Thursday, 13 February 2020

From PaulSS - Men at Arms in the service of Baron Talbot

This post sees the return of the Hundred Years War project that I spent a lot of time on during Painting Challenge IX.

I've collected more than enough figures to do a good sized re-fight of Agincourt using either To The Strongest! or Hail Caesar, but why stop there, so I've picked up three more boxes of the Perry Miniatures plastics plus half a dozen packs of the metals, so it's off I go again.

These figures represent a contingent of English Men at Arms in the service of Baron Talbot. The banner is from Battleflag

The Men at Arms are all from the Agincourt Foot Knights set while the banner bearer and musician are from the Foot command advancing set.

As usual the plastics are a delight to assemble, although that war-hammer snaps every time, and the metals are a bugger to clean up, but all take paint really well.

I did my usual basecoat, wash, three highlights method that gives a result on these that I'm very happy with.

The sabot bases were a custom order from Warbases.

I've a last few ACW figures to paint then the rest of the challenge should see more of these.

A dozen 28mm foot plus a banner should add me 61pts to my total.

It's great to see some more of your lovely 100 Years War figures. I do hope there will be some more this year.


Bromley's Butte From PeteF: Hordes of Gribbleys (142 points)

The challenge for Bromley's Butte mentions "experts on stealth and stalking" - which brought to mind the Nightstalkers faction within Kings of War. Every unit in the faction enjoys the "stealth" special rule - which makes them hard to shoot and these creatures of horror "stalk" you in your sleep.

Guess the film (easier clue later)
These gribbley horrors are Butchers from Mantic games. They are large infantry (about twice the size of normal infantry) - that can both absorb and dole out punishment. The Mantic aesthetic (if you can call it that) for Nightstalkers is of eyeless hordes of tentacled monsters and the three armed Butchers come at you with a variety of sharp objects.

The original plastic models are monoposed with only two options for the double right arm. I did some chopping and changing to break up the monotony - adding a few weapons from the bits box here and there for variety.

I used a home brewed bluish purple contrast paint on the bodies, "flesh-tearers red" contrast in the mouths and "gore grunta fur" on the furry pants (or whatever is covering that area). The advantage of the contrasts is speed - I guess they look OK all together as long as you don't get too close - at some point I might go back and do some more highlights - I was watching a video of how to add dripping blood using resin that cures in UV light... that might look good on these too.

Screaming (and puking) banner 

Fleshtearers' Red Contrast worked quite nicely on the textured banner

The Butcher Fleshripper is one of the faction's heroes. He provides some extra punch when they go go in for the attack. To model him I found a banner from another faction (Basileans - paladin types) and modified it with some screaming heads from a different Nightstalker sprue and a couple of heads from Dungeon Saga models. The pile of entrails and small pile of skulls are from a Wizkids pack that found itself in my hands when I was at the store with some Christmas money.

Most of my Nightstalker units are going to contain a movie reference and the two main units here pay homage to the best horror movie ever made.

Second film clue - didyagettit?

These are just over 50mm tall with 5 to each (horde sized) 120mmx80mm base plus the Fleshripper hero. How does 10 points each plus 30 for the new area sound?

Right so I have no clue what the movie is, not my genre. These are fantastic, loving the colour, and that banner is great


KenR 3 x 28mm Crusader Tanks Part 2 (63 pts)

Tanks again I'm afraid and why not, the battle against the flake will not end !

This is my second batch of Crusaders and as with previous ones I have gone for a plain look representing the second batch of the tanks that arrived in late 1941.

The tanks as before are from Blitzkrieg Miniatures with a tank commander from the Perrys Miniatures range, this figure actually comes as a standing figure so I cut it in half to go in the tank.

There is a slight sheen on the tanks from the gallons of varnish ! Points wise I'm claiming 63, 3 x 20 for the tanks and 3 for the tank commander.

Final picture is a group shot of the six Crusaders together. Next week it will be three Mark VI Light Tanks, still got some Foundry Men at Arms on the go on the side.

