Friday, December 30, 2011

2011 in review and a look ahead

2011 was, by any measure, a great year for miniature wargaming at my house.  I reviewed my 2010 plans and promises and found that I didn't necessarily stick to them.  The biggest promise being-NO NEW PROJECTS-yet the new projects I did take on were inexpensive or are largely finished. I did manage to paint nearly 600 figures this year, including cogs, 28mm figures and 15mm figures.  So from that standpoint it was a good year.

For the most part, the year focused on four major painting projects.  The first was getting ready for Hobkirk's Hill.  I finished all the figures necessary for this and ran the game successfully at Enfilade.  Hobkirk's Hill is important because it is an integral part of my overall AWI goal: be able to run all five battles from Nathaniel Greene's campaign in North and South Carolina:  Cowpens, Weitzel's Mill, Guilford Courthouse, Hobkirk's Hill, and Eutaw Springs (yes, I'm leaving out the siege of Ninety Six, but that would spare me the embarrassment of  having to build a fort under attack by men carrying large hooks.) I don't expect this will be a year in which I paint many AWI figures, but I do have a couple ready to paint, and I could see myself painting Von Bose or the 23rd Regt.
AWI Hobkirk's Hill was just a step toward completion of my AWI project
The second project I took on was of limited duration and that was the cog-building project for Sluys.  I am most proud of this work.  From using David Manley's rules, to thinking through and building the ships, playtesting and running the actual game, I still believe it was about the best thing I've ever done.  It was a fun game built on a very limited budget.  It looked good and folks had a good time. I'd actually like to build a few more cogs and galleys and try to game with individual ships.  Not quite sure when that would happen.
My first cog-with the fighting castles reversed.  I have ten more just like it. Doh!

My first batch of completed English ships

The cog Thomas, leads the English fleet

The giant hand watches over the first Sluys playtest.
 The third project was kind of a "you must do this" activity and that was painting and mounting my 15mm Jacobite Wars figures for the Killiecrankie campaign.  I'm ready to go, but I haven't gotten them out of the box since.  Something needs to change with the latter, and I'll speak to this issue more.
Hallmark Highlanders

Lord Leven's Regiment.

 Last, but not least, is my Mississippi project.  This one, unfortunately, threatens to be a monster.  At the present time I have almost all the miniatures necessary to run my first campaign, the assault on Chickasaw Bluffs on the Yazoo River in 1797 and an assault on New Orleans.  Sounds like I know what I'm talking about, but it's all hypothetical.  I'm busy painting away as we speak.  But I also want to broaden this to a confrontation between more regular Spanish and American troops over the Louisiana Purchase boundaries after 1803.  This would require considerably more Spanish troops and more regular U.S. Dragoons than I currently own.  I think this latter hypothetical look at Spanish American relations may end up a phase two that will be built later.

So, looking ahead to 2012, I see myself working in a couple of areas.  First is the Mississippi project.  Not really that many figures to paint.  There are lots of Indians in the scenario, but I already have these painted.  I need eight 10-figure units of U.S. militia, and I believe I have most of these already.  If I paint my Christmas bounty (36 militia from Perry) and do some fiddling and a little bit of remounting that won't be a problem.  I also have 30 Wayne's Legion figures to paint, which will give me six 12-figure units of U.S. regulars.  More daunting to this is creating the terrain pieces.  The cornfields are nearly done, but there is the stockade and the bluffs themselves.  I haven't quite figured it out, but that's all part of the project.

The second project I want to progress is my War of 1812 stuff.  I am only interested the Chesapeake actions, particularly Bladensburg.  I have my tons o' Victrix plastic figures to build and paint, and I anticipate getting started after Enfilade, but all goes well with Chickasaw Bluffs, it may be earlier.  There are British regulars to paint, militia to buy and paint.  You name it.  In any case I'll keep you posted.

I plan to stick to my NO NEW PROJECTS pledge.  I have plenty of figures to paint and want to advance my old ones.  There are a couple of anniversaries in mind.  There is the 200th anniversary of the Niagara campaign and the Battle of Bladensburg in 2014 to prepare for.  The year after that is the 600th anniversary of Agincourt, so working on 1812 and Hundred Years War figures would seem to be the right thing to do in advance of the celebrations I see happening at Enfilade.

If I have one promise I'd like to keep, it is to get out and game more.  Miniature games, board games, hanging out with my gaming buddies more would be my my big new year's resolution.  I have stacks of painting figures that rarely see the light of day, and I need to do better.


lrqan said...

Good for you mate. Keep it up. I've enjoyed your postings. Thank you.

Dave S. said...

What, no naval projects on the board for 2012!?! I demand a recount! Actually, I'm looking forward to seeing more about the Mississippi project.

Kevin said...

St. Nazaire?

DeanM said...

"Read my lips, no new projects." - quote from a forgotten US President

DougH said...

Oh Kevin me dear, and here you got me all introspective for myself and all.

PS Now if want a REAL naval wargame, do Trafalgar with 1:100 scale ships 1:1 and with each gun having its own dice and modifiers. It can be your annual game...lasting the entire year

Ted Henkle said...

Nice batch of upcomming projects you have. I hope I get a chance this year to participate in one of your games.