Monthly Archives: March 2016

Hoardlings: Bones II

Chris Palmer

   This week I completed the Hordlings set from the Bones II, Expansion I.  I needed something quick and simple to do because, like I said with my Monday figure, I was traveling over Spring Break, so knew my painting time would be limited.
    Since there were three of these figures in the set, I decided to base up two of them for Frostgrave, to represent Minor Demons; and  the third I based regularly for other Fantasy games.   I prepped the figures in the usual way; soaking them in a dish of water with a couple drops of dish- soap added, then giving them a light scrub with a soft toothbrush, and then rinsing and drying them.  I then glued one of the figure to a black-primed 7/8" fender washers with Aleene’s Tacky glue and the other two to  white-primed 7/8" fender washer.  I then glued the washers to a tongue depressor with a couple drops of the Elmer’s glue each.

     I began by painting the Hordlings with Crafter’s Acrylic “Citrus Green”, and then when the “Citrus Green” was dry, I gave it a wash with Iron Wind Metals “Dark Green” ink using a wet brush.  When the ink was dry, I painted the tentacles and wings of the center Hoardling, and the spine bumps of the first and third Hoardlings,  with Apple Barrel “Apple Lavender”.

    When the “Apple Lavender” was dry I gave the tentacles, wings, and spine bumps all a wash with Iron Wind Metals “Purple” ink using a wet brush. I then applied some slight thinned Black paint to the mouths of Hoardling 1 and 3, and painted the eye sockets on all three with the Black.  I then went back and painted the eyes with Crafter’s Acrylic “Daffodil Yellow”.

     My next step was to paint the tongue on 3 with Crafter’s Acrylic “Purple Passion”, followed by doing the teeth on 1 and 3 with Americana “Buttermilk”, and then highlighting the teeth with Crafter’s Acrylic “Light Antique White”. I then painted their irises with Crafter’s Acrylic “Deep Red”, followed by Black pupils.  Next, I added highlights to the wings, tentacles, tongue, and spine bumps with the “Apple Lavender” followed by doing highlights on their bodies with Reaper MSP Bones “Dungeon Slime”.  Lastly, I painted the horns on the third one with Americana “Neutral Grey”, and when dry, I gave the horns a wash with some GW Agrax Earthshade" using a wet brush.

        After I was finished painting the figures, I cut a small section of the sprue these Hoardlings came on and glued it to the base of the second one to represent some old stonework; and when dry, I painted it with Americana Zinc and then drybrushed it with Crafter’s Acrylic “Storm Cloud Grey”, followed by Folk Art “Platinum Grey”. Then, when everything had overnight to dry, I gave the figures a coat of Ceramcoat “Matte Varnish”.  Later that afternoon I flocked the first two’s bases with Woodland Scenics “Snow” flock, and the third one’s base with regular green flock.  The next day, I sprayed the figures with Testor’s Dullcote.

     I’m happy with how these little fellows turned out.  They were quick to do, and I was glad to have an excuse to use some vibrant colors for a change.

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Completed First Battalion of Reaper CAV Vehicles

Buck

A close up of a heavy tank platoon

A close up of a heavy tank platoon

A few weeks ago I received my box of Reaper CAV figures in the Bones material from the Kickstarter.  I really like the look of the vehicles, as they have a near future vibe that I find plausible.  I didn’t purchase any of the stompy robots, because I think they would be silly, impractical, and expensive on a real battlefield.  Last night while watching a movie with my wife, I finished the first battalion.  These look to me like M-1 tanks with some kind of rocket launcher on the top.

A battalion of Reaper CAV heavy tanks

A battalion of Reaper CAV heavy tanks

This signals the imminent start of development on the near future and science fiction version of Look, Sarge, No Charts.  Each base represents a platoon, so in the picture above, the heavy tank battalion has three companies of three platoons.  The single bases represent company and battalion HQ.  You can see that I have left space on the back of the bases for the characteristic Look, Sarge, No Chart data labels.

I sprayed the vehicles with Krylon camouflage paint that is supposed to bond to plastic.  I didn’t find a specific camo and Fusion product, but these camo paints are supposed to work on plastic.  These paints did not result in the common tackiness that many experience with the Bones material.  Though they dried with a nice, flat finish, they felt a little damp, not tacky per se, but damp.   They almost felt like suede.  After painting on the camo pattern and a few other details, I overrated them with Army Painter matte finish.  If find the large cans of Army Painter matte finish convenience, but as you can see in these pictures, it is not as matte as the Dull Cote matte finish.  Anyway, after spraying them with the Army Painter matte finish the damp feel is completely gone.  I think I may hit them with a light coat of Dull Cote to dull them down.

A command vehicle

A command vehicle

I don’t know if we’ll try to build our own back story and fluff, so there really is no guidance yet on organization, sides, or painting schemes.  At this point, I have two partially completed battalions of vehicles that I kit bashed from various sources.  I am painting them in straight olive drab.  The Reaper units I plan to paint in different camouflage schemes.  This battalion got a 1980′s US woodland paint scheme and the Desert Storm “V.”  I’ll be doing more fanciful painting themes on the next battalions.  While not 100% realistic, it is sometimes true that different units in the same Army have different painting schemes because they are habitually associated with a specific geographic area or terrain.  In Desert Storm, many of the deployed units had olive paint schemes, because they had been earmarked for deployment to Europe.  Anyway, the different camo schemes will help players keep their units separated on the tabletop.

For the near future, my focus will remain on Combat Patrol™, but I will begin development of Look, Sarge, No Charts for the near future and science fiction genre.  Between turns, there will be a cyber phase in which players use their cyber forces to get into the enemy’s command and control networks.  This will result in the winning side of a cyber phase drawing some number cyber action cards that can be used during a turn to impact enemy spotting attempts, activations, and other actions.

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Village Rioter: Figure 208 of 266

Chris Palmer

    Knowing I would be short of time for painting this past week due to Spring Break traveling, I skipped doing another figure from the Necromancer set that I had been working on, and instead selected one of the simpler figures from the Townsfolk II set to paint: the Village Rioter.
     I prepped the figure in the usual way; soaking it in a dish of water with a couple drops of dish- soap added, then giving it a light scrub with a soft toothbrush, and then rinsing and drying it.  I then glued the figure to a black-primed 1" fender washer with Aleene’s Tacky glue, and then glued the washer-mounted figure to a tongue depressor with a couple drops of the Elmer’s glue.

     I began by painting his head and right hand with Americana “Shading Flesh”. I then painted his pants with Crafter’s Acrylic “Navy Blue”, his tunic with Nicole’s “Brown”, and his cowl with Ceramcoat “Territorial Beige”.

     Next, I painted the torch with Americana “Mississippi Mud”, and the shaft of his pitchfork with Folk Art “Barn Wood”.  I then painted his gloved hand with Folk Art “Dapple Grey”.  I used Folk Art “Dark Brown” to paint his shoes, and Folk Art “Porcelain White” to paint his socks.

     I painted his hair with Folk Art “Butter Pecan”, and then painted his belt and pouch with Americana “Asphaltum”.    I let the paint dry for a while, and then gave the entire figure a wash with Winsor-Newton “Peat Brown” ink using a wet brush.   When the wash was dry, I painted the fire on his torch using a series of five colors progressing from a light yellow to a brick red-orange. I then added a little Black at the bottom of the flames to help blend them into the top of the torch handle, and a little Black at the top to make the flames look a little sooty.   Next, I painted the head of the pitchfork, his belt buckle, and the fitting on the torch handle, with Folk Art Metallics “Gunmetal Grey”.

      I decided the pitchfork looked too new, so I mixed some of the “Asphaltum” and “Gunmetal Grey” together to get a more aged looking metal color, and painted the base of the fork with that, transitioning up to the bare “Gunmetal Grey” on the tines.
      I then highlighted his hair using Americana “Buttermilk”; followed by painting his eyes, and then highlighting his face with the base “Shading Flesh”, then a little of the “Shading Flesh” mixed with some Americana “Mocha” to do lighter highlights.  Next, I highlighted his cowl with Americana “Khaki Tan”, and his tunic with Americana “Sable Brown”.  I then did highlights on his pants with Americana “Wedgewood Blue”, and on his socks with the base “Porcelain White”.  I highlighted his shoes, and his belt and pouch,  with Crafter’s Edition “Spice Brown”, and his glove with the base “Dapple Grey”.  After that, I highlighted the torch handle with the base “Mississippi Mud”, and the pitchfork shaft with the base “Barn Wood”.  Lastly, I painted the figures sculpted base with Ceramcoat “Walnut”.
 After the figure had overnight to dry, I gave it a coat of Ceramcoat “Matte Varnish” the following morning.  Later that morning I flocked the base, and that evening I sprayed the figure with Testor’s Dullcote.

     I’m happy with how he turned out.  Nothing fancy, just a good solid villager figure.

Figure 208 of 266: Complete

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Warg Painted as Arctic Wolf: Bones II

Chris Palmer

   This week I completed the Warg figure from the Bones II original figures set.  I didn’t realize he was a Warg when I started painting him; I just assumed he was a large wolf.  So, I decided to paint him as an Arctic Wolf because,  as with the rest of the animals I’ve been doing recently, I was painting him up for Frostgrave.
      I prepped the figure in the usual way; soaking it in a dish of water with a couple drops of dish- soap added, then giving it a light scrub with a soft toothbrush, and then rinsing and drying it.  I then glued the figure to a white-primed 1.25" fender washers with Aleene’s Tacky glue, and then glued the washer-mounted figure to a tongue depressor with a couple drops of the Elmer’s glue.

     I began by painting the entire figure with Americana “Dove Grey”. I then drybrushed his top half with Americana “Neutral Grey”, followed by doing is top third with Americana “Zinc”.

     I then mixed a little of the “Zinc” into some Black and painted his very top spine area and the tip of his tail and also around his face and ears.   I then painted his mouth and nose Black, and then I painted his eyes.    Next, I painted his teeth with Americana “Buttermilk, followed with highlights using Crafter’s Edition "Light Antique White”.   I used some of the “Zinc” to highlight his nostrils. 
     Lastly, I painted the base White.   When everything had overnight to dry, I gave the figure a coat of Ceramcoat “Matte Varnish”.  Then, the next morning I flocked the white areas with Woodland Scenics “Snow” flock and added some tufts of twine to represent dead grasses.  Later that afternoon I sprayed the figure with Testor’s Dullcote.

     I like the way this fellow turned out.  I think he will make quite a formidable wolf to encounter in the frozen city.

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The HAWKS Room at Cold Wars on Saturday

Chris Palmer    Here are a few shots I took of some of the various games the HAWKS ran on Saturday at Cold Wars in Lancaster, PA.

Buck Surdu’s “A Frozen Hell” WWII Finns vs Soviets game using Combat Patrol Rules.

Sam Fuson’s “Revenge of Sherlock Holmes” game using GASLIGHT rules.

Eric Schlegel’s “Al Capone Comes to Schlegel’s Ferry” game using Blood & Swash rules.

Bill Acheson’s “Panic in Pan Chaka” Tekumel game using GASLIGHT rules

Kevin Fischer’s “Advance From Odessa” Gundam game using Mobile Suit Gundam: The Gravity Front rules

Rob Dean’s “The Ringbearer” fantasy game using the 1975 “Ringbearer” rules.

Dave’s Wood’s “A Fantasy Battle During the Year of The Four Emperors” game using Bear Yourselves Valiantly rules.

Geoff Graff’s “Plastic Pirates Party!” kids’ game using Little Lego rules.

My “Happy Birthday, General Grant!” game using GASLIGHT rules. You can see the full report and more photos at my previous blog entry.

Dave Wood’s “Battle of Ebersburg, 1809” Napoleonic game using Fate of Battle rules.

Buck Surdu’s “To Lose a Battle” WWII France ‘40 game using Combat Patrol rules.

Don Hogge’s “Bloody Maltot” WWII game using Battleground rules

Greg Priebe’s “The Apocalypse Comes to Schlegel’s Ferry” game using Blood & Swash rules.

Don Smith’s “Breaking the British Blockade” Napoleonic naval game using Modified Trafalgar/Sails of Glory rules.

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Cold Wars AAR: Happy Birthday, General Grant by GASLIGHT

Chris Palmer    Saturday night at Cold Wars, I ran my GASLIGHT game called “Happy Birthday, General Grant”.  In this game Rebel raiders attack a birthday celebration for General Grant and attempt to achieve three goals:  1) Kidnap the General, 2) Steal the wagonload of whiskey at the party, and hijack the train containing the huge birthday cake that had been made for the General.
     I had run this game before at last year’s Fall-In, and it had been so much fun I thought I would give it another showing here at Cold Wars.   At Fall-In it had been a close run affair with the Union just managing a victory after winning a prolonged struggle over the unconscious body of General Grant.    The Rebels got the whisky wagon away, and the train stayed in Union hands.   In this running of the game, dismal Confederate dice rolling and amazingly hot Union dice rolling, meant that the Union denied all three victory conditions to the Rebel raiders.   However, everyone had fun; and that, as the GM, was the most satisfying thing.

The scene near the beginning as Rebel mole-machines pop up near the center of the table and they start disembarking their troops.

Union troops line the fence to fire on the party crashers, as the whisky wagon wagon-master begins to drag the valuable vehicle out of harms way.

Typical of the Union luck in this game, the wagon-master hurls a beer mug long range at a Rebel flame-rifle trooper and hits in an almost impossible shot.  The flame-trooper of course, fails his Save roll, and falls unconscious. 

The Rebels continue to press their attack, as a Timberclad and Bicycle Dragoons enter the fray from a nearby woodline. 

The Confederate General himself goes up and duels General Grant one-on-one, but is struck down by the Union General after only a couple rounds of melee. 

Another shot of the table at the height of the Rebel attack.

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In The HAWKs Room at Cold Wars on Friday

Chris Palmer Here are a few shots I took of just some of the various games taking place on Friday in the HAWKs Room at Cold Wars, in Lancaster PA. , this past weekend.

Dave Wood’s “A Skirmish During the First Boer War” game using modified Combat Patrol rules.

Another shot of Dave Wood’s Boer War game.

Don Hogge’s “Drums Along the Oswego” game using Muskets and Tomahawks rules. 
A closer look at Don’s game, as French and Indians attack a British blockhouse.

Rob and Norman Dean’s “Dragon’s Gambit game, using Chaos Wars rules. 

A closer look at "Dragon’s Gambit”, as forces of the empire combined with the good creatures of the land, try to repel evil marauders from the east.
Jim McWilliam’s “Who Want to Take a Viking Cruise”, using SAGA rules.

A close-up of Jim’s SAGA game, as Vikings try to round up some extra crewmen (and women) for their trip home.

The Bear Yourselves Valiantly game I ran featuring Elves vs a Lizardmen/Goblin alliance.  You can read about it in my previous blog entry.

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Cold Wars AAR: Final Battle of the Elvish Frontier

Chris Palmer    Friday night at Cold Wars I ran my “Final Battle of the Elvish Frontier” mass-combat fantasy scenario using  Bear Yourselves Valiantly rules and 10mm figures.  The scenario had a column of Elven refugees and treasure wagons fleeing an army of Lizardman and Goblins that was approaching the Elven capital.  Part of the Lizardman/Goblin main force has branched off to intercept this juicy target, and the Elves have rushed a guard to protect it.  The scenario was designed for 6, and I had four players show up.  So I pitched in to help the Elvish side and took the third command, and had the Lizardmen/Goblin commanders divide their third command up among the two of them.

The two other Elvish commanders advance their troops on to the field.  My force of mounted knights entered on turn 3.

The Lizardmen/Goblin commanders consider their next move.

Lizardmen battlegroups advance to cut the Elvish crossroad.

Elven legions move up to keep the road clear.

A view of the table near the middle of the game.  The Elves needed to exit 3 of their 6 treasure/refugee stands off the road at the lower left corner of the photo.

The desperate fight at the end.  With bat swarms and hordes of Warg riders closing in on the Elves’ column, the Elvish knights throw themselves into the enemy to stem the tide.   Even the refugees and wagon masters fend off several Warg attacks.  But, alas, it was not to be the Elves’ day, as my dismal dice rolling ended up with the knights bloodied and beaten.  I called the game at that point, and declared it a Lizardmen/Goblin victory.

     I had a great group of players, and had a blast GM-ing the game and running the Elves’ flying relief column.  As a whole the Elves’ dice rolling was miserable, and the Lizardman/Goblin commanders had dice that were hot. Eventually the Elves had been so beat up that there was nothing they could do anymore to stem the tide, so I called the game and declared the Lizardmen/Goblin commanders to be the winners.

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Combat Patrol at Cold Wars 2016

Buck

A narrow miss against two Polish vehicles

A narrow miss against two Polish vehicles

Last weekend was Cold Wars in Lancaster, PA.  Due to family commitments, I was only able to attend on Saturday, when I ran three back-to-back Combat Patrol ™ games.  In addition to my games, Zeb Cooke ran a Winter War game with 28mm figures, Dave Wood ran two Boer War games, and Duncan Adams ran his Napoleonic game (see previous posts).  Running three back-to-back games on Saturday had the benefit of limiting the amount of time I had to spend money in the dealers’ hall, but it also limited my ability to take pictures.  The picture above is the only one I remembered to take of the Poland 1939 game.

A wide shot of the Russian initial setup

A wide shot of the Russian initial setup

In my first game a Russian column was pushing up this road through the snow, but the Finns had other ideas. The Finns began the game hidden in the various wooded areas.  In addition to some satchel charges and Molotov cocktails, the Finns had a single anti-tank gun.

The Russians advance

The Russians advance

The Russian tanks were mostly road-bound, as they had to suffer bog checks if they left the road.  The Finns had also mined one of the frozen lakes.  The Russians immediately spread out their infantry to try to clear the wooded areas.

The Finns welcome the Russians to Finland

The Finns welcome the Russians to Finland

The hidden anti-tank gun brewed up one of the Russian light tanks.  By the end of the game, most of the Finnish infantry had been badly mauled, but the Russians had also taken heavy casualties.  I called it a narrow Finnish victory.

My second game was based on a scenario from the Skirmish Campaigns book on Poland 1939.  The Poles launched a local counter attack to knock the Germans on their heels.  It was a bloody affair with nearly every tank on both sides wiped out.  While I was running this game, Zeb was running his Winter War scenario.  I understand it went quite well, but I was busy running my own game and didn’t get a chance to see it.

My third game was based on another Skirmish Campaigns scenario and was set in France in 1940.  The French launched a local counter attack.  According to the scenario, the Germans had a 75mm gun, which in 1940 was a monster.  The gun took out two Somuas and two Char Bs.  The French continued to advance up the road into the teeth of the AT gun while pumping HE shells into the anti-tank gun’s position.  Luck was not with the French as after pumping six or seven HE rounds into the position and driving off the crew once, they were not able to knock out the crew.  The Germans had lost all of their tanks (35(t)s and 38(t)s) by the end of the game. The French objective was to push two vehicles across the table, but they only got one off the table, and their remaining Somua was still in the kill zone of the AT gun, so I called it a German victory, but it was a close run affair.

In all three scenarios, the rules worked pretty well.  There was a bit of not seeing the forest for the trees.  I have been working on an optional rules supplement to handle a few “corner cases” that are not fully addressed in the rule book, but in general, they held up well in a variety of situations.  In the France 1940 scenario, the French players were upset that they were unable to knock out the AT gun, which was a result of really poor luck.  Still, I think they came close to winning and could have won if they had done something other than continuing to charge up the road straight at the AT gun and had instead sought some cover, they may well have won the game.  Players tend to ascribe tactical failure or bad luck to the rules being broken, and this was no exception.  An odd situation occurred that I may address as an optional rule, but again players tend to latch onto one tree and forget about the forest.  Also, in the Finland game, players kept complaining that they wanted to gunk up the game with additional modifiers that favored them.  (They would likely have been just as vocal about opposing those same modifiers if they had been on the other side.)  While most of the players were very happy with the rules, a few folks didn’t appreciate the streamlined nature of the rules or the fact that a lot happened in a short period of playing time.  At the same time my France 1940 games was going on, I kept an eye on a France 1944 game, and while the players had a great deal of fun, there wasn’t a lot of movement.  The card mechanic is really unique, and I have found that sometimes players really fight it and don’t try to get their heads around it.

On Military Matters brought 16 copies of the starter set (printed rule book, one activation deck, and two action decks) and sold more than half.  Of course, I would have liked for them to sell out, but I think that was a solid showing.

I also recruited someone to start working on the modern Afghanistan and Iraq supplements for the game.  There are a lot of issues to work through, so don’t expect this in the next month, but it is definitely moving forward now.  So, while I am working on the South Pacific WWII, there are folks working on Napolenoics, British Colonial (Boers, Zulus, and the Sudan), the Falklands and other post-WWII British campaigns, and Modern Afghanistan and Iraq.  I am looking for someone who wants to go after Grenada and Panama, so I can concentrate on my favorite campaigns of WWII: Finland (done), France 1940, and Poland 1939.

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Malek Necromancer: Figure 207 0f 266

Chris Palmer

   Last week, before I left for Cold Wars, I put the finishing touches on Malek Necromancer from the Necromancers set.  I’m now half way through this set, with two done, and two to go.

      I began by painting the figure entirely in Black.  I then drybrushed the cape with Folk Art “Dapple Gray”.  Next, I painted his leggings and sleeves with Americana “Zinc”, and then I added highlights to his loincloth with Duncan “Olive Green”.

My next step was to paint his mask with Crafter’s Acrylic “Light Antique White”.  I then painted highlights on his boots, belt, and gauntlets with Americana “Neutral Grey”.  Next, I painted all the parts I planned to eventually paint gold with Folk Art “Golden Harvest”. 

    I then painted the skulls at his feet with Nicole’s “Brown”, and the rod of his staff with Crafter’s Acrylic “Navy Blue”.  After that I painted his sword with Folk Art Metallics “Gunmetal Grey”, and the sword hilt, scabbard top, staff parts, and the skulls on his outfit with Ceramcoat “Bronze”.   After everything had a while to dry, I gave his mask and all the metallic parts a wash with GW Agrax Earthshade" wash using a wet brush.

    I took some time to work on the skulls he’s standing upon at this point.  First, I drybrushed them with Americana “Khaki Tan”, and then with Americana “Buttermilk”.  I then painted on spot highlights with Crafter’s Acrylic “Light Antique White”.  By now the wash was dry, so I worked on his mask.  First I carefully painted in eyes, then I used some of the “Light Antique White to do highlights.  Next, I added highlights to his staff with Americana "True Blue”, and I highlighted the ribbon that seems to be hanging from the staff, with Ceramcoat “Black Cherry”.    I then did highlights to his leggings and sleeves with Crafter’s Acrylic “Storm Cloud Grey”; and then touched up the highlights on his cape with the original “Dapple Grey”, and his gloves and boots with the “Neutral Grey”.   Moving on to the metallics, I did highlights on his sword with Folk Art “Silver Sterling”, and I highlighted all the gold parts with Ceramcoat “14K Gold”.
      Lastly, I painted the base White.  When everything had overnight to dry, I gave the figure a coat of Ceramcoat “Matte Varnish” early the next morning.  Midday, I flocked the white areas with Woodland Scenics “Snow” flock and late that afternoon I sprayed the figure with Testor’s Dullcote.  When the Dullcote was dry, I superglued a red nail-art gem to the circle at the top of his staff.

    I really like how he turned out, and I think the gem on his staff makes a really nice accent.

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