What should I work on next?

17 August 2009

He's Back!

I know it has been a while since I last posted on either of my blogs, and I apologize for that to those of you who find either site a source of entertainment and/or enlightenment.

To be perfectly honest, I have done practically nothing gaming related since returning from Historicon. Throw in a week long bout of the crud, and even less was accomplished. Mix in a bit of 'back-to-school/work', and top it all off with a hefty dollop of analysis paralysis and there you have it: the recipe for a total lack of progress.

That's not entirely true, of course. I did do a bit of sorting on projects. Showed my oldest son how to clean up a mini before painting (careful - those X-Acto blades are sharp, boy!), and even got in a game last Saturday (Napoleonics). I did manage to get the three artillery pieces Dane bought at Historicon's flea market based up, and they look pretty nice. Two for Martians, one for the Venusians (catapult).

The paralysis involves basing. Once upon a time, I had the idea of basing troops that were not capable of close order drill on round bases, and troops that were capable on square bases. So, for example, Martian militiamen on round, British regulars on square. I still think it is a great idea. So we come to execution. I have about 100 15mm Martians based on round bases. I used Litko's 0.8mm plywood and then added the flexsteel sheet under that. I like that Litko's stuff is precisely cut. But the flexsteel just doesn't seem to have the 'grab' that something like a plain old washer does. I have lately been using the square steel bases from Wargames Accessories for the square bases, and they grab pretty well. I think what I am going to have to do is rebase all my Martians. This also appeals because I have changed my Martian base material about three times in the last year or so, and rebasing would tie them all back together. I am just hesitant to pull the trigger on a fairly big job that will cost a bit of money (not a lot, but its that much less I can use to buy more lead).

Another new project that is about to take up some of my time is a school project. I am semi-seriously considering a wargaming club at the junior high school where I teach. It will probably have to wait until the spring semester, though. A friend has kindly donated a good number of Napoleonic plastics (1/72 scale, ESCI, Italeri, that sort of thing) and I think I can make it work. I'll need more figures (a little heavy on the French cavalry - anyone interested in some swapping?) and some sort of simple rules. And basing. Painting is going to be very simple at first. I'll spray paint the French a flat blue and the British a flat red. I might go so far as to paint in faces and hands with craft paints, and perhaps even black shakos and boots. I want to go cheap and fast, not hyper accurate. These are for young teens who have little respect for other peoples' property. Once I get a few hooked, maybe we'll do a painting session or two.

Does anyone have any suggestions on rules or anything for this project?

Enough blathering for now. Please let me know if you have any ideas to help get this club off the ground in the spring.


Eli Arndt said...

I'm glad to see you back! The club idea sounds really cool and I wish you the best of luck, though I don't have much to offer in the way of advice.

Donogh said...

You could go real 'old school' and try Little Wars - with that the lack of a classy paint job is an advantage!
Otherwise I hear good things about En Avant (I've only red it myself) particularly with regard to inexperienced gamers learning about period tactics. Multi-player is an intrinsic part of the game as well.

J Womack, Esq. said...

Who makes the En Avant rules? I'd like to look at them. The rules we use at my local club are WAY too complex for kids.

I want something very simple. Four phases, Move, Shoot, Fight, Morale. That sort of thing. I may have to make my own quick and dirty rules. Hmmm....

Donogh said...

Jim Wallman publishes them for free over at
(Scroll down about half way to see the basic rules)