Regards Ken

I really love your tanks, bet they are a joy on the battle field. Top work


From MartinN: Cats big and small (25pts)

I'm burning a lot of midnight oil at the moment and actually get some stuff done for a change. Work is still extremely hectic and I've spent most of my weeks away in Munich (imagine disgusted gurgling sound here) and thus I've started to take some stuff to paint with me. It's always a little difficult to set it all up in an ergonomic way in a hotel room but definitely better than staring at the TV most of the time.

Of course I don't bring an airbrush with me but have done the base work at home and only did the detail work in the hotel. The Puma was started during last years challenge anyway as I intended it for the tutorial I did for Patt Smith's latest book "SETTING THE SCENE Vol. 2: The Mediterranean". In the end I decided against it, the Puma was never used in the mediterranean theater anyway, and did paint up a more appropriate Italian M13/40.

The Panzer V or "Panther" as it's universally known was developed as a response to the Russian T-34. Consequently it saw it's first use in combat during Operation Zitadelle, probably better known as the battle of Kursk, in 1943. The Operation was postponed several times as to make sure the brand spanking new Panther tanks would be available for the offensive.
These repeated postponements arguably led to the eventual German defeat at Kursk as the Soviets were well aware of the German attack plans and prepared their defense accordingly.

While the Panther was still unreliable, especially the transmission proofed problematic, it nonetheless showed great potential and saw service on all fronts till the end of the war. The Panther is seen by many as the pinnacle of German Panzer development in WW2 and was probably the best tank to see service during the war. Luckily for the Allies it was never available in sufficient quantities to really make a difference. Some historians even go as far as to suggest time and resources needed for the Panther would have been better spent producing more Panzer IV tanks. Personally I don't thinkit would have made much of a difference as more often than not the lack of fuel and/ or allied air superiority prohibited the use of any Panzers be them Tigers, Panthers or the venerable Panzer IV.

The SdKfz 234/2 "Puma" is probably the best known of all the German reconnaissance vehicle of WW2. It was deployed exclusively in Russia and the western front with no units being sent to the Balkans or Italy. The Puma only saw a very limited production run with just 101 vehicles built from late 1943 till late 1944.

Pumas were very successfully deployed during the fighting in Normandy but the fierce fighting also meant that they became a scarce commodity later on. At Arnhem 5 of the few remaining vehicles allegedly took part in the fighting but I couldn't find definitive (i.e. pictorial) proof of that allegation by both Anthony Beevor (Arnhem) and Robert Kershaw (It Never Snows In September).

Nonetheless, just the pure possibility of Pumas at Arnhem was enough of an incentive for me to paint up a second one. It got a SS license plate and the commander sports a field cap in pea-dot-pattern camouflage, so it should fit nicely with my plans for a SS force for the upcoming "Arnhem" supplement for Chain of Command by the TooFatLardies.

The Panther is a lovely model from Rubicon Models and was a breeze to assemble and paint. The Puma however is a Warlord Games/ Italeri collaboration and was a pain in the backside to assemble. Two of the wheels came off during painting due to the fragile (scale model like) under carriage. Also the wheels are hollow, something I absolutely hate even if not visible normally.
Tank commanders are Perry and despite their usual abysmal casting add a nice touch to these two vehicles.

As the Puma was already started before the challenge I claim just 25 points, 5 for two half figures and 20 for the Panther.

These are brilliant, the colours work fantastically. And much better than watching the hotel TV. 


From MikeW - 33 x Classic Warhammer Empire Stirland Halbardiers, Spearmen & Musketeers (167 Points)

In Challenge IX, I tackled my Warhammer Green-skin plastic mountain, it seemed logical that this time around I would shift focus to address the Empire troops that I've have lying around in various bags and boxes for too many years!

Contents of an Empire bag emptied on my workbench...
.. three knights will be the subject of a later post

When I say 'Classic' Warhammer Empire, I am of course, in this case, talking about the original Empire troops, Spearmen and Musketeers that came with what I think was the 3rd Edition Boxed Set in the early 1990s.

At the time, I was taken by the Landsknecht visual references and enjoyed the whole 'warring states' environment set-up in the Empire world. I plumped for the Stirland forces for two reasons - their ongoing fight against the Undead and their colour scheme - Green and Yellow - this matched the colours of my local football club and Manchester United's original club colours way back when!

