Sunday, December 20, 2015

Buyer Beware

   While I haven't been playing or painting lately, I still occasionally buy the odd war gaming item, every now and then. One of the latest things I have brought was this item.

   Now despite knowing that Battle Front is quickly becoming the GW of 15mm I was excited about this product. I thought 'Awesome they finally took all their painting guides and put them in one book'. Unfortunately, it wasn't until after I brought it that a realized a problem. Unlike the guides in their previous rule books that used Vallejo paints, the color call outs in this book are only for their new Color of War paints and those paints only.

Paint that can also be used as ammo in the zombie apocalypse.
    Not only do these paints have different numbers then the Vallejo paints, but also different names as well. It doesn't give any type of conversion chart between the two. While the book does have some good information on basing and painting techniques, it was made mainly to sell paint. So unless your planning to by a whole new set of paints, this book will not be as useful as it could be.

   Now that my rant is out of the way, I can tell what I've been doing the past few weeks. Most of the war gaming stuff I've been doing is on computer (Making up house rules, ship sheets, vehicles stats, etc.) I hope to be able to do some games in time for Gnome Con in March. To get ready I've started cleaning off my old work table so I can start painting again.

Ahh yeah, wish me Luck!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

What's been happening.

I know I haven't posted in a while. Several things have come up that really trashed my game and painting time. First I transferred to a new security posting with a new schedule. I'm now working days 8-4. This plus my other job have left me with little chances to paint or play. I actually thought about quitting my part-time job, but then this happened...

Since the police didn't issue a ticket to anyone, my insurance doesn't cover this. Since the damage cost more to repair than the car is worth, I'm now shopping for a car. In the meantime I'll update when I can. I still have a bunch of pictures of when I was in the Army, so I might start posting those.
Any that's all for now.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Harpoon Sunday

   Last Sunday, me and Christian met up at Morning Star Games to play some modern naval warfare. Instead of using Shipwreck, I convinced Christian to give Harpoon a try. I decided to start out with a semple surface engagement, no aircraft and NO submarines. The scenario was from Naval Sitrip and was about a little known part of the Iran/Iraq War. During the Iran/Iraq War in addition to attacking US and neutral ships, the Iranians also harassed Soviet vessels providing supplies to Iraq. Christian played the Soviets, he had a Kashin DDG and was escorting a merchant through the gulf. I was the Iranians with a Saam FF. Here's a picture of the initial deployment.

My Saam FF is in between the two islands on the left. The kashin and its merchant can be in the upper right. 
   We spent the first two intermediate turns, (each representing 30 minutes) closing with each other and detecting with radars. Eventually I pulled along side the two units just in SSM range.

   I then fired two Sea Killer II SSMs at the freighter. The Sea Killers had an old command guidance system that required me to guide them all the way to target. I had only two directors so I could only fire and control two missiles. Christian tried to shot the missiles down with his SA-N-1 SAMs, but they were not effective against the surface skimmers. The first two missiles hit the freighter causing a large amount of damage, but no criticals, damn.

I then fired two more Sea Killers at the merchant. The range had closed somewhat and Christian had decided to change tactics, firing some of his SA-N-1 Goa missiles at my ship. The SAMs air-burst showering my ship with fragments. While doing little to sink my ship they did destroy several of my sensors and weapons, including one of my directors, which caused one of the Sea Killers to self destructs. The other missile hit the target and although not causing as much damage as the double hit before, did produce a few criticals.

   The missile caused damage to the bridge and also hit one of the holds that was holding Ammo. Unfortunately, despite having destroy 90% of the ammo in the hold there was no explosion just a small fire that Christian would get under control.

The merchant on fire as the Kashin escorts it out of the area.

   Christian then fired more SA-N-1s at my ship taking out the rest of my sensors. With me having no more weapons to fight I withdrew from the battlefield. Still having escort the damage freighter, Christian did not pursue. In the end we both declared the battle a draw. I had done more damage to Russians than allowed but was just shy of the 50% required by my own victory conditions.
   Harpoon is a lot more complex than shipwreck. But with some pre-game planning can go quick enough, and it has a lot of good detail. I hope to play more of it in the future.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

In memorandum

It is with great sadness that I say goodbye to my Dell XPS M1530 laptop computer, whose screen died several days ago.

It gave me some of the best years of its life, including one year in Afghanistan. Till now every post on this blog was done on this machine. Later today I'll be taking it to my friend Christian to have its guts removed  and see if any of the files can be recovered.

Good bye old friend.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

If a tree falls down on the table...

As I've been getting ready to do some FFT, I've realized that I had a decided shortage of 6mm trees. I had made some a few years back but I don't know were they've gone and they weren't to good either. Thus I decided to make some new trees using some idea's I got from Bish's 3mm blog, only supersized.

First I started with a humble penny and glued a drywall nail to it.

I then spray painted them ultra flat brown.

I then flocked the bases.

Looks like a forest of punji stakes. 

