Welcome to my blog, the story of my continuing journey into the World of Zombie Wargames.

Monday, 22 August 2016

Personalities (Pirates 6)

Captains 3.  
It seems that almost every figure manufacturer feels the need to produce 'specials', or 'personality'  figures with probably the most prominent one being that of Blackbeard, or Edward Teach (or Thatch) if you prefer, being of course the epitome of a pirate.
The photograph on the right shows three such personality figures (all Foundry IIRC)  with their version of Blackbeard on the trio's left.
"I'm Blackbeard", "No! I'm Blackbeard", "I'm Spartacus"
Not a bad representation I guess, but he's not the only one I've got!
The photograph on the left shows another two 'Blackbeards' (How I ended up with two identical sculpts, I don't know).
The other Sculpts shown have probably all been given names of the more famous real-life pirates, such as Avery, Morgan etc. something which amuses me, but for all the wrong reasons.
Three more "Historical" characters ?

The variations between all of these is sufficient to give a wide selection of  figures that are emminently suitable as Captains for both pirate, merchant and Naval vessels.
The only thing I dislike about a lot of them (and a lot of other figures too) archetypical pistol raised in the air. Anyone who owns or has used a large pistol will know how heavy these things are and it's not generally done save for a formal duel (maybe).
"We could be proper pirates if we had hats"
Most of these can be used as ships' captains, but there are also those which shout out "Civilian!" (to me at least) , such as these three on the right. It's probably the lack of piratical hats or something!
There is ample scope for figures, such as these three to be used as Governors, important passengers etc.

 The last two I have for this section is the pair on the right; as they're so distinctive I have to assume they were listed as "named" or 'special' or something.
They wouldn't look out of place in a French-Indian war setting, the figure on the right being very 'Indian' looking imo.

Good, bad and ugly?
There are of course some Female Pirates too, amongst the 'personalities ( no doubt all called Ann , Mary or Grace (Bonny, Reid and O'Malley respectively.), but these vary from the historical to the hysterical.
The photograph on the left shows the three most historical looking in this selection.
(Sorry about the blurriness, but I blame the crap photographer )

"Avast behind" (and a bulging front too).
These next three amuse me, probably more than any other figures I have in this collection.
From left to right we have a pantomime lead woman playing the role of a man; the typical heroine from an old black and white film of yesteryear and finally a cross between a fantasy pirate and Rambo.

"We're laydees"
The three women on the left, a maid and two 'ladies', not quite the sum of my civilian female personnel, but a good chunk of it!
These three could easily be used over a span of a hundred years or so., but if I recall correctly they were indeed in some manufacturers Pirate range. I have quite a few similarly looking Redoubt figures from their Musketeers'  range (unpainted)

"We're feckin ladies too"
 Rounding off the female theme  are these two wonderful (imo) characters, suitable both for civilian and pirate use, being basically females in male clothing.
The figure below I discovered also to be a female I (I believe from the Old Glory Range) though I was dubious at first as to her sex.
It was only whilst working my way through the Old Glory pirate listings that I came across the figure and realised it was female.

"I may or may not be, I'm not sure"

That's it then for this week, next week will be the remainder of the odds and sods that haven't had their five minutes of fame, some more civilians and diverse crew that haven't been covered in a previous post.

As always your comments (and patience with this series of posts) are welcomed and appreciated.

Monday, 15 August 2016

The Bucket Brigade and Others (Pirates 4)

Over-manned gun
Continuing with my posts about my pirates this week I've sorted through the not-so-vast number of supernumeraries of my collection, the gun crew and a few others of note.
When I made my ships I did design them to be figure friendly, so that gun-ports were spaced sufficiently apart to allow for a figure  to stand on either side of the  model cannons.
The gunners
I had allowed for three gunners per gun and have various figures that are obviously only intended as gunners, so there are figures carrying cannon balls, with rammers, powder ladles and so on, both in action (ramming) and idle poses. Needless to say I haven't enough gunner figures to man all my guns, but I feel do have enough for my purposes.
"Be a pirate they said. It'll be exciting they said"
Along with the more or less unarmed gunners I also have various chaps that can also serve as gun-crew, such as the two figures on the right pulling on ropes. They can of course just serve as generic crew (also known as cannon fodder), but they're obviously not as 'exiciting' as some of the more dynamic cutlass wielding curmudgeons available.
I place the two figures below in the same category as the two rope-pullers, in that they're 'nice' but hardly anything more than eye candy (maybe not so much with my brushwork)
"We're occasionally excited"
"I wish I'd picked a cutlass now"
I seem to have a lot of these figures that are 'nice' to have but wouldn't be anyone's first choice, the two figures with boat-hooks,  on the left perhaps well illustrating the point. They're nice enough figures and it's obvious as to what their purpose is. They're a bit awkward for a busy deck with their boat-hooks as long as they are, but they could have a bit of  future serving as dockside workers.
"How come we never get shore leave?"
The next pair of figures really do look like a pair of fish out of water until they take up their rightful place behind a ship's wheel, as they're both 'Helmsmen'. It's obvious that every ship with a ship's wheel needs one of these chaps, so although they look awkward when not at the helm they're a bit of a necessity I guess.
At a pinch they could be used as an audience for the two musicians above. I've a similar opinion of the two lookouts below; they're needed but look out of context anywhere other than as lookouts. It's even further strange that they're pointing forward (presumably) whilst shouting rear-ward! 
"I'm pretending I've got a spyglass"... "Me too"
Pirate Line-dancing, hand jive.
It took me quite a while to figure out what the purpose of these five rapscallions  was exactly.
I did work out eventually that they were also gunners, but were intended for the swivel guns that I don't have! (But I did intend to get some - honest injun guv)

"How come I get two?"
Just in case you were wondering why this post was entitled "The Bucket Brigade", well here they are, men carrying buckets, just the four of them (probably three too many).
They look OK and could be used both as crew (and more importantly to me ) and civilians, carrying the many types of stuff carried in buckets.
Along with the bucket brigade comes the barreleers (that's a word - right ?) and all I've said about the bucketeers (that sounds a bit more 'piratey' - right?) can be applied to these . They look OK  gun crew with barrels of gunpowder, but could just as easily double as civilians lugging about barrels of rum in a tavern.

So that's it once more for another week and once more I haven't done anything over the last week, I'll be posting more about my pirates next week (sorry).

It remains for me to welcome a new follower to both my blogs (this one and my Gladiator blog - in case you'd forgotten), so "Welcome", Michal Kucharski, (whom I can't find a blog for), I hope you and the other visitors to my blogs find something of interest.

As always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated

Monday, 8 August 2016

Muskets (Pirates 3)

All 60 (ish) of my 'musketeers' - bring on D'Artagnan
So in my continuing audit of my Pirate forces I'm  slowly sorting them into various groups and  musket armed figures are in great abundance as can be seen from the photograph.
Worst case of chest-foot ever?
They're quite a mixed bunch in both quality and armament, despite being meant to be musket armed.
There are a few that have carbine length 'muskets' and others that have attached bayonets (? - yep, I know -wtf?), but I'm happy to say most have a chunky  weapon that looks like the length a musket should be (- I get a bit annoyed seeing muskets that appear to be short.)
Amongst the 'shooters' (I've omitted pistols from this category) I came across several of the more esoteric (read Hollywood) weapons that manufactures have produced in their foundries (teehee).
Of course there is also the poor chap that's cursed to carry around a chest on his foot for the rest of his career. I know that manufacturers love to do this sort of thing but it does annoy me, especially as he's not the only one that I have!
Not quite so annoying are the lookouts who are pointing one way whilst looking the other way and presumably shouting something akin to "Sails ahoy"

"They're behind us to my front"
Some 'blunderbus' armed figures (BG 2nd from the left)
 Some of the more usable shooters are armed with the inevitable "Blunderbus", another favourite of both coachmen and Hollywood.

 (It was sorting through these that I found my "Ben Gunn"
They vary greatly in the quality of the representation of their armament as the actual weapons were in reality.

"I thought we were robbing banks"
Along with muskets and blunderbusses I have what appears to be a shot-gun armed pirate, no problem normally as shotguns are really just another form of musket, but this guy has a double-barrelled one!

Adding to the mix there is a figure armed with a multi-barrelled firearm, I presume loosely based on the Henry Nock Volley gun (late 18th, early 19th century) as used by the Royal Navy.
"I'll get the seven on the right, you get the other four"

I'll leave this post with a few pics of the more esoterically armed figures I have (and have no idea what to do with.)
"And the salesman said this is what all the cool pirates are using these days"
"You're no, wrong there laddie" 
"When he said hand-cannon...."
"It looked smaller in the catalogue"
That's it for this week and I'll be continuing to post about my Pirate figure collection next time (sorry).

Thanks for taking the time to visit and as always your comments are both welcomed and appreciate.

Monday, 1 August 2016

Bloody Sepoy! (Pirates2)

I was a bit stumped this week (as usual) bout what to post about and I'd decided to do an 'audit' on my pirate figures collection.
Whilst I didn't really need to know how many musket-armed or sword(cutlass) armed figures I had, it would give me something else to post about and another chance to take some photographs of the whole collection.
Or so I thought !
I did start sorting through the two boxes of pirates that I posted about last week when I once more came across the Sepoy that I should have put with the others mutineers.
It was returning him to his rightful place in one of the drawers of a steel office filing cabinet) that I came across the following figures (see photograph below)
 The drawers aren't all labelled so it was a process of just going through the unlabelled ones until the correct one was found.
It came as a bit of a surprise to find yet more pirates.
They're painted but haven't had their bases finished (the other two boxes contain Celts/ancient Brits or some such that were to face my Romans though I can't ever see that happening)

So what was the results of this find ? The photographs reveal all:
28 cutlass/pistol armed pirates of various manufacturers
A trio of axe weilding scallywags
Four pirate-type women of dubious virtues
The women are very 'butch' looking (not that I'm bothered) and they're a cut above the other flimsily dressed  types (of which I also have a few). I have no idea of the manufacturer, but they do look like they're all from the same one.
So yet another 35 figures to add to the mix which means I've roughly painted (in both senses of the word) about 200 figures and have based all but these 35. All I have to do now is figure out how I originally based the majority  and try to match these up (one day).
The magnificent seven peg-legs
Whilst sorting through the others I came across even more peg-legs (or single legged types) to add to the original three (the three in the centre of the photograph above) making a total of seven altogether! I do wonder if they're as prolific as they're made out to be and it seems that every manufacturer of "pirates" seems to find it necessary to have a 'peg leg', not that I'm complaining,merely commenting.
I also discovered that the Wargames Foundry version of  Long John Silver is the third figure from the left in the above photograph, which prompted me to search for both Ben Gunne (sp?) and Jim Hawkins, being the only two others from the 'Treasure Island' pack that I could recollect.

So that's it then for this week - another thirty-five pirates to add to the mix, even if there is still a bit of basing to be done and all because of a misplaced Sepoy!

Thanks once more for visiting and as always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated.

Monday, 25 July 2016


The first box - very dusty
Yes, I know that this is meant to be a blog about Zombie gaming, but generating interest from anyone else has proved less than fruitful and as I have found that solo-gaming isn't for me I have been looking to finish off some old projects, my Pirates being just one of many.
The task of finding where I'd stored my pirates was frustrating as I found one drawer of them quickly but the second (and the majority of my collection) took a bit of detective work - I guess I really should label all my storage!

Another view of the first box
The first box contained about ninety figures and I was pleasantly  surprised to find that amongst all the pirates wielding various melee weapons and firearms I also had a sprinkling of figures that could be (or maybe were) civilians, amongst them some women who would do well as serving wenches, servants and governors daughters!
There were of course several figures that were obvious destined to be gun-crew and a couple that were helmsmen, standing with arms akimbo.

I was delighted to eventually find the second box, hidden in plain view in a box file along with several others (all unlabelled of course)
Contained within the box was the same mix of figures as the first only more-so, there being some 160+ figures.
All the figures are based on 20mm square bases (and I have no plans to change this either) and have a 20mm magnetic base added too. They all sit snugly on sheet steel and don't move about much - probably much to their chagrin.
Close-up of some of the second (main) box
These were all painted at least fifteen or more years ago when I could just about see what I was painting and I remember not being happy with my attempts at the colour of their bases, though I am fairly happy now. 
The figures are: a mix of Redoubt (the first I bought); a large number of Wargame Foundry (though for some reason not the Treasure Island set - a choice  I regret); a lot of Eureka pirates - purchased from Irregular Miniatures iirc and a sprinkling of Ral Partha. Of course I can't really distinguish which is which now.

The inevitable pirate archetypes
What is not noticeable from the photographs is that that these have all had a gloss varnish applied to them (I think), but it has lost a little of its sheen over the years.
I'm also sad to have to say that sadly these figures have never been used in any games, not a single one! The sepoy/mutineer that I spotted within their ranks has undoubtedly been used in an Indian mutiny game or two and he will be re-deployed to his correct storage with his other comrades.
So although looking a little worse for age and in need of a good dusting off, they're still usable.

As I strive for something to blog about, please don't be surprised if I fall back to showing more photographs of these, I may even be able to drum up some enthusiasm among the few (the very few) potential opponents.

Once more, that's it then for another week, thanks for taking the time to visit and as always your comments are both appreciated and welcomed.

Monday, 18 July 2016


The full complement.
Having sorted out my paint-able and rescued the almost-but-not-quite-finished cops that had been sat there for over a year I drummed up sufficient enthusiasm to re-glue the one that had come off his base and retouch all the minor scrapes that they'd endured with their fall from grace (and my paint-table).
It's only been a year and a half since I started these and they're the only 28mm figures I've painted in that time too!
Little and large

In the picture above it's not apparent just how big the foremost figure is, the photograph on the left shows the true difference.
he figures come from both Old Glory and Copplestone Castings and other than these two, they're very similar in size, though one set (I can't remember which now, but I suspect it's Copplestone's) is overall slightly larger than the other.
I've grouped the following photographs, by what the remainder re armed with, irrespective of their manufacturer
I've given them dark blue uniforms with gold buttons and badges and haven't a clue how accurate this is, but I like it.

Primarily armed with truncheons (nightsticks, Billy-clubs etc.)

Thompson and shotgun

Pistol armed
Just in case you're wondering "What about doing zombie games in the 1920s?", well it has already been done! You can read the exploits of Agent Hamilton Square (iirc) and others on Irqan's Plastic Soldier blog here, but you may have to back-track some three or so years! 

I also started sorting out my some of my 54mm figures that were in the great paint-table debacle the result of which can be found on my other blog here.

Thanks for taking the time to visit and as usual your comments are both appreciated and welcomed.

Monday, 11 July 2016

What a week!

Storage sorted for at least a year or two
Last week started fine, I got my blog post out in a reasonable amount of time and had a relaxing time surfing the web, trying (probably in vain) trying to catch up on the myriad of blogs and forums that I'm interested in and catching up on some long overdue correspondence with a fellow blogger.
Tuesday saw me once more at my local grocers asking if he had a couple of veggie trays that I could have for use with my 54mm figures for my arena and for my ever-growing car collection. When he came out of 'the back' where he stores these ready for disposal, he had a stack of a dozen (one is missing from the photo btw). I was of course delighted and immediately used one to relieve the ever-growing overpopulation of my 54mm beasts, victims, gladiators and others.
On the hobby-front I managed to cut a piece of foamboard for my church into roughly the size needed for the area of the altar at the back of the church. My enthusiasm for this build has been faltering of late as I have become aware of how large a project the whole thing would be and despite cutting corners by using crap scrap and building most of what I need I have realised I'll still have to spend money somewhere along the line...

The all 'new' all singing paint table

Wednesday I had a tidy-up of my paint table forced upon me.
A quick back-story is probably in order.
At Xmas, my table was moved to allow for the addition of decorated fake flora and it has taken me until now to return it to its rightful place in the sun!
Unfortunately during the move the entire thing collapsed in on itself scattering paints, figures and sundry other items in gay abandon.
It did however give me the opportunity to 'tidy up' the whole thing and it did give me a bit of encouragement to once more look at painting some of my 28mm stuff - something I haven't done for well over a year!
I did take some photographs of the resultant debris but as in all things techy, in my case, if it can go
wrong it will as the photographs are in my camera but I can't retrieve them.
Still on the paint-table after a year or so!
So in this new-found burst of  enthusiasm and a fairly tidy table I sorted through a dozen of my 28mm 1920s police force, straightened them out, where feasible and did a little touching up of the various scrapes and chipped paint and re-glued one to his base.
I've even managed to do a little extra too, simply adding the final colour to their bases, but that's as far as I've got.
In the background of the photo above you can also see the latest figures that I have ready for the arena (they're the 54mms just in case you haven't realised!)

I can't see me doing much hobby-wise this week, I've both a hospital appointment and an imminent Doctor's appointment to fit in with being grumpier and older.

That's it for this week, on what has been a bit of a soul destroying last seve days.