Officer and Standard Bearer, need to sort out a musician and another
standard bearer to get things just right for this regiment.
So these particular models I got from eBay as a job lot some years back but I never got round to doing anything with them. I'd painted up a Regiment of Stirland Spearmen about 10 years ago and these models were obtained to boost their numbers.

What I hadn't realised is that they had been converted to Halbardiers by their former enterprising owner, so they didn't didn't in with the existing spearmen models - so I stopped that project...

... fast forward and I have them out of their bag, fixed a few halbards back on their poles and started painting.

16 Halbardier Figures and one guy with a spear - can you see him?
White undercoat, followed by random, halves or quarters in yellow, followed by green, with a few white leggings and blue or lack hats where required. Most of the musketeers have a leather jack and all the halbardiers have armour.

Figures were shaded with Army Painter dip and then finished with matt varnish before the bases were worked on, in my usual manner.
The central Halbardier Block with Command Figures

To meet my OCD cravings on unit organisation, the regiments are supposed to be a central block of halbardiers, spearmen etc - including command, flanked by two wings of musketeers, archers or crossbowmen.

The 14 Musketeers, in a variety of Green and Yellow
The observant of you out there may notice there is not quite enough figures to achieve this in this batch - but when combined with some more figures I have found then the optimal 8 musketeers per wing can be achieved! Hopefully subject of a future post here.

The completed Regiment of 30 figures plus 3 spares for an existing Regiment

Which reminds me the flag was taken from the internet, each regiment should have two flags (in my world), one the Stirland State flag as shown here and the second a Colonel's flag, typically green and yellow with a family or town crest.

2 x 28mm Command Figures@ 5 Points each = 10 Points
14 x 28mm Musketeers @ 5 Points each = 70 Points
17 x 28mm Halbardiers @ 5 Points each = 85 Points
TOTAL POINTS 10 + 70 + 85 = 165 Points

Cracking job on these, love the colour scheme. Trying to work out the football team - Norwich? An extra couple for the really cool flag and minus 4000 for the many Utd reference.

From Brettm Epic 30K (Burch's Bluffs) (34pts)

Moving along Challenge Island..

I am now coming up on Burchs Bluffs

I had planned on several tanks and speeders painted up. However as I was printing these on my printer, the print turned out rubbish and was only able to salvage these two. In fact my resin printer is now down for the count till I can either get replacement parts or order a new one. 

So without further talk of printers dying on me. Below are two entries to my "soon to be" army of Emperors Children for 30k. 

Speeder bike came out great imo. Was also very easy to print.

The tank here I had some issues with on the back treads on the print. However no one checks out of the back of the tank! Its all about the guns!  

As of now I'm keeping the tanks off bases. See how that works out. Thats how I have all my FOW tanks done. However the smaller scale may be better based. Kinda torn on this.

For points we are at +30 for Burch's Bluffs and 4 points for the 2mm vehicles. Onward to Murdy's Mesa!

I am unsure about 3-D printing, think it's beyond my capablity and needs to be much more idiot proof. These have come out great and I love the colour scheme


From DaveD - 15 mm Tanks - Hit the Beach 120pts

I am now fully into the swing of the 15mm part of the painting plan. So first up I have new items for my US 1944 ETO. Last year I played a large Utah beach game (Link here)and these items are to further enhance the invasion beach items.

So I have 6 classic Sherman DD’s (taking me to 10 in total now)

More units to add to my 70th Tank Battalion for Utah Beach

Following a conversation with JamesM of this parish we found some 3D print designs for  deep wading kits to add to the tanks. I was going to magnetise these so they could be removed , but in the end with  Battlefronts “Hit the Beach” set  being such good value (I ended up buying one and being given the Sherman's from 2 of them !). I just went with having more tanks!

So I have 4 with deep wading kits , 3 of those are also dozer equipped - they represent units from  70th Tank Battalion that landed on Utah Beach on D Day. There is also an armoured bulldozer to help clear those troublesome obstacles

I really like these , and I don't think I have ever seey any on a gaming table.
Nice to have something unique too.

