Tuesday, 24 November 2020

Taking a Break


I've got this week off work but most of it is going to be spent working on our flat so sadly once again hobby time is taking a bit of a back seat.

I have however, been reading a lot of really enjoyable pulp fiction in the form of Doc Savage, Bulldog Drummond and The Shadow.

Each of these characters tend to have fantastic adventures in the 1920s and 30s and make for great fun reads of the pulpiest sort with cliffhangers aplenty, vile villains and square jawed heroes and it's got me looking at some of my old rulebook collections and having a bit of a ponder.

There's something deeply satisfying about reading pulp fiction from back in the day as it may not be quality fiction but it's loads of fun, the only downside is it can be difficult to find but I've found a decent cashe on The Faded Page, a repository of old books which are free to download and I highly recommend having a peruse!

Sadly what little time I've had for painting has been an intensely frustrating experience as I cannot seem to get motivated or get any decent results from my painting which may be due to me just not being in the right mindset for it or a lack of inspiration but we shall see...

I've decided to take a bit of a break and get the festive period out of the way before having a fresh bash at things in 2021 which will hopefully prove to be a bit more inspired than 2020!

I may yet post some more odds and ends as I've got one or two ideas floating around but in the meantime, All the best!

Monday, 16 November 2020

A Bit of Palette Cleansing


It's been a busy few weeks and hobby has had to once again take a back seat but I've recently placed a small order with em-4 Miniatures for some assorted plastic gubbins to allow me to get one or two quick and easy paint jobs done, namely for Gamma Wolves when I get hold of the book but also with some Battletech crossover potential.

I've been feeling the need to get some really simple miniatures that I could paint up without having to put in a ton of effort and after a bit of ruminating, I remember having a load of the old plastic Space Rangers back in the day along with the Steel Warrior Mechs. Sadly they got sold off years ago but in a bit of a nostalgic moment, I figured I'd order a couple of them to have a bash at painting.

I have very fond memories of painting them in my teens in all manner of random colours so it's going to be interesting to see how they hold up to a more modern paintjob. I'm especially fond of the Space Rangers who have a real Space Crusade vibe about them:

Hopefully they'll arrive in the next few days and I'll post a bit of a mini review but they're cheap as chips and should make for a fun little project!

I've also spent a bit of time rummaging my Flintloque stuff with the vague intention of getting some more of them painted as I was really pleased with how my Deadloque boxed set turned out during the last lockdown. I'll see if I can sort out some odds and ends over the next few days as I have a weeks holiday coming up and with Dundee being in tier 3 of Covid, we can't go anywhere so I may have a bit of free time on my hands and will try and post a bit of a daily project log to cover my progress.

We shall see how I get on but I'm rather excited to get going with it!

Sunday, 1 November 2020

Inktober 2020


I've spent October taking part in the yearly Inktober challenge which has been rather fun!

They've been a great way to get some drawing done which has in turn given me some visual inspiration for my Rusty Robots project and I've really enjoyed taking part.

If folks are interested, please feel free to take a peek at SPACE COW SMITH PRODUCTIONS.

Following the Government's announcement of another lockdown, I'm dejectedly awaiting Scotland following suit. At present I'm hoping I'm still going to be going into work as books are more important than ever these days but if the worst happens and I'm stuck in another lockdown, I'll start up another lockdown project log with a post a day of random hobby stuff.

In the meantime, All the best!

Sunday, 25 October 2020

Star Mogul Project Part 3: The Rules


Here's a quick link to the Star Mogul Rules!

Star Mogul Core Rules

The original rules! They contain everything you need to get started with the core rules and a guide to putting together your salvage company along with some hired guns and pirates to liven up games. It's also got the campaign system too along with an assortment of scenarios to play out!

Star Mogul: Distant Worlds

Distant Worlds was the first expansion to the rules and came with a guide to playing forces of Asteroid Miners and Hydrissians, an alien race with an interesting appearance and very different motivations to human warbands.

Star Mogul: Alien Evolution

The last supplement was Alien Evolution which introduced the X-12 Robot cult, a renegade group of mekks who seek freedom from their human overlords and the Mephalians, a degenerate remnant of the Mimjip Empire who operate ancient alien tech.

I'll post up a bit of a guide to the rules next time but in the meantime, All the best and I hope folks enjoy perusing a rather fun set of old rules!

Saturday, 24 October 2020

Star Mogul Project Part 2: Background


As part of my Star Mogul project, I've decided to get the ball rolling with a quick look at the background to the setting so without further ado, let's take a peek at what we've got!

In 2227 the Tread Lightly Corp launched the Tachyon drive which allowed FTL travel and humanity began spreading across the stars. 

At this point, there were already working colonies on several of Jupiter's moons, Mercury, the Asteroid belt and Earth's Moon. Terraforming and settlement of Mars was already underway but the Tachyon drive's creation allowed for exploration of new worlds far from Earth. Initially it was the Earth's great powers who launched expeditions using the Tachyon drive to establish colonies on newly discovered worlds and exploit their natural resources but the blueprints for the drive were stolen and soon smaller groups were launching their own colonising efforts. These smaller expeditions sought to establish new and free societies, far from the overcrowded and tightly controlled Earth.

This time period became known as the Young Exodus as many of the colonists who enlisted were chosen for their youth and vigour. The call of the colonies lured many out into space to an uncertain future but many saw the benefits over a crowded and stifling life on Earth. 

