Monday 30 November 2015

When is enough actually enough

I've been pondering my collection as I'm running out of space, and after the challenge this year  a very small lead hillock. I have about 40 full or nearly full file boxes of figures with space for about 4 more (approx 4000 figs overall - not vast but not small either). I have decided to limit myself in the future (stop sniggering at the back). I will fill the remaining spaces in boxes to complete collections and then decide if I expand one period to give huge battles or start a new one to complete a hole in the chronology, or ignore all my previous thoughts and just carry on regardless. My expansion thoughts are towards ancients, I have 4 armies none of which are big enough to fight epic battles.
At Battleground I moved to complete the colonial collection and I've nearly completed my VBCW collection, which I dropped this evening. I have enough space for one more squad not including 3 unfinished mortar crews and these postal workers that I bought on the recommendation of Matt Crump from Ironclad Miniatures. The eyes came out funny.

Sunday 29 November 2015

The Ballard of Keith

It was the Battleground Show yesterday in Stockton and I had great day. I met Roy Williamson, who was riding shotgun on one of the 2 cowboy games,  and for the 1st time Dave Docherty, who was running the other one (more of that later) and Matt Crump. It was great to talk to them all and there are potential plans afoot for a VBCW clash for control of the Pennines between me and Matt.
I spent quite a lot, although most has gone to my family to give me back as Christmas presents, so you can wait like I have to, or is stuff for the bonus rounds of the painting challenge, which will be shown when its done. So all I can show are some telegraph boys and a British mountain gun.

From the bring and buy I bought a selection of trees, £4 for the lot (massive bargain)

From the same guy I bought all these fences for £3

The most fun I had was playing Dave Docherty's cowboy game on a really well made table. 

The objective was for a hard as nails bounty hunter, the man with no name, to escort his prisoner from the hotel in the centre of town to the train before it leaves and to exit the table. He was against the town law, the Pinkertons and the prisoners brothers The bounty hunter was played by 2 lads name James and Ben who renamed the bounty hunter Keith!.
I played the prisoners brothers.

Ben and James played well and quickly headed North and stole an  wagon and made a swift B line to the train. The Law and the Pinkertons got into a scrap and I advanced towards the train as fast as possible. Keith hurtled the wagon across town, running over the towns folk - brilliant move and proper brutal.
I made it tothe train whilst one of the brothers stole a horse and raced for the train, killing a Pinkerton on the water tower whilst at the gallop.

Keith and the prisoner made it to a cattle car as the train started to leave and I got one guy onto the roof. The 2nd brother was gunned down by Keith as he tried to board the train. With only 2 turns left the 3rd brother galloped along side the train 

 Opened fire with with his Colt and .....

I won in a proper Hollywood style. I was lucky, although I did do a little dance, Ben and James played very well and couldn't have done it any better. The rules are on Dave's blog and were great fun. I feel the need to dust off the cowboy collection and play.

Friday 27 November 2015

A Plethora of Pathans

With the 6th Analogue Hobbies Challenge approaching I decided to practice my production line set up. I bought these Pathans at the Border Reiver Show (£20 for 31 figs which may be Old Glory). They took be 3 nights to do and I like them, although the dry brushing is a little thick in places. That will be 165 points Curt... wait that's not yet is it. Patience.

Tomorrow is the Battleground Show in Stockton tomorrow to do some Christmas shopping, meet some bloggers and play cowboys.

Sunday 22 November 2015

Winnie the Pooh and the Grumpy Day

My reverie of yesterday lasted until this morning and for some reason I've been grumpy all day and unable to focus. Did a bit of this and a bit of that and painted a few random figures. I also didn't like the photos from yesterday and so I took another one to try and get a better angle.

