Friday 1 March 2024

The Great Edinburgh Painting ‘Holiday’

A quick post just to ensure my loyal followers I’m still alive up here in Edinburgh. The caring is going reasonably well and we finally have a date next week for my Father to move into a care home. Between my general caring duties I have managed to get quite a lot of painting done. The (poor) photo below shows the progress so far.

These are all the finished figures, but as I didn’t bring my basing materials they will still need a little work when I finally get home, but the hard work is done. I am still working on the new Fallschirmjager and some other stuff as well so it will take quite a while to get them all based up.
I have also managed some walks when the weather has been nice. 

Hopefully life will return to some normality in the next few weeks


Friday 16 February 2024

Somewhere in space on a desert (not Dune)

Sadly no big worms in this game. Followers will know I have been painting up some spare Tallarn figures bringing them together for a small Xeno Rampant force. With a few days at home George travelled up to give them a run out.

Xeno Rampant is obviously part of the lion Rampant stable of rules which we have played many times. It is more like LR than R&P but quite a few changes have been made around shooting ranges, some free activations etc… the main thing is the rules are incredibly flexible in terms of creating an army with basic stats for each troop type being easily adapted to create a bespoke force.

Hidden deep in the dungeon I have four 40k armies if you include the Tallarn imperials, these games can often collapse quickly I thought I would get three forces ready for George and we could play a couple of very different options. To some extent this was a great test of the rules for a mini campaign I am planning in the future.

The Tallarn a fairly balanced force, two larger infantry squads, two heavy weapons teams, an elite command squad and of course the Walker.
Classic Xeno swarm, these are entirely combat focussed, some have special insertion options to allow them to arrive behind the enemy and the giant thing can cause terror pinning the enemy with fear
Tricky intergalactic alien species (Tau) lots of powerful long range shooting and some heavy jump suit types.

One slight challenge (which some will enjoy others not) is the rules are so flexible it takes ages to create the army list with nearly every unit having additional bonus stats. The three forces are all 30 point armies which seem to work well on a modest 4x4 table. Of course like lion rampant and unlike R&P a failed activation means the end of your turn this causes everybody’s plan to fall apart and much frustration. This is a game for lighthearted fun and brutal thrills not for those who like careful command and control.

Anyway with George taking the Tallarn we faced them against the Brutal alien swarm to start with.

With only combat and no long range shooting the aliens advance really quickly, as they crashed into their first combat with both shuddered as they literally cut their way right through the first unit of Tallarn.
But the larger aliens are not quite so fast
More monsters appeared behind the Tallarn lines but they are able to hold them back, on the rocky hill the Tallarn command squad forces the swarm back first in combat and then accurate laser fire. The giant monster is gradually heading for the Walker !
Ambushed from behind that’s not much fun !, enraged and literally mindless the creatures charge at the Walker 
But the Walker is tough ! And the Alien claws have little impact one swipe with its crushing fists and the Walker sends the Aliens back pinning them down
According to the rules we should probably have finished the game here but we were having fun, the aliens had nearly been stamped out but in a final twist these last two sneak from under the bridge and devour the Tallarn commander. No doubt he will be awarded some posthumous medal by the Emperor, that is if the rest of his force survives long enough to tell anybody about his heroics !

We then reset to face the Tallarn against the Tau

Little did the Tallarn know the planet had already been colonised by the Tau who have sent a small force to see the invaders off
Lots of long range shooting the Tau initially show what they are made of streaks of laser fire across the desert surface.
A heavy weapons team have been secretly inserted and pop up behind cover
But the Tallarn are a battle proven force and not easily scarred they lay down a withering fire from behind any cover they can find in the desert
The Tau no struggle to advance to support their other troops who get picked off piecemeal
The Tallarn take a hammering but gain another hard won victory.

We certainly enjoyed the battles, each very different as I had planned, we played the same scenario both times and I suspect it would have been more challenging for both sides had we needed to capture objectives or such like. There are plenty of scenarios in the rule book but of course these are pretty simple to generate anyway, I’m sure we will see some more adventures in the depths of space in the future. If nothing else it has been fun exploring some older collections and tidying them up for battle, as I explained to George after the games, in the past I was far less worried about playing with only painted figures so I have lots of only partly painted stuff, some of which I might now complete ?

To this end I have been working on three Tallarn/Imperial vehicles a Chimera transport vehicle
Here shown for scale (having taken the picture I have done a little more work on the transfers to blend them in a little more)
Finally I have been prepping more stuff, I wanted to pick up a few more Fallschirmjager to enable me to use my existing force for Chain of command. Fortunately/unfortunately this lot turned up very cheap at the York show a couple of weeks ago. Way more than I need, and in fact a have a few in detox for stripping as well. But this now gives me a more robust force for both CoC but also bolt action. So these will be coming to Sicily soon. Having searched for a while I believe they are mainly Black Tree figures a tiny bit smaller than my favourite crusader sculpts but not a bad match.

Well that’s it for now, I am packing up more stuff to take with me to Edinburgh as I am heading north again this weekend.

