Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Brand New Project - 28mm Sudan - part 1

And so a new project begins….

Back in 2016 I decided that I wanted to recreate sufficient forces for the Shed to play the Anglo Zulu War in 28mm.

If you have been following this blog you might recall that at the start of the project it was my intention to not just fight the Zulu wars of Victoria's empire but also feature the other major wars.

As of today I can announce that my take on the Sudan Wars of the late 19th Century has begun. This does mean hundreds of menacing looking tribal warriors up against a smaller well armed, highly disciplined colonial army. It also means cavalry, camels, river boats and fortifications. So where do I start.

Fortunately Perry miniatures offers the discerning wargamer a range of options with which to build his force. These figures will no doubt be augmented with other manufacturers once I had had the chance to to asses their compatibility, price and availability. In the coming weeks I will be happy to share this analysis.

To kick things off I needed lots of Dervishes (Fuzzy Wuzzies as Corporal Jones called them) so a trawl of ebay quickly found several of these boxes (6 in total). Each box contains 40 multipart figures and over the weekend I assembled the whole lot in several sittings. These have all been mounted on my preferred option of the 25mm steel washer base. I think it’s safe to say that I have become quite adept at assembling plastic troops en masse.

Believe it or not that is 240 Dervishes - I will need more

Quick tips for anybody else wanting to attempt this laborious task –

1.       Remove body from sprue, clean up flash and superglue to base
2.       Remove all heads – glue heads to body
3.       Remove all Right Arms – glue right arms…

I think you probably get the drift

Unlike the Zulus where I based them in 12’s on movement trays I wanted these to be consistent with the TMWWBK – so I have elected to base these on the eight slot zombie trays from Warbases. Two bases gives me 16 figures for one of their warbands.

The next step is to get this lot primed. 

Friday, 6 October 2017

Battle Report from the Peninsular War

Morning All

Well on Monday night we finally got round to playing a proper game in the shed and what better than throwing out 40+ units Napoleonic troops.

Once again I would play the allies to be joined later in the evening by Rolf. The French would be commanded by Alastair and Mark. To create some randomness we each received 22 units (as defined by cards) from the deck and had to build six brigades. The Brigade had to have a minimum size of two and max size of five. Most brigades were 3 -4 units in size. The cards also illustrate the  units stats.

This was a straightforward engagement with the battlefield characterised by a number of my new Iberian village squares. For those of you not familiar with built up areas inb Black Powder these are tough nuts to crack. One area can only hold one battalion and that unit effectively saves on everything bar a one !

So battle commenced with each brigade dicing to arrive on the board in march column.slowly and steadily the forces arrived. First up for the allies was their left wing - a brigade of infantry and cacadores support.

The British centre emerged  it was a bit crowded - a british line battalion quickly siexzed the firsat farm house

By now the Frogs had arrived and soon poured forward in the same old usual way. The elite Swiss battalion took up residence in the central farmhouse

The French commanders survey the battlefield

By now all the units were on the table - the British heavy cavalry dominating the centre

French Light Cavalry screened the advance on the right wing. These guys soon came into contact with the Allied light horse opposite. Honours were even as both brigades broke themselves on each other

A series of poor command rolls along the centre of the Allied lines meant they weren't going forward

Eventually Wellingtons orders were received and the Allied line advanced

The Brits siezed the third farm. Digging in for a hostile reaction

By now the Brits on the left flank had advanced and were engaged in a furious firefight with a battalion of french occupying the farmstead on the extreme allied left flank. The Cacadores chareged and bounced off - these built up areas really are tough nuts to crack

Across the centre the French line marched forward - a foray by English horse soon put them into square but with no infantry or artillery support the attack was wasted,, in the distance Brigadier Rolfs infantry were fighting hard against the french column. A single highland battalion routing two french columns in quick succession

The centre was in a stalemate position - the French decided to release their infantry (light in skirmish fomation to goad the allies into action. The British horse took the bait but just didn't charge.

Rolf was having much better luck on the French left flank - his redcoats had all but destroyed two further battalions and very soon the French left collapsed

The centre still saw little action - but the French skirmishers were taking a toll on the allied lines. Very quickly the massed formation of voltiguers drive off one british line battalion and injured several portuguese allies

Fearing the British cavalry might eventually come out to play the skirmishers moved to their right and opened fire on the farmhouse with six shots - four hits, Was I worried no - my brave boys only had to avoid rolling ones...oops - three casualties (given i'd already suffered one a break test was called for) and guess what the battalion was routed. Add this rout to the other suffered from skirmish fire half my infantry in the centre no longer advanced.

If i thought my British had a bad time spare a thought for Alastair - his entire French command on the french  was broken - the plucky chaps in redcoats had delivered a pretty bloody nose to the French

Brigadier Rolf had won the game for the allies

A fast and furious game full of drama, suspense but best of all a British victory

thanks for following

until next time

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Peninsular Village part 3

Hi Folks

When I left you last I had completed 3 of the boards for my peninsular village - if you want to go back to that post you can find it here

So the next job was to finish off the remaining 5 boards to complete the village block of nine squares - this would give a footprint of 90cm x 90cm.

