crimes ranging from whimsical to brutal, for reasons that, "make sense to him alone". Death, chaos and destruction follow in his wake. Is the disappearance of Charlie some sick, twisted joke? And what about this man - bat?

The Invisible Man.

The Invisible Man refers to himself only as Griffin, a scientist who has devoted himself to research into optics and who invents a way to change a body's refractive index to that of air so that it neither absorbs nor reflects light. He carried out this procedure on himself and renders himself invisible, but he failed in his attempt to reverse it.  His condition has almost driven him mad, making him a practitioner of random and irresponsible violence - and also the perfect assassin.

 " . . . another victim of the Invisible Man."

Mister Remorse.

Benedict Stark is a genius of crime and one of the most evil master-criminals the vigilante known as The Shadow had ever fought. Though he is also known as the Prince of Evil, he calls himself Mr. Remorse. During their first battle, he successfully kidnapped The Shadow's agent, Rutledge Mann. Even after Mann's rescue, Stark brazenly kidnapped him a second time along with four other agents who worked with The Shadow. 

Some have theorized that he is the same Daniel Joshua Benedict Stark that invented electroporation. Electroporation is a method to permeabilize cell membranes for delivery of normally impermeable biomolecules. A microelectroporation system was built to provide
a well-controlled and well-defined environment for quantitative studies of electroporation of Jurkat cells, an immortalized line of T cells; however, it exploded killing several people and only one person survived the blast - a young woman was seen crawling away and then running. She, the only witness to what may have happened has disappeared and Daniel Joshua Benedict Stark was never seen again as he presumably was disintegrated in the blast. 

Mister Remorse faces his nemesis Photon.

Besides the criminals behind the crime insurance racket, Stark, and his henchman, are the only adversaries to unmask the identity of The Shadow and fully disrupt the vigilante's secret organization. He has sold this information to the Joker.

The Abominable Dr. Phibes.

Dr. Anton Phibes, a famous concert organist with doctorates in both music and theology, is believed to have been killed in a car crash in Switzerland in 1921, while racing home upon hearing of the death of his beloved wife, Victoria, during surgery. Phibes survived the crash, but was horribly scarred and left unable to speak. He remade his face with prosthetics and used his knowledge of acoustics to regain his voice. Resurfacing secretly, Phibes believes his wife was a victim of her doctors' incompetence, and begins elaborate plans to kill those he believes are guilty for her death. He is the perfect partner in the lab with the insane Joker.

"It's a laboratory, not a lair. I have to remember that."

Once again some great figures from Pulp Figures - until next time!

Monday, January 22, 2024

The Search for Charlie Episode 1.5: More Hollywood Nazis (Boo and Hiss!)

"So Mister Sam . . . or Mister Rick . . . or whatever alias you are using now. It's been awhile since the incident in Casablanca! And now I have you in my clutches! BWAH HAH HAH!(Don't try to figure out the year of timeline - just go with the flow! Ed.)

Do you want villains? We have some of the worst (best?) of the best (worst?). As Sam searches for Charlie amongst criminal gangs and secret organizations, the nation state of Nazi Germany is an old nemesis and has the resources to thwart our good guys.

The Leadership.

Though technically part of the Geheime Staatspolizei (Secret State Police) or Gestapo for short, all special projects and direct actions, including Stahl-Mask's Doom Squad, report to Generalmajor Heinrich Strasser. When last we saw Strasser, he was pretending to be a Major and was mortally wounded by Sam under the alias of Rick Blaine. He was miraculously saved from
 death by Herr Doktor Professor Wiener Horst of the secret Nazi Science division. Utterly ruthless and willing to throw all enemies plus his henchmen and goons . . . I mean valued employees, under the bus to ensure Nazi dominance over the world.

Generalmajor Heinrich Strasser and his loyal bodyguard Scharführer Volkmar Käsewurst.

