Sunday, July 31, 2011
I painted them in the same scheme as my other LOTR dwarves.
Saturday, July 30, 2011
Thomas and I played a scenario from an old issue of Battlegames. The goblin player/attacker has to plunder a village with four buildings and set them on fire. He gets points for each building plundered and fired, but to gain enough points to win he must physically reach at least three of them.
I gave the goblins three warbands and a troll. The dwarves begin the game with a warband of rangers scattered - three to each building.
The goblins rush across the river, taking the dwarves by surprise.
An effort is made to form lines of defence...
Thomas sends the troll down one flank, forcing me to pull my dwarves back; meanwhile, his goblins get to work, looting a building and setting it on fire.
Two warbands come down the other flank, their archers setting up a position on the hill to rain arrows down on the defenders as the warriors close in. Chickens flee.
The goblins successfully loot and burn another building, bringing Thomas one point from a draw even as the dwarven reinforcements arrive.
The leader of the rangers is killed by an arrow and the rangers flee to the rear, even as the warriors beat off the goblins who are even now attempting to torch the barn. The goblin king, himself wounded, orders several of his goblins to form a 'goblin shield' before him.
On the other flank, the goblins are just one activation away from torching the building when the dwarves manage to engage them in melee and disrupt them.
This game was very close - had Thomas' goblins activated before my dwarves on that crucial turn, he would have won the game. He managed to overcome the low Courage and Melee ratings of the goblins by holding his archers back to form a 'fire-support base' from which he picked off my archers. The missile templates were a laugh - one of my dwarven thanes was taken out by a stray shot as he took shelter behind another warband, and for the first time we had an incident of 'friendly fire' as a goblin was killed by his careless compatriot.
This was the fifth time I took a friend through these rules, and once again we managed a close game with a narrative in about two hours. I think using an interesting scenario is key to having an enjoyable game.
The flame markers are a last-minute measure - I thought I had cotton balls at home but I was mistaken, and so I improvised using some coloured paper I had lying around at home.
At Thomas' suggestion, I am adding a rule to allow the troll to throw stuff - watch out for some boulder-flinging mayhem in our next battle report...
Monday, July 25, 2011
Well, I used to own Napoleon's Old Guards in 20mm plastics, and I got these 25mm EIR legionaries from Newline Design when we did a little gladiatoring way back when. They were a simple paint job - no point doing to much work when the shield is going to cover most of it. The shield decals are from VVV.
Sunday, July 24, 2011
The plinths are each made out of eight blocks of plaster Hirst Art bricks I got for an earlier project.
I am pleased with how the painting and dry-brushing picked out the details. The poor quality of the cast was sort of an advantage here, as the imperfections give the impression of wear on the statues. Bits of the models actually broke off during handling, and I added them to the pile of debris at the base of the statues..
There are some details that I only noticed when I was painting the models. For example, the motif on the left and right sides of the thrones are actually different.
And the knotwork on the back of the king's throne is simply stunning, and include a pair of gripping beasts!
I think I will be looking out for more like these on ebay...
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Anyway, at just GBP 6, you can have this beauty as the centrepiece of your skirmish game. It truly is made for gaming!
What is represented is the base of a ruined tower on a low rise. The internal diameter of the floor area is 6.5", and the wall is 1" thick. This gives room for about a dozen occupants.
The main door is reached via a short flight of stairs, with steps wide enough to allow a 1" base to sit comfortablly, but only wide enough for one figure to attack at any one time.
There is a secondary door on the side, again accessed by a short flight of stairs. There are a few rocks/fallen blocks of masonry scuplted on the ground itself that can provide cover to atackers.
There is also a window at the rear of the tower, which provides another shooting position for the defenders, and through which attackers may climb.
The plastic is almost 1mm thick, so while it is "hollow", it is still rather durable.
Making this terrain piece ready for the gaming table will probably take a few afternoons of work and some planning beforehand. If you have any experience in doing this, do share with me and the other readers.
You can get yourself one of these and/or other items here.
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
I got a current GW Empire Knight figure with parts, which unfortunately is too big compared to the rest of the figures, but these two Foot Knights (dated 1987 on their tabs) look just the part!
Monday, July 18, 2011
The first mini is that of a hippogriff which was the reason why I purchased the lot. While the wing feathers may not be as detailed as those on metal miniatures, I really like the pose and expression of the creature, and the size turns out to be about right.
The wings are set to far in front (although that would be the correct anatomical position if such creatures did exist) to allow a rider, so I will have to rip them off and reposition them a little further back.
One paw is raised, which give scope for some scenery on the base.
I like the curl in its tail. Overall I think it has a very regal bearing, and makes a fitting mount for the army's commander.
The postage was the same for one mini or three, so I thought I might as well get two more. My third choice was the Bluespawn Stormlizard.
I had no idea how big the mini would be, but I like the way it looked, and thought that if it was small I would just use it for a monstrous mount, and if it was big I would mount a howdah on it.
As it turns out it's pretty much the size of a big rhino. I guess I can either sculpt a saddle on its back or a yoke and make it pull a chariot or warwagon. I haven't got an army to go with it currently so it will wait in the wings. I'm not too sure whether I will keep its ears, but again there is no rush to make that decision.
