Friday, February 27, 2009

Unkerlant Travel Log: Ostland

Settled between a fork in the Blut River and the mountains, Ostland is a wild and unsettled land, full of rolling hills, dark woods and marshes. Most Ostlanders are thought of as barabarians by Unkerlanters. Ostlanders welcome this as a compliment, and have been known to use their rugged reputation to bully outsiders both in the political realm as well as trade.
In truth, Ostland is an unforgiving land. Hard winters have bred a tough people and an even tougher breed of sheep. The bedeutenbiter has a particularly rough coat that becomes extremely warm wool, albeit also extremely itchy. The sheep are also really bad tempered, known to bite and attack small, unattended children.
Ostvald is the provincial capital of Ostland high in the foothills of the mountains. There the locals show off their wealth from the wool trade with ostentatious displays of colorful clothing. Being a stoic people by nature, it is considered poor form to be caught scratching at the very itchy wool that has brought them their wealth. Ostvald is the home of Margraff Konstantine Von Ostland. The margraff is a huge, bear of a man with, unlike his stoic people, a temper to match. Konstantine is also famous for his completely bald head he has had since birth. A hair has never grown on his head, but everywhere else is a different matter. The Margraff has managed to produce 13 equally hairy offspring, in a land known for it’s high child mortality rate.
Normark is the only other town of note in Ostland. Known for nothing more than it’s brutal weather, Normark is really just a way station on the road to neighboring Zlobenia.
Ostlanders make great fighters. All the internalized emotion becomes unleashed on the battlefield.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Unkerlant Travel Log: Salacia

Salacia is considered by most of Unkerlant as little more than a den of thieves. Yes, most Salacians do have a tendency to “borrow” things that don’t belong to them, but to be fair, it is a dreadfully poor place. The soil is poor, the animals are unhealthy and the weather is lousy. These facts have made most Salacians very resourceful about making ends meet. However, stealing from each other has also turned a few thefts into all out blood feuds between families. The Brunstedler-Lidzgefeldt Pig War has been waged for almost half a century over the theft of a hog.
The two major towns in Salacia are Ferlangen, known for its’ salted eels, and Salzemund, where the salt comes from. Ferlangen is a trade hub of Unkerlant and ships it’s eels to every part of the kingdom. They desperately need the salt from Salzemund for their trade and Salt Guild of Salzemund knows this very well. Each town has found ways to gouge each other blind in the trade arena.
Presiding of over all of this is the Margraff Dolf Von Salzemund, probably the only portly person in Salacia. The old Margraff is so big, he uses a wheel barrow-like cart to carry his mass around. Most of his courtly business is done from behind a massive plate of sausages.
Salacians can be great warriors when called to the colors. Their bravery, however, is proportionate to the amount of plunder to be had.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Unkerlant Travel Log: Middelhiem

The Electorate of Middelhiem is, not surprisingly, in the middle of the country. Middelhiemers pride themselves in being level-headed, steady, and even-tempered. Most Unkerlanters would describe them as mind numbingly boring. “As dull as a Middelhiemer” is a popular saying around Unkerlant. Even the food is bland.
But, all of these traits have also kept Middelhiem fairly stable, free of much of the turmoil and literal backstabbing that occurs in the rest of the country.
Unlike the rest of Unkerlant, the leader of Middelhiem is elected by the citizenry.
The citizenry though, only includes wealthy members of the guilds. No would think of letting common peasants vote.
Being Middelhiemers, these elections can often be a long, drawn out process as the relative merits and faults are weighed for each candidate. Elector Hans Leopold Jones, the descendant of a wealthy Welsh immigrant, is the current holder of the title. It took almost a year of debating for the plodding citizens to finally make him Elector. Jone’s election was a surprise to many, still being considered a “foreigner” by most Unkerlanters despite being a third generation citizen.
In battle, Middelhiemers are steady troops, but lack any kind of initiative, or anything that would be considered valor.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Unkerlant Travel Log: Averland

Averland’s rolling plains make it fine horse country. Averlanders are some of Unkerlant’s best horsemen. The sturdy little breed of Averlander horse are descendants of Turkish horses introduced during one of the many incursions by the Turks over the centuries. Blutt Pass, one of the few openings in the surrounding mountains that have both protected and isolated Unkerlant, has been a highway for many invasions into Unkerlant. These “visits” have left Averlanders even more xenophobic than other Unkerlanters and more adept at defensive tactics.
Averlanders have mastered the use of war wagons. Foot soldiers are vulnerable to cavalry on the open plains, so Averlanders learned to circle their sturdy supply wagons around the infantry and use their own horse to make counter attacks. The wagons became even heavier and started carrying light guns.
The two largest towns in Averland are Hochsleben and Agbetten. Hochsleben considers itself the capital of the southern lands of Unkerlant, although nobody else does. It’s mainly known for it’s beer, brewed by the Mueller’s for 7 generations. Mueller’s Hochsleben is an Unkerlant favorite, sponsoring the local Kannonball team.
Agbetten is Hochsleben’s poorer relation, mostly known for a cheese made from horse milk. Agbetteners are a coarse folk, hardened by years of invasions and harsh winters on the plains.
The current ruller of Averland is Countess Alfreda Von Averland. Although the Countess is but fifteen, she has been quite active in the affairs of her people. She is known to ride across the southern plains in her Cossack-style attire, trailing attendants, suitors, and the rest of the court behind her.


