BoB/RCW: White Artillery and some scenery pieces

Louis the camera, got an outing today to take some photos of newly finished scenery pieces, and the second White Russian artillery piece I’d painted:

I still need to get to grips with the technical aspects of the new camera (Louis), but the focus is much better. Lighting remains an issue.

As you can see I replaced the officer for this second artillery piece, with a different one from the Copplestone White Officers pack (BC25). I have a third artillery piece to build which will make a full battery, asnd which will probably be actually deployed only once or twice in my life !

In preparation for my planned Back of Beyond Big Game in June I ordered and started building some scenery pieces. Whilst the Ukriane and parts of the Don are part of ther “Black Earth belt”, other areas are very much more steppe and semi desert regions, and as my BoB figures must also do service in central Asia, Mongolia and Manchuria I use a lighter soil mix for the bases…so obviously as Scenery Boy I need a different set of Trees! for this game…

Again I went for Woodland Scenics trees from Antics, and the scale chart indicates they are 24-32′ high on an O/S scale which is roughly 28mm.

Which looks more realistic for the figures.

The trees will be situated around the buildings on the battlefield, as open steppe of the Don, Kuban and Kalmyk regions is obviously grassland and any trees would be planted around settlements.

The March Violets: Made Glorious

Important news:

Album Tracklist goes up. Literally.
OK, have finally finalised the running order for the Album. Finally.

We wanted to have a definitive list that we wouldn’t have to change for vinyl. I’m a bit old school about Albums, I like it to play as the artist intended and don’t want to jump about or listen to ‘bonus tracks’ stuck on the end of a classic Album. Luckily modern playlisting allows those of you who like to pick and mix to listen how you like. Win Win.

It gets better… as this Album has gradually mutated into what will have to be a double LP if it gets on to vinyl, I have added another track to make sense of the timing per side. We are now up to 16, Hurrah!

For those of you who asked, here is the tracklist.

I’d speculated with Byakhee Tom what would be on the listing, and I’m pleased to say we were wrong and there’s loads of new Violet goodies…


More news very soon

So no, the previous two EPs only contribute a few tracks to the new album each so you still need to go out and acquire them, YAY, good job I was someone who pledged some money to this project and got the LE Trinity EP signed by the band (he said preening his ego).
Now get off your arses and buy the album when it comes out.

I am reliably informed by the band, that there will be live gigs later in the year as well.

Having been to a March Violets gig, I would suggest going, as they are ace…

Events dear boy, events

No new eye candy today.

Without wishing to succumb to the “what I did today” blog option, I’ll keep this to a short but tantalising set of comments that:

Keep talking…

New Camera

One of the first test shots:

Buzzard, taken at a range of 100 feet or more, through my kitchen window. I was particularly impressed with the zoom facility so I could even get details of his lower legs and claws.

And of a miniature:

Neither photo had to be altered, which is also an improvement on my old camera. Light levels were not good but both seem ok.

Here they are, the old one is top, in silver, new below it in black. Best of all I got a 8Gb memory card which should hold 2000+ photos instead of the poxy 50Mb card in the old camera which held about 35 photos…which annoyingly meant I’d shoot off to download photos mid game as the memory card was full.

Interestingly the shop assistant did almost start swearing when he was trying to take a photo of the figure I took in as the test sample !
So it’s not just us who have problems taking photos of our little toys. 🙂

As you can see from the photos (taken by my parents’ digital camera), the new camera features both a thinner profile, and a larger LCD on the back.

Again, I’m not one to get worked up about new techie toys, but it is interesting to see the progress technology makes in ever shorter time periods. It took less than 30 minutes and testing 3 cameras to get this beauty. I suppose I ought to go and take some pictures of figures and what not now. 😉

So from now on, Louis the camera and I, are going to have a beautiful relationship.

Did Rick/Han or Strasser/Greedo fire first ?

For the total heathens out there, the first film clip is from Casablanca.