Scharführer Volkmar Käsewurst is the strongest man in the Gestapo, the SS and possibly all of Nazi Germany. Hermann Göring has for a long time been wanted to arrange a "friendly" match between Käsewurst and the Nazi Supersoldat Carl Fronhausen but cooler heads have prevailed. Käsewurst wears the highest sniper award on his right cuff. His intense loyalty to Strasser was reinforced when he vowed after the "Casablanca" incident not to leave his side again.

Sturmbannführer Arnold Ernst Toht.

Sturmbannführer Arnold Ernst Toht is a sadistic and ruthless Nazi Gestapo agent and military officer. Major Arnold Ernst Toht has at least one sibling, a sister named Ilsa, an agent of the Third Reich herself. Toht joined the Gestapo and, as with the rest of his Gestapo brethren, is trained in the art of combat, interrogation, torture, and espionage, and was well-versed in mysticism and the belief in Aryan society. Over time, Toht became a skilled torturer and interrogator, relishing the opportunity to inflict pain and suffering even for its own sake, and a firm believer in the Nazi doctrine, leading him to dismiss any actions as absolutely necessary for the Nazis to destroy any threats to their supremacy. Over time, Toht would become known only for his last name. Some claim he will "melt away" when the odds are against him but his track record says otherwise.

Senior investigators and all around ruthless leaders.

Regierungs und KriminaldirektorReichskriminaldirektor (Colonel) Uhrwerk Kartoffelhänger.

Kriminaldirektor (Major) Wilhelm Forkenbrecher.

Kriminalkommissar (1st Lieutenant) Mordechai der Wissenschaftler.

"No one expects the Spanish Inqui . . . I mean Nazi Hollywood Gestapo!"

In any evil organization that is trying to bring the world to its knees . . . I mean challenge the entrenched hierarchies of the world, there are henchmen and goons . . . I mean assistants, that are willing to be at the point of the spear to deal with helpless victims . . . I mean the general public in leading them to enlightenment. Yep, they recently attended a positivity workshop.

All of these wonderful Pulp Nazis were designed by Bob Murch of Pulp Figures. All black uniforms are always a challenge but these days with Contrast paints it is a lot easier. For the black uniforms I used Citadel Contrast Black Templar and for the helmets, boots, pistol holsters and other black leather I used Vallejo German Grey. The officer hats were painted with Vallejo Flat Black.

"Hmmm . . . "

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

The Search for Charlie Episode 1.4: Stahl-Mask's Doom Squad

The mysterious Oberst (Colonel) Stahl-Mask (Steel Mask)

No one, except at the highest levels of Nazi Germany, know Oberst Stahl-Mask's real name. Western Nations and the Communist USSR only know that he wears the Pour le Merite, commonly known as the Blue Max (German: Blauer Max). It was the Kingdom of Prussia's highest military order until the end of World War I. Intelligence agencies are desperately matching recipients and locations of the recipients but to no avail. One theory, though often laughed at is put forth by Dr. Hans Zharkov that Stahl-Mask is the reanimated corpse of REDACTED. This is largely discredited due to the fact that Zharkov, a Russian émigré that now lives in Switzerland, has been diagnosed with clinical paranoia. Oberst Stahl-Mask, though normally ambivalent to missions or targets, he seems to have an intense hatred of the so-called "Shadow". Oberst Stahl-Mask leads Nazi Germany's elite strike force know as the Doom Squad.
Herr Doktor Professor Horst.

Herr Doktor Professor Wiener Horst is a lieutenant colonel in the secret Nazi Science Division. He is considered by the Germans as the smartest man on Earth (however see articles and notes on Doctor Clark Savage, Jr., Dr. Cuthbert Calculus,  Dr. Hans Zharkov and REDACTED. We will not at this time discuss the so-called existence of Dr. Fu Manchu as no concrete evidence has been substantiated as to whether this person exists. He is rumored to be conducting experiments of a heinous and unnatural nature; experiments that could damage the known laws of nature and cause . . . well, that's for the story to tell. 

