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Dark Souls the Board Game: Bell Gargoyle miniature painting



I was a day-one backer of the Steamforged Kickstarter and, ever since the core game box arrived earlier this year, I've been slowly making my way through the miniatures from the Dark Souls the Board Game collection.

I finished up the Bell Gargoyle today, and I am pretty happy with the results. Hit the Jump for some detail shots and a little bit of commentary.

Rear angle showing wingtip highlighting and
tail armor patina.
I did not include any other miniatures or reference items in these shots, but the scale of this guy is pretty large and required almost zero detail work, so after I airbrushed the base-coast, this figure was primarily a job for the bigger brushes in my kit.

As far as color scheme and choices go, I made a conscious decision to follow the concept art in Dark Souls: Design Works, rather than the model in the actual game. This has become my general approach to painting these Dark Souls the Board Game models: I'll take a look at the model in the game, just to refresh my memory, and then I find the concept art in the book, and use that as my main reference.

(Mostly because the filters/effects in the game have a sort of...lurid, smeary effect that looked great on an Xbox 360, but as most people who have played the remaster have noticed, hasn't held up especially well in the era of 2k/4k displays.)

Front right angle showing shoulder armor and helmet.
At any rate, after I primed him, I airbrushed on a whole-body base-coat of Vallejo Cork Brown (with a little yellow mixed in) and then used a larger brush to base-coat his armored bits a with a slightly darkened Army Painter Greenskin

(Say what you like about Army Painter's general quality level, but they make some really versatile base-coat colors: Greenskin is one of my go-to colors for fantasy/monster miniatures because it is incredibly versatile.)

After the base-coat, I used a huge brush to set down two washes of ink: Army Painter Dark Tone and Army Painter Soft Tone. For figures with lots of little pits and crags where I want to create a sort of leathery/weathered skin tone effect, I like to wash the Dark Tone way down deep into the crags and then use the soft tone to blur the edges of my Dark Tone wash a little.

Close-up detail of right flank, including hip
armor patina detail.
For the skin, I did three highlight colors. First, I applied a very watery Cork Brown and then, on top of that, I dry-brushed a darkened shade of Cork Brown. Once I had those browns down, I mixed in some Vallejo Bonewhite (one of my all-time go-to paints) with the Cork Brown for the  final highlight and dry-brushed it on: I was trying to achieve a subtle ashy/stone-dust effect as the lightest highlight color and, while the pictures I took don't really capture it, I ended up being happy with how it came out.

For the armor and weapons, I got the patina effect by aggressively dry-brushing a blend of Vallejo Light Green and Vallejo Green Blue (leaning more towards the Light Green than the Green Blue, which is really more of a turquoise).

Looking at the finished product on my desk as I write this post, I find that my favorite part about the paint job is the patina effect on the armor. I generally find with these things that the cleverer I am, the less I like the outcome, and this was such a dead simple idea, that I'm kind of proud of myself for not over-complicating it and messing it up.

Anyway, here are some details of the patina effect on the figure's halberd and shield:


As far as detail work goes, there aren't really any details on this figure to speak of. The only thing that even remotely qualifies, I think, is the teeth, and they're only generic-looking monster teeth, which I typically approach the same way wherever I encounter them.

Like my approach to the patina effect, my approach to generic monster teeth such as these is also dead simple: I base-coat them with Vallejo Bonewhite and then wash them with Army Painter Soft Tone at least two times (allowing the teeth to fully dry between washes).

As a funny, tooth-related aside, one of my friends noticed that the figure has these dagger-point monster teeth, and the model does not. 

Here's the model from the game:


 And, for contrast, here is a detail of the teeth on the sculpt:



I find that the longer I look at them, the dagger-point monster teeth are actually...kind of goofy-looking (major Simple Jack/Mr Ed horse teeth vibes) and, as my guy mentioned when he was pointing out the difference, make the sculpt look more like a camel than the model for the game.

Thanks for reading!



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