Saturday, 26 December 2015

Games review of the year

As the club will not meet again till the new year, I'll offer up a note of the games I've played this year.  Overall, I've a note of 37 evenings at the club out of a possible 50, though I may have forgot to note what we played on a couple of evenings.  And so, by theme -

A good year with 6 games of ADG with 15mm figures, 1 game of Commands and Colors with 10mm figures on 4inch hex terrain, 1 game of Impetus with 6mm figures and 1 game of the Kallistra rules on hex terrain again.  

CnC is always good, but this year has seen the chaps at the club get to grips with ADG and play at lot more games.  It's proving popular with us and I've no doubt we'll see many more games next year.

Horse and Musket era. 

Managed 3 games of Maurice, 1 game of Napoleon's Battles 4th edition and 2 games of Commands and Colors Napoleonics.  The CnC games were played in June to mark the anniversary of Waterloo and saw 4 of us play two games side-by-side.  Great fun, with honours going to the French players.

My only problem with Maurice this year was I only managed to play 3 games. I'd been planning to try to play every month or 6 weeks.  Next year I'll be trying to get play more Maurice and hopefully I'll be helped by having my Great Northern War armies finished and my Seven Years War stuff painted or part painted (they've been undercoated for a while now).

Sails of Glory and Wings of Glory 

I'll give these two their own group.  We usually play these as multi-player games with each person having one ship of plane.  The games are always great fun, though I now think we may have been getting sailing into the wind slightly wrong. We'll have to re-read the rules bit on that. We usually get in one game of Sails in an evening, but 2 or 3 games of Wings.

One of my games of the year is definitely the Wings game we had where two of us had fighters against the Gotha bomber. The Gotha is big, sturdy and capable of throwing out some defensive fire.  Hopefully we'll play this again soon.    


I have a notes of playing 2 games of Flames of War though I may have miscounted.  And the Fast Action Bulge boardgame.  Good games, though I usually find Flames too low level for my taste. 

Dystopian Wars  

I played 6 games of Dystopian Wars this year.  Generally good games, though my initial interest in Dystopian has definitely waned.  The games just take too long and we've been finding we only get through 3 or maybe 4 turns in an evening if we're lucky.  The second edition rulebook is difficult to read and at times seems a glorified mess.  I like the concept of Dystopian Wars but each squadron takes so long to play.  I may well sell off a large part of my FSA fleet next year. 


So many games to mention. I think I played 6 or 7 evenings of boardgames at the club over 2015. 

The year started with the really disappointing Legion d'Honneur; a bore-fest that was essentially a solo game for 6 players.  And worse than playing the game once, was getting persuaded into playing it again. 

Some of the usual suspects were played again - the old multiplayer favourites that are just great fun.  Among them are Mexica, Boomtown, Roborally, Metro, Pompei, Family Business and Sherlock. There are a couple of others which I can't recall the names of now; one is Ra (I think) and another is an exploration game similar to Mexica. 

The year ended with a good game; Blood Rage: Ragnarok.  That was a lot of fun. 

Games of the year.   

I may post more on this, but for now the two best miniatures games for me were ADG and Maurice.  Hopefully next year will see many more games of them. 

Sails and Wings were good and I'm certainly hoping we can play another Wings game against the Gotha. 

CnC is always fun. I've just sent away for the new Napoleonic module on Generals and Tacticians so I'm hoping to play some of that in the weeks ahead. 

Of the boardgames, Blood Rage was the best of the new games.  I hope to play it again.  I know the old favourites will be played many times.

Roll on next year.  I'll try to take more photos of club games so I can post what they actually look like. 

Final games of the year at the club

A quick post on November and Decembers games.  

Another game of Blood Rage: Ragnarok which was great fun. I would say that because I won, but I think I was really lucky to get the Valkyrie card and another card to immediately resurrect a character that was killed. This enabled me to play fast and loose with the Valkyrie. 

A new boardgame called Fief.  It's a euro-game with very nice components and is a kind of medieval land-grab for 6 players.  A good game for our club, but it did seem a bit too complex in places, almost like it was trying too hard to layer on stuff for players to think about and do.  The marriages / alliances bit was hilarious. 

Then ADG. We've started a little competition in the club, and eight of us have started.  There are initially 2 leagues of 4, and the top two from each table will go through to semi-finals and finals.  It's all with Dark Ages and medieval armies. My table has two Wars of Roses armies, one Arab and one Hungarian.  It's been good to start a club competition again without the overblown millimetrics and arguments which characterise the BHGS lot in their FoG competitions.

In December I planned a battle of the bulge boardgame with another chap who's a big bulge fan.  Kind of an anniversary game.  This time we played Fast Action Battles: Bulge.  It's an area game with both blocks and counters.  The blocks add the element of fog of war as the opponent sees only the blank face of the wooden block so is never quite sure about the exact strength of the unit.  It was my first time playing this game and as the Allies I made a few mistakes which cost me the game.  I also failed to blow several bridges. The German movement seemed to be very easy, so we may have missed something in the rules. 

At the club meetings before Christmas we usually play several boardgames.  This time 6 of us played Robo-Rally, Metro, Stephen's Game and Family Business in the one evening.  If you have the chance to play games like this with a group of people, please do - it's great fun.

