Tuesday, 21 February 2017

JUNGLE TERRAIN

Well lets some up the summer weather shall we over the Christmas period  ... Shitty with a side of shitty  ..... , so with that explained Andy and myself had found some time to get some terrain made - Jungle Terrain !!

We decided to make jungle terrain as we have both been playing a new miniatures game being CONGO , a fantastic and really fun 28mm skirmish game from Studio Tomahawk (makers of Saga) where 2 players (with choice of 4 factions) fight in the jungles and Savannah lands of Africa. I will be posting more on this game a little later.

The other reason we decided on the Jungle terrain was that Andrew has got some new Aussie Bolt Action figures for his new Papua New Guinea army based on the Kokoda trail. He has got some native figures to go with them (looks great with big fuzzie hair) these will look great when gets around to painting them.



Some photos of the overall table showing some of the terrain we have made
Works well with the saga board, ponds and river we have already got made up.
These photos showing a typical Congo game setup.


So with some materials : 3mm MDF board, a Hot glue gun, a pack of bbq skewers, a assortment of aquatic plants, bark nuggets from the garden and some old twigs from the beach.  right we are all set to make some terrain then and some resene paint test pots.

  
First up we have some dense high area terrain that we like to think of as a thick bamboo/vine thicket, we made these by drilling BBQ skewers into a 3mm mdf base and then basing with tea bag leaves (looks like a thick leaf base) and then painting (very hard to paint the bamboo trunks once all glued in !! so I recommend doing this before hand)  and then we applied all sorts of vine type aquatic trees up the trunks and some fern types at the base.

Now you could either make it impassable terrain that blocks line of sight (which works very well, as long as there isnt too many of them, or you could place a green felt below and lift when troops go inside the area. overall very happy how these turned up.

This photo above is a smaller bamboo version of the first ones we made, same effect except the aquatic leaves we used had a central hole, so simply placed one or two on the stick and glued in place, easy and effective

The next one is simply a stick that we found at the beach, chop to length, drill some holes and place some fern type aquatic leaves, and wolla ! you have cool looking Balboa/Fern type tree - well almost ....
Next is some smaller pieces that can be scattered around




Photo of some water reeds that are common in the wetlands of the Jungle. This one was easy - simply take a old broom/brush and pull out the bristles (they should some out as one piece as they have a wire end to them),  drill some holes in mdf , base and paint ... they come up very well and look good with the river and ponds we have.

We intend to make some African Huts (enough for a small village)  and also some pieces for a Savannah table as Congo games can be played either in the jungle or plains of Africa, so hopefully have these done soon.

Friday, 10 February 2017

MORE OF ANDY's BOLT ACTION GERMANS

Well Andy's been at it again and found time to paint some more of his German bolt action models.  His original painted models can be found here. He has now completed all his weapon teams he needs, Flamethrower, Sniper, High Command team and a Panzerschreck Anti-tank team.  He only needs to finish off his Nebelwerfer also his Pak40 gun teams and I think he has finished it all.

They all look very good indeed in their winter theme, something I may well adopt on my Finns.



High Command team - very cool


Panzerschreck Team


Sniper Team, very cool looking through the stumps


Flamethrower team
I will have to start painting and soon .....


Thursday, 9 February 2017

BOLT ACTION GAMES AND SOME FINNS

Its been a while since my last post.  Its been a shitty summer so far hasn't it !
I havent done that much sailing as its been just too darn windy with the wind often over 25knots most days, but I have been out windsurfing a lot .....  maybe a little too much truth be told as I haven't done much in the way painting any models !! .. well that's my excuse at any rate...

I had played several games of Bolt Action against my brother Andrew over the holiday period, I ran my Finnish force (still not painted hence why no photos) against my brothers German force.  With only a 2 games of Bolt Action under my belt I found the Finns quite easy to use and so far I do like them. Their trained huntsman rule and specific unit ambushing rules are very good indeed and my sniper seems to be a very good option, as does my tough fighter ability's for my infantry squads. The Mortar options however seem a waste of points to me unless their is a stationary target to range in on, my brothers Pak40 was a good test subject but even after 2 rounds of ranging in it took another further 2 turns to get it down to one man crew (I then got fed up and snipered it). My twin turreted T-26 tank option is a fun choice if its on a heavy terrain table being able to dish out 10 dice of MG fire .... Andy doesn't like it too much !

I must admit it will take several more games of Bolt Action to get the hang of it, for instance the close combat seems very deadly to me and very different to other systems, all it takes is a few horrible dice to turn a seemingly reliable option into a nightmare result.  for example my brother ran his 10 man German Veteran unit (with 2 SMG and 4 assault rifles) against my 7 man Finnish Vet's with Tough Fighters rule ....... Andy gets a total of 4 hits with myself getting 5 hits, which has made me the winner so Andy's troops all died............... lesson learnt - Andy shoots instead from then on !!!!!!!

Also knowing when units should go down and when to ambush units will hopefully come with experience (the Sissi Finnish troops have a bonus here as they can advance and the turn dice into ambush as long as they don't shoot ... so rather handy for beginners like me)But apart from some niggly rules to learn and put in practice correctly, it was a very good couple of games.


Well I have been a little busy with getting more of my Bolt Action Finns made, based and ready for painting. Those ski troops look very cool and all, but bugger me what a pain in the arse to put together ! took me ages to get through ten of them ..... and i have still got another ten to do.


The weapons teams were all rather easy to put together, but the Howitzer was a different story, quite fiddly and the bottom gun shield was missing so I had to make up one from scratch using plasticard. I made all the gun teams with log emplacements which look rather good I think, I will cover them with a dusting of snow and some tundra tuffs and they should be great with the triple colour Finnish Camo scheme they had.

All the tanks are now made, these were very easy to put together and should be fun to paint, just have to decide whether to paint them in the Finnish Camo scheme, or maybe a white wash, or perhaps leave them Soviet green ?? unsure at this stage.

But overall progress is coming along nicely .. if not a little too slowly for my brothers liking, but hopefully have these troops will see the painting table soon. I now have a dead line to have these finished by and its July, as I have been told that theirs a Bolt Action tournament being run at Panzershrek, so I will be running them there.

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

AETIUS & ARTHUR - NEW SAGA SUPPLEMENT BOOK !!

I have  just heard that there is a new Saga supplement book "Aetius and Arthur" thats due out mid February next year, which is great news !




The Supplement book is to be set back in the Late Roman days around 410AD when the Romans have abandoned Briton to defend their own borders against the Barbarian hordes crossing the Rhine in Western Roman Empire, then theirs the issue with the Visigoths having raided Rome's interior and must be repelled, also the imminent threat of the Huns arriving on Romes Eastern front to deal with. And with the Romans leaving Briton, the poor Brits are left to deal with the invading Saxon armys to the north and the ever annoying Picts that constantly raid their lands.

There is to be 6 new factions : the Romans, Britons, Saxons, Picts, Goths and the Huns which sound all very good, I think I will be doing the Romans for sure and the Goths sound very cool as well,  needless to say I am looking forward to the Saga Battle-boards for each of the factions.  I have the Anglo-Saxon force already so hopefully its not much to turn them into the Saxon force.  My brother is already eyeing up the Picts and Britons with keen interest.

There is also to be new heros and Legendary units that will be available to each force ... im thinking of the likes of Merlin, the Visigoth Alaric, Attila the Hun, the fierce Saxon brothers Hengist and Horsa and of course Arthur and his Round table knights unit. The book has also four new Saga missions to go with it as well.

So very much looking forward to this new addition to my Saga gaming .......roll on February !

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

ANGLO-SAXON HOVELS AND A VIKING LONGHOUSE

My brother and I, got some 4-ground buildings from a Mighty Ape sale the other week they had. It will make a nice addition to our multitudes of Saga games we are playing of late, love playing this game, and frankly not sure why other locals have given it up so easily .... its such a good game !

Right, the first pictures are of a couple of newAnglo-Saxon buildings which look very good I think, the smaller one is labelled as a hovel, while the other is a Saxon Dwelling.






My brother got a Viking Workshop long house to go along with his Viking house,  
now this building is impressive ! 
 complete with outside chairs and tables too  very cool




 Heres a shot with the roof off. I think Andy will eventually paint the base floor
but it looks good so far. 



The buildings are very easy to put together by just using PVA glue.  I will have to make up some new bases for them so we can play them in our Saga games (so we don't forget the 2" exclusion zones)

The next stage is to get some wattle fencing made up and maybe some hedges as well, so we get a Viking/Anglo-Danish village theme happening.- be good to get some farm animals and some wagons too at one stage ...... im thinking a great Christmas present for oneself.


Friday, 9 December 2016

FOW PAINTING USA MODELS

Well I have been busy painting again this week for a club tournament this weekend and have just finished my M2A1 105mm Howitzer battery, probably not my best work on painting the crew but it looks ok for the table top gaming .......  must admit I had found it quite hard going from painting 28mm models back to the 15mm scales



Also finished a section of Self Propelled Anti Aircraft platoon being the combination of M13 MGMC (twin .50 cal) and T28E1 CGMC (37mm)  ......  a great little platoon that can dish out a fair amount of firepower on the unsuspecting German armoured cars and aircraft alike.





Needed to finish another small section of US Rifle platoon , so all ready for the weekend gaming now.

I had to change my list for the weekend as I found out that it is only lists from 1943 Sicily Landings onwards, so I had to swap the 
T-30 assualt guns for some Anti-aircraft instead as the Rifle companies stop using the T-30's in favour of the M8 Scotts.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

BYZANTINES VS PAGAN RUS SAGA GAME

I got around to playing another great game of Saga the other night. I played a make shift force of Byzantines (im keen to buy these guys so hence the game) and was up against my brother Andrews, Pagan Rus force.  We rolled up a random mission and played the Defend the Homeland Mission which is an interesting scenario where upon you setup 3 buildings (one large and two small buildings) in a deployment area and then both players pick a number of points they think they will be able to defend/hold out for 6 turns, with the objective of the attacker would be to kill all the defenders to the last man by 6 turns.

Well with this only being my second game with the Byzantines, I thought I would like to defend the buildings and make use of my shooting and close support skills, so I secretly picked 5 points - thinking my Bow/Levy units could hold the buildings while my Hearthguard unit/Spear Warriors could support behind .........................  well wasn't I wrong, Andy thought of the same idea as me and wanted so much to defend, he only picked 3 points in which to do so !!!!! MADNESS !!!   ...this should be interesting, my mostly missile armed troops up-against a small group of Pagans that could excel against missile troops with some of their skills they have at hand .

So Andy had picked two units Warriors (one being 10 strong and the other 6 men) and a unit of 4 Hearthguard to defend with and placed them each in a building with a Spiritual Advisor Warlord (we called him the Soothsayer being Pagan) in the end building.
To face his puny force, I had 3 units of 8xJavelin armed Levy , a unit of 8x Bowmen, a bow armed Hearthguard unit, plus also had two small units of 4xWarriors and a mounted Warlord. (admitably I had too many bow armed troops and not enough melee but that's what I decided before we rolled the mission ! ...this is going to be tough since the Pagans will be in buildings)

Initial setup - please excuse the ragtag mess of my force and unpainted models - it was made up of multiple army units I had to represent the Byzantines

So I had the first turn and pushed up 2 Levy units and also the Bow Warriors and Hearthguard Bow,  I then activated the ever useful Scouting ability that activates 3 units of Levy and does not count for Fatigue YAY,  shooting the warrior unit in large building killing 2 of them. I had also used the Mass Archery skill where my bow armed units can shoot over friendly units in front , a very handy skill - this managed to kill a Hearthguard model ... a good start then


Andy had his turn, with only 5 Saga dice his Soothsayer came in handy giving him some extra. He didn't move as such and had no shooting, so all his dice went into skills that will annoy me such as
Cold Winds - a simply awful/awesome shooting reaction skill that if every dice rolled by the shooter that are a natural 6 it will result in a fatigue on the unit (and if a rare dice was used it is 5 and 6 results)  now this is painful for a shooting army.  He also placed the great winter in effect - another great skill that limits all movement and shooting only to 4" .  He also put up Frozen skill where it stops a second activation by me  - so some simply awesome defensive ability's there - no wonder he was confident only with 3 points !

So in turns 2 (and turn 3), I crawl up a meager 4"  , I get away with shooting some Levy and kill another few warriors , one of my Levy gets Frozen upon 2nd move, but I conduct some shooting with my Hearthguard that results in 2 fatigues being placed due to the Cold winds skill....ouch, but I do have a trick up my sleeve with my Common Efforts skill where I can transfer fatigue from one unit to non levy units as a Orders reaction .. haha . I also place some dice in my Strategikon skill , that shall stop Andy attacking me.

I have now managed to kill a few of his men but have a fair amount of fatigue markers due to that horrible Colds Winds .... This leads Andy to utilize another very useful skill that is called Endless Wastes - simply put if you have fatigue markers on your units you will DIE !!  and the fatigue markers stay there to make matters worse - so much needed rest needed but alas I have no time as theirs only so many turns left.


The following turn my Levy (with the help of some nearby Hearthguard using Strategikon) crack open the doors of the left hand building and poke their swords in but the two defending Hearthguard prove very staunch and beat them back killing a few in the process....... wheres a fire torch when you want one ? that would work wonders on these straw thatched hovels these rustic Pagans live in ......



I also shoot some more with my Bowmen warriors but that cold wind has left them exhausted , as they received 2 fatigue markers.  With my Strategikon skill all used up, this is what Andy was waiting for and his staunch 2 Hearthguard guys rush out the building in a swift counterattack against my tired Levy killing them and alas this has me placing more fatigue markers on nearby units.....he then attacks my 3 bow armed Heathguard but misses even though his barren lands skill is in play, but more fatigue goes down.... Andy then with the heroic sacrifice of his own Heathguard he uses his Endless wastes and kills a whole bunch of men..... simply horrible but oh so useful skill !


This is where Andy got a tad carried away and launched yet another assault with his 6 warriors in the central building (they must of got bored or were out of Vodka perhaps) against an exhausted 2 man Levy unit ... using his For the Khargan skill he rolled a bunch of dice and missed every one needing 3's .. haha I have them now as they can not retreat into the safety of nearby building.


This turn I get some good shooting done killing a few warriors,  but my foot warriors finally get into line - its hard work moving in the snow storm .....  they have even odds in the upcoming fight but with my Support Archers skill used, I tip the balance and manage to kill them all ....

Andy has only 4 of his Warriors and his Soothsayer left in the right hand building, so only 4 Saga dice Andy activates his Great Winter skill to slow things down , and he managed to activate his Endless Waste skill again,  I have only a handful of Levy and some warriors left as well as my Warlord

So coming into the last turn its up to my Warlord to kill the last remnants of these Pagans, he spends a turn moving towards the Soothsayer and then rushes (well I say rush but a 4" charge is hardly that! now is it) to the door of the building,  he calls out the Soothsayer but like the coward he is, he hides behind his warriors, typical ! I use my Strategikon with nearby warriors but only manage to kill one,  Andy was very unlucky not to kill my warlord then, as 3 of hits struck me (curse his Barren lands skill)  but I had managed to save all of them !


I then Sent in my Warlord again with some side by side Warriors - he calls out the Soothsayer again but he just cowardly smirks while his warriors dash out to defend him .... well I killed another one but that it was game over as I had no more Saga Dice.  All that was left of Andys army was 2 warriors and his cowardly but sensible Soothsayer,  I didn't fair much better with the model count as most of my force went down with the combination of Cold Winds and Endless waste skill !


So a well deserved win to the Pagans, and another great game, and with only 3 points against 5 as well, goes to show that the Pagans a tough bunch hiding in their buildings !  now where are those fire torches , lets burn down that building with his Soothsayer inside !!!

Cheers