Sunday, 30 January 2011


A bit of a change this time round. I haven't quite completed the Brytenwalda minis yet - just need their shields completing and then a touch of matt varnish to finish them off. In the meantime, my gaming buddy Colin dropped me a line with a few things he has finished off over the last few weeks or so. Thanks to him for letting me show his handiwork, i.e. the miniatures we game with when we do get together. These are a bunch of his 15mm goblin horde members.

This is the general gist of the email he sent me with the attachment...

"They are painted in gloss so they don't come out too well as they shine a bit in the flash, making it look like there's undercoat showing through in a sloppy way. They are mostly "Tin Soldier".

The Goblin at the front left with the tusks is actually an Irregulars Miniatures's 6mm Troll that was sent as a free sample.

The big chap, a troll or bugbear or ogre (as required) has been adapted slightly with the addition of black horns on his helmet where there were a couple of stubs and with angry eyebrows, as he looked a bit too gormless to look mean - all Milliput.

The wild boar is home made, carved out of almost hard Milliput. The base is another piece of Milliput, this time formed into shape whilst moist. The tusks were added later ... If the urge takes me, I'll try to make a mate for him, with a longer snout amongst other lessons learned.

The dungeon floor was a free download I darkened and reduced for 15mm and the walls and door are home drawn, scanned and printed of on 350gsm paper."
Colin usually runs our fantasy pen 'n' paper RPG, Dark Realm. These are rules that he has developed over the decades with the occasional bit of help from some of us other players. The game runs very well, and combat is brutish and bloody - very realistic. Hopefully one day this year we will get to meet up and have a game or two so I can see the beasties above in the flesh. I have seen his first few goblins and fought them as adversaries to one of my PCs, who was ensorcelled by the local witch who had a few as her minions. maybe he will one day be rescued?

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Updates and stuff

As I haven't got any miniatures completed over the last week or so, I have decided to put a few thoughts etc down on paper, so to speak.

I am hoping to finish off those Arthurian figures sometime in the next couple of weeks (hopefully by the end of the month) and I have also nearly finished some fantasy RPG ones. I am hoping to get those finished this weekend and get pictures up tomorrow if possible.

Like most gamers, I often wonder how much I spend on my hobby but rarely take stock of what I have bought. I have started a tally of my purchases in a side bar just to see how indebted to the credit card company I have become. So far my purchases have been:
LBMS stickers for those Arthurians and some Normans I have kicking around
Glue and paints - always needed, always running out
Airfix figures - Hobbycraft had some boxes of 1/72nd Airfix minis on special offer of £1.49 per box. I bought 6 boxes of Ancient Britons and 4 boxes of Romans. Hopefully enough to build some HotT armies in the future. I bought them because I haven't owned any 1/72nd soft plastics in years and wanted to experiment a bit with them. At those prices, I think I got a pretty good deal
Doggerland will continue on this year. Things are hotting up. I will start to put links up to my PBM website soon, but I did a code rehash a little while ago and completely knackered it. I will spend some time sorting that out and then try to get Doggerland up on there so the players have a ready-reckoner always at hand. I will also try to get those 15mm minis I bought painted and based up in readiness too - as HotT armies.

So, once again, loads of projects, not very much time. One day I will complete something and actually get some table-top gaming done!

Friday, 7 January 2011


This year I have decided to try to do things a little differently. I will decide on a theme each month and try to paint a unit or army or a few stands towards it. I am hoping this will allow me to complete armies more quickly and thus be able to use them to play games. I will try to post work in progress shots of all of the figures projects I work on each month. If I happen to paint anything else in the meantime, then they will wind up on the blog too as extra entries.

This month I have decided to put together a 600 solidus Romano-British Brytenwalda army. Here are a couple of shots of them in their undercoated state. Hopefully each week I will be able to add a picture or two to show my progress. All my potential Brytenwalda minis are from the Gripping Beast Romano British /Arthurian-type range. All I can remember buying is a pack each of armoured and unarmoured spears and a handful of cavalry. I will add to the collection with a wizard and some archers eventually to round out the army in later months.

This 600 Solidus Romano-British army is made up of the following ...

1 Pendragon (mounted Chieftain) @(60 + 10) = 70
2 Marca (cavalry) @52 = 104
1 Teulu (warrior command) @50 = 50
11 Aulue (conscript spearmen) @34 = 374

Total for army = 598 Solidus

This is a starter army which will hopefully have another similar one painted next month. I am going to name them the Reds and the Greens initially due to the colour schemes I am going to use to paint their cloaks and shields. The army this month will be the Reds.

Alex has bought into this too and he is putting together his own unit. We both bought some Gripping Beast packs of minis when we went to Salute back in 2007! Mine are to be based on washers and 2p pieces but Alex has decided to go down the Warhammer base route (20mm squares). Luckily the rules are OK with basing differentials, as long as warriors are based individually.

Hopefully I'll have an update or two for this weekend's work. Alex will certainly have something to show as he is busy painting up a couple of troops as I am typing this!

Monday, 3 January 2011

2010 summary, 2011 resolutions

Well, it wasn't as productive a year as I would have liked it to be, but the lead and plastic mountains did reduce a little. I managed to paint 190 figures as opposed to 234 for 2009. I put this down to a couple of purple patches in Feb/March and the end of summer. For some reason I just ran into a bit of painter's block each time; I just couldn't find the enthusiasm to pick up the brushes in those periods.

Gaming wise, there was an almost complete drought. I started to referee Doggerland, and whilst this is going very well, it would have been nice to actually play something on the tabletop. I guess it doesn't help that all my gaming buddies live so far away and it is almost impossible to get together these days - the pressures of modern day life I suppose?

I am hoping that 2011 will bring me more gaming opportunities and painting satisfaction. I think that if I am able to complete full armies rather than bits and bobs then games can be played. Looking at my painted collection from the last couple of years, I have only completed bits here and there, and nothing to put on the tabletop as antagonists, well, not in numbers any way.

I have downloaded some new rules over the last year and sent off for some too - Brytenwalda for Dark Age skirmishing and Dark Age Cthulhu for RPG stuff. All could dovetail nicely into the Doggerland world, with a new game aimed more at tabletop representation - it will be more at the skirmish level than army level (individual figures rather than stands of figures). Whereas Doggerland is all about warlords and their multiple warbands duking it out, the next generation Doggerland will be at the more local level of each leader only having one warband each on a smaller scale map - territory sized rather than continental. This will start up towards the end of 2011 when Doggerland has almost run its course.

Painting, however, will present a few challenges. I don't think I will set myself a target this year - it didn't seem to work the way I wanted it to last year, although it did give me a boost occasionally to try to reach the target. I will just try to set smaller scale targets to finish units and armies within X weeks/months that can fight each other, and any individual minis that take my fancy to fill in the gaps. I still have several hundred to paint but the pile is getting smaller, especially my old 1980s collection - there are probably less than a couple of hundred of them left now. My Romans and Celts are coming along nicely, but the main bulk is with my LotR collection. As long as I don't buy too many new ones then things will turn out right.

I didn't manage to get to too many shows this year, and Alex was only in tow for one of them. We both got to Salute and SELWG, and I also managed Colours and Crisis (a first time for me). Although I enjoyed the shows, they were mostly used for looking at new stuff on offer, seeing the display stands for ideas and chatting to people. This year I will try to play a few more demo games.

Alex has done well this year. He painted a fair few minis but unfortunately didn't get to play any games. His resolution is to finish his Bretonnian army and to get his Space Marines completed. He will also add to his HotT Elf army over the year.

So, in summary, 2010 wasn't too bad painting wise. There were a few dead patches but these were got through. Gaming wise, I was saved by Doggerland.

So, what is there to look forward to in 2011? Well, I will continue to paint the lead/plastic mountain, but in a more organised way in the hope of getting at least two armies each for HotT and LotR. I will start up a new Doggerland game at a lower 'social' level later on in the year and aim to get involved in a few more demonstration games at shows. I think it will prove difficult to join a club or get down to GW to play due to the nature of my job - I don't get home until way after 7pm in the evening, so by the time I have had dinner, sorted out an army etc I wouldn't get to a club until at least an hour later - way too late to start anything as everyone else will already be playing. I think the first games to be played will be HotT: Barbarians versus Dwarfs or Orcs or LotR: Rohan versus Isengard or Easterlings. That said, there will be plenty of 80s minis to be painted to keep the blog ticking over.

Which just leaves me to say "Thank you!" for reading over the last year or so. I hope you are enjoying it. I know it is a little disjointed, but hopefully I can remedy that this year.

Happy New Year!