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Sand Dunes, Grey riders, Keeper and Getting Geared up for Command and Colors Ancients

After some fun days in France as reported last time (see here) and visiting a number of places in Bordeaux, I think the most fascinating thing was neither a Chateau nor an old Fortification.  Instead I think the Dune of Pilat was one of the highlights of the Trip.  It is the tallest sand dune in Europe and I have not seen as much sand since I visited Sahara a few years back. After the time there I think I had enough sand in my shoes to cover a 6 by 4 feet table (more about the dune here).  It gave me a strong kick to get on with the Rommel project and the desert bases (But not too strong it seems as I did s**t all on that project this week).

Rising from the Ashes

I realised that I need to do another 46 bases of cavalry for the next Great Northern war project so I prepared them and gave them a coat of grey over the weekend – I will send away most of these to Marching in Colour (link to this excellent painting service here) – as my little Autumn treat (see more here).

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Command and Colors

Since I went to Joy of Six earlier this year I have been thinking about the Ancient Command and Colors game staged by the Wyre Foresters (see more here, the game is shown at the end of the post).  Having recently got the Tricorne version of the game my Command and Colors itch has become more difficult to resist.

 

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Great Game and you can read more about it on Boardgame Geek – here.

 

I have a fair few unpainted Republican Romans from Baccus (link to their Republicans here), and some Rapier ones too (link to their ancient range here), that I have had in one of the boxes in a dark corner (I recently discuss these boxes of shame here).

The game uses a hexagon board with terrain tiles and wooden blocks. The approach is to replace the hexagon board with sanded and static grasses tiles and the blocks with miniature bases.

I decided to got with 70mm hexagon bases (side to side, being 80mmish at its widest point) and using 2 No. 50mm by 20mm bases for each unit.  I will use the following basing convention for the number of miniatures:

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Infantry basing convention – Auxillia (two rows of 8 miniatures – 16 in total per base, 32 per unit), Heavy Infantry (two rows of 10 miniature – 20 in total per base, 40 per unit), Medium Infantry (two rows of 11 miniatures – 22 in total, 44 per unit), Light infantry (6 per base in random order, perhaps more!, 12 per unit)

 

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Cavalry (and war machines and warriors) Basing Convention Heavy Cavalry (one row of 8 horses, 16 per unit), Medium Cavalry (one row of 6 horses, 12 per unit), Elephants/War machines (one row of two miniatures, 4 per unit), Light Cavalry (one row of 4 horses, 8 per unit), Warriors (12 models spread over a base, 24 per unit).

I intend to send a few bases worth of these to Marching in Colours to get this project progressed a little bit more.  I did throw some quick paint on a few to have a look how they would turn out and to give to Chris as a reference for his work.

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Some Heavy Triarii Infantry – Rapier on the left and Baccus on the right – Note that the Rapier base is slightly bulkier and the figure look taller than they are compared to the Baccus ones. The Miniatures work very well together.

 

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Princeps/Hastati from Baccus

 

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In addition I need to get some Hexagon bases for the terrain and after surfing around I found that Supreme Littleness Designs (link to them here) sells 6 No. 70mm bases for £1.  I will need to figure out how many I would need, there are 113 hexagons on the board, but I want to have a few more for special terrain, like rivers, forts, hills, shoreline, etc.  For forest I intend to create small canopies that can be placed on top of the units, etc.   I think that there are about 20 scenarios for the Punic wars so I think I will count the units of each type and any terrain features to give me what I need.  I will get back to this in due course.

I could have gone with bigger bases for the units as well as the size of the hexagons but I think it will be big enough side project as it is.

He is a Keeper

I also pimped up one of the Dreadball Guards (Orcs) to a Keeper with a “ball glove” , using an old credit card and some spaghetti.  It ended up looking brutal enough – he is a keeper!

 

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A few small steps, but all of them in the right direction!

/Take care!

 

 

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Dreadballs of Fire and waiting for Command and Colors Tricorne

Sometimes the work-life balance does not swing favourably in terms of time left to do hobby related activities. This week, and I suspect the next week, will be one of those times.

The little time I did have this week was spent progressing on the Rats for Dreadball and they are now ready for some detailing. When they are done it will give a full Season One painted set-up with 4 teams (including the a full complement of MVPs).  Not great paint jobs but far better than the base grey colour of the plastic and I managed to do it in about 3 weeks of limited hobby time.  The fact that the Little One is into it as well makes it more motivational to crack on with.

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The Little One and I had a few good games of Dreadball using two human teams to get to grips of the rules – and we really like it.  I really recommend the series of videos by Andy2D6 on YouTube, the first one “How To Play DreadBall – Part One: The Board” can be found here.

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Very straightforward Tutorials on the Basic Game of Dreadball by Andy2D6

The following are a few shots from the games we played.  The Little ones blue guys was a bonus we got when we bought another base set of eBay – to add a few more Season 2 teams cheaply.  As per usual he rolled high and I rolled low, his Jacks (all-rounders) were as good slammers as my Guards (heavy hitters) and his ability to use the Strikers was very inspirational.  Nevertheless after a few games we got a nice flow and we really enjoy playing it (did I say we like it?).

 

Since I prefer my hat Tricorne I have been looking forward to the latest version of the Command and Colors rules (e.g. Memoirs 44 and Command and Colors Ancients) called Tricorne Command and Colors – The American Revolution.  I got my copy from Boardgameguru (see here) and I think that is the best deal currently on the net (or at least that I found browsing around).   I have to admit that I felt that the price was a little bit steep but I had already made my mind up and I suspect the first print run will sell out fast and then it will cost even more to get hold of a copy later.

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The rules booklet is downloadable here.   The following scenarios are covered:

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Extract from the Rules and Scenario Booklet

The following units are included (as the classical wooden blocks) to play the scenarios and I am tempted to do something with it in 6mm – at some point in the future. Baccus make all the miniatures needed (link to their AWI range here) and I think it would look absolutely fantastic.

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Extract from the Rules and Scenario Booklet

/ I hope it will be like a Carlsberg – Worth waiting for!  Incidentally I am also waiting for some magnets I have ordered to push on with the Rommel bases (see previous post here).  Have a good week!

 

 

Skirmish Wargames Show, DreadBalling and some Great Britons

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This was a nice weekend indeed, Saturday was spent driving around the Kentish/Sussex countryside and we went to Chartwell House (Churchill’s family home) and Penhurst Place (The Sidney’s family home for more than 460 years) – both well worth a visit.  On the way home we ended up in the Blacksmith Arms (in Cudham) where the comedian Harry Relph was born (1887 to 1928). He performed under the stage name “Little Tich” and was (amongst other things) famous for his routine with very long shoes (see a video here). They had his famous shoes on display in the pub – equally impressive with the Wellington boots we reported on some time ago (see here).  I knew immediately who he was as I had ended up listening to his 1910 recording “What a Risky thing to do” (see here) looking for some background music for a Call of Cthulhu campaign many moons ago.  A great, although not very tall, Briton (a Wikipedia write-up here).  I had a pint in his honour before we embarked on the short journey home.  I suppose you can do your own research on that other great Briton Churchill, if he is not familiar to you ;).

On the Sunday I went to the Skirmish Wargames show in Sidcup run by Redcoat Models(see here) – a small wargames show that occurs twice a year. I did not count the number of traders but call it 15 with about the same amount of wargames tables. The theme was Napoleonics and probably 1 in 4 of the tables were Napoleonic offerings.  I did not take many pictures but here is what drew my interest. I had a good time.

 

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The action around Utitsa from the Borondino 1812 Battle, by North London Wargames Group – 6mm action!

 

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Skirmish Wargames presented a 45mm scale skirmish battle using their “Tales of Derring Do!” rules involving Richard Sharpe and his Rifles, Spanish Guerillas, a female spy and some French Soldiers too.  It looked like everyone had a good time.  There was even a Film Crew present!

 

I played a game with John, who was running a fictional Battle in India with a Sikh uprising supported by French advisors (and some troops) against the British, using the Fire and Fury rules.  John had not laid on a table for 15 years but it did look good when it was all set up.  We used activation for getting reinforcements on the table but we both failed miserably but when we were successful John seemed to be able to get more out of each reinforcement wave – typically the French (yours truly) “spawned” one or two units whilst the British managed to get 6 to 10 units on the table.  It was fun and I managed to get a cavalry unit into the British outpost and steal a cannon.  However, the luck was only short-lived as they ran into a strong group of light infantry (Riflemen). One of those games that gets that narrative kick that makes all the difference in my view.  Many thanks John!, I think the game was yours 😉 .. Great fun.

Finally I had a nice chat with Glen Hardy of Art of War Shirts.  Glen has recently launched his business selling a nice selection of t-shirts that I think some of you may find nice – what I like is that they are nice designs and less in your face than some other offerings.  Do check out his webpage and get a few and/or let your better half and your mates know what you would like for Christmas (you know that any hard ones will be in the wrong scale or period anyway!).  Here is a link to his page.

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As for any progress this week I am slowly doing some DreadBall miniatures (yes I did get a few more teams). Doing Forge fathers and some MVPs this week but no progress on Rommel stuff.   The Better One said to me the other day “I did not know you were into this game now!”, “Been working on it for years!”, I answered back having just ordered a few more teams on eBay.

I based the Forge Father colour scheme of my favourite Swedish Coffee Brand Löfbergs Lila. Purple with some green detailing for strikers, yellow for jacks, red for guards and blue for the Keeper.  Can you smell the nice aroma?

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Talking about Great Britons, I could not avoid to reflect on the likeness with one of the MVPs and a very famous TV personality that recently passed away.  Anyway I let you reflect on your own.

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/ “Nice to see you, to see you nice!”, until next week!

 

 

 

 

DreadBall Season One – Old shiny never rusts

Slow week, again. But nonetheless some progress…

I did put the final touches on the two basic DreadBall teams this weekend, I am now ready for Season One! The season was originally “aired” in 2014 or something like that.  I am looking forward to this! If you know nothing about DreadBall then check it out here.  However if you are late to it, there are other variants and I believe a second edition in the making.  Having had a little look this weekend, the second hand market on eBay is favourable if you want to pick up some of the older stuff.

I promised the Little One a game but he fell asleep long before I had finished splashing paint – maybe we will get another opportunity this coming week! I did put them on the board to see how they would look.  Well what can I say it is me doing 28mm so I feel like the object of that famous Sting/Police song about the possessive lover – Every Breath you Take (slightly modified I must admit).

Every brushstroke you make and every detail you overpaint
Every mold line mistake, every inky stain, I’ll be watching you
Every layer you add, every wash you make, I’ll be watching you

I’ll be watching you!

I am very happy though and the Little One will love thrashing me on the field!

 

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I wanted the RefBot to look a little bit C3POish!  It is a mean looking lady!

 

However, as always, when I do get the finger out and finish an old project I tend to get some new inspiration so I got about 6 additional MVPs from eBay – they are mercenary veteran players that can be used to enhance a team.  The cosmic order will be restored on the lead, or in this case the plastic, mountain.  Old Shiny never rusts!

I suspect I will get the Ratmen (Veer-Myn) and the Dwarves (Forgefathers) team as well in a not too distant future – but I have decided I would do so as a reward when the MVPs are home and dry following the paint job (Sounds far too disciplined, doesn’t it?).  As stated already,  I am looking forward to this and the Better One did say that she would like me to do more sports – so here we go!

I also did some progress on my 6mm SciFi project – the Blue and the Green army.   We intend to give the Future War Commander rules a go using these.

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Next week I hope to start the Rommel bases (as discussed last time here, I got the miniatures this week but wanted to get some things off the workbench before getting into it. The 3mm tanks are SMALL!, but I suppose they should be) and also do some aircraft for the Sci-Fi project as I have some nice models I got before the holiday.  I want each army to have recon forces, infantry, tanks, artillery and air forces to allow combined arms type of games.

And yes I need to get started with this years large GNW project at some point – but not yet!…Not yet! (as Juba said in the Gladiator!).

 

 

/ Take Care