Saturday, 17 March 2012

Mopping up and baking rulebooks

Well, with my Khurasan and oldglory orders still not arriving this week I spent the time catching up. I managed to base up all the Kremlin mini's from last week but I am waiting to before basing and spraying them. I have been using a plasti coat matt black but the coverage is pretty awful and I have to black coat everything twice, going back to Helfords matt black car spray which I got pretty used to in the past.
I still have a pile of Rebel Mini's Mechs to paint up but keep putting them off as I don't like painting vehicles.... I got stuck in to some mini's that have been in my box for a while, first up are some Cyborg Enslavers from, they came free with an order I made a while back but I have not found a place to put them yet. The details are really soft on these and I was not too sure just how to paint them but they might fit in somewhere:

The other mini's I finished this week were a pack of GZG UNSC SAW Gunners, I had a go at speed painting these (all done in 2 hours including bases) by using base/wash/highlight and they look okish, alright for gaming on the table but not fantastic close up:

Elsewhere I received a copy of TooFatLardies Sharp Practice in print form, I dallied a while over whether to get a pdf copy but I figured I could never get a better quality printout (and I don't think I could get away with printing it out at work!), the book was a really nice gloss paper edition and I was glad I bought it..... until I dropped it in the bath!!!! bollocks! so then I baked it in the oven to dry it out......I now have a crinkly and crispy copy of the rulebook....lesson learnt. Only had a brief read through the rules but what I read inspired me to get the game to the table, the original idea was to get the terrible sharp sword supplement and game ACW but sharp Practice got me reading up on the Napoleonic Wars (of which I was VERY ignorant of) and I am keen to get hold of some miniatures and paint them up.

Which got me a little lost, when did 18mm become 15mm??? seems some of best 15mm Napoleonics are not 15mm at all such as Blue Moon, but they do look good. So I got a little lost as to where I was going to get some from but it looks like I might go for the Blue Moon mini's depending on how long it takes my last oldglory order to reach me. To be honest I weighed it up this way, just how many opponents was I likely to face with these? zip I have to buy and paint up both sides which makes it a moot point if they are a little bigger than other 15mm models.
Work continues on the Fubar Mech Scenarios and the new rules ideas but at a slow pace, I only get an hour or two each night and cramming everything in takes time! Also I have to hit the road again next week so things will slow down again, but it's ok as I think I need a break between painting to keep things fresh. Also I have found a few wargaming groups near to me, within a 45 minute drive which might be worth getting in touch with....

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Mechs, Buildings and oh my!

Another really productive week, managed to get the foam core buildings from last week painted up:

I sprayed them using a brown stone textured spray that went on ok, it did create some bubbling on the buildings but that died down once they were dry. To finish them I drybrushed on Graveyard earth, desert yellow followed by bleached bone, they look alright, a little brown maybe. Lesson learnt as well, spray the insides of the buildings black before starting the outsides otherwise the white really shows through the windows!

Painting wise I got a fair bit done this week, an Em4 miniatures plastic Mech ready to game with:

and a couple of oddities:

The last two are the controller from the 15mm SHM range and a little familiar from GW's Huron Blackheart kit (I have a few of these from repeatedly being sent failed casts from the finecast range, in the end they were never able to deliver a complete kit, but that's another story...), he looked like he would fit right in somewhere in 15mm :).

Elsewhere I managed to spend a night play testing Fubar Mech:

.... and it never really hung together very well so i've made some more changes to try and streamline the rules and hopefully make it more fun to play.

I managed to order those mini's I mentioned last week, still waiting for a few packs to arrive to get stuck in and sods law I go and order from Khurasan only for them to release a huge number of new releases a few days after!! ah well, just going to have to juggle a few buys and hide the packets coming through the post from my wife...
What did arrive today though was my order from Kremlin miniatures, had a mail a couple of days ago from Russ that they had been cast and were ready to ship and here they are:

I'm really impressed with the detail on these, I initially dismissed them a while back after seeing the pics on the site but i'm so glad I ordered as I can't wait to get these based and on the table.

Rule-wise this week I am still very slowly sketching out the ideas I had for a new rule set that will fill a bit of a niche, it's getting there and I should have something to show in a month, hopefully.
Still working on the Gruntz cards too, particularly the Specialists.

