22 October 2014

Tintin Imagi-Nations Wargaming - Early-WW2 Borduria

I want my interpretation of Borduria to hit several specific birds:
  • Be usable as not-Germans for any WW2 ruleset I'd like to give a try
  • Be the bad-guy to my Syldavian in any interbellum/early-WW2 pulp scenario I'd want to play
  • Use readily available miniatures without requiring any conversion but a non-standard paintjob
  • Yet, have a clear "those aren't your mom-and-pop WW2 Germans" feel to them 
Flames of War miniatures, picture from the manufacturer website.
Beyond its fascist regime and use of Messerschmitt Bf 109 (and apparently of some Heinkel made bomber in the earlier 1939 version of the comic), little is know about the Bordurian military...

So here is a first and obviously personal take on it...

Tintin Imagi-Nations Wargaming

With my work life on the verge of a revolution, I've put a big hold on my gaming spending. And I could sure use this break in the influx of new miniatures to actually paint something and make a dent in my mountain of unpainted lead. But of course I just keep coming up with new cool (and entirely unrelated to any already existing project) ideas instead...

As most of my ideas this one involved several existing "meh" concepts (an entirely subjective concept of course) suddenly clicking together into something exciting! Like that whole "Quar infantry + All Quiet on the Martian Front vehicules + Memoir 44 rules = Awesome" business...

10 October 2014

My new laser toy!

Well it's not mine, but I can play with it... I recently discovered that I had a free of charge access to a laser cutter at the local university! I just have to pay for the raw materials.

My first order of business was to make myself and a couple of guys from my gaming group a set of X-Wing Miniatures templates out of acrylic... It took me about half a day to figure out how to use Inkscape (an open source vector graphic software), to measure the shit out of my cardboard templates and to redraw them; 15 minute bicycling to the fabrication lab; a few minutes getting explanations from the nice lady at the lab; and about half an hour (I fully intended to time the process but was so excited that I forgot to look at my stopwatch when it was over) watching the laser dancing over the acrylic plate (and another 15 minutes biking back home)!

I got 4 such sets out of a 30 by 60 cm plate of acrylic (I did play around with the file quite a bit trying to fit 5 but couldn't, I guess I could probably fit 9 on 2 plates but I'm not considering mass production.)... Which puts the cost of the set a bit under a third of the price they're sold online (plus I don't have to pay for shipping). Note that I'm not criticizing anyone's pricing model here: commercial operators have to pay for their lasers, I don't!

One mistake I made is not converting the numbers and letters I inserted for engraving to regular objects, meaning that once I opened my file at the lab, they had all reverted to good old Arial... Fortunately I was able to go online and retrieve the font I used and the admin was kind enough to allow me to install it. So no harm done, but lesson learnt.

Next project: 15mm sci-fi buildings