Friday, November 29, 2013

Ronin, Samurai, Ashigaru

Over the last week I’ve been trying to organize some of my Samurai/L5R figures and get painting up some more to use with Ronin – Skirmish Wargames in the Age of the Samurai. I’ll probably be painting a lot of them over the next few months as I am fairly certain I’ll be running a Ronin campaign/tournament for the 10th Annual Wargaming Birthday Bash/Winter Wargaming Weekend in February.

First up, we have a bit of a mish-mash of stuff:

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version):

Front Left to right: A female Lion clan Samurai that was made by AEG/WOTC for Clan War (some of the Clan War minis have been re-released by Valiant Minatures, but I’m not sure if this one is), A ronin from Reaper Miniatures, A monk from Perry Miniatures, an Ashigaru from Old Glory, and another Samurai (this time a Crane Clan archer) from AEG/WOTC.

I have to say Japanese corded armour is a pain in the ass to paint. But it does look cool when you’re done. Here’s a few closer-ups:

Crane Clan Archer

Back of the Crane Clan Archer

Lioness Sanurai and Ronin (which I've painted as a Crane Clan student of the Kakita Academy) 

Monk and Ashigaru.

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

These models IN ACTION! (hopefully) 

Generic Central or South Americans

Wow… I finished these up over a week ago now (I think) and I took some hasty pictures at dusk that didn’t turn out all that awesome so I left off posting anything thinking I’d get around to taking some better pics. That hasn’t happened. I don’t know that it ever will. So here are the pics I originally took.

I’m not sure when, but some time in the last year I got it in my head that it might be fun to have a force that could be used as a generic, American-backed South or Central American country… Or perhaps even a mercenary force or the private army of some drug lord…? Anyway I picked up a couple of West Wind Productions’s Vietnam Special forces packs and then just added a few other odds and ends (mostly more spare Vietnam Americans and Australians from The Assault Group). I’m not sure who exactly they were supposed to oppose?! I guess if they were the private army of some drug lord I could use some sort of western special forces or something involved in a anti-drug operation.

I suppose I could pick up some forces that I could use as some Marxist rebel forces? Perhaps Eureka Miniatures/Kriegspeil’s “Musorians” – there’s two packs with soft hats that could pass as South or Central American anti-government rebels…?

I’d thought of using them in some sort of “imagi-nation” – like San Theodoros (from the Tintin comics) and maybe I could pass my Argentines off as soldiers of Nuevo Rico (a hostile neighboring country)...?

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version):

Here is the entire force. A larger platoon worth (or two understrength platoons) with some mortars for support. I could probably make use of some of my Vietnam equipment with these (tank, APCs, etc). 

I’d tried to break them down into squads and take pictures of each, but the only one that was even remotely in focus was the mortar team.

I have no strong urge to add anything to this force at any time in the near future (other than to come up with some opposing force)

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

More Ronin!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Ronin - Skirmish Wargames in the Age of the Samurai

I got in a few games of Ronin – Skirmish Wargames in the Age of the Samurai Saturday. First I tried a game with the boy in the afternoon….


We each took more or less identical Buntai with a Samurai and four Ashigaru. Two of the Ashigaru had yumi (bows), the other two had yari (spears). My Samurai had a Naginata, Finnegan’s Samurai had a Tetsubo.

We played the “Skirmish” scenario – which is pretty much a straight up “There they are, go get ‘em” sort of thing. There are additional objectives that you roll for that, if completed gain you additional vicoty points. I think Finnegan rolled the one where he had to have the most figures in three of the table’s quarters to get the bonus 5VP. I think I had to kill 75% of his force!?

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Turn One running towards each other – my archers loosed off a few arrows with little effect.

Still Turn One

This might have been the end of Turn One…?

By Turn Two are warriors were in combat… well… most of them… Finnegan’s Samurai hadn’t quite made it to anyone so I shot him full of arrows (or at least tried).

This might have been the end of Turn Two or sometime during Turn Three…? I think we only got to three – out of what was supposed to be an 8 turn game.

As this was the very first run through of the game after reading the rules earlier in the week we got hung up a few times – but for the most par things were pretty easy to remember and I imagine after a few more games things will go very quickly. I like the combat system. There’s a bit more decision making that simply who to hit – You have a combat pool of which you can draw attack of defence tokens – so you could choose to do an all out attack (choosing all attack tokens), that, if you get the initiative, could lay down some hurt on your opponents, or take a totally defensive posture to just try and get out of there alive (not making any attacks at all, or, preferably some subtle balance of the two that will give you enough fight to take down your opponents but cautious enough to keep you around for the next round.

