Tuesday, 23 June 2020

Indoors update 4

Follow that, er, sort of T34!

Well, are they Cubans? Well they are now! Previously Imex North Koreans, these chaps are now my generic OPFOR for Latin America, Africa and, possibly, parts of the Middle East. I just need some chaps with RPGs. T34 cunningly disguised as a T34! Bases not yet finished.

Obviously an NCO

Nice to see Simplicity in Practice being given a workout by Mr M J Tar here and here.

Also the concluding episode of Waterloo a la Carte by Mr Crook here.

Despite being indoors still, it appears to be all go!

Monday, 1 June 2020

Indoors update 3

These guys may be Cubans as well! To give the game away slightly, I'm working up a generic Opfor for 1950 through, probably, to 2000. I'm really happy with progress but I'm a slow painter, so pictures next time.

In this week's news.......

Yaah Magazine 8 with Race to the Sea by Herman Luttman. Get it for free here.

Remember Fistful of Lead? Well, its bigger brother is now here. Well worth £5.66!

During the Covid period I have bought virtually no hobby stuff. One of the things I did invest in was the Fistful of Lead Core Rule book, again, just over a fiver. Excellent value for money. A simple system with plenty of scope for hacking, lists for anything from Ancient Greece through to today and all in 56 pages. Nice.

The other thing I invested in was PSC's Northag. For £20 you get a hundred pages covering what appears to be a very simple system. I'm reserving judgement but my concern is around blue text on blue coloured pages. At my age I'm finding it difficult to read stuff and if they make it really difficult I won't bother. Having said that, I'll give it a cooler look in a few day's time.

Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Indoors update 2

I'll come back to this later but these guys may be Cubans.....

Although I find myself in the garden quite a bit recently, there is always indoors stuff to do. Some of my indoors time has, I like to think, been wisely invested in some of my favourite blogs.

Not in any particular order, we have:

Alex and Grant of TPA pondering Nevsky
The Payer's Aid  This is a must view site for anyone interested in board wargames of any sort. Alex and Grant have a prolific output of reviews and unboxings. They are well informed, engaging and a pleasure to watch. Also, plenty of back catalogue if you need an excuse to do some serious research.

Othais says howdy!
C&Rsenal As a wargamer I have a passing interest in weapons. I also have a well developed fear of firearms but do enjoy the history and mechanics. This channel is presented by  a nice chap called Othais. This guy is a real expert, he knows his stuff and his videos roll along at a fast rate of knots. Excellent mechanicals as well as some live shooting. I love the sound of a Lewis gun in the morning, it sounds like victory! I really can't recommend this more highly.

Tigers at Minsk - West front scenario
Battlefields and Warriors  Norm's blog covers a lot of ground, from AARs of cool games (such as the Hexasim games on Ligny and Quatre Bras), to small scale figure battles and, of course, Norm's own rules such as TaM. I have some real favourites such as Norm's excellent comparative reviews of tactical systems. Norm's posts are well written and comprehensive and well worth sitting down with a beer to read.

North Africa scenario
Grid based but not always Peter's blog continues to impress me. He is currently running a WW2 North Africa campaign using his own version of Tank on Tank rules and some excellent campaign rules. 

FOO Afghanistan
The Company Leader: Leadership Lessons from the Tactical Level of War. A serious blog feeding back a lot of real life military learning from the various US training centres. Highly recommended, especially for their Tactical Decision Games (TDGs). Some of the articles are well worth wargamers taking notice of, in particular, sustainment of advancing forces and maintaining vehicles in a combat environment. 

BTW the picture of Cuban soldiers not enjoying their morning run is a clue to one of my side projects......a little painting exercise.

Monday, 4 May 2020

Indoors update 1

Hi folks, a quick update on indoor stuff!

Just after my last post I got the lurgy. Luckily it was fairly mild, the physical side wore off quickly but it does leave you rather tired. The the rest of the family had it, again very mild so we are now all fit and well but staying indoors as per instructions.

I have noticed from other's Blog posts that there is a general torpor about. I'm feeling the same. I am trying to get some stuff done but everything seems to take three times as long as usual. 

Latest project is to re-purpose and repaint some A&A Miniatures French tanks for Brutal Simplicity. Here is the evidence, a B1, an S25 and a Panhard 178. Actually quite nice models (of around 10-12mm) spoiled by my heavy handed painting. However, now very usable for my own purposes!

I'll try and get back to normal by doing some more quick short posts this week.

Lovely to see other's blogs at the moment, a great way to stay engaged!

Note to self: French tank colours - 894 Cam Olive Green (too dark), 977 Desert Yellow (just right), 874 Tan Earth (OK but dark after wash), 819 Iraqi Sand (my usual tank dry brush). Next time try layers including cream and blue, you know it makes sense!). 

Friday, 20 March 2020

No exit strategy? Check out free stuff!

Well, OK, this bit is not yet ready but will be soon and will also be free! First scenario draft map for Brutal Simplicity 1940. Possibly "Not like a Stonne-Wall!". Based on OHW 18 but is being modified somewhat.

The real free stuff below illustrates that there is no such thing as a wargames industry, just wargamers who like wargames and are happy to give stuff away to cheer people up. The evidence is as follows:

1. Free C3i mag (#25) including Battle for Moscow game by Frank Chadwick! If you don't have this it is well worth it.

2. Free Yaah! mag (#8) including Race to the Sea 1914 game. Announced by Flying Pig but not as yet available from Wargames Vault.

3. Free Nordic Weasel game: Five Men at Kursk, be quick it ends today (US time). Nice game!!

4. Free Instant Thunder: An air game which looks like a simpler version of Wing Leader! The virtues of this game have been extolled by Kaptain Kobbold so look out for it here.

If the pressures of the day are causing stress and consternation, take some pleasure if you can from the following:

Bob Cordery has published this picture (and others) of his Portable Wargame as implemented by other people. This is a brilliant 54mm adaptation by Mike Lewis. Lovely, reminds me of Clive Lane's 20mm hex grid game.

Peter has started a new North Africa campaign which looks fantastic!

Disgruntled Fusilier is busy adapting Neil Thomas' Introduction to Wargaming WWII rules in an interesting manner.

And finally, PSC's Battlegroup Northag has hit the glossies this month so expect more action shortly (it was due to be released at Salute but this is now postponed so at some stage soon).

None of this makes up for Boris telling us that our loved ones are going to die but you have to take comfort where you can. Good luck to all!

Thursday, 5 March 2020

Brutal simplicity

Bonjour, the above pic is a clue to current lines of thinking. France 1940 in fact.

I have been going round in circles with some ideas about bringing Simplicity in Practice into the 20th century. Unfortunately, I started at the very difficult end (Cold War). Not that I have given up on that subject area. In fact I intend to return to it shortly using a bigger map and more units than in the OHW scenarios I have been using for Simplicity.

Dropping down the complexity levels I have arrived in 1940 France. Interesting tanks (Char B1 bis in fact), great texture and difference between units (French Colonials, Foreign Legion etc) and opposing sides that have individual characteristics which lend themselves to some game type exaggeration.

Starting design parameters:

  • Interactive player phases during each game turn with a really simple initiative mechanism
  • Actions driven by initiative rating
  • Units have one action per turn
  • Combat is addressed by one die roll
  • Scenarios taken from OHW using six by six hex maps
  • Forces limited to six units per side
  • Must be capable of being played with counters as well as on a table with models
To ensure this is really brutally simple we will be using crude measures for combat statistics:
  • Armour rating based on hull front max: 30mm or less = 0, 31-59 = 1, 60 and over = 2
  • Speed rating: 14 hp/mt or less = 1, 15 hp/mt and above = 2
  • Combat numbers to be based on maximum penetration at 400m for hard targets
Lots to do but I'm hoping it will give a good game with some historical flavour.

Tuesday, 4 February 2020

Out now!

Well, it is out at last and very pleased I am with the final product. If you are not familiar with Yaah! it is an 80 page magazine with a game in it. The production is very art magazine (think Wallpaper). Nice texture and layout. Plenty of articles on board wargames by some reputable authors (John D Burtt and Arrigo Velicogna to name but two). 

I'm also very pleased with the final version of the game. Very nice components and excellent genuine 1" counters.......

More at BGG and Flying Pig Games. You can get the analogue version from Flying PIg (and probably Second Chance Games) for $40 and from Wargames Vault for a remarkable £11.53. If anyone is worried about the print and lay option, it is very doable and all of the design and play testing was done using pnp materials. 

My grateful thanks to the guys at the Pig for such a great presentation: Mark Walker, publisher, Art Bennett, developer, and Ilya Kudriashov, art. A pleasure working with them.

I have noticed that I missed blogging for a whole month. Like many others I blame the flu and Brexit. Hopefully things will settle down shortly.