I also painted a couple of Foundry Greek figures

a couple of frostgrave figures, well 1 and a random free barman from Hasslefree

and a couple of very old Citadel Dwarf wizards fro a Dwarf villagers set that I bought in my youth, I love the one that has just woken up

Off to the Battleground Show next weekend to do some shopping, pick up a bargain and maybe play a game or 2, Old Glory have a sale on there (6 for 5) which is pretty good as they are cheap anyway. I've never bought them before  and am looking to expand the size of my ancient armies, so opinions on their figures is appreciated

Saturday 21 November 2015

Stripper Transport

Curt Campbell has unveiled the 6th Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge , The most important announcement of the blogging year. 

I got started with all this blogging mularchy because I entered last year, came 5th with 2648 points and won the people's award for flying carpet wars. Plus I started this blog.
I've set myself a challenging target of 2k points as I have 3 armies to paint, Republican Roman, Carthaginian and Zulu. I have also set up a side bet with Michael Awdry to paint the most Zulus. actually we both have to paint all our Zulus to win the Cetshwayo Challenge to recieve a painted Zulu InDuna from the loser. The problem is that he has 32 and I have 170, Never been the hare before.
I purchased this figure to use in one of the bonus rounds but none are suitable so I painted it today. It's from Hasslefree and is a brilliant sculpt of a female figure riding and undead, disemboweled stone troll. The troll is name Bob, cos that's the sound his head makes when it hits a wall. The rider is nearly naked, it's a Hasslefree figure, and looks a bit like a stripper.

I also watched the Netflix series Jessica Jones, the Marvel PI thing. It's great and David Tennant plays the bad guy with great vigour. Basically I've constructively done nothing for 24 hours and feel mightily refreshed

Sunday 15 November 2015

Ancient AAR

The greatest sporting commentary quote was said by the late great Sid Waddell commentating on the Darts final victory by Eric Bristow in 1984

 "When Alexander of Macedonia was 33, he cried salt tears because there were no more worlds to conquer … [Eric] Bristow's only 27."

However Alexander never thought about conquering Scotland. Today I fought a battle of Macedonians vs Picts using WAB rules. Okay so they would never have met geographically or temporally but who cares, aren't these what ifs one of the greatest things in our hobby.
The Greeks were 2 phalanxes, I unit of hoplites, 3 units of skirmishers, a unit of light cav and a unit of Companions. Against these the Picts were 1 unit of noble warriors, 3 units of warriors, 2 units of skirmishers, 1 unit of light cav, 1 unit of noble cavalry and some berserkers.

The Picts started on the left with cavalry on one wing and warriors on the other. The centre was held by the nobles and skirmishers.
The Greeks had the Phalanxes in the centre, hoplites on the right and cavalry and skirmishers on the left.
The battle started with the Greeks advancing on the flanks and countered by the Picts

The Pict LC chased of the Greek slingers and the noble cavalry and the Greek LC clashed. 

The Pict general was decisive and the Greeks were routed, pursued and destroyed

The caused the Phalanxes to wheel to protect their flanks from the Pict cavalry.

On the other flank the Picts and the hoplites charged into eachother with the Picts releasing a single berserker during the charge.

The berserker kills 2 hoplites and the units clash. It is a close run thing but the berserker was decisive and the hoplites rout (just).
The next turn saw the Picts destroy the slingers and then are engaged by the Companions in a wedge formation. The 2 generals met head to head and fought to a draw. All around them however the Picts were killing the greeks and after 2 rounds of combat the greeks routed leaving the 2 phalanxes effectively alone to be shot to death.
Overall it was a crushing victory for the Picts who were lucky with the dice but the Greeks were too dispersed and got surrounded before the phalanxes could engage.
No song is appropriate on the terrible weekend, 

Thursday 12 November 2015

Here's 1 I made earlier

This one is a bit of a cheat as these Foundry figures have been 90% painted for over a year, purchased for a bargain at the Border Reiver Show, They only needed shields, spears and basing.  I have about 12 more to finish a Macedonian army.

I'm planning to fight a WAB battle at weekend, my first in years using these figures, and some more obviously. Whilst not the best system I grew up using Warhammer and I am comfortable with the rules. Hopefully I'll publish the AAR next week.

Wednesday 11 November 2015

Somebody's gonna get their head kicked in tonight

Finished of a second stand of Zulus today to give me an Impi. Overall I like the effect but needs some tweaking and a bit of a haircut. Only 174 to go, but I'll save them for the winter's painting challenge. I have a bit of a reckless side bet with Michael Awdry. I will paint 4 times as many Zulus as him during the challenge, winner gets an Induna

Next up is a Vampire Count's hearse. This is from West Wind an a cracking figure. It is very pointy model and I've stabbed myself often with it. Not overly happy with the base, should have made the cobbled street out of Super Sculpty.

I bought the best of the Rezillos today so obviously this 

Friday 6 November 2015

Impressions of Zulus

This is my 4 post in 4 days, it's amazing how productive being ill is. Actually much better now but not up to going the pub so watched the footy and painted some Zulus.
I bought these from ebay a couple of years ago, a couple of hundred figs for about £40. However they were rubbish with a few Foundry figs and a lot of Warrior figs and  some amorphous lumps that were masquerading as figures. I have been reluctant to paint them because of the poor quality but inspired by yesterdays long grass post I formulated a plan.
I would base them on a single base of 12 figures with the good figs at the front and the poorer quality ones at the back. Then add lots of long grass to obscure the figs.

The painting was very simple and I did these 12 in a couple of hours. Couple of bases will make an impi.

Thursday 5 November 2015

Go Home

The boss sent me home from work today and took over my afternoon's teaching. Think I may actually ill and not have man flu.
Long bath, fixed the tap (it was not properly screwed on) in 5 minutes. Drank Lemsip, rubbed Vick over the relevant areas and went to bed for a couple of hours. Woke up feeling human, which is good cos I've got lots of research meetings and teaching tomorrow
So I did a bit of painting.

First up 3 masked Africans from a Northstar lucky bag

Next up some homemade figures. Whilst I love the variation you get in plastic figure boxes you do end up with a very full bits box. What would be a good idea would be if somebody made body and leg only packs of figures that I could stick heads and arms to. Does anybody know if anybody does that?
So I tried to make my own using a very simple carved body and legs, making a plaster mould and then casting using the spare metal that I have accumulated over time. Generally it didn't work very well, the mould was poor  and the metal doesn't like to be cast more than once. It becomes very very hard once set and very difficult to file and model, you need to add bismuth as a flow improver.
These figures had the body and legs covered with a thick Miliput cloak and arms and heads from the Perry Dervish set.

All that said I like the final effect. The grass is from a hanging basket liner glued on this a glue gun (hot melt glue is my personal nemesis) and the effect looks pretty good.

Wednesday 4 November 2015

Sacrificing Students to Odin

I've get bloody freshers flu, still. It's just a horrible cold that has lasted 3 weeks given to me by 1 of 40,000 students that arrived from all over the planet at the start of term. I've threatened to sacrifice the culprit to Odin if I don't get better, If I can't find them then it's whoever comes bottom in the next test. I think that's fair.
Also my bath is broken and there is no localised shutoff for the tap so I have to turn it off at the stop cock which will create hell with the heating supply. Showers don't cut it when you have a cold.
Rant over.
I have managed to do some more painting in my dilapidated state. A couple of Hasslefree figures for frostgrave

an out of focus apprentice

A big buxom warrior, think we dated once

There are also a couple of zombie fighters from Northstar and studio miniatures

This guy is obviously deranged and thinks he's Robin Hood with a catapult that fires explosive arrows and dustbin lid shield

He started out as a Yakusa thug but is now a surfer

Tuesday 3 November 2015

Daisy Chainsaw

Just a quick post today, my phone is playing up so just a couple of photos of completed figs. The 1st is a zombie fighter from Hasslefree

I like how she came out and will obviously be called Daisy.
The 2nd figure is a simple conversion of a 19th Century officer from a Northstar luck bag into Lord Percy's Butler


After (base need finsihing

I've also finished the latest Last Kingdom book - Warriors of the Storm - by Bernard Cornwell. It's a cracking read. i'm also enjoying the TV series
This song fits the bill nicely