Saturday, 23 January 2016

From TamsinP - 28mm Aztec Cuextecatli (22 points)

Just to rack a few more points up, here are 4 more Aztecs for my meso-American Frostgrave setting.

These are warriors who have captured two enemies in battle for sacrifice at the temples. Such warriors were entitled to wear a feathered suit (cuextecatl), a conical hat, sandals and a loincloth with embroidered ends. The cuextecatl was a one-piece cotton suit to which red feathers were sewn (with black double-stripes at various points) and was worn over the padded ichcahaupilli armour.

Their shields were decorated with the "hawk scratch" design.

They were also accorded certain privileges in civilian life, such as the wearing of a distinctive cape to show their rank.

The figures are 28mm from The Assault Group. For my variant Frostgrave setting, these will probably be classed as "infantry".

Scoring time - 4 x 28mm foot = 20 points.

Oh, these are very nice Tamsin! I really like your take on the current Frostgrave craze. Will you try to pick out some South American beasties that will fit in-theme? A jaguar or some sort would not go amiss here I think.
Lovely work!

From DaveD - In the service of the Queen Empress (12 points)

The column had barely stopped when Corporal Millsy appeared , an eager look on his face and his trusty shovel in hand. "Sir" he said to Major Docherty , "shall I get started now?" It was a question the Surgeon Major was very familiar with in the long days since he had first rescued the man from the "Thugees of Indoostan".

Corporal Millsy had been part of a patrol which had been ambushed by the Thugees.  Millsy was strangely the only survivor, and he had been led into captivity by being taken up the Kyhber Pass, more than once it was rumoured.

The brave Major was on a recce mission across the Hindu Kush, when the Raja of Bungditin released the dejected Millsy into his care. It seems the Thugees could no longer tolerate the whining and whimpering and wishing to curry favour - rather than just Curry Millsy - with the brave Major, the representative of the Great Queen Empress.

Ever since then Millsy had made himself the Major's personal manservant or batman. It was his duty to serve his officer. He often dreamt of being a proper officer - just like Major Docherty. The only thing that Corporal Millsy would never take orders on was to change his Scarlet tunic... "hey , hey calm down" he would mutter in his thick scouse accent. "I am not wearing blue!". It was a small price to pay in overlooking that foible as otherwise the man was devoted to his officer.

"Shall I start now sir? It won't take me long. I have plenty of practice as you know sir. I have been doing this so long now I have written a book sir. Even had it published when we were back in London when you were invited to tell of your adventures rescuing me to the Queen. It will make my fortune. Can I show you it? It has everything I have ever learnt about latrines, sir, pictures and everything.  Sir please take a look here"  he said imploringly as he handed his magnum opus over.

The Major took the tome in hand, it certainly was a thorough piece of work.

"Very good Corporal Millsy."  But I think you may need to change the  title...

"Sir! " "Very good sir!" .... A short while later, amidst the sounds of grunting and much whirling of the the shovel . "Finished Sir!"

The Major looked over to see the proud Corporal stood with a huge beaming smile on his face. Another latrine successfully constructed for his officer. Excellent thought the Major,  now where is Private Clint with the paper?

As the  Major set about his business...his thoughts drifted. He wondered if there would be any stocks of "5D" or "mind bleach" when they got to Khartoum. It was rumoured his doughty sister was there she would no doubt have some, unless some cheeky (paint) monkey had been interfering.

The gallant Surgeon-Major and shovel wielding Corporal Millsy will ride the four corners of the Empire once more in service of the Queen Empress

The two figures are both 28mm Sudan by Connoisseur Miniatures - the shovel wielding Millsy is a conversion with a suitably large shovel from the spares box soldered into hand - never to be parted.

Haha! Very good Dave. I have to say the part of the story which recounts poor Corporal Millsy 'being taken up the Khyber Pass, more than once it is rumoured' made me wince a bit.  I have a sense that these entries will be a continuing conversation across the hemispheres. 
 10 points for the figures and 2 points for the story.
I very much look forward to the continuing saga of Major Dochery and Corporal Millsy. :)

From GregB - Overdue Curtgeld - Old West 28mm (20 Points)

Don't move, varmit!

I don't have a whole lot to submit this week, but it is a submission I am pleased to finally make, as it is a shamefully overdue Curtgeld, owed on a Challenge long past.  This is a 25mm Old West figure, I think from Foundry, but I'm not 100% sure, as I got it from my friend Dallas here in Winnipeg.

Double crossed Prospecting? Over dinner? Who knows...

