Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Some recent 1/72 scale painting

I would suppose that there is not a wargamer out there who ever gets as much painting done as they hope to.  Most of the summer was occupied by other activities this year, and the fall is getting off to a slow start as well.  I was responsible for running an emergency response exercise for the office last month, which was taking up most of my crerative energy, but, when it finally came time to run it, I ended up with a long weekend in Tooele, Utah, with not much to do except to settle in with my portable painting kit.  I finished up 22 figures in a weekend, including this little dragon which I bought from the local game store while I was there. (The dragon also came with the large skull, which I painted up figuring that I could find a use for a giant/ogre skull for something.)  I have been trying to fill out my planned orders of battle for the five countries involved in my Northlands solo campaign, so I particularly wanted to get some orcs done.  I also had a group of cows (a very small herd, I suppose) that I wanted to add as a baggage element.  Beyond that, I was willing to go with whatever inspired me.


I wasn’t sure what to do with the cows.  My wife suggested that I look at “belted cows”. I hadn’t heard of this as a color pattern, and there aren’t any that I have noticed locally.

However, it looked like it would be very easy to paint, so, belted cows they are.  Since they are usually going to be deploed into a fantasy setting, I don’t need to worry about when the breed was developed or any of the rest of that “realism” stuff.

In addition to the bases, I finished up 7 individuals.  The orcs are destined for the Rangers of Shadow Deep campaign I am playing co-op with Chris Palmer, and the rest are an ecelectic assortment of Strelets, Caesar and Dark Alliance figures.  The 8th figure, at the far right, was finished before the trip but finally based up with the rest when I got home.  

As mentioned, at one point I took a break from the painting to walk down the street to the game store, Game Haven, where I picked up the Wizkids dragon and a couple of bottles of paint.  There was a Joann’s fabric and craft store next door, so I ducked in there to see if I could find something that would work for scenery.  I had the sudden notion that I might play a skirmish game with all of the freshly painted figures. 

I came out with a camoflage bandanna, a plastic plant, and some tan cardstock, and whipped up this. 

My son Norman looked over the available troops and suggested that the rational scenario was humans and orcs squabbling over cattle … until the dragon arrives.  I think that would have worked out, except that time and energy ran out before I could implement it.  Nevertheless, it does seem that it should be possible to have some sort of starter game on the table fairly quickly, should one need or wish to.

After getting home and getting the basing done, it took a couple of weeks to get back to the painting table.  I started in on some Dark Alliance orcish warg riders, but set them aside briefly to allow a heavy wash to dry.  Before I knew it, I was finishing up two “big guys” who had be in progress for a while.  The big eared one is a troll (or “bunyip” in the Dean family) from the sadly out-of-production Caesar Adventurers set, and the other is a Dark Alliance cyclops.  The Airfix Robin Hood figure is just there to give an idea of the scale.

With both sons due to be back in the area, family conversation has turned to DBA/Hordes of the Things armies, so I decided to try to make some progress on an ancient Nubian army (DBA I/3 if that helps) to add to the family Bronze Age collection.

I managed to finish up two warband stands and a skirmisher, so I have two skirmishers and nine bow stands (including a general) to go.  

Monday, October 10, 2022

Barrage XXV, 23-24 September 2022

 It is hard to believe that the HAWKs reached Barrage 25 this year; it still seems like only yesterday when someone suggested at a club meeting that a game day would be a good idea.  We went to two days a couple of years ago, and this year we had over 200 attendees including club members.

Unfortunately for me, I had to miss the Friday events, as I was returning from a work trip to Utah over which I did not have schedule control, and didn’t walk in the door at home until 9:30PM on Friday.  I was signed up to run a Not Quite Seven Years War game on Saturday morning.  While I had spent the weekend before the trip organizing my flea market offerings, and ensuring that I knew where all of the Bronze Age gear that my son Norman was going to need was stowed, I did not have the NQSYW scenario materials pulled out.

Therefore, I got an early start on Saturday morning, pulled all the stuff up from the basement, and got it loaded.  It still wasn’t early enough to avoid a bridge closure due to a running event, but at least I knew that it was likely to be happening this year.  Carrying around a stack of boxes loaded with Charge! regiments in 40mm does leave me wondering these days whether I should be recreating the NQSYW in something a little more portable, such as 1/72 scale plastics …

Chris Palmer brought the North Polenburger army, so the scenario involved an attempt by the Northern Alliance, here represented primarily by North Polenburg, to hold a bridge long enough to allow an evacuation after nightfall.  The Pragmatic Coalition was represented by Schoeffen-Buschhagen, Wachovia, and the Imperial Free City of Wiegenburg, as usual. 

The North Polenburg 32nd Dragoons made an impressive display on their gray horses, as usual.

They fought well, although there was one moment when the lone Wachovian Hussar standard bearer fought off a pair of Dragoons and preserved the flag; a commendation is no doubt in order.

As the battle progressed, the Coalition left flank gradually pushed in the Alliance’s right, in a series of cavalry charges and countercharges so typical of the rules.  The Wiegenburg Regiment (center right) in their white coats (and leading their mascot into the action) suffered heavy casualties in a direct assault on the Alliance line defending the bridge and were eventually forced to withdraw.  A follow-on attack by the Schoeffen-Buschagen Adelmann Regiment, though, was more than the defenders could withstand, and the game ended with the Alliance forces being compelled to withdraw in disorder, seeking an alternative crossing location.

It was, as always, nice to have the NQSYW back on the table.  As I’ll discuss below, there are several reasons why that project is on the top of my mind right now.

Norman has been working steadily on expanding the Bronze Age 1/72 project since last year’s Barrage, and he staged an afternoon game of Egyptians versus a Sea Peoples alliance using his home rules (NURD: Norman’s Universal Rules Design) which looked like it went well.  He ended up coming up prepared to rebase a few of my Egyptian chariots on the spot, to ensure that the Egyptians had the numbers needed.

My flea marketeering went well.  I arrived with four boxes of stuff and returned home with two, plus  $370 in pocket, so I was pleased.  It’s no fault of Reaper Miniatures, but I sold off a lot of Bones 5 figures.  I have concluded that I am more interested in recreating (or perhaps just creating) the vision of fantasy miniatures I had in my youth, so I expect to be putting my effort into expanding my vintage 25mm collection instead of trying to keep up with the latest styles.  


I mentioned that there were a couple of reasons why the NQSYW was on my mind.  Back in August, right after Gen Con, my pre-ordered copy of Henry Hyde’s Wargaming Campaigns arrived.  As might be expected with Henry Hyde, horse and musket campaigning is front and center, so perhaps this will finally kick me over the edge into doing another NQSYW map-based campign.

Additionally, William, my second son and the originator of the Pragmatic Coalition’s Imperial Free City of Wiegenburg, has landed a job in the Washington DC area, and will be returning to this general area next week.  His appointment is for at least a year, so his brother and I have been considering some possible agendas for game days, especially since Norman’s basement, as seen  back in June is suitable for miniatures.