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  • in reply to: Is Ogre the only Ogre-like game out there? #120937
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I have long wondered about creating or adapting a fantasy skirmish game so I can use my Mumakil as an “Ogre” style behemoth .  The idea being that the opposition are trying the stop the Mumakil crossing the board to crush something on the other side.

    It would have the Haradrim crew and a lot of hit points….

     

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Is Ogre the only Ogre-like game out there? #120831
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Two more silly options, if you can find them: Chaosiam had a game called Stomp! in which a giant is trying to squash a bunch of thieving elves before they can escape from a wizard’s garden; the elves meanwhile are trying to pin down the giant’s sandals with garden stakes and then pull him over with ropes so that his fall will break the wall. It is a very silly game. The other was by Steve Jackson Games and was called Globbo. This one featured an amorphous, growing, homicidal babysitter, armed with slapping hands, guns and a deadly belching head, trying to destroy the “kids” under its care. The kids come in three varieties or stages: the first and second are blobs of yeast and floating sparks – when enough sparks can land on a yeast they morph into the third stage: a full grown bug-like creature – deadly and nasty. It’s not the sort of game one sees every day. Both date from the 1980s.

     

    I still have my copies – both great games – Stomp uses Rock/Paper/Scissors for combat…

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Grid Wargaming Blog #120291
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Hi Mike

    I am interested in your book – can you give us any more details such as number of pages and a list of the contents?

     

    thanks

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Are game reviewers critical enough? #119288
    Blackhat
    Participant

    It takes time and effort to put together a review and I think that a lot of people cannot be bothered to write a detailed review of a game they dislike and aren’t going to play again.

    The only detailed negative review I can think of in recent years was of Crossed Lance’s (sic) which seemed to be deserved and helpful and it stopped a number of people spending £20 on a poor set of rules.

    I have bought rules that I thought were poor but have simply sold them.  I don’t seem to get on with Too Far Lardies rules but have accepted that their style of play isn’t mine so I no longer buy them…

    I thought that Bloody Barons was one of the worst written sets of rules that I had seen at the time but sold it on and other people (who know the RCFM system) seemed to like it…

    As Norm says it is seems more worthwhile to talk about a set of rules you like than ones that leave you cold even if you feel ripped off slightly by the price you have paid.

    I would never post of multiple forums to warn people off a set of rules…

     

     

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by Blackhat.

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: MIniature Wargames 436 #118578
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I must admit that having supplied the entire Coat D’arms range to James (at his request) I had expected a more in depth look at Hobby paint ranges and paint choices and styles in general.  I was disappointed by the rather superficial single page…

     

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: 2000AD comics questions #118450
    Blackhat
    Participant

    My favourite strip was Halo Jones – so much so that I wrote a Spectrum Games based on it in the 1980s – sadly the publishing house closed before it could be published…

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Cruel Seas: problems? #115024
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I have enjoyed the games of Cruel Seas I have played.  It is a fairly light, quick game but as Naval Wargaming isn’t one of my main interests it fitted with what I am looking for.

    The complaints about 10 pages of errata are somewhat disingenuous as it is only 10 pages because they have reproduced the pages so you can cut them out and stick them in the book – it would be a lot shorter in normal errata format.

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Convention Exhibition #114924
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I no longer attend wargames shows just 4 Toy Soldier shows a year which are really advertising rather than selling.

    When I did wargames shows (for 14 years) I had the following criteria:

    1. I expected the cost of the actual stand to be no more than 10% of my takings at a show.  Most shows managed that level.
    2. I took as much stock as would fit in the van and tried to take 5-10 of each of the popular items.  It is impossible to take everything but you never know what people are going to ask for. For very small shows I would put the paint racks in the car and then take the bigger ticket items (so 25mm rather than 15mm) that would also fit.
    3. I limited myself to shows that were 1-2 hours drive away – this was partly due to the fact that I had M.E. at the time and found shows exhausting without driving long distances.  I did attend the Edinburgh show once but that was a one off and really not worth the 4 days it took out (though we saw friends in Edinburgh).  I did the York show for a while but the costs of diesel came too great to justify the cost of attending plus we were paying for one night in a hotel as well and the hotel costs soared at the same time.
    4. When starting out you have to regard shows as advertising to get your name out there (which some people don’t seem to understand) but I would expect a show to cover the stand costs at the very least.

