Thursday 30 April 2020

10mm halfling rogue

I popped a bit of paint on my first ever sculpt. Aye sure, she's no beauty, but I love her like an underachieving child that only it's parent can love... 😉

Tuesday 28 April 2020

10mm halfling rogue WIP

Today was not a good day working from home. Combining work with home-schooling is one of the biggest challenges - perhaps the biggest - of the current Covid-19 lock-down. There are better days and worse days, but this wasn't a good one. By way of distraction/creative release, I decided to have a go at sculpting my first miniature: a new character (a rogue or captain) for my 10mm halfling army. She's not what you'd call a classic beauty, but she does have a certain comeliness - if I do say so myself. 

Here you can see the scale that I'm working in. From the feet to the top of her head she is 6mm tall - and almost as wide. She is the same height as the Magister Militum halfling infantry (but not their cavalry who are rather massive by comparison). She comes up to the belt of the Pendraken elven swordsman.

I've no idea how she will come out when painted, but I'm looking forward to finding out!

Sunday 26 April 2020

More 10mm Hoplites

The last of my current tranche of 10mm Greco-Macedonians are now completed with the fourth unit of hoplites. Above you can see the four units together, below, the fourth unit. As with most of my 10mm ancients, these gents are from Magister Militum.

Mammoths on the beach - sunny spring hunt with Palaeo Diet

Continuing to enjoy the sun while it hangs out in the Irish sky, my lad and I took Palaeo Diet outside this weekend for a wee co-operative mammoth hunt. We each started with three hunters from 'the tribe' (you don't need tribe names when there are no other tribes). I controlled Ogg the Calm (spear) and Frygga (spear), both starting on the beach to the south, and Tark (bow) starting off inland to the east. He controlled Fergg (fire) who started inland next to Tark, and also Bow the Thinker (bow) and Rarr (axe) who started off the beach to the north. Earlier, the tribe had dug a decent-sized pit and then sat back to await a small migrating herd of mammoths (large grazers). In the interim, a couple of feisty boars (pack predators) had also moved into the area. For the hunt to be a success, the tribe would need to kill enough animals to produce six bulk. 

In the opening stages of the hunt, Frygga and Og skulked up on the mammoth herd from the south, while Rarr and Bow moved in from the north.

Tark skulked towards the nearest boars, keeping low and slow, and silent as a stoat. Unfortunately, Fergg sneezed, the boar was alerted, spun round and charged straight at Tark, goring him badly before running off.

Fergg then ran at the other boar, brandishing his fire high to stop it getting wet in the bog. The second boar was completely spooked and fled straight into the pit. Two bulk worth of food in the proverbial pot.

Meanwhile, Ogg and Frygga made a co-ordinated attack on one of the mammoths. Frygga's spear went wide, but Ogg's found its mark and caused a wound, The angry mammoth charged in retaliation wounding Ogg.

Frygga, distraught, attacked the wounded mammoth chasing it off. Bow and Rarr then made their way into the centre of the mammoth herd. They managed to alert one of the beasts which also charged Ogg, wounding him a second time and knocking him out of the hunt.

Seeing the wounded mammoth heading north up the waterline, Fergg loped off to head it off, chasing it back towards Rarr and Frygga.

Rarr managed to wound it again with his axe, but was trampled in turn and collapsed. Tark's arrows continued to bounce off the mammoths thick hide, and it was down to Frygga to hurl the two spears that ultimately brought the mammoth down.

So at the end of the hunt, the tribe had successfully bagged six bulk of food (the mammoth and the boar in the pit), but at a great cost to themselves. Both Ogg and Rarr had been badly wounded and only time would tell if they would die of their wounds or recover to hunt again.

Saturday 25 April 2020

Horizon Wars - Lobster's Revenge airborne platoon

After our small game of Horizon Wars last week, my wee lad (9yo) developed a hankering to build a force of his own. I had a few airborne infantry figures and a mobile artillery piece left over from building my Elysium Trading Corporation strike force - enough for a 7P platoon of his new maritime insurgency - Lobsters' Revenge. He painted them up himself with only minimal assistance from me; I am super proud of him.

I asked to hear their backstory and was genuinely surprised to find out the answer. Apparently the industrialised warmachine of the European Empire has impacted on marine life and decreased fish stocks. People from the coastal areas have risen up in armed rebellion. If you know what you're looking at, that is a pretty convincing lobster claw painted on the artillery piece.

