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Stuck at Home; Keeping myself sane

Stuck at Home; Keeping myself sane

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Project Blog by warhammergrimace Cult of Games Member

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About the Project

As of Monday 23/03/2020 I'll be stuck at home, as the schools will shut down this Friday. So I'm keeping this project to show what I'm doing to keep myself sane. It'll mostly be painting miniatures, some of which will be added to my other projects. Writing board game reviews, some painting tutorials and terrain building. Going into 2021, this project page will become more like a blog.

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Painting Update Jan-April 2022

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I haven’t been that productive since the festive break, though I did manage to start a new project for 2022. I’d decided to build a Late Roman warband for Saga, Age of Invasions. So far, I’ve managed to finish my first unit of Hearth Guard and made a start on a unit of warriors.

Painting Update Jan-April 2022

In order to build a Late Roman warband I decided to pick up a box of plastic Late Roman infantry.

The box will allow you to build 44 soldiers (4 command miniatures and 40 soldiers). They can be used as legionary or auxiliary infantry of the 4th / 5th centuries, for either Eastern or Western Roman Empire. They can also be used beyond that, for early 6th century armies, like Roman Britain or Gaul, as well as early Byzantine armies.

I decided to build two units of archers, two levy units and a unit of hearth guard and a command unit. I plan to add a cavalry unit to the warband along with a Scorpion ballista for added fire power.

Painting Update Jan-April 2022

I’ve also managed to get some orcs from the Lord of the Ring range painted as well, these were done with a minimal paint palette, and I decided to make the armor look rusty and dirty as possible.

Painting Update Jan-April 2022

I’ve also painted a few odds and ends for generic fantasy gaming, but as I’ve said before I’ve not been very productive in the last couple of months. I’ve found that I haven’t had the motivation coming into the New Year like I had for the last 18 months. I’m guessing I’ve hit a bit of a hobby burnout. So now I’m looking for things to motivate myself again such as new project ideas, trying to find a spark to revamp or kickstart myself on old projects that have been forgotten and left to the wayside.

Painting Update Jan-April 2022

One plan I’m considering is picking up a small starter set of the new Army Painter Speed Paints and hopefully this will rejuvenate me into painting some miniatures for the numerous board games I have. Looking at the many reviews online they seem to work better than GW’s contrast paints so one plan is to give these ago over the next few months.

I need to finish the Asian Town Project this year, and so I’m going to concentrate on getting as much of this done as possible going forward. My aim is to make a start on the river sections and make use of the water effect resin I have. I’ll probably write up a small tutorial for the next issue. As I have plans to play a few different games with the project everything from Samurai skirmish, WW2 and Korea battles, Asian Zombies, Silver Bayonet and Wild West games set in 1920-30’s Manchuria.

Painting Update Jan-April 2022

I also need to get my ECW project started so I can get some games this year, along with a wide number of games and projects that includes Silver Bayonet in Europe, Stargrave, modern conflicts and more WW2 action.

More painted minis from 2021

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40K

Burrows and Badgers

Terrain

Moderns

Misc

Some of the minis painted in 2021

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Lord of the Rings

Bolt Action, Flames of War and Team Yankee

Ancients and Medieval

Sci-Fi and Fantasy

Irregular Magazine Autumn Issue 2021

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Welcome back dear readers as we publish our Autumn edition of Irregular Magazine for 2021!

We start in this issue with our customary dive into the News that has been happening in our great gaming hobby, and our beloved Editor takes an introspective look at how many projects he has on the go, and why, in the course of his ongoing battle with the Grey Horde.

As ever, we have a great selection of book reviews, starting with ancient history, with a look at the Spartans in The Bronze Lie and the Romans in Military History of Late RomeRoman Conquest of BritainRoman Conquests: Mesopotamia and Rome and Parthia: Empire at War. We also have a look at an intreguing title from Pen & Sword, Thracian & Dacian Armies, which take a look at two of Rome’s lesser known adversaries.

We also have reviews of two books looking at key historical figures, starting with The Last Viking from Osprey Publishing, a narrative tale of King Harald Hardrada, as well as a review Egypt 1801 from Frontline Books, which tells the tale of the end of Napolean’s Eastern Empire

As ever, there are many great WW2 titles available for wargamers interested in this period and we look at three of these, The Reckoning, which looks at the defeat of the Russian Army Group South in 1944, US and Germans at Bastogne which gives us firsthand accounts of commanders from this famous battle, and Desert Raids of the SAS, which specifically looks at the experiences of Major Tony Hough in WW2.

Finally for the book reviews, we examine two more titles – Valley of Death, an account of the LIght Cavalry at Balaclava and Towers of Strength, which looks at the fascinating role that Martello Towers have been put to use for, across the world.

But it is not all book reviews, we also have a look a the Trent Miniatures Napoleonic Range of figures, which are manufactured by Skytrex, as well as reviewing the new plastic British Riflemen for the Napoleonic period from Wargames Atlantic.

Allied to these minature reviews, our Editor has also had a look into the different rules sets that can be used to wage smaller scale or skirmish battles in the Napoleonic period on our tabletops, and has also had a dive into looking at the roles played by skirmishers in these wars.

In addition to all this, we also look at some new games that are out there, including the new card game Mobsitters, we look at the fantasy RPG Symbaroum, there is an overview of the much anticipated zombie-focused expansion to Stargrave – Quarantine 37, and finally we have a dive into what some of the alternatives are to gaming that doesn’t involve Games Workshop games, if that is something you’re looking to do!

Time to get reading – go on, download a copy now!

Projects on the Paint Desk

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I have several projects on the go currently and a couple that have stagnated whilst I try and finish up some of the smaller ones.

I’m one of those people that can’t have just one project running, I prefer to have several on the go at any one time. This is because I can get bored easily, so have the ability to switch it up every now and again is beneficial. This does mean that projects take longer to complete than they should do. The man benefit to this is I don’t generally get hobby burn out or hobby block, as soon as I feel a project is becoming a chore I’ll switch to another. In the last 18 months this has been really helpful with being stuck at home in lockdown. So what projects do I currently have on the go?

