vrijdag 30 september 2011

Back in Black!

Despite misgivings and with the support of his family, Peter initially sided with Iron Man in support of superhero registration. Convinced by Tony that the other superheroes needed to see commitment from the pro-registration side, Peter even went as far as to unmask himself on live television. However, fighting against the fugitive heroes and the existence of the Thor clone left a poor taste in his mouth, causing him to switch sides and instead join the renegades. Spider-Man was one of the few heroes who did not accept the general amnesty after Steve Rogers arrest, continuing to work with the underground Avengers.

Peter's now-public identity allowed the Kingpin to put a hit on Parker's family. Aunt May was critically injured by an assassin, and Peter donned the black suit to track down those who were responsible. Realizing he could not afford for his identity to be public knowledge, Peter agreed to aid the Scarlet Spiders in return for their help in re-establishing his secret identity...

woensdag 28 september 2011

Budget cuts... but not due to the budget!

It is like a street without end, a tunnel with no light at the the end of the darkness.

Some weeks ago, I already started packing up parts of `Lead Mountain` and the `Library of Merxemandria` as a result of less gaming, the realisation that most impulse buys would stay just that, and a terrible case of space running out, especcially with the larger, place taking anime statues I have.

Three huge `moving boxes` where all filled to the top with stuff, to haul of to the BnS at Crisis to be dumped at prices to make certain that I don`t have to haul half a box back homewards (hopefully)...

... and I still don`t have the space I like or need!

I went through the (stupid stupid stupid) idea of `measuring` the space units from my main historical army and the accompanying scenery pieces would take once they are fully painted and ranked up. I`m kinda depressed now, the Union army is going to be larger then I anticipated in frontage and depth of units. Add to that my manga books, star trek novels, marvel comics and enough dvd`s to start a movie rental specialised in fantasy and scifi films, and you get the idea.
I dread the day I would find a partner I decide to live together with, and the packing up part that kind of things tend to bring along hehehe. And we`re not even talking lil` ones then... which is also kind of disturbing to my close friends that I`m actually thinking of those things lately, they fear the `Last Bastion of Singleness` is starting to show cracks.

Soooo, that means more cuts are going to have to be made, and this time the main cut will go to those regimental units painted, halfpainted or even not touched upon at all. I think the best bet is to paint them up to tabletop and try to sell them off, in order to return a little bit of the money spend (or better said, blown) on them.
Same goes for the spaceship department, I already donated a huge Star Trek fleet to Creepy Corridor Andy, yet the remaining part still is `to big for an occasional game`, I still have an anime fleet to repaint...
And finally there are the odds and ends, like the never materialized though started 28mm world war 2 army, a Hordes Orboros warband, an assortment of role playing suitable models though I ain`t role playing for almost a decade, my classic toys I dug up the past months in an old box, and now just stand there... The traditional issues of a clutterer with a hole in his hand.

Maybe I should just take the Lead Horderers vow in 2012, which involves not buying anymore figures then you actually painted up. Or do like so many of my gaming club members and only buy actual wargame models on Salute and Crisis shows for example, or working with a budget schedule for the `hobby` (or both hobbies in my case) hehehe.

To be continued at a local wargames fare...

maandag 26 september 2011

Lockon Stratos... sniping the target!

Gundam 00... I`m not really a fan of it, the stroyline has some major flaws in it, though it does have it`s strongpoints, and the animation itself is very gorgeous.

But it does have... an irish Gundam Meister (technically, even two as it involves twins)... commanding a long range Gundam!!! A fantasy come true. It also has a sociopathic freckled redhead called Nena, but that`s a whole other fantasy altogether... What more reason could I have to paint up the green and white sniper gundam for my games of Future War Commander.

N-002 Gundam Dynames (aka Gundam Dynames, Dynames), is the long-range specialist Gundam in season one of Mobile Suit Gundam 00, piloted by Lockon Stratos. Dynames would later be redeveloped as GN-002RE Gundam Dynames Repair in A.D. 2314, briefly piloted by the second Lockon Stratos.

