Friday, 27 April 2012

Avengers (UK: Avengers Assemble) [movie]

I watched Avengers Assemble last night, when I met up with most of my Thursday night gaming group at the cinema with reasonable expectations of the movie we were about to see.


Those expectations I had? They were surpassed and then some.

I thought the film had a great cast; had some genuine surprises; some great action sequences; moments of humour that had the whole cinema laughing - two key moments with Hulk were hilarious (and intentionally so!); and most of all - it felt 'right' and it 'worked'.

Every character had their moments to shine, and in allocating Joss Whedon to writing and directing duties I think he proved himself a very capable director within this genre, but much more importantly, all of the dialogue felt unique to the characters in question: lines by Tony Stark/Iron Man, Steve Rogers/Captain America, Thor et al all felt true to the previously established Marvel Cinematic Universe interpretations and continuity.

It is a big movie. yes at two and half hours is the longest of the Marvel movies. It is not the longest super-hero movie (Watchmen probably), nor the most narratively dense (again Watchmen I believe, or possibly The Dark Knight), but it was a packed film. There is a little sagging in the middle which was more to do with positioning characters and characterisations, but in all I would rank this as one of my favourite super-hero movies of all time.

Thinking about the list that would probably include The Dark Knight (Avengers does not over-run as I feel TDK did), X-Men 2 (which starts amazingly and never quite lives up to that opening scene again in terms of action - Avengers builds better), Spider-man 2 (Avengers wins in scale, Spider-man 2 in evenness of tone), The Incredibles (I think The Incredibles has the similar problem of sagging a little, but also mixes too much spy-fi into the mix at the expense of spectacle - Avengers has an amazing array of spectacle). On balance Avengers is so strong in so many areas that it may be the contender. That said, I will be very curious to listen to Mark Kermode's review today on BBC 5 Live.

And to anyone going to see it - do, do, stay for the couple of minutes necessary after the initial post-film credits - it is worth it for anyone with some Marvel knowledge.

Possibly my favourite super-hero film ever. I want to see this again - NOW!

Monday, 23 April 2012


Back to back 'welcome' posts - this one goes out to Obscure Creations who has signed up, and thank you very much for doing so.. I hope that obscure Creations finds something of interest on the blog, but then I guess that goes without saying. Thanks again.

On to my hobby stuff/general update. I have a building or two I plan to photograph and post about, since one was finished a few days ago.

I have been painting Crimson Oni and have started with Shadow Mask, so maybe one will be finished tomorrow, luck permitting.

Doc Cosmos
And on another note - does anyone remember that mini I had sculpted by James Van Schaik when I wrote about having a mini commissioned (published in the Ancible; link to post here)? Well after moving house last year I did not realise that I had "put it somewhere safe" - meaning I had no clue in which box it was when I have been looking recently. After much searching, a third expedition into the attic finally uncovered the mini which I hope to get cast up soon  in very limited numbers after speaking with the friendly guys at MaxMini at salute at the weekend. It won't be a Pulp City mini per se, but it may very well see use somehow in my games!

Sunday, 22 April 2012


Another 'welcome' post, this time to two new Followers for the blog.

Big thanks to signing up go out to Minion Studio and starrchild81.

Minion Studio (judging by their own web-site!) are another 'hobby collective', including Brovatar, similar I guess to other collectives such as the GOG Online guys. Having checked out the Minion Studio site (link here) you can be sure that I will be Following their blog avidly; there is some great painting on there.

I think I had the pleasure of meeting and briefly chatting to starrchild81 at Salute, and if so thanks for that opportunity as well as stopping by here.

So thanks to all Followers of the blog, old and new alike.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Some Salute 2012 Sneak Peeks

At Salute this year ye Pulp Citizen was pleased to see some Pulp City preview minis on display: Green Emperor; and some new Grimm; as well as one of the Reaver Lords. New Grimm (top picture).
Green Emperor (middle; sorry it is fuzzy)
Reaver Lord (bottom) The Pulp Citizen also glimpsed some new greens that will be minis on the horizon: my favourite possibly being one of Voices Imps. Really, really looking forwards to them.


