Monday 31 December 2012

That Was The Year That Was...

So 2012 we come to the end...

Looking back at 2012 from a hobby perspective I haven't achieved anywhere near as much as I wished.

In the plus column I finished an army - the Athenians! I also painted up a number of Orc army regiments plus some odds and sods including a pile of old 40K Imperial Guard.

In the minus column the Zulus, a pile of brown undercoated miniatures, stare at me accusingly and I never progressed with my 28mm moderns as I wished (and we'll just skip over Wessex Games projects).

So bit of a mixed bag. If one lesson has been learn it is that I need to identify what projects I intend to concentrate on and stick to the plan and endeavour to do some painting (no matter how little) each day as every little helps (as they say). I just need to plan the first few months of 2013...

Anyway, off to see The Hobbit in a while so as this is the last post of 2012 I'd like to wish you all a peaceful and prosperous New Year!

Sunday 30 December 2012

Nice Looking Rack...

I spent part of Friday trying to get at least one of my Zulu regiments ready for dipping before the year ended and found myself spending more time trying to find the particular Vallejo paint pots I wanted (my current system of them all dumped in a clear plastic ziplock bag leaves something to be desired). Indeed I reflected my whole workbench/painting area is a complete and utter mess.

So the time has come for action!

Following an inspiring post on Belisarius's blog I have purchased this...

This is stage one in clearing, reclaiming and reogranising my workbench/painting area rather than trying to work amongst the detritus that has spread across all but a minute part on the area.

Once I have done this I will start to reclaim the wargames table with the aim of having a more organised and hobby orientated year in 2013!

Wednesday 26 December 2012

Gerry Anderson RIP

It was sad to read the news of Gerry Anderson's passing today. To many of us of a 'certain age' his TV shows defined our youth, in my case Stingray and Thunderbirds...

A few years back I bought a complete set of the Konami Thunderbirds models with the idea of creating an International Rescue type game. An idea to dust off in 2013 perhaps...

Tuesday 25 December 2012

Merry Christmas

Hoping you, your family and friends have a peaceful festive period and that Santa brought you lots of shiny new wargaming presents and not too many socks!

The model is Scibor Miniatures' Snowman Slayer, a companion to last year's Santa Hunter, lovely miniatures both...

Monday 24 December 2012

Sharke's Aquila

Craig Andrew's has uploaded my annual contribution to his Orcs in the Webbe advent calendar which you can read here.

This year I have gone back to exploring the possibilities of gameworld crossovers with the Orc Rifles from Flintlqoue ending up in the world of Pax Bochemanica where, rather confusingly, orcs wear skirts and carry eagles...

Back to the present wrapping...

Friday 21 December 2012

The End Is Nigh...

As the Mayans haven't been considerate enough to advise whether the world ends today at GMT, EST or even PST I thought we could all do some music. I'll be painting some Judge Dredd figures on the off chance they are wrong... ;-)


Friday 14 December 2012

The Great DreadBall Fumble...

I wasn't going to post on this topic again but my blood pressure is rising the more I look into it...

Allegedly all the Kickstarters have now been shipped. I say allegedly because on 26th November Mantic posted that "all trade is shipping at the same time as the Kickstarter pledges!"

 A few days earlier they posted: "Just to keep you informed we will be shipping out distributor orders next week as well, so if any are super quick they may hit shelves next Saturday – but they should be arriving at the same time as yours the following week – though obviously without the MVPs and the other goodies you'll all have in your first shipment!"

This is why I am upset with Mantic. I accept crap happens and things get delayed but they are making decisions and moving goalposts without explaining why directly to the people who put almost half a million quid in their bank account at the end of September.

I don't know why they have not done what they said they were going to do on the 26th November. I'm also a bit confused how some UK Kickstarters got their stuff two weeks back (one two separate parcels) which contradicts either waiting for the MVP stock or sending overseas orders out first (which I don't mind if I believed that was true as it clearly isn't)

I appear to have been quite restrained in not getting miffed until two weeks after it went on sale with retailers having now come across the following interesting blog posts from November:

Frontline Game: Dreadball Launch

Meeples and Miniatures: “Mantic have the ball, it’s the last rush of the game, they must score…wait…FUMBLE!!!”

Incidentally it didn't arrive today...

Thursday 13 December 2012

A Dread(ful)Ball Experience...

I must confess to being a bit jacked off...

Back in October I told you all how I'd been seduced by Mantic's shiny new Dreadball project and had been looking forward to painting up the miniatures and having some games. I was planning to paint up two of the teams and give it to Saul as a Christmas present, but it looks like that won't be happening.

Mantic collected over $700,000 from gamers who invested in the project to get it off the ground, but since collecting the money they have treated the Kickstarters pretty poorly.

First off was the decision to supply retailers before the Kickstarters. They have tried to justify this as part of building a gaming community for players by getting it into shops where the game could be played but many of the retailers they supplied don't have shops. North Star, an online retailer and wholesaler, received their sets of DreadBall on 28th November and anyone who pre-ordered from them received their copies on 3rd December. Dave Thomas (who also doesn't have a shop) even had some on his stand at Recon on 1st December...

Eventually Mantic told Kickstarters that the game was shipping to us and it arrived - first in Malaysia... then New Zealand... then Canada.... It is 141 miles from Nottingham (home of Mantic) to Bristol (home of me) but apparently it is easier to get an order 11,299 miles to the other side of the globe. 

On the DreadBall Fanatics FB page one UK Kickstarter posted he phoned Mantic today and was told that half the UK ones were sent yesterday, half are waiting to be collected today. Except other UK Kickstarters have received theirs. Cambridge last Thursday, Arbroath last Friday. So that's a bare faced lie to a customer...

I appreciate that Mantic have probably been overwhelmed by the response to DreadBall but they have seriously dropped the customer service ball and I am not a happy bunny.

In contrast Reaper's CEO emailed all the Bones KS customers when they had a problem with the paints and offered refunds for anyone not happy with the delay. Similarly Matt Sprange at Mongoose has been straight up and communicated any delays with the Judge Dredd Kickstarter items, even taking a hit on postage by shipping out partial orders to make sure we got something asap rather than waiting for everything to be in stock...

Tuesday 11 December 2012

A Sailor's Life For Me?

Still merrily coughing away here in Blease Towers so I haven't picked up a paintbrush for nearly a fortnight now though I intend to slap some metal work on the Zulu blades tomorrow. In the meantime, whilst SWMBO watches The Forsyte Saga she has discovered on ITV Player I've been looking at Lead (& Plastic) Mountain and thinking about next year's projects...

For a few years I've fancied having a crack at WW2 naval but have been put off with experiences with modern naval using  Harpoon twenty odd years back and the prospective "joy" of painting lots of grey models. A couple of years back I picked up a copy of Mongoose's Victory at Sea on eBay and a pile of Axis & Allies ships. They may not be brilliant, but they are painted (after a fashion).

These have (unsurprisingly) sat in a drawer for the last two years until I noticed Mongoose were planning a second edition of the rules and releasing a set of 1/1800th miniatures (the same size as Axis & Allies I believe). This piqued my interest until I saw the price (gulp!) but with my enthusiasm raised I then decided to revisit what could be done with the pre-painted plastics.

Of course I need to decide on a theatre of war and whilst I stocked up on piles of 1/700th planes many moons ago the Pacific is not very inspiring (despite reading an excellent book on it), as I want my ships to shoot at each other not just launch waves of planes.

A big of research and the Mediterranean seems the place to go...

Of course checking the pile of plastics and whilst I have a nice batch of British I only have one squadron of Italian destroyers (for some reason I have a lot of Germans, I think I was looking at doing a hypothetical Battle of the Atlantic). However it all seems jolly interesting and I have spent most of two episodes of The Forsyte Saga researching the Italian Navy, what it did in the Med and what models Axis & Allies have for them (quite a lot it seems).

All quite tempting, I think I need to find a good book on the subject...

Tuesday 4 December 2012

The Joy of Six...

I think it is Big Lee's fault, yes, let's blame him! You may have seen on Big Lee's Miniature Adventures the start of his 6mm North Africa project which started me mentally reminiscing about the "good old days" when 6mm WW2 was the only game in town (well apart from WHFB2). This in turn led to some perusing the Cold War Commander forums and me wondering what was lurking in "Lead Mountain".

A bit of rummaging later I found...

A lot of Soviet late-WW2.  GHQ T34/85's, Su-122's etc and a few PzIvH's. Battle of Hungary anyone?

