Author Archive

The Pearl of the Antilles – Haitian Revolution AAR #4 Hold the line.

Posted on December 9th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

Painting and posting has slowed to a trickle but hopefully the Christmas period will give me that free time to get juices flowing and some of the back log cleared.Last weekend saw the Wyvern Christmas all dayer, we were a little thin on the ground but …

All work and no play.

Posted on November 26th, 2017 under , , , , , , . Posted by

Hobby time has been rather thin on the ground in recent weeks.
A new job some two hours closer to home should have given me plenty of time to get in front of the brushes, but intense home work and manual reading put paid to any free time in the evenings, hopefully the next month should see things calm down.
I did manage to sneak a trip down to Warfare last weekend and joined the rest of the Wyverns in a refight of Cambrai 1917, using Paul @ Kallistra’s excellent hex terrain and figures.
The British out numbering the Germans 3:1 and supported by 30 Tanks attempted to break three lines of German trenches.

As one of the German commanders we opted to leave the first trench line lightly defended hoping to draw the British in where they would lose a number of tanks in attempting to cross the trench lines with the occasional grenade attack from the infantry defenders.

   

 

In a bloody affair in which the British opened up a number of channels through the use of concentrated artillery they flanked the German left but could not capitalise on the assault as they had lost all of their armour and around 60% of the infantry.
A drawn although the British were quickly on twitter to celebrate a victory.
“The news isn’t there to tell you what happened. It’s there to tell you what it wants you to hear or what it thinks you want to hear.”

 Joss Whedon

A great days gaming touch and go right to the last turn when the German Infantry managed to destroy the last 3 tanks with Grenades, what are the chances of rolling 3 12’s in a row.
Purchases on the day were few, but with Christmas coming and limited paint time, probably not a bad thing, I picked up some extra items for Ghost Archipelago in the shape of a couple of swamps which need some extra’s adding by way of grasses and reeds. I also picked up some lovely treasure pieces which will be great to fight over in the months ahead.

Redoubt had released their cotton pickers for the ACW, but they should be fine for the Haiti Project and some extra jump off points.
I have managed to prep the Crewman from the Ghost Archipelago Nickstarter, with 20 in a box, I opted for 10 European type characters and 10 Middle Eastern both gangs armed with a mixture of weapons, having given the Chinese a run out a few weeks ago, I figured three distinct factions could be formed for any one simply wanting to walk into the club without having to roll for all the stats from the outset.

Until next time….

Ghost Archipelago – 1st Outing.

Posted on November 11th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

Just a short post today showcasing the first outing for Ghost Archipelago last sunday evening.One of the great things about these rules is I have pretty much all that is required to put a game on, swamps, plastic plants and fish tank ornaments.Whilst I…

Ghost Archipelago – 1st Outing.

Posted on November 11th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

Just a short post today showcasing the first outing for Ghost Archipelago last sunday evening.One of the great things about these rules is I have pretty much all that is required to put a game on, swamps, plastic plants and fish tank ornaments.Whilst I…

The Pearl of the Antilles – Haitian Revolution AAR #3 Into the Hinterland

Posted on November 4th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Following on from the last game which was a close call and saw the Haitian’s fall back as their morale fell away as the support units were beaten and driven from the fight, this scenario sees the British push inland towards the fertile plantations, fea…

The Pearl of the Antilles – Haitian Revolution AAR #3 Into the Hinterland

Posted on November 4th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Following on from the last game which was a close call and saw the Haitian’s fall back as their morale fell away as the support units were beaten and driven from the fight, this scenario sees the British push inland towards the fertile plantations, fea…

Wyvern Wargamers – ACW Campaign for Sharp Practice.

Posted on October 31st, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

On the back of one of the Wyvern’s all day bashes a number of us have decided to embark on a short ACW campaign to keep us busy over the winter months and ensure the painting tally for the year continues to tick over.I have been reading the Too Fat Lar…

Wyvern Wargamers – ACW Campaign for Sharp Practice.

Posted on October 31st, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

On the back of one of the Wyvern’s all day bashes a number of us have decided to embark on a short ACW campaign to keep us busy over the winter months and ensure the painting tally for the year continues to tick over.I have been reading the Too Fat Lar…

Dusting off some old favourites… AVBCW.