Then as I had some M10’s spare (as you do - well I do/did...) I added wading kits to them . While they didn’t actually land any TD units on D Day itself , they just looked too coool .. so they will be in my next re run of the Utah beach game this summer.

So it’s 15 vehicles x 8 points = 120 points

The next lot of tanks are already lining the docks ready for departure to a blog post near you!

I played the Utah game, may have been the best game ever. Dave rocks up with a few tanks, there will be millions more, i wonder what the largest US vs German tank battle was as james has more than Dave

From GregB: For A September Day Near Quebec In 1759 (107Points)

The 28th Foot - 28mm figures from Warlord Games.
So...this is a bit...different. Apologies in advance for what might a longer see, this is a sort of secret project, one I had hoped to work on, under wraps, until I could just sort of surprise everyone one day with a game...but this is a plan that was just not going to work. So here we are. 

The 35th foot, ready to give a volley. 28mm figures from Front Rank.
I guess we can just start with the technical bits - here are the British 28th and and 35th Regiments of Foot. These are 28mm castings.  The 28th Regiment (with the yellow facings)  are metal figures from Warlord Games. The 35th Regiment (with orange facings) are metal figures from Front Rank - although both casualty figures are also Front Rank castings. All flags are from GMB. These figures are intended to provide tabletop representation of British infantry units which served in the Seven Years War. In one specific battle...

The Siege of Quebec 

An engraving showing Wolfe's army making their daring crossing of the St. Lawrence and assaulting Quebec.
I was born and raised in the Canadian prairies, in the City of Winnipeg. My hometown is, give or take, about 2,500 kilometres from the beautiful City of Quebec, in the Canadian province of the same name. This distance physically, geographically and culturally between Winnipeg and Quebec City is significant. Yet a great deal about the life I have been fortunate to lead to this point here in Canada was shaped by the events which occurred outside Quebec City on September 13, 1759, during the Seven Years War. On this day a European-style field engagement took place between a British force led by British General James Wolfe and the French forces of General Louis-Joseph Montcalm.  This was the battle of the Plains of Abraham.

Officer on the left, keeping thing in order...
As battles of the era go, this one was small, and relatively short - a shattering volley of musketry from the British side settling matters and sending the French reeling. This was not Leuthen or Zorndorf or Minden. But its impact on history was significant, leading to the fall of "New France" and, for a time, British rule over a substantial portion of North America - until certain subsequent events...the Battle of the Plains of Abraham is an important moment in the history of the country known today as "Canada".

The uniforms of the British infantry musicians in that era were really something...
The British conquered "New France", and in subsequent negotiations, ended up keeping the territory (a story best relayed in another post by someone qualified to tell it, and not me).  Canada today is a largely peaceful positive place to be. We generally coexist and get along.  It's not perfect - nothing is I suppose, but it's perfect for me. I'm blessed to call it home, and so many in the world would give anything to have our "problems".

Rear view showing the detail on the Front Rank sculpts. Very nice, very pleasing to paint!
That said, old disputes can...linger? I don't want to burden Challengers with politics, but for now let's just say that in Canada the cultural differences between French and English maybe haven't 100% completely and totally gone away even after all of this time. And, it must be noted, this view leaves out the perspective of Indigenous Canadians - also not something I'm any position to offer wisdom on. Let's just say...a ways to go there too.

Rear detail on the Warlord sculpts - the grenadiers are fully loaded, but the regular troops are not carrying as much.
The lines of history are amazing to much drawing back to this one battle, a brief and yet so significant engagement, a turning point in history.  So, so much, even today, all going back to that one moment.

I studied it all from when I was very young.  I visited Quebec City in junior high, and was stunned by the battlefield park, the walls of Old Quebec, the old, it captured my imagination. Our teachers in school had their biases, and in their telling this battle was just one more hapless military moment for France - just like WW2 (France as a hopeless case in things military is a staple of popular culture and history in North America). But of course nothing is so simple. I read the amazing book "Death or Victory" by Dan Snow.  It is an amazing read, and it is fascinating to put the battle that day into its proper context of a drawn out and dangerous summer campaign - one that was actually quite terrifying and vicious. Yes, the British won, but it was a close-run thing.  There is so much more to share - for example,  strangely, my high school history left out the part where the French returned to Quebec the next year and defeated the British at the Battle of St. Foy... :)

But I'm already blabbing too long about this. That is all best left for other posts or comments from smarter people.

A little closer view of the command and colour party - that one ensign is carrying, like, a broadsword? In one hand? Bad @ss fellow, I'm sure. Odd sculpt. But overall, I really enjoy these Warlord figures.
Some years ago, it occurred to me that it might be fun to wargame this battle.  I know many gamers do the "French & Indian War", but I was very focused on this one battle: Plains of Abraham, that battle, that moment - that was what I was interested in, not a skirmish in the woods.  This one, formed up, European-style battle that took place in North America in the Seven Years War.  Cool uniforms,, it would be so neat!

Read this book!!
I started doing the research, faffing around with figures, which scale etc. This consumed, like, years - I mean, I was always painting something else too, so hardly hobby paralysis - but this project was going in my mind for a long, long time...I don't know why, but I thought I could, somehow, paint all of the units and surprise everyone. But, like, come on...that was dumb.

Besides, I can't earn points with secret projects, right? So as I finished the final grenadiers with yellow facings, I thought I would share what I have so far with my fellow Challengers. Some of these figures were painted outside of the Challenge period, but I was so excited with how they look all together, I just wanted to show them all. 

The 35th and 28th Foot were on the right of Wolfe's battle line that day in 1759.  The 35th seemed unique because they had orange facings, and even now when I see them I feel like having some ice cream for some reason.
Many thanks to Byron and his 3D printer for making the little dice trays that I placed on to the casualty markers.
The Front Rank figures are a lot of fun. I love the sculpts. The heft. They are just great and relaxing to paint.  But Front Rank sadly charge extortionate amounts for shipping and their "battalion packs" are a bit...unusual, at least for me (YMMV).  The main bump for me is the inclusion of two musicians in the 24-figure pack.  Again, it's all personal taste, but that is not what I would do with a 24-figure unit. Also...the uniforms of the British musicians are insane - certainly a challenge to paint, and doing two of them per unit isn't my ideal...although it's a chance to practice, I guess!

A casualty figure on a round base - with a little tray for dice useful to mark casualties for different game systems.
The Warlord sculpts are very, very nice.  Huge bonus - the Warlord musicians and grenadiers have the details on their hats and uniforms cast right into the's pretty amazing! Great stuff.  But Warlord sometimes is just...odd. In this case, the unit boxes come with 18 figures.  This is a strange number, when so many people out there use 12 or 24 figures for a unit.  You can buy extra musketeers of course, but it's very strange/irritating.  Seems like a GW-style move to me.

Gotta love the grenadiers! Man...those hats...great sculpts from Warlord.
I'm working my way "along the line" on this project.  I have it relatively mapped out...will still take a while, I'm sure, though hopefully the Challenge and just general posting and sharing pictures will help it go faster.  I might change up my approach - the so-called "Louisbourg Grenadiers" would be up next for the British line, so I might change gears and start on the left of Montcalm's opposing line, or just skip to the British centre.  There are still things to figure out in terms of representing the Louisbourg Grenadiers on the table - would they have carried a standard? If so, which regiment, the senior one? Would their officers have mitres or tricornes? Things to ponder.

The line starts to take shape on the Plains of My Kitchen Island.
Anyway, my brushes have turned to things Byzantine for now. But I hope to have more to share with this project as I go along - if not during this edition of the Painting Challenge, then at a later time. Thanks for reading, and I hope you are not asleep.

For scoring, there are 20 complete 28mm figures, and one prone 28mm figure (one of the casualty figures) out of this whole lot that were painted during the Challenge, so I think that works out to 102.5 points? Cheers everyone!

Really interesting, I have a 1950's book on the Battle, must get it read. The units are lovely and a nice period to recreate. A flag bonus to take you to 107