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: One Set to Rule Them All? (With apologies) #100137
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I find that using one set of rules for a number of periods just makes me feel that I am paying the same game but with different coloured figures and why am I bothering?  I would rather use a set of rules per general period so that I get the feel of playing a different game rather than just pushing around different shaped pieces in the same game…

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: How Long Should a game Last? #99208
    Blackhat
    Participant

    3 hours for most games – at Guildford Club we start at 7pm(ish) and like to finish by 10pm to get to the pub for a post-game drink and post-mortem

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Faster play? #99146
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Newbury Fast Play rules are called that because they WERE faster and simpler than the previous version!

    I prefer rules nowadays that don’t interfere in the game – that is, the games mechanism aren’t blatantly on show to the extent that I feel I am playing the rules rather than a game set in that period.

    Games that would fall into this type for me are Chain of Command, Grande Armee, SAGA, etc  All very clever in their way, but too “gamey” in the sense of having too complex games mechanisms that distract from the game.

    I prefer The Portable Wargame, Neil Thomas,  Bolt Action, etc

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    Blackhat
    Participant

    Yes, completed masters but no moulds.

    If you are doing a range of similar figures then dollies are the way to go as you can get a 28mm figures assembled from dollies and parts (just needing arms sculpted) for £35.

    So you need dollies and a master mould and some castings.

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Retail Packaging: its Costs and Value #98691
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I think that nowadays if you are selling at shows or through retail that you need professional packaging, even if it is just blisters with card insert and foam.

    If you are only selling by mail order then the packaging is not so important.

    I have always used ziplocs for mail order and blisters for retail.

    Mike

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 9 months ago by Blackhat.

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    Blackhat
    Participant

    £200 is extremely high for 28mm sculpting costs unless you are looking at high end fantasy of SF figures.. (and even then I paid less than that for Cobalt-1 figures sculpting by Bob Naismith).  If you are producing a range of figures then you can get a dollie made of the basic shape then additional equipment, heads, etc and will then get each figure made up from these for £30-£40.

    I would estimate 5 28mm at £400 for masters for general figures…

    Casting is usually £3 or so a spin (possibly plus VAT) and then the cost of the metal (2.5p a gram for pewter at the moment).

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Moan #97909
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I find the current use of KS as a shop extremely irritating – to the extent that I have complained to KS about particular small company who has done repeated KS campaigns and then listed one at Xmas with 100 lots that you could “buy” through KS and which were ready to ship immediately.  When I called him out on it he changed the campaign to say that it was helping to fund “master moulds” .

    I think it is a shame that a platform that is supposed to be for testing out if weird and wacky ideas are viable is diluted into another marketplace for large companies to get preorders…

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: VSF rules for mass battles #93510
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Martian Empires will do everything you want and covers French and Germans,,, and only £10

    Martian Empires

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Spin Casting Machines #90165
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I have used a number of casting machines (and did have 3 for a brief time..).

    The Centricast type is fine for low runs but is not as easy to get good results from time after time.  The trick is to use a torque wrench to do the nuts up so you can apply even pressure across the mould and also save your fingers!

    A bob-weight machine is easier to maintain as there is nothing to it but harder to get an even pressure.

    Compressor/air based machines are the best as they give even pressure across the mould automatically.

    I have a secondhand Seba bought from Critical Mass when they closed up – it was 7 years old and works as though new…

    I also have a 20 year old MCP caster which leaks like crazy and  is a little temperamental but is a good back up.

    I would suggest starting with a secondhand Tiranti and seeing how you get on.

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Resin, metal or plastic #88487
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I have a mix of all three in my 20mm early war armies.

    Metal kits tend to be fiddly to put together and are pretty heavy.

    Plastic kits are also usually fairly fiddly to assemble.

    I am a big fan of the resin vehicles from Frontline Wargaming

    http://www.frontlinewargaming.co.uk/20veh.html

    which mostly just need tracks adding to tanks or wheels to the lorries.  They are quick to assemble and paint up very nicely.

