16 October 2017

Seriously Small Spaceships

David picked up some "MicroFleets' ships on Shapeways to use for Star Fleet Battles last week. Because he has very little painting time, I offered my brush. I figured they'd be quick to finish given their size. I was right.

Kzintis in progress. Compare to the 15mm tank and 1" grid squares. They are tiny!

The Kzinti ships were done in the grainy "white strong and flexible" material. The Cardassians are of the Frosted Ultra Detail and are much tighter. Witness the class-lettering on the bases.

This accounts for Sunday's work. The civilian ships and base are essential for good SFB storytelling. Looking forward to putting some of these on the table next weekend.

15 October 2017

Saturday X-Wing

Got in a quick round of X-Wing in Saturday afternoon with David. I wanted to get back to trying out different interesting combinations and just flying for fun. For this engagement, my theme was "bent vanes."

Vader, a TIE Bomber and a TIE Punisher square off against David's Decimator and Firespray.

With his setup off to the edge, I decided to pull him into the asteroids. That part of the plan worked very well.

For the first half or two-thirds of the game, I flew circles around the two big ships. Vader got great position on Kath Scarlett and smacked her for a crit. Somehow, David has put "Determination" on that ship and for the first time ever, it pays off. How irritating.

A move later, the Decimator blasts Vader to smithereens.

And as I get them to chase me into the asteroids again, the bomber gets blasted. A bit later, the punisher would succumb.

Curses! Both of David's ships were stripped of shields and on the edge of destruction. My poor agility bomber and punisher just couldn't hack it as time would down and attrition took its toll.

I enjoyed the ships I used and as usual, David has found a very solid combination.

10 October 2017

Naval Minefields for Dystopian Wars

So, with our first proper games of DWFA over the weekend, it was made plain that we need proper minefields. Sunday, I began whipping some up.

The back of an old frame provided some nice 1/8 inch board. It was surprisingly sturdy.

Liquitex Flexible Modeling Paste - Gel Medium smeared liberally.

I used the flat side of the blade against the putty and pull it straight off to give it a crinkly wavy texture. Process repeats many times until both squares are well-textured.

Like this!

A hosing of blue spray paint followed by a thin black wash to create some extra "shadowy depths."

 A couple drybrushings - pale blue, then white.

And a heavy gloss coat - job's done!

They look purty with the little boats. I'm rather happy with how these turned out. Now I need to make a couple for those land games!

08 October 2017

Dystopian Wars Fleet Action: First AAR

So, about a week before Spartan went under, I started looking through their quick-play rules - Dystopian Wars Fleet Action and Firestorm Taskforce. DW and FSA are terrific games but the fiddly nature of the rules limit how much of a game can be played in three hours. The new rules simplify things significantly but do a fabulous job of retaining the flavor of the original.

Ziggy and I got together for a battle Saturday evening to give DWFA a thorough workout. I used my Honorable Eclipse Company which have been in a box, painted, for quite some time but only minor elements of which have ever seen the battlefield (two years ago!). Zig used his British navy. One unintended matchup problem that Z didn't consider is that his ships rely heavily on torpedoes, which are useless of course against flying machines which make up 85% of an HEC force. Point values were just over 1700 each.

I'd have decorated the islands a bit more, but the decorations would have just gotten in the way of my fliers. Witness yet another bizarre deployment by Ziggy.

After a turn, there had been very little destruction. Lots of moving out and getting lined up.Oh, that white square on the left side was a minefield. I suppose I should craft a couple, more elegant.

A squadron of Hades interceptors takes a run at some frigates.

I'll note at this point that we were listening to 80's heavy metal and Slayer "Raining Blood" came on as I was getting the bombers lined up for a bombing run on the destroyers below. Just one of those fun memorable gaming moments. My bombers whiffed and we quickly turned the song into "Raining Dud."

The noose continues to tighten around the British. Their only element outside that top-right pocket is a corvette squadron visible (barely) on the left in front of the mines.

Turn 3 - I remember to launch the little guys from my undersea bases. Assault submarines make for the Hood battlecruiser and give it a good thrashing.

A view from the top. The immobile killing machine had just mashed up something or other in the distance. Pretty sure the gin & tonic inspired this picture.

Remains of a Hades squadron try to make an impression on the Monarch-class heavy battleship. They'd have done just as well lobbing water balloons.

The mini-subs finish off the Hood. During turn 4, Ziggy actually racked up a lot of kills but it wasn't enough to overcome the deficit. We called the game there.

The final score, just raw kills was 46 to 27 in favor of my HEC. I really do think that the lack of suitable targets for torpedoes was significant. Nineteen points different? Who knows? Next time I'll use something a bit more naval.

We're both very happy with the DWFA rules and they'll continue to be used. The game just plays better with less confusion, fewer rulebook dives and more toys on the tabletop.

07 October 2017

Just an update

I finished the Reaper Bones reclamation project a week or so ago. I ordered some 30mm bases to match the rest of the collection.

The crimson guy on the right, the guy with the minigun and the flamethrower guy had previously been "painted" by my son a few years ago. A little Simple Green and a quick paint job to match the rest and job's done. The crimson guy has 10 squadmates of similar design and the same colors not pictured.

I also had an order arrive yesterday. Along with those 30mm bases, I got these:
They were a good price on The War Store and will make fine additions to my Litumsian Imagi-nations.

Ziggy and I are going to play Dystopian Wars Fleet Action this afternoon. My Eclipse Company will have a go at the Britannians. I'm really looking forward to it.

01 October 2017

Welcome to the Jungle - AK47 Republic AAR

30 September

MCC forces attacked government troops near Lumbasa. The insurgents had heavy tanks and armored vehicles supporting a large contingent of infantry. 

WPA deployment. The insurgent commander ponders.

The MCC forces appear from the south. Tanks and infantry look lined up to take the village and bridges, while the vehicle squadron seems to have the boat ramp in its sights.

WPA tanks move to hide from the enemy tanks. The MCC infantry swarms through the village.

By the lake, Johnson's troops hide from the vehicle squadron that has just burst onto the scene.

Insurgent reinforcements arrive! A large group of infantry appear from an uncovered corner of the battlefield.

Litumsian Autoroute 17 becomes the scene of quite a firefight between the tanks and infantry of both factions!

Disaster! The rebels capture the boat ramp. They'll have access to all the best fishing spots on the lake!

But just then, one of the armored cars erupts in a gout of flame!

Cannon fire from the PT-76es across the lake smashes into the MCC vehicles, caught unawares. Two of the armored cars are wrecked in no time.

The rest of the squadron pulls back, but keeps their barrels trained on the woods, knowing the WPA troops are in there.

Quite a turn of events as the Lion Cadre on the bridge decide they've had enough and quit the field. Between the tanks, heavy machineguns and a lucky artillery bombardment, they took quite a beating in a very short span of time.

The WPA troops in the woods make a dash to the dock to reclaim the objective. The gunners in the vehicle squadron exact some revenge, gunning down the exposed infantry.

Reinforcements finally arrive! Two truckloads of infantry heading up the road to the President for Life Johnson Memorial Bridge Number 87.

The PT-76es good fortune continue as they take out both a recoilless-armed jeep and the M163. The remaining armored car would end up fleeing.

The MCC reinforcements take over bridge 87 and prepare to fight off the freshly-arrive WPA troops. Their arrival freed up the rebels tanks to deal with the government tanks.

Hardly Kursk, but a glorious tank battle nonetheless! The PT-76es completely dominate the Pattons, a victory owed in no small part to "Extra Determination" earned in the previous turn.

The battle ended - it was a stunning win for the defending Worker's Party Army of President for Life Johnson. The Militia Campaign for the New Congress slunk back into the woods to strategize for the next battle. 

We could get all high and mighty about not blaming dice and all that bullshit, but my wife's dice rolls were miserable compared to mine. I failed exactly four morale tests all game. If you've ever played AK47R, you know that's pretty great. I never really felt as though I had the upper hand until the very end. Her tanks kept me worried most of the battle - I was fortunate that they were stuck babysitting the bridge objective waiting for the slowpoke reinforcements to arrive.

A very enjoyable evening of gaming with my best gal. Oh, and for those of you keeping track, this is the first time I've beaten her in a game of AK47 Republic.

24 September 2017

Ryushi - Firestorm Armada Winds Down

I am disappointed about Firestorm Armada going out of production. The models were/are top-notch. I mentioned a month ago that I'd ordered a starter box of Ryushi ships the day Spartan announced they'd closed up shop. I finished them today.

A carrier, four cruisers and six corvettes. 

A different angle of the smaller ships.

And the carrier.

It's a color scheme to be proud of - a little bit Joker-mobile for sure but I like it. I'll have to let them get out and take a spin using the Firestorm Taskforce rules.