Current Projects

Although I haven’t taken any pics yet (bases still to finish…), there has been a fair bit of hobby progress in a scatter-gun sort of way.

I have recently been working on;

  • 28mm VBCW sailors to round out my Royal Navy force, for this year’s big game at the Ayton weekend with the LAW forum guys.
  • Diecast and mdf vehicles to go with the above
  • 28mm 17th century figures for general swashbuckling, and possibly Pikeman’s Lament games in the future
  • 28mm Woodland scenics tree sprues. They’ve got endless sharp points and are nasty buggers to work with. After moderate damage to my hands I have 12 more ready to base to add to my snowy winter setup
  • 15mm Dark Ages figures, which is an on-going tidying up exercise that is getting there slowly
  • 10mm Napoleonic Bavarians for 1809, these are my first ever attempts to paint 10mm and I did find them a bit tricky. I wasn’t sure whether to try to think of them as big 6mm or small 15mm. Still, in the end I think they look OK based for DBN. I need to try some Austrians next
  • 6mm Austrian SYW – 2 more battalions, with scaled down Warflag standards, which are working really well
  • General hobby room stuff to get things ship-shape (storage arrangements, getting the electrics and lighting sorted, etc). Still the final table to decide on, but in the meantime I’ve got a decent playing area
  • Starting to plan a couple of 4 player games that I’ll be hosting in July

Once I get something actually finished, bases and all, I’ll post pics!

On Display

The new games room offered me the chance to have something I’ve not had before – a display cabinet for figures.

It arrived yesterday, about a week earlier than I was quoted. When a priority bit of DIY like this needs to be done, it goes straight to the top of the list. As a result it’s now on the wall and full of figures!

It’s about 150 x 60cm, product name Alsino V16, from a big range of similar cabinets. Many come with pre-cut grooves for model trains, which naturally I avoided. I thought I’d fit more figures in but at least it’s made a significant dent in the pile of boxes. Very pleased!


Granted, not an original post name.

At the AMG weekend a few people brought along things to sell/dispose of and I picked this up from Paul for a few quid. It’ll fit in nicely with my non-specific colonial setting, either as an operational vessel for the locals or just as a nice piece of scenery. I gave it a dust, added the masts, and repainted the black bits. And that’s it, ready to go. 🙂


Coming up on 2016

As is the done thing at this time of year, I have been reviewing the year from a hobby perspective and looking ahead to next year.

I think I’ve made decent progress with some projects, and none at all with others. But I guess that’s the norm for most gamers. I spent more than I should have but hopefully nothing will be wasted and all will be used/painted/read within a couple of years!

The key projects were:

  • 28mm Post-Napoleonic/19th Century Colonial – for Sharp Practice and Ayton 2015
  • 6mm Franco-Prussian War – for the 4 player game in March and further formations added after that
  • 25/28mm Fantasy (largely re-paints) – for Frostgrave, which I haven’t played yet..
  • 6mm Seven Years War – at the end of the year, as a start to a major renewal of an old period

I dabbled with other things too, including Lion Rampant forces for future games, but didn’t get properly into it in terms of much painting – although I tried the rules out using 15mm figures and borrowed a retinue for the LAW forum day at Foundry.

Painting totals were:

  • 28mm   100 (plus about 80 I had painted for me)
  • 15mm   11 (crap, but still the best year’s output for a while!)
  • 6mm     900

For 2016 I have a few plans in mind already and the good thing from a motivational point of view is that I really want to get stuck into several of them immediately.

  • 6mm SYW – I have spent a fair few Christmas break hours basing (or re-basing) hundreds of figures for this project. I have about 800 painted already, but (gulp) 2,000 to do. It’ll take a while, and several re-visits to this project to get everything done, but now I’ve fixed the rules and the unit structures I’m very motivated to get as much done as possible in this first push.
  • 28mm 18th Century (not a duplicate of the 6mm, definitely, absolutely not). Ayton 2016 (end of April) is the target for this, but I haven’t decided on an order of battle for what I’m taking yet. Whatever, it’s unlikely to require a lot of painting and I intend to get into this from Feb/March onwards.
  • 6mm 1859 Austrians – I may of course become burned out doing SYW Austrians in this scale, but you never know. I really want this army and I’ll make it happen somehow.
  • 25/28mm Fantasy – I want to play Frostgrave and need to spend a bit of time on scenery. I already have the ‘winter’ terrain boards, I just need to assemble and paint the MDF ruins I’ve acquired this year, and scratchbuild some more using the high density polystyrene, which I’ve already had a play with. Figure-wise, there’s not a lot to do and I’m not far off having 2 decent warbands to start out with.

There are other things I’m interested in pursuing in 2016, and  possibilities include:

  • 1/3000 Naval – the age of sail. Originally bought (some a very long time ago) for Napoleonics, but now I’m thinking that the SYW, AWI and Revolutionary Wars would be more interesting. Easier to paint too! Who knows?
  • 15mm Ancients. There is a small group of LAW nutters who want to get together and play some Punic Wars battles in this scale. The lack of an agreed approach, set of rules, basing style or philosophy are merely ankle-high obstacles that we will inevitably overcome.. If so, I have a few more to paint to round out my existing armies.
  • More terrain boards, including a few additional river bends and some bigger hills
  • Jungle scenery (trees, suitable buildings, boats, etc) for a 28mm Colonial Sharp Practice campaign. The 2nd Edition of the rules will be interesting to see too.

Perhaps more importantly, I intend to get plenty of games in too. There’s the FPW campaign to finish with GM, hopefully in January, and then further one-off and campaign battles in a number of periods and scales. 2015 was pretty good for games all in all, and I’d like to do just as well in 2016.

So, lots to do and look forward to, which is the way with this brilliant hobby.

I’d like to wish all visitors a Happy New Year, and hope you re-visit in 2016.

SYW 6mm: a Re-start

After a long while, this is a project I am finally returning to – with an actual plan this time.

I have a lot of figures (all H&R), quite a number of which are already painted. But.. everything needs a minimum of a re-base and most need painting or at least a bit of touching up. A big project then, and naturally other things will need to go onto the back burner to accommodate this change of direction.

I’ll be using a heavily revised variant of the Realtime Wargames FPW rules, ie. retaining the core 6″ grid to govern unit positioning and movement, and unit bases to denote combat effectiveness. This will allow me to play some big battles with simple mechanisms, but of course I’m adding in the period flavour with specific rules for the SYW (and WAS).

The armies will be Prussian and Austrian, with a few Reichsarmee or allied auxiliaries for the latter, and to add a bit of colour and variety. After lots of thinking, prevarication and discussion with a fellow gamer, I’ve finally decided on the unit sizes and basing, which frees me up to get started. I’ve had many of the figures for over 20 years, and some for over 30. It’ll be good to get them ready for action again – hopefully there’ll be enough done for a small game or two next year. My initial target is to have enough to refight Mollwitz, or at least a SYW version of it.

Here are some of the first sample units, testing out the basing and the general look. Lots more to come!

The first Austrian Cuirassier brigade, regiments Stampach and Kalkreuth:


The first infantry battalions for each side, from the Prinz Moritz and Kaiser regiments respectively:


I’ll need some rustic German buildings too, for the villages of Bohemia and Silesia, and have plans to scratchbuild some basic cottages to add to commercially available churches, etc.

Some Fantasy Dabbling

It’s been a bit quiet on the Medetian front of late, caused by the usual excuses of a busy time at work and lots of other commitments. Still, I’ve managed a few bits of effort here and there – mostly around something new (which of course I need like a hole in the head..)

For quite a while now I’ve been thinking about trying to find a way of playing some fantasy games, based on a party of adventurers and some linked dungeon-crawls – you know the sort of thing. There are lots of games out there for this type of thing, including boardgames and board/figure cross-over games, etc. I hadn’t done a lot of research and was even thinking of designing something myself (and was a bit put off by the idea of having to obtain lots of floorplans or 3D dungeon scenery), so nothing was really happening with this idea. Then along came Frostgrave, which looks very nicely done, and likely to be spot on for me.

I have a reasonable head-start with stuff for this, including winter/snow terrain boards (although I appreciate that you can ignore this element of the background and set your games in any type of setting), buildings (although more on that later) – and lots of old figures from D&D and Rolemaster days.

I had a bit of nostalgic fun looking through these veteran figures from the ’80s and selected the most suitable for use with Frostgrave. They’d need re-painting but doing them one at a time should be quite good fun, so I’ve re-undercoated and re-based some. Where they were slotta based, I’ve done some fudging to get them onto 2p coins. I haven’t decided on the basing style yet, in terms of surface texture and painting, so for now I’m just giving them a smoothing coat of plaster to make things match.

Initially I’m working on two parties (referred to as Warbands in the game), one ‘good’ and one ‘evil’ in style. This is just for fun really, and to differentiate between the figures in a reasonably logical way. I’ve also got quite a few suitable monsters and other nasties that might be encountered, so should be able to get some early games in (when my pre-ordered rulebook arrives) without too much work.

The first few done:


Good old traditional adventurer types will fit into the henchmen categories, and a wizard with a pointy hat and staff will always be useful:

A Wizard and Apprentice team:

GW Empire Militia kit bashing. Lots of potential in these figures, from the 12 I had on sprues I’ve managed to make (in Frostgrave terms) 6 Thugs, 2 Infantrymen, 1 Archer, 1 Crossbowman, 1 Tracker and a Thief:

Of which two have been painted so far:

More old figure candidates for a possible repaint (not that I’m really likely to need more, but hey):

Some treasure markers to paint (Fenris Games):

Ideas on scenery next..


Quick Reference Sheet for Sharp Practice

During the games of Sharp Practice I played a few months ago I started to develop a QRS to aid play and reduce the amount of time I needed to spend hunting through the rules for things. Excellent though TFL rules are, the order of contents in some of their books can be a bit of a mystery!

I looked around and didn’t find much online. I liked what Arteis had produced and shared with the Yahoo group but decided I wanted something more condensed so that I could get everything on 2 sides of A4 paper (to be put back to back in a transparent sleeve and turned over as required).

In the end I went with MS Excel for ease of formatting and basically playing with text in boxes, and have got it pretty much as I want it now. It might not suit everyone (especially those who struggle with small text!) but I have decided to post links here and on the TFL forum in case it’s of use to anyone. I’ve used this QRS in a couple of games now and it works for me, speeding up play and stopping me getting lost in the rulebook.

Click Here for page 1

Click Here for page 2

A Visit To Foundry

Taking Goat Major’s advice I recently popped into Foundry’s new premises and shop at East Stoke near Newark. I needed a few figures (seriously, about a dozen) and hearing good things about their location and hospitality I thought I’d drop in on my way past.

I was welcomed and looked after with a coffee by Mick, who it turned out I knew through a forum we both frequent. Although I haven’t previously owned so much as a single Foundry figure, naturally I’d been aware of them over the years, and more recently heard about and seen the restoration of many of their old ranges. One thing you can be sure of with Foundry is plenty of choice – 13,000 packs I think(!?). The stocked racks go on for room after room and I suspect that if you haven’t done your research online beforehand you could easily be there all day. There are worse ways to lose track of time though, I guess 🙂

I just wanted some naval and other artillery crew types and their Crimean range was perfect. They’re not the cheapest, and these days might be a little smaller than most ’28s’, but I was very happy to pick up exactly what I needed.

So now I own some Foundry figs, and I’d better get going on them as the May event is approaching! I’ll post pics when they’re done.

Final 2014 Activities

It’s been 6mm clipping and basing time here, with my Franco-Prussian War armies’ (modest) expansion now underway. I’ve changed the intended orders of battle several times, trying to work out the best balance of forces for the pencilled in multi-player game and for the collection itself going forward. Working with a number of spare figures I’ve devised a decent ’rounding out’ of my current forces which involves a minimum of new purchases and, most importantly, a minimum of painting. Laziness can be cost-effective!

The armies, French and Prussian/Bavarian, are based and organised for To the Last Gaiter Button by Realtime Wargames. I aim to have 2 corps per side, for a 4 player game. This will represent over 100,000 men in total and allow a fairly large battle to be played out.

Work in progress:

So that’s it for my 2014 wargaming, which I’ve enjoyed immensely. I’ve also got a lot out of maintaining the blog, and especially from all the comments people have made – they’ve been much appreciated. I need to get cracking again during January. I have a number of projects on the go at the moment, and a couple of deadlines to meet for games in the first part of the year. I need to set up and play a game too, so I’ll have a think about what this might be over a New Year’s Eve beer.

Happy New Year to everyone who’s dropped in this year, and I hope you do so again in 2015. Cheers!

All Quiet on the Medetian Front

It’s been a very quiet hobby month, as illustrated by the lack of posts recently. Work and other commitments have taken up most of my time and energy and I’ve struggled to get back to either the painting board or gaming table. Hopefully this weekend will see a turnaround.

I have managed to do some hobby thinking however, in place of actual activity! It’s getting to the time when people start laying out their plans, realistic or otherwise, for the coming year; painting, gaming, modelling, etc. I’ve contributed to one forum thread already and here’s an initial plan for where my priorities will (probably!) lie for 2015..

Games and get togethers:

  • More home-and-away games with Goat Major, hopefully a continuing mix of Sharp Practice, 17th century skirmish and, with any luck, a return to Chain of Command (hint, hint)
  • A group weekend with some forum pals, hosted between me and GM; more Sharp Practice and possibly a Corps-per-player FPW battle in 6mm
  • A BIG battle at John Ray’s as part of his post-7YW campaign. I’ll be commanding a sumptuous horde of Austrians and allies against wily Old Fritz himself. Can’t wait!
  • The ‘A Military Gentlemen’ forum group multi-player game at Partizan, which is going to be amazing and hopefully provide an excellent social weekend too
  • The annual Ayton weekend in May; 19th century massed madness in the desert, followed by massed madness in the pub
  • Just maybe, another autumn group gaming weekend if we manage to rally ourselves to plan one
  • On the home front my plans are for:
    • more Sharp Practice
    • another 18th century solo battle
    • some 15mm ancients and fantasy
    • at least one 6mm Renaissance game, but hopefully a mini-campaign
    • a return to the inter-war naval scene
All the above represents a lot of gaming, and an increase on this year’s achievements (which weren’t bad either). As far as I’m concerned that’s the way I want my hobby to be, so roll on 2015!
Painting ‘plan’ next..