Tuesday, 18 February 2020

by AdamC: Brigs and Brigantine (40 Points)

Three more ships for Black seas.  These will be used a merchants and privateers.
Two standard brigs from warlord unlike many of my recent offering I haven't done any “surgery” on these. 
I kept the both ships in "natural" wood colors this one has yellow trim. 
The second has white trim to distinguish it from the other brigs.  Both came out looking quite sharp.  They will be used a merchant in a scenario I am working on for a game next month. I opted to use the revolutionary period US Flag.  The ships flags can be changed out.  
Speaking of Merchants here I present a creation of my own a Brigantine merchant.  A ship built from a couple of larger popsicle sticks, with coffee stirrers for the outer hull.  The bow is cut down from an extra frigate bow. 
The stern is made from an extra stern plate from a frigate (you get several more bows and sterns in each set) giving it a finished look.  She is rigged as a Brigantine a common ship type used for merchants from America.  Basically, she is rigged as a brig up front and a schooner in back.   For points we've been saying 10 points for the Brigs.  The Brigantine is about the same size so another 10 I'll leave the extra points (if any) for flags and scratch building to the Minion. 

By Paul
Some lovely conversion work here Adam. I love that rather than "nailing your colours to the mast", you have made the flags interchangeable.  I'm sure their captains appreciate the opportunity to pull a ruse de guerre or two!  40 points for you Sir, including some bonuses for the additional work and details

By MartinN - German light mortar and observers (20 points)

Several weeks ago I was gifted a sprue of the plastic Afrika Korps by Warlord Games and while I didn't like the figures some bits still can come in handy here and there. One thing I still needed for my other wise rather complete force of Early War Germans for Chain of Command was another 50mm light mortar and luckily there was one in the DAK sprue.

Mixing the DAK parts with the Early War Grenadiers proofed a little difficult and needed some surgery with scalpel and glue. As I was at it anyway I also built me two observers/ spare crew, one of which from the plastic Soviet Infantry I quite like to use the prone Soviet figures for Germans as they (obviously) don't wear that stupid Y-Tragegestell (Y-webbing) and thus work nicely for officer types. Just needed a pair of shoulder boards, easily sculpted on with Green Stuff.

Speaking of the Y-Tragegestell, this one is another pet peeve of mine. Looking at pictures of German soldiers (especially useful in this regard are pictures of surrendering Germans, i.e. before they're being disarmed) and from stories of family members who served during the war, I came to the conclusion that they were not that often worn in actual combat, especially not when troops were fighting from prepared positions or as part of a reconnaissance.

Thus I'd personally prefer a greater selection of figures without that, admittedly iconic, piece of equipment. There you have it. Some of you might not like shooting figures, others prefer standing over prone infantry - Silly I know ;-) -, yet others foolishly go for 1/48 over 1/56 for their vehicles and I'd prefer my Germans without Y-webbing.

Three prone and a kneeling figure should add another 12.5 points towards my total, but given the -very- minor conversion work on the Soviet figure I'd happily accept 13 points.
By Paul
Stunning work as always Martin! Noting the conversion work, detailing and basing I am awarding a total of 20 points for this lovely little crew

by PeterD Femme Fatale for Repeat Balloon Ride (5 points)

A 28mm figure of a Femme Fatale for my second balloon ride of the Challenge, this one taking me to the summit of the Snowlord.  Like many challengers the ability to make use of the balloon had me scrambling through the lead pile for suitable female figures.  (I also hit the e-commerce route for some figures that were ordered in 2019 but just arrived this week.)  This figure is a 28mm Reaper Bones figure bought on spec for the Hero Theme Round a few Challenges back.  The plan was to have something mid cold war themed in front of the Berlin Wall and word smithed to fit Bowie's Heroes.  But that project got sidelined by a case of the February's and she's sat in the lead pile ever since.

Anyway for a Reaper Bones figure, quality was pretty good and she painted up nicely.  There was a small mold line that came off easily and those slender legs don't give her much support and she bent over with too much pressure on the brush but that was easily handled.  I've painted her up as a generic Femme Fatale for cold war pulp stories using as my muse....
The young Deneuve in les Parapluies de Cherbourg (sigh)
I've never seen the film, it's supposed to be good, but I can fanboy over la belle Deneuve all day long.  I have been to Cherbourg twice on sailing expeditions with my dad.  It's a typical port city with not much to offer it, but it's in France and there's some interesting harbour fortifications on the breakwaters.

No bonus points on this one, it's my second balloon ride and we've been drinking Italian reds to go with some mighty fine stripling steaks recently.  But's she's my balloon ride ticket to the Summit and what ever the Snowlord has in store for me.

