Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Brigade Games - Great Service

Kudos to Lon Weiss at Brigade Games! When I told him I had a figure missing from one of the packs of Finns he popped the missing figure straight in the post - what a guy!

Great figures and great service too, Brigade Games come highly recommended!

Tuesday, 29 April 2008

Brigade Games Finns Arrive

Having only got the email from Brigade Games on Saturday the figures arrived in the post today! As with the other figures I've had from Brigade they are nice sculpts and clean casts. Here are a couple of photos:

Finn Infantry Command/winter gear

(Unfortunately there was 1 figure missing from this pack for some reason)

Finn Infantry /winter gear I

and here's a comparison of the Brigade office against the one from the Bolt Action command pack:

Saturday, 26 April 2008

Winter War Reading

I may have mentioned earlier that, having picked up some Baker Company Finns from eBay, I have developed a serious interest in the Winter War. I picked up some Bolt Action figures at Salute and have ordered some more figures in winter gear from Brigade Games (I've just had an email from Lon @ Brigade apologising for the delay to my order as their Finns were out of stock). So in order to get maximum use from the figures I started to look out for some reading material.

First off is William Trotter's book The Winter War: The Russo-Finnish War of 1939-40. I have just finished reading it and I can confirm the good reviews that I read of it. It is very readable and has provided an excellent introduction to me for the period. The author has clearly done his research and breaks the conflict down into the different areas in a very clear and accessible way. I can heartily recommend this one.

At Salute I spotted a copy of GURPS WWII: Frozen Hell - Finland in the Winter War and Beyond which is a supplement for the Second World War sourcebook for the Generic Universal RolePlaying System. I've always found the GURPS sourcebooks an interesting read and not too system heavy (something that's not always true for d20 sourcebooks). Interestingly the book as a brief introduction by William Trotter. Overall it's a good introduction to the period but obviously provides nowhere near the depth of the previous book; however, on the plus side in addition to the Winter War it also covers the Continuation War and the Lapland War, albeit briefly, which are both beyond the scope of Trotter's book. As with the other GURPS sourcebooks the sidebars provide some interesting asides and detail, and it also covers the weaponry used. A useful source.

I searched in vain at Salute for a copy of the Finland '39-'40 - The Winter War booklet in the Skirmish Campaigns series. Fortunately I found that The Wargames Command Post had a copy and they sent it to me very quickly. As with the other booklets in the series it provides a brief introduction, an outline of the format, information to enable the scenarios to the adapted to many sets of skirmish rules and then the scenarios, in this case 10 of them split into 4 separate campaigns. I am already checking to make sure that I have the kit for the various scenarios and, with a few exceptions (not enough T26's and trucks for one scenario; no Russian mortar for a couple of the others) I think I will be pretty close when the Brigade figures arrive. I plan to get some of these scenarios to the table later in the year - probably using Nuts! (which annoyingly isn't one of the rule sets they provide translation details for - but it shouldn't be hard) and will post the details.

Sunday, 20 April 2008

No SELWG Again!

One thing I did notice at Salute was the notice the chaps from SELWG had posted next to the bring and buy (they run it for the Warlords). It said that the refurbishment works at Crystal Palace are significantly behind programme and so the venue wouldn't be ready for the SELWG 08 show they had planned - so it's cancelled.

It's a damned shame as SELWG has always been one of my favourite shows - a good selection of traders, not too busy, ample parking (and cheap compared to Salute!), a good selection of games and a nice atmosphere overall. Oh well, just have to wait until next year...

Figure Review: Bolt Action Miniatures WW2 Russians

As I mentioned in a previous post Lenin let me have some BAM Russians at Salute. They include the main command group and the two scout packs. I asked him to paint these up in winter camouflage to allow them to be used against my Artizan Germans and Baker Co/BAM/Brigade Finns in the Continuation War.

As with the majority of the BAM range these are super figures with interesting poses and, as you can see, paint up very nicely:
The Wargame Shed - Figure Review No. 5

The Arrival of Solomon Kane

Lenin has done a superb job with the Black Cat Bases Vampire Hunter figure to create Solomon Kane!

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Back from Salute

The show is a bit of a trek but I managed to get there at a reasonable time (the DLR was suspended but the rail replacement bus service was pretty quick) and wasn't too far down the Q-Buster queue (isn't that an oxymoron?). The venue is still very much like an aircraft hanger and finding stands can still be difficult (particularly when it's full of people) but I managed to have a good look around.

Lenin had a less fun time initially as not only did he drive but the parking was expensive and the machines weren't taking cards to he had to queue to pay (not wishing to waste his precious cash!). He kindly brought along some WW2 Russians for me - I hope to post some pictures tomorrow - and my Solomon Kane figure. All excellent as you'll see once I have time to take and post the photos.

Back to the show. My first stop was at Musketeer Miniatures, who I had noticed only yesterday have an Irish War of Independence range sculpted by Paul Hicks (who also does the Anglian Miniatures SCW range and some of Bolt Action's figures). I realise that this period isn't to everyone's taste but it is something I'm very interested in and the figures will prompt me to do the detailed background reading. The figures themselves are lovely but how quickly they see the table is anyone's guess!

My next stop was Anglian Miniatures to pick up my pre-order of Carlists, International Brigade and a T26 (which I can also use for the Winter War). As I mentioned these are also Paul Hicks sculpts and again great figures. I added a couple of vehicles from Force of Arms later in the day, a truck and an Italian IZ armoured car. I also picked up a suitable painted building from TableScape (it must be relatively new as it isn't listed on their site yet).

I picked up my pre-ordered Finns from Bolt Action and despite a little initial confusion, which was quickly sorted out now just need the other figures from Brigade I ordered to have a decent force. I also picked up the Frozen Hell supplement for GURPS from Leisure Games. OK, so it is an RPG supplement but it has some nice summaries of the information for the Winter, Continuation and Lapland Wars along with weapons and other information.

Having saved enough in postage to justify the trip I wandered around with Lenin having a look at the traders and games and bumping into old friends and acquaintances. I must admit that the various radio controlled vehicles running around the show looked fun and the re-enactors were somewhat less controversial than last year. Attendance looked like it was similar to last year but that's just my impression.

It was a long day but having had a look at my figures now I've got home I think it was worth it for those and to catch up with old friends.

Thursday, 10 April 2008

Salute Prep

With Salute rapidly approaching I decided to do my usual - make a huge wishlist of all the stuff I'm interested in at the moment, price it up and then, having scared myself, pare it down to a more manageable level. The Winter War was a bit of a given so I decided to add to my Baker Company Finns with some Bolt Action and Brigade figures (obviously the latter are mail ordered). I emailed a pre-order to BAM and they responded in a matter of minutes - excellent.

I've been debating whether to take the plunge and go for Spanish Civil War. Having yet another look at Anglian Miniatures site has finally persuaded me and I've pre-ordered some Carlists and International Brigade with a plan to follow that with more orders in phases. I emailed Anglian and got a pretty prompt email back from them (I would have said quick if it hadn't been for BAM's performance) letting me know that they're offering 10% off for pre-orders - result!

Whilst I was sorting my figures out I pulled out the Eureka German rocket troops and decided that I needed to work out a way to use them. I've come up with a slightly left field alternative WW1 background and decided that I needed some more conventional opposition. Having liked the Renegade range I thought I might pick them up at Salute but no luck - they're not there. But I did spot that they're running a promotion (£6/pack inc postage) at the moment so I put an order in on line on Sunday and the figures arrived in the post today - jolly good show Renegade!

Not sure what else I may pick up at the show, I have my eye on some resources for both the Winter War and SCW along with some trees for my winter terrain but who knows maybe I'll spot something that really floats my boat. I'm going to give the new Ironclad figures the once over and, if they are scaled appropriately for my Parroom figures, I might take the plunge with them too (always assuming they've got any left!)

Monday, 7 April 2008

Saturday, 5 April 2008

VSF Figures from Ironclad

Lenin kindly pointed out some pictures of some VSF figure greens posted on the Lead Adventure Forum.

They look very interesting and depending on the actual size might become some opposition for my Parroom Station Masked Minions!

Alternatively they could be more of a match with my Eureka German Rocket troops.

In both cases it would actually allow me to get the figures out of the box and actually use them! Woohoo!

Friday, 4 April 2008

Crazy Dave and his Electropants

I actually managed a visit to my wargames club last night, the first in quite a while. We were treated to a Maximilian in Mexico game in 15mm using a slightly modified version of the Fire & Fury rules. The game was an adaptation of the Matehuala scenario from the Colonial Campaigns booklet by Tim Tilson.

John gave us a potted background to the Mexican Adventure comparing Maximilian to a receiver being sent in to sort out a failed company, in this case country! How Maximilian knew nothing about Mexico but managed to spend the whole trip over developing court protocols and designing uniforms rather than learning anything about it (possibly not that unusual an attitude in Colonial times?). And finally regaling us with the tale of Maximilian's final capture!

I was playing the Imperials (what else?) and our first objective was to hold the hill up up near the Republican set up area for the first three turns. We were considerably outnumbered but Bronze did an excellent job of holding them up. Certainly aided and abetted by Crazy Dave's dice luck (all bad). It gave us enough time for our French troops to arrive at the other end of the table and set up in the village ready to defend the well (another of our objectives). The unit dug in on the hill fought to the last man and the rest of Bronze's troops fell back.

Conversation was surreal as usual and as I had to leave early I now have no idea if Crazy Dave is going to reform the Electropants and go back on tour...

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Pulp Figures - New Gallery

I've been a fan of Pulp Figures for a while. They produce a great range of, surprise surprise, figures for the Pulp genre in 28mm. Whilst I was sorting out my figures I took the opportunity to photograph the majority of my Pulp collection with the intention of putting these on individual character cards for .45 Adventure. In any case I've put a link below to the new picasa gallery:

Pulp Figures