Monday, September 11, 2023

Throwing off the balast

 If you used to follow one of my blogs that has now disappeared, sorry, but they are never going to get worked on again and have (in my mind, who else has a say?) no ideas that are super worth retaining.  Most of what I have kept is because I think that the ideas are worthwhile.

So What's The Plan?

When I moved I swore that I would have a normal living room.  In practice, this lead to a lot of wasted space.  I don't really sit and watch a TV and when my friends come by we stay at the dinner table. So here's the new game space:

Fully Cat Approved.  A cat picture, because internet.

Current back burner

I have a nice army of Imaginations for Not The Seven Years War, which should regularly see action in the new space.  No particular plans to enlarge. See Enlightenment Imaginings
  • In 28mm
    • I am assembling a nice little 28mm force or two for Lion (and Dragon) Rampant and Clash of Spears.  Two interesting rules sets with very different approaches to the same scale and period.
    • Lets not forget the ongoing 28mm late-C15 Italians; probably Art de la Guerre.
  • In 15mm, my 15mm Italian Wars army for Impetus.  Deserves some love, and eventually it will get it.  Pictures eventually.   Mostly painted by a friend but I think that I can step up to it.
  • The less attended to but still high potential projects
    • Imjin war at sea.  If you don't know what that is, it is well worth a look.  Related, my 16th Century Mediterranean galleys.  And maybe an Indian Ocean meet-up? 
    • My very tiny pre-dreadnaughts
    • 10mm Italian Wars of Independence.  ACW tactics without slaveowners.
Nothing above is going to get a new blog; news will be posted here. For now anyway.

Panzers on the Anduin

Ever since I thought it might be fun to do fantastical (but not magical) World War II, that phrase has been bouncing through my head.  So the plan is to use the rules for the Columbia block game Victory, knock them into shape for a fifth age, industrialized middle earth, and use my WWII forces for tactical combat.  Still inchoate, but it will get it's own blog if it really starts to roll. 

My Roleplaying Experiments

I have worked through at least five rule sets for campaigns in renaissance Italy and now third century Rome.  The most recent games are ongoing, and I think it might me worth a blog to record and reflect on the whole experience.


It is traditional at the point to apologize for the paucity of blog posts and resolve that there will be regular updates in the future.  Let's be real BUT I think it would be good for me to do something every week on at least one blog, and I have recently been doing things that are good for me.  We'll see how it goes.

Thursday, December 5, 2019


A cat
My new boss, Hildigard von Katzen

And an 8x5' gaming surface

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Two posts in one year; I feel so smug.

As usual, I have too many projects.

  1. For the Enlightenment lads, I will be sorting out the table-ready figure inventory and start getting games going this month or early next so my retired buddies and I can game without having to accommodate working people.  Nothing need be done except the making of a list.
  2. For WWII, I think I will change rule sets, probably something of my own devising  -- or more accurately something cobbled together out of other systems.  Now, do I want to re-base or not?  Current direction is "not" -- the bases I use are not huge.
  3. Still running Magnifico, now on season two using GURPS.  Season three  will be derived from Cypher System, which is a bit more rules light.  For developing and selling a session they have a far more inviting business model and people I respect like the rules.
  4. I have now acquired a a 10mm Italian Unification army which I plan to use with Fire and Fury,  The draw is ACW kit and tactics without slave owners.  If that works well I will do more periods using it.
  5. I'm getting a cat.  Some nice senior cat from the shelter to drag me out of bed every morning and give me someone to look after.  I seem to need that somehow.
  6. There are 1:3000 pre-dreadnoughts that need my attention.  I have everything I need but time.
If I start listing all my other unpainted or barely started projects I will just be sad; I am planning on staying at home until spring rolls around so  there will be lots of cold winter days to get work done.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Eternal Project Reset

My last, badly mis-dated, post told of plans for the first few months of industrious post retirement hobbying.  Nothing, of course, works out as planned.

What's worked:

  • I am retired.  I like being retired.
  • I have traveled to London and Florence as well as trips to Toronto and Ottawa.  Lots of traveling to come.
  • I have helped run an actual prize winning game at Cangames in Ottawa! 
  • I have completed Objective One from my last post.  I am indeed running a GURPS campaign set in 15th Century Florence  -- it's called, uncleverly, Magnifico.  Great fun with happy players and lots of laughter.
  • And most important there is a wonderful new person in my life.  Fortunately for my projects, she's a busy writer and artist so I have to keep up my game!
So instead of listing dozens of Objectives lets classify and prioritize:


I want to work from Magnifico as my own campaign to Magnifico as a setting.  This presents some interesting challenges, the most significant being "how do I write about history without writing a history book?".  Most RPGs leverage the common cultural stereotypes  -- a feedback between fantasy books, bad history in movies, and video games endlessly recycled.  I think -- and at least some of the material I see getting YouTube views and the like supports the hypothesis -- is that some RPG players and GMs do care about historical accuracy and at least consistent settings.  

So, a timed, measurable objective:
  • By September  2019, complete a useful draft a setting for an Italian hill town with historical details, characters, and adventure hooks.  The setting will be system-neutral but will have guidance for using at least GURPS, 5e, and probably Savage Worlds or Fate.  If I am satisfied that I have the text I need, I will move on to commission art, produce graphics, produce a book and self publish on a PDF platform such as DriveThruRpg.

I have quite a few unfinished miniatures project.  I have resumed painting so I am no longer completely frozen.  The projects I plan to push ahead with, with no particular deadline
  • 28mm figures for Magnifico play.  I have quite a few painted, and if I can plod on at half a dozen a week I will soon have everything I need for quite elaborate games.  I am considering developing another set of rules, working title "civic violence" for gaming full contact politics in the Italian Renaissance city.  This would be fun at a low level of complexity as a convention game.
  • In connection with that, I have the tools I need to build XPS foam models of building for a miniatures game.  I have been quite inspired by my trip to Florence.  A few test pieces needed followed by a plan for a modular system.
  • 28mm Old School Napoleonics.  I have picked up a reprint of the Charge! rules -- the first mini game I played -- and ordered the figures for a full "regiment" of Austrian infantry.  I am not sure I will ever use them, but they will look lovely in the cabinet.
  • 6mm Italian Renaissance for Impetus.  Fun rules, and 6mm is not that hard to paint.
  • And I will get those 1:3000 navel figures done, because they too are just plain good looking.
  • I have other concepts in 10 and 15mm but they will wait until at least some of the others are on display.

I seem to have ended up with a mishmash of Europa games that need to be sorted, some of which truly belong in the hands of my friend Martin.  Europa players seem to like to put everything in the same box so I have a LOT of sorting to do.

I also want, as part of my non-wargamer life, to spend some time board-gaming with my friends; the "German" style games are good fun and I no longer feel as abashed by hobby as I once did.

And of course...

I have no intention of ceasing to enjoy my "normal life." We have trips planned, I still have my charity and choir to keep me busy, I have an enormous reading list, and life needs to be lived to the full.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Impending retirement

Sorry, but there was some sort of crap embedded in that post.  It's dead now (I hope).  Off I go to play Hunt the Wumpus with possible other cases.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

A resource for refugee sponsorship in Canada

Sorry if this is kind of spam, I don't want to loose track of it

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Well, the sorting and stacking worked out.  No miniatures parted with, but over 60kg of junk to the landfill and the room in a state where the cleaners are able to keep it reasonably dust-free.

I have not since returned to gaming, although I am looking at painting a couple of 28mm figures over the next few weeks as a form of relaxation.  If I do, I will post the results here.

Most of my free time has shifted to work at the church - Saint Vincent de Paul, choir, Alpha - and spending time with friends.  My reading is almost all a slightly more literary fiction (lots of Tracy Chevalier; but all detailed on my goodreads page).  I also spent much of last fall baking bread, and will probably return to baking when the weather cools down here again.  I've also found a great hummus recipe!

I have continued to pursue my studies of Renaissance history and over the next week or so will try using yet another blog page to organize my notes and references.  Not a perfect tool for the purpose, but readily available wherever I am.  The 6sided blog pages seem to has disappeared, but I had little enough there.  The other hobby pages I will leave linked for reference, and because who knows when I might  return to them?