Sunday, 23 January 2022

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast 20 - Half a Plastic Crack with Dom and Ken

Welcome back and a Happy New Year to you all.

The first episode of 2022 features the two original members of the Plastic Crack Podcast, a live Monday Night stream of general gaming chat which is growing and growing in popularity.

Link to the episode on Podbean Below 👇👇

Also available on other Podcast hosts like, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Tune In and more, just search for Yarkshire Gamers Reet Big Wargames Podcast.

Please leave a like or review wherever you listen, it helps to make the Podcast more visible and more importantly thanks for listening.

Starting in March 2020 with my guests the show has featured a number of Hobby Glitterati as guests but is probably best known in its current format as 4 gamers chewing the fat over the most important and quite often least important topics in the hobby.

The show features all our usual features and as always we drift off onto important topics like "should you have gravy on chips". We have another couple of entrants into Wargames Room 101 as well as another fun trip round the Yarkshire Gamer Quiz.

The Podcast circulates round the four channels of the guys involved,

Dom runs Boots on the table and his channel is below,

And Ken runs Miniature Wargaming Warriors, link below

The new release schedule of 2nd and 5th weeks of the month means that there will be just one Episode per month for Feb and March. So I will see you next month when I hope to be speaking with Gerry Elliot of Wargames Holiday Centre fame.

And finally if you didn't know already the Xmas Brews in the Binyard Special with Alex from Storm of Steel is avaliable on the Utubes 

Until next time, Sithee

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer


Wednesday, 19 January 2022

28mm Papal Zouaves for the Risorgimento

I've been neglecting the blog recently, with so many other things competing for time with Podcasts, Videos and Paint Challenge, there just haven't been enough hours in the day.

I have been talking about my Risorgimento Project or more specifically my attempt to recreate the Battle of Mentana in 28mm for a while in other places but I haven't really covered it here yet.

There are quite a few Garibaldi units already finished and I'll get round to doing a post on those soon. First up from this project though is my Papal Zouaves, something I did a test base for back in the summer, which I posted up in various places.

I've been looking forward to doing this unit for some time and I'm glad to say I'm really happy with the result. So here is my representation of one of the two Battalions of Papal Zouaves which fought at the Battle of Mentana. These formations were 750 men strong so I've made them 36 figure units as opposed to the earlier Garibaldi Infantry which are 24 figures representing  350 to 400 men.

The unit was truly international and was made up of volunteers from all over the world. Large contingents came from Holland, France and Belgium but most European countries had some representation in the unit along with smaller groups from the Americas, Africa, India and China. Initially a single Battalion in 1861, it increased in strength to 4 Battalions in 1867-8.

The figures are 28mm (of course, I have a reputation to keep 😁). The bodies are from the plastic Perrys ACW Zouave box set, which I had lying around from a previous projects whilst the heads were bought separately from Steve Barber Models. There are some minor variations in the sources I have about the uniform so I picked a version and went for it. The flags are a research project in themselves and for the moment I've just used a generic Papal States flag,

As is pretty much the norm with all my stuff now I've extended the depth if the bases, I love the sculpting of the weapons on the Perry Plastics and its to perfect scale, it is however a touch fragile and as these figures will be gamed with and most likely go to a few shows as a display game I want to protect them.

Simply by extending the depth so the whole of the weapon stays within the boundary of the base gives a much greater level of protection, its something I've been doing for a pretty long time now, harping back to my first plastic AWI figures.

I don't have a plan for rules yet, I have had a look around but nothing has grabbed my fancy yet. There are some Italian Language rules specifically for the period (and I love that in a rule set) however I've not been able to get hold of a copy.

So I've done my usual thing of basing before deciding on rules and gone for 60 x 60 bases six figures to a base. I've also used my staggered ranks technique to make the unit look "fuller".

Most of the photos have been done with the white background I've been practicing with, it definitely gives a very different look to my usual "terrain" background and is particularly hard to light but it's growing on me.

Next up I will be back with another episode of the Podcast (number 20 !)

Saturday, 18 December 2021

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast - Episode 19 - Xmas Brews in the Binyard

Its Christmas Time, there's no need to be afraid, or maybe there is as Brews in the Binyard returns for a Xmas Special.

Sadly there is just me and Alex as the third 6 from the unholy trinity Sean Clark couldn't make the recording.

