Monday, November 28, 2016

some planning... of sorts

Perusing a number of blogs on my regular daily feed, I've noticed some stock-taking and planning for the new year (for example, here and here). And because the year is rapidly drawing to a close, I thought I'd lay out some of my plans for the foreseeable future, with the usual caveat that whenever my gaming muse appears in her normal guise of enticing siren, I will, of course, listen intently and all my well-laid plans will most likely be forgotten.

Chain of Command 1944 (winter)

Earlier in the year, I banged up a platoon of US armoured infantry (see here). Immediately after, I started their opponents, a German infantry platoon (see here), but was soon distracted by other hobby madness. In the last couple of months, after a four-week painting funk, I was able to whip up the rest of the platoon and supports.

Thus far, four sections of regular German infantry (i.e. only one LMG team per section), two panzerschreck teams, MMG, FOO, vehicles, and various commanders (mostly Artizan Designs figures with some Warlord sprinkled in for variety). This force is complete but for a 75mm infantry gun and crew (four figures) and a flamethrower team (figures for which I have yet to source). So, first on the planning list, these last few bits to complete the force.

I also have a dozen or so US infantry from Artizan to bulk out my existing US armoured platoon into a bog-standard GI platoon. So, these are added to the first batch with the German stragglers.

Conveniently, if I can complete these by the end of the year, my 2016 painting point total will just top my goal of 2500 points.

Oh, and some winter terrain would need to be worked on too... sigh. Maybe in 2017.

Sharp Practice 2 - British

Also this year, I put together a US War of 1812 force for use in Sharp Practice 2 games. They've faced off against Vidal's British force a few times and come away without a loss as yet (just saying!). But my normal predilection for building both sides in any project had me start looking around for some suitable Brits to face the Yanks.

First up, I ordered some of the lovely new reinforcement packs from Front Rank, enough to field three infantry groups and some Big Men to accompany them. These are just beautiful figures and a fair step away from the old, rather chunky, FR sculpted poses. So, perhaps to be painted as Upper Canada Incorporated Militia? Green coats and blue trousers? Ummmm, yeah! Fortuitously, while pondering more purchases, Ohio Bob offered up a pile of unpainted natives from, I think, North Star. There are enough for three six-figure skirmish groups and a couple of Big Men (thanks again Bob!). OK, the plan was coming together but more was needed. Taking advantage of recent Warlord Games sales, I picked up a box of British infantry (enough for three more groups) and one of 95th Rifles. This last would serve to represent the 95th Rifles (as it says on the tin) or the Glengarry Light Infantry in the War of 1812 (purists step away please... they're close enough for me). I also pondered some British Light Dragoons as an addition but realized two things. First, in the War of 1812, cavalry played little or no battlefield role (although it could be argued that SP2 is the perfect vehicle to play out those petite geurre moments where cavalry could be represented). Second, if I were to expand this force to work for the Spanish Peninsula, I already have painted, from a previous collection, some cavalry support in the form of two eight-figure Spanish cavalry groups (Front Rank figs, in the photo above). And yes, I did say Spanish Peninsula.

Sharp Practice 2 - French

As most gamers do, I was thinking well beyond the War of 1812 project. I could easily use the Brits for games against the French. Now, while Vidal does have a Napoleonic French force for SP2, again my need (obsession?) to do both sides kicked in. So, back to Warlord Games (I'm such a sucker for sales) and soon arriving at my door was enough metal and plastic to field four eight-figure infantry groups, two six-figure skirmish groups, and some engineers. Again, I pondered cavalry and artillery supports but decided to wait on adding these and instead decided I could use some already painted Front Rank stuff as a stop-gap. Granted, the cavalry is all Imperial Guard but the Empress Dragoons will do as regular dragoons in a pinch. The Front Rank horse artillery is in line to be expanded by two figures (a five-figure crew and one Big Man is required), but ordering only two figures from FR seems silly. I'll just need to put together a bigger order....hmmmm :)

Sharp Practice 2 - Prussian

And since I had already moved my planning to Europe, why not give the French someone else to pick on, other than the Brits? So into the shopping cart went some Prussians. I've stayed conservative to this point and ordered only Landwher, Jagers, and mounted officers. Enough for a basic force...supports, I'll worry about later.

My planning for the next while then looks something like this:

WWII  >> Napoleonic Brits >> Napoleonic French >> Napoleonic Prussians

But where do the Carlist Wars additions fit in? And the Boxer Rebellion? And English Civil War? And ImagiNations... perhaps another nation to add?

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