Some things:

My photo
I paint small metal and plastic figures and rarely get to play with them. But that is fine with me.

06 September 2018

This puppy just loves everyone!

Wowzers! Over a month since my last post!

Well, hobby mojo was next to dead so didn't feel like painting at all after my trip back home to the UK. Until this week, that is.

So here i present you some of the stuff that I can show off from the paint station:

Actually just finished this current model by Games Workshop of a Beast of Nurgle. It was a pain to put together as a kit, but the finished model looks pretty good (if one picks the least cartoony options.).

Painting took a few lengthy sessions and i had lots of time to get stuck in yesterday and today seeing as I've been home looking after a feverish 13-year-old.







What i painted originally to get me back in the mood are as follows. Just simple contemporary zombies and some 3D printed scatter terrain pieces. Nothing fancy, but a nice reintroduction to painting.

I like to call 2nd from left "Pegs"




Next up? Well, I've got some Badgers and Burrows minis on the desk and maybe just maybe I'll work some more on those poor unloved Winter Germans, or, heaven forbid I remember to get back to the commissions i should have finished an age ago!?

24 July 2018

D-Day Event



Last month my LGS (Ogre’s Den in Orangevale, California) held an all-day D-Day Bolt Action WW2 event with umpteen players all eager to help recreate this most epic moment of the Second World War.

With multiple players bringing armies to represent both attackers and defenders of the conflict, there really was a LOT to see along with some amazingly well constructed terrain pieces (As the pics will show). As any who’ve followed my blog for at least a little while will know, I do not have a Western Front army for Bolt Action (Mine currently being restricted to Winter Eastern Front games) so I was lucky enough to borrow one from my good pal Densmol and was assigned as a defender on one of the gorgeous beach tables with my partner for the day, Andrew. We were to face the US Ranger landings – us having only 1000 points each and each of the THREE Rangers generals able to make lists of 1500! *this was going to be a heck of a tough, tough game*
This was the beautiful Beach Landing table (Actually two tables long). The top half represented the British landings, whilst the bottom half was where Andrew and I defended against the American landings. *Please note, each table was not allowed to affect the other, so no shooting across tables, etc.*

Other tables described the other action that went on during that storied day – a beach landing by the British on the table next to mine, paratroop drops by both American and Commonwealth forces who were attempting to take out some Flak 88 gun-nests that were providing supporting artillery fire on the beaches and a Commando beach-landing into a German-held French town (Town’s name escapes me now.). Each table looked fab and it sounded like everyone attending had as much fun as I did.

As usual with my battle reports, I’ll keep the blurb brief and leave it to the pics to tell the story with brief commentary beneath. Suffice to say, as history describes for us, the Allied players lived up to their namesakes on almost all of the tables and took the day. But goodness the carnage! Full props to the organisers for designing fun and difficult scenario rules and to Joe the owner of Ogre’s Den for hosting. I believe the next big event will be later in the year where the shop will be running a “Battle of the Bulge” event – perhaps I can use my Winter Germans in an appropriate setting afterall? J

Andrew and I set up our forces, largely consisting of inexperienced Osttrupen and Strafbattalion squads!

This Pak40 Anti-tank gun was the MVP for my force. Long range shots sank 3 landing craft destroying or drowning 6 or 7  squads, vehicles and Officers.

This was the objective area that my force had to defend at all costs. 

Lovely looking trenches with my Straf lads hiding out back and my regular Grenadiers up front, ready to take the brunt of the assault.


 
Meanwhile, over on the Airlanding tables, Flak88's are being defended by both German paratroops and regular Grenadiers. Densmol ran his Fallschirmjagers on one of these tables and I beleive managed to hold off his attacker, though lost his Flak88 in the process. 

There were three 88's on the airlanding table.

The 88's had an ability to be able to fire directly at targets on their own tables or choose to allow the Beach defenders to use them instead to call down a possible indirect artillery barrage. When I got the option to try to call one down, mine failed to hit a bloody thing, but Andrew managed to do some damage to a landing craft and the troops inside on one of his attempts.

The allied preparatory bombardments were rather brutal with both Andrew and I seeing casualties and pin markers aplenty strewn about our forces. The Uphill battle had begun.



So much suppression by those huge naval guns. 

And then the landing craft arrive and start disgorging their desperate cargoes - right into hails of Machine Gun fire by the terrified German defenders.

Each of the black dice represents a Forward Artillery Observer or mortar trying to zero in their nasty payloads on the beleaguered defenders. Yikes.

