Saturday 26 February 2011

Inside the Tor

The sound of hissing rain, pounding hail and howling wind from outside is interrupted only by the occasional crack of thunder. You are pleased to be in the dry, even if you have all chosen to light your own fires and seem to be very distrustful of each other. As you settle in to rest up, the thunderous clamour from outside picks up and the three doors in the room seem to tremble with every new blast. Suddenly, the room is lighted from without by a blast of lightning that makes the hairs on your arms stand up. An almost simultaneous thunderclap shakes the teeth in your heads. All three doors break open and fall to the floor disturbing centuries old dust and revealing passages beyond them. Seconds later the room is filled with squeaking as a horde of rats, their nest disturbed, charge in from the central door. The suddenness of this all surprises you and you stand slack-jawed momentarily as the rats race into the room and then swerve towards Elias as the fire in the centre of the room scares them around it.

(Click the picture for a larger version)

Friday 25 February 2011

Elias Dusan Argyrus

Elias hated the countryside, he was a city boy, having grown up in Specularum. At least in the city there were doorways to hide out of the rain, or warm taverns were a profitable hand of cards could be played. He could feel the cold beginning to settle on his chest. Coughing fits to look forward to then, what joy.
Still he had promised his mother he would carry letters to relatives in Threshold. He’d never been there himself, but that is were his mother had lived and met a young soldier. When his term of service had finished the couple and their young family, Elias’ elder brothers and his older sister, had moved to Specularum.

For once Elias was glad he hadn’t been big enough for the army. The thought of his brother Damian, who had been serving up here for nearly a year now, brought a smile to his face.

Elias stood about 5’8” and always seemed to look like he needed a good meal or two. He pulled his dark green, hooded cloak tighter about him. One of the others seemed to have spotted some shelter ahead. Not the sort of place he would have picked, but at least it was dry.

Elias settled down with his back to the fire and removing some of his damp clothing, to allow it and him to dry. Unscrewing the top and bottom of his staff with practised ease, he was left with a flute. With this he began to play the lilting melody of a Trahadar folk song. This kept both his fingers lithe and helped strengthen his lungs. After a few minutes playing a variety of tunes he turned to the others.
“Anyone fancy playing this game of chance I’ve been trying to learn. I believe it’s called poker.” Smiling he produced a pack of cards.

Wednesday 23 February 2011

The Dairy of Lacrimos the dyslexic

Bloody crap weather we're having.

The guys I'm travelling seem ok but its hard to converse in sheet rain and thunder...nevermind.

Finally got some shelter in what looks like an old abandoned temple...maybe there is some treasure lying around...nah!! Worth a look though, you never know.

Tired and hungry, so going to grab some sleep and some grub and then see if the others fancy a short diversion.

Thursday 10 February 2011

Miroslav Damekovich

Well met travellers. I am Miroslav Damekovich. I am a merchant by trade. I seek goods that folk want and will pay good money for and take them to them at a profit for myself. The best goods are those that are hardest to find and there is a fortune to be made in such items sold to the idle rich Thylatians. I will be blunt as is the way of my people and allow you to be aware that for one to be successful in such a trade one has to be capable of holding what one has. We Traladarans are a proud warrior folk and fighting comes easy to us but those times are past and have caused us much grief so we must look forwards to ways of making profit to make ourselves strong again. It is a new world and gold is what makes the world go round now rather than the knife, although one must be strong to hold it and wise to make use of it. But the wine has got my tongue and I ramble in my cups on past glories. I look to the future and profit and the gods look after one who looks after himself. Hah!

A young man, fair haired with shaved head except for a top knot as is the custom with some of the Traladarans. He wears the beginnings of a moustache on his top lip but does not seem of an age were this grows easily yet. Clothing is in the bright and baggy style of his people with a fur lined leather hat. Across his waist is a broad leather belt with a machete sized blade or saex and a money pouch. His banded mail armour he has requested the inn keep store somewhere safe with a great axe. A mule he has tethered in the stables.