A belated 'welcome aboard' to Brovatar, of Brovatar's Painting Blog. While the Pulp Citizen seems to have lost someone along the way, I am pleased to greet another new Follower to the blog and have reciprocated to Brovotar's own blog - thanks for coming aboard.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Beasts of War - Pulp City Interview (Salute 2011)

This interview was conducted by the Beasts of War crew at Salute 2011.

Logo and video ©2012 Beasts of War. All rights reserved.

Monday, 16 April 2012

More Mugs!

Okay, okay - this could get out of hand...

This pair were produced through Printster and they have images both sides as can be seen in the pictures.

Since I am more satisfied with this set, and these give me a Hero mug, and a Hero/Villain mug, I think maybe I need a Villain mug to complete the available options. Any hobby visitor to the Pulp Citizen's lair for gaming will be accorded all 'drinking from the mugs' opportunities!

So I just need to decide on a suitable Villain - any suggestions?


'Welcome' this time to guynamedFleck, a name I recognise from the Pulp City Forum. Already guynamedFleck has posted some cool and interesting painted minis on the Forum, and my favourite is the approach he has taken to his Heroes - adopting a Sin- City-influenced black and white style, with black lining to represent ink lines and a unique colour flourishfor each mini: great idea and one I loved seeing. I love that the minis hobby can yield such great inventiveness. Thanks to guynamedFleck for signing up as a Follower here.

On the minis front, I have started work on painting Crimson Oni, so over the next week or so will try and finish both him an a couple of Grimm I started a while back. So hopefully something new soon.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Best Mug Of Tea Ever?

I wanted to create my own 'special' mug for ages, and in the last week I did exactly that!

Anyone who knows me well enough know I love tea. If you are reading this blog you know I love Pulp City. The results of that seem inevitable.

It may not help me win any more games, but it will be a nice tea receptacle.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Making Adjustments

Be aware that I am making adjustments to the layout of the blog; if anyone finds things not working as they 'should', or wants to see more or less of some stuff, please place a comment below. Any feedback is welcomed.

The adjustments will start with the addition of pages and those pages will be expanded with content over time, so please keep checking in.

Saturday, 7 April 2012


Welcome aboard to Frontline Gamer, commentator, blogger, and "war gamer with an addiction to cool miniatures" - all good qualities in my opinion.

I have been reading Frontline Gamer for some time now, and thoroughly recommend it to other blog-readers out there. Frontline Gamer is running a free competition right now so check it out ASAP.

On the Pulp Citizen front, I have selected the first minis to prepare out of my recent acquisitions.

And don't worry, that competition or two I promised will happen, just maybe after Salute. Just remain content with the thought of free stuff for someone.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Interview With Melvin de Voor

This afternoon the Pulp Citizen was lucky enough to be able to interview Melvin de Voor, Pulp City's Art Director (for the Guide), leading concept designer, artist, graphic designer, DTP-guy, and all-round nice bloke.

Pulp Citizen: Hi Melvin; this is your first interview I believe? (If so I will try to be ‘gentle’).
Melvin de Voor: Hi Leon, yes, this is my first.

PC: Okay, can we start by talking about how you came to be working with Maciej and Pulp Monsters?
MdV: (I have to be careful not to get too long winded.) First I heard of Pulp City was at the old Confrontation forums; Maciej had a nice teaser of Guerilla and a *contact me if you want to learn more* signature. But the first contact that spawned us working together was at a Spiel Essen convention; Pulp City was still at its infancy but the preview miniatures of the initial ARC members made me fall in love immediately. We spoke about it, I sent in some samples, and that is how it all began in a nutshell. So blame the Ape Revolution Committee for that!

PC: Those communist Apes are responsible for a lot, aren't they?
MdV: Unofficially definitely, officially they are just "fiction", it’s all part of the master plan mind you.

PC: Can you outline your role in relation to the Pulp City game?
MdV: Not the easiest question, good start there.
I do a lot of concept art and illustration work for Pulp City based on concepts by the Pulp City development team; mostly when it’s the whimsical and the wicked I get the call.
But regularly I also bring in my own Supreme designs to the table like Vector, Night Fright and the Otherside Subfaction.
Besides that I also take care of a lot of graphic design elements, as well as the layout and DTP work of the Pulp City rulebook, and also general feedback and thoughts, and well, probably if this wasn’t an international feature, I’d make some lunch every now and then.

