Monday, May 25, 2015

Well, well, well... - A Flintloque Battle Report

It has been a long time since my last update, mostly for health reasons. Without giving to much detail, you can imagine things are pretty awful when you can't even find enough energy to look at a miniature! However, I'm now on the mend and ready to get a few projects underway: a few commissions for terrain and some sculpting. For my self, I was able to set aside some energy to finish painting a few figures and, after a long wait, Romina and I finally got a game of Flintloque underway.

A couple of weeks ago we made preparations but didn't get much farther than that, which Gavin from Alternative Armies turned into a brilliant post about setting up for play. You can see some more of it here.

What follows is a report of the skirmish between the proud forces of the Free State of Schnöselberg, dubiously led by Rittmeister Heißhund, and the Ferach infiltrators lead by the devious, duplicitous and downright dangerous Captain Couteau.

The Ferach forces prepare to march on the Red Dragon!

The Objectives

The first stop on the Schnöselberg scenic tour is the lovely, rustic Red Dragon Inne - a popular watering hole for the locals and soldiers who pass through. Close by is the renowned chocolatier and master coffee roaster Herr Tobleron. At the centre of the town lies a well. This is the main objective of the scuffle, and needs to be captured by the end of combat.

Buildings lying around the town are also able to be captured, but this is a secondary goal - and quite dangerous! When entering a building, a character must roll a d6: 1 - 2 - The soldier easily makes his way inside, only to be knocked out by surprise! (lasts two turns); 3 - 4 - The door is locked, getting in will be tough; 5 - 6 - The soldier easily makes his way in!

Supplies are always needed, so grab that pig - if you can! Approaching within 5cm of the pig will startle it at 50%. If startled, it will move 3d6 in a random direction. Otherwise it will need to be led away.

Lastly, that pesky journalist Fritz Heulen is on the prowl for a good story - this might prove to your advantage! Have him in your possession by the end of the battle. However, an opposed melee roll will be required to stop him snooping around for his latest story. Otherwise, he moves 3d6 in a random direction.

Special Rules

Sneaking a visit to the house of Herr Tobleron is almost irresistible as the smell of roasting coffee beans and other tasty treats wafts over the battlefield. Roll a d6 at the start of the game: the result is the number of cups of coffee he is able to brew. Imbibing a cup will give you an extra move action next turn. No fighting in the yard, though. There's a good boy!

Oh... and be careful: the townsfolk haven't taken too kindly to the recent visitors. The Innkeeper is happy to take things into his own hands and there is a 50% chance he may appear at the start of a turn and blast at a random soldier with his musket! His wife, however, is rather interested in these fine specimens and they know it! They ignore Shaken results if in melee within 15cm of the Innkeeper's wife.

Get off my lawn.

Well, well, well... 
The Battle at the Red Dragon Inn
as told by Herr Fritz Heulen 
in a letter to his cousin, the esteemed 
Herr Gunther Heulen Esq.

Dear Cousin,

It has been so long since we have spoken. My travels have taken me to the hot-bed of intrigue and skulduggery that is the Free State of Schnöselberg – and you all said it was a backwater! My latest adventures have landed me in a spot of trouble, but more on that later.

Be sure to pass on the following account of a recent clash for the key strategic point, the Red Dragon Inn… more importantly the well at the centre of the hamlet. Make no mistake - this could turn the tide of the war!

It was early on in the battle that I was whisked away by a Ferach soldier who, as he approached, brought with him a stench of alcohol that made my eyes water. He staggered over followed by a decorated superior. Unfortunately, he was well and truly legless a short while later: I barely heard the pop of the Ostarian Air Rifle that felled him. I never found out what happened to him after the battle but I seem to recall him getting dragged away by an angry mob of villagers...

The Jaeger von Meister sneaks around the back of the inn...


Seeing that I was in danger the Ferach lieutenant attempted to lead me away to safety as the distinct crack of musket fire could be heard in the distance. The struggle for the well had begun!

I must admit that in the confusion I could make out few details. However I do seem to recall being passed on to several other soldiers before the battle was finished - so considerate! Even now the Ferach have taken precautions to set an armed guard outside my tent for my protection.

