Last month, I speed painted the starter box for Zombicide and played few games. Here's how I was able to get the figures painted quickly, and my thoughts on the game itself.
Speed Panting Zombies
I wanted the set finished by the end of the year, which meant that I needed to paint 65 zombies in about a week. I made the decision to keep them monochromatic, almost black and white, as an homage to the zombies in Left 4 Dead.
To start, I used double-sided tape to attach the zombies to sticks. I arranged all the figures with the same sculpt, facing the same way on the same stick to that I could go down the line and paint all the same details in one pass. Then I sprayed them all with light grey primer.
I used three main colors: Formula P3 Cryx Bane Base, P3 Thrall Flesh, and P3 Coal Black for the "Runner" zombies. The first step was to drybrush the Walkers' shirts and the Runners' sneakers with white, right over the primer. Next, I went through and carefully painted the skin with Thrall Flesh. Then, I used brown ink to paint the belts and hair. The ink is thin enough that it tints the area and shades the recesses, but isn't completely opaque. The final step was to basecoat the pants, shoes, jackets, ties and dresses with Cryx Bane Base. In a few places like the folds of the dresses, I added a little Thrall Flesh into the Cryx Bane Base and drybrushed some brighter highlights.
Once all the basecoats were finished, I went through and used P3 Pig Iron to pick out some details like the jewelery on the female Walkers, and the walkman on the Runner. The last step was to paint the entire figure with GW Agrax Earthshade. And that's the basic process; quick and simple.
The Runners' clothing was painted with Coal Black instead of Cryx Bane Base to give them more of a "blue" tint so they would stand out a little. The strips on the pants were just left grey, and the Agrax took care of shading them.
Figures like the Fatties and Abomination deviated from the process a little– The Fatties have P3 Gun Corps Brown gloves, boots, and toolbelts, and the Abomination has the camera strap (which was painted with brown ink) and the bone protrusions (P3 Menoth White Base, and drybrushed Menoth White Highlight at the tips).
Once all of the figures were finished, I painted their bases with P3 Bastion Grey, and then drybrushed the tops with a mix of Bastion Grey and a little white. Finally, all the blood was added by mixing P3 Khador Red Base with a little brown ink. I dabbed a few splotches in places, and then splattered some more on the figures and on the bases.
Here are the finished zombies:
I didn't bother with any fancy foam; just store them right in their plastic trays.
I spent a little more time on each survivors, but used essentially the same process. I tried to tie their color palette to the plastic color that each survivor was molded in– Yellow for Josh, red for Ned, purple for Amy, etc. I also kept them relatively clear of blood, limiting it to their melee weapons and on their bases.
The 65 zombies took about five days to paint, and another three days for the survivors. With all the figures painted, it was time to break out the boards and start killing zombies!
Playing the Game
Since the zombies' movements are predetermined by the rules, you can play a "solo" version– one player, controlling four survivors, versus the game. I chose "City Blocks" as the first scenario and banged my head against the wall on that one before looking online and discovering that the scenario is basically unwinnable with only 4 survivors. I could only clear about half of the six objectives on the board before the threat level was high enough that the game was spawning handfuls of zombies with every card flip, depleting the reserves, causing the Walkers to activate multiple times each turn. Every time.
I had a similar experience with "Might Makes Right," in which you begin with one survivor, and uncover objective markers to free new survivors and add them to your party. I spent New Years Day enjoying not having to paint anything, and playing the game. Literally 30+ attempts at this scenario, and only once was I able to free more than one survivor. I bumped it up to three starting survivors (as if three people were playing) and was able to win the scenario by the skin of my teeth.
I love this game, but for the life of me, I don't know why they limited the 1-player version to 4 survivors, but 2-players get three survivors each.
I've convinced my wife to play a few times, and she really enjoyed it, so hopefully I'll be able to get her to play some more, and we can work our way through all the scenarios.