Robo-Rally has everyone controlling a robot on a factory floor that has turntables, pits, conveyer belts and walls. Navigation is via a 'program' of 5 movement cards towards 3 different targets.  All manner of things can go wrong and players can accidentally (or deliberately) interrupt and other robot.  Great fun.  

Metro is a multi-player game of laying train-tracks under Paris.  You have to provide a safe route for your own trains while laying track that will guide opponents trains off the board.  A simple game but so much fun. 

Stephen's game is a card game about arranging famous Stephen's dates of birth in the correct order.  Players see a description of the person on their side of the cards while the date of birth is on the side visible to opponents.  Simple fast and fun. 

And then there is Family Business. A card game of gangsters in the prohibition era where you try to wipe out the other families while saving your own cast of 9 characters.  All great fun and long-time favourite in our club.

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

GNW - keeping on keeping on

Just a couple of pics to show the GNW Russians are moving on.  Though there must be something in the seasonal air, as I now think the chaps of the red Moscow regiment are starting to look like Santa's little helpers.  

Hopefully more by the weekend. 

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Great Northern War on the workbench again

After sorting through various boxes for more stuff to clear out, I decided to have a break from the organising and get back to painting for the fun and delight of it all.  

I wanted to push ahead with the GNW Russian stuff, to get enough painted stuff of both sides to do a game of Maurice, so here's what the paint tray looks like at the moment. Lots of chaps in tricorne hats. First, the group shot.

Then some closer views.  These are some 'standard' infantry in the green with red facings. At this point I've only painted the waistcoat, breeches and a bit of stockings red, just to get a decent line around the coat. I'll slap on more red later to finish off the stockings.  

Now some of the more colourful units. Closest are the Rostov regiment; green coats with yellow facings and red breeches. There's a bit of uncertainty about the colour of the stockings, but I think I'll stay with red, so it should be a wonderfully mad combination of colour. Apparently they carried a blue standard.  

The red chaps will be the Moscow regiment; red 'everything' with green facings.  There's another regiment, I think the Buturski (sp?), that was red-coated with white facings, so would look a bit like these chaps in the picture, but I'll leave them for another day.  

I've not yet decided about the regiment of the chaps in blue with red facings, except that they won't be the Semonovska guard.  And at the back are the 'red' dragoons. Months ago, I did their horses but didn't start the chaps till now. 

And another view of the standard green and red chaps with the dragoons at the back.  

Once I done these chaps, I'll have to decide what's next for the GNW. Waiting in the wings are generals, more Russian infantry, Swedish cavalry and some other stuff.  I may do a couple more Russian infantry if I feel I'm on a roll when this lot is nearly finished, otherwise I think I'll do the Swedish cavalry. 

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

28mm Seleucids

Here are some pictures of the 'latest' completed army.  Some of it was painted years ago, but much of it remained in boxes, semi-painted or undercoated.  My ongoing impetus to have a grand clearout has seen me finish these off and they'll be heading to 'tinterbay soon.

First up are the 3 hefalumps.  Real heavy metal, this lot.  The first red and the yellow elephants have a couple of escort figures that can be added if wanted.  

A couple of generals with escorts and line lancers. 

Then the obligatory scythed chariots.  It wouldn't be a Seleucid army without a scythed chariot or two.

Now the pike, pike and more pike. Mostly line troops with the silver shields and golden shields at the bottom. There's 120 pike figures in total.     

Then the cataphracts. These are the other obligatory troops for a later Seleucid army. 

And another oddball unit type - the camels.  

Regular auxilia.

Irregular auxilia.  I was a bit uncertain about using blue and red for the Thracians, but they're not too bad. 

Another general with a Galatian escort and Galatian cavalry.  Then some Galatian skirmishers.

Seleucids bows. 

 Then skirmishers, skirmishers and more skirmishers. 



And finally, the light cavalry. First are the mercenary Tarantine types, then Seleucid militia, then the ubiquitous light horse archers.  



Sorry about some pictures being slightly dark. The natural daylight was fading as I started, but I persevered for a bit before switching on the lights.  

Monday, 2 November 2015

15mm Arabs

These are pictures of my Arabs.  This was another army that started fairly small and then just growed.

So to start with the generals and their escort.
Then some khurusanian horse archers.  
Some ex-Persian extra heavy cavalry 
The medium cavalry 
The Khurusanian heavy cavalry 

Chappies with swords 
Arab light cavalry 
Ghulam heavy cavalry 
Arab horse archers 
And the spear. All my figures are Essex except for some Irregular mixed into the spear units.  They blend well and give a good show.  
And the second spear unit.  
Some lighter javelin armed chaps.  
The baggage. This came out quite well.  It can also be lined up, 1 element wide as a caravan.  
Slingers.  I once thought of these chaps as waving their socks is some ancient folk-dance.
Skirmish javelins
Arab archers 
The slave ghulam archers 

Skirmish archers. These were also used as back rank support to spears.  

The first units of Daylami.  These have bow support.  

The slave ghulam with front rank spear and rear rank bow.

The second slave ghulam spear and bow unit.  

The other Arab spear unit unit with a rear rank of Irregular miniatures bow.  

The second units of Daylami.  These have cross-bow support. 

More skirmish javelin.  

And more skirmish bow, though these were also used as rear rank backup to the spears. 
And that's it, I think.