I was going to hold this topic for some months, probably next year, but them i had an insight.
It became obvious to me that a blog is not just a place to show the progress of my army and what neat new things i got. It's a place to share my experiences with the hobby, so i decided to do as i did before and in sharing those experiences sort of becoming a voice for my own community. But experience shows me a disclaimer is needed before:
Disclaimer wrote:I'm a gamer from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A beautiful and amazing city with i love from the deep of my heart in a country i'm proud to live on, even with all the problems it might have. In this topic i'll share my experiences with the hobby. This includes the difficult of being a gamer in a small country where miniature gaming is a very small and expensive hobby. I think it's very important to tell that i'm not doing so for donations, gifts or any other gain. I also don't want to show myself as a victim, as a poor child in need of help or any of that, nor i want to portrait my country and it's people, including other hobbyists, as so. We are just people trying to begin in a hobby that never really got ground here.
I ask that if any of you feel the need to make any donation, donate to UNICEF or other charity organizations. There are many people in my country, in your country and in all the world, including even other hobbyists, that need help and donations much more than me.
Sorry for making you read this but i found it to be necessary so i would not feel guilty as my posts can be unintentionally interpreted in another way.
First i'll talk about how i got into this hobby and my experiences with it even before i began to play
I'm have about 10 years of experience with RPGs
(and i'm only 23) but until last year i didn't use what people would call miniatures. We never used anything to mark the characters on a grid or table for most of my years of gaming. But we played mostly AD
&D and World of Darkness at the time, those were not really needed. When the 3rd Edition of D&D came we need something to mark the characters but first we used the most ridiculous thing we could get our hands own. Player characters could be chess pieces or even d6
(The only dice that is produced locally here in Brazil, so it's cheap and we have lots of them) and maybe that Cell phone could be a dragon and and eraser a Centaur. It did the trick and most of my group never wanted anything different, the most i saw was somebody cutting pieces of a Box into the shape of a square and writing the name of what it represent on top.
But i do have my hidden "artistic" side and i had the idea of making some paper minis. This is how it began... First they were ugly stand up minis that had pieces of boxes glued to them in a vain attempt to make them not fly with the weakest gust of wind. This was so long ago i don't even have pictures of them. Next came some better looking minis with 3 sides, which you can see bellow:
Finally i moved to minis that went more and more complex until they looked like this:
What was the next step? Plastic and metal minis of course! I bought some REALLY OLD skeletons and zombies from a guy i met on a social network that imports them and sells (As a side note: There are basically no real distributors here in Brazil. This happens because of both toys regulation and custom taxes make that impractical.). I bought some Acrilex brand craft paints from a local craft store (the closest hobby store is 20km, and both a train and subway ride, away, and remember i live in one of the largest cities in my country), some local Condor synthetic brushes and this was the result:
Notice they didn't came with bases, so i used 5 centavos coins.
Some zombies and DDM repaints after that i really enjoyed painting. Not just because my RPG
table was prettier, but because i enjoyed painting for painting sack, it was a path to my occult artistic persona that i felt i had never fully explored, even with all my writing and my singing lessons. I was hooked up.
But what about wargames? Well... i always had this desire to try them but i felt they were ver expensive and i would not be able to find other players close enough to me. I always loved strategy video games, and if it's more complex, it's better. I'm a long time fan of computer games like the Total War and Civilization series and the not so famous games by Paradox Entertainment like Hearts of Iron and Europa Universalis. Some day i discovered people actually played games like these here in Brazil and being already in love with miniature painting i had to try. I discovered that a national webstore had tried being GW
's representative in Brazil but ultimately failed. Their site still had some minis, mostly LoTR
material for a relatively cheap "We bought too much of those and need to get rid of those" prices, so i bought lots of them, with some GW
paints (mostly undesired colors they still had in stock). Vallejo paints were my first international buy (and a relatively quick and uneventful one, arriving just 1 month after i bought. Really, this is a quick and uneventful shipping when we are speaking about Brazilian postal service) and the core of my new improved painting collection. Things began to improve but i soon discovered that most people here in Rio played WH40k
Fantasy or WW2 Historical Games so i would never use my LoTR
minis outside my RPG
games. But still they helped evolve my painting skill a lot, as i'll show bellow with some examples of my work from beginning until the last mini i had painted when i posted this (Please noticed that dates are in brazilian standard DD
Noticed my last mini was painted on August. That's because as my painting skills improved i became more and more annoyed with the brushes i had and decided not to paint until i got new brushes. After a lot of trying and failing i bought them about one month latter, they were shipped 15/09 and still have not arrived, so i still have not resumed painting.
While that i read all i could about Warhammer 40k
fluff and got to love the setting. I chosen the eldar as my first army and began work on my custom craftworld. I would begin buying the minis when my the shipments from UK
i had bought with tools and the corebooks arrived. This would be so because of the way the Brazilian custom houses works, they don't have the personnel to tax everything as the law says so they basically pick based in lots of factors. The laws changed to accommodate to that and now taxes are absurdly high but being taxed or not is like a dice roll, with some elements influencing it, having many shipments arrive at the customs at the same time is one of those, so if i buy more stuff before the stuff i bought before arrives i have a much larger risk of having to pay about 60-70% of the value of the product plus shipment in taxes.
, it's mid September and none of those shipments arrived, the earliest (the corebooks) with the record time of 2 months and still not there. As those shipments are not tracked (Not worth paying for it) i have no idea if some of those are going to arrive at all. As the holiday season approaches i don't think buying minis is worth it because new shipments will probably arrive only february and march next year (due to the rise on the number of shipments at the holiday season).
Now i finish the this post with the current situation. With my new paints, my tools, my green stuff and even the rulebooks still not in my hands and with the fluff complete (will translate it to english and post after this post, probably it's going to end being appended) i decided to buy some epoxy putty (similar to grey stuff from what i hear) that we have at construction stores here in Brazil and try to learn some sculping. When i finish my first work (an humble mushroom, for the maiden world jungles of my army base) i'll probably post here. I still got to visit the place where carioca (that's how people from Rio are called) play WH40k
to get to know the people in person and take a look at the games (BTW
, it's a 32km trip to get there). I plan on doing it this saturday.
Hope people liked this post, and the next one comes soon. Please comment and live your opinions. I specially would like to hear about the experiences from other players in Latin America and on countries in development.