30 April 2017

The Siege of Port Arthur, 2016

This week's post is a shout out to fellow blogger Colonel Scipio, who runs the blog Palladian Guard (here).  Of particular note are the "Supercampaigns" he runs which integrate RPG like elements into a war-game campaign structure.  Very cool and naturally I was intrigued so we ended up chatting via email.

Last year I was invited to participate in the latest Supercampaign "Doomed but Defiant" set in the the siege of Port Arthur during the Russo-Japanese War of 1905-06.  As the Colonel his merry men are in UK, I as the overall Japanese Commander submitted my orders weekly, and subordinates would execute them as they interpreted them, and I was subsequently advised of the outcomes.  As you can imagine, this generated all sorts of realistic friction as orders were misinterpreted and subordinates took 'unauthorised initiative'.
The culminating engagement of the campaign, as depicted in the very cool narrative book
It was a great deal of fun and I must admit that I quite looked forward to my Monday lunchtimes with my office door shut - reading the weekly dispatches and crafting my orders.  I also recorded weekly war diary entries.  The lads at the other end did likewise.  The Colonel has now crafted them into this great book in an Osprey narrative style with great maps and graphics, inserting excerpts from the war diaries as appropriate.  I am thrilled with it as a wonderful relic of the game which lasted from May until September 2016. But the Colonel didn't stop there.
Just arrived with my book is this great little momento - a Imperial Japanese Army Command Stand featuring General Nogi, Commander of the Third Army and my alter ego during the campaign.

Thanks indeed for including me in the campaign Colonel - it was a great experience.  Thanks indeed for the great momentos too: they will have place of honour in the Man Cave!

You can read about our RJW Supercampaign at the Colonel's Blog here:
http://palladian-guard.blogspot.com.au/2017/03/russo-japanese-war-supercampaign.html

23 April 2017

British FIW Command stand

Over the weekend I completed this project, which I've been working on for a few weeks.

The is a British Senior officer is a Front Rank figure from the SYW range, as is the staff Officer (he is from their artillery crew collection). The hound is from Warbases and I painted up with the same colouring as one of my beagles :-)

Overall I'm thrilled with how this came out and think its probably my best work to date, aided significantly by how consistently I've been painting since Christmas.  Now to put him on the table and find out if he is a seasoned and clever Officer, or an ignorant man of entitlement...

22 April 2017

Weekend reading!

Nice to get home after a busy week at work to have not one but two pre-orders waiting for some attention.  So which one to digest first...

21 April 2017

More Redcoats!


Just before Easter I received reinforcements from Front Rank miniatures for my British FIW Army.  I also got my new sabot bases from Warbases to help rank them up and speed game play up (moving all those figures was taking quite a toll on game play).  So I got busy over the great and here is the result.

Overall, I've added a mounted Officer as a commander, another unit of Regular Infantry and this unit of Grenadiers in fur covered mitres.  The figures match up well against my Warlord ones and the uniform differences are relatively minor and simply add variety.


Now in train is a final unit of Infantry and another light infantry unit.   I also still need to paint and flock the sabot bases, and have this WIP Senior Officer figure underway (any likeness to Trump is entirely accidental!)



14 April 2017

Indian Longhouse

Presenting my Indian longhouse which was waiting in the wings for attention during the recent painting challenge (where terrain doesn't score for points) so its nice to get it completed.  Hoping to get it on the table in the coming weeks for a FIW Sharp Practice game.

Like my log cabin, I've gone for a brighter look vice weathered greys and like the finished look.  Its mounted on an mdf base so I could do a few thematic pits around it.  I've been looking forward to doing this since I saw the recreation ones at Plymouth Plantations (see here) though I went with a brighter, less weathered look.

Size wise, it works well with the Indian villagers I completed earlier this year (28mm Redoubt figs), which is good seeing that this is a 15mm building :-)  I went with the smaller scale for a better ground scale and think it works well overall (noting the doors would have been smaller to retain heat in winter).  It is a resin model by Blue Moon.
http://www.bluemoonmanufacturing.com/view_product.php?product=15LOM-156

And that completes the last of the FIY goodies I bought at Fall-In 2015 in the US :-)

09 April 2017

FIW Scatter Terrain

A few pieces of scatter terrain I recently made for our FIW games. Its been fun to do some terrain after all the figs during the painting challenge :-)

Firstly, some rocky outcrops, made from bark.  I spray painted them black and then drushbrushed with cheap acrylics before my standard basing process.
4 different sizes and 2 different base shapes, because I'm not sure which I prefer yet :-)

Learning from previous projects, I ensured the outcrops had flat surfaces so figs would stand  comfortably on them.

And also some deadfall sections for use in forests, made from bits from the garden and mounted on MDF scraps.

 Again, I left space on the bases to fit the figures on, so they can move through them as required on the table

03 April 2017

AHPC VII Reflections - Part 2: the Pics

I thoroughly enjoyed AHPC VII and am still lamenting its conclusion. It has easily been the best sustained hobby productivity I have had in at least a decade.  Modesty aside, I also think its some of the best quality 28mm painting I have ever produced.

This is what my new personal best of 1228 points looks like (previous best was 850 odd in AHPC IV).  I participated in all five Bonus rounds, received a Runner Up position in the Armour Bonus Round and my Red Skull figure was nominated (not by me!) in the Challenger's Choice voting.  Very humbling.

These Russian spider mecha picked up runner-up slot in the Armour bonus round


I really enjoyed painted figures as gifts - these were a true highlight for me.
Millsy with the Gimpy leg for Dave D
Centurion Alanus for Dux
this Orc beast rider for Slowpainter John
Looting Landsknecht Curtgeld
So its been a great challenge, for which the regular gaming at our Odin's night gaming club gave me great focus (thanks lads).   But most importantly,  it gave Reilly and I some dedicated hobby time together which has been fantastic.  Thanks again for an awesome hobby activity Curt!

Finally, I was delighted to be part of the AHPC team behind the scenes, in my capacity as Tuesday co-minion with Dux.  It took a bit of time away from my painting, but it was so very satisfying to be on Curt's staff to help make this great blogosphere activity happen.  In return Curt has very kindly painted this figure for me, which I'm absolutely thrilled with.
Kurt the wasteland survivor and prospective wasteland gang leader (once I get some more figs that is!)

This fellow was a bit too cleanly kitted-out to my way of thinking, so I added a slung blanket roll and chest pack to make him look a little more a seasoned Wasteland Wanderer. I did up the base similar to my Metro 2033 stuff, with hi-contrast A-bomb ash, shattered brick and a partially buried I-beam for him to trip over.


AHPC VII - so long and thanks for all the fish.


From Paul O'G: AHPC VII Offerings from my Man Cave

26 March 2017

AHPC VII Reflections - Part 1: Facts and Figures

While not a mathemagician anywhere of the calibre as the redoubtable Mr Miles, I have found myself tainted by his interest in some of the stats around AHPC.

So here are some completely self indulgent figures and graphics that will mean little to anyone else, but I wanted to capture them for myself :-)


Total Points: 1,228
I finished in the top 25% of the list (overall 22th place of the 96 participants) and I feel very chuffed to be in such august company at the upper end of the ladder (but still far below the productivity of some very impressive painters)



Figures: all 28mm scale
  • Figures: 139 (wow- that many? Well, its a lot for me!)
  • Cavalry: 7
  • Vehicles: 8 (4 AFVs, 2 jeeps and 2 canoes!)
  • Guns: 1

Totals by Genre (including bonus rounds)
  • French Indian War: 457 Points (Terrain bonus round)
  • Fantasy: 300
  • WW2 British Paras: 172 (Movie/book/song bonus round)
  • Weird WW2: 130 (Armour and West bonus rounds)
  • Misc: 141 (East bonus round)
My average points per week - interesting to see the impact of not starting until after the Christmas/New Year's visitors had departed, and a long weekend away at CANCON.  After that I settled down to a rather consistent average of just under 100 points/week.
Which was made up of a more fluctuating series of submissions each week:


Comparison between challenges:



And to complete the graphical homage to Miles and his amazing spreadsheet...
Next Up - round up pics and the submissions assembled!

21 March 2017

Painting Challenge VII - final submission

Times up - brushes down! AHPC VII has come to its inevitable conclusion
Major Brinkworth leads from the front with his Impressive Weapon!

To complete my AHPC VII submissions and add to last week's submission of Major Brinkworth and his redcoats, I present another 12 musketeers, a colour party and two sergeants.  I've continued with the green facings of the 24th Regiment and the relatively clear bases to reflect their role as Regular infantry in more open ground.
Unfortunately, the additional few figs I need to complete a full third unit under Sharp Practice 2 and the flags I bought for the colour party haven't yet arrived yet and are still a week or two away so will miss the challenge.

Sergeants Garside and Hanson reassure the lads in action and administer a good slap to those who need it maintain their resolve.  Plus those halberds tend to give any adversary pause for thought!
My more usual view of the lads as they go into action.

I'm really pleased with how the coats came out, emphasising their "bloody back" nickname
Here are all the lads together (combined with last week's submission), ready to take on Dux's French this week - I trust their performance will justify the effort required to paint all that b%@$dy lace!  It really finishes off the figures though, and the unit as a whole.
Firing Line: What British regulars do best, right Dux?
"These smell tasty Daddy..."
Finally, here are 7 war hounds from the Gripping Beast Irish Warband boxed set but intended more immediately for my Fantasy army as lesser war beasts.  These were dropped into the paint queue at the last minute to get me past 1200 points (after my flags and extra redcoats didn't arrive in time).
Odin poses with his little lead cousins...
"These smell even tastier..."
...and thats why one of the war hound models looks a little more veteran than the other.
Inevitable really!
Thats 16 Redcoats, 7 warhounds and a small supply base (not worth points, but I needed another deployment point) to complete my AHPC VII adventures. My initial target was 850 so to get to 1200ish for a personal best result is very satisfying indeed!

You can see this submission at the AHPC blog here: From PaulO'G: Last Submission - More 28mm Redcoats...

Thanks to everyone (especially Curt and my Tuesday co-minion Dux) for all the fun, comments and chats - I'm already looking forward to Season 8!