Forum Replies Created

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 166 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #197109
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards April 2024 Release: T-55AM and VAB 6×6 VTT

    This month, I have the VAB VTT six-wheeled (export) version and thanks, to a swathe of commissions that will be filling out the releases for the next few months, the T-55AM.

    (For the record, I went back through and attempted to work out exactly what the T-55 I already do actually was – it being early enough I wasn’t so rigorous) and it is to the best of my assertions, a T-55A, which I have amended in places where it wouldn’t break existing links!)

    April is also the tax return form month, so the period I take stock of the year’s gains. There is a more sober discourse on that, but I moved that to the end, so you can skip that if you want and concentrate on the 144th releases.

    VAB 6×6 VTT

    MMF (file) $0.85

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £3.23

    Shapeways $6.71

    FDM £3.30

    T-55AM

    MMF (file) $1.25

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £5.25

    Shapeways $10.48

    FDM £4.00
    ______________________________________________________________
    Only-Games Store Status

    Current Ko-fi Total: £112 => Only-Games Subscription costs met until 19th July 2024 (£100).
    New Goal: £12/£50 towards next goal => Costs for until 19th September 2024:
    Ko-fi link

    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa version, as always.

    Next month there are several things in the queue BMD-3, 2S25 Sprut SD, T-55AMV, and in the to-be-done queue are the BMD-4 and ERC 90 (my oppos at Manoeuvre Group want that for the French for Partizan).

    ______________________________________________________________

    Aotrs Shipyards Financial Report 2023-2024

    Being the tax season, I run April-April for yearly profits, so this marks the first point I can sensibly look back and see what overall effect MyMiniFactory has had (very positive) and HMRC kicking me off working tax credits (quite bad) has had on my financial status.

    I haven’t previously up out and stated things previously like this, but as I pride myself on being open, honest and transparent with you guts, especially with having to set the Only-Games Store to kofi funding, I feel I ought make a report.

    Before I go into this, though, I want to make a few things clear, so as to set the context as I don’t want to unduly alarm people with the coming stark numbers.

    I live with my parents, and aside from a token rent, I basically do all the housework and look after my Mum (disabled) and do all the general sorting out for the household, which basically is my real rent. (I don’t qualify for diddly-squat help otherwise.) I am thus not in immediate danger of losing the house or going hungry or anything like that currently. My expenses, then, are basically that rent, the subscriptions and other upkeep for the Shipyards (image hosting, MMF subscription, off-site back-up), my national insurance and dental bills, pension (I don’t feel I can rely on my state pension in another 02 years with the state of the world), so it is comparatively low. (But I am VERY acutely aware of the knife-edge I’m balancing on.) The money from working tax credit basically kept me solvent. With that gone, it means the Shipyards is entirely responsible for my income.

    Overall, discounting the kofi donations, the Shipyards made about as much as last year (£672). Notably, as this year is one in which my image-hosting costs came up, until MMF kicked in, it was looking like my worst year on record, with MMF bringing in about £600 in the six months it has been open, VERY clearly showing where the money is. If that continues, next year could be my biggest year yet.

    That said, the overall effect on my finances has been losing about £1400 since August (but as that includes Christmas and £200 paying back the job centre what they decided they overpaid me, that’s some spike charges in there as well, and it is not quite that bad month-to-month).

    Thus, the fairly stark look is that even if MMF does as well every six months, it still isn’t keeping pace with my personal running costs, so I have, basically, about 2-3 years before I am broke if nothing changes.

    So, what am I doing about it? For the moment, nothing drastic. I want at least a full year at MMF under my belt before I make any major changes like price increases or commission price increases. As word-of-mouth is getting round, stuff is going more and more frequently, and I have just had a load of commissions after more-or-less and entire year with none (commissions previously making the bulk of my income). If, for example, the impossible happens and I win the Only-Games UK Expo design competition and my model gets handed out to 10000 people, you would like to think would have a positive effect.

    (It is unfortunate that we can’t actually make it to Expo this year; but as we are down to only three shows, all at the Newark Showgrounds, I would like to try next year.)

    What about Patreon et al? I am certainly aware of the option, but I haven’t looked at it in anger, partly because I simply don’t know what I could offer more than I already have for the various tiers. Early access? (Meaning effectively at least a month’s delay for everyone else, because I don’t – can’t work more in advance than I already do.) MMF has a Tribes, but I think that’s more or less the same sort of thing, but looking into that is something to consider down the line.

    In the meantime, I have the lore book and after that, hopefully fleet lists for Accelerate and attack, which might drum up some interest as a another revenue stream.

    So until this time next year, things will remain much as they are, until stuff has settled a bit. It might be that next year, I do have to consider something like price increases (something I don’t especially want to do, just on the sheer amount of effort it takes) and commission cost increases (something I haven’t changed since I started in 2010). Consider this is advance warning, then, if that does come to be the case. But unless something drastic happens (like MMF doubles its subscription or worse), I intend to leave the pricing where it is at least until next April and ideally not have to do it at all.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #196462
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards March 2024 Release: Royal Elven Army Wave Three

    So, first off, the Only-Games Store is back open. I was quite frankly astonished at the support from Ko-Fi, which has reached enough to meet the subscriptions until July, which is more than I ever would have expected; so thank you from the bottom of my heart for all those that have supported me.

    The most important thing is, of course, the Only-Games store is open. The side benefits of the subscription to TheShop3D+, it means bare minimum that the resin prints (that will fit) in the shiny clam-shell packaging with the custom back cover (which will be like the ones I take round the shows and such, photo posted at the end, along with the new custom version.) There’s also the options to bundle PDF files with the purchase (so I could conceivably include the same lore files that I do at MMF) and potentially 2D manufacturing for booklets and things, though I don’t currently see an obvious use for that right out of the gate.

    I will periodically re-set the goal as we close to towards the end of the period, but really, we’ll just have to see how we go.

    As an aside, I apologise to anyone who tried to donate anonymously; while it’s anonymous at Ko-Fi, Paypal, hopelessly, tells the creator (that is, me) the email of the donator anyway, which I didn’t realised until I’d thanked a couple of people directly. I looked into things to see if there was a way to actually do it, but it’s a bit of farce. Unless you have Paypal business, when you can apparently decide what to put on stuff, basically, you’d have to have an email without your name attached for it to actually anonymous. The other method of paying is Stripe, which looking at it, seemed to imply that would tell the creator *even more* details. So that’s all a bit silly really. Sorry about that, doesn’t seem a lot I can do on that front.

    ______________________________________________________________________

    So, on to today’s release. Today’s release is the third and (for the moment) final wave of the Royal Elven Kingdoms army.

    The REK army has had to deal with a lot of mend-and-make-do as far as its armed forces go, as is apparent here – the Gladrusc Command Tank – a modification of the Gladrusc MBT – and Silmanordo APC hull, pushed into two different roles, AA vehicle and weapons carrier. (Not unlike the M113.)

    Gladrusc Command Tank

    MMF (file) $1.05

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £3.72
    Shapeways $9.07
    FDM £3.20

    With a very limited resource budget, the Royal Elven Army has put Gladrusc hull to a variety of uses, none of them ideal. In order to cut down on the total number of vehicles in production, the civilian government pushed through the idea of replacing some scout units by placing a drone on the Gladrusc. This necessitated removing the point-defence lazer and smoke dischargers and instead replacing them with the mounting point for a Long Flight drone. Initially, it was conceived that each platoon of four would have one of these vehicles and three standard Gladruscs. The military – having wiser minds – fought the idea, as is substantially reduced the defences of the tank, even with the addition of mist emitters in lieu of the smoke dischargers.

    In the end, a compromise was made, and the “recon” version of the Gladrusc was regulated to being a command vehicle, primarily for company commanders. This necessitated the addition of more equipment internally, but the removal of the lazer left more than sufficient mass, since the Long Flight was relatively light.

    The Long Flight Recon Drone is a low-cost, unarmed reconnaissance platform. Weighing in at around 250kg, it is essentially little more than a power core and expanded sensor array attached to an antigrav drive and flight engines. The sensor software includes warhead targeting packages, which allow it to spot for other missile-equipped units. It has an operational range of 24 hours over 500 miles.

    It is most commonly deployed on the command variant of the Gladrusc, or elf-deployed launchers carried by specialist reconnaissance infantry in an APC. In this latter case, due to the volume constraints of the APCs, the wings cannot be transported in situ and must be mounted before it can be launched. This increases the deployment time to around twenty minutes. Given that most of these specialist infantry are deployed as strategic, rather than tactical units who are primarily concerned with locating enemy armies, this is only a minor drawback.

    Long Flights used by the Gladrusc command tanks are instead frequently only used at much shorter distances for battlefield support rather than long-range reconnaissance, principally as missile spotters.

    The disposable nature of the Long Flight means that they have seen significant sensor upgrades over their long design life to keep their technology current.
    The command version of the Gladrusc is moderately successful as a company command vehicle, but insufficient for a dedicated command vehicle for higher level, simply because it lacks the required space; the role is typically served instead by command versions of the Silmanordo or Aincaala.

    Silmanordo Talco–Nertë AAA


    MMF (file) $1.30

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £4.91
    Shapeways $10.42
    FDM £3.30

    The Royal Elven Army’s limited resource budget over the last century has required it adapt to a policy of “making do.” The army has had to adapt existing designs to new functions. While this is often the case for armoured vehicles, for the REA, it has been a particularly acute problem.

    It is not unusual in the history of armoured vehicles to see an APC transformed into a weapons carrier (and as evidenced by the Talco-Otso Silmanordo variant), but rather more rare for one to be converted into a primary anti-aircraft role.

    Yet that is precisely what the Silmanordo Talco-Nertë Anti-Aircraft Artillery (lit. “silver oak mark nine”) vehicle is. Fundamentally, the Talco-Nertë is a Silmanordo hull with a new turret slapped on top. Without the ability to design a dedicated hull to house all the required electronics, the Talco-Nertë had to place the majority of its functions in the automated turret and what little space and mass was left over in the relatively small Silmanordo hull. The result was a somewhat ungainly-looking vehicle that performs notable much worse when it is require to fly, being not at all stream-lined and rather top heavy.

    However, when functioning as ground vehicle, the Talco-Nertë at least performs its function adequately.

    The turret is at least slightly better armoured than the hull, rating at Tier 16 verses energy weapons, and a Tier above the hull against kinetic weapons at Tier 12.

    The weapons load-out is the vehicle’s strongest feature. The Talco-Nertë’s primary weapons are the four rotary railguns, a rare direct-fire weapon system that is not energy based. In concert, these weapons can reach a combined rating of Tier 19, and it has sufficient ammunition for extended fire missions.

    The railguns are backed up by two rail-mounted Stormlight missiles; with a warhead rated to Tier 21, the Stormlights are a threat to main battle tanks.

    However, the efficacy of these weapons is somewhat muted by the sensor array, which is only updated from the base Silmanordo’s by the addition of the AA tracking systems. This leaves the sensor suite quite basis, and incapable of performing any other useful actions such as transmitting firing locks.

    Due to the relatively low combat usage, the Talco-Nertë has not suffered extensively due to its shortcomings, but as the galactic situation continues to deteriorate, it is a race against time for the REA to replace or upgrade these aging vehicles before they become more liability than asset.

     

    Silmanordo Talco-Otso Weapons Carrier


    MMF (file) $1.40

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £5.17
    Shapeways $10.32

    FDM £3.60

    The Silmanordo Talco-Otso Weapons Carrier (lit. “silver oak mark seven”) was initially only conceived as a stop-gap measure to provide infantry units with more fire support. However, the civilian oversight committee once again interceded, and the Talco-Otso was pushed into wider use than originally intended.

    The Talco-Otso now provides the Royal Elven Army as its primary missile vehicle. It still performs this task quite well, considering the age of its systems.

    The Talco-Otso carries four Starfall missile Pods, each contain four Starfall missiles. The Starfall is a lock-and-launch missile, rated to Tier 19. At the time of its inception, this was enough to be a threat to main battle tanks – hence why it was promoted from infantry support – but the advancement of the past century has reduced that effectiveness somewhat. Nevertheless, it is still enough firepower it cannot be ignored. However, once the Talco-Orto has emptied its pods, it has no other back-up weapons.

    The turret, when fixed forward in flight mode, has a small enough profile it doesn’t not significantly impede the vehicle in flight mode, though it does have a measurable decrease in speed and agility over a standard Silmanordo.

    The turret has slightly improved armour over the hull and an incremental improvement to ECM systems, but otherwise is little better protected than its parent unit – and only when one considers passive defence, as it has no active point-defence weapons at all. The Talco-Orto does not have standard smoke dischargers, but instead two mist emitters were mounted to the hull to provide point-protection. This was considered sufficient as the Talco-Orto was not intended to get too close to the enemy.

    It is quite remarkable, then, that with this determination, the sensor package of the Talco-Orto remains almost identical to the standard Silmanordo, meaning that it requires stopping for indirect fire from other units.

    ______________________________________________________________
    Only-Games Store Status
    Current Ko-fi Total: £110 => Only-Games Subscription costs met until 19th July 2024.
    Ko-fi link.

    ______________________________________________________________
    Photos of Replicator 2 versions.

    There is likely to be a pause on the sci-fi releases, though not a long one; my intention is to have the Grand Terran Sovereign Republic fleet on the table at Partizan on the 19th of May and work is progressing on that currently. (Strictly, I have enough to do a month’s release or two if I stretch it out, but I’d prefer a few more models yet.) This also has to be fitted around commissions, and of course, the work on Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide, the lore book, which is also getting perilously close to a first edition state. (I don’t say “complete,” since as a living document, it never going to be “complete…”)

    In the meantime, co-incident with today’s release, there is new entry on the Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide SpaceBattles thread here.

    This is a relatively short one, covering dimensions, planes and cosmologies, something I realised I needed to write to aid the understanding of the Saiyvalyss Alliance Quick Look. (Which it itself written bar the final checks, and will be hopefully up there in the next week or so.)

    ______________________________________________________________

    Leopard 2A4 in the bubble pack from… whenever I got that done.

    New backing card from as of from today.

     

    in reply to: 1980’s French Scenarios? #196243
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Thanks for the list info but we are using our own lists.   The VBL suggestion was great but alas we are doing 1980 to 1985 too early for them, but it is a shame.

    Vert Karki it is then, I love mon0tones so much less to do.  Spray black,  paint bits one colour,  done.

    As for scenarios in the absence of detail I deceided to test my knowledge of the real world.  One mission for the recon is flank guard.   I am trying to visulise the task assuming a NATO Counter attack which is going for deep penetration so the flamks need protecting and possibly the shoulder of the enemy forces where the breakthrough occoured.  Famously Monty in the Addens Offensive went to the Sholder to get it reinforced whereas the US genereal went into hideing in a bunker at the back.  So in the reverse the flank guard of the penetration may have two missions.  Prevent the shoulder being a pain and also deeper in covering the flanks of the defender.  can I get a scenario with a bit of both a reall challenge.

    One of my issues is its hard to find information on how the flanks are threatened/protected in a deep penetration.  Is there provision in the attack to drop off additional forces as the penetration progresses to protect the flanks.   I guess the penetration needs to be of the order of 15km to get at the stuff at the back like the shorter ranaged artillery so a reasonable amount of scope for some actions.  Especially with a steady flow of supplys down the cental axis of the pentration (assuming a max penetration width of 4 to 5km.

    Help underestanding the real world situation welcome.

     

     

     

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #196234
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards March 2024 Release: VAB VTT

    (Try again, right this time…)

    So, first off, the Only-Games Store is back open. I was quite frankly astonished at the support from Ko-Fi, which has reached enough to meet the subscriptions until July, which is more than I ever would have expected; so thank you from the bottom of my heart for all those that have supported me.

    The most important thing is, of course, the Only-Games store is open. The side benefits of the subscription to TheShop3D+, it means bare minimum that the resin prints (that will fit) in the shiny clam-shell packaging with the custom back cover (which will be like the ones I take round the shows and such, photo posted at the end, along with the new custom version.) There’s also the options to bundle PDF files with the purchase (so I could conceivably include the same lore files that I do at MMF) and potentially 2D manufacturing for booklets and things, though I don’t currently see an obvious use for that right out of the gate.

    I will periodically re-set the goal as we close to towards the end of the period, but really, we’ll just have to see how we go.

    As an aside, I apologise to anyone who tried to donate anonymously; while it’s anonymous at Ko-Fi, Paypal, hopelessly, tells the creator (that is, me) the email of the donator anyway, which I didn’t realised until I’d thanked a couple of people directly. I looked into things to see if there was a way to actually do it, but it’s a bit of farce. Unless you have Paypal business, when you can apparently decide what to put on stuff, basically, you’d have to have an email without your name attached for it to actually anonymous. The other method of paying is Stripe, which looking at it, seemed to imply that would tell the creator *even more* details. So that’s all a bit silly really. Sorry about that, doesn’t seem a lot I can do on that front.
    ______________________________________________________________

    Right, on to the actual (slightly late) release for this month. (With how messy this month has been, only the one this time; however, I’m in the process of taking some commissions, which will conveniently also serve as forthcoming moderns releases for a bit as well.)

    But for this time, I have the French VAB VTT (4×4 French army version), at 144th as per usual.

    VAB VTT


    MMF (file) $0.85

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £3.13

    Shapeways $6.56

    FDM £3.20
    ______________________________________________________________
    Only-Games Store Status
    Current Ko-fi Total: £110 => Only-Games Subscription costs met until 19th July 2024.
    Ko-fi link
    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa version, as always.

    Next week will be the last of the current Royal Elven Kingdoms ground forces. After which the sci-fi releases will be paused for a bit; I’ve got a new fleet well on the way, but especially, it’s not there yet; the Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide, the lore book, is creeping closer, but still a way off discounting proof-reading time. (Which, for getting on for 500 pages, is not going to be insubstantial…) I am going to try and see if I can work out how to turn it into a kindle file as well, as with the minimal black-and-white line illustrations, it’s definitely a read-book, not an art-book.

    Moderns, next month will either be the VAB VTT 6×6 international version, or potentially something else depending on how the commissions go.

    Again, thanks to everyone for your support bearing with me; it’s been kind of a rough couple of weeks, both inside and outside of work onto of the ongoing situation.

    ______________________________________________________________

    Leopard 2A4 in the bubble pack from… whenever I got that done.

    New backing card from as of from today.

     

    in reply to: 1980’s French Scenarios? #196081
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Guy ,    I looked thr VBL up alas I can’t relly use it my army is 1980 to 1985 a year or to too early for the VBL.

    Interestingly the French only have the 4 wheel VAB the 6 wheel was only for export.   But they do have the Panard Armoured car with the 90mm.   Interestingly weird with its 4 rubber and 4 steel wheels, except in Africa where the steel wheels did not work and they used rubber tyered wheels, so a permanent 8 wheeler.

    Does anybody use French?

     

    OOOPS forgot to log Aotrs off before posting!

     

     

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #196073
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    I am sorry to hear about your trouble with MMF, that sucks. I guess they’re getting a bit big for their own britches now and feel they can do a bit of arm twisting on the little guys. Is there another store/service that may be better inclined or not charge fees? I don’t know if DriveThruRPG has fees but they do sell STL files.

    Despite the fact that Only-Games basically shut down the physical prints side, the file market is making far and away more income. MMF is VERY big, and as I say, the files side is more or less single-handedly supporting the Shipyards at the moment, even considering the £20 subscription fee for that side. (Just not enough to throw another £25 a month.)  It would incredibly stupid of me to quit that side (and that audience reach) in what would essentially be a fit of pique to transfer over to Wargames Vault (which doesn’t have anything like the market reach for that side). Aside from that, doing so would additional mean I would have to spend another several weeks putting the better part of 700 models up there instead of actually doing work (and MMF actually gives me a better cut of the price, so prices would have to go up too).

    So as much damage as this has done, throwing a hissy fit and refusing to work with the company altogether would essentially mean the end of the Shipyards, period.

    I mean, I have to work with worse companies (Facebook, Twitter and I’m not terribly fond of Shapeways, for that matter…)

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #196069
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards Bad News Update

    I won’t beat about the bush.

