Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Let the Zombie Horde Begin - Part 3 Painting begins.

So having based all (or so I thought, see previous post) of my zombies, I went ahead and undercoated a the first batch. I have taken, since doing some Empress moderns, to mounting my figures on 6" nails. I found it easier to hold the model and more comfortable. And more stable as it gives the model more weight. I use hot glue, but have found this can sometimes need re-doing. With these zombies, I have experimented and tabbed a couple down with some white scenery glue. I am hoping the bond, won't be too strong to pop off. And a quick clean up with a razor blade should remove any glue from the nail head and the coin base.

Here are the first set of zombies. I have gone with a white undercoat for now, as I want to try and keep them bright and colourful, or as much as I can. I find black can darken things a little too much. Also the VFM figures don't have vast amounts of deep detailing where leaving black in the recesses can give nice shadows. I am going to be experimenting with skin tones and colours for a bit I suspect. So I decided to get a bit of progress on the zombie dogs.
First batch of zombies to be undercoated.

Having mounted and undercoated what I thought to be all the zombie dogs. I wanted to get a bloody/resident evil type feel to them. So I began with a white undercoat and a simple watery red paint wash. Put on quite heavy. Above and below show how effective the simple one colour scheme can be.

The effect with only a single red paint wash over the undercoat.

Having been quite pleased with that, I decided to give a few a simple brown leather, dry brush, or actually more of a wet brush really. I tend used a done white to pick out a few of the obvious bones, like the shoulder blades, the ribs and leg bones, oh and the eyes. (All vallejo game colours or model colour paints).

I think these are great figures for the price..

Sorry this is a bit dark but you can see the simple effect. I think they look pretty good. I have done 15 in this leather brown/tan type finish. And think I will do some more in a dark grey nearly black and maybe some lighter tan. The three colour schemes should hopefully break up the monotony of the single pose.

White undercoat, red wash, leather brown dry brush, and done white pick out of bones! Simple really!

The zombie bogs.. missing about 13 that managed to some how escape and not get based yet.. grrr!

So there they are,, what do you think?

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Sneaky zombie dogs.. keep your eyes on them..

Well, there I was admiring my nearly undercoated zombie dogs, and myself.. the number didn't seem right.. hmm.. why..?

Because, 13 of them had managed to sneak off the painting table and into a box and avoid being based.. grrrr!

Well, the first zombie dogs are now very red and very evil looking, but not quite the effect I want. I apologies for no photos yet, but more will follow once I have finished playing with colour schemes and I have got the rest of the pack rounded up, stuck down and textured, then undercoated and up to speed with the rest..

So, be warned.. you have to keep an eye on these sneaky zombie dogs!

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Let the Zombie Horde Begin - Part 2b Basing begins.

Wow.. two updates in one night.. well the first batch of zeds now have textured bases, and are now drying out. So I thought I would show you a couple of shots of their progress.

Zombie dogs with wet basetex paint and fine model railway ballast sprinkled on.
The first batch of Zombies. Done as above.
The first batch in its glory as it sits and dries.
500ml pot of basetex. Prefered as the smaller bottle dry out too quickly.

I simply spatula on the basetex paint using a stiff bristle brush. The lip of the coin bases helps retain the paint, though you do get the odd bit that dribbles over the edge. Load the base up fully. Don't worry as it looses volume as it settles. I use brown alot. Colour wise I have white, brown and dried earth, but I will be painting over the top, so colour makes little difference here to me.

But if you put it on after, well you have a range to pick from. Once the base is loaded up, I sprinkle on some model railways gravel, to give rougher patches and break up the uniformity. As the basetex dries it will seal in most of the gravel. I will rub my thumb over the bases before painting to remove and loose gravel.

A tip. If you decide to try basetex, buy a small bottle, they are acouple of pounds. Give it a whirl. But be prepared for it to dry up. Every small bottle I have had, has dried up within 6 months or so. Even storing them upside down. The reason is, no matter how good you are and tidy, you get paint caught in the lip and threads of the bottles and so it won't seal when closed down.

I thus, buy the 500ml tubs in preference. They last for years. In fact I had one tub for 3 years, before I finished it. And yes it did not dry out. The tubs are made of plastic which the basetex does not properly stick too. You can thus clean up the edge and lid periodically if needed.

Now the consistency of basetex can vary,, some pots come watery and some don't, more like a paste. It is not colour dependant either. I like just thickened enough to flow but not run like water. So if I get pot that's too runny, I leave the lid off for a short period and let it evaporate some of the liquid, or I have also added sand to the brown, to bulk it up. Just ordinary builders sharp sand.

Colour party, make out the particles in the paint that give it, its rough texture are the same colour as the paint. So if it chips you won't see a colour difference if you leave it as its raw colour. The brown certainly if applied in a reasonable layer gives a good "just dried" mud look.

Anyhow.. that's the first batch done! Now only about a hundred more to go!

Let the Zombie Horde Begin - Part 2a Basing begins.

With the horde mostly stuck down with milliput, I started on the epoxy-ing, as a security.
The milliput hold generally well, but one figure did come loose as I lifted it to glue it. So I think the decision to apply some epoxy was wise.

I also stuck down my zombie dogs!  And now the horde is ready to get their bases textured.
This is probably where I differ to many, in that I base and texture my figures before I undercoat and paint. I have never really found the 2pence bases to get into the way of the painting.

A close up of the epoxy applied over the dried milliput as security.
The horde! - My zombie dogs now glued to bases.

So now that the epoxy has set and the fumes have had a day to clear. I can now move onto the next stage of texturing the bases, with basetex paint by Colourparty  

It is nice to see the horde now taking shape. I know I still need to add some "tank" type figures to this lot yet and maybe a few exotics. I will probably get some more detailed figures for those, the VFMs are nice, but they are as my review states, not the "most" detailed and so I would like my players to be able to pick out the nastier/more special zeds during games.

The only problem is, it means a rise in price range of the figures I think and hunting through the likes of Heresy Miniatures' range. But they are not fully required to start with and will be an addition at a later date, when time and funds allow. For now.. its zombies and zombie dogs! 

Monday, 19 December 2011

Let the Zombie Horde Begin - Part 2 Basing begins.

Well I have discovered a couple of things over the last few days.. firstly that you need a decent sized pair of clippers/side cutters to trim off white metal tabs from over a hundred 28mm white metal models, and secondly is milliput goes quite a long way.

I had four tubes of milli put sitting in my painting table draws and eagerly dug them out to get to grips with my planned basing of zombies. But it had all gone hard! Rock hard! I picked most of it up at our clubs Gauntlet Show some years back for £1 each and had used up some on buildings, but even the unopened pack had gone hard. Apparently, keeping it in the freezer, prevents it curing for longer. Same with green stuff.

So it was off to buy a shiny new pack. Now one tip for mixing milli put. Don't just cut off two same sized blobs, push them together and begin trying to mix them together. Its quite hard work and takes a while. A quicker method, is too, cut out your two blobs. Roll each out into a sausage as thin as you can get of same length. Then twist together. Then fold in half and twist together and then repeat. And the just mix by twisting and squeezing. Soon you have a pliable, mono colour blob ready to work with. Also discovered you can use water to smooth it.

Anyhow I spent a couple of hours over two nights, basing up my Victory Force Miniatures' Zombies.

My Victory Force Miniatures 28mm Zombies mounted onto two pence pieces.

You can see most of horde here. I simply rolled out a small roughly 3mm wide piece of milliput and laid across the "tails" side of the two pence coil, as the three feathers decoration provides more texture for the figure to stick too. And I like our Monarchy. :)

Having pushed the milliput down a little with my thumb, I think stuck the miniature into the blob of milliput. Having cut down the slotta tabs, they stood up fairly well. A couple of the miniatures with more animated poses, where they lean forward, had to be propped against some vallejo model paint bottles. Which are just perfect. On some of the models I tried smoothing the edges of the milliput to try and avoid a ridge, when I next apply some epoxy resin and then the basetex texture paint to them. But I was worried about the milliput curing and so just gave up, as the epoxy should help.

The milliput sausages, with figures pushed in. Next step will be the epoxy glue.

So that's it for now. Next step is to leave for a while and let them cure. Then it will be out with the epoxy, just as an insurance policy, as I know the milliput is pretty strong, but I a little blob of two part, across the tab will make me feel better.

My reasoning, is, that unlike many games, with zombies, you tend to pick them up, or place them on the sides, and put on and take off the table, a lot during a game. Far more than you would with say, a WW2 figure. So I want to make these pretty robust.

The next steps coming up are; 1) Epoxy, 2) Basetex paint on the base, 3) Undercoating. I also have a few zombie dogs to glue down to add to this lot. :)

Check back for more progress on the horde shortly!

Thursday, 15 December 2011

More zombies,, this time with a bigger budget..

Well, following on from my previous post today.. there appears to be another zombie film out in 2012.. this time, with a higher budget..

World War Z 

Though this seems to be have faster paced zombies..

Lots of big bangs and even actors I can recognise..

Sudden silence.. appologies..

Apologies. I have not been able to post anything of late, due to a severe lack of progress gaming wise. The run up to the festive holidays has meant I have been a little side tracked with thorny issues such as job hunting.

That aside, I still have progressed basing issue with my zombies. They are now at least washed and dried and just need, a clean up and then milliputing and epoxying to the 2pence pieces.

I was hoping to get some done today, but circumstances have once more conspired against me.

Whilst talking about zombies.. I spotted a reference to this film, someone posted on TMP.

Given it came out in 2010 and I have only just discovered it, and that the rating sites, seem to be floating around about 6 out of ten.. I suspect it won't be a genre leader.. But it does appear to have reverted to the good old shambling type zombies. Hordes and hordes of slow but unceasing undead..

Which I kind of like.. so will be one to see at some stage.. I am sure there will be some gaming ideas to be borrowed from it. More updates to follow..

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Let the Zombie Horde Begin - Part 1 Scrubbing up.

Well hopefully you have read my review of the Victory Force Miniatures.
I bought some during their 50 for $50 deals (review is here ).

I had hoped to make a start on on these sooner but firstly have been faffing whilst I decided which bases to use. I prefer 2pence coins, but they VFM zombies are all tagged for slotta bases. But as my modern troops and everything else I have are on 2pences. I wanted to keep a consistent basing convention.

So its 2pences! Cheap, weighty and stable and readily available all year round.

So, that decision made.. I grabbed some milli put and trimmed down the tag on a couple and stuck them each into a blob of milli put on a 2pence. By trimming the slotta base tag down, it means they don't appear overly tall and are slightly more stable sitting into the milli put.

I usually use 2-part epoxy resin to glue figures down and will probably put some over the central tag to ensure they wont' come away.

So I reached for the first box and arrhhhh nuts!.. Yes, I had forgotten.. I had not washed or trimmed the figures. Oops. At least I had only done two out of the horde so far.

So out with a bowl, in went the figures, a handy splurge of washing up liquid. Fill with hot water. Stir with wooden spoon for a period. Change water. Stir again. Rinse and repeat until water runs clear and bubble free. Then tip out in a sieve and now laid out to dry.

So 100+ figures now drying. Sorry no photos yet. Will post some, once they are progressing. For now. Its waiting for them to dry. Then it will be trimming and cleaning up the flash. Then lots of fun with milli put I think.

I also have some zombie dogs, from the "zombies board game". A friend bought a "bag-o-zombie dogs" and I traded for the excess. I will  also be hunting for some Tank Zombies, and some other special type ones once the horde is progressing.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Warboot 6 - Emlyn Hall Manchester

Today a few of us ventured over to Warboot 6 at the Manchester Area Wargames Society, Emlyn Hall in Walkden, Manchester.

The "warboot" series of shows were started a few years ago and take the format of a one day (12pm till 3pm in this case), wargames sales fair, where sellers can book a table for a small fee and sell their wares.

MAWS (Manchester Area Wargames Society) have run these generally at their regular gaming site at the Emlyn Hall. Though some have been run elsewhere, such as the gaming centre in stockport.

Each time I have been to one, I have managed to find some bargains. And it always surprises me, that more people don't drop by to have a look.

Here are some photos;

Warboot 6 - The 40K seemed popular, as these punters proved.

Warboot 6 - A number of second hand games, such as GW Judge Dredd were on offer.

Warboot 6 - This seller had lots and lots of Warhammer Fantasy, sold in singles or units and was happy to do deals.

Warboot 6 - A local shop trader, with range of new bits and pieces. (Sorry forgotten the shop details).

Warboot 6 - There was a mix of historical stuff scattered here and there. One set of 28mm British Boer War figures interested me, but were just out of my funds sadly.

Warboot 6 - One thing I have noted is the increase in sellers selling GW sprues as single pieces. Handy if you wish to do conversions or have managed to miss a part or two.

My total haul for the day was;
Five Artisan WW2 28mm LRDG Figures for £3
A mint copy of Warhammer Fantasy First Ed for £5
Two Foundary Resin Medieval/half timber 28mm Buildings for £2 - Yes that is £2..
And a Front Rank Indian Wars 28mm Wolfes Army Box Set for £30.

The Army box set, has a few missing figures, but appears to have a few extras and totals over 60 miniatures. Not that I promised not to buy another period this year.. dough! And I have to profess to not know if they are all british, or if some french have gotten mixed into them. There are a handful of Indians too. Certainly enough british including Rogers Rangers, to for some skirmish games. Just need to get a few more indians.

So, next time I might have to take a few bits to sell. There was a mix of stuff, but the usual predominance of GW, 40k or Fantasy Battle stuff. And though a couple of sellers did not turn up, there did appear to be a reasonable amount of buying and selling going on. So looking forward to the next one.

In previous years there had been a fair few sellers, selling the AD&D and Horrorclix type plastic prepainted figures, but these sadly were missing. As I was hoping to grab a few bigger bits for some exotic zombies. May be next time.

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Conan and all things Barbarian by Matakishi

I discovered the Matakishi blog, sometime back around 2008 I think. Directed toward it, due to the articles on building with cork building tiles and his impressive Carentan WW2 layout that he built.

Since then, I have regularly popped by to admire and steal inspiration from his various projects and curse the almost god like production/painting rate, he achieves.

The Crom Campaign, sparked some interest, as a group of fellow club mates are presently playing a fantasy campaign, at skirmish level and it is something I have longed to do. Having done a lot of RGP tabletopping in the past. I have always liked fantasy type generes and have a goodly sized collection of plastic pre-paints. I have also been given a bit biscuit tin full of lead miniatures, from a friend, which were abandoned by a former tennant of theirs.
Mostly grenadier.. now before I embark upon yet another project. I have so far left the tin un-touched. As most need stripping of paint and repainting.

Anyhow I digress. I just wanted to share the above link and generally say I am not jelous at all. Honestly.. not at all.. Not one tiny tiny bit..

Terminators - In 28mm - A little Project.

I came across a link to this battle report at the time, posted on TMP.
Terminators: Cold War Factory Raid

I have been thinking for a while of doing a terminator game. And this enjoyable report and photos got me thinking.

I had a rummage around looking for possible models and general it came down to;
and - Terminator Robots.

I liked both ranges, but chose to get a few from Em-4. A couple of the models were showing as out of stock and a quick email to them, got a swift reply, from Doug, to say he would check as the moulds needed re-doing on a couple. He had a look, but was out of shop stock, but was kind enough to take some out of the show stock. (Cheers Doug).
So having promised, not to deviate from SST and my Vietnam projects. I find my self with a about 20 or so robots to paint. At least my plan is to paint hem very quickly. Black undercoat. Dry brush dark metal. Then light dry brush of shiny metal, the exact shades still to be chosen. Oh and paint some red for the eyes. A recent eBay win, got me a terminator salvation Hunter Killer toy, based on the latest film. Its is a little bigger scale wise than it should be. And is going to prove fun to mount on a flight stand. But it is about as good as I can get.

Rules System wise I plan to use, Arkula's rules as they did in the link. The rules are simple and great for zombie type games.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Starship Troopers Battle Report AAR - Game 3

This was the third game of Starship Troopers the Miniatures Game we have played.
Again my opponent was my friend Steve. As we are still learning the rules and getting to grips with the game. I came up with a very simple scenario.

The MI had to reach and retrieve a data core from a defunked CHAS unit that had been scouting the area.

The MI force consisted of an LT, three squads and two NCOs. One mounted in an M8 Ape Marauder. (We proxied these with AT-43 UNA figures and a fire toad).

The CHAS is from the SST range and so are all the warrior bugs.
I began with two units of 10 warrior below ground. Three obvious tunnel entrances. Two units of 7 and one of 6 warriors above ground.

The MI deployed from one narrow edge. With a tight deployment zone. They LT was in the centre with one NCO. A squad to his right and two to his left. The M8 was to his right and backed up the first squad. 

The CHAS stranded awaits rescue, well recovery of the data core and then detonation. 

The chas

The swarms begin to move. The MI did not fire in their first turn.  But by turn two they were blazing away. The withering morita fire slices up warriors the first two swarms. 

The MI by turn three had thinned the bugs numbers. But one or two had god close and with reaction kicking in it got brutal. Unfortunately for me, the MI weight of fire did decimate the leading swarms before they could do much more than kill a single trooper. 

Turn four saw the wipe out of my two lead swarms and the third one having emerged from the forrest. The M8's fire power, proved potent, though it took two hits before taking down the last of the third initial swarms. I moved one of my reserve swarms out. And my two burrowing swarms continued their advance. 

The first squad on the right, got too close to a bug hole and my cave-in i had bought cause two casualties.. more than my warriors had achieved so far. The burrowing warriors emerged behind the M8 in an ambush and took the M8 down. Unfortunately I was not quite close enough to get the LT and the NCO, but only just. The LT and NCO readied. The third and second squads were in reaction range and my emerging swarm was slashed with morita and flamer fire and wiped out. But not before i had managed to take down another trooper. The last ten strong warrior unit, having emerged and been spotted was lashed with fire and two rockets in artillery mode the following turn and it was basically all over for me.

I conceded a good victory. The MI had more points worth than me. And I should have been more aggressive with my bigger ten strong units or at least some of them starting out early. The MIs fire power potential is high and the flamers are potent things being squad weapons and thus getting reactions unlike the missile launchers.

It was fun and enlightening. Will be nice once I get my MI build and painted. I need to get more bugs made up so can start to vary the units in the games a little, but whilst we are still getting to grips its not too bad.

Looking forward to the next game.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

28mm Zombie Miniatures Review by FG

No point in re-inventing the wheel they say. So here is a blog I ran across the other day, when looking at 28mm zombie miniature suppliers and makers.

It is a little dated. 2006. But not too much has changed. Most of the makers mentioned are still about. Though it does not include Victory Force Miniatures I don't think.

Some nice photos and good comparisons.

So worth a look if you feel a zombie outbreak is likley.


The Horde has grown.

The remainder of the Victory Force Miniatures Zombies I ordered have now arrived. The last lot in record time. The tax man struck on one package alas. But even with the tax it worked out at £1.15 per figure, inc postage and tax etc.

The other packs contained a similar ratio of female to male zombies. I have the odd duplicate, but far less than I was expecting. And I got a free sample figure, which is nice.
I believe it to be a death row prisoner zombie with metal electric chair skull cap!
But i could be wrong. That is how I plan to paint it.

So now is the issue of basing again. 2pence or 1pence pieces? Generally I use 2pence pieces for stability. But the 1pences may allow closer packing. But at the cost of stability.

They also look better when laid down to indicate dead or knocked down figures.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Victory Force Miniatures - 28mm Zombie Horde Figure Review

Those who have read my previous post here on the 50 for $50 deal by Victory Force Miniatures will know that I decided to invest in some.

So after an anxious wait, a little box arrived with two bubble wrapped sealed baggies inside. Each containing 25 miniatures and their supplied black plastic slotta bases.

Now the horde deal (which is due to end very soon by the way) is for fifty 28mm white metal zombie figures, for the grand price of $50. Thats about £40 ish with the current exchange rates.

The horde you recieve is not always the same. VFM have abouut 140 or so zombie figures in the range. Some are unique. Others are variants on the same model where arms or legs have been moved or reposed. And you pay for pennies and they pick a random assortment. Meaning you can get some duplicated.
On TMP there was much debate about the level of duplicates. Now I have to say it did not worry me overly. And as you will see from the photos. I don't think I actually got any duplicates. If I did, I have not found them yet..

So to start with. Here are the horde!

Part 1 of the horde 24 male 28mm Zombies

Part 2 of the horde 15 more male 28mm Zombies

Part 3 of the Horde 11 Female 28mm Zombies

As you can see from the three photos above. The pack contained 11 female zombies miniatures and 39 male zombie miniatures. If there are any duplicates I have not spotted them so far. And wouldn't be bothered if I did have a few.

The figures have a range of builds and sizes. Some are obviously variants and do have a similarity to others, but nothing too noticeable. The build of the figures varies, some are slim others more chunky, but are all good fits for the "28mm" category. If you pick your opponent figures from any of the current swathe of makers such as hassle free, EM4, TAG etc I don't think you will find a major disparity.

The casting quality is good. Its not the greatest, as in there is some flash and mould tags that need removing. But frankly I have had much worse from other makers. So given the price. Top marks to VFM so far.

Now onto a few close ups.

VFM 28mm Zombie Female Miniatures
As you can see above. The female figures are easily identifiable. The posing is good. The faces are not the most expressive or detailed, but then they are zombies after all.

Close up of VFM Male Zombie Body Builder
 The figures have an integral stand tag and come with a 25mm round slotta base provided. These also provide a handy scale reference for photos.

This figure stood out when I looked through. Firstly because it is slightly chunkier due to the subject matter. But also has some good detailing. As you can see to its left the other figure is more representative of the majority. With what I would say as a medium level of detail and texture detailing. Now I don't wish that to come across to harsh. We have to keep in mind VFM have obviously set out to make them a "horde" set. I was actually expecting a lower level of detailing when I ordered. So am pleasantly surprised.

Range of poses.
 The above photo was an attempt to show some of the poses in the range. The majority are the a-typical stand up shambler pose. Some have out stretched hands and there is one in the set with no legs or kneeling.

Variety of VFM Zombies
 So the variety of subjects is good. Some are clothed, some partially, some with whole or complete limbs, some missing limbs. Some with very obvious zombie "bite" marks some with far less obvious ones.

In fact if you were nifty with a Green stuff, a few hole fillers and you have some very good civilians or hapless survivors/victims. Something I am considering possibly doing.

Detail close up VFM zombies
 Close up you can see there is some nice room for paint detailing. There are few "hard edges", so dry brushing  will have to be done with care. Every sculptor has their own style and most of the type its faces that stand out. There is a general similarity in many of the figures faces, and this may be from the use of standard dollies and many of the faces are looking upwards. I may tweak a few to lean forward. But that is personal choice. 

So.. if I had to give points out of ten.. One being "I could do better with play-do" and ten being "its too good to go near the gaming table, ever!"  then;

Figure Proportions: 6/10
Figure Variety/Poses: 7/10
Figure Detailing: 5/10
Production Quality: 6/10
Value for money: 9/10

Conclusion - I think as a range of figures. They are good. They are moderately well detailed and their style is definitely in keeping with their purpose. They should fit well with just about any other zombie range figures out there at present.
They are cleanly cast and will not require too long to clean up. There are no separate parts. Which for me is a bonus as they are a horde and that means speed of painting. So less time required for assembly the better.

And value for money! - I think these are about the best you can get. Definitely in white metal. Though with the caveat that this is the last time the 50 for $50 deal is running before a price rise. So hats off to VFM

Monday, 24 October 2011

Victory Force Miniatures - Zombie Horde Deals Ending 31st Oct.

Victory force Miniatures over in the states do a fair few 28mm miniatures. They are a range up until recently I had not even heard of. Then I spotted a post on TMP about some of their figures and the deals they have. And a friend also mentioned them.

Image Copy Right of Victory Force Miniatures

The one most notable to many, is the 50 for $50 Zombie Horde Deal. The zombie range they do has a mix of unique and variants in it. I.e. there are some unique figures, such as the mascot zombies and others, and then there are some general zombie figures with many, be altered to give variants, or slight changes in poses etc.
The net effect is good. The sculpting is good. They are not going to win painting competitions, but frankly when you are buying a zombie horde. Do you really need "a lot" of detail. My personal opinion is no.

However, this is the last 50 for $50 deal they are running before they have to put the price up. Presumably due to the rising costs of white metal, which in recent months has been shooting up in massive jumps, as market forces, mean people moving stocks from banking into commodities.

Any how the net result has been an across the board price rise in the miniatures market for white metal. GW who forecasting must have said prices of metal were due to continue to rise, has stopped metal figures and moved to their fine cast resin. Though this has had mixed results in the market.

VFMs deal means at around the £1:$1.50 ratio we have in currency for the UK, its less than a £1 a figure including their $16 dollar shipping. Which frankly is about the cheapest white metal 28mm prices I have seen in a long time.

I think its refreshing to see a miniatures company, offering this deal. Even  if you run the risk of getting a few duplicates in the mix, as they are picked by the staff out of a "pool" of figs. But by going on the posts of TMP and from friends views who introduced me to them. It appears the number of duplicates varies from zero to 20 or so in the 50. Which to me is perfectly acceptable. Given the saving.

So.. if you are giving some thought to some horror gaming and you want to get a good horde going, then its an offer that frankly only has a short time to run and I would say, is worth a punt.

I will do a review of the figures shortly in more detail. But thought others might wish to share in the deal before it goes.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Fast and Simple Gaming Fun..

Every now and then it is fun to have a change of pace and play a game that is fast and simple!
At the club we have adopted the AR:SE rules on the whole. Akulas rules have been play tested heavily and enjoyed by many over on the Frothers forums.

They are simple. They are inspred by several notable computergames and films and can be had for free! See his blog.

Last night at club, we had a quick game. Werewolves v hurman survivors. A simple and very bloody game, that loosely adhered to Akulas mechanics. I say loosely as we have tinkered and changed the odd thing. More on the fly than any real errors with the rules I might add at this point.

It is just a thing we occasionally do. The net result was four players and one games master, quoting dubious inuendo and film quotes regarding monkeys, whilst laughing our heads off, as our characters died in a plot that wouldn't even make it into a B class movie..  

However it was fast and simple and refreshingly fun. So if you have ever fancy a change of pace, and want something fairly simple. Then check out AR:SE, BAD AR:SE and Total AR:SE.. and give them a go.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Warhammer Historicals - Half Price Sale!..

Yes, I was shocked when I first saw a post on TMP about it. Warhammer Historical were having a sale. Given they are subsidiary of the Games Workshop, who are renown throughout all lands for "never" having a sale. It was quite a shock.

Well some time ago at the Phalanx Wargaming show, My self and Mick bought two model pirate ships complete with crew figures. That being a couple of years ago now, they have sat and never been used.

The other night Mick mentioned he had tried a Warhammer historicals rule set for pirates which included ships combat and so, when the sale was announced I ordered a copy.

Warhammer Historicals - Legends of the High Seas

The book arrived today along with a copy for Mick. Its a nice glossy colour production. Perfect bound and reasonable paper weight. Lots of art work and images. And looks interesting.

There is some history on various pirates of renown etc and reference sheets in the back with some templates etc.

I will do a fuller review at a later date. Once I have had a chance to read through it. But I am told it is loosely based upon the Lord of the Ring system which I believe GW have since dropped.

The Warhammer Historicals wild west are apparently also a derivative of this LOTR set too.
So, will post some views and reviews once we get a game or two on the way.

And of course, in the meantime. Their half price sale is continuing. Bringing their usually higher than average prices down to more average market levels.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Injury and Ebay - Preventing progress.

Hi Folks, Firstly apologies for the lack of progress. But a colision between an axe and my thumb has left me with a extremely badly bruised thumb, which had gone a lovely colour of blue/grey/purple and hurts like hell. Thus I am blaming this for the lack of progress of late.. hey, we all have to have our excuses.

Seriously though. I am hoping to get a little bit done this week if I can. And will post some progress shots as I go.

Ebay - that lovely world of crazy! I have been hunting down the odd bit here and there, and spotted some SST figures I fancied. I was about to bid when the price shot up. To £103.99 for three figure!

This is not the first time either. In recent times, I have seen SST figures reach what I frankly believe to be obscene values. I have happily paid reasonably high prices for some in the past and some might argue that the figures I have paid, were too high. But even I have my limits (apart from the obvious lack of cash as it were).

So if you have some SST figures that you don't wish to hang onto, it seem the market is rich at the moment. I suspect a fall off in prices will occur, as seems the general trends with such things. So it may be time to jump in with the bits you don't need sooner than later.

I will be checking to see if I have some spares in my collections later.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Starship Troopers - First Game - Battle Report

(Firstly apologies for bad typing. Accident with thumb and an Axe = pain and trouble typing)

So, I bought a couple of sets of painted warriors off ebay without seeing any photos. I expected them to be probably be dire and have to be repainted. They arrived, with a couple of casualties, but nothing too serious. And to my surprise. Quite well painted. Certainly table standard.

And so, armed with 28 bugs capable of going on a table, I roped in my mate Steve to play a game. I am planning on running an Starship Troopers Campaign for him and so we both need to learn the rules.

So we setup a simple game. The MI Roster

1 LT,
1 Squad of Sgt, 5 troopers and a rocket launcher.

1 Squad of Sgt, 4 troopers and a rocket launcher.
The troopers armed with Moritas and officers with ugls.

This gave about 560 or so points and so I could take
6 swarms of 7. As I had enough figures for the 28, it meant I would have to "keep two in reserve" until the casualties were able to be re-cycled.

So.. simple, head on kill or be killed game. We drew a centre line and a 6" boundary either way on the table and setup. Rolled for who went first and the MI won.

Table setup
 The table terrain was simple. four low hills, two impassible ridges and three Forest, rough ground areas. The MI setup in the two valley/channels. I setup with two swarms on the flanks and two toward the centre.
We kept the game simple on purpose and from the out set, it looked like I would easily win. I mean, I had wayyy more warrior bugs than he had MI, with two two actions per turn per unit and a 6" base move,, hmm 12" a turn possible. I thought easy! Now we had not set a turn limit and that probably went against the MI heavily, as in the main rule book missions, they have set turn numbers.

Anyway, we kicked off, The MI firing its rocket launchers, as I was shocked to find I was out of range of the moritas to start, only just mind.

The warriors surge forward.

The MI rocket from the first squad ( which the LT has chosen to join) and on my left flank, has a 2" LZ or lethal zone. Fired Directly and not in artillery mode the weapon, rolls its damage dice against each target who's centre point (nominated a lump on the back of the warrior body as being centre reference for the game). So two bugs, fell into the LZ, and the rolls, needed 5+ to hit. Two hits, one saves, one doesn,t One bug dead. Simple! Now this mechanic is quick, you have a two hit and an out right kill value. Roll equal or above the out right kill your dead, equal or above the hit value and you get a save roll (if you are entitle one). Though the game is I-go, U-go as such. The fact you have to roll saves and get to react if a unit completes an action with in 10" of your unit, giving you a free single action. Means you never get bored. A style of gaming I prefer.

The MI Lt readies his men before firing a punnishing salvo!
 My tactics were simple. Charge! I have no ranged capability with warriors. They are close quarters or nothing. But lethal in close quarters. The MI are the opposite really. Standard Power Armoured troopers don't fair well in CQ at all v warriors. And I feared this would give a dull game. But in fact i was rather fun. Having taken a while to read through the section of the book on fire zones and direct v indirect fire etc. It was Steve's second turn. This second squad having fired, but caused no casualties on the right flank with the rocket launcher.
His next round of firing, which included the moritas and the rocket launcher, on readied meant firstly he could fire the rocket launcher. And second he gets a re-roll on the damage for being readied.. scary! So in a blaze of bullets, the MI let rip. The contrail of a rocket landing square in the middle of the directly approaching warrior unit. The net result was five dead bugs! Ouch! near wipe out in one turn..

MI Left flank, squad two fire at the left hand warrior swarm.
 On the other MI flank, the shooting is deadly but not quite as effective.
My losses are mounting but I still feel ok. Plenty of bugs still on the table.
For the MI life is about to get interesting
 With my 6" move, I am soon charging down the MI, on my third turn. However my movement falls short and I provoke a "reaction" from the MI unit. Oops! Their reaction was to fire.
Now you see them!

The Warriors are relentlessly on the move!

Now you don't - eek!
 If you are observant you will notice in the above three photos, my lead, unit of four warriors disappears into green mush, under a hail of morita lead, as the reaction fire, decimates them!. Ouch.. Now with a second unit also filing in, I decide to switch the third warrior swarm that was heading for the LTs squad, to the right. Realising the the low hills of course, were not difficult terrain and I would get my 12" worth and if i could nail the weaker MI squad, I could then concentrate on the strong unit.
The LT breaths a sigh of relief for now!
Well my tactic worked, helped by a really bad round of dice by my opponent Steve. My two squads charged down the second smaller MI squad. Despite provoking two lots of reaction fire, his dice failed as several MI went "out of ammo" on the first reaction and so on the second reaction unable to fire. This meant I finally got close enough. One of the lead warriors swept in with his vicious claws. The other with its bite. One MI troopers was scythed in half by the crushing jaws. The second, may have survived if Steve's dice had not decided to go west. The reaction fire did kill off one warrior unit, but the fact a second was right behind it, meant I kept the pressure up. The second units dived in and this time, two more troopers fell. Leaving the rocket launcher trooper on his own. Without and officer in command range, he was down to reaction actions only! Not good when there are warriors about and your weapons is "pack" mean, it needs a ready action before i can fire! He did what only he could do and flee!
The lone survivor from the second squad tries to flee but is chased down by the warrior swarm.

The MI, prepare to go down fighting!

Without being able to get his ready action in, the lone trooper was eventually hunted down and killed! The LTs squad, fired furiously, but again the approaching warrior swarm must have had improved armour as 14 dice rolled and 8 were 1's.. ouch! Now within range, the LT attempted rally the lone trooper, but the LTs reaction fire, which I thought might wipe out the remnants of my other squad, only killed 1 bug! And so the killing jaws of three warriors tore the brave rocket launcher trooper apart. This provoked a reaction, from the LTs squad, who now desperately low on ammo, had three troopers run dry, just as my larger swarm approached. And the end was nigh!

Two warrior squads in close proximity, no where to retreat the Mi tood their ground and were torn apart!

So it was afun,and interesting learning experience. The basics rules are good. There are things we still need to learn and understand and for a first go, we had a laugh.

The MI fire power can be quite something, and will mowe down a lot of bugs, but if you can get close, with warriors, it soon gets nasty. So for a first attempt at the rules, with a mix of Starship Troopers figures and proxy AT-43 UNA troopers as MI. It went well.

Planning another game soon, with more of a defined mission. As we get to know the rules.