So, as we mentioned last week, the Salute releases are all up on the website and it’s now time for something completely new. Today we have a collection of new releases with a Spanish flavour, partially taken from my Menorquin holiday last summer.
Menorca is an island with a damn sight more military history than I expected, being dotted with fortifications and castles all around the rocky coastline. There are seventeen small towers of varying designs around the coast, primarily on the eastern side of the island. These are mostly different types of Martello Tower, cylindrical or conical in design with one or two guns mounted on the roof. The first item this week is a set of three different versions of these towers – the Torre de Fornells, a well-preserved large tower on the northern Fornells peninsular; the Castillo de Sant Nicolau in Ciutadella on the far west coast, an unusual octagonal castle built by the Spanish; and the Torre Son Ganxo, a smaller and more conventional Martello design. Incidentally, if you follow some of the links and notice that the positioning of some doors seems to differ slightly from our models, it’s because new doors have been opened at ground level on the towers for easier access. When in use 200 or so years ago, access to some of the towers was by ladder to a door on the first floor.
Next up is another design from Menorca, the Castell de San Antonio. This remains of this castle are located in Fornells, very close to the Tower. It was built in the C.17th to defend against pirates, but its very low elevation right on the harbour front made it vulnerable to fire from ships and it ended up being partially demolished in 1782. Despite its rather undistinguished military career, I’ve chosen to make it as a perfect example of a four-pointed star fort design which can be used to stand in for other castles around the world.
We’re now moving down in size to some very small fortifications built by the Spanish in Cuba during the War of Independence in that country and the Spanish-American War. There were many of these dotted around the island of various designs, and our pack has four different models. They’re of a similar design to American Civil War blockhouses so would serve a dual purpose there too.
Finally for this week we’re staying on Cuba with a model of a church. This has two towers and would serve in other locales around the world, notably various European Mediterranean and South American countries.
So this is it, at last – the final pair of our Salute 2017 models have crept onto the website. As of next week, we’re going to have to find something new to dazzle you with…
These last two are both cylindrical towers for our 10mm SF Buildings range, scaled up from their 6mm cousins (or down from 15mm, one or the other). Tower #1 is on the left hand side of the photo below.
B10-403 – Small Cylindrical Tower #1 – £3.50 B10-408 – Small Cylindrical Tower #2 – £3.50
It’s the new garage module for our Research Station set. Yes, we know, the Research Station already has a garage block, but that’s a smaller twin-bay affair with room for light vehicles only. This new model is a bigger building with space for larger ATVs and explorer vehicles, along with an attached side building for storage or admin.
The latest version of Majestic 12 Game’s excellent Starmada ruleset is the Unity edition. We’ve just taken delivery of stock of the rulebook and very good it looks too.
Starmada has always been a game with simple mechanisms that layer together to produce a detailed game that nevertheless doesn’t get bogged down – to quote the website ‘Simple, but not simplistic, is the guiding principle’.
This week’s main attraction is the website release of the new EuroFed spaceship models. There are seven all-new digitally-sculpted ships along with two fighter types. Most of the models retain a similar outline to their predecessors, but are much changed in detail. The two largest vessels, the Milano and Umberto, have resin hulls while the rest are metal castings.
The remainder of the ships will be replaced with new versions in one or two further waves later this year, when we also hope to add one or two new classes as well. The other two fleet packs (401 and 403) will return when we have the ships to fill them again.
As mentioned just before Salute, Phil has remoulded his Kerberos spacestation model which has been out of production for a while. I’ve painted one of the new castings and it’s finally made it way back onto the website again.
The Kerberos model is a one-piece resin model of a three-spoked ring station. In its basic form it is unarmed, but there are plenty of places to position turrets from one of our accessory packs should you wish to give it a defence capability.
Earlier today we added the new Squadron Commander fighters to the website – four new models, two British and two Neo-Soviet. They’re available singly or in flights of four models, and we’ve also created a starter pack containing four of each model plus dice.
As well as being usable in starfighter games, the models are also perfect for air support duties with our 6mm range since they’re the same scale.
The Squadron Commander rules are available for free from our website, although they have yet to be updated with stats for the newest craft. In fact, there are several sets of rules for which we need to provide new stats to cover our latest releases, so I feel a rules blitz coming on soon…
The most popular of our new releases at Salute were the 15mm tanks – the Neo-Soviet Terminator (and the Vombat and Bars, both released not long before) and the Yenpalo Xarledi grav tank (I think the Terminator outsold the Xarledi by one model – there was very little left of the big pile of hulls I’d cast up before the show). The Yenpalo went onto the website a couple of weeks ago, and today it’s the turn of the Neo-Soviet assault tank.
The Terminator is a heavy assault vehicle armed with two tri-barrel gatlings and four missile tubes. It also has a compartment in the rear for four Guards infantry, allowing it to transport them right up to the front line under cover.
The model has a three-part resin body (hull plus tracks) with metal turret and hatches.
One of the best things about selling our models is seeing what people do with them, the way they’re painted and used in either games or modelling projects. We’ve recently been sent some photos of two diverse scenic models made using our Small Scale Scenery range and we thought it would be great to show them off.
The first is a Roman town by Pas Capetta in Australia. He’s used a combination of our Roman buildings (metal and resin) and the Hadrian’s Wall and Roman Fort packs to create a superb walled town. They’ve been coloured using artists paint markers rather than conventional brush paints, and some of the trees are rather cleverly made from offcuts of an artificial Christmas tree.
Ian Maun on the other hand is putting together a large English coastal diorama, starting with the town of Market Hampton, which will sit slightly inland from the harbour. The whole piece is being made in sections which should all eventually fit together to form a single large terrain area. In case anyone was wondering, the castle isn’t ours – it’s from Langton Miniatures.
As mentioned before Salute, I’ve been working on extending the number of buildings available in our upcoming Dockyard building set. Mostly based on Chatham dockyard with one or two extras, I have a few 3D previews of the additions here. The buildings (Smithery, Pump house and Galvanising Shed) are all Chatham ones:
While this is a dry dock with caisson (it’s modelled as a waterline piece, eg full of water) which is based on the dimensions of the Chatham ones but with some slightly differing detail:
Finally, my favourite; this is a Titan Crane, one of the giant cantilever cranes which can still be seen in places such as Glasgow and Clydebank. It will be released as a 3D print as making it in resin or metal would be tricky to say the least! It stands an impressive (for 2mm) 46mm tall: