Saturday, December 19, 2015

Polish 10th Brygada Kawalerii Pancernej in France - Completed!

Well, it has taken me longer than expected, but I finally completed the 15mm Polish 10th Brygada Kawalerii Pancernej force I started months ago.  The entire force is Battlefront miniatures with the exception of the 4 French 75mm artillery pieces and the 6 R40 tanks which are from Old Glory.  The painting on this has actually been done for quite some time, but anyone who knows me knows that I really dislike basing figures; so the painted figures sat there looking at me...taunting me...until I finally gave in and based them.

I like how this force looks, and enjoyed painting it; I can't wait to get it on the table. I was going to use it in Shifting Sands 2016, but over the summer I started running again.  My weight had gotten up there in the spring and I really wasn't feeling or looking healthy.  It has been 10 years since I ran a half-marathon, and with 50 just a few years off I figured no time like the present.  The good news is that I have lost over 30 pounds...the bad news is that the half-marathon I plan on running is the same weekend as Shifting Sands.  Oh, least the army is done, and here it is:
Company Command with 25mm AT Gun Section
Company Command Mortars (2x81mm & 1x60mm)
1st Platoon (6 Rifle MG teams, 1 VB Grenade Launcher team, Platoon Command team)
2nd Platoon (6 Rifle MG teams, 1 VB Grenade Launcher team, Platoon Command team)
3rd Platoon (6 Rifle MG teams, 1 VB Grenade Launcher team, Platoon Command team)
25mm Anti-tank Gun Platoon 
Machine Gun Platoon
Artillery Battery 1
Artillery Battery 2
20mm Anti-Aircraft Platoon
1st Tank Platoon 
2nd Tank Platoon

Up next I am going to prep some 15mm WWI for Saguaro Painting Service to paint, then work on some other projects...more on that in my obligatory year end/new year post...

Sunday, August 9, 2015

New Project - Polish 10th Brygada Kawalerii Pancernej in France

I've been getting in a lot of games this year, but I have had trouble focusing on getting projects done/stuff painted.  With Shifting Sands 2016 confirmed as early war centered around the German invasion of Poland and France, I think I finally have some motivation to focus on a project and completing it.  I could just use my Polish 10th Mechanized Brigade ("the Black Brigade") or my early war German Panzer or Grenadier forces, but instead I have decided to do the one evolution of "the Black Brigade" I don't already have - the 10th Brygada Kawalerii Pancernej - 10th Armoured Cavalry Brigade for France 1940.

Many of the members of "the Black Brigade" that escaped the fall of Poland by crossing into Hungary traveled to France to help form the Polish Army in exile.  General Maczek, the commander of "the Black Brigade" formed the 10th Armoured Cavalry Brigade.  Highly motivated, but poorly equipped and treated less than professionally by the French, the 10th fought well in the Champagne and Bourgogne regions supporting their French allies only to be cut-off when neighboring French units retreated/withdrew.  General Maczek again ordered his men to leave another defeated country - those that managed to escape France helped form the core of the Polish 1st Armoured Division that would return to France in 1944.

This Flames of War force will use the "Compagnie de Fusiliers-Voltigeurs" Colonial list from Blitzkrieg.  The Fearless Trained rating of the Colonials seem to fit the Poles in this instance as they will not use the Trench Warfare or Integrated Defences rules, but will hit on 3+ during assaults.  I've got 211 infantry/crew figures, 15 guns/mortars and 6 tanks to paint up as pictured below.  An interesting note is that the tanks used by the 10th Armoured Cavalry Brigade were R-40's - Battlefront doesn't make this model, so I'm using Old Glory for them and the French 75's (all other models are Battlefront).  I will just use the stats for the Hotchkiss tanks with the R40 models since they are nearly identical.  Here is everything prepped and primed:
Now, some of my gaming buddies question my ability and desire to paint for myself anymore since I seem to be continually farming out painting projects to Tim at Saguaro Painting Service or Philgreg painters.  I still like to paint for myself, it's just that I have a lot of projects and haven't been able to focus on many.  I can, and will paint this army myself...and proceed to defeat the doubters on the game table!  Expect updates as I make progress on this force...

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

SAGA - Byzantines Complete

It's been a few months since I've posted...not because I haven't been doing anything gaming-related, I've just been busy (and a bit lazy when it comes to this blog).  Anyway, I just finished up a 28mm Byzantine force for SAGA.  All of the figures are Gripping Beast, which are great figures IMO.  The banners are from LBMS; this is the first time I used their products and they were actually pretty easy to work with once I did the first one and realized how I messed up :-) !  Note to self, follow the directions!  Anyway, the force consists of 4 units of 8 warriors (one with bow), 2 units of mounted hearthguard, and the warlord.  The hearthguard can be ran as all bow, or if I want one unit of bow and one with kontos, I can just adjust accordingly.  For some reason the picture of the warlord is a little washed out; I have no idea why this happened since the camera settings were all the same. 
Warrior Unit 1

 Warrior Unit 2
 Warrior Unit 3
 Warrior Unit 4 with Bows
 Hearthguard Unit 1
 Hearthguard Unit 2

As you can see by the tracking on the left-hand column, I am a few hours behind on my 1/2 hour a day goal for the year.  With summer coming I hope to catch up as there is only so much time that you want to spend outside in Arizona in the summer!  I have gotten in a lot of games, and have plenty more scheduled including a 3 game SAGA "non-event" run by Tim K over at "Cursed Treasures", and a late war Flames of War tournament in late July.  In the meantime, I'll keep playing various games and having fun.