I have no good excuse about how long this took to finish...meant to get to it, got to other projects, economy was in trouble, bad crosswinds, excuses, excuses etc.  Inspired by Mr. Roundwood's earlier (much more eloquent) post regarding catching up on Curtgeld dues, I dug this fellow out of the pile, got off my @ss and finally finished him this week.

Part of the issue is that I don't know a whole lot about the "Old West", other than it was, well, old, and it took place in the west.  As a Canadian in the prairies, I should really know more about that, but there you go...just not a period or setting I have really delved into, and hasn't grabbed my attention. That said, this fellow looks entertaining - a bit grouchy.  I like to imagine someone double-crossed him on something, and the answer to a double-cross is a double-barrelled weapon, right?

I would say this is a true 25mm figure, wherever it came from.  It's a figure size I genuinely miss, as most stuff is 28mm these days (and most of those are actually 30mm, but anyway).  But I think this will ad five points to my total.  Not much, but I'll take it!  Curt, this fellow will be here waiting for you when you next visit Winnipeg...

Perhaps its the sculpting of the folds in his clothes, or the size of his head, but he has a certain Dixon look about him. Maybe that's whats making him so grouchy. ;)  Seriously, this is a wonderful figure, Greg, and a very pleasant surprise. I particularly like his red waistcoat and beat-up hat - a gentleman from the Frontier for sure.
Curtgeld is worth 20 points in the Challenge market, so that's what you'll get for him. Thanks so much Greg. I look forward to picking up 'DoubleCross Dixon' when we're in your parts next. :)

From PeterD - 28mm Italians with Pole Arms Pt 2 (40 points)

A small post this week, as January is what passes for my busy time of the year work wise. Still nothing like when I was a pension consultant but I tend to slow down in many ways this time of year.

These are another 8 Italians to "complete" the unit I had posted part of last week.  They now stand as a block of 16, but will I will likely increase my pike and halberd blocks to 24 at some point.  Pictures are below, including the full set of 16 and close ups of the new group of 8.  These are all Perry's. A pack of 6 Italian Heavy Infantry, a Plastic Foot Knight and a drummer from the Italian command set.  I have based them to match the first set of 8, but I'll try different combinations for the next unit.

These guys, along with the rest of my Italian Wars collection and Curt's troops say action last night. A full AAR will appear on the Single Handed Admiral later but two shots featuring these guys. Curt's fire disordered them in the advance so they fell behind the rest of their Battalia. You can see their flag in the background.

Speaking of seeing action, here's a group of four guys who aren't likely to modelling the latest in tinfoil hat designs.

Challenge entrants: PeterD, CurtC, Sylvain and JeremyM (left to right)

Ahh, what a handsome, dashing bunch! (And I leave that to the readers to make up their own minds on what I'm referring to.)
Seriously, very nice work Pete. I really like the punchy colours you've gone with for these fellows, and they look great all mobbed up, ready to strike with verve towards the nearest pizzeria or espresso bar. It was great seeing them out the other night, and even better shooting anvils at them with Hildegarde's Death Bell.  :0)
And another 40 points for me to try to match in our Renaissance Men duel. Eek!  Well done Pete!

From MartinN: 15mm Battlegroup American Airborne (213 Points)

Finally the kitchen is completed (well, almost... you know how this works) and I'm back on the brushes. So this week sees me submitting a few American Airborne in winter clothing for use with the Battlegroup set of WW2 rules. I'm planing on using them for the Battle of the Bulge and maybe Hürtgen Forest using the lists from Operation Overlord. Iron Fist are to release a dedicated book (softcover) for Battle of the Bulge sometime soonish but as of now the lists will be taken from Overlord anyway.

The miniatures and tanks are all from Battlefront Miniatures. While some of them are nice or OK sculpts, only suffering from bad casting, others are absolutely awful. The six Sherman M4A4's are from the original 'Open Fire' starter set and some of the worst plastic tanks I had the displeasure to deal with to date. To make them look a little less like ugly toys I added some stowage from Battlefront. The platoon leaders got reinforced armour in form of sandbags to the sides. Unfortunately I didn't have any US markings in 15mm at home so only the mandatory stars (taken from 28mm decal sheets) were added.

First Platoon

Second Platoon

They were painted using the US Armor Camouflage set from Ammo of MIG Jimenez. As I quite liked how they came out I decided to not whitewash them but in hindsight I should have done that little extra step. Originally the tracks were intended to look muddy but as so often with pigments the results were quite different from what I had intended. For some reason the pigments dried out whiteish and I had to go over them with several layers of brown wash. Thus ruining the wet/ muddy look completely.

The crew for the .50 cal AA HMG were probably the worst miniatures ever. Despite having a set of three and taking only the best figures, they were just rubbish. Almost no detail, lots of flash and badly cast. Especially for the price BF are asking for their offerings, it feels like robbery to get such bad castings.


60mm light mortar

.30 cal medium machine gun


Overall I really enjoyed painting in a smaller scale than usual and am quite happy with how these came out. I still have to adapt my painting to 15mm but as I'm slowly running out of storage space, and really like how fast one can build a sizable force, I'll probably switch the most part of my painting to this scale.

Together with miniatures I painted earlier that gives me a well sized starting force of three not fully equipped platoons for Battlegroup. I still have/ want to bolster it out with some more stuff like trucks, halftracks, jeeps and scout vehicles. First though, I'll probably start on the Germans in order to get in a game some time soon.

Airborne Squad

So let me see. 83 foot of which 13 are prone/ sitting, six crew served weapons (one .50 cal HMG, a 60mm light mortar, three .30 cals and a Bazooka) and six tanks. If my math is correct this should give me 213 points. With a total of 233 points so far that's enough to overtake ChristopherS (144 points) in our little side duel... for the moment at least. I'm sure he's right now winging his brushes in order to take the lead again.

Acknowledging some of the bad models, you've still managed to produce absolutely stunning work here Nick. To be honest, when I first looked at the photos, I thought these were 28mm!!
I'm always struck by your skills with the brush Nick and you don't disappoint here. Your weathering on the Shermans is excellent and I like your take on the snow bases. Wonderful stuff.
As a suggestion, you should really try 20mm if you want a happy medium between storage and detail. You get all the benefits from 1/72 scale plastic kits PLUS you can access the lovely AB range, which I think you'd perform magic with. Again, just a thought. :)
This entry will allow you to hop-scotch over Christopher, but as you say, I'm sure he has something in the works to return the favour! :)

From JaccoK - 20mm late war Germans (96 pts)

I took a while to get the first entry ready but here it is.  These are 24 late war Germans form AB figures all in 20mm. These are an addition to my existing German army.

Last year our group started with the Battlegroup Kursk ruleset in 20mm. Our annual Christmas battle this was also with these rules (the Overlord add-on). I've added some pictures of the battle to get a feel. The table and scenario where made by Michael Fisser who did an excellent job as games master and as host.

Welcome aboard Jake! It's great to have one of the Dutch Waterbicycle Detachment in the mix this year. 

AB makes beautiful figures and you've really done them proud Jake. Your paintwork is excellent and I like that you've added little details like aerials to the radio sets. A great touch. 

That Christmas game looks just brilliant. Bravo to Michael! I had the pleasure to game with Jake, Rob and Michael a couple years ago while we were visiting Holland and it was a wonderful experience. Their games are stunning, great fun and you couldn't hope to hang out with a better bunch of guys.
I look forward to your next entry Jake!

From TamsinP - 15mm Righteous Army (194 points)

Five weeks in and here is my 8th entry for this year's Challenge.

Last week I submitted a command stand for the Righteous Army contingent of my 15mm Choson Koreans. Well, a commander needs troops to command so here are 96 Righteous Army infantry as my 8th entry.

In FoGR, the Righteous Army can either be taken as [Warriors, Unarmoured, Average, Bow*, Light Spear, -] at 5 points per base or [Warriors, Unarmoured, Poor, -, Light Spear, -] at 2 points per base. For this batch I've gone with the former - I may in future do a batch of the latter.

Getting in a little closer to each of the battle groups:

And a closer look at the command stands to show off the flags:

The figures are 15mm from Old Glory 15s; the flags are home made - after gluing onto the poles I went over the edges and washed the faces with thinned paint. For the blue and green flags I went back over the slogans with thinned red paint and a 3/0 brush as the wash had obscured them. I probably need to do the same for the orange flag.

I deliberately went for a grubby look as these chaps would have been living rough.

I make this 192 points unless Curt gives extra for the flags, which should put me back comfortably in the top 10.

These are terrific Tamisin. Such nice, clean paintwork and a very fast turnaround! Amazing. I really like the final shots of the flag waving mob (you know, that would look very cool nestled within one unit). I also really like the leaders and drummers. Question: I know you live in a London flat, so where do you store all your painted collections? You must have them squirreled-away all over the place!
194 points for you Tamsin. More than enough to place you back into the top ten. Well done!