Sunday, November 22, 2020

Entering the Exclusion Zone


Watching a recent video on the Tabletop Minions YouTube channel, I was reminded of Osprey Games' "Zona Alfa" - a skirmish game released earlier this year, involving gangs of scavengers negotiating the dangers of an eldritch "Exclusion Zone" in the Soviet Union, filled with weird radiation, the walking dead, mutants and worse threats.  Author Patrick Todoroff also released a free document through Osprey at the beginning of the Pandemic covering solo play.  

I dug my copy out and started reading it - I think I'd initially bought it to harvest ideas from for Wiley Games' Wasteland Warriors, but reading it I find myself liking it more and more as it's own thing, and the solo rules are, to be perfectly frank, just the thing right now.  Cases of COVID-19 are rising in my county and right now, I don't leave my apartment except to get groceries every other week because people just don't follow the rules to keep us all safe.  I speak especially of my upstairs neighbors who are throwing parties every weekend.  

I happened to have some Grenadier "Future Warriors" figures, now released through Moonraker/Forlorn Hope Games, based and primed, and some Copplestone "Future Wars" figures ready to prime.  I got the latter into the primer box and took advantage of what are probably the last decent priming days of 2020 to get them mostly spray-primed (I'll be touching them up with brush-on primer).  The former, however, I quickly got some paint on this week. The troopers in NBC suits will be my team for solo games, and the bikers will serve as bandits on the "Zone Hostiles" list.  "Big Nick" is going to be a stand-in for the bandit leader "Big Nicolai" in one of the sample scenarios in the rulebook. 

Friday, November 13, 2020

First Six Hobgoblins

 One of the neat things in 3rd edition Warhammer Fantasy Battles is Mercenary Contingents - you can spend a portion of your points on a mini-army of mercenaries who might potentially desert in battle.  It's a calculated risk from the gaming perspective (and one that, as Warhammer got increasingly tournament-focused, I can understand why it was culled) but a nice excuse to paint something different for a bit.  

Because WHFB 3rd Ed. as the ur-ruleset I'm using for Project Greenskins (figuring that painting enough figures to field an army under WHFB 3rd will be more than enough for Dragon Rampant, Oathmark, Warlords of Erehwon, etc), I noticed that there are no rules for including Hobgoblins in an Orc and Goblin army; there were, however, rules for a Hobgoblin Mercenary Contingent.  So, since I'd already bought, cleaned, based and primed a half-dozen hobgoblins from Knightmare Miniatures, I decided I might as well commit to some Hobgoblin Mercenaries.  In other games they might be "Great Goblins" or just a unit of Orcs with pointier noses.  

So that puts me at:

Project Greenskins - PAINTED:

  • 6 Goblin Archers
  • 6 Hobgoblins, inc. Command
  • 3 Goblin Champions

Project Greenskins - PRIMED:

  • 12 Goblins, inc. Command
  • 24 Orcs, inc. Command x2 (two units of 12, to be bulked up)
  • 8 "Boglet Bounders" (aka Squig Hoppers - if push comes to shove I might use these as Fanatics)

 Project Greenskins - ON THEIR WAY

  • 6 Hobgoblins
  • 1 Hobgoblin Commander, Mounted
  • 1 Hobgoblin Beastmaster
  • 22 Orc Archers, inc. Command

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Project Greenskins

 It's been a bit since I've posted here - got tied up in a painting project for a friend for most of October.  However, I'm back to getting some painting done for myself, and I've even organized a specific, ongoing project for myself; I'd already bought quite a bit for it over the last year, but I've formalized it now.

I'm building an "Oldhammer-inspired" force of orcs and goblins, basically being the sort of thing I dreamt about as a teen looking at issues of White Dwarf.  I'm holding myself strictly to the following rules:

  • Every figure has to be metal, or predominantly so.  
  • Every figure has to be painted to the best of my ability - no slacking off on guys in the back row.  
  • Square bases, painted Goblin Green.  
  • Every unit must have a full command. If there's no banner sculpted on a standard pole, I need to paint a paper banner and attach it. 
  • I have to meet the minimum figure counts for various unit types specified in the 3rd Edition Warhammer Armies book from 1991.  If it says an army requires a minimum of 20 Orc Boyz, then I need to paint a minimum of 20 Orc Boyz.  
  • It's not "done" until I build a Baggage Train.  

 So far I've finished off three Goblin Champions and six Goblin Archers:


One of the archers is a Harlequin figure rereleased by Black Tree Design; I've got some more I'd painted previously that I'd like to strip and repaint now that I've really gotten a handle on painting greenskins to my liking.   The rest are all from Knightmare Miniatures in Spain.  

I've also started on some Hobgoblins, also from Knightmare, as the beginnings of a mercenary contingent; while most of the army has dark, burgundy red as a unifying color, the mercenary contingent has a brighter red-orange color with yellow accents, inspired by an old photo of Chaos Dwarf Hobgoblins from probably around the days of 5th edition.  

After these are done, I might do something different for a bit, or I might continue with greenskins; I have a dozen orcs from Warmonger Miniatures primed and ready to go, and another dozen goblins from Knightmare as well.