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Crisis Antwerp 2013 picture report

So having returned from Crisis, I would like to show you some of the sights that could be seen there.

As usual, all pictures are linked to bigger versions!

If you did host a game and you can not find any pictures of it, I really apologize, it is probably that the pictures I took of it were no good. Sorry!

First of, just to give you an idea of the size of it all (and this is just the first hall):

Crisis 2013 1st Hall aerial shot

Crisis 2013 1st Hall aerial shot

I will refrain fro saying too much about the games and rather let the pictures do the talking, now if you should find anything that is mislabeled please let me know!

This could be a find example of that since I simply call it Wild West although from the looks of it, it was post ACW US cavalry vs. Native Americans.

Wild West

Wild West

Wild West

Wild West

Now Warmachine is not my cup of cake, bit this one was great with its two levels!

Warmachine

Warmachine

Warmachine lower level

Warmachine lower level

TSA Afghanistan Participation

TSA Afghanistan Participation

THS  (Fort George 1779)

THS
(Fort George 1779)

THS  (Fort George 1779)

THS
(Fort George 1779)

THS  (Fort George 1779)

THS
(Fort George 1779)

THS  (Fort George 1779)

THS
(Fort George 1779)

Stirpitz Hussars  Ocana 1809

Stirpitz Hussars
Ocana 1809

SELWG Valhalla Demo

SELWG
Valhalla Demo

Red vs. Blue

Red vs. Blue

Red Star Games Dien Bien Phu Table

Red Star Games Dien Bien Phu Table

RCW (I think)

RCW (I think)

Rapid Fire Market Garden

Rapid Fire Market Garden

North Star Games 1672

North Star Games 1672

Napoleonic Paper Flats

Napoleonic Paper Flats

Militia Brabantia Wargames Club - Punic Wars Naval

Militia Brabantia Wargames Club – Punic Wars Naval

Militia Brabantia Wargames Club - Punic Wars Naval

Militia Brabantia Wargames Club – Punic Wars Naval

Megabattles Ligny

Megabattles Ligny

Megabattles Ligny

Megabattles Ligny

Megabattles Ligny

Megabattles Ligny

Medival Japan Demo table

Medival Japan Demo table

Medival Japan Demo table

Medival Japan Demo table

Flames of War Market Garden

Flames of War Market Garden

Flames of War Market Garden

Flames of War Market Garden

Korean War

Korean War

Korean War

Korean War

Flames of War

Flames of War

Flames of War Ardennes

Flames of War Ardennes

Fire and Sword Demo

Fire and Sword Demo

De Alde Garde Geulders vs. Geulders

De Alde Garde
Geulders vs. Geulders

Darkest Africa

Darkest Africa

Darkest Africa

Darkest Africa

D-Day

D-Day

D-Day

D-Day

D-Day

D-Day

Culloden 1746

Culloden 1746

Culloden

Culloden

Crush the Kaiser

Crush the Kaiser

Crush the Kaiser

Crush the Kaiser

Blood Bowl

Blood Bowl

Battlegroup Fall of the Reich

Battlegroup Fall of the Reich

Battlegroup Fall of the Reich

Battlegroup Fall of the Reich

Barry Hilton

Barry Hilton

Barry Hilton

Barry Hilton

ACW

ACW

54mm ECW

54mm ECW

Now these were the general impressions from the show and now on the game I hosted… the battle of Möckern. I have to admit, that we did not really get to play a lot. There were always so many people who came to chat, that eventually there was no cohesive game to speak off. This will be remedied soon though, since we are planning to game it for good, before the year is over.

DHC Wargames Club  Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club
Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

Thanks to all who came by and introduced themselves, really enjoyed chatting with all of you. Hope you got the same feeling in return!

DHC Wargames Club  Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club
Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

What surprised me, was that this was the only game on display that dealt with the Völkerschlacht of Leipzig / Battle of Nations. Given that the bicentennial was only two weeks ago, I would have guessed there would be about a dozen other games.

And I was even more impressed by one gentleman who looked at the uniforms and flags of the troops on the table in detail and then went on to ask if this was Möckern. Really impressed by this kind off-the-top-of-the-head knowledge!!! And it made me proud to see that all the details I have worked on have not been wasted. Thank you!

DHC Wargames Club  Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club
Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club  Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club
Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club  Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club
Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club  Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

DHC Wargames Club
Völkerschlacht von Leipzig, Battle of Möckern

Now someone lease also made me proud and that was Sami, who spend the day (and the previous night in the hotel) in the most well behaved way. Not bad for a dog of 5 month on his first big trip to a war-games show!

Sami

Sami

And this is the view we got just when we left the grounds at the show.

Scheldt

Scheldt

Hope you enjoyed the report and hope to see you next year!

 

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Posted by on November 3, 2013 in ACW, Ancients, Medival, Modern, Napoleonic, WWI, WWII

 

Crisis Antwerp 2012 picture report

So yesterday it was time again for my favourite show of the year… Crisis in Antwerp.

Now as the kind reader of this blog knows since my picture report from last year, this year was the first year for Crisis to move to Hangar 29. It was a huge improvement over the old Metropolis. The light was far better and so was the air due to the much higher ceilings. So if you were kept from attending Crisis due to the stories of bad light and air over the last few years, you should definitely give it a go. Honestly… there is no reason why you should not give it a go if you live in western Europe or the South of the UK actually. The other positive thing was… there was much more space now than ever before, especially with much bigger aisles. And virtually all the traders had more space as well, which meant more table space to show the off good stuff. Oh and if you still remember the venue from before Metropolis (I do… does this mean I am getting old), Crisis has gone light-years from that!

But enough of that… on to the photos (which are all linked to bigger versions). I will do my best to describe what can be seen and which club hosted the game. If you find that I mislabeled your game, please feel free to contact me!

Oh and all the people on the photos are just there for size reference. So please do not complain if you can be seen on a picture! 😉

First up is an aerial photos of the first hall (yes there as a second one about as big):

The French adventure in Mexico:

28mm Napoleonics (Stipsicz Hussars):

Zulu (South London Warlord):

DUX Britanicum (Too Fat Lardies):

28mm Medieval:

Cholet 1793, 15mm Napoleonics:

I assume this was Dutch East Indies in 15mm:

Battlegroup Kursk Demo, 15mm WWII:

Fireforge Games Demo, 28mm Medieval:

Stronghold Terrain showpiece 28mm:

15mm WWII Pacific:

Malifaux, “Soulstone Rush in Bayou City”, 28mm (Murphy’s Heros):

28mm Lord of the Ring demo piece (if I remember correctly, this was from someone building custom terrain):

Beneath the Lilly Banners, 28mm (League of Augsburg / Barry Hilton):

Sorry, I did not see you around Barry!

Fictional AWI encounter, 28mm (Wargames Soldiers and Strategy Magazine):

Fall Gelb, 15mm WWII and a real eye candy:

Monte Casino Campaign, 15mm WWII / FOW:

The Siege of Troy, 28mm:

20mm WWI (Crush the Kaiser):

20mm Cold War:

Freebooters Fate Demo, 28mm:

15mm Napoleonic Peninsular (De Alde Garde):

28mm War of the Roses:

28mm WWII Pacific, Bolt Action rules (and they made a hell of a lot of noise rolling the dice in a mess tin):

28mm Napoleonics:

20mm WWII, Pegasus Bridge:

Red Star Miniatures Demo table, 28mm Cold War (Belgians and British vs. Soviets):

18mm Fantasy (THS):

 
38 Comments

Posted by on November 4, 2012 in Medival, Modern, Napoleonic, WWI, WWII

 

Painting mud

The recent posts about the minis for the La Bricole painting competition kicked off a lot of requests for my recipe for how I painted the mud. I am happy to deliver, but I have to say that it is so simple, that I am too embarrassed to call it a tutorial.

First a few words on where to paint the mud. Now while battlefields themselves can be wet from constant rain and the like, they are often not that muddy. This requires the soil to be churned up. Either from plowing, dozens of feet walking over the same spot, hooves, wheels, tracks or explosions. So this might not happen at too many places on the battlefields themselves, but it sure happens on the march or in camp. So even with soldiers just arriving on a pristine battlefield, they will be dirty. Obviously most of the dirt will around the feet and ankles, their knees (while striking tents, preparing foot or just sitting on the ground) or if you want on their behinds (usually not worth the effort since it would be hidden by the coats anyway). The exception I make are officers, since they usually had people setting up their tents, cooking their food and most of th time did not have to sit on the ground. So I only “muddy” their feet. With soldiers wearing greatcoats I also muddy up the lower edge of the coat, assuming that it would brush on the ground while kneeling, sitting down or just getting their share of mud thrown up by the shoes while walking or marching.

Now on to the actual painting. Obviously you should have painted the clothing and boots by now, or anything you want dirtied up. What you need is an old, wide brush. The ones usually used for basecoating are just fine. The hairs should not be longer than 1/2 the original length and no less than 2/3. It does not matter if some hairs are longer then others. Now you can use both synthetic or organic (red sable), but chances are good that paint will clog the brush up. So organic brushes are better since they will not melt if you need a solvent to clean them. So the brush should look like this:

old brush

old brush

Pick up paint with it and brush it out on a piece of paper until you have about the amount left on it you would need for drybrushing. Now stiple the dirty areas with paint. For the first step I use Valejo “Flat Earth” (VAL 983). This represents the mud that is still somewhat wet.

Mud step 1

Mud step 1

I now repeat this with Valejo Panzer Aces “Feldgrau II Highlight” (VAL 339). This represents the mud that has already started to dry. Go easier on the spots you already did since you still want “wet mud” to be showing through. And stiple some on a little higher, giving the impression of mud that splashed well… a little higher. In real life the higher you go the less will splash there, meaning there will be less new mud getting there and giving the old more chance to dry.

Mud step 2

Mud step 2

And that is it. I usually paint metal stuff like sword sheaths, spurs and so on after doing the mud. Assuming that there is no fabric it can soak into, I think it will not cling on as good, dry out and fall or rub off faster.

In the end the results should look like this:

Loading 6pdr.

Loading 6pdr.

Bavarian Grenadiers

Bavarian Grenadiers

French Grenadiers

French Grenadiers

As you can see the effect works best on dark and light colours and not as good on tans and browns (what a surprise). Hope you can put this to good use!

 
 

Crisis Antwerp 2011

Since I was I Crisis in Antwerp yesterday, I also want to share some photos with you. While I had planned to host an Operation Barbarossa game, that did unfortunately not happen, since other members of my club did not have the time to attend and it would have been too much to host on my own. So I only came as a visitor.

Except for the obvious amounts of shopping (mainly Perry Napoleonics from Dave Thomas and bases from Warbases) there was a lot of talking to do. Some of it yielded some very interesting facts.
First of all this will be the last Crisis held at Metropolis. The new venue will be about one klick (kilometre for those not into military speak) away. The new venue will have free parking again, more space, better lighting and a better air circulation. Catering will be done by the Tin Soldiers and include food (opposed to just drink).

In other news there were flyers around for Action 2012 to be held at JHQ Rheindalen sometime in March. Now this came as a big surprise since this years Action was supposed to be the last one. It was also surprising, since the flyer had the logo of the AWA (Army Wargames Association). Now on the AWA newsgroup there is discussion about a replacement convention called Tactics in JFC HQ Brunssum (Netherlands). I will try to keep you posted when I know more.

As some of you might have heard there is a company called Fireforge Games that will release plastic mounted Crusader (Teutonic) Knights soon. Now they had a table at Crisis showing some 3-ups pf the upcoming minis and they looked real nice:

These are not exactly anything I will do in the near future, but still they looked mighty nice and should prove more than just interesting for anyone into this period.

Next up are the games being presented. Now if you hosted a game that does not show up here it has nothing to do with me not liking it, but more likely with my camera messing up the shots I took due to the poor lighting.

This is a 28mm back to back WWI game by the Marie Louises de Flandres:

Staying with World War One, this time in 20mm… Crush the Kaiser. The game and rules looked nice, so I decided to buy the rules to give them a try in due time, too:

One of my favorites was Barry Hilton’s (The League of Augsburg) Beneath the Lilly Banners game. I enjoyed a great chat with Barry, too. I have exchanged a lot of online chatting with him over the past few years regarding his R2E rules for Napoleonics and it was great to attach a face to the name! The “ironic” thing about his game (being hosted in Belgium) was, that it depicted a battle in Ireland but featured a lot of Flemish troops. Sorry for some of the strange unit shots… they are rather meant to show the basing then the minis:

Some 28mm Vietnam:

The Italian Invasion of Ethiopia in 1935:

Pardulons demonstration table:

And my other big favorite… Leipzig 1813 by THS (Team für historische Simulationen):

And last some shots from assorted games:

 
6 Comments

Posted by on November 6, 2011 in General, Modern, WWI, WWII

 

Book review: Ospreys Campaign 187 “Cambrai 1917, The birth of armoured warfare”

Today I want to start something with new. For me part of the hobby is historical research. Obviously this means reading books, too. Now I do not have as much time for that as I would like these days, but from time to time I manage to finish a book. So here is the first, Ospreys Campaign 187 “Cambrai 1917, The birth of armoured warfare” by Alexander Turner.

Cambrai 1917

Facts first. The book itself contains 96 pages, filled with contemporary photographs, the Osprey specific colour paintings (by Peter Dennis) and a number of maps. It covers the timeframe from the planning stages up to December 7th 1917, or in other words roughly 6 month. The rough historical context, planning stages and descriptions of forces and commanders cover the first 36 pages. The actual combat (November 20th to December 4th) covers pages 37 to 87 and the rest is the aftermath, historic notes and so on.

This actually shows the biggest deficit of the book… too little room for such a large battle. In both major fields (preparation, the battle itself) there simply is not enough room to do more than scratch the surface. For example when it comes to the commanders, it only covers two British (General the Hon. Sir Julian Byng and Brig.-Gen. Hugh Elles) and two Germans (Kronprinz Rupprech von Bayern and Gen. von der Marwitz) each of them receiving about 1/3rd of a page. Same holds true for the parts covering the combat as well. At times you get a paragraph or two covering the battle for a village, other times the action of a whole Regiment only gets a sentence or two. In the end it makes it hard to understand the whole strategic or even tactical context.

Unfortunately this is about all I can say about the book. It is too short and as a result far too basic to cover something as big as this battle. The photos, paintings and maps make it worthwhile, but the text… well one should rather save the money and buy a real book on the topic.

So how do I rate the book as a whole? I have decided to rate the books I review by relating their real value to their official retail. So if you really want to buy the book… official retail is 18,95 US$, but it is only worth about 5 US$.

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2011 in Books, Reviews, WWI

 

eBay, volcanoes… oh and miniatures

I do not know how you feel, but it is my impression, that eBay has gone from a good site to buy stuff to a run down flea market. Here in Germany you either find professional traders that sell for the same price you can get in any brick and mortar store or people who try to get rid of their trash using the 1 Euro auction (and relist it every week until it sells). So my eBay account has gone mostly unused in recent month. So what a surprise that I actually bid (and won) on 6 auctions this weekend.

I started on Saturday with two Black Dog upgrade kits. These are 1:48th scale stowage for modern US vehicles and should come in very handy with those Hummers and Strikers I am doing at the moment (and maybe if there are some leftovers add to my already finished USMC vehicles).

Next up on Sunday was a die-cast Spürpanzer Fuchs. Now it took me well over a year to get this one three times. When it arrives, all three will be disassembled, converted into the transport version, repainted and finally complete my modern Bundeswehr force.

And last but not least, I got three 1:48th scale WWI bi- and tri-plane kits. Two German and one Australian. While I was not in urgent need for these, they were reasonably cheap and came from one seller (saving me additional shipping).

So right now I am waiting for these to arrive. While talking about waiting for things to arrive and planes. I am waiting for a couple of packages from the UK and it seems they are being delayed by Chuck Norris opening the BBQ season. In other words there is a volcano in Iceland that has decided blow some ash into the air which had an effect on flights to and from Germany last week and seems to be delaying my packages as well. 😦

Grímvötn vulcano on 22nd of May 2011 (NASA picture)

Grímvötn volcano on 22nd of May 2011 (NASA picture)

So what is on my table right now? Well I am working myself through another unit of Prussian Landwehr and finished the bases for the minis I showed you last week. So lets start with a French Brigadier (the Prussian Feldjäger will be added this week). The officer is from Victrix. I painted him up in 2009, this actually being my very first Napoleonic mini. Back then I had planned to make him a regimental officer and put him on a base in a infantry unit, but in the end decided against it. So he lingered around for almost two years now until I decided to base him up as a Brigadier. The other mini on the base is the converted grenadier from last weeks post.

French brigadier

French brigadier

French brigadier

French brigadier

And while we are talking about it… this is the unit he was meant to be part of. This is my first Napoleonic unit I painted, started in 2009 and only finished 8 month later in 2010 due to me working in the south of Germany during that time. Minis are all Victrix. This one is meant to be a generic unit and does not depict any specific unit for a specific battle. Sorry for the strange photo format… these pictures were originally edited for the Steve Dean Painting Competition, where they failed miserably.

Generic French infantry unit

Generic French infantry unit

Close ups

Close ups

So stay tuned for the Feldjäger posts!

 

Getting started

Well I guess times have caught up with me. When blogs first emerged a couple of years ago I simply thought that all they achieved was senseless ramblings. But over recent years that has changed. I have found a number of great blogs, which convinced me, that there is something more to blogging then first met my eye. Plus I find myself more and more lacking the time to update our clubs homepage  (dhc-wargames.de). So I decided to start a blog, too.

So what is this about? Well generally speaking… about the biggest of my four hobbies… tabletop wargaming. Although I fear I will mention the other three from time to time as well. So you can expect posts about minis painted, projects being worked on and games played.

Speaking of which… projects. Last week it dawned on me, that I already had my projects planned until 2018. I am not sure if it is pure madness to plan this far ahead (a topic I opened on theminiaturespage.com seemed to suggest that I am the only one), but this is the way it is right now. There is one show a year, that is the main event for me. That is Crisis in Antwerp, Belgium. Eventually there will be other shows to attend, but this one holds a special place in my heart. So what have I planned for it?

  • Well for this year it will be most likely be a WWII game, since it will be 70th anniversary of Operation Barbarossa. The nice thing about it is… I already got the minis and terrain for that covered.
  • For 2012 it will be Gettysburg or at least part of day one (Archers and Davis attack on the fields around Willoughby Run from 1000h to 1200h). I know that the battle of Gettysburg was in 1863, so this will only be the 149th birthday, but since I have different plans for 2013, it had to be one year early. And again… I already have the minis and terrain covered.
  • So what is so special for 2013? It is the 200th birthday of the Völkerschlacht von Leipzig (Battle of Nations) and I want to depict Yorck´s attacks on Möckern. Now this will be a hard one, since I have no terrain for it yet and the only minis painted for it so far is a battery of Prussian artillery which should be finished this coming weekend.
  • 2014 will see the 70th anniversary of the Normandy Landings, so that was an easy pick. Again most of the minis and all the terrain are ready, so this will buy me time for 2015.
  • Obviously it will be Waterloo in 2015. My plans right now are the massed cavalry attacks, but again… the numbers of painted minis are ridiculously low, so this will be even more work then Leipzig in about as little time.
  • I have no plans for 2016 and 2017, although I am sure that one of those years will feature Quatre Bras, since I will have most of those minis ready when I am done with Waterloo.
  • 2018 will see the Kaiserschlacht for its 100th birthday, but only on a skirmish scale.

As you can see, there will probably be lots of Napoleonic minis to be seen in the future on this blog. We shall be starting off this weekend with the 54ème Inf. de Ligne, the 12ème Cuirassiers and the Preussische Fussartilleriebatterie Nr. 12.

I hope I have not completely come full circle here, in the sense that I have only provided senseless ramblings. But since I do not want to end a post without any pictures… here is one of a Prussian artillery officer. The mini is a 28mm Calpe Miniatures Horse Artillery Officer. I painted him for the 12th Btry., but he will not end up on their initial bases, since I felt, that he looked a little out-of-place. He will find his place once I tackle the wagon park, but until then, he will be all by himself. Just as I am here right now. So comments will be appreciated! 😉

Prussian Artillery Officer

Prussian Artillery Officer

Rear view

 
3 Comments

Posted by on April 13, 2011 in ACW, Nap.: Prussian, Napoleonic, WWI, WWII