Projects on the Paint Desk

Lord of the Rings

LotR has always been one of my favorite Games Workshop rules systems, and I really like the miniatures as well. A couple of years back a friend decided to sell his collection and he offered it all to me for £40. There was far more than £40 worth of items. In fact there were several duplicates of miniatures in the collection, which I sold and recouped my money back. Since then I’ve been slowly painting up the collection of plastic, metal and Finecast minis. I’ve managed to paint a good chunk of the collection but I still have a sizeable amount unpainted to get through, so this is one of those on going projects.

Projects on the Paint Desk

Bolt Action

I started Bolt Action a couple of years ago, firstly with a small German force and slowly over the years this has grown from one tank to 4, plus now I’ve started a British 8th Army force which mainly consists of infantry, SAS and a Bren Gun Carrier. I still have infantry to finish for both, and I need a couple more vehicles for the British to purchase, but the Germans are pretty much nearly finished. My next plan for Bolt Action is a Chinese force which will be a mixture of Communist and Nationalist forces. I’ve started this already with a unit of Communists and a T-26 tank. Moving forward I’ll need to convert Wargames Atlantic WW1 Germans in to Chinese Nationalists

Projects on the Paint Desk

Asian Town

Last year I decided to create a modular gaming board using Sarissa tiles. The aim is to make it quite generic so that it could double as pretty much anywhere in China, Korea or Japan. The reason for this is because I plan to play WW2 and Korean War alongside Edo period Samurai and maybe Interwar China. So far to date I’ve completed two tiles, and have nearly finished 3 more which contain buildings.

Projects on the Paint Desk

SPQR & Mortal Gods

I received these as Xmas presents in 2019, and I’m embarrassed to say they’re pretty much still unpainted. I think the reason why both of these ended up on the back burner was because of 2020 and the pandemic. The plan with both of these was to start playing them at the club in 2020. So I did start painting units prior to the first lockdown, but due to the fact we couldn’t meet up to play then it was placed on the back burn and I decided to finish other projects. I’ve even purchased some elements to make terrain as well. This is going to be one of the projects placed back onto the paint desk.

Projects on the Paint Desk

Test of Honor

I managed to grab a load of the Test of Honor miniatures just before Warlord handed it back to Grey for Now. I’ve been slowly painting this up, and building the Asian gaming board was partly for this project. To date I’ve painted up several samurai and some old Citadel Ninjas I had in a box gathering dust for years. My aim is to continue painting up the miniatures on a regular basis. I’ve been focusing on the metal miniatures that I have, and only painted a few of the plastics from the original starter box that Warlord produced. The reason for this is because I really dislike the plastics, they’re fiddly and frustrating to build

Projects on the Paint Desk

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part 2)

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Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part 2)

Autumn Cicada (Viki)

The year is 1941 and East Asia is being torn apart by war – on land, at sea, and in the air. Imperial Japanese forces have occupied Hong Kong and work with native collaborators in a bid to impose strict Japanese martial law. Into this lethal fray steps, a young man named Ye Chong a fierce patriot and a devoted communist. Recruited by Chinese communist forces, he agrees to go undercover as a double agent. His role will be to infiltrate the collaborators who are helping Japan tighten its grip on Hong Kong. The role involves becoming the “Autumn Cicada,” a spy who will relay information back to his communist comrades who are still plotting to throw off the Japanese yoke. The role is perilous and beset with danger at every turn. When Japanese intelligence officers learn that a mole has infiltrated the military ranks, a deadly hunt begins – in an effort to expose, capture, and torture the Autumn Cicada. Fortunately, a handful of sympathetic freedom fighters is ready to help Ye Chong complete his mission – including the beautiful He Ying.

This is a period spy drama set in worn torn Hong Kong, this type of wartime drama is a genre that the mainland China excels at. Asa period drama it’s well produced, great scenic set pieces, costume with a well written plotline that has plenty of action and suspense. My issue with this show is the fact that the CCP are over played, in reality they probably didn’t have a spy ring in Hong Kong, it’s more likely to have been Nationalists spies operating in the colony rather than CCP. Apart from that it’s an enjoyable spy drama. If you like spy dramas then I’d also recommend the Disguiser and Sparrow both set during WW2.

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part 2)

The Sleuth of the Ming Dynasty (Viki)

The Sleuth of the Ming Dynasty is a 2020 Chinese television series based on the novel of the same name by Xi Mengshi. The series was produced by Jackie Chan, it stars Darren Chen, Fu Mengpo and Liu Yaoyuan in the lead roles.   Set during the 14th year of Chenghua Emperor’s reign, Tang Fan, a sixth rank official and Sui Zhou, an imperial uniform guard, join hands to crush a conspiracy to maintain peace and order for the people.

After working together to solve the case involving the Marquis’ son, Tang Fan and Sui Zhou gain widespread fame and form a lasting friendship with each other. Although his reputation precedes him, Tang Fan remains honest and upright in his duty as a public servant and continues to rent a humble home. His landlord is found dead in her quarters presumably from suicide, but clues lead to suspicions of foul play. After the case is resolved, Tang Fan travels to Henan to investigate the sudden disappearances of people near the tomb site of the late Northern Song Emperor. When the culprit is revealed, it seems that he is but a pawn in a much grander conspiracy. As major cases continue to plague the capital and the local offices, Tang Fan and Sui Zhou work hard to unmask the mastermind who is pulling the strings in the background.

This is a great mystery drama, with plenty of twists and turns. The characters go through some interesting development as the series progresses. There are some really good fight sequences in this show, and plenty of action throughout. The villains aren’t one-dimensional caricatures like in so many shows. They have some depth and are actually really interesting individuals. If you like detective shows, then this is definitely one to watch.

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part1)

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I have some Asian TV shows to binge watch whilst stuck at home, some of which might provide some future gaming inspiration for you. I’ve selected some shows that are currently available to watch on the apps Netflix and Viki. Most are either Chinese or Korean, though there is one from Japan and another from Taiwan.

