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

14 August 2017

Comrade! (Part 22 - M3 Half-track Done!)

Painting progress Comrades!

The M3 Half-track is done. Think I went a little overboard with the snow effects, but otherwise I’m happy enough with it. The model is a resin by Blitzkrieg Miniatures and required only a little clean up, mainly on the underside where there were some semi-ugly mold plug things, but aside from those just some slight resin flash. My only real criticism of this model is that it didn't come with any crew minis, but I just went and made a driver out of a plastic soviet tank commander with a headswap. Painting was all done with a brush and markings were unused decals from my T34/85. 

There was a picture of the back end too, but when I got to work to do the picture editing, I then realised it was out of focus. So, meh.

Action shot with some troops for fun and to show the scale of the Half-Track.
Here's the current standing of the Winter Soviets project in my display case:

What do I have planned for the gap at the front? Well I am happy you asked, because....

I also got these 5 painted up and since taking these pics have dressed their bases. Five to go and then  the squad of 10 will be done and I’ll start working on some Winter Germans which will be a nice change of pace. 

Switched up the Winter-white painting recipe a bit by applying a thinned layer of  brown wash to the creases. Liked the result so much I grabbed my squad of Scouts from the display case and spruced up their Winter Onesies with the same method and they look SO MUCH better for it too.

03 August 2017


Last night Densmol came over for Beer, BBQ and Bolt Action. (Hence the post title - clever eh? Okay, probably not)

We played a 1000 points game with my Soviets versus Densmol's Germans. The mission was an objective grab and hold affair from the main rule book called "Key Positions" and we rolled for 3 objectives total. In lieu of cheesing about the place and dropping them in convenient areas of the table, we decided to stick them in nice non-preferential spots on the centerline of the board and I added some fun crates, etc to give further credence as to why our commanders would have us grab them in the first place. Once turn 6 comes around (And a potential turn seven, dice roll dependent.), who ever holds more objectives uncontested wins.

Densmol's list was (to the best of my memory) as follows *All Regulars aside from Veteran SS*:

  • 2nd Lt + 2 Adjutants
  • 10x Heer inc Panzerfaust and LMG 
  • 10x Heer inc Panzerfaust and LMG 
  • 6x SS with Assault Rifles and 4 x Panzerfausts 
  • Medium Mortar
  • 251/1 D half track
  • Tiger 1E (!!!)

I decided to use my list I had hoped to take to the tournament last month (But never did.) *All Regulars aside from Free Inexperienced infantry*:

  • 1st Lt + Adjutant
  • 10x Guards with LMG and Panzerfaust
  • 10x Guards with LMG and Panzerfaust
  • 7x Scouts with SMG's
  • 8x Tank Riders with SMG's and LMG
  • 12x Free Inexperienced with rifles and Molotovs
  • Sniper Team
  • Medium Mortar with Spotter
  • Truck with MMG
  • M3 Half Track with HMG
  • M3 Stuart with 5 (!!!) MMG's

So his 7 order dice versus my 11. 

The game was lots of fun with some really cinematic events and a LOT of rules referencing due to us not playing for months. We also didn't declare what all the terrain elements were so buggered up there a bit too with some silly maneuvers that wouldn't have happened if "x, y or z" were the case. Regardless it was super fun, lots of dice were thrown and models removed due to outrageous casualties!

Hope you enjoy the write-up and half-arsed pictures! :)

Here's the table layout with the three objectives highlighted with exciting stars. Germans advanced from the north side, Soviets up from the Southern edge.
For reserves, Densmol held off his half-track with his Lt+pals and a Heer squad inside. I chose to have my Scout squad come in outflank on my right side (Not available until turn 3) and my Inexperienced Squad in the truck to shore up any gaps that might appear in my lines. The rest of our stuff came on from our respective table-edges on turn one.

My Stuart with Tank Riders aboard zipped up the left flank along with my half-track and it's bussed Guards Squad. My other Guards Squad headed on foot into the trees, using them as cover to head to either the center or right most objective depending on which looked safer. Supporting them to their right and also in the trees is my sniper team. Off to the bottom left corner of this pic, my Mortar team set up behind the rocky outcrops there whilst their dedicated spotter moved up alongside the woods to the right to offer more targeting opportunities.
Densmol rolled his fearsome Tiger to sit menacingly near the center of the board. supported in the center woods by a Heer squad. His SS moved down the road next to the hovel and his own Mortar team set up behind the orchard with a nice view down the road and beyond.
A better view of Densmol's advance near the hovel.
Guards Squad (Shamefully unpainted) and Sniper team advance through the trees with Mortar Spotter hugging the hedges. 
My Mortar set up safely behind the Rocks as the Stuart and halftrack make a beeline for the left most objective. That Tiger is looking hungry out near the center!