By Paul:
A fine homage to your would-be paramour - 5 points for you Peter

by KenR- Mk VI Light Tanks (70 pts)

Tank of the week is the Mk VI Light Tank, a particular favourite of mine, it looks slightly odd and clearly a pre war design but there is just something wonderfully mad about it.

The vehicles are from Blitzkrieg Miniatures and they too have suffered with #flakegate but after multiple undercoated I finally got them done and I am pretty pleased with how they have come out.

Crew figures are by Perrys Miniatures and certainly add an extra dimension to the models, the Perrys sculpting definitely matches my style of painting, with a dab of colour in the right place they just come to life.

These models have been painted in the Caunter Camouflage Scheme as most of my vehicles are, I have gone for the official colours for these tanks as I tend to do with my earlier war models. I think with these models and these colours you can see how the camouflage broke up the shape of the tank in a similar way to the Dazzle camouflage that started on ships in WW1.

Points wise it's 3 x 20 for the tanks plus 3 reduced size crew men for say 8 points, a total of 68 to add to my total. To be honest I am miles behind where I wanted to be this year, #flakegate really dented my time and enthusiasm at the start of the challenge hopefully it's picking up now.

I recently purchased some more decals from Warlord Games with British Tank names on and these have certainly made life a bit easier. Next week's Tanks will be another 3 Stuart's and who knows maybe those Gendarme will get finished !

By Paul:
Lovely desert vehicles Ken - I do like the Desert War for the utility of all sorts of light vehicles (on both sides) before the upscaling of AFV weights.

Your caunter scheme is particularly well done - take a few extra points for that, for a total of 70

by BenF - Curtgeld; Count Kristofer Osváth de Thorna, gentleman at large (40 points)

From the letters and diaries of the Marquis de Montchevreuil, Grand Écuyer to His Highness The King of France, French Flanders, 1688

I first met the Count near the hamlet of Oestveld, while a local blacksmith saw to my horse. His accent and manners set him apart from all that is familiar. He claims to have come from the east, and yet while I have traveled much of the land hereabout in the service of our glorious King, I must confess to ignorance of his origins. His laconic manner and terribly scarred visage, despite his cover of powder, speak of hard service in the wars which have so recently beset the lands to the east. However, his dress is somber and bereft of that ornamentation which is so oft associated with the courts of the east.

From the moment he arrived in the camp, rumours have surrounded the mysterious Count Kristofer Osváth de Thorna. Some say he has travelled in the lands of the King of Tartary, providing counsel and strategy on military affairs to the barbaric horsemen who dwell there. The braggadocio Conte di Fortunato claims that, over a fine claret, the Count confided of his service with the Streletsi guard of enfeebled Tsar Ivan V of Muscovy. Baron Hans von Kroneberg claims he is a scoundrel, and that the Count was known to have served the Prince of Transylvania, leading a band of mountain brigands in barbaric small wars against the Ottoman Vizier.

What is clear is that his eminence the Duc de Luxembourg has taken him into service as a trusted advisor and confidante. It is my opinion that we do well to keep such men as the Count Osváth de Thorna in our employ, if only to deprive the enemy of their use.


For this entry, my Curtgeld, I've shamelessly created a story set in Sidney Roundwood's fictional Flemish city of Laarden’s campaigns against Louis XIV in 1688 and 1689.  Perhaps it will come as no surprise to hear that this figure has been painted up as the prize for Sid for this challenge. Back in 2018, I visited Rich Clarke and Sid, and was treated to a great game, over half my weight in lager, and a great day with some chums I'd not seen for a few years. As an antipodean, it's not that often that I get over to the UK, so this entry will have to suffice as a thankyou till I can get a chance to buy a few Vino Collapsos or Cooking Lagers to repay Sid (and Rich) in kind.

The figure is one of the excellent Paul Hicks sculpts done for Ebor miniatures, from their GNW kickstarter a few years back. Hopefully his overly modern tricorne and tight cut tunic will not be too much of a shock to the world of Laarden.

Now that the bushfires are out, we've had a 'mini-cyclone' a week or so ago, which resulted in a few trees down, some flooding, and a power outage. Here's hoping that things are back to the normal Australian hot and humid February, so that I can get some more entries posted. Next up will be some 20mm WW2 Figures.

So far as points go, I believe this will bag me 35, 5 for the figure and 30 for the special entry.
By Paul: 
I love this entry, especially the thought, creativity and story behind it.
Take 40 points good Sir!

PS Glad you are safe amongst the chaos of fire, flood, cyclones and pestilence that our country is enduring of late

From Grahame H. Walkers for Frans Fjord (70 points)

I have probably left starting the island challenge a bit late, but that should make completing it more of a challenge.

