Thursday, 22 September 2022

Safely back.

Well Im back, safe and sound from Texas. Three flights, a four hour drive and 32 hours awake, I felt and still feel like Ive had a good kicking. Unfortunately within hours of returning I was hit by some lurgy and still feel under the weather. But enough of what I did on my holidays. What I will say is, that Galveston is a lovely town and a good place to sample American culture, weather and meet people who believe in good manners.A real throwback. Sadly the price of alcohol didnt match the feel of the place.
Last Saturday I dragged myself to The Border Reivers show in Gateshead. John and I have always attended this show and found it a decent day out. Saturday was no different, well mainly no different. 
The morning seemed busy and there was a decent queue waiting to get into the place. It was nice to bump into old faces and talk toy soldiers and the like. There were a few new trade stalls that I hadnt seen before with some interesting new products and of course there was a bring and buy set up. Strangely some tables were empty through the day, which was unusual for the show. I picked up some cheap [very] Victrix Macedonians but didnt succumb to the urge to buy up all the packs on sale. There is nothing worse than having thousands of unpainted figures under the table, it can be soul destroying. 
Games wise there were some nice tables on show, my favourite being the Westerhope Crew displaying their early war desert campaign.Its the one period of the second World War I enjoy. No mega powerful tanks and some interesting opportunities for the Italians to shine.
Unfortunately after the show I had a relapse and had to take to my bed. I think it was from talking to various wargamers who described their ailments, colleagues ailments or simply complaining of getting old. I know Im no better at times. One hates bits falling off them.
In between sleeping I have managed to complete a few figures. The Indians are from Lamming Miniatures and were good figures to paint. The foot soldiers are from Fireforge and will be added to my Lion Rampant force.Ignore any heraldry, its whatever I could lay my hands upon.
Hopefully I will attend Partizan in October, everything being well. It will be nice to get more inspiration and enjoy the sight of some top quality games.


Friday, 2 September 2022

Paved with good intentions.

Life is paved with good intentions. Unfortunately my life is no different. With the end of lock-down like many other wargamers I intended to produce a very regular series of posts on my blogs. But like many others that just hasnt happened. The reason? Well I think most people know the reason. 
Post the last two plus years I think its fair to say people are struggling to adjust to the new normal. Some people I know will never return to what was normality and basically become virtual recluses, dodging groups, crowds or even just very small groups. One sees them in various shops, masked up wearing plastic gloves and avoiding others like they have the plague. Then we have the majority whose life routines will never return. I think Im in that group. I do things slower, procrastinate more and seem quite happy to adopt a much slower pace. Of course it could be because Im getting a bit older.Anyway that is my excuse for not posting more regularly. 

Its also noticeable that the major wargaming companies aren't producing many new ranges of figures.Its understandable given the cost of everything going up. Of course we have a number of small figure companies such as Claymore Castings, Antediluvian Miniatures and the like releasing small ranges of beautiful figures but no big new projects. No new periods. So have we reached saturation point regarding the various periods?

Is there a need for a complete range of 28mm Napoleonics? Or has basically every war been covered by the many ranges? Hence the Napoleonic Rabbits and Turnips??? and such like. It probably explains the skirmish games that appear with regularity. Games with a well produced set of rules, figures displayed in the rules that are also produced to be bought with the rules a la Games Workshop and sometimes a nice range of gaming accessories to complement the new game. Why not, if they are good value?      

Clearly Ive plunged into the skirmish trend wholeheartedly with the new Lion Rampant release.I  must admit I am enjoying painting up some units and planning a couple of factions. Im determined not to spend a lot on the figures, but like all good intentions. Well you know the rest.
I did manage to pick up some cheapish? Foundry figures that were the customary joy to paint. I also located my old Brettonian transfers to add a little interest to them.
Of course it was prudent to buy some plastics for the sergeants and the like from Fireforge and very nice figures they are to. I also located a number of the old Brettonian plastic archers which have been a staple of my Never Mind the Billhooks project. Over forty years old but still excellent generic figures, not showy but perfect for smaller games. 

Im slowly painting up my Lamming order of ancients for my Persian army and very nice they are to. Well cast figures that are a pleasure to paint and a fair price to pay.  
There will be a lull for a couple of weeks after this post as I jet [hopefully] to Texas to enjoy the delights of Austin. I dont expect to visit any historical sites, unless they involve music, decent beer and the like. So if there are any Texan wargamers who also like to enjoy an eclectic mix of music, Ill be sat at the corner of various bars a typical Brit. You will recognise the type. I view this trip as part of my recovery from the Covid mess and I intend to sample the baser delights of life. Now that would be closer to normality for me.



Tuesday, 23 August 2022

Lion Rampant? Who me???

We are all getting older. Its inevitable and wargamers are no different even though we grasp our youth whenever we are enjoying our hobby. Its an escape from reality and frankly has kept me relatively well balanced through all sorts of life stuff. One thing that does happen as wargamers get more mature is do we start a new project and if so how large a subject is the project.
A case in point is my main interest the Napoleonic Wars. I have finally bitten the bullet and sold my entire Napoleonic collection of 6mm figures. The scaled armies of Russia, Austria, Prussia, Great Britain, the Confederation of the Rhine, France and all their allies. The whole kit and kabudalle.
It was like losing a close friend but one that I hadnt seen for several years. So the question was what do I do next? If I started collecting Napoleonics again it would be in 28mm and frankly in order to replace what I once owned would take several years, probably more. It would also have taken my savings which I am holding on to to pay my heating and electricity bills. 
I once owned a beautiful Games Workshop, Brettonian army. An army of knights, foot sergeants, archers and the like with a sprinkling of fabulous Pegasus warriors and other fantasy units. I really enjoyed painting the models. Sadly I only used it once and never ever used it again. Inevitably I sold it for a fair price decades ago. The same figures are now very rare and one would have to pay a fortune to own the army I collected. Now that would have paid for my heating bills.
So realising I dont have enough time to re build a large Napoleonic army I bit the bullet and bought the new Lion Rampant rule book by Dan Mersey after very strong recommendations from John. The forces arent very large but one could opt to collect and paint knights and their followers.I will admit Im a bit wary of skirmish battles and only dived into Never Mind the Billhooks because one can stage large battles using the rules.
Lion Rampant is definitely more a large skirmish game but the idea of painting knights was just too tempting, hence the images one sees now. These are my first units. The heraldry is post Brettonnian/ Hollywood, although I have opted for GMB 100 Years War French standards. I do like my flags. 

My command figure, with very large attack dog courtesy of Steve Wood.The figure I think I got from WI but I could be wrong.Anyway he's ready to lead.

The project isnt a big one although I have already bought too many figures. They will be a combination of Fireforge, Foundry [yes David] and some Antediluvian light troops. 
I have always looked back, its not good sometimes, but in wargaming Ive always enjoyed the nostalgia vibe. I bought some badly painted Egyptians spearmen advertised as Lamming figures. I knew they werent but wanted them anyway. Anyway Ive finally repainted and based them up. They will be drafted into my ever growing Achaemenid Persian horde. The figures are Garrison with added helmets created by the original owner. Crude, but I like them.

These, are Vendel Sparabara with Victrix archers to fill out their ranks.I have two more units to complete. Vendel were a great range, albeit big figures.


Thursday, 4 August 2022



Well I finally completed some half painted ancient units that had been stood around for quite a while and they're a real eclectic mix of troop types and figure manufacturers..
I bought a few Foundry Cesarean Romans to pad out my small Roman army.They were a pleasure to paint although I now refuse to pay full price for them, these were courtesy of E Bay. I know they are a tad bright, but I must admit I do like the look of them. 

I have had these two resin elephants stood unloved for many months and finally decided to paint them.I only need to paint the rest of the Successor army now. Again they were a pleasure to paint. First Corps I think.

I had mentioned Lamming Miniatures a few weeks ago and was complaining about the scarcity of the range on E Bay. I then discovered the ranges are now available again but only better. The ranges have been redone and are for sale under the Lamming banner from a very enterprising gent called Martin Cameron who is steadily working his way through the ranges bringing them back to life. Recommended.
I picked up some badly painted Garrison Egyptians and have finally renovated them. They're not brilliant but are acceptable and were one of the very first figures I bought, many years ago.

I know they look their age, but I wanted some Egyptian melee troops to add to my Persian army. Not too historical, but look the part.

My 'new' Lamming Egyptian infantry, beautiful sculpts and very clean Great to paint by the way.

                      Finally a new Roman general to add to my many Roman generals. I think he was a freebie.

My 6mm Napoleonic set up.

My 6mm Napoleonic set up.
Austria 1809.

Austrian Hussars

Austrian Hussars
Hinchliffe figures

Austrian Grenzer

Austrian Grenzer
Austrian Grenzer

Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2013
Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2012

Smoggycon 2012
Smoggycon 2012

Smoogycon 2009

Smoogycon 2009
My French getting another beating