The Brits on the other beach looked like a bloody swarm.... 

This was my view and I did my best to tackle my immediate opponent's advance, hoping that whittling him down would make it easier to bring to bear whatever I had left against our other two opponents. No, it didn't work.

Already the difference in troop quality (Veteran Rangers and mostly Inexperienced Germans) tells. Glad both Andrew and I brought along a Captain each to help shift our otherwise pinned boys.

Even through all the MG fire, the Rangers start making headway.

And drop a smoke bombardment on my MVP Pak40! No fair.

Commandos assault this town.

Hot Para on Para action.
Off table barrages and mortar bombardments all seem to drop at once and suddenly our center line looks horrifyingly bare! I try to rush my Straffbattlion up to shore the gap. 

Conveniently placed measuring tape will block the objective, right?

Suddenly I am left with three of my squads having barely two members each! Thankful I kept that Captain around to make them pass morale tests!

Fortune favours the bold! I've managed to kill enough stuff on my side to snuff out my immediate opponent's attack, but goodness, there are still enough Rangers in the center advancing!

And so many of them pouring through gaps made in our barbed wire obstacles!

Andrew also is seeing significant troop losses now, we just can't hold on. 

The end game.

I charge those pesky yanks to show them what for. And win.

But it doesn't matter - in the center, Rangers pour over the cliffs and kill everyone in the trenches.

It's not a pretty sigh for the Germans.

Andrew's last stand goes.... poorly. We have lost the beaches and surrender, well, what's left of our forces surrender. 

The 88's all three, were destroyed on the other tables.
One of the attendees set up this nifty display of headwear and uniforms. 
Write-up was a bit of a while coming together, but I've had some stuff come along in my personal life (Trip to the UK, Promotion at work, looking for a place to live.) so hobby has really been on the back burner in general really. Some purchases have been made, namely buying into Burrows and Badgers and I'm waiting on delivery of the new starter set for Relic Knights 2nd Ed sometime in August. Will the buying ever end? I'll try to get some paint on minis some time soon to show off. Thanks for reading.

06 June 2018

D-Day

74 years ago, the largest amphibious landing in history commenced as hundreds of thousands of brave Allied military personnel landed on the shores of Normandy with the intention of pushing the German defenders out of France.

In 10 days, my local LGS (Ogre's Den in Orangevale, CA) is holding an event to commemorate D-Day and I intend to attend along with my good pal Densmol. As my own Bolt Action armies are unsuitable for Western Europe in early June I had to borrow an army from Densmol's growing Germans collection, so I'll be fielding some Regular Heer with some Inexperienced Kreigsmarine (Sailors), Strafbattalion (Military inmates) and a tonne of Light and Medium Machineguns to defend the Normandy beaches.

Densmol's collection though didn't extend far enough to fill out a full 1000 point list, so he purchased the Kreigsmarine and said that I'm welcome to include them, but I had to paint them up first along with a Captain (See below) and Medic.

Here I present to you my force's Captain - I included him in my list as I am all too sure that my poor squads are going to be suffering a LOT of bombardments early in the game and his extra command bonuses will help remove any pins that ensue. The model was a freebie included with an order from and is by Warlord Games. (Though I can't seem to find him on their website?) Nice one piece sculpt with a few annoying moldlines running right down the face of the sculpt, but otherwise a simple one to paint up. Because time is of the essence I didn't put too much effort into this one, but I think he looks like a good tabletop job. He'll be staying with Densmol after the event as a thankyou for lending me an army (again).





Of course the errant bit of fluff on his cap peak somehow was not noticed until I am at work editing these pics... le sigh.

Please forgive the lighting in the pics, my tiny cheap photo box seems to only have one brightness setting and I've yet to work out a way to diffuse those LEDs. (I'm thinking perhaps a strip of wax paper?)

Next on the painting desk will be the Kreigsmarines. I've already blocked in 75% of there base colours, but so far they have been excellent sculpts to work with and have varied uniforms which will make painting them up for more enjoyable.

01 May 2018

Comrade! (Part 27 - KV Wip and something ancient-y)

Only a little hobbying to show since last post.

I built the KV-1/2 kit I get as part of my prize from the Stalingrad event  I went to on the 21st. It was a relatively simple model to put together and I really love the fact that it comes with two distinct different turrets for the chassis so you can make either the standard KV-1, or the crazy top-heavy looking KV-2. (Differences between the two - the KV-1 mounted a medium anti-tank gun, whilst the KV-2 had a scary arsed Heavy Howitzer!)

