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Saturday, January 29, 2022

Subtropical Sea-louse!

"It’s an Antediluvian Bulldozer!" exclaims Captain Haddock.

There are many unexplored and mysterious places on the face of this earth in the world of 1895. Some hold countless and unknown terrors for explorers and adventurers - one of which is the Sea Louse. Found only in fresh water, it has an unknown habitat and is thought by some to be closely related to sea serpents. The danger is not restricted to the water; there are some unconfirmed reports that the Sea-Louse can also transverse the ground near fresh water sources (Reference Quartermain, A., Unpublished diary, entry August 27, 1893).

The figure I call the Sea-Louse is a 3D download from Duncan Shadow known as the Abolith. Below is the profile I have developed for In Her Majesty's Name and it can be integrated easily into other popular games like Pulp Alley and Empire of the Dead:

Name: Sea-Louse
Pluck: 3+
Move: 12 inches in Water/4 inches on Land
Run: 6 inches in Water/2 inches on Land
Fighting Value: +4
Shooting Value: +0
Speed: +0
Talents: Amphibious, Night-eyes, Terrifying
Basic Equipment: Teeth that are Poisonous! (Already added to Pluck modifier) Attack bonus is +2 and Pluck modifier -3.
Armor: 10 (Scales)
Points: 59

You are definitely going to need a bigger boat.

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Not a Good Start to the Hobby Year

Maybe this will sterilize and kill all of his infectious diseases.

As some of you have probably guessed, I usually try to write my posts one to three weeks in advance. This is not one of them! Since the beginning of the year (yikes!) I’ve had streptococcal (big word) throat which required quarantine. About a week later - you guessed it - I caught something that rhymes with bovid. 


Fortunately I’m fairly healthy for a man of my advanced years and was never in any serious danger other than been really tired, worn out, and bored; though I am getting some reading done. But today (January 24) was a milestone, I felt energetic enough to actually paint in my hobby room. As my beautiful bride of 35 years said, “Of course it’s safe for me for you to paint. I don’t go in there unless you want to show me one of your toys.” (I think that’s what she said. Though instead of “toys” I could have sworn she said “accurate miniature representations of fighting men and women throughout the ages”. Yeah, that’s what she said.)

Today I did some detail work and basing on a conversion using Perry Miniatures Afghan Tribal Infantry, Gripping Beast Viking Herdmen, GW Pistoleer, and leftover rock chips from my patio project. This will be Mahbub Ali from the novel Kim, by Rudyard Kipling, based on the portrayal of the character by Errol Flynn.

Oh well, I’m sure I’ll be back up to a 100% soon and I’ll be getting this operation up and running on time.

Also I started to muster the rest of the 3rd Bombay Light Cavalry.

Take care and be safe.

Friday, January 21, 2022

High Elf General and Bodyguard for Dragon Rampant

These look awfully familiar.

Yeah I know these are the OOP production metal High Elf Phoenix Guard from Citadel Miniatures for the old Warhammer game. And that’s the beauty of Dragon Rampant (Paid Link); it is not tied to any particular figure range or company.

The High Elf General

Dragon Rampant (Paid Link) allows you to recreate any fantasy world with the rules. With rules I have gamed in Middle Earth with “The Three Hunters” chasing marauding orcs to rescue hobbits, battling a sinister evil necromancer’s army with a certain Cimmerian Barbarian, and protecting the knightly realms with a friendly dragon. You name the fantasy world, even your own, and I bet you can game it with Dragon Rampant.

Honorable Son #5 (The Skirmisher) found the Phoenix Guard figures on eBay for a very low, and I mean low, Buy it Now price and grabbed them up. He asked me to paint them for him (it took him about 2 seconds to convince me) and of we were. We decided on a variation of the “Classic” Warhammer” look a charged ahead. And then disaster struck.

It may not look like a disaster now . . .

The elves with halberds are two piece castings; the halberds with hands must be attached to the bodies. I painted the figures first and then started to prep the halberds for painting and broke one of them in half. Yikes! Thank goodness I have a bits box (always save those bits!). With a little trimming and filing I added an axe and sword from the Gripping Beast Hirdmen 28mm hard plastic box. It doesn’t look too shabby.

Here are the rest of the figures. How my son will rate them I will find out in the next battle. I’m getting the sneaky suspicion they will be some variant of elite heavy infantry.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Imperial Russian Steam Walker Tsarina Maria and Tsar Alexander

A Tsar Alexander Mechanized Steam Walker in support of the the Izmaylovsky Lifeguards Regiment somewhere in Central Asian near the British Raj.

Though late to add Mechanized Walkers to the Imperial Forces, due to conservative elements in the court and Russian Government, the Russians have embraced the simplicity and ruggedness of the Tsarina Maria Light Walker and the Tsar Alexander Heavy Walker (though classified by foreign powers as a Medium Walker). The Tsarina Maria is usually deployed with Lifeguard Cavalry Regiments and the irregular cavalry of the many Cossack Nations that owe allegiance to the Tsar. The Tsar Alexander, as a slower walker, is found supporting infantry regiments and is ideal for assaulting fortifications and fighting other walkers.

What would Victorian Science Fiction be without mechanized steam walkers? I received this beautiful, classic design as an STL file when I received the digital version of In Her Majesty's Name, Second Edition (link in the US and link in the UK/Europe)The Walker is a 3D file available from Duncan "Shadow" Louca on his website at IHMN Steam Punk Walkers. Rules for Walkers can be found in Chapter 5 of IHMN2. I sent the files to Honorable Son #3 (The Engineer) who not only has a 3D printer, but has TWO 3D printers! The boy is going to be getting some more files.

