Quick update to say that I am still alive! I'm even doing a little hobby stuff!
A few weeks ago I received an email from Dan (TMWWBK, The 'Rampants', etc) Mersey asking if I'd like to help playtest a new thing he's working on, which is essentially a Sci-Fi skirmish thing along the lines of 'The Rampants'. Well, having play tested TMWWBK and thoroughly enjoyed the experience, I decided straight away to say 'yes'. Trouble is, I had no models as I'd sold off all my 40K stuff yonks ago when I realised that those rules are simply not my cup of Darjeeling at all. So I went online and had a quick look around. 40K stuff was an obvious option, but it's very expensive and I couldn't be bothered with buying and stripping splodged plastics from EBAY, so I dug around and found Mantic's Warpath ranges. I fancied a kinda Imperial Guard sort of thing and their GCPS range fit the bill, so I bought their starter set. £60 for 25 plastic marine/ranger infantry, a walker, an armoured car and 4 metal support weapon teams, plus a leader in metal. About half the price of the GW equivalent. You can find it HERE:
Anyway, I've glued some of it together and started painting. The models are great on first look, although the walker was a bugger to put together, but the detailing on the infantry is a tad too shallow, so when I blasted them with Army painter Desert Yellow undercoat spray, some of the detail became a bit obscured. Anyway, I've opted for a 'speed paint' approach - you know, base colours, dip and matt varnish and I'm hoping the dip covers up some of the sins in the painting. for the first time ever, I'm really going for a 'good enough if you look at them from 20 feet away and actually close your eyes' approach! Pictures over the next few days once I've got a unit done...
In other news, I'm back onto my Ancient Italy variant of Lion/Dragon Rampant. I've been doing some writing and have even started highlighting up the hastati I base coated and dipped in September last year.
There's also a new set of rules coming later this year called 'Clash of Spears' which I'm looking forward to (I may end pop not needing my adapted Dragon rampant if they are as good as I suspect they'll be) - it's a small unit action set intended for ancients in raid-style scenarios. Initial looks at the rule book and some basic mechanisms look very encouraging. You can read about it HERE: You can also look a video about it HERE:
I've also been reading 'Early Roman Warfare - The Regal Period to the First Punic war' by Jeremy Armstrong, which basically turns the traditional narrative of the development of the Roman Army's manipular system on its head by very convincingly claiming that Rome never used a phalanx and that the manipular system came from a need to bring together the various clan-based war bands and city levy unit maniples into a coherent functional system during the 4th century rather than breaking an already organised phalanx up into smaller maniples. Give it a read - it's very, very good and very convincing! Find it HERE: Accordingly, I'm making a mid 4th Century BC Roman force in the first instance, with enough troops to also morph it into an early 3rd century force. This means only bronze-armoured troops for the earlier force and even some guys still using round hoplite shields, with the later force having all scutums and a handful of triarii with mail. More on all that once I get some more paint on some figures, which I'm hoping will happen once I move house, hopefully in about 3 weeks!
Well, all this is still small steps, but I am back...I think!! Catch you in a week or so, with first Sci-Fi pics (hopefully)