With the Byzantines finished up, next on my painting cue is a 15mm Polish skirmish force for By Fire and Sword.  I had actually started painting on those figures before finishing off the Byzantines; having an event planned for SAGA gave me the motivation to finish something off which is good since now I have one less project to worry about.  I'm not sure what I'll work on after the Poles; I have lots of possibilities...right now I'm leaning toward picking something with minimal work needed to finish so I can feel like I'm making progress on my mountain of lead.  Anyway, that's all for now...happy gaming!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

February Update - A Good Year So Far

Just taking a few minutes to give a short update on what I've been doing on the gaming front so far in 2015...

I've played a good variety of games so far with Flames of War, Pathfinder - Skulls & Shackles, Hail Caesar, By Fire and Sword, and GMT's Great Battles of the American Revolution: Saratoga all seeing table time so far this year.  I have more games of each of those lined up in the next few months, so I will not be wanting for gaming opportunities in the near future.

I've also been doing well working toward my 182.5 hour goal for this year.  So far I'm at 22 hours invested and I have a pretty decent return to show.  I've got 31 new figures painted which definitely puts me on a pace to beat last year's pathetic total; and the 141 figures I've based up so far have surpassed last year's basing total by a large margin.  I have also done a lot of reorganizing in my hobby storage which accounts for the majority of the non-prep/paint/basing time.  The 22 hours isn't too bad considering I was out of town for work for a week.  I need to try to bank some time though because I have another trip coming up in March.

The biggest accomplishment so far is getting the last two painted regiments of 28mm ACW Confederates based up; the 7th & 15th South Carolina from Kershaw's Brigade. This brings my total ACW Confederate infantry count to 280 figures!   I also rebased all of my 28mm ACW artillery onto multi-figure bases with the gun.  Originally the crew figures and guns were all individually based and that was just a pain when playing.  This definitely has me looking forward to getting in another big Black Powder game...maybe in April sometime.

7th South Carolina

 15th South Carolina
 Confederate 12-pounder's
 Extra Confederate Regimental Command Stands
 Confederate Rifled Artillery
 Union Rifled Artillery - first lot
 Union Rifled Artillery - second lot
 Union 12-pounders
Up next I'm working on prepping a large 15mm Jordanian force for Battlefront's "Fate of a Nation" Arab-Israeli game to be followed by finally starting on a 15mm Polish Skirmish Force for By Fire and Sword.  I will try to remember to give a recap/AAR of my next By Fire and Sword game.  Well, that's all for now...take it easy.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

2015 - The Road Ahead & 182.5 Hours

Every year at this time I look back at what I had hoped to accomplish, and what I actually did accomplish.  Invariably I am disappointed at what I actually get done.  It seems that when I have the motivation to paint and work on gaming stuff, I don't have the time - and when I have the time, I don't have the motivation.  Also, it's probable that I set unrealistic goals as I want everything done "yesterday".  So this year I am going to take a bit of a different approach for my goals for 2015.

As you can see by the sidebar, I certainly have made time for plenty of games in the past 2 years with 53 in 2013 and 72 in 2014.  Granted, the number of board games I'm playing has grown which bumps this number, but they are still games played and time committed to the hobby so I count them.  My goal for 2015 is to play an average of 1 game per week, so 52 games.  I think that can be accomplished and is a reasonable goal.  I'm pretty sure I'll get in games of the following:  Flames of War, Might of Arms, Hail Caesar, By Fire and Sword, CAV, SAGA, Bolt Action, Pathfinder: Skulls & Shackles, Fistful of Tows 3 and various board games.

Now on to the more difficult part.  In the past I've put up a laundry list of what armies I'd be painting up and basing and what game I'd use them in.  Needless to say I have a ton of projects...some started, some bare lead, some just ideas in my head...and I never finish a fraction of what I hope too.  For 2015, I've decided that instead of listing and being disappointed, instead I'm going to set a time goal for myself.  I'm setting a goal of 182.5 hours throughout the year to work on gaming hobby "stuff" (this does not include actual playing time).  This could be painting, working on this blog, building terrain, etc.  I'm simply going to track my hours and when I finish stuff I'll post it on the blog.  I don't know if the 30 minutes a day average is too high or too low, but I have to set my baseline somewhere to see if this works or not and whether I can get more accomplished than in years past or not.  So I've included a new sidebar to track the time I'm spending.  So far I have 2.5 hours spent...that includes 2 Blog posts and a couple of hours reorganizing my book shelves, supplies and storage (still more to do on that so I can find things easier) - it's amazing what you find when you go through stuff!

So that's my plan for 2015.  Will it work and will I have a better sense of accomplishment at this point in 2016?  Who knows...but it's worth trying!  Happy New Year to you all!