Thursday, 18 May 2023

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast - Episode 43 - Paul Thompson - EWM

Welcome to Episode 43 of the Reet Big Wargames Podcast and today my guest is Paul Thompson of EWM or Early War Miniatures.

The episode is available on all major Podcast hosts or via the link below,

Pauls company specialises in 20mm WW1, Interwar and WW2 figures and vehicles as well as a growing range of scenery, including a certain Binyard !

Its a long episode but Paul had some great stories outside of our usual chat so get ready for tall tales of German Military raids on the Isle of Wight in 1943, torpedoing sail boats in paddling pools with 1/35 scale submarines, riding around the country in a tank with the Perries and facing wargames gilterati whist dressed in plate armour.

On top of that we have all our usual features, Wargames Room 101 keeps going strong as another pet wargaming hate gets added to the Vault, we have another excellent attempt at the quiz and an unusual choice on Desert Island Wargame.

Thanks very much for continuing to tune in, the Podcast reached 75,000 downloads just after the release of Episode 42 and is already racing towards 80,000. If you enjoy the episodes and get chance please like, subscribe and leave comments where you listen to the show. Its a great way to get more people interested in the show.

You can get EWM figures via the link below, or why not pop and share a Ginger Nut with Paul at the next show.


Next episode should be out in around 3 weeks and I will be chatting to Pete Berry of Baccus Miniatures in the first ever Battle of the Scales :-)

Until next time, Sithee

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

And finally here is the Utubes version of the last episode with George Nafziger 

Tuesday, 2 May 2023

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast - Episode 42 George Nafziger - Author and King of the OOB

Welcome to Episode 42 of the Yarkshire Gamer Podcast and today I have an absolute hobby legend for you.

The Episode is available on all major Podcast Hosts or via the link below

Episode 42 - George Nafziger - Author and King of the OOB | Yarkshire Gamers Reet Big Wargames Podcast (

George Nafziger is a prolific author who has had many many titles published over the years. His first book in 1988 Napoleons Invasion of Russia was a fantastic debut and the subsequent series of books on the later 1813 and 1814 Campaigns are absolutely essential reading on the topics. When the came out they were the first easily accessible source of information on those campaigns I was aware of in the English Language. We in the UK were often fixated on Waterloo and Wellingtons Campaign in Spain that these books opened up a new area of interest in the Napoleonic Wars.

Not only that my guest is well known for his amazing series of Orders of Battle from the mid 17th Century onwards which are available both online and in the case of the WW2 series in book form. Its hard to describe the level of detail that is contained in these lists. If you want an accurate army with the kit they had, this is the place to go for research.

It was great to talk to George and as you would expect from Yarkshire Gamer, no rabbit hole was left explored ! I did have some technical issues with the recording but hopefully they have been ironed out in the edit.

George has a web site covering his books and orders of battle

Home - Nafziger Collection

With the books available here

Products Archive - Nafziger Collection

Remember if you are ordering from outside the US, contact George direct via e-mail and he will sort out the postage rates for the country of your choice.

Or By mail at

PO Box 1522

West Chester, OH 45071-1522

Or by email

Next episode I hope to be talking with Paul Thompson of Early War Miniatures. 

Until next time, Sithee

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

And as always here's a video of the last episode with Nick Schofield about the Papal Zouaves

Monday, 1 May 2023

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast 41 - Nick Schofield - Papal Zouaves

Todays guest is Nick Schofield and although Nick had a brief dabble with wargaming when he was younger he hasn't rolled a dice for many years. The episode is available on the link below or from any major Podcast Host

Episode 41 - Nick Schofield - Papal Zouaves | Yarkshire Gamers Reet Big Wargames Podcast ( 

My guest works in the church and has studied in Rome so there is no wonder that he has gained an interest in looking at the British and Irish Volunteers in the Papal Army during the 1860s.

So with my first ever non-wargaming guest I have shifted things around a bit so regular listeners will notice that the tried and tested format has been put aside for this one episode.

I chat with Nick about his background and his wargaming experiences before moving onto the history of the St Patricks Battalion and the Papal Zouaves using his book Victorian Crusaders, published by Helion as my guide.

It was a great chat with Nick, he's very engaging and clearly knows his stuff and it was lovely for me to talk to someone about a subject I am very interested in as well as stepping outside the comfort zone of my regular format, its definitely something I will do again in the future.

Nicks book is available from Helion direct and also from many other book sellers, link below

Victorian Crusaders | From Musket to Maxim 1815-1914 | Helion & Company

Hope you enjoy this little excursion from the Wargames path and I will see you in 3 weeks time for another episode.

Until then Sithee

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

Here's the previous episode in its Utubes format.

Wednesday, 29 March 2023

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast 40 - Steve Shann - Nations in Arms

Today my guest is Author, Painter and old friend Steve Shann. Available on all major Podcast Hosts or via the direct link below

Episode 40 - Steve Shann - Nations in Arms | Yarkshire Gamers Reet Big Wargames Podcast (

Steve has been a full time painter for many years now and many of the figures in the collections of my previous guests have originated from his brushes, so it's a great excuse to get a bit of a geek on about Paints, techniques and of course wet palettes 😆

Alongside the painting Steve has been writing articles and books for the hobby and beyond. He has a passion for the Franco Prussian War with a number of scenario books, wargame and uniform guides going back to the 1980s.

In recent years Steve has self published two excellent scenario books on the diverse subjects of Leipzig in 1813 and The Seelow Heights in 1945.

It's a long old chat with the episode just tipping over 3 hours. This isn't a short format, I want to bring you a good all round wargames chat not a 10 minute sales pitch, I know a lot of people who listen to this whilst painting so hopefully you will get some more figures done, so here is an excuse to get some more done !

I'll be back in 3 weeks time when I will be speaking with Nicholas Schofield, who has written a book on the British and Irish Troops in Service of the Papal States in the 1860s. It will be an experiment in an episode that is more about the history than the wargaming, hope you will enjoy it.

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

You can find out lots more about Steves Book, Paintings and Terrain at his blog site

And if you missed the last episode that is now available on the Utubes


Sunday, 26 March 2023

Analogue Hobbies Winter Paint Challenge 2022/23 Wrap Up

Well that wasn't what I was expecting as an end result to say the least, to say I was distracted is a real understatement. It was all supposed to be about the 28mm Italian Wars but as anyone who had a look through my posts would know it went a bit sideways, or seaways to be more precise.

Not too much of a distraction were these 10mm Pendraken Malburian figures for my Savoyard and French Armies, I've been using these for quite a while now as a Palette Cleanser so these were everyday fare.

Another planned distraction were these 28mm Franco Prussian French Chasseur a Pied, these were a bookend on last years Garibaldi Project and got me started back in December.

I did eventually get some Italian Wars stuff done, a unit of 16 Swiss Shot which I needed for an existing Pike Unit and 12 Borgia Light Cavalry and finally just under the deadline was a 60 figure Spanish Colunela, which should have been the first of a number in the Challenge.

The Colunela is a fine looking unit and I did some photos with a white background which I really like.

But of course the main distraction were these 1/700 WW2 Naval Ships, 3 large vessels, Bismarck, Prince of Wales and Ark Royal along with 2 Merchant Vessels, 7 Destroyers and a Submarine.

The Ark Royal is particularly impressive, the base is 42cms x 10 and its definitely imposing, I'm not a fan of the aircraft supplied with the kit and will be replacing them with upgraded versions in due course.

My favourite from my Challenge was the Bismark Build, the detail on the Revell kit is superb and it really added to the model. One of the best things I've ever done. I will sort out my charity donation in a few minutes and that's me done for another year.