Monday 7 February 2011

Vapnartak 2011

I went to Vapnartak in York yesterday. It's only 45 minutes from my house, which makes it a nice easy show to get to and the venue is pretty good. I really liked the Merchant Adventurers' Hall when it was there because of the atmosphere of the place, but the racecourse is much better in terms of lighting, space and parking. So, how was the show?

Socially it was brilliant. I met up with Andy (Another Slight Diversion), Meic (an old friend from my digging days in Wrexham), Mike with his newly sculpted Ottomans (very nice and can't wait to see them come into production: for a preview check the Baccus forum) and many others. I had a great chat with Peter Berry on the Baccus stand and Tony at East Riding Miniatures. All in all, the social side of things was really good and it was a great pleasure to meet up with people that I only see occasionally.

The down side to the show was that it was very busy in the morning and seemed rather overcrowded, which made looking at things difficult with people barging past all the time. The crowds thinned out greatly in the afternoon, which made it much better.

As far as demo games went, the show was rather disappointing. None of the games particularly inspired me. I found the wall-to-wall nature of the predominantly 28m games rather tedious and not particularly evocative of the periods being represented. Looking for the positive, The Lance and Longbow Society game did not suffer from this. I think it was Mortimer's Cross this time around and it did look like a game that one might wish to play. There was a demo of the forthcoming Viking Age rules from Gripping Beast that looked interesting. Again, it was not wall-to-wall figures and the table dressing of pigs and sheep was nice to see. The League of Extraordinary Kriegspielers had an interesting looking game going too with a nice town layout. The problem with this game though was that I found it hard to see what was going on for the backs of the players. Another major gripe of mine was that no one at any of the games even greeted me when I approached the table to have a look. A simple hello would have sufficed and might have given me the opportunity to ask questions without interrupting the game play. Instead, the players kept playing and the onlookers were ignored. As such I wonder why the players actually bothered bringing their games away from the clubs into a public arena.

On the buying front, I limited my purchases significantly due to lack of money. I bought some Figures in Comfort foam trays for my troops. You have to keep the troops happy or they will not fight well for you! I also bought a packet of each of the new Vikings packs from Baccus. They are beautiful little pillagers and I am looking forward to getting paint onto them so that I can field them en masse. Lovely stuff.

Sunday 6 February 2011

Who's the new guy in the Inn

Good Day, fellow travellers!

My name is Lacrimos Dabatenus, a Thyation by birth, but now I seek my fortune in Karameikos. I am a Blacksmith by trade, but it seems I have left that behind in Kerendas with my family and friends.

If you could tell me of any work hereabouts I would be grateful; I am skilled in metalwork, as I mentioned, but I am also skilled in the use of what I make and I am not afraid of confrontation.

I will be in the corner with some food and wine if you need me.


Tuesday 1 February 2011

January - The Photos.

These are the figures that I painted in January. It does not look like that many when I gather them all together, but it sure felt like a lot.

Parts of Exeter's Command slog their way across Towton Dale towards the Yorkist lines. Baccus 6mm figures as usual with a sneak preview of part of the Towton terrain included. Flags are all by Freezywater and bases from East Riding Miniatures.

Colonel Throckmorton P. Gladiolus stands proudly in front of the newest additions to the Bwendi army, Two HAMR suits (Rebel Minis). The Colonel (15mm Laserburn) is convinced that these will really help prevent further Albion Defence Force incursions into Bwendi territory. The Colonel's brother-in-law would appear to be adept at sourcing secondhand military hardware. "One careful owner, a little old lady who used it to go shopping, you know. Oh, don't mind that hole there. We can easily patch that up with a bit of plastic padding."

The Road Warrior stands proudly beside his new car. He is a 15mm zombie hunter that I bought through TwoHourWargames (might be Rebel Minis, I cannot remember). The car was one of a pack of thirty that I bought for £1 in my local Wilkos. The gun on top is a spare piece from a GZG tank. We are planning a small post-apocalypse skirmish and are slowly gathering forces. Rules of choice are currently one of the Wastelands variants.