Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Oops! I did it again....Ship Happens Part VII (Updated)

when will I ever learn....

     In a move that was sure to set back my already tardy painting schedule I decided to make another ironclad; a monitor this time, to oppose the Confederate casement ironclad. Having not yet shipped out the promised models (apologies to all who asked for one) I copied the monitor model and set to work. This has proved to be another deceptively simple design that requires a stunning number of rivets.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Sometimes Things Just Happen Part VI, Accidental Ironclad

it was almost inevitable, wasn't it?

     A little while back I was playing around with my Proxxon Hot Wire cutter (how many of these stories start that way?)   and knocked up some ACW style ironclads. Knowing the danger such things presented to my painting schedule I offered them up to anyone who would like one. Most went to good homes. Sadly this orphan was left alone. 
     Having an afternoon free I considered just chucking it in the bin and getting back to my Lace Wars cavalry schedule, but, once I had picked it up I got to thinking how simple a job it would be. The next thing I knew I was gluing things into place and cutting index card to represent the railroad irons that the Confederates used for armor. Of course after a few hours I was in too deep to quit so I plunged on and finished the job. This is where we stand now; just waiting fore the rivets to dry so I can start painting. Another pointless project, I don't even game ACW in 28mm!
     This is how things played out.....

Sunday, November 4, 2018

ACW Ironclads perhaps?


     As only one person took me up on my offer of a D.I.Y. Predreadnought (you can see his model in the back there) and the fact that I had a stressful week and needed to blow off some steam (yes, I know, more bad puns) I decided to try my hand at some ACW style craft. I got out my trusty Proxxon Hot Wire Cutter  and started cutting blueboard. After just about an hour I found myself with these six models. One is spoken for (the torpedo cruiser in the left rear) the rest are up for grabs as I don't game ACW in 28mm. I tried to make them big enough that 28mm figures won't look hugely oversize when on or near them but small enough to be manageable on a game table. All the models are just rough-cut blue board shapes in need of assembly, sanding and details (as is covered under the tab above "Adventures in Blueboard amd Foamcore") If you like I will provide thinly sliced strips of blue board to represent timber or ironcladding.

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Pro or Con 2018

     Another Pro or Con has come and gone. This year was again notable for several  spectacular games: from Hastings presented by Rodney Cain (of Flintcon fame) using the soon-to-be-published rules "Triumph"which was instantly recognizable from across the room with serried ranks of 28mm Saxons facing off with the ever-formidable Norman knights, to  "Charlie Don't Surf" using the TFL rules of the same name and featuring the claustrophobic Mekong Delta also in 28mm, and joined by "Mad Dogs With Guns" and "Gangs of Rome", two games with wonderful terrain that looked at the actions of criminal organizations twenty centuries apart. That is not to slight the other beautiful and well-organized games that filled the hall.  Below you will find a brief review of the games that I saw, my apologies to anybody that I missed, but I was running a game in the first session.

Senlac Hill: can William earn his sobriquet "The Conqueror"

Monday, October 29, 2018

Strange things on the telly, is that a pink T-72?

photo from  By Vitaly V. Kuzmin - http://vitalykuzmin.net/?q=node/510, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=27840320
     With an hour to kill and feeling to lazy to descend into the workshop or get a book to read I found myself channel-surfing. Flicking listlessly through the channels I suddenly found a title that tickled my fancy "Tank Biathlon". I figured I would watch it just to pass the time. As I watched it I was stunned by wide difference of results from over a dozen different teams all driving the same tank, a Russian T-72B3 (except that China drove their own  Type 96A). Skills included driving, main gun, coaxial MG and pintle mounted AAMG.

     These were the very best tank crews all from countries that operated the T-72 as part of their arsenal so the difference wasn't from lack of familiarity. I spent some time thinking about the huge gap between the performance of the "very best" crews from these different countries (the Kuwaiti team apparently managed to forget to downshift when climbing the hill and stalled their tank) and then considered just how wide a gap would exist between these elite crews and the average soldiers. You can find the video on Youtube

     Intrigued by such goings-on I dug around and found that NATO has been doing pretty much the same thing with the Strong Europe Tank Challenge (major fail in the marketable program title department!) which you can see here.   
     Now I think that my rules should include such "ace" crews in some way. I begin to understand such skilled warriors as Wittman and Carius.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Anybody interested in a 28mm D.I.Y. Pre-dreadnought?

    As I wind down the Lace Wars Project I find myself interested in some more Armored Cruiser action. Thinking about this reminded me of the Pirate Sloop  and the resulting Pirate Sloop Giveaway. Continuing this torturous line of thought I began to wonder if anyone would be interested in a "build-it-yourself " 28mm Pre-dreadnought kit. The model would consist of a hull blank with assorted parts for superstructure and turrets. The builder would need to provide card-stock, wooden dowelling and glue to complete the model. I would post a series of step-by-step articles to help guide the assembly of the model such as is found on my Adventures in Blueboard and Foamcore page.

     Please respond in the Comments section if this sort of madness is to your taste.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Return to Lace Wars, the figure modification madness edition

     At this rate I will never get these done. While building a Dragoon unit I was once again bitten by the figure modification bug. No longer happy with just changing a pose slightly I started cutting up the arms and hands that are provided, searching through other kits for arm in different positions and generally burning through a ton of time coming up with new and different poses for the figures. In the end I have a unit of Dragoons, no two in the same pose, but still a unit of Dragoons.  I think the next unit will all be posed exactly the same, just to move things along a bit faster.

pistoleers; all but one have had significant surgery

Thursday, October 18, 2018

A Return to the Lace Wars Part....oh heck, I've lost count

may I present the Danish Lifgarden til Hest

     Strangely enough, now that I am not under pressure to get units done for the convention on the 27th, I find it easier to get units finished. In my quest to find units of different colors I chose the Danish Lifgarden til Hest (Guards Cavalry in English). Matching the foot guards in snazzy buff-yellow coats with carmine cuffs and turnbacks they are a sharp-looking unit. The blackened steel cuirass contrasts nicely with the bright colors of the uniform.

Pikeman's Lament Rules Modifications for Pro or Con

     Having learned from prior demo games I am going to make some small changes to the Pikeman's Lament rules for the convention. I have no problems with how the rules play and am completely happy with them, but, for use in a convention I have found these changes make things play just a bit smoother.

      1. Rolling for Orders. A unit that has failed top pass its Orders check does not end the turn for that player. Instead we will be playing as if it were TMWWBK , a failed Orders check simply freezes the unit in question for the rest of the turn and you move on to the next unit. This keeps a string of poor rolls from ruining somebody's day after they have driven all the way to the Con.

     2. Each side will be subdivided into separate forces, they will all act on the same initiative  but they will be entirely distinct forces. Morale and Command effects will be specific to the player's force alone.

     3. I will produce the Commanders Characteristics and have them ready on a card in advance. Each side will be randomly dealt a number of Commanders  Cards equal to the number of players. They may examine them and assign the commanders to the units as they see fit.

     4. I will provide Unit Data Cards for each unit, these will list the Orders and Actions as well as the movement rate of all the units as well as a note regarding any special rules that apply.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Return to the Lace Wars, Sir Edward Villiers Regiment of Horse 1694

     I can breathe a little easier now that I have finished all of the extra units that I promised myself would be ready by Pro or Con. I present to you Lord Edward Villiers regiment of Horse circa 1694.

finally, a unit of Horse in red

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

War of the League of Augsburg Rules UPDATED ( a Fourth time)

field test of version 1.0 about to begin

     I was ruminating about my dissatisfaction with rules for the War of the League of Augsburg when it occurred to me that I have a word-processor and the ability to type (sort of). I then sat myself down and thought real hard about my impression of warfare before the advent of Marlborough (his impact seems to have completely overtaken the entire English wargaming community's view of the entire period 1688-1718). After I awoke from my nap the kernel of these rules was in my head, so I sat down and typed it. It seems to be working after a couple of tests. If you are interested in such things take a look and give them a try.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Con Jobs

     The Housemartin came over a bit early today and we gave his (and my own) scenario for Pro or Con a go. First we played through my Pikeman's Lament game, the results were satisfactory but the test game showed a couple of points that would benefit from a minor tweak.

     From there we moved on to The Housemartin's Gangs of Rome scenario. I have to admit that I greatly enjoyed this skirmish level game and The Housemartin's collection of buildings certainly improved the pleasure of the game

      We are looking forward to seeing you all at the convention.