PC: Sorry for not going easy there! So your role is very diverse from the beginning (conceptual work) to the end (design/layout). How do you find that kind of lengthy process?
MdV: Sometimes it means I have to switch between different mind-modes, as my work is very dependent on my state of mind, so that sometimes is tough, but on the other hand the variation is great.
A lot of things I did for Pulp city were the first time I ever did those (for example, the rulebook work.), so in the end it’s also a learning process.

PC: Can you remember what was the first piece of art or design you created for Pulp City?
MdV: Yes, that would be Dr. Red - he will always have a special place there (that damn ARC again isn’t it).

PC: Can you talk us through the creative process you have for designing a new character concept? What stages does the process go through?
MdV: It depends whether it’s a *commissioned* or *proposed* design.
With commissioned designs I get a small brief; based on that I make initial drafts and sketches (though, I often forget to do that and go straight to the final outlines). After which, with feedback, I turn it into a finished inked line art piece; when that part is agreed I turn to digital coloring to finish it up.
Proposed pieces often start with me swamping Maciej with a dozen scribbles and drafts and afterthoughts behind them…and sometimes one of them can follow up in the same process as commissioned pieces.

PC: Do you ever get any kind of ‘artists block or ‘concept block’ when tackling a new project?
MdV: Yes, I actually had those a lot last year, but almost every project I tackle has at least a minor artist block; although it’s mostly about me being critical or picky on my own ideas or art all the time. More often I have communication blocks while working in full creative-mode though, resulting in me swamping Maciej with a lot of stuff at once. During these periods I sometimes forget what day it is even.

PC: Do you have a piece of Pulp City artwork or design that you are most proud of?
MdV: That’s a difficult one, due to the diversity of what I do... I’m very proud of the rulebook. It was a struggle, I literally pulled hairs from my head…but when the book came in I felt like I just held my firstborn child in my hands.
Night Fright I’m also proud of - it’s my favorite Pulp City concept.
And Red Bella deserves a mention too as I’m still amazed it actually worked out (an ape, with subtle comic book female sex appeal…its trickier than it sounds!).

PC: The Red Bella Piece did work very well indeed, and as a fan I love Night Fright and Leech. Moving on; as well as a contributor to the game, I am a fan, and even so I don’t know everything going on. We see stuff like ‘Infeartigo’ (p. 50 of the Guide) – is it weird to develop stuff that may take a long time to be created as a miniature?
MdV: Maciej does a tricky job on that; nobody but him knows all what is going on, and [I’m] partly thankful for that too…as a fan, you like surprises every now and then.
To be honest, for me it’s just the icing on the cake to finally see the miniature fleshed out. Most of the time I draw the characters because I want to draw them, knowing they can get a place in the rulebook at the very least.
But yeah, sometimes I get very anxious to see some of the longer standing concepts in the flesh (looking at Bad Alice especially), but sometimes, like with Night Fright, the process is very fast actually, as he got priority over Deadliner (and Feartigo).
The problem is that there are so many ideas between the entire development team, and only so many that can be realized.

PC: True enough about so many ideas and only so many resources. Looking at your Deviantart page, I see Captain Flash – was he an early version of Sovereign by any chance as I can see some thematic similarities?
MdV: I had to take a peek at him again [the art is from 2010 – PC], but no, completely unrelated. Captain Flash was commissioned as a steampunk miniature for Moonfleet Miniatures based on a classic British hero (I think?) [Flashman? - PC]. I think it was never made, definitely never released (as is sadly the case with a lot of my work for them…this being a tough business for small companies). In fact I did not create the Sovereign concept (though I made the drawing for the card based on the miniature.)
But I can see how you got that idea...I think the afterthought is the same - an all-British pulpy hero type character.

PC: Gotcha. Pulp City is a very visual game, even down to the character cards – there are lots of icons in use there. Did you design those or were they in place before you came aboard?
MdV: I’m currently designing additional icons for **removed by the Pulp City department of censorship and intelligence **
However, the current card icons were already there when I came aboard.

PC: I see the censors hit us there! Changing tack - Do you have any favorite artists in the gaming world? Or outside of it?
MdV: I’m actually not that well versed in comic books, most of it I started to do research on after I started working with Pulp Monsters, and there are some artists I like that have become inspiring to me, but I have to shamefully admit their names escape me right now. Design and idea wise my main inspirations actually come from 80s and 90s cartoons, you know, back when cartoons were allowed to be epic! C.O.P.S, TMNT, Bionic Six, to name a few.
And Batman; I always love Batman, but more so his enemies.

The only comic books I had regularly bought (and count as inspirations) are Spawn, the Darkness and some of the Aspen [Comics] line-up.
Within the gaming world, Paul Bonner has had a huge influence on me as did Eduiard Guiton...the art of both fellas actually drew me to the gaming world

PC: On the gaming front, as a conceptual artist, when you see a 3 dimensional model of one of your 2 dimensional drawings, does that influence or affect the way you work or approach new concepts?
MdV: Yes, even before Pulp City I had longstanding concept art relations with Impact miniatures, and that proved to be educational. With a concept I regularly take into account the casting of the miniature; for for example were the miniature would be cut in two, then it’s better to add a design element in that position that could mask the cut.
Also, most of my concepts are straight-up front as opposed to exciting extreme perspective camera angles, since that is much clearer for the sculptor to work from…eventually, all these things just became part of my style... I wonder if your blog readers even want to read this much - I can never say things short.

PC: I am sure they do. Do you paint miniatures or play skirmish games yourself? And what miniatures or games are you involved in?
MdV: I do paint miniatures, sometimes, but so little time to do that. As for gaming, not really. I like the whole *making a crew up* meta-game, but don’t know many gamers until next month.
I have played Warhammer when I was younger, and Confrontation too…in both cases, to be completely honest, I found the experience less enjoyable than painting and crew-building.
I do like board games, and also games like Space Crusade, Heroquest etc., and I think when I get to miniature gaming, skirmish games (and especially Pulp City) might be closer to that experience.
Collecting-wise, I actually work for the games/ranges I currently like the most…Pulp City, Malifaux, Freebooters Fate and 15mm sci-fi. So that’s also where I’m involved hobby wise.

PC: Have you painted many of those figures that have been sculpted from your designs? If so, did you follow your own art as a guideline?
MdV: One; I have finished only a single miniature I did concept work for myself (Puppet Seamus); and there I did follow my own art colors...everything else is in unfinished stages.
I have to admit that I really never had a good place to paint, but next month in my new apartment, there might be more space. I figure that I have done concepts for between 100 and 200 miniatures, so 1% or 0.5% is a really tiny amount of painting.

PC: Ha-ha - you will get there one day, only 99.5% to go! Good luck with the move also. One final question. Would you like to share with the readers a sneak peak of a piece of art for Pulp City that has not been seen before?
MdV: Yep, but it’s so hard to take a pick…we have new master villain called Voices and his lunatic Imps; we have the intergalactic bounty hunter with an attitude Slug Muldoon; and we have Deadguard, the monstrous last missing piece for the Coven players. So, which would you like to see?

PC: I think 100 Voices has been mentioned on the Forum, so I am sure folks would love to see him! Thank you very much for your time Melvin. I really appreciate you taking time out like this.
MdV: Thank you for the interview, it was an honor.

Some contact links for Melvin: (note - this is still under construction)

Also note, that not all of those concepts above will ever be realised in miniature form, and some may have been already, in a different way.

Images © Pulp Monsters 2012, used with permission

Monday, 2 April 2012

New Post! New Stuff In The Post!

Things have been a little slow for me on the Pulp City minis front (but not so behind the scenes...), but today I reckon fresh motivation has arrived: new stuff!

My latest order comprises (in one blurry picture) the new waves, including an extra box of Green Serpent and Ninjas for the extra Ninja-iness.

Expect new minis to be painted soon!
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