Thanks as always for checking by 👍


Tuesday 13 February 2024

Painting Bonanza

I have spent another week up in Edinburgh on caring duties, but as much of my time is simply chatting and talking with my father I chose to take some painting with me, previous I only took figures to prep. The painting seemed to work well as we drink tea and chat away or occasionally listen to the radio. I hadn’t taken basing materials so I have been finishing things off since I got back yesterday.

Basically a completely mixed bag of things which were easy to carry and prepped ready to paint.

Yet another French command base
Two shots as the figure with his foot on the drum is probably my favourite Perry sculpt
Tachanka for the RCW….i May fiddle about with reins at some stage ?
A random Dark age command base
….and a standard bearer
AWI wound bases
Polish infantry early WW2 mainly to be used in Norway, although they could probably fight in the RCW as well
Both squads are warlord figures so identical, I picked them up off eBay ages and ages ago when they were cheap
and finally a bunch of Napoleonic wound counters on Warbases counters which go up to 12

I was pretty pleased with all this and it was nice to clear stuff which had been sitting about for ages.

It seems likely I will be back in Edinburgh next week so I am planning on what to take this time ? Perhaps Curassiers for the French ?

Thanks as always

Matt 😀

Thursday 8 February 2024

Threat to the flank Scenario ACW and Tallarn heavy weapons

George came up for a battle to the dungeon and I was looking for a scenario to introduce him to our ACW bolt action rules, I’ve had this Scenario book for a long time and it often provides a good starting point.

One of the scenarios in the book is a simple, flanking attack the idea being it places the commander in the position between concentrating his forces for the main assault or increasing his flanking force. 
The map in the book is as above, I adapted this slightly to squeeze it onto a 6x4 battlefield for 28mm ACW. I also gave both sides a flexible reserve off table to make the tactical decisions more interesting.
The river is only fordable beyond the tree by the bend, the objective for the Union force is to take the hill where the defending D force is stationed. No time limit is given in the book but I estimated 8 turns would be about right and put some pressure on the attackers.
The Union flanking force sets off towards the river by the bridge
The confederate flanking force moves to contest the bridge and their cavalry dismount
At the far side the Rebels open up with everything they have and rock the Union advance back
Both sides open fire across the river
But the yankies have the advantage and the rebels get pushed back
Union reserves start to arrive and push towards the bridge
A couple of very poor morale rolls and suddenly the rebel centre has collapsed luckily a reserve unit arrives but it may be too late ?
Union infantry are now moving across the bridge and the rebels have one last big volley to stop them crossing, the Union take 3 casualties but it isn’t enough to force a morale check
With the main frontal assault pushed back one of the rebel units on the hill make the mistake of pushing forward to cover the bend in the river and gets caught badly in the flank pinning them down
With cavalry now pushing on their flank and formed infantry across the bridge things are looking bad for the rebels and they have 2 more turns to hold 
The Union commander rushes every available unit to Wade across the river
The rebels are able to send the leading Zouave unit back where they regroup in the ploughed field
But with one turn left the second Union unit pushes across the river and the rebels are forced to surrender the hill 🙁

As often the case a very enjoyable battle, the scenario with the adaptations worked pretty well giving both sides a good chance, the rebels were able to defeat a whole Union brigade on the hill but the flanking movement over the bridge drew in resources when they might have been better holding the hill at the end. The rules which we have tested many times seemed to give a fun and entertaining battle including the random events. Always nice to get my ACW on the table.

A bit more painting this week but the only things finished are the heavy support weapons for the Tallarn XR force. All painted in the same style as the infantry.

Two autocannons, I do have a thirds but can’t see why I would need that at the moment unless at some point we go to a larger scale battle ?
A heavy mortar, again a have another of these for the future perhaps
A heavy bolter gun.
So lots of options here to support the infantry squads, next for the Tallarn are some vehicles/tanks I had but they will take a while

I am back in Edinburgh for a few days but do have some stuff with me which I can work on.

Thanks as always for stopping by 😀


Tuesday 6 February 2024

Tallarn Walker and the 22nd Foot ?

Well it kind of shows the range stuff I am tinkering with at the moment.

To go with my Tallarn Xeno rampant force I have painted up this armoured ‘Walker’ I picked this up about 5 years ago secondhand I think it is a Warlord Konflict model, but I actually prefer it to the Warhammer sentinel model I have. The driver /command figure is a spare autocannon gunner model just with a pin in his base so he can be lifted off if needed.
Next up my first purchase from York show at the weekend. You often get people selling off collections at York, this gentleman was selling off a load of painted Napoleonics. As I have plenty in the lead pile I wasn’t going to buy too much. However, after some haggling (I’m not prepared to spend much on painted units) I thought an extra British unit, one that I haven’t painted would help the British catch up to the French. They required just a little fiddling, firstly the bases needed to be thickened  which if you look closely you will see where I have brought them up to match my other figures. Secondly I put some stain on the trousers which were too white for my liking , I touched over the uniforms with the red I use again to match my figures. The bases were lightened slightly and some of my spring grass added. Finally I touched up the flags and painted them with a matt finish. Probably in all an hour or so and the result a very serviceable unit for the Peninsular.

That’s it for now, planning another battle in the dungeon tomorrow which I need to sort out. Then back on care duties so back to Edinburgh for a few days.

Thanks for checking in Matt 👍