Sunday, March 19, 2017

Horizon Wars Game 2


Martin and I played our second game of Horizon Wars this afternoon.

I fielded my Heavy Gear Caprice mechs. As Martin had more points in models, I picked the Failed Ambush scenario, where my force, harbouring in a village in the centre of the table, is surprised by a superior enemy force coming at it from (potentially) all sides.

While Martin had the advantage in points, I had the advantage in numbers and of starting in cover.

Most of my mechs stayed in cover while a couple tried to make a break for it to the foreground in this photo. Martin committed his mechs to this corner of the table and managed to destroy one of my mechs and cripple a couple others. My mechs then conducted a fighting retreat to the opposite side of the table. Martin then threw in his off-table mobile artillery to try to stem this retreat, and managed to destroy another mech before it was destroyed by my artillery.

With one table edge open and most of my mechs still mobile, we decided to call the game.

We certainly had a better grip of the rules in this game, and I even performed the Recover action a couple of times. As with the previous game, I find that having more elements of the table confers a significant advantage.

We have yet to try out the aircraft rules, so perhaps in our next game we will do so.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Warzone 2nd Edition Imperial Regulars


A quick shot of the 40 Warzone Imperial Regulars that came in the 2nd Edition box set I got, plus a Trencher Hero. It took me a while to get everything assembled and primed, but I managed to power through 30 of the figures in the past 3 days once I developed a system of painting them quickly.

They are painted in a WW1 British colour scheme, which I think turned out OK. There are just enough colours to give the impression of an infantryman at tabletop distance.

The figures took the block-and-wash method well. I am particularly impressed by the detail on the bayonet, which looks more WW1 than sci-fi.

I am planning to add a heraldry decal on the left shoulder pads of these fellows, but apart from that they are done. I am tempted to add a mortar with 3 crew to the force though, if I can find the appropriate figures.

I still have the 40 Bauhaus Hussars that came in the box which I don't think I will use - let me know if you are interested, and perhaps we can arrange a trade.

Thanks.

Monday, March 06, 2017

Kings of War Hits Tracker


One of the nice things about Kings of War is that you do not remove figures from a unit to represent casualty, but at the same time this obliges you to track hits on a unit somehow. I looked at the many ways other gamers have used, and decided I wanted a system that kept the markers within the footprint of the unit. As my figures are all currently mostly singly-based and used with movement trays, I figured it was simply a matter of replacing one or two figures with Hits Tracker base occupying the same area.

As I had several dice holders left over from a purchase from Warbases, I decided to make use of them for this little project. It was simply a matter of gluing one of these dice cells onto a cavalry base and adding some battlefield litter and scenic tufts to blend the base to the unit.


The 3-cell frame is a little too large for one or even two infantry bases though, so I had to remove the the divisions between the outline and also one end of the frame.


The result is a precise fit for three dice, although in retrospect having two cells would actually be sufficient for most infantry units, and would have allowed me to add stuff on the base for decoration.


I made enough bases for my WOTR army, so the next question is whether I should do the same for my Night Goblin army, which I am planning to expand (just by 90 or so figures, nothing much...) to make up a 2000 points KOW army. And whether I should get fancy coloured dice for each of my two armies...

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Battle Systems Shanty Town and Zen Terrain Bridge and Conversion Kit


Here is the set-up using three of Battle Systems' Shanty Pack #2, a Zen Terrain Bridge, and two of  their Conversion Kits. The utility poles and cables are my scratch-builds. Not every bit from the sets are used (I probably could have gotten away with just one Conversion Kits pack), but it's a pretty good representation of what can be built using the above.


Here's a closer view of the buildings, showing the bridge and a ladder and rooftop turbine from Zen Terrain.With a coat of suitably drab spray paint and some weathering, they blend into the grungy Battle Systems buildings.


My favourite bits from the Conversion Kits are probably these console screens, which I attached to the walls of the buildings using Bostik sticki dots. They don't really pop out, but will be useful for scenario games.

Over all I am very satisfied with my purchases. The set-up can be more cramped and littered, and when fg brings his stuff over we can probably make a better-looking table to play over.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Perry WOTR Light Cavalry and my entire WOTR/(The) Empire Army

The Perry WOTR Light Cavalry have been sitting in a tub for almost two years, but I finally started and finished painting them in the past three days.

I assembled them in two fashion, half of them as mounted crossbows.


And three with lances, and three as command figures.

The leader rides a horse from Claymore Castings. The glue is still drying on the base of the last figure.

With these figures done, I can say that I have completed my WOTR/Warhammer (The) Empire army.


The problem, of course, is that the Warhammer (The) Empire no longer exists. Nor does the whole Warhammer world. Not that that will prevent us from playing Warhammer 8th Edition, seeing how we already have figures for at least four armies. I do like the Warhammer rules, especially the fancy army lists, but on the whole I find them hard to remember, given how rarely we play them.

I have been looking at alternative sets of fantasy mass combat rules for a while, and last week I decided to order a copy of Mantic's Kings of War 2nd Edition rules. The reviews I have seen praise the rules for their simplicity, which is a plus for me, but I do worry if the army lists are different enough to distinguish each army. I guess we'll find out when the rules arrive in a week or two.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Black Hat Dwarf Town Guard Crossbow


Here are the Black Hat Miniatures dwarven crossbowmen I painted for Adrian. The bases are unflocked so he can do them in the same style as the rest of his army.

These are some of the easiest figures to paint. The crossbow and the hands come in a separate piece from the torso, so I was able to prime them in two colours: black for the torso with all the metal, and brown for the hands and crossbow. The torso was then dry-brushed with silver, the face, hair and beard, sleeves, belt and scabbard, and feet hand-primed with red-brown or just painted over with the shade of brown I chose to represent leather, then the face and hair done. For the hands and crossbow part the hands are painted over the brown paint, and the bow itself left as is, with the metal parts picked out in black primer and then silver. Once the parts are glued together, I washed the non-silver parts with brown wash.

They are a little too large for a 20mm square base, so to make them rank up I set the rear rank closer to the rear of the base - this shouldn't be an issue as missile troops are unlikely to be deployed deeper than two ranks.

Again, these are a breeze to paint, and if you need a ton of dwarven crossbows for your army, they are the guys for you. It's a pity the range is so small, or I would be tempted to buy more.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Mountain of lead, plastic, resin, and MDF


I haven't been posting to much this year, but I have been spending time prepping figures and models for painting.

These are what are on my painting desk right now: two packs of Zen Terrain Conversion Kit and a bridge pack. some sci-fi utility poles which I scratch-built using parts from suction wall hooks, inter-dental brush caps, plastic toy parts, and faux leather cords, a cheap plastic M1117 which I have converted with Tamiya and Kromlech bits, 20 Black Hat Miniatures dwarven crossbowmen, and a tub of (remianing) 37 Warzone Imperial Regulars.

Apart from the dwarves, these are all part of the sci-fi shanty town/Blast Pistol project which I plan to make the focus of the next few months. I have also ordered two more packs of Battle Systems' Shanty Town cardboard terrain.

I will post pictures of the stuff as they are completed, but here are some comments about them.

The Zen Terrain stuff are excellent, and come pre-cut and with clear instructions on assembly. They fit well and are easy to assemble with just some white glue, except for the turbines, which took a bit of fiddling. The bridge in particular is very well-designed, and fit perfectly with the Battle Systems buildings. I simply sprayed these with beige or grey paint, and will do some simple weathering and wash on them before spraying a matt varnish and calling it a day. I haven't got anything to put on the billboards though, so if you know of any appropriate posters and whatnot, do let me know.

The utility poles are the result of some scrounging around stores and drawers. There are commercially available sci-fi streetlights and such, but I wanted the messy, exposed cables - I believe the key to creating a cramped, shanty town feel to the tabletop is to introduce horizontal components to the terrain.

The M1117 came out of a bag of cheap toys. I drilled holes for the hook rings, added some grab bars using bent paperclips, and an antenna made of a length of thick wire and drilled-through plastic rods. The toy had the jerry cans on the sides sculpted on in low relief; I thought about filing them off or covering them up with stowage, but fortunately fg had some 1/35 Tamiya jerry cans which come in halves, and it was a simple job then of gluing half a jerry can to each and making a rack out of paperclip for them. The twin-mini-gun and the wheels come from Kromlech. The wheels come without a hub cap, so I used the landmines from my Tamiya M20 kit to cover up the holes in the centre. I have yet to decide which faction this vehicle will be assigned to, and what colour indeed to paint it. Suggestions are welcome.

The Black Hat dwarves are very nice, and come with separate hands-and-crossbow which will make the painting much easier. They do look like they will be hard to rank up in two rows on 20mm square bases though.

As you can see that's quite a lot of stuff and it will take me several weeks to complete. Stay tuned.