Monday, May 27, 2013

Copplestone Castings - Siberian Rifles

Last of this weekend's efforts, 10 Siberian Rifles from Copplestone Castings, having completed the last of Tsuba Miniatures Russian's at least until the next order, I thought I would bolster the Russian command with a further unit of Russian Infantry.

The Copplestone Casting Miniatures are slightly larger than their Tsuba counterparts, but when based and painted fit in fine and the Fur hats and overcoats mask any size variances.

This brings the Russian forces to 4 sections and a HMG, next up Cossack cavalry....

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Copplestone Castings - Chinese Armed Bandits - The Honghuzi..

Having finished the main Russian and Japanese Troops for the RJW Project (at least until the next order arrives), I thought I would paint up some Honghuzi or Chinese Bandits, I had a bunch of these from a back of beyond project that never took off, but they are perfect for the RJW albeit fractionally larger than the Tsuba miniatures, but once based there is little to tell the difference.

During the Russo-Japanese War, the Honghuzi took advantage of the conflict to carry out attacks against Russian forces. The Japanese had in their employ Chang Tso-lin, a famous Honghuzi leader who led his men against the Russians, given the treatment the Chinese population received at the hand of the Russians it was relatively easy to recruit armed men to harry the Russian forces.

It is believed that more than 10,000 of these bandits were operating in Manchurian area, divided into companies of from 200 to 300 each led by Japanese officers in the pay of Japan.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Two Hour Wargames - Arab Revolt

We have all been there, you have a great idea for a project, you get the first batch of figures in the post, you start painting, you know you need at least 30 a side and you can't wait to get them on the table before the next shiny thing comes along. But before you know it you have 30 figures in a box and they have never been played with.

Mark has kicked off his Desert War Project and has done a cracking job on his Afrika Korps, but they lack opponents at present, so we agreed to put them up against my Arabs in a scenario inspired by a Commando comic of my childhood...... :-)
Played using the Two Hour Wargames - Chain Reaction Rules.

The village of Ali Bar Bar the Afrika Korp settle in for a nights rest, they are in desperate need of supplies, there armoured car has run out of fuel, they are in need of water and this is the last watering hole before the long march back to their own lines. 

They had been tracked for several days by the local tribesmen, seeing a chance of seizing prisoners for a chance of a ransom to either the Germans or British, as the sun sets they pour out of the desert.

The German MG34 Team, man the walls of the central compound.

Manning the roof tops the Germans stand to.

The local natives pour from the desert having spotted an undefended door at the rear of the central compound, on a high dune, native riflemen fire into the compound pinning a German MG team as they attempt to move to a position to cover the exposed rear door.

At the southern end of the village the Arabs filter into the outskirts of town, however their efforts are thwarted by a sniper in the tower, every time they step into the street they are gunned down or forced to cover.

A further group push forward but are stopped in their tracks by fire from the roof tops.

The natives reach the large door at the rear of the compound and smash their way in, however the Germans have moved an LMG team to cover the door and as the Arabs break in they are swept by machine gun fire, killing several and driving the rest into cover.

Natives push through the orchard but are brought down by German Rifle Fire, before they reach the defenders.

As the sun sets the Arabs have lined the wall to the compound and are breaking through the windows, but they have lost half their number for the loss of only 3 Germans. Meanwhile the Afrika Korps have moved reinforcements to the Alamo stopping the remaining Arabs in their tracks.

A great excuse for  a game, with a set of rules perfect for this type of one off scenario. The Arabs were completely outclassed and outgunned, but the game had some great moments including the killing of the German senior NCO with a spear through the chest..... One of those rare moments when 3 6's are needed.....

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Mars Attacks Wargame Mantic Games....

We're pleased to be working with Topps on a new licensed Mars Attacks tabletop wargame, due for release in 2014! Here's the full story:


Set against the backdrop of the new and expanding MARS ATTACKS universe, the game will feature all of the fun and thrill of the classic series, plus new characters and factions that will see action in upcoming comic books and toys.  It will also tie-in closely with Topps' just-announced all-new trading card series, Mars Attacks: Invasion, releasing in October.

 "MARS ATTACKS is a world where giant robots, mutated insects and hordes of Martian soldiers face off against Earth's military and innocent civilians— how could you not want to see a game out of that?" says Topps' Adam Levine. "Mantic has quickly become one of the best in the business, and they're the perfect team to adapt our outrageous visuals into this exciting new form."
Mantic plans an early 2014 release.

Is your tabletop ready to be invaded?  The Topps Company and Mantic Games have joined forces to bring MARS ATTACKS to life as a miniature-based tabletop war-game!  Combining high quality sculpted figures with fast and fun tactical gameplay, Mantic will deliver an exciting new dimension to the resurgent sci-fi property.
Mantic Games, makers of the popular WARPATH and DREADBALL tabletop games, will make MARS ATTACKS their first license.  "MARS ATTACKS is a cult classic series that fans have been falling in love with generation after generation," says Ronnie Renton, Mantic CEO. "Its oddball blend of retro sci-fi visuals, dark humor and over-the-top violence will make for a unique tabletop experience… our team can't wait to bring the Martians to life in ways no one has ever seen before!"

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Safe Haven - The Elizabethan Zombie Wars.....

Last Sunday saw a further outing in the world of Elizabethan Zombie Nightmare....

Captain's Deacon & Coles had heard tell of a safe haven over the river in a valley to the west, untouched by the plague and the curse of the risen. They had been walking for many days and their morale was already a little low (why do people assume my games are aways a stitch up?) before they come across the small hamlet and the bridge, this time there would be no opportunity to avoid the dead, they would have to break through.

The eastern approaches to the town, all is quiet and no sign of the dead could be seen, but the Human player knows they are lurking some where on the table...

A view from the west, an abandoned encampment can be seen on the west bank.

The trained bands under Deacon and Cole tasked with forcing the river, armed with plenty of Calivers and Muskets, more than a match for the forces of the undead.

The forces of the living  advance on table from the East deploying into a skirmish line ready to face the undead drawn from the bridge by the tramp of boot on soil and the clank of armour, with over 30 living souls passage to the bridge should be easy.

The valiant captains decide to skirt the village and approach bridge from the river edge, as they near the barn , moaning and groaning greets their ears, before the doors give way, spilling the fowl undead from their temporary mortuary.

The undead player had 6 plague pits to place on the table and had opted for two on the out skirts of town, the human attackers formed a formal firing line and poured fire into the dead emerging from the barn, but the crash of muskets, served to awaken the dead in the plague pits at a rate of 1d6 per turn.

A ferocious melee ensued as the swordsmen carved into the evil creatures, losing two of their number but dispatching over 12 of the Zombies, but still they came on. 
To be sure the human players kill their fallen comrades a second time.

The human lines become stretched, they continue to pour fire into the advancing undead, but the constant firing on serves to attract more and more of the recently departed. Bullets run out, but zombies don't.

The first platoon, led by a band of monks, make a break for the river, the undead distracted by the rattle of musket fire outside the barn, they skirt the first burial pit as a couple of the fowl creatures shamble towards them.

A shot rings out knocking down a single zombie, but the shot is enough to bring more of the dead towards the advancing human's.
Seeing their path blocked the human players decide this is a bridge to far and head for the table edge.... They will have to find another way across the river if they are to reach the safe haven.

Human losses - 5
Undead Losses 43

Declione & Fall - Move One.

Move one Starts with the following updates.

The Spanish player has scout vessels patrolling the Mediterranean shores of southern Gaul and Spain, he also had Ships off Britannia.  These are not full fleets.
The cities are garrisoned and there are field forces in the Hex above Trier along the Rhine.
There is also a land force NW above Arles and one in the Hex by what we know as Gibraltar.

Belisarius the great leader of  the Byzantium Empire has garrisons in all cities except Nicea, all ships are in port but there is a field force below Sirmium in the mountain hex.

Parthia forces have crossed the desert border into my lands and Byzantium 

The current holder of Rome Pompus Maximux, has garrisons in Rome, Ravenna and Aqueila.
There is a field force in the Hex between Rome and Aquileia.
The Pompus naval forces have left Rome and sailed to the Hex off Carthage.

With my Capital at Alexandria I have all cities garrisoned. 
I move a force under Gen Nafarious Purpos from Alexandria towards the Desert border.
Admiral Crustacius has sailed from Carthage to the straits between Spain and Africa to blockade this route.  driving the Spanish ships before them.

The next update is due this evening....

Interesting times ahead.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Decline & Fall - The Battle for Empires - A Simple WAB campaign.

I bumped in to some old friends at Warfare last year, it was great to catch up even if it has been perhaps 15 years since we last played together "Tuesday nights in Rich's cellar...."
Who could forget the great campaigns of old - Hue City and the Pony Wars where no one packed any ammo... :-)
However just to prove what a great hobby this is we agreed to catch up over e-mail and what better way than a campaign.... Given that we all live in different parts of the coutry how we ever meet up to play a game has yet to be worked out...