Dynames is largely a counterpart to GN-001 Gundam Exia. While Exia is themed heavily on melee combat, Dynames is the opposite. Dynames' weapon-of-choice is its GN Sniper Rifle to provide mid-to-long ranged fire support. As its primary armament, Dynames is almost exclusively used as a support sniper, taking up a well-hidden position(s) and dispatching targets from afar while Exia draws the attention and fire of the enemies. If forced into short-ranged combat, Dynames switches from the rifle to its GN Pistols, wielded and used gun-kata style. In very short range, Dynames prefers to use its GN Missiles, using its beam sabers only as a last resort. While Dynames is focused on sniping, the unit was also designed to utilize a series of special equipment to adapt to various missions.

For specialized long range precision firing (though rarely used), Dynames has a special particle rifle, which it is capable of firing on orbital targets from the ground, the Super Substratospheric Altitude Gun. To prepare for shooting alone, the pilot needs to connect the weapon to a large GN Condenser and network with other computer systems to make the necessary calculations for accurate shooting. Because the blast is very powerful, Dynames' rear is connected to one of Kyrios' Tail Unit as a stabilizer to absorb the shock of the discharge. It takes roughly 30 seconds to recharge for the next shot.

zondag 25 september 2011

Something stirs in Hell`s Kitchen...

Since it seems that Superhero gaming is finally going to take off at the Tin Soldiers clubhouse, I went in kind of a painting frenzy.
Diggin` through my huge box of the most handy superhero models available to mankind, namely the often woe`ed Heroclix collectables, the first set I painted up are the most famous inhabitant of Hell`s Kitchen, blind lawyer Matt Murdock, also (or better) known as his alter ego, Daredevil. And yes, I am one of the few that actually think the Ben Affleck film isn`t by far the worst Marvel adaption ever made, it is waaaaay truer to the storyline and the feel of the character then the whole X series together!

Together with his love intrest Elektra (okay, that WAS a horrible movie) he faces of against his enemy, Bullseye...

zaterdag 24 september 2011

Regiment of the Month 5: I cheated!!!

Another month has passed, and the 5th instalment of the Regiment in a Month has arrived.

Ever since I started my ACW force, I wanted a unit skirmishers, but most rules suggest just putting your bases a bit apart or to base less models together... no thanks, i wanted something special, and when I read the Osprey Elite 140 - The American Civil War in the Indian Territory... I had my regiment of skirmishers.

Delaware Scouts

Native Americans in the ACW fought a war within the war, with many family and tribal feuds being fought over with a savagery far exceeding the `normal` war acts. Scalping for one, or the execution of relatives from an opponent was more the norm then the exception as these fierce and proud warriors fought for their homelands.

Perhaps best known is the Battle of Pea Ridge, but a lot more smaller actions where fought out in the Trans Mississipi region, that acted as a buffer between the Union and the Confederacy. Indian troops where poorly equipped, having to rely for the most part on their own private equipment and mostly by foraging the battlefields, making the units look even more rag tagged then some southern regiments near the end of the war.

So now I had to find models, and as this is a very unplayed part of the ACW, I couldn`t find any manufacturer for Union native americans, so I had to resort to the oldest trick known to any wargamer. Not converting, not sculpting... no, I had to resort to downright cheating!

I bought a few packs of Indians drawn from various `tribes` from Conquest Miniatures Plains War range and 500 Nations range, and added just a few hardee hats and caps in the regiment. And then the cheating began by painting their normal tunics in blue and trousers in sky blue, with the odd civilian colouring in between.
That way, they LOOK like they are wearing blue uniforms if one takes the `1 foot rule` into account, even though not one actually wears a military costume.

Ely Harper, Stand Whaitee... just some of the more famous names that fought in the Civil War, and the culture is so rich and flavored I always had a soft spot and intrest in them, and now they will march onto glory in my collection!

But it looks the deal on the tabletop, which is fine enough for me...

