The Stad

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Everything posted by The Stad

  1. Previously: A New Post at Gammeltårn Kjell left Gammeltårn in great haste and, having picked his way out of the mountains by the crumbling game trails, now galloped along the Old Road towards Forstlys. More ancient than memory and yet nearly unblemished by the passing of time, the Old Road crossed the Burial Isle from east to west in several segments, each perfectly straight, and only subtly, if ever, sloping. It was favored by many of the travelers and merchants that made their way across the island, and on his journey Kjell passed many folk who also trod the road to the capitol, nearly all of them laden with the trappings of festive revelries. Maybe I started this six months ago... maybe I've been a little busy... but it's here now, so... C&C welcome! And yes, the photo quality is not outstanding. I have an old phone for a camera.
  2. Everything here is great; I love your tents, the hall is unique with some great shapes, the night-lighting is very successful, and your story is quite entertaining. Well done!
  3. The Stad

    Prelude: What Lies in Store

    Great story, and very impressive moc! I love how many different details you fit into the scene, and it is fittingly lush for the Avalonian countryside.
  4. The Stad

    AoM Inn Phase 1: Party Supplies

    Thanks! I wish I had more red leaves, I how they look too. I do find it a bit difficult to balance looking “clean” without looking “plain,” but I’ll keep working on that front. Thank you! I agree about the water, it could use a little more texture to suggest movement. Next time!
  5. AoM Inn Phase 1: Party Supplies - Mitgardia On Shifting Sands - takes place in Kaliphlin, but points go to Mitgardia
  6. The Stad

    On Shifting Sands

    The man hated this place. He hated coming out here, into the depths of the Badlands, hated meeting with those withered creatures, hated waiting for them in the cold shadow of this great, unsettling thing. Yet, here he was, nonetheless. He first saw their tiny figures when they mounted a distant dune. He watched them steadily descend its face into the next valley, then several moments later they appeared again, closer now, still coming at an even pace, unhindered by the rising heat that began to pulse in shimmering waves off of the endless sea of sand. They reached the crest of the penultimate dune, and his horse, which had been idly pulling at the burnt stalks of some long-dead shrub, came to him nervously pressed its head against his shoulder. Even she didn't like these meetings. In a few more moments they were there before him, and the first among them spoke. "Your task is done, then?" it rasped, its red eyes flickering behind the rags that held it together. "Of course," the man answered stiffly. "The proper people were paid, the peasants were fed, the shows went on., as promised." "So say our listeners. You have again performed...more than adequately. Your payment will be delivered to the oasis south of the Fallen Angel on the fifth day hence. A portion will also be delivered, to be used towards our efforts. Return to this place in two fortnights for further instruction. This is an adequate rendezvous, is it not?" "I'd prefer somewhere closer to water," the man said slowly. "My horse doesn't do well so far out here." "Perhaps a camel would suit you better," the creature dismissively returned. "No, closer to water is closer to eyes that might see that which must not be seen. Our meetings must remain unmarked. Besides, this place is significant to us." The man didn't respond. He'd tried, though he didn't expect to get much better from such dealers as these. He began to turn to leave when the creature spoke again. "Do you know why this place is notable?" Its voice seemed distant now, its gaze rolled slowly up and down the strange grey stones of the spire, and still the man didn't respond. "This marks the site of a great victory for our kingdom. Here, where lay their last great city, was the final gasp of an ancient empire, who came before even the god-kings of old. In their time they knew power unrivaled, ruled over lands innumerable, counted themselves as masters over earth, sky, and sea, and yet they are gone, and we remain. Our armies crushed them to a man, their halls and towers were torn to the ground, and our mighty king wrapped the very stones in the loving arms of this desert. Such is the fate of those who would stand before us!" Its eyes flashed brightly as its voice came to a crescendo, then just as suddenly the creature was silent. "As you say." The man bowed his head and turned, walking his horse back past the spire, the way he had come. "Remember," called the creature, and the man paused and looked back, "Our great master is generous to those who serve him well. Give thanks, and pray that you never fail him." The man bowed his head again, and both parties turned and left. When he was sure the creatures could no longer see him, he mounted his horse and spurred her away as fast as she would run.
  7. The Stad

