Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Sheffield Triples circa 2003 and plans for 2015 and beyond...

Sensational 40 mm Peninsular Skirmish game put on by some very clever chaps in Sheffield many moons ago.

As we approach 2015 the whole taking stock of the years past gaming and time in the hobby tends to be something we bloggers reflect on.

For me 2014 was a busy one with the release of the Sudan Desert rules "The Sands of Sudan" inspired by the games of Peter Gilder way back in the days of Wargames World etc.  These rules have gone tremendously well and the reception has on that has certainly been beyond my expectation.  To those who have purchased a set, played games already with them, wished me well and referred them to friends a great and heart warm thank you.

Another view from the side which shows the tremendous effort put on by these chaps.

French Hussars scamper across the bridge...too late however to save their companion hanging from the tree!

Membership of the AMG or "A Military Gentlemen" forum has been a highlight for me.  Those who were fortunate enough to purchase the wonderful John Ray book of the same name were invited to enter the forum.  What an experience it has been!

I have "met" some of the doyens of the hobby across Europe and the Americas and it has been breath-taking.  Their thoughts, projects, work and games have been a sight to enjoy and savour.

In fact as a direct result of a wonderful thread on 40mm British Peninsular figures I have added these images from a trip to England many years ago where I was fortunate to meet up with some fantastic folk and enjoy some wonderful games and trade.  These figures were painted by the very clever and talented Dave Jarvis and the game was put on by Stuart Hutchinson I believe.  Many of these buildings are now in the collection of Ian, another AMG member and fine chap!

British troops head up the mountain defile.

The club of which I am a member, the Napoleonic Wargaming Society (NWS) has grown from strength to strength with increasing membership numbers, great weekend game days, exciting new plans and an enthusiastic approach to many different areas of wargaming.

Another view of the bridge and the French advance.

Magnificent detail in this boat in port.

Virtually railway modelling vignette.  French gunner has met his demise in the watery river flowing under the bridge.

Poor picture of Sharpe, Harper, Teresa and friends.

Plans for 2015 include more wargaming in the Sudan, some additional Peninsular action with son Ben and hopefully his younger brother Alex tagging along as well.  As I type I have a brigade of lovely Connoisseur Spanish infantry in Bicorne nearing basing completion.

Thanks to all who have taken the time to visit my two blogs this year and good luck in all your endeavours in the coming year.

I hope that 2015 is a wonderful one for yourselves and your loved ones.

All the best.


Sunday, 30 November 2014

...and now for something a little different.

These are a very, very interseting set of rules!
I love wargaming!

I enjoy the researching of historical periods, the collection of figures, the investigation into uniforms and standards they fought under and the tactics they used.  I also enjoy the basing of these figures once painted and the battles we can play with our friends and other gaming companions in a fun and relaxing atmosphere (that's right I rarely play competitions).

However another fascinating aspect of the hobby which is truly very fulfilling and satisfying, is the opportunity to converse and correspond with wargamers all over the globe.  We all have such a wonderful hobby in common and hence dicsussiobs are often like talking to a good mate down at the club.

One such fellow is the very famous Simon Miller a.k.a The Big Red Bat at

Simon is famous the globe over for his wonderful grand manner style Ancients games that he runs in conjunction with the Aventine Miniatures and the Wargmes, Soldiers and Strategy aficionados of the hobby.

He has now self-published an electronic version of his wonderful rule set "To The Strongest".  Having been privy to the machinations of Simon's versions, proofing and his meticulous attention to detail I HIGHLY recommend thees rules to all gamers who enjoy a fast playing battle with rules that are simple to rule however which have a very subtle and distinct tactical edge to them.

The grid based system is one which I strongly believe is a breakthrough in terms of large scale demonstration or "Battle Day Games" where thousands of figures are involved and you want to attract the entire plethora of gamers, fringe gamers and those who may well be enticed in joining this wonderful hobby.

Cannot wait to play Guido in a game soon.

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Wanted - Gripping Beast Antigonus figure please.

Reward on offer for this man.  One eye general of note who may be quite old and hence
easy to apprehend.  Do watch his sword though!!

I was hoping that the power of the bloggersphere may be able to assist me here.

I have been chasing this particular Gripping Beast limited edition figure for some time and was hoping that someone may have a couple spare that they would be willing to sell me.

Here's hoping!

Jeffs latest work - good guy to wargame against as well!

This search was resumed as a result of the catalyst of friend and club member Jeff Champion having his fourth book published by Pen and Sword recently.  This one is on the old fox Antigonus the One eyed, some say the greatest of the Successor Generals who fought for Alexanders empire and beyond in what is a most fascinating period of ancient history.

The book is available now through Amazon, Book Depository etc. and from what I have read so far, it is a wonderful depiction of a most amazing character.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Impetus Rematch - Those "Pesky Persians" rise up again!

Sassanid General and Standard Bearer give a bit of moral support from the rear!

We decided to strike while the iron was still reasonably hot and get the boys out again for another battle.  Once again the interest was good around the club and young Chris and Kiwi Andrew grabbed the reins so to speak and endeavoured to see how we could butcher these excellent rules!
Roman battlelines - slightly fuzzy in the morning least thats my story!

Equites Illyricani look to secure the flank.

The battle was a 450 points aside game.  Being slightly unfamiliar with some of the subtler aspects of the rules we did mess a few things up:  Wheeling importance, evading of lights, moving up to move skirmishers to name a few.  However the game was great fun yet again!

Wonderful shield designs from LBM - really sensational to work with.  Whatever did we do before Mr Stephen Hales.
  What a clever fellow!!

Persian levy/militia are finally blooded...and do a damned fine job as well.  Arrogant little latinos!

Those heavies look the business.  Gripping Beast Late Romans and Persian cavalry.

The Sassanid Right wing.  Experimented with skirmishers in front to protect the Saravan Clibanarii however really only negated my own fire which was of a superior nature.
Right Wing Commander - "Go forward lads!".

Nice "A and A Miniatures" Saravan General.

 Another game set for two weeks with another three new players.  One of the outstanding aspects of these rules is the beautiful look and aesthetics of the game.  It garners many comments and certainly attracts people to the table.

Until next time.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Impetus - Late Roman v Sassanid Persian

Two units of Comitatenses with supporting Sagitarii archers - Gripping Beast figures.
Well I really am enjoying ancient wargaming again!

It has been a funny period for me since the demise of WAB.  At our local club we had played Warhammer Ancient Battles for many years and thoroughly enjoyed the games, even though there have often been many vagaries with the results, heroic leaders and their devastating effects on combat etc.  We enjoyed the games however more often that not we came down to 10.20 pm on the clock and the great rush for a charge and a result took over.

"Winning draw i think mate".  Countered by "You have to be bloody joking!!".  All in good spirits ...and that's just the way it was.

Sassanid Saravan cavalry - in layman terms for the aged...Clibanarii with lance and bow!
 With the demise of Warhammer Historical and the very poor way they relaunched a flawed system with new expensive books and re-published "old lists" for profit the ancients period for whatever reason left me a little cold.

We have played Clash of Empires at the club.  WAB V2.0 as some put it.  Very good system but I have been looking for something a little different.

Sassanid Militia on opportunity...though I am sure that they hope the "opportunity" never presents itself!

Last year at Cancon, our national wargaming show put on by the CGS every Australia Day long weekend, I caught up with good mate Matt Williamson (Bluewillow) who was playing in an Impetus Tournament along with several other 28mm Ancient luminaries such as Chris K, Richard T etc.  What struck me initially was the size of the bases and the ability to craft together more than a group of soldiers on 20mm square bases.

Looking at the games being played convinced me that this was the way to go.  With cash in hand I hurried off and grabbed the rules plus the supplements from good mate Ian at War and Peace and we were off.

At least that what I thought...

Roman cavalry to the flank - Equites and Illyricanii. 
The biggest task for me this year has been the publishing of the Colonial Sudan rules inspired by the games of Peter Gilder many years ago at the WHC.  It has been a large task as I have felt that to do a half-hearted job getting them out and fully playable would be a disservice to the early memories and inspiration drawn from those series of Wargames World that I first read as a young teenager many moons ago.

These are however, nearing publication as the final proof reading is taking place as I type.

CP Saravan - the cataphract style "Super Heavy Cavalry" as Phil Barker would have put it.  Quite potent and resilient
mounted troops though no bow option available in Impetus for them so some troops may need to be re-horsed!
 With teh help of the very friendly people on the Impetus forum via the website  it was obvious that these rules had a massive following and that they were well supported and passionately played.

Those T supporting archers can be very, very effective against mounted who refuse to engage to the front.
The final straw was visiting some sites of Australian Impetus player - quite inspirational.  Richards "Tartys Tin"  was sensational.

At the same time some players at the club who had normally played DBM, DBMMM, DBMMMM (maybe one M too far!), FOG etc. were looking for something different and started to dabble in Impetus as well.  The dabble has become a full blown playing of the game at the NWS, albeit in 15mm.

One of the Roman Commanders NOT to be disgraced and needing to flee the battle with his broken unit. 
The rest of the chaps did rather better though!

So taking to the shelves, grabbing figures that hadn't seen the light of day for many years, the conversion took place.  Many cuts, scrapes, superglued and pva'ed fingers later I had produced 450 points of Late Rom,ans and Sassanids to play a battle in 28mm at the club last night with Geoff Marshall.

Pivotal moment as the Cataphracts of both sides clash...Romans prevailed after a bloody stoush! 

Though we got a few things wrong (inches instead of 2cm for 28mm...made a difference for fire and movement - first game in 28mm though so can be forgiven) the game was great fun.

Persian horse archers skirmish with their Roman enemies from the heights.
 This battle result?

The Romans pressed well initially on the right and had early success however the heavier Sassanid cavalry took its toll against their lighter armed opponents.  On the left the Roman attacked aggressively with the cavalry wing and were shot to pieces,  In the centre the cataphract battle decided the battle with the Persians breaking after they were swept from the field.  Excellent game played to a tactical conclusion in just over 2 hours including breaks.  Very enjoyable indeed and well played Geoff. 

Already there has been some interest from other chaps at the club and the boys will get another outing in a few weeks.  In the meantime some more basing and painting beckons.

Friday, 5 September 2014

Crossroads - US forces in Normandy 1944

"That way buddy!".  Motorcycle riding MP directs traffic at the crossroads.  Dodge Deuce Trucks transporting troops to the front and also picking up the occassional stranded paratrooper as well!! 

Thought I would post a few shots of the continuing US forces on the build for Battlegroup Overlord, Chain of Command etc.  The models are all Bolt Action from Warlords and are lovely resin and white metal vehicles which are a delight to paint.

Easy models to paint - I believe this one without the tarpaulin is actually a model from Company B but need to check.

The Greyhound is a BA model with all of them having the correct armoured division marking etc.

Lovely Blacktree US troops purchased from the very talented Paul Darnell's collection many years ago.  These chaps actually had a starring role and appeared in his excellent WW2 Touching History publication.
 The photograph above shows some grunts looking for a ride as they rush through the churchyard - hopefully there may be some room on those Deuces!

Rear view of the vehicles.
These are part of the growing force that we are building in order to play an entire array of rules both at home and at the club.  We are most enamoured of the Battlegroup Overlord rules as we enjoy the wide variety of vehicles and support units available etc.

More to follow as soon as time allows.

Friday, 15 August 2014

US M3 Half-tracks from Bolt Action

The platoon out looking for some trouble...all Bolt Action vehicles painted by yours truly.

One of the most wonderful aspects of flicking through the many excellent blogs on the worldwide web these days is the very easy way some of them inspire you to try and emulate their wonderful work.  One such site is the very famous Troop of Shrewe, whose work on modern and WW2 vehicles is simply superb.

These shots are my unashamed attempt to replicate his work, at an amateurish level mind you, for my US WW2 forces that we use at the club for all manner of games.

Charlie Company prepare to move out.

The plan was to attempt to keep all vehicles as individual as possible whilst maintain a "uniform look".

"Fancy a cigarette fella?".

Really like how the seated GI's have helped set off the vehicles.

Brass casing from the .50 calibre MG.

Looking quite pensive in the back.

I tried to get as much stowage, helmets, spare carbines etc on the vehicles to help distinguish them from
each other.

Bit of a rust pigmented was across the floor to add the look of mud and debris.

We based these vehicles on mdf to help protect all of the guns and other bric- a - brac from handling of my hands and those of my boys.

Rear view

The Gunner here is normally on the back of the jeep in the warlord range but I liked his look of steely determination.

Might have gone a bit mad here on the Silfor tufts.

Beautiful sculpted model from BA

Discarded ammo belt on the floor...from Verlinden.

The resin knapsacks are fantastic apparel...linen with a wash.
Final half track of the platoon with a rear gunner from Company B.
View from the other side of the model.

Really like these seated troops - have I mentioned that??/

All the vehicle markings are from Company B - GREAT people to deal with.