Sunday, August 10, 2014

Super Dungeon Explore Base Set 100% Painted!

It's been nearly 2 years since I first got Super Dungeon Explore (I ordered it on 8/23/12) and I'm happy to report that it is now 100% painted. It took a long time and there were a lot of starts and stops to it, but it's finally done. Of course, it's just the Base Set along with an extra Dragon's Clutch pack and there are still the Roxor, Van Drakk sets and the single releases to go yet. But this is a large step forward.


The protagonists of our little adventure. A lot of folks are painting their SDE heroes up similar to classic gaming heroes, like Link or Mario or Final Fantasy themed. But I really wanted to stay away from it. Instead I tried to keep the spirit of the hero depicted on the card, while also making my own choices in color schemes.

- Claw Tribe Barbarian

Out of all of the hero models, this one is my favorite. I also really like the way her paint job turned out, and her loincloth is the first real attempt I've ever made at painting tiger fur. Between the fur, her hair and her eyes, she get a lot of compliments from my friends. Plus she's a melee beast, so she's the popular girl.

- Deeproot Druid & Angry Bear

The Deeproot Druid was a little tough to pinpoint an idea on how I wanted to paint him. But, thanks to a fellow SDE player on Soda Pop's forums, I borrowed his idea and did it for myself. And that's how Angry Bear became a Panda.I really like both of these models and the face of the Druid himself. I felt that using Manga eyes on him would ruin his expression though, so I went with simple dots instead.

- Ember Mage

I've seen a lot of Ember Mages painted up like Final Fantasy Black Mages, but I'm not a huge fan of painting up SDE with a lot of character references. Instead I went with red robes (kind of like the card) and tried to make the orb in the staff look like it was glowing. There wasn't a lot of room for creative freedom on this one. Since she is a fire mage, anything other than red would have looked off.

- Glimmerdusk Ranger

I'm kind of "meh" about the Glimmerdusk Ranger. Overall I'm not that interested in her model and there was some debate over whether or not her head dress was hair or not. I do like the colors I used for her and am happy with how she turned out. But in general I'm not a huge fan.
- Hexcast Sorceress

This one is the 2nd model I painted anime/jrpg inspired hair color. And overall I'm pleased with how she came out, though I think her eyes are a little off. But hey, I was still working on the style. Since she was more of a general caster class, I had more freedom in her color scheme too and I really like how her staff turned out.

- Riftling Rogue

This little demon thief was the first of the SDE Heroes that I painted. I'm really happy with her too and how her skin turned out. Since she was the first SDE model I worked on, the Riftling Rogue was kind of a testing grounds for the style of shading, colors and eyes too. She's also a pretty much constant party member in our games too, as she's my Sister's favorite character.

- Royal Paladin

It's really hard for me to paint a paladin without sticking to the cliche White and Blues that I normally go with. I was really tempted to paint him up like my D&D 3E Paladin, which was greys and greens. Looking back on it, I wish I would have, that character was one of my favorites.

- Soda Master Candy

The first promo Limited Edition mini for Super Dungeon Explore. Candy and Cola is apparently being retired once Forgotten King's Brave Mode Candy and Never Lost Cola release. So that means this "rare" figure is going eventually live up to her reputation. She's a metal mini, unlike the rest of the set and her base is plain. Which means I needed to paint the stones on there instead... kinda sucks cause I love uniformity... Candy is one of the few models in the game that I've painted as she is depicted on her artwork. And that's pretty much because she's Soda Pop's mascot.



The Dragons of Super Dungeon Explore are all red dragons in the lore, cards and such. But since I was planning to paint the Kobolds red, I really didn't want to paint the dragons red too. Between this and Caverns of Roxor, that would be a lot of red stuff to deal with. Even though it's my favorite color, red can be a pain in the ass to get even coverage with. Instead I wanted to do something a little different... and went with black dragons instead. Remind me to never paint black skin ever again... it's super annoying.

- Egg Clutch Spawning Point

I love the spawning points for the dragons, they looks sweet. I had some trouble with the crystals though, since I never painted a larger one like this before. The eggs on the other hand, where super easy and I really love how they turned out. I tried to get the crystals to look like they were letting off a bit of a glow too.

- Hatchlings

Another model I really didn't like painting. They were kind of hard to get brush angles on and like a lot of SDE figures, their muscle definition is a little soft. Making it hard to figure out where details were. They are super cute though!

- Whelps

These guys are cool looking and do seem to get the players a little nervous. They are my favorite of the dragons. They have the most attitude out of all the dragon models too.