A lot of Cold War era models including some 1967 or '73 Arab-Israeli War (Chinese Farm?) and piles of GHQ Soviets, probably enough for Fulda Gap and Afghanistan. I also have a GHQ British battlegroup I bought for my 2ECW project who could also fight the Russkis...

Also a few bits of Scotia South African armour. Some interesting CWC Angola lists here whet the appetite...

A few pieces of near-future Twilight 2000 inspired armour...

And piles of SF, mainly Copeland and Brigade.

I really need to pull it all out and sort it out into some armies but there is enough here, certainly enough Soviet whether 1945 or 1989, to get on with something concrete next year.

Saturday 1 December 2012

Thousands of Them? Where?!!

Zulus? What Zulus?

Well "Zulu Month" came to an end with zero Zulus painted (well finished, 24 are close to dipping stage and 48 are base coated). The dreaded lurgy is still here (office Xmas dinner missed) and I am still coughing and spluttering. So a slight revision of the 2012 plan, December will be Zulu month with some Judge Dredd miniatures to break the brown monotony. The War Between the States will be pushed back in 2013...

Sunday 25 November 2012

Lurgy 1 Miniatures 2

Returning from Paris with somekind of Gallic lurgy I have been confined to barracks, annoyingly missing out at a music festival I had tickets for in Leicester yesterday and the Reveille wargames show in Bristol today...

However, in between horrendous bouts of sneezing, sniffing and coughing I have taken the opportunity to sneak out and do a little bit of painting for my forthcoming Judge Dredd project (the first boxes of which arrived on Friday).

The first figure is a Heroclix DC Super-Adaptoid converted to be Johnny Falcone from the 2000AD series Marauder (don't worry if you haven't heard of it, there was only one series back in 2009). It was a fairly simple conversion using a bit of Liquid Green Stuff and a pretty distinctive looking miniature.

The second is a female with gun which I think came from Alternative Armies in the eighties. I had planned to use her as the beautiful but deadly Angelina in some Stainless Steel Rat 28mm adventures but have never been really happy with the face. I added a Green Stuff mini-skirt and painted her up in a generic SF fashion so she can be anything from a gang member, some Mega-City socialite's bodyguard or Wally Squad Judge.

Hopefully I can see off this cough and finish some Zulus!

Thursday 15 November 2012

Back To The Trenches...

You may recall a couple of years ago that I painted up a battalion of the Corpo Expedicionário Português for Élan. Earlier this year I completed two battalions of German infantry which I forgot to photograph and post on the blog. Only another seven are needed to complete the brigade! :-)

The models are 6mm Irregular Miniatures, somewhat rough and ready but they paint up quickly and do look good en masse...

I found them doing a little bit of tidying in the games room (which still needs rescuing) which led to a bit of ill-considered navel gazing and the idea to plan 2013's painting activity out so I actually achieved something.

Given the relative success of dedicated project months you might well wonder why I said ill-considered? Well, sitting down and typing the projects and armies I could remember, I could plan out the next five years painting and still probably not be finished! (and this doesn't take into account painting anything for Wessex Games rules projects - AirWar 1918 and Tusk 2 glare accusingly at me!)

Clearly I am going to have to be much more focused going forward (attend less wargames shows and stop looking at TMP). I think I will continue the dedicated months as this gets things done but stops me getting bored, but aim to complete a number of the specific projects within the year so I have both sides finished and can actually use them in a game or two!

Ok, back to the IsAngqu and uMbonambi...

Wednesday 14 November 2012

No Can Do...

Bit of a painting disaster today that has put a major crimp in Zulu month, I dropped the can of Army Painter Leather Brown spray and snapped the nozzle off! Well half off, but when I tried to use it I managed to totally snap it off covering my hands in brown undercoat in the process (hopefully I have got most of it off having to go to a parents' evening meeting at school in a little while).

I have order a replacement can (and some blue for the ACW Month) but it won't get to Blease Towers until I am off working away next week. :-(

Still I have managed to undercoat sixty Zulus, so I will have to crack on with them and I can still glue the remaining regiments together (and see if I can find the forty that appear to have gone AWOL in the Plastic Mountain...

Tuesday 13 November 2012

Charge Of The Wolf Brigade!

Twenty-seven years after I bought them(!) I have now painted up 32 Citadel Goblin Wolf Riders - hurrah!

I'm not quite sure why they took so long as I have always liked the figures. 16 had been painted and seen action previously (when I was a mere Snaga Orc) but I chose to repaint them so they all looked the same. I will spilt them into two regiments for games.

The miniatures were some of the first Kev Adams sculpted Goblins and I especially like the wolves (IMHO Orcs and Goblins should ride wolves). I found I was short two riders so converted a couple of the plastic LOTR Moria Goblins. Hopefully I will find the original missing figures one day.

Zulus next, 48 of whom have been given a spray of brown undercoat this morning...

Monday 12 November 2012

Lots of Minty Goodness...

No doubt the Judge Dredd fans amongst you will be aware of the Frother's Annual Charity Thingy and its Judge Minty miniature donation reward, but are you aware of the Judge Minty fanpic that is getting limited showings this month before being released on the web? Looks good...

On the painting frint today's rain has stopped play when t has come to undercoating the Zulus (tomorrow looks ok) but that means I can crack on with the Goblin Wolf Riders who are 75% finished...

Sunday 11 November 2012

Lest We Forget...

On a cold November morn,
A moments silence, from those who‘re born,
Red flowers laid at my feet,
Remembrance of sacrifice complete...

Saul Blease


Friday 9 November 2012

World War WTF?

Like many zombie fans I've been looking forward to World War Z being released at the cinemas. Having seen the trailer below I am now unsure...

Tuesday 6 November 2012

BSG: Blood & Chrome Online This Week...

The 2003 reboot of Battlestar Galactica was generally regarded as hugely successful, producing an edgy politically savvy SF war series that ran for four seasons. It's prequel, Caprica, was interesting but distinctly different and only lasted one season, however BSG fans were excited when SyFy commissioned a pilot for Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome, a return to the Cylon War background from the original series revolving around fighter pilot William Adama. Unfortunately SyFy have decided not to pick it up as a TV series (though there is the possibility it might see life as an internet series).

The pilot will be shown on TV next year, but will be debuted online in a series of twelve minute episodes from this Friday. The trailer does look quite good...

Monday 5 November 2012

Ragnarok 59 Put To Bed...

I finally got Ragnarok 59 off to the printers today (only eleven months late!). I have edited the SFSFW journal for two stints previously and had no intention of ever doing so again due to real world time issues but with no one stepping up to the plate after Nick Whittock's editorship I have found the mantle thrust once again upon my shoulders!

The editing and typesetting was largely straight forward this time around and a great deal easier and better looking than the hand typed, Letraset titled first volume I started the thing with twenty years ago!

Unfortunately what seemed straight forward when creating the full colour PDF that will go to Wargame Vault, was problematical as I tried to convert it to an internal black and white print ready format for the printers due to Apple's wonderful Pages software not being a clone of Word and things I know how to do in seconds in Word took a bit of working out in Pages. But I got there eventually...

If you are interested in F'/SF wargaming I would encourage you to join (click here!).

Ragnarok is the longest running independent F/SF wargaming journal by a long stretch and most readers seem to think it is of interest. You will be able to buy the PDF in due course from Wargame Vault (or for a token charge if you are a SFSFW member and want a PDF to go on your iPad) but there is nothing like a paper journal to read down the shed/on the loo, is there?

So what is in it? Issue 59's contents are:

Aftermath - Fantasy Battle scenario
Burning Down The House - Dirtside II scenario
The Drake Incident - Star Trek battle
Messing About On The River - generic fantasy campaign
To Keep Man, Man - the Instrumentality of Mankind
The World Needs Heroes - superhero wargaming
Aeronef over Guahan - Aeronef scenario
Crush Your Enemies - Conan wargames
Assassination - Killzone scenario
Far Trader - Traveller ships in Full Thrust
Fantasy Air Wargames Rules Set - the winner of the 2011 SFSFW rules writing competition

Ok, on with issue 60, let's see if I can get that out before Christmas 2013! :-)

Sunday 4 November 2012

Some Interesting Reading...

I realised as I finished a book today that it is a little while since I posted any reviews on the blog, having  restricted myself to the little "What I'm Reading..." box on the right (and even that isn't 100% correct as I normally read one non-fiction and one fiction book concurrently).

My non-fiction reading has been a little varied of late and I have read some interesting books which may prove of interest to some of you...

Over the last couple of years SWMBO has had me watching the TV series The Borgias, knowing little about the historical period it is set it all I could do was tut at the costumes of the Papal and French armies and go with the flow in the knowledge that even a bad historical drama is better than the X-Factor. After series two I decided to find out a little bit more and picked up a copy of Christopher Hibbert's The Borgias (I'd read his Indian Muting history a number of years back and enjoyed that).

