Saturday, August 31, 2019

Cobbaton Combat Collection.

Sneaking away whilst the family did the usual beach and shops, I had a morning at the Cobbaton Combat Collection, well worth the visit if you happen to be in North Devon. First things first it is not a museum, more a collection that as the owner put it a “hobby that got out of hand”.
Perhaps a warning to us all.

To the untrained eye it can appear a little jumbled, dusty and unkept but if you know your history, military vehicles and weapons there is plenty to see. With a large collection of WW2 Allied vehicles and numerous cabinets of rifles and other memorabilia.

Here's some of the highlights..

Centuar Mk 1V with D Day Markings.

Tucked away in the corner a T34 although how they got this down the Devonshire country lanes is beyond me.

A Beaverette from 1941when you get close up it is very rough and ready, but it was afterall the stop gap after Dunkirk, you really would not fancy your chances against a Pz III. It got me thinking about dusting off my AVBCW collection.

A T55 perfect inspiration for the North Korean project, this one is from the Czech Republic, an icon of the Cold War.

An finally merely because I was taken by the size. A British Mark VIII torpedo. A reminder that the Cruel Seas starter set has not left the box yet.

A great couple of hours wandering about now back to Sandcastles and Cream Teas.....

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Drawing in the outposts - Pearl of the Antilles Campaign.

The summer months are always a testing time with campaigns as the lag between games can kill off peoples interests or the gap between games is extended the Pearl of Antilles campaign in Haiti is no different. There is also the risk that as the action hots up that the number of games makes the gap between moves to long to combat this the plan was to dice for some of the smaller games.

Within the Dawn and Departure campaign rules I adopted the simple dice mechanism with a couple of tweaks.

When attacked, an Outpost may elect to stand and fight, or may choose to retire.
If an Outpost elects to simply withdraw, it rolls 1D6.  
On a roll of 1 or 2, the troops from the Outpost will simply disperse and play no more part in the campaign. 
On a roll of 3 to 6, they may withdraw away from the enemy.
where they remain until give new orders if they are subsequently attacked they will automatically disperse unless reinforced with a larger detachment. (This should stop players constantly falling back.)

We have two such encounters in the north of the Island.

The forces of Gen Louverture continues to pursue the slave forces of George Biassou, Biassou has broken his forces up into small groups to try and slow the advance of Louverture as he advances towards the centre of the rebel controlled region.

Using a random dice generator.  - 4 The rebels slip away a mile or so having avoided Louverture's skirmish troops.

Meanwhile the Spanish were not so lucky. The Princess's forces on the back foot and falling back to Phaeton, looking to change the focus of the Spanish Commander an incursion across the border attacks the Spanish outpost.

With a random roll of a 2 - The Garrison are over run by the slave forces which number several groups and in excess of 60 attackers.

With one large encounter outstanding which see's the French under seige by the Slave forces of Dutty Boukman we should have this completed over the next fortnight which should allow us to get several rounds in over the autumn.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

V the Mini Series - Visitor Sky Fighter.

Whilst I wait expectantly for Crooked Dice to produce a Visitor Sky Fighter. ( More in hope and I guess depending on how well the Alien packs have sold.) The Reptiles need some air power to help them keep the humans in check.

The Sky Fighter was a very slick looking craft and very iconic in the mini-series, the fighter and the larger transport were very often seen parked up at road blocks or dropping down to allow the Shock Troopers to spill out. 
So my Shock Troopers needed one or at best a proxy for the games in Zikanga.

I picked up the following craft from the guys at Deamonscape who do a cracking range of 25/28mm resin vehicles, I have a couple of them for the Starship Troopers collection and this VTOL offering seemed perfect. With no guns and clean lines it felt very much of the Visitor style.

I thought about giving it a more lived in look but opted for the fresh out of the showroom feel. I did think about hand painting the symbol but in the end pinched one from the web as it stands out on the white background.

Based on the size and scale it should be perfect for a squad of around 6 troopers which is perfect for the games in the pipeline, mostly around capturing one or rescuing one.....

Right back to the serious stuff....

Friday, August 23, 2019

Cotswold Wargaming Day - 1st September

Next Sunday see's the Pearl of the Antilles taking a road trip down to Northleach, for the Cotswold gaming day. August is always a challenge on the gaming front with high days and holidays so this serves as a great kickstarter to the autumn and hopefully more hobby time than what I have been able to achieve over the summer.

I missed the event last year but Keith has done a great job pulling together a number of interesting games and with 30+ gamers booked in already it's sure to be a fun packed day.

The games cover a range of periods and rules sets so plenty for everyone.
  • 19th century action in Mexico
  • WW2 Battlegroup Panzergrenadier
  • SYW
  • Air Wargame, ‘Bombing Berlin'
  • Crimean War, Bloody Big Battles
  • ‘Liberdy’, a Wild West game
  • 'Sawmill Village'
Players get the opportunity to experience the different games on offer with players encouraged to invite people into play, which is a great way of being tempted into a new period or experience a new rule set.

