Tuesday, 17 January 2017

The To the Strongest! Worlds- a reminder!

There are now just over six weeks to go to the third annual "To the Strongest" World Championships! These will take place in the quiet village of Chalgrove in southern Oxfordshire on the 25th of February 2017. The event is a friendly contest, hosted by the South Oxfordshire Generals, in which players get to fight three ancient or medieval battles during the day. We hope to have thirty or more entrants this year. The atmosphere is more good-natured than competitive.

If you'd like to throw your hat in the ring, you can choose your army from any of the official "To the Strongest!" ancient and medieval lists, up to 130 points (that’s 50 to 150 minis depending on the army, based for any rules system). If the list isn't already written for your favourite 28mm historical army, let me know and I will write a list for you. If you don't have a suitable 28mm army, mail me and I will lend you one from my collection. 

The 9AM to 5 PM competition will be a three round, round robin format using the TtS! rules (version 1.1 with errata). We’ll be using 6' x 4' tables, marked up with a 12 x 8 15cm grid. Cloths and terrain pieces will be provided but please bring them if you are able. Tournament ranking will be determined by how competitors do in each of the three rounds. There will be prizes for the winner, for the best army, for sportsmanship and also the traditional "wooden spoon." Tea, coffee, hot chocolate and probably biscuits but no lunch provided. The entry fee is £9.

Alongside the tournament, Andrew Brentnall and I will be running a demonstration game of "For King and Parliament", the TtS!-based English Civil War version of the rules that will be published later this year, and will be able to answer questions about it.

The "Worlds" is always a great event. If you can make it, please email me at the email address to the left and I'll forward your details to the organiser, Steve Dover. We hope to see you there!


I am jubilant because these command minis are just about the last required minis for my Numidian army. Here is Juba I, King of Numidia and his bodyguard of Spanish mercenaries. Juba's Numidia was a strong kingdom, but no match for Caesar. Photos are clickable.

I'm really pleased with Juba- I converted him from a Foundry German! The miniatures are Foundry, Companion and A&A miniatures. All of these minis were painted by Nick Speller with some additional detailing by me. The bases are my usual Batbases.

I now just have the bases on the medium infantry to paint and the flocking of most of the army- around three weeks work, I reckon. These are intended for the Ruspina game at the end of March.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Panzer Army Africa 48 BCE

In 48 BCE after the Pompeian defeat at Pharsalus, Caesar's erstwhile lieutenant Titus Labienus led his surviving German (and Gallic) veterans to Africa to join the Pompeian cause. They fought at Ruspina in 46 BCE, and later at Thapsus. I'll be using them in the former battle in the WHC at the end of March; I might do a second regiment if time permits.

It seems to me that these veterans of the Gallic War must have become somewhat regularised during their long period of employment in Roman service so I have given them the odd bit of Roman gear and some almost-matching German shield designs from LBMS. The minis are Foundry Germans with conversions, by various painters including me. The bases are my latest Bat Bases- AN END TO THE HEGEMONY OF SQUARE BASES!  ;-)

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Elephant reconditioning

I spent a happy couple of hours this week reconditioning and extending my Numidian elephant herd. 

I have added two Agema elephants on the left (still awaiting mahouts). I had a hand in the design of these, and they are, consequently, the most accurate forest elephants of the various types shown. I still need to flock and tuft the bases to match the Savannah steppe mat on which they will be fighting. They are on Batbases of my own design. Better photos to follow when they are finished.

The battle they are intended for at the Wargames Holiday Centre Ancient weekend will be Ruspina 46 BCE, This was one of Caesar's closest shaves; a most unusual engagement which pitted a couple of Roman legions against an absolute horde of Numidian light horse and, later, a mass of formed troops. It is little known but has long been a favourite of mine because of its asymmetric nature.

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Even more scruffy Numidians

Here are the next bunch of Numidian medium infantry that I'm currently re-basing and expanding. They will also serve as African spearmen in my projected Carthaginian army. Many were speed-painted by mate Greg Privat for our big Zama game of 2010, others recently painted, to match, by Shaun McTague and myself. They now constitute six units of 22 minis each that can double up to form deep units. Each unit splits in two along the centre, which makes it easy to depict disorder.

They will first see action on 31st March to 2nd April at the Ancients Wargames Holiday Centre weekend in Basingstoke- we still have 2 places left - if interested, please mail me for details at the address on the left.

Saturday, 31 December 2016

Happy New Year, all!

I have decided to see the New Year in with a little gentle basing- here are four units of Carthaginian veterans for one of the WHC games at the end of March. They are suitably grim- they have probably just heard that the Numidian cavalry have just defected! Around half were painted by Shaun McTague- the others are from various sources, tarted up by me. They are on a new set of magnetic bases I've designed that lock loosely together in pairs or fours. More pictures in a week or two.

Can I wish a very Happy Year to all who read the blog, play To the Strongest! or shift lead (or plastic) around any gaming table! May we all have great 2017s and may none of our cards be Aces!

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

An end to flocking block

Since the summer I've been basing but haven't been able to bring myself to get out the flock box. Consequently I've built up a backlog of at least 60 unflocked units (mostly Numidians, per a previous post). Last night I actually made a start! I'll be OK so long as the Bob Dylan collection holds out.  ;-)

I can't recall where I got the flock box but it is really good find- the flock stands nicely to attention- and I've not lost my eyebrows yet.