Sunday 19 April 2020

28mm Swashbucklers - Capt. Gideon Brown's Boys

While I wait on more Baccus 6mm Austrians to arrive, I've been diverted by a small pirate project. I have set out to do 15x 28mm figures nominally divided into three groups - a blue crew, a red crew and 'natives' (more Pulp natives than any specific culture). Capt. Brown's Boys are all from North Star Miniatures: the boy is a metal 'Jim Lad', the others are all made up from a Ghost Archipelago plastic sprue with North Star's resin conversion kits. 

There are a range of games that they could see action in: Song of Blades and Heroes, Song of Drums and Tomahawks or Flashing Steel are all options from Ganesha Games. I have also picked up En Garde! from Osprey which looks very promising.


The terror of Terry the Terror - Song of Blades and Heroes

My wee lad and I have had a good few games of Song of Blades and Heroes over the last few weeks. I've been keeping the warbands pretty simple, but he's becoming quite adept. Taking advantage of the sunny weather, we took our 200 point game outside this weekend for a clash between his knights led by Sir John the Magpie, and supported his ghost (with the Terror special rule - I have decided to call him Terry). I ran out a warband of four dvergr led by Thorfinn Hardluck and supported by two trolls.

Making far too much use Terry the ghost (I forgot to give him the undead special rule, so we reasoned he was just a bloke wearing a sheet), my lad took an early lead, eliminating my two dvergr archers. However, I then counter attacked with Thorfinn and the trolls, sweeping up over a hill (if stunty legs can 'sweep') and attacking his axeman and Sir John.

Despite knocking the axeman down, my Scandi trolls failed to finish him off. Sir John then charged the right-most troll and as he reached back his arm to swing his mace, the troll ripped his head off, pulled out his spine and used it as a whip... a supremely brutal kill. The rest of Sir John's retinue ran from the table, but Terry hung around.

My delightful child then used Terry the Terror to great effect. He charged at each of my remaining figures in turn who all fled before him. Good lad. 😏

Thursday 16 April 2020

Surprise Horizon Wars scramble in a ruined city

The young master surprised me this evening asking for an introductory game of Horizon Wars. Happy to oblige, I selected two simple enough 9P forces from my collection and we set up a small 2' square table of buildings and ruins.

I ran the European Empire running a P6 super mech and three squads of dragoon mobile infantry. He controlled a P3 mech, a P2 mech and two mobile artillery pieces from the Elysium Trading Company. 

He grasped the concepts of the game really quickly. And then I crushed him. Mercilessly. About time too.

Good game. 😁

Sunday 12 April 2020

More 10mm Greeks/Macedonians

Next off the painting table are three more unit of 10mm 'Greeks' for my Classical Macedonian army. The queue of remaining 'stuff to be painted' is now looking very short - only one more unit of 10mm hoplites; then onto other minis that are currently AWOL somewhere in the manufacturing/postal process.

A second unit of Magister Militum archers for my force.

A sixth unit of peltasts/Macedonian levy - also from Magister Militum.

And a second unit of light cavalry. These are the new Thessalian cavalry from Pendraken (unlike all my existing mounted units which are Magister Militum). 

As a unit, these are really nice figures. The horses are superb sculpts, even if the riders are a bit like muscle-bound mountain men. They've hugely muscled arms and their faces are really just bushy beards with noses.

Above you can see the Pendraken cavalry on the left, and Magister Militum light cavalry on the right. The biggest shame from my perspective, and this is no specific criticism of either company, is that the figures are not really compatible. You certainly wouldn't want them on the same base. The Pendraken sculpts are much finer, but as a result their horses are dwarfed by their MM colleagues. Indeed, the Pendraken cavalry are not much taller than MM infantry.

Thursday 9 April 2020

More men for Sir Guillaume's retinue

A final(?) two men have enlisted to serve in the early 13th century retinue of Sir Guillaume le Fauconnier. Built because I still had bits on my Fireforge sprues (the bow arm is borrowed from elsewhere?), and and idle mind. What I really need now is to get them on the table! Below is the full retinue in all their yellow and blue glory 

Monday 6 April 2020

The stoutest of hearts - 10mm halflings of the Hearthshire Hearthguard

As a special treat to myself (I'm odd like that) - and to add much needed muscle (or the halfling equivalent there of) to my Hearthshire militia, I put in a special order to Magister Militum for a full pack of 10mm halfling standard bearers. A few added hats and head swaps with Magister Militum Greeks later, and I am proud-as-punch to present the Hearthshire Hearthguard, the closest Hearthshire gets to fielding a professional unit. And don't they all look smart in their green and white livery waistcoats?

Sunday 5 April 2020

Got trolls...? More 10mm green-skins

I needed to place an order with Magister Millitum for some more Greeks and halflings, so added some of their 15mm hill trolls. I like the blue skin that is often used for trolls, but as we have blue skinned elves in this house, I decided to go with more of a pallid green. 

Here is a size comparison shot showing the different races in my goblin army, from left to right: goblin warriors (Polar Fox 10mm goblins), ogre mercenaries (Magister Militum 15mm orcs), trolls (Magister Militum 15mm hill trolls), giant (Blind Beggar Miniatures 32mm prehistoric hunter).

Saturday 4 April 2020

Homeschooling with Galleys & Galleons

This week we combined testing the solo/co-operative guidelines for Galleys & Galleons, with our homeschooling wargame. G&G has elements of addition, subtraction, probability, risk vs reward, and compass points, as well as the opportunity to blow up ships... There was also a useful learning point about social distancing.😷 

My son and I set out as loosely affiliated pirate sorts. I took the brig, Oberon (entering the area from the SW), while he captained the ghost ship, Bluebeard's Revenge (entering from the NE). The quarry were a flotilla of AI controlled Dutch East India Company merchant ships - the Nutmeg (merchant junk), Tea Chest (junk), and Pepper Corn (junk), accompanied by the cromster, Utrecht as a small warship escort. The Dutch ships ignored advise to follow social distancing and were set up close together in the NW of the area. Their exit point was the SE corner, between Fort Blaggard and Hangman's Rock.

As the Oberon sailed towards the centre of the area, hoping to intercept the Dutch, Fort Blaggard opened fire. The autonomous skipper of the Utrecht also decided that the Oberon looked like an easy mark and made straight towards her. After several exchanges of fire - in which the Utrecht got the worst of it - the Dutch captain cocked-up and had to roll on the All at Sea table, colliding with the Oberon and receiving further damage in the collision. The Oberon's crew grappled the Dutch vessel and the boarding action was settled with the cromster's surrender. Unscathed in the fight with the Utrecht, the Oberon had been damaged by the gunners on Fort Blaggard, but the first prize was mine!

Meanwhile, the Bluebeard's Revenge had managed to sail to the centre of the table and found herself in irons, right in front of the flotilla of junks. Never one for subtlety, her young skipper fired off a devastating full broadside at the Tea Chest causing significant hull damage which also then ignited her powder magazine. There were no vessels near enough to the blast to risk catching fire, but the wreck and debris from the Tea Chest now left a slip/trip hazard of the other junks just behind her.

As the sun began to set, the inevitable happened, the Nutmeg sailed straight across the wreckage and took some minor hull damage. As she changed her heading and opened fire on the approaching Oberon (causing me more hull damage!), the Peppercorn failed her activation roll and sailed straight into the stern of the Nutmeg causing both vessels to suffer further damage.

The badly damaged Nutmeg came about and sailed away from the mess of masts, spars and floating bodies, on to be hit with another of Bluebeard's Revenge's crippling broadsides. The Nutmeg was destroyed then and there. The Oberon risked the floating wreckage of the exploded junk to sail up to and grapple the last Dutch vessel, the junk Peppercorn. After a quick boarding action, the second prize was mine.

So all in all, a successful run. The Dutch convoy was most definitely stopped. The ghost ship dragged many more souls down to Davy Jones Locker, while the Oberon made off with two nice prizes. Well, one nice cromster and a badly damaged little junk. The AI guidelines seemed to work just fine. The Dutch ships did sail across wreckage and collide with each other, but I've done far worse than that myself! Yarrr! 💀

Friday 3 April 2020

But one man of her crew alive… solo rules for Galleys & Galleons

 But one man of her crew alive

Being guidelines for running autonomous merchantmen and warships in solo or co-operative games of Galleys & Galleons
  • Activate autonomous vessels in order of their proximity to the player’s vessels – the nearest autonomous vessel attempts to activate first.
  • Autonomous vessels always roll 2d6 to activate, only rolling damaged dice if necessary.
  • Follow the charts provided. Where there are two sets of orders, prioritise 1) with a first available order, moving on to 2) only if a second order available.
  • Autonomous vessels always carry out their orders first, and then make their compulsory movement.
  • Autonomous vessels will sail over shallows, but will never intentionally run aground.
  • Autonomous vessels will never intentionally change their heading if it will leave them In Irons.
  • Bastions will always fire on the nearest target, and/or reload if required.