Having gone through my mountain of unpainted shame (and it is a mountain rather than a pile) I found these two Walkers. I have no idea where or when I purchased them. Equally I don’t know who made them, but if it wasn’t for the challenge they made have never even been painted.

Now that I have done I’m thinking I should buy some more Sci-fi stuff. When will it ever end????

Anyhow the figures.


Well I know that is 30 pts for exploring Frans Fjord
Not sure about the walkers themselves . They measure about 3.5” so is 5 pts each too much?

Makes a total of 40pts

By Paul:

Well they look like cracking little mechs, well deserving of attention so getting them off that mountain of shame and onto the gaming table is a great outcome!

I like your never say die attitude - it is indeed never too late to venture onto Challenge island!

For your fortitude I'm going to count these as 28mm vehicles - so thats a total of 70 points to help you on your way with just over a month to go - good luck!

From EvanH - A Brief Interlude for Scatter Terrain (10 points)

Greetings, Challengers and Challenge Fans!

Just a quick post with something I rustled up after finishing my submission for Awdry's Atoll.

Nothing special, just a rather dilapidated farm cart for use as scatter terrain in pre-industrial skirmish gaming.

It's a Nolzur's Marvellous Miniatures primed model, and it's been glued to a Warbases 80mm round MDF base.

It was basecoated with GW Rhinox Hide, and drybrushed with GW Gorthor Brown and Kommando Khaki. Ropes were picked out in GW Bleached Bone before inking with Agrax Earthshade.

The groundwork was laid down with Vallejo White Pumice Paste, and painted in successively lighter earth shades.

Static grass was added and broken up with Tajima1 wild grass and flower tufts.

It's going to be useful as set dressing or cover for any warriors or soldiers who find themselves in the vicinity when the manure hits the winnowing fan (pre-industrial metaphor there).

As a 28mm vehicle, it's worth a princely 20 points on paper; but this is rather different to a truck or tank! So I'll recommend scoring as an artillery piece equivalent for 10 points.

What's next? Well, I have to get across to the mainland from Awdry's Atoll, so the next landfall will have to be Reidy's Reef, unless a balloon trip can be arranged.

Stay tuned...

By Paul: 
nice one Ev - it will be useful from Hastings to Hobbiton. 
10 points it is!

From martinC: The AAA Girls (Roundwoods Tower) (80pts)

The Archaeans looked on from afar and Martin moved off  down the Snowlords Peak following the path to Roundwoods Tower.
I have a very large imagination force for a Very British Civil War. For those that don't know what it is, where have you been and what hobby do you do. Basically it is the Spanish Civil War in 1930's disUnited Kingdom. There are dozens of factions, all poorly armed and comprised of, in my case, monks, cricket teams, football teams and the Women's institute (my most terrifying unit).
In this alternative universe Lord Percy is trying to reform the Kingdom of Northumbria and is fighting against various communist and socialist factions.
Into this world I present The Byker Air Defence unit.

This female only unit and ready to protect Newcastle for all forms of air attack

with their 40mm Bofors gun

All the best AAA needs an emplacement. This was a prize from a previous challenge that I painted ages ago. it now has a proper use

But it's a tight fit

The figures are from Bad Squiddo and it's a lovely resin model but very expensive

Byker girls are famous with the Southern tabloid press for these types of images

Image result for byker girls night out

So that is 6 crew and 1 28mm gun = 50pts plus 30pts for roundwoods tower

By Paul:
Thats a cracking addition to your table! While your immediate intention is VBCW, I am reminded about how many ladies stood too in emplacements such as that, night after night, around the world to help defend their homes.  To them I say thank you - a great tribute Martin

From DaveS - Part of the Union (30 points)

So, I've got a week off work, which will hopefully mean that the output will speed up.  Today, I managed to get the skirmishers for my ACW Sharp Practice completed.  These have been painted in the same manner as the rest of the forces that I have been doing, although this time they get a skirmish base, and there are fewer of them.

With these, I have finished the recommended starter force.  I've also added a temporary flag to the colour party that I painted previously.

With this, I've finished the basic force.  Next up on the table are some artillery, along with a few more infantry units.  One of these will have that something special that I struggled to get.  I'm also planning on adding at least one unit of cavalry.  As these are able to be fielded either mounted or not, I've put in the order for some of the Perry dismounted cavalry, and the horse holders.  Finally, I need to build a few deployment points.

So this is 6x28mm models, for 30 points I think.
By Paul:

Nice figs and congratulations on completing your first army for Sharp Practice Dave!
I can tell you from experience, that you are in for a grea experience with these guys and you'll be adding new elements and capabilities to them in no time!