Mars Miniatures

Mars Miniatures

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Cavalry Arrives

The clatter of hooves echoes over the wartorn lands of Bree...
Is it the mighty Eoreds of Rohan we hear?
No, it is not.
Rohan has not yet entered the War of the Ring (at least not in our campaign).

It is a mighty host of cavalry from Marienburg!

 Here is the last portion of the Marienburg army.
3 units of finely dressed warriors, come to battle for Bree and the freedom of Middle Earth.

Here are the best cavalry of Marienburg, the Gardes du Corps.

 The commander and standard bearer of the Gardes du Corps.

Musician and trooper.
The Gardes du Corps are also known as the Marienburg Life Guard.

 Here are some Brandenburg cavalry.

The musician and commander.
The commander uses the olde style lobster pot helmet.

Standard bearer and trooper.

 We have some Saarlander cavalry.

Standard bearer and commander.

Saarlander musician and trooper.

The cavalry spot the main body of the Marienburg army ahead.


This completes the armies of Bree for the campaign.
Next up are a few more forces of Darkness for the invaders.
Which means we are slowly approaching the start of hostilities... battle reports!

I bought a new folding game table that is 6 x 4 foot from
Its a 6' x 4' game table made of lightweight aluminum.
I didnt take any pics of the table, but theres plenty of pics on their site.

For the table itself, I would like to give it a 5 axes out of 5 rating.
But I must give the packaging a 3 out of 5, because it was dented in transit.
The area that was damaged is the center of the table where the 2 halves meet.
I have gently worked the dent to a somewhat decent shape.
But there is still a noticeable drop from one half of the table to the other... and its in the center.
I think I can fix it a bit more and get it straighter.
But it could have been avoided if it was packaged with a bit more padding on the edges.

So what forces of Darkness are coming up in the next couple of posts?
We hear there is a talkative ambassador making an appearance, an icon or two of Warhammer fame, plus some non-green villains!


Monday, July 17, 2017

Oldhammer 2nd Edition Box & Scenario Books

Sometimes eBay amazes me.
Not all the time, but when it does, it makes me cry manly tears of joy.

Here is the 2nd Edition Box set of Warhammer Fantasy Battles.
You might remember my White Box 1st edition post here:

There is similarity in both of these purchases.
Not only did I get each of these boxes at about $50 a pop, but they both had all the extra material of their edition packed in the box!
In the 1st Edition box, I got the Forces of Fantasy supplements and the Book of Battalions.
Now in this 2nd Edition box, I got all 3 scenario books for 2E with all their miscellany.

How am I so lucky?
Sigmar must be watching over my hobby purchases.
Either him or Sauron, Im not sure which.

Im also a very patient eBayer and I always wait til I can get a good deal, so Im prepared to get a "not so great" copy.
But surprise again, once more!
I got a sharp undented box and crispy clean booklets.
So later, I might have to sacrifice some fatty Hobbits in the name of Sauron (although isnt that what pretty much happened in the Shire campaign of last year?)

Now I have had this edition before, but I never had the scenarios supplements of McDeath or Lichemaster back then.
Hence, my surprise of new nostalgia waiting for me.

Look on, dear reader, and witness the beauty of Oldhammer 2E

Overview shot of everything that came in the box.
Thats right, I got all the scenario books with the rulebooks!
And all the cardboard buildings and miniature standup counters.
Plus some addendum, catalog pages, and various ads.

Look how nice and crisp this box set is!
John Blanche does the box cover art (as if you didnt already know!)

 The first two core rulebooks are Combat and Battle Magic.

This looks freshly printed.
Everything is crisp and clean, even the staples look newly forged!
As condition ratings go, these books are Mint.
All the books were in acid free backing and in comic book bags.
This was definitely from a serious collector who probably bought two copies of everything, one for use and one for storage.
This was the storage copy, as it looks and feels unread.

Oldhammer artwork

The rules are pretty much the same as 1st Edition with Forces of Fantasy mixed in.
Some of the art is recycled, but the new pieces are great.

This drawing looks to be a Wraith or Wight coming out of some pottery like a Djinni from a lamp.

Dammit, who knocked over the Urn?
(everyone points at the sinewy barbarian) 
Conan!  You're too big to be a thief!

The third core rulebook is the "Monster Manual".

And the 1st scenario book is Bloodbath at Orc's Drift, which is written and illustrated by...
Gary Chalk, Ian Page, and Joe Dever!
For those who dont know them, they are all of Lone Wolf gamebook fame.

Joe Dever, was not only the writer of Lone Wolf books, but also the video game Killzone.
Which is why Helghast is in both works.

Gary Chalk did the artwork for Lone Wolf, various Oldhammer and also the board games Talisman and Cry Havoc!

Both of those board games I spent much of my formative years playing.

Ian Page was an unfamiliar name, so I googled him to find out: not only did he help write some Lone Wolf books, but he was also the lead singer of the Mod Revival band "Secret Affair".
An obscure band, but since I do have a fascination with the "mod/power pop/punk" bands of the 70s, this was quite a surprise for me.
Listen to

A mean looking Wraith taking on a Beastman.
My money is on the Wraith, looks like he has a beastman trophy collection already below him.
A couple of those heads look like Orcs.  And a Dwarf too.

Hey they even provide a nice map of the area
I swear this looks like it belongs somewhere in Sommerlund!
Now I will have to figure out where in Middle Earth this is for my own campaign.
Oh, spoilers!
Yup, Orcs Drift might certainly happen on this blog.
If I had to guess, I would say this map is a small area in Dimrill Dale!

A couple of army sheets for the scenario

Two more beautiful scenario books!

The Tragedy of McDeath is written by one of the creators of Warhammer itself - Richard Halliwell.
And is illustrated by the wonderous John Blanche.
Mr Halliwell was a big part of the design of the first 3 editions of Warhammer as well as one of the greatest board games ever made... Space Hulk!

Terror of the Lichemaster is written by Rick Priestly and illustrated again by Gary Chalk.
Im sure we all know Mr Priestley's contributions to the gaming world.
For the padawan learners, Mr. P has designed and or contributed to Warhammer Fantasy, 40k, Necromunda, Warmaster, and Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle!
Nowadays, of course, he is with Warlord Games and has done Bolt Action, Hail Caesar, Gates of Antares, etc.

Oh look its the Loch Ness... err I mean Loch Larm Monster.
Nessie it turns out, is just a Dragon Turtle!
Oh, and I do have a Dragon Turtle just waiting to get a nice paint job.

Ha!  Look at these guys!
They look like Hogwarts drop outs.

I could be wrong but besides John Blanche, I dont think any of these blokes are with GW today.

Lovely simple art and stats.  And a map to help you lay out your game table.

Lastly, I got a ton of these cardboard sheets for buildings and counters.


So there you have it, minty fresh 80s nostalgia!

Im sure that some of it will be quite useful here on my Middle Earth mashup.

I dont think I will switch back to 2E rulewise though, I will be sticking with 6/7E for quite awhile yet.
Still, it is a treasure to me.
I will be pouring over every little scrap of art and info contained herein for many a sleepless night.

So thats 1st and 2nd edition collected (I have also completed 6th and 7th, & closing in on all the Warhammer Ancient Battles books too)

Now, if only I can get 3rd edition books for a good price and in mint condition...
I dont know if my luck will hold out.
Especially with the creaky old binding of 3rd edition hardcovers.
And this time, I swear to all the old gods and the new... I will never sell or give away my wargame books and miniatures collection again.
So say we all...


Next post: The Horsemen Cometh!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Warfare Minis - More Marienburg Infantry Arrive In Bree

Oldhammer LOTR - More Floppy Hats in Bree

Buddies... welcome to another post.

 More Marienburgers have crossed over the Misty Mountains Pass and are headed to the defense of Bree.

 This time we got a block of pikes, some grenadiers, a general on horse, and a cannon.

 They are, of course, from Warfare Miniatures and sculpted by Clibinarium.

 Here is General Rutger Van Halen.
In his early years he was in a rock band in Panama.
After one particularly rowdy concert the band was sold into slavery by the native Panamanian Slaan.
Rutger was the only member of his band to escape through the jungles of the New World.
He then found himself being hunted by a Blade Runner named Captain Solo.
Rutger delivered his famous "Tears in Rain" speech and got Captain Solo to doubt his new career choice.
Solo even allowed him to return to the Old World aboard his freighter ship.
Freed from his Replicant slave clause, he returned to Marienburg and was quickly recruited in the war effort to defend Breeland.

 Brandenburg Cannon and crew

 These cannoneers like to point in all directions whenever the General is watching.
Makes them look busy.

 Marienburg Foot Guard Grenadiers

 These fellows carry explosive Str4 grenades.
They may place the small blast template within 8"

 They can also operate in skirmish formation.

Oldenburg Pikes
And here is a nice big block of Pikes.
They have a suitably impressive large banner to match.

 This regiment is from Oldenburg.

 Not only are they impeccably dressed...
They are dressed to kill!

 There are 32 men in the unit.
Arranged in 4 ranks and 8 men wide.

 Brushing up on my Pike rules from the Dogs of War armybook, I (re)learned that Pike can strike with all 4 ranks in any combat where the Pikemen have not moved (they have been charged, or in a second or subsequent turn of combat).
4 Ranks of attacks!
In the first turn that the Pikemen have charged they still get to attack with 2 ranks.
Pikes also get to strike first in any combat, despite being charged or Initiative.
Oh, and also, each Pikeman gets an extra attack against enemy cavalry on the first turn!

 Left to Right:  Churchyll the Duke of Marienborough, Rutger Van Halen

Churchyll:  Rutger!  Glad to see you caught up with us.

Rutger:  Hey buddy!  I hope the cavalry arent too far behind.  I hear we are outnumbered here by our enemies.

Churchyll:  Trust in the defense of your Pikes, brother.  And in the power of our muskets.

Rutger: Yeah, yeah... still...  there is something comforting about waves of cavalry riding down the enemy flanks!

Churchyll:  Hmm... youre right.  Where are those damned cavalry?! 

Another pic of all the Marienburg infantry painted up so far.


Coming up next post we will have Marienburg horse, with the Guard du Corps cavalry and some Saarlander cavalry.
There might even be some news from the North!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Age of Sig-Marienburg, League Of Augsberg In Middle Earth

Hey buddies, here is a long delayed post.

And a truncated update at that.
I had hoped to paint the full army of Marienburg, but alas, real life has delayed that.
My own dear Mum passed away recently.
She was a great and understanding wargaming mother.
Considering that my Pop is an old school hex & counter wargamer as well, that makes her doubly a gamer saint.

I will miss her greatly.  But life must go on, as must this blog...
I didnt want this month to pass without a post, so here is the first part at least...


The Town Crier can be heard with the latest news in the war torn lands of Eriador...

Marienburg has entered the War for Bree!
Floppy Hats sighted crossing the borders of Eriador!
Sauron says Floppy Hats are for sissies!
Social media calls for ban of all Mordor products until the Dark Lord apologizes for bullying!

Now that Ive got your attention (and possible prepared ire)...

Am I switching from Oldhammer to Age of Sigmar? 
No.  (You can put down the rocks now you grognards!)
Im here to announce that Marienburg is joining the war effort in Bree...
complete with new outfits and floppy hats!

 Here comes the vanguard of the Marienburg forces. 
They feel a bit vulnerable right now without the protection of their pikemen, cavalry and cannon.
But dont fret, reinforcements are following right behind this post!

 Churchyll, Duke of Marlboro... errr... I mean Marienborough.

