Archive | January 2013

Slow and Steady

It’s been a busy few weeks so sadly my projects have had to take a back seat.  I say projects because there is a super secret birthday project in the works for my dad.  I’ve already said too much.

 

Dog OP

A Colonial Marine Observation Post (OP).  The tent is from plasticard with green-stuff flaps and top, with a few edges onto the body to give a canvas like appearance.  Most of the effect is paint.

This will be a potential objective for the Felines.  It can reactive fire, but otherwise is something to be seized or destroyed.  I am 50-50 on if a sniper detachment should be deployed near this objective.  It will likely draw Colonial Marine assets to defend it, simply to deny the enemy an easy victory.

 

Cat Arty

A Feline gun emplacement.  Made from a nail and plasticard (squint in the right light and the gun shield and mantlet are visible under the cam-net).  The Cam-net is cotton with two small posts.

I made the cam-net in a new way.  I mixed water, glue and thick green paint into the fabric to help it keep it’s shape.  It dries a lot lighter, but gives a good infusion.  Since I wanted to try a Swedish scop-kit effect, a light colour was the best base.  From there I did reverse hi-lighting (going from light to dark with the most raised areas the darkest).  The gradual wet blend is lost at this scale.  I have to say it works since it took me 20 pics to get 3 to choose from…the colours and flock shifted the focus.

For game play, these will be off-board artillery pieces with a need for a forward observer and separate activation.  In some scenarios, the Colonial Marine objective will be to destroy this with an air-strike.  Observe a shot, make expertise roll for counter-battery, aircraft inbound.  Big boom, go home for victory beers.

 

Brown Pride

CinC Solar Empire Marines Felinoids.  This is a Protector Squad.  Like the Infiltrators, these start the game holding potential objectives.  A larger squad, but not elite like the Infiltrators. By sheer chance of selecting models, I made this with only three poses.  Not the most exciting in terms of variety.

Close Up OP

Extreme close-up of the OP being over-run.  CinC Solar Empire Marines and Felinoids.  The scale of the felinoids is apparent here…absolutely giant!  Again, I think those swords they carry are going to translate to a game effect.

So the project is rolling along nicely.  This is good as I have agreed to run this as a game for the Edmonton Wargame Group annual games day: MayDay (http://maydayconvention.com/).  If you will be in Edmonton during that time, it will be worth checking out.

To actually have this project to a level I would like I need to get more terrain done and a lot more models.  2 more platoons of Marines.  3 more squads of felines, a mortar team, a towed anti-tank gun, and the tank squad.  The support elements may get trimmed to only 2 of those 3…and the towed gun is on thin ice.

The terrain is the other big part.  TV station needs the broadcast tower assembled, then I have some more blocks of ruins to paint, and a bunch of intact urban to build.

Hopefully something stirred some interest for somebody.

Advertisements

Deja FUBAR?

Tonight gave me a chance to have some players at the Edmonton Wargaming Group playtest the forces.  Dave used the Strays supporting a couple of Infiltrator Prides of the Felines versus Chen Song commanding a platoon of infantry and a tank platoon.

15 Jan FUBAR Battle

 

Early movement of the Felines secured the ruined office tower and bridge.  The Red Strider  Squad provides over-watch from across the river.

To simplify the game based on forces available, the objectives were not secretly determined.  The Marines had to secure the office towers and bridge while the Felines and Strays needed to inflict 25% casualties and withdraw at least 50% of their forces.

 

15 Jan FUBAR Battle 2

The tenacious Feline squad in the tower first planted mines, then waited for harvest.  They took 50% casualties, but held off two Marine squads.  The over-watch from across the river prevented the Marines from bringing all 3 squads into the building.  This stall, and a later counter-attack by the Felines holding the bridge resulted in a Marine defeat.

The real disappointment in the game was the limited movement.  Obviously I need to improve activation rates of the units.  I am thinking of raising Marine activation rolls as long as they have their command element alive.  The Strays may get a news van from KT-TV to give a similar bonus.  The Felines just have to suck it up…they start the game holding all the objectives anyways.

Red HT-010

Renegade Legion Aeneas Light Tank by CinC that has been renamed a HT-010 “Hornet” Colonial Marine hovertank.  The plethora of weapon systems makes it a bit frightening.  At least when it activates.  Substantially smaller than the other vehicles.

 

Yellow Stinger GAF

Renegade Legion Space Gull by C in C.  These “Stinger” fighters are quite modular, as I put this together in a much different way than the pictures on the C in C site.  Potentially deadly, the Colonial Marines must not have coordinated radio frequencies since they never showed up.

 

Dog OP

A Colonial Marine Observation Point?  Not all the objectives will be held by the Felines.  Although it will no always play a role, the Colonial Marines will have an OP on the battlefield that potentially could be a target for the Felines.  It will respond to enemy movements like a unit on guard and have a save and suppression value but it will not otherwise function as a unit.

More FUBAR

The past week has given me enough time to sneak a few more models into the finished stage.

 

Blue HIFV

A CinC Renegade Legion Lupis TOG Light APC that I have rebranded a Hive command and control APC.

The CinC Renegade Legion Anti-Grav Tanks are just amazing.  My only complaint is that the Romulus TOG Medium APC (I rebranded the Elf) has waaay too many weapon systems.  If I painted and included all the weapons on the model it would have: a main gun, a coaxial gun, a missile launcher (2 missiles) and a rocket pod (6 missiles).  The vehicle also has no viable exit point as the turret is above where the access hatch opens into.  But it is 6mm scale…so I will just suck it up :-).

Blue-Black AILV

 

A frontal view of the CinC Renegade Legion Romulus TOG Medium APC.  I have designated each vehicle and squad within the Platoon like poker chips.  This is Black Squad of Blue Platoon.

Blue-White AILV

Here is a side profile of the Romulus.  I have rebranded these into Armoured Infantry Landing Vehicles – AILV or Elf.  This is White Squad’s ride.

The infantry are very high quality too.  I have only a small selection of the miniatures but am amazed at the value.  Each pack of approximately 53 models costs an astounding $8.00 USD.  The detail is superb and much superior to the DP9 infantry models I previously posted.

Blue-Black Squad Blue-White Squad Blue Target Designator Blue Squad

I see your $20 and raise 5 Colonial Marines.  CinC Solar Empire Marines.  The heavy weapon is from the Infantry Light Support pack, all other soldiers are the basic infantry.

The Felinoids models are a bit staggering.  I looked at them online and thought, ok, they look cool.  I looked at them when I received them and thought, nice sculpts.  I put them beside assembled infantry and realized they are 10-12 feet tall.  In accordance with the cannon of the setting they are sculpted for, no problem.  Just be aware if you buy them they are quite imposing.

Green Infiltrator

 

CinC Solar Empire Marines Felinoids.  To gauge size, these are all based on Canadian/American pennies.  This is an Infiltrator Pride, a unit that starts the game securing infrastructure and gains bonuses to terrain.

Each model carries a large sword, something I was originally going to ignore for FUBAR.  Now, I am thinking of either giving a melee bonus or calling it an anti-tank knife.  Imagine the poor Australian poacher who tried the “that ain’t a knife” routine with this guy.

Green Infiltrator Zoom1 Green Infiltrator Zoom 2

Extreme close-up.  Background models out of focus.  The detailing really stands out.  This model is crouching while the others are prone.  The remainder of the sculpts are standing or squatting.  There is an unarmed weapon operator in the basic pack…he is undergoing conversion to man a mortar.

So there is a snap-shot of those models.  If you are interested in some 6mm Sci-Fi models  highly recommend CinC.  They have 3 ranges of science fiction models that are fairly inter-changeable.  The Solar Empire Marines line assumes mass-production and similar designs so nearly all the vehicles and heavy weapons are intended for universal use.  I personally prefer the look of the Renegade Legion Antigrav Tanks so went that route.

6mm FUBAR

FUBAR is a set of rules I was exposed to at an Edmonton Wargaming Group games night several months ago. If you are in Edmonton, look it up on Yahoo.

FUBAR started as an online reaction to over-complicated and ever expanding rules – a one-page set of rules. Now the rules have expanded a bit and several periods and settings exist. Simply put, it is an abstract set of generic science fiction wargame rules. Fortunately (unfortunately?) there are no points values for units unless a set has been developed (conversions of Star Wars or 40K for example). The FUBAR site is here.

Sample Card
An example of the unit data cards I am creating. DP9 Fleet Scale CEF Battle Frame

I intend to develop scenarios that do not have balanced forces. Instead, each force reflects the capability to achieve their tactical objectives, with difficulty. The board set-up will always include 3 elements of infrastructure scenery, 3 tactical objectives, and enough other terrain to make the battle interesting. Objectives will include seizing tactical objectives, controlling infrastructure, conducting counter-battery fire or even scorched earth tactics. I will also have a wildcard of a third force…that may side with either force or stay independent, depending on objectives.

Stray Forces
The “Strays” advancing through the city. Ruined Buildings are Games Workshop plastic Epic Buildings.

My intent is that this will play as a non-conventional warfare game using air support, artillery, electronic warfare, fog of war, and realistic objectives. I have a large set of ruined urban terrain and I am slowly expanding that to include infrastructure and tactical objectives. I have two infrastructure objectives built: a small nuclear power reactor and a water treatment plant (the power plant is the central building in the above pic). The next to be built is a television station.

Stray Blue APC 8
Games Workshop Epic Rhino turned into an APC 8 command and control vehicle with ECM.

The first force I put together are the Strays. The core of these are CEF Fleetscale Miniatures from DP9. The two-legged walkers, infantry and minitanks all were packaged together. Sadly the tanks are out of scale, but I wanted to use them. After seeing a crowd of people figuratively “plugged into” their data phones I took a step past Ghost in the Shell. Upload your personality into a shared collective virtual space. There’s an app for that. Download your persona into a vacant body or machine…now an army takes shape.

Stray Orange Cannon Frame
DP9 Battle Frame conversion with a Gauss Cannon. Recast as an Armoured Persona Framework. Still called Frame because I’m lazy.

The Strays roam the streets and “collect” the unwary and abandoned. Now the mini-tanks make perfect sense, and the walkers with waaay too small crew compartments…they just have a few chips and a modem to fill in for a crew. Sinister in some sense, the uploaded personas do actually have a pleasant existence and immortality…as long as the servers stay up. Naturally, the Strays are obsessed with maintaining the power grid and protecting KT-TV (Kitty TV – cute and cuddly, the place for off-world broadcasts).

Stray Red Strider
A Strider, the heaviest vehicle deployed. A CinC Recon Walker model. Very nice to assemble with crisp detail.

This force has very limited anti-vehicle weaponry, relying on the heavier Striders and a couple of heavy weapon Frames conversions. The Frames all have a very short range anti-tank weapon…so if they can survive they will be able to ambush vehicles. The SPRCs (Sparks) provide most of the anti-tank firepower, as expected for mini tanks. Realistically these forces will not do very well outside of dense urban terrain.

Stray Purple SPRC
Semi-Autonomous Programmable Robotic Combatants (“Sparks”) Stray heavy infantry. DP9 CEF Fleet Scale Hover Tank.

Eventually I will get the hang of taking better pics. 6mm is an unforgiving in terms of photography…close enough to pick up detail makes the painting look pretty terrible.

HOTT Fantasy Army

As a first post I figure a good place to start is a project that I finished with a bit of timeline motivation.

I had cobbled together my first 28mm HOTT army from some spare Lord of the Rings models in my bits box.  With a few other spare figures I built my army of Melnibonea.  A future post will showcase them I am sure.

The reason I mention the other army is I wanted a striking contrast for the opposing army I would build.  As my wife has enjoyed a few games (mostly Confrontation) I asked for her input.  The result was an army influenced by “traditional” fantasy like the Carrol, Lewis, or Grimm stories.

I figured nature spirits would be a good basis for the forces of nature and good rising up against an oppressive empire.  Here are a few pics of the sculpts for these spirits.  I was inspired by Jim Henson’s work in 80’s fantasy films so yes, the googly eyes were intentional.

Greens4

Greens of a vine monster, an animate pile of rocks, and a more traditional rock monster

More greens.  I was inspired by the aliens from Sesame Street for the tree spirit in the back right.

More greens. I was inspired by the aliens from Sesame Street for the tree spirit in the back right.

Finished forest spirits.

Finished forest spirits.

Finished forest spirits from reverse angle.

Finished forest spirits from reverse angle.

More forest spirits.  Note the bush monster.

More forest spirits. Note the bush monster.

More forest spirits, order reversed.  The giant hand and peeping eye is my favorite.

More forest spirits, order reversed. The giant hand and peeping eye is my favorite.

The combined forest spirit might.

The combined forest spirit might.

The forest spirits form the back-bone for the army and count as Warbands in HOTT.

Unicorn

A unicorn conversion from a LOTR Rider of Rohan horse.  I repositioned the legs and it has become the bane of my existence as the glue point on the base constantly gives way.  The unicorn counts as a paladin in HOTT.

Converted from cheap animal toys with greenstuff armour.

Converted from cheap animal toys with greenstuff armour.

My oldest daughter has quite the collection of beasties and I managed to raid these few.  Armour was added to give the impression of intelligent animals.  The lion is close to horse sized – so this is often the general (I don’t know where the inspiration for a giant talking lion leading an army could come from).  Count as Beasts in HOTT.

Centaurs converted from LOTR Riders of Rohan.

Centaurs converted from LOTR Riders of Rohan.

I added barding to the horse bodies by extending the armour from the rider torso into the horse forequarters.  I am happiest with the Appalosa scale armour.  Count as Riders in HOTT.

 

Angels converted from LOTR Galadriel and Celeborn.

Angels converted from LOTR Galadriel and Celeborn.

Sitting unused these models sprouted a set of wings to act as angels/fairies to provide air support.  Count as Flyers in HOTT.

I’m not the happiest with the quality of painting I did on these models.  I rushed it and was going for an “across the table” level of quality.  I may go back and retouch these.  Eyes need picking out and a more subtle blending of colors is needed for the fabrics and furs.  The only “human” element is not pictured as they were the most rushed.  Since their purpose is to guard the camp they will be furthest from the action – and discriminating eyes.

The whole army consists of: 1x Beasts element (General), 4x Warband elements (nature spirits), 1x Paladin element (unicorn), 2x Riders elements (centaurs), and 2x Flyers (angels).  It provides a lot of movement and flexibility, especially in any sort of cover.  Facing heroes, knights, behemoths or blades it has some difficulty in the open – a perfect counter-point to the Melnibonean army I built.