    The Aotrs Shipyards Only-Games store is closing down.

    As of yesterday, I was told that the deal Only-Games had offered me in November (i.e., that I would not have to pay the subscription fee in return for taking an extra 10% of the mark-up) was not possible and that I would have to pay the £25 a month to keep the Only-Games store open.

    The Only-Games store is not remotely making £25/month.

    Given the Government shenanigans (i.e. that self-employed people either Get A Real Job or Be Making Too Much Money To Qualify For Any Help, No, We Don’t Care You’re Looking After A Disabled Person – and they finally), I am not in a financial position to absorb the cost from the sales on MMF or Shapeways, since those are literally my only income (and the sustainability of the Shipyards is 100% now reliant on whether, basically, MMF is going to generate enough income to even break even).

    As such, the Only-Games store is going to close down, as soon as they do it.

    This is, coming at this time, an enormous blow, both financially, since it cuts off a trickle of income, that, while mot much, was, like Shapeways, something. (A tenner a month would just about cover the NHS prescription contribution for my depression pills that I have to pay, because, of course, I Don’t Qualify For Help, says the government.) And also mentally, as noted I am already having a rough time (last week was an absolute disaster than made me wish I’d had the doctor last Monday do more than “only” double my prescription.)

    (Obviously, given the already low sales numbers, a price increase would be counter-productive, since it means the prices would have to pretty much start by would passing Shapeways.)

    So. My TheShop3D account is still there. The shop will not be deleted, so, I’m told, anytime I choose to take the subscription, the shop can come back. So the only thing I CAN do, which at least obviates me having to entirely delete swathes of material from all my stuff, is to basically say that:

    1) I can take, by special commission, orders (I.e. I order and I then I have it delivered to me (MAYBE able to have it delivered to you direct, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it). Contact me directly by any of the usual methods.

    2) I have set-up a goal on my ko-fi account such that, if I receive sufficient donations, I can look at opening the store for a limited time. (I’m going to say a sensible minimum of two months, so that would require a £50 threshold).

    Link here, with publically visible total.

     

    That way, at least in theory, there is a way to get the physical prints in resin. Otherwise, it is the files from MMF, Shapeways or in FDM directly from me.

    That is, I’m afraid, the best I can do for you.

    (If you are wondering why I’m not rage-quitting entirely, that would be both unhelpful and counter=productive, because MMF and Only-Games are intrinsically linked and the staff across both are the same and the former IS kind of critical.)

     

    This has, obviously, delayed the moderns release. (I was barely in a fit state to do anything yesterday after that, though I manage to fix a subtly-hidden assembly error in the VAB that was causing the wheel/axle to fail before its release this week, the only hint of a silver lining.

    There may or may not be the moderns release tomorrow.

     

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #196068
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards Bad News Update

    I won’t beat about the bush.

    The Aotrs Shipyards Only-Games store is closing down.

    As of yesterday, I was told that the deal Only-Games had offered me in November (i.e., that I would not have to pay the subscription fee in return for taking an extra 10% of the mark-up) was not possible and that I would have to pay the £25 a month to keep the Only-Games store open.

    The Only-Games store is not remotely making £25/month.

    Given the Government shenanigans (i.e. that self-employed people either Get A Real Job or Be Making Too Much Money To Qualify For Any Help, No, We Don’t Care You’re Looking After A Disabled Person – and they finally), I am not in a financial position to absorb the cost from the sales on MMF or Shapeways, since those are literally my only income (and the sustainability of the Shipyards is 100% now reliant on whether, basically, MMF is going to generate enough income to even break even).

    As such, the Only-Games store is going to close down, as soon as they do it.

    This is, coming at this time, an enormous blow, both financially, since it cuts off a trickle of income, that, while mot much, was, like Shapeways, something. (A tenner a month would just about cover the NHS prescription contribution for my depression pills that I have to pay, because, of course, I Don’t Qualify For Help, says the government.) And also mentally, as noted I am already having a rough time (last week was an absolute disaster than made me wish I’d had the doctor last Monday do more than “only” double my prescription.)

    (Obviously, given the already low sales numbers, a price increase would be counter-productive, since it means the prices would have to pretty much start by would passing Shapeways.)

    So. My TheShop3D account is still there. The shop will not be deleted, so, I’m told, anytime I choose to take the subscription, the shop can come back. So the only thing I CAN do, which at least obviates me having to entirely delete swathes of material from all my stuff, is to basically say that:

    1) I can take, by special commission, orders (I.e. I order and I then I have it delivered to me (MAYBE able to have it delivered to you direct, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it). Contact me directly by any of the usual methods.

    2) I have set-up a goal on my ko-fi account such that, if I receive sufficient donations, I can look at opening the store for a limited time. (I’m going to say a sensible minimum of two months, so that would require a £50 threshold).

    Link here, with publically visible total.

     

    That way, at least in theory, there is a way to get the physical prints in resin. Otherwise, it is the files from MMF, Shapeways or in FDM directly from me.

    That is, I’m afraid, the best I can do for you.

    (If you are wondering why I’m not rage-quitting entirely, that would be both unhelpful and counter-productive, because MMF and Only-Games are intrinsically linked and the staff across both are the same and the former IS kind of critical.)

     

    This has, obviously, delayed the moderns release. (I was barely in a fit state to do anything yesterday after that, though I manage to fix a subtly-hidden assembly error in the VAB that was causing the wheel/axle to fail before its release this week, the only hint of a silver lining.

    There may or may not be the moderns release tomorrow.

     

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #195469
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards February 2024 Release: Royal Elven Army Wave Two

    This month, I have the next three units for the Royal Elven Kingdoms Royal Elven Army. This time, the Aincaala APC, the Silmanordo-Talco-Neled command vehicle and the Lhúg recon cycle!

    Ainaalca APC

    MMF (file) $1.30

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £4.86
    Shapeways $9.12
    FDM £3.30

    The Aincaala (“eye-n-caa-la”) APC is the most modern APC in the Royal Elven Army, but that still makes it just over half century old. The Aincaala is a significant improvement over the older Silmanordo, but the anti-military civilian-controlled purse strings regulated it to only modest production numbers in comparison to the cheaper Silmanordo.

    The Aincaala’s largest gain over the Silmanordo is armour. The kinetic armour at the front is rated to Tier 16, and the energy to Tier 18, and the side only a tier less. This makes it quite well protected for a shieldless unit, and slightly better armoured than a contemporary Grand Terran Sovereign Republic APC, such as the Warrior. The Aincaala also boast a full-grav drive, giving it much better mobility than a tracked APC. The Aincaala also has the greatest speed and manoeuvrability in flight mode over the elves’ other APCs and heavy AFVs, but this is at best a marginal benefit in operational use.

    The Aincaala’s turret is larger and more armoured than the Silmanordo’s, but it is still fairly small. The turret is equipped with two lazer point-defence cannons, which in concert can rate up to Tier 9. While not fully independently targetable, during interception or anti-infantry modes, the barrels are not synched together and thus provide a better coverage chance to hit the smaller targets.

    The Aincaala does not have smoke dischargers, but instead carries a pair of mist emitters. The mist emitters are two globes, locates on the sides of the turret. These are magical items, enchanted to produce a thick, magical mist around the vehicle. While still almost useless against a modern sensor system, this mist is fully effective against anything short of a sensor and even disrupts magical targeting and scrying effects. The orbs are not limitless, but run on charges (not unlike many items like spell-carrying wands or staves). While it is possible to recharge these in the field, the number of spellcasters available to do so is limited, however, so most are recharged in factory facilities. This means that quite frequently, the orbs are treated as semi-disposable resources (not unlike drones).

    The Aincaala only carries a squad of six, but was designed to do so from the start. Though it does not have the autohealer that was placed aboard the Silmanordo, it has better overall facilities and protection for the troops.

    The Aincaala has one major variant, the command vehicle. This was produced against considerable civilian resistance due to the existing Silmanordo Talco-Neled and necessitated a very tight budget. The command Aincaala is thus an unhappy compromise. Externally, it is identical to a standard Aincaala, as even the planned additional sensor and communications mast was dropped. Inside, the troop bay is refitted to serve as a command vehicle, but it is cramped. The only advantage it offers over the Talco-Neled is the heavier armour. As such it was regulated to around company command level and failed to gain much traction with its entirely unremarkable performance. Production was stopped after only a decade.

    Silmanordo Talco-Neled Command Vehicle

    MMF (file) $1.30

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £4.96
    Shapeways $9.49
    FDM £3.30

    The Silmanordo Talco-Neled Command Vehicle (lit. “silver oak mark three”) is the most common command vehicle in the Royal Elven Army. An early adaption of the Silmanordo itself, the Talco-Neled, following a prototyped (and eventually abandoned) reconnaissance vehicle.

    The Talco-Neled does not suffer as badly from not being design for purpose from the ground up as some of the other vehicles, given its role is not intended to put it in the line of fire where the thin armour would be most detrimental.

    In order to accommodate the command systems and personnel, the Silmanordo’s hull was extended upwards and slightly to the rear. This necessitated moving the point-defence turret further forward to make room.

    The four petal-like hatches of the Silmanordo were reduced down to a more traditional clamshell-like upper and lower pair and lengthened so that they could fully accommodate a standing elf. Inside, the interior is completely re-designed and asymmetric, with three duty stations with mini holograph displays to supplement the main command systems.

    Other than a slight improvement to sensor systems, the Talco-Neled’s combat performance is identical to that of the Silmanordo. Complaints were raised by the army that this put veteran commanders in a very fragile vehicle, which lead to the Aincaala APC’s command variant. However, that was a much less extensive (and expensive) refit and the lack of standing room makes it less suitable for the task. Thus the elven commanders continue to make do with the Talco-Neled.

    Lhúg Recon Cycle

    MMF (file) $0.95

    Physical Print

    The print version is in three versions, all single riders, all with pillions or a mix of both.

    Single rider:
    Only-Games (4) £3.14
    Shapeways (4) $9.88
    FDM (2) £3.10

    Rider with pillion:
    Only-Games (4) £3.26
    Shapeways (4) $9.96
    FDM (2) £3.10

    Single Rider (2) and rider with pillion (2):

    Only-Games (2+2) £3.20
    Shapeways (2+2) $9.92

    The Lhúg (“snake”) recon cycle is a dedicated scouting and reconnaissance vehicle. Production began in 2315 replacing two older designs from the early 23rd century, making the Lhúg the most modern vehicle overall in the Royal Elven Army – and the single most popular.

    The Lhúg can be operated by a single rider, but is designed to take a second passenger. This has a variety of uses, from facilitating rescue or retrieval operations (particularly in peace time) to transporting an addition set of eyes for a spotting team.

    The Lhúg is the fasted and most agile of the current crop of elven AFVs, with a modern power-plant. The four engines are mounted on a rotating housing that lets the Lhúg modify the direction of direct thrust, allowing it significantly higher climb, dive and even reverse speeds above what could be achieved by the anti-grav drive alone. It has only sub-orbital flight capabilities, with a ceiling of 85km (53 miles). However, it noticeably struggles at altitudes above the stratosphere (50-55km 931-33 miles)) and the Lhúg generally operates at tropospheric heights (12km (7.5 miles).

    Like most recon cycles, the Lhúg is only lightly armoured. Only the front has any degree of armour, rating to Tier 12 verses kinetic and Tier 13 verses energy weapons. The sides and rear are much less protected, their armour rated only to around Tier 5 to 7. While this is still sufficient to make the vehicle resistant to modern small arms, the rider of course remains the most vulnerable point, especially from the side.

    Armament consists of a fixed pair of lazer cannons, rated to Tier 9 in concert. This is backed up by six Falling Star anti-tank missiles, the same kind as carried by the anti-tank infantry.

    Unusually, the launchers are placed in housing on the “wings” at the front of the vehicle, rather than mounted behind the rider as is normally typical for cycles. This is due to the fact that the Lhúg is expected to operate in the heavy forest which covers most elven worlds and permeates even into the cities. The “wings” thus serve partly as a deflecting barrier to shunt aside branches from the Lhúg’s path of flight – a similar principle to that seen in some forest animals.

    By placing the missiles in these deflectors, it further removes the danger of such obstacles that otherwise might get caught in a more traditional cycle’s pods.

    The advanced sensor system is mounted high enough to be above the rider’s head, so that the Lhúg can park safely for scanning or target designation duties without exposed itself to fire. The sensor systems have had continuous upgrades and are the best such systems in the REA.

    Between the engines, below the sensor mounting, the vehicles storage system is located. This utilises the same magic-item based extra- dimensional storage system used by the infantry, replacing the rider’s (and/or passenger’s) standard pack. As a rider cannot easily access anything held in a pack (or use a two-handed weapon) while moving with any degree of efficacy, that the pack is essentially removed to a stowage box on the cycle is not a particular disadvantage. This system, while expensive, uses widely-available civilian magic item components. It grants the Lhúg to carry almost as much cargo as a conventional ground or grav car, albeit with a hard limit on the size of items that can be placed within the storage system. This is a great advantage for long-term reconnaissance operations, and it allows the one- or two-elf team to carry plentiful supplies for extended operations in the field.

    ______________________________________________________________________
    Photos respectively of Replicator 2 (Aincaala) and Prusa (Silmanordo Talco-Neled and Lhúg) versions.

    Next month’s sci-fi release will be the last three REA models in the current line-up. The entire lot will be out at Hammerhead on the 2nd of March, fighting a historical battle set during the Zirakthargûm Divinity War of 2340-2341 (about five years ago) against the Zirakthargûm Divinity.

    No further progress on any of the other side-projects, I simply haven’t had time, while playing catch-up with other stuff.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #195224
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards February 2024 Release: Centurion Mk 5/1 (RAAC)

    Short and sweet this month. Dipping into the backlog this time, for a tank which has been sitting there for probably the longest; the Centurion Mk 5/1, as used by the RAAC!

    (With the CV90 taking so long, followed by the starship I was doing taking almost as long, with other stuff and then with the upcoming Hammerhead show and making an attempt to enter the MMF/Only-Games UKGE Design Competition, I simply haven’t had chance to start anything new this month for moderns.)

    Centurion Mk 5/1 (RAAC)

    MyMiniFactory (file) $1.60 Link

    The Only-Games price: £6.39 Link

    Shapeways price: $12.82 Link

    Direct price: £4.00

    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa version, as always.

    Next month – still up in the air. As soon as I have the next few jobs done, new vehicle is next on my list, but as to what (maybe another CV90 variant, maybe something else), I don’t know.

    Before then, we will be as usual down at Hammerhead on the 2nd of March, where I will be doing Manoeuvre Group Sci-Fi (with the Royal Elven Kingdoms) and the other half of the KB Club will be doing regular Manoeuvre Group – this time in a densely-hedged battlefield.

    in reply to: New Cold War Army Lists from Manoeuvre Group #194641
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Right. I’m told that kampfgruppes are specifically war-time combat formations (thus why it hasn’t been used in recent times, because Germany hasn’t been AT war since WW2), which are formed from taking elements from, say, a Panzer Division and a Panzer Grenadiers Division. Rather that use the much longer German compound words for the specific names for each version (e.g. the name for the reconnaissence version), the MG authors have chosen to simplify and use the generalised anglicised version “kampgroup” for consistency.

    (The agreement was supposed to be to take the offending “e” off the end, but apparently that didn’t make it as far as the cover…)

    I can only relate this to, rather than debate this with, you about it, since it’s not my field and I’m not the authors (at best, I’m the occasional proof-checking and upload-thing-doer); and can thus only suggest you direct polite inquiries in their direction (either here or at TMP). (Bearing in mind the aforemention Brian/UshCha may or may not be around until he returns for Australia and the other half doesn’t use forums to my knowledge.)

    in reply to: New Cold War Army Lists from Manoeuvre Group #194579
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Now that I know where I’m looking for it (and I’m not in my own working hours), “Warsaw pack” in the product description is definitely a typo – and that’s my bad, I missed it on my own check for them. As they haven’t gone quite yet, I can get the aforementioned Brian to log on to Wargames Vault and change that for him myself.

     

    As to the other – no idea. A cursory google (and then bing, as I remind myself google is no longer that reliable) indicates that the word has been used instances other than MG army lists, so I don’t know if its a typo or not and beyond that, I’m not the expert. (I am playing starships with the other half later today to try and remember to ask, but by that time, if anything needs to be done, it’ll be mid-Feburary before it can be.)

    (Edit: done (to Warsaw Pact”); in the absense of other data points, I have also made the spelling of “kampgroup” to  “kampgroupe” consistent with the cover, to be changed when/if necessary, because again, I missed that discrepancy myself; though in fairness when it’s a word I’m not familair with, so I glossed over it. It may still be wrong – I have NO idea – but if so, its consistently wrong until (and if it needs to be) fixed.)

    in reply to: New Cold War Army Lists from Manoeuvre Group #194544
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    I question the “playtested” aspect. Is that so the units give the kind of results you would expect or are you trying to make balanced tournament units? If the former OK and if the latter then another GW clone. Units should have what they were equipped with and if creating gamey force just call it a W40K variant.

    Absolutely the former. (That is, provided what you expect is a simulation of how the real tactics should behave.) MG is not a game remotely designed around competition-style tournament play (the pair of ’em are about as far away from the GW end of wargaming as it is possible to be); it’s all scenario-based (that is, the end user’s own scenarios, not, like proprietry ones or something), and intended to simulate real-world tactics as best as they can.

    (Case in point, they play sometimes with a former platoon commander who always beats the living crap out of them without needing to know the rules, because the game models the tactics well enough he just does what he used to and it works…!)

    The army lists are thus essentially real-world force organisations, with some game stats tidily at one end.

    (They are not immune to typos, though, and I can’t catch everything myself, especially when it’s terminology I only have a modest layperson’s understanding of. I can only pass those on, and as I say, half the team (that does the documentaion) is away tomorrow.)

    So, for example, while they’ve been sorting the lists, they spent several weekly games doing trench warfare and realised they needed to slightly re-write the infantry assault rules to cover niche situations like “what happens if you are assaulting an enemy unit and not their position and you pursue and they run off through another enemy unit which you then reach” and such. (MG itself had a version update a few weeks ago with said changes, congruent with writing these lists.) That’s sort of what I was thinking of particularly when I said “playtesting.” Tweaking the simulation so it works like how it should in the real world, not fixing “balance” or some such.

    (They play once or twice a week (and have since they started writing it[1]), so even those rare corner cases are getting vanishing small or obscure. Hell, they play more than I get to nowadays…)

     

    [1]Which was about the time I started writing Acclerate and Attack (my staship rules) which was 2002?

    in reply to: New Cold War Army Lists from Manoeuvre Group #194540
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    The second is probably a typo and one which their spellcheck maybe didn’t pick up (which I can pass on, but the primary author is off to Australia for three weeks tomorrow).

    The first I can’t speak to, since I don’t know what is planned for Parts 2 and onward (its seemingly “Russian” in the lists itself). I’m not the expert in the period (I just do model tanks and only by nation of manufacture from what it says on wikipedia) so I’m not in a position to be able to debate on that, I’m afraid.

     

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #194502
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards January 2024 Release: Royal Elven Army Wave One

    This time, I am bringing a veritable basket of releases, something for everyone!

    First of all, for the 144th sci-fi, I have the first three Royal Elven Kingdoms army releases (which should have happened nearly four years ago, before lockdown interrupted literally the day after they debut at Hammerhead!) More on those in a moment!

    _____________________________________________________________________

    Secondly, while not strictly new in terms of models, for starships, I am proud to announce the release of the Accelerate and Attack Starter Set on MyMiniFactory! MMF allowed me the opportunity to release the rules with the model files for two attendant Stone Portal and Vivrathk fleets in a bundle. It’s the closest thing I can get to a boxed set! At $40 (or about £32) this is a saving of 34% over the both the rules and the model files, or 10% just for the model files!

    If you prefer just the rules, Accelerate and Attack! is available separately ($15.95) here with the free web enhancement pack you can check out here.

