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Sunday, 25 August 2013

Dead Man's Hand - Painted Outlaws

As predicted, these figures too a while to clean up with file, knife and side cutters. Once done I super glued them to 20mm Renedra bases and blended the bases to the figures with Vallejo coarse pumice. I spray prime with Matt White.
The figures were painted with Vallejo Acrylics, shaded with Vallejo and GW washes and varnished firstly with Purity Seal and followed with Army Painter Matt Coat.
They were a pleasure to paint with sufficient sculpted detail to take the shading and highlights. Height wise they are a good match to Artizan Cowboys and certainly look the part.

Next.....some Artizan figures I've bought to boost the numbers.

Friday, 23 August 2013

TFL Chain of Command Rules

Well call me weak, but I've fallen in line with what seems like the rest of the WW2 wargaming community and per-ordered the new skirmish rules from TFL.
Impressively for me as a confirmed tight arse, I've got myself the book, the PDF, the iPad version, sexy CoC dice and counters!!

I think what swayed me to finally buy a set of their rules from new, was their finally dropping their standard card driven mechanisms and blinds.

Book looks good (not their fault our dear postman decided folding the packet in half would be a good idea to get it through the letter box!) and is well produced.

I'll have to wait to see how they play, but I really enjoyed their six part exposé on YouTube, so am confident. Whilst there's been lots of bumf on the web and in print about how this is the first set to capture accurately small unit tactics, I think Jim Webster beat them by about 20 years ago with a set published in an early MW.

It'll have to be 15mm to start off with while I paint up some German 28's to take on my Soviets........

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Pendraken - 10mm WW1 French

WWith everything else on my workbench, I still have my 10mm Great War project going on. I intend to use Square Bashing II but with 4" squares rather than 6" ones.

This will allow me to fight the large (900pt) battles on my limited tabletop.

I have based infantry on rectangular bases (25x20mm) rather than squares so they will fit the Kallistra trenches I plan to buy.

These are some of the mid/late war French Army I've started.  Heavy tank  and a light tank plus 9 x 75mm and 8 x hotchkiss MMGs - mounted on 25 x25mm mdf bases.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Dead Man's Hand - 28mm Great Escape Games Figure Review

At first glance I was impressed with the look of the Great Escapes' DMH figure packs.
Each Gang (1 of 4) comes in a plastic quadruple DVD box. They look really professional and classy.
The box art details the gang and what's in the box.
Now on opening, I must say I was a little underwhelmed. The box contains a gang of 7 white metal miniatures, 7 laser cut mdf 25mm diameter bases, and a single printed card with some gang related rules. That's it.......for £20! 

Interesting that there is only seven figures per pack as reading the rules I suspect you'll need more than 7 in your gang to play some of the scenes?
My disappointment went further when I saw the level of finish of the figures. When you think these little fellas have cost you nearly £3 a piece, the last thing I'd expect was to be spending several evenings with a craft knife, file and side cutters removing all the flash and runners.
Worse still this figure suffered from misaligned mould halves and is gonna take a lot of work with a file to put right. All in all pretty rubbish quality control if you ask me. 
I'd rather thought the idea behind the rather extravagant packaging was you could store your gangs in them after painting? Well if you fit the 25mm bases provided, you won't! You can see here they're too wide to allow the box to shut.
What I might try as an alternative is the 20mm Renedra bases that came with the Perry Eighth Army. These should fit ok.

All in all, I've been left feeling a little bit taken for a ride. 

The whole DMH range is priced as a premium product. However these figures, whilst lovely sculpts, are let down by poor quality finish and over-pricing.

I don't think I shall be getting anymore. I think there are plenty of other ranges offering much better quality and better value for money, i.e. Artizan.

I guess you pay your money and take your choice.

