Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Wargaming the Saldorian Revolution

 Following up on my last post, I've spent some time thinking about what I actually want out of my hobby right now. And inspired by Donald Featherstone, I've decided to work my way through a solo campaign in a science fiction milieu. I've been enjoying the hell out of David Drake's "Hammer's Slammers" series of military hard scifi (inspired by the author's own service with the 11th Armored Cavalry in Vietnam), and while Brigade Models offers a line of Hammer's Slammers miniatures in both 15mm and 6mm scale, I didn't want to simply ape the books; rather, I thought I'd follow Drake's lead and draw some inspiration from history for my own campaign. 

So we find ourselves in the 23rd or 24th century on the semi-terraformed and colonized planet of Saldor; a mining world, it exports platinum and iridium to other world's in human-settled space but is, by and large, a backwater planet. The government is corporate feudalism and there's an ethnic divide between most of the working class (i.e., 95% of the planet's population) and the moneyed elite. 

A series of small labor strikes over failure to meet worker safety regulations are met with an overwhelmingly violent response from the corporate government, setting a match to the powder-keg of worker discontent planet-wide. The token planetary defense force is stretched thin by uprisings, leading the government to hire off-world mercenaries; other off-world corporations, smelling blood in the water, begin offering financial and military support to the revolutionary worker's groups. 

A starter force of wastelanders from Microworld Games arrived the other day, representing the worker's revolution in its earliest days - with laborers in their protective gear taking up arms and converting civilian vehicles into armored cars. 


This little package gives me six vehicles and enough infantry to build three infantry units for Battlesuit Alpha. I'll be cleaning these up soon, but the weather's not going to allow priming for at least another week. The overwhelmed forces of the Saldorian Guard will be added soon, and after that I can start working on mercenary companies and heavier armored fighting vehicles delivered to the conflict. 

I also got the first batch of terrain painted for this - a VTOL airfield from Brigade Models, which will be a hotly contested target - allowing revolutionaries to cut off outgoing shipments of precious metals or control the delivery of weapons and other supplies.




I've got an industrial center and some fortified walls I'm hoping to be able to get primed and painted soon, and once Royal Mail starts shipping internationally again I'll be ordering some residential areas and civic buildings so I can have fights for control of settlements.

In the meantime, I'll be working up details of the setting - a map to be fought over (starting small and then expanding out into other parts of the planet), orders of battle for the planetary defense force, etc., as well as working on chance cards to inject a little randomness into each game. Despite using the Battlesuit Alpha rules, I don't anticipate too many stompy mech suits showing up; instead it will be tanks, APCs, armored cars and similar vehicles. And probably a lot more infantry than was in mind when Battlesuit Alpha was written.

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Improving my Solitude


 So I've been in a bit of an odd space mentally in regards my hobbies lately, and it's got me doing some soul searching. I posted a condensed version of this on Instagram earlier, but I want to use this space to flesh it out a bit more. 

Two weeks ago in my monthly session with my therapist, I told her I felt profoundly lonely; that I felt torn between two competing drives: on the one hand, I miss in person gaming. I'm not sure how I feel about returning to running and playing games at my FLGS (more on that later), and I am playing in a semi-regular D&D campaign with some friends face to face, though it's now been over two months since I've been able to meet with them. On the other hand, I have the well-being of my spouse, who is immunocompromised, to take into account; every trip out is a calculated risk and I feel hard-pressed to justify spending a couple hours at the game store where, lets face it, even at the best of times some of my fellow patrons struggle with the concept of personal space. One of my favorite stories to tell is the time in 2019 I was running a game in store, and someone standing behind my chair adjusted the straps on the backpack so that it was resting on my shoulders instead of theirs. Very much a "what the hell" moment at the time, but very illustrative of my point. 

