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Grinning Skull’s Link Quest Web Challenge, would you take up the quest?

7 Nov

Well, hello there you lot! I’m back again once more, letting you know about my latest brainfart idea that hopefully will prove entertaining (to say the least!)

I’ll explain in the best way I can, as with all my other ideas, I’m going to throw it out there and see what traction it ends up having, but that will depend entirely on you, my dear audience!

You will remember me telling you that I have been very, very busy, and I can’t emphasise enough that all the time I have available, is not enough to achieve the myriad of tasks I need to do to operate this fledgling operation of mine at a higher frequency. Of course, all the stuff I try and create each month takes time and effort, and doesn’t leave much time for getting the word out there about what I’m up to and what’s been released and such.

I do try to push myself to get the word spread as much as possible, but since I have a lot of hats to wear in this, promoting all things Grinning Skull can fall short when I’m busy creating content, organising schedules, and loads of other mind-numbing tasks needed to keep moving forward. Add to this, since switching my domain here on this site to a dedicated domain (www.thegrinningskull.com) it has literally altered stuff in the search engines, and traffic patterns have changed. A bad thing for getting the word out, as it seems as a lot of the long hours I first put into establishing backlinks and other web type stuff needed to make my voice heard in the many billions of pages in the sea of data on the web, has been unravelled since switching to the new domain.

Indeed, I’m not saying that this will always be the case, I understand that given more time and more effort, it’ll even out once more, but it’ll take time, and more effort, a commodity that I find myself short of right now.

So, I’m implementing a way to help get Grinning Skull get a boost, a way that you could help out, and be rewarded for your efforts too.

It’s called the “Grinning Skull Link Quest Web Challenge”

So then, what the fook am I talking about? Well, I’m looking for some individuals out there to take part in a regular competition to help get the info out there, people willing to take the challenge of posting Grinning Skull related links to the web, to the people that might not have heard or seen what it is we do. I’m not talking about spamming to unrelated sites and so on, just places it’s going to benefit both us and those who would find our content useful.

I’m not a big forum or social media dweller, but I do realise that in this day and age, the importance of this for building a brand and following. Things such as this tend to zap the spare time I have, which I could be used to create more content and push forward on my various plans.

So, I’m looking for a group of willing volunteers to take part in the challenge, to post valid links and backlinks of all things Grinning Skull, and earn themselves the chance to get free stuff as being crowned monthly link quest champion.

Of course, it’s only going to work if I can get a few of you involved, and I also understand that it may all come to naught (If my experience of competition type things is anything to go by, can be an excercise akin to “Pissing in the Wind”!)

So, if you think you’d like to take part, email me via the contact form and let me know. If enough of you get involved we can get the ball rolling and get things started. I’ll keep you informed with the progress as it transpires, and as ever, I’m interested in your thoughts and comments about this, as well as any other Grinning Skull type info!!

Grim.

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Busy, Busy, Busy… Lost down the rabbit hole at Grinning Skull Towers…

3 Nov

Busy, Busy, Busy…

Well, as you can imagine, my lack of presence here posting means I’ve been busy and somewhat distracted with all sorts of things of late. Things have been happening that have meant I haven’t had the chance to update the site as much as I’d have liked to.

I’d have liked to put more on here, such as updates and such (and yes, I do have stuff to tell you about!) but organisation isn’t my greatest strong point, so I’ll be posting some catch-up stuff shortly, which I hope some of you will be interested in. Also I’d like to point out that of late the posts that I have been putting out, have to me at least, seem to have been a little salesy-spammy which is something I don’t like to do here that much, I feel that while it’s important to update online current Grinning Skull related merch and releases, good content is king, so loads of adverts don’t sit well and I’d much prefer to put out some articles that I feel that you lot would appreciate and get something out of.

Of course, I’m going to have to advertise my shit, but I don’t want anyone to feel like I’m becoming the metorphorical Jehovas Witness of the hobby world, that annoying twat who’s always flogging their brand of gaming religion to everyone who clearly ain’t listening! It’s a balancing act that is getting more difficult to do, as you appreciate things like Grim’s Dungeons of Doom tutorials take some time and planning to get sorted, so other stuff on the content creation side gets priority over free stuff. that’s not to say that I won’t be posting articles like that, on the contrary, I’m planning right now a new series of tutorials to coincide with my forays into my lot playing Osprey’s Rogue Stars, something which I’m lacking a table full of 28mm Sci-fi scenery and painted models, which need to be done for us to play. Sci-fi terrain making is my preferred theme (as you might have guessed by the 15mm stuff I’ve done on here) but I’m guessing that this will appeal to the 40k crowd as well as other 28mm sci-fi gamers too.