Unterfeldwebel (US equivalent of a Staff Sergeant) Carl Fronhausen was given an experimental serum by Doctor Hurst that turned him into the Nazi Supersoldat (Super Soldier). Attempts to duplicate the experiment by Doctor Hurst have been, shall we say, disappointing and painful for the other subjects. Current intelligent assessments have placed Unterfeldwebel Fronhausen's speed, strenth and agility way above norma human parameters. He is pretty good with a submachine gun too.

Oberjager (Corporal of Light Infantry) Gunter Wildschwein is probably the most dangerous hand to hand combat expert in the German army. He has no mercy or compassion toward his opponents and though an expert shot, prefers to use his personal knife which is named "Biss des Valkr". In addition he is the team's demolition expert.

"The American detective was spotted where?"

"He must never find out about what we are doing and why he is here . . ."

Sunday, January 14, 2024

The Search for Charlie Episode 1.3: Financing the Search

"Cut!" yelled Merrik Von Stroheim, world famous director and sometime producer for RTO Films. "Now I want you to move closer Generalmajor Strasser."


From Sam's Journal:

"I know as much about money as the next guy, but I knew we would need some extra dough to conduct the search properly. I was picking up clues, here and there, rumors mostly, and I was beginning to think this was going to be an expensive look. So I went to the money man. Yep, I went to the boss - the owner of the agency. The Colonel made arrangements with RTO films for exclusive rights and distribution of "the movie" if they would finance the investigation. The Colonel has some good contacts."

"Okay everyone take a 10 minute break. Not you sweet heart - I need more sweat and fear in your performance and 'hanging around' for 10 more minutes will do it."

Merrik Von Stroheim is the world renown director, and sometime producer, who captivates the world with his on location filming and fast paced, hair raising films.  Not many know, but he is also German nobility, but he keeps his title a closely guarded secret. An arrogant and highly intelligent man, his skills and personality have propelled him to the top of his career. With success comes controversy; though, only whispers but no one willing to go on the record from the film industry and risking blacklisting. Some stars refuse to work with him due to his demanding schedules and unothodox methods. There are unsubtantiated rumors of the near death of starlet Vera Veller at the hands of some mythical frog monster that only the crackpots at Miskatonic University would believe.

Captain George Sutherland, DSO, on half pay with the Gordon Highlanders. He gained his combat experience on the Northwest Frontier, Turkey and in Palestine. He is wearing his Regimental tie.

Captain George Sutherland, DCM, is the kind of officer and warrior you want in combat - but not in peacetime. The peacetime  army rarely knows what to do with a soldier of his capability; and Captain Sutherland has no patience for the paperwork, politics and bureaucracy that comes with sitting in a headquarters when more timid and cautious officers look for scapegoats for their lack of decisiveness. Interestingly, information on his awarding of the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) is scarce, though Whitehall confirms he is authorized to wear the medal. Unsubstantiated rumors of a denied Victorian Cross in Palestine was in retribution and to cover up the cowardice of REDACTED and he was awarded the DCM and put on half pay as a sop. Merrik Von Stroheim, recognizing his innate skills in camera work, hired him as his chief camera man - plus his other talents have proven useful too!

Another "outcast" hired by Merrik Von Stroheim is "former police" officer Miss Peggy Allen. Disgusted with the corruption and the "look the other way" of her department, Miss Allen took the highly recommended leave of absence offered by the city. She has become Von Stoheim's go to for almost everything - though often he does not realize. He also hasn't noticed her other hobbies of checking on Stroheim and the areas he films. She has noticed the glances of the stoic Captain Sutherland. Oh, and she's good with a pistol too.

"Something doesn't look right . . . Is that . . ???!!! "

This is Kevin. Every group has a Kevin. Sorry Kevin.

"Generalmajor Strasser! Where is my, err, endowment money for my film institute? The payment is late and you know I won't tolerate lateness!"