    _____________________________________________________________________

    Finally, after much toil and playtesting, my partners-in-crime at Manoeuvre Group have released their first army list in quite a while! This is the Cold War Army Lists for 1981 to 1985 Part 1 ($6.50), including British, German, Russian and US forces, in the new Issue 2 standard. As with all MG army lists, the list are heavily researched real lists and thus suitable for any game system, not just MG.

    As noted last time, Manoeuvre Group Sci-fi has been updated to v1.02, which includes the stats for this month’s Royal Elven Army! Free to download at Wargames Vault here.

    _____________________________________________________________________

    Bringing us back to full circle, here are the three vehicles of that self-same force:

    Gladrusc Main Battle Tank

    MMF (file) $1.05

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £3.68
    Shapeways $8.65
    FDM £3.20

    The Gladrusc (lit. “forest fox”) Main Battle Tank was introduced in 2232. It was itself an overhaul and upgrade to the older Aeior (named for a polearm weapon of the halberd type) MBT. The Aeior had served well during the closing period of turmoil before the Strayvian Empire’s collapse, but had reached beyond its service life. With the general elven populace believing that the galaxy was entering a new time of peace and prosperity, there was strong resistance to military expenditure. The Gladrusc project was only initiated at all due to being funded primarily by the Sylmiatis Wood Elf Kingdom, traditionally the most independent and martial of the kingdoms.

    The similarities between the Aeior and Gladrusc are apparent. Both are fully gravitic, and thus capable of both low grav and full flight and have a relative small, uncrewed turret. In essence, the Gladrusc was an upgraded version of the Aeior with contemporary technology, but no new innovation. Even the Sylmiatis government struggled to gain the approval and resources to manage even this much.

    The Gladrusc was, at the time, cutting edge for performances. It has armour rated at Tier 20 to the front, though the sides armour is lower, and the rear is notably rated lower due to the presence of the engines.

    The turret is lightweight, and controlled from a crew station within the hull, rather than within the turret itself. On the one hand, this gives it a much smaller profile against fire when hull down and means that destruction of the turret causes not loss of life. On the other, it means that any actual hits are far more likely to strike the hull than the turret in the first place, which somewhat reduces overall survivability outside of a hull-down firing position.

    The turret’s main gun is a long-barrel lazer cannon, rated at Tier 21 with excellent range. This is supplemented by four smoke dischargers and a Point-Defence lazer weapon, rated at Tier 6. Advanced ECM and a full sensor suite completed the loadout.

    A century’s advancement has rendered this performance down to merely adequate. Aside from a few incremental upgrades – the most notable was a power-plant and engine upgrade in the 2270s – the Gladrusc has little been altered. Only the full-grav drive and sensor system mark it out from a contemporary tank fielded by the Grand Terran Sovereign Republic.

    The military push instigated in the last couple of decades means that, finally, work has begun on a successor, or at least a significant upgrade. This would very likely include hybrid technology from the Saiyvalyss Alliance and Aotrs intelligence expects that, at the very least, the next generation of elven battle tank will be equipped with Saiyvali shield generators.

    Silmanordo APC


    MMF (file) $1.20

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £4.26
    Shapeways $8.20

    FDM £2.90

    The Silmanordo (lit. “silver oak”) Armoured Personnel Carrier is an aging design. Designed over a century ago, in the early 2220s, the Silmanordo is a classic example of the stagnation of the elven military. It has received only a few incremental updates in all that time, and remains largely the same as the first production model.

    The Silmanordo is an archetypal APC, a battle-taxi, intended only to take troops from a to b with a minimum of combat. The Silmanordo is a full grav tank, capable of suborbital, if cumbersome flight, with a respectable turn of speed. It is only lightly armoured; even with the minimal armour upgrade from the dawn of the 24th century, the frontal armour only reaches Tier 14 rating against energy weapons, and remains rated Tier 11 against kinetic weapons. The rear, more vulnerable because of the engines, is down as far as Tier 7 and Tier 6 respectively.

    The Silmanordo is armed only with a single automated point defence lazer turret, rated only to Tier 6 itself.

    One of the more unusual features of the Silmanordo is the rear hatches. The group of four does not open quite vertically, but at a slightly offset angle, so that the hatches open more like the petals of a flower. To some extent this was mandated by the curved hull surface, but the reason why some other method was not implemented is unclear – it certainly does not seem to impart any special advantages aside from aesthetics.

    Even from inception, the Silmanordo was plagued with the problems of resistance to military spending in the decades of relative quiet proceeding the Strayvian Empire’s collapse. (Forty years was not a long time-span for such a long-lived species.)

    With elven culture convinced with the fall of the galaxy’s biggest antagonist and a new age of peace was dawning, it became increasingly difficult for the military to receive the resources to continue to advance.

    The Silmanordo was initially conceived to be able to transport 11 soldiers. This remains the official specification, but in practise, this is simply impossible. While technically true that the Silmanordo can physically fit that many people inside it, it ignores that to do so, it requires them to not be carrying any equipment.

    There is even evidence that the stated figure of 11 was originally intended to be inclusive of the two-elf crew, not the infantry.

    For those in charge of the purse strings, however, that figure became gospel. It meant that the army would be able to supplied with less unit to carry the same number of troops. A platoon of 24 could fit into three vehicles, not four. Indeed, the idea gained more and more traction to increasing dangers to the actual combat performance of the troops that would have to be carried.

    First, there was the proposal to have four squads of six divided among the three APCs. The army resisted this idea, all-too well aware the chaos this would cause in actual combat situations when one or more vehicles were lost. The army said that instead, the squads would have to be reformed to work in three squads of eight – which the Silmanordo would just have about coped with for combat troops.

    But then the next idea floated by the committee in charge was to change the size of the platoon from 24 to 22 – which would allow a squad of six and a squad of five, and thus reduce the amount of vehicles down to two per platoon.

    The kind of disaster this would inevitably result in when one or more over-crowded and under-armoured vehicles was actually hit can only be imagined. However, the army advocates happened on a desperate solution before the situation was somehow made even more untenable.

    The proposal was raised that to facilitate lower combat losses, advanced medical stations would need to be fitted to the Silmanordos. This would, they army argued, also make them much more useful in disaster relief scenarios that they were more likely to encounter during peacetime. The medical stations would require some sacrifice of space – the capacity of the vehicle for combat troops would have to be reduced to 6 – but surely, the army argued, that this was a sacrifice worth making?

    To the great relief of the serving soldiers, the civilian overseers were very pleased at the suggestion and accepted it immediately.

    Thus, the Silmanordo was put into production and thousands were made, including numerous variants. As it transpired, the medical stations did indeed prove very useful, as for the majority of the past century, the Royal Elven Army had few instances where it was called to battle. But this merely reinforced the civilian opinion and the later Aincaala faced even stiffer opposition to being put into production.

    It is somewhat ironic that on the one hand, the Silmanordo is among the oldest and least modern AFVs currently serving in the Royal Elven Army; on the other, the medical stations within them are otherwise some of the most advanced, as they have benefitted from all the advances made in the past century in the civilian fields.

    Royal Elven Kingdoms Infantry Company


    MMF (file) $1.90

    Physical Print (72)
    Only-Games £7.59
    Shapeways $41.46
    FDM –

    The Royal Elven Army infantry has in many ways, suffered less from the military stagnation than the armoured vehicles. Given that many HPE-L worlds even as civilised as those of the Royal Elven Kingdoms still have dangerous wildlife – as do many alien planets – there is still a strong requirement for personal protection even for the civilian population. And while archery remains the most common elven pastime, in the post-industrial era, shooting (both with projectile weapons and in modern times, energy weapons) is not far behind.

    The modern REA soldier is thus very well equipped. The full body armour is light weight and flexible, with integral visual camouflage and enhanced infrared scattering, both systems of which exceed those in use by the Aotrs. In terms of noncombat kit, the REA is one of the best equipped forces is the galaxy.

    The standard-issue pack contains integral interdimensional storage, using time-tested magical technique developed in the pre-industrial eras. This allows the soldiers to carry larger amounts of gear without compromising their ability to perform; elven soldiers carry more gear per person than most military forces, but their weight load is substantially smaller. This system means that the elves can even carry an allotment of personal entertainment gear and additional personal foodstuffs, meaning that morale in the field remains very high. The standard field kit also includes significant medical kits, including healing potions and often wands for any spellcasters capable of using them.

    The primary armaments of the infantry are lazer rifles. The most common is the Ghanir 115 lazer rifle, but several other models of similar performance are in service, especially with national forces. These weapons share many similar basic components by design and there is generally little to choose between them.

    Due to their pack’s additional storage, elven soldiers can carry two Whistling Wing Light Anti-Tank Warheads each, even when carrying heavy weapons. The Whistling Wing has an effective range of 500m and is rated at Tier 15.

    Elven soldiers also typically carry a melee weapon – again, often stored interdimensionally – and are highly proficient in their use.

    Standard doctrine is to deploy in squads of six. A standard squad is assigned a lazer cannon as a squad support weapon and a warcaster (that is, a spellcaster capable of using battlefield spells, typically a wizard, druid or cleric). Warcasters usually only carry a pistol, rather than a rifle, usually needing the freedom of movement and hands to cast their spells.

    Anti-tank squads have only a single rifleelf in addition to a warcaster, and then four soldiers armed with the Falling Star Heavy Anti-Tank Warhead.

    The Falling Star is a venerable and somewhat iconic design; due to its distinctive pop-out dorsal/ventral target sensor arms which make it resemble a stylised bow when activated. While for many ground forces, this might be considered a disadvantage, for a culture so steeped in archery, this is actual natural and statistically, improved fire rates and accuracy over a more conventional system. The Falling Star has a range of around 2000m and is rated at Tier 17.

    Most platoons have anti-tank squads in a ratio of two to two or one to three, but dedicated anti-tank platoons are not unknown, especially if the elves are aware they are deploying against heavy enemy infantry.

    This high-level of equipment only serves to enhance the professional and experienced elven infantry . Elven infantry soldiers can often have combat experience and veterancy that rivals or even exceeds that of Aotrs infantry forces, which makes them among the most dangerous unpowered infantry – at least among humanoids and elenthnaroids – in the galaxy.

    ______________________________________________________________________
    Photos respectively of Replicator 2, Prusa and VPN versions.

    Next month’s sci-fi will be the next three REA models.

    Over the course of this year, I am going to attempt to:
    a) Make the first proper release of Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide as a stand-alone lore product PDF; this will be probably around maybe $10, but I feel that justified for 300k words!

    b) Release the “official” fleet stats for many of the forces and powers contained therein. I am intending to charge a token fee for these (likely only a couple of quid), which – like the MG army lists, will be a batch of several fleets suitable for fighting each other. Partly, this is because it will give me some idea of whether or not people are actually interested, since free products generally get downloaded because they’re free. These lists will be simply presented, with minimal lore. I intend to try to have an actual Word document in addition to the PDFs with the ship profiles, so you can use these to simply copy and paste them to your own word docs to simplify having to make your own. I’m starting out fairly simple with these, until I can judge the reception (which in this case, meaning whether anyone body gets them or not). This is, I’m afraid, the only metric I will have for judging this, in the absence of other feedback.

    (These will necessarily include notes on whose models to use – where possible; not a few ships, notably the bulk of the REN, are scratch-built or from various sources I might not be able to remember!)

    No projected times on either of these, they’ll be done where they will be done, the former especially.

     

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #194160
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards January 2024 Release: CV1940C

    Kicking off this year, only a single release this month, but it is at least entirely new and not from the backlog liked I had thought it might have to be! So this time, then, I have for you the Swedish CV1940C IFV.

    This is a touch early, perhaps, but I had just enough time at the end of this week to get this out before the end of the week, which leaves me free to start fresh next week (when I’d have normally done the release). (The sci-fi release will thus likely be a week on Tuesday).

    CV9040C

    MyMiniFactory (file) $1.25 Link

    The Only-Games price: £5.06 Link

    Shapeways price: $10.18 Link

    Direct price: £3.95
    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa version, as always. Again, grey-sprayed, since I’m still on the Photo-Terrible natural/white/transparent filament.

    This was a bit of a nightmare. I thought “the CV90 is on my list, that should be a nice and easy start!” But no, the CV90 has several wildly different variants: the CV9030 not only has a totally different turret, but major hull differences as well. Source material was also quite scarce for the CV9040, so I did the C version (totally different turret to the earlier CV9040s and the CV9030…) since I only found walkarounds for the C and the CV9030s.

    Still, while it was another nightmare turret (see also Merkava IV, though not quite that bad), it is done, though the easy job I was hoping to do more variants will be 75% as much work as the base model…!

    Next month… Not sure. (The sci-fi releases are set for the new few months, though.) I will be taking a week off sometime in February (my parents are off for three weeks to Australia, so I want to at least have one week’s holiday with the house to myself!) I am three-quarters intending to do the CV9030 while I, like, still have the walkarounds and sources (and maybe that turret won’t be quite as bad?), but we’ll see.

    In other news, even this far and out of the sales, MMF is trickling out much faster than the physical sales, so hopefully, that’ll keep going; the various winter sales have at least pulled me out of the nosedive of worst financial year since I started, so fingers crossed.

     

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #193316
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards December 2023 Release: Royal Elven Navy Wave One

    Like an unconvincing skeletal Santa in an obviously faked beard bringing a pile of dubious gifts, I have a multitude of releases and updates this month!

    Firstly, this month’s releases are the first batch of vessels for the Royal Elven Kingdoms Navy; but we’ll come back to that in a moment!

    I have finally gone through the painstaking process of updating the PDF catalogue with all the new links/prices etc. Here’s a direct link.

    ______________________________________________________________________

    Manoeuvre Group Updates

    Manoeuvre Group have been hard at work, and between us, we have released version v2.02 for Issue 2 of the main Manoeuvre Group Rules (available at Wargame Vault here ). This corrects the usual batch of typos and spelling errors that creep in despite one’s best efforts, fixes several long-standing errors that have been in the rules since release. The assault rules section has been completely re-written to accommodate for some edge cases that the authors found when fighting infantry games – specifically, to account for situations like “what happens if you are assaulting any enemy unit, and that enemy unit runs off through one of its friends and the assaulting unit hits the friends instead?”

    Manoeuvre Group Sci-fi (free at Wargame Vault here) has been updated to v1.02, the most pertinent change being the addition of the stats for the Yrgynela and forthcoming Royal Elven Army.

    In both cases, existing customers should have received an email notification of the updates and a change log (and for good measure, a change log document is now included to!)

    Wargame Vault is also having its usual Winter Offensive sale (25% off, 21st December to January 2nd), so then is a good time to get Maneouvre Group or even Accelerate and Attack! if you don’t already have them!

    ______________________________________________________________________

    Only-Games Store Update & Winter Sales

    I went into full detail about the situation in last week’s Modern release post and this will be long enough as it is, so I’ll be brief. The short, short version is that the Only-Games store will remain open for January, but there has been a necessary price increase of about 13% to accommodate that. As of yesterday, that has been completed across all ranges in time for the switch over.

    To leaven that somewhat, Only-Games are having a 25% off winter sale, starting 15th of December. Use code: SNOWYGAMES25

    MyMiniFactory are also having a Winter Sale, starting of the 18th of December until the 8th of January, which is 30% of the Aotrs Shipyards ranges; use code WINTERSAVINGS

    (Note: The Black Friday sales, particularly at MMF were sufficiently good I elected to join both of these sales, even though that are close together. But I will try not making a habit of it (if I wanted to be Always On Sale, I’d have set my MMF prices higher to start with!)

    I am less pleased to report that, as I have been updating the catalogue, I discovered Shapeways has had another unannounced price increase of 25-30%. Nothing I can do about that, sorry.

    ______________________________________________________________________

    So that finally brings us to the release itself! Seven ships this time around.

    Royal Elven Navy

    Hundasonda Dreadnought

    MMF (file) $3.40

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £14.14
    Shapeways $24.33
    FDM £5.70

    The Hundasonda represents a fundamental shift in elven ship design, a process which started with the refits of the mid- 2330s and the construction of the Kestrel and Bestra cruisers. Following the Dathedi model, the cruisers boasted massive engines and manoeuvrability and their primary defence, but at the cost of a correspondingly lighter weapons load. Both vessels used fixed lazer cannons and torpedoes as the primary armament. While they were by themselves not usually able to disable an enemy, their extreme manoeuvrability proved very useful.

    The Hundasonda is the ultimate expression of that philosophy – a highly manoeuvrable large dreadnought. The Hundasonda was conceived with no less goal of being a “Midnight-killer;” a ship capable of taking on the Aotrs Midnight-class Dreadnought on equal terms.

    The initial designs simply could not carry enough weapons to compensate for the Aotrs superior technology, and the hull was revised and got larger. The REN thus opted to continue to build using elven hull technologies, simply because the saiyvalyss as not rebuilt shipyards of sufficient size. The production Hundasonda masses almost 25% again as its erstwhile target. This mass is propelled by advanced saiyvalyss engines to an acceleration of 16.5mc and 183 MEUs, more than sufficient to overhaul even the upgraded Midnight’s and mitigate the latter’s range advantages.

    To ensure it reached range, the Hundasonda was equipped with 7200TXq shields, and a saiyvalyss-armour skin rated to 24TXq; both equalling or exceeding the Midnight’s. And to protect from the swarms of missiles – and to provide extra short-range firepower – the Hundasonda carries a plethora of point-defence blaster and syvri batteries which collectively rate at a staggering 8940Xq.

    The primary firepower is provided by three spinal-mount lazer cannons, totalling an output of 1260TXq over an accuracy enveloper of 430 000TXq. Multiple lazer turrets with an accuracy envelope of 410 000km provide another 2496TXq of firepower to bear.

    This still left the Hundasonda somewhat undergunned for its size, and still without much of a counter to the Midnight’s superior firepower. Thus the elven designers took a novel approach. The Saiyvali had been experimenting with the concept of fitting numerous light torpedo batteries to their capital ships, to replace the short-ranged fixed syvri that is commonplace on their ships. Such systems were only good for one or two salvos before being expended, but the spike impact was significant. This theory found an ideal partner in the Hundasonda and its assigned targets.

    Thus the Hundasonda mounts thirty-two light torpedo tubes in four clusters in the nose. While each one only carries three Amhylathi (“radiant arrow”) light torpedoes, each warhead is rated at 103TXq, making a single salvo very dangerous within the accuracy envelope of 120 000km.

    In practise, this proved too loftier goal even for the combined technology base of the Royal Elven Kingdoms and the Saiyvalyss Alliance. The Aotrs’ technology was just too far ahead for the Hundasonda to stand a chance one-on-one. Two, however, would be more than a match.

    This was proven in October of 2348. The newly-formed Bright Accord alliance forces (consisting of the Royal Elven Kingdoms, the Saiyvalyss Alliance, the United Concorde of Divine Realms and the Zirakthargûm Divinity) launched an attack on elements of the Aotrs First fleet. The First Fleet vessels had just completed their refits and were preparing to re-join their operational theatre. While the FTL jump distance was within elven hyperspace jump distance, without the sensors of the UCDR, the elves had never been able to track the Aotrs Gate drives to be able to mount a successful assault. The UCDR, by mutual consent, took a backseat role in the attack, to preserve an element of surprise on their capabilities. Their primary contribution was to use tractor-configured vessels to two the Zirakthargûm Divinity elements into battle. (The dwarf hyperdrive otherwise would never have been sufficient.) No saiyvalyss vessels engaged in the battle, but many personnel were present on the joint craft, notably on the three Hundasondas deployed.

    The attack achieved tactical surprise – a significant achievement against the Aotrs. Hundasonda dreadnoughts Vana, Verya and Hundasonda Nelde, and their accompanying task force charged right into the Aotrs command group and destroyed the Midnight Dreadnought Witch Hour with a single salvo. The allied forces inflicted heavy damage on the Aotrs fleet before withdrawing ahead of Aotrs reinforcements. (Delaying too long would have put the dwarven element at significant risk.) Nonetheless, this was a resounding victory for the alliance, and the first defeat inflicted on the Aotrs navy for almost thirty years, since the commission of the first 10th generation Aotrs starships.

