Sunday, October 30, 2016

1943: Battle of Kiev and Operation Sting

 Finished up the diorama for my "Battle of Kiev" Bolt Action German Army. Hoping I can lead it to more victories than what the 4th Panzers faced that November.

 This gem came from a Painting War magazine, top notch sculpt.
 Enemy at the gates inspiration.....

 "Get me those TPS reports!"
 3 man weapon team bases. All are magnetized for kill counting...

 The puppy has +4 penetration in close quarters combat. Also fires a mean russian LMG...
 The German Mario Brothers, just reminds me of those bricks you smash...
 Explosion modeled folks.
 Medium mortar made from a bazooka piece.... one of these days I will buy the actual mortar kit for an army....

 NCO "Badass". Nothing can stop him.
 Dead tank commander... maybe it would have rolled better if they had a live commander....
 Mist cloud....
 German MMGs line up for the Russian inexperienced horde....

 Pretty Bofors ready to go

 Panther 187's 2nd confirmed kill, another French tank...
 Hot tank on tank action. Late Night Operation Sting....
 Awaiting the USMC advance.
BARs and shotguns make mince meat out of even the toughest ambush order.

Not to blame dice....but lets just say those 3 bricks will not ever be leaving that hotel trash can... Time for a new dice order. Panthers don't not kill stuff, bad dice rolling doesn't kill things.... the new German national rules rock and I can't wait for 'Tiger fear" for these big cats. I really want to get these guys out more but I fear the hobby bug has bit and I am again torn in a new direction for a new army.... gonna keep it in the German family though. 

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Wood Working World

While catching up on my outdated tv knowledge I have been binge watching Parks and Recreation. It has been a little while since I posted progress but here it is. I was channeling my inner Ron Swanson and crushed some laser cut MDF.

This was the shipping box from Angry Mojo Games.They are helping sponsor the Las Vegas Open Bolt Action Event.

50 lbs of laser cut MDF is indeed not a children's product. The kits are from their rubble and ruins, train, bunkers, and Quonset hut line.

Rubble and Ruins
The ground work has been laid for Bolt Action tables in the city of sin!

Meanwhile, back in Kiev...

 This is a XL custom army tray from Mini Duels. The MDF builds into a large rectangle with 2 drawers on either side. It is 3 inches tall and each of the top inserts is 6x12 inches. The inserts lift out so you can swap for whatever army you maybe using. These were custom cut inserts that I submitted to fit my display board layout for the Germans in Kiev.

You can arrange the drawers however you like and I left one rather large for a dice rolling area. Avoiding the figure bowling situation that happens when rolling on the table.

Currently the inserts are based and primed along with the army. November 5th deadline is fast approaching. 

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Batte of Kiev: Uncut

The first of my battle of Kiev diorama is going live! All the models are based and ready for paint! This is one image that really inspired this display piece. I also have just really wanted to do a German force since the beginning but never got around to it. Since making some battle of the bulge snow covered shermans, this cemented my terrain season for the force.

 The Bolt Action list rests in the eastern front because of the first introduction of the Panther tank. The rules are cool because for a reduced point cost, there is a fun theme of the tank potentially breaking down each time you move it.
 I also really wanted to make this piece be a giant action scene. Who remembers the Halo 3 ad campaign? This building has the debris explosions added. It is simulating an artillery round coming from above. Inside will be my very own ARC reactor....

I Tony Starked it and cut up some of these tap lights. They will be inside the building shining bright to simulate the exact moment the round explodes. Total Hollywood.

This thing rocked. I wanted to translate that to a World War 2 setting. Just absolute chaos with mini scenes unfolding all around. Each time you look at it you see something new.

 The models have a lot of Hollywood poses and each model is caught in its own heroic movie moment. This is a raw version. 75% of the special effects and fine details cannot be added until after painting. This half track has a T34 armor piercing round flying through it on its way to hit the panther....
 There are around 40 magnets all over this piece each allowing different models to be moved to bases for game play, special effects to be removed or attached. Blood splatters, snow clouds from shock waves, exploding bricks, ricocheting bullets, mid-air tank rounds, mortar muzzle flash are all in store.

The tank top comes off and inside is a PoweredPlay LED board. It is set to flicker to simulate sparking wires in the engine.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Adepticon 2016 Bolt Action Coverage

 What an amazing weekend! All the dice, armies, fubars, and last minute heroics all mashed up into one big ball of Adepticon! 

I have a tendency to ramble on so I am going to try and keep things controlled and precise! 

First off, a gigantic thanks and thank yous to our sponsors; these are the guys, besides Adepticon, that really make this happen! 

Warlord Games
Blitzkrieg Miniatures
Army Group North
Black Tree Designs
Sarissa Precision
Cigar Battle Mats
Frontline Game Mats

Equally important are all the people that helped make this happen and continue to impress me through time, effort, and coffee donations.