I got that Renaissance itch again, so I painted up some Old Glory Poles.
Don't know if these boys will ever see action, so they might end up on the auction block.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Unkerlant Travel Log: Graveholm

Graveholm is a damp, gloomy place, perpetually shrouded in mist. The people themselves match their environment, being cold, gloomy, suspicious and very superstitious. They wear countless talismans and charms to ward off the multitude of imagined witches and monsters that haunt every bog and wood.
Graveholm’s one crop is a black, foul smelling potato. Little wonder the peasants are in such a foul mood.
Count Ludwig Averheim is the current leader of Graveholm, and has ruled longer than anyone can remember. The old count is cadaverous in appearance, and some say has an odor to match. Little is seen of him besides his black coach racing across the countryside
escorted by his fearsome Black Guard. Graveholm may be a poor place, but Count Averheim is an Elector, and therefore very important to Unkerlant politics.
In war, Graveholmers are sturdy soldiers, resigned it seems, to their fate.

Monday, February 16, 2009

100 miniatures, 100 days

I managed to stick to a plan for once. I finished 100 miniatures in as many days. I didn't always paint one a day, sometimes I painted 7 on a Saturday that made up for the week, or a strip of 10mms counted as 1 figure. But, I did it. I wanted something special for my 100th, so here's Dash Dixon, Galactic Hero!

Samurai! (& a Ninja)

Painting the WW2 Japanese Super-Villains got me in the mood for some old Foundry Sammies.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Unkerlant Travel Log: the Baronies

The Baronies
The lands known as the Baronies are one of the few areas in Unkerlant with somewhat decent farmlands. Most of the soil is given over to the growing of potatoes, onions and cabbage, the staples of Unkerlantian diet. The Baronies are made up of 13 separate lands of varying size. The smallest, Weniglant is little over 100 acres.
The borders are constantly shifting as farmers and barons alike move boundary stones with little regard for their neighbors. This not only leads to almost constant squabbles, but also leaves the peasants at a loss to who gets their taxes every month.
The two largest towns are Marburg and Wurtbad, both of which would be considered large villages in most of Europe. A great rivalry exists between the two, which culminates in a yearly festival where Marburg and Wurtbad play a match of Unkerlant’s favorite pastime (besides warfare) Kanonball. This often grizzly sport is similar to rugby but played with a canon ball and blunted pikes.
When called to war, the Baronies muster their civic militias. These soldiers are members of the local guilds and form their own platoons, such as the Royal Cheesemongers and the Wheelwrights.
Nominal command is given to the largest barony at the time. The current commander is Baron Wulfrem Von Wurtbad. Von Wurtbad is a capable man, but often plagued with gout and confined to a carriage. This leaves the militias to the not-so-capable, Baron Favio Vermechelli, an Italian barber whose amorous relations with the Baroness Von Knottel has elevated him to his current post.

Japanese Super-Villains of WW2

Here's just 3 of Japanese Super-Villains that will soon join Team Axis. Presnted are Rikishi the Super Sumo wrestler, Tsunami the Master of Water and Hachiman, the living embodiment of Warrior Japan. I'm also previewing 2 of the 4 Kamikaze robots.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A brief History of the 2nd War of Unkerlant Succession

In 1702, the much beloved King of Unkerlant, Karl Franz III died without a legitimate heir. He had outlived not only his wife the Queen, but all five of his sons who had died earlier of childhood disease or riding accidents.
The kingdom was in turmoil. There were four claimants to the throne:
First was Karl Franz’s sister, the Arch-Duchess Brunhilde of Volborg. Older than her brother, Brunhilde was almost worshipped in her home duchy. Her portrait graced every house and hovel, despite the fact the elderly Arch-Duchess had not been seen in public in years. It was whispered (never by Volborgians) she was dead, and that the duchy was actually run by her consort Augustus, a man despised as much as Brunhilde was loved.
Another claimant was the exiled Prince Ruprect of Borogravia. Borogravia, once part of greater Unkerlant, had broken away during the First War of Unkerlant Succession. Prince Ruprct was the son of Karl Franz’s brother Otto, and therefore the king’s nephew. Had not Ruprect been a “foreigner”, he would have been the obvious choice for the throne, despite the fact he tried to have his uncle assassinated on several occasions. This was just considered “politics” by most Unkerlanters.
Next on the list was Prince Adalbert of Franistover, cousin to Karl Franz on his mother's side. The prince was often called Adalbert the “Addle-Brained”. He was a portly man and gregarious by Unkerlantian standards, but prone to often bizarre decisions like knighting his chef after he baked a particularly good pie.
Lastly, Karl Franz did sire a child that lived to adulthood, just not a child with the queen. Before he married Queen Elzbeth, the king fathered a child with the Duchess Friedricha of Zlobenia. The duchess never married, and their son Sigmund took the title of Duke of Zlobenia after her death in 1663. Duke Sigmund “the Bastard”, was an indifferent ruler, usually hunting instead of governing.
Now, throw into this mix that Unkerlantian kings rule by authority of the seven Electors. Whomever could win over these votes would be king (or queen) of Unkerlant. The stage was set for one of the messiest, oddest, and most little known struggle of the 18th century.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A Guide to the Uniforms of Unkerlant

Presented is a standard guide to units involved in the 2nd War of Unkerlant Succession. This should be used as a general over view, and not a full registry as there are many exceptions to the rule. Several of the more colorful regiments will be provided at a later date.

Monday, February 2, 2009


The Villains always need some henchmen. Here's some for the Super bad-guys, or in case of these blue ones, maybe a techno-wizard of the future.