Feb 28, 2024

Captain Alatriste

This is a conversion from 'The Pistoleers' Bloody Miniatures figure pack, depicting the famous fictional (?) character.

I trimmed off the mortuary sword blade and added a longer rapier, a Spanish cup hilt and a longer scabbard. I also made him a moustache with Magic Sculpt.

(It is a nice touch by the sculptor that the figure holds the blade in his left, so the guard is on the reverse side.)

I deliberately gave Captain Alatriste a rag-tag outfit, using muted colours, and a well-oiled buff coat, as he should have appeared on many occasions while fighting in the tercios of Spain.

Feb 26, 2024

Bloody Miniatures - Heavy Cavalry

 (And a reminder to learn to take pictures with my phone properly)

I've come across Bloody Miniatures by accident, on the '17th century Wargaming' Facebook group. At first I hesitated to purchase them, because all I had for the period were Warlord plastics, and the Bloody figs were quite bigger than those. 

In the end I bit the bullet, and since then made two more orders (including one for Christmas), because, in all honesty, these figures are amazing and they sort of brought back the enjoyment of painting into my life.

Now these horsemen were in the second order, and I will most likely not post the rest in the order of purchase, just the way I can get them out of their storage boxes.

This is 'The Lobsters' pack of three figures and horses. They painted up rather easily, the only hindrance being that I could not paint the dark bay horse with the rider attached, so I glued them together after painting. I'm not entirely content with the bases so might redo them later.

Usually when I paint larger units, I make the horses uniform as well, but as these figures are a character each, I thought the nags should be a bit different as well. I think the paintjob turned out to be rather nice.

Feb 12, 2024

Takar Chalun's Mercenary Army

Takar Chalun* is a mercenary warlord, currently employed by the Cities of Bandar Tuk, serving with High General Leuha Taton's Army of the Eastern Approaches. His warband is small but effective; the War God Judha Puduganur had smiled on him many times, and he became wealthy and influential in the court of Rehemana. 

Feb 7, 2024

Trashy Fleets - 1/1000 Royal Navy pre-dreadnought

By popular demand (that is, the Mad Padre has mentioned in the previous post that he would like to see some ships), here is the first Trashy battleship.

Now I cheated with this one a little, as the hull was completed some time ago, I just added touch-ups and the base. The model is roughly 1/1000 scale, so about 10cm/4" long, with emphasis on the proportions and general features.

This ship represents the epitome of RN pre-dreadnoughts (not counting the Lord Nelsons), with two pairs of 12" guns in hooded barbettes, and funnels abeam of each other. The ship's got no name yet, as most likely she will not be part of a historical representation of the Royal Navy.

Jan 10, 2024

Trashy Fleets - The Trashy Fleet Spirit

Here's the motto of the Trashy Fleets Pre-Dreadnought project, explained in detail.

Make It Free

Ordinary household items like cardboard, corkboard, plastic tubes etc. are perfect material for some trashy ship modelling.

One can also use leftovers from model kits for secondary armament, conning towers, railings, masts etc., the possibilities are limitless.

If It's Not Free, Make It Cheap

Junkyards, online trading groups and flea markets are the favoured hunting ground of the scratchbuilder, and he will use anything and everything he can get for cheap.

Make It Good Lookin'

Of course the above does not exempt one from historical examples such as well-proportioned and functional vessels. Everybody likes trash-bashing, but there should be a standard. Trashy Fleets aren't made up of scale models, but one can keep close.

Jan 2, 2024

Christmas gifts and New Year plans

The first part of this post is somewhat of a humbe brag, as my significant other asked me to assemble a wish list for this Christmas, which I promptly did, only to be overwhelmed because I've received many gifts which were not on the list! Most of them are wargaming or military history related:

- a 4'x4' gaming mat from gamemat.eu - I'll make a separate post about it!

- a Revell 1/50 Viking ship (all I need is some Vikings)

- Four packs of Bloody Miniatures 28mm ECW figs, including the newly released Lobsters (some painted during the holidays)

- A batch of Magic Sculpt

- A set of GSW silver Kolinsky brushes (a joy to paint with)

- John Keegan's History of War at Sea

It feels good to have a supportive partner and she in fact has already joined me for testing the gaming mat.

As for the second part, when it comes to planning, I found that less is more. So the major projections for 2024 are:

- Expanding the TYW/ECW collection for larger games, I've now got a good amount of figures for larger skirmishes.

- Starting an Italian Wars collection (had a bunch of Perrys and Landsknechts but sold them in 2020), a Steel Fist unit of kniggits is in the mail back from December.

- 17th century buildings to populate Trashburgh (construction of an inn is under way).

- Reviving the 1/1000 scale Trashy Fleets projects (starting with some French pre-dreadnoughts because why not!)

- Finishing the 1/700 Derfflinger.

- The odd impulse buy here and there. We are planning two European trips in the Q1 of the year (including the Vasa Museum) so that might just push the bill.

A bit less slightly hobby related but managing my battle station is overdue:

- I'll get my old drawer cabinet and refurbish it

- Relocating the hobby desk to an area with better natural light

- Assembling some shelves to contain figures and the book collection (including the Ikea model with the drawers, pretty cool thing)

Nov 23, 2023

Rules Page update

I have added no less than three new rulesets to the 'Rules' page (available via the link or the header of this blog), which are free to download, use and distribute by the way, and are the results of more than ten years of gaming experimentation:

  • Gudugan Pudugan, a fun little set which is only seven pages long, of pre-historical/ancient big battles and a flexible unit/army component system

  • Victorious Eagle Warfare 2, an update on my go-to Napoleonics set, with better command options and explanations on unit behavior

  • The Brave Lieutenant, a Pike and Shot period set which spent many months in the making, only to bin it altogether in the end and just adopt the useful parts of VEW2 with Renaissance spice.

Please do browse through them.

Oct 29, 2023

All the Other Kids With Their Pumped Up 'Nids

I received, second-hand, a group of 20 Termagants and their smaller friends, the push-fit versions from the Leviathan box. It feels good, after more than ten years of hobby time, that I can buy used GW stuff in larger numbers!

However, this post is not about humble bragging, but a sort of warning against artist's block when painting larger batches of figures. Sure, some armies require elaborate paint jobs, but space bugs are not that. At least this is what I found after painting the first little fellow in a more intricate pattern, got fed up with the thing, wanted to play with them in a painted state, in the end causing myself more frustration and shelving the entire lot for two months or so.

Now two things came to my aid: one, I usually have foresight for happenstances like this, and assemble and/or prime and/or start basing models in my spare time when I do not paint, so I don't have to start from scrap when dusting off an overlooked project. This means that all twenty-odd little bugs were assembled and placed on their bases, waiting for me; and two, I'm more of a pragmatist than an artist in a lot of aspects, so I thought: why not simplify this just a bit? We've all seen very neat and elaborate paint jobs, but, again, that's not for large batches I was trying to deal with here.

Oct 24, 2023

Guardhouse and Livestock

I wanted to put some scratchbuilding advancements I learned to practice on a larger building, so I completed this 28mm scale two-storey one, the bottom tier built of stone and the top from wattle and daub. The first floor and the roof come off and figures can be housed inside. The building itself is suitable for a variety of periods, so I sincerely hope it will be of use.

The stone fence is an experiment in a more solid type of corkboard, I think it came out nicely so I'll be producing more.

There is also a Bloody Miniatures fig for scale, and some Warlord plastic animals I gave a simple paintjob to, scored during their previous sprue sale.