Later in the evening Patrick stopped by and we had a go at it…


For our first game we used the same two Buntai, and the same scenario. I think I had the control ¾ of the field objective, but Patrick rolled the capture the enemy leader one (so I had to quickly reread the rules on subduing foes!).

Turn Two and we are in the thick of it. I think we rolled 11 turns for this game (game length is generally random 6+d6 turns for the Skirmish Scenario).

Things went south for me very quickly – in our first round of combat Patrick’s samurai captured mine?! And then one of his Ashigaru killed one of mine!?

The next turn his Samurai passed off my captured samurai to his free Ashigaru and chased down one of my archers with his samurai!

Then he chased down my other Ashigaru – who was already battling two of his Ashigaru… In a last ditch effort to free my samurai my remaining Ashigaru ran up and tried to shoot his Ashigaru that was holding my samurai prisoner. I managed to lightly wound him… but that didn’t free my Samurai and that was pretty much the end of it for me…


Next we made up two new Buntai with the small collection of historical samurai and Legend of the Five Rings miniatures I have.

Patrick made a Kakita Academy Koryu Buntai. He had a Sensei with Jenjutsu, Commander and Powerful attributes, a Senpai with Commander, Kenjutso and Niten attribures, Two initiates with Kenjutsu and a novice with only a sword to fill out the points.

I took another Bushi Buntai, but this time only took Samurai. I took a Bushou with Kenjutsu, Sejo-jutsu, and Intuition attributes, and three samurai with Kenjutsu. None of my Bushi had any armour.

WE again played the Skirmish scenario, and I, once again, had to control ¾ of the table to get the bonus points. Patrick had to survive and take less than 25% casualties.


Things were looking up for me after the first round of combat. My Bushou had taken down one of the initiates. And only one of my samurai in combat with the Kakita Academy Sensei had been lightly wounded.

Things went downhill rapidly thereafter…

His Sensei took down two of my samurai and then his Senpai grievously wounded my Boshou…

The next turn saw my remaining samurai chopped to bits by three opponents and my Boshou finished off…


I like it.

Combat is fast and deadly. I think the longest game was four turns… Of course in all three games we pretty much all charged headlong into close combat as fast as we could – because that’s what we were wanting to try out. I think in the future it might be more advantageous to try and keep in mind the other objective that can score bonus victory points and take more missile troops and maybe try and soften up the other buntai with some arrows or something before isolating and  ganging up on the survivors…

We shall see. I am definitely keen to try some more.

This could very well be what we end up playing 10th Annual Wargaming Birthday Bash - I have lots of Samurai (okay, most of them are Legends of the Five rings figures… but a lot of them are fairly historically accurate…) that I could paint up for a few Buntai. I could do with a few Monks and a few more Ashigaru and some bandit-looking guys and peasants and such… but that will probably have to wait until the new year.

(if anyone’s wondering what to get me for xmas… hint, hint, hint, hint, hint, hint, hint…)

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Maybe those Generic South/Central Americans – they’re done, and I took some pictures of them, but it was getting later in the afternoon and the light was fading fast so they didn’t turn out so awesome… maybe I’ll try taking some new ones tomorrow…

Saturday, November 23, 2013


I picked up a copy of Ronin – Skirmish Wargames in the Age of the Samurai  a while back and finally got around to reading it this last week. It looks like a pretty slick little game and so I’ve been pulling out all my samurai and Legend of the Five Rings trying to put together a couple of buntai for a game. And that got me painting a few Samurai and Ashigaru for giggles…

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version):

On the left is an unarmoured Samurai from Perry Miniatures. In the middle are two Samurai from AEG's old L5R Clan War range. On the right is an Ashigaru archer from Old Glory. The two on the left have been painted in Crab Clan colours and the two on the right have been painted in Lion clan colours - as I might like to make use of them in a Savage Worlds /Legend of the Five Rings game sometime.

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Hopefully a Ronin game report!

And then the Generic Central/South Americans. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

In Other News...

Curt over at Analogue Hobbies is running another Winter Painting Challenge and after taking a year off I'm back in on this one. So I think as the renovations wrap up and I get the hobby dungeon cleared up over the next few weeks I'm going to spend some time assembling a few vehicles that I'll then paint when the challenge starts (Assembling and priming kits is apparently fine - as long as no paint goes on before the challenge starts!)

Also Rusty Nail over at Hurry up and Wait! had a little give-away contest  to celebrate 50000 hits.  Honestly I don't know why he doesn't have twice as many! The pictures on the site are truly inspiring. Even if you don't care for moderns stuff or the Falklands go check it out - the detail on teh basing - especially the wepaons teams and the little terrain bits is something we should all aspire to!

Anyway... I WON one of the Gurkhas. It arrived a month ago now and he was on a much bigger base than my own, so I tried to carefully carve him off his original base and put it on one of the washers I use while trying to preserve as much of the original basing detail.

And here he is with my own Gurkhas:

Pretty sweet, eh? Fits right in! (Thanks Rusty!) 

Two T-72

I had thought of calling this post Tea for Two T-72… but that would just be Silly!

I picked up three 1/48 scale T-72 tanks in two separate orders. Unfortunately In one order I ordered Tanks of a different make thinking them to be the same…

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version):

The tank on the left is from Academy, the tank on the right is from Kitech. They are both supposed to be 1/48 T-72 tanks… I have another of the Academy tanks to build. Generally I’m not super picky, but these are quite different enough that it does kind of annoy me.

The Academy T-72. Usually I'm okay with sacrificing a little detail for easy assembly... but this it a little much. It's more toy than model. 

The Kitech T-72. The little things that I think are smoke grenade dischargers were all individual and a bit of a pain in the butt to put on... but overall I like the look of this one better. The Vehicle commander is from Mongrel Miniatures. 

Here they are with the diecast BTR-60s and a few of my Cold War Soviets infantry. 

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Generic Central/South Americans - just finishing up the bases on a platoon of them! 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Bit More Vietnam Stuff

I’ve been kind of busy over the last couple of weeks. As I mentioned before we’re doing a little renovating. Today was the first day in a long time there wasn’t workers scurrying about during all daylight hours – even on the weekends for the last few weeks there’s been people here desperately trying to get the insulation and stucco one. Our house has been under a  tarp...

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version):

I’ve also been busy putting in flooring...

Hardwood floors…

Tiling the bathroom…

So I haven’t had a tonne of time for painting and what little I have gotten done I haven’t really had an opportunity to take any pictures of... until this afternoon….

I finished up a few more Vietnamese over the last few weeks for the new Savage Worlds /Force on Force Tour of Darkness/Ambush Valley campaign we kicked off  last month… (could I get any more links in one sentence!?)

Civilians. The two on the right are from West Wind Productions “Vietnamese Civilians” pack – which, of the 20 civilians in the pack, there were 18 men, and two boys… not one female…? The two on the left are from Eureka Miniatures (which I picked up from Eureka Miniatures USA). This is the ONLY female Vietnamese civilian I have. I modeled one a while back (to mould and cast myself) to balance out the population a bit, but never got around to moulding and casting any… I think Baker Company has some civilians that I might pick up at some point. Maybe I should just find that old master and cast up a few women of my own….

These are West Wind Productions “Montagnards” which bare little resemblance to real “Montagnards”- but would work fine for Colonel Kurtz’s “Montagnards” from Apocalypse Now (Which I’m sure these are modeled after. In Tour of Darkness there are some degenerate, cannibalistic jungle savages that show up in a few encounters or adventures – that kind of remind me of Tcho-Tcho – which is what I will use them for.

The last two Americans from Baker Company.

A few West Wind Productions Viet Cong.

I have only a couple Viet Cong, a downed pilot, a Huey Gunship and the Swift Boat to finish up before I can say I’M DONE! Or at least done all of the 28mm Vietnam stuff that I have – as I mentioned I’d like to pick up or make a few more villagers and have been thinking I’d like to pick up something to use as ARVN. I was thinking I might use some West Wind Productions “Berlin or Bust” Pacific Marines – as their Berlin or Bust figures are a tad on the smaller side… and the ARVN, at least in the earlier stages of the war, look like they’re using American WW2 hand-me-downs (M1 Rifles, BARs, etc) I thought they might fit the bill…?

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I also finished up couple of 1/48 T-72s – but I’ll do them in a separate post. I am also very nearly finished the Generic American-backed Central/South American forces… maybe over the weekend I’ll finish them up… of course I still have a bit of hardwood flooring to put down at some point…

I also recently read Ronin earlier this week and it looks like a pretty slick little system. I’m keen to try it out and might be able to cobble together enough for a Buntai or two from my assorted Japanese Samurai and Legends of the Five Rings minis…