28/11/16

Bertrand le Brigand and the bowmen of Bergerac

In the framework of my 20 years Anniversary, I am completing the collection of my Bretonnian army.

Bertrand and his companions are some of the first miniatures I collected. Strangely enough I never painted a full unit of Bergerac, only few plastic archers. 
So I went bact to the very base of the unit's composition and painted new models. 
They are Foundry "Medieval Ribaulds", others are Brigands from companies I forgot the name, plus a couple of converted 5th ed plastic archers.  

Last, but not least, I repainted the original trio to make them fit better with the rest of the unit. 

I like that I can play this unit in Warhammer as well as in Kings of War and 9th Age. 




Another miniature I finished this week is a Grail Nun from Reaper. I removed the two swords and replaced them with mace and shield. Now it fits better with the rest of the unit of the Grail Reliquary she is going to join...


26/11/16

Bretonnia 1996 - 2016



It has been a long journey. In a cold and dark evening of 20 years ago, unaware of the meaning of what  was going to happen, I bought the Bretonnian army book. It was meant to be a Christmas gift.

I felt in love with it. A love so strong that still endure after so many years.
So much happened in this time. Studies, life experience, jobs and other games. But my love for this fantasy medieval world inhabited by valiant knights living in tall castles never extinguished.

Obviously I had other interests and other hobbies in these years, but every time I came back to my "first love".
Still today, when I have some spare time, painting a Bretonnian miniature makes me feel again like that teenager of so much time ago.

I have to thank a great Lord of the past, the first who settled the Bretonnian community in the newly born internet (yes, there was a time without it):
Earl Cadfael 

Thanks to him I came to love even more this army and I felt part of a community.
The list of friends I met in there and at the Round Table (a new community I created together with a friend of mine) is long, together we shared our passion for this little world, which will survive to any Age to come.

Once I heard a good theory about the Lady of the Lake:
She could have been Ariel, trying to lead the Bretonni toward the good, but after so many centuries the Diety became an indipendent one, a real goddess created by the Knights and Ladies of Bretonnia. Because in Warhammer the people create the gods, and not vice versa.

Well, the same happened to Breonnia: it was once an army created by Nigel Stillman for the GW company. But today is a spirit, a concept, an idea of chivalry in fantasy that will never die.
There are already other companies and fans that are writing ruleset and sculpting models for Bretonnia. We made it what is it and it will endure.

To celebrate these 20 years I am currently painting some Bret models.

The first one is a just bought Black Tree Design model. I had not good memories of that company. I don't remember who pointed out in a forum that their range was not tat bad. Then I went on their online store and picked a couple of models. They are very '90s. They fit quite well with the 5th ed range and the theme of the anniversary.

This model is at the same time something old and new:
It is an old model, but painted in order to fit with my current 6th ed range.
Foot Knights is an old concept, but it is a new unit in my army.

The models received a 5th ed plastic crest and shield. I decided to use a 25mm base to give the model and the future unit a bigger visual impact on the battlefield. They are élite warriors, they have to get larger bases then commoners

Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce you to Sir Taureau the Red Bull, the Energy Knight!




Team Yankee Italian Army

I am going on with my project of providing the game of all needed in order to play the Italian Army.

It is a long process, I have to make a full research about historical facts and armoury, then I have to get the models and paint them. At last, but not least, I have to elaborate the graphic for the game together with good quality photos.
It is not easy nor simple, but I enjoy it. It is a kind of accademic research.

The cards are based on official Team Yankee units.
Where possible, I am going to use existing  (usually US or West German) game units and use the correspontent card as a starting point.

For that reason some point are arguable: e.g. the Morale,
yes it is high, probably 4+ would fit better.
In the West German unit cards the units have Moral 3+ and I kept it.
 If I would change this value, the cards would became fan made (and then there would be a new problem: do the Leopard then cost only 2 points instead of 3?)
For this reason, in order to remain official,  I prefer not to change card statistics.

The main battle tank Leopard 1:






And the self-propelled heavy artillery, the M109: 



12/11/16

Tormentors Marauders

I found it! A piece of old background from the 5th ed Realm of Chaos book.


Tormentors will be the name of my Chaos warbands and Dechala will be their leader.
It seems like I will need a lot of slaves to go together with my warriors...

I finished for a Dragon Rampant small campaign a unit of Chaos Marauders:






The kidnapped girl comes form the Hasslefree Miniatures Harem range.


09/11/16

Panavia Tornado

Here it is my second unit for Team Yankee game.

I continue my project of fielding an Italian '80s army,
I've added a flight support unit with an anti-helicopter.

The models  are from Revell Tornado ECR in 1:144 scale. With a very little conversion they became Tornado IDS.
At the moment they miss a flight stand, I am going to build one with transparent plastic. They are also missing air-to-ground bombs. I am waiting for Battlefront to add extra rules for them (e.g. the 1000 lb Mk 83 bomb or the 500 lb Mk82), because I don't like how the cluster bomb dispenser looks on the model.

It was not easy to find information about the painting scheme of Italian '80 air force colours. I have to admit anyway that it was an interesting challenge going throgh many fighter enthusiast websites and look at their photos for inspiration.
Very complicated was also to hand paint all the red-white-green circles of the Italian air force's symbol. I missed a lot not having some decals to help me in the job.




