Tuesday 31 May 2011

An evening (or two) with the Perry Twins

Hi all.
It's been a while since my last post, largely due to work and boring stuff like that, but things continue to evolve here at Chez Colonel...
Left to right, back to front: Notorious Greg; Christopher (Spawn of Greg) Simmonds; Simon "Backshootin' Lowdown Good-Fer-Nothin'" (Spawn of von Peter Himself) Haldezos; Yours Truly; von Peter Himself; Alan Perry; Michael Perry

This week's highlight was a couple of evenings with the Pery Twins, who come over here to NZ every now and then and, when possible,  meet up with the Kapiti Fusiliers, their associates and other various nefarious interlopers (i.e; Me.)

Saturday evening took the form of a beer or six at Mac's Brewery in Wellington, and a pleasant time was had by all. The Perrys were their usual jovial, gracious and generous selves and the drinking and model-making chat continued long into the night when they joined myself and Notorious Greg for further boozing at Molly Malone's.

And there it might have ended, but...

To my great delight, Alan and Michael were at a loose end on Sunday evening, and so joined a few of us at Notorious Greg's house for a gunfight. Leadwood was duly transported to Greg's place, hot pork sandwiches and beers were served, and battle was joined...

On Michael Perry's side:
Me, Notorious Greg, and von Peter Himself.

On Alan Perry's side:
Christopher (Spawn of Notorious Greg) Simmonds, and Simon "Backshootin' Lowdown Good-Fer-Nothin'" (Spawn of von Peter Himself) Haldezos.

Twenty Four Little Lead Gunmen proceeded to wreak havoc on the streets of Leadwood.

Things went rather badly for our side, it has to be said. I won't go into painstaking detail but, in brief, here's what happened:

Battle report, battle report, dice, dice, measure, bloodbloodbloodblood, ouch!, run away!...  Bullets flew, fists met chins, rifle-butts were viciously thrust into heads, guts and other painful bits and grown men were reduced to yellow-bellied petticoat-wearin' nancy boys! In the end, we were (to use military vernacular) hammered, smashed, bludgeoned and otherwise soundly beaten.

Anyway, fun was had by all.

My thanks to Alan and Michael and my fellow gamers. I hope we get the chance again!

In other news:
My new walker is rapidly taking shape on paper and I hope to put knife to plastic very soon...
More Crocs from Hordes Mercenaries are on their way to join the horde...
10mm Fantasy is coming on nicely...
And Oh, so much more...!

Watch this space, folks...

All the best!

Sunday 22 May 2011

A day for a few bits of stuff...

Things seem to be getting carried away...
Having done a little work on my 10mm cavalry this morning, my son and I went in search of plastic board (for basing and making tanks, VSF walkers and the like) and 10mm foamcore (for constructing a new hex-based table)

We then indulged ourselves with a most enjoyable game of Crossfire - our first in a long time. We each fielded only a company of troops, circa 1943, on a 4'x4' table wth fairly simple terrain - just a few woods and hills, a church, a farm and a ruin. I am pleased to report that his Americans were kicked about pretty hard by my Germans. We'll be playing a lot more, with more troops soon.

I spent the rest of the evening thinking about hexagons. It's a curse, this damned hobby!

Still on the production line:
Lots of 10mm fantasy guys,
A really big dinosaur with armour, scars, spikes and attitude
Lizards with big swords
A scratch-built sci-fi tank
Pig Iron System Troopers
A new, four-legged, steam-powered walker

But if you think I'm obsessed, check out this guy!

All the best.

Thursday 19 May 2011

Just How Miniature Can A Man's Issues Get?!

You know how about twenty four hours ago, I claimed I created my Reptile army because I wanted to avoid doing "generic" fantasy...?

Well, kindly forget I said that. I'm thirty-eight years old. My mind wanders. I say things I don't mean. And when I was at school, Hypocrisy 101 (or: How We Built The Empire) was part of the curriculum (along with 'Latin For Dummies and 20th Century Clueless Teenage Anglo-Saxon Throwbacks'; 'Hunt-the-second-years-and-dump-them-in-snowdrifts/bushes/unflushed toilets'; and 'Detention As A Cure For Atheism')

But I digress...

I have just spent the last couple of hours cleaning and undercoating a couple of hundred 10mm fantasy miniatures from Copplestone Castings and Kallistra, which I bought about two years ago and never got around to finishing. True to form, I did the bad guys and the big, scary monsters first, so they've been running amok in my Cupboard Of Secret Things, safe in the knowledge that the good guys haven't got their uniforms on yet...
A somwhat large number of orcs an' stuff...

I promise, I'll get the forces of freedom (albeit monarchistic, ritualistic and xenophobic) ready in time to stem the evil flow of self-expression and creativity personified by the drooling masses of orcs I have already unleashed...
Treemen emerge from the woods, to find their allies as yet woefully unprepared...
Anyone care to guess which side I'm favouring?

More 10mm very soon.

All the best!

Wednesday 18 May 2011

Growl! Snap, snap!

