Waiting: The Hard Part of Pandemic Hobbying…

Waiting. It is never really the fun part of our hobby. Waiting for washes to dry, waiting for stuff in Post. Waiting for that base-coat to finish so you can, finally, crack on.

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When I’m not distracted by Doggo. Yes, that is a horse toy. She kept losing the smaller dog sized balls in the bushes.

In this lovely, hot, Canadian summer I find myself in, I’m doing a lot of waiting. Honestly, it makes for awful content; I have little to show for it, as much of what I had in the wings primed, ready to go, I’m simply not interested in painting! And on the hobby front, I really want to start on Zona Alfa.

But, as I imagine it is worldwide, mail has slowed considerably. I don’t blame my local Posties; They are fantastic people, and once it actually gets to here, I get my stuff promptly. But I have a lot I want to write about, and unfortunately, it just isn’t here!

I can hear you now “Mate, go paint. under-coat something.” Herein lies the next problem. Unlike my Australian friends down under, I am unused to scary insects. And we have several nests of Wasps, and they sneak in every-time a door is opened. We take care of one nest, and several more crop up. So, until they decide to piss off, my family and I tend to not go out much, and staying outside longer then I have to with Sir Stings a Lot and his merry buzzing men about, I tend to avoid. So no mass-undercoating either!

I miss winter…

But all is not lost! I did get something neat done, and I can talk to you fine fellows about what is coming!

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“Do I have to go up, again?”

This is a Forge World Thunderbolt Pilot. He was available in 2007 at Games Day, and of course, I wasn’t there. Someone who was decided to part with it on eBay, and after deciding it looked legitimate enough, I pulled the trigger.

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He’s quite a character! Quite a lot of detail on this model, it is a fantastic sculpt.

He sat, languishing in my collection for years. I was simply terrified to mess up a rare model, especially one that is resin, as that is a notoriously difficult medium to strip. But after getting well and truly sick of trying to paint Space Marines, I used him as a palette cleanser. I was also inspired by the “spirit of the blitz” attitude of Vera Lynn, and cued up Cliffs of Dover and There Will Always be An England. She sadly died last week, and while I’m sure this means nothing to most, this is my tribute to her, and in turn, the RAF. I was tempted to go for 40k style, Phantine colors. But in the end, inspired by the Royal Air Force flight uniform of the early 40’s (1940’s, not 40,000).

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The uniform I’m quite happy with; It was a simple matter of shading in the correct hue for each part of the model, something I don’t bother with on “mass” production models.

So this is my humble tribute to the late Vera Lynn, in my own way. I have a Bilbo Baggins in the wings to pay homage to the late Ian Holm, so watch this space!

Of course, because I can’t stay on track for long….my buddy did it again. Seriously, I should leave his stuff on “read” sometimes. He asked if I was interested in war-gaming the Spanish Civil War.

It took me by surprise, as this was one setting I never thought I’d get the chance to do. But I knew that his heart wouldn’t be in that setting for long. So I counter-suggested.

“What about The Very British Civil War?”

This is a setting close to my heart. I had followed it for years, but knew, deep down, that there simply wasn’t a community to play it here in Canada. But, he did some digging, and really liked it! I was in! We will be using seriously adapted Bolt Action rules, for ease of using something we know!

Now, I don’t want to rouse the copyright gods, despite my gut-feeling that the lads behind the setting wouldn’t care, so you’ll have to wait until I get some models and books of my own to truly cover it. Suffice to say, he is playing the plucky “Middle England” Anglican League, and their allies in Canada, the Albertine’s, wanting to put Prince Albert on the throne.

Meanwhile, as is my custom, I’m playing the “bad” guys, the British Union of Fascists (those jackbooted jerks!) and King Edward’s loyalists in the Army. I’ve put in an order from Gripping Beast for a significant force of Territorial Army Royalists, using the Woodbine Design Company WW1 British, a model line I’ve been keenly interested in for years. This will be followed up by an order from Footsore Miniatures, of “BUF” troops, to represent His Majesty’s unsavory and backstabbing allies. My buddy will be fielding a force of Warlord and Footsore miniatures, to represent regular Canadian Army and Local Defense Volunteer’s. 3D printed tanks, something I’ll show off soon, will round out our band of modern day Cavaliers and Round-heads!

