Ok. It sucks. Many tournaments are on hold and a lot of us are confined to our homes. But the bright side is that we are all finally given the opportunity to get some real hobby time in. Here are ways to really take advantage of the all the down time and get stuff done or at the bare minimum keep you preoccupied while you practice social distancing.
Figure out your next army’s paint scheme. Some people are fine with copying the box art, but others (myself included) insist on standing out and being special snowflakes with their own unique paint schemes. Figuring out just the right colors that coordinate beautifully can take a while to do. I will go through countless test runs until I find something that works and I am willing to replicate on an army-wide scale. This process is often times fun but almost always very time consuming … so it is a perfect way to burn though all this down time at home.
Build and paint terrain. Lets be honest with ourselves: we almost always prefer to work on getting new units on the tabletop then working on the tabletop itself. Terrain is not exactly something we all race to buy and build although it legitimately can be game changing. This is the perfect time to check out the beautiful and functional ITC sets that Frontline Gaming produces. I am a fan of the full sets that create a thematic battlefield that helps make the game even more engaging. Having a completed table of painted terrain at home with a matching mat, will pay dividends in the future and is something you will be so happy to have.
Industrial line assembly. You know all those troop units you have been dreading on tackling. Like that hoard of 30 Ork Boyz or the 60 Astra Militarum Guardsmen? Turn on a quality podcast or watch some Netflix and zone out as you just hammer through building and painting a pile of nearly identical minis. Ideally you focus on efficiency here and create an industrial line style process which speeds up the whole thing. I like to build/paint in batches of 10 minis. I clip out bits and trim them down and remove mold lines. Then assemble all the legs and torsos, then weapons and heads. Then go back and add the accessories. Painting for me, involves doing the same color on all 10 minis before moving on to the next color. Figure out whatever works best for you, and then stick to it so that the repetition makes you a master.
Update the old. You likely have become a bit of a better hobbiest since that first start collecting box that you eagerly purchased with your allowance. Over the years, new techniques have been learned, your ability to edge highlight has improved, and now you dutifully base every model. Take a few hours…or days…to go back and review your collection. Get them on par with your new standards or simply make touch ups and repairs to the minis that have been fighting alongside you for countless battles.
Crazy conversions. The time to show off your creative, Orky side is now. You can go through all your bits and make the most ridiculously awesome conversions you ever thought possible. Plenty of time on your hands means you can try out all sorts of ideas that you never bothered attempting before. Simple kitbashing and head swaps is a great way to get started and then once you find success there, you will likely want to push the envelope further and use Green Stuff or really start piecemealing together entirely new models from twenty different sets.
Build all the minis. Yes. All of them! You likely have at least a few boxes of unopened kits just sitting around in storage because you either forgot them or simply got sidetracked with something newer. Well, now is that time to finally revisit these unopened boxes and assemble all of them. If a model is assembled it will give you the opportunity to play test it- if you are simply testing out an army, no one will care if half the models are not painted. Plus, seeing a built model might encourage you then to get it painted eventually.
Apply those decals. Finally that decal sheet that you stashed away can see the light of day and be used to give those models the details they deserve. Decals are easy to apply and can look amazing if applied correctly. Take the time time to give each and every model in your army the unifying logo/icon it deserves and earn you those hobby points at the next tourney.
Add a side project. While you might be a diehard Imperium player in your “regular” life, maybe now you paint up a few Xenos and make a 1000 point army to play for fun. Or venture into the world of Age of Sigmar and give that a shot. GW also has so many boxed games that you likely never considered. I started a whole new army that is going to just be a passion project that I work on whenever I am tired of the uber competitive scene or want to just paint things that are more exciting to me.
Yea. We are all confined to our homes as we ride out this storm. Lets use this to our advantage to really get some serious hobby time in. When the clouds lift and we finally get to go out in public, we should all have something to show off!
And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!