And so we are of to the finale of the project, with the 6th month at the doorstep. It will be another unusual ACW regiment for me... another one very unlikely to be featured much on the table top, but which I`m painting up as a `centrepoint unit` just for those times they will.

Ciao ciao

maandag 12 september 2011

Anima Tactics

A new ruleset, well, the game ain`t new at all, but finally I bought the book. Well, some might be going `urrr, only now` on this, but yeah, I had it on my radar for buying at some convention for a while (ever since the hardback came out past january)... and never anyone carried it.

So I lost all hope of waiting for Crisis, and ordered it through Wayland.

I love the models, got the Sophie Ilmora one painted in my cabinet for years, and being an anime afficionado, it was only logical to get the rules.
The book is a real work of art, with a lot of manga style drawings and storyline that could have popped straight out of some series at first glance. Detailed reading will follow soonish after the upcomming `rushed fortnight` at work, though i can`t say i`ll ever get a game sorted though.
Not many at my club are `into` anime, and even though we`re debating some kind of skirmish gaming as a `glue` for the comming year, I doubt this would be elected.

But like the SodaPop`s, I`m not worried, I`ll be completing my range of `models I like` and unveil them to you in due time, aka, when I have time again to do some casual painting opposed to regimental paintjobs at the moment.

This model was infact the very first try-out for the `lining` painting style years ago, when leaving the drybrush method whoch never was my cup of tea. Two colours back then for me, the style I now use on `normal` gaming models, and even after all the time, I still love her (no you pervs, not like that!)

Ciao Ciao

zondag 11 september 2011

They are Babes!!!

A whole new lot of goodies has dropped at the doorstep of my, hmm, how to put it... Temple Towards Preservation of the Inner Child Culture, TTPICC for short (pronounced Typic, got it, got it ;D ) also called my living space.

A nice set of japanese anime figures of all sorts, with two large pvc statuettes and a lovely lil` gasaphon:

Unchou Kanu in her wine red Bondage outfit from the Battle Vixens anime

A really nice model from a not so well known anime series `down here` in lil` ol` Belgium. The model has lovely facial sculpting, the hair is nice and flowing and well, the bondage dress is just like it says

Rei Ayanami in motorcycle outfit - Neon Genesis Evangelion

One of the most well known anime, and a great series, though i even think the manga story topping it off even better. Everyone likes Rei (okay, Mari from the 2.22 might beat her for the crown of series babe) and her mysterious, outworldly behaviour. This model of the blue haired albino girl was a bargain on ebay, setting me back a measly 10 pounds at a clearance sale.

Athena Glory from Aria

I admit, I haven`t seen the series yet so i can`t comment on how i like it or not, but I did like the gashapon model. And at 1 dollar and free shipping, that was a worthwhile investment...

A lot more are under way, apart from to repaint Gundam stuff, like a series of ultracool Dragonball gashapon`s, some Queen`s Blade models, more Saints... and more glass cabinets to display it all hehehe

Ciao ciao

zaterdag 10 september 2011

Flank attack on Rich Mountain - July 11, 1861

Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan assumed command of Union forces in western Virginia in June 1861. On June 27, he moved his divisions from Clarksburg south against Lt. Col. John Pegram's Confederates, reaching the vicinity of Rich Mountain on July 9. Meanwhile, Brig. Gen. Thomas A. Morris's Union brigade marched from Philippi to confront Brig. Gen. Robert S. Garnett's command at Laurel Hill. On July 10-11, Brig. Gen. William S. Rosecrans led a reinforced brigade by a mountain path to seize the Staunton-Parkersburg Turnpike in Pegram's rear.
A sharp two-hour fight ensued in which the Confederates were split in two. Half escaped to Beverly and on over the Shawnee Trail, but Pegram and the others (including the "Sydney Boys", a regiment formed from the students of Hampden-Sydney College) surrendered on July 13.
Hearing of Pegram's defeat, Garnett abandoned Laurel Hill. The Federals pursued, and, during fighting at Corrick's Ford on July 13, Garnett was killed; he was the first general officer to be killed in the war. On July 22, McClellan was ordered to Washington, and Rosecrans assumed command of Union forces in western Virginia. The Union victory at Rich Mountain was instrumental in propelling McClellan to command of the Army of the Potomac.

