Tuesday, July 20, 2021

The Viking Shore Part III: the OTHER longship


What's better than having one longship?  Having two longships!

The Other Longship

Finally completed my second longship.  This is the 'Long Serpent" from Old Glory.  It's a big resin cast so there was little assembly required.  

Whole ship

I used the left over shields from the first longship to line this one as well.
Now they are like twins.

Dragon prow.
Somehow it looks both mean and sad at the same time.

The Ship is sold as a 25mm model.
So here it is crewed by some 28mm Viking thugs.

Didn't that turn out nice?  I think so.  Now I am the proud owner of the beginnings a real Viking fleet.

Both ships together.  They match up near enough.
I doubt that I would ever want/need more than two.

Wandering Eyes in the Dark Ages

In the hunt for a dark ages mass battle ruleset that I really adore I recently picked up Impetus 2 from Wargame Vault.  

I have mass battles rules that I like well enough, these being Sword and Spear and Hail Caesar, but I don't really adore them.  They're like the women you date while you wait for someone better to come along; so that you have someone to go see movies with or take to parties.  This leaves me with wandering eyes for different rulesets.  I've heard some good stuff about IMP2 so when I saw it was on sale I purchased the PDF.  

At first I found it hard to read and understand honestly.  Usually when I read a wargame ruleset I can see in my mind how the game takes shape but not in this case.  This has happened to me before with this publisher (Dadi&Piombo); as I also have Lords and Servants and Long Rifles by these guys and find them confusing and hard to grasp so have never tried them.  Now I am not a dumb person (Of course I would say that); I double majored in college and have a doctorate so I'm pretty sure I can take in information and spit it out again.  And I don't mind complexity in a rule set and have plenty of such board games to prove it.  But there's something with the writing style, or maybe because it's a translation, or maybe it's just the mechanics themselves don't ring with me; that I found myself going "what?" a lot while reading it. 

Though during sequent reads it's starting to make sense and I'm actually liking what I am reading.  Persistence pays off sometimes!  I usually give myself 2 read throughs of rules; while I don't expect to know everything right away on the second time it at least needs to start to make better sense or I'm not bothering with it.  (I'm LOOKING at you ADLG!  I read you twice and still you made little sense, and now you're in the trash!).  

Yet I know it's going to be one of those games that you have to see on the table and run it through it's paces to really understand how it all comes together.  Ideally I would find someone who already knows the game and could walk me through it. 

Though I am annoyed with them again because apparently I have to buy The Warbook 2 to get the army lists I want which is NOT AVAILABLE as a PDF yet, and I have mentioned that I HATE BUYING BOOKS OF ARMY LISTS THAT HAVE 103 LISTS IN THEM (yes I counted) WHEN I ONLY WANT 4 OF THEM!!!!

Sorry for shouting.  I get worked up sometimes.  If I were a wargames company I would do the cool thing and either provide the points system so that people can make their own armies, or provide army lists free online, or just sell smaller PDFs that have 20 lists for like $5 based on theme or region. 

The other ruleset I purchased on a lark was Triumph!  This one has the advantage where there are lots of youtube vidoes on it.  There are somethings I really like about it and somethings I'm not so sure of.  Apparently it's a DBA derivative but I've never played DBAnything so it's all fresh to me.  However, I've never seen a DBA game being played and thought; "that looks like fun."  

Time will tell.  

What Now Kemosabe? 

Besides working on the above Longship and being distracted in real life by such things as Mental Illness, a insect infestation in my house, drunken in-laws, sick children, erupting volcanos, homicidal inmates, meteor showers, and a general lack of time; My wargaming hobby has been meandering and unfocused and not much done.  (yes, I made up some of those things; I enjoy hyperbole).  

I'm feeling the urge to actually complete something.  Just need to pick something that give my life direction and meaning.  

Till next time.  Thanks for reading.  Extra thanks for writing a comment. 

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Brigade Fire and Fury Scenario: Wilderness Battle


The Sun is Dumb 

This is the scenario that I cobbled together for my fathers day weekend game.  Turns out that it didn't happen as we were meant to play outside in my backyard due to COVID precautions--

--  and while the state of Ca. has been opened up in all manner of ways I like to be safely behind the curve.  Even having people over after 15 months of no house guests was a big deal.  But as my wife is not vaccinated and we have 2 little kids and a baby in the house; gathering different people together to play games but doing it outside seemed like a good safe option to have some miniatures fun.  My backyard is shady and as long as we stick to the cultivated areas we should be safe from any backyard beasties that live in the wild parts of the yard.  I exaggerate, or do I? --

But then there was a record shattering heat wave.  I mean a "it hasn't been this hot in 30 years and whatever you do stay inside!" kind of heat wave.   At first I was stubborn about it; telling people  "if the real soldiers of the day could fight in very hot weather with black powder muskets while wearing wool uniforms then surely we can play miniatures in the shade while wearing shorts and sipping cold drinks."  

Yet when the temperature for the day was predicted to be 108 F (that's 42 C for you folks in other parts of the world who use funny scales) I caved in and cancelled.  That's pretty damn hot and just sounded miserable even if in the shade.  At that temp even if there was a breeze it'd be hot.  

I just didn't think it would be any fun.  

Turns out the temp of the day was only 103 but I still stand by the decision.  
My ancestors would think me weak and effeminate, but in my defense Miniatures really are an indoor sport.

You win again, my old enemy.

On the bright side, I learned that I can control the weather.  So the next time you want really bad weather on a certain date, you just let me know.  I'll plan something that I'll really look forward to and should be really fun for me on the same date and BAM!  Guaranteed bad weather.

On the down side; this meant that I got to spend the entire Father's Day Weekend with my children (/shudder).

Brigade Fire and Fury Wilderness Scenario

I'm posting the scenario as an act of online storage.  Sure I printed it all out and stuck it in a folder somewhere.  Sure it's saved on my desktop.  But folders get lost, computers suddenly break, but blogs are forever (right?).  And somebody on the internet might stumble upon it and like it.  It's fun to share.

I like ACW games set in the Wilderness during the later parts of the war.  The AOP newly under the command of Grant and Meade is a hammer finally being swung effectively.  The ANV is a lean mean fighting machine but needs to balance aggression and defense.  It's mongoose versus cobra and the terrain is terrible.  

The foundation of the scenario I took from the scenario book
"Bayonets, Shells, and Balls" by Potomac Productions (1996)
I got it off of Wargame Vault.

I took the historical info and twisted and tweeked it to fit what I thought would be a good game.

Terrain Notes:  Green areas are heavy woods.  Yellowish brown areas are clearings.  There is no other terrain and anything else on the table is just for scenic affects to look pretty; like hair highlights.  
Heavy Woods counts as Rough Ground: Line of sight is reduced to 2",  grants partial cover for units being fired on, and Defending units in melee receive the +1 for favorable ground. 
The roads are not good roads so do not provide a movement bonus but DO count as open group for limbered guns or units in march column moving through the heavy woods.  

Deployment: Place brigades on table as shown.  Players may pick the formation but mock anyone who does not pick Line or Supported Line.  Players may place Divisional and Corps commanders where they see fit.  Enter on Turn 1 where indicated: VI Corps Commander Sedgwick, Divisional Commander Wright and all brigades in Wrights division (Russel, Shaler, Brown, Upton; in any order).  Also enter on turn 1 where indicated Divisional Commander Crawford and his two brigades (Fisher and McCandless).   Enter on turn 2 Divisional Commander Ricketts and his two brigades (Morris and Seymour).  All units enter at the double quick movement rate.  
Artillery begins limbered at the board edges and belongs to the Corp commanders.  

Historical Backstory:  It's the ACW; just fight fight fight!  The AOP is attempting to curl itself around the flank of the ANV when it launches an attack to stop the movement.  The AOP responds with a counter-counter attack and they clash headlong in the middle of the wilderness terrain.  

Objectives:  There are 3 key positions on the table:
1: The crossroads behind the CSA which starts under the CSA control is worth 1 victory point for being held at the end of the game by either side.  
2: The large clearing in the middle of the battle starts under neither sides control and is worth 1 victory point for being held at the end of the game by either side.  The field counts as being held if one side has units INSIDE the clearing and the other has none.  If both side have units inside the clearing then neither side counts as holding or losing the key position.  The clearing cannot count as being held or lost until turn 2 (basically each side gets a turn to move units into it or not).  
3: The crossroads behind the Union lines is worth 1 victory point to the CSA if they at any point have the crossroads.  The CSA do NOT need to hold the crossroads to receive the victory point, just get a brigade onto it.  However if the CSA does take the objective and then loses it the CSA still suffers the -1 for key position lost. 

The -1 on the maneuver check for each Key position lost is cumulative.  