Guards Squad dashes from their transport to claim the objective then hear a giant boom as the Tiger sights on the poor half-track and turns it into scrap with it's 88 gun. First blood to the Bosch.
In a first for me in Bolt Action, my Mortar team spots the nasty SS Vets as they dart down the road and try to range in. I needed a 6 and expected nothing of it but rolled anyway. And rolled a 6! With the nasty Nazis bunched together all of them ended under the 2" blast template and after some very nice damage rolls there were no survivors. My finest Bolt Action moment to date!
Squads on both sides move through wooded areas to keep the precious cover. Densmol's own Mortar fails to range in on my left most Guards Squad holding that objective and he manages to bring on his half-track packed with his Lt and his second Heer squad. The Tiger takes out a couple members of the same Guards Squad, but they hold firm.
On the 3rd turn, my Scouts come in on the right flank and unload into the rear of of the halftrack pinning the occupants. Off-picture, the Sniper add's another pin. In revenge, the Tiger rolled up and unloaded with it's Machineguns slaying 3 of the Onesie-wearing Scouts.
Leaving my Lt+mate to hold the left Objective, I run the remainder of the Guards Squad toward the Central one. I also brought on from reserve up the road (Even tho the stupid arrow in the pic shows otherwise.) my truck containing the Inexperienced squad to bolster them. The Guards are mercilessly shot at by the German Heer along the edge of the woods, but somehow stick around regardless of casualties taken.
The Guards Squad in the woods keep on heading up and try to shoot the Tiger with their Panzerfaust!
And miss.... With the leftmost Guards own Panzerfaust wielder now dead there's very little I can do to the horrible Big Kat except try to ignore it.

Densmol's Heer in the half-track finally get their shit together and hop out to claim the right most objective, the Tiger takes what should be an easy shot at the Inexperienced Squad and misses! The last few members of the Scout Squad are gunned down after failing to move into cover turn after turn.
With a last ditch effort, the Tiger tries to whittle down the Squad in the woods with yet more MG fire, but fails to do any real damage and the German halftrack with the Lieutenant inside attempts to roll over to the Center objective so the Lieutenant can hop out and contest it for a draw. But he FUBAR’s and his driver has other plans, shoving the transport into reverse at top speed!!!!

At this point, it's the bottom of the 6th turn. The only way Densmol could manage to pull back a draw was if he successfully rolled for a possible 7th turn. He didn't and with two objectives in my hands to his one, the day was mine.

It was fun to finally get in a game after ages and even though we were fluffing our way through the rules and I was swearing up a storm due to his stupid Tiger and it's "Tiger Fear" rule causing me to miss multiple Orders tests, we both claimed a good time was had.

If you made it this far, well done - you win too.

01 August 2017

Needing a little direction

Here’s a bit of a “State of the State/housecleaning” address. 

*No hobby progress, so ignore this post if you’ve no interest.*

My hobby has been sorely lacking in direction of late. Recently, my efforts to paint a “bit of this” and a “bit of that” really hasn’t been satisfying my needs and I’ve been feeling somewhat in a hobby “Limbo”.
Well bugger that lark. Things need changing up around here.

In a previous post I mentioned that I have a large number of unfinished projects, these are in part due to a hobbyist’s nasty dose of “Shiny-itis” - Constantly getting distracted by new things and setting old unfinished projects aside in lieu. This utter lack of self-discipline is a rot in a hobbyist’s core and I’ve decided to set that nonsense aside and finish stuff.

O Inquisimunda.... How have I allowed you to lay idle so?

My number one game to paint for and play (And by “play” I mean, the maybe 3 times this year that I’ve been able to so far…) has been Bolt Action. I’d begun my dalliance into this fun beer’n’pretzels WW2 wargame with my Late War Winter Soviets and I’ve almost gotten to the point of being able to call my whole collection that mystical target of “Fully Painted”. (It’s true, it’s true.) With only:

1x Medic
2x Anti-Tank Rifle teams
1x Light Mortar Team
and the remainder (8 figs) of my Winter Vets boxed set to paint I’m so bloody close to being done with my current collection.

Old pic of my Soviets, though now missing recent additions like my newly painted Stuart and now finished half-track. 