Yesterday evening, we tried our very first steps into the rules of rank and File, produced by Crusader, which are a generic 1740 - 1900 set with an ACW supplement.

I went to search for a setting and scenario that would allow for not to many issues, yet for example give us a chance for working out things like morale and such, and came up with this scenario, a part of the attack:

The Union, who had historically double the forces we used, would have to break through the small confederate force in order to support the main attack. The confederates just had to hold the wall for 6 turns.
We used a small table of only 24 by 48 inch, as it was focussed on the frontal assault on a defended linear obstacle, and with green troops (more chance on morale failures) with enfield rifled muskets. The purpose of the game was to get the hang of movement, trade a few pot shots in turns 3 and 4, and launch the ACW specific rules charge of a wave attack in turn 5.
That would give us a `first feel` of all the different aspects in the game and allow for fine tuning in the future.

One important `houserule` we agreed on before embarking on the whole project of Historical gaming in our group, was that banners didn`t need to be correct. A unit of Zouaves needs to be represented by a unit of zouaves, no proxying (we can always twiddle a tat in the scenarios if we lack this or that unit), but no issues on banners. Most manufacturers have mainly the Army of the Potomac and the Army of Northern Virginia in their ranges due to them being the two most famous forces, but there where many more battles fought after all...


All troops are Green in morale level. All troops are equipped with 1853 Enfield RM muskets.

W. S. Rosecrans (+1 / 1)
3rd Ohio regiment - 5 stands
14th Indiana regiment - 5 stands

J. Pegram ( +1 / 0)
20th Virginia regiment - 6 stands

The Battle:

The 20th Virginia had entrenched itself behind a small stone wall on the path through the forests, resulting in the Union force advancing steadily in line towards them.

Near the forest edge, some pot shots where traded, but the untrained troops on both sides failed to make any impact on the opponent. The Union lined up for a wave attack, with the 14th Indiana going in first, closely followed by the 3rd Ohio led by Rosecrans himself.

The defensive fire resulted in the 14th Indiana reaching the wall already unsteady, and in the resulting melee they where promptly routed and ran away, losing more men when they failed to rally.

In the meantime the 3rd Ohio was now battling it out with the 20th Virginia, and the southerners got a pummeling, becoming unsteady themselves. The 3rd however could not press on it`s advantage as the time had passed, and the main army was about to launch it`s attack, having to do without the flanksupport Rosecrans had to provide.

The first Confederate success was a fact...

In hindsight, we agreed it`s a good ruleset, suitable for our gaming group who sometimes `lacks the motivation` to learn whole tomes of rules, let alone read them, without being a too simplified ruleset.

Now it`s time for the next step and to start drawing up orbats and painting regiments for the first 2v2 battle with those rules, with which the command optional rules of messengers or base contact will be used... The goal is around december / january for... The Battle of Batton Rouge!

Ciao ciao

donderdag 8 september 2011

The Next Big Project

When your getting older, you start playing historics. A commonly heard phrase in the wargame community, and one that often tends to be true. And a transition I`m going through myself currently.

Surely, you get to play less then the average fantasy gamer, but that is then in my opinion compensated by the command decisions, especcially if it is a `historical scenario` where your trying to change history with the benefit of hindsight.

And from experience, it does tend to lend itself better for multiple players on each side.

Witht he anniversary of Gettysburg nearing ever closer, my union army finally got the kick off of serious time spend painting this year instead of just lying around in my cabinets, all `planned` units now have banners ordered, and Crisis will serve mostly as the gathering of odds and ends like personalities, command groups, limbers, those kind of things... I estimate the force to indeed be ready around July 2013 if I try and paint a regiment or two each quarter.

So what is that new project then?

I live in Belgium, and some kilometres from our capital, on a small and slooped patch of grassfield there has been a small skirmish. About 197.5 years ago to date some small frenchman got involved there in an argument with a british kid born in Ireland and a german officer.
Some pot shots where exchanged and then the french withdrew, leaving a monument featuring a statue of a lion being erected on that spot... I`m talking of course about WATERLOO.

I always admired master strategist and unit placer Sir Arthur Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington, as one of my favorite generals ever. This fact, coupled to the fact that the 200 years anniversary will be a huge event and that it is on my `homesoil`, makes it no more then normal that Napoleonics will be the next army I`m going to be building and painting, albeit slowly and `in between` the more pressing projects running currently. And after by then years of painting blue uniforms, the red will be a welcome change as well...

Another side project will, depending on how fast the Perry`s are releasing the plastic sets, some American War of Independance, though I`m only thinking of a commander here and only a few small units, bit like my English Civil War in the making. These would serve perfectly as `my brigade` when playing a historical battlegame. I`m just in doubt what side to get, I kinda like the look of those white / light blue uniforms of the French like that bloke in The Patriot wore... but that is music for far far away.

zondag 4 september 2011

Exclusive Preview: Crisis 2011 limited edition model

So here it is, the free model you`ll receive at the entrance of Crisis this year:

Mercator, sculpted by Paul Hicks


As other years, the first 1000 paying visitors will receive a model, and I must say I like him a lot, as well as having quite some possibilities to use him in other games like for example a human wizard.

zaterdag 3 september 2011

Summer Kitchen ACW scenery

For 10 years I strayed away from drybrushing, no idea why actually, but I guess it has something to do with being on a budget back then. Now with the ACW kicking off not in our club, where it is a long time mainstay, but in my particular gaming group there, it was time to buy some scenery to go with it.

So at the Lille (France) convention last may (that show report is on my blog, just scroll in the may 2011 section at the left hand of the blog, near the bottom), I did some shopping around for small (and not to expensive) houses and the likes, and the first batch has been painted up this week.

The house and wall sections where two layer drybrushes of Coat D`Arms Heavy Grey topped by Vallejo Game Color Cold Grey, and the roof was Coat D`Arms Rat Brown with Horse Tone Bay over it. All painted upon a Vallejo Heavy Orange basecoat.

Waaaaiiit... orange undercoating????

Yes, I tend to use various shades of undercoats instead of black, grey or white for scenery because
1. I have a lot of those Extra Opaque colours just gathering dust and
2. the occasional tat of orange showing through gives it a certain brick wall feeling. Check out the cracks in grey brick houses, you`ll see some reddisch orange showing through them!
But mainly for reason 1 ;)

So for the rundown of the models then

The house itself is from JR Miniatures ACW range, 5006 - Rose Farm Summer Kitchen

The wall sections are from a frecnh company called Gauthey Miniatures, a company I spend many a euro annually at the Lille fair. He makes all these kinds of neat additions for basically no money at all, and all is cast in resin. Sure, it ain`t the quality of a Grand Manner or such, but it is cheap! These two wall sections, code `mur1` in their range, knocked me back an `amazing` 2 euros. Be sure to google his website up, you won`t be disappointed. And mention that you found him through this blog, so he stocks up for the next edition of the show... or if we can convince him to come to Crisis one of the years.

Finally the farm lady. I bought this model in the Dax Magic clearance bin at the Red Barons show past march (again, report can be found elsewhere on the Society). Knocking me back an amazin 1 euro, though it could be I got her for free because between the few models I rummaged out of it, and the mucho paints, greenstuff tools, inks, washes and all other things I got a lovely discount.
She is from Hovels, and comes with two chickens that she feeds, I thought her a nice `innocent bystander` for an ACW game.

That`s it for my first scenery set, this friday we`re gaming a part of the Rich Mountain battle to get the hang of the Rank and File rules, so I`ll bring a full report of that the next weekend.

Ciao ciao