The elves quite deftly maneuvered their way to a good vantage point, intercepting the lone dogman that held the well. With a decisive order from their Leader, the small section of troops let rip from their muskets and felled the poor pup where he stood!

 The Ferach elves take position...


The whole affair was very civil for the most part: I seem to recall two soldiers from opposing sides taking time to have a coffee break part way through the battle. I quite like the idea of a soldierin' life, and have often wished to take up the uniform of my native land, see the world... if only my health would permit.

Two soldiers take a moment to sample Herr Tobleron's finest brew... 
and benefit from a quick burst of energy in the next turn!

The supercharged Schnöselberg grenadier takes the initiative and makes a grab for the well... can the puppies hold it?

Covering fire.

In a last ditch attempt at the well, the Ferach troops closed in to hand to hand combat. Lowering their bayonets and sounding the charge, they rushed in... however, they did not reckon with the good breeding of Musketier Sprungsteen, or "Knuckles" as he is known to his peers! He felled two Ferach elves with one almighty right hook. It would have done his litter proud.

Knuckles gives the Ferach more than they bargained for... his pal von Schnussel does the same!

At this it seemed that Cpt. Couteau of the Ferach elves used his better judgment and sounded the retreat, after passing through the hands of what seemed all the nations of Valon it was time to leave the battlefield - but not before a last, desperate attempt by the young Schnöselberg drummer. Unfortunately, he was quickly dispatched by the cruel elf who eyes glinted as he sliced the poor young pup. There is something really off about this guy... I only hope I do not suffer the same fate!

Cpt. Couteau swoops in and snatches Herr Heulen from the unsuspecting drummer... nasty!

He who fights and runs away... the Ferach grudgingly make their escape through the trees and back to camp...
but not empty-handed!

And so, dear cousin, here I sit in solitude, awaiting my fate! Who knows where my adventures will take me, and what thrilling tales I will have for you when next I write! Farewell!

- Fritz Heulen


And that wraps up our first "full-sized" Flintloque battle! The Schnöselberg troops held the well as, quite simply, there were too many casualties on the Ferach side to do much more than grab Herr Heulen and make a quick exit (and it was quite late in the evening when we finished up anyway). While most of my section survived to do battle another day, they had many injuries so I'll be interested to see how they fare next time. I'll definitely stay out of the line of fire of that deadly jaeger!

Hope you enjoyed it! Of course a few more things happened in the game that Fritz didn't account for... including the cowardly Heißhund emerging at the very end of the battle to catch the pig!

The Innkeeper kicks open the door and opens fire... I lost two of my elves that way!

The pig was tricky to catch, and almost overwhelmed my Volitgeur.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Book Review: More Wargame Terrain by Tony Harwood

Title: More Wargame Terrain (Dampfpanzerwagon Guide No. 2)
Author: Tony Harwood
Year: 2014

I've recently received a copy of Tony Harwood's More Wargame Terrain in the mail. I must say I've been a follower and fan of his work for a while now, particularly through his blog. As (hopefully) my own blog will show, building wargames terrain is a passion of mine and something I can appraise with some degree of credibility. All this aside, in order to do this publication justice I'll take a step away from my own bias as much as possible, and hopefully provide some valuable insights to you, dear reader.

Not having a copy of the first volume, it is difficult to say how closely More Wargames Terrain picks up where its predecessor left off. However, in Harwood's introduction he states that Guide No. 2 can be read in isolation, and I would have to agree. Amongst the 116 pages there are very clear instructions and ample photos and diagrams to take on one of the eight projects. And although there are some more advanced techniques, the language and photography used, and the overall direction throughout the guide, make this certainly achievable to any novice.

Anyone familiar with Dampf's Modelling Page will notice the care Harwood takes in showing his projects develop, and this is very well captured within the pages of More Wargames Terrain. However, for someone who has been building terrain for some time, there are ample techniques and effects employed to provide something new and challenging.

Is there a drawback to this book? The only thing I can suggest as an addition would be something of a "gallery" or a larger spread of a wargames table, and there is already a hint of that of the back cover. This is really just a suggestion. The book is a complete success.

