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Monday, September 18, 2017

Have you painted that 'Intimidating Figure yet'?

The Intimidating Miniture Figure? We all have one or many. You  know, that miniature that you really want to paint but keep putting off because you don't think you can do it justice. We see it/them in the gaming magazines and just immediately want them. In fact you usually go ahead and buy it but then it sits in your hold bin forever as you work up the nerve or the perfect color scheme.
Often for historical wargamers it tends to be intricate shield designs, highlanders with plaid kilts or maybe that hard to do camouflague.
For Sci-Fi and Fantasy gamers it maybe geometrically painted space elves or those accursedly beautiful old Confronttion minis from France.

Sometimes it's the assemly that can be daunting. Sabrina, my wonderful painter wife, once had a Waterloo moment with this dear fellow. She almost put him away for good after he came apart the third time while being painted.

I've faced quite a few bugbears in my 35 years of gaming, ancient Greeks, Landsknect and Ottomans among them. Each force felt a daunting task but as you can see I finally put them to rest.

It just takes patience and time. The more you paint the better you will become at it. What felt impossible in your first year may seem easy as cake years later.
But here are a few tricks.
When painting armies with shields, put your first attempts in the rear ranks, newest in the front. Same with leaders, paint the rank and file first and the leaders last. Usually you'll perfect your style as you go along so the latter are often better.
Don't be afraid to ask for advice online or from local gamers. There are many old pros that are quite willing to help out. Just be aware of the style you're looking for when looking for help. Are you going for decent wargame quality to build armies or demon award quality? I learned the dry brush technique from my mentor Terry Wills years ago because my aim is large armies.
So what's your bugbear waiting to be painted?

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Small Dystopian Campaign

Well when you get stuck at home during a hurricane what else do you do then paint figs and come up with a quicky campaign.  This will be a very quick and dirty little game based on the Dystopian Wars Campaign 'Hurricane Season' using what forces we have, a map from the old Etherships and Ironclad rules and the Imperial Skies rules.
Orders have been semt out and i'll post update pics of the force movements as I get them. I doubt any of the players will be checking here over the next few days but if they do well good intelligence for them.


Federated States of America, painted by Sabrina

Basic Dystopian Crazy scenario. The Empire of the Blazing Sun (Japan) is on it's way to the Caribbean to disrupt the position of the Federated States of America. Allied to Japan is the European Coalition consisting of the French Republc and The Prussian Empire, both of which have sent a small task force to help. The Empire of Brittanica does hold Jamaica and intends to aid the Americans even though this is a backwater front for them.
Main targets are Cuba (FSA controled) Jamica and San Juan.

First Moves in, looks like we will have a battle to play today, Japanese attacking San Juan defended by American Task Force 3. ( Japanese actual figs won't be here so we'll be using Prussians and a few French as standins)

After a fierce naval battle San Juan falls to the Japanese
Next act: FSA sends a task force out from Pensacola to retake San Juan which runs into the Prussian fleet near Havana. British, on there way to San Juan, run into FSA task force retreating with the Japanese fleet in pursuit. While the French steam into San Juan and join with a Japanese carrier force. So two big battles for this week and next.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Mini Monday- When those Rules finally come

Now many of us have something I call the Forgotten Legions.
These are those projects that were started long ago and completed
for the most part,  but because of various circumstances never saw or only had a limited amount of table
In my case I have a Dystopian VSF fleet that my wife painted up for me but in the end I found the rules to tedious
so it's been gathering dust for years.
An army of Roman styled Gorillas, Centuars and Dwarves that I painted up on a whim but never found a set of rules
that I liked for them.
And finally several forces for the Indian Mutiny that got rotated through various rulesets over the years, but none ever really stuck.
Of course my list goes on but the main thread here is the absence of rules which tickle my fancy.
Yeah a lot of us have this problem.
But then comes that glorious day when a new (at least for you) rulebook comes along and Bam! It's the one that sets you on fire!
And best of all, you already have the figures painted and ready to go! Oh what a wonderful day it is when you dust off those Forgotten Legions.

Over the past few years several rules have arrived that brought not only my legions out into the light but also those of many fellow gamers.

Lion Rampant and later Dragon Rampant.
Who knew there were that many Medieval figs in the area! Oh and the legendary fantasy  figs of old that came out when Dragon Rampant
was released. Ral Partha, Grenadier, Marauder slugging it out with the newer GW stuff. ,Needless to say my Roman Gorillas got the run of the table.

Men who would be Kings
I dragged my hills on this one a bit till I read an article in one of the glossy mags, so we gave it a try. Eureka! Suddenly Don was digging out his
various colonial forces, so many in fact that we missed that 'get things painted first stage'  My Mutineers also got a lot of table time, which especially felt good
if you think about all those hours I spent painting them.

Imperial Skies
Another set of rules that I overlooked when it came out, that is until Allen finally dropped them on me. A evening perusing the rules and Wham Bang it suddenlly occured to me that they would be perfect for that Federated States of America fleet that I've never used. Played last Thursday and success! Got two more games planned this week.

Ah the joy, when those Forgotten Legions finally get to shine!

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Mini Monday- Ships

A note before I begin, Mini Monday was a post that my friend Stelios started doing a few years ago.  Every Monday, for over a year, I started the day with a warm cup of joe and Mini Monday on my screen. Sometimes it was about the weekends miniatures battle, sometimes about how to paint or about some toys that could easily be converted into nice models for the table other times he questions if we should be painting orcs green or brown. Whatever it was, it was always interesting and fun to read. So recently to pursue his writing career with great passion, Stelios has put aside distractions. So Mini Monday would have been abandoned, but with Stelios' consent I've decided to keep up the tradition till some true wordsmith comes along or hint, hint, returns.

15mm American Civil War Ships from Old Glory

So Mini Monday- Ships. Whether they are propelled by oars, sail, steam along or even fly they are a joy to bring to the game table. In many miniature battles it can often be quite a chore to bring all the terrain and miniatures for a game. 100's of figs, scores of trees, hills and buildings all for that one battle are lugged along in big plastic containers that fill the trunk of your car, It takes time to set up and to take down. But this is often not true of ship games.

Yesterday I ran a renaissance naval game with galleys. I had a box of 60 1/1200 ships, one ocean mat and one hill to represent the coast. Set up time 10 min, game time 2 hours takedown time 10min.Done. It always seems that with the naval games we always have plenty of time to chat after the game,  

60 galleys at 1/1200 scale

Same period as above but in 15mm scale.
Now as I stated above ship battles can come in all forms and sizes, so there is usually something to tickle your fancy.  Ancient oared vessels that become landbattles at sea, Age of Sail where you manuever cunningly to with the wind to pepper your opponent with your broadsides. Age of Steam and Iron, battling with unique designs of ships for supremacy on ACW rivers and the high seas. And of course WWI with battleships and WWII with airpower. But there is also  Victorian Steampunk and battles in the depths of space, ie Dystopian Wars and X-Wing. Throw down that sea or space sheet set out some ships and you're ready to go.
The figure count is usually low so less time painting and the terrain is almost non existent. Not that you can't have terrain but no one really expects it either.

Steam punk Japanese navy

Friday, August 25, 2017

Getting ready for Konflict 47/ DUST Mech Battle

Maybe 4 more buildings and then I'll be ready to run a Mech Battle using the Konflict 47 rules.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Preparing for the anniversary of Lepanto.

72 ships so far, Goal is 150 by October 7th.