Saturday, November 29, 2014

Song of Shadows and Dust Faction

So those of you who’ve been following along will know I got very (VERY) excited about Nic Wright’s excellent Song of Shadows and Dust (a reimplementation of Andrea Sfiligoi’s A Song of Blades and Heroes). Song of Shadows and Dust focuses on street violence in urban areas around the Mediterranean circa the first century BCE (plus or minus) – Think of HBO’s Rome series or the more recent Spartacus series. Though I haven’t got in a game in the last few weeks (er… MONTHS!?) I am still very excited about it and an planning on running a Song of Shadows and Dust campaign for my 11th Annual Wargaming Birthday Bash/Winter Wargaming Weekend coming up in February 2015.

Unlike previous events I’ve run I will likely not be providing everyone with forces to play with – I’ll be providing 3-5 urban game tables (that’s a LOT of buildings) – and, really, that should be enough! But I thought to help inspire those that are coming to the event – or anyone else interested in the game, but are unsure where to source figures – I’d try and put together a few quick, relatively inexpensive factions in 28mm. (I figured I could also sell these factions I build to other who really want to participate but absolutely, positively refuse to make any attempt to assemble and paint their own!)

Factions are predominantly armed civilians and there aren’t a lot of ancient armed civilian figure currently available – the lovely Ancient Civilians Collection from Wargames Foundry being the happy exception! There are ancient light infantry with slings or bows or javelins are available could be used, but most other light infantry generally have shields – which generally wouldn’t be carried around in the street as it would attract a bit too much attention.  After much searching around I settled on the Numidians from  Wargames Factory

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

The pack contains 28 plastic figures. Most of the 300 point factions we’ve used in our games so far have had 6-8 figures. As I am planning for a campaign where the factions could potentially grow larger the factions people bring to the campaign would need to be larger. So the box could easily make two factions of 13-15 figures totaling 500-700 points each.

In the box, there are seven sprues with bodies and LOADS of arm options!

There are also seven sprues with an assortment of weapons.

I’d originally planned to do this as a step-by-step how-to sort of post… but after sticking the bodies on the bases I realized this was going to take more time than I have to spare at the moment… maybe next time.

After sticking bodies to bases I thought I should probably go about this with a plan rather that sticking random weapons on willy nilly. So, I sat down and worked out two factions. Both had to have a starting faction of 300 points and include extras that could be added as the faction expanded it’s influence and grew in numbers ( I should say “IF the faction expanded it’s influence and grew in numbers”!)

For the first one I wanted to do as little converting/sculpting as possible – to illustrate what can be accomplished by simply assembling the figures out of the box. Here’s what I came up with:

Starting Warband:

1x Faction Leader 60
1x Boxer 83
4x Henchmen @ 27 = 108
1x Henchman with Sling 36

This is a total of seven figures at 387 points (the number in the faction was important as one of the rules I was considering using, at the time, from Song of Deeds and Glory</a> was that the maximum warband/faction size is limited to the number in the initial warband/faction x2)

The additional figures that could be added to the warband – or used as different options to replace lost members)

1x Armed Henchman (with sword) 36
2x Retired Vetrans @ 52 = 104
1x Henchmen (with cudgel) 32
1x Cruel Henchman 27
2x Henchmen (with Slings) @36 = 72
1x Henchmen (with javelins) 27

For a total of 14 figures at 685 points (I think a faction would have to be doing REALLY well and not taking ANY losses to get that big in the course of a 5-6 game campaign…)

So here is what they ended up looking like.

The Whole Faction. I painted them all is various shades of blue (or blue-ish greys) to make them a little more easily identifiable from other factions. When (if) I get to doing another

The Faction Leader – he could just as easily be fielded as a Guild Master (for less points) or a Demagogue (for more points) - done in darker more vibrant colours to make him stand out a bit. 

The Boxer – the taping on the hands was just painted on. Could also be fielded as the “Punch Drunk Boxer” for 46 points…

Four basic “joe-shmoe” henchmen – I gave them rocks and knives. Anyone in the game can pick up rocks and hurl them! Knives are small and easily concealable – to help maintain their “grey” ability. The could also be fielded as apprentices or even a “Savvy Henchman” (at 48 points)…?

