Wargaming Week 06/05/2019

Let’s start this Wargaming Week, covering the 29th of April through to the 5th of May.

BLOG STUFF

First up big news – I’m going quiet on the blog for the next three weeks. In fact, by the time you read this, I’m probably just taking off from Edinburgh Airport and heading out to the west coast of the USA for meetings. Sadly, I’m not planning on doing any hobby stuff while I’m there so this site would be pretty silent. I will be keeping an eye on the news coming out and putting it up on my Facebook page but you won’t get a Wargaming Week until I’m back in the UK.

NEWS


4Ground have released a brand new kit that I’m actually quite interested in. Ideal for filling the roads of the Bazistan Oil Fields with prizes for the insurgents, I’m impressed with how this kit looks. Perhaps something to pick up when I get back.

PURCHASES

Nothing!

HOBBY

In preparation for this week’s game, I finished off the minivan from Spectre Miniatures. This model is really cool and an addition I’ve been waiting on for AGES. Painting it was the same as most of my vehicles by actually ended up being done mostly via hand. After washing, I ended up lightly painting white back over it, giving it a brighter look compared to the previous white vehicles. I think I’ll be going back and repainting them to make them look a little cleaner.

On Thursday, desperate to get a game in before I go stateside, I ran a brand new game of Spectre Operations. In contrast to other games, we decided to make it a little more stealthy. And oh boy, it was incredibly tense. There is a full battle report coming soon (I took tons of pictures) and it was such a good time.


That’s it for this update, expect more updates next week soon!

Wargaming Week 29/04/2019

Let’s start this Wargaming Week, covering the 22nd through to the 28th of April.

NEWS

First up, we have some new greens from Spectre. These guys look like some high tech operators, armed with a mix of modern weapons like the X95 Tavor, CZ Scorpion Evo and the Vector, all equipped with a mixture of attachments. Their kit also looks very modern. I honestly can’t wait for these guys – they really remind me of some of the contractors from the original Kickstarter which is a very useful style as they can be used for a whole host of different roles.

Tiny Terrain are almost at the finish line with their T62, as the casting process has begun. They are looking for a May release date and I have to tell you, I am versy excited about these. Getting some less modern armour is going to be fantastic!

PURCHASES

Still no purchases as I’m slowly working my pile of figures

HOBBY

Not a huge amount due to travelling and seeing Avengers (and crying) but I did manage to get these two civilians painted up and get started on the minivan. Quite excited to get these on the board, especially for missions with some ROE stuff.

Also, I managed to get a game of Chain of Command in at my usual wargaming buddies. It was an enjoyable game, the 8th Army following up their last defence with one against the main assault. There were some really good moves, but eventually, the Germans managed to get a foothold in the village.


That’s it for this update, expect more updates next week!

Wargaming Week 22/04/2019

Let’s start this Wargaming Week, covering the 15th through to the 22nd of April.

NEWS

It’s the post Salute lull so news is basically nothing as everyone rebuilds stock and recovers from standing in the Excel centre.

The only exception is Empress who keep drip feeding previews for their ongoing Vietnam range. As always, it’s some fantastic work from Paul Hicks.

PURCHASES

Nothing! I’m working through the pile I have while getting ready for some time away. That said, having somehow lost some of my scatter, I might be rebuying the rubbish bags from Spectre.

HOBBY

First up, I finally managed to get the pile of UAVs from Spectre finished off and mounted on the flight stands. I’m going to do a writeup on them along with the MAARS robot and the Operators once I get them all finished. As for these guys, they were super simple – paint white, black ink wash to pick out the details. I was a little slapdash when spraying so some of the flight stand was coloured but honestly, I’m not that fussed – I’d rather get them ready for the table than making them 100% perfect.

With it being the Easter weekend (and staying in Edinburgh for a change) I managed to get a load of stuff done. Most of it was preparation work (bases and undercoating) but now everything but the White Dragon guys.


And shockingly, I actually painted my first two figures for the year! Yes. In April. Jeez, that’s a painting funk and a half. Wanting something simple (aka no camo) I decided to get the Spectre Sheriff and my favourite Undercover Operator painted up. It was really great to get back in and get them painted, especially using the Army Painter brushes. I’m sure they are not the best figures I’ve painted by hey, first time back after a long time away!


