Monday, January 30, 2012

Complete Celts

Finally managed to finish off my Warlord Games Celt Warriors.  Just a quick pic for now with a final set of tips and thoughts later this week.

Warlord Games Celt Warriors, finished and based thank God.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Slow Progress

Work has taken a lot out of me this week, and I've had little energy to throw into miniatures each evening. I've found that putting in even 5 minutes a day helps keep projects moving along, so this week has seen me clipping Wargames Factory Romans from their sprue and finishing the decals and painting on some Warlord Games Celt shields.
Warlord Games Celt shields, attached to tape and card for assembly line detail painting.

I'm hoping to make some significant progress this weekend. I have 30 Celts just dying to get their shields attached and based.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ancient German Archers

Got the bases finished off on some Crusader Ancient German archers. Pretty quick paint job to get these on the table quickly.
Crusader Miniatures Ancient German Archers

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Foundry and Old Glory Victorians

When I was going through my individually based WWII minis recently I found a handful of Victorian era figures I painted up 10 years ago for some "Gothic Horror" skirmish gaming.

Foundry 28mm Victorian Big Game hunters. Top Hat is from a "Bowery Boys" set I believe.
28mm "Vampire Wars" priests. 

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Hail Caesar Status Markers

I've only played a few test skirmishes of Hail Caesar, but I realized I wanted to include some on-table markers to help me remember the status and abilities of various units. Even with only a handful of units per side I found myself forgetting which ones had used their Wild Fighters ability, or which were allowed the "Winning" bonus from victory in the previous round.

Hail Caesar with unit status markers

I thought about creating a unique marker for each potential status, but decided that would be a bit overwhelming, with dozens of extra markers necessary for even my existing units. I settled on a single figure stand with interchangeable color-coded bases to indicate the unit status. It took a little trial and error, but I finally came up with a system that should be fairly simple to both build and use in play. Check out my solution after the jump.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Foundry WWII

A friend of mine is a WWII nut and recently proposed we break out Crossfire for a few games.  It's been a few years since I last played Crossfire, and with all the hype around the latest version of "I Aint Been Shot Mum" I suggested we give that rules sets a try to see how they compared. I had an older version of the rules that I picked up years ago but never got around to playing, but  rereading them now, I realized my collection of 20mm WWII miniatures were all multi-figure based. It didn't sound like that would work well with IABSM since casualties (kill and wounded) were tracked individually.

I'll be honest, the Warlord Games newsletter always has a lot of tempting 28mm WWII figures in it that have been catching my eye lately. I remembered I had painted up a few individually based 28mm World War II minis about 10 years ago, so I broke them out to see what I had and decide if I wanted to add on to them for testing IABSM. 

Foundry (I think) 28mm WWII Germans
Foundry (I think) 28mm French Resistance
Not enough for a very extensive game of IABSM, but maybe I can throw in a few U.S. Paratroopers and we can run a quick Normandy squad v. squad action.

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Friday, January 6, 2012

A Calamity of Celts

I made some progress on my Warlord Games Celt Warriors over the last week or so. I've got the whole group painted up to table quality and ready for a final dip in Army Painter Soft Tone to pull them all together and give 'em a little more shading.

I was a little impatient with getting this lot done.  For the Ancient Germans I had a pretty strict color palette of muted earth tones. I wanted the Celts to stand out with much more vivid colors. I also know the Army Painter will soften the colors quite a bit, and any patterns that aren't high contrast will become dull and difficult to make out.  The colors and patterns are what give a Celt warband its personality, so I overcompensated using a lot of off-white, GW Foundation Red, navy blue, and bright green with striking high contrast patterns.

As I continued to work the group up though, the overall effect was a little to clown-like. I tried repainting, switching to muted colors, trying a lot of different patterns, etc.  In the end, there's a lot going on with the entire warband, and without a really unified color palette I think the effect might be a little TOO chaotic, even for such a wild band of barbarians. I've sunk enough time into these though and I'm eager to get them on the table. I'll just chalk this up to a learning experience for my next band of Celts.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Hail Caesar Skirmish #2!

Hail Caesar: Rome vs. Ancient Germans skirmish

What a great game! I had another chance to try out Hail Caesar, this time with my wife. She's up for games of any stripe so it wasn't very difficult to cajole her into playing. We also watched the HBO miniseries "Rome" a few years ago, so she had a little background with the era. I offered her the choice of armies.

"Romans. Not stupid barbarians." I got out my meager cohorts and passed them to her.

"These guys are neat," she commented. "Hey, you put these spears on backwards. You've got the handle pointed forwards."

"No, those are called 'pilum'. That long metal part isn't a handle. It has a hard point, but the shaft gets weaker when it gets near the middle. The Romans would chuck those at guys when they got close. The hard point would go into their shield, and then the weak part would make the rest of the pilum bend down, so they've got this curved wonky spear stapled to their shield. The pilum was ruined, so the enemy couldn't throw it back, and it was weighing down their shield which would have hindered them too."

"Huh. That's actually really interesting."

"Really?"  She's not much of a history buff. This was probably the first time any historical fact elicited more than a polite shrug.

"Yeah. I mean... if you had just told me that out of the blue I wouldn't have cared, but now that I see the little guy and he's about to go fight, that's actually pretty neat."


See how she fared after the jump...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Year End Review

2011 was my return to painting ancients after a three year hiatus.  I didn't even start until the Summer, and a combination of work, family and other projects tended to divert me from miniatures from time to time. That said, I did manage a small bit of progress:

  • I painted 111 foot and 6 cavalry, which is a pittance, but was quite a lot compared to the fat 0 figures painted in the previous few years.
  • Finished 1 megawood terrain scenic, 3 small woods, and several small hills and hedges. 
  • Managed to attend Historicon.
  • Got in a few games of Hail Caesar.
It's not a lot, but I wanted to get it all down so I can compare my progress next year. Here's hoping I can double my output and games played in 2012! :)