Saturday, March 13, 2010

Paper Soldiers

When I was growing up, we had a Mac. It was a top of the line, Mac SE/20. 20 whole megabytes of memory on the hard drive, and a wha-zoo 3.5 floppy drive. Black and white. It was great.

I used to spend my adolescent years squinting at that Macintosh screen, making tiny figures and vehicles in Fullpaint and Superpaint. Hovertanks, Mechs, Spaceships, their crews, variants, different modules, you name it. I had too much time on my hands, but what the hey, I was happy. Black and white. No color. Zooming in for detail work, and zooming out to see how it looked, crafting things pixel by pixel. Naturally, with all that time with my face inches from the screen, I was in glasses by the 7th grade. Lasers fixed that a few years ago (wha-zoo! laser-carved eyeballs!).

So, I discovered that folks still make 2D flat figures, and after some exploring (wasting time, actually), I found a few sites. What struck closest to home was a site called Junior General. These guys use mostly MS Paint, which is close enough to the old Fullpaint and Superpaint of my youth. They've tried to stay with the 1 pixel=1 inch scale, which at 72 DPI means their stuff is usually 1/72nd scale. I'm not to concerned with scale purism, more than I am at just looking through their wonderfully simple, pixelated little soldiers. It takes me back, that's all.

I'm a sucker for stuff like this less-sophisticated stuff. Maybe you are too. If you've got a set of tabletop rules that you want to explore or playtest, give their Near Future/Scifi listings a look-through. Just make sure you stay within their crediting and use guidelines. Junior General also has Master files, so you can open up a file in MS Paint, and make your own. Tutorials, too!

Many of the contributors have centralized their homage pieces to copywritten works at another place they call The Dark Site. Aliens, 40K, other stuff is there in blogged archive form. Great stuff.

Another good site, with a great links section as you scroll down, is Jenny's Paper Miniatures. Her fun take on an all-female army is cute, too.

Well, back to 3D.

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