A 'wargames exchange' to sell, swap or give away to other gamers is available. It's the perfect opportunity to pass on things to other gamers that you know will appreciate the models or reading matter, items to good for your regular jumble sale.... Do people still have jumble sales???

I shall be hosting a Sharp Practice game featuring our old friend Claude Canard of the French Sloop "Le Vendeen" as he attempts a rescue women and children from the slave rebellion in Haiti.

Claude's had a make over and find himself shipped from Egypt to Haiti so lets see if he has more lucky in another of France's outposts.
4 commands are available on the day so plenty of room for people to dip in and out.

The event is being held at:


The Westwoods Centre

Bassett Road


Gloucestershire GL54 3QJ

Sunday 1st September 2019, 10.00 - 17.00

Looking forward to seeing everyone and a day of gaming.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Dispatches from the front....

It's been a mad couple of weeks with very little time for gaming and painting all very frustrating.... 
I really need to put some focus on the hobby as the toys won't paint themselves.

With a new job there has been very little time for painting or is it that the I just hate painting cavalry and the Haitian Colonial Cavalry have been sitting on the paint table for a couple of weeks now, I need a spark to get them going.

Meanwhile the painting queue just got a little larger.

I picked up a couple of packs of Havana Volunteers which gives me a couple of light Infantry units for the Spanish. I saw these advertised a few months ago from QH Miniatures and thought they might be worth a couple of packs.
Thanks to Steve M for sending on my package. After a mix up the package from Spain went missing, but thankso Steve who tracked me down via a couple of club members and sent them on, so there are some benefits of gaming odd periods and blogging about it :-)

Meanwhile last weekend saw a quick trip over to the M5 Living History Show at Spetchley Hall, with a mix of periods covered Ancient Greeks, Romans, Medieval, Vikings, Napoleonic, American Civil War, WW1 and WW2 together with a number of traders it's always a good way to spend a Sunday morning.

Everyone looked to be enjoying themselves and it was nice to see some cavalry in action in the ACW engagement, the chaps representing the Brits in Khaki were very impressive and got me thinking about painting some up. I picked up the following in one of the book tents....

Some light reading for the holidays - could this be a new project?

Definitely a period not gamed but can you get the figures for the Brits in Tibet and is there a uniform guide for the Tibetans let alone figures.

I can feel a few late nights on the internet coming up.
Any suggestions chaps on who makes figures for Younghusband's Expedition?

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Ghost Archipelago - #7 The Gateway.

According to locals the Chappata live in a mountain city high where the only why in is through a large gate in the bottom of the mountain, all the parties have to do is push open the gate and enter the city, where a bounty of treasure awaits.
The Chappata are peaceful people and not known for their warrior skills so they should be easy to push aside.
The winner in today's outing is the first player to push open the gate.

The Gateway is defended by three warriors of the Chappata people, however a further warrior will join the defenders for every 18 rolled on the initiative table. They won't engage the parties until anyone gets within 10" of the gate or they are fired upon.

Littered along the road to the temple is various piles of treasure, the players will gain rewards for collecting them, but this is a race to the gate..... Remember guys a race.....

Turn one and it would appear blood feuds run deep, as the freebooters open fire on the Atlantians who are sandwiched on the main highway between to the two opposing forces.

Whilst the Marines look to skirt the fighting the Guardians blaze away at anyone in sight.

Heritor Rasco is taken out of the fight by a blunderbuss blast from the nasty pirates... this brings a lull in the fighting with both sides content that a small amount of recompense had been done.

A few turns tick by and the Marines and the Pirates make it to within sight of the gateway, the native numbers had been growing slightly but they continue to observe the invaders. The Freebooters make a break for one of the piles of gold, only for the Marines to break from cover and let loose a volley.

Captain Masters let's his releases his war hound who tears into the burly pirate, his large axe is no match for gnashing teeth,

Meanwhile at the gate the native numbers continue to swell.

Having regrouped the Atlantians now led by Atmir move up the road, the Warden throwing up clouds of mist to cover their advance.

The Marines having triggered the Chappata fall back into the hinterland in the hope that they will take out the other gangs leaving the way clear for them to reach the gate.

Atmir takes the opportunity to grab a a pile of treasure before another bloody exchange between them and the Marines.

The clock ran down and all players agreed to fall back each party having lost a number of comrades, with their numbers reduced and the natives growing numbers. They would have to try another day to breach the gate,

Another fun outing but perhaps next time we all should save our powder for the natives.....

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Spectre Miniatures - African Militia #2

More from the cupboard of shame whilst I wade my way through the rebasing of Korean Micro armour and buildings I wanted to clear up more of the African Militia. 

Another interesting bunch in T shirts and civilian attire - I am loving the graduate, I think he must have passed his GCSE in weapon handling.....

Next week back to the small toys and more 6mm.....