Overall it wasn't bad, though the final chapters were a bit rushed. The coverage of the Italian Wars is restricted to the Papal involvement and there are no detailed descriptions of the battles but as a basic overview it was ok and I now know that all the actors in the TV series are far too old, except Jeremy Irons who is not fat enough and doesn't have a big enough nose!

From a wargaming point of view the conflict is interesting and forces raised for it could also be used as and Estilian army or similar in WHFB...

Osprey have been busy re-releasing some OOP books in e-book format and I have recently read two, Will Fowler's Allies at Dieppe: 4 Commando and the US Rangers: 4 Commando and the US Rangers and Nicholas Best's Five Days that Shocked the World.

Fowler's book is an excellent history of the build up and execution of the raid by 4 Commando on the German gun batteries that threatened the Dieppe landing in 1942. Whilst the book was extremely enjoyable it suffered from some awful numerical typos (eg. having Churchill captured by the Boers between the two Boer wars and the Vikings land at Dieppe 900 hundred years before they actually did!).  I have noticed this in a number of Osprey e-books, having a proof reader is fine, but if they have no knowledge of history this sort of thing can creep in.

Despite this I still recommend the book although it could do with some maps (I don't feel Osprey yet understand what they can do with e-books and how they can be formatted without the restrictions of physical printing).

Best's book covers the last few days of the Second World War in Europe and is a collection of inter-woven eye-witness accounts from individuals, both civilian and military (a number famous such as Sophia Loren and the Pope!), that were caught up in the events that unfolded.

It must be hard to find anything new about WWII but Best has done and some of the events that occurred are not widely know and are quite enthralling. A good read that brings a detailed human perspective to horrors of the end of the conflict in Europe.

Finally there is Richard Holmes' Redcoat: The British Soldier in the Age of Horse and Musket, a fascinating book covering all aspects of the army during the black powder from organisation to recruitment to discipline to supply to... well, you name it.

There are sections on all parts of the army, the infantry, cavalry and artillery getting excellent coverage but also the smaller parts which make for interesting reading (the section on medical care is particularly grim).

My only criticism of this book is that there is so much noteworthy information in it, it is hard to retain it all! As well as a fantastic book on the army, it also gives a revealing insight into civilian life during the period as well.

If you are a Horse and Musket gamer and haven't read this, make sure you do!

Friday 2 November 2012

The FLGS is Dead! Long Live the FLGS!

As I had to take son and heir into town today I decided to pick up some paints from Cut and Thrust Wargaming, my FLGS. I say "my" very loosely as I've been there only twice and I suppose it was not a great surprise to find it was closed, shutters up and a 'To Let' sign up.

Why had I only been there twice? Well the main reason was the sucky parking, although today I found a useful free parking area nearby, and the limited ranges of wargames material they carried. Aside from the paints there was little of immediate interest to me and to be frank that which was there could be bought cheaper on the internet (I know I should support the FLGS but when you add on parking the difference in cost was starting to get silly and I haven't won the lottery yet).

They did have some excellent gaming facilities but with their no children rule precluding a sixteen year old six footer who is more mature than many gamers I've met it restricted any desire to go there more often for anything beyond shopping.

We then swung by the local model shop to pick up the paints to find they had one lonely bottle of red left in the Game Color rack - doesn't anyone at Antics understand the principles of restocking? Grrr...

Anyway whilst Cut and Thrust is no more it appears a new wargames shop (Vanguard Wargaming) is opening in Bristol in a couple of weeks in Hotwells. It will be interesting to check this out though given its location I suspect parking may be an issue again.

The location is a tad bitter sweet as it is the site of the old  Spring Gardens Tavern which had been a great little venue for new bands and musicians before it closed.

Thursday 1 November 2012

November is... Zulu Month!

Ok, as announced yesterday November is Zulu Month, when I am going to try and get as many of the 288 Warlord plastic Zulus I bought earlier this year with some birthday money (and subsequent eBay foraging).

I've decided to start with that I am going to use Bickley's Washing The Spears rules with Black Powder lurking in the background. With that in mind I have decided to base the figures up as elements rather than individually in sabots which was my first idea. Whilst individual based miniatures in sabots would extend their usefulness (thinking smaller scale games with The Sword and the Flame) I concluded that this was a lot of fuss for limited return and if I every really wanted individually based Zulus, the plastics are cheap enough to buy another box and and when...

So, this means that I will be basing five figures on an 80x40mm base (which sounds spacey but isn't) giving me 10 regiments, 8 with thirty figures and 2 with twenty-four. The regiments are split 50/50 between married and unmarried units. Whilst I will be posting photos of painted units etc here, I have set up a specific Zulu War blog to go into some more detail and not boring readers who don't care what the difference is betwen the uMbonambi and the IsAngqu regiments. So if you want more in depth Zulu war stuff please follow me there as well...

Painting is going to be (hopefully) quick and dirty using a brown undercoat and Army Painter dip so things should move quite speedily (famous last words?)

Wednesday 31 October 2012

Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad

We all know the oft quoted maxim that no plan survives contact with the enemy and this is the case with my August plan for the remaining five months of the year. However all was not lost and whilst I had planned to finish the Athenians, some more Orcs and the Zulus by the end of October, I'm happy that the Athenians are finished and that I have two more Orc regiments finished (and 36 wolves painted awaiting riders). Ok, no Zulus but as Meat Loaf says two out of three ain't bad...

So the question is whether to stick with the plan and move onto the Persians next month and ACW the month after or push everything back? Given November is a strange month for me, with a week off and a week working in Paris, I think trying to deal with the fussy Persians would be setting myself up to fail so I have decided that November will be Zulu Month, as painting them should be fairly straight forward, and I'll leave December as the planned ACW Month. The Persians will be pushed back into 2013.

I also want to finish the wolf riders in November as they are well progressed so I will probably concentrate on them for the rest of this week before clearing the decks to concentrate on the Zulus.

Tuesday 30 October 2012

Athenian Cavalry - An Army Finished!

At last an army finished!* :-)

I have just completed the last of the planned Athenian army for the Peloponnesian War project, sixteen Athenian cavalry from Foundry. I actually only wanted twelve, but they came as a job lot on eBay so I painted them all up in case the extra four found themselves needed at some stage in the future.

As with all previous Athenian posts, the figures were white undercoated, block painted and then dipped with Army Painter Soft Tone. I'm not 100% convinced the dip technique is appreciable quicker than my black undercoat technique, these certainly seem to take longer than the orcs but that might be because they are a much more stop and start approach waiting for the dip to dry, be matt varnished etc.

* Of course no army is every really finished and I am sure that there are many potential additions that could come along, but this was (by and large) the army I originally planned, therefore it is finished.

Just need to paint up the Spartans now...

Athenian painted running total: 

125/125 infantry
16/16 cavalry

Monday 29 October 2012

In The Jungle...

October was supposed to be Zulu month under the August Plan but not an "uSuthu" has been murmured in Blease Towers so I will be revisiting the plan for November and December after some more ruminating...

In the meantime whilst trying to finish off the Athenian cavalry (almost done now) I took the opportunity to put the finishing touches to some jungle terrain I had been working on and off on for some time now.

Construction is really simple. A variety of tropical fish foliage pieces were hot glue gunned to some old CD-R's, the base area then sanded, painted and flocked (well two have, I noticed when taking the photos I have forgotten to do six of the eight!).

Originally I had in mind using them in some 28mm Darkest Africa and Warhammer Lustria games but realised they they are so non-scale specific that they could also be used for 15mm Tusk type games as well as 54mm Burma Firefight games.

Tuesday 23 October 2012

Not My Fault!

It's not my fault! No, honest it's not! No, it's Boggler's, ALL his fault, yep, the blame is 100% his - entirely...

So there I was not even considering Normandy Firefight and not maybe, one day, considering some 54mm skirmishes set maybe in Italy or Burma, not in the slightest. Then was does Boggler do? The comments on yesterday's post with: "I have acquired all the requisite bits. The thing that puts me off is the terrain?"

Good point I think and go to bed. Then it starts niggling away...

On the school run I'm pondering whether 1/35th terrain like the Tamiya brick walls would work with 28mm as well as 54mm figures then having tea I had the 'eurkea' moment! Jungle terrain is generally non-scale specific, eBay and Burma here I come...

So now, thanks to Boggler and his conundrum(!) I now have bought some Airfix Multipose Japanese and British infantry (and some Afrika Korp, not sure why but 12 figures for £10 seemed good value when I watched the bidding war for the set one up explode on the list hitting £17 for just 6 in an old box!) and am spending too much time Googling photos of the 1944 Burma campaign - Thanks Boggler!!! ;-)

Monday 22 October 2012

Normandy Firefight

A little while back I picked up a copy of Normandy Firefight, Warwick Kinrade's "detailed skirmish combat rules from WWII" from North Star. Like most wargamers I buy far more rules than I will ever play but the fact that these rules were designed for extremely small scale skirmishes of up to around five figures a side and used 1/35th miniatures, my interest was piqued.

The rules are very interesting using a two second action move, detailed wound location and recording of ammunition expenditure. This might sound a bit too much but I was extremely impressed how Warwick combined the to-hit, hit location and damaged caused in one D100 roll (and I love percentile dice). Overall the mechanisms seem quite elegant and simple for such a detailed game.

I do have some reservations such as the lack of an overwatch rule to allow opponents to shoot at miniatures running from behind one piece of hard cover to another (eg. from house to house) but I think that I'd really need to play the game before critiquing further.

Will I?

At this stage probably not. The concept intrigues me, I used to love sticking Airfix Multipose and Tamiya figures together (and there are some in the attic IIRC) but at the moment I don't want to slip into a new scale. The game can be played with 28mm miniature or even 20mm ones but I guess much of the fun is using the larger scale models.

Even with one part of my brain saying no, the creative part is pondering 54mm infantry combat in Italy or Burma!

Maybe a project for 2014? :-)

Sunday 21 October 2012

Red Orc Regiment

At last some painted miniatures! :-)

This is a regiment of old Grenadier UK Orcs sculpted by Nick Lund. I've always liked Nick's style, much more Tolkienesque than Kev Adams.

As I will be using both Adams and Lund Orcs (as well as some old FTO Perry ones) I decided to paint these up with a different skin colour, opting for a red-brown as a nod towards the Red Goblins of yore...

Painting was some rough heavy drybrushing and layering over a black undercoat with some Devlan Mud washes on anything that looked too bright. They are dirty and grubby, but to my mind that is what Orcs should look like.

Hopefully I can get on with the thirty Goblin wolf riders I've had sat around for a couple of decades next! :-)

Saturday 20 October 2012

Paint Comparison Chart

I've just used the final dregs from my last pot of the old GW Bestial Brown on the bases of my Orcs. With the continuing GW price rises and my love of Vajello I was wondering whether Vajello did a compatible colour that I could buy - they do, Beasty Brown!

How do I know? By using this Paint Comparison Chart on the Dakka Dakka forum which should be very useful (unless you use Foundry paints!).

Sunday 14 October 2012

Back To The Painting Bench...

I've just finished painting some Grenadier Orcs. This is the first time in a couple of weeks that I've managed to get some painting done due to the incessant demands of the 'Real World' and a stinking cold that still occasionally flares up (cough, cough, cough). Once dry I just need to sand, paint and flock the bases and they will be done (as will the Athenian cavalry who also just need basing).

Now October is supposed to be Zulu month but this will now probably be later in the month when I have a bit of holiday booked in (I'm planning a bit of a conveyor belt approach). In the meantime I will continue with the Orcs & Goblins as and when I can grab a few minutes here and there...

Whilst I haven't been doing much painting I have unfortunately been doing far too much spending...

First off I got hooked into the Judge Dredd Kickstarter. This wasn't a great surprise as I love Judge Dredd and have been meaning to get around to some serious Mega-City gaming for a long time now (I bought some of the Citadel figures decades back but that went nowhere...).

This will actually kill two birds with one stone as most of my 28mm SF 'Lead Mountain' will probably be easy enough to use in the Dredd background with minimal effort (after all a ganger is a ganger whether official or not).

So expect lots of 2000AD miniature loveliness in 2013AD! :-)

Judge Dredd was going to be my last Kickstarter for the year but Eli (I See Lead People) Arndt has launched his own game company in the form of Loud Ninja Games and launched a Kickstarter for 15mm Space Raptors (c'mon how great is that?). Seriously, apart from supporting Eli with his cool idea, I have had for a number of years a hankering to play a few games based on Harry Turledove's World War series, based around an alien invasion during WW2. As the lizards in the books are around four foot tall, I'm hoping the 15mm raptors will work well enough with my 20mm WW2 collection.