 Finally I added a clump of Woodland Scenic's Foliage Clusters. Note this is not to be confused with their clumped foliage, as this stuff is MUCH denser. I tried using the clumped stuff for a couple of trees but it didn't work out. I'll probably use the clumped foliage for the bush markers I'll need to make.

In all I was able to make about 48 trees. Which should give a few good woods.

I'm going to start working on my next modern unit this week. I'm also going to see if I can get Christian to try out Harpoon some time.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Megablitz: 12th Panzer Division

As I said yesterday I finished painting up a new unit for Megablitz last week. This is my first late war German unit, the 12th Panzer division. Here's the unit just after I finished painting it.

Now for some of the individual units. First up we have the division's armor, the 29th panzer regiment and 2nd AT Battalion. This unit gave me a bit of trouble. The StuG III was a older GHQ mold without side skirts. So I made my own. They went on uneven, but the extra camouflage even things out. Then I had the barrel of the Panther snap off so I quickly had to replace it.

Next up we have the Division's infantry made up of the 5th and 25th panzer grenadier regiments.  

For reconnaissance I have the 2nd Recon Battalion with a selection of light armored vehicles, mainly SdKfz 250 half-tracks.

Now we come to combat support units. From left to right we have the 32nd panzer pioneer battalion, the 303rd Heer flak battalion, the air defense battalion, and the 2nd panzer artillery battalion.

Finally we have the combat support units. The 2nd medical battalion being followed by the maintenance companies, the 2nd supply battalion, and the division HQ with the 2nd signal battalion in the trailer behind him.

 Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of the unit all together in a nice formation, only the gaggle pictured up above. I'm not sure what I'm going to work on this coming week. Either a new modern unit or some terrain.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Star Fleet Battles Sunday

Last Sunday I drove down to Brunswick to play Star Fleet Battles with Christian, Mike, and David at the McDonald's. The scenario was a free for all between several Orion pirates. The objective was to drop boarding parties on to the wreckage of the Titanic IV. Each ships had a different layout  and we each gave our ships a name. The battle raider I commanded was named Battle Wagon. David had the light raider Blackhole Sun, Mike commanded a heavy raider called Rattlesnake, and Christian named his medium raider The :Last Elvis. Here was the initial setup.

You can see my ship on the far right.
On the first turn most every was going at a conservative speed of around 15-18. I tore through the stars at 27. This would allow me to arrive at the wreck first. Right off the bat David started firing drones at me and we exchanged in a slight missile duel. I then arrived at the wreck quickly dropped off 3 boarding parties then turned away. Meanwhile Mike fired a plasma Torpedo at me.

At the beginning of the next turn I deployed my stinger 2 fighter. As Both mike and Christian started drop boarding parties. Mike also tried to use his shuttle to drop off troops but it was quickly shot down.
 My stinger 2 fighter then engaged Davids fighters. I manage to destroy his F-18, but then suffer crippling damage from his Z-V fighter. David then tractored my fighter. No wanting him to get my stuff I used a phaser to destroy the fighter myself.
 I then found myself in trouble with Christian closing on my aft along with his fight and a plasma torpedo. I used my rear phasers on the torpedo then did a high energy turn to bring my strongest shield to bare. I ended up losing the shield and suffered 10 internal hits.

As the game ended for the day, my ship lost another shield and suffered 10 more internals. We plan to continue this game next month. Despite having lost two shields and suffering 20 internals I still feel pretty good about the situation. Most of the internals were superficial. I still have all my phasers, a drone rack, and a photon torpedo. My only worry is the damage to my scanners and that I was not able to reinforce the boarding parties I put on. Which is what I was planning for the next turn.

Anyway we should be concluding this next month after labor day. Tomorrow I'll be putting up the picks of my new Megablitz unit.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

New Aircraft

Last week I decided to work on some of my Modern aircraft for Angola. First up for the South Africans we have a Canberra Bomber.

This came out very nice with good markings. 

Next we have a South African Buccaneer S.50.

The buccaneers used during the Angolan Wars didn't have many markings. Just a small tactical number on the rear.

Finally for my Angolan forces a MiG-17 fighter.

I paticularly liked this one with it's camouflage and unique markings.
Anyway I hope to use these in a scenario soon. This Sunday, I'll be going to play some Starfleet Battles. I also Hope to have another Megablitz unit done next week.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Megablitz Red Steel 2: The 1st Guards Tank Corps

I decided to take a brake from the Modern stuff and paint another Megablitz unit. The next scenario I'm planning will be late war Eastern front, so I've started with a new Soviet tank corps. I've finally came up with a standard for the size of my Megablitz stands. My battalions size units will for the most part have a frontage of 1km or 3/4", while my brigade size stands will be sightly larger at 1". I usually use a soviet flag to identify my Russian unit; however, since these are guards, I decided to give them a nice banner instead.  First up we have the main combat units: the 15th, 16th, 17th Guards Tank Brigades, and the 1st Guards Mechanized Brigade.