Some  henchmen with missle weapons – two with slings and one with Javelins

The two retired Veterans (in helmets) and single sword armed henchman - for when the faction gets a bit bigger and BOLDER! (note the swords are a bit thin and fragile - one already broke off before I even finished painting!?) 

Henchman with “cudgel”. Perhaps that a bit big for a cudgel… whatever – big stick that gives him the bludgeon special rule!

Finally the “Cruel Henchman” I gave him a bloody stone and knife to make it easier to differentiate him from the regular henchmen. The “Cruel Henchman” has the Savage special rule…

And that’s that… Hopefully it’s inspired one or two of you and filled your heads ideas and possibilities.

The next faction I was planning to do with the remaining figures from the box was to be lead by a Young Politician or Disgruntled Aristocrat – I can’t quite remember which – that I planned to try  and model a toga over with some green stuff. Possibly an Assassin with a hooded clock – also modeled from greenstuff…? I may not get to those for a week or two however – I have some other stuff to get going on – Great War stuff… play-testing Song of Galleys and Galleons… other stuff…

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

More on my plans for the Song of Shadows and Dust campaign in February and HOPEFULLY some game reports of Song of Galleys and Galleons!! 

Early Medieval Mounted Men-at-Arms

After our first game of Lion Rampant I went snooping through the lead pile to see if I could find any more mounted troops that could pass for “medieval”. I found these fellows I got in some trade – I think they are Old Glory Crusaders…?

(of course then North Star Figures went and offered the first of their read-made Lion Rampant Army Deals - made up of Crusader Miniatures… er… Crusaders…).

(and then I found some Wargames Foundry  Hundred years War Mounted Men-at-arms on ebay…)

I’m trying to let this go until next summer (when our survey of history will bring us around to the middle ages) and focus on the task(s) at hand (Greeks, which we are studying now, Romans, which we will be getting to in teh new year, Great War stuff for the Vimy Project, and getting out the sailing ships for a game I'm supposed to be play-testing - not to mention the not-so-game-related projects I have on the go)… but it doesn’t seem to be working out so well…

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

Mounted Men-at-Arms

Same bunch, slightly different angle.

Again with the different angles…

Actually I only need six for a mounted unit in Lion Rampant, but I'm hoping I'll be able to scare up another four of these (for a total of twelve) to be able to put together TWO such units. 

Most of my Medieval-ish retinues have belonged to Philipe du Lapin - who colours have been red and white, usually red surmounted by a white bunny (sometimes the "Bunny Rampant"). I thought I should start in on a second (opposing) force whose colours would be green and yellow... maybe involving a badger... I don't know... I think maybe I overdid it a bit with all the different patterns all using yellow and green here...?

 With these done I think I will shift gears and get working on some of the more pressing projects!

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I fell into the Black Friday trap and ordered another Brigade worth of Great War British/Canadians which should keep me busy for a bit. Expect to see more Great War stuff in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, however, I took it upon myself to try and make a faction or two for Song of Shadows and Dust - the first of which I finished last night and should hopefully post some pictures of later today.

I’m also supposed to be play-testing a new set of Age of Sail Rules - Song of Galleys and Galleons - By Nic Wright – so I’m going to be laying off on the painting for a week or two to clear off the game table to get some games of that going on – stand-by for game reports!! 

I've also been very busy the last few weeks working on some crafty projects with The Girl... more on that shortly as well. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

49th (Edmonton) Battlaion, Canadian Expeditionary Force

I have finally gotten back to painting battalions for my Canadian Great War project. This one is the 49th (Edmonton) Battalion, CEF

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

The figures for the 49th – along with all the units of the 7th Brigade (3rd Division, CEF) are from Great War Miniatures.

I have two more battalions to paint up to finish the Brigade; The Royal Canadian Regiment and the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry. Then it’s on to the 9th Brigade to finish up the 3rd Division (or perhaps a few of the German opponents…?)

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I have a few odd and sundry items in the works; mounted Knights for Lion Rampant (or A Song of Blades and Heroes or Song of Arthur and Merlin or any other medievally skirmish game, I suppose)… and … other things… and hopefully tonight or tomorrow I’ll get around to posting the report of the game of Wargaming Nineteenth Century Europe 1815-1878 I played with John last week. 

Bones Shoggoths and a Halfling

Wow… I’ve been slacking off a bit - over TWO WEEKS since my last post!?

A couple odd items this morning – all Reaper Miniatures Bones figures …

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

4 Shoggoths – I picked these up to use with Innsmouth Escape - a boardgame from Twilight Creations that I picked up a while ago but only recently got around to sitting down and playing it. In it there are Deep Ones of four different colours (so up to four of your bestest friends can control Deep Ones chasing your hapless hero who is trying to run around Innsmouth and round up some of his/her Miscatonic college buddies before escaping from the wretched city…). Each Deep One player is supposed to be able to summon a Shoggoth – but instead of supplying a miniature for this there is only a cardboard counter… I noticed that there were Shoggoths in the Reaper Miniatures Bones collection… so I picked up four and painted one each in the colours of the four colours of the Deep Ones provided in the game.

While I was at it, I painted a Bones Halfling.

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Despite not posting much over the last few weeks I haven’t been entirely unproductive! In addition to these figure I also finished up another Battalion for Vimy project (which I will be posting shortly) I also got in one last game of Wargaming Nineteenth Century Europe 1815-1878 with John at his house before he moves out – which I will hopefully get around to posting… soon…? 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Ancient Greeks, Olympians, and a Medieval Knight

I got a few things finished up over the weekend…

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

Ares and Apollo from Wargames Foundry - The last two of the Olympians that I picked up a few years back and mostly painted… except these two… and now they’re done. 

Hmmm.... Greek Gods apparently don't have pubic hair... or at least Apollo here doesn't. Is it a god thing? Do they just not have any or is it fashionable amongst the gods to shave down there? Or is it just Apollo? Perhaps he moonlights as a porn star...?

Here are ALL the Olympians together. Quite the crowd.

The Godesses – from left to right: Demeter, Hestia, Hera, Aphrodite, and Athena

The Gods (part 1) – from left to right: Ares, Posiedon, Zeus, Hades, Hermes

The Gods (part 2) – from left to right: Eros, Hephaestus, Apollo, Dionysus  

A couple of Pegasai(?).

Greek Casualties from Warlord Games

More Greeks, mostly from Black Tree Design - the fellow on the left isn’t from Black Tree Design. I got him in a trade and I’m not entirely sure where he came from…?

Still more Black Tree Design Greeks – I seem to have a LOT of guys in this pose…?

Finally… not a Greek… an early Medieval Knight. I’m pretty sure he’s from Old Glory, probably supposed to be a crusader…?  

The backside of said knight – showing off his Bunny Rampant device.

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I’ve got to get on with some Great War battalions so I thought I’d just into that this week – it is Armistice/Remembrance Day tomorrow! I also have a few more Ancient/Mythic Greek items on the workbench I’d like to finish up.

Perhaps also a game report of the skirmishy-role-playing game I’ve started with the kids set in the world of Mythical Greece. 

Monday, November 3, 2014

Great War Canadian Vickers Team

Probably my last entry to the Lead Adventure Forum Great War Painting Club - unless everyone else is a slacker and I get super motivated this evening…

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

Great War Canadian Vickers Team

The figures are from Great War Miniatures.

This team is meant to be from the 7th Company, 3rd Canadian Machine-Gun Battalion. (They should have a small green arrow above the grey patch, but I forgot to paint it…)

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

There’s a lot of stuff cluttering my workbench at the moment. I’m going to have to have a tidy up pretty soon.

Next? Could be Greeks. Could be Romans. Could be Medievals for Lion Rampant. Could be more Canadians for the Vimy Project (I’ve been having a look at things and I need to paint about two battalions a month until March 2017 to get them all done in time… So I’d best get cracking on those!).