Special Guest Superstar DJ: High Elves in red dresses and big girls’ blouses

So whilst waiting for the new camera to take some pictures, here’s some WHFB High Elves.

Byakhee Stuart painted up a bunch of High Elves in red for a change, a few photos of which have appeared before, but he finished off the entire army…and then sold it so some lucky guy in France.

The shots show the completed items with their custom built movement trays – I used some old LOTR ruined wall sections and stuck some corner sections on the trays so it looks like the infantry are holding part of a ruined village or something. The cavalry, who like wide open spaces, just have plain ones – I’ve seen cavalry trays done with bits of ruins on and I think it looks wrong.

Stuart also commented that the bases were done to match in with his Tomb Kings army (more of which to come later).

Full set of pictures are here.

Silicon Heaven

There will be a short pause, as my digital camera has died and gone to silicon heaven.

Tried turning it on today to photograph the buzzard sitting on my garden fence, it feebly whirred and tried to bring the lense out but no…it has gone on to a far better place.

After a minutes quiet reflection I hopped into the car and headed off to get its replacement.

KRYTEN: At 0700 hours tomorrow morning my shutdown disc will be activated
and all mental and physical operations will cease.
LISTER: Then what?
KRYTEN: I don’t know… maybe I’ll get a job as a disc jockey!
LISTER: How can you just lie back and accept it?
KRYTEN: Oh, it’s not the end for me, sir, it’s just the beginning. I
have served my human masters, now I can look forward to my reward in
silicon heaven.
LISTER: (Stunned pause.) Silicon what ?
KRYTEN: Surely you’ve heard of silicon heaven?
LISTER: Has it got anything to do with being stuck opposite Bridgette
Nielson in a packed lift?
KRYTEN: It’s the electronic afterlife! It’s the gathering place for the
souls of all electonic equipment. Robots, calculators, toasters,
hairdryers — it’s our final resting place.
LISTER: I don’t mean to say anything out of place here, Kryten, but that
is completely whacko, Jacko. There is no such thing as “silicon
KRYTEN: Then where do all the calculators go?
LISTER: They don’t go anywhere! They just die.
KRYTEN: Surely you believe that god is in all things? Aren’t you a
LISTER: Yeah, but I just don’t think it applies to kitchen utensils. I’m
not a frying pantheist! Machines do not have souls. Computers and
calculators do not have an afterlife. You don’t get hairdryers with
tiny little wings, sitting on clouds and playing harps!
KRYTEN: But of course you do! For is it not written in the Electronic
Bible, “The iron shall lie down with the lamp?” Well, it’s common
sense, sir. If there were no afterlife to look forward to, why on
Earth would machines spend the whole of their lifes serving mankind?
Now that would be really dumb!
LISTER: (Quietly) That makes sense. Yeah. Silicon heaven.
KRYTEN: Don’t be sad, Mr David. I am going to a far, far better place.
LISTER: Just out of interest: Is silicon heaven the same place as human
KRYTEN: Human heaven? Goodness me! Humans don’t go to heaven! No,
someone made that up to prevent you all from going nuts!

The new one is being charged up and I’ll be getting to grips with it later today. Hopefully my photos will get better now I have a camera that isn’t 10 years old.

HUDZEN sends LISTER flying with a single swipe, then turns his attention
back to KRYTEN.

HUDZEN: See you in silicon heaven!
KRYTEN: It doesn’t exist!
HUDZEN: What doesn’t exist?
KRYTEN: Silicon heaven! There’s no such place!
HUDZEN: No such place as silicon heaven?
HOLLY: That’s right! The whole place is a big con.
HUDZEN: No such place as silicon heaven?
HUDZEN: Then where do all the calculators go?
KRYTEN: They just die.

With a spasm of shock, HUDZEN let’s go of KRYTEN.

HUDZEN: Calculators just die? No such pl… nck…noo…

HUDZEN tilts to one side and freezes. After a few seconds, a chime
sounds and the face of Jim REAPER appears on the screen set in HUDZEN’s
REAPER: A metaphysical dichotomy has caused this unit to overload and
shut down. Divadroid international would like to apologise for any
inconvenience this may cause. A credit note will be forwarded to your
company immediately.
LISTER: What happened?
KRYTEN: He’s an android. His brain couldn’t handle the concept of there
being no silicon heaven.
LISTER: So how come yours can?
KRYTEN: Well, I knew something he didn’t.
KRYTEN: I knew I was lying. No Silicon Heaven? Preposterous! Where
would all the calculators go?

AVBCW: Big Game Hereford 2013 – Umpire notes

Phew ! JP and I did a lot of organising over several months to pull this event off. We got more of it right than we did for the first game in February 2012 (sadly not very well documented)…not least because JP’s wife and daughter had the temerity to be ill with chicken pox and he claimed he couldn’t make it – a feeble excuse methinks !

Before anything else I’d like to say thanks to all the players: Jim; Jon (JP); Mort; Rich; Rob; Roo; Tom and Tym.

This time round, whilst the booking of the Village Hall** was easy (and indeed is a great venue) we had to find a new caterer which took a week or so but turned out to be absolutely fantastic as she was using local butchers, bakers and other sources for the food at extremely good prices. She did provide the quote of the day after Rich had explained what game we were playing (AVBCW) about fascists:

I often lay awake at night and wonder how many fascists I know.

Moving on…

Then we had to think up some good “local” scenario based stuff, like the lions, the scarecrow, and most importantly the errant Bishop. Hmm, we should have had a tin-man !

Learning from the battle of Little Hereford, JP and I decided that the attackers of Ledbury (Royalist & BUF) should have more forces to offset the trenches and other defences the Anglicans and Socialists had.

Finally, we wanted a bit of drive or discipline, and so opted to force my own group’s house rules on the event. This went very well, and thanks Tom – you got it right you were following the house rules, no cr@p on the table, so thanks to all the gents as it was a nice clean table(s).

What didn’t work was our naive attempt to keep the two table in synchronisation. Mort warned us it wouldn’t work, and it didn’t. Having Table 2 with experienced players motoring on ahead, whilst Table 1 with several new players was left floundering in its wake. They soon speeded up though.

Mort mentioned putting together a checklist for doing these events and I think that is a good idea so we can share our experience of running large multi player games. This should cover both the logistics and the house rules of playing these Big Games.

This was the sponge dice Rich found when we were packing the tables and chairs away. It’s about 12″ diameter, and we wish we had found it earlier !

Here are some links to blogs attendees have produced:

JP, my co-conspirator Lots of material and photos of Table 2.

Rob, deviant socialist
More nice pictures.

Rich, fascist nutter (scroll down) Let’s Off Road ! Tank commander par excellance…

And finally, the full collection of my photos.

** With two visitors who turned up at the hall, and given this is a”Local Village Hall, for Local Villagers, and we’ll have no trouble here” my status as resident eccentric is now sealed…

AVBCW: Big Game Hereford 2013 – 2

Charge !

The Chance card pulled indicated the two commanders had met before and hated each other this caused the entire set of armies to collide with each other in the most massive brawl and hand to hand combat I (or anyone present) had seen in an AVBCW game.

The cavalry finally did what they are meant to do and charge into combat, and they caused a lot of damage. Though they were eventually ground don by the socialists in subsequent rounds of combat.

In the meantime, Table 2 had delivered a decisive result – victory for the Royalists and BUF – the telephone trilled on Table 1 weith the victorious Blackshorts on the line confirming victory and that they had not found the Bishop of Hdereford. Both sides in Table 1 did a hasty search of all remaining buildings and the Bishop was found…

In a privy, behind the Royalist/BUF lines !

As were the Twiggy Mommet protestors, who fought on outnumbered and distracted well over 20 BUF infantry. If it wasn’t for the other Chance Cards in play the extra BUF would have made victory even more crushing.

Roo’s SA Rugby squad, seeing the melee mistook it for a rugby scrum and piled in.

Jim’s Hot Rod (Steam Tank) faxced off agains the BUF’s Big Beast.