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Dead Man's Hand - 28mm Wild West

In a weak moment, supported by my Dear Wife I hasten to add, I parted with a considerable sum of money and bought myself so DMH items from Great Escape Games.
I'd already bought myself the rules to read through, from Firestorm Games in Cardiff. The book is a little thin for £20 rrp. Even with the card deck, I think it's a little steeply priced. You can probably see in the photos the glossy, softcover is already starting to look dog-eared.
I've only read it through once, it looks easy enough to get into, and there are lots of examples. Noticeably missing is anything to do with horses? Do I feel a supplement coming on?
The first new purchase was a 4Ground building to go with the game. This is the Marshal's office costing £24.
This seemed very extravagant but Colette was adamant I could have it! Building was straight forward following the clear colour instructions included.

It is a fantastic model when finished. Fully painted inside and out, it features an office with opening front door and a barred inner door to the cell area. The two cells have opening doors and there's an opening steel reinforced door out of the area in front. The roof and veranda lift off to give you full access and sections of walls with the iron barred windows from the cells can be removed during a 'breakout' scenario.
Reminded me of my old Timpo Wild West town from 40 odd years ago. By the end I was convinced it was worth every penny and can't wait to get some more!

I also treated myself to a box of their figures......I'll leave that until the next episode.

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Warlord 28mm Ruined Farmhouse

My dear wife bought me this for my birthday, and a very useful addition to my terrain collection it is.
There are sufficient parts to assemble a variety of ruins. I chose to create a ruined house (which I thought was reminiscent of my much loved Airfix Strongpoint from the 1970's) and a smaller ruined cottage or outbuilding.
I glued the finished ruins to sheets of 3mm Perspex I had lying around. And created the effect of tone flooring with some old vacuum formed sheet I found in my spares box.
You could always use the pieces in any way you wished. It would be possible to create a large farmhouse ruin or half a dozen small ruined corner walls to use as cover from fire.
If I have a complaint with the kit it's that the larger pieces are terribly warped. I tried straightening with hot water, but failed dismally and decided to accept that's the way it was going to be!
I covered the bases with PVA and sand and when dry, sprayed them in grey car primer.
I then painted them with black wash before I dry brushed light grey over the top.
I wasn't that impressed with the finish and I went back and dry brushed with a brown/light grey mix which gave a much warmer "Normandy" look. This was highlighted with dry brushed buff.
When dry I picked out remaining areas of plaster/render in white - weather around the edges with sepia wash.
Finally the base was painted brown and dry brushed buff before adding static grass. The slates were made from the one remaining corner piece I had left over. I spray varnished both buildings to protect them during handling.

I'm very pleased with the end result. At first they might seem expensive at £13.50 (if bought alone) or about £30 for three on some discount sites. But when compared to mdf equivalents (which would lack the detail we have here) they are pretty good value for what in effect has produced two ruined buildings.

As stated earlier, my only real gripe is the degree of warping. I can put up with this though, it is a ruin after all! 

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

28mm PSC Russian Anti-tank Gun

Well if I thought the heavy weapon set was good, I hadn't readied myself for these little beauties.
Each box has parts for two guns each with a crew of four. Each kit has a choice of three barrels 45mm short, 45mm long & 76.2mm infantry gun all using the same carriage. It would of course pass for a German Pak 37 at a pinch.
The crew are all multipart and are exquisite. There is a choice of heads, ammo crates, rounds (fired and unfired) and a smg + rifle.
Simply unbeatable.

These cost me £10 delivered from eBay. An absolute bargain.

28mm PSC Russian Support Weapons

Well I've finally got around to assembling and painting some of my Russian Heavy Weapon set. I have to say I'm really impressed!
The figures are a real improvement over the infantry set. In many cases they are multi-part to introduce more interesting poses.
This Maxim looks a little small against the figures, and the loader lacks an ammo box but all the same I still like this group.
I've probably got more mortars now than I'll ever need! But at least I've got a choice!
The anti-tank rifle comes both deployed (both revamped figures from their infantry box) and there is a figure walking with it on his shoulder (the same figure carrying the light mg in their infantry box).

Still to be painted - the mg crew on the move towing their Maxim. A lovely pair f figures, very animated.

All in all a very good value set of figures. For Bolt Action or (dare I say it) Chain of Command, a real bargain. Please PSC, do some of your other ranges in 28mm!