In addition to the 3 key positions there are objectives:
Heavy Losses:  The CSA gain one victory point if the Union reaches it's heavy losses threshold of 43 stands and guns.  The USA gain one victory point if the CSA reaches it's heavy losses threshold of 33 stands and guns. 

Greater Losses:  1 victory point for the side that inflicts greater losses.  

Game length:  CSA has the first turn; Game lasts 12 turns (represents 6 hours of game time).  


Order of battle for Brigade Fire and Fury 2ed

Every brigade is armed with Rifled Muskets.  

V Corp - Warren
    V Corp / 1 Div - Griffen
        Ayers: Vet 12/9/6
        Sweitzer: Exp 10/8/5
        Bartlett: Exp 10/8/5
    V Corp / II Div - Robinson
        Leonard: Exp 9/7/5
        Baxter: Exp 10/8/5
        Dennison: Grn 10/7/4
    V Corp / III Div - Crawford
        McCandless: Grn 12/9/6
        Fisher: Exp 12/9/6
    V Corp / IV Div - Wadsworth
        Cutler (exceptional): Crk 11/8/5
        Rice: Vet 9/7/5
        Stone: Exp 10/8/5

V Corp Artillery reserve (3 Batteries)
Vet LR
Vet LR
Vet RN

VI Corp - Sedgwick (Exceptional)
    VI Corp / 1 Div - Wright
        Brown: Vet 12/9/6
        Upton: Crk 10/8/5
        Russel: Exp 10/8/5
        Shaler: Exp 10/8/5
    VI Corp / III Div - Ricketts
        Morris: Exp 13/10/7
        Seymour: Grn 13/10/7

II Corp - Ewell
    II Corp / I Div - Early
        Hays: Crk 8/5/3
        Pegram: Exp 9/7/5
        Gordon (Exceptional): Crk 10/7/4
    II Corp / II Div - Johnson
        Walker: Crk 8/5/3
        Jones: Vet 8/6/4
        Steuart: Exp 7/6/4
        Stafford: Exp 8/6/4
    II Corp / III Div - Rhodes
        Battle: Vet 10/8/5
        Daniels: Vet 9/7/5
        Doles: Exp 8/6/4
        Johnston: Exp 8/6/4
        Ramseur: Crk 9/6/4

II Corp Artillery Reserve (2 batteries)
Vet NP
Vet NP

(from AP Hills III Corp but all by itself)
    III Corp / 1 Div - Anderson
        Harris: Exp 8/6/4
        Mahoune: Crk 9/7/5
        Perrin: Exp 8/6/4
        Perry: Exp 8/6/4
        Wright: Exp 8/6/4


There we go.  All uploaded and packaged and ready to be trotted out and played at the next opportunity.
Whenever that may be.. grumble grumble grumble...

Thanks for reading.  Not much for the wide readership in this post unless you're someone who enjoys a well crafted ACW scenario for BFF.  Next post hopefully won't be to far into the future and should be more interesting. 

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Small Side Projects


This post is 2/3s boring and 1/3 exciting.  

Which parts are boring and which one exciting? Read on dear internet friend, read on...

Small Projects for Small Minds like Mine

While working on the shoreline terrain I completed some small side projects that basically used the same steps / materials so were easy to do.  Yay me for hobby efficiency!  Effective time management!  With all that extra time I saved I could probably watch a short Youtube video on the mating practices of Ostriches; because one might need to know that sometime.  The world is crazy.

The Devil is in the....

Den.  No, not the den as in the room in your house where you store your treadmill that you never use and just hang laundry on.  I mean the Devils Den from the American Civil War in the Battle of Gettysburg.  In case you don't know: The Devils Den is really just a hill that has a bunch of large boulders on it.  It was a natural defensive position for some Union troops though really the fighting mostly swept over it to get to the hill beyond it called Little Round Top.  

Actual Devil's Den

For a long time now I needed a Devil's Den for the Little Round Top Scenario for my ACW games.  And for a long time I kept thinking I was gonna make one myself; 
because-ah, I like-ah, to make-ah, a little bit-ah, terrain.  
But I obviously haven't gotten around to it yet.  

As an alternative I picked up this 'rocky hill' from one of my favorite companies Battlefield Terrain Concepts.  I have lots of their stuff.  This one is described as 'suitable for Devils Den.'  

All I did was paint and flock it (As I said; hobby activities I was doing anyway while making the shore line, same colors even... efficient or lazy..)

It came out alright.  In truth I wish it was juuust a little bigger.  Maybe I'll get around to making my own *someday*.  
But with this done I now have everything needed to play out the some Little Round Top Scenario goodness.  Exciting YES??  

Maybe not.  Perhaps this next bit:

Dial 'F" for Fussy

As seen before on the blog; I really like the rules called Clash of Spears.  The rules need a lot of counters / markers if you want to avoid having dice all over the table (which I do).  So in order to track command points I ordered these counter/wound dials.

Recall the Sesame Street song:
"Which on of these things is not like the others?
One of these things is not the same.
Which one of these things is not like the others?
Now it's time to play our game!"

I forget the company that I ordered them from and honestly, I wasn't super impressed with them anyway.  They are fine enough; just round MDF disks with magnets and numbers etched into them.  I gave them a basic paint job and some flock.  

Two things happened:
First, on one of the disks the magnet was inserted wrong so that it's polarity is reversed (it came like that, I didn't do it.  I swear) so that the etched numbers had to face down and not up through the top disk with the notch.  grumble grumble grumble.  A simple fix of painting the disk black and painstakingly hand painting roman numerals on it.   Fixed!  

Then, the more I looked at the dials the more I liked the black with the roman numerals sooooo muuuch better.  The numbers were easier to see and in general the disk just looks smarter without the bare wood showing through.  
I got fussy about it and made them all match.  I used black card stock to cover the etched numbers (it helps to have a wife who's into paper crafting and always has a supply of card stock to steal indefinitely borrow) and painted the roman numerals on top of that.    

King Ethelbert says,
"I find command dials VERY exciting!  And don't they look sharp too!
Like my sword that I use to slay heathen Vikings
and cut bricks of cheese."

I'm sure we all agree.  They look better that way.  I feel like lately my level of wargaming fussiness has been increasing.  I just want things to be proper and look right.  Maybe I can become a Napoleonic wargamer after all.  


A Triumphant Return

Like many people, COVID really put a kiboosh to a lot of my opportunities to play wargames face to face.   We had rules that I could go over to someone else's place to play a game, but had to wear masks, no multiplayer games, come home and take a shower, burn the clothes, sacrifice an animal to the God of Pestilence,  etc..  I wasn't allowed to invite folks to my place.  I did manage to sneak in a few games here and there.  But largely, me being the friendless loner that I am, found little opportunities to play.  

Things being as they are now, many people being vaccinated and California scheduled to go all open on June 15th, we're loosening our own  household restrictions but still trying to be safely behind the curve.  Which means:

(outside, wearing masks).  

So I have an ACW game scheduled for Father's Day Weekend at my place with anywhere of 3 to 6 people showing up.  

Scenario will be something like this.
These are all Brigades.  Shown in Line and Supported Line Formations just for fun.
Rules will be Brigade Fire and Fury

See, I did save the really exciting bit for last.  It's the excitement of anticipation.  

Till next time.  Thanks for reading.  

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

The Viking Shore Part 2 - The Shore


Hello All!  It's been awhile, I know I know I know.

I shall reward your patience with lots of pictures.  Every blog reader likes pictures.  

In the last post, I built a Viking Longship  and remarked that I had no coast or river bank to put it on.  So after all that work, the Vikings remained quite lame.  "We have a ship, I PROM-mise."  

In this post, I solve that problem by building some edge-of-the-waterfront terrain.  This was an ambitious project mainly for 2 reasons; 

1: I really don't know what I am doing; I just copy others off the internet.

2: Since my hobby time has been squished to the wee hours of the night and only one special nights, perhaps it was the wrong time to take on a large terrain project.  

But I do enjoy making terrain;  especially when it comes out looking half decent.  I suppose I could of posted WIP shots along the way instead of leaving the blog silent; but I wanted it all in one post for the sake of completeness.  Also, I had a really bad paper cut that prevented typing.  

Shore line terrain

I wasn't so much going for a beach but more for a the bank of some large navigable river.  I know I called this series of posts "The Viking Shore' and that implies a beach but I don't like the beach.  It's sandy, the water is freezing, the air is hot, and I sunburn easily.  

Where do trout keep their money? In the River Bank of course.  

I made two sections of River bank.
Each one is a little over 2 and half feet long, and around 9" deep.

I know rivers are more realistic if brown or gray colored.
But I life my water blue.  Blue like my dreams of the Caribbean;
Where the waters are warm and the beeches nude.

Lets see some close ups shaaaallll we?

I made two of these so that one can be used on a smaller skirmish table or both together on a larger table.

Both together on the 6' side of a 6'x4'.
There's enough room there for 2 Viking Lonships.
(Sing it now! To the tune of Moon River)
"Fooooore-shadow!  Hinting at what comes next.."

No Longer Lame Vikings

As mentioned, the WHOLE POINT of making the river bank is really just have a place for the Longship to sit on the table to attract Lady Viking groupies.  Let's see how that turned out:

kinda like that, But I can set the scene better.

"We're here.
Let's go steal stuff."


Construction pics of the River Bank

Here is a brief phot essay on the making of the terrain.  Notice that I stopped calling it shore and am now calling it a river bank.  That's called a transition.  It's what writers do.  

I took the last pieces of hardboard that I had lying around and cut them to shape
and beveled the edges.  Then I primed them black on both sides to prevent warping (I'm not sure if that really helps, it's just something I read about and in the habit of doing).
Then I cut some foam board to strips to make the rough shape of the bank.

Then I used wall spackle/filler to build up the bank to the foam board.
I added some undulations on top of the foamboard as well as
strategically placing some rock molds

River bank covered with ground texture.  Mainly fine ballast and coffee grounds.
Same thing I used on my forest terrain.
Also add small rocks around the larger rock outcropping.

After everything is dry, painted the bank as one does.
I thought painting the bank before I bothered with the water would be alright.

Construction pics of the Water 

Creating the water effects was a process I copied from the internet using toilet paper (we're not hoarding this stuff anymore right?  Pandemic is over right?).  If you type in 'toilet paper + glue = realistic ocean water" into google there is a nice man from Sweden named Marklin with an excellent video.  It's for his model railroad.  It's amazing what you can find on the internet and how smart people are.  I love the internet.  .

Back to making wargaming terrain

If you care to watch the video, Marklin does a much better job of laying out the steps but start with..

put down a layer of glue only slightly watered down.


On top of the glue place strips of TP.  Go over it with a brush dipped in the gluey water.
Add layers as necessary to get good coverage.
I was going for just a wavy ripple effect versus an actual tide.
To get it, I used the brush to dab and push and basically just be fussy with the stuff
until I thought it looked right.

Here's how they looked when everything was dry.
I used an exacto knife to slice off any excess TP hanging off the edges.
You can see that in spots where the TP was thin that the black primer shows through.
That didn't happen to the Marklin!  I must of messed up.   
I was however pleased that the ripples in the TP were very solid.

Now it's time to paint the water.
This was a little nerve racking because I've never tried to paint water before.
Luckily, I was kinda super duper smart about it all:
(even a blind chicken will peck a kernel of corn once in awhile.)
using some cardboard, I had made a practice piece.
First I used to to practice putting on the TP (shown on left)
and now it would make good practice for the painting (on the right).

Paint the water using a wet blending method.
I had to look it up too.
I tried to make the water at the back of the piece look deeper by being darker.

Let the paint dry.
To get the glossy affect that water has, I coated the water sections
with gloss varnish.  A good idea stolen from the internet.

Looks like this when it dries.  Add more coats of varnish if necessary
though I found one coat sufficient.

Last step not pictured:  when everything is dry again - add flock to taste.
And there we have it.  I hope you found the process as exciting to read as it was to write.  
Maybe just mildly entertaining?

Plans are for Suckers

I was just thinking about how two months ago, I had zero plans about doing anything like this.  Wasn't even in my brain that I'd be embarking on creating a dark ages shore.  The whole project just kinda sprung out of nowhere.  I think it's one of the joys of our hobby that you can just go where the inclination / inspiration takes you.  It's a fun little hobby really.  Or is that's just an excuse for being distracted.  I waaaaas planning on doing some AWI stuff.  


'The Big Move' as I am now calling it; is progressing slowly.  We're much more in the phase where we are just trying to pack up stuff and put it in to storage than we are in the phase of looking for the next place to live.  We. Have. SO. MUCH. Stuff.  Least I get some exercise by moving the boxes.  I oughta have arms as big as tree trunks by the time this is over.

Thanks for reading.  Thanks for leaving a comment.  I appreciate it.  Won't be over a month till my next post.  PROM-mise.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

The Viking Shore; Part 1 - Longship


Hello All,

In this post I build a 28mm (ish) Viking Longship.  All good Vikings need a longship.  Which means until now all my Vikings have been quite lame.