Hi all!

Just added a new page for my Reptile Horde for Hordes of the Things...

Hope you like!

Tuesday 17 May 2011

A Little Market Research...

Is there a market for hand-made-to-order buildings such as those I made for Leadwood?

I'm considering making model scenery to order, in the hope that such an endeavour might at least pay for my hobby... but, is it viable? What would be a fair price?

You tell me, folks. As a benchmark, take a look at the stand-alone building I made for the tutorial and tell me what you think it is worth. (Let's make it easy and talk in terms of US dollars.)

Is there a demand out there? I would very much appreciate your feedback on this.

All the best.

Monday 16 May 2011

The Lizard Horde Marches On... slowly... ish...

Hi all.

It's been a few days since my last post, so I thought I should update...

Preparations continue for a long-term Wild West campaign/soap-opera...

Started work on my Pig Iron System Troopers and the scratch-built tank I'm making for them (more later...)

The Dinosaur Behemoth for HOTT is taking shape - I've added armour plating and other bits, but it looks like being a long project!

I've been designing a four-legged walker, along the lines of my Steam Walker, but armed, armoured and huge! I just can't decide between Napoleonic period 'Lacepunk' and VSF 'Steampunk'. Suggestions and comments are welcome! (By the way, thanks to Victoria's Boys in Red (http://vbir.blogspot.com) for featuring my walker so prominently on your page! Much appreciated!)

Meanwhile, the Reptile Horde gains strength... A whole Phalanx of Lizard Spears (converted GW Skinks) is almost complete, along with a Lizard Wizard and some other choice bits and pieces...

All the best!

Saturday 14 May 2011

Leapin' Lizards!

Morning, all!

Work has begun on my new dinosaur conversion, intended to become the centrepiece of my Hordes of the Things (HOTT) Reptile Horde.

I'll be adding a new page to my blog as the army takes shape (finishing the bases for my crocodile units at the moment...) but for now, here's a bit about the development of the dinosaur...
Toy dino made by Papo.

Right arm repositioned, scars added.

Rider selected - a Reptus Warlord from Reaper Minis.

Reptus broken up. Head replaced with the head of an old GW Pteradon.

Head remodelled with green stuff.

Rider precariously balanced in place. Spines remodelled. Weapon remodelled. Rings inserted into dino's head for reins.

...and here's the (almost finished) Croc contingent...

More soon. All the best!

Wednesday 11 May 2011

Now what...?!

Hi all.

A HUGE thank you for the response to Leadwood and the tutorial I put up yesterday! I'm blown away!

Which has got me thinking about what to do next with Leadwood... Greg and I talked some time ago about keeping track of events in Leadwood as a sort of storyline, trying to work real-time into our campaign and documenting the developments of characters, reports on gunfights, feuds and alliances that develop... I can see that maybe it's time to start.

The idea is that we pick a few models (say, five) to begin at Citizen level, and go from there. We may even have some sort of financial system as well as experience, so that new gunfighters can be recruited, busted guns can be replaced, lawmen paid off, surgeons employed...

I hope such a thing would provide a regular entertainment for anyone wishing to visit this blog from time to time...

I'd love to hear all your thoughts and suggestions.

All the best!

Colonel O'Truth

Tuesday 10 May 2011

Finished Tutorial and more!

Hi folks.

I just finished my tutorial on Western Building construction (posted above as "Tutorial" page.) Hope you like it.

Also: Received my Pig Iron system troopers! Cool! Now I have to finish their tank...

AND: Bought a big scary dinosaur for my HOTT reptiles! He's going to get heavily converted, repainted, and generally hacked to bits! What fun!

So much to do...

Monday 9 May 2011

Progress so far...

It's been a few days since my last post and I am pleased to report that things are going well for my various bits and pieces.

The Wild West building tutorial will soon be ready (see pic below); I eagerly await the arrival of some Pig Iron system troopers for my new Sci-Fi project, for which my scratch-built tank is nearing completion; I've blown the dust of my partially finished HOTT reptiles and will finish them soon; and Scott Bowman, Abdul666 and others have inspired me to finally paint my Black Scorpion female pirates.

Furthermore, I have started to design a much bigger steam-powered walker and have a pretty clear idea of how my next big project - a Sci-Fi city - will take shape.

Feeling good!

Keep rolling those dice, folks!

Thursday 5 May 2011

The Curse Which Afflicts Us All....

It's been a long day.

I'm supposed to be in Nelson right now but at midday, having flown from Wellington this morning at ten o'clock, I landed in... Wellington. What was supposed to be a twenty minute trip turned into a two-hour debacle with two aborted attempts at landing and a guy directly behind me who thought the whole plane would appreciate his humour. Personally, I didn't notice any actual humour at all, but I deduced from the volume of his raucous laughter that he, at least, was attuned to his own subtle finesse...

Anyway, I'm home again and Nelson's loss is this blog's gain. I'll soon be heading to my recently decontaminated desk to continue constructing and photographing the Wild West building for my walkthrough. Should be able to put it all up on the blog much sooner than I expected...