    [AoM House Phase 2] Homecoming

    It does indeed look much livelier now, and excellent job refining this MOC, I don't have the patience to stick with something in an iterative process like that. Job well done!
  8. I've got one freebuild that needs some final detail work, then I'm not sure when I'll photograph it. The last three months have not provided much building time, but I hope to crank out some entries to the next challenge and maybe some storyline-advancing freebuilds over the summer, since my wife is expecting in August and I don't imagine I'll get many moments with the bricks after that...
  9. Making sure this gets counted:
  10. Two Mitgardian soldiers labor towards the Clan Lands through the winter snow, their sledge laden with the queen's generosity. It will be a welcome sight to those who struggle through this long winter, especially after such a meager summer, though who knows what will be expected in return for such gifts as these...
  11. The Stad

    On Shifting Sands

    Thanks, it took many iterations to get it just right, but I’m happy with how it came out. The beauty of this medium is that we get to use our imagination constantly, and the “ice cream cone” piece looked like a good, small pouch to me, so here we are. Thank you! Thanks, though this isn’t really part of any ongoing story as of yet. I just wanted to build with tan for a while... Thank you! Isn’t it funny how the part we consider the focal point so often takes the back seat to the part that we build as an afterthought! Though I am glad you like the base, it turned out better than I had hoped it would.
  12. They had set the table at the eastern side of the vast rotunda, near enough to an opening that they got plenty of light, but not so near that the wind would blow all their charts and maps away. Here they spent many hours each day, deliberating on designs and consulting the records they had dug out of what seemed to be a library, several floors below them. This tower was the largest in the complex, ancient beyond all reckoning, and yet largely unspoiled by the long northern winters and the harsh salt winds that blew off of the Bay of Storms, and so it had been selected as the center of their operations as they went about exploring the rest of the ruins and establishing facilities to house, feed, and outfit the new garrison. Makny and his cousin Kjell looked over the many parchments again as Kjell reported on the latest surveys. "We have taken full account of the lower districts along the water, but only a portion of the central ruins have been fully charted. Of the openings in the cliffs in the upper district, we have found many, but I will not yet say that all have been discovered, nor have we had men enough to spare to determine how these caves and tunnels connect." "Thank you cousin," Makny replied, "It seems that we will need to request further resources from your father. How has work progressed to clear the pass?" The entrance to the bay was a narrow track that wound through the rocky hills of the Burial Isle in the south. In many places it had been obstructed by landslides or washed away by long-gone rivers, so that it was difficult to follow on foot, and nearly impassable to a wagon and a team of oxen. Supplying the settlement had been difficult in the summer months, and with winter approaching it would be nearly impossible. "Work along the trail is slow," Kjell admitted tiredly, "It seems that the only travelers it has seen these past years have been game." Makny rubbed his eyes and bent closer to the maps, as if on their thousandth viewing they would reveal some new path into the cove that had yet gone unnoticed. Suddenly they heard footsteps and heated words from below, and Makny turned as several men reached the top of the stairs across the room. At the front came a rough looking man with an air of importance, followed