Sunday, 27 November 2011

The Tangent goes to War!

Myself and the rather smashing chap Mike of Little Odo's Miniature Wargaming Blog have been threatening to actually push some of the collective lead mountains around some green fuzzy polystyrene for a while now, and it finally happened this afternoon.

Mike made the perilous journey down from farthest Bromley in the dark wilds of Kent, bringing some Gripping Beast 28mm Romano-British, and some warband lists for Song of Splintered Lands.

You'll have to excuse the photos - using my Blackberry Curve, and the camera on it is utterly useless. Mike took a handful more using his Blackberry, so between us we might be able to find one that's in focus.

Anyway - first out of the block was SSL. Mike's first outing with the SBH engine, and he played the baddies (the Flowering/Rebels), and promptly handed my goodies (the Faithful) their collective furry backsides on plates.

Can't remember much of the game - seemed to involve a gruesome kill from both sides, but morale held. My decision to use the brilliantly hopeless Tassletail Brothers again but paid to any hope of winning things... that and Mike's uncanny ability to roll six after six after six... with my bloody dice!

We then swapped it around, and Mike picked up the Faithful whilst I elected to give my sort-of-painted Dwarf warband its first outing.

So, how did the Stunty Debut go? Erm, well - the Champion on Bear charged off on his own, fully expecting to make short work of the clump of mice, but he ended up transfixed, then suffered a sudden bout of being dead. The battle in the middle see-sawed, and eventually the Faithful prevailed. It was a close run thing though. Mike rolled a lot of sixes.


So, how does the Dwarf faction in SSL shape up? Rather well, I must say - they've all got long ranged attack, which didn't dawn on me at first. This potentially has huge benefit when using the SBH tactic of stopping short of an opponent to force him to charge (thereby increasing his chance of failing activation when he has to roll at least 2 activations, or preferably three).

The Bear could have been good I suspect, but I went a bit mental with him. The Bondi are better than their stat line would have you believe; shieldwall is hugely powerful. Huscarls are so-so, but the good overall quality makes them a dependable lot. The Crossbow Specialists are very strong indeed - Shooter Long, sharpshooter, and C3 means they're rocking with +5 within 5", which is very respectable indeed.

After that, we played the new version of Song of Arthur & Merlin. The first game took about 5 minutes with my Saxons getting pummeled by Mike's numerically superior Romano British. Mike rolled a lot of sixes.

Second game, we doubled the size of the table, and added a couple of cavalry each to run about 370 points. (I think SAM in historical mode is too small at 300pts). This gave us more tactical scope, and I finally won something. Mike didn't roll a lot of sixes.

Set up on 4x4 board.


Saxon horse pile into the back of the Romano-British shieldwall.


Then it was dinner time, so we called it after four games and a rousing afternoon's toy soldier action.

Think Mike enjoyed himself - he certainly didn't run away screaming, which most people usually do from the house of Tangent, and looking forward to another outing soon.

I think I'll actually find some time to finish the Dwarf band - great fun to play with, and a nice change from the Druid's Children. I'll also get the Beastlands warband underway properly, just because I'm all inspired again.

Nothing else to report, except Splintered Light having a 25% sale until the end of the year. Get over there, say hi to David, and get your lead mountain up.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Beards and Cheese

Looking back over the blog, it's been interesting to note my gradual loss of gaming mojo in the last twelve months. Of late I've painted nothing, gamed even less, and displayed the classic symptoms of a gamer scratching around for inspiration.

So, last weekend I embarked on a proper tidy up of the lead pile. The intention was to spark a bit of interest in my hobby, and to give myself the opportunity to sift through the vast mountain of stuff and perhaps sell a few bits.

Typically I didn't find anything I really wanted to sell, having sold off all the really useless stuff a few years back. Nonetheless, a tidy workbench is a productive workbench. Probably.

Alongside that an incident with the boiler at home (no, not that one, the one which heats the water) prompted local chum Stuart at the Great Game to offer to buy my 28mm town scenery from me - some of which can be seen here;
I've had it a number of years, made for me by a bloke in Oz. It's probably only been used in anger no more than a dozen times, and has spent the last couple of years languishing in another friend's gaming hut/shed/thing. Stuart has a son and they're both into 28mm WW2 at the moment, so it'll be going to a good home.

This sale is rather convenient in terms of timing and funds. A week or so ago I was in a cantankerous mood, and decided to email the local gaming circle about restarting Blood Bowl. For reasons which would take ages to explain, Blood Bowl had become the byword for Beardy Cheese Play and after running in a very active league, we all dropped it. I was surprised, therefore, when all bar one person readily agreed. So now I need to buy a team.

The person to blame for this, I've decided, is Laughing Ferret Labs. Quite apart from having a bloody brilliant blog, detailing a steady descent into gaming madness, he's also a dab hand at painting things. Especially Blood Bowl teams. If I wasn't reading about his Blood Bowl teams so often it never would have occurred to me to mention it to anyone. Honest.

My previous BB team was a Shadowforge Bunny Girl team, supported by a Heresy Ogre. They looked brilliant, but were pretty crap on the table. Not entirely their fault it must be said, as I've never been a great tactical player, especially with the wonky rules GW tend to turn out. The girls were sold a number of years back for a rather large sum of cash, so the hunt begins. It might be a short hunt, truth be told, because Impact! Miniatures do a Scotling team, and being descended of the mighty clan Hamilton that appeals to me. (I should state I am in no way Scottish. I'm Sussex.)

Last but by no means least, Mike of Little Odo's Blogspot is probably going to make the perilous journey South West from his vast mansion in Kent to push lead round a table, eat food, and generally talk rubbish. Games we're intending on are Song of Splintered Lands, and probably something Dark Ages like Saga.

This may happen in November. Which November is entirely open because both of us work and have families, so getting to play with toy soldiers for any length of time requires planning and co-ordination which makes Overlord look like it was jotted down on the back of a Woodbine packet.

So, that's that. 28mm WW2 is now to the bottom of the pile for me - which is a touch sad, because it's what got me back into wargaming back in 2005. Blood Bowl rears it's ugly UgoIgo head again. I've got even more to paint. And, I've still not painted anything.

Just to finish, here's some Splintered Light Badgers and chums lurking about the woods looking menacing. 'You want some? You want some? Grrrr... I'll bite yer face off'