These feelings have been compounded by an increasing difficulty I've had in even getting a virtual table together for a role-playing one-shot over the past four or five months. These two people want to play, but won't play at the same table as each other (even virtually), this person wants a game but can't (or won't) find space in their schedule where they can meet me halfway, that person has a history of canceling an hour before game when they've known for three weeks they can't make it on the date scheduled, and I've had a half-dozen people practically begging me for games but as soon as I ask them "what days and times work for you" I get ghosted. I've bent and twisted myself in knots trying to accommodate people for months and it feels like no one will meet me half way, and I'm tired of feeling taken advantage off. I think the straw that broke the camel's back was a player I've run for, on and off, for five or six years now, who told me they'd double-booked themselves for a date and time I'd finally managed to pull together a game on, and that they'd decided they were more excited for the other game. Just tell me you can't make it, because this was just salt in a wound. 

As far as my miniature painting/wargaming hobby goes, I spent last weekend cleaning and organizing my hobby space. My wife and I live in a one bedroom apartment and so I stake out the back half of our dining room table as a painting space, I've got a shelving unit next to the table with terrain, battlemats, and project boxes on it, and a large storage tote in the bedroom closet that's something of an unofficial "Graveyard of Dead Projects." I cleaned things up, condensed things (all my unpainted orcs and goblins for Warhammer are in one box now instead of two, etc.), pulled boxes out to pass along to wargamers who will appreciate them, and in so doing I've made myself a lot more introspective about my hobby.

These are my shelves post-cleanup. Not perfect, but leagues better than they were.
 

Going forward, I want to be a lot more thoughtful about what I bring into the apartment; I want to make sure my wife has her craft space secured and that I'm not overflowing into it, and I don't want to be shoveling money into projects that I may never actually start, let alone finish. I want to get away from the sense of FOMO I get with miniature kickstarters as well. 

And that leads me into wargaming. I bought the Stargrave rulebook about three weeks ago, because my friend Tom tipped me off that there would potentially be some Stargrave campaigning going on at our FLGS. I haven't been a regular at my game store since they've re-opened to general gaming; and I asked on the store's Discord server about how busy the store tended to be on Thursday nights (which is wargaming night), explaining that with my wife's illness, if the store was likely to be crowded I probably wouldn't be able to attend. The response from the store's social media person (not the owner) rubbed me the wrong way; they told me not to use the crowdedness of the store to judge personal safety and it came across, to me, very condescending and read like "well just don't come in if you think there's any risk." My therapist, reading this person's response, instead interpreted it as "well you'll never mitigate all risk, so just come in." 

I replied to this person that no, the presence or absence of a crowd isn't our sole metric for assessing risk, but it is one of the factors we take into account. Still, I'm having difficulty shaking the nettled feeling I got from the interaction. Maybe it's how the pandemic changed me, maybe it's how it changed the business, but I've felt less welcome when I've gone in for books or paints since 2021 and this feels like a continuation of that trend. And it's made me stop and ask myself, "Do I really want to go in on Thursday nights after work to play Stargrave?"

And finding an answer to that question has gotten...messy. I've had a lot more bad experiences playing wargames in the various gaming stores around Rochester than I've had good ones, unfortunately. Between unabashed cheating, people bringing crowd-sourced tournament lists to "friendly" games, bellicose people who are looking for someone to take their frustrations out on and people who get belligerent at the thought of playing with any victory condition other than "table the opponent"...do I want to keep subjecting myself to that?

Don't get me wrong, I've had a couple really good games at local stores, and games with my friend Tom are always a pleasure, even when he has tabled me. But it's hard not to be wary of gaming with randos. The other thing I'm wary of with gaming at the store is getting caught up in chasing the Next Big Shiny Thing. Right now Stargrave is popular; I don't want to rush to paint a whole bestiary and terrain and this that and the other thing (all of which takes up space - see my earlier point) only for interest to disappear entirely in three months as the community moves on to the next game that catches people's interest. I busted my hump trying to get people at the store to play Frostgrave a couple years back, followed by a similarly failed attempt to interest anyone in Fistful of Lead. 

