Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Linear or Square?

Not, perhaps, as simple as you might think.

I was contemplating the size of my AWI figure collection versus the size of my gaming table and was startled at how many linear feet just my infantry would fill up.  Came out to about 138 feet - 1/2 inch per figure and over 3,000 figures.  And my table is only 4' x 12' in size.  How in the world would I ever get them all on the table?!

Well, it turns out that is the wrong way to think of it.

Technically that is correct if all the figures were in one rank and all standing shoulder to shoulder.  But if formed into brigade size masses and counting the space all the figures would take up - not just the infantry but cavalry, artillery, command, and casualty figures take up a bit less than ten square feet.  Thus much less than one fourth of the table would be needed for the whole of my AWI figure table to be on the table all at once.  Which means I could run a game with all of them, albeit crowded.

Thankfully, my collection is meant to allow northern, central, and southern campaign games so there would rarely be any point to having all the figures on the table at the same time.  Unless it was Long Island!

Saturday, May 6, 2017

The 7th

Not the date.  The cavalry regiment.  I've started prepping my 7th Cavalry regiment for my Old West/Plains Wars set-up.

Twelve companies at twelve mounted figures each plus twelve dismounts, a standing horse to represent point of dismount, and three dead horses and two dead men (that's 42 pieces x 12 or 504 pieces) and then there will be the high command, still a little minor adjusting but 6 more mounted men and six dismounts but only two dead horses and two dead men (harder to kill the high command).

I'm also hoping to get at least half of the army supply wagons prepped and primed this week, four wagons with drivers and four horses per wagon.  Part of the minor sorting is adjusting so that within the twelve companies there will be four battalion commands - each battalion to have three companies (or troops for those of you not aware that company was the proper name for a 'troop' at the time.

A bit of a distraction from the French and Indian War I'm supposed to be finishing and the American Revolution I've started and should be progressing with but at least the Old West is one of the KEY periods (AWI and Cracked Colonials being the other two key periods).  Enough for now.

Friday, April 28, 2017

A Modest Change of Direction

Exercising that well known prerogative - but in a masculine direction! - I've changed my mind about my gaming table.  Instead of adding two 2' x 4' extensions to each end to be able to go to a 16' total length instead of the current 4' x 12' size, I'm abandoning the extensions and converting them in to 'level changers'.  That means the table stays at 4' x 12' which is plenty of space for 15 mm gaming, at least within my new mindset.  I might still put together the occasional Extravaganza Game to run at a convention but I'm going to put more focus on games that max out at six players - and I'm well in to adjusting my varied figure collections for this new direction.  A couple of periods will stay on the massive side - the AWI and the Old West.  But most everything else will either hold steady where it is or reduce in size (if not done already) and maybe one or two periods get abandoned - or not.  Dang will power problem.

What's driving this decision is two things.  First, it was a game I recently ran at a local convention using a table roughly the same size with six players, three per side.  Worked just fine and allowed plenty of room to play our game, a French and Indian War event.  Second, when deciding to dismantle my passes in favor of just using the 'deep profile hills' I realized I would still need some height for games, either for a 'drop' to a seaport or a 'rise' to other heights.  The simplest way to get there was to convert the already assembled 2' x 4' extension into one rise and match that with the second 2' x 4' extension not yet assembled because it was going to be on a hinge.

As soon as realized this meant the ends were more open and the gaming 'flanks' more accessible, that sealed the deal.  So, now I need to assemble the second extension into a riser (need a couple sticks of 1 x 2 and or 1 x 3) and then build some 'step up' pieces using 1/2" plywood cut with a jigsaw and bull nosed with a belt sander and then base painted.  And eventually all this gets textured and painted to match my 8 color paint system for terrain.

I'll need to make a couple of sub-risers as well so that I can use one of the risers at one level and the other riser at a second and higher level.  That means I'll need two 4' 'step ups' - and with two of those I can, if a game calls for it, have a 4' x 4' riser with a 'step up' (or step down) on either side of the rise.  For another option, I'll also build four side 'step ups' so that I can use the risers lengthwise as either one 2' x 4' piece (and if I have two of those, I need the four side 'step ups') or as one 2' x 8' riser using just two of the side 'step ups'.  I suppose, it just occurred to me, that if I build two extra 4' and a little more 'step ups' so they match properly with the side risers, I can put the riser in the center of the board longwise (and I'll need two small corner 'rise ups' in case I want to put two lengthwise center riser pieces for some reason.  So, all told, that will be 10 'step ups' to build.

Since those risers will have a flat and flush surface, I can put buildings or any of my other terrain pieces on top to add even more versatility.

Diverging away from that topic but sticking with the terrain area, I've decided I will add another 72 evergreens to match the ones I've already bought as far numbers of trees and types of bases - but I will color 36 of them lighter with spray paint and the other 36 darker, basically adding pines and spruces to my gaming evergreens.

Now, back to those passes to be dismantled, I'm going to convert them to three rather long deep profile hills, one each at 31", 29",  and 24", roughly.  Will lose some length when I jig saw and bull nose the newly sawn elements.  Should be able to re-use the majority of the wood without too much extra effort.

I'm also going to reduce the number of cliffs I build - just too much too store.  I also realized I need to make a shorter straight cliff to maximize versatility - and I will make a couple of options of the standard length and the new shorter length, such as at least one waterfall.

That's it for the moment.  Off to other things.  And, yes, photographs eventually.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Redux de reasonable

Or, reduction towards reasonableness.

Been working to reduce the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan and the French Foreign Legion figures and the 'enemies'.  Well, success on several fronts but the Anglo-Egyptian army has been stubborn - though some reduction.  Natives, except for the Emirs and the Sultan, reduced by a full third - though still need to sort out the casualty figures.  For the French, I need one figure per stand for the native side of things to effectively double my native force of Bedouin and Touareg.

