The 6 survivors are done and with them the contents of the Walking Dead core set are now complete. At just 18 models this is probably a negligible achievement to most but I am a slow painter and easily distracted by other projects so I will take my victories where I can get them.
Along with the models I made up some loot counters to replace the card tokens that came in the set. I had some flat Warlord bases I could spare so I did a bit of digging in my junk box and arranged some objects on them that would be desirable to enterprising survivors or wastelanders in any post apocalyptic tabletop hell of my imaginings.
I spent more time on the individual survivors than I did on the walkers. I was most interested in cohesion for the herd and wanted each of the survivors to be unique individuals. I base coated the figures as a group of six but as I added the details I focused on each separately. The quality of the sculpts was at least as good as that of the walkers. Like the unliving the survivors had some parts where detail seemed a little soft and a single pronounced mold line but I enjoyed painting them just the same. The diversity of my six cast members made each a unique painting experience with different tricks to try and colours to choose.
Derek was a minor character in the Walking Dead comics. The leader of a small scavenger group in DC he tried to push his way into Alexandria and got a bullet in the head for his troubles. A bully and inelegant leader I saw him as a fat, poor man's Negan and painted him to intimidate. I'm not sure if he was skinhead punk or thought that the Fonz was scary when he was growing up but I painted him in denim and leather. I like the model mostly because there are not enough paunchy male (or female) figures out there. I thought a pistol was questionable for a big guy like that because I couldn't see him running far or fast when that little 9mm ran out of ammo.
Liam looks like a douche. Of the group I liked him the least. That pony tail just says, "Grab me here and tear out my throat". The face seemed distorted by his expression and of all the figures this one suffered because the face itself seemed soft. To make matters worse the pitiful whiner is cowering and covering up in such a manner his hand make dealing with with his waxy visage that much more of a hassle. I painted him as quickly as I could and look forward to his almost certain demise.
Sandra is my favorite of the models apart from Rick. I like the pragmatism of the figure. She is a runner wearing leather for protection, cargo pants for mobility and a bandana to keep the hair out of her eyes. More of a flee than fight character the knife is a sensible desperation weapon I gored up a bit to show she uses it for stabbing not slashing. I painted her skin with an olive hue because I thought it suited her high cheekbones and hawkish nose. She looks tough and competent; I hope she lives.
Patrick is the third scavenger model and I like him almost as much as the Sandra figure. He has a bat and a cutoff hoodie so I was probably thinking sport or baseball when I painted his pants as sweats and ran the lines down them. If I had been paying closer attention to the comic source material I definitely would have put some ink on his exposed arms. I will probably add a sleeve to one of his arms when I go back and flock the bases. According to the card Patrick is a bruiser and he looks the part with his bat at the ready. I added some gore over the aluminum to simulate him braining a walker with it.
Most models rely on the face to "sell" or define them. Carl is an exception and I thought that the sculptor did a good job of it. A child's face doesn't have a lifetime imprinted on it and doesn't dictate their nature as effectively. A highly detailed face would make a child look like a small adult. They chose to describe Carl's with his belongings and I thought it worked out well. I painted Carl's features very "soft" or flat and let his kit do the talking.
Rick is a pretty cool model and I had a blast painting him. His uniform had enough detail to convince me of his profession but not bog me down with too much fiddly painting. I'm sure I spent half of the time painting this model at the least playing with his face. I was probably harder on Rick than I should have been. I think the sculptor captured a time in Rick's life during the comic just after the beginning of the end but my experiences with The Walking Dead are rooted in the AMC series so I selfishly stole the happiness from his life and made him more the more haggard and hard bitten character I was more familiar with. On that note I found it really jarring that Rick was sporting a "Dad's Comb-over" rather than Andrew Lincoln's mane.
Hurray for me for getting the set done and hurray and thanks to you if you were willing to see the article all the way through to the end. It has been an enjoyable journey but we are just on the first leg. I intend to build some physical barricades to replace the card ones and ready some die-casts so I can have a 3d setup to give the game a test run. I'll share a report on my experience some time in the near future and unless there is some unforeseen train wreck that eluded me (I did read over the rules) I'm confident I will be grabbing up some expansions to continue my adventures among the walkers.