closely by several of his guards, and trailed by one of Makny's hapless lieutenants. "Sir, I've told you, the commander is busy!" the lieutenant puffed. He had obviously been trying to stop the men for several floors now, to no avail. "And I've told you, your head of the household guard can make time for a Rigr who is here on the Jarl's business," the man snapped back. Makny waved the lieutenant off as the visitors swept onward, and mustered up the most hospitable tone he had at his disposal. "My lord Hammel, welcome. It is good of you to come visit us in our new quarters." "Enough of your jests," the man cut in sharply, "We are both busy men." Makny's face hardened. "Indeed we are. I see your guards have come with you to these chambers; am I to bear this as an insult or to take it as a threat?" Hammel advanced toward the table, though his men kept their distance. "You are to see my men as the warning that they are. Word moves quickly in the north. Whispers abound that the Stromvakt seek for themselves a mighty stronghold, a seat from which to carve out their own lands." Makny nearly snorted. "Surely a man of your position and esteem would not believe such idle gossip. We are here at the order of my uncle, the Lord of Førstlys. After the city nearly fell to Raavage's forces, he saw the need for a place that might keep his people safe in a time of even greater peril." "I would expect you to have a good story to justify your presence," Hammel retorted, "But your words do not hold weight. The guild is wary of your work here." by "You speak of the guild as though we are not a part of it. Have you forgotten already who broke the siege of Duergvenn and rescued you and your garrison? And which colors do you see behind you on that standard? This is my uncle's land. He may do with it as he sees fit, as is his right, as is the right of any lord in this guild, in order to keep it secure against those who would do him or his people harm." "Do not speak to me of Duergvenn as if it solidifies reputation," Hammel sneered, "No victory serves only one cause. Your loyalty has yet to be truly proven." "Is that why you are here, then? To test our loyalty by telling us to leave?" "No, young lordlings," he said derisively, "I am here to present you with a summons. Your loyalty will be tested far from here, along the banks of the Antler and the shores of the Winter Lakes. The remnants of the enemy have crept from the shadows and gathered in the heartland, and now they threaten the Capitol itself. In the aftermath of these wars Chorian cannot gather enough men from his lands alone, so each true guildsman is called to go and eradicate this menace once and for all. If you indeed fight for all of Mitgardia, you are to sail for Northridge in a fortnight." Hammel ended with a smug smile. "If that is the case, I look forward to riding with you once again." "Indeed," Hammel scoffed before he whirled and swept out of the room. Makny waited until the Rigr was gone, then turned back to his cousin. "That was a strange visit." "Yes," Kjell nodded slowly, "I would have expected my father to send word of these happenings himself. The guild might have sent out the call to arms, but we may only go at his command. Of course, that is if the Rigr even speaks the truth..." Makny came around the table and the two walked towards the edge of the high battlement. "I am loath to send you away while your help is so sorely needed here, but I feel that we need to know your father's will on this matter." Kjell nodded silently. Makny felt a strange anticipation rising within him, while out over the bay the first high clouds of the afternoon drove landward. I didn't have the time to finish this before the Challenge 1 deadline, so I guess it's going to be a freebuild. My first attempt at an all-Lego scene, I still need to work on my lighting. C&C welcome on everything!
  13. The Stad

    A New Post at Gammeltårn

    Thanks! I had a better perspective shot that showed more details: But I didn't like the wedge being showed off. This started out as part of a large octagon, but I couldn't get the wedge to come together with other wedges in a good way. I definitely should have gone back and straightened out the sides of the stairs to get better pics. Live and learn, eh? Thanks! I've found in the past that the photos I imagine myself taking and the ones I actually end up taking are always different enough that it pays off to put the effort into areas that might end up on the cutting room floor. Thank you, I feel like a story benefits from multiple layers of conflict and uncertainty. Thank you! Thanks, the mix of greys is partially out of necessity, but it does work to my advantage most of the time. As I showed above, I did have a lower angle shot, but aside from being too lazy to rebuild the stairs (three times as wide sounds about right), I was also limited with how low I could go with the camera by how many light blue bricks I had for the background sky. But I appreciate the critique, I really respect the amount of work and thought you've been putting into your own scenes. Thank you! Yes, the ruff is from the Penguin, and it is of limited utility (which I didn't find out until after bricklinking five of them), but has just enough extra room in it to allow for a new cloth cape and fits with the Ultron helmets for a cool combination. And I'm glad you're enjoying the story!
  14. Thanks! Thanks! Yeah, I found myself fighting a losing battle with gravity with the internal friction of some of those pieces in the branches. It was a very delicate build. Thank you! I always hope to be convincing. Thanks, I agree with the stone placement. It was a bit of an afterthought, I'll admit. Next time.... You bring up a lot of good points as far as the drifts and path are concerned, and I considered a lot of those as I was composing this. There is some snow under the tree, and the area under the lean-to is the same dark tan that I used at the edge of the paths (very wide game trails), because in my head that area had been recently cleared and was still somewhat damp. That said, I don't think the writing reflects the physical facts of the build at this point, and maybe I shouldn't have made a point of "broad branches that kept off much of the rain and snow." As for the camera angle, I don't even have an excuse for not using this photo first: Thanks, I feel like snow makes any scene feel very cozy, wilderness or no. Thanks! I'm glad you picked up on the light/dark tan. Thanks, it's good to have another build posted! I figure they're very large trees - and I don't have the pieces or photography setup to do them justice - so I figured just the bottom of the tree would be sufficient.
  15. While it was common for the families of Mitgardia to send their sons to the northern tribes after their twelfth summer, only the children of the Burial Isle were sent out regularly before they came of age to become accustomed to the wilds. Makny had learned from his father when he was only seven how to fish the streams, trap small animals, and build shelters and fires to keep him warm through the cold nights. One of his favorite things to do after a long autumn harvest and many days in the hustle and dust of the storehouses was to take his horse into the hills and be alone. Makny liked to make camp beneath one of the great black-barked trees that grew on the high hills, deep inland. They had broad branches that kept off much of the rain and snow, and were usually found near some of the strange ruins that dotted the Burial Isle. Makny enjoyed spending his evenings - after building his lean-to, unsaddling his horse, and lighting his fire - contemplating the ancient stone structures and the people who might have built them. I've been sitting on this, waiting for a sufficiently overcast day to photograph it and enough free time to post. C&C welcome as always!
  16. The Stad

    [MOC] NCS Surface Transport

    There’s a lot going on here for what looks like a very simple build, so I commend you for that. I think it’s harder to make something small look really clean like this because there’s nowhere for little imperfections to hide. Love the base too, it works very well in this sci-do setting, even without the wargs.
  17. The Stad

    AoM: Inn Phase 1: Alehouse

    Another great addition to your town, I love the cohesive architectural style. I’d echo what others has said about pieces being a little out of place, like the offset ridge piece on the higher roof and one of your “timber” tiles being skewed on the section to the right. I like your posts around the bottom, but I’d recommend considering the way a vertical load would travel through the structure to the ground as a way to inform the location of the posts. For example, I’d think that you would need support directly beneath the corners of the half-timbered overhanging sections. Or, if you want some overhang, just beef up the horizontal element on the bottom of those sections to handle the stress from the cantilever action. Still, this is an awesome moc with a lot of great details, and as someone who lives in the cold, I can endorse your depiction of snow.
  18. The Stad

    Kaliphlin at Work - Day 18: Cleanup

    Great job telling a story with just a single image. I like your cart design, and appreciate the judicious use of texture, though I think I would have reversed the sand green and dark bley areas in the wall, as if the muck were piled up on the outer wall surface, cracking and falling away in some places.
  19. The Stad

    AoM: House Build 3: Wainwright

    Great job, your half-timbered technique is very appealing and realistic in appearance. The overall color palette looks great, and you've got a great balance of textures here. I'm really impressed with how you've adapted this to two different settings and made it fit into them so well!
  20. As others have said, there's a bit too much going on here in terms of textures and colors, but at the same time it's got too many square corners and straight edges, particularly in the landscape. I like the effort you put into the roof, and I really like the accuracy with respect to the source material. I think this is one of the best nordic longhouses we've seen here. Well done!
  21. The Stad

    Dwellings of Mitgardia - MCB Book III

    Two dwellings of sorts:
  22. The Stad

    Mitgardian Farmhouse

    Such great, clean build here. I always marvel at the amount of detail you can cram into such a small space. It would have been good to have the stream be a plate or two below the banks on either side, but that's a minor detraction really. Very well done, as usual!
  23. A Camping Trip | Mitgardia | The Stad A New Post at Gammeltårn | Mitgardia | The Stad
  24. The Stad

    Age of Mitgardia (free-build-challenge)

    House Phase 1: