28 December 2017

To Boldly Go ... To Where I've Gone Before ....

Long, long ago .... as a teenager I happily played ABDs 'Starfleet Battles' with my friends. 

It was one of those games that started it's life off in a single ziplock bag and was a lot of fun to play, eventually there was an expansion also in a ziplock bag and then a 'Commander's Edition' that left the ziplock behind and came in a nice box. After that it really took off, new editions, tons of errata and copious expansions. It's still there, in production, with a loyal customer base.

As I understand it, the ADB got their license agreement before franchises were a thing, and as long as they stay with the bounds of their 'Starfleet Universe' loosely based on the original and animated series they can continue to produce and publish games.

In about 2005 ABD published 'Federation Commander' and while this wasn't attempt to reinvent the wheel, it certainly refined it. There was a lot of rationalisation, dropping concepts or rules  and streamlining the game. For instance a SFB turn was made of up 32 sub-turns or impulses. Federation Commander uses a turn of eight impulses, ok, the movement step is divided into four sub-impluses but that actually works. Plasma torpedoes still zip along at speed 32 and ships are able to accelerate or decelerate their base speed (by spending energy) to manuoeuvre for position against their enemy before you fire weapons, activate tractors or launch a shuttle.

I brought one of the 'core sets', Klingon Border' and a few of the expansions a few years ago and occasionally have brought it out to play. It hits that nostalgic sweet spot, for me was where I first started with the commander's edition, before the expansion bloat set in (an expansion devoted to 'national guard' and coast guard fleets. Seriously?!).

Anyhow Lachlan and I have dug it out once more for a few games. We were looking for something that we could play that didn't require either of us having to acquire and paint up a new batch of miniatures. Mind you Lachlan soon pulled out my small collection of Star Fleet Battles miniatures and started dropping hints, which I have politely ignored.

We had a few games and started a small campaign, already Lachlan has fought a couple battles subjugating a disagreeable neighbour. We're keeping a campaign dairy once we progressed enough in the campaign I'll post sections to the blog.

20 November 2017

Broadening My Horizon

I'm always ready to check out a set of wargame rules and a recent game of Bolt action has spurred me to purchase a copy of a platoon level set of world war two rules 'Chain Of Command' published by 'Two Fat Lardies'. This has been something I've been meaning to do for quite a while, I already purchased a pdf copy of first edition 'Sharp Practice' and the accompanying supplement 'The Compleat Fondler' some time a go and liked what I saw.

Everything I seen and read about Chain of Command promised it could be a interesting set of rules and now I had the chance to read through them I'm looking forward to getting to playing a game. The pre-game patrol phase and the 'jump off' points actually allow for hidden deployment 

I've also purchased the campaign supplement and a few of their 'pint sized' campaign supplements as well, it's looks like I'm falling down the rabbit hole with this one.

As well 'Chain Of Command' a copy of the new KonFlikt'47 supplement 'Resurgence' and the core rule book for 'Battlegroup' published by Plastic Soldier have also appeared on my doorstep. Lachlan has given 'Resurgence' an read and is pleased by what he's seen in the book.

I'm hoping Battlegroup will provide a replacement for 'Flames Of War' after encountering the marketing exercise that is the new edition. 

23 October 2017

The Horse Bolted ....

I've been continuing to concentrate on my Bolt Action/KonFlikt'47 United States Army miniatures, I was going to enter a local Bolt Action competition but I was waylaid by a virus so didn't make it. But Lachlan did come for a visit and give me a game. Which was nice since he probably infected me in the first place.

I fielded my 1000 point list I would have taken to the competition and Lachlan giving me fair warning took a 1000 point German Fallschirmjäger force that included a Major that in concert with it's platoon commander could activate his entire force using the 'snap to action' rule. It's legal, it says so in the FAQ you can download from the warlord store for free.

As Lachlan and I had an equal number of order dice there was a 50/50 chance that the first order die of the turn would be Lachlan's and he would be able to activate his entire force and if he didn't get the first die, with each die pulled from the bag the odds improved in Lachlan's favour. During the game I got lucky enough to pull two order dice from the bag in a turn before one of Lachlan's was pulled and he activated his whole force.

This quite rule legal and approved gambit not only kicks the core game mechanic of Bolt Action into touch. It goes after it with an axe and dismembers it, turning Bolt Action into U-GO-I-GO game. In the end I prevailed (only just) but both Lachlan and I agreed what we played wasn't Bolt Action, but in fact it was and could be again .........

