Saturday, June 12, 2010

Random Non-Gear Pictures

After thinking about it long an hard, I've decided not to participate in this year's army painting competition at There are many reasons for this, not least being the fact that between my job, my work to relocate to Canada and my two-months-old son (see post below), I just don't have much time for painting, and I don't want to be the guy who just enters an Iguana in an army painting competition: that's just not right.

But I also have two other reasons.

First is the decision on the part of DP9 to disqualify Gears and combat groups previously entered in an earlier DP9 painting contest, which leads me to believe that I'd be disqualifying my whole army from future competitions, which I don't want to do right now. Granted, I have lots of other Gears to paint, but nothing like my current MilICIA army.

Second, and this is largely me being an asshole, but I just don't feel like the target audience for this. To quote on of the pod guys one the Dream Pod 9 forum (and this is nothing against them, just part of their pragmatic strategy to promote the game), "it's to encourage people to show up at the American Championships at GenCon with painted armies." That's all well and good, and I get it, but then I look at the people who placed in the three top spots last year:

1st Place: Jakes Staines (Sar), UK
2nd Place: Patrick St-Amand (Commando Zero), Taiwan
3rd Place: Henri Härkönen (SickBunny), Finland

Shameless self-promotion aside (yes, I got second place, but there really weren't that many entries last year and I did submit three different squads. Let me say it now: I am a mediocre painter. CMON says so.), I don't think any of us are going to attend GenCon, for obvious geographical reasons. And then there are the nice guys at Heavy Gear-France (see link in the sidebar) who do an awesome job of promoting the game on their side of the pond. My frustration (if I can call it that; it's really just an itch, actually) comes from my impression that the current Pod Squad-centric promotion drive for Blitz! leaves us old timers in the lurch in a way. I'm sure things will be different next year, but for now, that seems to be the strategy and us overseas fans have to wait it out and hope for different terms next year.

That being said, I don't paint Heavy Gear miniatures to participate in painting competitions; I paint them because I love the minis and the overall imagery of the game. And here are a few more pictures, this time featuring infantry and tanks.


  1. I just noticed the whole PL 3 thing in the painting contest rules, I completely disagree with it. The painting contest should be completely open. Anyway, you could possibly enter your army commander and design a PL3 army in Gear Garage.

  2. It's not so much that I completely disagree with it. It's just that I am disappointed they chose to target the contest so clearly towards players who will participate in certain tournaments. And the fact that they seem intent on barring not only previous winning entries (which makes a lot of sense), but all previously entered models. I don't want to submit just an army commander. Just watch the shit start flying if such an entry wins while people who painted a whole army don't make the cut.

  3. There was no intent to bar anyone, I can assure you of that.

    The shit may fly, but that's contests in general. I think it was a mistake to have the PL restriction, it's just near sightedness on the part of someone I can't name, and I'd really like to have seen the contest open to more categories, like any REAL painting contest.

    Best Commander (legal options)
    Best single figure (open)
    Best squad
    Best army
    Best strider/tank

    I've never liked the way any of the previous contests have been run to incorporate army building, painting and army construction are completely separate things that have nothing to do with one another, but I'll try to get that under control for next year. Again, I'll reiterate that it's near-sightedness on the part of those who organized the contest this year, and not malevolence.

  4. I am one hundred percent sure there was no malevolence involved either. I messaged the person involved just after the contest was announced outlining my argument, but never got a reply. I would love to see different categories next year.
    I think the Pod has always had trouble with their painting contests in that they are overly restrictive (in a way the game is not), like that Pimp my Gear last year (I think) when NO ONE submitted any entries because the theme was so unpopular.

  5. Oh yeah, I didn't like that one either. My reasoning, from a painter's PoV, is that you usually want something you can field at the end of the day, and you also want something that fits an anime or military mech theme, and pimp my gear did neither.

    Now I think a rare variant contest would be more fun if a bit difficult. I'm almost positive we'll have a duelist contest for Arena which should encourage a lot of customization as well.

    BTW, what are tour thoughts on army painter figures being entered in painting contests?

  6. I think one has to just painted minis on the paint job's merits. "Dipping" is quite popular and produces decent results, but it certainly can't compare and can't compete with a "real" paint job. I use army painter products, but only on infantry and ATVs, and it probably has a place in painting armies, but when it comes to contests... I don't know.