Friday, 30 January 2015

Galleys & Galleons: My totally unoriginal shore forts

Making forts from take-away coffee-cup tops is a brilliant idea but it wasn't mine. I stole it from the well-known naval wargamer and fellow Galleys & Galleons playtester, David Manley. Taking my cue from David's Fort Barrista,  I'm calling them Fort Costa and Fort Nero, though the tops actually came from neither.

Here are some pictures of my own production process.

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Galleys & Galleons: The Pirateology xebec

I recently bought three Pirateology xebecs as the basis of a Barbary Pirate fleet for Galleys & Galleons. Sold as a 'Barbary Galley', the ship is nicely modelled and although no scale is stated, it seems perfectly compatible with the Peter Pig 1/450 Pirate ship range. I thought it might be helpful to take some close-ups with a Peter Pig ship for comparison.

Thursday, 15 January 2015

The 'Crossfiregrad' scenario

This game was originally inspired by Steven Thomas' 2 Foot City, and my thanks are also due Nikolas Lloyd for his 'nearer than' house rule (see below). My version of this urban Crossfire game has been around for some time. After going through a number of iterations, it has finally solidified into a set scenario for staging at the Cavalier show in Tonbridge, Kent, next month.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

2015 projects and options

Portuguese/Dutch for Irregular Wars
Enumerating last year's wargame-related achievements reminded me that retirement has not provided the expected increase in spare time, but, rather, the opposite. Accordingly, and contrary to every wargamer's natural instincts, I really must learn to maximise the time I do get by concentrating on completing current projects and making use of existing armies before moving on to anything new, especially if that carries a significant painting burden. I may have said that before, but it's a mantra I need to repeat. My main immediate priorities are thus to finish at least the first batch of ships for Galleys & Galleons and the Portuguese and Dutch armies for Irregular Wars.

Monday, 5 January 2015

Galleys & Galleons: first games

Nic Wright's forthcoming Galleys & Galleons rules are certainly raising a lot of interest and just before Christmas my friend Ian and I finally got round to a couple of playtest games ourselves.

I can only apologise for the photos. The ships are wearing just their undercoats and look like ghost ships, and the photos were taken very inexpertly in the heat of battle. But, hey, it's a playtest. (Ghost ships are actually covered in the rules in a fantasy supplement at the end.)


The seascape in our first game was a little overcrowded with islands and shallows. They were cunningly placed by my piratical opponent, forcing me into a very awkward starting position. Eager to teach the pirates a lesson they would not forget, my ships sped ahead leaving the boats behind. All measurements are made using the coffee stirrers.

Saturday, 3 January 2015

Games and painting 2014

Irregular Wars playtest with counters
My painting to-do list was becoming oppressive, so last year I decided to note what I managed to do rather than what I planned to do. It didn't increase my productivity but it made me feel better. For the first time, I also recorded the games I played.

In first place was Irregular Wars with 14 games. These were all playtest games and consumed most of my wargaming attention for the year. They were played with counters as I still haven't completed any IW armies.

Second place went to Crossfire with 5 games - one Spanish Civil War, one Normandy and three played on my 'Crossfiregrad' (Stalingrad-esque) cityscape.

Now for the runners-up. I played two games each of Command and Colours Ancients, Dux Bellorum, Galleys & Galleons (playtest) and my friend Ian's developmental ancient rules, and one game each of Impetus, Maurice, WWII Micro Armour, Corvus II, Flanders Fields, Warmaster Ancients,  and my friend Ian's developmental WWI game.

10mm ACW Confederates
As for painting/modelling, I finally completed my 10mm American Civil War armies. I haven't yet played a proper game with them, though they did take to the table in connection with playtesting some hex based Nineteenth Century rules that I'm developing. I also added the finishing touches to the 'Crossfiregrad' cityscape.

Finally, I 'progressed' the 15mm Portuguese/Dutch/Spanish and some scenery for Irregular Wars, the 1/450 pirate ships and scenery for Galleys & Galleons and some 10mm ACW buildings. I aim to finish all these ASAP in 2015.

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