Friday, 26 December 2014

Christmas is over, the New Year beckons.

Can anyone spot a theme for 2015?

Happy New Year, everyone!

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Christmas is coming.....and I'm trying to get some of my current projects out of the way before the Christmas presents are opened, and new projects initiated.

December is always a bit hectic in our family; three birthdays, a wedding anniversary, and being in Japan, we tend to treat Christmas and New Year as separate events (well, the wife does...). Add in the end of year parties, hangovers and the rest, and the time to paint stuff shrinks dramatically. And my painting rate is pretty glacial; I belong to that faction of the hobby that tends to go for the game first rather than the painting. However, I am slowly getting things shifted. The Renaissance galley fleets I really need to finish. They've been painted bit by bit, so now I'm trying to get down and do the lot. The Genoese are just about done; just the bases left to do with the water effects (which I'm still learning how to use effectively), so now I'm on to the Venetians, who are now in the shipyard.

 The colours are similar to the Genoese, mainly red, but I've left the hulls as a dark brown, and have left the poop awnings as simple canopies rather than trying to go for the 'cover all' effect of the Genoa squadron. The flags are printed so the next task is to trim the cast ones from the mast heads and put the paper ones on. Then it's just the basing to do. Together, the Italians represent over half the Christian fleet. The next to do are the Spanish and Papal ships and galleasses. Then I can worry about the Turks and Barbary pirates.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

The first Christmas presents to myself have started arriving. Two boxes of Victrix 28mm 1804 French infantry. I bought them largely because Victrix had a 20% discount on them last month, so I gulped, and shelled out, mainly so that I have my own figures to join in the club Napoleonic games in Tokyo. At 17 pounds for 60 figures they seemed a good deal, about 8,000 yen, including P&P (buy them from Amazon Japan and you pay between 11,000 and 14,800 yen per box!!). 

I have to admit to being a little nervous about them. I've always been a 15mm and 6mm gamer. My painting isn't great, and I worry about putting the figures together and painting them to the kind of GW standard that seems to be the norm amongst 28mm gamers.

Other items on the waiting to arrive list are Rousselot's "Napoleon's Army" and Command and Colours Napoleonic. I also got the US and Japanese fleet packs (plus some battleships) for the Coral Sea from Scale Creep miniatures. I actually ordered these back in September, but not everything was in stock, so they asked me if I minded waiting to send everything in one package. They've arrived just in time for Christmas.

So it looks like 2015 is going to be focused on two themes; naval (galleys and WW2), and Brown Bess (my C18th War of Spanish Succession, AWI and Napoleonics). Busy times ahead!

Friday, 28 November 2014

AWI Collection

Here are some more snaps of my AWI collection. As I said previously, this is still very much a work in progress. I still have more cavalry, Continentals, artillery and French to paint up. In the meantime, these are the meagre forces at my disposal for the defence of Liberty and Freedom.

The 3rd Continental Dragoons.

Continentals, including Kirkwood's Delaware light infantry, 2nd Rhode Island and the Continental Marines (c'mon, you've got to have the Marines!).


 Artillery and riflemen.

 Militia. These were the most difficult to paint. I tried to get a mix of clothing colours and styles. It's not always obvious in this scale, and period paintings show a lot of quite dull colours - browns mainly - but I think I did an adequate job of capturing the 'not regular' appearance of the units.

Monday, 24 November 2014

I've always loved ships, especially sailing ships and galleys. As a kid I had some wonderful books on the subject, and read avidly about biremes, triremes, carracks, galleons and the rest. Yet somehow I never really got into naval wargaming, at least with miniatures. I bought the Avalon Hill 'Trireme' games and 'Wooden Ships and Iron Men' rather than buying ships. I still bought rules, though for the most part they were so detailed as to be unplayable except by the dedicated. I'm not into masses of record keeping and charts. One exception was a set I picked for the grand sum of 50 pence at a show in Nottingham. It was a very short set from WRG for C16th naval warfare. I thought it looked fun, and bought half a dozen ships to have a game. Over time, I acquired a few more ships. I liked the period, and looked at other rules, but never really liked them as much. I left all the ships at my parents' when I came to Japan.

Then I picked up a copy of Roger Crowley's 'Empires of the Sea' on a trip home. Somehow it reignited my interest in a big way. I dug out my old ships, brought them back and managed to persuade some of the gamers in Tokyo to give them a try. The game was a success, and I sent of to Navwar for more ships. So I now have a pile of lead to sort out paint. Eventually, I'll have Holy League and Ottoman/Barbary fleets to face off. New ships are being assembled and painted, some old ones repainted. Just for a taster, here's the Holy League's Genoese squadron in the shipyard.

These are also on my other blog, The Kapudan Pasha's Blog, with some old pictures of some ships in action.

Friday, 21 November 2014

I am a wargamer living in Japan. Like most gamers I have a range of periods of interest, and flit from one to another over time. And, like most gamers, I have piles of unpainted miniatures in storage. One reason for starting this blog was to be able to post pictures of my miniatures and games, simply to give me some inspiration to get more painting done. 

I thought about trying to create blogs for each interest, but it would be way too much work, and (as you can no doubt see from the quality and format of this blog) I am not particularly computer savvy. As time goes on and I become better at creating and formatting posts, I hope that will change, but until then, please bear with me.

So, to kick off, a couple of pictures of some of my American War of Independence figures.

The figures are all Baccus 6mm. One of the members of the West Tokyo Wargamers, Matt Ashton, is building up the British/Loyalist forces, while I'm doing the Rebels and French. The top pic shows some of the militia units, the figures in the lower are Continentals. We use the Black Powder rules and just measure everything in centimetres rather than inches. They seem to work pretty well and let us use some quite large armies. Our standard unit size is 48 figures, and when I finally paint everything up, I'll have about 24 Continental and militia regiments, 4 French, plus artillery and cavalry. The British have similar numbers. I haven't bought the Warlord Games AWI supplement yet, but it's on the Christmas list.