Wednesday, June 23, 2010

GASLIGHT Historicon Playtest

Last Saturday several of the HAWKs got together to playtest two Historicon games. One of the playtests was for my GASLIGHT game, "The Return of Victoria Hawkes, by GASLIGHT", using our GASLIGHT set of Victorian Science Fiction skirmish level rules.

The scenario has a Union strike force attempting to blow up a Confederate super-weapon. Union forces consist of three infantry units, an Iron Horse cavalry unit, a Steam Spider vehicle, two Impervious Suit conveyances, two Steam-riflemen, the Expedition Commander (mounted) ,and Victoria Hawkes. They also had two bombs which were needed to blow up the super-weapon The Rebels had three infantry units, a Bicycle Dragoon Cavalry unit, two Timberclads, a Steam motorcycle, an Electro-cannon, two Flame-rifles, an the overall Commander (mounted).

The game played well, with the advantage swinging back and forth between the two sides. I don't want to give too much away about the course of the game in case the folks who have signed up for it at the convention read this beforehand. Some highlights include an epic melee between the two cavalry units, one of the bombs accidentally detonating when caught in a cannonball burst radius and wiping out part of a unit, and the nail biting ending as the remaining bomb neared the super-weapon with a climactic change of hands in the last couple turns. Below are some photos for your enjoyment.

Union forces advance.

The Iron Horse Cavalry and the Bicycle Dragoon Lancers charge toward each other as the Union Lady Zouaves advance from the right, and a Rebel Timberclad provides support.

Close-up of the Iron Horse Cavalry. Assembled from Dixon cavalrymen and Mage Knight Galeshi Cavalrymen mounts. (Photo by Rob Dean)

Close up of the Charleston Light Bicycle Dragoons. Figures by Eureka
. (Photo by Rob Dean)

The two units meet in a multi-turn melee.

After dealing with the Iron Horse Cavalry, the Bicycle Dragoons, turn on the Lady Zouaves. An Impervious Suit and a pair of Steam-riflemen stand in support. An Electro- cannon with its crew killed is in the foreground.

A Timberclad advances and tries to knock over an Impervious Suit. (Photo by Rb Dean)

The final turns: a pair of Confederates move to pick up the Union bomb (at the foot of the figure on the right of the weapon platform) as another Union Zouave Unit moves up on the left of the photo and two timberclads try to cut them off.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

2mm Ships and Martians for Mars

Here's a few pictures of some new units I've completed for my 2mm "Look, Sarge, Its Mars" Historicon game.
First up are some naval units for both sides. The British are equipped with the Cerberus Monitor from Brigade Models' Land Ironclads range. I painted it in Games Workshop Fortress Gray, washed with black ink and dry brushed with white for the hull; and, GW Dheneb Stone, washed with brown ink, for the decks. The Martian Canal section is made from craft foam sheets, cut in 2 inch strips for the base and .25 inch strips for the sides. The water is painted with tube acrylics to give texture, and given some white highlights. The ship bases are also done this way. In the background is the fallen Colossus of Mars made from an old 25mm fantasy figure broken into a few pieces and mounted on a mini CD.

The second ships shown are attached to the German force. They are two of Irregular Miniatures' 2mm Monitors (Item IK04). I painted them in GW Codex Gray and gave them a back ink wash, than dry brushed with GW Fortress Grey. All the bases shown are 3 inches by 1.5 inches which will help give you a sense of scale. In the background is a large stone head that come in a pack of two from Dream Pod 9

The last photo for today is of a base of Martian allies for the British. I used Irregular's code BG33 for the long line of Radium Riflemen in the center, and code BG16 for the swordsmen that make up the rest of the unit. I primed them black than gave a heavy dry brush of GW Tanned Flesh to represent the reddish Martian skin, and then gave them a thin line dry brush of Apple Barrel Lemon Chiffon for their tunics. The base is covered in white glue and then in fine railroad ballast with sand mixed in. When dry the base is painted with Folk Art Barnyard Red, and dry brushed with Americana Burnt Orange, and then GW Vomit Brown. Lastly, some little bits of flocking are added for Martian vegetation

