Sunday, February 22, 2015

Preparing for the Battle of Paris

This past Saturday, a few of the HAWKs got together at Duncan's house to work on the terrain for our Saturday morning "Fate of Battle" Battle of Paris game we will be running at Cold Wars:

   S-194 - Battle of Paris, 1814
Sat. 10:00 AM, 5 hrs, 12 players
GM: Buck Surdu and HAWKs
Napoleonic 10mm, Rules: Fate of Battle
Coalition forces converge on Paris for the final battle to oust
Napoleon. Napoleon is out raising another army while Joseph
manages the defense of the city. As the Austrians, Russians, and
Prussians prepare to attack the key Montmartre Heights Joseph is
busy building hasty fortifications; although, he was supposed to
have fortified Paris weeks earlier. Can Joseph hold Montmartre
Heights and Paris long enough for Napoleon to put another army in
the field, or will the Coalition force the Corsican Ogre into exile?
     The main goal of our session was to cut out and paint the large hill we would need to represent the Montmartre Heights, and to build the fortifications the French had during the battle.
Buck, Duncan, and Dave apply a base coat to the heights
  We started by drawing out the shapes of the heights on 2' x 2' foam panels, and then cutting them. Then, while Buck, Dave and Duncan worked on painting a textured dark brown coat on the hills, Buck's daughter, Sam, and I worked on the log and gabion fortifications.
Sam works on building fortifications
  Unfortunately, Dave and I had to leave early due to the onset of a snow storm and a long drive ahead of us. The others who stayed, had a lunch break while the first coat of paint dried, and then finished up drybrushing a lighter brown coat on the heights.
Some of the finished hasty works
    It looks like we will need to meet again one more time to finish flocking the hill, and finish up work on the sections of canal that cut across the battle field.
The assembled and drybrushed hill. (Photo by Buck Surdu)
  We are using this terrain for double duty, as it will also represent our "Elven Capital" in our evening "Bear Yourselves Valiantly" game:
S-195 - Battle of the Elven Capital
Sat. 6:00 PM, 4 hrs, 12 players
GM: Chris Palmer and HAWKs
Fantasy 10mm, Rules: Bear Yourselves Valiantly
Forces of evil are massing to make the final assault on the Elven
capital of Palmerania. The Elf King Hout is out raising another
army, while the elves and their allies are busy fortifying the city.
Can the goblins, orcs, and other assorted bad guys crush the main
elven defense on the commanding Caledonian Heights before the
King arrives with reinforcements to lift the siege?

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

10mm Lizardmen Giant Turtles with Howdahs for BYV

This week I completed two giant turtles with howdahs for a planned Lizardman army I want to build for my "Bear Yourselves Valiantly" forces.  The turtles are actually 15mm models from a lot of 15mm Lizardmen figures I bought on the TMP marketplace a while ago.  The Lizardmen figures are from Pendraken.     The original 15mm howdahs stood too tall for the 10mm figures, so I had to cut  the walls down about an 8th of an inch all around.

Monday, February 16, 2015

10mm North Polenburg Hussars Completed for LSNQSYW Project

This week I completed the 34th Hussar Regiment for my 10mm North Polenburg Imagi-Nation Army.  This is for a force I started based on a long standing club project, started by Rob Dean and myself, called the Not Quite the Seven Years War (NQSYW), in which members of the HAWKs created forces for their own 18th century Imagi-Nations using homecast 40mm figures.  I decided last year to do an offshoot project in 10mm for use with our "Look, Sarge, No Charts" series of rules...a little project I call Look, Sarge, its Not Quite the Seven Years War. (LSNQSYW) :)  (See this blog entry for more information on the project, and some photos of the rest of the 10mm North Polenburg Army.)
The North Polenburg 34th Hussars ready for action.

The regiment shown with one of their NQSYW 40mm counterparts.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

