Monday, December 8, 2014

Priority Phases

Sometimes you just need a refreshing keg while you are breaking down a cow...
 Gets the job done. 

A lot has transpired in the last couple weeks; mainly food related stuff being Thanksgiving and all. Establishing priorities in life is what we do on a daily basis. Do I need to leave at a certain time? Complete a task? But sometimes you need set your taste priorities right. 

Tis the season for dry aged rib-eye. Top shelf Wagyu has arrived and will be nice and aged in time for a Christmas roast.

Add squash, sweet potato, or parsnip to your sweets; like this apple crisp with delicata squash. This sounds totally like a food network tip....

Or if pork is more your game. Lazyman's suckling pig: de-boned, confit, and whole roasted.

So if you are in the business of trying out new whiskeys, stay away from this brand on the right. Koval: very over priced and must be mixed to be bearable. A local Chicago distillery that just hasn't figured it out.

That being said, I had to find a use for this bottle. It started with the French 75. A classic cocktail named for it's ability to get you hammered. It was named after the French 75 howitzer that inspired hammering effects, just like the 6th or 8th one of these. The 75 has two variations of either gin or cognac, lemon peel, simple syrup and champagne.

I made a variation dubbed: "The American 105" Whiskey, lemon simple syrup, and prosecco. Basically stuff I had in the fridge. It will get you just as hammered. Success.

On that note, we travel to the shores of France.... where the Allies did they're own artillery assaults during the D-Day invasions. 

 This is a little tease as we call it in the industry. The completed 6x4 Bolt Action Normandy beach and trenches. This is one of a couple fine detailed boards that will be making a debut at the Chicago 2015 Adepticon convention.
A little blurry... maybe the camerman had 1 too many American 105s.... or it is the fog of war.
Check back for more progress on this Normandy table, Pegasus Bridge table, and a very unique moon base table for Palladium games Robotech event.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Hold Your Fire: After Weekend Report

This past weekend was Chicagolands first local, dedicated Bolt Action Tournament. While these Italian gunners were lining up a perfect shot on a T-34, lots of Bolt Action was happening!

We had 17 players attend with a lot of new faces to our older group. A great networking and meet up of lots of different players in the state.  From experienced to brand new players, all the games were tense and exciting!

Lots of great terrain, tables, and time were donated from the community to continue the local tradition of exceptional scenes to set our combats upon.  Here are some of the featured tables.

plastic legions great French village

Belgium fields

European Town

Tunisia Airfield

Rhineland Farm

The weekend was a blast and everyone is super stoked to play more Bolt Action and looking forward to Adepticon!

We had a pretty good spread of Nations.

3 Russian
1 Japanese
1 Italian
3 US
2 British
7 German

Two of the US players were closely separated for the top 1 and 2 spots.

My African Italians were awarded a Best Appearance recognition; always a close race and a great reason to keep improving!

I will leave everyone with some action shots, but check back for an exciting announcement concerning 2015's Adepticon Bolt Action Events!

 German trucks try to storm a Russian ruin.
 British Red Devils attack the German held airfield.
 The Allies defend a key town from a German count offensive.
 A German machine gun team rethinks engaging that Russian tank.
 An Italian tank scouts the ruins...
 ...while the Fiat 3000 provides cover from the trees.
 A German assault gun is discovered!
The Italian gunners adjust they're aim to the new threat.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Bongiorno: Flower Power

Fun fact: Dr. Seuss illustrated tons of political cartoons during world war two. 

That brings us to the conclusion of Africa Orientale Italiana! While meandering through the desert our hero,

 Armed with such weapons as the Beretta model 38 machine gun and traditional sabers. One of they're forgotten conflicts was when they charged the British 4/11th Sikhs Regiment of the 5th Indian Division.
 With the surrender of Italian forces in East Africa in 1941, our intrepid commander refused to surrender and retreated into the desert; to wage a 'Lawrence of Arabia' guerrilla war. Known to locals and British garrisons as, Comandante Diavolo.

 Now that I have these models all finished up and I see the cavalry squads arrayed, I may have gone a bit overboard on this conversion project. It started with some beautiful Perry French dragoons and a hack saw and ended with 20 more 40mm models... 2 full squads of cavalry in a WWII game...

 Decals are from Company B, a little large but in the end you wouldn't be able to really see them if they were smaller and would not want to really put them on a model either...

Having originally wanted to showcase the eastern front Italian cavalry regiments when they successfully charged against Siberian Infantry. The Africa Campaign had a more romantic nature to it, as much as war could relate to that.
 Here is 1st squad in the force. Having established some strong defenses, the Lt. surveys the scene.

 The mortar team takes aim, or maybe just picks some meadow flowers.
 In the rules, the Italians get the chance to place defensive works on the table.
 The Africa Orientale Italiana only supports the most modern and elite armored support. The Fiat 3000 (right) is based on the WWI French FT-17. The smoke screens these burning vehicles gave they're infantry was invaluable... The FT-17 kit is made by Trench Worx. Top quality stuff, some of the best.
 While the tanks maybe outdated, Italian artillery was quite renowned for bravery and accuracy. These truck mounted 90/53 AA guns were the siblings to the German 88. Often more deadly in anti-tank roles than anti-air.
 It could still melt the rivets off an American Stuart. (Looking at you Plastic Legions, it also works on armored cars...)

Friday, September 12, 2014

Avanti IT!

 Rounding out the remainder of my Malifaux crew at these little fellows. They sure do like to clown around! Pun pun pun pun pun pun.... They are all little minions controlled by the puppet master in my last post. More of a swarm tactic.Continuing the basing theme of a Victorian Venice.

Also continuing my inspiration of "things that scared me". They were painted in the likeness of Tom Curry's representation of the clown IT. Besides him and that little leprechaun horror movie, they round out the top 3 of childhood fears. 
Avanti! While the very last of my Malifaux crew, Teddy, got side lined; these fellows took his place.

 A couple squads of Italians have formed up in the square. While originally purchased for a Eastern front force from the Perry Brothers, I doubled down and went with a neutral paint scheme to be able to use them for both North Africa and the eastern front.

 If you see some horses in the background, that is because they are. The entire inspiration of building this army was 2 units. The heroic and often fatal charges of Italian cavalry on the eastern front, or the guerrilla warfare from horse back in East Africa. 

Here are two of the internets best articles on the subject that inspired my interest.

Unrelated, but I highly, highly recommend reading the book, "An Army at Dawn", Rick Atkinson's 1/3 series on America in World War 2 and the invasions and operations that led to the end of the war. Army at Dawn is the North Africa campaign, Torch through Tunisia.
 Much can be said and debated about the scale of Perrys to other companies models. But they're metal lines are almost perfectly in scale with warlords and should not be a concern when considering buying these models. I really wanted to capture the posses of the "action" models and mounted up some fortifications for them to be defending.
 The second unit that inspired this army, is NOT the tank below, but an anti aircraft gun that was truck mounted. It will appear later, once painted of course!

The L6/40 light tank is made by Company B, and like most Italian armor, it did not fair well.... Outdated from the onset it turned into a recon tank due to its low profile and quickness.