Friday, January 8, 2010

New Year, New Plans

Many belated returns, everybody! I hope you had a good holiday season. I've been getting back into normal life over the past week, but I've still kept active with my wargaming plans.

First, the old campaign has come to it's conclusion at the tail-end of last year - rather good timing, as it has lasted for about a year in the real-world, as each side contested the province of Spitzplatz. I'll post shortly tying up all the ImagiNation-world changes, and rounding it off (in other words, digging back over old posts from 2008 to review who met their objectives!) Once this is done a new campaign with some fresh quirk will be launched, to let Aschenbach and Luftberg once again continue to test themselves against a new contrivance of fortune.

So, what for the new year? Well, over the holidays I did two big things. The first was to invest in a new wargames rules-set, and the second was quite a lot of painting.

First, with a bit of Xmas money as a present (I never specify hobby items as presents, as my family tend not to be too sharp on military compositions for armies in the mid/late 18th Century - bafflingly) I have bought a set of rules. It came from listening to the excellent 'Meeples & Miniatures' podcast, which I recommend if you like to hear two entertainingly affable wargamers chatter at length about the hobby. Anyway, they recently reviewed the ruleset 'Black Powder' quite favourably, and this caught my attention for several reasons:

a) it's written by Rick Priestley, who did the old Games Workshop rules that first got me into wargaming (and yes, that rulebook is still on my shelf)
b) It's a big hardback book which looks excellent
c) It's been described as having the old 'classic' discussive tone of the likes of Charles Grant and other 1970's-vintage books
d) It covers SYW, Napoleonics and ACW, which are all favoured periods with me
e) It is apparently quite similar in mechanics to Warmaster, which I always felt was criminally under-rated.

So, with that I have sent away for it and am awaiting delivery (it seems to have sold well, and stocks are currently 'on order'.) I'll post a review when it arrives. The only offputting factor was that I had heard it was a 'big battalions' ruleset, which used 24-figure units. I was a bit uneasym until my mental gears creaked into action and I realised that my existing 15mm figures are based in 24-man infantry regiments already! Ah, happy fortune!

Secondly, I have been painting a lot. As readers may know, I have been battling for months to paint flat-out, while playing SYW games along the way. For much of Autumn I managed to nearly burn myself out with frantic painting. In fact, I swore off it and decided to give myself a break. However, the old adage that 'a change is as good as a rest' proved right, and I found myself painting - just on other things. I've been busy on a 6mm medieval army (which I've mentioned on my other 'General Headquarters' blog) plus a pile of Perry ACW figures, etc. Things got encouraging however when I wrapped up the medieval project over the holidays. With this boost, plus a new-year burst of enthusiasm, I have turned back to the last remaining units in my army-expansion project. Pictured below is my 'Lead Mountain':

As you may be able to see, I have my masterplan on paper (in the "2010 SYW TO DO LIST") plus a stack of figures. Some are raw lead, totally unpainted, while others are completely finished and need merely rebased. In all, there are 18 bases of infantry and cavalry left to do.

So, that's the new year - new figures, new rules, and a new campaign!


Andy Mitchell said...

I can never lay out so many unpainted figures without failing a morale roll. Painting, for me, is a strange combination of antipathy for the actual process and pleasure when I see some progress being made.

Congratulations on a successful year's campaigning: I confess I have never been able to see a campaign through to the conclusion.

A J said...

I agree with Andy, just seeing the pile of shiny metal awaiting the brush can be demoralizing. Bite-size is the way to go. Paint a dozen at a time, be they horse, foot or gunners.

Well done on a successful year of campaigning! I can think of very few campaigns I've either ran or taken part in which were completed.

Bluebear Jeff said...

I'll look forward to your thoughts on "Black Powder" once you've tried it out. (A good title, by the way.)

-- Jeff

CWT said...

I agree with the comments about the discouraging lead mound. However, I'm on an irrational 'high' right now (no doubt it's all the mince pies) so I'm firing into it. I've managed to undercoat a lot, plus get a load of the horses done, and that always brings the bulk down quite a long way!