The only way I'm going to ensure that the local community is going to stay invested in a game long enough for me to be able to afford buy-in and paint everything I need to paint is if I jump back on the Games Workshop wagon; and even then, it's an arms race to stay "competitive" since none of these people play Warhammer 40K or Age of Sigmar as anything but an aggressive, competitive game, always preparing for the next tournament. I danced the Age of Sigmar dance a few years ago, spent a couple hundred bucks and after a few painful months realized I was having a miserable time. I don't want to get back on that wagon, and I'm pretty sure my wife would bounce me off all four walls of our apartment if I tried. She loves me, she supports my wargaming, but she's got no love for Games Workshop either. She also saw how despondent I came home after my last game of Age of Sigmar and how I put my AoS army in the closet and didn't touch it for months afterwards. She won't let me do that to myself again. 

That also takes me to my Oldhammer Orc and Goblin army. I dusted it off last month and started adding to it with plans to take it to Da Boyz GT this year but - why? When I stop and think about it, I almost question my sanity. I've never heard anything about Warhammer tournaments that make them sound like experiences I want - timed games of cutthroat competitiveness and army lists tailored towards victory at all costs is the precise opposite of the leisurely art of kriegspiel that I want to involve myself in. I think I saw the photos of 2022's event and went "I have the miniatures to participate in that!" and jumped in with both feet without thinking. The more I think about it (especially in the light of my wife's illness) the less desire I feel to participate.


I've been playing solo games through the pandemic, and last week, while my wife was in the hospital for a round of treatment, I put Donald Featherstone's 1973 book "Solo Wargaming" on my Kindle and read it while sitting next to her. I came away so much more energized and inspired than I'd been in weeks, eager to resume solo play with a host of new (to me) ideas to make my games more interesting for me such as chance cards, ways of randomizing deployment, etc. I was immediately excited at the prospect of a solo campaign, complete with a map of the area, tracking wins and losses, and letting individual toy soldiers develop histories, personalities, accolades. 

I decided I wanted to go with 6mm scale for ease of storage and gentleness on my wallet; it helped I'd invested in some 6mm scifi terrain a couple months back for use with Wiley Games' "Battlesuit Alpha." A sci-fi campaign set on some imagined world in an imagined future with hover tanks and laser cannons (and maybe a few giant stompy mech suits) sounds very appealing to me. I've got a core idea I've been kicking around for the past few days of what the conflict is and who the belligerents are in it, and I ordered some figures and vehicles (from Microworld Games, since the cyber attack on the Royal Mail puts UK manufacturers beyond my grasp for the moment) to start getting a feel for 6mm scale. I'm anticipating using "Battlesuit Alpha" for tank battles and "Bigger Battles" for more strictly infantry battles. 

Which circles me back to where I started this post; maybe it's not that I'm lonely, per se. Maybe I just need to improve the quality of my solitude. It's important for me not to lose sight of the fact that first and foremost I should be enjoying myself - that this is a hobby, a respite from the day to day, and if it's stressing me out or making me unhappy, I am doing it wrong. Making sure it's a creative outlet that inspires and encourages me, a pleasant place my mind can drift during the drudgery of the work day, I think that will do much more for my mental and emotional well-being then just gaming for the sake of gaming. One of my big takeaways from Age of Sigmar was that not playing games was better than playing games I wasn't enjoying, and I don't want to backtrack on that. 

So this has been a long post, and it's been a lot of kind of just organizing the thoughts that have been swirling through my head for the past two weeks. Call this a journaling exercise maybe. I hope it hasn't come across as too bitter or aggressive; I think I've just not let myself realize how trampled I've been feeling.

Sunday, December 25, 2022

Merry Christmas and State of the Orc Army

 Merry Christmas everyone, I hope it's a safe, healthy holiday for you all. 

I took the opportunity to get the kitchen table cleared off, a 3'x3' battle mat unrolled, and rather than playing a game, I set up my entire Orc & Goblin army. I've been working on this army off and on since 2020, most notably in the 4th and 5th annual Old World Army Challenges.

I am hoping to take an expanded version of this army to Da Boyz GT in 2023 for 8th Edition Warhammer Fantasy Battles. I have a pretty good idea of what I want to see happen with this army in terms of enlarging it, but I wanted to make sure I took stock of what I had first.

