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.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Some Panzer 38(t)s for Memoir 40

The German armour for my Memoir 40 game is rounded out with three Panzer 38(t)s from 20mm Zone. Unlike yesterday's Panzer 2s (which were great models), these were only so-so. The metal treads are two sided (so any tread can go on either side). This sounds like an elegant manufacturing solution.

The problem with this is that it reduces the area available for gluing and also forces you to eyeball position. And the top of the treads were misaligned (creating a slope from side-to-side across the width of the treads) which meant one tread would sit higher than the other unless you carved off a lot of detail to level them out.

The bow machine gun is quite pronounced. There is a hole in the hull for positioning, but none of my MGs had the reciprocating pin (making the join tricky and prone to breakage). There was a nice set of extras (three commanders, bogeys, gas cans and treads). Unfortunately the bogeys and the treads are for a different tank (maybe a Panzer 3 or maybe the Panzer 35?).

There was also no hatch available for the command figures and fitting them in would have required drilling out the existing hatch and then fabricating a replacement hatch. Not exactly consistent with a quick build. Then there is the nasty mold line that I see I missed on the side of the turret. That would have been a bitch to scrape down with the rivets on the front plate.

All told, these were disappointing models and I wish I had gone with the Panzer 3s. If I need more armour, I'm going to try some of the the fast-build plastics that Pegasus and Armourfast have out.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Panzer 2s for Memoir 40

Filling out the German forces for my Memoir 40 game are these five 20mm Panzer 2s from 20mm Zone. These were lovely minis to put together.

They come with a resin hull, metal treads and a one-piece turret. There was also some spare tread. I found some decals to finish them off (decals could stand to be dirtied up a bit). Everything fit with very little clean up.

Up next: Some Panzer 38(t)s to round out the German armour.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Some 1/72-scale German soldiers

Completing a short burst of painting is this set of five 1/72-scale Germans from Zvezda. 

This is, I think, Zvezda's nicest kit of the lot, with four troops and an officer. I might pick up a couple more of these if I see them. I will also be using this arrangement to build a couple of units from loose troops.

Up next: Some 20mm Panzer 2s are underway. Then maybe some Panzer 38(t)s.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

A 1/72-scale MG team

Filling out the German ranks is another MG team, again from Zvezda.

The wall looks awful in this photo (weird--looks fine in person) and everyone needs a shot of dull coat.

I'm quite taken with the dioramic nature of this kit.

Up next: Some ground pounders