Hah minor details.
The campaign is set during the fall of Rome with several faction fighting to control the empire and ultimately Rome, set out below are the starting points and factions. 

The Empire and how its split up.

Bill (Yellow) choose Spain and Gaul, his lands include these countries with the cities of-
Seville 2 reinforcement points
Tarragona 1
Arles 3
Trier 1
Londonium 1
Total 8 points or 800 Warhammer  points.
His lands are Spain and Gaul, the border being from the Alps upwards to the Rhine, on to seas. 

Steve (Green) choose Byzantium. his lands include Greece/Macedonia, what is modern day Turkey down to Antioch.
Cities Salonika 1 point
Byzantium 4.
Corinth 1
Nicaea 2
Antioch 3
Total 11 points.

I choose to be North African (White) Perhpas it was all those years playing Rome Total War and those flaming elephants....
My lands borders south of Antioch along the coastal plains to what is now Algiers.
Cities Carthage 3
Cyrene 2
Alexandria 3
Total 8 points

Richard took Rome (Red)
North up the Danube and then south along the Danube to a border south of Sirimium.
Cities include
Rome 4 points
Aquileia 1
Ravenna 2
Sirmium 1

Whilst Keith opted for Parthia (Blue) a roaming force operating to the rear of my North African's and the Byzantiums.

First orders are in and the skulduggery has started all ready.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

All Quiet on the Martian Front - War of the Worlds.

Oh no another distraction....
I have been a fan of H.G. Wells, War of the Worlds since my early teens, I have have built up large collection of Black Hats Tripods and Martians, however I have struggled to find a suitable set of rules which captures the battles in the book.

However when this appeared on Kickstarter, I think I may have found it....
It's my first time on Kick Starter but this venture really seems to have taken off, being full funding in the first few days.

All Quiet on the Martian Front is a 15mm scale sci-fi battle game that plays out the second Martian War and breathes new life into the classic earth invasion tale. 
Set in the second decade of the twentieth century humanity uses tanks, artillery, and never before seen technology to defend Earth from the Martian invaders. The Martians use advanced war machines, human zombie slaves, gas warfare, and worse to eliminate all humanity from the Earth. 
It is tanks vs. tripods, big guns vs. heat rays, and incredible heroics vs. emotionless eradication across the tattered and entrenched landscape of 1910 America.

The guy's over at Alien Dungeon are certainly throwing some get ideas at the Kick Starter scheme, with plenty of stuff that will cross over into the "1st invasion"

British Home Service Infantry, "Bows and Arrows against the lightening"

My plan will be to use my existing collection, but to expand it to include the proposed Martian drones and selected vehicles which fit the earlier Victorian era.

Should the Kicker starter really fly off the shelves then the Brits arrive..... 

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Celebrating 50,000 Hits......

50,000 Hits wow.....

I created this blog to keep a track of my efforts and to track the various projects and Campaigns that I get distracted by, over the last two years it has served to increase my enthusiasm for the hobby and provided me with a goal to paint to which has increased my output, but perhaps more importantly it has created some great friendships with gamers with a common interest.
Thanks for stopping by and reading my ramblings.



Monday, May 06, 2013

Sarissa - Laser Cut Japanese Terrain

Having missed Salute, I was pleased that Dane was able to come to my rescue picking up my order from the guy's at Sarissa, having completed the first units for the RJW project and with the Lard day fast approaching, I was on the lookout for a suitable Manchurian farm, Japanese would have to do.

Laser Cut terrain is certainly en vogue at the moment and I must say I was rather impressed with various packs needed to make my farm and compound.

The Sarrisa packs range from various Japanese buildings and walls, they come away from their MDF prints very easily and fit together very well.

The Gate and Peasant farm house, the main pieces needed for my farm and compound within the design you can choose to have the shutters open or closed, once complete the pieces are sturdy and robust.

Front of the compound added to the 5mm MDF board, sharp sand to be added once the wood glue has dried.

Rear of the compound.

So next up the paint job, despite two coats of paint and inking the Laser Cut print still shows through, which was important to retain the detail. I need to add various farm implements and perhaps a tree or two to make it a little more Chinese in feel.


The rear of the Chinese Compound, could this be the weak point?


Japanese troops sneak up on the Russian defenders. I decided to glue the gates shut, I toyed with half open,but thought they might be a little fragile.

I am pleased with how this turned out, but am still torn between the wider terrain discussion if I factor the cost of each kit, the time taken to build the various pieces, construction the compound and paint time, would I be better purchasing cast resin?
This model is light weight, but will it stand up to to the stresses of regular gaming.
I guess time will tell.