Taking advantage of the Mark 5 DreadBall bases that all of my DreadBall models are mounted on I set out to make the idea of a team in a can a reality.
A bit if history. If you are not familiar with my GeoffTec Mark V bases (I find that hard to believe) you can check out the journey I went on to create them here: Hobby Highlight: DreadBall Bases
To begin the process of creating the GeoffTec Team in a Can™ (TIAC™) I went to Thingiverse.com. After some searching, I found a 3D model of a screw lid can that I liked.
The can wasn’t the right size so I imported the .stl file into TinkerCAD and resized it as well as making some modifications.
In addition to some small stylistic changes, spaces for 10mm x 1mm neodymium magnets were added. The magnets hold the inner components of TIAC™ in place. The inner components were designed next. Inside TIAC™ are tiers with magnetized slots for DreadBall Players (mounted on MKV base inserts), Mark V bases, DreadBalls, etc. The modular design on TIAC™ allows for multiple, reconfigurable loadouts.
Once all the components were 3D printed on an Ender 3 printer, many 10mm x 1mm magnets were glued into place. (Don’t tell but I actually ran out of 10mm x 1mm magnets and had to double up on 10mm x 0.5mm magnets in a few places.)
Piling onto our July 9th post about DreadBall fluff, thisBreadDoll editor wanted to remark on a favorite bit of background with a separate post.
The lore for Lucky Logan / Kreed is ace. The best however, is the tale of 0Rabb1.
Unfortunately, the model for 0Rabb1 is difficult. As part of the ‘People’s Choice Champions’ MVP set, it is not difficult to find. Instead, it’s difficult to assemble. Once erect, it’s also just a little difficult to admire.
0Rabb1 is five-piece build, and not one of the strongest miniatures in the DreadBall line. The scale is particularly unfortunate, especially when compared to its predecessor, the Medbot (or, Medi-bot, depending on how long you’ve been coaching).
The Medbot model is fab. It’s full of character; silly and sleek like all z-grade science fiction. Cast in plastic, the Medbot also lends itself to easier customization. And so a project was born.
“I WILL CREATE MY OWN 0RABB1!” – Andrew Wodzianski
Editorial rant: I paint miniatures as a means to an end. I wear many hats, but when it comes to hobby time; I’m a gamer first and a painter second. My first world priority? Paint towards a table top standard to assist in play immersion. I’ve painted every single piece of DreadBall, because my league and I play with every single piece of DreadBall. I play games with friends to escape banal reality. But every once in a while, something deserves a little more effort. I thought 0Rabb1 needed that kind of attention.
Why stop with a customized MVP? Why not make a diorama? Why not make a story? WHY NOT?!
Materials for an uprising:
1 Medbot model from DreadBall / Deadzone
2 prone Martians (1 from DreadBall, 1 from Mars Attacks!)
4 Mechanite bits from DreadBall
9-10 straight metal push pins
1 table from Starship Scenery
1 monitor from Starship Scenery
1 coloured advert from Mars Attacks!
1 tile from Hexagon Construction Set
1 wooden plaque
1 black plastic capped push pin
1 placard from Crown Awards
Paints, varnishes, and pixie dust
Cut, glue, stomp, paint, spin a blender, and add more hours than needed; FINISHED!
Form follows function, so this diorama’s 0Rabb1 can be removed for gameplay.
The goal was to create a little narrative, depicting 0Rabb1 at the launch of it’s revenge on organic life forms. Perhaps during its tenure on the DreadBall pitch, it grafts the spikes seen on the official model. For this early interpretation, those angled pieces of metal are envisioned as repurposed tools from an operating room.
Let’s talk about how we store and transport our DreadBall miniatures. For the purposes of this discussion lets assume the miniatures in question are painted. Unpainted miniatures can be stored and transported in just about any container you can imagine and there’s not much point in displaying unpainted minis.
Once your miniatures are painted, you, like me, will probably want to be a bit more careful with them so as not to damage the beautiful paint job you have done. You might also want to put your pretty models on display to show people how amazing they are.
Obviously all it takes to display miniatures is to set them on a surface where people can see them but if you want to get fancy a display case is the way to go.
I use a Detolf case from Ikea. It is afordable and it looks great. Because a lot of miniature gamers use the Detolf to diplay their models there are several upgrades available. You can get extra shelves and all kinds of fancy lighting systems.
If you’re not really into displaying your DreadBall miniatures you’ll at least need a way to store them.
I use miniature cases to store my models that aren’t on display. You can get all sorts of cases from many different companies using foam or even magnets to keep your miniatures safe. The cases I primarily use are from a Kickstarter. They are Mantis (not to be confused with Mantic) cases. They are basic cardboard boxes that hold foam trays with slots for miniatures. I know a few companies make cases similar to this, for example KR Multicase.
For storage purposes you can also use Plano storage cases. BreadDoll editor Andrew uses this system to store his entire collection and it works great for organization. You can get this type of case just about anywhere.
Keep in mind when using these plastic storage boxes that if you also intend to use them not just for storage but to transport your minis, you might want to add some padding to them. Adding some paper towel or tissue with the minis in the boxes will help prevent your paint jobs from getting damaged by the harder plastic of the cases.
Once upon a time DreadBall teams came in clamshell cases. You may still be able to find some of these older retail teams in stores. The clamshell cases work well enough to store a single team. The clamshell cases came with a couple thin layers of foam. If you want more you can always make your own upgraded foam insert.
While hard to find now, if you have an old first edition box set of DreadBall, there were custom foam inserts created to fit inside the box.
I’ve also seen coaches take foam miniature trays and cut them down to fit in the newer 2nd edition DreadBall box set. These are really good if you only have a couple teams and want to keep them stored in the offical retail box while protecting the paint jobs.
If you don’t always play DreadBall at home you will need to transport your minis to where you will be playing. Many if not all of the storage solutions above may also be used to transport your minis, especially if you are careful.
Personally I like a smaller case to transport my minis as I tend to only take 1 or 2 teams at a time when I travel to play. My case of choice is the Feldherr MINI . The MINI is the perfect case in my opinion. It holds a couple teams and is fairly inexpensive for great quality. I also really like the Aquilla 1 or Aquilla 5 by KR Multicase. They’re also not too big, not too expensive, and have alots of room for a couple DreadBall teams.
There are TONS of solutions for storing and transporting your painted DreadBall minis. I’ve gone over some of what I use and what I have seen. If you have a solution you think is great, please comment and let us all know what it is.
Magnetising your DreadBalls is a fun and practical hobby project. You drill a hole in the bottom of your ball and glue in a magnet. You drill a hole(s) in your miniatures’ bases and glue matching magnets in the bases, taking care to align the polarity correctly otherwise the magnets will repel each other instead of snap together as desired. (Check out this article on magnetising your bases: LINK)
STEP 1: Choosing a ball
There are a few options when is comes to the DreadBalls that are available.
First Edition DreadBall used 6mm balls on a small attached base
Second Edition DreadBall comes with small 4mm balls that detach from their base
You can make or 3D print a custom ball. I use a custom 8mm ball on a base with the same profile as the first edition ball. You can download the 3D print file for my custom DreadBall from Thingiverse.
In this tutorial I’m going to use my custom, 8mm, ball as the example but the exact same process can be used with all the different balls.
NOTE: If you decide to use the smaller, 2nd Edition, ball(s) I’d recommend gluing the ball into it’s base and letting the glue dry before continuing to step 2 of this tutorial.
STEP 2: Drill a hole
So you’ve chosen your ball and need a hole to put the magnet in. Use a pin vise and a 2mm drill bit to make your hole. You can use a marker to put a little dot where you want the hole to be or you can “eyeball” it but you probably want the magnet in the center of the ball’s base.
Don’t drill too deep. The magnet I’d recommend using is 2mm x 1mm so the hole only needs to be 1mm deep. If you use a larger ball you could use a longer magnet (such as 2mm x 3mm) in which case you’d drill a bit deeper. When you are finished drilling your ball will have a nice hole in the bottom.
STEP 3: Glue in the magnet
Now that your ball has a nice hole to put a magnet in, it’s time to glue in the magnet.
For the official 4mm or 6mm balls I’d recommend using a 2mm x 1mm neodymium magnet. You can get these magnets on Amazon and eBay or you can Google about for other sources. Many game/hobby stores carry magnets as well for just these types of miniatures hobby projects.
When magnetising a larger ball you can use a longer magnet. I use a 2mm x 3mm magnet in my balls. You can buy longer magnets or just stack the 1mm thick magnets to make 2mm x 2mm or 2mm x 3mm sizes.
Magnets have polarity, a North and a South pole. For compatibility’s sake I suggest gluing the magnet into you ball with the North pole towards the sky. If we all do this then all our balls will snap to each other’s bases. To determine the polarity of your magnets see this previous article: LINK
Regardless of whether or not you choose to make sure your balls compatible with everyone else’s, make sure you glue the magnet in your ball and base in matching orientation. You don’t want your base to repel your ball.
Use superglue. I like Gorilla Glue brand but any will work fine. Squirt some glue out on a piece of paper or card and then use a toothpick to apply the glue into the hole you drilled. Making sure the magnet is in the orientation you want and then push it into the hole. Use a non-magnetic tool or the table top to make sure the magnet is flush with the bottom of the ball.
That’s it. Once the glue is dry you have a magnetised ball that will snap on to your magnetised base when your player picks it up. Paint it up all pretty-like and play DreadBall!
DreadBall Coaches achieve immortality in a number of ways. Sometimes, it’s through a singular victory. Sometimes, it’s the stewardship of a dynasty. Personally, I achieve my youthful appearance by a strict refusal to mature.
I visit toy stores.
Toys inspire me. They inspire my; studio practice, stage work, understanding of popular culture, and hobby time.
In the spring of 2017, toy stores where inundated with product for a highly anticipated summer blockbuster; GHOSTBUSTERS. Ghostbusters are awesome. Firmly rooted in the 1980s, the films and cartoons (and RPG) were instrumental in my development of the man-child I am today. The 2017 film may not have actually delivered on the hype, but it did a damn fine job with merchandise tie-in. Regardless of preferred media deliver form, physical toys of the Ghostbusters have always been universally dope.
I ran across ONE Ghostbusters toy that I KNEW would make a perfect containment center for my FAVORITE DreadBall team. I had a new home for my Ada Lorana ‘Kooky Spooks;’
01 Guard – Winston
02 Jack – Vinz
03 Jack – Zuul
04 Striker – Ray
05 Striker – Egon
06 Striker – Peter
07 Jack (Team Captain) – Gozer
It was a Ghost Trap.
The 2017 Ghost Trap toy served double duty. It was not only a diminutive prop, it was a play set.
With Trap in hand, it was clear to me that the Ada Lorana would need to have their new real estate beautified. Paint, washes, magnets, black electrical tape, and varnish later – it was ready for new occupants.
Welcome home team!
A roster of six, plus the team captain Phantasm, as well as two prone markers. Every Coach needs to use their prone markers. It’s a sign of maturity.
Magnets ensure that the models can best utilize the limited space, and in this narrow case – it’s thematically perfect. Ghosts don’t need to obey the gravity, right?
Sold separately was a perfect Coach model. Unfortunately, there is a pesky skeleton resting inside of the dapper assistant. Its removal would sacrifice the glow-in-the-dark properties, but those bones just don’t make sense.
The Kooky Spooks are THRILLED to have a new containment center that makes their Head Coach remember a favorite film. They are less than thrilled to know it won’t travel far from their home pitch because airline security thinks it’s of nefarious means. Truly, the only harm these blue besties inflict are on my opponents.
I don’t like to share Works-in-Progress, but here’s a sneak peek of a future project. I’ll let BreadDoll readers pontificate my intentions. I’ll share the final results in another Hobby Highlight (est. 2021)…
The truth can be hard to believe. It was once thought that there was only one last surviving Elastopod. Truly. This is ridiculous. There are 8 9.
The Elastopod home world was destroyed when a starship carrying unknown alien artefacts exploded, obliterating the entire Elstopod home system. This was almost the end of the Elastopod race. Luckily the members of the Elastopod Special Forces Bravo Squad were on patrol in a ship at the far edges of their solar system. When their planet was destroyed Bravo Squad survived. Really.
Making their way to the GCPS, Bravo Squad now plies their advanced military training on the neodurium pitches of the pro DreadBall leagues. They are a team to be feared no matter what some may say. Elastopods are not all bumbling goofs as rumor would have it. It’s unclear where that rumor began but the Sole Survivors are having none of it. Match after match the last of the Elastopods teach their opponents to respect Elastopods once again.
Back in November of 2016 my fellow BreadDoll editor Andrew hosted a DreadBall tournament call “Judgement Day”. The idea was that the referee for every game in the tournament would be Judge Dredd.
For those that aren’t familiar. Back in 1st Edition DreadBall there were alternate referee rules for using Judge Dread instead of the RefBot. Mantic produced a Ref Dredd mini. It was great fun.
Although Andrew was providing Ref Dredd models to use on the day I still decided to paint my own (above). I also decide to take it as far as I could and create a whole team of Judge Dredd themed judges to use as my team in the tournament. A conversion was needed.
I found some heads that were the key to my conversion at Puppetswar. They are sold as “Executioner Heads”.
I decided to use the Trontek 29ers as the basis of my conversion. Before buying the heads, which looked perfect, I did a few mock-ups in Photoshop.