Posted on October 28th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

A little behind on postings, so much for winding down in my notice period at work :-)Another 3 years have passed and time to dust off the AVBCW Collection, every now and again its good to revisit Worcester in 1938 and the exploits of Harry Doyle and Se…

Dusting off some old favourites… AVBCW.

Posted on October 28th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

A little behind on postings, so much for winding down in my notice period at work :-)Another 3 years have passed and time to dust off the AVBCW Collection, every now and again its good to revisit Worcester in 1938 and the exploits of Harry Doyle and Se…

Ghost Archipelago – Review and First Impressions

Posted on October 22nd, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

Just as I was preparing the latest batch of Haitians the latest distraction landed on the door mat. Frostgrave: Ghost Archipelago, I only played the original game once it was a little heavy on the terrian side for my liking but when I saw the setting for Ghost Archipelago it felt like a rule set that could bring all of my odd collections together on one table top allowing me to get to use some of the mini’s that rarely see table time.
I backed the base level pledge in the current Nickstarter from Northstar, which provided me with the Rules, spell deck, a box of Crew, Crew Rooster, Treasure tokens and preproduction casts together with the novel to get you in the mood for island hopping.
Everything was well packed with the books bubble wrapped for extra protection. The presentation style is excellent, the rules are hard back and have a high production feel to them, no pages will be falling out of this set unlike Cutlass! 

The Snakeman’s sword was damaged but being only one I can’t see much use for him anyway.

I did not go to the trouble of selecting the Heritors and Wardens but am happy with the random figures, they have a Eastern feel to them which will allow me to use some of my Ottomans should I need to ground troops or extra crewmen.
 

I quite like the idea of my Atlantians guarding the various temples and jungle outposts, they will definately feature as some of the “bad guys” the rules cater for waterborne warfare with rules for boats, perfect as I picked a couple of these up from Iron gate scenary at Derby a few weeks ago.

The rulebook is 144 pages filled with full color photos of painted miniatures are some lovely art work to inspire the modeller in you. The rules within the book are relatively straight forward and with specific chapters for each area its easy to to find the specific rules. The contents include. Heritors, Wardens, and Crewmen, Chapter 3 Playing the Game, Chapter 4 The campaign followed by Heritor Abilities, Warden Spells, Scenarios (eight in the book), and the Bestiary.

Flicking through the rules and set up this morning, Ghost Archipelago, provides for a basic warband consisting of 10 members that must be purchased using 250 gold coins. Outside of the Heritor and Warden the warband can filled with a mix of  Standard Crewman and Specialist roles such as the Pearl Diver or Scout.
The Wardens must choose from five branches—Beast, Earth, Storm, Warden, Vine, and Wave, allowing your Warden/Wizard to influence the terrian and creatures on the board.
To spice up your encounter Ghost Archipelago also provides a Random Encounter Table with three levels of encounters each giving a different type of creature and with rules for your average wildlife through to Dinosaurs and the undead, plenty of choice to allow me to get those long forgot miniatures on the table – Fishmen anyone?
Ghost Archipelago feels perfect for those mid-week games where you only have a couple of hours to spare, the terrain demands are minimal espically if like me you have been collecting fish tank terrain for years. With 10 figures aside the investment for a warband is quite low and you can always swap out the monsters to fit what you have already – You never know the Bugs may make an appearance….

Ghost Archipelago – Review and First Impressions

Posted on October 22nd, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

Just as I was preparing the latest batch of Haitians the latest distraction landed on the door mat. Frostgrave: Ghost Archipelago, I only played the original game once it was a little heavy on the terrian side for my liking but when I saw the setting for Ghost Archipelago it felt like a rule set that could bring all of my odd collections together on one table top allowing me to get to use some of the mini’s that rarely see table time.
I backed the base level pledge in the current Nickstarter from Northstar, which provided me with the Rules, spell deck, a box of Crew, Crew Rooster, Treasure tokens and preproduction casts together with the novel to get you in the mood for island hopping.
Everything was well packed with the books bubble wrapped for extra protection. The presentation style is excellent, the rules are hard back and have a high production feel to them, no pages will be falling out of this set unlike Cutlass! 

The Snakeman’s sword was damaged but being only one I can’t see much use for him anyway.

I did not go to the trouble of selecting the Heritors and Wardens but am happy with the random figures, they have a Eastern feel to them which will allow me to use some of my Ottomans should I need to ground troops or extra crewmen.
 

I quite like the idea of my Atlantians guarding the various temples and jungle outposts, they will definately feature as some of the “bad guys” the rules cater for waterborne warfare with rules for boats, perfect as I picked a couple of these up from Iron gate scenary at Derby a few weeks ago.

The rulebook is 144 pages filled with full color photos of painted miniatures are some lovely art work to inspire the modeller in you. The rules within the book are relatively straight forward and with specific chapters for each area its easy to to find the specific rules. The contents include. Heritors, Wardens, and Crewmen, Chapter 3 Playing the Game, Chapter 4 The campaign followed by Heritor Abilities, Warden Spells, Scenarios (eight in the book), and the Bestiary.

Flicking through the rules and set up this morning, Ghost Archipelago, provides for a basic warband consisting of 10 members that must be purchased using 250 gold coins. Outside of the Heritor and Warden the warband can filled with a mix of  Standard Crewman and Specialist roles such as the Pearl Diver or Scout.
The Wardens must choose from five branches—Beast, Earth, Storm, Warden, Vine, and Wave, allowing your Warden/Wizard to influence the terrian and creatures on the board.
To spice up your encounter Ghost Archipelago also provides a Random Encounter Table with three levels of encounters each giving a different type of creature and with rules for your average wildlife through to Dinosaurs and the undead, plenty of choice to allow me to get those long forgot miniatures on the table – Fishmen anyone?
Ghost Archipelago feels perfect for those mid-week games where you only have a couple of hours to spare, the terrain demands are minimal espically if like me you have been collecting fish tank terrain for years. With 10 figures aside the investment for a warband is quite low and you can always swap out the monsters to fit what you have already – You never know the Bugs may make an appearance….

Star Eagles – Playtest 2.

Posted on October 21st, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

A little behind on the posts but finally a few minutes to report back on the recent Star Eagles run through. A simple affair with the newly commissioned War Ricket Ajax sent off on a mission to attack the the capital of Frigia, the Ice kingdom ruled by…

Star Eagles – Playtest 2.

Posted on October 21st, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

A little behind on the posts but finally a few minutes to report back on the recent Star Eagles run through. A simple affair with the newly commissioned War Ricket Ajax sent off on a mission to attack the the capital of Frigia, the Ice kingdom ruled by…

War Rocket Ajax

Posted on October 15th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

With a club outing this evening I wanted to try and see how a larger Crusier type would fair.From the first play test, fighters were mighty fast so how would a larger craft be handled under the rules?Another casting from the chaps at Hydra and their Wa…

War Rocket Ajax

Posted on October 15th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

With a club outing this evening I wanted to try and see how a larger Crusier type would fair.From the first play test, fighters were mighty fast so how would a larger craft be handled under the rules?Another casting from the chaps at Hydra and their Wa…

Star Eagles Latest News

Posted on October 13th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

This Kickstarter is a little on the late side but I was heartened to received the following update for Star Eagles.
 

Sorry for the slow rate of updates.  I know it has been frustrating for you all waiting for some news on the project.   Not wanting to make excuses, but my day job decided I was not working hard enough and has been sending me all over Asia for the past few months to deal with manufacturing problems. Things have final returned to normal and I can get back to focusing on finishing this project.  Normaly I am very responsive on my KS projects and I am sorry for the lack of more frequent updates. 
Production of the minis will begin this month, I have finalized the scaling of most of the ships and will be sending them off for production later this week. Based on where I am now, I expect the revised timeline is to have the KS shipping in later part of December.   
I am also working with Litko to have the move templates and counters made of Acrylic rather than cardboard. This will be a perk for the delay in the project.  Hopefully can show off some of these in a few weeks. 
In regards to the rules, I have received a lot of playtest comments and it seems the inititaive aspect of the game is causing a lot of confusion.   I have been rework the initiative mechanics to enhance the flow of the game and make it easier to understand.   I estimate I need about another two weeks to finish the rules and then I’ll be ready to release the most current version for all to see.  I will then wait for another round of feedback before passing it off to Andrea for formatting.   I think the revisions improve the game a lot and make it evn better than before. The feeling of a dogfight will be even more intense.


This does give me the opportunity to paint up a couple of items hanging around the paint table, I would much prefer to have a refined product than rushed out with holes in the rules and poor finishing to the production.

Carrying on the Alex Raymond – Flash Gordon theme, I thought I would paint up these War Rocket Mini’s as Vultan’s Fighters, Hawkmen on their own are not enough to protect Sky City from Ming’s War Rocket’s, although how they they got into the cockpit with their wings is one for me to think about…

I opted for a couple of shades of gold with white strips for effect, they blend with the mini’s I painted several years ago which have been in storage for several years and looking at some of the older pic’s could do wth a make a make over as my painting style then was rather flat.
Perhaps one day they will get a repaint but for now the new fighters will be gracing the table on Sunday.

Image result for 28mm flash gordon hawkmen


Star Eagles Latest News

Posted on October 13th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

This Kickstarter is a little on the late side but I was heartened to received the following update for Star Eagles.
 

Sorry for the slow rate of updates.  I know it has been frustrating for you all waiting for some news on the project.   Not wanting to make excuses, but my day job decided I was not working hard enough and has been sending me all over Asia for the past few months to deal with manufacturing problems. Things have final returned to normal and I can get back to focusing on finishing this project.  Normaly I am very responsive on my KS projects and I am sorry for the lack of more frequent updates. 
Production of the minis will begin this month, I have finalized the scaling of most of the ships and will be sending them off for production later this week. Based on where I am now, I expect the revised timeline is to have the KS shipping in later part of December.   
I am also working with Litko to have the move templates and counters made of Acrylic rather than cardboard. This will be a perk for the delay in the project.  Hopefully can show off some of these in a few weeks. 
In regards to the rules, I have received a lot of playtest comments and it seems the inititaive aspect of the game is causing a lot of confusion.   I have been rework the initiative mechanics to enhance the flow of the game and make it easier to understand.   I estimate I need about another two weeks to finish the rules and then I’ll be ready to release the most current version for all to see.  I will then wait for another round of feedback before passing it off to Andrea for formatting.   I think the revisions improve the game a lot and make it evn better than before. The feeling of a dogfight will be even more intense.


This does give me the opportunity to paint up a couple of items hanging around the paint table, I would much prefer to have a refined product than rushed out with holes in the rules and poor finishing to the production.

Carrying on the Alex Raymond – Flash Gordon theme, I thought I would paint up these War Rocket Mini’s as Vultan’s Fighters, Hawkmen on their own are not enough to protect Sky City from Ming’s War Rocket’s, although how they they got into the cockpit with their wings is one for me to think about…

I opted for a couple of shades of gold with white strips for effect, they blend with the mini’s I painted several years ago which have been in storage for several years and looking at some of the older pic’s could do wth a make a make over as my painting style then was rather flat.
Perhaps one day they will get a repaint but for now the new fighters will be gracing the table on Sunday.

Image result for 28mm flash gordon hawkmen


The Pearl of the Antilles – Haitian Revolution AAR #2 Life’s a Beach

Posted on October 6th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Somewhat behind on posts due to work commitments but finally the Haitians make an appearance in their new formation, this time defending a full blown British landing.The Brits had come looking for trouble with a naval landing party under the command o…

The Pearl of the Antilles – Haitian Revolution AAR #2 Life’s a Beach

Posted on October 6th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Somewhat behind on posts due to work commitments but finally the Haitians make an appearance in their new formation, this time defending a full blown British landing.The Brits had come looking for trouble with a naval landing party under the command o…

Haitian Napoleonic Flags 1791- 1805

Posted on October 1st, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

The final figures leave the paint table before setting off on their first major outing with the full force.
Another batch of Freemen from Trent Miniatures, the separate heads do make for plenty of variants within the unit. The standard bearer and drummer is always useful within Sharp Practice to give your force a couple of options.