 

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part1)

Nokdu Flower (Netflix)

Set during the Donghak Peasant Revolution which took place from 1894-1895. Two half-brothers fight on opposite sides of this rebellion. Baek Yi Kang is the first son of an important family. His father is wealthy, and he is notorious as a local government officer. But Yi Kang’s mother is from the the lowest class. Due to his mother’s low social class, people look down on Baek Yi Kang. Song Ja In is the only daughter for the head of a large peddlers group. She is the owner of Jeonjoo Yeokak, which sells merchandise and is also an inn. She has courage, stays calm under pressure and has charisma. Song Ja in dreams of becoming the best merchant in Joseon.

The show follows the lives of two brothers during the Donghak Revolt, who end up on opposite sides to each other. Though fictional the background of the revolution is based in fact, all the key members of the Donghak leadership were real individuals. The revolution is used to drive along the story of these two brothers, whose destiny seems ill fated. The show is well produced and gives an insight to the plight of Korea just as the 19th Century is slowly coming to an end and the inevitable take over of the country by Japan.  The series highlights the struggle of old Korea against the influence of the modern West along with the growing conflict with Japan.

I enjoyed this show, and I could see potential gaming ideas springing from the series, especially skirmish games between Korean factions and the Japanese. It’s a definite show to watch for those interested in historical gaming.

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part1)

Alice in Borderland (Netflix)

Alice is a Japanese science fiction suspense-thriller drama streaming television series based on the manga of the same name by Haro Aso. The series stars Kento Yamazaki as Arisu, a young man who finds himself lost in an abandoned Tokyo alongside his best friends, Chōta (Yûki Morinaga) and Karube (Keita Machida). As they begin their search for civilization, the trio quickly finds out that they are trapped in a city in which they are forced to participate in risky, violent, and dangerous games in order to survive.

The show follows Arisu trying to survive in this surreal gaming environment, every time a player survives a game his/her visa gets extended. If they fail to extend the visa, they are killed by the mysterious game controllers. This means in order to survive the players are forced into potentially life-threatening games where they could be killed.

At times this show moves into the dark side, but dosen’t stay there, which I found interesting. It makes the series much more interesting to watch. There are also plenty of humorous moments in the show which pulls it away from the darker side and thus makes it a far less depressing dystopian TV show compared to others. It’s a very slick, well-choreographed action show and the games they’re forced to play are unpredictable and dangerous, but the fact that the players are under resourced going into them makes it much more enjoyable to watch when the over come the odds to win.

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part1)

The Uncanny Counter (Netflix)

Uncanny is a South Korean television series starring Jo Byung-gyu, Yoo Jun-sang, Kim Se-jeong and Yeom Hye-ran. Based on the Daum webtoon Amazing Rumor by Jang Yi, it centers on the titular character So Mun, a crippled high school boy who is enlisted to be part of the Counters, a group of demon-hunters who search for and fight against evil spirits that escape from the afterlife to prey on humans.

The counters are effectively Grim Reapers trying to catch evil spirits who have entered the bodies of individuals who have committed violent acts of crime. This is an action sci-fi adventure show in a similar vein to Heroes, where the main characters have superhuman powers, and which the main character So Mun struggles to harness his. It’s a light-hearted show with some great action sequences, and plenty of martial arts fight scenes.  There are plenty of light-hearted moments in the show that adds some comedic elements, though I wouldn’t say this was a comedy, it’s action-based drama that tries to be humorous in places. Though its well worth a watch.

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part1)

Futmalls (Netflix)

Investigation into a series of strange cases leads police Zhao Xu Zhen to a mysterious website called “Futmalls.com,” which claims to be from the future. Customers can buy anything from the site, including future love, fame, or beauty. The product is non-refundable. And the price is unimaginable.

This was one of the more intriguing shows I watched recently, it’s a Sci-Fi crime horror TV series set-in modern-day Taiwan, where people can unknowingly purchase items from the future, though there may be consequences in doing so. It’s an interesting concept where vulnerable individuals are targeted to purchase items from the website, which end up with extreme consequences. This is one of the first Taiwanese shows I’ve watched and was really pleased with the result. It’s well written, edited and produced. It’s one of the more thought-provoking Sci-Fi’s I’ve seen in a while. It’s a definite one to watch, though I was disappointed it was only 8 episodes.

Gaming Inspiration from Asian TV Shows (part1)

Sweet Home (Netflix)

This is an apocalyptic horror South Korean television series starring Song Kang, Lee Jin-wook and Lee Si-young. Based on the Line Webtoon of the same name by Kim Kan-bi and Hwang Young-chan, which recorded over 1.2 billion net views. Following the death of his family in an accident, loner Cha Hyun-soo moves to a new apartment. His quiet life is soon disrupted by strange incidents that start occurring in his new building. As people turn into monsters which take the form of their hidden desires, Hyun-soo and other residents try to survive.

Most of the action takes place in and around the apartment block that our band of survivors are trapped in. Unlike recent shows like the Walking Dead the villains aren’t zombies but a wide variety of monsters, which makes a nice change. This isn’t a gritty post apocalypse horror fest like walking Dead, but a more tongue in cheek monster horror. There are some gritty moments but overall, it didn’t take itself too seriously. It’s a fun watch, with plenty of action, twists and turns stuffed with monster mayhem at every turn.

Irregular Magazine podcast episode 4

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Join Alex and Jason for the latest episode of the Irregular Podcast.

In this episode they discuss TableTop skirmish, its recent history, the games and how it has affected current trends.

https://anchor.fm/irregular-magazine/episodes/Episode-4—Skirmish-Gaming-e11aeaj

 

 

 

What is Irregular Magazine

Irregular Magazine is an online table top gaming magazine, which has been going since 2009. This is the new podcast to accompany the magazine. We plan to cover numerous topics related to the tale top gaming hobby that will include television, film, RPGs, Board games and war gaming.

http://www.irregular-magazine.com/

 

Podcast Episode 3 - Irregular Magazine

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In this episode we discuss all things Kickstarter, our thoughts regarding it’s influence on the hobby, as well as our own experiences buying into various KS’s over the last few years.

