Monday, 29 November 2021

Warfare 2021

The Wargames Association of Reading's Warfare show took place last weekend. It's one of my favourite shows along with Cavalier and SELWG (when it was still in South London). 

This year's venue was Ascot Race Course which has an impressive building lit by natural light. What a pleasure after the awful 'aircraft hanger' experience at Excel. Saturday was an extremely cold day and the train from London had no heating. A bitterly cold wind was blowing in Ascot but the venue was a fairly short walk from the station and entry was handled efficiently. Strangely, there was no-one at the door giving out bumph.

I bought virtually nothing but I did take in the games. I don't attempt to catalogue the games at shows because others do this so well, but three caught my attention.

(Incidentally, I noticed when preparing this post that Blogger no longer 'holds' the photos you are uploading so if you are placing them one at a time you have to go through the same long process for each one. Blogger pretends to get better and better but actually just gets worse and worse.)

The heading photo and the two photos above are from a North American game of Muskets and Tomahawks presented by Combined Oppo's Wagames Group. Great work on the scenery including three grades of loose stones and gravel.

 Huntingdon & District Wargames Society presented this Rome versus Carthage DBA First Edition battle using HAT 52mm figures. A great choice for demo games.

Lastly, Jemima Fawr's Miniature Wargames Blog presented The Second Battle of Murfreesboro/Stones River 1862 using Fire and Fury. The superb scenery was outstandingly realistic.

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

My Blog List

My Blog List widget (right-hand margin) appears to be broken and is not accepting new additions or edits. I have, therefore, added a new instance of the widget and will be rebuilding the list before deleting the old one.

The old list has grown very long and does not necessarily reflect my current interests, so this will also be an opportunity to bring it up to date.

Sunday, 14 November 2021

Salute 2021

This is admittedly a bit of a non-report. I'm glad for the return to normality, but I didn't get anything out of Salute myself. I was seeking inspiration and motivation, but failed to find any. 
Unusually, I didn't have a shopping list and don't currently have any burgeoning new interests, so it was a question of going with nothing and coming back with nothing.

I was vaguely looking for a 1/56 ready-made, ready-painted Russian building suitable for my RCW project, but didn’t see anything. The dim artificial lighting sadly remains the overwhelming feature of the venue and my ageing eyes struggle to see figures properly under these conditions. This rather removes the point of looking at trade stands and the pleasure of looking at games. Unless I have a pressing reason, this is probably the last time I will go to Salute.

Thursday, 11 November 2021

Metals vs Plastics

On my workbench:  some more Copplestone
RCW cavalry, and Warlord Games
AWI infantry.

In a rare moment of opportunity and modest enthusiasm I tackled a sprue of 28mm Warlord Games American War of Independence militia that has  been knocking around for ages. I wanted some more figures in buckskin with long rifles for Rebels and Patriots and five out of the ten figures on the sprue were useable.

I can't remember why I got these instead of buying metal, but they might have been a free gift. Opinions about plastics amongst my friends are sharply divided. There are those with large plastic collections while some people just can't abide them.

I've bought painted plastic figures on eBay and IMO they mix well enough with metal on the tabletop, but I've never made any up. In fact, I can't remember doing anything like this since I made Airfix kits as a boy.

In theory assembling figures from bits provides opportunity for variation. In practice choice is limited. The detail, proportions and realism of the figures is good and  the job wasn't too challenging but there are some negatives. You have to be careful to find the right bits, e.g. matching arms. The fit wasn't perfect and requires some filler.  Above all the whole process was extremely fiddly mainly, I suppose, because plastic is very light.

Metal figures also require preparation, particularly clipping, cutting and filing. This sometimes requires a bit of strength but I've never found it fiddly. 

The finished product. They seem relatively free of plastic 
cement damage, unlike the kits I did as a boy!

The resulting poses are possibly not as convincing as one-piece metal figures but at least the long rifles are less likely to break. Once mounted on metal bases (2p coins) with added filler, the figures will seem more substantial.  Overall I'm pleased enough, or will be, but I'm not sure I'd want to do a whole army.