Ideally I would like to have purchased readymade flags but being one of those off the beaten track projects I could not find them commercially available anywhere so I had to improvise.
Given the mixed history of the war it not unsurpising that the flag varied as well.
As the revolution spread to the colonies so the revolutionary flag was adopted by the freemen of the island so any troops fighting against the monarchy would have been seen carrying the following.
French Republic, 1794
In 1798 Toussaint L’Ouverture wrote the Haitian constitution adopted the French tricolour as his flag when he was nominally governor of the colony. After his kidnap and transportantion to France  Jean-Jacques Dessalines led the fight for independence against the returning French. In 1803  Dessalines tore up the French flag, threw away the white stripe as a symbol of the whites and had the remaining stripes sewn together by Catherine Flon, the goddaughter of Jean-Jacques Dessalines as the first Haitian flag. 
Revolutionary Haiti, 1803

The inscription “Liberté ou la Mort” (Freedom or death) was added and this was used as a military flag for a number of the fighting units.

Military Flag of Haiti, 1803

In 1804 the flag was modified: this time the blue and red bands were placed horizontally: this was the first flag of the independent republic of Haiti.

Republic of Haiti, 1804

 

On 8 October 1804 Dessalines was proclaimed Emperor of Haiti under the name of Jacques I and the blue band was placed vertically again.
Jacques changed the flag to black on 20 May 1805; this can be interpreted as symbolising the people of the country or the colours could symbolise the motto “Freedom (red) or Death (black)”. 

 Empire of Haiti, 1805

I have opted for the 1804 variant, which will allow me to eventually fight the later war with the Polish Legion, but I have my eye on a couple of Congo type figures which will make perfect standard bearers for the insurgent force so you are likely to see a couple of the 1803 types on the table in the weeks ahead.

Haitian Napoleonic Flags 1791- 1805

Posted on October 1st, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

The final figures leave the paint table before setting off on their first major outing with the full force.
Another batch of Freemen from Trent Miniatures, the separate heads do make for plenty of variants within the unit. The standard bearer and drummer is always useful within Sharp Practice to give your force a couple of options.

Ideally I would like to have purchased readymade flags but being one of those off the beaten track projects I could not find them commercially available anywhere so I had to improvise.
Given the mixed history of the war it not unsurpising that the flag varied as well.
As the revolution spread to the colonies so the revolutionary flag was adopted by the freemen of the island so any troops fighting against the monarchy would have been seen carrying the following.
French Republic, 1794
In 1798 Toussaint L’Ouverture wrote the Haitian constitution adopted the French tricolour as his flag when he was nominally governor of the colony. After his kidnap and transportantion to France  Jean-Jacques Dessalines led the fight for independence against the returning French. In 1803  Dessalines tore up the French flag, threw away the white stripe as a symbol of the whites and had the remaining stripes sewn together by Catherine Flon, the goddaughter of Jean-Jacques Dessalines as the first Haitian flag. 
Revolutionary Haiti, 1803

The inscription “Liberté ou la Mort” (Freedom or death) was added and this was used as a military flag for a number of the fighting units.

Military Flag of Haiti, 1803

In 1804 the flag was modified: this time the blue and red bands were placed horizontally: this was the first flag of the independent republic of Haiti.

Republic of Haiti, 1804

 

On 8 October 1804 Dessalines was proclaimed Emperor of Haiti under the name of Jacques I and the blue band was placed vertically again.
Jacques changed the flag to black on 20 May 1805; this can be interpreted as symbolising the people of the country or the colours could symbolise the motto “Freedom (red) or Death (black)”. 

 Empire of Haiti, 1805

I have opted for the 1804 variant, which will allow me to eventually fight the later war with the Polish Legion, but I have my eye on a couple of Congo type figures which will make perfect standard bearers for the insurgent force so you are likely to see a couple of the 1803 types on the table in the weeks ahead.

Burning the candle at both ends – Haitians complete.

Posted on September 30th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

It’s amazing what the motivation of a big game can do for your painting efforts.A couple of late nights and a few early mornings and the Haitian Slave Army is complete six groups, 4 bigmen and a priest…..The extra units of Hand to Hand troops should …

Burning the candle at both ends – Haitians complete.

Posted on September 30th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

It’s amazing what the motivation of a big game can do for you painting efforts.A couple of late nights and a few early mornings and the Haitian Slave Army is complete six groups, 4 bigmen and a priest…..The extra units of Hand to Hand troops should c…

Haitian Insurgent Leaders.

Posted on September 24th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Posts are coming think and fast at the moment.With the release of Northstar’s Congregation, The Bokor, the Mambo, and the Houngan make for great Haitian Insurgent Leaders. Wonderful figures and a pleasure to paint.Hyacinthe was a leader in the Western …