This area of the website is my hobby blog, it contains articles about games that I have enjoyed playing together with paining and model making articles.
The Wobbly Goblin Tavern... a terrain project for D&D and fantasy skirmish games such as Saga Age of Magic, Thud & Blunder, Otherworld, Badgers & Burrows and Lord of the Rings.
This blog is going to chart the development of The Tavern and its surrounding enviroment. The tavern and accesories are all 3D printed. They are going to be set into modular terrain tiles, (Sally 4th Terra-Formers) and landscaped in with laser engraved cobblestones and other scenic effects.
A couple of years ago I backed Hobgoblin 3D's Kickstarter for the Wobbly Goblin Tavern. Their Kickstarter was the deal of the century £15 for the files to make a 3D Tavern of immense proportions (well at least 20" long). The Kickstarter took a long, long time to deliver but the results were certainly worth waiting for. The tavern has been designed as a snap together kit with hundreds of pieces and an instruction manual that runs to 107 pages. I have glued my model together with superglue and once it has been painted it will be embedded into a 2' square Terra-Former tile.
I am planning tohave the Inn and the initial tile completed by the end on June 2019. After that I will expand the lgaming area to 3'x3' with the inclusion of outbuildings including stables and barn and some gardens and a courtyard area.
These first four photos show the ground floor which has been completed and base coated with household emulsion. I use Sandtex exterior masonry paint (Bitter Chocolate) as an undercoat and primer on all terrain projects. The floor and stone course has then been undercoated with 'Granite Grey' matt household emulsion.
I could not resist trying out my existing bar room furniture and fittings for size. These are a real mixture of frre 3D objects from Thingiverse, old metal and resin castings that I have had knocking around for years and some plastic pieces from board games such as Dungeon Saga and Conan!
The ground floor of the tavern has a very large common room area with a significant fireplace and chimney at one end. There is plenty of room for a bar in the centre and more tables at the far end. There is a seperate room on the ground floor, which I am going to use as the guest room for the 'posh' visitors who can afford to pay for a bed for the night rather than a blanket in front of the fire..
On the first floor is the accomodation for the Inn keeper, family and servants. I'll cover that and the roof sections in next weeks update.
Today is a huge milestone, as I have finally finished 3D printing and assembling the roof sections. Each of the 3 roof sections have 64 seperate tile sections which are suspended on a framework of 'A' frames in a very similar way to a real roof. This completes the build of the Inn itself, it just all needs to be painted. The wooden plank sectrions on the ground floor have been painted and have had two levels of drybrushing applied to bring out the texture of the wood. Hopefully you can see the difference between the staircase that has been painted and the first floor wood work which has just been undercoated.
Here's a look at the first floor accomodation with the roof off. I love the wooden veranda. I can see all sorts of swashbuckling swordplay going on along it!
I also decided that an Inn was going to need stabling for customers horses, so a did a bit of searching on the Internet and found this rather nice design for medieval / fantasy stables. The 3D design files are from Infinite Dimensions. It was not a company that I had heard off, but as the design file was in the region of £11 I thought that I would give it a go, and I am very pleased with the results. There are doors to go in the openings at the front, however the sides are open as well, so I get the feeling that horses would just wander out. I am therfore planning to add individual stalls and hay and water provision by hand to complete the equine provision.
If you've got stabling then you are also going to need some storage for hay, straw, oats etc. The thatched store room as also from Infinite Dimensions. When I brought it I noticed that it was a bit to big for my 6" wide print bed. I scales each piece down to 92% of original size. I think it is still plenty big enough and looks in scale with the other buildings and 28mm miniatures.
I do rather like the design of the store house. It has a lot of gaming potential. The thatched roof section lifts off to reveal a second floor / attic.
The first floor has a staircase going up to the second floor / attic and a door to an exterior platform which would be ideal for loading / unloading from wagons. The ground floor has some nice clutter designed in as part of the single piece and the external staircase leading up to the first floor.
I have decided that their will be a cobbled courtyard between the Inn and the outbuildings to tie them all together. To build this I have designed and laser cut / engraved some 1" square, 1" x 2" and 2" square cobbled sections. These have nice deep etching between the cobbles, so I am hoping that once they are embedded in the terrain boards and painted up they will blend well with the 3D printed elements. I could off course have 3D printed some 'Dungeon Tile' to use, but that would have added a couple of extra weeks of 3D printing time. The engraved tiles are not on website, but if anyone else needs them for a project, give me a shout and I'll see what I can do!
I have also decided on the final configeration on modular terrain tiles. The Inn will be 3' x 3' with it's out buildings. The main building is goiing to be set into a 2' x 2; Terra-Former Tile with a road running in front off it. The 2' tile will be edged to the right and at the back by five 1' x 1;' plain Terra-Former Tiles. Four of the 1' square Terra Former Tiles are going to have cobble stone sections embedded in them and the last is going to be left plain to have the Inns vegetable garden and Orchard moddeled on to it.
I'm hoping to get some more work done on this hobby project over the weekend, so check back next week for updates, or better still, sign up to our newsletter!
Last Sunday (12th May 2019) Yorkshire was blessed with sunshine and light winds so we took the opportunity to take our gaming gear and set it up on the patio to top up the vitamin D while rolling some dice and having fun.
These circumstances do not occur that often, so we need to make the most of them.
I was joined by Mike Wilson and Doug Wright for another great game of Pulp Alley, using the new 2nd edition rules.
Doug and I are seasoned Pulp Alley veterans. It was the first time that Mike had played, although he had brough and read the rules last year.
The scenario was set in the world of Albedo, so each league was made up of Anthropomorphic Genetically Engineered Life Forms (or critters) for short. Since the critters developed memory and self awareness there society has been fixated on finding answers to the fundamental philosophical questions: Who are we? Why are we here? Who made us? For what purpose? This has been the catalyst for Albedo society’s quest for the stars. In this game three 'away teams' from competing factions have made planet fall on the planet Diazgon III to investigate a strange edifice from a departed civilisation, as sensors reveal that the most advanced life forms are primitive and aggressive Simians.
In Pulp Alley terms, the scenario played was 'Treasure Hunt'. Minor plot points were placed on the table to represent clues to how to unlock the doors to the mysterious tower where the ancient artifact was located. These were 6" in from the table and 6" away from other plot points.
The major plot point would be placed by the player whose character was the first to solve a minor plot point. To fit in with our story line, we decided that the Major Plot Point must be placed somewhere within the tower.
Scattered deployment was used to set up our Leagues on the table. Starting with the 'Director' each player takes turns placing one figure anywhere on the table (as long as they are at least 6" away from a plot point or enemy figure).
We decided that the large jungle areas, the rocky paths up the cliffs and the inside of the building were dangerous terrain which meant that they only became perilous if you ran (moved more than 6") through them. The patches of carniverous plants and the piranha infested river was perilous terrain, whatever speed you travelled through it!
The critters were surprised to find their investigations hampered by a tribe of belligerent simians. Although in the Albedo universe there are 165 species of genetically modified critters none of them are based on monkey’s apes or pigs. A little known piece of Albedo trivia!. The simians were played as wandering perilous areas. At the end of each turn a D8 was rolled to determine direction and distance for eacj model to be moved. If a character moved into or activated within a small blast template centrered on the model they had to pass a random peril.
My Otter heavy league comprised of Leader Kao Kazo, two Sidekicks Arka Chanlu and a cat character Felras Lacal and lastly another female otter ally called Aka Bowinmi. At the start of the game my league split with Felras heading to investigate a clue near the foot of the cliff and Kao and Arka heading for a clue at the front door of the tower. Not quiet sure what Aka is doing, but she seems to be attracting a lot of incoming fire from the other leagues.
Aka goes down, but she takes her assailant with her.
Felras turns away from the clue that he was investigating to return fire against the lappine who had opened up against him. Felras does not like to be disturbed. He uses his quick shot ability, sprays and prays with 5D6 and his prayers are answered. Bunny hits tyhe dust (and rolls down the cliff dramatically).
Meanwhile, the main action is going on at the front of the mysterious alian structure. Kao is struggling with the clue, he manages to get it half figures out. Arka moves up to help and to protect his back at Erma and some of her buddies are also trying to muscle in on the action.
At the far corner of the table, down by the piranha infested river Mikes Leader Charha (beret wearing fox) has discovered a clue and prepares to fend off a Simian attack. Dougs leader Zhdibo, unfortunately has got stuck in the Piranha infested river thanks to some mean Fortune Card play from Mike.
The action hots up outside the main doorway. As all of Mikes League (bar the leader, Charha) attempt to stop Kao from completing the clue.
Charha is assailed from all sides. Doug sends some of the supporting cast up to give covering fire to his leader as he battles with the piranha fish.
Felras had an unlucky moment... not only was the clue he had spent so long trying to solve a 'Red Herring', but Zhibo made it out of the river, joined forces with one of his followers Zhbo to gun down Felras in a hail of gunfire.
Felras pulled his act together and headed for the cliff where the new clue had appeared, taking out Zhbo for good measure.
However, before he could solve it Dougs Leader Zhdibo shot him in the back.
Meanwhile back at the tower, Kao had solved the clue, unlocked the door and ran up the stairs passing the perils on the way. The major plot point was in sight!
The closing scenes provided some unexpected twists. Mikes leader, Charnha proved to be a bit of a Ninja. pulling off a climb up the wall of the tower and squeeze through the window that stretched over two turns with accompanying perils. Charha was then blocking the route around the balcony to the plot point, so Kao was oblidged to leap across the gap. This peril was passed. A sniper also took a few shots at him before he eventually solved the puzzle to claim the major plot point, on the last activation of the last turn of the game!
Down at the entrance Arkha had been bravely defending his back for turn after turn, but was eventually felled im melee by the brutish Dean.
Here are the character cards for our Leagues. The top one is my League, led by Kao Kazo the Otter. The next League is Doug's led by a feline EDF officer, Zhdibo.
Mike's League led by the foxy ninja Charnha and co-starring the iconic Erma and Toki.
The character cards are all pre-generated Pulp Alley character cards. I took photographs of the miniatures, printed them and cut them up and then before we started the game, we drafted our leagues in a similar way that you would draught in a collectable card game. We started with leaders and went round the table in a clockwise direction taking it in turns to select a leader from the deck. We then draughted sidekicks going back around the table in an anti-clockwise direction until all the sidekick characters had been selected. This worked very well. As usual Pulp Alley provided a fun and exciting afternoons entertainment, with everything to play for right down to the last activations of the last turn.
All of the miniatures are from the Albedo Miniatures range.
The terrain boards are built using theTerra-Former modular terrain system.
Miniatures are based on Sally 4th clear bases.
The library / tower is 3D printed from a design available from Printable Scenery.
Last friday we had a playtest of our Albedo ACP164 participation game that we are putting on at Partizan next weekend, (Sunday 19th May).
We are very lucky as the game is being run by Mike Wilson who has written the ACP164 Source Book and Campaign Supplement. Mike has recently returned to the UK after living in Australia for the last 35 years, Mike has spent the last week staying with us which has given us the opportunity to get a wide range of games played.
Our Partizan game is called Block Wars. The action takes place within the confines of a single 'Hab Block' Each faction controls a single floor and are looking to increase their turf.
Their are 3 methods of teavelling between floors, and they each have their own perils.
Firstly, there is the main stairwell, unfortunately this is normally well guarded by some trigger happy critter, waiting to get a reaction shot off as soon as you are half way down the stairs.
The second option is the fire escape at the side of the building.
The third and most entertaining option is using a line with a grappling iron to either absail down to a lower level, or climb paw over paw to a higher level, and then leap over the balcony to melee who ever is in the reception party at a bit of a disadvantage.
Victory points are awarded for territory held, territory gained and eliminating the enemy characters who are equiped with the sinister suitcases.
We played the game through twice. As it is a participation game at a show, the plan is to play for an hour and then count up the victory points. The colored tokens represent rooms controlled by a particular faction. Mike, Doug and I had a great game and really enjoyed the scenario and look forward to sharing it with any one who is at Partizan on Sunday.
A wargame using the fourth (‘One Rule Book’) version of Games Workshop’s Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game, depicting an imagination of the seizing back of the Corsair port of Umbar from the last remaining forces of the dark lord Sauron’s army.
King Aragorn, Elessar, sovereign of the Reunited Kingdom of Gondor and Arnor, leads a mighty host southwards. Riding with him are his friends and allies from all the fair races of Middle-Earth – Elves, led by Prince Legolas of Ithilien; Dwarves, led by Prince Gimli of Aglarond; his kinsman and loyal Prince Imrahil of Dol Amroth; King Eomer of Rohan, and two diminutive but brave Hobbits of the Shire, Knights of Rohan and Gondor. Borne by land and sea, the host has besieged the walled city-port of Umbar and prepared an escalade from the water and against the outer walls. Inside the city, the galley slaves – some of whom hail from the very lands now marching to liberate them – stand ready to rise up against their oppressors.
Facing them are the dregs of Mordor, the remnants of Harad and Rhun, the surviving Corsairs. Even trolls and half-trolls, their loyalty firm through dark magicks and habit, defend this last bastion of darkness. The Sultan of Umbar, the Fleet Lord of the Corsairs and other fell Men are torn between the desire to flee by sea to a new lair or to hold firm and fight, leaving behind tears in the camps of their enemies and songs of their great stand.
It was early in the Fourth Age, when the free and newly-liberated peoples of Middle-Earth set out to reclaim lands long lost to the forces of the dark lord Sauron. One such domain was the port of Umbar, far to the south of Gondor, that had once been a thriving possession of the mighty kingdom of men. As the realm faded, so evil crept in and for long has Umbar been a port rules by bandits and pirates. The infamous Corsairs have ravaged Gondor’s coastline for centuries until their demise at Pelargir in the last days of the Third Age but now the port is but a last desperate refuge for the minions of Sauron as they await their fate.
Nemesis approaches in the form of Aragorn, King Elessar, ruler of the reunited kingdom of Arnor and Gondor, come to bring this former jewel into the kingdom once more. Riding with him is King Eomer, ruler of Rohan and staunch friend and ally. Lending their support are Prince Legolas of Ithilien and Prince Gimli of Aglarond, once more competing in martial competition. A combined assault on the fortified port has been planned, with boats full of warriors crashing through the harbour entrance and a formal escalade over the city walls at the same time. A third front is planned with the revolt of galley slaves from their compound in the ruined Old City, still recognisable as Gondorian architecture amongst the sandstone dwellings of the Corsairs, aided by Swan Knights from Dol Amroth breaching the compound walls.
The defenders are a rag-tag bunch – survivors of the battles for Minas Tirith and Cair Andros, refugees from Mordor, bodyguards for fat sultans who sent others to do their bidding. With the troops having nowhere to run they prepare to sell their lives dearly, while rich merchants ready a large ship to break the blockade and flee.
The game started with ramps crashing down on the city walls and troops pouring onto the battlements. At the same time the fleet of boats made its way into the harbour. Two boats contained Dwarves, the speed of the rowers compensating for their short legs. Elves manned another craft, Legolas standing proud in the bow with his longbow and confident of outscoring Gimli, who needed a box to see over the hull! The final craft contained Aragorn himself, leading from the front as ever. No fool, his boat had a large crossbow in the bows to clear a path. Across the siege tower ramps Rohirrim and more Elves surged forward, with the gates breached by a mighty ram and ladders permitting more access to the walls.
The port was ever ready for a counter-attack, with high walls around the city and stretching out into the harbour. Orcs crewed Siege Bows in the towers, able to shoot massive bolts into man or vessel alike. Half Trolls and elite Haradrim warriors awaited the invasion on the jetties while Easterlings stiffened the line with their heavy armour and long spears. Ominously the dock managers had released cave and Mordor trolls from their usual duties of loading ships. With some clad in armour these brutes also awaited the forces of Light.
One Dwarves craft turned aside in order to clear the long breakwater but the other three vessels raced for the jetties. Prince Imrahil led his knights into the city, fending off rapidly-mobilising defenders but the ill-equipped galley slaves struggled against shieldwalls of Easterlings. Cave trolls guarded the shattered gates while heroes from Rohan and Ithilien strove to force them back. There were archers in profusion, with the Elves having accuracy and punch while Evil had the mighty Siege bows and poisoned tips. Those troops not engaged in hand-to-hand combat exchanged missiles and thinned the ranks of the reserves.
As is often the case, siege ladders proved more dangerous to those ascending than the defenders but progress was made from the ramp of the tower. The Dwarves were the first ashore and ran into the half-trolls with their multiple attacks and great strength. Gimli was soon beset but he loved being outnumbered. He was losing his combat score against Legolas when the latter was specifically-targeted by a visiting young general who disliked Elven princelings and shot everything he had at him! Fare well, Prince of the Woodland Realm.
The fiefdom troops continued to beat back all opposition, even as the slaves were pegged back, and Evil started to pull back deeper into the city. The surviving Elves intercepted the merchant ship before it could escape and cleared the main wharf of Corsairs. A vicious battle for the narrow bridge was won by Elrond’s sons but at a cost in time. Aragorn won his fights but the jetty was so congested that again progress was slow. The sun set and the battle ended with an inconclusive result on both walls and jetties, but the incursion of Prince Imrahil and the greater prowess of the great Heroes of the West would surely have prevailed.
Terrain is built using 12" square modular terrain boards using kits from Sally 4thTerra-Former Range
The Sultans Palace & surrounding Souks are from Exotic Locations Range
The Middle Eastern Style Buildings are from Outremer Range
Siege Towers, Battering Rams & Siege Ladders from Sally 4th Siege Range
Yesterday (28th April 2019), Doug and I had our first game of 'Seven Days to the River Rhine' the new 'Cold War gone Hot' ruleset published by Great Escape Games. Both Doug and I had played 1980's Cold War games before wusing Cold War Commander, WRG and Cold War Commander rules amongst others so we had the miniatures and the terrain all ready to go. Seven Days to the River Rhine (7DTRR) is a battlegroup level set of rules. A model vehicle represents a single vehicle and a stand of infantry represents a section of infantry or a support weapon such as Milan or a Mortar.
We played using 6mm miniatures, I think they are from Heroics & Ross, from several decades ago. We played on a 6' x 6' gaming area. I like 6mm scale for Cold War gaming as I feel it gives a good representation of troop density and ranges.
My cold war miniatures are mounted on 40mm square bases. Each bases has a 10mm x 40mm info strip on it that gives the type of unit, weapon and armour stats, breakpoint and morale values. I find that this helps to make the units stand out,. This is quiet important with small models that are camoflaged to blend in with the surrounding terrain. The bases is also used as reference point for the direction that unit is facing and arcs and flanks.
The mission was quiet ambitious for an introductory game. 2 QUEENS Battlegroup were tasked with holding the two towns (top left). To achieve this mission they fielded 2 Platoons (6 bases) of Infantry, 1 Troop of Chieftan 5 (3 x MBT), 2 x Milan Posts, 2 x Stricker & 1 x Scorpion from Brigade Recce.
3 Guards Motor Rifle Regiment had a primary objective of capturing the towns with a follow on objective of capturing the road exit points. To achieve this they deployed a Motor Rifle Company (10 x Infantry mounted in BTR70) and a Tank Company (10 x T72A) with a Platoon on Regt Recce (3 x BRDM).
2 QUEENS Battlegroup OC located his command post in main town. Armoured element deployed at front edge of woods. Infantry and Milan posts dug in around edges of wood and built up areas across the Battlegroups frontage.
One of the key strengths of 7DTTRR is its command pool / activation mechanism. Each fighting element in your force (apart from attach helicopters) gives you a command point. Both sides role off for initiative. The winner goes first. You spend a command point to activate a unit or to perform a morale check. The first activation of a unit happens automatically. You can attempt to activate a unit multiple times, but for each subsequent activation the unit needs to roll more than the number of command tokens already allocated to that unit. In this case, the Chieftan to the left would need 3+ and the one on the right 2+ on a D6 to activate. Once you declare an activation, your opponent can spend a command token to attempt to interupt. There chance to do this is dependent what they are reacting to and how many tokens they have. This is rolled on a D6. a 6 is always a success and also makes you the active player.
In order to be able to play the game I made myself a set of NATO & WARPACT Command and hidden deployment tokens, which I have added to our tokens & templates page in case anyone else is interested in them.
3 GUARDS MRR advanced on 3 axis with a platoon of tanks in lead followed by infantry in APC's. This attack is looking stalled. First two T72's are destroyed and the 3rd has two morale markers on it. When you fire against an enemy target you roll to hit. This is based on quality of unit and tactical modifiers. If you hit you inflict a morale marker automatically as long as your weapon was capable of penetrating armor. You then roll a D10 and add your weapons penetration value. If your score is equal to armor the target gains maximum number of morale tokens, if it exceeds armor value the vehicle is destroyed.
On 2 QUEENS left flank heavy casualties are sustained by the relentless Soviet attack.
3 GUARDS MRR also suffer casualties, particularly when caught in the flank by a well sighted Milan detachment sighed on the spur of the hill.
Our first game ended with a marginal British win. The Soviet attack had suffered heavy losses and had not entered there primary objective.
Both Doug and I are looking forward to playing more of this game in the future. Our first game was pretty slow as there was a lot of rules reading, discussing and checking stats. The key part of the game is deciding when and how to spend your limited supply of command points to most influence the battle, and speed with this will come through playing the game.
Race Against Time
For the 2nd game in our Vice Alley Old West campaign we moved out of town to a small mining settlement down by the creek.
It was a race against time, following a tip off that illegal moonshine was being distilled down by the creek my vigalante leage were determined to gather enough evidence to close the operation down. It looked like they had arrived at just the right time as a large wagon was being unloaded in the centre of the settlement. T o gather sufficient evidence my leader Marshall 'Leather' Durham needed to overcome three sets of perils and challenges. My league was made up of four sidekicks, so Marshall Durham was nominated to act as the leader for this game.
Four minor plot points were deployed around the table more than 12" away from other plot points. These included a nervous youth a fiesty old woman, a mysterious envelope and a leather bound journal.
The settlement was home to a number of critters that provided some movable dangers. These included snakes, geese and dogs. Each random plot point moved D8" in a random direction each turn.
The Marshall starts a careful investigation of the wagon and its contents while Wilson 'WIld Hog' Hurley, Ralph 'Wild Boy' Hicks, Bernard 'Glory' Barnes and a young fellow who said he was handy with a 6 gun that they picked up in a bar, fan out to provide a defensive perimeter.
Once the lead started flying, the young lad from the bar was the first to take a slug. 'Aint it always the way, that the nameless minions die young!
Hicks heads off towards the creek to have a word with the nervous youth, who seems to have attracted the attentions of a snake of truely epic proportions.
The flock of geese head towards 'Wild Hog' Hurley, while the Marshall is struggling to make much progress on evidence collection. This is a tough assignment for a league made up of sidekicks without a leader level character.
Down at the creek, Hicks is in good form, after beating the giant asp into submission he turns his attentions on the nervous youth who is all to happy to tell him everything he knows.
Dougs criminal syndicate closes in, a fierce gunfight develops and his henchmen approach the wise old women (with the blunderbus) in the hope of some extra information.
Despite using the tethered horses as cover, Hurley goes down in a blaze of glory.
... and as if the assignment was not hard enough already both the gianst snake and the flock of geese are unexplainably drawn to the Marshall, the wagon and the clues.
Six turns came and went and unfortunately the vigalantes failed to gather the evidence that they needed.One victory point was gained for solving the 'nervous youth' plot point, bringing there influence / reputation up to five.
However, as always Pulp Alley was a great game to play, however badly you do, it is always a lot of fun and it works very well in a western setting.
Links for further details:
The terrain boards are all made using Sally 4th Terra-Formers. These are 12" modular terrain tile kits with a wide range of profiles for hills, streams, roads and many more features together with strong rare earth magnets embedded in the sides to hold them firmly together. Click here for more information on Terra-Former terrain.
Pulp Alley is a set of skirmish rules that can be used for encounters between 2-30 figures per side in any enviroment from the stone age to the space age. Click here to find out about Pulp Alley.
Artizan have a great range of 28mm Western miniatures. Click here to take a look.
This blog is showcasing some of the amazing painting done by Hanno Barker on some of the ACP164 Albedo Miniatures game models.
Hanno has a great depth of artistic knowledge that he has used to bring these models to life using an acrylic base coat which then is built upon using oil paints in the manner of the Renaisance Masters.
If you would like to learn how Hanno has acheived these rich tones, he has posted a very useful article on the Albedo Patrol Forums, click here to take a look.
On Sunday I started working on some terrain for gaming set in the Arctic inspired by movies such as 'Ice Station Zebra.