First up, here's the whole army:



That's 90 Orcs, 31 Goblins, 14 Hobgoblins, 4 Trolls, 5 Boars, 6 Wolves and 1 Krung Beast. It's kind of wild to realize how much I've already done.

 

First up is the newest finished unit, a squad of five Goblin Wolfboyz with bows, with an attached Goblin Big Boss. These are from Knightmare Miniatures and are phenomenally characterful sculpts; the wolf the Big Boss is riding is actually from Warmonger, as I'd accidentally snapped the ankles on the sixth Knightmare wolf. I'll be adding a second squad of Wolfboyz with bows in 2023.


Next, we have six Goblin archers, mostly Knightmare but there is one Black Tree Designs figure in there. I have a bunch of Warmonger and Black Tree archers to paint and add to this unit; it's not a huge priority because I'm not anticipating fielding this regiment in November, but I'm happy to paint them regardless.



While we're on goblins, here's a dozen Goblins and three Goblin bosses from Knightmare. I have a ton of unpainted Black Tree goblins I'll be adding to this regiment. Ultimate goal is to get it up to 40 goblins. A Knightmare Orc Shaman is visible behind the goblins.


Harboth's Orc Archers, with Harboth. I have a dozen painted here, and have a box of maybe 20 more that I could strip and repaint if I wanted. I have a special fondness for these guys - they were released just weeks after I was born. Behind them, next to the mounted commander, is my current Battle Standard Bearer for the army, with a crowned skull and crossed swords mounted on some bound-together polearms. He may ultimately find his way into a unit and be replaced as the BSB.


"Dese Lads Ova 'Ere," 1 dozen Orc Warriors from Warmonger. This unit will be expanded to 25 this year. I love the tuba player, and the banner that just bafflingly says "Eat Yer Beans" is a perennial favorite of anyone who sees it. I've got an Orc crouching with his hands over his ears coming from Warmonger in the next couple weeks who I'm hoping will let me move the musician inwards from the edge of the line.


"Dem Lads Ova Dere," another dozen Warmonger orcs that will again be bolstered to 25 in the coming weeks. The "Foot of Gork" banner was my first attempt at doing shading and highlighting on a flat surface. The foot is traced off the Monty Python's Flying Circus foot. Behind them are four Bog Trolls from Troll Soup; I received another four yesterday in the mail. I might pick up another four later on, so I can field two units of six. I'm a big fan of the one picking his nose, with a nosepicking "Orcling" from Warmonger on his base.


"The Black Fire Boyz" are more art project than planned part of the army; 15 Warmonger "Mercenary Orcs" in landsknecht garb with spears. I like the idea of a band of orcs aping Empire battlefield tactics and style, but I really don't want to keep doing puff-and-slash after these 15, so I won't be expanding this unit.


"The Old Guard" - these are my Orc Big'uns, a mix of Citadel/GW and Heartbreaker Miniatures originally released between 1985 and 1995. I've got some more Heartbreaker figures on the way, and will be scrounging through ebay and various buy-and-sell forums to expand this regiment further. I think the ultimate plan will be 38 Big'uns, with the army battle standard bearer and maybe the general attached to the unit. 


10 "Barnorsk Great Orcs" from Harlequin, remolded and reissued by Black Tree Designs a couple years ago. Buying and painting these was what sparked this whole army project; I think I want to go back and remove their citadel shields, trim the pegs and replace them with sculpted face shields from Warmonger. And maybe expand the regiment; I see myself using these as Black Orcs in WHFB. They're a pain in the ass to try and rank up, incidentally.

 

6th edition WHFB Goblin Doom Diver; I originally painted this up as a proxy 3rd edition Orc Stone Thrower (since goblins are about as smart as stones), hence the orc crew. I like the guy shading his eyes best.