I'm stuck in the Dark Ages, but it's a good kind of stuck you know?  Like when something is stuck in your teeth but it tastes good.  

I wanted to expand my dark ages collection but did not want to paint miniatures.  Painting miniatures is boooooring.  Decided to do something different and build this ship that I've had lying around for a few months.  It took way longer to do than expected; due to my lack of time and poor modelling skills.  The object is not to have the ship sail around carrying miniatures but to sit on a coast looking like a really cool piece of terrain.  A little Dark Ages scenery magic that will get some oohhs and ahhs and a maybe few Viking lady groupies.  The I can say something sexy like "Let me show you my Longship..." 

Here is My Longship




Whole ship

whole ship another angel


Now for fun, let's put a miniature on the deck so we can get some sense of scale...

Standing in the Bow looking awesome



On the whole, I am quite pleased how it turn out, which is why I spammed you with pictures. 

Construction Notes (for those interested):

I used the same Revell Viking ship model that everyone has.  This model is 1:50 and 28mm is close to 1:56 so it near enough in scale to the miniatures to make no big difference.  

I got the model from a nice man on TMP
who basically let me have it for free.  I just paid the postage
and gave a promise that one day I would use it.
Promised fulfilled.

The ship comes in this ugly brown plastic but has everything needed to construct it.
One problem is that the model is designed to sit on a stand so has a keel
which will prevent it from laying flat on the game table.
It had to go.

To cut it down to closer to the waterline, I first glued to two halves of the hull together.
 Then I used a dremel with a cutting attachment to slice off the keel.
And a sanding attachment to further wear it down.

I didn't do the best job of it.
The plastic was melting as much as it was cutting off or being sanded away
and I was afraid I would end up destroying it..
  It now lays mostly flat, but wobbles to the right some.
I quit while I was ahead.

The model has an anchor well in the bow of the ship (read: big open space)
that I didn't like; how can someone stand in the bow and look awesome with no deck?
I constructed some deck planks over the anchor well with card from a cereal box.

Making the furled sail was a bit of challenge and I tried a couple ways.
The successful method was taking some toilet paper and soaking it in watered down glue,
enough that it became saturated but still held together (ie, not a lot of water/glue),
then folding it over and over on top of itself like layer cake.
Let dry on some wax paper.
Then used scissors to trim it down to the size of the yard. 
It kinda-sorta-almost looks like cloth that was gathered up in folds.

I glued the sail to the yard.
I took some lengths of  'rope' included in the box and coated them with glue
and then wrapped them around the yard and sail.
Looks alright.

Used the 'rope' to tie it to the mast.
I also took lengths of the rope covered with glue and wrapped around the mast
in strategic locations (where I thought rope would be).
I did the same on the Bow and Stern parts.  

I'm pretty sure that Vikings did not climb up the mast and then go out along the yard to loosen the sail like on Napoleonic era ships; but rather had the yard stored down the center of the boat and when it came time, just raised to yard into place.  I originally tried to have the yard and sail stored lengthwise along the ship but I couldn't get it to fit, so up high it went.  

Lastly was putting the decals on the shields, paint the shields some,
and putting the shields on the ship.
The decals are fiddley and didn't always work.
I had no intention of doing every shield that came in the box (64)
but just enough to give a good showing.  

Problems That I have Made Myself

Now that I am the proud owner of a Viking longship, I've come into some BIG problems.

1) I haven't quite figured out how to store the damn thing.

2) One longship does not a Viking fleet make; now I want one or two more.  This has lead to some internet shopping and comparisons.  Any suggestions are welcome before I buy something.  

3) The biggest issue is that I currently don't have any suitable river bank / beach terrain for the awesome model to sit on.  This must be solved immediately otherwise my Vikings will continue to be quite lame because there's nowhere to put it on the table.  My Vikings can saaay they have a ship but no one will see it, just like in high school I had a girl friend in Canada.  I'd like something where the ship could appear to be partly on shore and partly in the water; like they just pulled up to do some raiding.  

I freely admit that these aren't really-real problems.  

Now More Sporadic in Nature

I want to give a notice to those who are silly enough to waste their time by reading this blog regularly that updates will likely become more sporadic in the near future.  I have too many real world concerns that are coming to head and will require time and effort.  The biggest of which is I have to get serious about moving; unless I want son #3 (now 4 months old) to share my room forever.  

Till Next time.