Saturday, 19 December 2015

Santa Claws is coming to town...

With the silly season upon us and the countdown to Christmas begun, I was very fortunate that time could be found for a few gaming mates to get together and roll dice. After a magnificent BBQ in which inappropriate amounts of meat were appropriately consumed, it was time to get down to the serious business of pushing toy soldiers around. Special mention must be given to the beverage of choice, which matched the theme of the evening rather nicely.

John, our very generous host, had prepared a special SAGA scenario based on the 'A feast for crows' scenario. The Christmas twist was that we were raiding Santa's village! We had to raid the bakery in the middle of town and get out before being overwhelmed by angry elves armed with sharp toys, or the other players. There were even special edition Christmas miniatures to be claimed -  thanks John for those generous gifts!
The village - will Santa make an appearance?
My Anglo-Danes ready to ruin Christmas
The elves are not happy!
Santa dished out some serious hurt, before later falling beneath a flurry of Dane axes...

It was a great game, the elves were using the Pagan Russ board with all its nasty winter tricks, with Scottish and Welsh war-bands competing against my Anglo-Danes. Each time a unit went near a building or forest, the roll of a dice revealing it was full of elves was heartily cheered (especially when it was an opponent being charged). Santa even made an entrance, though he did not last long... I just hope that the real Santa doesn't hold any grudges. No-one wants to wake up to an angry fat man screaming 'Payback!' and swinging a stocking full of coal around his head on Christmas day.

The objective! These Scots did not make it out.

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Wish me luck!

After enjoying last years challenge from the sideline, I have decided to throw my hat into the ring and give it a go. I have given myself a target of 500 points, and since my gaming is all 25-30mm, that means  about 100 models.
When I got back into the hobby about 9 years ago, I painted a Dwarf army for the Warhammer tournament scene (which I enjoyed  while it lasted...), since then though, my usual output is about 20 models per annum. However, this year as I've broadened my gaming horizons, I have painted a war-band of Anglo-Danes for Saga and a Carthaginian army for Basic Impetus and a few other bits and bobs.

I'm hoping the painting challenge will really help me take a chunk out of my lead/plastic pile, because I've been buying models at a rate much higher than 20 models a year! Though if I fall behind, there are always the challenges.

Behold - My lead pile in all its organised glory! Well, the stuff I have ambitions of perhaps, possibly, maybe putting paint on .

It's really starting to pile up...

The only problem I have at the moment is that I keep buying more things for all the painting challenges! I've also accepted a side-challenge - to paint up a war-band for Muskets and Tomahawks, so there is the real chance I will end up with a larger pile of unpainted miniatures at the end of the challenge than when I started. Which isn't a bad problem, really...  =)

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Bit of a mixed bag

The last few weeks have been super busy, and it shows no sign of slowing down until Christmas! Fortunately, there have been a few bright spots of gaming goodness in amongst all the grey of everyday life. Though to be fair, there has not been much grey in anything, but who wouldn't want more time to get their hobby on?

I got another game of Basic Impetus in, alas, the result was another inglorious defeat. However, like all great generals throughout the ages, I had a co-general I can shift the blame onto... Well, I could if he hadn't been absolutely amazing at rolling hits on his dice- turning some of the weakest units in my army into some of the best! So it's back to the drawing board, again...

The moment before my circling manoeuvre went pear-shaped

This week saw me use up another of my birthdays, (hopefully there are still plenty more left in the bag!) and as a treat I picked up a copy of Frostgrave. The initial intention was to be able to use all my existing Warhammer minis and not need to buy anything else. Of course, it is never that simple, and I can foresee a few (this could be a little optimistic) single monsters and animals being added to my collection to let me play out all the encounters. We'll have to see how the first few games play out.

Finally I will leave with you the only minis I have managed to paint up. These are for a Star Wars: Imperial Assault campaign I have been running. Fortunately, the recent appearance of Lord Vader in a game helped to briefly balance the ledger, though those darn Rebels keep bouncing back!

Saturday, 17 October 2015

Lessons were learnt...

My troops at the start - confident and shouting lots of  'helpful advice' at the enemy
Had my first outing with my new Carthaginian army and my first play through of the Basic Impetus rules on Wednesday. Thoroughly enjoyed the game and the army despite receiving a hiding. 

The Basic Impetus rules offered more depth than I thought they would. I was originally dubious about needing a '6' or double '5' to score a hit - but seeing how quickly units could disappear on a damage/save roll, it balanced out. My units could hit hard, but if the Roman heavy infantry could absorb the initial blow, they were able to grind out the combats, which I felt reflected the flavour of the armies we were using. 

Have to learn to use these guys better...

Because they and my General were all I had left at the end

In fact, I was so pleased with the rules that on the drive home I just kept churning through all the other periods it would be cool to play with these smaller Basic Impetus armies (until a look at my painting inbox sobered me up).

I'm certainly keen to paint up more units and have another crack at Rome, I'll definitely try some tactics more advanced than "charge", now that I have a better understanding of the rules.

The view when two bloggers clash

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Everyone has to start somewhere.

And so it begins...

Having played only GW games for many, many years I have returned to where I started - Historical Gaming. My first big project is teaming up with a mate (Dux Homunculorum) to re-fight some of the great battles between Republican Rome and Carthage (I wonder what the score stands at among gamers over the years). I've loved getting back into a project like this and am looking forward to rolling some dice. 

Here is the army in all its glory using the Basic Impetus army list. Still working on how to take better photos, on which the internet is fortunately full of helpful advice. Shields are mostly transfers by LBM studios.

Next up for the project are some Italian Allies and hopefully a victory or two! We will be initially trying out the Basic Impetus rules and hopefully will get to give Sword and Spear a run later on down the road.