GW 28mm Lothern Skycutter to 10mm Elven Airboat Conversion

This week I completed a conversion project that I've been working on slowly over the past couple months, that involved converting a 28mm Games Workshop Warhammer "Lothern Skycutter" into a 10mm Elven Airboat.  I had purchased this model for a very reasonable price from a friend's flea market table at the BARRAGE gaming convention, with an eye to using the boat portion of the kit for my 10mm Elf fantasy army.
The kit's box
    I began by assembling the boat, and making a few modifications.   First, I trimmed and re-positioned the rudder handle, so it would sit low enough for a 10mm figure to use it.  Secondly, I took an old Games Workshop Warmaster Elf Repeating Bolt Thrower and cut it down so it would mount on the prow of the boat.  I gave a friend the large bird that was part of the Skycutter kit .
The assembled model.
  Instead of using the typical GW base that came with the kit, I glued the airboat's flight-stand to a 3"x 1.5" base suitable for use with the "Bear Yourselves Valiantly" mass-combat Fantasy rules.  I then went through my box of spare figures and selected some individually based 10mm Elves I had to use as a crew.
The finished airboat.
 I spray primed the boat and crew with flat black primer (I wish I had used white!) and painted the boat in a dark blue, white, and yellow scheme, and the crew in a light blue and white uniform.
The airboat shown flying over some 10mm Elven troops.
I painted the crew and boat separately; and after painting was complete, I glued the crew in the boat.  I added some scraps of lead, cut from a figure's base long ago, to the base of the boat to add stability, and blended them into the base with a little putty so they would resemble little hills.  Afterwards I flocked the base.
A close-up of the crew.
    I'm pleased with how this project came out.  It will add some powerful air support to my Elven forces.
A shot from the back angle.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Saving Wee Willie Winkie By GASLIGHT

This past Sunday Buck Surdu hosted a GASLIGHT game as a going-away event for a friend of his who works for the State Dept. and is about to be deployed overseas.  The game was set in the Northwest Frontier, and was a followup scenario to a previous one Buck had ran in which British troops were tasked with saving Wee Willie Winkie from the clutches of the evil Pasha.  In this outing, the British troops were on their way back to camp with Wee Willie Winkie when they are ambushed by the Pasha's men and some Russian advisers who have supplied the Pathans with some Steam timberclads
The scene early in the game as the Brits from up their defense. My troops are seen moving off on the left, while a force of Sikhs move up to hold the center, and the Lady Hussars take the right.
     I played on the British side, commanding two units of Punjab infantry, a light steam tank, and Captain. Caruthers.  The Brits decided to form into a defensive lager, anchored on several key terrain pieces, while withdrawing Wee Willie Winkie to a safe distance far from the front lines.
Some of the fierce fighting around the point of the British inverted "V".
   On the British right, part of the column get separated from the main body  and valiantly held out the entire game against repeated attacks from two units of Russians and their Steam Lorry. The rest of the British line ended up in a shallow inverted "V" , with the point of the V on a hill in the center of the table.  The British left was anchored on a large outcropping , but the right, held by the Female Hussars ended up with out a secure anchor.
My troop unleash a volley at a charging unit of Pathans.
    A fierce battle developed in the center as the Pathans threw their weight against the Brits holding the hill.  The fight seesawed back and forth.   Meanwhile, where I was positioned on the left, I was able to hold off the Pathans facing me.  After a couple devastating volleys from my troops, the Pathans contented themselves with holding their ground and sniping at my troops at long range.
The Pathans facing me resorted to sniping from the hills.
  When the time seemed right I decided to counterattack, launching my one unit of lancers in  a flanking maneuver around the large outcropping securing our flank, and attempting to take the Pathans in their flank as my infantry charged forward and hit them in the front.
An overview of the table at the height of the battle.
  My cavalry successfully decimated the first unit they hit with the aid of some  volleys from some Highlanders positioned nearby, but my mounted troops then came up against the decimated unit's Leader, The Big Khan, who started slicing his way through my horsemen like they were butter.  Only the intervention of the Major in charge of our force saved my horseman, and defeated the Khan.
Wee Willie Winkie being guarded by a unit of Highlanders.
This unfortunately delayed the cavalry, so that my infantry was caught charging  across the open terrain without the mounted troops providing a flanking force, and I ended up taking some serious casualties.  Luckily, at that point the game was called as it was dinner time.  The Brits were declared the winners, as even though many of our units were chewed up, the Pathans were no where near Wee Willie Winkie, and in fact had been severely mauled themselves in the battle.
    You can read another report of the battle on Buck's Blog.
The Big Khan slices through my cavalry, before going head to head with the British Major.
  Everyone had a blast, and the game was a lot of fun.   Thanks go out to Buck for hosting, and his wife Candy for providing great snacks throughout the game and a nice dinner afterwards.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

10mm Dwarf Cavalry Battlegroup for "Bear Yourselves Valiantly"

This week I completed a Dwarf Cavalry Battlegroup of three Warbands for use with "Bear Yourselves Valiantly" mass-combat fantasy rules. My Battlegroup consists of a Leader mounted on a bear, two warbands of heavy bear-mounted troops, and one of lighter ram-mounted troops.  The figures are from Magister Militum's 10mm Fantasy line.
   I designed their banners, using this great free flag-designing website: Flag Designer