The Hex Files – Things are Getting Strange…

“Things are getting strange, I’m Starting To Worry, This could be a Case for Mulder and Scully …” (Catatonia)

Heroscape Krav Maga figures 32mm could double up for the FBI … extreme hourglass corseting by Agent Scully here?

What series or TV programmes distract from or inspire your gaming scenarios?

Painting has slowed considerably in the Man of TIN Towers and Pound Store Plastic Warriors thanks to the Disney+ subscription channel now hosting all seasons of the X Files from the early 1990s.

Part of the steady Lockdown year has been spent binge watching box sets of series and episodes in order such as Star Wars spin off series The Mandalorion, Stranger Things, Buffy the Vampire Slayer …

I have been waiting years for the X Files to be available but the cost of video and DVD box sets has been off-putting.

These Heroscape suitably besuited characters could make FBI figures

I remember watching this series as it came out in the early 1990s. Watching them through again from Episode 1 and seeing the series and main characters develop, I remember some storylines and character monsters very well but I obviously missed quite a few episodes too – I was hard at work in my first job.

I enjoyed the stand alone one-off “monster episodes” in the early series far more than the tangled plot and subplots of conspiracy within conspiracy. Trust No One etc.

The series cleverly combined a US cop show and crime drama with every Arthur C. Clarke’s Mysterious World case and conspiracy theory you can think of, exploiting the public mistrust of “government within government”, all recently dealing with the recent end of the Cold War and the shadowy activities of the CIA.

I like the small town America where anything weird can happen. It’s perfect Forgotten Georgia territory, although I think lots of the X Files was filmed in Vancouver, Canada.

It reminds me strongly of the old 90s high school horror teen comedy drama series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (recently rewatched – free on All4) or the more recent retro 80s Stranger Things series on Netflix with its cast of young teenage kids, another of the binge-watching delights of this last unusual year.

Somehow I don’t think such series could have been made in Britain, despite the weird West Country cryptozoology and other dark regional folklore. To be fair, we had Doctor Who grounded on Earth (or 70s Britain) fighting off monsters in the Jon Pertwee Third Doctor series (arguably the best Doctor?) with its fabulous Brigadier and and UNIT episodes. I have seen several such UNIT games on people’s blogs.

Obviously time spent enjoying watching the X Files is time spent not painting figures. I should be painting my ArmaDads Army figures and repairing hollowcasts but …

Sometimes X Files plots seem like possible gaming scenarios.

Who needs new figures?

In my boxes of figures I have these handy ready painted FBI figures which came with the useful boxes of plastic Heroscape hex terrain.

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/heroscape-duelling-figures/

And some weird looking alien crew from a downed space craft, avoiding the blue hats and awaiting rescue from above?

I can see a way in future to reuse the bodged hexagon (whoops octagon tiles) from recreating the old OOP Games Workshop Lost Patrol game:

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/02/12/octagons-are-not-hexagons-or-my-diy-games-workshop-lost-patrol-tiles/

Pound Store Plastic stores stock lots of the 1990s and post Gulf War American troops that could be easily paint converted into the brutally efficient (fictional?) Blue Berets or Blue Hats US Army UFO Retrieval Team or the various SWAT teams.

Usually these plastic modern figures range in size from 30-32 mm to 40/45 – often 54mm plastic clones and copies, steadily downsizing as they become more distorted.

Even these distortions can be used as aliens as the Wargaming Pastor does with his alien Selanoids in his Death Zapp game. https://thedeathzap.wordpress.com/2019/05/25/battle-squadron/

Other sources of figures to hand:

These two metal Fantastic Beasts figures with a repainted brown trench coat almost make a Mulder and a Scully, if I repainted the hair – investigating wizardly goings amongst the young at a secret castle (somewhere in the north of Britain?)