Whilst Tom’s Cavalry surged across the river outflanking Jim’s Anglican’s.
Even the late arrival of Mort’s fleeing troops could not stop the BUF and Royalists, who a couple of rounds later received reinforcements as Tym and JP’s troops arrived. The game was over, Ledbury was lost and the Bishop had been captured.

BoB: Big Game June 2013 book it now

A strangely appropriate location for a Back of Beyond game…

To be held on either 8-9th or 22-23rd June 2013.

Let me know by the end of February so I can organise stuff as this is the first Big Game for the Back of Beyond that has been organised I think.
Two possible scenarios depending on attendance:

– 1918 – the Don/Kuban – Germans, Reds, Whites and Cossacks
– 1920 – Tannu Tuva – Reds, Whites, Mongols and Chinese.

Let me know if you are interested, and what forces you can bring.

£10 per head which includes the cost of booking the hall, and lunch.
The lunch is enough to ruin any diet given this w/e’s experience !

As per other games sessions, a curry night hosted at my house just up the road is also on offer.
I am also able to offer a (double) bed, and couches if people want to stay over night.

AVBCW: Big Game Hereford 2013 – 1

After a last minute line up change we got to the game. On Table 1 – we had two tables…

The BUF (Richard) and Royalists (Roo & Tom) massed their cavalry, some 40+.
Now Cavalry did not have a good track record in AVBCW games (note past tense)…

But when augmented with Tanks, and a few good dice rolls they stormed across the table towards the Anglican and Socialists. Though the BUF tank did blow up a building on the way over…

Whilst the Socialists from B’ham after rather placing thier car in a rather rakish position on the bridge suffered from the effects of a chance card that meant it was out of petrol. This seemingly small event went on to make a major impact on the game, as the broken down car was then shelled by the BUF tank, blown up and left wrecked on the bridge blocking it. It provided cover for Anglican bomb squads who attempted to blow up the BUF super tank later as it crossed the stream.

Meanwhile the Socialist NCO checked out the wrecked car..and found that it had contained the Bishop of Hereford, who had now escaped and was somewhere on one of the two tables…capturing the Bishop would be a major issue for both sides.

Elsewhere, the Anglicans had sent forward a unit across the stream. Screams were heard across the fields, and the survivors later claimed that they had found an Abyssinian Lion in the bushes that attacked them. Both the Anglican troops who claimed to be attacked, and the Royalists moving towards them made these claims, but to date no reliable photographic evidence has been shown. It is suspected that a domestic house cat or two was responsible for clawing a few ankles.

The staff of Emperor Hailie Sellasie have declined to comment on the whereabouts of his highness’ pet lions.

With the Royalists and BUF approaching the bridge, the Socialists called up their reserves !

With both their lead car and motorised tachanka out of action (kaput), the socialists retreated as per orders whilst the BUF and Royalists targeted them with mortars and tank guns. Luckily for the socialists the BUF super tank managed to get stuck trying to cross a hedge which bought them some time. However, spies in their midst, fog and other adverse chance cards really hindered them and they were not able to mount a decent defence.

Having loped off the head of the scarecrow that was taunting them (it was dressed up in BUF uniform), the BUF cavalry cantered on, leaving in their wake some very annoyed Twiggy Mommet protesters who turned their scythes, pitchforks and shotguns on the unfortunate BUF infantry.

Breakthrough !

The BUF supertank crosses not only the hedge, but the stream !
Thbis was the beginning of the end for the Anglicans and Socialists. With the tank across, and seemingly immune to the tank killers of the Anglicans who made a brave effort, the ATR squad mown down by BUF cavalry, the tide turned against them.

However, the Anglicans went down fighting, the Royalists assaulted the immobilised tanks (known as the Hot-Rod), but the Anglican commander raced to the rescue and valiantly fought off the Royalists.

And then a Chance card through everything up in to the air. It turned out the commanders were old enemies and basically everyone had a grudge against each other…CHARGE…

To be continued…