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

54mm VSF ACW GASLIGHT Vehicles

I was recently going through some old digital photos of GASLIGHT games that I ran in the past to review what troops I had (it was easier than digging out the boxes!) in preparation for putting together my Historicon scenario which I will be playtesting in the weeks ahead. I came across the following photos of a pair of 54mm GASLIGHT vehicle projects I did in '03, but never showed anywhere for lack of a venue. Now that I have this blog, and most of my current time is involved with last minute convention prep, I thought it would be a good opportunity to"dust these projects off" and share them with you all in hope that it offers some inspiration for your VSF projects.

First up is a Confederate landship I built, called the Daisy Cutter. The basis of the hull is a dozen-egg egg carton of the pulp-paper variety. I glued the carton together, then cut out holes for the port and starboard cannons and a front viewport,then I glued balsa strips around the bottom half of the egg carton to form the bottom of the hull. I then glued half inch balsa strips around and on top of the vehicle to form planking, leaving holes where the cannon and the view port would eventually go. I also cut slots underneath to mount wood disc wheels.

Here is a shot of the complete planking. i have included a 54mm soldier in the picture for scale. On top of the landship I have glued a turret made from a thin wood craft box. It is glued upside down so the lid forms the ring for the turret to sit in. I also cut a gun port in this. Underneath I glued eight wood disks to make wheels.

Next I added all the finishing bits. In the front I glued a wide-toothed comb to form a rake to sweep aside Yankee formations. I also mounted all the guns, which were cast in a homecasting artillery mold, and gave them balsa gunshields. The smokestacks were made from plastic tubing from the junk box, and the smokestack finials were made from wood craft bits. On the back I mounted a spar torpedo to deal with any threats from behind. The spar is made from a dowel, and a bit of necklace chain added a nice touch as the lowering cable. I also added balsa hatches and a cardboard viewport. Around the edges I glued heavy paper to finish the edges nicely. Then I added rivets made from very pins stuck through the balsa.

Here's the finished model with paint and weathering applied.

Here is the Daisey Cutter Landship in in its first convention game at Fall-In '03.

Here it is in one of my GASLIGHT games at Origins '04. Note the addition of a dollhouse Victrola on top, to play stirring battle music as the landship rolls into combat!

Next up is a 54mm Union walker I built. It is converted from an old Star Wars AT-ST, or Chicken Walker. This is the kind designed for the large action figures. You can pick them up rather reasonably on eBay, especially if they've been played with hard and are a little As-Is.

I added a homecast Gatling gun where the central lasers were, and trimmed the side ones to make them look a little bit more like cannon. I also glued plastic bases with diagonal slots over the existing front vision slits and a round plastic base, without a slit, on top to form a hatch. Then I glued a hose washer on top also to make a air vent for the cabin.

On the back I cut down, and glued a Li'l Hug drink bottle to make a boiler and a large straw to make a smoke stack. I also glued to Clix bases onto the rear leg joints to give them more of a gear look. The whole thing was then liberally covered in rivets.

Here are some photos of the finished product shown with a 54mm soldier for size comparison.

Friday, June 4, 2010

2mm VSF for Historicon: The British

In my last post I featured some example bases of the German VSF troops that I am preparing for my Historicon "Look, Sarge, It's Mars" game, using modified "Look, Sarge, No Charts: ACW" rules, Brigade Models Land Ironclads, and Irregular's 2mm troops. Today I am featuring examples from my British forces.
As before, all troop and vehicle stands are 3 inches by 1.5 inches, HQ and battery stands are 1.5 by 1.5 inches. I also wanted to expain that I purposely did not paint the windows on my ironclads. I feel that in battle they would have some sort of protective shutters on them, rather than expose the crew to lots of shattering glass.

British Infantry

Battery and Brigade HQ

Mk. I Armored Gun Carrier

Warlord Class Ironclad

Britannic Class Ironclad

Sovereign Class Ironclad



Dismounted Dragoons

Posting these now to show I once painted eyes on a 2mm figure: