Friday, December 14, 2012

On Vacation

Let the fanfare begin. Today begins my Christmas vacation. Seventeen days away from work. Five without children. Minis shall be painted, terrain shall be made, games played, alcohol will be consumed, cigars smoked and hopefully many toys will be received from Santa.
Posting will be non existent. Oh, but when I return.......
To everybody who stops by, thanks for all the kind words and comments over the past year. See you on the other side of the Mayan Apocalypse.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Pulp Alley

The Red Raptor-his motives are his own....

I have been looking for a set of Pulp-era rules for awhile. There's lots of good ones out there, and I have a ton of great miniatures for it. But most rules won't hold up to the 6-8 players I get every Thursday. So I was delighted to get a chance to try Pulp Alley by David Phipps while still its playtest phase.
Lady Dora Stanpipe-late of Madame Cheddar's School for Strong Willed Young Ladies

We gave it a whirl last week but I didn't take pictures because of lack of finished minis or terrain. Our brave playtesters looked past this and dug in. The game embraces the idea of pulp with Leagues or teams or stalwart heroes led by a Leader. The roster is then filled (in a very simple way) with Sidekicks, Allies and Followers. Your Leaders are, of course, the toughest. They get d10s and d8s to fight evil. Everyone else down the line gets progressively fewer sided dice.
Players must capture Plot Points while facing Perils, represented by a Fortune deck.
I found the mechanics very streamlined. The game easy to pick up, and most of all, handled our crew.
The pre-game and post game sequence is smart, with a campaign smoothly integrated.
Mr. Phipps has been very responsive to both questions and suggestions. I highly recommend this when it comes out. I'm painting away to form 8 teams.
One thing I have done is make character cards for the actual games. The rosters are good for the campaign aspect.

WIP: paint it black

I'm one of those black primer guys. Weapon of choice? Over the years, I've tried everything. The best so far hands down is the cheapest $0.98 flat black from WalMart.

Next: Base colors

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

WIP: ConFed troops basing

Normally, applying basing material is the last thing I do on a miniature. I use a product from Liquitex that's acrylic, making it durable, already has grit to it, and after I mix pigment to it, halfway done at application.
I wanted a more rocky texture to these bases so they looked like they were wading through rubble. My skirmish miniatures are always based on steel washers. I like the look of the thinner bases, and as I line my transport boxes with magnetic sheets, it keeps them from falling over or shifting. Granted, the walk from my storage room to the game room is about 20 feet, but they occasionally they take a longer trip.
I used tacky glue liberally apllied. Then used railroad tallus (sp?). I started using sand, but it was too fine, and switched to rubber in-fill for the final part. My wife used to work for an artificial turf company and I have not only a garage full of turf samples, but 5 gallon buckets of sand and rubber in-fill (the black rubbery stuff in the "grass" that keeps it up). Don't know how it will hold up to paint, but here goes nothing.
Also note, I had to use "greenstuff" to hold the heads on. Superglue wasn't getting enough of a purchase.
Next: Priming

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Distractions and Holiday plans

Christmas is about the only time I take any kind of consecutive day vacation. I've been steadily chugging away of my Renaissance armies and to me Christmas break is a great time to do odd one offs and side projects. After playing some 15mm SciFi with the group, combined with 28mm WW2, it got me thinking of 28mm SciFi skirmish. I've always liked Pig Iron's stuff, so this week I bought some.
I have a roughed out a  background that I think will give some fun games. Everything from the big Fleet battles to fights in the burned out cities of the future. I'm looking at a modified Victory Decison for the skirmish rules.
This will be a new Civil War of sorts. The oppressive rule of the United Systems Alliance has finally led to open war. The newly founded Confederation of Free Worlds has made it's first stand on the planet New Meridian. The brave little Browncoats (wink,wink) will have to face better technology and better trained troops to survive, but if they can just hold out, maybe new systems will secede to join them.

I plan to actually do a WIP for these fellas. Malicious use of Biological and Chemical warfare by the Union has forced the use of gasmasks across the battlefields. Union troops will be played by Pig Iron's System Troopers.
The other project (distraction) is Maurice. I have long been a fan of anything Sam Mustafe does. He's one of the few wargames rules writers that I often stop mid read to go "Yes! That is an awesome idea."
I have the free quick start rules and have read them. They seem to be a combination of two rules I love. The card driven command system of Commands and Colors, and combat mechanics of Might and Reason. A quick Google of reviews of rules will reveal I'm not alone in my excitement. Maurice is meant for the Age of Reason, but I've seen people using it all the way up to War of 1812. You'll just have to wait and see where I go with it. Unkerlant, or another place....