My blog about my wargaming activities. I collect a lot of 15mm miniatures for the American War of Independence and so collect a lot of rules for this period. I started miniatures with Napoleonics, so I have a number of armies in 6mm and 15mm figures for skirmishing. I have15mm WW II figures that I use for Flames of War, Memoir '44, and someday, Poor Bloody Infantry. Finally there is my on-again, off-again relationship with paper soldiers that I sometimes write about.
Friday, February 08, 2013
News from the rear
Welcome to new readers Cesar Alfredo Paz and Natholeon. I hope you enjoy the blog. I welcome and appreciate comments.
I haven't written much on any of my blogs of late because I haven't been miniatures gaming in a while, although I have been gaming a lot. We just started a BattleLore tournament over Vassal and although I have only 1½ games done, there has been a renewed interest in BattleLore, so I have been getting a lot of practice games in. So much interest, in fact, that I played a game last Saturday, and one each night Monday through Thursday. (I am taking a well-deserved rest tonight.)
The games have been exciting, even those where I was teaching a new player both the BattleLore rules and how to use Vassal. (He picked up very quickly.) A recent play of the Neville's Cross scenario almost ended in a complete reversal of fortunes, as I alluded to in a past post. In this game my dice were extremely cold, resulting in only one hit the first half of the game. We were heading towards the end, with my opponent leading 4-1 (it is a 5 Victory Banner scenario), and I was desperately trying to find a Center card so my Knights could charge when I drew the necessary cards and my Knights quickly overran three units, bringing the score to 4-3. I drew a Mounted Charge and attacked with my two cavalry units. The Knights quickly overran their target, bringing the score to 4-4, but the other cavalry unit, with four dice and 33% chance to score a hit on each die could not get a single hit. Had I gotten that hit I would have won, coming behind from a 1-4 game. As it was, my opponent targeted a weak, stranded unit and picked it off the next turn, ending the game 5-4. It was a real nail biter, for sure.
What was disappointing about the game was that I had played it as a practice, as the scenario is one we all play in the third round of the tournament. Because my dice were so cold, and my cards so badly in the wrong section, I was always on my back foot and never able to put forward my own plan. So in the end I had no more of a clue about how to play the scenario than before. Sometimes games with such wildly bad then good luck skew your thinking about how you should play the scenario, when actually using those moves as a strategy is, well, a losing proposition. So, I played it solo (okay, so I did not take a break from BattleLore tonight…) and I think I have a lot better idea of what to do when it is time to play the real thing.
I have been painting up miniatures a bit lately, mostly my wooden soldiers, and as I was casting about for a certain color of paint the veil raised from my eyes and I noticed that all of the clutter was a number of un-based troops crowding my painting area. I had done a basing spree in order to get my Aztecs up and running for Saga, but I had more to do … a lot more. I think it was triggered by the arrival of painted 6mm Spanish troops from Thailand (DJD Miniatures painted them and they look gorgeous; pictures later). That and my wife complaining that I had too much stuff scattered about the house and not enough down in my gaming room (a guest house, really).
I started by hot gluing light metal sheets to the bottom of Sterilite storage boxes (I use the small and large clip boxes for 15mm and 28mm troops, and the deeper medium clip boxes for my 40mm wooden soldiers and tall troops in other scales). I then use business cards magnets on the bottoms of all my bases so the figures stay in place. I actually started going crazy with all of this and started magnetizing the bases of my BattleLore and Battles of Westeros figures so I could arrange and organize them, should I ever play a face-to-face game with those rules.
I did so much basing, in fact, that I ran out of bases and had to place an order with Litko for more. These days I pretty much stick to 40mm wide basing schemes for multi-figure basing and ½" wide bases for 15mm, 1" wide bases for 28mm and 40mm infantry, and 1½" wide bases for 40mm cavalry when basing singly. Speaking of which, I am getting to the point where, if it is not 6mm, I am strongly considering basing the figures singly. If I want to do a skirmish game I am all set with singly based figures, and for mass battle games, I can use metal movement trays (as my figures have magnets on the bottom). In fact, I found some interesting flanged steel movement trays from Shogun the other day. I may have to buy some and try them out. Of course, if I go this way, I will suddenly have a huge re-basing effort with my 15mm American Revolutionary troops, as most are based multiply on 40mm wide bases. (I will probably keep my DBA troops mounted as they are though, but who knows.)
I hope to write up more soon, but I am not sure if anyone would care about me writing up a BattleLore battle report. I did one for the second round of the tournament, if anyone is interested. You can see my incredible luck!
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- Huachuca City, Arizona, United States
- I am 50 yrs old now. I bought a house in Huachuca City, AZ (although I have a townhouse in Houston, TX and a small home in Tucson, AZ) working on a contract for "the next two years" that is going on five years now. To while away the hours I like to wargame -- with wooden, lead, and sometimes paper miniatures -- usually solo. Although I am a 'rules junkie', I almost always use rules of my own (I like to build upon others' ideas, but it seems like there is always something "missing" or "wrong").