Friday, March 26, 2021

Norman Infantry


Here are some unarmoured Norman infantry that I've just finished painting. The first unit is a mix of Gripping Beast, Crusader and Conquest Games with LBM banner and shield transfers. The second is all Conquest Games with Battle Flag banner and shield transfers. The Conquest Game plastic Norman infantry, like their cavalry set are good value, for 20 pounds you get 44 infantry (18 armoured) with options for spear, sword, axe and shield. The Victrix Normans will be out soon but if you like a bit of variety (like me) in your armies, then they're well worth a look.

Monday, March 22, 2021

Midianite Camel Riders


Here are some 15mm Midianite Camel Riders that I've just finished painting. The figures are by Museum Miniatures from their Z range. These are one piece metal castings, designed in CAD and the photos on their website are CAD renders I think. Quite amazing detail, much better than 28mm Midianite Camel Riders figures, that I have! Size wise they're a good match for Xyston.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Command & Colors Samurai Battles - First Samurai Skirmish


First Samurai Skirmish scenario 

Last Monday my eagerly awaited order of the new GMT Games board game, Command & Colors Samurai Battles, arrived and I spent the afternoon putting the stickers on the wooden blocks. Today after rereading the rules I played a solo game with the first of forty scenarios. This proved to be a cracking game, that was neck and neck right to the final turn. The two sides were evenly matched in terms of troops, command cards, dragon cards and honour and fortune tokens. While there is much that will be familiar to players of Command & Colors Ancients and Medieval, there are definitely differences which really add a lot to the period flavour.

An example of this is with a retreating leader, where rather than escaping and fighting another day, the player may choose to have the leader commit seppuku (honourable suicide), thus depriving the opponent of a possible victory banner, and in turn gaining five honour and fortune tokens, while losing a command card. Careful use and management of the honour and fortune tokens is really key to maintaining your army's morale. Retreating units entail the loss of honour and fortune tokens and a lack of honour roll can cause losses to the retreating and closest units. Troops depending on their type can generate honour tokens when rolling dice for ranged fire and/or combat. 

At the end of each turn the active player receives a dragon card as well as a replacement command card. The effective use of these dragon cards, including the timing in a turn phase, is something I struggled with in my first game but hopefully greater familiarity with the cards and rules will see some improvement in this area. The rules are only thirty pages and not overly complex but with all the scenarios, dragon cards and honour and fortune tokens there are many, many hours of rewarding and challenging gaming to be had with this board game.

End of a close game with a 5-4 result

Monday, March 15, 2021

Gandhara 304 BC - Command & Colors Ancients


 Seleucids on the right, Indians on the left

Opposite end

Indians play a heavy troops card

Chandragupta leads his elephants in attack

Indian Heavy Chariots

More Indian elephants on the left flank

Last Sunday I played a solo Command and Colors Ancients (CCA) game out in the shed. The scenario was Gandhara 304 BC with the Early Seleucids under Seleucus taking on the Mauryan Indians under Chandragupta. This turned out to be a really one sided game, as the Indians never really got going. They had consistently poor cards and dice, while the elephants, light and heavy chariots were very brittle with only two blocks each. The Seleucids on the other hand had good cards and a counter attack and double time card allowed their pike to wreak havoc in the centre. Chandragupta was killed and the Indians were thrashed 8-1 victory points by the Seleucids.

GMT Games are currently shipping Command and Colors Samurai Battles (CCSB), I should get it this week. I'm really looking forward to this as there are 40 scenarios. A pdf of the rules is already available:

I've read them and they look really good, the Dragon cards and Honour and Fortune tokens really add an extra element to the game. I will just play this one with the blocks, as I have more than enough figures to paint as it is...

Seleucus advances with his Companions

Indians attack on the right flank

Indians retreat

Seleucids counter attack

A double time card - Seleucid pike wreak havoc

Seleucids thrash the Indians 8-1 victory points

Saturday, March 13, 2021

Persian Kardakes


Here's a unit of Persian Kardakes that I've just finished painting. These all Victrix figures and transfers from the recently released Persian Unarmoured Spearmen. Combined with the Persian Unarmoured Archers these are really versatile and can be used to make early Persian unarmoured sparabara and archers, Kardakes like these for a late Persian army, as well as takabara peltasts and slingers. Options only increase with the most recent Victrix releases, Persian Armoured Archers and Persian Armoured Spearmen. I can't wait for the cavalry!

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Early Carthaginian Chariots


Here's an Early Carthaginian chariot I've just finished painting and two others I painted about four years ago. The first is by Agema Miniatures and the other two are Newline Designs. I stuffed up when assembling the Agema chariot and crew. While I looked at the painted version on the website, I failed to notice that the spearmen with the shield was on the left side of the chariot with his shield hanging on the outside. 

Luckily I had a Newline crew figure that fitted in the remaining space (I still have two more of these to paint), so all was not lost! The Agema chariot is a nice mdf kit. Incidentally if you're drilling holes for the crews' feet in to the floor of the chariot, make sure you use a mask and do it outside. The horses and crew are nice figures but pinning two weapon hands was very time consuming and fiddly - give me plastics any day!

Etruscan ADLG Game

  Above are some 2nd Class Etruscan infantry that I’ve just finished painting. Figures are by Gorgon Studios with LBM shield transfers. On F...