Just a pic of the build so far. The only real fiddly bits were the two tiny machinegun barrels (One on the hull as pictured and another on the rear of each turret) that were hard to handle without getting one's fingers glued up.

Silly design really - these things could potentially tip backwards if they were set up on an incline!


I also was excited to see this new shiny thing arrive in my postbox on Saturday! This is a new game put out by Andy Hobday, who seems a jolly nice bloke. Along with this new starter set, the Gangs of War game in general seems to be very well supported with lots of free to download scenarios that can take new players beyond the one in the box. I really like how it's a really small scale game (So only a handful of minis each that need to be painted!) and after a quick scan through the rules, seems very straight forward to learn. This set also was a steal as it includes a beautiful Temple to Apollo in mid-construction (By Sarissa Design.). I've begun gluing it together, though there's not much to look at so far, so instead, here is a derpy picture of me and my acquisition from the weekend.

Ladies, this hunk is avail... oh feck, who am I kidding. There're no ladies following my blog!
In my last post, I briefly described a very funny (At the time) moment during the Stalingrad event where my team-mate, Tony sent in from reserve his Ampulet team up a sewerage canal on an inflatable dingy. Well, here's a pic he took of said team! Bloody ridiculous and we all (German player aside) had a good laugh over it!



Last night I had a wee bit of time to slap a little paint on a couple of my zombie collection to cleanse the pallet sotospeak after painting so much WW2 uniforms, so next post they should be finished and ready to show off - watch this space!

24 April 2018

Stalingrad Event

The Volga Crossing where I played

Pavlov's House in the center of the long table

The Tractor Factory. The lavender yarn was used to mark deployment zones. Those diagonal deployment zones made for an interesting setup.

My view up the table.

In my last post I described an event that I have been very much looking forward to, the first I've been able to attend this year. The area's main hub for Bolt Action, Ogre's Den in Orangevale graciously opened doors and allowed the group to set up a 4'x18' table to represent three of the most iconic parts of the Battle for Stalingrad in World War 2 - The Tractor Factory, Pavlov's House and the Volga Crossings. The table(s) looked simply breathtaking, easily rivaling anything I've seen posted online. Andrew Bergthold was the on-the-day organiser and was also celebrating his birthday (So we all got free BBQ'd burgers, kindly provided by his father.) and had designed the overall scenario and specific conditions that each section of the table had to abide by. Each table section had a pair of players for each side playing 5 turns over two connected games. The 1st game we could not affect what was happening on the tables next to us, but in the 2nd game (After we were provided reinforcements, we could, which made for some really fun matchups.). It all made for a very fun and thematic day of gaming, with the overall winner who had the most kills, taken objectives and also managed to get their troops into their enemy's deployment area.


My list for the day had a few restrictions in the players packet, seeing as Tony and I were "Crossing the Volga river". No vehicles (In the initial crossing, though any taken could come on as reserves, no
gun teams larger than a light AT/Howitzer and to reflect the constant peppering those poor sods had to endure on those wooden boats all units that arrive in the "1st Wave" (A turn 1 mechanism in Bolt Action) arrive already having a pin on them.

My force on the day.
1st Lt.
2x 12-man Regulars each with 2x LMG's - Fantatics
2x 7-man Regulars all with SMG's - Fanatics
1x (free) 12-man Inexperienced Squad - Fantatics
Regular Sniper team - Fantatics
Regular Flame Thrower team
Regular Anti-Tank Rifle team (Ended up just taking the one) - Fanatics
A Forward Artillery Observer
Medium Mortar Team - Fanatics
And here are some of the other armies present at the event - some really nicely painted forces I think!









The following are just the pictures I took of the day's gaming; that is, when I remembered to take them. Our main objective was to have more troops on the wooden square just past the beach then the Germans by the end of the 1st round. I will say, #1 highlight of the day was my mates Gregg and Frank from my rpg group turning up to check out the game and my old Flames of War pal Rich (Of Flames of Nerd blog fame likewise dropping by and feeling so inspired he went and picked up a whole new Japanese army later that day! Woo, a new opponent!) who stuck around for the early stages. 

That crashed aircraft terrain piece was lovely. Have since bought a 1/48 Spitfire to make something similar myself!

This StuG did a good job of scaring the Soviets on the beach to keep their heads down, but in the end would end up immobilised and thereafter, ignored. 

