Monday, 20 June 2011

The forces arrayed

After the excitement of Saturday, Sunday was a day of taking stock, planning and gathering of resources.

I've enough infantry on the Prussian/German side to do 6 line and 2 Jager units (based on GASLIGHT's 10-man units). Even with the unit I'm waiting for from Ironclad Miniatures, I can only manage half that many British. I can however put four units together of Masked Minions and Iron Men for the "Evil Genius" force, so if needs be we can have the Redcoats joined by the forces of misunderstood scientific genius Dr Vesuvius (who isn't the lease bit criminally insane, despite the scurrilous lies published about him by the Evening Gazette, shortly before that scandal rag's offices were accidentally burnt down by a freakishly unseasonal lava flow.)

The various vehicles I've got in 28mm divide quite nicely and thematically between the three forces. Britain gets some light tanks, armoured cars and tankettes. Germany gets the heavier A7V tanks and most of the walker type vehicles, while the Evil Genius side gets a selection of robots and weird science weapons.

For terrain, I've settled on a selection of card buildings from Dave Graffam Models. Although designed for Fantasy settings, Dave's models use PDF layers to allow you to customise them with different features and textures, and by selecting brick textures and removing any obvious fantasy elements, they should look fine for VSF. Rather than build them from card, I'm going to paste the printed card facings over foamboard construction to make the buildings nice and sturdy.

The dilemma of how to do cobblestone or paved streets was solved with a trip to B&Q. Several supplliers to resin or latex cobblestone road sections, but they're quite expensive. There is a technique for making your own by creating a "cobblestone stamp" tool and using it to imprint a pattern on sheets of clay, but that's fairly labour intensive. The quick, cheap compromise comes in the form of B&Q's Natural Mosaic Effect vinyl floor tiles for £7.95. That gets you six 1ft square tiles covered in roughly 1/2" to 3/4", irregular simulated stones. It's not perfectly to scale, but it does give a good impression of a cobbled or roughly paved road surface. I'm going to leave to tiles intact to form a larger "town square" and cut the rest in half to give eight one-foot long, six inch wide road sections.

While at B&Q I picked up polystyrene sheets, MDF and paint to start work on rivers and hills, which is going to be today's craft project.

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