The trend in wargames terrain today is, like most "things" in the modern world, geared towards economising time and money. You see this in the continual flow of laser-cut terrain and 3D-printed playing pieces which provide players with something that can literally be slapped on the table. But that isn't for everybody. What this book represents, I think, harks back to an earlier time where cardboards, paddle-pop sticks and found objects were the building blocks of the wargames table, awaiting a personal touch - whatever that looked like - and that is something worth conserving.

More Wargame Terrain can be purchased by inquiry on the Dampf's Modelling Page blog.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Dwarves 42eme Legion de Nain (L'Ostaire) - Von Trapp's Grenadiers

Hi all,

This is a post very much in the fashion of Tony Harwood's "online build" (many examples of which are on his blog) as is the result of some discussion on The Notables Yahoo group although at a relative snail's pace. So below, all my work on the famed Von Trapp's Grenadiers led by Gustav von Trapp, expert trapper and huntsman. He was quite an extensive conversion on the dwarf Sergeant from the Legion de Nain pack.

I put together a short story below on a slow day at work (months ago now) as plans for Gustav's own section started formulating:

The Hills are Alive!

Private Rorc scratched a flea out from behind his left ear, got ya he thought to himself and grinned.

It was late afternoon, and Rorc had been placed on sentry duty. He turned to see the rest of his section making camp and getting ready for a brisk evening in the green, rolling Ostarian hills. His sergeant’s warning fumbled its way through his brain, as his eyes flicked around the general area… “the ‘ills are alive.” Rorc spun around and brought his musket to bear in front of him. “Who izzit?” he asked the empty field infront of him. He swore he had heard something… and not the kind of noise a forest makes. He squinted, and in the afternoon light he could make out some figures in the distance. A series of ululating notes drifted their way down the valley to his pointed ears. Was that… singing? Not like he’d heard… definitely not during last night’s bout in town. What he wouldn’t do for some of that Dwarven ale… blimey, he’d even settle for some of that Dogmen brew that tasted like p-

“Oi, Rorc!” Sergeant Andorcson bellowed “Quit yer day-dreamin’, you’re on watch!”
“But I’ve seen sumfin’, sir!”
“You what?”
“I’ve seen sumfin’, sir, high… on the hills!”
The Sergeant grabbed a spying glass from a nearby trunk.
“Looks like a goat’erd”.
“A goat’erd?”
“Yer, on his own, too. A lonely goat’erd.”
“Ley-yodel-ley-yodel-ley…” the sound of the goatherd’s singing reached the small camp.
“’Cept for ‘is goats, that is” added Rorc.
“Good job, Rorc” said the Sergeant derisively.
Deflated, Rorc resumed his watch, and his scratching. Bloody dwarf, he thought as he squinted up at the hills again, maybe he’s got some grog?


Gustav von Trapp peered down to the campsite below, clutching his hooded cloak over his uniform, and his crook for effect. Although he had lost an eye his vision was still sharp, and his wits sharper. He and his brothers had been on the trail of these Orcs for some time now, and it posed little challenge the experienced woodsmen. He knelt down and patted his dog. The pug looked up at him expectantly “Not much of a guard dog” he said, chuckling.
“Gustav! How much longer to ve haff to stay here?”
“Be patient, Werner, and don’t move around so much. You are a goat, remember?” he chuckled. He was enjoying this, and there was little he enjoyed these days. A good draught, a good sing, and a chance to beat the Orcs back to Albion where they belonged. Or preferably back under whatever rock they came from. The simple life he lived had been taken away from him and his brothers, and he blamed the Orcs and the Grand Alliance… bah, he spat, there was nothing grand about it. Looters, pilferers, thieves, vagabonds, and worse. He had not been keen on the Elves, either. But, the enemy of my enemy…  He seethed into silence before signalling to his fur-draped brothers that it was time to move. Gustav lead his band as they scampered down the hill towards cover on all fours, their disguise was working it seemed.

Night was coming.
The trap was set.

As they moved Gustav softly hummed their marching song, his single eye glinting in the twilight.


So, following that I put some work into a few more dwarfs to join Gustav, and there is a pic below of my progress so far:

Hope you like it!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Adelaide Dungeonbowl Cup 2014 - First prize custom board

Hi everyone,

I was asked by Alex over at AFOUL to put together a custom board for their tournament. This was quite flattering as Alex is quite the terrain-maker himself and has been putting together a really impressive dungeon over the years. You can read more about the Dungeonbowl crew over at their website.