Also, I’m planning a PDF digest or two of “Grim’s Dungeons of Doom” material from the articles already published. I’ll be cleaning it up, adding new bits, articles and pics and collating it in a nice ebook format for download over on our various DriveThruRPG, RPGnow and Wargamevault publisher store pages, and possibly a limited print copy run if there’s a few who are interested.

On the Grinning Skull Miniatures front, there’s also stuff going on, and some of you might know new releases are afoot, last month saw the Little Killa clowns released from Alternative Armies. We are also gearing up for more new releases in the line, B.E.A.R.S., Klorzid mutant plants, more Zarglian Invaders are forthcoming, so expect to see more about these in the near future. Also, whilst I haven’t had much opportunity to get some sculpting done due to time commitments, that is not to say my ideas are dead in the water, and I have a whole heap of mad ideas for other models in the line, and also some more traditional miniatures I’d like to pump out in some way shape or form. The Grinning Skull miniature line was always intended to push the envelope with unusual and weird models that are not seen anywhere else, so expect more in the way of my bizarre brainfarts. Things like Giant Killer babies, Alien Starship crews, genetically modified sentient fruit and veg, plus more additions to the Zarglian Empire, Evil X-TED teddies, malfunctioning robotic psychos, more killer clowns & Circus freaks, more alien monsters and maybe a few Chukk and Oggum too!

Also, I’d like to turn my hand to some more traditional fantasy miniatures, since the Grinning Skull line is more Sci-fi weirdness, I’d like to get some of my trademark stylings into my own interpretation of the usual fantasy fare. I have tons of concept sketches and notes for things like Trolls, Goblins, and some of my own inventions I’ve come up with.
Grimlins (a imp-like race of demonic creatures), Trolkyn (Small troll related infantry that would serve as Goblin and Orc Proxies) and Monstaaz (Comedy demonesque minion critters that would serve as cannon fodder in chaos or demon armies) Couple these with a load of big beasties, Trolls, Ogres, Giants, Minotaurs, and a whole heap of my interpretations of creatures, and you have what I’d like to call something like “Fantasical Freaks” or “Brain Damage” Miniatures, a separate line from Grinning Skull Minis, but how long it’ll be before these ideas will materialise into the real world is unknown as yet, but it’s part of my long-term plan. Maybe these will figure in a future Kickstarter or Indiegogo crowdfunder, although this time it’ll be better planned and executed!

However, ideas are one thing, doing the legwork or simply having time and resources to bring these into the flesh are another. I’m resonably confident 95% or more of these will see the light of day, that is providing new things don’t take precedence over them or I kick the bucket, or something strange happens (Alien abduction, trapped in a mirror realm, dimensional wormhole, lost in a prehistoric world etc.)

On top of all this, we’ll be ploughing ahead with more PDF releases as usual, as we head to almost 200 titles, I want to celebrate this milestone, with something special around the new year (Got a few ideas, but you’ll have to wait) and plans for more to come in 2018, plus I want to see if we can get to 400 before 2018 is out!!

As ever, I welcome your comments, ideas, feedback, and thoughts, plus I’m always up for collabs and such like projects if you’re interested in stuff like that!

Next up will be an October End of the month round-up, plus More Grinning Skull Miniatures stuff.

Grim.

Rogue Stars: Let the ideas start to flow!

16 Sep

So, with Osprey’s Rogue Stars ( Rogue Stars: Skirmish Wargaming in a Science Fiction Underworld (Osprey Wargames) ) winging its way to me through the post (yes, I succumbed to it in the end, the temptation was far too great!) I really look forward to getting it so I can have a really good read to ingest all the lovely space opera flavour I’m hoping there to be!

I’ve not really had much chance to peruse any osprey wargames rules other than Frostgrave, but I have read my share of other Osprey books (I absolutely love the Jason and the Argonauts book, review of which is here: Osprey Adventures: Jason and the Argonauts Review)

All these ideas flowing, with plenty more to come I expect, especially when I get a good browse at the rules and fluff has got me thinking. I am going to need a new baseboard or two and maybe some playing mats, plus a fair bit of 28mm scifi scenery will need to be made, not to mention getting the minis together (I think I have plenty of miniatures to fit this game already, but I have seen a load that I wouldn’t mind getting…!)

I’ll try my best to do to create more min scenic tutorials, just like the Grim’s Dungeons of Doom series!

What I would like to do is take this opportunity to invite you on my journey too, I’ll document my thoughts, ideas, miniatures purchases & painting, scenery tutorials and so forth, similar to Grim’s Dungeons of Doom and even share any battle reports along the way.

Both spotlights are working! There will be no escape for trespassers!