    Shrike Escort Cruiser

    MMF (file) $0.85

    Physical Print
    Only-Games £2.69
    Shapeways $5.14
    FDM £2.80

    The Shrike Escort Cruiser was first produced in 2156, and so has been a near-ubiquitous sight for humans, at least, dealing with the Royal Elven Kingdoms. It has had several iterations over this span, but had changed relatively little.

    The latest 2348 version follows this same path. The vessel’s distinctive profile has been little changed in its latest incarnation. While it utilises several key Saiyvalyss Alliance technologies provided by the alliance, much of the basic function remains unchanged. The Shrike was the second such vessel to be produced by the joint project; like the Falcon Destroyer, the length of service time lessened the work to produce the duel-technology systems, further assisted by the work done of the Falcons.

    The power core has been replaced with a saiyvalyss design. The same core is used on the saiyvalyss YL-6 Idilgwand Class Transport Cruiser and only a few modifications were necessary. This enhanced power system enables to Shrike to upgrade to saiyvalyss engines. Dropping the mass by 25%, the Shrike’s performance has increased by over 50%, going from an acceleration of 11.24mc to 17.2mc. The agility has likewise substantially improved, now rated at 176 MEUs over the Shrike’s previous respectable 110. This increased manoeuvrability gives the new Shrike a much-needed boost to its survivability.

    Some of the extra mass was devoted to a new armoured skin of saiyvalyss manufacture. Rated at an Armour Integrity Capacity of 421TXq, it is relatively light for a cruiser of the Shrike’s size, but still gives a solid backstop to the Shrike’s existing 1600TXq shields.

    The most notable change has been the removal of almost all the Shrike’s previous pint-defence systems. Only the two missile racks remain; as before, these are typically loaded with 48 Zephr Arrow point-defence missiles. Instead both short-and-long range lazer batteries have been replaced with roughly equal numbers of saiyvalyss blasters and syvri. This brings the Shrike’s total point-defence energy weapon output to 4470TXq, a boost of almost 150%. There is some cost in range – the Shrike’s previous long range lazer batteries had a larger engagement sphere of 7.4Ym³ compared to the 2.34Ym³ of the saiyvalyss blasters, but the lazers could only output 520TXq and massed twice as much. The Saiyvalyss systems have enough range to allow a greater separation than the standard elven point-defence lazers, which has been considered a good-trade off. While it might force the Shrike’s escorted craft to fly slightly closer, the massive amount of extra firepower will ensure that far less missiles will penetrate the screen.

    The Shrike’s secondary armament is unchanged. The twin heavy lazer cannons have an accuracy envelope of 420 000km, and a combined output of 832TXq. This is supplemented by smaller batteries rated to 618TXw, provided all-aspect coverage at an accuracy envelope of 300 000km.

    All-in-all, the new Shrike is considerably better at its job and is likely to survive to perform it much better, thus ensuring more elven vessels stay in the fight.

    Falcon Aurë Destroyer

    MMF (file) $0.80

    Physical Print (2)
    Only-Games £3.05
    Shapeways $5.76
    FDM £2.90

    Falcon Sarn Destroyer

    MMF (file) $0.80

    Physical Print (2)
    Only-Games £3.10
    Shapeways $5.77
    FDM £2.90

    Falcon Rost Destroyer

    MMF (file) $0.80

    Physical Print (2)
    Only-Games £3.10
    Shapeways $5.97
    FDM £2.90

    The Falcon Class Destroyer has had a very long an illustrious history. The very first Falcon class destroyers date back to 1575, in the aftermath of the Dathedi War, being among the first generation of elven ships built under the unified banner of the newly-minted Royal Elven Kingdoms.

    Over the past nearly eight centuries, the Falcon destroyer has significantly changed, with only the name and a rough similarity of shape in common between the first Falcons and the present.

    The Falcon Destroyers of the previous century suffered from the lack of military innovation. Fundamentally a sound vessel, the Falcon struggled with being a little too generalised.

    But when the first projects for the joint Royal Elven Navy and Saiyvalyss Alliance Kallvourassthi (lit. “night sky navy”) were discussed, the Falcon Destroyer was a natural fit. Sheer familiarity with the hull chassis and the expertise built up over centuries of use meant that the Falcon could be most easily adapted for a ground-up prototype. Many subsystems did not require changing, having already been optimised to perfection various configurations over the years. While the Saiyvali had more advanced hull techniques that would be of some benefit, producing a saiyvalyss hull would have required a completely new design and more extensive shipyards, compared to the comparatively lesser investment in systems.

    The Falcon’s newest 2347 incarnation thus is serving as a test bed. Built on the tried-and-tested elven hull chassis, the Falcon’s engines have been replaced by more advanced saiyvalyss drives. These match and slightly exceed the Falcon’s previous specifications, bringing an acceleration of 16.9mc and 186 MEUs. This allowed an increase of 6% to the ships’ mass for a little over half the engine mass and volume, and the volume reduction also means the new Falcon is actually slightly sleeker too. A saiyvalyss-tech hyperdrive further increases the Falcon’s FTL speed by 17%.

    The Falcon’s 1600TXq shields have been retained, as elven shield technology is superior, but they are now supplemented with saiyvalyss armour-plate rated at 420 TXq AIC for an additional layer of protection.

    The sensor and communications systems have likewise been built to saiyvalyss standards, while superior elven secondary systems (towing tractors and teleporters) are retained.

    The Falcon’s 1000TXq point-defence lasers have been removed. Additional mass saved from the new engines allowed them to be replaced with a more extensive system of saiyvalyss point-defence blasters and syvri, totalling a net 2210TXq output. With an engagement sphere of 2.34Ym³, more than double the lazer’s 1.1Ym³, the 2347 Falcon has doubled its point-defence capability for only a 50% increase of mass and volume.

    The Falcon’s 500TXq spinal lazer cannon remains the centre piece of its anti-capital ship firepower. But with the other improvements, the Falcon’s remaining weapons payload is higher.

    Three weapons configurations have been developed and are being tested.

    The first configuration Aurë (sunlight), supplements the spinal cannon with two additional lazer cannons, bringing the net spinal weapon output to 1020TXq, over a 420 000km accuracy envelope. Four lazer batteries bring a total 416TXq output that can be brought over a similar range against a target at any aspect.

    The Sarn (stone) configuration most closely matches the previous Falcon’s weapons load. Replacing the single elven 710TXq-yield torpedo tube is much more advanced saiyvalyss torpedo technology. Two twin tubes for both fore and rear can fire 920TXq-yield torpedoes, and fire at double the accuracy envelope at a staggering 1.2 million km; the much compact torpedoes also mean that the Falcon Sarn carries 120 torpedoes instead of 42. This makes is very much more effective as a torpedo vessel. The cost of this is that the all-aspect lazer batteries had to be downgraded to the older Falcon’s 309TXq systems with only a 300 000 km accuracy envelope.

    The third configuration, Rost (rain) is a departure from the Falcon’s more typical role as a ship-of-the-line, becoming a missile vessel. The Rost carries the same all-aspect batteries as the Aurë, but the additional lazer cannons are replaced by a pair of missile pods. The initial test loadout has been 96 of the elven standard 230TXq-yield Starspear missiles, capable of being fired in bursts of twelve. The nature of the missile pods means they can be easily re-equipped on a per-mission basis, either with a like number of 224TXq-yield Striking Swallow long-range missiles or 216TXq-yield Zephr Arrow point-defence missile or even up to 112 of the Saiyvali’s more advanced missiles, the standard of which is the 250TXq-yield range.

    The new Falcon is, perforce, significantly more expensive to produce, on account of the advanced technology. Even when full production lines are operational, it is expected that the resource cost alone is likely to increase by 27% to 85% over the older Falcon. However, the increase of offence and defence in considered well worth the extra expense.

    The Falcons are still undergoing testing to iron out any problems – particularly stemming from the mixed technology, but it is likely that the 2347 Falcon may enter production by the end of the 2348.

    Tiriech Escort Frigate

    MMF (file) $0.80

    Physical Print (4)
    Only-Games £2.66
    Shapeways $6.23
    FDM £2.80

    The Kindred Escort Frigate was the last purely elven starship design to be produced. It entered service in 2335, as part of the frantic refit efforts following the disastrous Dathedi incursion. The Kindred was intended to supplement the elven fleet point-defence vessels, aimed particularly for cruisers and larger vessels. The Kindred was centred on a large-scale ECM system. This was backed up with the same array of point-defence lazers as the Shrike, in a more compact hull and mobile hull. Its sublight drive characteristics allowed it to keep pace with all larger elven starships save the Kestrel. Other weaponry was limited, only providing a single torpedo tube with 24 torpedoes of 230TXq yield; this allowed it some sniping shots are range, but little else.

    Nevertheless, the Kindred saw rapid deployment (partly to replace Shrike losses). It in fact first served the REN in an engagement with the Japanese Empire, where its ECM system were used offensively to mitigate JE cloaking systems and won the day for the elves.

    An upgraded version was thus a logical choice for the third joint elven and saiyvalyss project. The Kindred was more heavily redesigned from scratch and became the Tiriech (guarding spear).

    The Tiriech masses slightly less than the Kindred (by about 4%). One of the primary reasons was the removal of the torpedo launcher, regulating the Tiriech to a pure support role. The drive characteristics remain the same: 16mc and 182 MEUs, identical to the Kindred’s, though the Tiriech uses saiyvalyss drives that mass half as much. Like the other joint projects, the Tiriech uses the more advanced saiyvalyss hyperdrive, increasing its FTL transit speed by 16.67%.

    As with its forebear, the Tiriech echoes its contemporary Shrike’s energy point-defence armament – in this case, the 2348 Shrike’s blaster and syvri armament, which gives the Tiriech the same output (4470TXq). The ECM system remains much the same, with only a few upgrades in areas where the saiyvalyss had some advantages.

    The Tiriech uses some of the mass reductions to mount slightly sturdier shields. It still has no armour, but its shields are rated to 795TXq, a third again as much as the Kindred.

    The resulting trade-offs make the Tiriech a much better vessel at its job, but while leaving some room left for the numerous Kindreds to not be completely overshadowed; indeed there is an a good argument for the Kindreds being freed up to take more of an offensive roll, and there is talk of a refit to remove the Kindred’s less mass-efficient long range lazer batteries for full capital lazers or possibly even missile racks.

     

    Sicil Heavy Corvette

    MMF (file) $0.80

    Physical Print (4)
    Only-Games £2.14
    Shapeways $5.00
    FDM £2.70

    The Sicil is the last of the first batch of new generation elven ships to have been produced. Like the Hundasonda, the Sicil (dagger) is a totally new design, though one that owes much to earlier corvettes, notably the Sparrowhawk.

    The Sicil is a close-attack strike vessel, intended to close to short range and attack point targets, taking advantage of the same light torpedo tubes that the Hundasonda uses.
    To this end, the Sicil mounts eight light torpedo tubes, each loaded with a trio of 103TXq-yield Amhylathi torpedoes. This only gives it one or maybe two effective salvos, but even this is two-third the firepower of a typical bomber squadron.

    Backing up the light torpedoes, the Sicil mounts an array of blaster point defence systems of saiyvalyss manufacture. These give a combined output of 1440TXq, giving the Sicil decent point-defence or a significant amount of firepower to add to any breeches the Amhylathi’s create.

    The Sicil’s saiyvalyss engines are configured for evasion and mobility over acceleration. It boasts a rating of 290 MEUs in manoeuvrability. Its acceleration of 21.45mc is still extremely respectable, though less than what might be expected for the engine’s mass. The Sicil’s remaining defences are modest; only a thin unarmoured skin of 24TXq AIC rating covered by shields rated to 420TXq. Still, in concert with its agility, this is enough to protect it long enough to get it into attack range.

    It is noteworthy that this sort of semi-sacrificial strike craft is more typical of saiyvalyss thinking than elven, and represents a shift in military philosophy towards the rather more typically aggressive style of the Saiyvalyss Alliance.

    ______________________________________________________________________
    Photos, as always, of Prusa versions.

    Next month will see the start of three releases of the (much-overdue) Royal Elven Army, which will see us into March. After that, we’ll, it’s anybody’s guess… But I hear dark rumours that after their emergence three years ago, the Grand Terran Sovereign Republic has consolidated enough of its combined technology base to begin production of its own ships…

    This will (hopefully!) be the last update of this year. So have a good Christmas (and/or appropriate holiday) and good New Year and thank you for bearing with me in the year that, for the Shipyards specifically, been roughest to date.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #193085
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards December 2023 Update and Release VBLs

    As typical for December, I have an early release post for you.

    So before I get to the release, the update.

    It is good news, though somewhat qualified. The short, short version is the shop is will remain open, but there will be a price increase.

    As I have mentioned, Only-Games is moving to a subscription-based model next month. There was simply no way I was making that subscription, so I contacted them regarding other options (i.e. what about having it open only for a limited time each year, could I do it such that orders would have to come through directly etc.). They instead offered a much better alternative (since I’d been there from the start and helped road-test some of the stuff); they would increase their take off the platform price (i.e. the overall price) by 10% from 10% to 20%. That means that for me to be making the same amount of money (and indeed, any at all), the overall price has to go up.

    To maintain the same amount of pennies I make, the prices will be going up by about 13%.

    A price increase is never good news, but if it means the shop remains open at all, it is the least bad outcome and I’m very happy with the result. The price increases will be going into effect more-or-less immediately (starting from the release itself), since it has to be done by January and will be done over the course of this week (starting with the moderns).

    (The MMF prices will still be calculated off the previous pricing structure, I’ll be making myself a spread sheet as I go!)

    Once this last bit is finally done, we will finally after several months of frantic work and extra stress (I’m on pills now…) we will be back to normal operations again.

    LESS good news to report, I have discovered as I have been updating my catalogue, that Shapeways has as recently as a few weeks ago, had an unannounced price increase. (The previous VBL model, notably, had gone up.) This is a jaw-dropping 25% to 30% increase, even more astounding in light of it being kept hush-hush.

    The only very marginal point in Shapeways’ favour is that they caught as catastrophic error in the Chieftain hull that crept in during the last round of update, which propagated across all five model (the moderns and the sci-fi one). This required a before-breakfast-on-my-effective-Sunday fix, but hopefully is done now.

    Speaking of Shapeways a slight change to format. MMF uses dollars as their currency, so as I’m having to use both dollars and pounds anyway (I and Only-games work in base pounds), there’s no good reason to not use Shapeways’ dollar prices, and eliminate the exchange-rate-discrepancy.

    ______________________________________________________________

    To the release itself, them. This time, I have three more VBL versions: the Reco version of the VBL, and the standard and Reco version of the slightly larger VB2L.

    VBL Reco


    MyMiniFactory (file) $0.80 Link

    The Only-Games price: £1.95 Link

    Shapeways price: $4.52 Link

    Direct price: £2.85

    VB2L


    MyMiniFactory (file) $0.80 Link

    The Only-Games price: £2.04 Link

    Shapeways price: $4.52 Link

    Direct price: £2.85

    VB2L Reco


    MyMiniFactory (file) $0.80 Link

    The Only-Games price: £2.09 Link

    Shapeways price: $4.62 Link

    Direct price: £2.85

    _____________________________________________________________

    Note: I have updated the OP with all the various links, to hopefully provide a better place to have them rather than repeating the general links on each post.

    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa versions, as always.

    Next month is an unknown, it depends what I get chance to do (if anything) over December, which is a short month; it thus might be something from the backlog, we’ll see.

    Next week’s week-early sci-fi release will see the release of the Royal Elven Navy starfleet as existent, and the ground force over the next three (and not before time, the REK have been hanging around since 2020).

    So for those of you who don’t follow the sci-fi or general releases, have a good Christmas (and/or other season-appropriate festival) and a good new year, and I’ll see you again in January.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #192791
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Very, very quck update: I have since spoken to Only-Games. I’ll make a full annoucement with details when I do the release, but the (positive) upshot is that my Only-Games store will be staying online, but there will be a price increase to compensate coming over December. Just wanted to make a quick note to migitate that FoMO…

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #192790
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Very, very quck update: I have since spoken to Only-Games. I’ll make a full annoucement with details when I do the release, but the (positive) upshot is that my Only-Games store will be staying online, but there will be a price increase to compensate coming over December. Just wanted to make a quick note to migitate that FoMO…

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #192745
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Update and Black Friday Sale

    (Apparently, in my stress, I forgot to crosspost this last week, so I better do it now)

    I have, finally and belatedly, put up the Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide entry for the five Royal Elven Navy ships I have done so far. (The REN fleet consists of ships from a wide variety of manufacturers prior to the Shipyards.)

    I plan to release the ships as December’s Sci-Fi release, and the nine ground force models over the next three months, which will neatly lead up to Hammerhead.

    You can read the lore on the REN here.

    (And that of the Royal Elven Army just above it; use the threadmark feature to find the Quick Look at Royal Elven Kingdoms.)

    Moderns releases (both physical and .stl) will resume next month.

    Black Friday Sales:

    Shapeways:
    Frack knows. I don’t know if they’re doing a Black Friday sale, and if they are, they probably won’t tell me about it until it’s halfway done.

    Wargames Vault
    Accelerate and Attack: Aeons of War (and the other Shipyards Wargames Vault products) will be on sale in theri Black Friday sale at 25% off from November 24th to 27th.

    MyMiniFactory

    Only-Games

    This runs 13th – 28th November, 2023, and is 30% of at MyMiniFactory (use code BLACKFRIDAY23).

    As of today, Only-Games annoucned they are are increasing their discount to 30% off over Black Friday weekend itself (24th of November to Tuesday 28th November, use code BLACKFRIDAY30), from their previous 25% off 13th-28th (code BF25OFF).

    (Note in both cases. that this will override the Aotrs Shipyards 20% off sale that ends on 30th November).

    (From last week) I gave this very considerable thought before opting-in. (I did not twig at the time it also applied to Only-Games.) I have not had any objections to sales on Accelerate and Attack (because 25% off is still Some Money) nor to sales at Only-Games and Shapeways because those were, fundamentally, off the cost of their manufature, not my small mark-up. MMF actually gives me more of tghe share, of course, but my prices on MMF I had already placed at “what is the minimum amount I feel I should charge?” – $0.8 equates to me making just north of 50p. I was thus more or less aiming at “this price is like being on sale all the time” instead of what I would consider the corporately manipulating “the sale price is the real price, so add 25% to the base cost so that when on sale people get the endorphin hit from thinking they are Getting A Good Deal.

    So I was seriously considering not putting the sale in at all. However, I am as if you’ve been following, in a position where it feels unwise to turn away the publicity. So this is an experiment. If the sales do genuniely give me a spike in sales, great, it is something to repeat.

    As a final note, to re-iterate: Only-games is moving to a subscription model in January, and that means a £25/month fee (on top of the MMF subscription fee). After a spike in summer which did (in September), last month’s sales didn’t reach that. Thus there is a very real, very frightening possibility (even probability) that this cost will make operating an Only-Games store unsustainable (especially as he Shipyards is now my only form of income). That would be a crippling blow, since it would take out the decent physical prints. So if nothing else, if you think you might ever wany any Aotrs Shipyards models in resin… Sooner rather than later, would be my pointed recommendation, because I genuniely do not know for how much longer I will be able to offer it to you.

    (From today) I will be doing a full update on the situation the first week of December (when I will be doing the moderns release early), but with current projections, I strongly recommend that if you are ever considering getting anything in resin from the Shipyards, you do it sooner rather than later, as my current projections suggest that if this subscription cost does indeed come in at what they said it would be in January, maintaining the Only-Games shipyards store will be untenable. (I feel uncomfortable saying this, as it is fundamentally FoMO, butI’d rather do that than have some time next year somebody saying “I wanted some of your stuff in the resin, where’s the shop gone?”) I will be looking at options there are, and will report in the aforementioned December update.

    If this seems a bit doom and gloom… Sorry, but it kind of is? Not much else I can say about it; that is the bare facts as they stand. Worst financial half-year since the Shipyards started + no working tax credit + very non-trivial operating cost forthcoming makes my outlook rather bleak, I’m afraid.

     

    ________________________________________________________________________

    Finally, I am considering again about releasing more Accelerate and Attack fleet stats as a free download perhaps over December. I think I will have to do it (as a free download) via Wargames Vault (which means ONLY Shipyards fleets this time), because last year… I don’t even know if anyone downloaded it.

