Monday, January 19, 2009

The Plan for 2009

So when do we get painted, eh?

It is fairly hopeless for someone with my attention span to try to plan for the year but I did have a go last year so it is worth reviewing how I did and try to do something similar for 2009.

For 2008 my top priorities were:

Great Northern War
Early Saxons
Greeks and Spartans
Punic War

With subsidiary categories:

Back of Beyond
Lord of the Rings
WW1 East Africa
Napoleonic Quatre Bras
3rd century Romans and Palmyrans
Caesarian Romans
Wars of the Roses.

So what did I actually paint? Looking at the priority categories first:

Sudan British 18
Sudan Mahdist 17
Sudan Egyptian 14

Not a bad total but I ground to a halt as soon as I got to the Gordon Highlanders!


Swedes 17

I could have done better on this but I was frustrated by the lack of Russians to oppose them. At least I have seeen greens of the Musketeer Miniatures Russian pikeman now and they are supposed to be being cast right now.


Early Saxons 11

Not too bad considering they aren't uniformed.


Spartans 10
These are exactly the sorts of figures where you can have a couple on the table and just do a bit on them when you feel like. At least I finished my main unit of Knights for Thermopylae this year.


Nothing on this!

Of my subsidiary targets I did the following:

Pulp 2
Back of Beyond 2
Lord of the Rings 6
WW1 East Africa 0
Napoleonic Quatre Bras 2
3rd century Romans and Palmyrans 0
Caesarian Romans 0
Wars of the Roses. 0

Well, that shows that I chose the wrong periods there, largely!

What I did do which weren't part of the plan but which I already had figures for were:

Darkest Africa 32 A lot of Ruga Ruga and Ngoni
Byzantine 8
Gladiators 12 And played a game at the club (shock!)
ECW 7 (Finished my 48 man Tower Hamlets Trained band)
Swashbucklers 2
WW1 Germans 16
What were new purchases for 2008 were:

Zulus 16
Normans 14 I find these very quick to do.
Giving a total of 206 figures altogether.

So, going forward I am going to work on these priority periods in 2009:


I want to get some more Highlanders done, an artillery piece, finish my second Rub of 60 figures and finish my two Beja Camel units.

Great Northern War

I've already got some more of these on the go so I would like to finish the first full regiment and start some Russians.

Dark Ages

Early Saxons, Normans and maybe some Anglo Saxons. I've already finished some this year and would like to finish my second unit of Early Saxons.

Greeks and Spartans

I will continue to do the odd figure here and there but want to get some Thracians done for a change.

Punic War

I'm not planning to do this other than some Celts.

The Great War

This is promoted to a new priority. I'm working on Early War Germans, then I'd like to do some Early War British. I am doing some Late War Highlanders and a tank and have started some Late War Germans. I would like to do some more East Africa too. Looming over this horribly is the Arab Revolt from Artizan. If they do Arabs on camels I am doomed!
Zulu War
I need to get my first British finished and do a couple of full units of Zulus. I have already started some more Zulus and am inspired as I have acquired a Zulu War assegai.


I plan to get my first unit of French done and have about half a dozen figures in an advanced state.

That's it. The new technique this year is to paint bigger batches of figures, 10-12, rather than my usual 4-6. This means I won't necessarily get my six figures done a week but maybe get more done over a month. Secondly, I am only going to have priority period figures on my workbench. If I fancy doing something else it will be pulled out worked on or it will have to go back into the boxes.
So, big sort out this week so I can have two full days at the weekend which will make a change as I have had to give a lot of time to my little boy to help him revise for his school entrance exam this week. We are planning to have another Lord of the Rings battle companies game this weekend to celebrate the end of his revision!

Games Workshop battleboard

I've started work on this now and hope to get it finished in the next couple of weeks.

The board comes in six 2'x2' tiles. Four have hills on one corner and two are flat. They come in grey plastic and are very heavy. They seem quite strong and my wife, who bought it for me for Christams said that in the Games workshop she bought it in they said that they had got a fourteen stone man (196lbs) to stand on it without it breaking.

The boards have some texture but I decided to add more to match the bases of my figures, more of which later. The first thing I needed to do was remove the skulls and bones that GW have scattered across the boards. I want to be able to use these boards for all periods so don't need this (rather unnecessary) addition. It doesn't take long to carve the skulls into what look like rocks as there are only half a dozen or so on five of the boards. The plastic is very hard, however, resulting in several cut fingers!

The real issue is going to be the sixth board with the skull pits in.

Carving these away will be more of a challenge! I did think about using plastic filler to fill them in but the boards have a fair bit of flex inthem and I thought it would fall out. Instead I have decided to turn them into a couple of ponds.

The next step was to undercoat them black and I used Citadel acrylic black which coats really well. The GW shop people told me it takes three cans to cover all six boards and that seems about right (I have only done four so far). I'm sure I could have got cheaper black spray somewhere else but I'm lazy so just got everthing in GW, pretty much.

Actually, the boards look pretty cool black and it has me thinking I need to do a Mordor one for the Lord of the Rings. A friend went to Iceland recently, to take advantage of the credit crunch prices, but she said that she couldn't live there as it was like living in Mordor!

The next stage was to paint the board a base brown. My wife got me the GW board scenery kit but I didn't like the brown colour they included which was too red. I paint the bases of my figures Humbrol 29 and had a bit of luck in that it is one of the few colours they do in aerosol cans. It takes a whole can to do one board, however!

In part two I will texture, highlight and add the grass!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Blog Hit Parade: Year End

Here are the year end totals for my blogs this year. Cavegirls got nearly twice the visits of Pulp Warriors with the Sudan blog leading the "proper" wargaming blogs. I am frankly amazed by the number of visits these blogs get and really need to be better at getting content into them. There is a seventeenth on Quatre Bras out there but I haven't really done anything on it yet. Never mind, Napoleonics are next on the painting table when I have finished the part-painted Anglo-Saxons, Celts and Early Saxons on the workbench, hopefully in the next few days.

1 Cavegirls in Fur Bikinis 93,164
2 Pulp Warriors 48,428
3 19th Century Sudan Armies 31,897
4 Legatus' Wargames Armies 20,041
5 Spartan WAB 8,655
6 Return to Darkest Africa 6,419
7 Great Northern War 3,740
8 Punic War WAB 3,348
9 1st-4th Century Roman WAB 3,301
10 Dark Ages WAB 3,103
11 Lord of the Rings 2,306
12 Byzantine WAB 2,072
13 The Great War 1557 (since May 2008)
14 Zulu War 1024 (since September 2008)
15 Swashbucklers 461