Sunday, 21 April 2019

Creating the Earth

Having only a grass mat, play surface, purchased for less then a fiver from work, I required something more deserty. So I decided to make one.

The are plenty of guides on 'YouTube' but this is my version.

Step One

Gathering the equipment. Mostly sourced from the pound shop & Wilkos' test pots. The most expensive piece was the mat itself at £4.99 Screwfisx. This is one of those covers that you put on the floor or over furniture when painting. It has a cotton weave on a plastic back. It needed a bit of ironong.

Step 2: I tacked the mat to a board to keep it flat.

Step 3: Measuring out the playing surface 3' x 2.75' (This was determined by the mat itself.)

Step 4: I covered the playing surface in builders caulk, spreading it out with the scraper.

Step 4: WIP

Completed base layer.

Step 5: Undercoat Grey

Step 6: Wash of 'Granite' Tester Pot

Step 7: Second wash of 'Natural Stone'

Step 8: Dry Brush with 'Midnight White'

Finished product.
I worked in my Mum's pad and the lighting was not good. The pictures don't really do the mat justice. I'm fairly happy with it. Hopefully it will be seen in better light as this project expands.

Thanks for reading and Happy Easter to you all.

Thursday, 11 April 2019

In the beginning was the word.

The idea for my latest blog is to recreate the adventures of a Hebrew warrior during the early biblical times. I will be utilising elements of RPG and tabletop. As I play solo I required a couple of sets of 'fast play' easy to use rules.

 The latter was fairly straight forward. I had bought Neil Thomas' One Hour Wargames, which I found eminently readable which contained a neat set of utilitarian multi-era rules, as well as a series of scenarios. Many of these are easily transferable to a host of Biblical encounters. Details of which can be located in Chaim Herzog's and Mordechai Gichon's (fabulous) academic tome Battles of the Bible. (The reading of which does require a map (physical and human) of ancient Judea/Palestine/Israel, unless one is aware of the geography of the ancient middle east.)

The former rule set proved somewhat more problematic. Then a thought of long, long ago popped into my head. I remembered a set of quick play rules from the early days of wargaming (d6, saving throws and all that.) A rummage in my Mum's attic turned up the Military Modelling Annual 1972Within were a set of rules published by one of our hobby's Grandfathers, Charles Grant! So, with a bit of tinkering I produced my own set of ancient skirmish rules. Needless to say heavily reliant on Mr. Grant's ideas. (I'll publish them on a separate page, if allowed.)

With rules now in place. Further development of this project may now take place.

Tuesday, 9 April 2019

Slowly but surely.

New year new project (s).

I have started a new blog, that will be developing slowly. I require a desert landscape for this. Therefore I decided I would build one.

Stage one of the project. A gaming mat.

There are many tutorials out there about the design of gaming mats. I drew inspiration from most of them and I will reference them on my new site.

First: The requirements

1. A 'drop cloth.' One of those cloths that you put on items to stop them getting covered in paint when DIYing (not modelling.) It has a cotton weave on a plastic sheet. The most expensive item at £3.99.
2. A pressure gun (£1.00)
3. 2 x Tubes Latex Caulk (£1.00 each)
4. A pair of work gloves (£1.00)
5. A spreading instrument (£1.00)
All other items from work box.
 Tack the four corners to prevent 'rucking."
(Ntote to self: Practice Macro-photographing.)

Measure out gaming area. In this case 36" x 34". This is because it was the maximum size of my hard work surface.

Put caulk on cloth and spread out using scraper. Wear you gloves. I usually wouldn't, but I needed to do other things and would get putty all over the house.

Speckle/texture with a sponge and leave to dry.

Next episode: Under coating and painting. This'll take a while as I am no longer rushing my projects.

Have a good time modelling gang.


Monday, 1 April 2019

Just a post, explanation and thank you.

It is that time of year again. That time when I have new ideas and try to reinvigorate my hobby.

The past couple of years have crashed and burnt. This year I've made changes. What went wrong previously.

Firstly; my old Mum got ill and required major surgery. She got through it all, but it has required a huge life change and it was left to me to facilitate this. It has culminated in her now living
in a nursing home.

Secondly; I took up an Officer's role in my club, on the proviso that it would take only a couple of hours a week. This rapidly became an almost full time position requiring so much time.

Thirdly; Fourteen months past, I took a P/T job with a well known discount supermarket. I got posted to a brand new store and my 20 hour per week job soon became a 40 hour post.

Finally; SWMBO's sight went South and she couldn't drive. Enough said.

All the above led to a realisation that if I wanted/needed sleep, then there was not sufficient time in the standard day. Something had to give. During the last two years the aforementioned has cost me two good friends and my much loved hobby.


Since the dawn of 2019; Mum has stabilised and although wheel chair bound and not bed bound. I am relinquishing my club office in a couple of weeks (AGM). My work hours have normalised, only this month mind. P's eyes have improved  significantly and I have engaged with one of my lost pals and trying to build bridges with the other. All that is left is to reform my hobby and bloglife. This is the start. Fingers crossed.

Sorry for all the false starts over the past couple of years. Fingers crossed this is IT.

Thanks for all your blogs, believe it or not they have ALL really helped me keep a 'foot on the ground.'



Tuesday, 12 June 2018

A RECCE! ( A post about a different area.)

I am trying to keep up my blogging. So here is this week's As you msy know I am heavily involved with a local members club. Our prices have to change, so my mate and I went out to REECE the prices. Here our our local pubs.

Saturday, 2 June 2018

THANK YOU. And a bit of backstory.

A REALLY BIG THANKYOU to all of you that made comments. It has invigorated me to make an effort to keep this up.


Trebor SREVEI is the Peninsula Warden, a law enforcement agent in a lawless part of the county. The county seat is the walled city of Deva. The Peninsula is north of that (c.f. the Wirral.) The main town is Budestone, a port on the northern shore (I am working on the town map and buildings as I type.)

Trebor’s main protagonist is Maurice HIGHSPRUCE, a half elf/orc, who has control of all the criminal gangs in the area. Maurice lives in the wilderness. His gangs work in the town. The gangs are delineated by race.

There are four hostelries in the town, these are:

The Purple Panther Pub.           Elven
The Amber Adder Ale House. Orcan
The Golden Goose Inn.            Dwarven
The Ginger Grizzly Tavern.     Human

Being a port these establishment are not exclusively racially orientated, but are controlled by the named race.

Trebor has digs in The Ginger Grizzly.


One of the things I love about 2HW rules is the random nature of them. BRILLIANT (well done Ed!) My original theme was for Trebor to search and locate a ‘downed’ pilot (from a Da Vinci device) within the zombie ridden hinterland. Two Hour Wargames' game structure changed it to what it will be. So folks I have no idea where this is going.


OK the idea from Sue Laflin-Baker’s book. Which is good fun I can outline the plots in more detail if it is wanted. It is all about the Conference of Wargamers (COW) who dined and then after dinner played one of her plots in the book.

My SWMBO is out this evening on a works leaving do, so I am home alone with my boys. As I didn’t get to dine for the first outing tonight I am dining at the Ginger Grizzly this evening. (N.B. The Landord/chef at the GG is a retired Landsknecht combat chef!) 

 Menu to follow!

Take care out there.