You can tune into the episode on any major Podcast Host (search for Yarkshire Gamer)  or through Podbean on the link below, if you enjoy the Episode and can spare the time, leave a review on whatever Host you are on,

My 2021 28mm Roman Legion 

Its a typical end of year episode with a review of 2021 and a look forward to 2022, as usual there are 14 swear words in the episode so please don't play aloud near children or nervous goldfish.

My short lived 28mm Wars of the Roses dabble

Which is better, Worcestershire Sauce or Henderson Relish, Yazoo or The Flying Pickets and what we are having for Xmas Dinner. Stories of tape measure duels and Big Games abound in a lengthy 2 hrs and 40 minutes.

Another Project this year 15mm Arab Israeli 

Also included are some more of Yarkshire Gamers Rules for Life, what are yours ?

Many of my previous guests have been kind enough to record special Xmas messages throughout.

My 28mm Swiss Pike Block 

Its been a brilliant 2021 and I want to thank all my guests and especially you, the listeners. You have made this Podcast worthwhile with your support, likes, comments and follows, thank you one and all.

We will be back with new episodes in 2022, have a great Xmas and a Happy New Year.

Until next time, Sithee

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

Alex can be found at Storm of Steel Storm of Steel Wargaming - YouTube

Finally the last episode can be found on the Utubes 

Monday, 22 November 2021

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast - Episode 18 - Curt Campbell Analogue Hobbies Paint Challenge

Welcome to Episode 18 and today we have saved on jet fuel and stayed in North America for todays guest who is Curt Campbell. There is an embedded player at the bottom of the page to listen to the episode, or you can subscribe to me on Podbean (or any other major host) it's FREE 👍

Curt lives in Canada and has an excellent Hobby Blog called Analogue Hobbies.

Analogue Hobbies (

Each year for the last 12 years Curt has run a Painting Challenge over the Northern Hemisphere Winter Months (20 Dec to 20 Mar). Painters from all over the world have gathered together in a virtual Art Studio every year to encourage each other to make an bighole in their Lead (and plastic) mountains. The web page for the Challenge is below.

The Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge (

As always the chat is full of the usual features, the Big Game chat, the Quiz and the new feature Wargames Room 101 gets a new entry.

If you enjoy these Podcasts then why not nominate it for the Little Wars TV Caesar Awards, it would be great to grab a nomination in the Podcasts first year. Link to nominations is below.

Caesar Awards - Home

I hope to have a couple of episodes out in December so stay tuned, this episode has been released a week early to coincide with the announcement of the Challenge, the Utubes version of Episode 17 will be on YouTube next week, until then


Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

Friday, 12 November 2021

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast Episode 17 - Jason Weiser - Military Miniature Magazine


Back to the usual single guest format for this episode and I am very pleased to be speaking with Jason Weiser who is the Editor in Chief of a new, yes I said NEW Wargames Magazine, based in the USA.

As usual I speak to Jason about his own Wargames story in the first part of the Episode, before moving onto our usual Big Game Chat.

Then after Sean and Alex tried to destroy the Yarkshire Gamer Quiz in the last episode we get into further problems with translation and somehow manage to upset the State of Texas in the process !

The final section of the Episode (starts 1hr 14 mins in) is all about Military Miniature Magazine. How it started, how its going and what its plans are for the future.

The main website for the magazine is at

Home - Military Miniature

Jasons own personal website is at

It's 500 Miles to the German Border! - A Twilight 2000 miniature wargaming blog (

I didn't realise that the US didn't have a currently in print Magazine for Wargaming at the moment and I wish Jason and the Magazine every success in the future.

I will be back in two weeks time speaking with Curt Campbell on the eve of yet another Analogue Hobbies Winter Paint Challenge.

If you missed the last episode, or just fancy listening to it again (and who wouldn't !) then its available now on the Utubes, link below.

Hope you enjoy these episodes, until next time,


Regards Ken 

The Yarkshire Gamer 

Wednesday, 10 November 2021

Team Yankee - First play, thoughts and changes

Those of you who regularly follow the blog will be aware of my journey into Team Yankee and some 15 mm Arab-Israeli wars set in the 1980s. This is based on the Team Yankee Oil War Book which is a subsection of Team Yankee rules and and I've set my armies in around 1982, 1983 the time of the Lebanon war between Israel and Syria.

