Sunday, December 30, 2007

28mm English Civil War

Next in the pile of stuff to take stock of is my 28mm English Civil War collection. This collection has increase extensively very recently due to a very successful trade – I traded away eight 15mm DBA Dark Ages armies (three of which were fully painted) in exchange for… well, you’ll see… a LOT of Old Glory 28mm ECW stuff (thanks Mike!)

Originally I thought I’d use Warhammer: English Civil War – whenever I got around to playing, but (as you well know if you’ve been following the blog) I’m quite enamored with the whole Warmaster idea and imagine I’d like to use these for that… So my current plan is to bases them as per my new basing standards and have some extras on single bases for skirmishing or “change” for the stands If I play do ever end up playing Warhammer: English Civil War.

Here’s what I’ve got so far:

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Now these lads are a touch smaller than the Old Glory – more like real “25mm” stuff. They’re actually figures I modeled and cast myself. Well actually I modeled them and my friend John cast them as I wasn’t set up for that when these were made… I’m not sure where the masters have gone to, I’m pretty sure I got them back from him. I hope he has the moulds as I’d like to cast some more someday…

A second batch of the above. These, with the ones pictured above, should make me ONE UNIT of pike and maybe two shot…

Old Glory Cuirassiers. One unit. Should be all I need, really. I’ll have one left over, he’ll become a commander of some sort.

These are the first ECW figures I ever bought. They’re old Wargames foundry figures that I ordered from England back before the internet based on descriptions and line drawings in a Wargames Illustrated add back in, oh, 1988…? Anyone remember those good old days? I wasn’t disappointed but never did get around to placing another order… didn’t really have the money at the time… or had different priorities… These will probably be kept as individually mounted figures for skirmishing – except the general, he’ll actually serve as a general. They’ll probably get touched up and re-based onto round washers at some point – including the general.

Here’s the stuff I got in trade. One of these I bought myself a while back – one of the Command Packs – I thought I’d use them with my home-cast rank and file.

My Highlanders! These boys have seen lots of action as a Mordhiem warband. Most of them are Old Glory, though I think there’s a couple of Dixon figures in the back there. Nice figures. Pain in the ass to paint – what with the tartan and all. But they do look nice when they’re done.

My Covenanters. All three of them….

The highlanders I have yet to paint. Again, mostly Old Glory but there’s a couple more Dixon and some Essex figures in there as well.

These are some old Minifigs Scotts. Probably more appropriate for the Thirty Years War.

So as I mentioned these will mostly be based as per my new basing standards. The foot will be on 60x40mm bases; pike will have 8/base, shot will have 6/base. The trouble is how many bases/stands per unit. The standard in Warmaster seems to be three. The one English Civil Warmaster variant I’ve found so far varies from that and had pike in units of four and shot in units of two…? Guess I’ll have to play it and find out how they work…

The Horse will be mounted three on a 60x50mm base and are 3 stands per unit.

So what I HAVE is:

16 painted and 16 unpainted home-cast pike (so far…) Which would make one unit if 4 stands/unit, or one and a start on a second otherwise.

16 painted and 16 unpainted home-cast shot (so far…) Which would make two units if 2 stands/unit, or one and a start on a second otherwise….

One unit of Cuirassiers to be finished.

The Old glory bags include:
2x ECW-2 Unarmoured Command
1x ECW-4 Pike Advancing Soft hat
1x ECW-7 Pike Advancing Montero Cap
1x ECW-9 Pike Buffcoat, Charging, Helmet
1x ECW- 11 Pike Buffcoat, Porte Pike, Helmet
1x ECW-12 Pike Buffcoat, Charging, Soft hat
1x ECW-19 Musketeer Firing Montero Cap
1x ECW-21 Musketeer Advancing Montero Cap
1x ECW-26 Cavalry Buffcoat Helmet
1x ECW-27 Cavalry Buffcoat Soft Hat
1x ECW-36 Royalist Personalities
1x ECW-53 Moss’ Troopers

So a total of 60 “command” (could be used in pike units or shot), 150 Pike, 60 shot.

That would make 5-7 units of pike – depending on whether using 3 or 4 stands/unit – and 4-6 units of shot, depending… any leftovers cold be individually based for skirmishing and/or “change”.

Each bag of Horse would be one unit with one left over to be a commander (or skirmisher)

The Highlanders I have 15 painted and 27 not-so-painted… the ones already painted and on washer I will leave as they are. 18 of the others will make one unit of highlanders… unless I base them as “hordes” which would be 7-9 figures on a 60x60mm base… hmmm…

Hmmmm… I have some guns somewhere, but no crew, which I didn’t manage to take a picture of.

The unfortunate bit is that the campaign I’d really like to play is Marquis of Montorse’s Scottish campaign… and there would have limited use… When I get around to the Englsih Civil War again I will model a couple Scottish pikemen and shot and maybe a highlander or two and cast them by the hundreds… That’s a “someday” project right now, though…

Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Successors

Lookit me, I'm a blog-posting foo'!

Taking stock of a few more things we move on to my ancients stuff. This one was easy as NONE of it is painted yet!