With all that I did this week I will be easing off a little over the next couple of weeks, I can feel the strain when trying to commit to painting/doing so much and it feels like i'm spreading myself a little thin so with a weeks holiday coming up I am going to sit back and relax and probably read through a rule book or two. That does sound a little odd, relaxing by reading through some stringent rulebooks? but I think that's the steady niche of nerd i've been easing myself in to for a while now, you see I am just fascinated with the whole concept of GAME. How people can present concepts in boardgames and role play and wargames whether they are abstract or really marry to the theme that's being played out, it's these play mechanics and different ways of thinking that repeatedly surprise me and drive me onwards to turn my own thoughts into some written form that someone can read as a schematic and then just GAME with......

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Easing back in

Really hectic last couple of weeks with travelling and an unbelievably stressful work week this week (had to put some 12 hour days as well) have taken a big bite out of any scheduled time I had to get cracking hobby wise, although I still found the odd hour to get a few bits between I managed to paint up a couple of GZG Cyclops Heavy Battlesuits, went for a slightly different colour scheme with these and played with some lighter yellows/browns, yellows being a colour I have shied away from due to the paints i've used being very watery but I used a foundation paint with looked pretty good. Looking at the pics blown up though I really need to water down some of the paints as it's looking a little heavy handed.

I popped into the range to pick up some household bits last weekend and was surprised to Foam Core boards for sale! I've been checking on their website but never found it. Picked up 5 A3 boards for £7.99 and just went for it, no major scale measurements just went for roughly 2.80 cm per floor and went a building. I made up three north African/Tunisian esque builds that I figured could be used in a host of scenarios/eras, I managed to pollyfilla the cracks today and should sand them down and texture spray them tomorrow:

While I was travelling I took the gruntz sheets with me and started sketching out the stats for the mini's in my collection, i've started making the profile cards up and putting the jpegs on the Gruntz forum here, the pdf I was creating were really crisp but they are coming in around 8megs so i'll have to see if I can make them smaller.

Elsewhere I got lost in flights of fantasy, I have been meaning to playtest the Fubar Mech rules once a few mini's were painted and to even get a few games of Fubar in but time has not been on my side, perhaps next week....also while I was away I took my notebook and outlines for a new ruleset/background I wanted to work on having had a large number of ideas sketched out I want to get some structure in place but again once back in my room I just needed to crash. :( I will get my ass in gear and get this ALL done next week! (note to self).

Having bought a pile of miniatures back before last December the idea was to get them all painted before buying any more and I cannot stress how hard this has been! There is SO much quality being released in 15mm at the moment and so fast it's hard to keep up, so I am going to have to focus and expand on what I already have. Looking at the Cultists I was trying to find an APC/Tank that would really suit the theme and came across these fench WW1 tanks from Blue Moon via old glory in the uk:

I think with a little conversion work these would make some great Cultist Steampunk APC/Tanks. To lead them it has to be Comrade Vortan from Kremlin miniatures with some armoured support via the Cyberian Death commandos, but they also need some kind of big hitters i.e a mega construction of the I do have a few dollars in paypal for my first Khurasan order. :)

There's also been this scratch I have been wanting to itch for a while, I having a passing interest in the ACW and have been recently reading/learning the history so want to explore the wargaming side, only it's a little awkward. I don't feel I know the history enough to do full scale or even the painting schemes justice but I want to get stuck in and since no one has published "Wargaming: for people who don't know much about history but like the cool uniforms and the loud guns." I thought I would start on the small skirmish level. The potomac mini's caught my eye a while back (a nice paint job goes a long way) so might be a good start, rule wise I have been edging towards getting Too Fat Lardies Terrible Sharp Sword along with the original sharp Practice rules. Seems a bit of a pain in the ass having to buy both to get the full rules but hey. I was looking at Fire and Fury Regimental, but with the International postage/import tax/UK postage handling charge etc it's a bit too much to ask just to tip my toe in.

Coming up I am tempted to visit my FIRST wargames show! Exeter Legionary show 2012 is on May 5th (I think, they've neglected to put the date on the actual show site...) and there are a few interesting traders going, be good to see Angel Barracks and the 6mm mini's in person. It's a long shot i'll be able to make it but you never know :)

Anyway, feel like i'm just brain dumping now so best to sign off. Probably best to try and update a more regularly that one big weaving conversation, :/ Cya's.