Team Yankee was always going to be a controversial choice for us as the rule set as it is written is very different from those that we play normally and it was obvious before we even started playing that we would need to make some changes so get it to fit in with the way that Yarkshire gamer enjoys our games.

I have outlined some of my thoughts on this on previous posts on Facebook and the like, I was quite surprised that they received quite negative reaction on one of the Team Yankee Facebook groups. One guy got really angry about it, so if you are triggered by people changing sets of rules, then this probably isn't the article for you. If however you are playing or think of playing Team Yankee and you are maybe not happy with how it flows or you just want to see how we are playing around with the rules then this and a subsequent number of posts which will follow will show how we change the rules. We have probably now invented a new game, let's call it Team Yarkee.

The 1st thing to say is that I am aware that Team Yankee is kind of a cross over game between your GW40K type games and the more traditional historical miniature games. People who come into Team Yankee will be used to a I Go, You Go, game mechanism which is not particularly popular here at YG, and they will also be used to being restrained to a relatively small size table a 6 by 4 or maybe even 4 by 4 and therefore the way that Team Yankee will be familiar and therefore will be quite comforting for somebody coming from a GW science fiction background into a more historical setting.

Everything that we do with Team Yankee is not saying that Team Yankee is a poor game it's just changing the game to the way that we like to a play here at Yarkshire Gamer. So what I'm going to is explain initially the changes that we have made to the rules and how those changes came about a then I'm going to go on and describe how our 1st game went and had then stick some pretty pictures in, for you to have a look at as we go along ! Before I start it's probably best for you to know we don't use points and our games do not using any of the official scenarios in the team Yankee book.


So for a first practice game I chose not to use any aircraft, no helicopters and no artillery. Different people learn different games in different ways and we like to build a basic knowledge of rules of before we move on and add more complicated bits in, so for this game we have got forces of mostly armour with a little bit of infantry added in just to mix things up a little bit.

But before we even started we knew that the I Go You Go mechanism in the rules would not work for us and I had a couple of choices that I've been looking at for possible replacement. The main contender, and the one we playtested for this game, is the card activation system and if you look at the photograph below our show you some of the cards that I have made to use in our games.

It's very straightforward system, one which many of you will be familiar with. Rather than one player moving shooting everything and then the second player doing the same,  each turn will start with the turn of a card, that unit on that card will activate and complete its move and fire etc Then the next card is drawn and that unit will activate and do its move. You carry on until all units have moved fired etc and then the next turn begins.

This gives a very different dynamic to the game and it means that 1 player isn't sat around doing nothing for ages whilst all their troops get killed. It allows both players to be interactive with the game at the same time and it's a system that we prefer and will probably stick with. 

The other method that I was contemplating was at the old order chip system which comes from a rule set called Johnny Reb but the card activation worked well so this will stay on the back burner for now.

The next change that we introduced became very apparent within a couple of turns of playing. This was in relation to the range that weapons can fire, most modern tank weapons can fire out to 3, 4 even 5 kilometers, the same for anti tank missiles. In Team  Yankee the maximum range that you can fire is 32" or 40 " (for most weapons). Now I get that when you've got a small table but it it's a very strange "Ground scale" when you can in the same turn move on a road move 20 or 30" easily moving 3/4 of U maximum gun range are in one turn !.

I can see why it's there with the rules been made for smaller tables but for us on a larger table, a 12 by 6 normally,  just doesn't make any sense so it was simple enough to add range bands in. So all Soviet built Syrian vehicles have a range band of 16" and all Israeli vehicles have a range band of 20". The simple mechanism is that it just becomes harder to hit the further away you are and there is an extra plus 1 modifier for each range band as you move out at with your firing, so the current rules are plus 1 to hit over 16" for all vehicles. We have simple made it +1 16" to 32" +2 32 to 48, +3 48 to 64 and so on for Syrian Vehicles and +1 20 to 40, +2 40 to 60, +3 60 to 80 for Israeli weapons. We also added plus 1 to the armour of each vehicle (per range band) the further away it was from the firing vehicle. In our first initial game that all seemed to work really well, straightforward and intuitive for everyone involved and was more realistic.

The changes are in their infancy and it will be something that I will come back to and put more detail in the more we play and make changes in other areas if required.

The Game

I said earlier we don't use points and I didn't use any of the missions in the book.  We already had the table set up with the desert terrain from the 28 mm World War II Western desert game we played a couple of weeks ago so we just simply fought over that train with our team Yankee vehicles. It was a case of putting everything that I had painted on the table really (apart from helicopters which were gonna add in in a future game) so here are the 2 forces that we used.

Team Israel

 One unit of 2 times Merkava 1 HQ

 2 units of 3 times Merkava tanks

 2 units of 3 Magach 6 tanks

 One unit of 3 Pereh anti tank missle launchers

 One unit of Israeli mechanised infantry mounted in M113 armoured personnel carriers

 1AA unit with 2 Israeli Shilka

Team Syria

 One unit of 5-T 64 tanks

 One unit of 5-T 62M tanks

 2 units of 5-T 62 tanks

 One unit of Syrian mechanised infantry mounted in BMP 1s

 One unit of 2 Syrian Shilka 


Having set to terrain up we just simply allowed each unit to enter the table on the 1st draw of its card. We rolled a D12 which determined how far along table edge the vehicles came on, drove on the table and had a scrap.

How the game went

Once we started the game and made the initial changes to the ranges as discussed above we quite enjoyed the battle. We found it quite engaging and easy to pick up. One of the reasons I wanted to try Team Yankee rather than try out say 7 days to the Rhine or Battle Group Northhag, was that I really like the presentation of the rules and also the presentation of the little unit cards that come with the models. It would be a shame not to at least try and get those cards to work in a context of a game that we would enjoy and I was quite pleased with how it went. More are going to be introduced in further games, I will try helicopters in the next game, possibly this weekend.

The Israelis managed to stop the Syrian advance and both sides got cover and entered into a bit of a slug fest. But the rules coped well with it and we found that the heavier Syrian tanks the T62M and T64 vehicles which would necessarily available to the Syrians in the timeframe (but were in operation with Soviet Union) They made a big difference and gave them a bit more of a chance whereas the standard T62s lost 8 out of 10  and T62 m's lost 3 out of 5 whereas losses on the Israeli side were 3 Merkava and 2 Magach 6. A reasonable exchange I think, reasonably realistic in terms of exchanges of tanks.

So I hope you enjoyed that little introduction into our changes fo Team Yankee and hope you will follow the journey as we go along and try out different things with this set of rules. I'm looking to add more things in as we go along and of course take lots more pretty pictures which is hopefully what most of you are here for anyway, so thanks for visiting, until next time, 


Friday, 5 November 2021

Israeli Force for Team Yankee Oil War

Israeli Team Yankee models

A few weeks ago I posted up an article on the Syrian Forces I had painted up as a taste of our introduction into a semi historical 1980 - 1985 Arab Israeli Conflict based loosely on the Lebanon War of 1982. 

For any new readers, at Yarkshire Gamer we don't do Army Lists or points, so everything you see is not based around any particular points total, its just a bunch of units that will help us to learn, modify and most importantly enjoy gaming in the modern(ish) era.

We have played one game so far using Team Yankee rules, we very quickly made 2 changes, we went to a card Activation system and we increased ranges. This post concentrates on the Israeli forces I have done and I will do a separate post on that first battle and our thoughts and experiments with the rules in a separate post. In fact we have probably started a new game, let's call it, Team Yarkee !

So here is a run down of the individual units in the Army to date

A Company of Israeli Infantry

4 M113 APCs

3 x Pereh Anti Tank Missile Vehicles 

5 x Magach 6 Tanks

2 x AH1 Viper Attack Helicopters 

And 8 Merkava 1 Tanks

There is no Artillery as yet but that's something that I will add in due course. I like to learn new rules (especially when we are changing them) in blocks so we have started with Vehicles and Infantry in our first game and then as we are happy with that we will add in, Helicopters, then Artillery and then maybe Aircraft and AA. 

The vehicles are all painted with a base of Israeli Sinai Grey which replaced the earlier Sand Colour just prior to the Lebanon War, again I intend to do a video tutorial on painting the vehicles when I do the next batch.

Hope you have enjoyed that little journey through the start of my Arab Israeli project, I will be back soon with a game write up and my thoughts on the rules.