Thanks again to Curt for heading up this wonderful Challenge, Peter for being my Monday Minion and waiting for so long for some Spanish Wars Italians and finally to all the people who visited and commented on my posts.

Until next time, Sithee 

Wednesday, 1 March 2023

Yarkshire Gamer Podcast 39 - Martyn Kelly - Big Gaming in the USA


Welcome back everyone, it's been nearly 2 months since the last episode, doing 5 in December was like setting a flamethrower to both ends of the candle and I had burnt myself out.

The episode is available on all major Podcast Hosts, or via the Podbean link below. If you do enjoy it, please like, subscribe and comment to help increase the Podcasts profile.

But after a good rest and concentrating on my hobby projects for a while I'm back and ready to go again. I've got the next 8 episodes planned with some great guests, I have Manufacturers, Painters, Authors, Big Gamers, Hobby Legends and the like to bring to you, I also hope to bring episodes from countries we haven't visited before and get the low down from fellow wargamers around the world.

In addition to that I have a tester episode with a non wargaming Historian which will follow an obviously different format, but if it works its something I plan to do in the future if it works out well.

But that's the future, it's time to introduce my guest, I first became aware of Martyn Kelly from his Facebook posts regarding some huge participation games he has put on at Conventions in the US. He's done some brilliant Italian Wars games featuring a 196 figure Pike Block which in my opinion really represents the 9,500 men who were actually in that block, much better than 24 figures for sure.

I love talking from Gamers outside the UK and getting there perspective on a hobby we all love in so many different ways. All the usual features are here, Big Game Chat, Quiz, Wargame Room 101, Desert Island Wargame and the usual chat in between.

I talk to Martyn in the Big Topic about the set up of Conventions in the US, how they are organised and what a visitor expects to see. We then move on to talk about what visitors expect from a Big Game at a convention and the differences between putting such a game on between one with friends and one with total strangers at an event.

Its then a deep dive into how my guest goes from that first germ of an idea through to actually playing the game at a show. Trust me its a lot of work and guys like Martyn go a long way to make these events what they are, so if you haven't say thank you to your game organiser.

It wouldn't be Yarkshire Gamer with a bit of Italian Wars Chat (now apparently an extension of the Wars of the Roses ;-) and we start the Pavia Challenge live on the show. Martyn has gone for 1:25 scale so I've gone 1:24 !

It was a great chat and the fact that I thought that we had only done an hour and a half when we had done two and a half shows that the phrase "time flies when your enjoying yourself" is true.

Keep up to date with what Martyn is doing next as well as a wealth of information about his previous projects on his blog, College of Kings.

College of Kings - Posts about my miniature armies.

Thanks for listening and welcome back to the show, don't forget to subscribe, like and leave a review wherever you listen to this. Not much in life costs nowt, but this Podcast does so give us a like.

All pictures above reproduced with the kind permission of my guest Martyn Kelly.

My next episode will be out in a fortnight and I'll be speaking with Steve Shann. I've known Steve for a long time and you will be familiar with the name if you've listened to previous episodes. Steve has a number of publications to his name covering diverse topics like WW2, Leipzig and The Franco Prussian War. On top of that Steve does a spot of painting so get ready for 2 hours on the correct shade of blue for French Uniforms !

Until next time, Sithee

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

And here is my usual P.S. Its the Utubes version of the last episode.



Monday, 6 February 2023

1/700 Bismarck


Regular followers will have seen this model being gradually built on the Utubes (links below) so I am really pleased to present the "nearly" finished model.

The kit is from Revell  and sold as a full hull kit, which I didn't notice when I bought it so a sharp blade and a lot of swearing turned it into a waterline ! I was very impressed with the kit, much more detailed (and longer to build) than the Tamiya ones I've built.

The base on the ship is the same size as the Hood which is 42 x 10. My rules use standard base sizes for classes of ships, so for this scale Cruisers are on 32 x 8 and Destroyers 22 x 6. Don't get you calculator out to work out some complex formula based on model scale and ground scale to work out the reasoning, there isn't any. I am trying to protect the model.

I've done a series of videos on the Utubes covering the entire build if you are interested in that side of things.


The camo scheme is as the ship was painted in early May 41 at the start of Op Rheinubung (Sovereign Hobbies reference), I know these aren't the colours at the time of engagement with Hood, but I wanted a scheme that was instantly recognisable as Bismarck without the pain of repeating the black and white up the superstructure.

Symbols - the good old "controversial" crooked cross is not present on the model as it has been presented. I am aware of the sensitivity around this symbol for some. I will be adding it at a later stage, the Revell kit does not come with it as a decal option so that made the decision easier. I am very firmly in the camp of, if its historically accurate and representing a real moment in time I have no problem putting a symbol on a model. I'm old enough and daft enough to distinguish between an accurate model and a political ideology. When I add it I will put a note on any relevant photos.

The horizon in the background of the photo is bent because there is a dip in my table 😀

If you spot anything missing from the model let me know, I've got a couple of pieces rattling around in the box that I've missed !

Anyway I've had a great time building this model and I look forward to displaying and playing with it in the future. I was so enthusiastic I built Prince of Wales last night 👍

Just for reference here's a picture of Bismarck next to Hood

And finally one of Bismarck being escorted (very closely) by four Destroyers 

Regards Ken

The Yarkshire Gamer

If you're interested in the Utubes series, links are below

Monday, 30 January 2023

1/700 WW2 Naval gets its Convoy On


I've not put anything on the blog for a while and in the meantime the 1/700 WW2 Naval Project keeps on growing. 

First up is a Trumpeter Models kit of the Liberty Ship, John W Brown. I've done it with a basic paint job.

I've upped the weathering on this ship to give it that back and forth, about to structurally fail look ! There is some discussion about the Cargo booms being out like they are on the model whilst at sea. Contemporary pictures show both extended and stowed, this is how the kit comes so that's what you get.

As a bit of fun I've added some 1/700 crew figures (from Eduard) in a couple of places on the ship as a bit of a try out. The picture above is my best effort at showing the dance moves from YMCA (although In the Navy would be more appropriate 😉)

To make a decent Convoy I will need a whole bunch of these but every journey starts with a Liberty Ship 🚢 

Next up is another Trumpeter kit, this time its HMS Eskimo one of the Tribal Class Destroyers and probably the best British small ship of the War.

I've gone for a Western Approaches Scheme for this ship, the Green was a little but wierd looking when I first put it on, but after a bit of weathering I think it looks the business.

Definitely an upgrade for my British fleet, if I get my gaming mojo back I am looking forward to getting it on the table.

There is a second Destroyer to add to the Fleet, this time its HMS Javelin.

I picked up Mal Wrights book on British Destroyer Camouflage of WW2 and picked out this pattern for the ship. The model is HMS Jervis from Aoshima another of the J Class.

The dark Med Blue was another colour I wasn't sure about but again after getting it on the model and adding a bit if weathering it's definitely growing on me. I think it's years of painting smaller ships in grey that makes these so different for me.

I think the joy of this scale is the ability to really do camo schemes justice, I've tried this sort of thing in smaller scales and it never quite looks right. Sure 1/700 isn't particularly practical and I'm sure the comments section is already full of "have you got a car park to play in" comments 😆

And finally (Ester) I have done a second Liberty Ship this time from the Trumpeter Jeremiah O'Brien kit.

This time I've jazzed it up a bit with a Measure 32, Design 11F paint job, who said Liberty Ships can't be exciting 😁

No crew on this one (yet) but I might add some at a later stage. There are some subtle differences between this model and the John W Brown one at the top of the page, mostly minor changes to the gun layout.

Hope you've enjoyed this update on the Project. I am having a whale 🐋 of a time putting these together and there is plenty more to come !