05 September 2017

Father's Day - More Distractions

Last weekend was father's day and Lachlan came visiting with a gift for his dad. A 1/144th scale model of a 'Ginn' from the 'Gundam Seed Destiny' anime series. He didn't need to, Beth had already clubbed together with the kids and volumes one and two of 'Space Battleship Yamato 2202' are winging their way to me via the post.

To honour this effort I pushed aside my current batch of US army 'Bolt Action' miniatures I'm working on and assembled it in short order. Come on, how can you resist? A mecha not only armed with a gun and missiles, but a sword too!

I'm going to leave painting it for later, I want to try my air brush but as I'm a total novice I want to get some practice first.

31 August 2017

Now My Distraction Has A Distraction

What started off as a little side project, buying a Bolt Action 'Firefight' starter set and assembling and painting the modest amount of miniatures that came in the box has ballooned out of control.

For starters Warlord Games released their 'weird world war adaption of 'Bolt Action', KonFlikt'47. Lachlan, wonderful son that he is, brought me a copy of the rule book as father's day present and in line with the evolving father son project next came the KonFlikt'47 US Army Starter set. Then we entered into a local Bolt Action tournament and Warlord Games of course released the new version of the game and the acquisition of more miniatures, rules and army books ensued. Lachlan building a German fallschirmjager force and myself, a US late war US army force.

I've been beavering away on the my US troops aiming to get them complete so I can get back to my painting list and I've been lucky that Bolt action is a active game here in Tasmania and there are better organised people that organise events that encourage me to keep assembling the miniatures and slapping the paint on them.

But now there's this ..........

It's a small side project, right?

17 July 2017

Waiting For Me When I Got Home

Beth and I had just started trip to the UK and on the second day in Edinburgh I received an email from Hobby Link Japan letting me know that the Garmillas Ship Set I had on back order was now back in stock and if I still wanted it I could complete the order. Of course I wanted it and it was waiting for me on our return to Tasmania, 'Operation M' is back on track.

By the way had a great time visiting the UK. I probably will post about some of the wargaming related activities later when they're relevant, but first. Here's two pointless photos of me enjoying myself at the Tank Museum at Bovington and in front of HMS Belfast in London.

18 May 2017

Two For The Price Of One

The painting of my Bolt Action US Army platoon is complete, a platoon headquarters, four ten man squads and Sniper, bazooka, light mortar and HMG teams. This provides the basis of my US army forces in both Bolt Action and KonFlikt'47 and now I'm getting on with the two KonFlikt'47 walkers I have, a coyote and a Grizzly.

I'm going to leave the flocking of the bases until after the K'47 heavy infantry squad is complete and sit down to do it in them all the bases in one block. Probably after we come back from our trip to the UK.

23 April 2017

Loot Always Helps

I've been busy with work so I haven't had too much time for either gaming or working on my painting queue, but that hasn't stopped me from assuaging the lack of progress (in the painting queue at least) with the acquisition of even more loot, including some birthday loot back in March.

12 March 2017

Lucky Me!

I must have something right recently. First I scored this 'old' Army Painter display stand from the local model shop, McCann's Model World. They had got in one of the newer, larger Army Painter stands and knew that I was on the look out for a storage rack for my paint. I was thinking of buying one of those MDF lasercut ones, but this works just as well.

Next Beth flew upto Sydney for work at the start of last week, so she nipped into Hobbyco and grabbed me this ....

A 1/1000th scale Balgray from the Space Battleship Yamato 2199 anime series, the kit comes with a number of inscale space fighters so now it's 'carrier ops' for my 'Operation M' project.

22 February 2017


No not these kind, though they did turn up in a game of Space Munchkin. We've had a busy summer with our small herd of goats increasing with the birth of fourteen baby goats

Also we got a decent harvest of hay from the paddock, just over 700 bales. Plenty to feed the goats over winter. But of course we also managed to get a few games in, things like Stars Rebellion, Bloodbowl and Scythe.


I'm still plugging away at my Bolt Action US Army miniatures and the initial block is almost done and I've also decided to get my 15mm late war British units (Flames of War) sorted out too. I won't be doing those in a single block as I want to get back to my painting queue. Instead I'll seed a few units into the queue, stating with a eight gun 25 pounder battery.