Episode 3 

US plan to attack the British Empire

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There was no ‘special friendship’ between the US and the UK before WW2. In fact, war between the two was not such a far-fetched idea – the US had its own empire ambitions, the problem was the UK ruled the world. The US decided that if they were to build an empire, they would have to remove the Royal Navy from the equation as they were deemed an obstacle to any future expansion plans. So, a conflict between the two was considered a possibility by those in the US government.

The most obvious way this would happen was the US coming up against Japan, who were expanding their empire in Asia, as Japan also had ambitions of further expansion. The US at the time were very anti-Japanese and it was likely that the US would come into conflict with Japan in Asia as both interests in the region were likely to clash. If this were to occur it would also in all probability bring to the US into conflict with Britain because at the time Britain in an alliance with Japan (Anglo-Japanese Alliance).

US plan to attack the British Empire

So, the likelihood was that the US would come into to conflict with both Japan and the British Empire at the same time. So, the US government decided they needed a plan for this very outcome. War Plan Red was developed by the War Department after the 1927 Geneva Naval Conference and approved in May 1930 by Secretary of War Patrick J. Hurley and Secretary of the Navy Charles Francis Adams III and updated in 1934–35. It was a routine hypothetical exercise and did not require presidential or congressional approval. Only the Congress has the power to declare war.

US plan to attack the British Empire

The war plan outlined actions that would be necessary if, for any reason, the US and Britain went to war with each other. The plan assumed that the British would initially have the upper hand by virtue of the strength of the Royal Navy. The plan further assumed that Britain would probably use its base in Canada as a springboard from which to initiate an invasion of the United States. The assumption was taken that at first, the US would fight a defensive battle against invading British forces, but the US would eventually defeat the British by blockading Canada’s ports and cutting off its food supplies. It is debated whether this would have been successful however and if the plan would have ultimately resulted in a stalemate.  That was the strategy employed by Britain against the US in the War of 1812.

US plan to attack the British Empire

The British military never prepared a formal plan for war with the United States during the first half of the 20th century. For instance, the government of David Lloyd George in 1919 restricted the Royal Navy from building more ships to compete with American naval growth and thereby preventing the plan’s development.

The British military generally believed that if war did occur, they could transport troops to Canada if asked, but nonetheless saw it as impossible to defend Canada against the much larger United States, so did not plan to render aid, as Canada’s loss would not be fatal to Britain. They believed that once the US blockaded the Canadian ports then Canada would be lost.

US plan to attack the British Empire

British military officers planned to, instead, attack the American fleet from a Western Hemisphere base, likely Bermuda, while other ships based in Canada and the West Indies would attack American shipping and protect Imperial trade. The British would also bombard coastal bases and make small amphibious assaults. India and Australia would help capture Manila to prevent American attacks on British trade in Asia and perhaps a conquest of Hong Kong. The officers hoped that such acts would result in a stalemate making continued war unpopular in the United States, followed by a negotiated peace.

Canadian Director of Military Operations and Intelligence Lieutenant Colonel James “Buster” Sutherland Brown planned for a Canadian pre-emptive attack against the United States in the event of an imminent conflict between the United States and the British Empire. The purpose of invading the US was to allow time for Canada to prepare its war effort and to receive aid from Britain.

US plan to attack the British Empire

Sutherland Brown along with other officers carried out reconnaissance for the plan, in civilian clothes during 1921-26. Some military officers thought the plan was so crazy that it might just work whilst others considered it suicidal.

This could make an interesting alternative history campaign using early WW2 miniatures, basing in either the North American theatre of war or a conflict based in Asia against both the British and Japanese, or fighting them separately. A couple of ideas could include an invasion of Japan or trying to capture Hong Kong from the British. At this time Japan was engaged in Korea and China, so one idea for the US could be to land troops in China and aid the Chinese against the Japanese. China would be one of the main targets for expansion by the US in Asia, simply because of the resources that would be available. If the US captures China, you could have an uprising by Chinese factions, or skirmishes along the border with Russia. Once the US ventures into Asia a conflict with Britain would be inevitable because of British interests in the region.

Irregular Magazine now has a podcast

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We now have a podcast up and running, yes we’ve joined the modern age here at Irregular Magazine.

www.anchor.fm/irregular-magazine

Pimcron's Warhammer Podcast; Ep 136: Interview w/ Irregular Wargaming Magazine

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I was recently interviewed for Pimcron’s Warhammer Podcast

BROUGHT TO YOU BY GAMEMAT.EU AND OUR PATREON PATRONS!

Use promo code EVENT10 at Gamemat.eu for 10% off your order

In This Episode We Cover:

Fan Mail: What Happened to Shorehammer Segment?

Want That Or Not: Severth Sevetnth Seveteervnth

Real Talk: Interview with Irregular Wargaming Magazine

The podcast is not kid-friendly, and speaking of children, most of what I say is silly jokes, even if they involve my children who are perfectly safe and well-loved.

Contact me at [email protected]

Or call in at (419) 972-1811 to leave a voicemail!

Join our Brutality group on Facebook at www.facebook.com/groups/brutalityskirmishwargame

Join me on Patreon! https://www.patreon.com/pimpcron

https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-5uqri-ff18e2

Irregular Magazine Spring 2021 Issue

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Welcome once more to our latest issue of Irregular Magazine, Issue 15, Volume 2 for Spring 2021!

We begin with looking a the latest News in our gaming hobby, including news about new Critical Role figures from WizKids so you too can play more in Exandria!

This is followed by an update from our Editor on how he has been doing in his ongoing campaign about his personal grey hoard.

We have a review of the board game Aliens: Another Glorious Day in the Corps! which is a real draw to many of us gamers who are fans of the Alien movies, as well as RPG reviews of the exciting Talisman RPG and the Achtung Cthulhu setting for Call of Cthulhu, as well as a review of the Towns and Taverns book of battle mats.

We look forward to the hotly anticipated Stargrave, the miniatures agnostic sci-fi followup to the very popular Forstgrave from Joe McCullough, and will be published by Osprey in April; and we also look back at Blast from the Past in the form of the old, but hugely popular Games Workshop game, Mordheim.

Many of us are interested in miniatures, so we have a few interesting articles for us all this time – we have an Alien painting tutorial, that sits nicely alongside our board game review of Aliens; but we also look at the fantasy range of Celtos miniatures and the sci-fi range of Hammer’s Slammers miniatures, both of which are available from Brigade Models. And to complement all of this, our Editor has a look at the Back to Basics of miniature painting, for those of us who need a refresh!

Finally on the miniatures front, we have a good look at a new and often asked question at the moment: Are 3D printed miniatures any good?

Following up on previous issues, we have a look at eSports once again. This time in the form of mobile eSports. Can we now play online games at a high level using the powerful computers that many of us now carry around in our pockets?

We also have and interesting review of the early 20th Century US plan to attack the British Empire, should it have proven to have been necessary. This article definately provides some interesting alternative history options for our 20th Century gaming.

This issue is also packed full of book reviews once more, with no less than fourteen book reviews. Stretching from Ancient times to 20th century warfare, if you’re looking for a recommendation of something new to read, we’ve probably got you covered!

Being something of a fan of the Orient, and being a Sinophile in particular, our Editor brings us another great review of Asian TV shows to watch online, that we might otherwise have missed out on.

Finally, although we may tease him a little, we have a lot to be grateful to our Editor for, not least the service he gave for his country, which includes his participation in the 1st Gulf War. This was now 30 years ago, and he has a look back at this conflict, including a personal perspective and a couple of period photos of him in situ.

Of course, many of the games we are talking about still need friends to play with, and although the world now has more hope than ever, many of us remain unable to meet up with friends to play games. Please stay safe everyone, until the times come when we can all play together again!

Time to get reading – go on, download a copy now!

Issue 15 Volume 2 / Spring 2021

Irregular Magazine Spring 2021 Issue

Some better pics of the Ninja Goblin

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Finally took the light box out to take some better images of the finished Ninja Goblin

Some better pics of the Ninja Goblin
Some better pics of the Ninja Goblin
Some better pics of the Ninja Goblin
Some better pics of the Ninja Goblin

Painting Update

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During this lockdown I wasn’t as productive as I had been in previous ones, but I did finish an army and I started building the modular tiles for the Asian town project.

Team Yankee

I’m currently building two armies for this in preparation of being able to meet up with friends and introduce them to the game. I’ve been building a BAOR(British Army on the Rhine) force and a Soviet force that will also double up as a Chinese PLA force for Asian battles, as I plan to possible run an invasion of Hong Kong campaign. So how far have I progressed, well I literally just finished the British force about an hour prior to writing this up. As for the Soviets/PLA all I have left is 2 T-80’s, a T-64 tank and a BMP-1 left to finish, which I should hope fully complete this weekend. Which means by March 2021 I will have two completely painted armies for Team Yankee.

Bolt Action

Like Team Yankee I’ve been building two armies, an American force and a German army. I’m just about in the final stages of completing both of these and fingers crossed will have finished painting both by the end of March. All I have left to paint for the US are the infantry, all 13 tanks are now done, along with the half-tracks, mortar unit and MG crews. As for the Germans all I have left are some half-tracks and two 88’s left to build and paint. I managed to paint up the last of my Panthers and final Puma a week ago so these are on track to being both finished ready for when we can all start meeting up again and playing games.

The Ninja Goblin

This is a large scale display piece and he’s been sat on the shelf unbuilt and unpainted since 2011, yep, 10 years I’ve had this mini sat waiting for me to get him started and finished. So I finally started painting him, well I did the base last year and didn’t get any further until quite recently when I bit the bullet and decided to get him painted. I like tackling large scale every now and them as it takes me out of my comfort zone as it requires a slightly different approach when compared to painting 28 or 15mm gaming miniatures. I’m happy with the skin tones and the wooden elements on the figure, though I think at some point I’ll need to go back to the cloth parts and touch up some of the highlights to make them pop more, but for now I’m happy to leave him as he is.

Asian Town Modular Terrain

I finally got off the starting blacks in actually building the tiles, most of last year was spent building the terrain pieces to go to the tiles, such as bridges and buildings. Finally I made the leap and built the first two tiles, which consisted of a set of ruins and a pathway tile running alongside the ruins and a wooded area. The next tiles I plan to build will be a couple of outlying farms/rural dwellings outside the town, along with the town entrance tile. I’m hoping to have these completed by April, then I can concentrate on the river sections and the actual town itself.

A Very British Civil War - The Plymouth Incident

Tutoring 5
Skill 4
Idea 5
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The conflict between Kernow and its neighboring enemies has been raging for a while. Skirmishes across the border have been ongoing for some time. Yet a daring raid into Plymouth by a newly trained commando raiding unit saw an upscale in the conflict.

The Kernow Commandos are a highly specialized unit trained in making raids into enemy territory with the aim of causing as much destruction as possible. After a few successful small raids along the border, they were ready to carry out quite a daring attack on Plymouth and the Royalists stationed there.

The plan is to attack two targets, the main attack would be on the Royal William Naval yard, with the intention of destroying as much as possible. The other would be a diversionary attack on areas around Devonport, this would be designed to make as much noise as possible, so that the main attack goes unhindered as Royalist resources are dragged over to the diversionary attack.

Both teams would be armed with small arms in the form of SMGs, hand grenades and high explosives. They would attack at night and cross the estuary to Plymouth from Salt Ash in small water going craft. The main attack would plant explosives and return to Salt Ash by boat. The diversionary attack would create as much noise and damage as possible and the commandoes would have to make their own way back by any means possible, capture is a likely situation.

One of the targets for the diversion attack is the Royal Marine barracks at Stonehouse, attack the main gates and throw grenades and high explosives into the buildings where possible. The main naval dock yards would be another target to attack and cause mayhem.

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During all this chaos the main attack would sneak into the Royal William yard to strategically place high explosives. The two ships in dry dock would be a prime target, along with various buildings. The aim is to give the Royalists a bloody nose.

For this scenario you could any number of possible rule systems, though we recommend Bolt Action. We would suggest making the commando teams veterans, to allow for their specialized training and the fact that most served professionally in the army before the civil war.

You could play this as two separate games for each of the attacks, for the diversion I would suggest to just play through an attack on an area of Plymouth attacking anything and everything. It’s all fair game, the team can attack anything.

For the attack on the Royal William Yard, you could play rules to see if they manage to sneak in undetected and plant explosives. If they’re spotted, then it all goes to chaos and the commandoes just attack anything to try and damage as much as possible before being killed or captured.

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Suggestions for size of units for the attack, I would say two platoons of veteran commandoes for each of them armed with SMG’s. The Royalist defender can have a larger force and I would suggest that is decided between to the two players. I would say the more the merrier, but both attacks should be treated as surprise attacks, so the opposing player won’t know they’re coming until either they are spotted by sentries or the commandoes start shooting, then at that point it’s all guns blazing on both sides.

Fantasying History

Tutoring 5
Skill 5
Idea 6
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Alternative history campaigns, battles and backgrounds have always held an interest for both war gamers and historians, it’s the question, What If? Such as what would have happened during World War 2 if Hitler had invaded Britain?

A campaign could be built around the that question, in which the first wave of German military are paratroopers, followed by beach landings. The possibilities are endless and the scenarios numerous, but an alternative campaign setting needn’t be restricted to the 2nd world war, any period can be used as a possible alternative setting. Such as the Imperial Roman military might marching to conquer ancient China, or just making the existence of magic real in the ancient world.

In the last couple of years alternative settings have become extremely popular, especially with campaign settings around the 2nd world war, both leading up to it and during. A very popular growing setting is A Very British Civil War, set in 1930’s Britain, surrounding the abdication of the King. In real life the king abdicated, in the setting he doesn’t, and this leads to a civil war, with various factions all fighting for control of the country. Much more mainstream and popular settings are those set during the war, based on the Nazi’s obsession with the occult. In the setting they discover a way to harness the power of the occult. This sees the war take a different turn, with demons, vampires, zombies and advanced technology. Let’s face it anything with zombies will be popular, and these are Nazi zombies.

Though you don’t have to purchase into a background, as there are plenty of good resources on the net and they’re not all set in and around the 2nd world war, which is quite popular at the moment. There are plenty out there for free, which is always a good thing, and these delve into other areas of history. Also, you could always develop your own alternative background, which could be developed with the armies and periods you already own. A possible idea could be an invasion of England by France during the Napoleonic period. A good jump off point may be the invasion of Fishguard in Wales in 1797, though in reality this invasion was a dismal failure for the French, you could decide that they manage to get a foot hold, which leads to a massive invasion of French forces.

I’m going to look at some of the current alternative backgrounds available commercially and those which are free out on the internet.

A Very British Civil War

A very British civil war is an alternative history setting based around the abdication of King Edward VIII. In the setting it assumes that he didn’t abdicate, and this in turn sets in motion a civil war in Britain. The background is centered around the idea of wargames played with small companies of soldiers who represent factions and locals, who many assume if history had unfolded in this manner.

AVBCW doesn’t have a set of rules to play by this is left to the players, allowing them to use a set they are already familiar with. It’s become very popular over the last 12-18 months. The reason for this is the organic nature of the background, players have the ability to input their take ideas on how the background should develop. I myself shaped and developed the initial flavor of the conflict in Cornwall. This has now been developed and nurtured by other players on Gentlemen’s Wargame Parlour. It’s also that element of being set in our own backyard and the ability to fight battles and skirmishes in our own towns, cities and villages which make this an interesting and fun game to play.

There’s the fun aspect of developing of new units, adding local flavour to them, being able to add fun local flavour to the background as well is a great aspect of this game. I decided to make Druidry the main religion of the Cornish Nationalists, with druids joining units and factions within the nationalists. The reason being that a druid society was created during the 1930’s in Cornwall, plus I thought this would be a fun aspect to the Cornish. There is basically no restrictions to how you develop your game or factions.

More information can be found at the following websites.

www.solwaycraftsandminiatures.com

www.wargamesp.18.forumer.com

1588 and All That (Spanish Invade England)

This is an alternative background developed by Tim Eagling over at the website www.spiritofthegame.org.uk. Set in Elizabethan England, during the period of the great Armada and the question. What would have happened if the Spanish had invaded England? it’s a period sandwiched between two hugely popular gaming periods, The War of The Roses and the English Civil War. The period of 1588 is a period of transition in war and weapons, it’s the switch from Medieval Europe through to the early modern period. It also comes after climatic change and in the wake of the black death.

Had the Spanish landed in England it would have been an interesting period in history. There was no trained standing army in England, the trained bands in the counties varied from each other. Though there would have been thousands of men, mainly peasants, equipped and ready to fight, though they would have varied in training and competency. The trained bands were provided by each of the counties, and this meant that a trained band could get held up if required at a national level.

It was during this period that saw the decline in the use of the longbow, is was slowly being replaced by the forerunner of the musket. This was a weapon that was easier to supply and train troops to use, whereas the longbow required years of training to become competent in its use. The longbow would have still featured heavily on the battlefield still, it was also during this period that soldiers started to lose their armour, which made the use of the longbow more devastating.

So, could the Spanish have conquered England if they had managed to invade? The Spanish would have faced problems with supply lines between mainland Spain and England. This could be a very interesting alternative history to explore. It allows the use of both longbow and early muskets/handguns. Though best of all its completely free.

More information can be found at.

http://www.spiritofthegame.org.uk/1588andallthat/about.htm

Another alternative history idea would be one that looks at the recent riots, developing a storyline that sinks Britain into a modern civil war. The Falklands war has the potential to be used as a alternative backdrop. What would have happened if the war had escalated and Britain was forced to invade Argentina? What would have been the consequences and how would the rest of South America reacted?

The possibilities are endless which is why alternative history gaming can be an interesting and fun to play.

So, I decided to take a look at an event in ancient history and specifically the 9th Legion.

9th Roman Legion

Professor Birley once wrote.

The fate of the ninth still engages

The minds of both nitwits and sages

But for that problem one fears

Will be with us for years

And for ages and ages and ages

One of the most infamous legions to be connected to Britain is the ninth. There is a legend or myth that surrounds this legion, which has fascinated a lot of people down the ages.

These myths are connected to the disappearance of the 9th, of which there are several theories. The last record we have of the legion is in Britain, is that they were stationed at York in 108 AD, later AD 122 they are replaced by the 6th.

The usual theory is that the ninth was routinely replaced by the 6th. Yet another interesting theory is that the ninth was destroyed in the Carlisle area, when they were sent north due to problems in that locality with the local tribes. Some people have suggested that this was the main reason for the construction of the wall by Hadrian.

Another theory put forward by C.E Stevens, was that the ninth were sent to Carlisle to assist with the construction of the wall. He noted that the wall was originally built in turf and timber in the Carlisle area, because of this we don’t have any inscriptions, as evidence. It was during this phase of construction that the ninth was defeated and destroyed. Which he then states, for the sudden change from a turf and timber wall to a more permanent stone wall.

Many people believe that the 9th ‘s last days as a legion are connected to the wall and the Carlisle area. Another theory has the ninth legion leaving Britain, being reposted to the Rhine and then onto Armenia where they were destroyed in 161 AD.

I have a very different theory as to what happened to the infamous 9th legion in Britain and afterwards.

AD 108

The Ninth becomes the official legion that deals with supernatural events and zombie outbreaks. I was thinking that when something occurs that is extraordinary and can’t be explained then the Ninth is sent to deal with the situation. The Ninth has become a clandestine organisation that doesn’t exist on paper (or scroll), and only the Emperor and certain senators know of their existence, which is why they disappear from official records.

You could play a range of scenarios involving all manner of supernatural and strange creatures, including Cthulhu Mythos. I would suggest looking Osprey’s Broken Legions as a possible rules set and you could kit bash a small warband of Roman warriors with a variety of kit and weapons to deal with the unnatural world.

Finished Terrain

Tutoring 4
Skill 5
Idea 5
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I have a number of terrain pieces in boxes that I’m slowly trying to get painted whilst in lockdown. Here are some the finished pieces so far.

I have numerous pieces of terrain in a variety of scales that need to painting, so whilst I’m stuck at home during the lockdown I’ve been trying to get as many as humanly possible painted.

One of these is a water fountain in resin by Airfix, it’s 1/72 scale but will happily work for 15mm and 28mm. I painted this is a simple grey colour with some shading using Nuln oil. I then added weathering powders to make it look more weather beaten. A very quick and dirty paint job to get it tabletop ready. I picked this up about a year or so ago in Home Bargains for about 3 quid.

I’ve had this tower from Games Workshop built for several years and for some reason I’ve never managed to get any paint on it. So I decided over the Christmas holiday to finally whack some paint on it. I decided to go with a simple paint scheme, and finish it of with weathering powders to give it a weather beaten look.

Finally I had a couple of farm building in 10-15mm, now I bought these back in 2011 and didn’t do anything with them, mainly because I didn’t get around to purchasing and painting a 15mm army. In the last 12 months I’ve started armies in this scale for Flames of War and Team Yankee. So I decided now was the right time to get some paint on them. This was done using a simple and quick paint scheme making use of contrast, washes and a couple of normal paints.

Projects Up-date old and new

Tutoring 5
Skill 7
Idea 7
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Last year I started a few new projects, and I have a couple of ideas for projects this year. So this post is a round up of how each of the projects are going and what I have planned for this year.

So last year I started the year with a few new project ideas, some of those are near completion, whilst others have fallen by the wayside some what. The first of those projects was Flames of War armies, both a US and German army, based on the contents of the Hit the Beach starter set.

Both of these are coming along nicely, and I’m happy to say both armies are nearly finished. I’m in the last stages of completion on both of these. For the Americans I have 6 Sherman Tanks to finish and then all that needs finishing after these are the infantry. I added mortar and HMG platoons to the Hit the Beach infantry units, all of which need a lick of paint. With regards to the Germans I have a few half tracks and 4 Panther tanks to paint and this army will be finished.

My Lord of the Rings project has been rather slow going over the last 12 months. I have managed to get some bits and pieces painted but nowhere near as much as I wanted, so this will continue to chug along this year as well. I did open the year by painting a unit of Gondor infantry. I’m hoping to get more units painted this year, and that’s what I plan to concentrate on, as last year I mainly painted character models.

Another project I started last year was to paint up miniatures for both SPQR and Mortal Gods. For both of these I managed to finish a small unit of infantry. For SPQR I managed to paint up the Roman infantry from the SPQR starter box. I’ve now started on the Celts, already completing the limited edition Druid, and making a start on a couple of hero models. For Mortal Gods I’ve painted a unit of Phalanx and the Macedonian command, along with two Macedonian Heroes. I’m currently painting up King Philip and Alexander. The aim for this year is to finish the starter models from both box sets, and purchase the Roman and Celtic hero boxes later in the year.

My Bolt Action projects have been ticking along for a couple of years and will continue to do so this year. I main aim is to build and paint more US infantry, as well as finish the few Germans and British I have left. I also need to do more work on my Chinese army. I plan to purchase the German WW1 infantry, Partisans and the Boxer Rebellion boxes to make Chinese Nationalist infantry. I managed to paint a unit of Communist Chinese for the Korean War campaign and will add to this later on this year. Another purchase I’ll need to add to my Bolt Action project, is a vehicle/tank for the US and some jeeps/LRDG trucks for the Brits. I was supposed to pick these up last year but for one reason or another I didn’t get around to it. I did manage to pick up a T-34 and paint it for my Communist Chinese.

Towards the end of last year I did plan and start research for a small skirmish project set during the English Civil War. I planned to build a 1/72 warband and plan a campaign set in Derbyshire and South Yorkshire, which is close to where I live. I’ve talked about running a ECW campaign for some time, but never really gotten around to it. So around Autumn time last year I finally bit the bullet and ,made a start. I carried out the research for the campaign, and picked up some 1/72 hard plastic miniatures. The aim this year will be to paint enough for two small forces.

The big project I planned this time last year, was the Asian/Chinese town game board using the modular tiles by Sarrissa. Most of last year was spent building and painting terrain pieces. This included a number of buildings, and a couple of bridges. Now while I didn’t finish this project, or start any work using the modular tiles I did get quite a few of the building I plan to use built and painted. So this year the aim is to make a start on the modular tiles and get as much as that done as possible.

Another project I started last year, around August/September time was two armies for Team Yankee. The first was a Soviet army, which is nearly finished apart from a T-64, BMP and two T-80s. The other army I started was the British, which I decided to base on the 4th Armored brigade which was stationed in Germany and served during the Gulf War. I started this project with the British Army starter set, and plan to add some additional units such as an M109 artillery regiment, which would be my old unit 2nd Field Regiment Royal Artillery. The starter set is nearly finished apart from 4 Challenger tanks and a Chieftain.

So what are my project plans for 2021, well I pretty much only have 3 potential projects for this year. The first is a Qin army, which most people will know as the Terracotta army. I have some miniatures from Studio Eye in the states. I was fortunate to visit Xian in China where the Terracotta army is and since then I’ve been inspired to build an army. The second plan is to build a small force to try out Saga Age of Magic game. My plan is to used the old Celtos miniature range to build a barbarian style warband for this game. The final plan I have is to build a small warband for the forthcoming Baron’s War rule set. This will be a small force just to play skirmish size engagements.

2020 Painting Round-up

Tutoring 5
Skill 6
Idea 6
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When we went in to Lockdown in March I was furloughed by work. So I decided to keep myself sane whilst stuck at home I’d try and get as much mini painting done as possible. During this time I was able to paint a staggering amount of miniatures painted. This lasted right up to August before I was made redundant.

After that point I slowed my painting down a touch. This is because I’ve had to occupy my time since lockdown ended to finding a new job, as the company I was working for made a mass of redundancies and I was unfortunately one of them. This means I’m spending more time on job hunting and less on painting as a result. I did enjoy the opportunity to have the free time during lockdown and being furloughed to paint some miniatures and boy did I managed to get a fair few finished.

So, during those few months before the November lockdown I managed to finally finish all the Walking Dead miniatures I currently have. All I need to start now are all the Walking Dead Sanctuary board game miniatures I have. Though the only difference between them is the fact that Mantic’s Walking Dead minis are based on the comics whilst the Sanctuary are based on the TV series.

So The November Lockdown hit and I decided to try and paint another large batch of minis. I got busy painting up vehicles for both Team Yankee and Flames of War. For Team Yankee I built and painted five T-55 tanks from Plastic Soldier Company. For these I opted for a simple paint scheme as this would be fast and easy to do. So, I used Vallejo’s Russian Uniform Green and a Military Shader wash by Army Painter. For Flames of War I managed to pick up some US Half-tacks by PSC, as I plan to add an infantry company to the US army. Again, I used the same paint scheme as I did with the T-55’s.

I also managed to get a few miniatures painted for Bolt Action, and when I say a few I really mean a few. I painted a few for the US army that included a Stoessi Heroes miniature which is a private, but I plan to use him as a colonel and commander of the army. Alongside this I also got around to paint some Brits for my desert war army, which included an anti-tank unit and a small mortar team and a bren gunner.

On top of all that I finally got around to painting the Skaven Blood Bowl team which has been sat on the shelf for the last two years. I decided to base the colour scheme on an old XFL American football team. This was a simple paint scheme which made getting this team painted and finished quite quickly. I always recommend making your palette very simple especially when painting units as this will speed things up and make life a lot easier.

One thing I managed to do which I haven’t done for a while is paint a large-scale miniature. I painted a 70mm modern dwarf. I found this quite a challenge as it’s been awhile since I painted anything above 28mm, though I enjoyed the process it was a challenge jumping from 28 up to 70mm. Once I finished the miniature, I decided to make a start on another, though this time I decided to paint a 54mm US Infantry soldier in Vietnam.

On top of all this I painted some miniatures for a few other projects that included a couple for Test of Honour, a couple of 40k minis along with two for SPQR.

As we slowly came out of lockdown and started heading towards Christmas, I didn’t spend as much time on painting as I’d previously had done. I spent more time with the family playing board games and getting ready for the festive season. I did manage to build and finish some more terrain to use on my Asian town project, this included a entrance gate to the town, which was a 3D printed piece I bought from eBay. At the same time I managed to build and paint two Asian bridges from TT Combat, these were really easy to build.

One of the other things I did during this period was to build and prep a large number of miniatures ready for the New Year, this included another batch of tanks for my Flames of War and Team Yankee armies. I also prepped all my Burrows and Badgers miniatures, as well as a batch of Lord of the Rings minis. I also prepped a number of minis for the various other projects I currently have on the go, that includes SPQR, Mortal Gods, Chosen Men and 40K Kill Team along with various fantasy miniatures.

Overall it’s been a productive year for painting and working through the numerous projects I have on the go. This was made easier by the number of lockdowns and restrictions we had in place throughout 2020 since March. I managed to get around 300 miniatures painted, and this included terrain pieces, which is an enormous amount for me, prior to this the best year I had was to get around a 100 finished minis.

Now we’ve entered 2021 and in the UK another lockdown, so for the first 2-3 months I’m expecting to keep up this productivity in miniature painting. After that we’ll see how things go, I don’t expect to paint as much as I did last year, but I’m hoping to get another large chunk of my grey army painted.

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