That’s it for this update, expect more updates next week!

Wargaming Week 15/04/2019

Let’s start this Wargaming Week, covering the 8th through to the 14th of April.

BLOG STUFF

My Salute report went up! People always seem to like them (maybe because it means they get to see Salute without risking their wallet) and honestly, showing stuff off is one of the bits I find fun going to

A few people said they were quite impressed with the photos which I’m shocked at seeing as I was (in many cases) running and gunning with the Pixel 2XL. It does an incredible job no matter what you throw at it and I’m really hoping the Pixel 4 this year will keep the incredible camera.

NEWS

First up, Tiny Terrain last week showed off the DSHK coming to their Chechen war. Both sides will be receiving support weapons in the next wave. Also mentioned is the T62 coming soon with a tentative date set for May.

After receiving them at Salute, Empress has been drip feeding out new sculpts for the US Marines in Hue. There are plenty more on Empress’s Facebook page, showing off a few really nice variations. Keep your eyes open for the full release soon I guess.

As you saw in last week’s pile of shame, White Dragon Miniatures released a literal pile of new models at Salute. From the entire Taliban range (including bikes) to Foxhound and Quads, Courage In Contact is slowly expanding out into a full range. It’s a really good looking set of figures and I’m right in the middle of getting both my Brits and Taliban all together.

Spectre has started their recovery from Salute. As well as cranking their way through the last few pre-orders, and getting stock back into action, they have been starting work on the next set of releases.

The mask in the photo above is a Russian made respirator. Based on that, we’re probably looking at some more CBRN guys. The question is, whose getting them? Russians are the obvious choice but this style is pretty old. Possibly the Militia might be needing some protection if they are handling the nuclear devices from the objectives packs.

Finally, not wargaming related but definitely part of the inspiration. The writer of Terminal Lance and the White Donkey is writing a new book I can’t wait for. Set in Afghanistan rather than Iraq this time, the artwork alone (including this very Metal Gear Solid inspired front cover). I’m really excited about it, especially as you don’t see media of troops in the upland portions of Afghanistan very much – after all, it’s normally deserts that everyone thinks about.

PURCHASES

I point back to last week’s post and the haul from Salute, while explaining why I’m not buying more figures for a while. That said, I am looking at a second LTV but it may wait a little bit.

HOBBY

Main thing this week is assembling all my purchases from Salute. In other words, lots of basing, lots of resin, and lots of undercoating.

I’ve also been taking a look at my pile of unassembled models which meant I built a lot of drones this weekend. I’m going to try and get them done sooner rather than later.

The main thing from this week in the hobby has been finally getting all these Brits ready for painting up. For the first time, I’m using Stirland Mud which means I’m doing all my base texturing after the undercoat. However, the WW2 project is slowly rumbling on.


That’s it for this update, expect more updates next week!

Salute 2019

Last weekend was Salute 2019, the biggest wargames show of the UK calendar. And as is tradition, I got myself down to London for a weekend of tourism and looking at the usual impressive selection of wargames goods that appear at the show. And, as you can see in the last Wargaming Week, I bought a few things from the usual suspects.

After having pre-ordered the important stuff that I knew would probably run out, I decided to take a more leisurely start to the day at Salute. As someone who isn’t a huge fan of playing demo games at shows (I prefer my wargaming slightly slower paced and without being concerned at making sure I’m not missing something else) I usually burn through everything by lunch. So rather than waiting in the queue for the mad crush, I decided to casually stroll in later on.

In a turn of events that will shock exactly no one, my first stop was to the Spectre Miniatures who this year were right inside the door. After picking up my order and marvelling how quick the vultures had picked it clean of all the new stuff, I had a look at their demo game you can see above. Using the Black Site Studios buildings on a battle mat, they had a cool scenario with Russian agents trying to reclaim a cold war weapons cache clashing with US operatives. Overall, it seemed busy all day.

A quick drop in to Studio Miniatures was next and it was for exactly this picture. I’m still incredibly proud of the work we did on Plausible Deniability and seeing it available at Salute was a very strange thrill.

Another quick drop in was to see Supreme Littleness Designs, my local MDF wizard. More importantly, I wanted to see this little beauty he had talked to me about – a colonial fort. I can see it appearing in an upcoming game or two so watch this space.

And then I got to the White Dragon Miniatures stall and my wallet suddenly became lighter. First up, their new Taliban figures looks exceptional. I have a pile of them on my desk at home and I can’t wait to get them painted up.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a show without some previews and White Dragon brought along a future range – the IDF! Complete with both Tavor armed infantry and two versions of the Merkhava, I can’t wait to see more of them!

Finally I got to take a look at the new Foxhound and White Dragon’s interesting method of producing resin vehicles. Rather than traditional single piece vehicles (which are big chunks of resin), they are instead casting them in two parts. This means they can do larger vehicles without needing piles of material and also means they can hide. Personlly, I’m not a fan of the scale White Dragon has chosen for it’s releases (1/56 rather than 1/50) but I am looking forward to seeing the Mastiff when it arrives.

4Ground had their usual collections of small boards (including one for their Adeptus Titanicus range).

Similarly, TT Combat were there in full effect, with the traditional mile of MDF boards all ready for people to buy.


Of course, one of the big reasons to go to Salute are the demo games. This year there was a really nice selection of tables showing off different games, everything from the giant set piece games to some really nice and practical arrangements.

First up, we have the Too Fat Lardies and their excellent Malaya set Chain of Command game. The game was busy all day and honestly, I just really enjoyed how good it looked! If you want some more details, Rich has been detailing the progress on it over on the Too Fat Lardies blog.

Oshiro had a very evocative game set in Victorian London using their terrain. It’s not something I play but it definitely grabbed my eye.

Burrows and Badgers is a guilty pleasure of mine and I always love the little boards these skirmish games provide.

Gringo 40’s ran an Indochina game that literally stopped me in my tracks. From the way the river shines to the intricate buildings, every part of this screamed care and passion.

Honestly, I’m not a fan of Battlefront’s offerings in terms of gameplay. But this board using Fate of the Nation was so impressive that I had to grab some snaps. No idea how well it actually played but it certain looked fantastic!

Wargames Illustrated had a game using their brand new release in the Giants in Miniatures range, T.E. Lawrence on his bike. Simple but evocative board using the 4Ground buildings was a pretty good setup for an effective game.

Peterbrough Wargames brought their Bloody Omaha game using I Ain’t Been Shot Mum and I love it, especially after reading Mike Whitaker’s blog where he documents putting it together. Giving the players the attacking Americans while the GM ran the Germans meant it was busy all day!

A really cool WW2 game I glimpsed as I ran. Seemingly simple, but very eye catching.

A very impressive looking fantasy game that was busy every time I went past it but I completely failed to write down which game it was!

I’m going to admit, I’m not 100% what this game was but I think it was the Ardhammer 2nd Sino-Japanese War game. Honestly, it was mostly the paddy fields that grabbed my attention as I walked by and I just had to grab a picture.

As traditional, Dalauppror was there with their impressive board. This year was the battle of Dänholm. Even though it’s not a period I’m a fan of, it was definitely a sight to behold. On the face of it very simple but very impressively done.

Of course, my highlight had to be this. Walking the hall, my eyes were soon drawn to the familiar tan and roadways of Afghanistan. Moving closer, I was even more surprised to see British troops running around the classic scene, crossing over the canal and moving towards the compounds.

This game, Operation Panther’s Claw, was being run by the Whitehall Warriors and to my surprise were using Skirmish Sangin! They explained a few tweaks they had made to make it play more easily with full fire teams but honestly I just love how the board looks!

A sight any Modern wargamer would be jealous of – a true vehicle pool just waiting for the British to roll onto the board. I was really impressed with the sheer variety of figures on the board – every manufacturer I could think of was represented ranging from Spectre to Empress to Eureka to the Assault group.

While talking to the guys behind this game, they showed off the level of detail they had been working to get. Each of the civilian vehicles actually have accurate number plates for the type of vehicle, with a mix of Pakistani and Afghan registrations to really set the scene. I really like this little detail, even if very few people would actually recognise it.


Overall, I really enjoy coming down to Salute. Although mostly for the social side (catching up with friends mostly seen via Facebook), it’s also really nice to get that burst of hobby inspiration. So expect to see me back next year, all ready for more!

Wargaming Week 08/04/2019

Let’s start this Wargaming Week, covering the 1st through to the 7th of April.

Ladies and gents, this is going to be a short one. And mostly about Salute.

BLOG STUFF

My Impressions of Spectre Operations Version 2 are up! As I say in it, this new book is a real evolution of the game, rebuilding what was needed to make the game even better while still maintaining the core that made version 1 such an interesting game. You’ll be seeing me playing this a fair amount – as much as I love Skirmish Sangin, writing scenarios and handouts for it can be a bit of a slog. I’m working on making a way of speeding this up but for when I just want to grab a rulebook and go, Spectre has returned to being my go to product.

NEWS

SALUTE HAPPENED – EVERYONE GOT READY FOR SALUTE AND THEN WENT

PURCHASES

So I may have been a little busy at Salute – lots of wobbly shelves throwing items into my bag. Let’s run through the damage.

  • Spectre Miniatures – Carefully pre-ordered on Wednesday as I knew they would be sold out by the time I got there otherwise.
    • Baba Yaga – This year’s special edition will be a great addition to the undercover or bodyguard range. A nice dynamic pose really helps to see the character it’s supposed to be portraying.
    • Minivan – FInally! Steve from Spectre will stop having to listen to me begging for this! I’ve been desperately wanting a Minivan for operators to pour out of after watching S.E.A.L. Team do it in the very first episode. Civilian vehicles really expand the possibility space so get more on the table is always good
    • Objectives – I’m always looking for things to spark new scenario ideas and oh boy do the new objectives cover that in spades. I’m already looking at a few ideas, especially with that warhead.
  • Hasslefree
    • Modern Archaeologists – Okay, I love the games that inspired these two figures. More importantly, for all the things the remake of The Mummy with Tom Cruise did badly, it did interest me in the concept of some scenarios featuring archaeologists or treasure hunters working in an ongoing warzone. Keep your eyes open for these two popping up in a future game.
  • Militia Miniatures
    • Republican Guard – I’ll admit, I had taken a glance at the kickstarter for these guys and not been entirely sold on them. However, Westbury Wargamers (available on twitter and at their blog) showed them off in the metal and they looked pretty interesting. To add to my ongoing focus on the Middle East, I pick up all three packs for the Republican Guard. This should give me a team of regime loyalists/Bazi Royal Guard, complete with a nice commander figure ideal for a Special Forces team to attempt to snatch and grab
  • White Dragon Miniatues
    • Taliban – So this is a big one. I have been keeping a very close eye on these as they went through development and were previewed earlier year. Having now seen them in person, I just had to pick up the entire range, in a varety of heads, and get them on the board. There are some very clever design decisions, including some weapon combinations you just haven’t seen in use in other ranges. I think the double barrel will be a nasty surprise for an operator trying to breach and clear a location.

HOBBY

Between work (including some good news that might be slowing my hobby WAY down in May) and going to Salute, I’ve had a really slow hobby week again. I did manage to get a few odds and sods done, getting stuff mounted on bases and continuing some paint jobs.


That’s it for this update, expect more updates next week!

Wargaming Week 01/04/2019

Let’s start this Wargaming Week, covering the 25th through to the 31st of March.

BLOG STUFF

I put up a new battle report last week! I know how much people love the games, especially when I get new kit out on the tabletop and this being the first go with Spectre V2 was especially special. Even if the scenario didn’t work, people still had a pretty good time. I also enjoyed taking a little longer to do the write-up, letting me really think back and analyse the game, as well as thinking about what I can change in future games. Also it means I actually get some sleep after running the game!

As I’m writing this, I’m also a good chunk of a way through writing up some thoughts on Spectre Operations Version 2, talking about the new book as well as quickly going over the rules tweaks and changes. I’m expecting to get it finished before Salute but there is a lot of stuff to cover in it. Overall though, I’m really enjoying the changes.

NEWS

This week was Adepticon and Spectre was there, sharing a stand with Black Site Studios and their wonderful terrain. As well as a great demo board, it’s also acting as a little preview for what’s going to be coming out at Salute next week. The scenario markers from last week’s instagram preview were available as well as a mini-van in resin (something I’ve been asking for since watching them use one on SEAL Team) but the biggest news has to be the exclusive figure. Your own hitman, back out of retirement and taking down the mob. I really like

If you weren’t there, Spectre have said that the exlcusive figure will be available at Salute and online for a limited time. I am already throwing Spectre an email with a list of things on and I can’t wait to see it all in the flesh on Saturday!

Speaking of Salute, Eureka has also shown off some new things they are beinging with them. For anyone interested in Cold War Russian forces or using them for other things, the brand new heavy weapons should be an ideal addition to your teams. The figures are all brand new sculpts from Kostas and presented in Eureka’s style. The weapons are also a good set of additions – the mortar, AGS and SPG 9 have been released with Afghan users in the past but the new NSV gives you a much more modern machine gun than the DSHK. If you use the rest of the range, these guys are heartily reccomended.

PURCHASES

Nothing – it’s almost like there is a giant monster waiting around the corner to take all of my money as well as pulling me into London for the weekend.

Although speaking of Salute I have a few plans of things I want to pick up. As well as the latest modern releases, I’m really looking for some stuff to add to the scenery collection. Adding the walls helped to bring the table in the last battle to life, so my next step is to add more scatter style terrain. More importantly, greenery – I need to really bring the board to life and not just make it a sea of brown and tan.

HOBBY

This week’s hobby time has been pretty limited by a whole host of real world things (both good and bad). So honestly, just had a little bit of a week off from it. Probably the most involved thing I’ve done is sit down and have a proper read through the Spectre V2 rulebook!


That’s it for this update, expect more updates next week!

Wargaming Week 25/03/2019

Let’s start this Wargaming Week, covering the 18th through to the 24th of March.

BLOG STUFF

The battle report from last week’s game is almost done – I’m just adding the last few touches to it, including a section talking about the scenario design and analysing the result. This is something that always comes up in the forum threads afterwards so taking a few days to get the infomation together myself makes sense.

I’m also starting to write up some thoughts looking at Spectre V2 and comparing some of the changes. From my first play, the final product is the same great game we had in version 1 but with many of the sticking points removed. More details coming soon!

NEWS

First up, Sarissa are showing off some new bits of scenery and this caught my eye. I’ve been thinking about what my collection is missing and a big part of it is greenery. These vine trellises would be a really great thing to add to compounds for a MENA situation, adding some green while still creating something cool to fight through.

Spectre have started showing off a few things coming soon at Adepticon and Salute by putting up a few images of their new objective markers coming soon. I recommend clicking through to instagram and taking a look; there is a really nice combination of military hard cases full of guns alongside servers if you want something a little more urban. I’m already thinking of quite a few scenarios to use each of them.

Not too be outdone, Empress has finally given the German Infantry released last year something to roll around in. To match their near future look, the Puma IFV could have rolled out of a sci-fi film, totting a 30mm cannon and ATGM under that sleek armour. I’m really interested in one and I can see it being a great addition to the range. The Germans now have both an IFV and a MBT from Empress, letting you build up a reasonable force using them.

And of course, the sound of Fortunate Son blaring through the sky can only mean one thing – the first packs of the US Marines in Vietnam are here. Two packs of riflemen, a set of M60 gunners (including both a team and two individuals) and a pack of grenadiers.

I don’t need a new period, I don’t need a new period…

Finally, just squeezing in under the wire as I finish writing this post, Supreme Littleness Designs has shown off a new release that will be coming out at Salute – a Colonial Fort. I think this one looks pretty cool, especially after having built some of Mike’s other stuff. Although not designed for modern, it could be an interesting setpiece for anywhere in the MENA region that had a colonial touch. Maybe the local bad guys have found a useful place to dig in, taking advantage of the fortifications. Either way, I think I’ll be looking to pick one up.

PURCHASES

Nothing this week, although my eyes are starting to look towards London and planning Salute purchases.

HOBBY

My main hobby time this week was spent painting up some scatter walls to get ready for Thursday’s game. Expect more pictures when I finish them (I only just got them to a playable state) but I really like them. They are a great addition to the board, making it feel more realistic and lived in. Now I just have to find where the rest of my scatter terrain has gone…

In other hobby news, no pictures but I managed to progress on the Sarissa Colonial buildings – they are all now undercoated and ready for me to start my process of washing and getting ready for the tabletop. Once these are done, it’s going to lead to some far more interesting street fights. I’m also hoping I can bring some extra colour to the game with them, not just tan.


That’s it for this update, expect more updates next week!