Once I’d chosen the Soviets as my primary force, I knew that I’d want to be able to offer games at my house for mates to play so went and purchased the entirety of a matching Winter themed Late War German force. Thus far I’ve only painted up my Hetzer Tank Hunter and the NCO of a Heer squad for them. What’s left are:

1x Lieutenant+Adjutant
10-man SS squad (Warlord Games SS-Charlamagne minis)
10-man Heer squad (Warlord Games Winter Heer minis - The NCO is painted as mentioned above.)
10-man Volks Grenadiers (Warlord Games plastics)
1x Medic (Warlord Games Winter)
1x MG42 Medium MG team (Warlord Games Winter)
1x Panzerschreck team (Warlord Games Winter)
1x Sdkfz 251/1D Half Track transport (Warlord Games plastic kit)

All of these are primed and based and just sat waiting for me to paint them. I’ve avoided getting back to them mainly due to having never painted WW2 Germans before and being irrationally intimidated by the prospect of painting Camo uniforms. Silly really.

Hetzer keeps Hetzin'. 
The last part of this Winter project is the table itself. No point in my mind to start collecting Winter themed armies for home play and not have a likewise themed table to play on. So I bought a large piece of white felt, snowy trees from China and some lovely Eastern Front buildings by CharlieFoxtrotModels to use as terrain.

This being the 1st of August, that gives me five months to get this all painted and ready for gaming and will give me the chance to call my Winter shenanigans DONE. (And feel like I got something completed for once.) And there you have it – a self-imposed deadline and some much needed direction for my hobby, call it a "pledge" of sorts. Wish me luck!

(Now I just need to find someone to buy all my 15mm Flame of War Commonwealth to make room in my display case for all these Winter projects…)

24 July 2017

Weekend Painting Update

After being low on painting mojo for a couple weeks, this weekend saw my mojo return with aplomb!

Whilst I only managed to get a small scatter terrain piece fully painted, I did get work done on other stuff too, including a secret project for a mate that I'll preview later after he's got it in hand.

First up, my WW2 Soviet Lend Lease M3 Half-Track (By Blitzkrieg Miniatures) has all of it's base green/wash/green+details stuff done. Now just weathering and markings to go. Not sure I'll be white-washing this one up to add a little variance amongst the schemes on my WW2 Soviet vehicles, though it will get the same snow and mud treatment as my other vehicles.

Blitzkrieg are known for their fine work. It's obvious that they design and then 3D print their stuff as their were the tell-tale print lines on the chassis on this resin&metal sculpt. Not sure I appreciate the texture on the flat areas, but between paint and weathering I'm hoping it'll be less of an of an issue for me.

Some nice stowage sculpted on to this thing. Had to add the driver from my pile of spare plastic parts though. 

Next is this nifty little resin wall. It was a cool and very affordable find in the bargain area at my LGS and was simple to paint up. The sculpt had quite a few bubbles but nothing so bad that couldn't be covered up by the moss effects and dark colours painted on and I've no idea who produces the piece. Nothing fancy, just good enough for slapping on the table - one can never have too much scatter terrain afterall.

The creamy rock thing in a little left of middle is some sort of equine-looking skull.

On the left facing is a bit of chain. No idea what it would be there for pratically, but it was nice to break up the otherwise stack-o-blocks.

Lastly, after my last post on the Dragon Rampant game my son and I played, I felt the urge to work on something "fantasy" to add to our next game together - so here's a Griffon. It's made by Wizkids in their new pre-primed plastic range that is far too affordable that I'm assuming was created to compete with the Reaper Bones plastic range. (Which if they keep charging a mere $3-4 for each pack, they'll quickly out-price Reaper.) The sculpt is very crisp and dynamic, obviously a CAD effort, but has some very obvious mold lines (That I couldn't be arsed to try to remove for fear of losing detail.) that make for a good gaming piece, but not so good for those who cringe at such blemishes in a model. So far just base coat and wash, still simple highlights and detailing to go plus some basing. I have some more of these pre-primed fantasy sculpts that I'll be painting up in the future.

Watch as the deadly griffon pounces upon a doe-like rock and blunts it's talons in an effort to squeeze the blood from it! 

17 July 2017

The Liche Wizard's Revenge!

Not been in the mood to paint this past week so no updates for you on that, but I did manage to get in a game of Dragon Rampant in with my boy.
Bit of cheap narrative for you and then some pics of the game with the odd descriptor. :)

“And lo, the lands were awash with death. Crops withered, livestock took ill and the very life within the soil leeched away. Evil magic pollutes the very air and some say that the bodies of those recently laid to rest in the furthest-most settlements have risen from their graves, even attacking their own family members.
The Liche Wizard Roogarbito has escaped his 200 year imprisonment beneath Mount Pickle and has gathered a great undead host to wreck vengeance upon the descendants of those who left his body to rot. He marches with his unliving host toward the last great human city of Hook after already defeating the gathered armies of the nation of man.
Last remaining Lord of Man, Prince Erik, has received a report from his few remaining scouts that the evil Liche travels at the rear of his army and could be vulnerable to attack by a determined small strike force. Should he be brought down, then Prince Erik’s seers assure him that the dark magics holding together the massive undead host shall surely disappear and the threat to the living be vanquished!”

My son played the Liche and his Undead bodyguards – a unit of Skeleton Soldiers, Zombies (Held off table to be summoned in-game) and some Armoured Wights (Using Vampire rules).
I in turn played the humans using the “Northmen” army listings. Prince Erik (Chieftain), Two units of Thegns (Bellicose foot) and a Giant, who we decided was a merc of sorts that the Prince had convinced to help him out with promises of loot.

Enjoy the pics (And apologies if they come out huge, for some reason my cruddy home laptop had no way to reduce their size. I think I need to invest in MS Office :( )!

The setup - the Prince's forces know that the Liche will head towards the cross roads and array in an even spread to account for whatever the dastardly Wizard might bring to bear.

Skeletons on the road and flying armoured Wights in the trees (As they aren't affected by movement penalties)

Brave men of Hook. And a stinky giant.

Zombies held off table waiting to be magically summoned by their evil master.

Middle and Left flank units advance. My Boys on the right were cowards and spent two turns doing bugger all at the back.

Wights fly through the trees and Skeletons and Liche advance.

My son summons the zombies to deal with my left-most warriors.

Yikes, looks rather intimidating from here!

Meat, the Giant is ready to pound bones into dust!

The Evil Liche urges his zombies forward...

... to which my warriors bravely step up and bear combat!

And do a fine job of cutting down all but two of the undead rotters!

With only two  of their band left, the magic holding the zombies together dissipates and the last two crumble into fleshy puddles.

The Liche manages to shoot the Giant with a bolt of dark energy!

Enraged, the giant charges the Skeleton Shield Wall!

Back in those trees, those Wights spend three turns trying to untangle their floaty robes from tree branches. :)

The Meat swings his massive club and crushes bones, but in turn is poked and slashed at with rusty weapons....

And after yet another blast of dark energy decides that no amount of treasure is worth dying (And being added to the undead ranks) and so promtly runs orf. Sod.

The humans are now without their big hitter, but still have two large units of warriors and their Prince, they still have a chance, surely?

Prince Erik, angry at seeing his Giant bugger off, takes his fury out against the skeletons...

... and he forces them back after smashing a handful!

"Get off my Land!"

The Wights swoop down near the rightmost warriors and they charge them in kind. 

A fierce engagement ensues seeing the warriors push the ghastly unit back into the trees!

The left-most unit of warriors have a bead on the sorcerer! All they have to do is get to grips with the dead thing and they could end this madness! But no, the Sorcerer sends yet another bolt of dark energy out, blasting two of them and cause the rest to shit their pants and run for the hills! >_<

On the right, the fight becomes one of attrition.

Neither side do much damage.

The Prince tries to get to grips with the Liche, but he too suffers dark blasts.

The remaining warriors are tired and losing faith. Their prince is not able to close the gap and is being punished from afar for his efforts. 

With a final push, the Wights see off the warriors....

... and then move toward the prince to aid their dark master. (The Prince is on his last wound!)

At last! The Prince is able to rush the Liche and bring his axe of justice, could this be the moment of victory!!??

Wights move in from behind, knowing that should they reach the duel, they will easily turn the tide.

But no, the Great Liche Wizard Roogarbito has not spent all those 200 years plotting his revenge only to be thwarted by the likes of this bearded whippersnapper! With a barking laugh, the Liche takes off his horned helm and crashes it down on the head of his would-be assassin. This champion of Man will make a fine addition to his undead Horde.

My son played the game very well. He expected the zombies to do better, but really zombies are just a speed bump in this rules set. Keeping the Liche back and using his ranged attack just about every turn was perfect tactics and my humans suffered by not having any ranged attacks to shoot themselves. (He managed to roll the 7+ activation roll to shoot 9 turns in a row!!!)

Next game we play, he has decided that he wants to play the part of the humans, so now I'll have to get painting on some new fantasy figs!