Sunday, November 27, 2011

Super Dungeon Explore for the Novice

So part of my blog is to try to help people out with their modeling and painting. Through my various going ons and contacts I have noticed that a large part of the Super Dungeon Explore crowd happens to be board gamers who may have a limited modeling experience. This instalment brings you some helpful tips and advice for the general assembly and painting of your Super Dungeon Explore game.

Step one: Cut a hole in the box.... 

That is to say make sure you have everything. There are a lot of peices in those little bags. So lay out all the pieces and make sure you have them all ( use the assembly guide bellow to make sure your peices are all there). Then make sure you have all the cards and boards and such. Despite the awesomeness of this product sometimes mistakes are made. It's nothing to get upset about though because Soda Pop Miniatures will help you out if your missing things. Just go to their website and send em an email and there "info" address. Sometimes Deke gives out his too so they can get you squared away.
It's dangerous to build alone, take this!

Now that you have all your pieces....

Time to get started! Find some music or a movie you've seen before because this is gonna take a while.
Next get some tools together. I recommend the following for all your assembly needs: Exacto with fresh blades, Super Glue (buy some at CVS or Rite Aid cuase it's cheep like the budget!), Small files ( you can acutally find a nice set at the dollar store), Liquid or solid green stuff, and-if you can get a hold of it- Insta Set.
So now that you have all your tools find some time and patience. 

Now we can begin assembling. I am going to focus on a hero or two to systematically show you how to get the most out of these models. If you have any questions regarding assembly check out the nice assembly chart I posted above. 

 Flash makes Angry Bear ANGRY!! 

This stuff is the bane of my existance. It can ruin models and paint jobs. Basically what it is is excess plastic or metal that remains on the model after casting but is not acutally part of the sculpt. Failure to remove it can cause models to look horrific and paint jobs to be ruined. It is often across an area of the model that is very important or intricate too.

That little white glob on the otherwise gray druid is flash.

Pick a model you want to assemble and gather all of it's pieces. Inspect each on for any flash it may have. Look along the center lines of the model and on weapons, arms, feet ect. To get rid of flash simply take a file and file it down, or if it is in a tiny area you can shave it off with your exacto blades (just watch your fingures). 


Now that all the flash is gone we are going to assemble whatever model you have chosen (it's up to you!). Wash your pieces in soapy water and dry them nice and thorough. Now use your super glue to glue them together according to the assembly guide.

Some of the pieces may not stick together too well. Thankfully you have some options. The easiest is insta- set. Just glue your pieces, hold them together and give a little squirt of this stuff and it will set instantly. If you don't have Insta-Set you can simply put glue on both ends of the pieces and then put a small drop of Elmers glue on one of the ends. Then stick them together. Hold for a little while and that Elmers glue should give you the extra stick you need to keep things together.

Putty style green stuff works as well. Just mix the yellow and blue together (keeping it wet) till it's green. Then put glue on both ends an stick some of the Green Stuff on one part and stick the pieces together. You may have to shave some green stuff off the joint because it smooshed out. 

Gaps can really get to the new modeler. They are a pain. Thankfully I have the ansewer. Green Stuff! Liquid or Putty style. 

This is a gap (look where the arm meets the hand on the axe): 
To fill it we just apply some liquid green stuff (or putty, but putty will require some manipulation) via brush till we have filled what we want filled. 

Use a clean damp brush to smooth out any areas that are a little unweildy. 

You can do this with the bases too! get rid of those gaps make your models look good! 
IF you want to maintain the stone texture just take a dental tool or toothpick and kind of trace some stone lines in the green stuff once it's started to set. Keep it damp during sculpting!

There you have it you have an assembled modeled that is together, flash free and with gaps filled !  Now on to some simple painting advice. 


I am not going to go too far in depth with this part. I am just going to offer some basic beginer things. There are some schools of thought that it is not a good idea to assemble your mini before you paint it. I think this school of thought is generally wrong, especially for novice hobbyists. So don't be afraid to get all those little guys assembled first so you can just through down and play.

1) Prime it! if you don't do this you are dumb and deserve it when your paint falls off your model. Utilize a hobby primer, you can use black or white but i prefer black. It is more forgiving. I will give tips for both though. Check out this brush thralls run down of priming. You don't need the fancy gun though, just keep it about six inches away from your model and get as much of it as you can. If you miss some things just go in with that color of paint and fill in. I use spray primer but there is also brush on primer. 
2) Get your materials! I recomend the following: a size 1 or size 0 round tiped brush ( pointer the better), water, paints : if you primed black pick up some GW foundation paints, if you primed white pick up some GW washes. 
Painting tips: 

As a begginer do not expect this: 
I have been painting for a little while. The only way you get to level up in the painting world is through practice. You will be a success if you do the following: 

1) Keep your colors clean. That is to say if her hair is suppose to be red make sure her hair is red, and her face does not have any red on it. Keep the colors where they are suppose to go. 

2) You have good coverage. Sometimes a paint color won't always cover up the primer completly. You will see streaks through the paint. If this happens make sure you apply another coat. keep doing this until the color is there and the primer is not. 

3) your paint is smooth. beginers tend to put too much paint on their brush. Make sure you add water to dilute your paint to around the consistancy of skim milk ( maybe a little thicker) then apply. This may cause the streaking i talked about earlier but if you add a few more coats you will have a nice color. 

4) You take care of your tools. Keep your brush clean!!! make sure paint doesn't get above the halfway mark of the bristles. This will eventually RUIN your brush.  

If you want to try hi-lighting as a beginner

This is how you do it: first pretend your good, smooth, complete base coat of color is a square. What you will do now is simply picture a smaller square inside of that original square. Than you will mix your original color with a little bit of white to achieve a slightly lighter color. Then you apply that color to the smaller square inside of the original box.

So finally don't get discouraged while painting. It takes a while and I consider someone a good painter who simply paints and keeps trying. I promise if you keep it up you will get better. In fact if you paint all the Super Dungeon Explore miniatures you will probably end up better than many painters out there simply because you have so much experience. Don't use my blog as your primary painting resource either. There are so many Youtube tutorials and great painting forums out there you have all the information you need to succeed.

Putting some time and effort into your super dungeon explore stuff will really pay off in the end. The game is awesome but it is epically awesome when you have well put together and painted minis. Good luck! 

That's all I got for now. I have a box of the new Quarriors expansion in front of me so I am gonna sign off now. If you have any questions leave em in the comments. I always try to respond. 

Peace out, 
Steve (your guide to the scary dungeons of Crystalia)

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