Joy in Sheffield

Our next show is coming up in just under two weeks’ time; after the luxury of the short journey to our local Broadside show last month, this time it’s the longest UK journey that we undertake, to Sheffield for Baccus’ Joy of Six show. As the name implies, this is an event aimed exclusively at 6mm gaming of all periods and genres, and features a number of games and traders in that scale. We attended for the first time last year and were very impressed by the standard of the games and the venue itself (although the less said about my hotel the better – I’ll be staying somewhere else this year!).

For this specialist show we have a smaller stand with stock appropriate to the event. Obviously we’ll have the full 6mm SF range including all army packs, company packs and as much stock of individual models as we can manage. We’ll also have a good selection of 6mm building packs, and also individual building models (again, as decent a selection as possible). Our 6mm stock for this event should be better than any other show, Salute included. To support our ground forces we’ll have a full range of Squadron Commander starfighters – starter packs, blisters and individual models. We’ll have all our recent releases in both ranges, and there are more to come before the event.

Last year we brought along our Small Scale Scenery range – there was at least one 6mm game there using these on their terrain. They went dowbn very well, so we’ll be doing the same this year, including the large number of recent new releases.

We’ll have a good selection of 3D printed models, they aren’t all necessarily 6mm but it’s all in the same box so we might as well bring everything! Similarly, since our stock of rulebooks for shows all travels in the same box we’ll have a full range, both 6mm (Strike Legion and Horizon Wars) and others (Starmada, Imperial Skies, Gruntz etc). We’ll also have a selection of dice and bases.

Finally, we’ll be bringing a small selection of spaceships and packs since we’ve had a request for them. These will be behind the stand rather than on display so please ask if you’d like to see any.

We are still taking pre-orders for any of our ranges, 6mm or otherwise – you can either place an order and pay in advance using the collect in person option on the website, or just drop us an email and pay on the day.

Bring on the Guards

Back in March we released two new Neo-Soviet tanks in 15mm, and followed this up at Salute with the Terminator assault tank. These models have now successfully made the transition down to 6mm and are available on the website today.

The existing Neo-Soviet vehicles such as the Bizon MBT are used by regular tank units which form the bulk of the Red Army. The newer Bars and Vombat family are available in smaller numbers and at the moment are used exclusively by Guards units. The Bars is conventional MBT with a 3-man crew and is armed with a conventional 22cm gun firing DU ammunition. It has a secondary tri-barrel gatling mounted on the turret roof for defence against infantry.

The Vombat is a hybrid tank/APC used for urban combat. Based around the same chassis and drive-train as the Bars, it has a smaller engine unit with modified gear ratios allowing for high acceleration, ideal for dashing from cover to cover in close urban terrain. The space saved is used for an infantry carrying pod with (cramped) space for four Guards riflemen. The Vombat is fitted with the same turret and 22cm cannon as the Bars, although with a different ammunition loadout – high-explosive and canister rounds are prioritised over armour-piercing ammo. The Terminator variant has a very different turret with twin JR-330 30mm tri-barrels and four 9M218 missile tubes, and only two crew – driver and gunner/commander.

All three models are available individually priced at £1.25 (the Vombat replaces the older version of this model). There is also a company pack available for each – the Vombat and Terminator are in packs of eight with 32 infantry and a Lisa command vehicle, while the Bars company has 12 tanks plus command vehicle.

SF300-1211 – Vombat Assault Tank – £1.25
SF300-1211a – Terminator Assault Tank – £1.25
SF300-1213 – Bars MBT – £1.25

IC-1215 – Neo-Soviet Urban Assault Company – £12.75
IC-1218 – Neo-Soviet Guards Tank Company – £14.25
IC-1219 – Neo-Soviet Terminator Assault Company – £12.75

Xenosaur

It’s Friday, so it’s new release time again. One of today’s items should have been in our Salute list, but didn’t quite make the cut in time. Martin Baker has scaled down our 15mm Yenpalo Lizard riders to 6mm and given our aliens a unit capable of scouting in rough terrain or providing a shock force guaranteed to give any human infantry a bad day.

We also have two more new Human 6mm packs – our South African forces now get their own dedicated infantry figures wearing bush hats, and also a pack of mounted infantry on horseback for patrolling the veldt.

These new figures also filter through to several existing army packs – the SAC infantry will replace the generic figures in all relevant South African army and company packs, while a new Yenpalo Combat Group will replace the existing pack with the addition of 12 Lizard Riders (which was always the intention anyway).

SF300-670 – SAC Infantry in Bush Hats (x24) – £2.75
SF300-675 – SAC Mounted Infantry (x12) – £2.75
SF300-1173 – Yenpalo Lizard Riders (x12) – £4.00
IC-1102 – Yenpalo Combat Group – £14.50

Don’t forget the Joy of Six show which is coming up in just over three weeks’ time; we will have a number of new 6mm items before then to bring with us.