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

This is a pile of old Rafm “Armies of the Hellenistic Period” packs that a friend got from a distributor that was closing down. He more or less gave them to me and then asked if I’d paint a 15mm Greek DBA army for him in exchange… I have the army… I just haven’t painted it yet… (well… I THINK I still have it… somewhere!?). It’s been a few years not that they’ve bee sitting in a box under my work table.

Unfortunately I know NOTHING about the period. Originally I was thinking I’d paint these up someday and base them as per 25mm DBA armies. I’d probably get a few armies out of them. My good friend Mikey K was visiting earlier this year and helped me sort them out a bit. I made some notes on the packs as to what they might be and circled some armies in my DBA book and then put them back in the box…

Recently I picked up Warmaster Ancients and started thinking about these again and how I might make a WMA Successor army out of these using the basing system discussed in a previous post on Rules and basing. So with that in mind…..

Here’s what I’ve got in that pile pictured above, how I might use it, and some of the things I’d need to get… when I get around to painting these up:

1x AH-30 (of course these are old codes that Rafm doesn’e even use anymore – this one, for example is now RAF07130, but I’m just going to use the ones on the package…) Macedonian Prodomos with Kontos. I’m not sure what a “Prodomos” is… or a Kontos for that matter. But in DBA I imagine it would be 3Cv and Warmaster I’m going to call them “Heavy Cavalry”… not that I can do much with one pack…

7x AH-18 Illyrian Light Cavalry. Now that’s more like it… definitely 2LH or “Mounted Skirmishers”! Ten stands of them! (so, three units in Warmaster, I’d need one more pack to make four)

2x AH-38 Babylonian Levy Archer and 2x AH-39 Arab Archers. If I mixed the two I could make one unit of archers (using the 6/base system for regular troops…) the rest could become skirmishers…? Of course if I did them 4/base I could have a unit of each… hmmm….

1x AH-32 Greek Archer Kneeling – maybe mix with the left overs from the Arab Archers to make a unit of skirmishers…?

1x AH-24 Staff slingers… hmmmm…

2x Mysian Peltast – this will become one unit of 4/base “light infantry” – which I will call Ax if using DBA…

4x AH-15 Extra Heavy Companion Cavalry – Now “Extra Heavy” would lead me to think that they are heavier than heavy and therefore “Cataphract” in Warmaster ancients… However in the Rafm line there are “Cataphracts” which do look like they have even MORE armour on their horses… Whatever, they’re going on stands 3/base and will make me one unit and the beginning of a second (or some command stands, I guess…). Either way in DBA I’m sure they’re Kn.

3x AH-1 Imitation Legionnaire – Poof! One unit of Heavy Infantry – not normally “allowed” in a Successor army. Three stands of Bd in DBA.

2x AH-41 and 2x AH-42 Macedonian Pikemen (front and rear ranks) - One unit of Phalanx. These would be 8/base… or maybe 9 in three rows of three on a deeper base…? We shall see… In the latter case I’d need another pack… I’ll need more packs anyway as these are the foundation of Successor armies and I currently have only enough for about two phalanx.

3x AH-5 Phalangist in Quilted Armour and 2x AH-6 Phalangist in Asian Dress? Another Phallanx, possibly the beginnings of a third if I go with the 8/base. In the end I’ll probably do something REALLY stupid and decide I need to do 12/base on a 60x60mm base…

1x AH-43 Macedonian Hypaspis in Leather Armour. Not sure what they do what work but in the notes I made when Mikey K was here I need to paint them white with a silver shield and they might be Sp in DBA…

2x RA-10 Auxillary Slinger – okay this is getting into the “armies of the Caesars” line… still skirmishers are skirmishers (or Ps are Ps…). This would make a unit of them.

2x RA-57 Dacian Archers – again with the Romans and their enemies – more skirmishers…

So, tallying that all up for Warmaster I'd have:

3-4 Units of Mounted Skirmishers (Illyrian Light Horse)
1 Unit of Archers (Babylonian and Arab)
2 Units of Phalanx
1 Unit of Heavy Infantry (Imitation Legionaires)
1 Unit of Cataphracts (or Heavy Cavalry)
1 Unit of Light Infantry (Mysian Peltasts)
4-5 Units of Skirmishers (including the Greeks, Staff Slingers, Roman Auxillary Slingers and Dacian Archers...)

for DBA multiply by three... and add a Sp and Cv stand (Hypaspists and Prodomos)

Well I certainly have not shortage of Skirmishers! I do like to do two opposing armies at a time and I probably have enough skirmishers for both. When I ever do get around to painting these I will definitely need a pile of more pike/phalangists…

If anybody out there actually knows anything about the armies of this era and know that some of these definitely don’t belong in the same army together or I’ve categorized these wrong please, PLEASE do feel free to post a comment and set me straight!!

2007 In Review

So the year is nearly over and I’ve been giving some thought to what I want to do next year. Perhaps I should take a look at my goals for 2007 and see what was accomplished.

My various plans for the year were set out in a number of posts on this blog – The Vimy Project, The Game Plan 2007, and various updates.

The progress of the Vimy Project can be followed using the Vimy Label on this blog – unfortunately you then have to read the posts from bottom to top as it always shows the most recent. In a nutshell between December of 2006 and may of 2007 I modeled about two dozen German and Canadian figures, made moulds, cast about 200 of them, based and painted them, then made about 12 feet of barbed wire obstacles and four 2’x2’ custom/purpose built terrain squares roughly approximating something that looked like the 4th Canadian Division’s front at Vimy Ridge. Then I rented a car and hauled it 500km to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada for Mayday….

Around the same time I built a half dozen generic mudbick type houses that could be used everywhere from North Africa to Afghanistan and the “Back of Beyond” – these I also took to Edmonton for a Savage Worlds Pulp Adventure game I ran – which wasn’t part of any original plan – I just kind of volunteered mid-march as registration was about to open and someone else had backed out…

After Mayday I recognized the value of having a focus and a plan so I set out The Game Plan 2007. In it I outlines the events and conventions I planned on attending, the regular gaming I wanted to do from week to week, and the projects I wanted to work on. Anyway, following the same outline of the plan, here’s how things worked out:

Events and Conventions

Mayday – As I already mentioned I went. It was fun.

Fallcon – After Fallcon 2006 I wasn’t sure if I was going to go to Fallcon again. The only really good times I had during that weekend were when I was playing games with friends. A number of the events I signed up for at the conventions blew chunks – partly because of poor organization and lack of play-testing on the part of the person running it, partly because of the other people playing…

I ended up deciding to go for two main reasons. The first was I recognized the value of an absolute deadline for a project. I got the Vimy Project completed in time because I felt I had to. I wanted to take a break from the Vimy Project but, after the success of it at mayday, I was still pretty pumped about Contemptible Little Armies and some friends in Calgary seemed to be getting really interested in it. I thought I might head to Calgary and run just have a big gaming weekend and run a big CLA game just for them. Somehow I got it in my head that I could run it at Fallcon, just for them…. i.e. I had four friends that were interested in playing – if they all signed up for it on the first day of registration there would be no worries about annoying gits at the table. Maybe it would get the game some exposure and anyone interesting that stopped by the table to have a look they could try and recruit into their game….

Well, trying to cut a story that’s getting a bit long story short here… only one did sign up. Of course I didn’t fine that out until the Friday I showed up in Calgary…. Over the summer I had been doing a fair bit of play-testing and the limitations of CLA were becoming all too clear. It’s an okay game if you’re playing with friends of a like mind that have an appreciation for the era and the tactical realities of it. I had almost wanted to give up and cancel – but then figured – hey it’s just going to be cool friends at the table – nobody’s going to try anything gamey…. Ha…

I guess there were two other reasons I had wanted to go. One was modeling and casting my own figures and wanted to show them off a bit and had been thinking I might try to sell some. The other was the auction. I love getting crazy deals on cool stuff…

Whatever… I’m not going next year. I might make a trip out to Calgary for a gaming weekend with John and Will (and anyone else that can pry themselves away from whatever else they’re doing that’s so damn important….). yeah… I’ll just shut up about that now.

Hero’s Gambit – I had planned on running stuff again this year… but then didn’t. There was much discussion about this in another post (Hero’s Gambit and other things). I’ll leave it at that.

Tim’s Wargaming Weekend – didn’t happen last year, but it definitely is this year – it’s taking place 22-23-24 Feruary 2008 and more or less being amalgamated with my 4th Annual Wargaming Birthday Bash (the birthday bash is basically being extended into a whole weekend of wargaming with friends). More on that later.

Regular Gaming

Friday night wargames – for a while I was running games every Friday night. Then it was every other Friday night, then over the summer it fizzled completely – until I got ramping up the play-testing for Fallcon and wanting to try out this fancy new game I’d acquired called “Blitzkreig Commander”. After Fallcon I got games going again with a regular game night of Thursdays. I simply decided I was going to set aside the time and play a game every Thursday night – whether anyone showed up or not. If no one did – I’d play it solo. That way everyone would know that on any given Thursday evening there was a game going on at Tim’s house. No need to worry about whether it was the first and third or second and fourth or every other week… it’s EVERY WEEK – SAME TIME, SAME PLACE… Throughout the fall we mostly played Blitzkreig Commander and Cold War Commander. We took a bit of a break in December, as everyone was getting crazy busy with other things, but started again this past week and will be raging on every Thursday night in the New Year.

Savage Sunday

I had a fairly regular Sunday afternoon Savage Worlds game going on. I started the year playing pulp adventure skirmish games. Then it too became every other week. Then fizzled. Then started up again with the release of Savage Worlds: Pirates of the Spanish Main , then that fizzled… then later in the fall I got a regular weekly game going again on Saturday nights and have a pretty solid core of 3 players that have been showing up EVERY week, and another two or three that show up intermittently (well okay two that show up intermittently and another that has been threatening to show up for the last three months but has yet too…). This show no sign of slowing down so I expect it will rage on into the new year as well.


As I mentioned already I accomplished a LOT in the first couple months of the year on the Vimy Project. Here’s how the projects set out in The Game Plan 2007 (and the schedule I laer came up with in ”It’s Good to Have a Plan”) worked out…

Back of Beyond - This was the big project for the bulk of the spring, summer and fall. I set out to build four armies by Fallcon in September – White Russian, Bolshevik, Chinese and an Army of British India. Again, modeling and casting the bulk of my infantry and cavalry, and buying some officers, guns, and specialist troops I finished the White Russian, Bolshevik, and Chinese. About 300+ infantry, two-dozen cavalry, plus some guns, airplanes, characters… It was a lot. If that wasn’t crazy enough – a couple weeks before the convention I decided to rip them ALL off of the individual bases they were originally mounted on and stick them on multi-figure bases… I also re-based all the Vimy project figures and completely gave up on playing Contemptible Little Armies. When I get back to the era I’ll be playing “Great War Commander”!

East Africa - I also modeled German and British Askaris for a Great War East African Campaign – or possibly a fictional “Central African” campaign.

Pirates - As I mentioned I got terribly excited about Pirates… well... briefly… I did paint up a handful of 28mm pirates and I made a bunch of wee ships (See Tim's Shipyard)


Around mid-july I came up with a plan for things I was going to do after Fallcon (Game Plan 07 Sep-Dec). In it I planned to work on my CLA East/Centrral African stuff, 28mm World War 2, the Great War Era Indians I had originally planned to do for Fallcon, Build all the planes I picked up to use for Canvas Eagles and “Project Rebase” - re-basing a number of my 15&20mm WW2 and modern stuff. The only stuff in this list I did was “Project Re-base”. I’m not even going to try and count haw many bases/figures I rebased from the old 30x20mm or 30x30mm bases I had been using to the new basing standards … Instead I raged ahead with some considerable focus and productivity but not so much of a sensible plan… hence the ridiculous amount of modern armour models I’ve acquired over tha last couple months… (See the Armour TO-DO List).

Around October I decided I should start taking stock of everything I have. It was to be an opportunity to show off all the stuff I have painted on my blog while at the same time… well… TAKE STOCK of what I already have and assess what I might need to finish projects I have on the go… I’m still working on the whole Taking Stock thing…

Later still in the fall I decided it was time to PURGE the 15mm stuff once and for all! I had already traded away a pile of it early in the year – collections of 15mm stuff that I hadn’t really even started painting. I held on to the 15mm DBA armies because, well I had a couple of them painted and still held onto this glimmer of hope that I might paint them up someday and run a 1066 campaign. After some serious consideration I came to the realization that I just wasn’t ever going to paint any large numbers of 15mm figures. It always seemed like a chore and that I was forcing myself to do it… Not something I want to do with my hobby time!? I DO enjoy painting 20-30mm figures! I know some people thing painting anything is a chore and I just don’t get why they selected this hobby if that’s so – but I decided to go with what works for me so the 15mm stuff started to go.

I had a bunch of 15mm modern stuff that I held onto because I figured it’s be too expensive to replace it with 20mm. Well, expensive or not, having them in 20mm would be more versatile as EVERYTHING ELSE I had that was “modern-ish” was 20mm! (and that whole don’t care to paint them thing previously mentioned…) So they were the first to go! In exchange I got a PILE of cool 20mm ww2 stuff that I might actually paint some day!

Then the 15mm DBA and HOTT stuff went… next it’ll probably be the Fallshirmjager… more on that in the New Year.

While this all this (trading, re-basing, stock taking, stockPILIING of 20mm stuff, game playing, etc) was going on through the fall I was raging ahead with painting 20mm modern stuff, and I got quite a bit done. Two battalions of modern British, three battalions of Soviet VDV, a battalion of Soviet Motor-Rifles, and a fair bit of soviet equipment, three tanks, a BMP-1, a BRDM, two American M1s, a handful of Israelis and Afghan DRA and Mujahideen, etc, etc, etc. It’s all there on the blog if you look back… In the last couple of weeks I cranked out a bunch of new 28mm fantasy figures for (Savage) skirmish gaming on Saturday night, as well as touching up and re-basing (from old square bases) other older figures, as well as a whole unit of Elves for my new 28mm Warmaster project and some 28mm Vikings to finish up a couple of units.

So despite the fact that I’m feeling a little scattered and overwhelmed by how much newly acquired (whether through trades or purchases) I have to paint… I do think I had a happy and productive year over all….

Now to work on my plan for next year… and finish stocktaking… Stay tuned – The game plan will be along shortly…

Friday, December 28, 2007

Rules, Rules, Rules… and basing… again

I do torment myself about these things

Recently I’ve been doing a lot to thinking about gaming and rules and basing for various different periods. What I’ve decided is that I’m basically going to use two basic systems for all my gaming in the foreseeable future – Savage Worlds for skirmish gaming and Warmaster/Blitzkrieg Commander/Cold War Commander derivatives for everything else (i.e. non-skirmish games).

All the Savage Worlds skirmish games will be played with 28mm figures individually mounted on round metal washer. I hate square bases for skirmish games and I hate plastic bases. Hate them.

I’ve also decided on a standard basing system for all my non-skirmish games.

For 28mm figures – they’re all going on a 60x40mm base for most infantry types. Cavalry will probably be 60x50mm. Anything requiring deeper bases will be done “as required” but keeping the 60mm frontage. This is the same frontage as DBA – so I could use these for DBA – but I’m obviously using different depths and I will also be using different numbers of troops.

Most pre-“horse and musket” foot troops will be based on said 60x40mm bases in two ranks of three. Conveniently this works out to and average of 20x20mm per figure so that if I ever fell on my head and thought playing Warhammer might be a good idea I could use them for that – I’d just need a couple of the individually mounted guys for “change” when I started taking casualties.

To represent some lighter troops (of all eras) I will have three or four figures scattered about on the base. This I’ve done this with most of my Great War/Russian Civil War/Back of Beyond forces. You can see pictures of these on my CLA Fallcon playtest post and my CLA Fallcon AAR.

Some units with particularly dense formation I will be basing them in two rows of four – my Seven Years War regular infantry have been based this way as will most pikemen.

Horse will be either two or three on a 60x50mm base.

For 20mm/1:72 I’m using 2”x1-1/4” (~50x32mm) stands for infantry and light support weapons. There are generally 3 infantry on one of those stands or one weapon and two or three crew. For bigger support weapons and smaller vehicles I use a double sized base – 2”x2.5” (50x64mm). for anything bigger I’m trying to keep the 2”/50mm frontage but I’ve found for some bigger tanks that’s just not enough so on some I’m using a 2.5”/65mm frontage – depth as required…

Because of the difference in sizes for 20mm infantry vs 20mm tanks I was this last week considering using a 2”x2.5” (50x64mm) base for infantry with about 5 figures on it. I’ve tried to rid myself of that dangerous notion as it would mean reorganizing everything ( not to mention rebasing hundreds of figures – many of which have quite recently been re-based from 30x30mm bases…). GAH! I am demented sometimes….

I have been desperately trying to PURGE myself of 15mm figures. I’ve traded away all the modern and dark age historicals and all the fantasy stuff. The WW2 stuff will be a little harder to let go of as I’ve put so much work into it and I know so many people with 15mm forces that I could conceivably play with…. I think the Falshirmjagers are going to be going up on the trading block in the very near future however (as most of them aren’t painted and are never going to be….).

I have been re-basing the 15mm stuff I am planning on holding onto (for now) and they’re more or less following the same system as the 20mm figures, except the infantry generally have four figures per stand and that many tanks will fit on the double sized (2”x2.5” - 50x64mm) base. Only a few will need anything bigger.

The Armour TO-DO List

As part of my general taking stock and planning for 2008 I thought I’d take stock of the 20mm/1:72 armour kits I have this evening…. Oh dear…

Here’s what I have:

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Armour – WW2

World War Two kits seem to be almost exclusively German:
7x PzkwIVG
2x PzkwIIIM
1x Panther G
2x Wirblewind/Flakpanzer
2x Panzerjager(?)
1x Jagdpanzer IV
1x AA/AT kit (Pak 40, Pak 36, and Flak 38 – all with crews!)
1x StugIIIG
4x Sdkfz 251 – various sorts – they’ll all just end up being the standard infantry carriers
1x Sdkfz 251 with rocket launchers
1x Sdkfz 251 assault bridge
1x Sdkfz 250/9 recce
2x Jagdpanther
1x Sdkfz11 and Pak 40
1x 88 and tractor
1x Sdkfz 222 and Kublewagon
plus assorted bits for various “bashed” kits

I also have a T-34 to repaint and two IS-2 (both assembled and primed and started painting– just need to finish)….

Let’s say about 30 kits total – that I could find… wow… I actually only bought three of them – of the German kits that is. The two Airfix kits listed on the bottom were given to me, the rest I got in trade for my Falklands 15mm stuff! (along with a pile – like HUNDREDS – of 1:72 plastic WW2 infantry)… Well all this along with the piles of late war SS infantry I’ve already got painted would make for some great Canadians vs. 12th SS in Normandy games! (or British paras – which I’ve also got piles of already painted – vs. SS panzer troops near Arnhem!)

I think the PzkwIV and Panthers and 251s would probably be my first priority, along with the AT guns… the two Jagdpanthers would be dead last – I already have two (from a HaT/Armourfast kit) and there just wasn’t that damn many of them, especially on the western front.

I also have 4 Corgi die-cast shermans which I will at some point base and re-paint to look like Canadian tanks – maybe even convert one to look like a Sherman VC.

Now for the modern stuff….

Armour - Modern

Well I have a bit more of this stuff…

French (not in the picture)
2x AMX-30
2x AML-90
4x VAB

3x Scorpion/Scimitar (one assembled –needs to be painted)
6x Challanger I (two of which are the up-armoured variety)
10x Warrior IFV (eight of which are the up-armoured variety – there was a crazy sale at squadron…)

5x Leopard 1A4
5x M113
4x Grizzly
2x Cougar

1x BTR 50 Command
3x BMD of assorted varieties
5x BMP
1x AT-3 Sagger
3x BTR 60 PA
1x 2S9 Nona
1x Hind D
2x Mi-8
1x 2S1 Gvozdika
2x T-54
2x T-80
1x T-72

5x Bradleys (die-cast kits that just need to be re-painted)
1x Blackhawk
5x Cobras (I’ll probably only ever build and paint two – got them as part of an auction lot)
1x M-48 (assembled and primed – just need to finish painting)

2x M113 FSV (one assembled and primed – just need to finish painting)

So… uh… another 80 kits or so… okay, I may have gone a bit overboard here… adding the two together is about 110 kits… If I did one a week, that would be just over two years… Hmmm I better get cracking!

Actually I’m hoping I’ll be able to do some of them in lots – say over two weeks do four or five of the same or similar vehicles – setting up a bit of a production line.

The sad thing is there’s a couple more kits I’d like to pick up ( a couple more BMDs… some ERC-90s – as they’d be more appropriste to go with the VABs…) I think I can hold off on them for now.

As for priorities for the Modern equipment I’m thinking Russian stuff first! After the Russians I should probably get cracking on the British equipment – as I have a lot of British Infantry done – equipment will mechanize them. The American Bradleys would be up there too as they’re quick repaints, I have some M1s done, and I have American infantry based, primed and ready to be painted.

Stuff like the French VABs and the Canadian M113s and Grizzlies aren’t going to be all that usefull until I have some infantry – which may be a while. I guess the M113s could be used in Vietnam so they’d be slightly higher on the list than the Grizzlies and VABs.

Of course there are things I’d like to do besides build and paint armour kits for the next two years…

The "Road" to Murmansk

Christian and I got together to play a little Blitzkrieg Commander this evening. John Bertolini stopped by to visit and watch for a bit, too. I wanted to play with my new Russian Naval Infantry and I do know Christian is a big fan of the Eastern Front. Noe I didn’t order any Russian Naval infantry, they were sent to me by mistake instead of the stuff I actually ordered from a certain company that produces modern and WW2 20mm figures. They told me to keep them. I didn’t actually get them for free or anything as I paid more in brokerage fees and taxes for the box that was labeled as containing the stuff I actually ordered (which was considerable more… like ten times more…) than the Russian Naval Infantry were actually worth… Ah well… hopefully I’ll get the stuff I actually ordered in the next week or so…

I called this The "Road" to Murmansk because... well... apparently there were none - despite what the germans maps told them ( I am being "funny" here)! Only tundra, swamps, and bogs... I don't really even know if there was trees... but lacking that sort of specific knowledge of the campaign conditions I threw some out there to break up the table a bit.

Somewhere Near Murmansk, July1941


General Dietl’s troops are driving east into Russia to cut the train line and seize the port of Murmansk! Standing in their way, the brave men of the 3rd Naval Infantry Brigade!


We played basically a breakthrough scenario right out of the Blitzkreig Commander book.




One Regiment with three under strength battalions, each with:

6x Infantry Units
1x Support Unit (MG)
1x Support Unit (Mortar)


One Naval Infantry Battalion, with:

7x Infantry Units
1x Support Unit (MG)

2x Artillery Units (76mm) – off table, 2 assets each.


Christian took the Russians so I took the Germans.

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

The Germans set up… I know, I know… they look more like late war Waffen-SS than 1941 Gebrigsjager…. Work with me here – I don’t have any of those painted up… YET!

The Russians deployment. Now Christian had some issues with the area he had to defend, the lack of troops he had to defend it with, and the lack of command units to order them to defend it (the last point Christian whined about constantly throughout the game… so much so I offered to dig him out a “lend-lease” Canadian command team at one point if it’s make him stop). He spread his troops pretty thin – hoping to make use of opportunity and initiative fire and clever scheduling of the off-table artillery to stall my advance.

An overall view of the initial deployments. In the foreground are my Germans – they had 12 turns to get the bulk of their formation off the far end of the table.

Lacking a Russian Sailor’s hat I let Christian wear my Bolshevik Budenovka.



All three German battalions surge forward two moves dashing around the bogs and swamps (the brown grassy-looking area terrain)! Looking good so far.


Steady boys, steady…



Momentum starting to fade already. All three battalions complete only one move…


Steady boys, steady…


Again, creeping forward. Russian opportunity fire suppressed one platoon of Germans.


FIRE! Russian small arms and machine-gun fire suppressed another German platoon.



1st Battalion (the southernmost) made no move at all this turn (first command roll = 11!).

2nd Battalion (in the center and pictured above) moved out into the open. Opportunity fire suppressed one platoon. They made a second move, but couldn’t make it to the Russian platoon in the woods opposite.

The 3rd battalion also rolled an eleven for their first command roll!? CO wasn’t much help either – my advance quickly ground to a halt!


Christian’s first cleverly planned artillery barrage arrived right on top of two of my battalions! (It’s like he can read minds… or see the future – crappy command rolls and slow advances and all!) However the 76’s did little to impress or upset the Germans. Of a dozen platoons under the two barrages only two received any sort of casualties and none were suppressed.

That’s all the Russians managed to do this turn.



Ineffective though the barrage was, the 1st Battalion decided it was bad to sit in a registered target area and got moving. Three times! On the second move the Russians made some opportunity fire but caused no hits.

The 2nd Battalion over ran one of the Russian’s platoons, consolidated the position and brought fire down on the sailor’s MG detachment that had been harassing their advance.

The 3rd battalion crept ahead for two moves.


Well-coordinated fire from the Russians suppressed two German platoons, one in the 1st Battalion, and one in the 2nd Battalion. Further fire caused one to fallback into the 2nd Battalions HQ area causing confusion all over! Still more fire was poured into their position, causing the MG platoon some grief and had them ducking for cover for the next turn! The already suppressed platoon in the first battalion was also obliged to fallback into their battalion’s MG platoon causing further chaos across the German advance!

John, who was observing, thought Christian might just have a chance…



1st Battalion did some moving and firing, twice.

Then the 3rd Battalion went rocketing across the table for four moves!

2nd battalion, under command of the CO – as the battalion’s HQ was apparently still in utter confusion, also did some firing and moving, suppressing the Russian’s MG detachment.


Command Bonus! Fire twice! Another pass – Fire again! The sum total of all this firing netted 1 hit… no suppressions…



The 1st Battalion failed to anything but sit right in front of the woods defended by a battalion of Russian Naval Infantry

The 2nd Battalion did some maneuvering and firing which, once again, suppressed the Soviets Machine-gun detachment.

The 3rd Battalion – being ordered by my CO as, once again, I failed to move my HQs at the end of the last command phase… One company laid down a base of fire on and suppressed the only sailors in their way, the rest moved up. Then the whole battalion moved. Then, showing his truly inspired leadership abilities (Command Bonus!), Oberst Braun had them fire on the remaining Naval Riflemen and wiped out the platoon and had the men on the 3rd battalion storm the woods – the last woods that stood between themselves and the railway – mind you there was still a bit of bog to pass by… but they were very nearly there and only at Turn Seven!


Again those cleverly planned artillery barrages came crashing in! in both cases on positions previously held (or… CURRENTLY HELD..!?) by soviets – those heatless, godless commies! Here, in 1st Battalion’s position, the only damage caused was one hit and suppression on his own Naval Infantry platoon – HA-HA!! (at least that’s all I noted down… looking at the picture for the next turn there are two platoons of Germans suppressed without hit markers which means they would have been suppressed in thre previous Russians turn… so he must have tagged those two platoons in the open as well… ha… uh… ha…?)

The second barrage caused casualties in three of my platoons, but only suppressed one, which was in the open.

The Russians were so in awe watching the pretty lights of there own artillery barrages (some considerably closer than others) they failed to do anything else this turn.



The 1st Battalion Did some maneuvering and firing – causing two hits on the platoon of sailors in the woods, but failing to suppress. They then took hits in one of their own platoons, which WAS suppressed, by opportunity fire from the Naval Infantry. The next attempt to issue orders was a COMMAND BONUS!!! So rather than assault they just finished off the sailors with an extremely high volume of small arms fire, and then began maneuvering around or through the woods…

2nd Battalion directed fire on the Russian MGs, which knocked out the detachment (clink…. Did you hear that? I think it was the Russians reaching their breakpoint!)
They then decided it was time to get going. Rather than doing something sensible like following the 3rd battalion to the north around the bog in front of them –they decided to take the shortest route to the table edge and march right across the open bit between two bogs and right through the remaining company of Naval Infantry (you can’t say I’m anything but sporting!?). Opportunity fire brought on by this action suppressed two platoons.

This is where the 3rd Battalion started their turn – ready to assault the Sailor’s MG detachment, which the 2nd battalion so nicely took out for them…

Here’s where they were at the end of three moves – directed once again by the CO, Oberst Braun (only because he’s a micromanaging twit that forgets to move his HQs up at the end of the Command phase because he wants to take all the glory…)


Passed their first break test!

Fire from the sailors clustered in the woods around their CO suppressed two platoons of Germans of the 2nd Battalion that were charging across the open directly to their front.



Down to the wire…

3rd Battalion went first and got two platoons off the table! Huzzah!

The 1st Battalion stalled. Christian figured they were mesmerized by the spectacular light show of the 2nd battalion assaulting the Soviets in the center woods…

2nd battalion continued to creep forward firing and maneuvering and being suppressed by opportunity fire…

The CO, for all his brilliance, failed to motivate the 1st battalion – which was clear across the table, to get moving!


They passed their break test! A hail of rifle fire suppressed the three leading platoons of the 2nd battalion, severely blunting my assault!



The 3rd Battalion again made a single move getting two more off the table and on towards the Murmansk Railway!

The 1st Battalion was still in a daze and did nothing.

The 2nd Battalion’s Commander was at a loss for what to do…

The CO stepped in at this point… which to get moving 1st battalion – way across the table (80+ cm away, -4 command penalty…) or 2nd Battalion (not quite so far away…) The unsuppressed platoons of 2nd Battalion got to fire once!


Passed that damn break test again!

They did 2 rounds of firing which I think suppressed one German platoon.


Christian was really hoping I’d have a command blunder here… (FALL BACK!!) Didn’t happen. The 3rd Battalion was able to get the rest of their force off the table in good order (except the battalions mortars which had been left far behind and more or less forgotten about…).

The 2nd Battalion, all finally lined up to fire with only one platoon suppressed, knocked out one of the platoons of sailors. Three platoons started moving around the woods toward the table edge while two others, which weren’t suppressed, continued to shoot up and suppress the remaining Russians defending the position. They didn’t make it.

