Thursday, November 19, 2009

Dead Lads

My first batch of 15mm soldiers is ready

Yesterday I finished basing and varnishing my first set of 15mm soldiers. Most of these were constructed from my convention purchases, namely Rebel Miniatures EF Infantry bodies with Scourge heads. The conversions went quickly, but I have to remember not to pick them up by their heads, ever... the remaining seven figures were the EF Infantry Sergeant, painted as a medic, a droid made from a Scourge Heavy Weapon body and an EF Infantry helmet, four mercenary cyborgs (red-inked Scourge Heavy Weapon troopers), and a Dog Soldier(RAFM Warhounds of Sirius).

The whole set turned out rather well, I even managed to stick on the magnetic bases. So what can I use these for? Beamstrike will get used in a small skirmish sometime next week, with the Coalition Dead Lads as the protagonists. Once I buy some bases and rubber steel stick-ons I've got a fair start on an ASQL Human Imperial army: 4 squads of Stormtroopers, though I still need to purchase at least one AFV for them. Maybe after Christmas.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Fall-in! '09 Part 2

After an excellent dinner of philly cheesesteak pizza at Dino's it was on to the next round of gaming.

My game wasn't here, but I needed something to do during the hour beforehand.

The evening game was titled "The Kepi to Morocco" and used the Sword in Africa (variant of The Sword and the Flame). TSATF is a semi-skirmish game with a 1:10 figure scale. All of the various 28mm figures were individually based, fired individually, and used damage resolution charts that adjudicated damage based on unit type and formation.

Fire Combat uses multiple d20s, movement uses a number of d6s depending on formation (open order, square) and unit types, and melee is a simultaneous affair that lasts until all participants are dead, victorious, or run away. Unit activation alternates depending on a card draw (red for French, black for Arabs), with each portion of the turn sequence (Movement, Fire Combat, and Melee) being resolved in turn. The natives are able to hide themselves in all manner of terrain. Scouts can be detached from formations to spot hidden ambushers.

I really enjoyed the game; it reminded me a lot of 3rd edition 40k but without the numerous special rules, statlines, and wound markers. Unfortunately the Legionnaires spread themselves too thin and as a result were very vulnerable to the millions of camels hiding behind every rock.

The quiet before the storm. No natives in site.

Massed Legionnaires and their native allies. The front three Legionnaire formations were mine. Two of them were rendered non-entities by their wounded.

The Arabs are massing their troops so they can hide?

The French were pretty thin on the ground at this point, but at least we knew where the Arab foot troops were. There was one last, huge, swirling melee, but the pic was really fuzzy.

Routine Inspection

An understrength Coalition Squad makes an arrest in alien territory.

"This is a routine Coalition inspection, please turn over any illegal arms caches you might have in your possession."

Up on the roof... a SAM and Dead Lad are watching for an ambush.

Someone's in for a surprise.

Fall-in! '09 Part 1

I attended Fall-in! this weekend, thanks to my lovely wife agreeing to go. This was my first purely gaming convention, and it was a blast.

We arrived too late Friday to get any games in, but I did get to look around the exhibition hall. Truly impressive; even Dragon-Con didn't have as much swag, and they had around 20,000 people last time I went (vs. the 2,000 or so at Fall-in!). I picked up a Rebel Miniatures combat flatbed, Scourge and Scourge Heavy Weapons, and some EF infantry; I later did some head swaps between the Scourge and EF infantry to get my Coalition Dead Lads. Iron Wind Metals was selling Battletech bitz by the ounce, so I loaded up on 6mm scale turrets, many of which will grace my landship if I ever get around to buying it. I also picked up a handful of GHQ tanks and a Crossfire rulebook, so I should be ready for our Crossfire campaign shortly. Litko's 15mm bases have also proved useful.

After a quick auto tour of the Gettysburg battlefield I was ready to jump into my first game, Cowboy Wars out West, unfortunately it was canceled. Instead I went to an Old Glory-sponsored game in which the Earp Clan and friends took on some cowboys, using the Desperado skirmish system (percentage-based). I took command of Virgil and Wyatt Earp, but things went poorly for our side. I had initially deployed Virgil and his rifle in a sniper's position, but unfortunately none of the cowboys ventured into the street. His brother faired worse; Indian Charlie unloaded three rounds into his back, and he was shot through the heart. We all were given resin outhouses due to our foul dice rolls. Old Glory was showcasing their western buildings and their new pre-made table sections (2' x 2' painted, sculpted, and flocked at $115 for a box of three).

The set-up.

The characters and their cards are all laid out.

A better view of the town and surrounding countryside. I absolutely love those rocky outcropping tiles.

The carnage is well under way, and Virgil is hiding in an alley between the buildings in the lower right corner.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Alien Squad Leader 2.0 Review on Dropship

For an excellent review of Alien Squad Leader 2.0, check out Mark's post over at Dropship Horizon.

Not only is the review excellent, but this man on the other side of the pond is the world's foremost blogger on 15mm sci-fi figures and rules systems.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Papercraft Terrain

Since I won't be doing any gaming at the Sand Table for two weeks, I've decided to concentrate on making some papercraft installations and perhaps some built-up areas for Alien Squad Leader. I may get around to painting up something for Golden Hat X, but I'm not feeling very inspired.

I'll see about posting up some pics of my builds later this week.

Monday, October 19, 2009

It's best to be flexible...

An epiphany struck me at work today... I need to cool my jets and be more flexible...

My current gaming group contains only one serious player, apart from myself; the rest enjoy gaming but regard the weekly preparation, painting, planning, etc... as a chore, and will usually find an excuse not to do it in a timely manner. Others object to my choice of rulesets. In months past this has caused me large amountsC of frustration and anger.

It is not necessary to be angry; we all gather at the Sand Table of our own free will to have some fun and relax. I like to have finished pieces on the tabletop, and put forth the effort to make it so... others don't really feel the need, and I certainly can't force them to see it my way, that sort of thinking just makes game night unpleasant. Instead, since I am responsible only for my own actions, I must be flexible and treat game night as casual game night, more beer and pretzels than anything else. Win or lose, painted or unpainted, Crossfire or Necromunda, at least I can have some fun.

If I want things done in a serious fashion, using rules to my liking, I've got to do it solo, and it's there that I can find utmost satisfaction. You don't often find yourself arguing with yourself, after all.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Progress on my Afrika Korps Battalion

I've made good progress on my Crossfire Afrika Korps Battalion. All company, squad, and battalion stands are finished and covered in sand, with the exception of my Battalion HQ, Company Commanders, Platoon Commanders, and Pak 88s.

I still need to purchase one pack of Panzer IIIs, one pack of Sdfz 251s, and one pack of Tigers. I'll also need one additional truck or 251; as of right now I don't have the trucks to transport all of my platoons. Sadly, GHQ does not sell individual vehicles, and I don't really feel like making another Irregular Miniatures order. I'll rummage around in my Canadian Motor Company's box and see if they have any spare trucks.

15mm Slammers and Aliens

As promised, pictures of my recent endeavors:

Hammer's Slammers

Troll Mercenaries

A small APC and a Command GEV

My unpainted "Enforcer" Robot for the Coalition

Looking for Rules for Post-Apocalyptic Skirmish

Well, I've got about an hour 'til my next class due to a cancellation, so I've got some time to kill.

Last night while working on several papers that I had due and watching Waterworld, I thought of my multiversal post-apocalyptic setting that I've been acquiring 15mm figures for. The Coalition TO & E was a part of that. I've already received two packs of 15mm SAMs and two packs of jetbikes, and I've painted up a few Cyberknights using Laserburn "Lawmen" or Judge Dredd figures. The question is, what rules will I use?

I've pretty much decided that I want the option for multi-basing so that I can use my figures for FWC, so I will likely purchase wooden individual bases with magnetic backing for all of my figures as well as metal sheeting for multi-bases. So I've got platoon-level action covered by FWC. What else can I consider for skirmish gaming?

-Necromunda: Ash Wastes is really its own setting, but I can find figures to cover most of the gangs.

-Nuclear Renaissance has a lot of what I want, but there are no rules for PAs, advanced robots, or hover vehicles.

-Combat Zone is a fairly flexible ruleset, with only two stats, but I may have difficulties with the high-end PAs and robots

-Just bought Star Mogul, and at least its salvage rules are interesting.

-Chain Reaction 3.0 is free, I might at least use its reaction system for solo gaming

-Shockforce doesn't have good rules for truly large vehicles and robots.

-I was developing my own skirmish system, but it may be too fast and furious for my big nasties.

So what do I really want in a skirmish system?

-fast-play mechanics
-few stats to memorize
-wackiness, but not too many tables
-rules for vehicles,PAs, robots, magic, psionics, mutants, aliens, demons, etc...
-campaign mode with less bookkeeping than Mordheim

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Something Completely Different: Where do your little metal figures come from?

It has come to my attention that vast quantities of tin are mined in the Eastern Congo and sold to Western manufacturers to support continued militia operations in the area. Considering tin prices lately, it may be the most lucrative mineral mined in the area. Where do our miniatures come from then?

Food for thought...

Minor Update - 15mm Slammers and Aliens

Just completed my first 15mm project yesterday, GZG's lovely Hammer's Slammers with closed visors and Fifth Element-inspired Alien Mercenaries. Later in the day I'll be posting pics and detail the painting scheme.

Edit: No pics today... sun went down before I had a chance to photograph, and the flash just isn't as good as daylight.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Coalition Platoon TO & E

Here is my proposed Table of Organization and Equipment for a standard Coalition Platoon in 15mm scale. Noticeably absent are any Future War Commander stats or the various upgrades and add-ons that could be applied to the unit. I will save that for future posts.

Coalition Dead Lad Platoon (Future War Commander)

Red Squad
- 3 man Dead Lad Fireteam
- 2 man Dead Lad Support Team
- 2 man SAM Flight
- 2 man SAM Flight
- Enforcer (HQ)

Green Squad
- 3 man Dead Lad Fireteam
- 2 man Dead Lad Support Team
- 2 man SAM Flight
- 2 man SAM Flight
- Enforcer (HQ)

Blue Squad
- 3 man Dead Lad Fireteam
- 2 man Dead Lad Support Team
- 2 man SAM Flight
- 2 man SAM Flight
- Enforcer (HQ)

Platoon HQ
- Coalition Military Specialist (CO)
- Jetbike Squadron (Recce/Gunship)
- Skull Walker
- 3 man Dead Lad Fireteam
- 3 man Dead Lad Fireteam

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Battle for the Masses - Battle Report

Well, this Friday we finished the remainder of our game beginning with turn 3. The forces of Humanity and Hill Dwarfs faced off valiantly against the Undead, Lizardmen, Greenskins, and Brass Dwarfs. The forces of "good" had already inflicted a break point against us by squishing a swarm of bugs, but our mighty Steamtank had already nearly broken their elite Dwarf Hammerers.

Poor elite Dwarfs, the forces of Darkness gain initiative and they are squashed under the spikes of its death roller.

The rest of the turn was not terribly exiting, though the dragon did make a mess of my Brass Dwarf Blunderbusses, while the two young griffins helped.

This brought the Dragon with in range of our Sorceress who then proceeded to cast Dust Storm, which in theory would kill the Dragon's effectiveness 'til the end of the game. Then it was dispelled pretty much immediately.

Over on the other side of the table a swarm of bugs was getting chewed up by spearmen, all the while blocking my Myrmidorcs' charge.

Meanwhile, a Dwarf hero was thwacking the skeleton archers soundly, which caused them to get slightly disgruntled, and well, decide to kill his ass. Still he did cause the skeletons to waver, setting us up with two wavering units for the next turn. I stupidly forgot about the Rally spells possessed by my Brass Dwarf Daemonsmith, and as a result, allowed the skellies to remain wavering into the next turn.

Our young Dragon also charged some wavering dwarfs in the flank, though they passed their check, game-ending was not possible.

Still, we managed to win initiative and inflict withering damage to break that same unit, thus winning the game for the forces of Darkness. Happy Birthday to me indeed

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Of Judge Dredd, Landships, and FWC

Charles will be absent from the Sand Table for the next three weeks, so we're going to dive into Dirtside once again. Eager to mix things up a bit further I suggested we try a Judge Dredd-style scenario in 28mm, knowing full well that at least Will would latch onto it. One problem came up when a scenario was suggested: I don't have a Judge Dredd model. This little problem was solved by buying the Indyclix Judge Dredd figure; not very attractive, but since I'm not in love with the Judge myself, it doesn't really matter.

So here's the set-up: a squad of hive/mega city enforcers, led by the Judge himself have gotten the wave that a bank heist is being organized by a gang of Triads, and are moving into the square to block their escape. Little does either side know, but a gang of Scavvies also got the tip and will attempt to take the goods while the scuffle's going on.

In Combat Zone terms, the Judge will be a Hero with Autopistol and Combat Suit, probably with improved melee dice.

He will be followed by a fairly normal corporate squad, with CO, NCO, and some sort of SAW.

The Triads will be represented by a Gang with a few specialists, including a Sumotori (Toughness +9) and a Kabuki Doll.

The Scavs will foll0w standard Scav gang rules, just need to see what sort of figures I have painted up.

Landships and FWC
Though we will be playing Dirtside these next couple of weeks, I intend to gear-up for FWC when we do our next Sci-fi campaign. With this in mind I'm trying to come up with viable figures for both Bolo-style super heavy tanks and landships.

In terms of landships, I consider the ideal to be Mobile Suit Gundam's Big Tray, shown here:

The problem is, no existing manufacturers make anything like it, so I've decided to adopt an alternative approach: Add a bunch of 6mm gun turrets to a 15mm hovertank, namely one from the GZG 15mm Stargrunt range.

The Kra'vak Heavy Grav Tank, High-Tech Grav Tank, and the Assault Sled all look like good candidates. As for the turrets, I may pick up a pack or two from the Dirtside range, or buy a couple Battletech tanks and scav the turrets from them. Not the cheapest route to go, I'd expect, but I don't intend on building more than one of these big boys.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Look, I've graduated...

No more LiveJournal posts to an unappreciative audience for me.

My objective in this blog is to chronicle the trials and tribulations of my various miniature wargaming projects, and hopefully motivate me to take more photographs. If at all possible I'd like to include WIP shots of all my various figures.

As of this week, I've accomplished nothing in the realm of miniature wargaming, though I did receive a copy of Future War Commander for my birthday, and I am looking forward to showing it to my local group this weekend.

Speaking of which, on the docket for this weekend is the remainder of our homebrew "Battle for the Masses" 28mm Fantasy mass battle game. Things are looking grim for the "goodies" as my steamtank will surely break their elite Dwarf unit if the "baddies" win initiative. I hope to post a battle report of sorts next time.