The colonies were initiated, some over 100 light years from Earth but soon several began reporting discovering the ruins of an alien civilisation and further research and excavations revealed the ruins to be over 400,000 years old. These discoveries resulted in a fresh wave of exploration further into unexplored space as many sought to delve further into the mysteries of this lost alien society and the Great Expedition phase began with a new gold rush as prospectors rushed to the new frontiers in search of lost alien tech and the mysteries of the Mimjip civilisation.

By 2340 humanity appeared to be forging an empire amongst the stars. Earth had begun to regulate its population and biosphere thanks to the resources that poured in from its offworld colonies and recovered alien tech.

Things weren't all rosey though as many colonists began to resent the amount of resources and money they were being required to send back to Earth, despite a lack of political freedom or representation they had been promised. 

Soon several established colonies declared their independence from Earth but this wasn't too much of a concern to the Earth government as trade continued to flow and the sheer distances involved meant a military response wasn't feasible.

Then the discovery of the ‘Forge’ at Alpha Centauri occurred and relations broke down rapidly. The ‘Alpha Forge’, as it became known, was an orbiting starship construction platform the Mimjipani race had left behind. Its technology relied upon the gathering of rare elements from the local asteroid belt which were then shaped and tempered slowly into a near indestructible starship hull deep in the fires of Alpha Centauri itself. 

It was the outer colonists that discovered the forge and worked out its operating procedure, but the obvious military implications of the new starship hulls became apparent quickly to Earth and the governing bodies of the home system. Using heavyweight diplomatic and economic muscle, the council of Earth attempted to obtain possession of the forge for itself. 

The whole situation deteriorated badly not long thereafter when earth’s council declared all members of the newly formed ‘Federal Union’ on the Outer Rim in violation of their legal obligations and sent in a cohort of storm troopers to obtain the Forge by force. The assault was repelled, just barely, by the efforts of a lieutenant engineer Thomas Redcloud (awarded the ‘Gold Aurora’), who fixed the entire docking area to self destruct, catching the storm trooper reinforcement party off guard and allowing the defenders to consolidate their defences in time.

After this, the Frontier Union organised the Alpha Forge with heavy artillery in case Earth tried to take this valuable artefact by storm again. There was no declaration of war – the Frontier Union had no army. So they had no choice but to organise one in response to the actions of Earth, and also, the growing number of slave raids by the Hydrissian ‘devourer’ cult on the fringes of known space that began in 2442.  The Federal Defence Force (FDF) was organised and ties with the home system became much more restricted as the colonies strove for self sufficiency.

Around this time, shortly after the century turned to the 2400’s, a new threat loomed on the horizon.
The discovery of the ‘Mimjip Pathogen’ reared its ugly head, though too late for many on the frontier. Somewhere among the exploration and exploitation of the ancient Mimjip ruins a deadly virus had been released. 

The virus had lain dormant for many thousands of years, and was probably thought of as an innocuous infection by the ancient Mimjipani race. The accidental release of this virus had devastating consequences on humanity as it lay semi-dormant for several decades before it was discovered and made itself felt. By this time it had spread throughout the colonies and throughout the home systems. The resulting pandemic killed many millions, and has brought mankind’s fledgling empire among the stars to its knees.

Entire space colonies have now lain deserted for decades and much that was built has now been laid to waste. Finally, in more recent years, the Mimjip pathogen seems to have played itself out, and cases are becoming much rarer. Perhaps only those who are naturally able to fight the virus have survived. Nevertheless, the road is now open for those who are brave enough, or perhaps foolish enough, to begin the process of rebuilding what was lost.

This is where the game takes place with small groups of salvage experts exploring lost colonies for tech and fighting over the ruins of a once great empire. It is a lawless place but fortune favours the bold and money is to be made amongst the stars.

I'm hoping to take a look at what is required to play in the next instalment but I'm still humming and hahing about what miniatures to use. Do I go 28mm, 15mm or sculpt my own? Each option has it's pluses and negatives so I'll need to get my thinking hat on and figure out just what I want to do before I get the that point but I have plenty of other stuff that I can be getting on with, including putting together a bit of a campaign map showcasing the region that the action will be happing so watch this space!

In the meantime, All the best!

Thursday, 22 October 2020

Star Mogul Project: Part 1 Musings


I have managed to get myself a new laptop (many thanks to my brother for being awesome!) which should allow me to get my blogging up and running again which is rather exciting and I'm looking forward to getting things running normally again.

I'm interested to see what Stargrave develops into as what little I've read makes me think of the old Star Mogul rules and I've been thinking of using that for the next while to give me a nice small project that can then get used as a building block for some warbands for Stargrave in 2021.

Back in about 2008, I had a blast putting together forces for the game and a few years ago I played a couple of games using 15mm scale figures and I'm rather fond of the game, despite not playing it much and it may be a fun little project to round out the year and indeed clear through some of the odds and ends from my lead pile!

My next post will cover the background of the Star Mogul setting and I'll see how I get on with choosing some suitable figures for my two salvage crews.

In other news, I've also preordered Gamma Wolves as I rather like the setting and think it might be a good project to put together in a scale smaller than 28mm and with there only being the need for a half dozen figures per side in total, it should be a fun side project too!

In the meantime, All the best!

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

In Search of a New Project


I’m currently working my way through Inktober so haven’t had much time for other hobby related shenanigans!

I have noticed that Osprey Games are releasing Gamma Wolves, a stompy robot post apocalyptic game and have announced Stargrave too which is rather exciting.

Now I’m not sure if they’re going to be my cup of tea but I am looking for a new project and will be interested to see how things develop!

I’m having a bit of a hobby slump at present following the lockdown progress I had earlier in the year so I’m keen to try out something new to get the mojo going again so if anyone has any suggestions, I’d love to hear them!