I also made a gaming card for this unit for the Team Yankee game:



15/10/16

New game: Team Yankee

I was tempted and I failed. Like always.
During a model and wargaming fair last month I say a selle with the new Flames of War Team Yankee game.
I have to say I loved it. Every army is amazing, the models are well done and the army books are marvellous.
In the past, I resisted as much as I could to the 15mm scale. I already have a huge IIWW collection in 1:72, and I did not want to restart it in 1:100.
BUT... that's modern warfare... it is different...
I also took this decision because the modern plastic soldiers and models in 1:72  are not cheaper than the BattleFront ones in 1:100.

I could not decide which army to pick. I loved them all: The USA, the Soviets and the West Germans.
I finally decided for something different! I would have done the Italians!
Why not, after all Italy is a country at the border of the Iron Curtain (Comunist Yugoslavia was not the best ally of USSR, but for sure in a war it would have sided the reds).


It doesn't matter to me if the Italian Army is included in the Team Yankee book. Italy is a NATO nation and it is placed on the frontline.

My first plan was to identify which Team Yankee models from other armies I could collect for the "Esercito Italiano".
Luckily in the Italian army many US vehicles were employed, while others were developped together with the German industries.

My very first Team Yankee models are therefore the Leopard 1 (of  which 800 were used by either bought or directly produced the Italians).
The rules are in the Leopard 1 are in the West Germans expansions called exactly "Leopard"


All I had to do was to paint it with the Esercito Italiano olive green...


...and the magic was done!
I love them! They are so cute!

I used the Battlefront NATO Green spray, I then added some dark brown  wash plus a light green drybrush. Then some weathering and few scratches. Painting the license plates was quite hard by the way.
I will need many of those tanks, as they cost only 3 points each.

Now my plan includes to find adn buy the other already available models:

The M113 transport:



The M109 self-propelled howitzer:


M106 Mortar carrier




Tornado combat aircraft:
 







13/08/16

Bretonnian Catapults


I completed an old project of mine: introducing field artillery to my armies.
I know, it is not very Bretonnian and it is against the rules of chivalry.
But you can be sure that these catapults will be used only against other warmachines, shooting units and lowborn massed infantry formations. All the enemy heroes, cavalrt and monsters will be faced ony by my Knights

I converted two Mantic Undead catapults to use them in my Bret army. They have been "restored" and the screaming skulls removed, as well as several spikes.
I've chosen catapults instead of trebuchets, as the latter are fixed siege artillery and do not fit IMO in a field battle.

Each catapuly, by tradition, belongs to one of the twin fortress of the De Rochefort's main keep: Domanne and Berme. The heraldry of the two castles are depicted on the shields hung on them.
Nowadays both catapults are manned by Berme's crew, only an old and experienced yeoman craftman from Domanne has the honour to oversee the operations, even though his sight is not good anymore as it was in the past.

The dog companion from the Bretonnian plastic sprue has been painted as a fox terrier. I love it.





11/07/16

Bretonnian Herrimaults

The six Herrimaults are ready!
I plan to increase the unit up to a 10 strong men in order to play it with Kings of War and 9th Age.

By now they are ready to be used as Bidowers in Lion Rampant.

I used natural colours and I wanted to give them a kind of coherent look.
I also avoided to use bright green shades as often used in 80's Robin Hood's "marrimen" clothing.


07/07/16

Bretonnian Herrimaults / Forest Hunters

My next project is a small unit of Herrimaults.

The "command group" is composed by Bertrand le Brigand, Hugo le Petit and Gui le Gros.

The rest of the unit will be a mix of other "rapscallion-looking" models. I have some Revolting peasants from Foundry. Plus I converted an old Bret archer and gave it a more "outlaw-looking" head.


Then I needed a 10th model.
I wanted to use a Bretonnian model. So I went back to my 5th ed bits box and saved another old Bertrand's archer.
The pose was the typical 5th ed plastic one, so I went with the cutter and I removed the head and both arms.
I used a 6th ed plastic archer head, as I did on the archer in the photo above, plus a pair of Mordheim/Empire Militia archer arms.
I am very satisfied how I could save this old model and I gave it a new life.
Those 5th ed plastic archers are very cheap to find on ebay, I am thinking of converting more of them.




The unit will be played
in Kings of War as the Brotherhood Swain's Villein Rangers,
in Lion (and Dragon) Rampant as Bidowers scouts.
in 9th Age as Brigands with a Castellan Hero.


29/05/16

Bretonnian Brigands Part 2

Here it is my unit of Brigands!
The Perry models were easy to paint, they are neat and clean, the details on the miniature perfect. The brush goes by itself on the crisp parts, without much risk of mistakes.
I also love the good human proportion of the models.





To paint them as seen in the old 4th edition Rule Book made the whole session like a "historical research" inside the Warhammer miniatures history.
I never did something like this. Usually I invent my own painting scheme, themed ether with De Rochefort's blasons or Quenelles' Army. But this time I had a precious old book to copy from. It was a mix between historical wargaming and religious reverence