Thursday, 28 January 2016

GW at Nuremburg Toy Fair

Seen at Nuremburg, apparently GW intends another push on the toy market with Airfix type gift sets of snap fit models, brush, glue and paints in a box.

The plastic will be coloured so no undercoat or bar coast will be needed.

Price from £10 (top) to £25 (bottom row).

Might be some bargains here lads when the residue gets remaindered.

Reported by Chris Smith.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Review 7TV - Version II

Last night I played 7TV version II with Mik H. Neither of us had played before so we chose a simple introductory scenario.

The first think I noticed that in comparison to version I, it was so much quicker and easier to create a force from scratch. Boss Hoggs boys, headed by co-star leather-clad sadist Travis, took all of five minutes to create from the preprogrammed convenient cards - that incidentally have all relevant information written on.

Mik fielded Prof. Tweedy's vigilantes.

The game has been rewritten and cleaned out from the bottom up. All those fiddley counters that made 7TV such a pain to play are gone. Now you have but one action marker set that act as the resource control for everything. Another change (from what I remember of the old game) is that you feed these markers in as you decide to use them during the turn.

The new game most closely resembles Batman, in that it is a resource-controlled skirmish game. However, Batman involves setting up resource counters onto a control board at the start of each turn rather like a Star Trek battle - "more power to the shields Scotty". 7TV II just feeds them in as they are used and no control board is necessary.

This makes t7TV more fluid, faster, and more in keeping with a TV show.

The end of the game. Boss Hogg and Travis expended their cheap minions freely and took out all Tweedy's people.

I always loved the idea of 7TV but disliked the execution. Version II is better in every way. It's more like a new game than a reboot.

Loved it: Highly recommended.

My thanks to Mik for teaching me the rules.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

VBCW - Temporary Airfield on the Village Green

Spode's Blackshorts have 'liberated' two Silver Wings and flown them to an airfield that they have set up on the green of the Kent village of Puckleberry.

Stormflyer Goring, late Flight-Lieutenant Goring of His Majesty's RAF (very late since the affair of  the missing mess funds), stands guard in case any peasant revolutionaries of the Watt Tyler Front are in the offing.

From right to left is a Fairy Flycatcher, a carrier plane as you can see from the reinforced undercarriage, and a much more potent Hawker Fury. If you imagine the top wing of the Fury removed and retractable undercarriage fitted, you can see how Hawker developed the Hurricane so quickly.

These are old 1:48 models that I bought cheap, prebuilt off eBay, and tarted up a bit.

They'll be no holding Spode now that he has air support.

Pip, pip, old bean.

Plastic Oldhammer

Plastic Oldhammer soldiers can be had for a song on eBay, especially those that were in starter kits. Some, like the Bretonnian Bowmen, make useful Medieval as well as fantasy figures.

Many are unpainted.

These will never be great figures, especially repaints as they are not worth the time stripping, but they are useful army padders.

A lick o'paint and Army Painter patina varnish can cover a multitude of sins.

Monday, 25 January 2016

IHMN - Rough Diamonds

Sergeant Murphy leads a team of skirmishers in an exercise on Salisbury Plain.

In Her Majesty's Name - Jolly Good Chaps

Some Jolly Good Chaps of the sort that built The Empire, dont'cha know.

Sourced from Warlord Games Zulu War range and eminently suitable for IHMN.

Pip, pip!

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Review Antares Medium Stanchion Building

Dropped in on my friend Shaun to blag a cup of coffee to find he was working on his lasercut Antares buildings.

He has finished the Medium kit.

What struck me about the model is that it is much larger than I had imagined from the photo. It is well designed for wargaming with steps you can actually put a figure on. The steps are on a separate stand and lock into the main building at the top without gluing so they can be stored seperately, which is a great space saver. You could also put a more vertical ladder onto the main model as an alternative.

The theme is all very colonial 'Star Wars' looking. Not sure why I think that but I do. Nice to see something that looks a little different. I can see these being used for fantasy and Lost World games

I like it and at £13 it is good value.


Saturday, 16 January 2016

Review - Nagash, Supreme Lord of the Undead

The Nagash model is one of the most expensive plastic kits in the GW range. This particular example cost me £65, and I haven't seen it discounted for much less: GW has a policy of blocking discounters while staying within EU competition laws.

Let me say up front that I am not sure whether to review this as a display  or a wargaming model. The suits at GW have been trumpeting a new policy which is to dissociate themselves from wagaming, transforming the company into a 'bespoke model' manufacturer. However, since the Age of Sigmar debacle there seems to be one of those 180 degree swings that characterise what passes for a marketing strategy at the company. Now we we seeing promises of new games galore. All those 'specialist' games that were cancelled because they were uneconomic are apparently on the way back.

Anyway, here I will try to review the kit from both a modeller's and a wargamer's perspective, although I am firmly in the latter camp.

The first impact of opening the box is extreme disappointment. It is empty except for two large plastic sprues. A display modeller is going to be very pissed off. For example, compare this with the Tamiya 1:48 Fieseler Storch. You can find a review of this fairly typical display model here. The Storch box is just stuffed with goodies. Lots of sprues, decals and even etched components.

And you know what, the Storch can be had for as little as a measly £35 - see here - although I believe the full RRP is closer to the Nagash's cost.

 The Tamiya kit is much more finely detailed than the Nagash model. 

It also has a huge range of options for the discerning modeller.

The Nagash base is notably disappointing, being just a large blank piece of plastic. I had to delve around in my bits box for Mantic items to decorate it. That is not unusual for wargaming models but few of those cost sixty five quid.

 As a display model Nagash is lousy value for money. Frankly, I think GW delude themselves if they think this is going to sell well to modellers. Apart from anything else, such people like kits with a provenance - either from real history or solid 'mythological' backgounds from Achilles to the Starship Enterprise.

As a wargaming kit, Nagash is harder to value. One is not just buying a kit but a game playing piece so value for money rather depends how much Age of Sigmar (or some similar game for which the model has utility) features in your life. It is fair to point out that offhand I can't think of any other manufacturer offering something similar in plastic.

Personally, I was underwhelmed as a purchaser. I did not feel I had value for money, I don't think the final result is all that impressive 'in the flesh', and I won't use the model enough to justify the outlay.


Friday, 15 January 2016

Knight Models - The Riddler

DC comics go way back into my past so, although I'm not a great fan of the Batman Miniature Game, I love their models - especially the super-villains.

Wonderfully evocative model of the Riddler.

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Antares - Skirmish At Lordswood

The Colonia at Lordswood goes off air so a security unit of the Concord Military is sent to investigate. It consists of an officer and aides, a small tactical unit and two light support drones.

The Concord TU carefully moves into the plantation as there scanners show evidence of Ghar gravitonic activity.

Ghar fighting vehicles are detected within the compound. The drones are sent out to the flanks to give fire support.

The Concords are suroprised by a Ghar close combat unit and a short range firefight develops.

The Ghar unit is wiped out but not before mauling the Concord TU.

A second Ghar fire-support unit is trapped between the buildings and pulverised by drone fire from the front and rear.

My first proper Beyond the Gates of Antares game, 400 pts a side.

Great fun: looking forward to more.

Friday, 8 January 2016

SMER Piper Cub

A German patrol cautiously inspects an abandoned US Army liaison plane.

SMER are a company that buys up old, very old, moulds and rereleases them under their own brand name. The detailing is not exactly Tamiya quality, the sprues often need cleaning, and the scale can be a bit off but they are robust and oh so cheap.

Mine cost me about £7.

This 1:48 Piper Cub is perfect as a piece of terrain for a Bolt Action Game in the Med or Western Europe. It comes with nice decals for early or late war plus Normandy stripes. It would also do for interwar or post war in Africa, Asia or South America.

They were built from 37 to 47 and are still flying today.

Although I use 1/72 planes to represent bombing or strafing models one really needs 1:48 if the aircraft is intended to be on the ground as a terrain piece.

Perfect for a wargamers needs: Recommended.

Games Workshop Profit Warning

Games Workshop announced disappointing Xmas sales. Profits are likely to be down on last year by a small percentage.  Chief Executive Rowntree described it as 'good progress'.

GW briefly raised profits and massively increased their return on capital (a currently fashionable index among corporates) by cost cutting (among the design and sales staff) and price rises. But this hasn't stopped a long term slide in sales which is now hitting profits.

Read more here.

Monday, 4 January 2016

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Churning Out Marines

Spent the new year fast painting GW Marines.

First up some 30K Ultramarines painted by Tamiya Metallic Blue spraypaint.

Next, a unit of Sigmarines with crossbows, painted with Humbrol Metallic Gold Spray Paint.

Spray cans are the perfect way to under coat and base cover marines, saving oodles of time and giving a pleasing uniform appearance. A dab of wash and a few complimentary colours and you have a Proper Job - as they say of the land of my fathers.

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Anuvva Freikorps Officer

Another Copplestone figure.

It's not well known but Guderian, who was a complete shit in many ways, was a Feikorps officer in the Baltic: not something you will find much about in his memoirs.