Posts Tagged 'Scott Bowden'

An Update: Legacy of Glory, 20mm WWII and Empire

Life has been busy which means the blog has been quiet.  Work has been very busy and while the pace has slackened a little bit, it’s still giving me plenty to do on nights and weekends which conflicts with both family time and gaming time.

Other than buying a slew of wargame rules recently the only other purchases I’ve made have been about 20 feet of olive canvas for the start of a terrain mat and recently I’ve bought some 20mm WWII figures for France 1940.    I’ve been painting in spurts and recently started working in earnest on the AB Russians again.   I’ve gone back to a cleaner version of my original style since the blocking-in look, while nice was very time consuming.    Between the Napoleonics and 20mm stuff I’ll be plenty busy over the next few months as time allows.

Gaming-wise it’s been a slow time.   Haven’t done any since the fall.  I have my Legacy of Glory gaming group coming over Saturday to spend an afternoon pushing troops around to get more familiar with the rules.  This will be our third meeting and things are slowly coming together.  We would’ve been further along had my schedule not been so messed up over the winter; our plan is to meet at least once every two months if not monthly.  We’ll see how that goes.   I hope to get a copy of the beta rules for LoG: Thunder of Destiny sometime this spring.  The rules authors are starting to distribute early releases of the rules in snippets and so far things look good.  I’m hopeful that playtesting will reap benefits for both game play and rules layout.  The first edition of the rules suffered from formatting issues that kept a good set of rules from gaining wider acceptance.

In other news, Scott Bowden is re-releasing Empire in several versions (the original Empire, Empire II and EMPIRE (aka Empire V)) in electronic form via The War Event.  If anyone’s interested in getting a set, it’s a way to keep interest alive in the rules.  I haven’t played Empire in almost two decades but I had fun with the rules when we played and would not turn down a chance to play them again with the right group of people.  Another game with a complex learning curve like Legacy of Glory.

Weekend Update

My AB order arrived on Friday, and this weekend I managed to get my first unit, the Pskov Muskteers, cleaned, mounted on painting bases and primed.    I’m going to work on a different technique this time around, something similar to what Shane Devries does with his figures.  It gives them a much more defined and ‘clean’ look at a distance which is what I’m aiming for.     Shane uses enamel paints, so his basecoating process is different than what I’m looking to accomplish.

Instead of using thinned enamel paint for the basecoat, I hit the figures with a light coat of grey sprayed primer.  I was aiming for a thin coat over most of the figure rather than complete coverage, so some of the undercuts didn’t get hit.   Next, I painted the enire figure with a thin coat of Tamiya XF1 (Flat Black).  Finally a use for a black paint that does not cover metal figures very well.   The black went completely opaque in the creases of the figure while leaving a thinner, somewhat translucent coat over the top.  Then I sprayed matt varnish on the figure to lock in the dark colors and (per Shane’s idea) avoid some of the washout problems that can happen when applying bright colors over the matte black base.

The end result was a figure that was overall a very dark grey with pure black in the creases… somewhat ghostly looking.   I am hoping this will give the felt shako a more natural look than just pure black, and it will not be quite so harsh on the final product as the deep black.  I may try this with a white undercoat as well and see what it looks like.  Experimentation is fun.  I’ll post some pictures of the finished product in due time.

Other than that, I picked up a mint copy of Scott Bowden’s old “Stars & Bars” ACW rules off of TMP.  I had a copy of these but either lost or sold them some time back during one of my “I am no longer a gamer” phases back in the late 1990s.   No idea if I will ever play a game of them or not, but it’s nice to have some of those older sets for nostalgia if nothing else.

I also read this morning on the Empire Yahoo group that Mr. Bowden is in negotiations to set up a website that will allow electronic delivery of new wargame rules and other such products worldwide.  This is excellent news even if you don’t play Empire.  Detailed Napoleonic simulations are a niche product in what is already a niche market, so I understand why few people are willing to outlay the needed cash to print even a small run of wargame rules.  With electronic delivery, the work can be put into the formatting the pages without having to worry as much about printing costs, especially if multiple formats (i.e. a ‘rich’ format and a ‘stripped-down’ one for printing) are considered.  This is what Too Fat Lardies do for at least some of their products.  Hopefully this will become a new marketing model that more hobbyists are willing to adopt.

Speaking of Empire, I enjoyed playing the game way back when, but the design is a little long in the tooth now.  I’m very interested to see what changes and refinements Mr. Bowden and his compatriots have come up with in the last 20+ years.  With all of the research he has done for his recent books, I’m sure there will be some new ideas about skirmishing and unformed combat at the minimum.    I look forward to seeing what he will come up with.


On the Painting Table

28mm Perry French Dragoons
13
40% Done

28mm Perry Confederate Zouaves (Coppens')
24
50% Done

28mm Sash and Saber Russian Napoleonic Infantry
24
5% Done

Warhammer 40K Kroot
19
DONE

Warhammer 40K Tau Pathfinders
9
10% Done

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