Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Merry Christmas from The Old Crow

Merry Christmas to the world that supports our blog!!

We thank the many visitors from around the world and for the comments to our blog!

Accept this little joyful noise from us at Battleground Hobbies!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Dwarves from The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey by Gamesworkshop

Thorin Oakenshield from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Well we did go see the Hobbit an Unexpected Journey on opening day and out of everything the dwarves were the most unexpected of all. They were not as lack luster as Tolkien originally wrote them . These guys were very inspirational in their dwarfishness (is that a word?) and would never be stuffed into a sack. Thorin Oakenshield and the dwarves really got into the thick of things with axe, sword, hammer and yes even a bow. The movie gives you  a great deal of background information on the dwarf culture and their lot in Middle Earth.

Thorin Oakenshield from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Games Workshop currently only offers these mighty heroes in the "Escape from Goblin Town" box set. Hopefully they will be made available in a set of their own in the near future. Lets take a look at them one by one! The Leader of this illustrious band of adventurers is Thorin Oakenshield. The front of the model is pictured above wielding Orcrist, or Goblin-Cleaver.

And here is the back of the model. You can see the beautiful scabbard, which is what caught Thorin's eye in the troll lair.

Balin from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Next in the line is Balin. Balin appears older and more scholarly but can dish it out in a pinch

Dwalin from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Dwalin carries a mighty dwarven hammer  and wears some nasty "Brass Knuckles" for dishing out additional damage.

Dwalin from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Here you can see the nicely sculpted features like the knife worn on his belt and axes carried on his back.

Bifur from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Bifur uses what could be called a pole arm for a dwarf. It is a sweet combination of spear and halberd rolled into one and carved on the figure in a fierce pose.

Bofur from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Wearing a wonderful hat and swinging his war hammer, Bofur also strikes a grand pose

Bombur from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
What troop of dwarves would go anywhere without food and a cook? Bombur fills the roll in a large way. He also utilizes his  iron ladle along with butchers cleaver to handle any goblins that get to close!

Oin from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Another deceptively grey bearded dwarf is Oin. Yes, he is hard of hearing and his "ear trumpet" can be seen slung on the miniatures belt. he wields his iron shod staff with great force.

Oin from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
The back of the figure shows his dwarfish sword.

Gloin from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Gloin is the closest thing to Gimli you'll see in the movie and as a sculpted figure too. Hear you can see his axes careening wildly and effectively. He also has a full compliment of metal beard ornaments. Quite a family resemblance wouldn't you say?

Dori from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Dori is finely crafted swinging his sword and mace. The dwarven sword and scabbard are unique to the character.

Dori from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
The rear of the miniature shows the detail in hair and clothing.

Nori from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
The unmistakable "tri peak" hairdo sets Nori out from the rest of the band. The model completes his look with the three braids in his beard. He has his long handled mace raised and poised for an attack on a luckless goblin.

Nori from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
On Nor's back is sculpted his twin swords.

Ori from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
The youngest of the dwarves is Ori. He is carved in a slingshot release, no doubt taking down another goblin. His weapon did not fair well against the wargs!. His knife is seen strapped to his belt and his book bag slung from his shoulder.

Fili from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Fili is one of the more adventurous dwarf characters and always ready for action. this miniature has a nice fighting pose. His throwing knives can be seen sculpted into his gauntlets..

Fili from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
and his sheaths carved on his back.

Kili from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
Kili is also a younger more adventurous dwarf. Here he is sword raised for the strike. This model has some nice features like the studded gauntlets and belts, extra knife...

Kili from The Hobbit and Unexpected Journey
and his bow and quiver worn on his back. The figure has a lot of motion carved into it like the coat swirling behind him.

Kili is probably my favorite one in the bunch and overall the sculpts are very nice. They have a good amount of detail but are missing some extra pouches and the likely assortment of paraphernalia a dwarf would have on an adventure. We've also come to expect more from Games Workshop and Citadel miniatures.

With that said, we do look forward to seeing these guys in their own box set and will probably add them to the never ending miniature collection.

Have a Great Battle,
The Old Crow

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Building the WWII Battle of Carentan for Bolt Action!

Carentan Normandy Band of Brothers
OK World War Two enthusiasts, how about recreating the town of Carentan to play a game of Bolt Action! 

Carentan was featured in the Band of Brothers series and Call of Duty video game, now it can be for wargaming in 28mm. 

Carentan Normandy Band of Brothers
The Battle of Carentan was an engagement in World War II between airborne forces of the United States Army and the German Wehrmacht during the Battle of Normandy. The battle took place between June 10th and 15th of 1944, on the approaches and within the city of Carentan, France.

For your recreation, the objective of the attacking American forces in Carentan was consolidation of the Utah and Omaha beachheads and to set up a defensive line against expected German counterattacks. The defending German force attempted to hold the city long enough to allow reinforcements coming from the south to arrive, prevent or delay the merging of the lodgments, and keep the U.S. First Army from launching an attack towards Lessay-Périers that would cut off the Cotentin Peninsula.

Carentan Cafe de Normandie
Paul Ward of Matakishi's Tea House put together the PDF which was written by Dominic and has provided his details of the building of the Second World War French town.

Carentan History
The free PDF contains detailed build notes and many full-color photographs of the process. There is also a section explaining the quest to match the known historical facts with the reality of Carentan today, including both period and modern photographs, and an analysis of the fighting at the time.

The Carentan PDF is a great modelling resource for those getting started and an inviting tale of historical research offered free at the Wargame Vault. The WargameVault offers other deals on paper models for your gaming table.

Building Carentan Desire Inghouf
Here is the start point for the restaurant "Desire Inghouf" seen in the first image and in the Band of Brothers series. Dominic uses 4mm thick cork tiles for the construction of the buildings.

Building Carentan Desire Inghouf
And as it progresses. There's a bunch of extra historical information along with the model making.

Building Carentan Desire Inghouf
Here is the restaurant "Desire Inghouf" just about completed. Final touches like signs and other details were added. Download the PDF to see the final building.

Building Carentan
The PDF is over 100 pages and you can see the progress of Carentan being built step by step!

So build it and Have a Great Battle!!
The Old Crow

Friday, December 7, 2012

How To do Practical Modelling and Stone Texture

Practical Modelling
A short while ago I was able to put model making to a very practical use. A stage design was needed and the directors sketch would not help the construction staff. So we helped build a scale model of the set and advise in the making of stone! Here is the set design model

Practical Modelling
The right side opens to reveal the back of the inn represented

We've done several scale model projects with stone, the Leaping Wolf Inn and 40K Courtyard just to mention a couple. and this would be the same but on a much larger scale!

Using the same polystyrene we carved panels and individual stones

Practical Modelling and Stone Texture
here's one of the panels

Practical Modelling and Stone Texture
For stage, over emphasizing is not a bad thing as we did here in the "shadow" crevices between stones.

Practical Modelling and Stone Texture
We added lots of texture, to the extent of overdoing it, so the drybrushing could be seen from a distance.

Practical Modelling and Stone Texture
Varying thicknesses of stone helped achieve a nice rough stone construction feel.

Practical Modelling and Stone Texture
Even more stone!!

Practical Modelling and Stone Texture
Timbers were carved too. Again, everything we do in model making only much larger!

To see the finished project, check out the "Set Design and Stage Construction" post on the Hendersonworks Blog

Now to model Space Marines and Vikings on this scale....

Have a Great Battle,
The Old Crow

Thursday, December 6, 2012

New Release: 1650 A Cloak and Sword by Tercio Creativo

Tercio Creativo is the project of old fans in Spain who are now a bit more "skilled" and trying to make it in miniatures and strategic games worldwide. They have been developing their own historic miniature line in which they're hoping to bring to life the atmosphere of their own skirmish game. The miniatures or "Pawns" are 35mm scale to allow for good detail and paintability. And as you'll see below, the are packed with details and can be exquisitely painted.

1650 Cloak and Sword is a miniature and card based skirmish system. The two factions currently released are the Old Regime or the New Order. They have just come out with some additional mercenaries you can hire too. Besides a faction band, you'll need 4 ten sided dice, a tape measure (in centimeters), 2 packs of skill cards (which can be downloaded for free) and a playing area of 120 centimeters (approx 4 feet).

You can download background material to enhance the gaming and create new scenarios, called "Commissions". Commissions can be in day or night. If at night, sight is limited and lanterns can be placed to illuminate areas on the plying surface. Two Commissions available are "Brawl" and "Rescue".

To start you get "Maravedies" in which to hire a band. Every piece has a cost you must pay to hire the character. A Basic 1650 band normally costs 250 Maravedies, although you can hire bands up to 500.

Each character's contract card shows it's Pay (cost in Maravedies), Incentive, Audacity, Defense, Vigor, Weapons Attributes and Peculiarities.

If you'd like to try 1650, the rules, skill cards and faction cards can all be downloaded for free.

Now lets introduce you to some of the personalities and pawn types you'll be able to use in building your team.

The "Alguacil" is one of the Leaders of the "Antiguo Regimen"´s faction and the high command of the "Guardia de Ysbilia". When this gentleman takes the control over the "rounds" of the town, discipline and fear, much needed in these dire times, spread throughout the city. The "Alguacil" directs the different corps of the "Guardia de Ysbilia" from the "Torre Áurea" and he descends from it to command his men personally when the battle rages in the streets.

Verdugo, the old convict is now one of the members of the Guardia de Ysbilia squad, though one who hides his face in order to avoid reprisals from the families of those who were executed by him in all these years of loyal service.

The elite of the Guardia de Ysbilia is composed by veteran Guardias. Former soldiers and swordsmen who joined the Guardia de Ysbilia long time ago and keep their loyalty to the old regime. Veteran member of the Guardia de Ysbilia, the Guardia is a very tough duelist thanks to this, he has can afford armor and a shield, which let him ignore the most bladed weapons attacks.

The Guarnicioneros are those members of the Guardia de Ysbilia dedicated almost entirely to the custody of palaces and public buildings. Still, do not averse to a good brawl where exercise their muscles. 

As a Convicto of a violent crime, there are only two ways to get out of your cell: Carried out boots first, or as cannon fodder for the Guard of Ysbilia. You choose. 

The "Oficial" is one of the Leaders of the "Nuevo Orden"´s faction and the high command of the "Morados Viejos". Tercio's veteran and skilled swordsman, he's one of the most dangerous laborers between those who are in San Georgio's castle.

As nobody is born knowing everything, it's logic to think that even between the Tercio's veterans there are noobs. 

As experienced as the Recio, and perhaps even more proud, the Curtido cupplies his lower push with more versatility thanks to the management of his two weapons. With them, this pawn lags the Oficial in terms of threat. 

Here is the Zurriago, musketeer of the Old Purples, and one of the most dangerous pawns in Ysbilia... from the distance. 

Nicolas Lopez, mercenary and amateur inventor. Not one of the better fighters out there. Not even one of the better shooters, but who cares? "With his wasps' nest, surely I will get one or two good shots, no matter who is aiming to have.

Mercenary Le Garou It is said he was raised by wolves. Or maybe even devil himself. Anyone who would have found him in the mountains, would have swore that. But now, when I he's hunting the Gauls... "It isn't so clear."

Mercenary Guillermo-Flamberga

Irene Vioque

Padre Calixto

The Curtido

and you don't want to meet El Embajador in a dark alley!

Have a Great Battle,
The Old Crow