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

Monday 24 September 2018

Jimland - the Future

So I've just about exhausted my current enthusiasm for my "Adventures in Jimland", I added and amended to the rules in various ways but hopefully haven't detracted from the original simple game.
So here's a few of the things I've done

a) Hexes instead of squares,. Using a hex map was, I think, a simple and obvious amendment, expanded the options in the game.
b) Expeditions couldn't start from the last terrain hex they explored.  I thought this was a little too abstract and wanted my expeditions to travel to "the front line" so to speak.
c) To aid travelling over known terrain I added explored hex movement and trails, both of which speeded up travelling to "the front"
d) I've also used a table for Native encounters, rather than cards, but keeping the proportion of each type of encounter. - I'm considering reverting to using the cards though (but expanding on them to include some of my variations.
e)Load have been able to be partial loads, so no longer is a whole load of 10 rations used to feed 5 men,. This helps in the distance an expedition can make and helps with the "getting to the front" 'problem' too.
I've been writing rules for quite a few other ideas too that I've had, but always with an eye on their simplicity and whether or not they'll have major implications on the main rules.
I have rules for building hospitals, schools and trading posts (established by taking the relevant personnel into the wilds), but haven't trialled them yet  I do like to think these things over for a good while.
Villagers in Jimland appear and disappear in quick fashion, I'm considering rules for having a permanently friendly village using the premis of schools, hospitals, mission stations or traders as above. an example, a successful missionary's conversion of  a village inhabitants' flock as the basis to form a permanent mission and hence a friendly village fixture on the map.
Canoe travel has been contemplated even though model canoes  needn't be used, whereas pack animals are needed and even though I have the pack animals, I haven't finished them nor have I used them!

The mastermap!
I do have many ideas for games in Jimland, but most, if not all,  would require players, as keeping secrets from oneself is impossible!

The map or the right is my mastermap, allowing for lots of adventure variations - eg. a race from either side of the map too some maguffin in the centre and I'm sure everyone can think of similar ideas.

And the explored area - after a dozen or so adventures!
There is still a lot of life left in exploring Jimland, but despite the interest shown by fellow bloggers, I find it's really difficult getting motivated. part of our hobby is interaction with others - solo gaming leaves me cold and I want to share my ideas with other players, bouncing them around so to speak.
I feel at times that I'm re-inventing the wheel as I'm pretty sure they'll have all been considered in the do defunct Yahoo group for 'Jimland'

On a lighter note, I took the plunge and bought a set of Paleo Diet (the more observant may have seen my "What I'm currently reading" gadget thing) along with its supplement "Fireside tales".
First read through and they seem to be what I've been looking for, fun and fairly simple, but with a fair amount of choice for playing different ways and an easily option to make your own campaigns (without the supplement). This was not an impulse buy as I've been a fan of this wargame, or rather skirmish, genre for many years. 

That's it then for this week, short and probably not so sweet, but if anyone has any mammoths they don't want...or the game "Valley of the Mammoth"\ they wish to sell...

I'm sure you've guessed that this caveman thing is a new project and I reckon it's what I've needed to boost my enthusiasm for gaming.

As always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated

Monday 17 September 2018

Jim's Landing

Earlier this year, or possibly late last year, I showed the photograph on the right as a 'tease' of a work in progress.
Obviously a building of sorts, using foamboard and coffee stirrers (of course).The reason behind the building was to have a backdrop for my photographs of expeditions leaving Jim's Landing into the wilds of Jimland.
I started the model sometime in October 2017, worked on it up until late November and then if memory serves, it was shelved as yet another unfinished project (and still is).

As I haven't managed to do a single thing  hobby-wise for over two months, I've dug this little project out to pad out my blog!for something to post.
The building on the left is a simple foamcard  model, representing an adobe style 'v' roofed building (note the roof 'joint' in the top right corner of the building), though it appears to have a lean-to roof!
The reasoning behind this building design is that it was meant to represent an earlier structure, to which  a later, larger structure was added as Jim's Landing grew in fame.
The additional structure would be entirely of wood, giving a noticeable contrast between the two parts of the building.
The front of the building half is seen in the photograph on the right.
The walls are card, with coffee-stirrer cladding for planking and notice that there is no back wall, as this will be formed from the wall of the piece above.

The two halves joined together
The rear of the building (intended as living quarters)
Boring side if the building, but note the appearance of a 'v' roof on the rear bit
Slightly more interesting side of the building.
Building front
Top down view,, the front is intended as a Bar (left) and a general store (right)
Close up of bar and store
Close up of store (on the left) and living quarters (on the right)
The roof   (yes, I did one, and yes, it was a pain in the proverbial)
Boring pic of underside of roof, showing central supports.
Photo showing roof in place  (it was the second roof I'd made)
Slightly boding side view
Front view (bit obvious)
 So it's about 95% finished and I can hear the murmurs of "why wasn't it finished ?'  etc.
The simple answer wasn't that I was bored with it at the time, nor did I run out of enthusiasm, but I was frustrated that I couldn't fond a way to pain it to my satisfaction. I'd tried various techniques on a spare piece of paling fencing made in a similar style, materials and so on, but to no avail. Painting wood to represent wood shouldn't really be that difficult, but it beat me at the time. Finishing the roof on the other hand, I have had plans for for some time and know how I'll be finishing it (if I ever return to this project). It won't be planking, shingles, tiles, turf, grass or thatch either!

So that's the post for this week then, like many others that dig out their old stuff I too have fallen back on this measure and it wasn't even the post I had intended to write about, but as this model sits on a shelf staring at me daily I thought I'd give it a new lease of life. I also bought the shader stuff at the last show specifically to see if I could use it on the wood of this model!

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

Monday 10 September 2018

Not Ned's now, but Fred's Greatest Adventure (part 3)

After the highs of the Border Reiver show, I'm once more back in the real world where gaming an my enthusiasm to do anything hobby-wise is once more at an all-time low. It must be well over a month since I have managed anything hobby-related, save for writing this blog!
Picking up then where we left the expedition, in grasslands, readying itself for another scrap...

Once more:
From the Journal of Frederick Cartington

"Once more we were set upon by hostiles, but with adequate warning we braced ourselves for their attack"
The opposition, 4 with hand Weapons to the North and 4 with bows to the South
The four 'fighters' close on the column...
...whilst their archers start their ineffective shooting 
The column breaks for cover and a defencive position...

and the natives continue to bear down upon them.
All the shooting disturbs an unwelcome guest (obligatory crap rubbish picture)
Our shooting bags a native bowman...
...but a furious melee develops,...
...joined by a rather large snake
The snake claims its first victim...

...meantime the gorilla thumps its chest and bellows...
... with no effect as it's now quite far from both protagonists.
The snake chomps its second native victim, but is also wounded...
and our gunfire claims another, proving too much for the natives, who flee
The reformed column
"The fight was swift and furious though our shooting was less than adequate. The melee in the rear of our firing line dispatched  two of our opposition aided, I'm told, by a serpent that we also dispatched.
That mighty creature, a forest dwelling gorilla also made an appearance but as it left us alone, we too left it alone!"
"As we made camp, less than two weeks had passed since we left Jim's landing and with more than two week's food available, we determined to press on" 
 "it was two days before we managed to get going again as fog descended upon us making further progress impossible, but eventually the fog gave way to excessive heat giving grave concern to our Doc."
"it was a mere four days since our last encounter that we were  ambushed by some roguish fellows that gave us a  very hot welcome"
We rush to receive them, their rifles are a bit too effective!
The Natives, three with rifles (centre bottom) flanked either side by two melee-armed
Our soldier drops and our Askari despatches one of theirs
A forest bear takes an interest whilst the melees rage on...
The fight grows everywhere and the natives lose another two...
The bear decides this fight is not for him.
 "A rapid charge into the enemy threw them off balance and they were unable to use their very effective rifles, but even as the fight died down poor Ebor was struck down by a bullet, our third casualty of the day"
"Doc was unable to save any of our wounded and I made the determination to return to Jim's Landing. Several great apes we saw en route was indeed new primate species of several types, though the didn't take much notice of us and we arrived without further incident."

The expedition's route
The expedition had taken 18 day's (in game time) and made an incredible (imo) 470 points of discoveries etc. which would have been enough to give four explorers a point increment each (in a single ability), alas the last encounter was gruesome as we had lost Ebor (and of course poor Ned), leaving us with only three explorers. I think the  game took about four hours to play out over two (or maybe three days). It certainly took a lot longer to edit the photos (over 100!) and write up the adventure.
Was it worth it ? At the time probably yes, now I'm not so sure.

My enthusiasm has been sorely dented, I have unused armies, many unpainted figures, several buildings that I'd like to have built and some building kits that may never see the table.

Thanks for taking the time to visit and apologies for the despondency, but as always your comments are both welcome and appreciated.

Goodness only knows if I'll be able to find anything to post about next week, I doubt if anyone will be interested in yet another hospital visit I have to attend (tomorrow!).

Monday 3 September 2018

Border Reiver 2018

Having procured a lift to this event (despite it being less than 2 miles away, but getting there by public transport is a nightmare for me), I had a very enjoyable day at Border Reiver.
Myself and three others arrived fairly early to what appeared to me to be a very busy event, although there was still enough room for a good wander around.  From memory, the traders were much the same as last year with the absence of Dave Thomas (for whatever reason). The games were, as always, varied in quality from the "hastily thrown together", to the more typical 'club' games, with all the variations we are used to - demonstration types; games being  played; participation games and so on. 
I made my way immediately to my good friend Stu's vast Pirate game, though its a loose term for a conglomeration of Frostgrave,( Ghost Archipelago), Blood and Thunder and various other genres (i spotted elves, dinosaurs and even a Tardis!)
Stu made and painted all the terrain himself over the last several months, here's the pics:
The 'village'
One of three of his 'Ainsty' ships
His fort, based on one in Bermuda iirc
Another of his ships and an island
Another view of the above
Natives !
The volcano

View down the table (18' x 6' !)
His scratch-built ghost ship !
Moving on to other games:
What a Tanker, by whom I'm not sure.
My local groups 40K  (literally 300 yards form my house)
Very crowded board, with a lot going on
A Rapid Death Fire game put on By Redcar Iron Beards (I think)
Huge table and probably based on a 'Bridge to far' scenario.
 Another fairly local group to me, Blyth Wargamers put on two good looking games - Casablanca 1942 and a Frostgrave (iirc) dungeon style crawl, both looked very good.
Good looking table and figures

I did wonder about the defenders rushing out in the open to oppose the landing!
A huge undertaking to make this from Hirst blocks.
 Tyneside Wargames club, put on this good looking galleys game:
IIRC all the ships were scratchbuilt (about 1:300 scale I reckoned)
All the ships had crews too! (I read somewhere there were about 1000 figures!)
 Probably my favourite game of the show was this Napoleonic epic from Westerhope games club (very local to me too).
I'm a sucker for big battalions (though I prefer the 7YW) and this game ticked all my boxes; not just the game and superb figures,  but the general banter between the guys playing (in their team pink RED shirts.
Good sized table, not overly crowed with troops
Superb painting
Good argument though for clear bases !
Hard to make out, but the artillery had flashing lights to represent gunfire
Every Napoleonic gamer worth their salt has to have some Mamelukes!
 Whitley bay  3D gamers (?) put on this Japanese game.
A period I like, a lot, but this game didn't grab me!
 The inimitable Andrew Wylie (almost an ever -present at every Northeast show) once more put on his 'Dead Man's Hand' participation western game.

All the models are card...
...but do look the part
His latest addition - a Chinese Escort Agency possibly ?
 Here's some arbitrary general photos of the venue...


I did get some loot, though very modest (I spent less than half of my budget):

 A Sarrisa MDF garage
Two Warthogs, of the animal variety rather than the death from above type.
A Pulp Figures' film Crew (Other production teams shouldn't get nervous)
Finally a tube of quick-shade stuff (which I'm still a bit dubious about).

I met many old friends  at this show, one I hadn't seen for about 40 years or so!
That's it then for this week, I'm sure other blogs have better photos of the event, but as always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated.