Category Archives: periods

Periods I play

Saxons and a hut…

Finally finished the next lot of Saxons. The main lot are from the Gripping Beast Dark Age Warrior pack. I’m less keen on this than the Thegn pack. I don’t like some of the poses and I had a few issues getting heads to sit the right way so a couple look like they have their shoulders hunched. Which may be accurate if they are about to get battered!

I’ve got eight of the Warlord Huscarls but just did four to be going on with. Had problems getting the primer to take (the metal kept repelling it) but they have come out OK.

And finally a building to fight over! A Battlefield Buildings solid resin grub hut from Caliver Books. I can’t really be bothered having a removable roof so solid is fine. Cleaned it up using wet and dry paper in a bowl to avoid dust and gave it a good wash. Spray primed black and then assorted paints and washes to give the desired effect. Annoyingly there are a line if air holes across the front and back which I missed when cleaning and spraying and only noticed when I was varnishing! I’m happy that is just looks like rotted wood!

I want to do another ten of the Dark Age warriors and the other Huscarls. But I reckon I’ve got no excuses for not playing something now!

A

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Dark Age Characters

After completing the big batch of Saxon Thegns I wanted to play with the spare bits of plastic for some characters and also finish the Saxon warlord figure. So…

Thirty years ago the small coastal village of Mynyddwych was raided by Vikings. It was unexpected. There had not been raids in the lifetime of the village elder. But it was brutal. The men fought valiantly but were no match for the veteran warriors and all were put to the sword. The women and children were  rounded up and taken away to be sold into slavery. All except Brona, wife of Fridolph. She took up  her dead husbands sword and fought until subdued. She was then assaulted and left for dead. When the local lord, Aethelbricht the Falconer, arrived the raiders were long gone. But Brona still lived. And nine months later gave birth to a sturdy blonde haired boy. And died in the process.

Aethelbricht , took the boy into his household and named him Grimmwulf. As he grew he learnt the martial skills to serve his lord. He also learnt of his origins, the raid and the death of his father. And he vowed to track down the raiders and exact vengeance! For ten years he travelled to the Viking lands, through the lands of the Rus and finally to the seat of the Roman Empire in the East. He learnt many new skills and now fought with two swords! As he continued to track down the raiders he would often free captives, intended for the slave markets.  Among those were two Arab warriors. For their freedom they swore loyalty to Grimmwulf and so he was joined on his quest by Abdul Khaliq el-Rahimi and Kameel al-Hameed.

Abdul Khaliq el-Rahimi was a fine warrior. Never afraid to face any number of opponents.

Kameel al-Hameed, the younger man, still had much to learn but could be relied upon in battle.

But both swore to protect Grummwulf with their lives. Grimmwulf, a sword in either hand and his shield strapped to his back was a deadly killer.

His quest still unfinished, Grimmwulf returned to his home. His lord had summoned him. All was not well in the kingdom. Aethelbricht the Falconer was still a warrior to be reckoned with and still lead his household on behalf of the king.

So there we have some characters! And I still need a game!

Next up are the rest of the Saxons for SAGA. Having a nightmare with the Warlord Housecarls. Tried priming on with my usual Vallejo Surface Primer and the stuff just wouldn’t stick! So I washed the rest on soap water and tried again. Same problem. I’m having to go back over them three times or more to cover up the bits where the primer has just slid off the figure leaving gaps! What a pain!! Never had a problem before priming metal figures.

Onwards!

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Saxon drugs and rock’n’roll!

After last year’s Ayton game where I painted assorted Norman types for Lion Rampant I acquired a partial box of Gripping Beast Saxon Thegns and some Dark Age Warriors with a view to producing some opposition. Despite having finally painted the half dozen (from bits) figures a few weeks ago that was all I’d done towards this plan! So having acquired SAGA v2 at Partizan I decide to stick together 16 of the Saxon Thegns. To be honest, they were a bit fiddly to do. More from the case of matching shields and arms so they didn’t look like contortionists! But eventually they all went together and the result are:

As with the figures earlier in the month I kept the general look ‘dirty’ by using assorted light to mid browns and applying a GW Agrax Earthshade wash with no further highlighting. I did a few with a nice red, blue or green to reflect higher status. I’m saving the fancy edgings for the Hearthguard types. And then the shields are what add the colour to the unit. All hand painted. I know the transfers look nice and realistic but I’m not sure they fit my painting style.

So in theory I’ll be doing some of the Dark Age Warriors next which I’ll keep very basic and then some huscarls and I should be SAGA ready! But in the meantime I have discovered the Song of Blade and Heroes system which seems rather neat and good for small skirmishes. So I’m going to give them a whirl! Oh, and taking advantage of the flexibility of plastics I’ve got  a trio of ‘characters’ on the workbench as well. And some buildings coming from Caliver Books!

So, yet again, despite not being a fan of plastics I’m rather enjoying them!

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All sorts!

After Partizan and my birthday and a week in Cornwall I’ve not really had time to post much or even complete stuff. But now, being back home, I’ve finished a couple of things off and can post re some recent acquisitions!

First up was the purchase of a Tiny Wargames grass mat. I’d seen similar to these at Partizan and at Ayton and having seen some vids of them in action on Facebook I decided a 6×4 would be ideal for the play area I have in the attic. I went for the basic cloth option. I wanted to be able to drape it over hills.

The creases need a little while to drop out but overall I’m pleased with it.

And on the table you can see some 15mm AWI I’ve just rebased. These were bought a few years ago from LOSH (over on the GdeB forum) and made up 27 stands of militia (mostly Polly Oliver but some Essex) and a few Hessian command figures. As I’m planning an AWI game next year these needed basing so I can see what I have.

Soon, I’ll dig the rest of the collection out and have a proper parade!

What next? Some scenery… courtesy of a post on a Facebook boardgame group I grabbed a pile of old GW trees, hedges and a hill (and some other bits). A good addition to the starting 28mm scenery.

Having made a pile of hedges for my 6mm games a few weeks ago I used up the last of the Javis clumps mixed with some Woodland Scenics stuff to do another 12 stands (11 and 2 short lengths).

And finally some painting… After last year’s Lion Rampant Ayton game I decided I needed some javelin armed bidower types. So, using the last few bits from the Conquest Normans and Archers I cobbled six together and primed them. And they have sat there for a year! Until this week when I finally painted the buggers!

Kept the colours quite ‘muddy’ and dull but quite pleased with them. I now have some Gripping Beast Saxons to glue together. I kind of need Anglo-Danes to face the Normans I have but want Anglo-Saxons to give me an excuse to get Vikings! We shall see…

A

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ShedCon 2018 – Grays

Despite a knackered foot and hobbling around I made the trip down to the home of Iain Burt (Essex Boy) in Grays for a 20mm WSS game to christen his shed! 

The shed is outstanding. Plenty of room for an 8’x5′ table and six of us around it. Lots of storage at one end and under table. The table is great, can be reduced in size to 6’x5′ if needed and was all built by Iain himself. The raised edge has hills and sky painted on to aid with taking nice pictures! I arrived Friday afternoon and although Iain has been planning an preparing this game for over six months I was roped into painting the bases in trees and later he was finishing basing figures! But the plan in the day was to get up early and at 8am go into the shed to lay out the table. That shouldn’t  take long should it? I knew he has some painted blankets so just throw those down and lay out the terrain on top? Not Iain… 

First a layer of 1″ polystyrene laid down followed by a double layer of compressed underfloor insulation sheets….

The river sections were then laid out and the course marked and the whole thing cut out of the insulation board to create a recess.

The blankets were then laid down, tucked under the boards and locked in by the edges and pressed into the recess to allow  the river to sit in that with matching blanket material to blend it in. A LOT of work but it really looked good.

Now the roads. These were made for the game and just needed laying out as planned as they only fitted one way. Half an hour late after looking at pictures and ‘trimming’ a few bits they finally all fitted! 🙂

A few buildings and fields and a LOT of trees added and we had the final table. Well worth the effort. The trees especially looked the part.

The scenario was a simple one. Myself and Dave Hall were defending the road junctions. Five wagons were placed at road entry points (mostly on the far side) and at end of game the other side (Simon, Gary and Tim) had to have clear roads to exit at least three of the wagons off their side of the table. As long as we had a unit that could charge the road along a route then it was blocked. We started with four infantry brigades deployed anywhere two feet away from the three ‘enemy’ sides of the table. They started with five brigades coming on at table edges. Other brigades (cavalry and infantry) were fed in to either side as Iain saw fit. Rules were based on Rank and File with a few mods from Iain.

I’ll post all the pics in a gallery but a few here to describe the key events of the game. I was defending the right against Simon with a Yomper brigade (it’s the name we give to the figure!) which included the Savage Swans and the Alterfritzenburg brigade was deployed centrally to cover against a central attack by Tim. 

Dave had the tougher job of defending the left village and centre against a determined Gary and Tim.

The battle around the village was savage with Gary having to battle through angry townsfolk and then unit after unit being thrown back before, after pushing and pushing, Dave was thrown back. Although, the road was almost open Dave was able to put up a final line of defence and with a unit of cuirassier in support still controlled the crucial junction.

In the centre Tim had a tough task. Both myself and Dave had brigades blocking his way and the impassable woods made it hard to make numbers tell as he tried to cross the river and bring his force to bear. Two gun batteries caused casualties even at distance and as both were often able to converge on one unit it made progress slow. However, as the flanks came under more pressure and unit had to be moved in support the defence in the centre weakened and with a little more time the defence would have collapsed. However, time was on the side of the defenders!

My battle was to be a grinding affair on the right to seize control of the road. After Simon’s initial attack stalled he withdrew to control the road. As his cavalry came on some went up into the woods to battle with some stubborn local militia. As his force consolidated its defence it became clear I would need to advance and contest the road as if we did lose the other flank then we could not afford to give an easy ‘point’ away here. So my first brigade advanced and the ensuing firefights did not go well for me. Supporting dragoons and cuirassiers came up and the dragoons charged into the face of multiple battalions and guns and did not fair well! The supporting cavalry did push back Simon’s line but they too were eventually thrown back. The Savage Swans were the only unit of the brigade to survive and as supporting units of Altefritzenburgers, battered from their own battles, came up in support it was clear that here too the defenders still contested the road. 

So, as the day drew to a close it was decide the defenders had done their duty and held the roads! It was a great game. The rules worked well. Each unit rolled for quality as they took their first test. I ended up with quite a few green troops! We used low ammunition rolls which restricted the power of guns a little. And the various markers and flags that Iain produced made the game flow really well. Equally the good company and their approach to the game did likewise. A pleasure to play with the chaps again! Here we all are: Iain Burt, Simon Tonkiss, Andy McMaster, Dave Hall, Gary Phillips and Tim Hall.

It was a pleasure to play with Iain and Gary’s collections and to christen the new shed in such fine a manner. Many thanks to Iain for all the work put in.

And as a final note, I spent the Sunday helping Iain buy a new PC and then setting it all up for him. I was rather shocked when I saw the PC it was replacing! I don’t think I’ve seen a monitor that small for nearly ten years!

Thanks for looking. All the images from the day are at: ShedCon 2018 Gallery

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