- Wyrmlings

These guys are the reason that the dragons are black in my SDE game. When I was deciding paint schemes for them I was thinking Blue or Black dragons. But after some thought, I decided I wanted to paint them up similar to Dark Hatchlings in World of Warcraft. So the color was taken from that, but with the skin being actual black.


The Kobolds stayed red, originally I had thought of doing them like lizard men and painting them green. But then I realized that the Turtles in Roxor would be green also, and didn't want to much of a single color on the table. But, rather than painting them all up with one uniform skin tone, I decided that each class of Kobold will have a different color skin. Giving each team their own look, and allowing me not to worry about the uniformity outside of their group.

- Kobold Warrens Spawning Point

The Kobold Warrens Spawning Point is sweet. No lie, I think they are my favorite thing in this set overall. I love the look of it and I knew I wanted to make it look like it was glowing. Unlike the Dragons spawner, I decided that these ones would be uniform and all would glow like fire coursing through their lines. 

- Dragon Priests

Possibly my favorite of the Kobolds, the Dragon Priests have a lot of character. Out of all the Kobolds, I had the most fun painting these guys too. I think part of it had to do with there only being 2 of them (I've found with this project that I really, really don't like squad painting). Also, the crystals on their staves match the dragon spawners. One being green and one being purple.

- Flingers

Damn this guys. Damn them to all hell. I HATED painting them. Out of all the models in this game, these guys killed painting SDE for me for a LONG time. Their bandages were a pain, their details seemed kinda... not there. And overall, they just weren't fun to paint at all. I kind of like how they turned out, but man am I glad they are finished.

- Gougers

The last of the Kobold minions I had to paint. These guys were pretty alright to paint. But it took me a while to finally get up the motivation to do it. I do really like how their eyes turned out and they were more fun than the Knuckleheads. All of their spears had wierd flashing sticking off the side on them though and I was worried about cutting it in half while trying to remove it. But I think they turned out pretty good.

- Ironscales

These guys were the first Kobolds I painted. And they set the look for the rest of the Kobold crew. When painting them, I didn't want to have their metal all nice and shiny. So I decided to corrode it with some rust and corrosion effects. They turned out great and I get a lot of compliments on them.

- Knuckleheads

These guys look so cool. I love their little helmets and their overall look. They were kind of a pain to paint though, thanks to their shields and their helmets. I'm glad I was able to finally get them painted up, it was a shame having them sit in black primer for the last year.


- Rex

Rex turned out really awesome. I was going for a more orange skin tone, but I like the red color that he ended up being. He took a little bit of work to get his skin color base coated (I think I went over it 3 times before I started highlighting). Now that he's painted it looks even more intimidating than he did before. I can't wait to plop him down in a game!

Dungeon Boss

- Starfire

The king of the base set of Super Dungeon Explore! Man he is a pain in the ass to assemble too. The way he mounts on that broken pillar is an exercise in frustration. I think it literally took me an hour to put him together. I really like him though and how he turned out, especially the spines and horns.


- Treasure Chests

Who doesn't love loot? SDE has models of treasure chests that go on the board and the players can open them up for treasure, which is usually more powerful than the regular loot they can acquire. I'm really pleased with the chests. But after I got done painting them I realized I should have put the bronze strapping on the dark brown chest and the silver on the light brown chest. Ah well, Forgotten King will have even more chests to paint up and I can fix that issue then.

- Boo Booty   

What's this? You greedy adventurers went for the treasure and were attacked by a Boo Booty! Boo Booties are the SDE version of the classic RPG  mimic. The official color of them is green and yellow. But I liked the idea of keeping them looking like the rest of my chests, so I went with brown and silver.

So there we are! My copy of Super Dungeon Explore all painted up. I do apologize for the dust on some of the models (they have been sitting on the tray for a while). I haven't sprayed them with varnish yet either, but I'm going to let them sit for a few more days yet. Rex and the bases for everything need a bit of time to fully dry. But before I varnish everything I'll hit them with a can of compressed air to clean it all up.

I am planning on getting the rest of the level boxes and single models painted up before Forgotten King arrives, which is supposed to be in December. Hopefully I can knock it out. I think I'm going to paint up King Starfire next and maybe move on to the mini-bosses and Nyan Nyan before I do Roxor or Van Drakk.

Van Drakk will be last though. Since Forgotten King's kickstarter campaign added another Pumpkin Patch spawner and more Rattlebones. I have to wait to paint those up... I have to paint up all the models from the same spawn points at the same time.