    Tenatively, I would do it as a PDF, but with the actual ship record blocks (as opposed to the construction stats, baically) as a Word document, as the latter are intended to be cut-and-pasted for your fleet for that scenario (and typically disposed of afterwards). If anyone is interested, has any other preferences – or a particular Shipyards Fleet you want to see stats for, please, please, PLEASE say something. Otherwise I am just throwing my time away working on stuff nobody wants, which is wasteful at best and dispiriting at worst.

    (As of today, the resounding silence suggests that this is not going to happen.)

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #192744
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Quick Only-Games Black Friday Update

    A quick update. Firstly, Only-Games are increasing their discount to 30% off over Black Friday weekend itself (24th of November to Tuesday 28th November). Use the code:

    BLACKFRIDAY30

    _____________________________________________________

    I will be doing a full update on the situation the first week of December (when I will be doing the moderns release early), but with current projections, I strongly recommend that if you are ever considering getting anything in resin from the Shipyards, you do it sooner rather than later, as my current projections suggest that if this subscription cost does indeed come in at what they said it would be in January, maintaining the Only-Games shipyards store will be untenable. (I feel uncomfortable saying this, as it is fundamentally FoMO, butI’d rather do that than have some time next year somebody saying “I wanted some of your stuff in the resin, where’s the shop gone?”) I will be looking at options there are, and will report in the aforementioned December update.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #192453
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Update and Black Friday Sale

    Moderns releases (both physical and .stl) will resume next month.

    Black Friday Sales:

    Shapeways:
    Frack knows. I don’t know if they’re doing a Black Friday sale, and if they are, they probably won’t tell me about it until it’s halfway done.

    Wargames Vault:
    Accelerate and Attack: Aeons of War (and the other Shipyards Wargames Vault products) will be on sale in theri Black Friday sale at 25% off from November 24th to 27th.

    MyMiniFactory/Only-games:
    I have entered Aotrs Shipyards into the MyMiniFactory/Only-Games Black Friday sale.

    This runs 13th – 28th November, 2023, and is 25% off physical models at Only-games (note that this will override the Aotrs Shipyards 20% off sale that ends on 30th November) and 30% of at MyMiniFactory.

    Use the code BF25OFF at Only-Games and BLACKFRIDAY23 at MyMiniFactory for these discounts.

    I gave this very considerable thought before opting-in. (I did not twig at the time it also applied to Only-Games.) I have not had any objections to sales on Accelerate and Attack (because 25% off is still Some Money) nor to sales at Only-Games and Shapeways because those were, fundamentally, off the cost of their manufature, not my small mark-up. MMF actually gives me more of tghe share, of course, but my prices on MMF I had already placed at “what is the minimum amount I feel I should charge?” – $0.8 equates to me making just north of 50p. I was thus more or less aiming at “this price is like being on sale all the time” instead of what I would consider the corporately manipulating “the sale price is the real price, so add 25% to the base cost so that when on sale people get the endorphin hit from thinking they are Getting A Good Deal.

    So I was seriously considering not putting the sale in at all. However, I am as if you’ve been following, in a position where it feels unwise to turn away the publicity. So this is an experiment. If the sales do genuniely give me a spike in sales, great, it is something to repeat.

     

    As a final note, to re-iterate: Only-games is moving to a subscription model in January, and that means a £25/month fee (on top of the MMF subscription fee). After a spike in summer which did (in September), last month’s sales didn’t reach that. Thus there is a very real, very frightening possibility (even probability) that this cost will make operating an Only-Games store unsustainable (especially as he Shipyards is now my only form of income). That would be a crippling blow, since it would take out the decent physical prints. So if nothing else, if you think you might ever want any Aotrs Shipyards models in resin… Sooner rather than later, would be my pointed recommendation, because I genuniely do not know for how much longer I will be able to offer it to you.

    If this seems a bit doom and gloom… Sorry, but it kind of is? Not much else I can say about it; that is the bare facts as they stand. Worst financial half-year since the Shipyards started + no working tax credit + very non-trivial operating cost forthcoming makes my outlook rather bleak, I’m afraid.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #192108
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    𝗔𝗼𝘁𝗿𝘀 𝗦𝗵𝗶𝗽𝘆𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗦𝗽𝗼𝗼𝗸𝘆 𝗨𝗽𝗱𝗮𝘁𝗲

    I am back at it again after my week off. I, unsurprisingly, have not had time to do anythign special – but as a last-minute decision, I jumped a bit ahead and uploaded XGA01, arguably among the most spooky conceptually of the current powers. (The Aotrs are, of course, Actual Skeletons, but they are not as existentially spooky.)


    They also have one of the more extensive and narratively-driven Galaxy Guide Entries (as they made their debut in Rolemaster/Spacemaster, and i made an enormous effort when writing up to expand on the already considerable detail). Their lore entry is somewhat closer, perhaps, to a SCP Foundation exploration log (if with a somewhat lesser emphasis on the horror, but its as close as I got to hand!),
    So as a special Halloween treat, here is a drove link to the Galaxy Guide entry for XGA01 in full, in PDF form, with all the bells and whistles and is as close to the format for release as I’ve gotten so far. Please have a look, in the spirit of the season!

    In addition to XGA01, the Tarrainian Federtion army is also uploaded, and both forces should be available for purchase sometimes tomorrow.


    ______________________________________________________________
    𝗠𝘆𝗠𝗶𝗻𝗶𝗙𝗮𝗰𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆 𝗣𝗿𝗼𝗴𝗿𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝗨𝗽𝗱𝗮𝘁𝗲
    𝗥𝗮𝗻𝗴𝗲𝘀 𝗖𝘂𝗿𝗿𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗹𝘆 𝗨𝗣:
    Updated: End of 31/10/2023
    𝗠𝗮𝗻𝗼𝗲𝘂𝘃𝗿𝗲 𝗚𝗿𝗼𝘂𝗽 𝗠𝗼𝗱𝗲𝗿𝗻𝘀 (𝟭𝟰𝟰)
    China
    Czechoslovakia
    France
    Israel
    Irregulars
    NATO
    Russian/Soviet
    German
    UK
    US
    **Moderns uploads completed!**

    𝗦𝘁𝗮𝗿𝘀𝗵𝗶𝗽𝘀
    Flight stands
    Alpha Strike force
    SSA
    Stone Portals
    Vivrathk
    Phystyulons
    General Designs Hulls
    Jalyrkieons
    Aotrs
    Extra-Galactic Aliens (XGA01)*
    𝗠𝗚 𝗦𝗰𝗶-𝗙𝗜
    Cybertanks
    Galactic Terrorists
    British Royal Space Army
    Strayvian Dominion
    Phystyulons
    Herosine Empire
    Jalyrkieons
    Aotrs
    Soviet Remnant
    Tarrainian Federation*
    𝗠𝗶𝘀𝗰
    Explosion/Suppression Markers
    *Uploaded but not in Store page yet
    ______________________________________________________________
    𝗔𝗼𝘁𝗿𝘀 𝗦𝗵𝗶𝗽𝘆𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗦𝗮𝗹𝗲 𝗮𝘁 𝗢𝗻𝗹𝘆-𝗚𝗮𝗺𝗲𝘀!
    As a final reminder, the 20% off Aotrs Shipyards (physical) products at Only-Games sale remains on all the way through to November the 30th!
    Use code 𝗔𝗢𝗧𝗥𝗦𝟮𝟬
    The small text:
    Applies to one-time purchases, no minimum purchase requirements, no usage limits, can’t be combined with other discounts!
    ______________________________________________________________
    In other news, both Maneouvre Group and Maneouvre Group Sci-Fi have pending updates – the latter might have already been done, but any plans for that have been derailed. No time frame yet, but both the MG authors and I have been working on these in the background.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #191767
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards October 2023 Update and Surprise Release

    Just in time for the Spooky Season, I can report that as of yesterday night, the entire Army Of The Red Spear starfleet, ground force and fighter force, in all their highly trained and organised magical space-lich glory, are uploaded to MyMiniFactory!

    The starships are up and cleared, though the ground force and fighters won’t get their final checks passed likely until Monday, but you SHOULD be able to see them all under the Aotrs collection on the Shipyards MMF page.)

    For that matter, the Aotrs Shipyards sale at Only-Games is still on until the end of November (details below), so if you want so magical space liches in physical form, everything is up there (including the Blackhole, which appears to have been missed as an oversight last time…!) so now is as good a time as ever!

    The Aotrs range is the single biggest range for any one power (eclipsed only by Manoeuvre Group Moderns when counted a whole, not as multiple nations). It is been an appalling couple of weeks, which problem after problem on top of the already stressful situation[1]. But I, driven more by stress to get the job done than by anything else, managed to get about 130 models up this week, which takes me to 422 out of around 560-ish models to upload. (The count isn’t identical, since some separate physical models have been collated into one file set.) All the moderns are now up as well, so it’s now basically the back half of the alphabet of the sci-fi to go.

    This brings me to today’s surprise release! I said there wouldn’t be a release this month, but as I completed the Aotrs, I decided that I would do one, since it is exclusive to MyMiniFactory due to its size: the 1:300th scale version of the Murder, as seen at Hereward and Other Partizan!

    Murder Fightercruiser (300th)



    MyMiniFactory (.Stl File) Price: $15* Link

    (The fleet scale version is already out… And obviously, I’m NOT going to do a 144th scale one. In fact, as it’s closer to terrain at that size anyway, you’d be better served using the 300th version at that scale anyway!)

    *MMF mandatorily works in dollars with no conversion, so it has to be in dollars. Yes, that irritates me a bit as well…

    ______________________________________________________________

    MyMiniFactory Progress Update

    The Aotrs being done, and with their surprise release marked a convenient point to make an update post (as I don’t know how many, if any, people have been checking the updates on the prior post); but also because I am basically taking next week off. The start of my working week (Tuesday) is my birthday (which I’d have been taking off anyway), but the events of the past couple of weeks have convinced me I NEED to take it off, before I do myself even more of a health mischief. (I’ve been so tired that I went an entire week without playing anything, so I haven’t really even relaxed. Even last night and this morning, just thinking about this post as a Job To Do was giving me anxiety.)

    So, after posting this up, I’ll continue on today and maybe tackle one of the smaller ranges still left to do, but then that will be it basically until the 31st.

    So here is where we stand as of today (21/10/2023).

    Ranges currently Up:
    Updated: 21/10/2023

    Manoeuvre Group Moderns (144)
    China
    Czechoslovakia
    France
    Israel
    Irregulars
    NATO
    Russian/Soviet
    German
    UK
    US
    **Moderns uploads completed!**

    Starships
    Flight stands
    Alpha Strike force
    SSA
    Stone Portals
    Vivrathk
    Phystyulons
    General Designs Hulls
    Jalyrkieons
    Aotrs (bar 6mm fighters which are *)

    MG Sci-Fi
    Cybertanks
    Galactic Terrorists
    British Royal Space Army
    Strayvian Dominion
    Phystyulons
    Herosine Empire
    Jalyrkieons
    Aotrs*

    Misc
    Explosion/Suppression Markers

    *Uploaded but not in Store page yet

    The small mercy is that I have sold enough this first month to cover the MMF subscription fee, so at least for this month, my efforts haven’t been in addition to actively costing me money…

    ______________________________________________________________
    Aotrs Shipyards Sale at Only-Games!
    20% off Aotrs Shipyards (physical) products at Only-Games all the way through to November the 30th!

    Use code AOTRS20

    The small text:
    Applies to one-time purchases, no minimum purchase requirements, no usage limits, can’t be combined with other discounts!
    ______________________________________________________________

    Whether or not there is an update next month remains in question (likely not for moderns, though a possibility of releasing some of the elves remains. However, I would quite like to do something actually creative, or at least different after several weeks of hell, so I might instead just do CAD work and/or some more work on Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide as a break; we’ll see.

    ______________________________________________________________

    [1]For those of you who have not been tracking the updates on the Facebook post, these have included: Mum having her car run into (no physical damage to Mum, but the car is damaged and thus I been helping with the insurance stuff); when my uncle came up for a visit (he’s now arguably as disabled as my mother and frighteningly getting worse every time I see him), so I was helping with him – and on the Friday, Mum’s phone was stolen. (It dropped out of the car in one of two places and was nicked.) So I have had to sort that (make sure everything was cancelled, report to the police, the whole nine yards). I went to get some cash out, and realised I did not remember my PIN (as it was not what I thought I remembered). Because I never used my card at all during lockdown, I totally forgot my previous one, and since, I only get money out once in a blue moon. And because Lloyds treats customers without smart phones as second-class citizens, I have had to wait for a huge amount of time for them to send me a new one. We’ve also had to have our COVID jabs this week as well, so I wasn’t not good yesterday, and none of us had fully recovered from the nasty flu-y cold we had a week or two ago. And for good measure, I am still waiting to be told to pay back the working tax credit I owe, which apparently has been passed to Universal Tax Credit who may (or MAY NOT) follow up on it, and I can’t even chase them for one way or another for another two weeks. I basically HAVE reached my breaking point, to the point that (when I can find the energy and effort to chase it) Mum has said I should go to the doctor’s.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #191766
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards October 2023 Update and Surprise Release

    Just in time for the Spooky Season, I can report that as of yesterday night, the entire Army Of The Red Spear starfleet, ground force and fighter force, in all their highly trained and organised magical space-lich glory, are uploaded to MyMiniFactory!

    The starships are up and cleared, though the ground force and fighters won’t get their final checks passed likely until Monday, but you SHOULD be able to see them all under the Aotrs collection on the Shipyards MMF page.)

    For that matter, the Aotrs Shipyards sale at Only-Games is still on until the end of November (details below), so if you want so magical space liches in physical form, everything is up there (including the Blackhole, which appears to have been missed as an oversight last time…!) so now is as good a time as ever!

    The Aotrs range is the single biggest range for any one power (eclipsed only by Manoeuvre Group Moderns when counted a whole, not as multiple nations). It is been an appalling couple of weeks, which problem after problem on top of the already stressful situation[1]. But I, driven more by stress to get the job done than by anything else, managed to get about 130 models up this week, which takes me to 422 out of around 560-ish models to upload. (The count isn’t identical, since some separate physical models have been collated into one file set.) All the moderns are now up as well, so it’s now basically the back half of the alphabet of the sci-fi to go.

    This brings me to today’s surprise release! I said there wouldn’t be a release this month (and there isn’t for moderns, but I’m mostly copy-pasting this to both threads), but as I completed the Aotrs, I decided that I would do one, since it is exclusive to MyMiniFactory due to its size: the 1:300th scale version of the Murder, as seen at Hereward and Other Partizan!

    Murder Fightercruiser (300th)



    MyMiniFactory (.Stl File) Price: $15* Link

    (The fleet scale version is already out… And obviously, I’m NOT going to do a 144th scale one. In fact, as it’s closer to terrain at that size anyway, you’d be better served using the 300th version at that scale anyway!)

    *MMF mandatorily works in dollars with no conversion, so it has to be in dollars. Yes, that irritates me a bit as well…

    ______________________________________________________________

    MyMiniFactory Progress Update

    The Aotrs being done, and with their surprise release marked a convenient point to make an update post (as I don’t know how many, if any, people have been checking the updates on the prior post); but also because I am basically taking next week off. The start of my working week (Tuesday) is my birthday (which I’d have been taking off anyway), but the events of the past couple of weeks have convinced me I NEED to take it off, before I do myself even more of a health mischief. (I’ve been so tired that I went an entire week without playing anything, so I haven’t really even relaxed. Even last night and this morning, just thinking about this post as a Job To Do was giving me anxiety.)

    So, after posting this up, I’ll continue on today and maybe tackle one of the smaller ranges still left to do, but then that will be it basically until the 31st.

    So here is where we stand as of today (21/10/2023).

    Ranges currently Up:

    Updated: 21/10/2023

    Manoeuvre Group Moderns (144)
    China
    Czechoslovakia
    France
    Israel
    Irregulars
    NATO
    Russian/Soviet
    German
    UK
    US
    **Moderns uploads completed!**

    Starships
    Flight stands
    Alpha Strike force
    SSA
    Stone Portals
    Vivrathk
    Phystyulons
    General Designs Hulls
    Jalyrkieons
    Aotrs*

    MG Sci-Fi
    Cybertanks
    Galactic Terrorists
    British Royal Space Army
    Strayvian Dominion
    Phystyulons
    Herosine Empire
    Jalyrkieons
    Aotrs*

    Misc
    Explosion/Suppression Markers

    *Uploaded but not in Store page yet

    The small mercy is that I have sold enough this first month to cover the MMF subscription fee, so at least for this month, my efforts haven’t been in addition to actively costing me money…

    ______________________________________________________________
    Aotrs Shipyards Sale at Only-Games!
    20% off Aotrs Shipyards (physical) products at Only-Games all the way through to November the 30th!

    Use code AOTRS20

    The small text:
    Applies to one-time purchases, no minimum purchase requirements, no usage limits, can’t be combined with other discounts!
    ______________________________________________________________

    Whether or not there is an update next month remains in question (likely not for moderns, though a possibility of releasing some of the elves remains. However, I would quite like to do something actually creative, or at least different after several weeks of hell, so I might instead just do CAD work and/or some more work on Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide as a break; we’ll see.

    ______________________________________________________________

    [1]For those of you who have not been tracking the updates on the Facebook post, these have included: Mum having her car run into (no physical damage to Mum, but the car is damaged and thus I been helping with the insurance stuff); when my uncle came up for a visit (he’s now arguably as disabled as my mother and frighteningly getting worse every time I see him), so I was helping with him – and on the Friday, Mum’s phone was stolen. (It dropped out of the car in one of two places and was nicked.) So I have had to sort that (make sure everything was cancelled, report to the police, the whole nine yards). I went to get some cash out, and realised I did not remember my PIN (as it was not what I thought I remembered). Because I never used my card at all during lockdown, I totally forgot my previous one, and since, I only get money out once in a blue moon. And because Lloyds treats customers without smart phones as second-class citizens, I have had to wait for a huge amount of time for them to send me a new one. We’ve also had to have our COVID jabs this week as well, so I wasn’t not good yesterday, and none of us had fully recovered from the nasty flu-y cold we had a week or two ago. And for good measure, I am still waiting to be told to pay back the working tax credit I owe, which apparently has been passed to Universal Tax Credit who may (or MAY NOT) follow up on it, and I can’t even chase them for one way or another for another two weeks. I basically HAVE reached my breaking point, to the point that (when I can find the energy and effort to chase it) Mum has said I should go to the doctor’s.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #191119
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards now at MyMiniFactory, plus Only-Games sales until the end of November!

    So in lieu of the scifi release this month, instead, I can announce that Aotrs Shipyards now has a MyMiniFactory store from which you can buy the files. (You can also get the free flight stand files from here too!)

    MyMiniFactory Page

    To re-iterate, the files will be coming WITHOUT presupports, for the simple reason that I don’t have access to a resin printer and it is not current viable to pay for commercial ones. (You can contact me through the usual channels – or the PM on MMF – to pick my brains on supports for FDM, of course.)

    You can get each model individually (packs would not be viable, given the ever-changing nature of the ranges, especially the moderns), and they will be coming in at about 65p ($0.8) to about £3-4 for the big ones (based on what I have uploaded so far.) Tanks are coming out around the £1 mark.

    Models come with the standard (hollow) files for printing in resin or SLS (typically designated with -S or -M), and FDM prints; the post purchase notes will tell which files to use for each type of printing. (Note parts too small to be hollowed out are agnostic to printer type.)

    All starships, fighters and VTOLs that are physically large enough have a post hole designed to take a standard 3.2mm or 3mm flight stand (or are supposed to be glued to the top of one) are coming come with a suitable stand and base too. This will be a standard 27mm hex stand or a small base with a 15mm for smaller vessels – you can of course just download the free flight stand pack if you want something different.

    Sci-fi models all come with an Entirely Optional Lore excerpt from Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide in PDF form. (In theory, as it’s not showing up in the files; so, if you do by a still, could you please, PLEASE let me know if this is or is not working properly in my current approach, as I might have to do it another way.)