And then what? Well, that brings me to the age old affliction we all share. I have a long list of ideas, projects and plans, ranging from things I have started but not finished, things I have been thinking about, things I want to order, paint and glue onto bases, and fresh ideas that make me want to shove all the other stuff out of the way.

Why do we do this to ourselves? It seems that wargamers are utterly unable to just focus on one project at a time, see it though to completion and then start on the next!

ACW? VSF? Crocodiles? Pirates? Sci-fi city? Tanks? WWII? Medieval walled town? The list goes on and on...

Surely someone out there understands? Sigh...

Wednesday 4 May 2011

A nice, relaxing... Aaargh!

After a long day at work, I was looking forward to coming home this evening and starting work on the walkthrough I have promised.

I had sketched the building and noted dimensions, I had all the bits I needed (thanks to Gerald at Macks Track and a big box of leftovers from the construction of Leadwood), and I'd been running through my mental list of tips and tricks to include all day.

I parked the car, said, "Hi!" to my kids, had a bite to eat and eagerly approached my bench...

My incredibly untidy heap of a bench!

Hence the "aaargh!"

Mine is not the bench you see in colourful model-making magazines and books, with everything all neatly laid out, every brush pristeen and wearing its bristle-protector, a shiny new cutting mat and a freshly emptied waste bin waiting hungrily beside a welcoming, oh-so-comfortable swivel chair.

Oh, no!

My bench is made from half an old transit pallette, knife-scarred and paint-daubed, with interesting lumps of gap filler, green stuff and congealed glue here and there that periodically have to be sanded flat. My brushes are looking somewhat the worse for wear but they serve me well ( loyal veteran brushes of many a campaign. How could I abandon them?) My cutting mat is starting to resemble something Doctor Frankenstein might have pieced together, my waste bin growled at me from beneath a mound of scrunched-up sketches, paint-spattered newspaper, shoe liners(?!) beer bottles and some other things I didn't look too closely at. And my chair - well, it's a zombie-swivel-chair, let's face it. But it's mine...

Anyway, half an hour and one big black plastic bag later, having kicked the bin into unconsciousness, I was ready to begin...

And now, I am happy to report that I am well on track. Materials have been prepared, pics have been taken and construction has begun. I have to go away to work in Nelson until Saturday night but the trusty steam-powered laptop will be with me and I should be able to knock together most of the walkthrough pretty quickly in my evenings.

I will be presenting a small, single-storey wooden building with a false front, signwriting, boardwalk, cloth awning, corrugated iron roof, smoke stack and a couple of wanted posters.

In the meantime, here's a big crocodile. Because I can.
Part of my Reptile Horde for HOTT - coming soon. ("Beloved of Sobek" by Crocodile Games.)

Watch this space.

Tuesday 3 May 2011

Request for walkthroughs...

Hi folks.

Malcolm (surname? Sorry - don't know) and others elsewhere have requested walkthroughs/tutorials. I've thought about this from time to time, which is why I took a few pics of Leadwood as it took shape.

SO: over the next couple of weeks, I'll construct a new Wild West building as a stand-alone piece, describing each stage of the process, the materials I choose, tips and tricks and what label of pinot noir goes down best when working with balsa wood.

Similarly, I plan for the (near) future to document the design/construction of a modular futuristic city, a couple of tracked sentry robots and a few other things.

I hope it all proves useful, entertaining and educational.

Happy warring!

Monday 2 May 2011

New Pics of Leadwood and Townsfolk

Posted lots of new pics of Leadwood in its finished state, along with many of the characters who appear in our games. Hope you like 'em!
Also added pics of my Steampunk Walker. Just a bit of fun...

The blog tapes shape...

Just posted a number of pictures of Leadwood as it developed, under "Leadwood - The Early Days." I'd be happy to discuss anything shown here, techniques, materials, etc.
Looking towards the rear of the Lucky Strike Saloon, across the graveyard. Note the open grave. "Always pays to be prepared," as my ol' Pappy used to say...

More pics of the finished town to come...


Sunday 1 May 2011

My first post! Whoopee!


The first post... what does one say? Well, I'm just throwing up a few pics at the moment.

This blog has been brought about largely by the very flattering response to photos that my good friends Greg and Roly posted online of my recently finished miniature town - "Leadwood" - and following a great game and lots of wargaming chit-chat with a few mates earlier today - the Official Unveiling of the town. (The streets were suitably christened in blood, but the battle was won by a gosh-darned Mexican! Who'da thunk it?)

Those pics are on here, soon to be followed by many more (it's a very complex model, with lots of things to look at) along with a few of other projects I'm working on, or have worked on. Under "Old Cowboys" are some shots of earlier work (now owned by Greg) that lead to Leadwood. There are also a few pics of a pirate-ruin that was to be the basis of a modular ruined city built on water.

Other things to come - I'm currently considering a sci-fi city, I'm scratch-building a sci-fi tank from plastic board, and I hope to show fantasy, steampunk and other design ideas.

Watch this blog!