Alex also runs a newsletter about fantasy football gaming called "Put the Boot In". He interviewed yours truly in anticipation of their big event, which you can read here.

I do like to support Bloodbowl tournaments, although I'm not much of a tournament player, myself. They are usually smallish community groups and tournaments really are in the spirit of the game. Their tournament rules are the result of hours of gaming and in the interest of fair-play, which is all good in my book.

Anyway, on with the board!

Here is the board's frame, with the modular elements set up, and a few more detailed shots towards the end:

Those last few shots show my scratch-built teleporters, as well as some treasure chests I prepared for the prize. The two identical, square chests are scratch-built, with the others coming from a Hirst Arts mold. The last two shots are taken on my own dungeon boards that you might see a bit more of in the future. I'll be using the Cavern Crawl rules, which I really recommend checking out for this sort of thing!

For anyone interest in custom pitches, for individual purchase or for tournaments, please feel free to contact me.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Ludwig von Barkhoven

Hi everyone,

I am very proud to announce that, for the first time, one of my sculpts has become commercially available. Ludwig von Barkhoven is now available from Alternative Armies by clicking here. He is actually part of a giveaway at the moment.

So, the miniature!

I do love Napoleonics. With Flintloque I am able to actually get some games in, and enjoy the small-scale skirmishes I've wanted to do since watching Sharpe. After reading a scenario with Beethoven as the objective of a rescue mission, I immediately turned to Flintloque and how we could do something similar. We needed Beethoven... or is that Barkhoven?

Here he is in the green:

Gavin Syme from Alternative Armies very kindly accepted the miniature and set about putting him into production.

Here is a picture of the first cast, straight out of the machine and into Gavin's hand:

As you can imagine I was quite eager to get him painted, so when the casts arrived I got right on to it:

And here is the great job that Sam Croes over at AA did for their promo work:

The beauty of this process is that, even now, the esteemed Notables - the Flintloque Yahoo Group - are pitching together to put a backstory and rules together for this furry little chap. A really great community effort, bringing this lead dogman to life.

Have you got yourself Ludwig von Barkhoven? Be sure to send in some pictures, if you do!

Hope you like him.

- Christian

Happy New (?) Year

Looks like there was a bit of a false start to my blogging since I last posted. This is symptomatic of 2013 being, well, crap... for a number of reasons most which I won't bore you with. I did go through quite a slump both with model making and gaming in general. If any of you remember the Ancient Wall Fort project that is now lost in the post, with a lucky mystery owner somewhere between Melbourne and Sydney. That, amongst other things, was quite a blow. I guess sometimes it's good to learn that some people are just not worth wasting your time on.

I also know I'm not the only one that had a rough time last year.

But... I can happily say that, for me, all that has changed!

As 2013 drew to a close I rediscovered my enjoyment of wargaming and miniatures with Flintloque and its wonderful community of gamers and supporters. There's real fun to be had with this game, which I'll go into in later posts.

Yes, posts! I want to post at least once a month, even if it is this kind of reflective garbage (hopefully not!).

I had an amazing time away in South America, particularly the Atacama region of the Andes. My interest in archaeology ignited, I have also commenced (another) post-graduate degree: a master degree in Ancient History which, down the track will hopefully signal a career change.

You will also being seeing a shift into more sculpting... and a few more surprises along the way planned for later in the year that I hope you will all enjoy.

So, here's to the year ahead!

I can't wait to tell you all more about it.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Back from the dead...

Hi all,

I've spent a fair bit of time away from the computer, with plenty of commissions underway! Since the last post I've completed two more Blood Bowl boards and the building below. Let me tell you this bun has been in the oven for quite some time!

 And some more detailed WIP pics:

 This was a prize for the winner of a 2012 Warmachine Tournament at that year's Conquest event in Melbourne. We couldn't figure out what a Warmachine building looked like but I think we came up with a pretty good design over the phone!

There are a few more components left to make and I hope to update you on those soon.

In the meantime I'm making quite a bit of adobe and a very, very intricate piece... more details as they come!

P.S. miniatures used were from Lead Adventure Miniatures (survivor) and eureka Miniatures (zombies). Highly recommended!