Wednesday 20 May 2009

Victorian Science Fiction

As an aside from all this nautical mayhem, I am also really interested in Victorian Science Fiction. The basic premise is gaming using a late 19th century set up supported by inventions that may have been around or those that appeared later - for example anything that flies. Anyone that has read any of the classics by HG Wells or Jules Verne will get the idea. The two sets of rules of choice for this 'period' are Aeronef, covering air actions between fleets of flying ironclads and dirigibles and Land Ironclads - both available from Wessex Games. Both sets are usable with each other so a degree of crossover is easily attainable.

Both rules sets are supported by miniatures available from Brigade Models - Wessex themselves also have a small line for Aeronef. the air stuff is scaled at 1/1200th so anyone having access to some period warships would be able to tackle a huge Tsushima/Jutland/Midway/Leyte Gulf sized action with a novel twist.

I like dirigibles and so my air fleets tend to be based around these. They are 'second line' air assets as most major powers use Aeronef ironclads rather than the airships. A historical parallel would be the Dreadnought vs Pre Dreadnought composition of the worlds navies in 1914 - all the trendymajor powers had dreadnoughts as the first line weapon of choice whislt the smaller powers stil needed to rely on the older ships.

My own own air set up is still in gestation - it is Turkish (naturally) and is dirigible based. Another practical advantage of a dirigible fleet is that they are really easy to scratch build. All you need is a supply of 1/72nd, 1/48th or 1/35th scale plastic aircraft kit bombs, some plastic scrap bits and pieces, some flying bases and a little imagination and they are ready. I have another batch on the modelling tray and will go through the process on a stage by stage basis when I get around to it.

For Land Ironclads I will be using some of the marvelous models launched by Brigade together with some bits and pieces from Irregular. These are scaled at 2mm in order to fit in with the huge range of Aeronef models already available. Check out and also for ideas and inspiration. You may also want to check out

The great thing about VSF is that you could use an existing 19th century army and just add a couple of steam powered contraptions suitably painted in a traditional style and there you have it - instant VSF.

More to follow with this in due course and as the mood takes me - including VSF naval (where is Captian Nemo when you need him?) and VSF in space.........;-)

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