Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Book Reviews: Painting Wargaming Figures and The Wargaming Compendium

Hi all,
 Not much on the modelling and painting front. RL has been busy and I have been doing a lot more writing of late, not to mention, the motivation to pick up the brush hasn't bit me like is usually does this time every year. I am sure it's a temporary thing and I will pick it back up soon.

  But, I wanted to do a book review or two, and these books are ones I've wanted to do for some time. 

Painting Wargaming Figures
Author: Javier Gomez
Publisher: Pen and Sword Military, 2015
Dimensions: 6 x 9"
Cover: Soft Cover and Kindle

Pages: 192pp

Taken from
 To me, this is an essential book for any serious painter. The techniques that he lists here have certainly upped my game as a painter (and I am not good enough to think my game does not need improvement by a long shot). What I like most about this book is the very clear layouts, how each color is given a chapter's worth of attention, including that pernicious of all colors to paint with, white. And yet, he does so with a bit of dry humor, and simplifies what seems to be at first glance, a complex method only known to a true artist. But the secret is, it's not hard at all.
 Everything about this book is well laid out, the techniques are solid (I have used them often) and work with any paints by any manufacturer (even if he uses Vallejo paints exclusively throughout the book, one can easily work out the conversions between brands), I also like how he discusses each technique and the other tools of the painter's toolbox. He teaches priming, drybrushing, ink-washing, it's all there and laid out in a clear, easy to follow format not limited to a single manufacturer.

 What I like most of all, is that he then discusses other scales. Just because he uses 28mm in most of the examples of the book, he also discusses 20mm, 15mm, and 6mm to name a few scales and how you can simplify his techniques to work with smaller scales.

 This truly is a must get desk reference for any wargamer, if not handy at the paint table itself. We can all learn something from this book. 5 out of 5 mushroom clouds. 

The Wargaming Compendium
Author: Henry Hyde
Publisher: Pen and Sword Military, 2013
Dimensions: 6 x 9"
Cover: Hard Cover, Soft Cover, and Kindle
Pages: 520pp
Taken from
This is simply another must have book for any miniature wargamer. In this book you get a history of the hobby, capsule histories of every book that has ever discussed miniature wargaming as a subject, two sets of wargaming rules (neither a rules set suitable for Twilight: 2000, sadly...), a wonderful writeup on how to paint soft plastic figures in a way that the paint ACTUALLY sticks. (Yes, this is a big deal in and of itself, discussions on just about every period in wargaming, and much, much more.

While the size may be a bit daunting, it's actually a very quick read, and it is very beginner friendly with lavish use of charts, infographs, and color photos that have very nicely painted figures throughout. It's certainly influenced my own efforts both on this blog, and elsewhere, and Henry hasn't rested on his laurels, as now he's running a Paetron supported blog of his own, with something of a podcast associated with it as well. If you like the book, I more than encourage supporting his efforts through Paetron.

The book certainly merits the score of 5 out of 5 mushroom clouds I am giving it, and I would run, not walk to get your copy if you do not have it already. 

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