The second mini I decided on was the Dwarf Ancestor.
It's supposed to be some sort of living statue/guardian thing, but I think I will just base it on a plinth and use it as a statue. On retrospect I should have gotten a pair of them instead.
The shaft of the warhammer is curved - in reality there is no way you can carve a piece of rock like that and not have the thing break off, I think - so I will have to replace it with a lollipop stick.
The second parcel contained two plaster Isle of Lewis chess pieces.
Their size and style make them ideal as grand statues for my dwarves. They are not very well casted - they were not made to be wargame scenery but cheap art projects for children - and there are filling defects and bubbles; I will have to fill the bubbles with plaster filler myself, and I will scatter some bits of debris on their plinth bases to depict the bits that had fallen off the statues.
The real surprise about these pieces are actually on the back of them:
Sunday, July 17, 2011
We played a game of Strandhogg in around two hours, which gave us plenty of time to chat over drinks and chips afterwards.
For this game I wanted to field my dwarf warriors instead of my rangers to see how the new stats and unit configuration works, so I picked a suitable scenario from the Warhammer Skirmish booklet.
The battle depicts a goblin incursion into dwarven territory, the boundary which is marked by a stream. The goblins attempt to cross at the ford, which is guarded by a dwarven ballista.
Besides the ballista the dwarves have three warbands: one huscarl and two warriors warband. The goblins have three warbands of foot, one of warg riders, and are joined by a troll.
FG began the assault with a warband of warriors on foot, followed by the warg riders. The ballista dropped a few goblins, but as they surged across the ford the crew had to relocate themselves as the huscarls move forward to cover their movement.
On both flanks the warbands threw out their archers to pick off the advancing goblins.
The warg riders made first contact, charging against the shieldwall of huscarls. The melee here would last a few rounds and draw in the foot warbands from both sides on the dwarven left flank, but the dwarves finally emerged victorious.
On the right flank the dwarven archers retreat uphill as the goblins close, while the warriors come off the hill to form a shieldwall. The dwarven warriors are given better Melee rating than the goblin warriors, but as d10 is used to resolve combat, the combat is not always a sure thing; in addition, the goblins' armour gave them a fair chance to survive a blow. What told however was the goblins' lower Courage rating, which meant they didn't always charge into melee as ordered and could not capitalise on their numerical advantage, and they were more prone to losing figures through failed Morale rolls.
Friday, July 15, 2011
Thursday, July 14, 2011
I painted a billman and an archer to sort of get the pattern set, and am almost done with the fully-armoured knight (who looks like Robocop). I realise I have made a mistake by gluing the figures onto their bases before fitting their arms on - the heads may not be looking at the correct direction, and I may not be able to rank them all up nicely and may have to rebase them eventually...
I also received the Perry metal dismounted knights today. I was wondering if they would be bigger than the plastic figures, but as you can see they match very well.
I guess I'll keep chipping away at the pile of plastics until the LOTR dwarves arrive - then that will take precedence.
No word yet from the Flag Dude regarding my request for a custom-made flag - I suppose he is still clearing his email from after Historicon.
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Anyway, the paint allowed me to finish the kite shields I bought off ebay (parts from the Wargames Factory Saxon Thegn box), and glue them to the back of my dwarven Huscarls.
There are no straps modelled on the dwarves, but between their beards and the way their arms are held across their chests, it doesn't look obviously absent.
Here's a view of the shields from the back.
I also completed the oval shields for the Hasslefree dwarves. As you can see, with the shield before him, the Hasslefree figure blends in well with his LOTR fellows.
I also gave in and bought the last blister of Murin and Drar from the gaming store, having failed to find a cheaper option on ebay. They are wonderful figures with a lot of dynamism, and I think I will use them as leaders for my Ranger warbands instead of the Warriors warbands. I'll wait for the other 3 metal dwarf warriors I bought on ebay to arrive before painting them all together.
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
One down... 39 more to go. Well, 49 if you count the other figures that I have bought or traded to form this army.
Like many other wargamers, I was daunted when I opened my box of Perry WOTR Infantry; they came at less than S$1 per figure, so I guess one didn't really... expect so much from them. But the sheer prospect of having to remove more than a hundred parts from a sprue, deflash them, decide in what combination to assemble them, whether or not to paint the arms before gluing them to the bodies... Add to that the fact that I will be priming them in white rather than black like I have for the past decades, it all becomes rather overwhelming.
Now the reason why I am priming with white for this project is because yellow forms half of the livery for my troops. I could have chosen a colour scheme that works with black primer, but I decided to use the coat-of-arms of a family whose name a long-time friend shares. The musician in the picture above sports that livery, the banner, as well as the badge for the nobleman.
Admittedly the painting barely makes 'wargames standard', but I am hoping that after a dozen figures I will get better at painting them - if not, there is always the 'mass effect' to fall back on.
With one command figure done, I feel a little relieved. I plan to paint the figures in small batches of 6 or so of the same torso type. The whole project will take me a few months though, but hopefully I can have a game with them before the year ends.