Sunday 28 April 2013


Another set of rules I've had for some time and just getting around to sorting suitable figures! Saga is a very clever set of Dark Age skirmish rules available from Gripping Beast you don't need many figures at all, my 4 point Viking starter warband is composed of a Warlord base and 4 units of Hearthguards, thats only 16 figures!
In this period Gripping Beast are the boys for suitable figures so I pick up a box of their plastic Viking Hirdmen and also a pack of metal Ulfednar Berserkers, well you have to don't you? I also got a banner sheet and shield transfers from Little Big Men Studios now these really set the figures off and are very easy to use. Now on to the Figures! Dougie
The Warlord base, figures from the GB plastic Viking Hirdmen box.

Ulfednar Berserkers, figures GB metals
So all I've now got left are 12 more plastic Hirdmen for the other 3 units and I'm done. At the moment they're primed and based so I should get them finished in the next few days.

Friday 26 April 2013

Check your 6 Jet Age

I've had these rules a while now and rate them highly.

 I've always been unsure about a scale to pick, the system uses hexs to play on and I decided fairly quickly to go for a 6'x4' Hotz mat Hotz Mats . In this size, to get the necessary 45 x 30 hexes to play on, you're looking at a hex size of 1.5 inches, which is what the author suggests. The scales open would be 1/300 or 1/600. I tried both but for me the 1/300 aircraft just looked odd at engagement ranges, way too close so I saved a ton of money and ended up buying some of the dinky Tumbling Dice 1/600 Aircraft .
The rule book covers the 4 periods I'm interested in Falklands, Arab Israeli, Vietnam and Angola and with the Tumbling Dice stuff being so cheap I can do the lot!
Hotz Mat wise I already had a Green European one which will be fine for Vietnam and Angola and do the Falklands at a push but I've ordered a Desert one and Sea one to cover all terrains.
The next quandary involved bases and attaching the planes. The system requires you to record speed and altitude, now you can do this on the paper Maneuver Charts that you game with or incorporate it into the stand. So I'm not sure wether to use the classy plain Litko Stands or the Forge World Flying Bases . Magnets were fine for attaching the aircraft.
Litko Stand
 Forge World
Attachment, a 2mm magnet from Hasslefree Miniatures Magnets
Attached to a Phantom
On the flight stand

On to some planes, all 1/600 Tumbling Dice. Dougie
Sea Harriers
Skyhawks Air Force and Navy
Super Etendard and Canberra
A Shar letting an Aim9L go!


Monday 22 April 2013

Empress Taliban Commander

Folks one of the truely superb Empress 28mm Taliban figures. He'll form part of a 28mm Skirmish Sangin project, this dapper fella is sporting an M65 jacket over his Shalwar Kameez with slung AK and some nice brown loafers from Charles Clinkards. You've gotta love the Empress figures! Dougie

Sunday 21 April 2013

Salute 2013

I made my yearly pilgrimage to Excel for Salute yesterday and I wasn't disappointed, some really great games and the wallet got hit so all round an enjoyable day.
Game highlights for me were numerous and my favourites were as follows;
Omaha Beach - Some really super terrain from the GMG guys from Kildare featuring Dog One beach and lovely 20mm figures and vehicles.
Dux Bellorum - The Newark Irregulars take on the new Osprey rules of the same name again stunning figures and terrain.
Zombie TV - Crooked dice team delivering the zombie apocalypse to Trafalgar Square with a really clever terrain tile complete with collapsed Nelsons Column and Tube Station, Fantastic!
Dead Mans Hand - Great Escape Games new wild west skirmish system played on a Poker table in 28mm, very clever idea and looked spot on.
Purchases were initially controlled and I didn't go too crazy, first off I stopped by Eureka miniatures, lots of new stuff in 28mm which wasn't even on their website, some cracking Somali Militia and my first purchase of the day a four figure pack entitled "Seal Team 6" now this isn't what they have on the website, its 4 figures straight from Operation Neptune Spear, seperate heads featuring the latest generation of night-vision goggles with 4 tubes, wonderful!
Empress Miniatures were visited and I picked up some additional Brits including the new pack of downed aircrew, these are as usual simply tip top, now some may be horrified that I'm moving from my Afghan 20mm, I'm not these are gonna be a new project for Skirmish Sangin so keep watching!
Whilst at the stand I also saw the new Red Star Miniatures French Foreign Legion Paras for Indo-China. WOW!!! Mr. Paul Hicks has done these and they are Excellent, really capturing the period and flavour, seperate heads with steel helmets, and we can apparently expect other heads with berets and the Bigeard Cap, so they'll cover Algeria as well. Viet Minh are in production
All told an excellent day and looking forward to next year
Later, Dougie

Thursday 18 April 2013

Mutineer Islamists

Some of the very nice 20mm Mutineer Miniatures Islamic Militia, they're usable in a variety of theatres, all wearing shalwar kemeez and as such I've painted them with matching tops and bottoms which is the way they're worn. Dougie
Pack ISM01 Islamic Command Figures
This is a great pack with a Mullah/Cleric type, a couple of obvious leaders with comms gear, a guy with binos and AK, a mechanic with a nasty looking spanner and lastly a sniper prone with Dragunov. The Mullah has unfortunately lost a hand, probably making an IED, and is suitable for all Middle East scenarios or outside Finsbury Park Mosque.
The sniper in the shade of a tree
Pack ISM02 Islamic Militia AK47
8 standard AK armed Militants, a mixture of either chest webbing or plain.
Pack ISM03 Islamic Militia RPG
4 guys with RPGs

 The boys in downtown Al Amarah, Iraq 2004.

Tuesday 16 April 2013

West Side Boys Part 3

More of the superb Mutineer Miniatures 20mm African Christian Militia, this time the support packs. All the figures are very nicely done and are ideal as any African rebel forces. Dougie
A Dushka Team
A Mortar Team
A Recoiless Rifle Team

Monday 8 April 2013

Skirmish Sangin Forum

Skirmish Sangin now has a forum ran by Colin Phillips, we need to support it, the links below

Compound 17

This Skirmish Sangin scenario was played out at my club a week ago, its taken from the rulebook and we put it on a 3' square terrain tile. Using 20mm figures I use a ground scale of 1cm = 1m so the ground scale and figure scale are the same.
For those who haven't got the rules, why not!, I'll do a very short overview.
Compound 17 is currently occupied by a local Warlord who is sitting on the fence, not helping the Taliban but not supporting  ISAF either. Intel has suggested that a local Taliban leader is going to visit the Warlord to convince him to assist expelling the infidels and as a sweetner he will be assisted in selling his opium. As a result a UKSF OP team has been covertly inserted and is watching the compound, intel has proved acurate and a QRF is to be inserted at dawn and search compound 17 to arrest the Taliban leader.
We had 4 players, I had the 4 man UKSF OP team, with Chris running the 2 Airborne fire teams landing as the QRF, there were other teams coming from other directions but these weren't gamed. Andy and Les were running the Taliban, 4 fighters and the Warlord and his entourage, 6 fighters.
Due to the nature of the Op  ISAF also had an attack helicopter, callsign Ugly51 on standby in the vacinity.
Read on to see what happened. Dougie
The table, Compound 17 is the large compound with the domed roofed buildings on the right of the photo, its just before dawn the Warlord and his fighters are in the compound together with the Taliban forces, all are still asleep following the shura the previous evening. The UKSF OP team is hidden in the treeline on the left side of the irrigation ditch, the open area at the bottom left of the photo is where the QRF fireteams will enter from.
Another table view.
My UKSF hidden prone in the treeline with a great overwatch position on the compound
The QRF chopper set the dogs barking and woke the compound, the QRF advanced by rushes towards the treeline and irrigation ditch, as this was happening Andy had some of his folks get up on the compound roof but unfortunately my OP team spotted them straight away, 2 were dropped almost instantly by rifle fire, forcing morale tests galore and one of my guys got off a 40mm grenade from the UGL which although not on target put the cat amongst the pigeons!
The QRF were now moving forward across the irrigation ditch and to try and stabalise the situation some Taliban moved into a small compound infront of 17 using a blind spot.
One Talib got on the roof but was prone not wanting to raise his head over the parapet, his oppo stayed in the courtyard while the QRF skirmished forward.
The ORF cooked a grenade and posted it killing courtyard guy and severely affecting the morale of his mate on the roof.
The small compound was surrounded and on clearence the roof guy surrendered having hidden his AK and gone into innocent farmer mode. A couple of the fireteam were lucky having poked there head around a corner and being on the receiving end of a near RPG strike! This caused a morale check but luckily no injuries.
While this was happening the Warlord had made some futile attempts to spot were the fire was coming from to his front, the UKSF, but these prone hidden operators weren't seen and were in the process of calling in Ugly51. The ISAF consensus being Compound 17 was now very much hostile and an AH was the best asset to use in this situation. The QRF went firm in the compound arresting and plasticuffing the "farmer" and after some delays in the arrival of Ugly51, some bad forward observer dice rolls! The Bowman system was obviously playing up again, the AH arrived and gave the people in Compound 17 running around with AKs the good news by way of 30mm HEDP.
The narative of the system came in at this point with the Warlord claiming he knew nothing about his visitors being Taliban and the Taliban not saying much as they had large holes in them.
The system again played well with Andy trying his best to get some sort of injury on one of the ISAF troops, this can alter their focus to casualty extraction, but unfortunately not being successful. Once ISAF had the enemy fixed the firepower was deceisive!

Falklands Rock test piece

Well thats the first of the Timecast Rocks done, I'm happy with how it looks, just got the others to knock up now. For anyone who's interested I'll be posting a tutorial on how it was painted.
Later,  Dougie
With a 10mm Argentine stand for scale.

Sunday 7 April 2013

Falklands Rock runs in 10mm

I've already mentioned I picked up all of the new 10mm Falklands stuff from Barrie at Timecast, when I was at Vapnartak this year. The Rock Terrain bases he does are really good and apart from the tented and firing position bases are usable up to 28mm. These are really ideal for the hilltop battles and look the part. They've all been primed and a test piece will be completed for your perusal very soon.
Later,  Dougie

Saturday 6 April 2013

Hungary 1945 a 6mm Project continued.

This project is always simmering in the background, the look I'm after for both sides is a cold wet Hungarian winter. Here's a shot from Operation Konrad in 1945, cold, wet, bare trees!

The photo below is one of my Soviet command stands and I've never been happy with the trees I'm using.
Like the majority of wargamers I buy trees as a bit of an afterthought, the ones I get are ok, the photo above is a pine tree and they do deciduous as well in a couple of colours, however, what I was really after was a deciduous tree in winter, bare without leaves.
Now I've tried different things, making the trees from wire as described on the GHQ website but they didn't look right.
For my middle east 6mm forces I'd used some superb palm trees from the model tree shop, these are expensive but brilliant, check out the photo below
Anyhow I contacted the model tree shop told him what I was after and for deciduous trees in the size I was after he mentioned some brass trees that came in a number of different foliage colours. The colour wasn't important and the proverbial flash of inspiration came and I asked him if he thought the foliage would come off ? He wasn't sure but suggested sending one out so I could experiment. As normal with the model tree shop a package arrived the next day! Before I go any further here's the link for the company, they are excellent to deal with, have superb products and their service is outstanding!
The tree arrived I looked at the attached foliage and was sure burning would get rid of it! The photo below shows a tree on the right before its been napalmed, the tree on the left is after.
All it required was cleaning and a very minor Trunk thickening. Because the trees are etched brass they are 2 dimentional now this isn't a problem when the foliage is on but without they need a bit more substance, this is easily achieved with semi circle section plastic rod glued to the trunk and then it and the minor branches thickened up with liquid greenstuff.
This next photo shows the rod and greestuff added to the tree and it ready for paint and planting
Heres a photo of the same Soviet command stand from above but with one of my bare trees replacing the pine.
More like it! This is more the look I was after. If you order any trees for my treatment let Mr. Model tree shop know you've read about it here! The latest stand to have the tree treatment, a Soviet CO stand.
Later, Dougie