Once again each board was given the eva foam flagstone treatment and those areas uncovered by paving were covered in sand and ballast. Once this was all dry the ground work was painted in brown paint (an emulsion mix I had made up for me when I did my desert boards, the brown was originally based on GW Khemri brown). As soon as was dry all the ground work was drybrushed yellow ochre followed by a dry brush of titanium buff. It works really well as an arid groundbase.

The paint treatment starts

The boards themselves were then treated to a smattering of static grass and a few trees from my very large collection. I dont think you can have too many trees.

These are nearly finished.

I now need to complete some scatter terrain (carts, fountains etc) and a single board for a town square.

At the moment the tower is still freestanding. It maystill gets its own board

So onto some pictures - if you look carefully you might even see that the town is being investigated by the 95th !

My peninsular village is taking shape

A different angle

A birds eye view

I can see movement....

A view up the street

Another birsdeye view of a 2 x 4 sized town

Here comes the 95th !

In my next post you'll see the some of the boards in action...

so next problem where am I going to store this lot

more soon

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Peninsular Village Part 2

Managed to grab some time over the weekend to try and almost finish off three of the Peninsular Village Boards.

These were the walled complexes/ farms. I have a game planned on Monday night and they will be needed.

If you missed the previous post it is here

As you can see from the pictures below I have not only completed the groundwork but have also added trees, static grass etc. I realised that as soon as these were complete I hadn't taken any work in progress photos so these will have to wait til next time - apologies

Building 1

The trees are from one of the Chinese sellers with the trunks lopped off

The tiles have come out really well...

Building 2

A little more upmarket  - it has a balcony

Here they are side by side

up next is Building 3 - this is on a 60cm x 30cm board

- I think of it as the Monastery

All three boards together...

I'm on a roll now and want to get these finished pronto...

more soon

part 3 here

Thursday, 28 September 2017

28mm Village for my Napoleonic Project part 1

Hi Folks

As promised in my last post I have started on my latest terrain project, the Peninsular Village. Although if truth be told this could be used for a variety of periods and genres.

Effectively I am re-purposing and tarting up the buildings I bought on ebay earlier this year. These have all been assembled and painted by somebody else (if you are reading this thank you - they look great).

The original ebay purchase - think I spent £80 on this lot

The issue I had with them was that they looked slightly bland sitting on my green baseboards and it was difficult to denote one particular build up area from another. I also wanted to use them to create a series of farms, convents, monasteries etc.

With a plan sitting in my head I decided to mount these on 30 cm square 5mm plywood bases. I am hoping that the ply will be thick enough to prevent warping. My usual terrain bases tend to be hardboard but this material is guaranteed to warp past a certain size. For the princely sum of £13 my local B&Q hardware store was able to cut up an 8ft x 4ft board into several squares plys a few rectangles (60cm x 30cm).

It was then just a simpler task of placing the current buildings in a series of patterns on these boards. By going down the square route these can be reconfigured into a number of different size villages and ham;lets or I can use the boards individually. From a black powder ruleset perspective each board counts as a built up are and can hold one battalion of troops. 

The buildings themselves were fixed to the boards using hard as nails glue and left to dry overnight.

Aside from the Church and Tower (still to be mounted on boards) I have now created a village with 9 base boards - that's almost 1 metre square. Whereas the walled compounds are square on the bases the individual houses have been placed at angles to reflect the fact that these towns are rarely built on grids.

Four boards come together to create a town square in which will sit a fountain purchased from Grand Manner. I'll also put together some statues for the town.

The building in the top right of the photo below was over 30cm long so this sits on a base 30cm x 60cm. It looks a bit like a monastery

The next job is to then dress the boards. I decided that flagstones would look good and using 2mm eva foam I cut out hundreds of small squares and rectangles. These were fixed to the boards using PVA. As you can see from the pictures I am about half way through this. It is a laborious task and patience is required.

This compound has had the tiles painted black and ground work started on the outside

Once dry these are then painted black specifiaclly allowing the paint to seep betwen the cracks. More on the progress of this in the next post.

There's more, as I mentioned in the previous post I have added to my village two purchases from Charlie Fox Trot models. These are the small church and the tower. Both can be found in their pantile range.

Once assembled (they are made of mdf) I added stone work to the corners using eva foam. This adds further depth to the model and makes these models stand out. The bare MDF was then coated in a semi liquid filler mix (consistency of thick gravy) and allowed to dry.

I wanted these two buildings to tie into the rest of the buildings and fortunately one of my tester pots of emulsion paint was an almost perfect match. The walls have been given a couple of coats with the added stonework painted white.

The first couple of paints - still not finished - doors windows and weathering to be done

As you can see these match the colour of the original buildings

The resin roofs were primed black and then drybrushed deep red and terracotta.

Come back soon