    I don’t notice the difference between all three types on the table.

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Wargames' subscription boxes #87221
    Blackhat
    Participant

    They are pretty popular  – I have been selling a LOT of paint to three of the big ones in the UK…

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Salute – Are You Going? #86598
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I traded there for nearly 10 years and then went as a punter a couple of years ago.  After an hour I wanted to go home…

    It was too big, too noisy and full of games and traders I had no interest in (that year there were a LOT of boutique SF and Fantasy games)…

    I can’t see me going again.

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Gaming – Diversity #86444
    Blackhat
    Participant

    People have a tendency to group together with people like them – it is simply human nature.

    There was a recent study in London and it found that despite London being very diverse in cultures, people didn’t mix outside their own groups outside work.  It may be multi-cultural but the cultures stick together…

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Cavalier 2018 #85819
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Thanks. Not getting to shows these days would you say the games there were typical in terms of scale and genre. I see very little in the way of sci-fi or fantasy…

     

    Cavalier has never had a large number of SF or Fantasy games – I think it is just down to the clubs that put on games there….

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: 23 issues of MWAN for sale – SOLD #85818
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I would love those – pity you’ll only ship to the USA…

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: 25/28mm Ranges Sold #83993
    Blackhat
    Participant

    More Martian Empires? That is great news! But we also need more Tales of the Dragon Kings (which, in my opinion, are the most beautiful figures EVER).

    Glad you like them – at the moment I want to get the unreleased things such as Home Service cavalry done for Martian Empires and then I( will look at other new releases for Black Hat’s lines.

     

    thanks

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Anyone recognise these guys? #83872
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Sorry, don’t know who they are by.  They do remind me of something but I can’t think what – they seem to be a similar idea to Irregular Miniatures 42mm Deutsches Homage range where you bend the arms to hold weapons, etc.

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: eM4 ACW Plastics #82625
    Blackhat
    Participant

    They have been out quite a long time – in fact, Doug started working on them before Perry produced their plastic ACW….

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Old school fantasy #82563
    Blackhat
    Participant

    That’s a blast from the past  – I helped Nick and Celia out on their stand a few times when they carried DragonLords for us…

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: New Years Plans? #80609
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I am planning on spending the first couple of months rebasing some stuff to get collections sorted and ready to play with.

    At the moment I have decided to rebase my Franco-Prussian 25mm collection to match Neil Thomas’s rules as it will enable me to use them better on a 4′ deep table than at present where a unit in march column takes up 24cm! That has been reduced to 8cm.  It will also let me play some big games once I have the 30 or so units a side based up.

    I will also rebase my 28mm War of the Roses and Early Imperial Roman armies into single stand units for To The Strongest.

    Then I have a few hundred Lord of the Rings figures to properly base up for Kings of War…

    After that I might paint something for myself…

     

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: e-Commerce Solutions, i.e. Your Online Store #76423
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I started with OSCommerce which worked fine for many years, changed host and it carried on working for a couple of years and then just stopped and I started to experience weird errors so moved to Woocommerce on WordPress.

    Woocommerce has been very good – easy to manage, easy to add products to, lots of addons if you want them and pretty good dashboard and reporting.

    I don’t track inventory as I cast to order for most things and have never tracked inventory for my COat D’arms paint stocks as previous systems didn’t handle it. In theory I could combine my Woocommerce and Xero accounts package to handle it.

    The other great thing is that Woocommerce has an interface into Xero accounting which means all the invoices are automatically reported in Xero.  I import paypal payments, reconcile and it is all done.

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Big Battle Skirmish? #74240
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I agree that I wouldn’t call those games Skirmish Games – they are simply old school style “roll a dice for each man” style a la Featherstone or Wesencraft…

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Skirmish Fantasy rules – what ho! #74063
    Blackhat
    Participant

    oops – realised I misread it and see it is skirmish you are talking about….  Would this be something between RPG dungeon level and mass combat?

    I still stick with:

    – An interesting magic system that is more than a spell list.
    – ability to stat up creature as you want (like superhero games let you build superheros)
    – heroes and “extras” to form warbands.
    – decent scenario ideas other than “grab the treasure and get off the board”

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Do You Need Victory Conditions in Games… #74042
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I am in favour of simple victory conditions – I am a big fan of the “hold 2 objectives from a possible 3” type of conditions and also a fixed number of turns.  The Neil Thomas OHW scenarios work well because they are clear about winning and limited to 15 turns.

     

    Mike

     

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 8 months ago by Blackhat.

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Skirmish Fantasy rules – what ho! #74041
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I am really happy with Kings of War for my mass combat fantasy so they’d have to offer a game which flowed as fast, was a simple to remember and perhaps offered a slightly more interesting magic system?

    If they were gridded I’d definitely have a look, but that’s just me… 🙂

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Minifigs S range.. #73985
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Michael

    John, who produces the Minifigs S Range has permission to cast the figures from Minifigs and has been producing the figures for a while.

    They are listed as recasts, because that is what they are – he doesn’t have the original moulds and masters (as Minifigs dumped them in the 1970s) and they are cast from production copies…  It is a term from the Toy Soldier indusry…

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Historical gaming trend? #73046
    Blackhat
    Participant

    The only people I’ve ever noticed pushing a scale as being the right one that everyone should use are 6mm fanatics. There’s quite a few examples of that on the Baccus forum thread Whirlwind linked to.

    I think that some of the people Victoria is referring to post on a number of forums rubbishing everything but the scale they play in… It happens but I tend to ignore it.  They believe they have found the holy grail of wargaming and want everyone to see the light and if it works for them then that is great. It won’t influence me, any more than being stopped by Jehovah’s Witnesses in the street is going to change my opinion on religion…

    Mike

     

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Historical gaming trend? #72857
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Interesting – I chatted to Pete about this at Colours.

    The hobby does seem to be shifting to a model of boxed games that provide rules, figures, painting guides and everything you need even for historical gaming.  It also is shifting to smaller, skirmishy  games where you require fewer figures.  I can’t say I am surprised as newer companies in the industry have been aping the GW model for a while and GW has moved its games over to skirmish as well..

    I get WI each month as they send it to me but I don’t often do more than scan it as the mix of latest Osprey rules, chasing the latest trend, lack of scenarios and talking about actual wargaming doesn’t match my own hobby…

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Battle of Hook's Farm, Woking #71171
    Blackhat
    Participant

     

    Very cool, and of course the most important question…. What sort of cake? Victoria Sponge I hope. 😀

    But of course!

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Are modern sculpting standards higher? #70921
    Blackhat
    Participant

    The original minifigs were carved from blocks of lead solder (on the train by the sculptor while commuting….), other figures were constructed from wire armatures and soldering.  You can produce very high quality figures using the solder technique – it is how jewellery is made and how all the All the Queen’s Men figures I have are originally made – all the masters are metal but it is a very slow and skilled process.

    The advent of kneadite and other puttys made it far easier for people to sculpt.

    Also, the rubber and silicon used in moulds have improved a lot, as have casting machines and techniques which means you can mould and cast figures now that were simply impossible without cutting them up into different parts.

    I don’t believe that the actual quality of the sculptors has improved but the tools they have now to create their work and for it to be reproduced certainly have…

     

    Mike

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Wargames Debt #70595
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I would have thought that a lot of the smaller companies are not heavily indebted as they are small one man bands who are not limited companies.

    The bigger ones will leverage debt/loans like any normal company for capital purchases and expansion.

    When I bought Gladiator Games back in 2006 I used my own savings to do so and have not put any more money into Blackhat since and it has paid me a full time wage since 2008…

    But I don’t have any personal debt at all (no mortgage, nothing), so I am very lucky to be in that situation.

     

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    in reply to: Coat d'arms equivalents #68391
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Coat d’arm, definitely old guard in my book. Not widely available in the US and seemingly no product support.

    They are available from Scale Creep Miniatures in the USA by mail order to any of the 50 states.. Or direct from us.

    I am puzzled by what you mean by product support? We have a list of the colours on the website with swtches – not sure what else you are looking for?

    Mike

    Owner of Coat D’arms

     

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

Viewing 40 posts - 41 through 80 (of 150 total)