Tuesday, 31 December 2013

2013 in Review

It's that time of year again – time to look back and reflect on what's passed, on projects planned and followed through (or abandoned!) during the year.

Overall it's been a very nice year hobby-wise for me, although my colossal workload during the last two months meant it did in practice end somewhat prematurely. However, during other periods I managed to play games once a week for over a month and I've also completed several projects, some of which I hadn't even planned. And as I wrote in my half-time report, I've joined a club which further fueled my drive to game and complete projects, although I do feel it's very easy to get distracted and jump aboard new projects which can lead to painter's burnout or fatigue.

I set a goal of playing a game every two weeks, or 26 games in total over the year. Well, I lost track of all the games played after my half-time report (were the count was 16) which is a good sign I think. When I tried recalling these, I counted at least 10, which means the goal was most likely achieved!

The year started with a nice mix of mainly Muskets&Tomahawks and playtesting of the forthcoming Osprey wargame Lion Rampant, by Dux Bellorum designer Dan Mersey. Speaking of this game – during the summer we did our impromptu testing of three rule sets for the Dark Ages, apart from Dux Bellorum, Hail Caesar and Dux Britanniarum. It was nice to finally get to do some Dark Ages gaming (it's after all my favourite period) and to field my Welsh army.

However, the real focus for the last part of the year was our club project, A Very Moderate Swedish Conflict, and the development of our own rules – were the absolute majority of the work has been done by the ever industrious Dalauppror. We've now taken a much needed break in the campaign, and may pick it up again in the spring.

In between all this Swedish interwar gaming, we managed to get some games in the Kalmar Union War campaign, and also another chance to field my Novgorodians against the Swedish crusaders and finally a short, but sweet, test of the much hyped Chain of Command WW2 rules.

Of course, there's always the feeling of "I wish I've had time to play this game/period more" but overall I'm very happy about the games played during 2013. Well, apart from a game of Saga which I still feel is a rather boring rules set ...

Moving on to the actual painting, I had three projects planned: FIW French for Muskets&Tomahawks, Novgorodians for Lion Rampant, and Picts for Dux Britanniarum. All of these were finished (and two of them even before half the year was over). In addition I managed to paint a unit for the club's A Very Moderate Swedish Conflict project, a mounted warlord for my Welsh army, four Landsknechts casualty markers and most of a Saxon force for Dux Britanniarum (I'm not counting the four or five 15 mm models I added to my Panzergrenadiers for our test game of Chain of Command).

In total: 137 28 mm miniatures, including 17 mounted models. Of these, 73 were painted in the second half of the year, which meant I did meet (and exceed) my goal of painting at least as many models finished up to and including June (which was 64 models).

Compared to last year, when I finished 171 miniatures, this is of course a bit on the low side, but last year was an exception in that I was on paternity leave and had more time to paint. And these last two months really had a huge negative impact on my output – I had planned to have the Saxons finished by the first week of December and then do another Red unit for A Very Moderate Swedish Conflict before the year was over. But, as I said, this year is perhaps more of a realistic gauge of what I actually can manage.

Of the finished projects, I fielded the French FIW force in four games, the Novgorodians in two, Röda nävar in one and the Picts in zero games (still waiting for the Raiders expansion for Dux Brit to be published). A pretty decent result all things considered.

I had some vague plans for painting some steampunk models when I got my delivery of the Empire of the Dead Kickstarter miniatures, but I simply haven't had the time. And to be honest, my interests have moved away from this project and era – much like the Wild West project from last year. Maybe it's time to rethink these "fringe" projects and my investment in them ...

As for the blog, I had my usual goal of updating once a week, and this I think I managed for most of the year. Again, with the exception of these last two months of course. I had some sketchy plans for shaking things up a bit, and not only post my weekly updates, but these came to nothing.

Well, there you have it – another year in the books! Thank you all for reading my ramblings during 2013 and I hope you join me again next year.

Happy New Year everyone!

Monday, 30 December 2013

Landsknechts Casualty Markers

As some of you might have seen, the only thing I managed to finish during my involuntary absence was a Christmas gift for Dalauppror in the form of some casualty markers for his splendid German mercenaries. There were four miniatures in the pack and as I have ... let's say "future plans", I decided to paint the other two for myself.

The miniatures are from Artizan and the bases are from the clever folks at Warbases.

As I was in a bit of a hurry, I tried to cut some corners with the finishing of the basing. Unfortunately, I don't think it worked very well and I'm not entirely happy with how the bases turned out. Another lessoned learned!

This was my final regular update for 2013. Tomorrow I will post some thoughts of the year that has passed, and then in a couple of days my plans for 2014.

Until then!

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Merry Christmas!

Just a quick post to wish you all a Merry Christmas – or God jul as we say in Sweden – and to show that yes, indeed, I am still here. The past month-month and a half has been pretty crazy at work, to say the least, and consequently I've had very little time and energy for hobby stuff. I've managed a couple of hours here and there, but work on the Saxons has slowed to a crawl.

With all that behind me, I'm looking forward to spending time with my family and getting back to some serious painting. I really want to finish those Saxons before I start my new projects for 2014.

So once again, I wish you all a God jul wherever you are, and however you choose to celebrate it!