Churchyll is the sworn foe of the High Elven Cirque du Soleil King, Ludovic XIV
The Sun King, I mean Soleil King employs a troupe of Eldar mime/assassin/performance artistes whose wave of terror has spread across the Empire.  These self-styled Harlequin assasins were making snide insults about Elector Counts the Old World over, simply because they just didnt have that "je ne sais quoi". Even the already flamboyant Marienburgers werent exempt from the taunting of the Soleil King and his snobby Elven insulteurs.  Many a thin-skinned noble stepped out of public office and deleted their twitter accounts from the deadly Eldar ridicule.  At first there was the War of the Estalian Succession, then the War of the Hochland Succession, then the War of the... you get the picture.  It was a dark time for the Empire, until the Marienburg General Churchyll beat those dastardly pointy ears at the Battle of Bad-Plaquet.  The Soleil King has accepted the terms of the "No more bullying" Treaty and so far the haughty Elves have refrained from their deadly derision and settled for narrow eyed looks and upturned chins.  But the Eldar, being such a duplicitous species (dishonorable according to the stunties!), no one knows how long the peace will last.  The success of the campaign has brought much glory, wealth and technological prowess for Marienburg.  While the rest of the Empire has languished in the (yawn!) Renaissance era, Marienburg has leveled up to the Age of Reason, complete with floppy hats!

OK, this new and entirely silly background fluff allows me to now field the wonderful minis from Warfare Miniatures who have just opened up a US site!  Cheaper prices and free shipping!  For years Ive wanted to join the Imagi-Nations craze.  Now I will, but it will happen in the context of my Oldhammer Middle Earth campaign world.  And I really think its just an evolution that was bound to take place in the Oldhammer mythos.  Bretonnia is just an excuse to use medieval minis, the Empire for 30 Years War, Kislev for Polish Lancers, etc...
I think there was even a Roman Centurion looking mini at some point in the past. (Yup, it was a Dogs of War General, Lorenzo Lupo - Prince of Lucinni)

 The men in blue coats with red sleeves are from Oldenburg.

  They are the most grizzled veterans of the lot and like to grumble about all manner of affairs; usually about new fangled editions of wargame rules.

 The men in grey coats with red sleeves are Saarlanders. 

 They say the great Saarlac Pit creatures are bred there and sold for great profit to the Hutts out east.

 The men in white coats with blue sleeves are Brandenburghers. 

They are a musical people, apparently the Maestr Magos-Lord Sebastian Bach named six conciertos after their fine city.

 Churchyll, Duke of Marlboro looks about for the scouting report.

 Churchyll:  Ahh there you are, scout boy!  So what news of Eriador and Breeland?

Saarlander Scout:  The Shire has fallen with its allied defenders, but Bree has reformed under a rogue bandit leader and a ranger who has claims to the throne of Gondor!

Churchyll:  And are any of those pointy eared Elves to be seen in Bree?  And what news of Kislev?

Saarlander Scout:  The Elves are all under siege in Rivendell or out west at the Havens.  Of the Kislevites, who knows... but it is said, there is a chill in the winds.  Will the Ice Queen answer the summons to war?

Churchyll:  Well, if not.  We, Marienburgers, shall save Breeland!

Saarlander Scout:  We must hurry, many Undead forces are surrounding the Human Resistance.

Churchyll:  If Bree falls before we arrive then we shall claim the whole of Eriador for the Low Countries!  No Undead forces can prevail against the might of Marienburg!

Muskets and floppy hats.
Will it be enough to turn the tide in Bree?


Just for the record, I have the greatest of respect for the Horse & Musket historical wargamers in general and the League of Augsburg folks in particular.  With that said, I hope none of them see the travesty about to occur on this blog in the name of the Grand Alliance.  Avert your eyes, my esteemed historical gamers!

Marienburg in Warhammer lore is inspired by the Low Countries and so it is entirely appropriate that I use Dutch figures meant for the 9 Years War also known as the War of the Grand Alliance, also known as the War of the League of Augsburg, also known as the Williamite/Jacobite Wars, or the War of the Two Kings in Ireland, and also known as King Williams War here in the American colonies.

The colors of Marienburg from Mordheim are blue, yellow, and red. Which of course is the colors of the Garde te Voet, the Dutch Guard. And Im using appropriate Dutch flags for the regiments, and the Gardes du Corps for the cavalry.  However, I will not be painting them exactly historical.  Same colors, just in different spots.  I claim fantastical license for Oldhammery sensibilities.

The next couple of posts should bring the rest of the Marienburgers into the blog.


Next post:   More Floppy Hats in Bree