Saturday, September 20, 2014

Dropship Commander vehicles

Craig asked me to paint up his starter box for Dropship Commander. I finished off the decaling on the human faction vehicles today.

These model looks to me to be about 10mm and are hard plastic. They are fantastically engineered and cast with amazing tolerances. I don't really care for assembly, but these were a dream with well thought out joints, no flash and simple construction.

I painted these up much like the book suggested. I may have strayed a bit light (I used a can of Russian green I had laying around as the base colour). The APCs are nice enough models.

There are two different tank-like vehicles. The anti-air type (above) has a gatling cannon while the anti-tank type (below) has some sort of laser (or rail?) gun. I didn't read the background fluff in the rules.

Up next: There are three drop ships that I'm just finishing along with six units of foot.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Flashback: Gunslinger

We had nine guys out at the club last night. Dave hauled out his 10mm WW2 troops and put on a Russian front game using Blitzkrieg Commander.

Bruce took us back to 1982 (or 1882?) with a game of Avalon Hill's Gunslinger, including Gamescience miniatures he won in an auction around about that time. 

The marshall and Miss Kitty were left to defend the town against two desperadoes. The bad guys split up, with Terry's fellow exchanging wild shots with the marshall, while I snuck around the buildings to get the drop on him. Miss Kitty moved into the saloon and pulled her derringer out of her bodice.

Alas, the marshall pulled a whole lot of bad, bad cards (too much coffee?) and was unable to hit me. Eventually, we dispatched the marshall and made a terrible mess of the saloon with gunfire.

Up next: I have some Dropship Commander minis underway. The human faction is based coated and I'm working on the details. These are nice models!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

1/72-scale WW2 French Infantry

The recent spate of nasty weather (plus a commission that is demanding attention) inspired me to move some of the WW2 French infantry that have been crowing my desk through the final steps.

These are 1/72-scale models from Caesar Miniatures. There were about 40 in a variety of poses. I decided to base them single-ly for my Memoir '40 project.

I also have a box of Pegasus French that I will multi-base to create the core of each Memoir unit. The tunics came out about how I figured they would but the helmets came out way darker.

The Pegasus models were (mostly) multi-part models so I left them to be assembled later. But I did paint the two poses that didn't require assembly. Below, you can see the Pegasus and Caesar poses side-by-side (Pegasus in the number 1 and 3 spots). Pretty compatible, I'd say.

I've moved some stuff around in my hobby room to better organize it. This has affected level and angle of the natural night available for photo box. The picture below shows an interesting effect, with the background fading out the mini.

Up next: Some Dropzone Commander minis are built and will be primed tonight (if the weather cooperates). I have two batches of these. Then probably back to some more 1/72-French.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

War of 1812 at the club

Our first games night of the fall and we had 16 guys with five games running (basically a full house--any more games and we would have spilled over into the foyer!).

Chen hosted a game of Strange Aeons and there was some Warmachine. Bruce hosted a WW2 game. And Dave hosted an ancient game. Lots of genres last night and almost every scale from 6mm to 54mm. One of our better nights, I think--thanks to all of the hosts for their efforts!

I played All the King's Men (War of 1812) with Scott, using his lovely 54mm metal figures. Wow, what a look! This was my first time through the rules. I like the card activation and the multiple activations (with decreasing effectiveness). 

The first game was all Britain. It was the second battle of Mackinac and the British artillery quickly brewed up the American arty. Then the indian allies paid a surprise visit to the American flank.

And then another visit on the other flank and game over. Yankee go home!

We played a second game switching sides and this was much more close run. The Indians were still a pain in the butt for the Americans but the Americans managed to break them with disciplined fire (and dumb luck). At the end, I'd say it was a bloody draw.

Overall, an interesting game. I wonder what it would play like in centimetres. There was little room for manoeuvre in the game--basically set 'em and go forward. The decisions were about which units to activate, when. These were good decisions, mind you. But a slower game with more modest ranges might make for an interesting experiment (not sure about range versus unit footprint). I'd certainly play again. And 54mm is very attractive!

Up next: Assuming the weather starts to turn, Iw ill get bad to some 1/72-French. Then I picked up a DropZone Commander Commission which requires some building and painting.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Gangsters at the Club

We had more than a dozen guys out at the club on Tuesday night. There was a game of Bolt Action (no pics!) and a game of DBA going on.

I played in Bruce's gangster's game with Terry, Steve and Larry. I was the coppers and was pretty careful about my victory conditions. Below, you can see the sleepy streets of Chicago as the game got under way.

Since Bruce is going to run this at Fallcon, I won't spoil it for those who are playing by revealing too much. Below you can see some of my coppers hanging out by a statute of General Lee. These fellows will long be remembered for pushing my point total over the top with their noble sacrifice.

With Chain Reaction, there is usually a fair bit of stupidity that happens during the game, as things run out of control. One of Terry's fellows jumped in a truck, gunned it, got shot and then the truck went to of control crashing into the police station. At the same time, an FBI guy got carried away in a roadster (stupid febbies...), tried to crash through the doors of the firehall and instead piled into the wall. Despite my troops fleeing the board, the coppers won on points in the end (which was rather vindicating).

Up next: Likely some 1/72-scale French WW2 infantry.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Late Roman cavalry

I've almost finished a major reorganization of the hobby room. Part of the work was identifying half-finished projects and queuing them up for completion.

Today I finished some MiniArt 1/72-scale Late Roman cavalry that have been lingering on the workbench since May or June. I quite like the MiniArt German troops I have painted but these have been sculpted by a different artist and lack the depth and grit of the earlier troops I've done.

There are 20 figures in five poses. The pose I like the least is the middle fellow (above). I painted these guys as per the box but the golden armour isn't great. And the mail needs a bit more depth to pop with a wash. The other two armoued guys could work as dark age troops in lots of settings. The lighter troops (javelin and bow) are also useful and, I think, more interesting poses.

Up next: There is club night on Tuesday (much looking forward to this) and I have some 1/72-scale WW2 French underway. As we're in the midst of apple season in Edmonton, progress will likely be slow until September.

Monday, August 11, 2014

New York 1776

Bruce dropped by this afternoon to play New York 1776 by Worthington Games. This game reprises Washington's withdrawal from Long Island to Manhattan and then north to White Plains. To win, the British must occupy New York and have knock the American army down to 20 strength points in 20 turns. The Americans win by avoiding this outcome.

The set-up is above, with the British all starting on Staten Island (top left). The American has some flexibility in his set-up--I chose to deny the British access to the main sealanes.

Bruce initially chased most of my troops off Long Island and drove me out of New York. I kept troops in Jersey to threaten him which slowed his advance.

Battles are fought on a separate battle board a la Napoleon. One of the kickstarter extras were terrain and tactics block (meh). A better extra would have been an army organizer so only the leader blocks (or unled blocks) would be on the board--having all of the blocks on the board obscures the map. An easy home fix, I suppose.

After some back and forth and some awful dice for both of us, I managed to sneak an army back down Manhattan and jump across to Long Island, Bruce gave chase (as he had to grind me down). And then I jumped back north, at which point we called it (not enough turns left for him to make a go of it.

A tough game for the British, I think. You need to be aggressive and that makes you vulnerable to spoiling attacks or a withdrawal by the Americans (which is historic). I'm keen to try my hand at the British. Washington is a slippery rogue!

Up next: I have some late 5th century 1/72-scale Roman cavalry that I have moved to basing. I am also reorganizing my hobby room before emoting onto to paint some 1/72-scale WW2 French.