Friday, 29 December 2017

Roman Warship-plastic kit.

Among the "mound" of pressies I got for Christmas this year,hiding in among the "usual" underpants,socks,aftershave etc. etc. I received some 1st Corps figures,a copy of the WRG book on Medieval armies,a set of acrylic paints and a plastic kit of a Roman Warship......................

The figures will be started next week,the book is great,and has been thumbed through already,the paints,I must admit(until I used them) I thought wouldn't be suitable for painting, and the kit just shouted out to be made asap!!

The kit was made in Korea-now being a Geordie,I struggle with English,let alone Korean,so my heart sank at the thought of instructions in Korean-I needn't have worried,the instructions were of the "visual" type-however,most sections had sub-sections within them!!! Most of the initial construction was common sense stuff,so the first few stages were easy enough.

OOH ER!!!!-the worst was to come-the rigging-at this point I made an executive decision not to put any rigging onto the ship!!

See what I mean????anyway,on with the kit....................................

The basic shape was easy to achieve,just glue the sections together! the difficult part was getting the shields,rudders and oars into position-but with a bit of patience,perseverence and alot of glue,I managed it.(oh, I should mention quite alot of rude words!!)

I opted to paint the shields on the sprue,because they had to be glued onto a rail,which then had to be glued onto the deck(sticky the stick insect springs to mind here!)

Top photo shows the shields stuck to the rails,bottom photo shows the rails in position,but not yet stuck.

With the basic shape done,I started to paint the sails and bow and stern,using the acrylic paints previously mentioned-and I was impressed!

Now for the oars,the bloody oars,the bloody,bloody oars!!!-with the model just about finished,i discovered that the bloody,bloody oars should have been fitted at the very first stage!!!!!!!
However,being of sound mind and not the least bit phased by small set-backs as this-I did manage to get them fitted(sort of!)

The whole thing is finished,and I think it looks good.

Three more views of the finished article.
It started snowing when I was finishing the model,and I really did want to go and clear the back path,but I was exhausted with making the ship,so THE WIFE had to do it-ah bless!!!

Happy New Year to you all.

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Battleground Plastic Kits.

The discerning reader will have remembered that I bought two plastic kits at Battleground show at Stockton last month-one,a medieval boat,and two a medieval bridge.
Well, I have finished both kits, to the standard that I wanted,and here they are...................

The bridge,which must be the steepest and most inaccessible bridge in the world,had to be made in 6 sections,as shown,with "umpteen" pieces in each section!!

The kit,which was Russian,had no written instructions,so proved a bit of a "test" to my limited abilities,but the end result can be seen here.
I suppose that it could be used for sledging down,or for rolling Easter eggs down,but is not very practical for wargaming(oh yeah?-just watch!!)

The RSPCA would have something to say if you tried to get a horse up that incline!!

A double archway-that's novel and will probably lead onto another river-section project in the new year-hey ho!!-why did I buy it????
Anyway,on to the next kit,which will prove to be more useful.............................

A Medieval boat,useful from Norman times, and through the Crusades.I have deliberately left off most of the deck clutter,so I can put a figure or two onto the deck(Santa,are you listening??)

The mast and sail are separate,so can be removed,although it must be pointed out that I glued the sail on upside down!!!-I blame two things-old age and Captain Morgan!!!,so the Cross had to be re-painted to give the impression that it was the right way up!!-oh dear,why do I bother?

As it sails away across the kitchen table,one though springs to mind-it'll never get under those bloody archways!!!-Happy Christmas.

Monday, 18 December 2017

Battle of "Olympian Fields" 490BC.

Last night saw a 100% turnout for our last battle/game of 2017,and what a battle it turned out to be!-everything a wargame should be,colouful,exciting,loads of silly banter,tense etc. etc.

Top photo is the Scenario,bottom photo is the table before any movement-the Greeks are on the left,and Persians on the right.
I commanded the Corinthians and Thessalanians,Dave commanded the Athenians,and Graham commanded the dreaded Spartans-whilst Paul and Brian commanded the Persians-all was set for a great game.

I added a bit of "reality/excitement" by saying that each section of the Greek army had to throw a 3 or 4 on an average dice to indicate that the "omens" were  favourable,and that a 2 or a 5 meant that the "omens" were not favourable-if not favourable,that section couldn't move until the right dice was thrown!!-Graham and Dave threw the right dice-I didn't!!-hoist by my own petard springs to mind!!!
This photo shows the Spartans advancing-a formidable sight.

Eventually,I managed to get my troops moving,but Paul has "stolen a march" on me,and his cavalry and Immortals are charging forward-HELP!!

Dave's Athenians are pushing forward and have made contact with Brian's Phrygians-however,due to my "tardiness", his left flank is exposed!

Graham's Spartans are advancing under a hail of missile fire,against Brian's Cardaces infantry-this will be bloody!!

CRASH!!-and it was! After some wonderful melees,and even more wonderful dice throwing from Graham,the Cardaces were beaten,and driven back-hurrah!!

Meanwhile,on my flank,I have redeemed myself(for a while!) by beating Paul's cavalry,and holding his Immortals(that doesn't sound right!!)-In the background you can see Dave's troops giving the Phrygians a good old "hammering"-another hurrah!!

The "exposed" Athenian flank is now being threatened by Paul's Greek mercenary troops,and Brian has sent in his "crack" units,forcing Dave to put his commander into the fray-the inevitable happened-he got killed and his whole force had to take a morale test!!-most failed,except one unit,shall we call them the "Audacious Ones",who decided to attack Xerxes himself(surrounded by his elite bodyguard)-was this wise????


Due,in part, to some of my notorious dice throwing,my flank is on the point of collapse,and Dave's Athenians are running for their little metal lives-all seems lost,although the Spartans are in good condition!

One last shot,we decided that because of the sorry state of my flank and the centre,that the Persians had won the game-well done to us all though!-Brian sure knows how to celebrate a victory,doesn't he???????????

Are there no prisons or workhouses?-bah humbug!!!-his little hat looks nice though!!!
On behalf of the Westerhope Wargames Group,I would like to wish you all a very merry Christmas and hope that 2018 brings us all peace and prosperity-enjoy it!

Monday, 4 December 2017

Battle of Marston Moor 1644.

As we have been invited to take part in Charlie Wesencraft's group Christmas game(refighting Marston Moor) next Saturday,I thought I would re-fight this battle to see what we are letting ourselves into by way of tactics,weapons,personalities etc. and, as a bonus, Charlie came along to observe and comment!!

This is the table before any movement-the Royalists on the left,Parliamentarians on the right.
Paul was Cromwell,Dave was Fairfax(for the parliamentarians) whilst Brian was Rupert and Graham was Goring.(for the royalists)

Both Brian and Paul have launched their cavalry at each other in the opening move!!

At the same time,on the other flank,Graham and Dave have done the same thing-tremendous looking stuff!!!
In the centre,the whole of the Parliamentarian infantry are advancing and driving the royalist dragoons and musketeers way from the ditch/hedge.

To counter this push,Brian has advanced his infantry,and a fire-fight ensued! To the left of this shot you can see the cavalry battle raging ,both sides feeding in units when and where needed!!

A close up of the cavalry battle-very tightly fought,but Brian hit a bad spell of very low dice scores,and gradually he was pushed back-historically correct,but infuriating for Brian!!

Brian is being pushed back,what he needs is the reserve cavalry to help him out-where are they?-well,Graham had decided to take them over to his flank(which was winning!!) to bolster his troops!!-nothing was said,of course, Brian is too much of  a gentleman for that!!!

The infantry battle is looming,as both side contest the ditch/hedge line-Graham looks as though he is deciding where to employ the reserve cavalry!!

Dave is throwing some diabolical dice,and Graham is pushing him back-as per history!-the reserve cavalry can just be seen,in column,in the background-it's a good job Brian doesn't need them(???!!!)

The royalist infantry are being driven back towards White Sike Close,and the parliamentarian commanders are looking "smug"-just out of shot to the right,the royalist cavalry are soundly beaten,and retiring(it's good being retired!)-history is repeating itself!

Brian's last cavalry unit is being surrounded,and the game is over-Graham has won with his cavalry,but the centre is lost ,and an historical result has been achieved-well done to everyone.
This time of the year is for rejoicing,being happy and looking forward to enjoying good food,good company,gifts etc. etc.-the whole season is probably epitomised in this photograph......

BAH HUMBUG!!!!!!!!!!!
Roll on next Saturday,when we will,once again take to the fields of Marston Moor,at Charlie's club.

Monday, 27 November 2017

Battleground 2017-show report.

What can you say about Battleground 2017?-the organisation,planning and execution were all magnificent,and a big thank-you must go to Leon and his "crew" at Pendraken for a fabulous day-Free admission,free parking and free coffee-what was there not to like??
The  show had a plethora of traders,and games galore,the "footfall" was good and everyone (except the Ainsty's stand!!) said they had done well,and were looking forward to next year!!!

The doors have just opened,and the spending starts-talk about Black Friday-this was Hyper Saturday!

The "bring and Buy" stall was doing great trade-reasonable and realistic prices-I even paid a guy full price for a couple of plastic kits!!
Who's that in the "geranium red" shirt,marked Westerhope Wargames Groupie??

It's our old mate Chris from a land far,far away called Yorkshire!!-he popped up to see us at the show,and to spend,spend,spend!!

Robbie was there(of course) as enthusiastic as ever-good man!!

Charlie Wesencraft was there,talking to Paul and Brian.
There were a variety of clubs from all over the country putting on demo. and participation games.One in particular seems to have caught Brian's eye...........................

What is he looking at??-the group calling themselves the "Old Guard Wargamers" were on the next table to us,so we had to look at this almost the whole day-look away now if you are of a nervous disposition(you have been warned!!)

For God's sake man,buy a pair of trousers that fit!!-If you can't afford a pair,why don't you make some money by hiring yourself out as a"bike rack"-dirty bugger!!!!!!The Old guard isn't all it's "cracked up" to be!!

This is the display at the end of our table-it drew alot of attention from other gamers and the general punters-a good talking point.

This is Graham and Brian "guarding" the table very early on during the day-the game went well and the interest in the period seems to be growing-well done us!!
All in all a great day.