Thursday, 4 June 2020

Troops on Parade - 28mm ECW Royalist


There is something very cathartic above setting a gaming collection out on the table for inspection. It's something I have reet enjoyed since starting this feature a few years back. Is it the joy of seeing the collection all together on the table or looking at the mass ranks with a sense of achievement, I don't know, but I do know that most of my fellow gamers will "get it".


As is becoming the norm at YG I have done a Yarkshire TV special on the Utubes to accompany the post (link above), for those that prefer static photos and text see below. For rules we play a homebrew  modified version of Forlorn Hope.

All the figures are metal, this was before the days of cheap plastic soldiers, all the bases have a reassuringly weighty feel.


Starting on the right of the Army we have Prince Rupert (with his dog) and his group of Cavalry. These figures are all from Perrys bar the command which are Bicorne.


Over on the left I have my other wing of Cavalry, these are made up of Bicorne miniatures with a single unit of Renegade horse. At the head of the line is the Kings Mounted Lifeguard.

Another view of the left wing of Cavalry
The Infantry in the middle are all from Renegade, I can't remember the exact details but I bought a load of them in one go during a deal they were running.


Those of you familiar with the period will recognise the flags of the units on show, rather than go for a specific army in terms of location and year I have picked and chosen from a number, with units from the Oxford Army and the Armies in Cheshire most prominent. Front rank here right to left as viewed are Talbots, Lifeguard and Ruperts.


The Lifeguard was a particular joy with the extra flags. Forlorn Hope is a 33:1 scale (in terms of men to models) game so my units are between 16 and 30 figures strong but generally 20 or 24. We have found that units are just not viable with less than 16 figures.


You can see from the bases that this is pre grass tufts days, some units in the Army have the original versions of tufts. We used to buy packs of coloured bristles from Railway Modelling shops, clump them up and glue one end, wait for them to dry and chop the top off. It was very slow and I have up on it, maybe 4 or 5 units in the Army have them.


My favourite unit in the Army is this little 16 figure Chester Milita Regiment with its own made up flag "Forward for God and Cheshire" it implores.


The personality figures are all Bicorne, here we have Sir Jacob Astley Commander of Foote.


Prince Rupert of the Rhine, Commander of Horse.


The main man himself King Charles, with Royal Standard carried by Sir Edmund Verney, odd figure, whatever I do the flag won't come off 🤔


The guns are mostly Old Glory with a couple of Perrys Figures, I do seem to have bought rather a lot.


In between the guns are a number of individually based figures from Wargames Foundry which cover a number of functions, Forlorn Hope, Engineers, Rappers and Snipers.


I love an army with lots of flags, it's not quite the Italian Wars but it's not far off. Most annoyingly after packing all the figs away I realised I forgot to put out my two units of Dragoons (mounted and dismounted) as well as my single unit of Cuirass 😣


Hopefully you have enjoyed that bit of fun, hopefully in a few weeks tine we will be back gaming.

Thursday, 28 May 2020

Kingdom of Jerusalem Mounted Sergeants


The recruitment for the Kingdom of Jerusalem continues a pace with a new unit, this time it's Mounted Sergeants.


12 x 28mm figures from Fireforge Games, I've decided to arm these with hand weapons rather than lance which means there are less flags than normal. The large pennant had been painted using a decal from the Battle Flag Decal set as the base.


I do like the sense of motion you can get with these Fireforge figures, the plastic kits allow you to make subtle variations in the figures, the horse poses give the impression of motion and the deeper bases I like to use allow a staggering of the figures again giving that feeling of movement.


Looking at the photos I think the shields need another coat of Matt Varnish.


I have a unit of mounted Knights left to do before the force is finished but for the moment I am concentrating on finishing off my 7tv Baddies.




Thanks for watching, see you all again soon.

Wednesday, 20 May 2020

How to paint horses using the oil paint wipe method


If you exclude "what are you doing in my back garden dressed as a chicken ?" one of the most common questions I get is how do you paint you horses. The other, how do you do your sea bases will be the subject of the Yarkshire TV treatment soon, however for now here is a video run through of painting horses in oils.


It's quite lengthy (45 mins plus) but I have covered everything, equipment, paints, techniques, figures etc so if you are interested in trying out the oil method give this video a go.


You can get through horses at a fair rate of knots too, any questions just ask.

Questions Answered

On the various formats this video has been posted on there have been a few common questions so to save me posting the same thing on different formats here they are,

How long is the drying time post wipe ?

The drying time post wipe is obviously variable around how much oil you use, room temperature etc but is considerably less than an unwiped figure.

I leave mine a minimum of a week before I start using acrylics for reins, saddle, white markings etc. I would give it a couple of days minimum in a warm room.

The problem area will often be the recesses around the harness as this is where the deepest amount of oil paint sits. If your unsure try a test patch.

It's never a problem for me, the big selling point of this method is speed of painting so I paint in batches of 50 to 100 horses so they sit around sometimes for over a year to be painted.

What are the best colour combinations ?

The first thing I would say on this is that another of the strong points of this method for me is the hundreds of different combinations of colours and the subtle effects you can achieve, even using the same oil colour but with a different consistency will give a different effect so it's very hard to quantify. My top tip is to find stuff out by trial and error.

Golden Rule number one is that the oil paint must be darker than the acrylic base otherwise their will be no contrast

If you want a colour combination to try as a test I would use a Vallejo 70856 Ochre Brown base with a Brown Madder (or Burnt Umber) oil layer.

The darkest oil paint is Vandyke Brown which is almost black. This works best with the dark base coats so try 70814 Burnt Cadmium Red as a base. Others to try are darker browns like 312 (Panzer Aces) Leather Belt, 70983 Flat Earth, 70921 English Uniform, 70879 Green Brown.

Going lighter next up would be Burnt Umber, this is a very dark but slightly redder colour than Vandyke Brown. It works best with dark ochre type colours so Ochre Brown, 70914 Green Ochre 70825 German Pale Brown are good.

In between Burnt Umber and the next colour is Raw Umber, this is a very earthy brown and doesn't have the sheen of other colours, I use it sparingly over German Pale Brown and 70874 USA Tan Earth.

Next lighter are Brown Madder and Brown Transparent Oxide, I have put these two together as they are very similar but give a subtle difference in effect, the transparent oxide being, well more transparent. These are the most versatile colours and work well with the Burnt Umber colours. Go to is Ochre Brown as mentioned above. Also good are 70977 Desert Yellow, 70912 Tan Yellow, 70913 Yellow Ochre.

Finally the lightest Oils Burnt Sienna and Brown Ochre, these only work with quite lighter colours and I sometimes mix a bit of Burnt Umber in to darken them up. Go with Desert Yellow, Tan Yellow, 70847 Dark Sand, Yellow Ochre, 70976 Buff.

Hope that sends you in the right direction. I encourage experimenting with the colours, try some of the light bases like Dark Sand with Brown Madder for example and see if you like it. So long as the oil paint is darker than than the base it will work, you will find the best combinations for your taste.

What consistency of oil paint should I use ?

Paint straight from the tube is too thick, get some distilled turpentine like in the video, put a small amount of oil paint on a none absorbent surface (size of your little finger nail) add a touch of turps to the brush, pick up some oil paint on the brush and mix them together on the surface.

You are looking for a consistency off oil, thin enough to flow easily over the horse and get into all the recesses but thick enough to give a full colour coverage.

Monday, 18 May 2020

Italian Wars Mounted Crossbow


This is turning into a rather productive pandemic, even though I am working the same hours as I was before lock down I'm not distracted by Football and actual gaming and I seem to have got a bit of a painting mojo going at the moment and I'm trying to make the most of it.

These were featured as a work in progress on the video update I did on the Yarkshire Gamer YouTube channel last week and if you haven't why not have a look and subscribe (for nowt) to get the latest updates.


The unit has 12 x 28mm Perry Miniatures from the plastic box set made up to represent mounted crossbow from the Italian Wars to add to the one or two other units I have. The flag as usual is from Pete's Flags and is representative of one carried by Giovanni Medicis Black Bande.


As with my other units I have taken my cues for the clothing from the colours of the flag so you will see a lot of black and yellows in the clothing.


I just love the Perrys figures so much. They fit my painting style exactly, it's like I had a say in how they were done 😂 the faces have so much expression, a touch of paint in the right place just brings them to life.


Figures are painted in acrylics as is the horse furniture, the horses are all done in oils and I'm in the process of putting together a video run through of the process which should be up in a couple of days. Below are some photos of the individual stands.






So these can go in a box waiting for the world to get back gaming again. Next up on the paint table are the mounted element of the Kingdom of Jerusalem force.


Thursday, 14 May 2020

May (not) gaming update


A video update on what's happening down in the Yarkshire Gamer games room when there ain't no gaming going on.

Monday, 11 May 2020

Op Compass Game 9 - Grand Theft Auto


Before we all got locked down the crew at Yarkshire Gamer finished the ninth game in our ongoing Op Compass Campaign.

If you want more information on the previous games, special rules etc there is a resource page link below,

https://yarkshiregamer.blogspot.co.uk/2018/04/opcompass-1940-resource-page.html

The games are based on an excellent book by Robert Avery which is available from The Toofatlardies, there is a direct link to purchase the book on the Resource Page.We use 28mm figures with this scenario taking place on an 12 x 6 table using a home brew set of rules, based on Iron Ivans Disposable Hero's. However for this game I thought that the scenario was too close to the previous game so I have improvised taking a cue from the book, The Crucible of War, Wavell's Command by Barrie Pitt.


Steam rises from a broken down Rolls Royce Armoured Car
Historical Background 

It's mid December 1940 and Sgt Charles Galpin is out on patrol on the Torbruk - Bardia road making a general nuisance of himself cutting telephone wires. As the car rounded a corner it struck an exposed rock and stuttered to a halt, steam rising from the broken pipes, in a small collection of buildings by a watering hole.


Stand and Deliver
Observing an Italian Ambulance rattling down the road towards them, Galpin had a clever idea, now theft of an Medical vehicle would be frowned upon in peace time, but this my friends isn't peacetime.

The game begins as Galpin and his crew drive the Ambulance back to the stricken Armoured Car with the Italian occupants "locked" in the rear of the Ambo.


In the distance an Italian section looks on through binoculars wondering exactly what it was they just witnessed.

Set Up and Terrain 



I forgot to take a photo without figures on the table at the start so here is a shot towards the end of the game showing the terrain. You will need a single road running down the length of a 12 x 6 table, the road should wind round a couple of low hills. Looking at the picture above the British troops arrive on the road nearest the camera, the Italians at the other end.

The theft of Ambulance happens between the two small hills about 2/3rds down the table, the Italian observers are on the hill in the extreme far left.

There are no special rules in force other than those given in the briefings.

Get that tow fixed Corporal !
British Briefing 

Get that Armoured Car recovered and deal with any Italian Troops you encounter.

Italian Briefing 

The British have just nicked one of our Ambos, get the thing back and teach the cheeky gits a lesson.

Here comes the Italians
Umpire Briefing 

This game needs an umpire, certainly for the first phase, briefings for the players are deliberately vague, the scenario has a narrative start leading into a more general scrap as the game progresses.

The British player starts by attaching a tow between the ambulance and the Armoured Car whilst "persuading" the drivers to get in the rear of the vehicle. Roll 2d6 each turn needing more than 12 (in cumulative total) to get things moving. The machine gun on the Armoured Car is operational, it moves at half speed with a random plus and minus d6 modifier.

The rest of the Troop return to find out what happened to Sgt Galpin
At the same time the Italians roll 2d6 needing the same score, once they pass 12 they will run back to their vehicles and the game is afoot. The Italians have 3 Tankettes, one with a 20mm Anti Tank Rifle the other two with the standard 2 x MG layout.

When the Italian Tankettes reach the place of the initial ambush, the remaining 2 Rolls Royce Armoured Cars arrive on the road at the British entry point.

A bit of off roading
On the actual day of the incident, the Italian Driver of the Ambulance wasn't to impressed with being hijacked and this coincided with Sgt Galpin not being very good at locking the door between the front and rear of the Ambulance.

The Italian, in true Hollywood style opened the intervening door and started wrestling the British driver of his vehicle, this lasted for some minutes before Sgt Galpin regained control and fired a couple of shots into the rear of the Ambulance from his service revolver, this persuaded the former owner of the vehicle to be more accommodating.

After a bit of zig zagging, the vehicle gets back under control
To represent this when the Ambulance reaches the central village both sides roll 2d6 each time the truck moves. The highest is the winner, draws are Italian wins. If the British win, they drive as normal, 3 wins and they have subdued the Italian Driver.

If the Italians win, roll an additional d6, 1 or 2 the vehicles go straight ahead, 3 or 4 45 degrees right and move forward, 5 and 6 45 degrees left then forward. Our vehicles went off on a merry dance, narrowly missing a large rock formation (which would have been interesting) in the process.

After the Ambulance is back under control the game reverts to a more normal style meeting action.

And they are safe !
When the Rolls Royce Armoured Cars arrive, the Italians roll a d6, the result is the number of turns until they obtain reinforcements, once they arrive the British roll a d6 and that's the number of turns until they obtain reinforcements. It then alternates until all the troops arrive or a result is gained.

New troops arrive at the entry points described in a random order.

Mk VI Light Tanks 
British troops are,
1 - HQ Section of 1 x A10 Cruiser Tank
2 - 3 x Mk VI Light Tanks
3 - 3 x A9 Cruiser Tanks
4 - 3 x A13 Cruiser Tanks
5 - 1 x 25pdr Field Gun with dedicated observer in Number A.C.

More "tanks"
Italian Troops are,
1 - 3 x Tankettes (1 with 20mm Anti Tank Rifle)
2 - 3 x M11/39 Tanks
3 - 3 x M11/39 Tanks
4 - 2 x 47mm Anti Tank Guns with Truck tows
5 - 2 x 75mm Field Guns with Truck tows

Italian Troops secure the village
How did we get on 

Well the pictures to date have shown the initial stages of our game, having secured the Ambulance a group of Italian Tankettes set off in hot pursuit only to be met by the two returning Rolls Royces. Whilst they sniped at each other from a distance the Ambulance driver fought back and very nearly stuffed it into a large rock.

First the Italians got another 3 Tankettes (oh how they were happy 😂) whilst the Brits got some Mark VI Light Tanks for their first reinforcements. The Italians had some proper tanks (thats what i love about early war gaming, you get excited when a M11/39 turns up !) arrive next and rushed them forward to the village and that's where we are with the photo above. Back to our pictures to cover the rest of the game.


The British now supported by an A10 command tank took positions in the hills and a firefight started with the Italians in the village.


The Italians (partially hidden by my finger 😂) tried a flank manoeuvre to turn the Brits position on the hill.


Whilst in the village some Tankettes took advantage of what for them was hard cover.


Next arrival on table was three A9 Cruiser Tanks tipping the balance in favour of the British.


Whilst the Italians received some Anti Tank Guns who began to dig in on the hills behind the village.


It wasn't long before the Anti Tank Guns made short work of the Rolls Royce Armoured Cars who had tried to get round the flank of some Tankettes.


Things started to explode in rapid sequence now, the A10 Command Tank was taken out by a M11/39  after the two had been exchanging ineffective shots for a few turns.


The Mark VI Light Tanks decided to bug out, it was all fun and games when they were fighting Tankettes but it was getting a bit hot.


It was almost hand to hand combat with the tanks at some points.


The three M11/39s were all knocked out by the A9s, one of whom was taken out by the 20mm armed Tankette.


But the remaining Italian tanks held the village, it was a strong position the extra cover making the vehicles extremely difficult to take out.


The dug in Anti Tank Guns secured the Italian rear and flanks.


Losses on both sides were high, the British had lost an A10, an A9, a Mk VI and two Armoured Cars.


The Italians had lost 3 M11/39s in the flank attack and two Tankettes.


So we decided that it was a draw, the British had been successful in getting the damaged Armoured Car away but the Italians held a strong position in the village, losses were about even.

So for our ongoing Campaign it was 2 points a piece meaning that we stand at British 20 points, Italians 16.