Forward you dogs!



When you aim to be killingest general of the day, this is how one should roll. (A rare day where my dice and I loved eachother.)


So close!

There had been a Kraut Flame Thrower team at the crest of that rise for a second there.... wonder where they went? 

Getting a bit packed on this beach.



Meanwhile, over behind Pavlov's House.


Action shot of Travis Hiett's Assault Engineers stomping through some rubble

Wait, there can't possibly be more troops coming from across the river???

That's right Nazi pigs!

Sudden breakthrough on the left flank! Soviets assault the German sniper who had set up in the left side ruins.

The Tractor Factory was incredibly hard fought. 
Well, somehow, that person was me. My first #1 placing at any sort of event. :)

Highlights of the game:

1.  One of my fine opponents, Aaron brought on his Flame Thrower team from reserve a mere 6" from a squad of my own poor troops who had just managed to crawl off the beach and take their first step on dry land. Aaron gleefully throws his to-hit dice to spread fiery death upon them and rolls.... a "one", thoroughly missing his shot! Next he rolls to see if his Flamethrower still had fuel left and rolls.... another "one"! Seems the silly buggers forgot to fuel up before leaving for the front lines! (Free kill point for me.)

2. My Soviet partner, Tony (Who's company made the day even more fun), brought along a T-34 tank, which seemed to cause our German playing opponents some concern (Even though, throughout the game, the tank shot and hit NOTHING). So both Aaron and Kat called in an Airstrike by the Luftwaffe Stukas to take it out. Both roll to see if/how the strike was coming in and.... both rolled a "one" at the same time! In Bolt Action, that means the incoming aircraft mistake their own forces as targets and the opposing player(s) (In this case Tony and I) got to pick their targets instead! Whilst the ensuing airstrikes didn't kill all that much (Mostly due to both German forces being Veteran skill level throughout for the most part), they caused enough pins on the German units to be really annoying.

3. Kat's lone remaining Veteran Grenadier that had been withstanding a withering hail of small arms fire and yet surviving all of it, was eventually charged by Tony's 6-man Naval squad and forced to defend himself in close combat! Of course, Tony rolled not one dice enough to take the bugger out and Kat in turn did just enough to win the combat, wiping out all 6 sailors with a cheeky grin on her face. (She now has a reputation for this sort of shenanigan after doing similarly against me in my previous matchup against her)

4. My Medium Mortar team refused to come in from reserves 3 turns in a row.... Then when it finally set up for a shot, ranged in first time and annihilated the remainder of a 5-man Veteran Grenadiers squad. (The Commissar had just brought out his pistol to execute traitors to the Motherland as well...)

5. The last two turns of the day saw a KV-1 tank (Borrowed from Jason, a very nice chap) brought on from my post-game reserves come on over on the Factory table to tackle some nasty stubborn German StuG (that had a heavy howitzer!?), but it couldn't penetrate the makeshift tankhunter's extra-thick armour; and Tony's Ampulet team come on on the same board, paddling an inflatable raft up a sewerage canal and try to lob globes of firey death at the StuG (Also to no effect.). This in turn caused Craig (The StuG's owner) to angrily pick up his tank and claim "It wouldn't stick around". Needless to say, he didn't enjoy the game. LOL.

In the end the day was an emphatic overall Soviet victory and called off early, with the Commies holding all three main objectives and really piling the hurt on the poor Germans. Also, it seems the Luftwaffe were on drugs or something that day because as well as the two fouled-up airstrikes on our table, a 3rd was called in and also fouled up (Destroying it's own German gun team I think) on the Tractor Factory table too, along with a general strafing of the whole board after the 1st round that hit absolutely nothing. (!?)

The winner of the event was... me, with 11 kills for the day, 3 of my own units in my opponent's deployment zone and our main objective taken (And had the game gone on one more turn I would have grabbed one of the German secondary objectives too.).  My first time winning a gaming event too. With my in-store credit that I received as reward, I quickly spent it prior to heading home, leaving with a new Warlord plastic KV-1/2 tank kit, a Soviet Anti-tank Dogs team, Soviet Heavy Mortar team, a 2nd red orders dice set (So I can play armies larger than 12 units total.) and the below Rubicon Models Soviet Studebaker truck (That I glued together last night.). A fine haul!



If you got down to this part, then congrats, didn't realise this was going to end up so wordy!

The paint table is a little cluttered right now with many project on the go at the same time. I think a little non-WW2 is in order to clean off my hobby palette?