I had posted some pictures of my Walker on Facebook in the Group dedicated to In Her Majesty's Name and was asked how I painted the Walker. Fortunately I took pictures step by step since I had never done a 3D figure before and Honorable Son #3 (The Engineer) and his Beautiful Bride (The Social Warrior) wanted to see how it was coming along. Here is the painting guide; though there is no real right answer on how to paint Walkers. Use your imagination!

This may seem obvious, but I glued the arms and legs to the body of the model. This was the first time I put a 3D printed resin model together so I did some research to find out what glue works best. I used Gorilla Glue liquid gel and it worked perfectly - a word of caution though, it dries quickly! I originally was going to base it on a Litko base, but I then I realized I was getting low in numbers with the 1 1/2" size (I've got some cavalry coming up!) so I carefully took it off the base (I used white glue) and glued it with Gorilla glue onto an old GW round base. I then primed it with Flat Black.

After the primer dried, I used a technique I call "wet brush". It is similar to dry brushing but I use more paint and I don't worry too much if the paint is not smooth especially on models that you want to have some wear and tear. It is also perfect if there are raised parts of the model or figure as they are naturally outlined in black.

The color I used for wet brushing was Citadel Ironbreaker (or whatever the color is called now). All of the other paints I used are Vallejo unless specifically stated.

Duncan gave this model some great detail.

After I finished this phase it suddenly dawned on me where I had seen the model before. It is illustrated on the cover of the 1st Edition of In Her Majesty's Name.

I then painted the viewing port (?) and what I'm calling the machine gun openings Dark Prussian Blue. Once it was dry I went over it with a blast from the past I bought in Germany in 1987, GW Blue Wash!

When's the last time you saw this bottle?

I then painted the rivets and bolts and ball bearings, etc. Brass.

I finished the painted by adding some Dark Blue, Sky Blue and then White to the ports to just give it some extra "reflection" effect.

For the Imperial Russian Eagle I looked for common use images and then reduced them as images using Powerpoint. I glued the image on the Steam Walker, let it dry, and then I painted the image.

Time to finish the base on this bad boy. The most common method I use for basing is to use some water downed white glue, spread it on the base and then deep the based in one of my mixtures of hobby sand.

Once the sand dries, I add another layer of white glue that is even more watered down to seal the sand in place.

Once that is dry, I add some splotches of white glue randomly, mix it with water and then dip the base in static grass. I wait about 30 minutes and then spray with a matt or flat protective covering.

Ta-Dah! Ready to take on the enemies of the Tsar and Mother Russia.

More to come later on the Imperial Russian Army for In Her Majesty's Name, Second Edition.

Saturday, January 15, 2022

Second Native Mohegan American Native Unit for the French and Indian War

These great figures are from North Star's Muskets and Tomahawk range of figures. This pack is Indian Warriors 2 and can be found at this link on North Star's Website or if you are in the United States you can get them from Brigade Games.

I now have 12 Mohegan figures which will give me flexibility with their deployment in my preferred rules Rebels and Patriots (Paid Link); two units of skirmishers or a Regular sized Native Warband. Depending on the force composition and scenario they will also either be Veterans or Aggressive. For my Native Forces I have chosen to mount them with the alternative 3, 2, 1 basing method for Rebels and Patriots (Paid Link) instead of mounting them all individually. With some slightly larger bases, it gives me a free hand in making them look more like vignettes of actual Mohegans in action. If you want to see the other Mohegan unit just click here: Native Mohegan American Native Unit for the French and Indian War.

The Mohegans are a Native American tribe historically based in present-day Connecticut; the majority are associated with the Mohegan Indian Tribe, a Federally recognized tribe living on a reservation in the eastern upper Thames River valley of south-central Connecticut.

The Mohegans were allies of the British Colonists and supported the British war effort during the French and Indian War as scouts and skirmishers. Eventually an entire company of Mohegans was organized and became part of Roger's Rangers (Rogers hired men solely on merit and shocked regular commanders with his use of Indians and freed slaves).

Thursday, January 13, 2022

Frederic Villiers

Another correspondent for The Men Who Would be Kings (Paid Link) is Frederic Villiers (23 April 1851 – 5 April 1922), was a British war artist and war correspondent. Along with William Simpson and Melton Prior, Villiers was one of the most notable 'special' artists of the later 19th century. He may have been the model for the Kipling war-artist character, Dick Heldar in The Light that Failed.

 Villiers on horseback in the Batal Colony prior to the fight in Chaimbellistan.

 He reported on the Russo-Turkish War, witnessed the events at the Battle of Plevna and traveled to Afghanistan to cover the Second Afghan War that had broken out in 1878.  In 1882 he was in Egypt to cover the Anglo-Egyptian War and was present at Battle of Tel-el-Kebir. The following year saw him in Russia to cover the coronation of Tsar Alexander III but he was soon back in North Africa, this time to provide sketches of the fighting in the Sudan during the Gordon relief expedition.

The last outpost before entering the Byber Pass from Batal to Chaimbelastan.

In 1898, he was one of the artists sent to cover the campaign in Sudan which culminated at Battle of Omdurman. Villiers brought along an early cine-camera and was filming when an explosion caused the boat to rock in the Nile River, tipping over the apparatus. His other campaigns included the Boer War where he accompanied the Kimberley Relief Column.

 Making a quick sketch of the Gordan Highlanders.

The Frederic Villiers figure is from Perry Miniatures SU4 Newspaper Correspondents pack.