18 March 2017
3D Printing and Sketch Up
On the gaming front, things have picked up lately. Now back in Brisvegas, I’ve reactivated my 3D printer from some modelling projects. Having used Trimble’s Sketch Up in previous design projects, actually printing something from those projects were haphazard, infrequent and of doubtful enthusiasm. By the latter, I mean that while the enthusiasm was present, my commitment wasn’t entirely 100%. As a result, the two printings (a mech horse for my steam punk gaming and a scaled down Dutch house for my Arnhem game) invoked initial excitement that quickly tapered the thrill of actually creating something in 3D has worn off.
W40K trenching system
Nowadays, I am using Sketch Up more often in a couple of design projects. The one currently active is a trenching system for the 40K period. The idea was inspired by something I’d seen on WAU forum; in fact, it was virtually a straight copy of the trenching system but with my own interpretation on that excellent idea.
I have sorted out what I am doing for my presentation/battle board. It’s going to be an Imperial outpost established in a supposedly abandoned planetoid. They are protecting a survey team exploring some alien structures that are unknown. But at the same time, an Eldar Warp Gate suddenly appears and a sizeable force of Eldar suddenly make their appearance through the gate, right on top of the outpost. The Space Marines detachment guarding the outpost are heavily outnumbered and desperately request help from their own chapter. Help though is some time away and the garrison has to do its best to defend the place until reinforcements arrive.
The second idea is a pet project: scaled down Insect-class river gunboats. I wrote a review on an excellent book on these little riverine craft that also plied the coastal waters in their lifespan.
I’m particularly interested in their service in the China Station. And I want to incorporate them into some of the games that cater to the period, namely my In Her Majesty’s Name Dragon Tong company.
But the Insect-class vessels are a later interest. Originally I was interested in the American river gunboats. In particular there was one that caught my interest: the USS Oahu. The American vessels also saw service in China along the main river systems such as the Yellow River.
I’m still deciding on what scale. But I really need to chase up copies of the original blueprints so I can design an accurate replica for my 3D printer.
Field of Glory Napoleonic
Today I received a copy of the FoGN rules, version 2 draft. The backstory, briefly, is that some gamers contacted the original designer seeking news of the long-promised upgrade to these popular corps-level Napoleonic rules (yes, there is a global community who are as passionate of these rulesets that rivals anything currently on the market). But because of extenuating circumstances and long drawn-out activity involved in the upgrade, a couple of those querying gamers somehow ended up taking over the upgrade. Hence, why I received an email of the draft version 2 today. Both of those gamers responsible are from Australia and New Zealand.
Fast forward to yesterday. My mate contacted me asking if I could obtain a copy because he was keen to test the rules too. I said I would contact the guy responsible. The fellow kindly got back to me today with the draft. So now I’m reviewing the current draft and with a couple from my gaming group keen to trial the draft version, it looks to be a busy time for FoGN adherents.
I do enjoy FoGN because it’s the only Nap rules where there are enough players for me to continue to engage and maintain interest in. I’ve organised and run the last two FoGN events in Brisbane so my interest is more than passing. As well, I’ve gotten to meet some of the best Oceanic players of the game through holding my own FoGN events.
I still struggle to wrap my head around the concept that this is CORPS-level gaming NOT regiment or battalion-level. There is a world of difference that can throw off some of the less wary, like me. AWRG is another ruleset I’m familiar with and more in keeping with what I was used to gaming-wise. But it’s 28mm and there are few players in my local area. The one guy I used to game with suddenly dropped off the gaming radar so I was left with continuing to find another ruleset or stick to FoGN. Lucky the gaming circle I am part of enjoy FoGN enough to continue to play it.
There is also DBN (v2.1). It too is corps-level but it uses few figures and has a different point system. DBN is a quick, fun game, more pretzel-and-beer while FoGN is time-consuming and also more serious. Gaming time is also different between the two systems with DBN being much quicker to play than FoGN (version 1). But I hear that version 2 take much less time to complete. Which is good cos it felt like going FIFO whenever someone suggested a game of FoGN.
Solo wargaming activities
There was a flurry of activity in January and early February that has tapered off completely right now. I was engaged in the 2017 season of Lion Rampant in that time. So far, with my medieval skirmish game, I’ve introduced a new faction – the Livonian knights and their French sponsors, lost one of the main faction leaders – Guy de Tourmonne, and generally tried to complete painting all the minis for the game. On the latter, I’ve had to compromise and get them at least table-worthy.
While I was going great guns, I paused long enough to get started on the Russian Civil War. I even managed to prepare two 300-point lists for Red Actions/Red and White, and assembled a table. But I did not start. Why? I don’t know; I think I’m still unconvinced that Red Actions is the route I want to take for my first. I prefer Red and White because it’s much simpler to use. The other reason, and more plausible if I were being honest with myself, is that I can’t be bothered going through all the rigmarole of having to learn new rules. The gaming market these days is constantly throwing up new rulesets on nearly every conceivable gaming period. Where there was little to none when I first started, now there is just too much choice and variety.
There is also Canvas Eagles, a free WW1 aerial game using 1/72 planes that is part of the collective because many WW1 planes saw active service during the RCW.