Of course…this means yet more waiting! I never learn, do I!

I do apologize for the lack of content; My next article will hopefully, Canada Post willing, have more substance! But in the mean-time, Happy War-Gaming, wherever you are!

 

 

The Road to Miniwargaming: Part 2….and a detour to 1944…

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They may look majestic, but keeping these mighty stallions of the air on the table is a game unto itself!

Finally, the light at the end of the tunnel. A hurried rush to get everything painted before the big day, but…its done. My list is painted, varnished, and safely ensconced in protective foam for it’s long journey to Welland, Ontario.

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The last stragglers cross the finish line. I ran out of my preferred brown paint, Army Painters Oak Brown, and had to use GW’s Dryad Bark; Similar, but not the same! However, they still rank up nicely with the rest…so I guess its fine?
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Ready to roll poorly, at my command, at the worst possible time…now on Youtube for all to see!

This has been a hectic last week, as the clubhouse was a hive of activity. I managed to get another practice game in. I decided before that game to remove one Lascannon squad and Ratlings to bring in a Leman Russ Annihilator, a unit I’ve had for a while. It saved me one squad of painting, and its durability and firepower paid off; It was the right decision to amend the list. I’m still not bringing the best possible list in the world, with my Imperial Navy assets still front and centre, despite the FAQ making them far harder to use. I don’t want to spoil who I’m facing; Suffice to say, I hope to make for good sport!

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The last practice! I lost, but learned some tricks and tactics to use for later, and learned I MUST fly in careful patterns or risk losing the 300+ point model in a very embarrassing way…

This whole thing has got me terribly excited! If I am allowed, I will take as many pictures as I can, and I’ll try to keep you guys informed as to what is going on.

Now, I would end here, but a rather surprising turn of events happened at the Clubhouse this week. During the middle of my practice game, Paul, the owner, walked in, hands full of Warlord Games Konflikt 47 starter sets! Turns out, while not a fan of historical gaming, the simple addition of “weird” elements has convinced him….it was all downhill from here. The Clubhouse, while having a couple of lapsed Bolt Action players, mainly played 40k and AOS, and we didn’t have the drive to play that we would normally have. But suddenly, at least 4-5 people have committed to playing Konflikt 47, purchasing starters and assembling in mad haste. And with Konflikt 47 being an offshoot of Bolt Action, using much the same rules, us WW2 fans found ourselves suddenly experts. At least two of the new players want to do Bolt Action as well! I helped run a demo at the Giddy Goblin in Hanover, Ontario, and played a few games at the Clubhouse as well.

Unfortunately my primary Bolt Action force is the British 8th Army, specifically in the North African campaign. Being a 1941-1943 force, they lack heavy armor by 1944(and onward!) standards, and also lack firepower. Luckily, I did just happen to have a British Airborne starter army just sitting on my shelf, and a plastic Sherman to temporarily give them a wee bit of a chance against any Tigers or the like! One frantic day of assembly gave me 1000ish points of plucky British Paras, ready to take the fight to Jerry!

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A plucky British Paratrooper, freshly assembled.
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Major Allison Digby Tatham-Warter, a real life paratrooper who fought at Arnhem, 1944 . Known for his distinctive umbrella, which he carried because he couldn’t remember passwords…and figured no British soldier would mistake him for a Jerry, as they were sensible enough not to carry umbrellas! He’ll be acting as my Major in my army, granting significant buffs to my Paras.

Now, none of my WW2 stuff is painted; why would it be? No-one locally played at the time, and my only opponent was my friend in the city, and at least he had started on the painting part. However, I now find myself in the position where I need to paint up my British 1st Airborne for engagements in 1944-47, and so begins yet another intricately detailed miniature army to paint. The cycle continues! As I finish work on them, I will post updates!

Until I post again, Ave Imperator, and happy war-gaming, wherever you might be!