The 1st Battalion tried to make a run for the edge too. The only got two moves in, opportunity fire from the lone platoon of sailors defending this corner of the table suppressed one German platoon…


Christian played out the Russian’s last turn (after passing yet another break test – at -1 now!) while I made notes, it was really all over by that point. I had secured a Minor Victory by getting 25% of my troops off the table.


While the Germans certainly took casualties during the game nowhere did they take enough to render any of the platoon/stands combat ineffective – I took no losses in terms of stands. The Russians lost just over half of their (pitifully small) number. I imagine many of those might have just been guys surrendering or making for Murmansk…

I guess I COULD have given Christian another command element (at the very least it would have stopped the whining)… but I didn’t have any other Russians painted… so…

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

More Taking Stock
The Game Plan for 2008
Regular weekly Thursday Night Game reports (the reports of my Thursday night games that is… not always posted here on Thursday nights…)

As always please feel free to post comments below!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Seven Years War

Okay so I had promised to do the 20mm WW2 next but it’s turned out to be a bit of a daunting task, so I thought I’d do something a little easier…. Get that sense of accomplishment and excitement before I take on the 20mm WW2 monster…

My interest in and knowledge of the Seven Years War is mostly limited to North America – and the figures reflect that. The campaigns I would be playing are those fought in North America.

I played a game at Edmonton Mayday last year that used a system called “Two for Tea” by Bob Barnetson, which is based on Warmaster (report and pics HERE). It was a lot of fun and I was instantly sold on it – I came home and re-based all my figures to use them with the system! I played a game with my friend John (report and pics of that game HERE) but have done little with them since. I would definitely like to work on these again over the next year – there are not many of them and a month of dedicated work would probably finish them up.

Here’s some pics of what I’ve got:

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Two regiments (battalions) of British. I should probably change these so there’s a King’s colour in there in addition to the Regimental Colours… These are all figures modeled and cast by my friend John Bertolini. They were originally meant to be for the War of the Spanish Succession. I figured the uniforms were “close enough” for me and painted them up to use in the Seven Years War.

A unit of Old Glory Militia.

Some individually mounted figures for use in skirmish games. Mostly Old Glory, though I think there’s a Foundry figure in there, and Rafm, and I thought I had some West Wind figures… but they seem to be absent now that I have a close look…?

Some British Grenadiers – again figures modeled and cast by John Bertolini.

Three more regiments to finish painting up…

Some more individuals to finish painting up. Two of those are definitely West Wind. Two are Old Glory… the woman…? Foundry…?

Some Rafm “Female Settlers” most will be based individually for skirmish games… but one or two might find their way onto a stand of militia.

More stuff to be painted… Guns by Rafm, crew by John.

Command elements which need to be finished – these are all from Old Glory.

Some old Rafm British Marines with really old paint jobs! Need to be re-painted and re-based (and I’d need a few more too!)

Roger’s Rangers

A regiment of Highlanders! All these packs were picked up earlier this year when Rafm had a “1986 prices” sale on the line (which is about the when I bought the ones I previously had!) - $4 a pack!

Assorted Iroquois

Four Battalions of French Infantry – Don’t ask me which Regiments – I used to know. I could go look it up… Whatever they are they more than likely fought at Quebec (or maybe Louisburg). The ones in the foreground, on the left of the picture are from Rafm, as are the standard bearer and Drummer in the unit next to them. The rest are all from John.

One battalion of French to finish up. These are all from John.

Le Marquis de Montcalm and his colonels (which still need to be painted!)

French Canadian Militia. I should model one of my own and cast piles!

French Cavalry

The only non-North American troops I have from the era – Jacobites! These are from Old Glory.


25/28mm Seven Years War - British

Have Finished:
2 Regiments of Foot
Regiment of Militia

Have To Paint:
1 CO stand (General Wolfe), 3 Colonels
3 more Regiments of Foot
1 Regiment of Highlanders
Roger’s Rangers
1 Unit of Iroquois
Marines. – need repainting.
2 guns and crew

Still to get:
… Well maybe if/when I get the above done I’ll borrow John’s new, re-mastered moulds and cast a couple more regiments.

I guess I’d need another pack of or two marines to field them… though I’m not entirely sure where they saw action…

25/28mm Seven Years War - French

Have Finished:
4 Infantry Battalions

Have To Paint:
1 Unit of French Cavalry
1 French Infantry Battalion
2 guns and crew
1 Unit of French Militia

Still to get:

Same as for the British - if/when I get the above done I’ll borrow Johns new, re-mastered moulds and cast a couple more regiments.

I should model a French Militiaman of my own and cast piles

25/28mm Assorted 18th Century Civilians, etc for skirmish gaming

Have finished:
a couple...

Have to paint:
A couple more assorted Old Glory and West Wind figures
One pack of Rafm Female Settlers – a couple of these might make it on to various militia stands – and maybe some militiamen will be based singley…

Need to get:

I could do with a couple infantrymen on single bases for skirmishing games… I’ll cast my own at some point.

You can see more pics of John Bertolini’s figures HERE!

Next on Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Well I am supposed to be geting together with CK for a little Blitzkrieg Commander action so there might be a report from that... or there might be more of me taking stock... I'm not going to make any promises about which that might be, however...