The project is going to consist of enought 1' square terrain boards to cover a 6' x 4' table. These will have features on them such as thin ice, pressure ridges, rubble ic and crevaces.
Features will include an arctic research station on stilts, some Jamesway huts, an ice-bound ship and a submarine conning tower breaking through ice,
Submarine Conning Tower
This is the image that I used for inspiration. I wanted the conning tower 'bridge' to be big enough to take 3 miniatures mounted on 25mm bases and I wanted an open door with a gangplank.
I started off by designing a frame which was cut from 3mm MDF.
Two pieces of thin card are then glued in place to make the steel plate skin.
The rivet, plate and ladder detail was then added using self adhesive, textured 3-Decals which are made by N-FX.
The conning tower has been given a quick base coat of grey household emulsion. Eventually the masts, periscopes and other details will be added as resin castings and the model will have a decal for ID number.
To give an idea of scale it is photographed with some miniatures that have been sculpted by Mark Fuller. These will be available as part of Sally 4th Classic Movie range later this year.
The second piece to be modelled was the iconic Jamesway Hut. These look very much like the Nissan or Quonset hut but they are not covered with corrugated sheeting. Jamesway huts are always covered with a rot proof and vermin proof fabric that holds insulation in place.
This model is of the smallest version of this hut. I've modelled the hut with its internal frame so that it can also be depicted as a hut being built or a ruin with fragments of fabric left attached.
OK, I did not do all of this on Sunday! When we develop a model kit, one gets built as I design the kit. Once it is completed and fretted out, we need to make another model from scratch to photograph for the instruction leaflet, so I had a spareTramp Steamer kit, 95% assembled that had been gathering dust on the shelves for a year, so I decided to use that to model a ship stuck in the ice.
The terrain that I am building is based on 12" square terra-former modular terrain kits, sometimes terrain features like this do not fit into a 12" square so I combine 2 sides from a 2' square tile kit with two sides from a 1' square tile kit to make a 2'x1' tile.
It was very easy to draw around the hull with a whiteboard marker and then remove a hull shaped cavity with a cheap hobby knife.
I've then used some Sculptamold (paper reinforced plaster to add a bit of texture to the tile and fix the ship in place.
Arctic Terrain Tiles
The other progress for this weekend was to assemble enough 12" square Terra-Former tiles to make an initial 4' x 4' area. This will later be extended to 4'x6'.
Terraformers are MDF modular terrain frames with embedded rare earth magnets to hold them closely together.
.... To be continued over the coming weeks as Iwork on the project!
D&D has got to be one of my favourite games of all time. I started playing at school at about 15, around the time of the Red Box edition and just before AD&D was released and those early campaigns such as Against the Giants and Expedition to the Barrier Peaks and Tomb of Horrors still create a wave of nostalgia. I played a lot of AD&D at college and then it tailed of a bit due to lack of enough players to get together at any one time. A couple of years ago I started playing 5th Edition, and had a fantastic campaign that lasted about a year before scheduling became an issue. At the moment our RPG group is playing a campaign using Fate set in the world of Harn, which is a whole lot of fun. Nick & I have often talked about the feasability of using D&D as a 2 player skirmish system, so that we can enjoy the richness of the game system and build up familiarity with the core rules at times when we can't get four or five playres together for a game.
A couple of weeks ago, we gave the concept a trial, it worked well and was a whole lot of fun. We used one of the encounters from the first module from Defiance in Phan, The Goblins Lair.
Many months back I made a set of 3D printed terrain for earthy cave's and lairs using the excellent terrain tiles from Dungeonworks. I tried out a new approach to painting the tiles. They were all given my usual terrain undercoat of Sandtex Chocolate Brown. I then used real earth from my garden for colouring and texture. The earth was prepared by drying out on a baking tray in the oven and then sieving through a fine sieve to remove stones, twigs and larger particles. The dryed and sterilised soil was then mixed 4 parts soil to one part chocolate brown tile grout. The terrain pieces were then painted with pva glue and the earth mixture was sieved on to it. When it had dried I then sprayed watered down PVA glue and Isoproponyl to seal the finish. Rocks and tree stumps were then drybrushed up from black. I'm very pleased with the results, as you can't really get anything that looks more like earth and soil than real soil!
Our group of adventurers enter the lair. The party consists of an Elven Mage, a Dwarf Fighter a Human Fighter and a Halfling Rogue.