Hank Edley 
Matt Weeks
Andrew Chesney
Jon Russel
Jon's US Volunteer team
Mercenary Miniatures, local chicago team
Kyle Toth
Brent Sinclair
Chris Thomas
Jeremy Olsen

Schedule Recap: I do not have any photos from the thursday events but I will try to track those down.

Thursday Morning: Tank Wars
Thursday Evening: Combat Patrol
Friday: Team Doubles
Sat/Sun: US Nationals 

We had 20 teams show up for the event, 40 total people! The local scene has really rallied to this format. I encourage anyone to try it out! The biggest challenge is having people who are too nice and turn into chatter boxes! 

For this event I preset all 3 rounds of match ups. The Team event is tailored specifically to be the more casual and thematic event. Thus no swiss system was used. 

 As I go through improvements each year, this was a big hit! Gone are the days of yelling out match ups or posting a tiny little piece of paper! 

I used this for the nationals as well, so I could just fill in table assignments after each round. 

We had a lot of German teams show up for the Doubles event, I contribute that to the house rule of allowing armored transports to fire 1 weapon system without being full. 

Day of, I also added the house rule of, "Recce units may not perform an escape move when shot at by an ambush order" People applauded and threw babies... 

Note on Scores: For both the published results below, there was an army list submission penalty applied of 5% if lists were late. The theme score is based on a 5 point check list. Not in order, but things that affect it, multiple infantry flame throwers, more than 2 assault rifles per squad, time period mash ups, multiple recce vehicles (inconjunction with other offenses), background or write up, balanced/realistic force make up. 

Please feel free to email me at for copies of these rubrics, missions used, or other materials. 

Doubles Results: Listed as Team Captains Name

 I do not award a "best overall" award for this event because it is about having a good time. That is why sportsmanship is the top award.
Best Sportsmanship: Andrew Verticchio
Best Axis Generals: Bruce Romanick, sports tie breaker
Best Allied General: Duane Zoldak, sports tie breaker
Best Painted: Mike Malake, player vote tie breaker
Duck Boat Medal (theme award): Seamus Hamrin, sports tie breaker

130 maximum total points, % are weighted to get the overall
*All armies are Generic Reinforced Platoons, the army list description is merely my shorthand.

US Nationals Event Coverage 

What a marathon of Bolt Action events! People were troopers with a lot of excitement going into the weekend. While the title denotes a large, perhaps GW feel, IT ISNT! While more competitive armies were present, a theme score persisted and overall people had some great armies. I encourage ANYONE to ask attendees their thoughts and impressions. People had a blast.

 With a large German field the day before we had a more even split for the weekend. We had 40/48 attendees show up day of.

Army Break down
German: 13
British: 10
Soviet: 4
USA: 6
Hungarians: 1
French: 2
Chinese: 1
Polish: 1
Finns: 1
Japanese: 1

All missions, including the doubles packet were rifts on book missions as well as some old ideas from the Lord of The Rings Strategy Battle game days. This was a full on swiss system pairing event with each round being based on battle score, highest to smallest. Match-ups were adjusted depending on if players already played each other. 

US Nationals Results

While this event is also about having fun we do award an overall trophy.
Some folks may not like the look, but it is PERFECT for an Adepticon Event. The Adepticon Skull logo, an order die in its mouth, and 5 rifles supporting a 105mm round. Each of the rifles from the major powers during the war. Over the years Adepticon has done a great job incorpating all aspects of wargaming into its brand. Saga, 40k, fantasy and historicals.

Award Winners
Overall: Ben Cone
Best Axis General: Richard Davis
Best Allied General: Sabas Parada
Best Sportsmanship: Duane Zoldak, player vote tie breaker
Best Painted: Jeremy Olsen, player vote tie breaker
Duck Boat Medal: Kevin Dowsett

 *All armies are Generic Reinforced Platoons, the army list description is merely my shorthand.

130 maximum total points, % are weighted to get the overall

 The photos that follow are some of my favorites from the weekend. If you see a lot of tanks/vehicles that is from the doubles. Also check out the PHOTO ALBUM on the top right hand side for TONS of more photos.

write up for the army above, for more info on this army, A Bridge Too Far

New Burma table!

Slovak Rapid Division!

German City Fight

Hungarians March to the German Music Death on the Danube

So many amazing looking armies!

This guy so copied my winter theme germans... really great weathering

training exercise?

Kevin's best theme army for Nationals. A Brilliant Homeguard force.

Our newest table from

Straight from the movies!

Sarissa's V1 kits!

Brits try to storm the Russian Train

The Russian Train Tables. Future plans include expanding the track to 3 tables and having the train moving the entire time during games at a slow crawl. More for themed events, during the doubles the train moved between tables once at the half way point of each round.

American Flyer train and tracks