    (The Riposte frigate alone currently has a PDF label, because I forgot to upload that PDF in my first pass, and then put it in a different way; if I have to add the PDFs separately after the fact like that, it will obviously increase the timing more, so I don’t want to do it pre-emptively if I don’t have to.)

    The MMF also has a direct link via the physical prints button to the Only-Games store, so you can go look over the ranges while they’re on sale (sale code and details in the post above!)

    Updates and releases will also be posted the Story function. (The first of which contains a brief intro, re-iteration of stuff, and a quick FAQ.)

    As the store page doesn’t seem to have a terribly good sorting method, I will be using Collections to help you keep tabs of the ranges better; this is no different to at Only-games or Shapeways, but here I’m also going to add collections which are sub-collections of the MG moderns by nation as well. The store page only lets me pin ten to the front, so shortly, you’ll want to go to the collections tab.

    As the models have to be manually approved, even when I supply print photos (don’t envy that job…!) there is a delay between me uploading and them becoming visible in the store. (Thus at tie of writing on Saturday, only Thursday’s batch is in the store, though you should be able to see yesterday’s – and today’s – models in the collections regardless.

    As with the Only-Games upload, I will be updating this post (at least on Facebook) updated with progress as I upload the various ranges. It is, I’m afraid, slow going (it’s taken two solid days to get just 10% up); so there is NO WAY I’ll be done for Other Partizan next week, but I’m hoping to get a chunk up, at least. (And I have to take some time off next week to deal with a scaling commission and do the Other Partizan prep, such that it is.)

    Ranges Currently UP:

    Manoeuvre Group Moderns (144)
    China
    Czechoslovakia
    France
    Israel
    Irregulars
    NATO

    Starships
    Flight stands
    Alpha Strike force*
    SSA

    MG Sci-FI
    Cybertanks*
    Galactic Terrorists*
    British Royal Space Army*

    Misc
    Explosion/Suppression Markers

     

    *Uploaded but not in Store page yet

    ______________________________________________________________
    I should note that MMF is subscription service, so it being available long-term is dependent on getting enough through the door to meet at least the 25$ a month fee, so every little helps. I’m going to give it a year, at least, to see if it will sustaining itself; I really hope it does, but we shall have to see.

    If you would prefer to support the Shipyards in other ways, such as the ongoing work on Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide, I have a ko-fi here.

    In other news, I also have a Mastadon account now.

    To go with the Twitter one I am just barely remembering to use.
    ______________________________________________________________

    Just as a coda to the whole working tax credit/universal credit nonsense, I got a letter from HMRC saying “you know how we switched you over on our time scale, not yours? Yeah, so because as soon as we decided to swap you over, you ended your working tax credit, you were overpaid, so you have to pay us like £200 back. We’re not ACTUALLY going to tell you how to pay that back in this letter, because that would be convenient; you have to wait for us to send you ANOTHER letter later on you have to worry about instead.”

    Fricking world we live in.

    ______________________________________________________________

    So, as I say, no release next month. With a bit of luck, maybe around the time of the moderns or sci-fi release I’ll be able to do a post to say everything is caught up, but we’ll see. (I’ve already had one delay due to illness already…)

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #191116
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards now at MyMiniFactory, plus Only-Games sales until the end of November!

    So in lieu of the scifi release this month, instead, I can announce that Aotrs Shipyards now has a MyMiniFactory store from which you can buy the files. (You can also get the free flight stand files from here too!)

    MyMiniFactory Page

    To re-iterate, the files will be coming WITHOUT presupports, for the simple reason that I don’t have access to a resin printer and it is not current viable to pay for commercial ones. (You can contact me through the usual channels – or the PM on MMF – to pick my brains on supports for FDM, of course.)

    You can get each model individually (packs would not be viable, given the ever-changing nature of the ranges, especially the moderns), and they will be coming in at about 65p ($0.8) to about £3-4 for the big ones (based on what I have uploaded so far.) Tanks are coming out around the £1 mark.

    Models come with the standard (hollow) files for printing in resin or SLS (typically designated with -S or -M), and FDM prints; the post purchase notes will tell which files to use for each type of printing. (Note parts too small to be hollowed out are agnostic to printer type.)

    All starships, fighters and VTOLs that are physically large enough have a post hole designed to take a standard 3.2mm or 3mm flight stand (or are supposed to be glued to the top of one) are coming come with a suitable stand and base too. This will be a standard 27mm hex stand or a small base with a 15mm for smaller vessels – you can of course just download the free flight stand pack if you want something different.

    Sci-fi models all come with an Entirely Optional Lore excerpt from Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide in PDF form. (In theory, as it’s not showing up in the files; so, if you do by a still, could you please, PLEASE let me know if this is or is not working properly in my current approach, as I might have to do it another way.)

    (The Riposte frigate alone currently has a PDF label, because I forgot to upload that PDF in my first pass, and then put it in a different way; if I have to add the PDFs separately after the fact like that, it will obviously increase the timing more, so I don’t want to do it pre-emptively if I don’t have to.)

    The MMF also has a direct link via the physical prints button to the Only-Games store, so you can go look over the ranges while they’re on sale (sale code and details in the post above!)

    Updates and releases will also be posted the Story function. (The first of which contains a brief intro, re-iteration of stuff, and a quick FAQ.)

    As the store page doesn’t seem to have a terribly good sorting method, I will be using Collections to help you keep tabs of the ranges better; this is no different to at Only-games or Shapeways, but here I’m also going to add collections which are sub-collections of the MG moderns by nation as well. The store page only lets me pin ten to the front, so shortly, you’ll want to go to the collections tab.

    As the models have to be manually approved, even when I supply print photos (don’t envy that job…!) there is a delay between me uploading and them becoming visible in the store. (Thus at tie of writing on Saturday, only Thursday’s batch is in the store, though you should be able to see yesterday’s – and today’s – models in the collections regardless.

    As with the Only-Games upload, I will be updating this post (at least on Facebook) updated with progress as I upload the various ranges. It is, I’m afraid, slow going (it’s taken two solid days to get just 10% up); so there is NO WAY I’ll be done for Other Partizan next week, but I’m hoping to get a chunk up, at least. (And I have to take some time off next week to deal with a scaling commission and do the Other Partizan prep, such that it is.)

    Ranges Currently UP:

    Manoeuvre Group Moderns (144)
    China
    Czechoslovakia
    France
    Israel
    Irregulars
    NATO

    Starships
    Flight stands
    Alpha Strike force*
    SSA

    MG Sci-FI
    Cybertanks*
    Galactic Terrorists*
    British Royal Space Army*

    Misc
    Explosion/Suppression Markers

     

    *Uploaded but not in Store page yet

    ______________________________________________________________
    I should note that MMF is subscription service, so it being available long-term is dependent on getting enough through the door to meet at least the 25$ a month fee, so every little helps. I’m going to give it a year, at least, to see if it will sustaining itself; I really hope it does, but we shall have to see.

    If you would prefer to support the Shipyards in other ways, such as the ongoing work on Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide, I have a ko-fi here.

    In other news, I also have a Mastadon account now.

    To go with the Twitter one I am just barely remembering to use.
    ______________________________________________________________

    Just as a coda to the whole working tax credit/universal credit nonsense, I got a letter from HMRC saying “you know how we switched you over on our time scale, not yours? Yeah, so because as soon as we decided to swap you over, you ended your working tax credit, you were overpaid, so you have to pay us like £200 back. We’re not ACTUALLY going to tell you how to pay that back in this letter, because that would be convenient; you have to wait for us to send you ANOTHER letter later on you have to worry about instead.”

    Fricking world we live in.

    ______________________________________________________________

    So, as I say, no release next month. With a bit of luck, maybe around the time of the moderns or sci-fi release I’ll be able to do a post to say everything is caught up, but we’ll see. (I’ve already had one delay due to illness already…)

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #190551
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards Sale now live!

    The sale is now live: 20% off Aotrs Shipyards products at Only-Games all the way through to November the 30th!

    Use code AOTRS20

    The small text:

    Applies to one-time purchases, no minimum purchase requirements, no usage limits, can’t be combined with other discounts!

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #190550
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards Sale now live!

    The sale is now live: 20% off Aotrs Shipyards products at Only-Games all the way through to November the 30th!

    Use code AOTRS20

    The small text:

    Applies to one-time purchases, no minimum purchase requirements, no usage limits, can’t be combined with other discounts!

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #190539
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Update cross-posed from the Moderns release thread:

    Last Wednesday I had meeting with both Only-Games and MyMiniFactory to discuss the hows and whys of using MyMiniFactory to start selling .stls through MyMiniFactory. (Note for clarity: this will of course be in addition to, not instead of, the physical prints from current sources.)

    It was something of a good news/bad news situation. Only-Games is in the process of introducing a subscription for all creators, something I wasn’t aware of. This would have been catastrophic, except that since June, Shipyards sales have spiked high enough to actually cover that subscription fee.

    (This represents such a dramatic relative spike from being a trickle (nothing some months as recently as April) which has taken me by complete surprise. I can’t quite work out what triggered it; June’s releases were merchants and the explosion markers and it was just after Partizan, none of which particularly is out of the ordinary.) It was so sudden I hadn’t really registered it yet until prompted to look, since at Only-Games I don’t get notified of individual sales and I have to remember to check.)

    So, if that happy trend continues, it means that it will cover the subscription cost which might have otherwise have spelled serious problems.

    ______________________________________________________________

    We had a long discussion on the .stl market, which obviously, MyMiniFactory ultimately knows better than me, since the Shipyards has hitherto been a physical-only producer. The long and the short of it is that 80% of people buying files are printing in resin, not FDM.

    This creates something of an issue, since as perhaps notoriously at the point, the Shipyards doesn’t have a home resin printer – nor in the circumstances am I likely to get one in the near future. (Don’t even know where we’d put it in any case.) I thus can’t obviously test-print resin models to check supports. I have looked into what I could do, and talked to Atlas 3DSS (a company that does supports for you), which has at least given me a very basic understanding of what works. But, for obvious reasons, I can’t afford to have the supports done commercially for, like 600 models, and what I would hazard would be around $15-25 dollars per tank or something. At very best, I might be able to provide some pretty much “manual and my best guess” pre-supported models (as an addendum to the product) but I feel trying that without even a cursory test would be unhelpful.

    (I thought my mate had a resin printer he’d gotten from his mate (who has a habit of buying printers and then getting rid of ’em), but turns out I was getting confused and my mate’s mate’s resin printer went to my other mate, who moved way. (Confused? Well, now you know why I was1) ,

    So on balance, the assumption is going to have to that models come without supports.

    In some ways, this doesn’t change anything, since for Wargames Vault, I was only able to supply images of recommended supports for FDM printers anyway.

    What it does mean, though, is that I am undecided as to whether to bundle the FDM versions in on the models on MyMiniFactory. I COULD, since it looks like I could simply bundle them with a zip as part of the models and I *will* do so if anyone requests it, but I don’t know whether it’s worth doing. (I will, however, take the opportunity to bundle a flight stand file with the starships, as well as providing the same free bundle of stands as is currently on Wargames Vault.)

    This has meant that I am largely letting the plans of releasing the files on Wargames Vault go fallow for the moment. If there is demand – especially for FDM files, I may take a look at it.

    ______________________________________________________________

    Looking around at how other manufacturers sell their models on MyMiniFactory, I saw a lot of starships in packs, rather than as individuals. I am leaning away from that, and intending to keep having individual models (or smaller packs, like maybe one pack for fighters). For one thing, I do occasionally go back to older ranges and add stuff to them (the Herosines/General Hull Designs notably) and of course for the moderns ranges, those will never be “complete” until I run out of real armour to model (don’t see that happening)! Thus, while I may look into doing fleet/army packs, they will be in addition to, rather than instead of, the individual models.
    ______________________________________________________________

    So, taking into consideration all of the above and having a look around at what other places are doing, I have decided on my pricing plan, which is TOTALLY different to what I thought.

    Remember back in the 80s and 90s, when you could a lot of stuff for your pennies? That’s where I’m planning to go. The not-quite-Poundshop route. I am figuring that my pricing system will be based around double the mark-up I get on the physical models. Thus, tanks will come out at around £1 to £1.50, superdreadnoughts at around £3 and up to about heavy cruisers at 50p. (I think a floor of 50p is not unreasonable.)

    I am all for having low-cost entry points (so Little Timmy (sic) can get a nice little fleet for his hard-earned pocket money…) and also allowing people to pick and choose my models across all the ranges.

    This policy means, as of last Thursday (06/09/2023), the price of the Small Starbase and 300th !O-2300 Spacetruck on Wargames Vault have been dropped permanently to £3 and £1.50. (I’ve not sold any of either at time of change, so that’s good, because I don’t feel guilty about calibrating it totally wrong to start with. Live and learn, right?)

    One advantage of selling the models individually means that, if something sells well, maybe I can look into doing supports for it, either myself or professionally.

    This also means that this gives me a much lower turn-around time. It means that, aside from splitting the hollow versions off their sprues, there’s not too much work to do per model to get them up. So I can hopefully get stuff up on there, and up to date, in a fairly reasonable time-frame that is not 2-3 years. (Like it took to get the FDM/Only-Games stuff ready in case of Shapeways Emergency the last time around.)

    That is now The Plan, anyway. Obviously, if there are more unforeseen issues cropping up, I might have to alter them, but hopefully this will be the way forward.

    ______________________________________________________________

    On top of this, there is the issue that I have to do all the preparatory, like Art Stuff. (My Shipyards renders look a bit… Understated to most on MMMF.) While there’s no an approach I can take OTHER than the renders (since I can’t use photos of the FDM for resin prints, and TurboCAD is crap at renders), even something as simple as adding a title or logo to my existing renders will be a job and a half. (Terrible questions like “what font do I use, since I can’t easily use the one for all the book titles, since I basically have manually tweak it in PaintShopPro8?”)

    As such, as MyMiniFactory is ALSO a subscription system, I can’t afford (literally) to not sign-up at least three-quarters prepared. So I will need to be doing some of that groundwork.

    (At time of posting, I have gotten as far as the SSA ships and up to “m” in the moderns in unspruing (but the majority of that still needs mesh-checking/fixing). So it’s going to be a long job.)

    ______________________________________________________________

    With that all to do, I have decided that there is very likely to NOT be a moderns release (and possibly no sci-fi release) in at least October and there may not be a scifi release next week. This will be the first time since I took the Shipyards full-time (eight years ago) there won’t be a monthly moderns release. I could, of course, dip into the backlog, but at this uncertain point, I’d just rather not having it hanging over my head until I can get myself on firmer ground.

    (For the same reason, I am further breaking a habit of a lifetime and planning to do a continuation of the Hereward scenario at Other Partizan, instead of sci-fi MG – featuring the Royal Elven Army), like I had intended.)

    ______________________________________________________________

    Only-Games very generously also offered me to have 25% sale on the Shipyards ranges. This would be specifically for the Shipyards (as opposed to the sitewide summer sale). I am still waiting on the confirmation – at last count, it was going to be up until end of October to catch Other Partizan on the 8th, but they have not got back to me at time of posting; I’ll do another post when that’s ready.

    ______________________________________________________________

    I have also – after a GREAT deal of delay – updated Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide at it exists currently on Spacebattles.

    This covers the forthcoming Royal Elven Army (which has been semi-ready for release since before lockdown), and two new designs that were going to be New On Table for Other Partizan before the plans changed.

    It took a HUGE amount of work to clean up the line renders (because of course TurboCAD facets the surfaces, which then need cleaning up), so please, go and take a look!

    Something I have resisted having before, but that the Universal Credit people didn’t really give me much option on but to take the option:

    If you feel exceptionally generous and would to like support these lore efforts (at least before I can put out copy of the Galaxy Guide!) I have set up a ko-fi here.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #190538
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards September 2023 Release and Update: M2A3/M3A3

    In addition to this moderns release, I have a fairly substantial update.

    I was hoping to do the update last week and then the release, but that hasn’t panned out. So bear with me.

    TL;DR: M2A3, M3A3 and both with BUSK, likely no releases in October, Aotrs Shipyards coming to MyMiniFactory for .stls in the fairly near future; possible Aotrs Shipyards sale at Only-Games soon.

    First off, then, the release: the M2A3 Bradley and the M”A3 with the Bradley Urban Survival Kit, plus the M3A3 (same).

    M2A3


    Direct price: £4.05

    The Only-Games price: £4.43 Link

    Shapeways price: £8.09 Link

    M3A3


    Direct price: £4.05

    The Only-Games price: £4.60 Link

    Shapeways price: £8.09 Link

    M2A3 with BUSK


    Direct price: £4.30

    The Only-Games price: £4.74 Link

    Shapeways price: £8.42 Link

    M3A3 with BUSK


    Direct price: £4.30

    The Only-Games price: £4.67 Link

    Shapeways price: £8.43 Link

    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa versions, as always.

    Believe or not, there are STILL some Bradley variants left to go at some point down the line…

    Right on to the update stuff.

    ______________________________________________________________

    Last Wednesday I had meeting with both Only-Games and MyMiniFactory to discuss the hows and whys of using MyMiniFactory to start selling .stls through MyMiniFactory. (Note for clarity: this will of course be in addition to, not instead of, the physical prints from current sources.)

    It was something of a good news/bad news situation. Only-Games is in the process of introducing a subscription for all creators, something I wasn’t aware of. This would have been catastrophic, except that since June, Shipyards sales have spiked high enough to actually cover that subscription fee.

    (This represents such a dramatic relative spike from being a trickle (nothing some months as recently as April) which has taken me by complete surprise. I can’t quite work out what triggered it; June’s releases were merchants and the explosion markers and it was just after Partizan, none of which particularly is out of the ordinary.) It was so sudden I hadn’t really registered it yet until prompted to look, since at Only-Games I don’t get notified of individual sales and I have to remember to check.)

    So, if that happy trend continues, it means that it will cover the subscription cost which might have otherwise have spelled serious problems.

    ______________________________________________________________

    We had a long discussion on the .stl market, which obviously, MyMiniFactory ultimately knows better than me, since the Shipyards has hitherto been a physical-only producer. The long and the short of it is that 80% of people buying files are printing in resin, not FDM.

    This creates something of an issue, since as perhaps notoriously at the point, the Shipyards doesn’t have a home resin printer – nor in the circumstances am I likely to get one in the near future. (Don’t even know where we’d put it in any case.) I thus can’t obviously test-print resin models to check supports. I have looked into what I could do, and talked to Atlas 3DSS (a company that does supports for you), which has at least given me a very basic understanding of what works. But, for obvious reasons, I can’t afford to have the supports done commercially for, like 600 models, and what I would hazard would be around $15-25 dollars per tank or something. At very best, I might be able to provide some pretty much “manual and my best guess” pre-supported models (as an addendum to the product) but I feel trying that without even a cursory test would be unhelpful.

    (I thought my mate had a resin printer he’d gotten from his mate (who has a habit of buying printers and then getting rid of ’em), but turns out I was getting confused and my mate’s mate’s resin printer went to my other mate, who moved way. (Confused? Well, now you know why I was1) ,

    So on balance, the assumption is going to have to that models come without supports.

    In some ways, this doesn’t change anything, since for Wargames Vault, I was only able to supply images of recommended supports for FDM printers anyway.

    What it does mean, though, is that I am undecided as to whether to bundle the FDM versions in on the models on MyMiniFactory. I COULD, since it looks like I could simply bundle them with a zip as part of the models and I *will* do so if anyone requests it, but I don’t know whether it’s worth doing. (I will, however, take the opportunity to bundle a flight stand file with the starships, as well as providing the same free bundle of stands as is currently on Wargames Vault.)

    This has meant that I am largely letting the plans of releasing the files on Wargames Vault go fallow for the moment. If there is demand – especially for FDM files, I may take a look at it.

    ______________________________________________________________

    Looking around at how other manufacturers sell their models on MyMiniFactory, I saw a lot of starships in packs, rather than as individuals. I am leaning away from that, and intending to keep having individual models (or smaller packs, like maybe one pack for fighters). For one thing, I do occasionally go back to older ranges and add stuff to them (the Herosines/General Hull Designs notably) and of course for the moderns ranges, those will never be “complete” until I run out of real armour to model (don’t see that happening)! Thus, while I may look into doing fleet/army packs, they will be in addition to, rather than instead of, the individual models.
    ______________________________________________________________

    So, taking into consideration all of the above and having a look around at what other places are doing, I have decided on my pricing plan, which is TOTALLY different to what I thought.

    Remember back in the 80s and 90s, when you could a lot of stuff for your pennies? That’s where I’m planning to go. The not-quite-Poundshop route. I am figuring that my pricing system will be based around double the mark-up I get on the physical models. Thus, tanks will come out at around £1 to £1.50, superdreadnoughts at around £3 and up to about heavy cruisers at 50p. (I think a floor of 50p is not unreasonable.)

    I am all for having low-cost entry points (so Little Timmy (sic) can get a nice little fleet for his hard-earned pocket money…) and also allowing people to pick and choose my models across all the ranges.

    This policy means, as of last Thursday (06/09/2023), the price of the Small Starbase and 300th !O-2300 Spacetruck on Wargames Vault have been dropped permanently to £3 and £1.50. (I’ve not sold any of either at time of change, so that’s good, because I don’t feel guilty about calibrating it totally wrong to start with. Live and learn, right?)

    One advantage of selling the models individually means that, if something sells well, maybe I can look into doing supports for it, either myself or professionally.

    This also means that this gives me a much lower turn-around time. It means that, aside from splitting the hollow versions off their sprues, there’s not too much work to do per model to get them up. So I can hopefully get stuff up on there, and up to date, in a fairly reasonable time-frame that is not 2-3 years. (Like it took to get the FDM/Only-Games stuff ready in case of Shapeways Emergency the last time around.)

    That is now The Plan, anyway. Obviously, if there are more unforeseen issues cropping up, I might have to alter them, but hopefully this will be the way forward.

    ______________________________________________________________

    On top of this, there is the issue that I have to do all the preparatory, like Art Stuff. (My Shipyards renders look a bit… Understated to most on MMMF.) While there’s no an approach I can take OTHER than the renders (since I can’t use photos of the FDM for resin prints, and TurboCAD is crap at renders), even something as simple as adding a title or logo to my existing renders will be a job and a half. (Terrible questions like “what font do I use, since I can’t easily use the one for all the book titles, since I basically have manually tweak it in PaintShopPro8?”)

    As such, as MyMiniFactory is ALSO a subscription system, I can’t afford (literally) to not sign-up at least three-quarters prepared. So I will need to be doing some of that groundwork.

    (At time of posting, I have gotten as far as the SSA ships and up to “m” in the moderns in unspruing (but the majority of that still needs mesh-checking/fixing). So it’s going to be a long job.)

    ______________________________________________________________

    With that all to do, I have decided that there is very likely to NOT be a moderns release (and possibly no sci-fi release) in at least October and there may not be a scifi release next week. This will be the first time since I took the Shipyards full-time (eight years ago) there won’t be a monthly moderns release. I could, of course, dip into the backlog, but at this uncertain point, I’d just rather not having it hanging over my head until I can get myself on firmer ground.

    (For the same reason, I am further breaking a habit of a lifetime and planning to do a continuation of the Hereward scenario at Other Partizan, instead of sci-fi MG – featuring the Royal Elven Army), like I had intended.)

    ______________________________________________________________

    Only-Games very generously also offered me to have 25% sale on the Shipyards ranges. This would be specifically for the Shipyards (as opposed to the sitewide summer sale). I am still waiting on the confirmation – at last count, it was going to be up until end of October to catch Other Partizan on the 8th, but they have not got back to me at time of posting; I’ll do another post when that’s ready.

    ______________________________________________________________

    I have also – after a GREAT deal of delay – updated Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide at it exists currently on Spacebattles.

    This covers the forthcoming Royal Elven Army (which has been semi-ready for release since before lockdown), and two new designs that were going to be New On Table for Other Partizan before the plans changed.

    It took a HUGE amount of work to clean up the line renders (because of course TurboCAD facets the surfaces, which then need cleaning up), so please, go and take a look!

    Something I have resisted having before, but that the Universal Credit people didn’t really give me much option on but to take the option:

    If you feel exceptionally generous and would to like support these lore efforts (at least before I can put out copy of the Galaxy Guide!) I have set up a ko-fi here.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #189926
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Update: (Reposted from Sci-fi Release thread.)

    So, bad news. Sorry, I don’t have any pictures or anything to leaven this up.

    As reported on yesterday’s release post in scifi, today, I had an appointment with Universal Credit (as I am translated off from Working Tax Credit). I was very much concerned this would be used as an excuse to day “you’re not making enough money, naff off,” (as this has been tried once before) and I was 100% justified.

    In a very real sense, they are not so much moving people from Working Tax credit to Universal credit as just obviating Working Tax credit entirely, especially if you are self-employed.

    Universal Credit is basically set-up such that if you are self-employed, you are tacitly told by the system “either Get A Proper Job Loser, make enough money you can’t claim it anyway or get knotted, mate.”

    To whit: If you are self-employed, if you are not making enough to qualify for “gainful employment” (whose gain? Certainly not mine.) you have to be looking for work and sign-on every week. Identically, in fact to if you are NOT self-employed and signing-on, though apparently we don’t call it that now.

    If you ARE making enough to qualify for “gainful employment” – you are about 50% past the break-point at which the 45% of your income they reduce the benefit by is larger than the benefit you qualify for anyway.

    (Or at least if you are single and don’t have children. The children – and presumably, but I may be reaching, since Mum doesn’t count apparently – dependants is fair enough; that I am single because I Don’t Significant Other (and thus Don’t Marriage) also feels a bit punitive, to be honest.)

    That “gainful employment” threshold is – are you ready for this? £1400 a month.

    (Twice what is if you are getting paid employment, apparently.)

    I have, basically, taken the final option of the three (got knotted), and spent the last few hours composing a letter to my MP (because that nonsense is not something I will tolerate without issue, and that is about the only thing I CAN do about it).

    So, what are the ramifications for the Shipyards?

    It’s still going be here, for at least as long as my savings last and I HAVE to functionally sign-on. I am not in any immediate danger of going short of food or anything like that. Long-term, what it does mean is that what saving I have gathered which were, basically a buffer for what happens when my parents die will be being whittled away .

    In the shorter term: An acceleration of the process of getting the .stl files up, and maybe setting up of a kofi account (just as SOMETHING) and using that as an indicator as to whether it is even worth trying to set up a Patreon.

    I have also been idly considering compiling Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide to a first edition PDF release for a while as essentially a mechanics-less sourcebook, but that is still a ways off yet; under the circumstances, I may well put that as a “pay what you want” on Wargames Vault.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #189925
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Update:

    So, bad news. Sorry, I don’t have any pictures or anything to leaven this up.

    My fears about today’s Universal Credit appointment were 100% justified.

    In a very real sense, they are not so much moving people from Working Tax credit to Universal credit as just obviating Working Tax credit entirely, especially if you are self-employed.

    Universal Credit is basically set-up such that if you are self-employed, you are tacitly told by the system “either Get A Proper Job Loser, make enough money you can’t claim it anyway or get knotted, mate.”

    To whit: If you are self-employed, if you are not making enough to qualify for “gainful employment” (whose gain? Certainly not mine.) you have to be looking for work and sign-on every week. Identically, in fact to if you are NOT self-employed and signing-on, though apparently we don’t call it that now.

    If you ARE making enough to qualify for “gainful employment” – you are about 50% past the break-point at which the 45% of your income they reduce the benefit by is larger than the benefit you qualify for anyway.

    (Or at least if you are single and don’t have children. The children – and presumably, but I may be reaching, since Mum doesn’t count apparently – dependants is fair enough; that I am single because I Don’t Significant Other (and thus Don’t Marriage) also feels a bit punitive, to be honest.)

    That “gainful employment” threshold is – are you ready for this? £1400 a month.

    (Twice what is if you are getting paid employment, apparently.)

    I have, basically, taken the final option of the three (got knotted), and spent the last few hours composing a letter to my MP (because that nonsense is not something I will tolerate without issue, and that is about the only thing I CAN do about it).

    So, what are the ramifications for the Shipyards?

    It’s still going be here, for at least as long as my savings last and I HAVE to functionally sign-on. I am not in any immediate danger of going short of food or anything like that. Long-term, what it does mean is that what saving I have gathered which were, basically a buffer for what happens when my parents die will be being whittled away .

    In the shorter term: An acceleration of the process of getting the .stl files up, and maybe setting up of a kofi account (just as SOMETHING) and using that as an indicator as to whether it is even worth trying to set up a Patreon.

    I have also been idly considering compiling Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide to a first edition PDF release for a while as essentially a mechanics-less sourcebook, but that is still a ways off yet; under the circumstances, I may well put that as a “pay what you want” on Wargames Vault.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #189885
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards August 2023 Release: Merchants and Mercenaries Part Three

    Before we get to the releases, a few things.

    First of all, Only-Games are having a big summer sale, 25% off sitewide and free shipping on orders over £60, which ends on the 30th of August – so now is a good time to binge on all those Aotrs Shipyards models you know you want.

    Use code: OGSUMMER23.

    Second of all, I will be down at the Hereward Wargames Show in Peterborough on the 3rd of September, putting on a game of Starwing (my own homebrew starfighter system), pitting the Galactic Empire best TIE Defenders and Missileboats against the might of the Aotrs fighter forces. (And the other half of the KB Club will be doing Manoeuvre Group at 72nd.)

    There is one more major announcement, but I’ll save that bad news for the wrap up.

    Onto the releases, this time the third and final wave of merchant shipping the Coeus Heavy Cruiser and the Xavek-Manfeld !O-2300 Spacetruck! (That’s “Ks-avek,” not “zavek”.) The latter is available at both fleet scale as normal, and in .stl form from Wargames Vault, making it the second product to be so! (Like the starbase from last month, it’s a bit too big to be practical for the webshops, and unlike that, I hadn’t already uploaded it to both befgore I made that decision!)

    Coeus Heavy Cruiser (Explorer)


    A rare visitor to the fringes of the local galactic region, the Coeus Class Heavy Cruiser hails from far-off Earth-I. The Explorer variant we see traded off some weapon emplacements into order to accommodate sufficient cargo space to be able to make such a long trip.

    These are deep range vessels that serve Earth-I’s alliance. As the variant’s name suggests, these vessels are principally for exploration, but they also serve as diplomatic couriers, since there are no relays which would otherwise cross the gap for regular modern FTL communications, and slow-than-light communications would take centuries.

    The extreme distance means that other than very cursory acknowledgements, the Earth-I mirror sector has little influence to the local region.

    The Coeus is typical of Earth-I’s technological base. Most prominent are the two rotating superstructures which produce artificial gravity (which rotate in opposite directions). The Coeus has no shielding at all, complete reliant on its armour for protection. This is considerable, with an Armour Integrity Rating of 4000TXq, but it puts the vessel at a severe disadvantage in a long fight against shielded foes.

    It has otherwise performance that is consistent with military vessels of about a century back. Older drives give it 9.7mc acceleration and manoeuvrability rated and 108 MEUs, which is only a little below the modern average. Sensors and communications too are largely similar to military systems of that period.

    Despite its modifications, the Coeus Explorer is still a warship at heart, not a transport – as it must be to undertake the long journey without a massive convoy escort. While these vessels are rare enough to have not been involved in many combats, we have still been able to glean a mostly-accurate picture of their capabilities. Multiple point-defence turrets armed with a mix of particle and plasma weapons provide a combined output of about 1870TXq, over an engagement sphere of 0.85Ym³. Two 350-TXq laser cannons are spinally-mounted, with an accuracy envelope of 330 000km. Secondary laser and plasma batteries have a combined output of about 300TXq and an accuracy envelope of about 285 000km. About half of these original batteries were removed for the additional stowage space, so we can infer a standard Coeus would have approximately twice that output. Finally, four missile racks are mounted behind the forward superstructure module. Each contains twenty 190TXq-yield missiles, with an accuracy envelope of approximately 500 000km.

    Despite its technological inferiority, the Coeus is thus by no means a push-over, and comparable to a modern heavy cruiser of one of the minor powers (such as the Tarrainian Federation), with its lack of shields being its single largest drawback. But unlike the similarly unshielded forces of the Eternal Reich or the Orc Fearcrushy, the Coeus is not in a position to dubiously utilise the lower resource cost to field a larger, more disposable fleet. It does not even have the advanced armour composites that those powers utilise. What it does have is more than sufficient to deal with light raiders, however, and the very fact it is not a transport and more vulnerable than a shielded vessel means that it is not a very tempting target for larger pirate forces (or, for example, the Herosine Empire, though to some extent that is a redundant qualification).

    Given the distances between Earth-I and the local region, this is likely the only vessel of Earth-I we are likely to see for many decades until hyperdrive speed drastically improves.

    Direct price: £3.05

    Only-Games: £2.12 Link

    Shapeways: £4.45 Link

     

    !O-2300 Space Truck



    The Xavek-Manfeld (the “x” is pronounced “ks”) !O-2300 is a typical In-System/Orbital Lander – ISOL or, as they are more colloquially known in human space, “space truck”. (The “!” is an alveolar or postalveolar click in Venerian; the proper pronunciation is difficult for humans that do not use clicking languages and has vernacularized into a click of the tongue.)

    Space trucks are the basic workforce of in-system transport systems. These vessels are used to transfer cargo from the larger freighters, cargo haulers and orbital docking yards to the surface or between planets and moon and other short-haul trips. While large bulk cargos of the same goods are usually transferred directly to the receiving facility, mixed cargo for intermodal shipping needs to get the varied goods out to all over a globe. Space trucks represent the most efficient way to transfer small loads to the surface, either directly to a company landing pad, or to a road, rail or gravway transport system. While in some more advanced powers, teleportation is used for small loads (like people), in general, it remains too power inefficient for widespread use, as the sheer volume of goods makes it impractical.

    The !O series is a long-standing mainstay of the space truck industry and they are often known informally as “exmans” or “xmans.”

    Introduced in 2298, the !O-2300 quickly achieved a reputation for being rugged, reliable, power-efficient and adaptable, and the brand has continued to the present with annual or bi-annual models with incremental improvements.

    The !O-2300 has only modest acceleration of 24mc, which is more than sufficient for in-system flights. While slow, it is quite agile, rated up to 350 MEUs, quite sufficient for even difficult docking or landing gaps. This is one of the reasons for its popularity.

    The base !O-2300 model comes fitted with a small civilian hyperdrive, suited for in-system hops or short interstellar jaunts. Models used only for local transport usually remove the system for a little more storage space or just to reduce weight and power-consumption. The space truck’s crew compartment is quite spacious. Conventional usage is handled by a single crewperson, but there is seating for two additional people as standard. A tiny fold-out bunk, kitchenette and toilet facility provision for longer flights.

    To protect the crew and cargo against atmospheric mishaps, weather and other hostile environments – as well as some protection from raiders, the !O-2300 has an integral shield array that is rated to a respectable 150TXq.

    So from these basic design, the !O-2300 and its descendants have been adapted for almost every purpose, including passenger transport, ambulance, search-and-rescue, fire-fighter and exploration. Some models that work exclusively at docking yards remove the entire cargo bay and add larger engines at the rear, replacing the cargo bay area with towing arrays or tractor beams for moving containers around – even those much larger than the space truck itself.

    Fleet Scale
    Direct price: £2.60

    Only-Games: £2.12 Link

    Shapeways: £3.58 Link

    1:300th (6mm) Scale

    Direct price: £4.20

    .Stl File: £4.20 Link

    _______________________________________________________________

    Photos, as always, of Prusa versions.

    Next month… Is very, very up in the air.

    Tomorrow, I have an appointment with Universal Credit (as I am translated off from Working Tax Credit), and with the country in the state that it is, I have a very real fear that they will say “you’re not making enough money, naff off!” (As this has been tried once before.) It also does not help that this is coming on a year which has been overall quite low, at a time of year in which sales are generally low anyway.

    So, quite what I do if they say that… I don’t know. I would likely at least have to accelerate adding .stls to Wargames Vault, and I could potentially set up a kofi… Patreon is a possibility, but I genuinely can’t think of what I could do more for the required higher tiers than I already do. So this might have significant ramifications. I will not, at the very least, be immediately packing in the Shipyards; when I took it full-time, it was after ten years of unemployment and in desperation that I could ground out at least a full year by exhausting what savings I had before I had to sign back on and I have a little more now than then. But down the line; I genuinely don’t know.

    This, as you might imagine, put a significant damper on my holiday which delayed this release a week.

    In theory, though, the Royal Elven Army is slated for a release (finally!) around October for Other Partizan… But we will just have to see, I’m afraid. (And for once you can read that sentiment quite literally.)

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #189348
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards August 2023 Release: Panhard VBL

    Slightly early release this time, because I’m away next week. (Likewise, this month’s sci-fi release will be delayed.) Short release; longer update (see end!)

    This time, something different – the Panhard VBL (in 144th as per usual). After the nightmare of the Bradleys (and in addition to the bedroom redecoration disruption) I wanted something relatively quick and easy.

    Panhard VBL

    Direct price: £2.85

    The Only-Games price: £1.71 Link

    Shapeways price: £3.55 Link

    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa versions.

    Next month is likely to be More Bradleys (likely some of the A3 versions).

    I also intend to do some more variants of the VBL as well; but we have both the Hereward Wargames Show coming up on the 3rd of September and Other Partizan the following month, so we’ll see how things pan out what I do. (I do have the backlog to dip into, so there is no danger of their not being a moderns release in any case).

    However, as I always pride myself on being up-front; this week I also received notification that I am being moved over to the Universal Credit Scheme from Working Tax Credit. This is always a concern, of course, because notoriously, changes like this have gotten used as an excuse to try and get as many people off benefits as possible for PR (usually ending up targeting those who most need it and who are least able to fight back, as we have experienced with my mother). I thus fully expect, despite me turning up to the appointment with a massive stack of evidence (including among them the special commission sale I did for the New Zealand Armed Forces…) – which I WILL make them look through – them to try the “you’re not making enough money” “what’s enough money then, what are the guidelines” “we don’t *have* any guidelines” “okay, so how can you guarantee me or anyone else that you’re not just being arbitrary and that this is a fair assessment, do I need to make an Official Complaint and write to my PM again” “umm…” routine that I had the last time. Which is basically stress I don’t really need (especially as some additional family health issues with my mother’s older sibling, which are likely to only deteriorate).

    In theory, the decision won’t even be made until September, but whatever it is might have an impact on the Shipyards; if they approve things, all hunky-dory, if not, things are going to go decidedly A Bit South and I can’t even really make anything more than tentative plans until I see how it plays out. (Do I try Doing A Pateron? Accelerate the file-sales?) Maybe I’m worrying for nothing, but that really wouldn’t be in-character for the modern world, would it?

     

    In other news, Shapeways have replaced the grey fine detail plastic with tan detail plastic at the same price point and have “sunsetted” (urgh) the smooth fine detail and smoothest fine detail – as expected. In theory, nothing should be changed with the change over, but if you find a glitch, please do let me know. (Or, like, use Only-Games anyway, since they’re a better and cheaper product!)

    In addition, Shapeways are trying to implement a pilot scheme to sell .stl files as well as prints. I am not getting into this pilot program until they take it more seriously; the pilot scheme is a fixed price of $10 for sales and a 50/50 split… Less than I get from Wargames Vault and with no control. Plus to be viable, they’d have to allow the sale of files that they DON’T print, since the hollow Shapeways models are not suitable for FDM printing… So don’t expect any movement on that front from me for a while.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #188628
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards July 2023 Release: Merchants and Mercenaries Part Two

    Today’s release comes amid the spectre of terrifying Intermittent Power Cuts. Today I have the second release of the merchant and mercenaries; the Cranefly light freighter and the DSS-C065 starbase (aka “small starbase”).

    The starbase marks the first model from Aotrs Shipyards proper available as a .stl file, available from Wargames Vault (where both Manoeuvre Group and Accelerate and Attack! Aeons of War can also be found).

    This is the first proper trial run of this, helping set-up the work flow. As the station is so big (“small” is relative), it made sense to make this the first purchasable file.

    The pricing model has been something I’ve given much consideration as to how to approach for some time. Do I price it for one model? More than one (for stuff you would expect to print more than one of)? Less than physical model? More, because of the potential danger of it being pirated (which has already happened with the physical models)? If the price is higher, will that not encourage piracy?)

    In the end, I have opted for simplicity. I am going to price the .stl at the same price as I would charge for a direct print from my printer. It’s simple, saves me fiddling with rounding and so on and will at least be reasonably consistent.

    Currently, I am going to provide the files essentially unaltered (and un-renamed) from the versions I use for my printer and for the webshops. As such, I will make a quick explanation here; though a shorter explanation of the files is in both the product description and the Readme in the bundle, this is a bit more of an “under-the-hood” breakdown that I felt probably wasn’t necessary to include in this and every subsequent Readme.

    Thus, there will be one or more files for the FDM printer, which are solid (i.e. they do not have internal walls) and are designed for printing on an FDM printer. For ground units, this just means hull/turret(s); for starships, to minimise support material it may mean ships in two halves left/right, top/bottom or front/rear, depending where the best plane of slicing is.

    These files are labelled [model] solid[part] (e.g. Starbase_1solidfront.STL)

    (The number before solid is basically my version number, which is essentially 1 for everything unless it has a locking turret (which is 2.)

    Because adding locators mean you have to add supports on one side to make the peg, I don’t put them in. (I had very little success with making two holes and a separate joining piece.) You thus will want to use glue and just line it up by with your fingers, but it’s not actually terribly difficult – I can do it passably with my incompetence, so the rest of you should be fine.

    There is a second, singular file designed for resin or SLS printing (i.e. that which I upload to Only-Games and Shapeways). This is a hollow version (such that resin/powder can be cleaned out) and for models with more than one piece, is sprued together. This version is always [model] solidS (for “sprue” whether or not it actually has a sprue – originally it was “s” for “Shapeways version”).

    This is, of course, the prototype and thus we might need to change things. I can for instance see a possibility of people maybe wanting a single-piece solid file (at the expense of having to have more supports) perhaps for some models. But since in most cases, this would be a quality drop, I did not think that it was worth the extra time to make a special version for that as standard for each model, unless there was an actual demand for it. So we shall see how it goes.

    Rather than put the Entirely Optional blurb on the product page for the .stls, I have used the option that it’s a bundle anyway to basically take the Bleakbane’s Galaxy Guide entry and make a PDF of it instead (which is in a better format anyway!)

    Right then; to business!

    DSS-C065 Starbase

    The shape of the DSS-C065 starbase is a familiar one to anyone traveller throughout human space and even beyond. The DSS-C065 is more common towards the outer edges of human space, due to its time of introduction. Closer to Earth (-N), it is less frequent, but by no means rare.

    Colonial Freightliners took off as a private company within two decades of the first hyperdrive flight, with their first Amazon-class bulk freighter launching in 2079.

    Within a few decades, they had diversified into static infrastructure as well as transport vessels. By the mid-22nd century, their Deep Space Station line quickly became a de facto standard, especially throughout the smaller powers.

    The DSS-C065, introduced in 2218, has been particularly successful, hitting the ideal spot between affordability, customisability and durability. It was one of the first types of starbase of its size; at the time, it used state-of-the-art structural technology and had to be assembled in its own special framework. Nowadays, more modern and much larger space stations can produce them in massive factories, which has aided the spread.

    The DSS-C065 is a general-purpose space station, serving roles from merchant or trading station outpost, colony station, refuelling depot or even military installation.

    Over half of the station is devoted to a mix of cargo holding and crew quarters, the precise mix varying from station to station. The bulk of the crew quarters tends to be located in the upper sphere, the centre of which is often opened out into a recreational centre or park.

    At the very bottom of the station is a small ship bay, able to accommodate lighter starships for more extensive repairs. The hangar doors are located on the bottom of the station, and ships enter vertically (relative to the station).

    The upper pylons are the primary docking facilities, however, able to accommodate multiple vessels docking. A smaller also serves to house smallcraft and shuttles for the work or the residents.

    The DSS-C065 has enough protection to deter a mid-sized raid. It has shields rated to 4200TXq, though no armour, rating an integrity of barely 9TXq. Modern stations are equipped with both short and mid-range point defence lasers. The short-range light turrets total an impressive 2700TXq output, with the two interdiction-range arrays outputting a combined total of 850TXq. Finally, two anti-capital ship laser arrays with an accuracy envelope of 188 000km have a combined output of 350TXq. These defences make attacking the station without significant force quite dangerous. However, like all stations, the DSS-C065 is vulnerable to long-range attacks and even kinetic bombardment, since the minimum station-keeping thrusters do little to enable it to remove itself from harm’s way. The defences thus serve as more of a deterrent, of a delaying tactic to allow local defence fleets to arrive.

    Numerous modifications exist, spanning from the split of cargo-to-crew (usually about 60/40), to the modification of the ventral hangar bay, to a more robust defence system.

    Direct price: £10.60

    Only-Games: £17.22 Link

    Shapeways: £41.48 Link

    .Stl File: £10.60 Link

    Cranefly Light Transport

    Andrade Industries’ Cranefly Light Transport is an old spacedog. The first model appeared all the way back into the early colonial decades; at the time, it was notable as being the first independently-financed FTL cargo vessel created by a South American company. (The headquarters still today remains located in Chile.) A simple, yet enduring design, the Cranefly’s popularity peaked in the last 22nd century, and it has been on the steady decline since. Andrade Industries still has a single production line, trickling out new models – mostly to smaller independent worlds or mid-size corporations. A large number, upgraded and refitted over the last couple of centuries, still remain in service around the periphery of human space.

    The Cranefly’s sublight speed is unimpressive by modern standards, with only a 4.2mc acceleration. Manoeuvrability is somewhat better, rated at 74 MEUs. Nevertheless, given the Cranefly’s small size, this is enough power that even the original Cranefly was capable of atmospheric flight and landing on a planetary surface. Many modern Craneflys are no longer so equipped – perhaps one in five – with the mass given over to other purposes.

    The Cranefly has two cargo-loading doors, one each side of the vessel. In addition, the nose-dome of the vessel also articulates and retracts, allowing easy access. Indeed, not a few Cranefly variants over the years have made use of this latter feature as a smallcraft bay. About fifty percent of the Cranefly’s internal volume is given over the cargo space.

    A typical modern Cranefly has shielding rated at 150TXq, but only a thin skin with an AIC of 23TXq beneath. A light laser array provides meteor and very light point defence protection with an output of about 325TXq.

    One notable variant occasionally spotted in the security role is a militarised version, the Cranefly Strikeboat.

    In the latter half of the 23rd century, the Cranefly’s base design was overhauled, and formed the basis of the Hornet Security/Patrol cruiser.

    Direct price: £2.45

    Only-Games: £1.61 Link

    Shapeways: £3.82 Link

    _______________________________________________________________

    Photos, as always, of Prusa versions.

    The original small starbase was scratch built (as I believe someone noticed the first time, from a bit of old ’88, stuck on the body of a knock-off Transformer). The Cranefly is a CAD re-design from a model which was originally a 6mm fighter – from the Starhound range from Tabletop Games in the late 80’s I think? (Sadly, I don’t think those models are around anymore.)

    Here’s a couple of bonus pictures of the originals (left) compared to the new (right):



    Next month, the last of the three releases, with the Coeus Heavy Cruiser and the !O-2300 space truck (in both fleet and 300th scale; the latter of which is going to be .stl and direct sales exclusive. (After the small starbase proved so expensive at Only-Games and especially Shapeways, it’s not going to be worth putting the !O-2300 up – unless people ask for it, anyway!)

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #188339
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards July 2023 Release: M2A2 and M3A2 Bradley

    This time, more Bradleys. As I have accrued… More than enough, I elected to release four this time, because I don’t want the release queue to be rammed with Bradleys ad infinitum (there’s still EIGHT more in the queue).

    (I mean, I’m kind of sick of them myself at this point, if I’m honest, after doing a fourteen of the little sods.)

    So today I have the M2A2 and M3A2 and both A2 versions upgraded to ODS with ERA. It was not until AFTER doing this, I learned that that ERA was taken back OFF the Bradleys, so there will be an ODS version without ERA (as well as the A3s with and without BUSK) down the line.

    For the record, those of you trying to work out the difference between M2 and M3… It’s mainly in the location of the viewing slits towards the rear of the vehicle, which actually made doing the Bradleys quite a chore for a fairly small difference.

    M2A2

    Direct price: £3.95

    The Only-Games price: £4.43 Link

    Shapeways price: £7.80 Link

    M3A2


    Direct price: £3.95

    The Only-Games price: £4.43 Link

    Shapeways price: £7.80 Link

    M2A2 ODS with ERA


    Direct price: £4.30

    The Only-Games price: £4.65 Link

    Shapeways price: £8.04 Link

    M3A2 ODS with ERA


    Direct price: £4.30

    The Only-Games price: £4.65 Link

    Shapeways price: £8.05 Link

    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa versions.

     

    My bedroom is in the process of being done, which is disrupting things a bit, but I am hoping to get the VBL done for August’s release (picked solely because it was a nice, relatively easy shape that wasn’t going to drive up the wall, *Bradleys*); September is likely to be More Bradleys, but at least it’s being spaced out.

    The aforementioned bedroom issues might mean that next week’s scifi release gets delayed, but we will have to see how it goes; I’m away again in August and I also have to do a ton of painting for the September show (and I have only just barely started about thinking what to do for October’s Other Partizan.

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Scifi Release Thread #187716
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards June2023 Release: Merchants and Mercenaries Part One

    Slightly later than I had originally planned, but this time I have the first part of what it likely three batches of merchant and mercenary craft. I had intended for these to be two parts, but with the flight stands and explosion markers released, I changed plans slightly. The upcoming merchant starbase and the 1/300th version of the upcoming space truck are quite larger and thus I intend to make them ice-breakers for selling the files. I’ve already uploaded the former to Only-games and Shapeways, so I will release them there, but the spacetruck I had not originally planned to release at all; I did the design at 300th for the lore entry  but as I have committed to Hereward Wargames Show in September to do 1/300th (Aotrs verses Galactic Empire), I figured I might as well use it there and release the file for good measure.

     

    But to start things off this time, I have for you the Prosperity Transport (which started out as repurposed bit of scrap broken toy in the mid-90s, now re-done in CAD!) and a brand-new variant; and the Cutlass CT-1 (which started out as cardboard in the late 90s) and a brand-new fleet scale version!

    Prosperity Transport

    The Prosperity transport is the third-most common freighter in the local galactic community, after the Beta series Transport and Nomad. Its manufacturer, Sol’s Colonial Freightliners is one of the oldest interstellar transport corporations, though it has long been eclipsed by the General Hull Designs and Hawking Astronautics. The Prosperity is a simple but reliable and affordable design. It fills something of a middle ground between the Beta Transport and the Nomad.

    The Prosperity is larger than the Beta, being about the size of a standard heavy cruiser. This size advantage is gives an overall performance boost over its nearest competitor. It carries 12.5% more cargo capacity. The civilian hyperdrive is faster than the Nomad’s Warp Drive, but comparable to the Beta in performance, though the Prosperity has better engines.

    The Prosperity also has slightly stronger shields, rating at 440TXq. Finally, the stock Prosperity has better armament. The Prosperity was one of the first civilian vessels to fit modern 5th-generation point-defence lasers. The original model only rated to 350TXq, but the vast majority of vessels have been refitted over the years up to a modern 450TXq system. Secondly, the Prosperity also mounts a series of light capital-scale laser arrays. These systems only have an accuracy envelope of about 95 000 km and are rated at only 175TXq – not enough to discourage a determined attacker, but enough to deal with substantial debris and even to give an unwary capital ship some concern if it gets within range.

    The Prosperity, then, has taken the role of frontier transport more readily than the Nomad or the Beta. The Beta remains the most popular due to its low price-tag and running costs, but it is very vulnerable without significant escort over long distance journeys, which is where the Prosperity has the edge.

    The Prosperity, like both the Nomad and the Beta, is relatively easy to convert by an end user. Its generous cargo space can be easily converted to other purposes. The stock laser array, while not very useful for modern starship combat, is very adequate for dealing with asteroids and the Prosperity has almost cornered the role in both ore-mining and deep-space rescue operations.

    Direct price: £2.60

    Only-Games: £1.80 Link

    Shapeways: £3.70 Link

    Prosperity Transport (HAC Modification)

    The most significant modification of the Prosperity Transport was to attempt to compete with the Nomad more directly. The Prosperity’s entire cargo bay and lower hull is removed to make way for four massive clamps to hold the HAC-1200 cargo modules. The engines and hyperdrive are enlarged to handle the extra mass, but performance remains largely the same even unladen, since cost-efficiency was the key selling point. This version provides comparable cargo capacity to the Nomad, and much less cost. However, while it is marginally faster than the Nomad over FTL transit distances due to having a hyperdrive instead of a warp drive, it lacks any of the Nomad’s other selling points, being very slow and under-protected. This version thus has seen only modest adoption.

    Direct price: £2.90

    Only-Games: £4.05 Link

    Shapeways: £5.87 Link

    Cutthroat Heavy Bomber



    General Hull Design’s CT-1 Cutthroat Heavy Bomber was clearly intended to be sold with an eye towards the pirate and mercenary market. First appearing in 2315, it sold extremely well and has proliferated as one of the go-to vessels on the market for its class. It was so successful, in fact, that even several major powers – notably the now-British Space Empire – not only bought it, but configured their own variants.

    The secrets of its success – like so many of General Hull Design’s vessels – lie within a base chassis that is robust, simple and easily customisable.

    The base CT-1 has fairly a fairly standard drive profile. An acceleration of 9.1mc ensures it can get to where it needs to quickly. The manoeuvrability is rated at 92 MEUs, which is fair for a heavy bomber. The addition of built-in flaps for atmospheric flight was an unusual but inspired choice. The mass saved by reducing the thrust-vectoring of the primary drive allowed the larger engines required for the excellent acceleration, while giving the Cutthroat an agility in the atmosphere of a standard fighter, at 118 MEUs. A small hyperdrive allows it to make the typical FTL-strikes common to most fighters (and allows the two crew a chance at escape if their home carrier is destroyed).

    A plating of armour with an AIC of 21TXq covers the Cutthroat’s hull. Layered on top, the shields are rated at an impressive 252TXq, in concert making the Cutthroat a tough nut to crack.

    The standard armament of the CT-1 is four 20TXq-output laser cannons. Eight hardpoints are located under each wing, each with a Standard Warhead Capacity Rating of 1. These are normally used to mount short-range dogfighting missiles, such as sixteen 30TXq- yield Vitrius Conglomerate SRASHM-1111 Vipers.

    The remaining weapon systems are all mounted in the fuselage bay. Just under the cockpit, the bay terminates in four housings. These are typically used to either mount additional guns or for torpedo tubes. The bay has a Standard Warhead Capacity Rating of 32. The stock CT-1 mounts a quarter of Herosine Arms Growler-B9 20mm rotary autocannons, each with an output of about 19TXq at maximum rate of fire. Behind the Growler, two hatches on the Cutthroat’s V-shaped lower fuselage pop open to release missiles – or, in the ground attack roll, even dumb bombs. A typical load is eight 40TXq-yield Darian Defence MRASHM-1119 Sunspot missiles and a quartet of heavier 48TXq Gomez-Moto LRASH-142 Zero-X missiles. Less commonly, a full load of twenty-four additional Vipers are carried.

    Many variants of the Cutthroat exist. The Herosine Imperial navy makes use of several themselves, including the stock CT-1, as do the British Space Empire.

    Fleet Scale
    Direct price: £2.60

    Only-Games: £1.40 Link

    Shapeways: £3.82 Link

    1:300th (6mm) Scale
    Direct price: £4.20

    Only-Games: £4.05 Link

    Shapeways: £7.31 Link
    _______________________________________________________________

    Photos, as always, of Prusa versions.

    (Incidently, I did try filing down the top surface of the Prosperity to remove the stepping… It worked reasonably well, but naturally, it still showed up on the photo, despite looking and feeling flat by eye and hand…!)

    But here’s a couple of bonuses:

    Prosperity old (right) and new (left)

    and Cutthroat (1999, left) and 2023 (right)

    Next month, more merchants!

    in reply to: Aotrs Shipyards Moderns Release Thread #187163
    Avatar photoAotrs Commander
    Participant

    Aotrs Shipyards June 2023 Release: Explosion Markers

    This month, something different: explosion markers. Following a surge of interest at Partizan, Manoeuvre Group and Aotrs Shipyards have collaborated to release this set of explosion markers, suitable for any scale.

    These were originally designed by MG to use as suppression and reaction markers, but will, of course, serve any purpose you can think of, from measuring fall of shell for artillery or naval games to blast markers and the like!

    A first for the Shipyards as well – the markers are being released in both physical form (in the usual methods) as a set of ten and also in .STL format on Wargames Vault (as a single piece, so you can print however many you like).





    Direct price: £4.00

    The Only-Games price: £6.00 Link

    Shapeways price: £12.81 Link

    Wargames Vault (.Stl File) Price: £1.00 Link

    ______________________________________________________________

    Photos of Prusa versions.

    Next month is likely to be another Bradley variant or two (I have completed the M2A2 and M2A3 thus far).

     

    One other announcement:

    Only-Games, as of Friday the 16th June, will be starting to sell pre-coloured 3D printed models.

    Does this mean you can get excited about pre-coloured Aotrs Shipyards models?

    No. No, I’m afraid not. Let me calibrate expectations immediately, before anyone asks: the TL:DR is it is simply impractical on almost every level at the current time.

    For a kick-off, the procedure requires 2mm wall thickness. This basically eliminates almost the entire Aotrs Shipyards model range – and very definitely all of the moderns before we even start.

    Beyond that immediate problem, there is a raft of other barriers.

    Cost of model: I have no idea what the price increase will be like.

    Material incompatibility: They say you can’t have a model in grey resin as well as pre-coloured. This would mean fundamentally doubling the entire Aotrs Shipyards catalogue, since most wargamers do want to paint their own toys, as that’s as much if not more of the hobby than actually playing. (You can imagine how keen I am to do that AGAIN.)

    Texturing: I do not know how to texture. My CAD skills are self-taught, as solely for the purposes of 3D printing. So in order to create precoloured models, I would first have to learn how to texture, work out of/how to do it in TurboCAD (it requires a .obj file not .stl). (I wouldn’t even know how, for instance, to make it so that you could have the explosion markers done in, like, plain orange or black.)

    Images: Without having each model printed myself to evaluate and photograph (impossible on a financial level), I couldn’t evaluate how the model would come out of the process, so it would be asking you to basically take a shot in the dark.

    I Am Not An Artist: Notoriously, I commit Art like other people commit crime. (If you’ve followed enough of the Facebook posts, you will have seen the occasional “bonuses” scribble.) So even if I knew how to apply a texture map, I would also have to learn how to digitally paint models/create a texture map and get to a level that is sufficiently professional to be commercial. In the case of moderns, this THEN raises the issue of what real-world colour scheme or schemes that would need to be done, which I would have to research and attempt credibly, and potentially meaning a model for every different colour scheme pattern, which would balloon out. And, of course, the amount of diminishing returns for each variant colour scheme because that is serving a smaller and smaller customer base on an already niche product. (And I DEFINITELY can’t afford to pay a Proper Artist with the skills to do the job.)

    (The only feature which would be up to requirements is that is can handle 10 million colours, apparently, meaning that you could at least in theory, get close to the right shade of, say, NATO green.)

    So, even assuming that the process was physically able to accommodate my models, to do it would be an enormous, long-term project just to even start, let alone get back to where we are – and it would be coming, basically, at the expense of other enormous, long-term projects like for instance releasing the .stl files of my models. It is, as they say, just not happening, I’m afraid; I don’t have the skills, resources or budget to do it.

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 166 total)