For the Fuzzie-Wuzzie (Hadendowah?) and the Ansar (?) I may need two casualties per figure - thanks to that aforementioned stubbornness.

French worked out at 12 foot units and 8 cavalry units plus the heavy weapons and train and leadership.  Oh, and a band and heliograph unit.  The British worked out to 12 foot units and 6 cavalry and 2 camelry units and the other associated units, band and heliograph included.  And a good dose of leaders for both.  Doesn't sound so bad, right?  Hold up.  Then there is the Egyptian army, more or less, with 6 units of Egyptian foot, 3 units of Sudanese foot, and 3 units Indian troops.  Then the cavalry - two Egyptian plus Egyptian lancers (did they have?  don't know.  but mine do.)  A mounted gendarme unit (sort of trash in battle) and two more horse mounted units (Egyptian?  tired and late), and one Egyptian and one Sudanese camel mounted units.  For both sides, all mounted have dismounts.

Foot units are 18 figures, mounted are 12 figures.

The native forces have 6 24 figure infantry units, 4 15 figure cavalry units, and 2 12 figure cameleers units.  I have a total of six of those groupings with some associated other bits but two of them have been deemed excess for a swap meet one day.

All in all, probably reduced the painting load by well over 1,000 figures.

The "European" troops rate 2 casualties per unit for foot and mounted, all else (leaders, heavy weapons, train elements) 1 casualty per.


Monday, February 20, 2017

Centrifugal Force?

I hope my progress this past week shows promise for this year.  I've made significant progress on the AWI, back working on the FIW, and doing a little bit with the zoologicals for the Scramble - or Steeplechase - for something sort of like Africa.  Check out those tabs above for more information.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Flavorings and Cavalry in Prime

Okay, I admit this is not going to be the most exciting post but I think you'll find some things of interest somewhere in the photos.  This first lot is a series of cliffs in development.  I had a bunch of left over pieces from other projects and rather than throw them away I realized I could use them to make a variety of cliffs.  Some might say a piece of 2x4 on top of a 1x6 might not be much of a cliff - unless you are a 15 mm figure!  So, they'll do - eventually.  Ended up with a LOT of them.  What I like most is the ability to create a box canyon effect.  There will also be at least one waterfall.  Many, many options as to how to use these once they are done, which they are far away from being at this time.

This next lone shot is of a piece of terrain originally created for my pirate games.  With a four foot wide table they reach nicely from one side to the other which means they can be used in a variety of hill formations.
Which leads to this group of in progress terrain pieces.  These are meant to be high passes but can be used in a variety of ways.  One really cool use will be to arrange them in such a way as to create 'famous' passes - think Apache Pass or Kyburz Pass.  This is all adding a lot of options to what I can put on my table.

Above is a set of 16 spring grass pieces, some finished, some in progress.
And here we have two sets of 12 pieces each of tall grass, the left being nice and green and the right hand batch being very dried out (used lots of browns, tans, a little green, and a finish with saffron cans of spray paint).
The background above, to the right, is the summer green grass, 16 pieces.
And here, on the left and into the background are the 16 "California blonde" grass (think autumn).
Here is a small group of six pieces used for underbrush - bit of an oops here because when I built these I couldn't find the couple dozen other pieces I was looking for so these might get re-done at some point in time - or maybe I just build some more crowded pieces of underbrush.
Here you'll want to focus on the lower front - those are some areas of just rough, really dry ground.  Not shown because of issues with posting pictures and an out-of-date Safari on my other lap top are 3 each of two types of plowed fields.  I think, all told, I know have about 90 flavor pieces with more planned to get to at least 120 pieces.  The new challenge is how to store these so the wood bases won't warp.  Flat, flat, flat!

And, now, something a bit more fun: 20 regiments of American Revolution Cavalry primed and ready for painting.  Not the greatest photos, I'm afraid, and because of that photo loading challenge I'm not sure if the photos show all 20 regiments but I think they do.  But they provide evidence of progress.  I realize it is hard to see in many of the photos but there are dismounts to 'match' to every regiment, 12 men mounted on 12 horses, 12 dismounted men, a group of householders, and one dead cavalryman per unit (40 pieces x 20 regiments = 800 pieces to paint!!!  Yikes-a-zowie!)
Four regiments above.

 The above photo came out with better lighting for an unknown reason but you can at least see things better - 3 regiments in there.

All those regiments sort out to 3 British (16th, 17th, and mounted Highlanders), 3 Loyalist, 2 German, 4 Continental, 2 Legionary, Militia, 3 other revolutionary units like Washington's Life Guard, North Carolina and von Heer's Corp, and 2 French regiments.  Not all were actually full regiments but I want lots of cavalry for those hypothetical games I will be running.

And now to switch gears, here is the 'newest' of my French and Indian War units, the second provincial regiment.  No, the paint jobs won't win any awards - but those guys fight across the table just fine.
That flag has NY on one side and NJ (I think) on the other.  And seeing these photos I think I'll go back and use a wash on the skin tones - maybe.

Now that I have access to the blog again and have an idea how to sort out loading photos in the future, hope to get more posts up.  Though no promises they'll be soon because I'm putting a lot of my effort into my model railroad.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Success - regained access to blog

A bit late to post tonight but I have photos of recent projects but have been having trouble accessing my blogs - finally got back in!  Yeah.

Over 23,000 views since inception which surprises me - though I do discount a couple thousand of those as spider trolls.  I guess just part of the internet reality.

More later now that I've gotten back in.