Friday, July 18, 2014

Islands in the sun

In the Dystopian Wars 2 player set 'Shadow Hunter' you get some sheets of Islands, sandbars and rocks to use on your Dystopian oceans. I thought it is a great idea for easy to store/transport terrain and it also means no balancing acts required if you have toys that end a move on these features.

Inspired by how good they look I thought it was easy enough to make some more from Google Earth Imagery. I made some using parts of nearby coastal areas, printed them out and glued them on some card and cut them out.
Living here in Darwin we have lots of land that is void of all those man made features like Roads, Buildings and so on which could potentially destroy the illusion of scale. I didn't bother with an exact scale but used my eye to gauge if it looked OK. Coastal areas can contain many areas of shallow water that would be a problem for some Dystopian vessels. So perhaps the lighter coloured water can be shallow water.
All pieces from Google.
2 smaller pieces above on right from Shadow Hunter.
2 on right from Shadow Hunter, large table edge piece on left from Google.
Photos taken in poor light with flash.
Cheers from Brendon

Monday, July 14, 2014

Mixing it up

Been relaxing for a couple of weeks at home. Mid year school break here in the Top End which means a 4 week holiday for school kids including my daughter. We sort of split the child minding duties by 1 week in kid day camp, 2 weeks with me and, 2 and a bit weeks with the Mum. It's a fantastic time of the year here with the lower part of Australia in a southern winter while here we call it The Dry. Perfect time for camping which we did for a couple of nights and had great campfire nights with the background of busy sounds of Wallabies in the bush. I also spent the 2 weeks going on Bike rides around town (that sometimes ended with a cold beer at a beach side bar) walking the dog, watching DVDs, movies and the kid had an Eleventh birthday to celebrate.

But you may prefer me to get back to writing about wargaming related things so lets get into it. Below is a close up of a Dungeons & Dragons board game plastic figure. A birthday present for the kid. This is her choice for character for the two games we all played together. I have painted some more figures from the box so will post some more in the future. I plan to complete all of them for her. The figures are a roughly 28mm scale but they are that bendy toy game plastic and some have a bit of flash that I didn't go to the trouble of removing.

In the past when I have had time off I have had a plan of what I am going to paint but this time I decided to not have a plan. I didn't commit as much time to painting as I have in the past but decided to just paint whatever I felt like if I sat down at the painting table. Worked out good actually. No minor frustration if I didn't hit any self made goals. Just enjoyment of painting. 

Here is some progress I made on my Mid-War Crusaders.
The 3 x Crusader II built and up to the same stage as the Crusader IIIs (started a long time back but never finished). rather than find some decals and wait for them in the mail I decided to hand paint the markings. These guys are a part of 9th Armoured (just before Super Charge). 9th Armour (British) was in the 2nd NZ Div for that operation.

Next was yellow squares on turrets. First with white then yellow.
Consistency and accuracy...who cares. It's 15mm wargaming.

A wash of desert dust to get past that fresh out of the workshop look.

The pattern is from the incredibly awesome Mike Starmer publication Alamein and After 42-43. Was it like what 9th Armoured Crusaders looked like historically at Supercharge? Not sure but, according to the orders in Mikes publication it is what they should have looked like by order of the Army! is a pattern. A repeated design (looks very same-ish on each tank).
After the Caunter schemes of the Early period had stopped many units had their own schemes but this was an intelligence failure as it made it easier to tell divisions etc apart from each other for the Axis forces. Standard army wide vehicle designs and colours became the official orders but no doubt the nature of warfare would have led to a lengthy transition period. Lack of paint, manpower, vehicles not pulled out of action long enough, etc etc.....

Before I made any further progress on them I decided to black primer spray the new Blazing Sun ships from the Shadow Hunter set I went halves with a fellow player. This actually led them to being completed a few days later. A heavy battleship and 3 cruisers with the option of 3 weapon types each. You can see the swappable parts at the rear.

My fleet grows in size and I think I am only lacking one ship design which is the Heavy Cruiser. Only available in a box set which has more of what I already have in the box so until it is available on it's own it will have to wait til it joins my fleet.

Finally an image of some nicely painted French Dystopian ships not painted by me but a fellow gamer. This force fought side by side with me in my first Version 2 game. 2 vs 2 and we did not use the hand of cards options. I think I was the only one (of 4 players) at the table who had the version 2 card deck. Nice looking French ships...really nice.

Cheers from Brendon

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Dystopian Wars Version 2 force build tester

Some wargames can make things seem complicated at first. They can be the first few times you work through a detailed sub-set of rules. Dystopian Wars version 2 could perhaps be a hard slog for those completely new to wargaming but the scenarios in the intro 2 player box set could be a great starting point for newbies.
However for someone like me who has played in the previous edition I found the force build rules a ...."Holy computations Batman!" moment. To get it all figured out into a what does it all mean I went to a spreadsheet format in Excel and came up with this below.
I have found it really handy so far even though I am yet to play a game. Below is examples for placing in the Light Blue lower areas. (Quick guide to limits not to exceed except the red total minimum).

And here is an example of it when used.

This may help you as it certainly helped me.

Cheers from Brendon.