I suppose that this is going to start me off with a new article series as a result, but I reckon that those 28mm Sci-fi gamers of you out there (especially warhammer 40k, Oldskool Rogue Trader and other Sci-fi wargames that are available) will find plenty of useful stuff for them to justify it.

I’m thinking that I’ll make an interior set of terrain similar to Grim’s Dungeons of Doom, but not too much, that way it’ll be interchangeable with the walls, floors and other fantasy scenic stuff (the cavern walls will fit nicely in an Alien planet theme, maybe some alien flora and fauna, but then I’m going to have to do a few 28mm Sci-fi buildings and maybe something along the lines of the old Necromunda scenery from the 90’s. Where ever possible, I’ll point you in the way of useful resources and info too, which will be a nice change to 15mm model making in the Sci-fi wargaming I’ve got used to.

Like I’ve said, I imagine that there’s going to be loads of ideas free-flowing, but I really want to know what you think too. Is there anything I should be trying out? What scenics do you want to see me make? Just let me know by commenting below,  tell me about your ideas or your experience of Rogue Stars gameplay.

I’ll be back later with some possible miniature choices, that is, once I’ve plundered my lead piles…:)

Normal blog service is now resumed!

18 Jul

Well, it’s been a while, hasn’t it? Well, as you can see, I have been suffering a variety of tech issues which have kept me offline quite a bit.

Hopefully, everything is on the mend now, so I’d like to apologise for not completing the June post a day challenge, so sorry for that, it was out of my control.

I’m still catching up on work (a lot of it got corrupted or wiped) so, while I get ahead, things will be a bit slow here. Obviously, I’ll be updating about new releases and such, so there will be a bit of self-promo (hey, I need the links don’t I?) so I’ll apologise again before the deluge of promotional posts start.

I’d be grateful if you’d take a gander at my new titles (of which so far there are about 10 or so) and see if you’d like to purchase one or two, or if not pass the link to those who it might find it of use.

Grim

Will the new “IT” Movie, see a new wave of Creepy Clown sightings?

13 Jun

A subject not talked about on here for ages is that of the Clown sightings of the past few years. The worldwide craze started by the Northampton Clown, caused much fear and loathing in the community in the UK and US and started a viral sensation that now is but a distant memory.

September sees the release of the new version of Stephen King’s seminal horror, “IT” which I’m sure that we are all familiar with. The movie looks like something most fans of the horror genre will be looking forward to, but maybe not if you’re caulrophobia (Phobic of clowns) but the whole thing has got me thinking that while the whole craze is old hat now, we might be seeing a resurgence of such antics again once the movie has been released.

If you haven’t seen the trailer for the new film yet, where have you been? No longer will we see the great Tim Curry don the guise of the infamous “Pennywise the dancing clown”, but now Bill Skarsgard will play the evil alien entity who disguises itself as a variety of head fucks to feast on the young residents of the town of Derry.

For those of you who haven’t seen the trailer, here it is before we carry on with the discourse.

Looks ok, but the proof of the pudding will be seeing the movie in its entirety. It does look as if the movie will deal with the first part of the story (when they were kids) with a sequel in the works probably to carry on the second part of the story (when they are adults) and have to face “IT” once more to stop its reign of terror.

This aside, I’m pretty sure we are going to get the onslaught of clown sightings as a response to the movie’s release. There will always be some joker (get it?!) ready to put on the clown suit and mask and start scaring people for a variety of reasons, be it for publicity, for viral hits or simply to spite those who live in fear of clowns. This is a big issue, seriously bigger than you’d realise, some people really do have a proper fear of all things clown. the last time I blogged about them, at one point I received 160,000 hits in a day just on one post about the subject and over 100 private messages and emails! A real boost for my humble site stats for sure, but a real eye-opener in terms of how much this subject affects people’s lives and psyches.

I recently took my kids to the circus, myself hoping that the clown/s there would be creepy enough to entertain me (well, I’m not scared of clowns if you’re wondering) but what I ended up finding is that “real career clowns” if I can call them that, are somewhat watered down compared to the traditional idea, which for me at least was a bit disappointing!

What I will do here, is monitor the subject in the media over the course of the movie release, and what I find, I will blog about. One thing is assured this time, is that if my own area sees the return of the Doncaster Clown (or other pretenders to the title) I will try my best to get an interview with the guy, in fact, if there are any other regional clowns, I’ll also try to start up a conversation with them, just to see what motivates these folks to do what they do!

Who knows, I might end up making some clown related PDFs, minis or similar type stuff to cash in on the craze (well, if it happens) and the very least should help me shift some books!

Whatever happens, mark my words. The clowns will return, and I’ll be here to keep you up to date with the associated craziness that comes along with it! Let me know your thoughts and comments on the subject!

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