Maidstone Wargames Society Open Day

Phil and I have belonged to Maidstone Wargames Society since … well, the dawn of time it seems ! We are respectively the third and second longest-serving members, behind the the club’s esteemed secretary.

Every year the society holds an Open Day as a showcase to promote what we do and hopefully attract a new member or two. This year’s event is next Saturday, June 24th. It’s held at our normal meeting place, Linton Village Hall, a couple of miles south of Maidstone itself. This year there are eight games covering a wide range of periods plus a number of static displays. You can chat to the members about the games or the club, or join in if you feel like having a go at anything.

More info’ along with directions can be found on the club’s website.

Dock of the Bay

We’ve been quite on the blog for a week or so – I’ve been busy with orders (including another large restock for one of our retailers) and other stuff, and also had a couple of days off with the long-suffering Brigadieress. I’ve also been painting these next items – it’s taken a while (I’ve been mentioning these on and off to various customers at shows for the past couple of years) but today we’ve added several new sets of Dockyard Buildings to our Small Scale Scenery range. These were supposed to have been released last Friday (which would have neatly coincided with the 350th anniversary of the Battle of the Medway) but we’re a little late, delayed by preparations for Broadside, the weather (guess who left some painted models outside to dry and got caught out by a sudden rain-shower …) and a desire to paint and present these properly, which took longer than I expected to finish (Anchor Wharf in particular has a lot of windows).

However, we’re there now and we think it’s well worth the wait. The buildings are in the main based on prototypes at Chatham Dockyard in Kent, which at the turn of the 20th Century was one of Britain’s main naval dockyards for construction and repair.

The larger buildings are all resin, with the smaller buildings set cast in metal. The metal buildings set includes various manufacturing centres such as a sawmill, smithery, galvanising shed and pumphouse along with administrative buildings and general purpose sheds. If you didn’t want to use them specifically as dockyard buildings then they would still make great general-purpose factories and warehouses.

The Titan Crane is a 3D-printed piece, available from our Shapeways shop. It’s priced in dollars (since that’s the way that Shapeways do things) so the price in Europe will depend on the current exchange rate when you order.

SSS-8085 – Slip Cover #3 – £4.00
SSS-8086 – Slip Cover #4/5/6 – £4.00
SSS-8087 – Mast Sheds and Smithery – £5.00
SSS-8088 – Anchor Wharf – £6.00
SSS-8090 – Dockyard Buildings – £9.00
SSS-8093 – Waterline Dry Dock – £4.00

SHP-108 – Titan Crane – US$13.00

Fire Broadside!

It’s showtime again – after a brief hiatus since Salute, we’re back on the road again this weekend at Broadside 2017. Well, when we say ‘on the road’, that might be a slight exaggeration since it’s very, very local to us – Phil lives about eight miles away, Tony a 10-minute walk !

The show is on Sunday 11th from 10am-4pm at the Swallows Leisure Centre, Sittingbourne which is close to the mainline train station and bus links to Maidstone and Faversham. Sittingbourne is also not far from the M2 and M20 motorways, so access is straightforward. Just mind the parking, Sittingbourne is renowned for its rather officious parking attendants and their complete lack of flexibility and sense of humour 🙁

As this is a smaller show, we don’t bring absolutely everything with us, however we will have good stocks of:

  • Celtos (individual figures, unit packs, army packs)
  • Spaceships (fleet packs, rulebooks, individual models of our recent releases)
  • Squadron Commander (blister packs, starter packs, individual models of the new British and Neo-Soviets)
  • Small Scale Scenery (all models)
  • 15mm SF (army packs, platoon packs, rulebooks, individual models and packs of figures)
  • 6mm SF (army packs, rulebooks, company packs and building packs)
  • Aeronef (fleet packs, flotilla packs, starter packs, a selection of battleships in blisters, individual stock of the new Spaniards and Dutch)
  • Imperial Skies (rulebooks and accessories)
  • Magpie Miniatures (individual figures and blister packs)
  • 10mm SF (individual buildings)

If there’s anything else you’d specifically like us to bring, just drop us a line before Thursday this week.

Viva España !

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.

SSS-8081 – Castell de San Antonio – £3.00
SSS-8082 – Menorca Towers – £2.50
SSS-8083 – Cuban Church – £1.00
SSS-8084 – Spanish Blockhouses – £1.00

And that’s it for Salute !

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

Somewhere to Park Your Snowmobile

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.

B15-506 – Large Garage Block – £7.00

Unity is Strength

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’.

You can buy it now from our website.

STAR-005 – Starmada Unity – £22.00