Each of the tank brigades has a motorized infantry battalion. The 17th GTB has an extra T-70 stand, this is for 1942-43 scenarios. The 1st GMB is 3 Mechanized battalions thus has a larger base.
 Next up we have the Combat Support which includes: the 1269th SU regiment, 80th AA regiment, 455th Mortar Regiment, and the 13th Motorcycle Battalion, strangely having no motorcycles.
I may add some more units late such as a IS-2 Regiment and artillery regiment. 
 Now for the Combat Service Support which only has the Corps HQ and supply.
The highlight of these units are the awesome new fuel and radio trucks by GHQ. I lucked out and got these just before GHQ jacked their prices up again. 
 Finally we have the whole unit together. A match for any German division.

That's the new unit. From now on I'll probably be going back and forth between Modern and WWII miniatures.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Outer Air Battle 1963

Last Sunday Me and Christian managed to play a game of Shipwreck. The scenario was a bit different this time. A Soviet air attack on a US carrier in 1963. I liked this game as I rarely able to use one of my big carriers. I ended up playing the Soviets, while Christian got the Americans. Here's a picture of Christians fleet as first deployed.

In the center is the Big E. Christian also had 2 CG, 2 DDG, and 2 DD. The aircraft at the front is an E-1 tracer, precursor to the E-2 Hawkeye.
 The first turn began with the arrival of my Target Acquisition Group. This consisted of 2 Tu-95 Bears, and two Tu-16 Badger D.

For some reason the Christian mistook the Badger's as EW birds, when they were in fact the recon version.
 At the same time I was lucky enough to get two Juliet SSG. Unfortunately the Juliets had to surface to fire there missiles.

A number of my recon birds were shot down. Then in turn 2 the US fleet turn to get better ADA shots at the oncoming Russian attacks.

Also during turn 2 part of the EW group arrive. The Tu-16 Badger E Chaff Bombers arrived and started to make their chaff corridors. One was shot down after barely starting, but the other made a fine wall of chaff.

Finally turn 3 and the bomber groups arrive. One from the North and one from the east. Here's the Northern group as it entered.
Each group represented 10 aircraft. The stands representing 3 Badger Gs each and a Badger J EW bird in the rear.
 Meanwhile the Eastern group entered with the advantage of having the chaff wall in between them and most of the ships and aircraft.

Unfortunately there were still several fighters about and they started to shot down my bombers.
The most effective weapon in these attacks were the F-8s 20mm cannons. 
 At the beginning of turn 4 my bombers were finally in range and every one fired. Starting with the Juliet subs and not a minute too soon as the USN helicopters were almost on top of them.

The Northern group fired just as a group of fighters were about to jump them. Most of the fighters turned to engage the missiles.

Meanwhile the Eastern group passed through the chaff wall just long enough to fire their missiles. This group had be heavily engaged with fighters and had lost several bombers. Thus they couldn't send out as many missiles as the Northern group.

In the end, as is my bad habit, I didn't get any pictures. Needless to say the game ended in a depressing defeat for the Soviets. Of the 29 missiles fired, only 3 reached their targets, all of which missed. Christian committed the plane and missile movement was too slow, and allowed too many shots. After looking into it, I found that he was right. The aircraft and missiles should have been going twice their movement, which would have given Christian less chances to hit.

Anyway now I think I'm going to concentrated on my Modern ground forces for FFT. I'm also going to start making more units for Megablitz.

Thursday, June 25, 2015


  This week I managed to get some more painting done. I continued to rebuild my modern microarmor forces. This time I made some opposition for my South Africans in the form of a SWAPO Front. Being an irregular unit, this bunch was a pain to paint, even if the SWAPO had the good sense to stick mostly to greens and browns.

The first part is the basic fighting unit of the Front the Front Detachment. These were the Gorilla forces that actually cross the border to attack targets in South West Africa. This unit has five infantry stands

Normally a Front would have 3-5 of these front detachments but they were so spreed out that only one would  be on the table during any given scenario.
The next unit in my front is the Specialist Unit. These units were made to screen the SWAPO bases in Angola. The combination of admin/base defense force. This unit is well equipped with five infantry stands, one mortar, one AA Gun (a ZPU-1 and a ZPU-2, which AA gun I use will depended on the scenario), one support stand (Clerks, Cooks, etc.), and two trucks. to move stuff around.

Like the front detachments, a front would have several of these specialist units (one per  base) but once again these would be so spreed out that there would only be one on the table at any given time.
 Next up are the base units of the front itself. First up is the CSS units. This includes the commander, a jeep to carry him, another support stand, two trucks, and a stand of trainees.

Now we got some of the Combat Support Units including the recon platoon, engineer platoon, and a T-34 that has seen better days.

Finally I got the AA Battery, with an SA-7 stand, ZU-23-2, ZPU-4, and a light truck to help move things around.
Like the specialist unit, which AA weapons I use (only two in any given scenario) will depend on the year and situation.

Anyway that's what I've finished so far. Next week I plan to paint a bunch of aircraft for Shipwreck, as I am working on two possible scenarios.