Epigruel's Slop 'n' Go Chuck-Wagon. I painted this up as a baggage train in OWAC IV after finishing 1000 points of 3rd edition greenskins. The wagon and cauldron are 3D printed, the cooks, guard and boar are all Warmonger. There's a Warlord Games "Landsknecht Casualty" in the back of the wagon, waiting his turn in the pot. Obviously this is just a flavorful, fun accessory, and probably won't be making an appearance on any battlefields.


Some commanding officers; the boar chariot is a converted Warmonger Beastman chariot, with a new orc crew added. The orc in the puff-and-slash making a rude gesture was my general for OWAC IV. On the right is a classic Citadel/GW boar boy (with a shield from Knightmare), and on the left is a much larger mounted Orc Commander from Knightmare. I've been encouraged to field a general on foot, and I recognize the limitations of mounting my commander in a chariot, but I'm really tempted to put the Knightmare orc in command of the whole army, maybe attached to the unit of boar boyz I have primed and awaiting paint. 


Last but not least, we have a Hobgoblin Mercenary Contingent for 3rd edition; 12 Mourngul Renegades (I have three more to prime and paint), a commander on a Temple Dog (a Reaper Miniatures "Krung Beast" I sculpted a saddle on), and a beastmaster in need of some Hobhounds. I could use the hobgoblins to bulk out an orc regiment in 8th edition, but otherwise they might stay home.

So what's next?

First and foremost, I need to bulk out my Big'uns and my two mobs of Warmonger Boyz, along with my goblin regiment. I've got more Warmonger figures on the way, and need to sort out the goblins I have. 

More trolls. I've got four unpainted ones here, and may order another 4 to field two units of six.

Add a second Wolfboyz unit.

I have 10 Orc Boar Boyz to paint, all from Knightmare Miniatures; several of them were converted with weapon swaps, and I converted a standard bearer and musician. 

War machines will be a big addition as well; I have one bolt thrower half-painted and intend to add two more, as well as a proper Rock Lobba catapult. Two Goblin Wolf Chariots might be called for as well. 

I've been encouraged to field a Mangler Squig in 8th edition; I've got Knightmare's Giant Gnasher that will work perfectly as such.

Friday, December 16, 2022

Mounted Orc Warboss (Knightmare Miniatures)

 So in 2021 I painted 1000 points' worth of Orcs and Goblins for 3rd edition Warhammer Fantasy Battles as part of the Old World Army Challenge. I signed up to paint another 1000 points this year, but couldn't keep up on my painting and got disqualified halfway through. So I have a lot of greenskins here that have been primed and awaiting paint for a year now.

Earlier this month, I found out that a local tournament, Da Boyz GT, had a Warhammer Fantasy Battles 8th Edition tourney this year. And I have my wife's enthusiastic support for me to attend in 2023 (our health allowing), if I get enough minis painted up to qualify. I've never actually played Warhammer; 20-21 years ago I walked into a Games Workshop store for the first time and walked out with a box of plastic Night Goblins, a blister of Fanatics, a blister of Squigs and a River Troll. As a teenager I didn't have the money or the attention span to focus on an army long enough to get one built. So were I to attend it would fulfill a bunch of teenage dreams of mine. 

This got me inspired to dig out some primed greenskins and start painting, starting with this mounted Warboss from Knightmare Miniatures. He was a birthday present from my wife in 2021, and a great starting point to resume painting my orcs and goblins. I love that he's riding a warthog instead of a standard boar.




Sunday, December 11, 2022

Ah-Cahulka, the Golden (Lucid Eye Publications)

 Over on Instagram I'm participating in a "Deadcember" painting challenge this month, and posted my finished piece today. My undead of choice was "Ah-Cahulka, the Golden" from Lucid Eye Publications, a Mesoamerican-style liche from their "Savage Core" line, part of the "Maxzan" faction. 


The base is a couple layers of cork board, torn into irregular shapes and stacked on top of each other, painted in shades of gray (there was a green wash in there as well, for the humid, mossy stone look, but I think it got lost in the gray to some extent), then splodged with thinned white glue and dipped in a couple different shades and grades of flocking. I topped that off with a couple of green foam shrubbery bits. 


I had a really good time painting this figure; I'd originally thought he'd be a gaming piece but honestly, I might keep him as a display figure.

Saturday, November 26, 2022

Back of Beyond: "Keys to Shambhala"


I've been reading Andrei Znamenski's 2011 book "Red Shambhala: Magic, Prophecy and Geopolitics in the Heart of Asia" this week. Exploring Bolshevik efforts in the 1920s to exploit apocalyptic Buddhist prophecies to sway Mongolia and Tibet towards Marxism-Leninism, it's ripe for being turned into a Pulpy "Back of Beyond" skirmish game. And so, going through the figures I've got painted (and painting one to finish things off), I prepped a game for this holiday weekend. I need to get some more White Russians and Warlord Chinese painted at some point in the near future to expand these games some as well. 

Honestly, some of the personalities operating in Central Asia during this period are more colorful than would be believable in fiction, which is just wonderful for gaming purposes; I've been a big fan of Roy Chapman Andrews, the American paleontologist who retrieved the first known dinosaur eggs from Mongolia in this period (and who was one of the models for Indiana Jones), for many years now, and he's almost bland by comparison to the likes of Baron Roman von Ungern-Sternberg, Frank "One-Armed" Sutton, Colonel Frederick M. Bailey, and Cheka agent, cryptographer and paranormal investigator Gleb Bokii.

Bokii's efforts to organize a scientific expedition to locate the legendary kingdom of Shambhala and convince the Ascended Masters therein to turn their occult superscience towards the Bolshevik cause was the inspiration for today's game. I didn't have any figures scrawny and weaselly enough to pass for Bokii, so I used a figure from Pulp Figures' recent "Arcane Academics" Kickstarter as a fictionalized stand-in: Dr. Sergei Kolchak - revolutionary spy, agent provocateur and occult investigator. His grandson would continue the family tradition of exploring the paranormal, fifty years later in the 1970s. 

Setup: 1924, Southern Mongolia. Dr. Sergei Kolchak, head of a secret occult investigation unit within the Soviet Secret Police, has become obsessed with legends of the hidden kingdom of Shambhala in Central Asia; he seeks to meld Leninist-pattern communism with Tantric Buddhist teachings to produce a stronger, more spiritually-pure version of Communist ideology. The monks of the Emerald Monastery, he believes, hold the secret to Shambhala’s location. He’s had the monastery shelled to convince the monks to surrender, and now, under cover of darkness, leads a team into the ruins to collect the monks. However, a team of American expat mercenaries, all veterans of the Polar Bear Operation in 1918, are on hand to protect the monks.

"GENERAL" CAPPY BOYD'S EXPATRIATE MERCENARIES (Group Trait: Loyal)


  • General Cappy Boyd (Leader; Encouraging, Steady, Smart) armed with a Pistol
  • Sgt. Piney (Specialist; Tough as Nails, Deadeye) armed with a BAR
  • Pvt. Junior Jones (Regular; Dodge) armed with a Boys Anti-Tank Rifle (anachronistic, I know, but deal with it)
  • Zeb Walton (Regular; Stealthy) armed with a Rifle
  • Michael "Boomer" Murphy (Regular; Sprinter) armed with Dynamite Bundles and a Pistol

CHEKA SPECIAL OPERATIONS GROUP (Group Trait: Killers)


  •  Dr. Sergei Kolchak (Leader; Cold-Blooded, Bodyguard, Occult Expert), armed with a Pistol
  • Dragovitch (Specialist; Brawler, Pugilist), armed with a Pistol
  • Commissar Ivanov (Regular; Ferocious), armed with a Pistol and Saber
  • Olga, Heroine of the Revolution (Regular; Indomitable) armed with a Pistol and Banner
  • Red Guardsmen (Grunt Group; Loyal) armed with Rifles

 The Bolsheviks deployed at the northern table edge, while Cappy and Sgt. Piney deployed in the ruined monastery at the center of the table with the four monks; the remainder of the Mercenaries began play off-table, arriving at the table edge upon their turn in the initiative order. Night has fallen, reducing all weapons to an effective range of 12" and giving everyone a -1 modifier to Shooting attacks. The scenario is basically "Caught in a Tight Spot" out of the Fistful of Lead: Wasteland Warriors book. I randomized the table edges that the remaining Mercenaries arrived at though. 



Kolchak moved into cover and took a long shot at General Cappy Boyd and missed; Boyd returned fire, putting a Shock token on Kolchak. Sgt. Piney opened up on the group of Bolsheviks with full auto fire, putting one grunt Out of Action, wounding Commissar Ivanov and putting a Shock token on Dragovitch, while going Out of Ammo himself in the process.

 

The game quickly turned into a swirl of shooting and close combat as the Bolsheviks attempted to rally and storm the fortified position Boyd and Piney were holding and Junior, Zeb and Boomer entered the field from three different table edges. And, I'll be honest - I got three hours of sleep last night, and I've been up for nineteen hours as of when I'm writing this, and I'm pretty sure I forgot to update the turn counter a couple times. So what happened when is a little hazy today. Instead of the full play-by-play, here's some highlights:

  • Ivanov stands back up after being wounded by Piney, advances towards the center of the table, and is wounded a second time, this time by a shot from Boyd. He stands up again and actually scales the wall to reach the platform the monks are on. He gets into close combat with Boyd and wins, putting the General Out of Action. Before he can grab a monk and make his escape, he's shot by Piney and put Out of Action himself.
  • After using burst fire on the Bolsheviks, Piney was shot at by one of the grunts, taking a Shock token and retreating to the far side of the platform. He spends his next turn reloading, and then is attacked by Dragovitch in close combat, winning and putting Dragovitch prone with a wound. Piney then turns and shoots Ivanov, who'd just killed Boyd.
  • Dragovitch succeeds on his recovery roll, stands up and, despite being wounded, punches out Piney - putting a Shock token on him and pushing him back AND OFF THE PLATFORM. The fall results in Piney taking a second Shock token. Before he can try to recover, Olga shoots him, putting a Wound on him. 
  • THREE figures rolled a "1" on a recovery roll to stand up after being wounded, resulting in them instead expiring and going Out of Action - Piney, Boomer (who was shot twice in quick succession by the last remaining Grunt) and Kolchak himself (shot by Zeb). All in the span of about two turns. 
  • In the final turn, it was just Olga, one Red Guardsman, Junior and Zeb left on the table. Zeb beat the Red Guardsman in close combat, putting the grunt Out of Action, while Olga went Out of Ammo while shooting at Junior from cover. Olga decided fleeing the table was the better course of action than standing around fumbling with reloading her revolver. 

 


So a victory for the Mercenaries, but a costly one, with only two figures left on the board. I think the monastery may have ended up over-fortified; the Bolsheviks had a very hard time even getting close to the monks, and didn't manage to even shift any of them off the platform; I think having the monks on the raised platform was probably a mistake in hindsight; Piney and Boyd were able to shoot down at the approaching Bolsheviks as they approached pretty handily, and the attackers had to circle around the platform to reach the stairs if they didn't feel like climbing a sheer building side while being shot at. Still, the Bolsheviks gave a pretty good showing for themselves, even if they didn't win.

Friday, November 25, 2022

Old School Miniatures "Starship Skirmishers" Kickstarter

 Old School Miniatures has a Kickstarter going for scifi skirmish figures, and you know me, I love scifi skirmish gaming. Jamie was kind enough to put a call out for volunteers to paint up some of the new figures, and I volunteered, receiving one figure. Between Royal UK Mail and the US Postal Service, I didn't receive it until November 22nd, halfway through the Kickstarter! I knuckled down though and got my contribution cleaned up, based, primed and painted - with 90% of the painting happening TODAY. 

And to top it all off, I can confidently say it's one of the best paintjobs I've ever done.


There's only four days left in the Kickstarter if you want to get a head start on adding this figure, and some other great Rogue Trader-inspired figures, to your collection.