Sunday, 26 February 2017

Dystopian Wars - some French

Here are some French ships for Dystopian Wars. These are likely to be next on my clear-out list.  First a group picture with the big stuff not on stands and submarines and tiny flyers at the front.

Then a picture of the airship and the skimming dreadnought on their stands. 

A closer look at the submarines. There are two on the surface and 3 submerged. 

A look at the air skyship.  This comes with a group of 6 tiny flyers. 

The flyers at the left are for the skyship, the group of nine on the right go with the dreadnought.

And the skimming dreadnought itself.

More later. 

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

British Napoleonics finished - yea !

I got the British artillery finished. Here are some pictures.

It's been a long road to get the whole army done, but that's it finished.  I've done 11 infantry battalions of 28 figures, 6 cavalry regiments of 12, a batch of generals and now, the two artillery batteries. There is a sense of achievement in getting this far. We just have to see them on the table.

More later.

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Napoleonic and Bolt Action British done

I got some British finished. The Napoleonic chaps took a bit of time because of other tasks but it's good to see them done. 

First the Bolt Action vehicles. I redid the bren carrier with army green and it came out OK.

Then a later picture after the bren carrier and Sherman have been given a wash of soft tone. Now they're looking a bit more like what I want. I just have to finish the tracks and do some light weathering. 

The Napoleonic figures are done. Here's a picture of me part way through the basing. The undercoat of khaki has been done and a first drybrush of sand applied to half the bases.

The final top drybrush of cream has been applied and then later the flock.   

And finally the flags.  It's good to reach this point as that's now 11 battalions of infantry I've done. 

Now I'll take at look at the pile of stuff that's waiting in the wings - Napoleonic British artillery, Bolt Action infantry, Lion Rampant stuff, Dystopian Wars stuff and all the horse and musket figures. Just like every other gamer I reckon.  

Sunday, 22 January 2017

progress on BA British

Here's a little update on the Bolt Action British.

A couple of views of the armour.  The starting point for these was when I borrowed a spray can of Army Painter's Army Green from a friend at our club.  It was brilliantly quick and provided a great staring point. I'll definitely use these sprays in the future.

There then followed some highlights and dry brushing, then some washes. On the pictures, the Firefly at the top left was washed with soft tone, the other Sherman remains without a wash at this stage. The bren carrier was given a black wash and turned out a bit too dark. The Stuart had a mix of tones. I reckon the soft tone was best and I'll use it on the other Sherman.  I'll probably add a bit of black shade to line hatches and the like, just to give a bit more depth.  

The transfers went on. The Firefly is intended as the Scots Greys of 4th Armoured Brigade, the Sherman as the Fife and Forfar Yeomanry, the Stuart as the recce units of 11th Armoured Division and the bren carrier as the Black Watch in the 51st Highland Division. 

And a couple of shots of the infantry. At this stage they just have an airbrushed coat of Vallejo brown green. I then quickly splashed some green on the helmets. This would allow the figures to be used in game without looking too stark. 

And another brighter shot. The chap in the blue at the bottom is the RAF forward observer and the blue was a first try at getting a decent base for the RAF blue.

Meanwhile, painting continues on the Napoleonic British and the next batch of infantry are nearly completed. I'll try do pictures for next time. 

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Bolt Action British underway

Over the Christmas and New Year period I've been gluing bits to other bits and to my fingers. But I've made some progress and yesterday I got a whole bad undercoated white.

The first picture shows gluing in progress. The two standing figures on the left without heads are the command figures. One is standing holding a mug of tea and the other is advancing  and will have a brolly in his left hand. The brolly is a little homage to the irrepressible Digby Tatham-Warter at Arnhem. And the tea drinker is there just because we're British and it's what we do.

At this point I want to give these characters Tam o' Shanters to represent the Black Watch, but the metal heads I bought from Warlord seemed a bit over scale. I decided to cut the bonnet from the heads and then attach them to the plastic heads. It was a bit of work but I got there in the end. 

Undercoated infantry. There are now 3 sections of 10 men.

And the undercoated others. At the left are the figures for the machine gun team. At the top left are the spotter team, including a rather spiffing looking chap in the RAF uniform. I could try to paint him to represent a good friend who served in the RAF, but the metal figure is a bit slimmer.  :)   

I've also changed the Tam o' Shanters, putting them only on the tea-drinking commanding officer and his sergeant-major escort. The more junior officer with the brolly has a camouflaged helmet.

At the right of the picture are the figures for the vehicles.