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2019/07/14/a-quick-trip-to-the-works/

Size comparison of metal nano figures from The Works with my pound store plastic penny dreadfuls, Phoenix SD and STS Little Britons Boy Scouts 42mm range

Anyway I look forward to more adventures with clean cut boyish Agent Mulder, and “Gutsy Girl” intelligent, sceptical agent Dana Scully … it’s a great way to wind down from a busy working day!

What series or TV programmes distract from or inspire your gaming scenarios?

TO BE CONTINUED …

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 24 March 2021

Author: 26soldiersoftin

Hello I'm Mark Mr MIN, Man of TIN. Based in S.W. Britain, I'm a lifelong collector of "tiny men" and old toy soldiers, whether tin, lead or childhood vintage 1960s and 1970s plastic figures. I randomly collect all scales and periods and "imagi-nations" as well as lead civilians, farm and zoo animals. I enjoy the paint possibilities of cheap poundstore plastic figures as much as the patina of vintage metal figures. Befuddled by the maths of complex boardgames and wargames, I prefer the small scale skirmish simplicity of very early Donald Featherstone rules. To relax, I usually play solo games, often using hex boards. Gaming takes second place to making or convert my own gaming figures from polymer clay (Fimo), home-cast metal figures of many scales or plastic paint conversions. I also collect and game with vintage Peter Laing 15mm metal figures, wishing like many others that I had bought more in the 1980s ...

7 thoughts on “The Hex Files – Things are Getting Strange…”

  1. If you like X Files, there is a spin off called “Millenium” starring Lance Hendrickson. I saw the first two seasons and they were pretty good.
    For me, I’m thinking a John Wick game might be fun.

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    1. Thanks. I don’ know this Millennium series – I will keep an eye out for this. The more I watch of the X Files, the more I realise how little I saw of the original.
      Likewise Buffy the Vampire Slayer had a spin off TV series (which I also didn’t see) based around the ‘good’ vampire character of Angel ( which spun off roughly by the time I thought the original series stopped being fun).
      I haven’t yet seen the John Wick franchise.

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  2. I must confess to having never seen the X Files, not sure why but it just passed me by. I have been thinking about it but I can’t think of tv that has led to gaming. I find Pathe News footage of interwar manoeuvres has influenced my semi flats and other collection of old toy soldiers. For example one reel was of British Manoeuvres in the mid Twenties and featured terrible rain encouraging me to model figures in rain capes.
    One direct influence on gaming and figures is Dad’s Army, I couldn’t paint up my old homecasts/recasts without a Young chap in a long scarf and a old chap with a n enthusiasm for using a bayonet . It is hard to game the Home Guard without DA coming into rules and scenarios. Like any one if I see a film l fancy gaming it. Th e last bbc War and Peace tempted me but I am glad I resisted, same for the continuing pull of Barry Lyndon, The Draughtsman Contract and The Duelists.
    I look forward to seeing your tv inspired gaming and hearing more…

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    1. Pathe Newsreel continues to be a joy for my Sidetracked occasional railway blog.

      I quite agree re Dad’s Army – there are plenty “episode scenarios” and the occasional map chalked on a Blackboard – and the town map http://www.dadsarmy.co.uk/map.html
      One of my ongoing ArmaDad’s Army Elizabethan Home Guard or Coast Guard muster (Rabble) will of course have a trailing scarf – (“Stupid boy”) – equivalent to the Britain’s Farm series Village idiot figure suggested by royalty? How very unPC!

      Draughtsman’s Contract – now there’s a charmingly odd Peter Greenaway film and Michael Nyman soundtrack. I enjoyed several of their films together.

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  3. I remember the old X-files. I seem to recall, as you say, enjoying the earlier seasons more.

    I don’t watch much tv nowadays. I don’t know why – I just don’t. As a long-standing member of the Victorian Military Society, I can say I did enjoy The Terror series (about the Franklin expedition to the arctic). But, holy cow, it was extremely gory – about the worst thing I’ve seen! :O

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      1. I have to say – fantastic series in every other sense but I had to turn away at a number of points and I’ve done that before!

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