I was happy with the mock-ups. I ordered the heads. Looking more at the mock-ups while I waited for the parts to arrive, it occurred to me that the conversion would need one more thing. Badges. I set about designing a tiny little badge in 3D and doing another mock-up.
Again the mock-up pleased me and the 3D badge design looked good. It was time to send the 3D file off and get it printed. I sent my design for printing using Shapeways and the result was perfect.
I cut off the Trontek 29ers heads using modelling clippers. Some crazy glue and patience later I had attached the new heads and badges. It was time to paint them. A quick color test to start.
To paint the blue body of the judges I used Army Painter Ultramarine Blue. I washed the base color with Army Painter Dark Tone before applying another layer of Ultramarine Blue as a highlight.
The green boots & gloves were base coated in Army Painter Army Green and washed with Army Painter Green Tone. A highlight of Army Painter Goblin Green finished it off.
The yellow bits were base coated using Army Painter Lava Orange. Reaper MSP Candlelight Yellow was applied over the orange base.
Some red, black and flesh details completed the look. Clearly it was far from my most complicated paint job but the results were satisfactory. The team was done and the conversion looked great. The Law was ready for Judgement Day!
Of the thirty published teams for DreadBall, one of my most enjoyable hobby experiences was painting the Cyborgs. Enjoyable, but also bat guano crazy. I chose a time consuming, and messy painting strategy in order to make the Revenants ready for prime-time. Herein lies the tale of technique that is not recommended for the squeamish or impatient.
Visually, DreadBall Cyborgs are a lot of meat bags with mechanical parts. Ratios of meat to mechanics may differ depending on the sculpt. They are cobbled together and their finish is not… refined. With no worries toward polish, I knew I wanted these bots to look battle worn. I wanted layered history, and I knew that required…
Follow along in a picture gallery of sameness, subtlety, and toothbrush subversion!
If any BreadDoll readers have questions about the techniques deployed or my mental health, please comment below. I also welcome any suggestions for a team name. I’m fielding the Cyborgs onto the pitch next week for my league’s EIGHTH season of DreadBall.
Though I’ve yet to commit to a team name, I lean towards CSI (Cyborg Sex Initiative). My Players have been identified.
Over the years I have created many pitches in Photoshop to be printed out on neoprene (or vinyl). As Adepticon 2019 approaches I have turned my thoughts to creating a three dimensional pitch.
I have seen a few 3D pitches created for DreadBall . Most of these pitches attempt to create the feel of a stadium. I am taking the inspiration for my project from the origins of DreadBall and a pitch I stumbled across on the internet long ago and fell in love with immediately.
It is said that DreadBall is so-called because it was first played in drop
hangar 91 aboard the Corporation warship Dread, the flagship of then Senior Flank
Commander Jesus Ortiz.
My pitch will be built to look like it is in the hanger of a GCPS ship.
One of the goals I have set for myself is that the 3D pitch I will create should double as a Deadzone board (for those not familiar, Deadzone is a miniatures skirmish game set in the same universe as DreadBall). Deadzone is most often played on a 24″ x 24″ mat so that would be the minimum size of my 3D pitch board.
I plan to design the actual playing surface of the pitch in Photoshop the same way I always have with the neoprene mat laying in the 3D hanger I construct. The neoprene mats are 28″ x 14″ so I will need to build the board larger than 24″ x 24″.
A Deadzone board is actually divided into 3″ squares (cubes) so if I make the 3D pitch board 30″ x 30″ that would be 10 squares x 10 squares instead of the normal 8 x 8 Deadzone is typically played on. I think that’s just fine.
I am still in the early planning and brainstorming phase of this project. Mantic makes a line of sci-fi terrain for Deadzone so I will almost definitely try to use as much of that in my 3D ship hanger/DreadBall pitch as I can. You might be familiar with the Mantic terrain if you backed the DreadBall Xtreme Kickstarter. As part of the Kickstarter Mantic built a 3D prison pitch using their terrain. You could add the terrain required to build the prison pitch to your Kickstarter pledge if you so wanted. I will say, it was pretty cool looking.
I want to hold a contest. Help me name the corporation starship as well as the hanger number in which my pitch will be located. My pitch is a modern DreadBall pitch. It is not meant to recreate the early days of the sport when it was still evolving. It has been setup on a modern active fleet ship. To enter the contest subscibe to the blog and email your idea to email@example.com with the subject line “DreadBall Ship Name”. Only 1 email per person will be counted. I will randomly choose one of the contest submissions and the winner will get a choice of either a Barricade Gaint or the now out of print Anne-Marie Helder mini. No deadline for entries currently, I’ll let you know when I’m far enough along in the build. Keep the suggestions/entries coming!