And a closer look at the command figures. I think all these deserve names and any suggestions are welcome. At the moment, the CO is Colonel Sir Archibald Bogle of Auchtershoogle and his escort Tavish McTavish. 

And the vehicles so far. I left the front off the bren carrier because after several dry runs, I found I couldn't fit the driver into the vehicle at a later stage if this was glued in place. And I wanted to paint the figures separately from the vehicles.

More later. I'm hoping to do a spray session on the infantry this afternoon.

British Light Dragoons

I got these finished this week. I had hoped to complete them by the end of the year but other stuff got in the way.

These are all Men at Arms, Napoleon at War 'big' 15mm figures.  There are three units in all, with facings of red, yellow and crimson.

I've almost completed the British forces for a friend. The remaining 3 infantry are well on the way and that leaves 2 artillery batteries. Hopefully I'll finish everything this month, but we never can tell what new game fads may distract us from targets we may set.   

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Games review of the year

Here's a quick review of the games I've played in 2016.

The pleasant surprises of this year were Lion Rampant and Bolt Action, Lion Rampant more so. It's just brilliant fun. After my first game in August I bought the rules and Perry plastics for the Wars of Roses and have had several great games since.

Here's the list for the year. Overall, not a bad year for games. 

Dystopian Wars     9 games.
ADG ancients.       8 games.
Maurice                 7 games.
Lion Rampant       7 games. 
Bolt Action            3 games.
Black Powder       1 game.
Flames of War      1 game.
Commands and Colors Ancients   2 games.
Board games                                10 games. 
Turning Point: Stalingrad               2 games over 6 meetings.    

The amount of Dystopian Wars was due solely to the new Fast Play Fleet Action rules. They are just far more fun than the previous versions.  Before we started playing them I was on the point of selling all my Dystopian stuff other than a couple of basic fleets. 

The ADG games were mainly our club competition. And other than the final against a hardened competition player who cheated a bit, the competition was fun.  It also highlighted a part of our club which has two types of players. There are those players who play BHGS competition games and who argue a lot about any rules, and the other group of our side of the room who are much more sociable and play for fun. We're still competitive but we laugh much more and can work through any rules questions or misunderstandings. 

The Maurice games were mostly fun.  I say 'mostly' because I did experience one game against a competition-head who wanted to try them out. Other than that all the games were good and still a whole lot of fun.

Later in the year was Lion Rampant. Just a whole lot of fun. We've even started a mini-campaign which will continue into 2017.

I tried Black Powder, which I found just a bit dull, despite all the gloss and advertising. It was OK, and I'll play it again if the chaps at the club want to.  

We had one game of Flames of War, and for no other reason that there were so many other games to play. Too many games and not enough time.

Then at the end of the year was Bolt Action. I was not planning on yet another game to get into, but the big models looked so good on the table and the games were fun so I got some stuff. I've had three games now, and all good fun, though my British force is still on the workbench. I hope to field something early in the near year. 

The boardgames were generally good.  A new game of Waterloo was a waste of time, as was, sadly, a Battle of the Bulge game amended by a friend. Wings of Glory was great fun, Squad Leader was as good as it ever was - still a brilliant game. Then there was Blucher, which can be played with miniatures or cards. It was OK, but nothing special. On the anniversary of Jutland we played two games of the old Avalon Hill classic - Jutland. Both good games, which goes to show that sometimes, old vintage games like Jutland and Squad Leader are still better than more glossy newer products. We also played the Napoleonic naval rules by Osprey which gave a very good and fast paced game. We'll see if we'll play this or Sails of Glory as the naval game of choice. Maybe we'll do both if there's time.

I had two games of Command and Colors Ancients.  Both good games. Then I played Turning Point: Stalingrad over several club meetings. This was really good. We recorded the positions of the pieces at the end of each evening and picked up the game at the next club meeting. It was good to give a game like that the time it deserves, and we had great games.

And that's about it. I'm now aware that ACW and Napoleonics have taken a back seat for a while. Hopefully I'll be able to play them some time in 2017.

But next year will definitely see more Lion Rampant and Bolt Action. I'll try to continue with my games clear-out, but who knows what the next fad may be. I know that old-school imaginations horse and musket stuff is just bubbling under. And there is The Pikeman's Lament due in January. This is a set of rules based on Lion Rampant, set in the 17th century and going up to include the Great Northern War.  We'll likely play this because of the fun we've had with Lion Rampant.         

Here's to 2017. May you all get to play many good games.