Sunday, 18 November 2018

December 2018 issue of Wargames Illustrated with the Cruel Seas "Boat" Sprue

Sequence of actions: Big kid enters candy store, sees best candy ever, buys ones (restrains himself from buying two but orders the pre-order Starter Set) and takes it home and immediately starts eating it (see below, the "candy"):

Big kid puts together the "candy" and is one happy kid [albeit no longer in the "candy shop"] knowing at least they have been assembled are ready for the 'painting tray' (see below, or on closer inspection are they?):

I have a piece left over and it does not seem to go obviously anywhere. Have I missed a bit of a gun? It seemed to be parted where all the other gun bits were, but I don't want to go just sticking a bit on any old where! (see below, middle left hand side - mystery piece):

I did a Warlord Games S-Boat Google search but all the images seem to look like the S-Boats or E-Boats (take your pick) I have assembled. Sadly the "sprue" was considered so straightforward it came without instructions. Any help appreciated (and thanks in advance)!

PS: I also notice that the "sprues" were a mixture of RN Vospers and KM E-Boats. They seem to be selling really fast! In fact no Vospers were left by the time I picked up my copy.

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Both Of These Blogs Should Have More Followers

Looking around the Blogshpere and occasionally you come across Blogs that have just started and deserve a much large audience due to their content and quality. These two fit the category nicely: 

Lardistan and other Goodness:

Tomorrow When The Revolution Begins:

Take a look, I don't think you will regret it!

Friday, 16 November 2018

Early World War I: Canvas Eagles Dawn Patrol (1/144)

Dawn over the Western Front. A photo reconnaissance Be2 is escorted by an early war Bristol Fighter  [not to be confused with a later war BrisFit]. The sky is a clear blue but the RFC flyers will have to contend with the rising sun, so "Beware the Hun from the sun!"(see below, please also note the early war "dirty dope" [Yellow] paint scheme):

A lone fighter from the Imperial German Air Service is prowling the skies in his Fokker Eindecker EIII (see below, the Kallista scenery is a natural fit for the Canvas Eagles rules, the trench-line/no-man's land being a bespoke additions. The "white poker markers" represent "Archie" positions and the "blue poker markers" represent 'areas of interest' that the High Command want to be photographed (see below):

The forces converge. Spoiler alert the planes fly past each other without any damage to each other. The German plane did let off a medium burst [Note: Wisely the pilot did not want to risk his guns jamming with a long burst] of machine gun fire to no effect. Then there was a knock at the door! As we were playing a "rolling game" this meant another German plane was about to enter the fray (see below, the German plane has a slight advantage in that it has the sun behind it):

There was a gasp as a sleek state of the German art killing machine appeared, the Albatross II. This was a nasty shock to the Entente! Immediately it dived into a head on attack with the Bristol Scout (see below, just in sight s the base of the EIII about to Immelman back into the combat zone):

Despite taking many valuable pictures the Be2 lingered far too long over the German lines and the slow lumbering "photo recon bus" paid a heavy price by mixing it with the deadly Albatross (see below, two "red hits" caused an unsustainable eight engine hits and the Be2 disintegrated):

The "rolling battle" meant that the player simply picked up a new plane and returned to the fray. This time a green painted RFC DH2. As the Entente were getting a bit of a pasting I also decided to step down from being an umpire and join the fray in a Nieuport (see below):

Rather than being a Nieuport 11 as per the model, I had picked up the stats for a Nieuport 10 which is a two-seater observation plane. No matter that seemed to be fairer so we just played on (see below, I was desperately angling myself away from the Albatross II, leading it rather unkindly onto the RFC fighter pair who were knocking pieces out of the German EIII):

The game ended with a tactical German win. The smoking EIII made it off table (just), although I had taken a photograph of an interesting trench-line, albeit from a very high altitude. What swung it to the Germans was the still burning wreck of the Be2 deep inside their lines.

Good fun was had by all and the plan is to take this game to the local Stockton Battleground Wargames Show on Saturday 24th November as a participation game. If you are there please feel free to stop by and say hello.

Thursday, 15 November 2018

GMT Board Game: "A Distant Plain" Third Reprint

This one has been on the "bucket list" for some time now - alongside Matrix Games. "Out of Print" and at ridiculous eBay prices prohibited my earlier attempts at getting it. However after signing up on the GMT P500 reprint scheme (one year later) I am the proud owner of said game (see below, see Board Game Geek listing:

It is part of the Counter Insurgency (COIN) genre of games, asymmetrical warfare. It has also been promoted by various speakers over the years at the Connections UK Conference. More impressively it has been acknowledged as a respected and informed narrative on the dynamics of the conflict. The co-designers Brian Train and Volko Ruhnke alongside their keynote addresses at UK Connections 2018 gave de-construction insight to a military replay by active serving officers and governmental officials. So in the same vain that I "had to" get Advanced Squad Leader (ASL) because the 1st Royal Irish Commander Ivor Gardiner recommended it, this was a "bucket list" must for me! The hidden bonus is that it has "high" solitaire play (bots can run three of the sides) so there is no excuse in not getting it played over Xmas.

You Tube Videos explaining the game:

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Strange Bedfellows: Malburians and Tyranids/Necrons from Warhammer 40K - Painting Tray Update

In preparation for a replay of The Battle of Ramillies in January 2019 I am in the midst of preparing a unit of Spanish-Italian troops for the French Army in 28mm. Behind them lie my Tyranid and Necron foes strange bedfellows on the pairing table. It is a case of transfering the painting techniques in one period across to another (see below, Vallejo Paints and Wash greatly come to my aid):

Progress Update: The Malburians have their "shade" colours down, all that need to be done is lighten up the figures with a "light grey" base and follow with a "white highlight" on the tunics. The Malburian "fancy stuff" (laces, garters and stockings and cuffs) for this unit [Grimaldi] are mainly 'red'. I have instated the "factory production line" system getting little bits of the same thing done across the whole unit in one night!

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

WWI - You Tube Series - Week by Week (5 Seasons) Amazing!

Timed nicely or rather fittingly to finish with the 100th. anniversary of the end of WWI.

I am going to have to start watching this! As I have Five Series to catch up .. !

Monday, 12 November 2018

Holiday Arms Cache in 20mm

A recent visit to Edinburgh saw an opportunity to visit Wonderland and rampage through their 20mm figures selection (nothing beats having things physically in you hands creating budget dilemmas of all sorts). I simply could not resist these US Tank Riders from HaT. I did not "need them" for any particular "order of battle" or troop type but I could just see them enhancing the look and feel of any of the US kit I have with scruffy GI's lounging around (see below, they all have good character features and you get quite a lot too): 

Meanwhile I could not help noticing in the Italeri model section are rather large Italian cannon! Something I had seen before but hadn't picked up and later regretted it. It was a compulsory purchase. I so wished I had picked up a 1/144 scale F22 when I saw one years ago! That will be my HMS Repulse and KGV story all over again, waiting 10+ years for it to reappear (see below, this is part of my slow churn 20mm - 1/72 scale Western Desert force project): 

The figures look great, not much to the build and it looks slightly, dare I say it H.G. Wells "Little Wars"? All I seem to be missing from my Italians is a little transport (you did not walk anywhere in the desert),  a couple of Light Tanks [Fiat L6/40 and L3/33] an earlier Medium Tank [M11/39] and a large car/small truck with a gun in it called a Sahariana (see below, all will come with the passage of time):

Note to self: There is no definitive start/end dates to the above, more growing the collection. I also stocked up on a collection of 15mm WWII Zvezda models, but that is another story. I also noticed a collection of Strelets/Italeri Japanese Infantry kits that had to wait for another time ;)