The sneaky Goblins have some hidden arrow slits that they use to open fire on the party. The mage hurls a fireball at the wall, hoping to catch the goblins through the slits. The 3/4 cover save however saved them from any harm.
The Dwarf makes it through the passage way and charges the goblin archers.
The party set of a trap in the entrance way. Although it did not cause any harm to the party, it did alert the rest of the Goblins to intruders. Two Goblins head off to charge the intruders, while the third heads to the wolf cages to unleash there fiercesome pets.
The two wolves charge the Mage and bring him to the ground unconsciouse. Unfortunately he fails two death saving throws before the Halfling is in a position to attempt first aid, which he failed and the Mage passed away.
The Dward fighter, heavily outnumbered holds his own long enough for the rest of his party to coome to his assistance. Eventualy the Goblins are dispatched and the three remaining companions, bloody and weary push forwards down a narrow corridor towards the waiting Bugbear and his minions.
This worked very well and we are looking forward to playing some more.
Links for further information.
The Dungeon Tiles are 3D printed from designs from Dungeonworks
The Bugbear is from Otherworld Miniatures
The clear bases are Sally 4th Clear Bases
The Dwarf & Elf Mage are miniatures from Mantic Games Dungeon Saga
The Human Fighter is made from Gripping Beast Saga Plastic pieces
The Goblins are from Games Workshops Middle Earth range
The Wolves are from North Star Miniatures
The next fantasy miniatures gaming article that I am planning to write will be a first try out of Saga - Age of Magic, the eagerly awaited swords and sorcery supplement for the well established Saga game from Studio Tomahawk. We've got our pre-order in so hoping that we will have a copy by the end of next week.
Albedo Combat Patrol:ACP164.
The Defence of Science Station Z1430.
A couple of weeks ago, my good friend Patrick had an unexpected free afternoon so we decided to have a go at the introductory ACP164 scenario - Defence of the Science Station.
Set on a planet, many light years away from Arras Chankra an ILR Planetary Invasion Fleet has recently landed and plan to annex Ralon186 to the Republic,
Taken by surprise, the planetary HomeGuard were quickly overthrown at the starport and main population centres, however there are many pockets of resistance that need to be cleared before the ILR can claim a complete victory.
Science Station Z1430 was a biological research station, engaged in valuable research to determine if cultivated plants could be used to supplement the critters mainly synthesized diet. A single section of 8 HomeGuard had been tasked with its defence, however the platoon HQ was also located in the building and an additional section were close enough to support if reinforcement was neccessary.
The left flank was secured by a fast flowing stream and number of dirt tracks led to the science station.
The EDF split there section in to two fireteams. Alpha Fireteam positioned themselves behind the sturdt walls of the plazza.
The LMG from platoon HQ was set up on the roof of the research building with a commanding field of fire.
The defenders did not have to wait long for the first wave of planetary assault troops to advance through the light woods and move towards the cover of broken ground to the left of the building.
Long range fire, particularly from the defenders LMG thinned out the attackers, but did not prevent them from making it to cover.
The HomeGuards Bravo Fireteam had positioned themselves amongst some rocky outcrops to the right of the research station. It was not long before they had multiple targets to engage.
Although the ILR took heavy fire, and lost some good rabbits that day, it was not long before a second quad joined them to consolidate there position.
Eventually a second squad of HomeGuard arrived as reinforcements and started to move forwards.
Alpha Fireteam had born the brunt of the ILR assault for many turns, casualties were mounting and cohesion was beginning to break down. Here we see a critter failing a morale test and heading for the next piece of cover...inside the building.
At this point, the Republics finest decide to settle the issue by close assault
The ILR win the melee after two turns of bitter fighting.
Charlie Fireteam, part of the reinforcing section counterattacks, but they are also overcome by the aggresive ILR Troopers,(who are quiet handy at close quarters).
Delta Fireteam move forwards, but are too late to prevent the science station falling into enemy hands.
As always, an exciting game of Albedo. The scenario was pretty well balanced with a platoon attacking a reinforced section. Up until the last turn I had felt that I would get my reinforcements into the battle and that they would make a difference, but it was not to be and Patrick and the ILR won a well deserved victory.
Links for further information: