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Copy and advertising closing date for
next edition: April 22nd 2011.
Sadly, the news of yet another stalwart of the hobby passing away has
reached the Battlegames studio.
Mike Ingham, who previously
ran the Wargames Holiday
Centre, died on February 4th
after a long illness. He was
highly thought of by a great
many wargamers and of course
will be terribly missed by his
loved ones. Mark Freeth of
the new Wargames Holiday Centre, now in Basingstoke,
posted a very moving tribute online which can be found
On a brighter note, it would seem that our hobby
remains in rude health. Never before has such a
plethora of products poured forth from publishers,
manufacturers, rule-writers, sculptors and others, be
their ventures large, small or somewhere in between.
What is most encouraging is that our hobby appears to be
booming not only in terms of quantity, but qualitatively
as well. Whether your preferred medium is plastic or
metal, there is just a mind-boggling array of goodies
to choose from, and in every scale conceivable.
Let’s dwell on that last thought for a moment. As
many of you know, I’ve been designing the packaging
for Will Townshend’s Plastic Soldier Company, and
every time he releases a product, I know that he’ll
need boxes for 28mm, 15mm and 1/72 scale versions
of everything he does, virtually simultaneously.
Looking around, just at the Cavalier show in Tonbridge
last Sunday, I realised that Will isn’t alone in purveying
more than one scale. I found myself next to the Fighting
15s stand, for example, and as their name implies, they
are of course well known for selling the beautiful AB
15mm figures – but Ian Marsh was keen to show me
the latest 3mm (yes, three millimetre!) offerings from
Polish company Oddzial Osmy. A range which started
with some micro (no kidding) armour is now moving
into horse and musket and thereafter, I presume, other
periods too. Borodino in a briefcase? Why not!
By comparison, Peter Berry’s offerings from Baccus seem
positively enormous, but at least my eyesight can just about
cope with his creations, and the same goes for the GHQ stuff
you can see in my article this issue. And of course Magister
Militum, who import the GHQ armour I love so much, are
also purveyors of their own 10mm and 15mm miniatures.
Cover: A Matilda brews up, victim to accurate fire from a Panzer IV, while the
German commander looks on with satisfaction. 1/285 micro armour from the
Editor’s collection. Photo by the Editor.
Tiles of a wargames widow part 2 4
Diane Sutherland, UK
Forward Observer 8
Mike Siggins, UK
At the sharp end 10
Richard Clarke, UK
Grand tactical Napoleonics 14
Bob Barnetson and Bruce MacFarlane, Canada
1806 in miniature 19
Jim Purky, USA
The Battlegames Terry Wise Award 23
A new commemorative award
The Battlegames Combat Stress Appeal: update 24
Our campaign to help support ex-service personnel continues
Command challenge 25
Henry Hyde, UK
A starter for ten 31
Conrad Kinch, Ireland
New goodies reviewed by our team
The Battlegames shop 44
The place to order your subscription and much more
Competition and classified ads 46
Another great competition
Events March/April 47
Richard Tyndall, UK
But the variety doesn’t stop there, and I have been
involved in a couple of games using 10mm Pendraken
figures that have really appealed visually, coming close to
that ultimate middle ground between the mass effect of
oodles of figures on the table, and sufficient detail on the
miniatures to appeal to the button-counting enthusiast.
The phenomenon isn’t entirely new, of course,
and dear old Minifigs, now in the hands of Dave
Ryan at Caliver Books, were pioneers in 15mm,
25mm and even 5mm blocks. And who remembers
Hinchliffe with their System 12 back in the 1970s?
The moral? Scale creep can go down as well as up!
Nowadays, I can choose precisely the type and size of
miniature I want, in the periods I like, to match the type
of game I want, big for skirmishes, small for army action.
Until next time, roll ‘em high!
Tiles of a wargames widow part 2
The continuing tales of a wargames widow
by Diane Sutherland
Last issue we saw that my troglodyte existence on the island of Crete was tinged with joy and dread. There was joy that the wargamer was shipping out
more of his toys so I could now see my furniture. Dread
that there was another fortnight coming up filled with
chocolate paint, wood glue and dust. It was also joyful to
think that, using a wargaming term here, reinforcements
had appeared on the horizon. They were galloping in to
outflank those terrain boards. So far there had been little
talk about other “essential” terrain items; hills, rivers,
forts, forests and such like. I had hoped I could take a bit
of a back seat and work up a tan before the guests arrived.
Wrong again, I was as white a sheet when we drove to
pick up Joe Dever, the first guest, a fortnight later.
The term “designated driver” has all sorts of
connotations, doesn’t it? An over-indulgent wedding
reception springs to mind. So too does a party where
you are the only one drinking orange juice all night. In
the wargamer’s head, it means, “just pop to X please
and get me Y”. Now I had two wargamers to cope with,
as the reinforcement came in the shape of Tim Hall, the
wargamer’s long-standing friend and wargame opponent.
We left the terrain boards in May 2010 with a chocolate
undercoat and some very basic dry-brushing tests
completed. However, the entire surface area of the vast
table was like a rugby pitch in the autumn; mud, mud and
more mud. It was also as flat as a pancake. We had decided
that all of the hills, mountains and other terrain features
would be freestanding. Also to be made were two stretches
of river beds, each of which would have to be three tiles
long. We opted for dried river beds, again multi-purpose.
One would represent the Tavronitis River in the Crete game
and the other would be used for the Indian Mutiny game.
Carving out a river bed from a sheet of insulation board
is a thankless task. Having done this in miniature with the
roads, we knew how long it would take and how many
fingers would be lost in the process. The simple solution is
stick a full 60cm square board onto the MDF and then cut
all the way down to it. All that’s required then is to texture
the river bed and the banks after a little tidying up. The same
Three dried river bed terrain tiles. These have been textured with wall filler.
To the left the partially completed lake or pond.
Some of the carved, textured, glued and sanded mountains and hills. These
all needed to be dusted down before painting. In the background, for the
eagle eyed amongst you, you can see the mass production of range sticks.
The next stage in hill completion. The hill on the left is 2.5m long and has
three levels. The mountain in the background has a track and flat surfaces
for fields and woods.