One of my top ten military books and a constant companion since the early 1970s
A charity shop find for a mere £2 - I have not played it as yet but it is fully complete and is likely to be games at some point
Set up and ready to go. Seeing this map still giver me the same thrill as it did way back in the 1970s!
I am not sure why but for some reason I am feeling unusually optimistic about the various projects I have either on the go or at the planning stage - or even those I am ‘just thinking about’!
I think resuming work on the ACW ships and the rules has kind of acted as a form of ‘motivational reset’ and so many of the others bits and pieces I am looking at suddenly seem to be more achievable. Am I kidding myself? Possibly, but one should make hay whilst the sun shines (it has certainly been doing that over the past few days!) and so I have organised my plans into some kind of order which I have listed below. When I say order I mean what I am going to do with the idea - not necessarily when it is going to happen!
ACW - Ships, rules and assorted battles
As mentioned work has resumed on the ship models and I have in mind some additional work in respect of certain refurbishments. Some earlier models will be retired and newer models built to replace them - there are more retiring than will be replaced - along with some terrain pieces. The rules need some combat examples and then they will be off to the play testing team for what I hope will be the last time. I also want to look at getting some land actions in - Portable Wargame style and other sets.
War in the Pacific
I rather fancy building the ships for this as it would be a quite self contained mini project. I reckon a dozen or so models would suffice and naturally I would use my ironclad rules as a starting point. I may try some of the land battles using ‘It’s Getting a Bit Chile’ by Trebian (currently in the Wargames Vault sale) and my block armies.
Russo - Turkish War
I am thinking that the naval side of this may not happen as planned despite having started on the models. No matter as the Turkish ships will certainly feature as part of the Madasahatta: the Prequel project. For sure there is plenty of scope in the Russo Turkish War - probably more so from a gaming perspective than occurred historically - but I am thinking my efforts would be better employed a little later than 1877/78. I have fought a few land actions from the period which have been great fun and may dabble again with the block armies at some point but for now I think it is safe to say that the period is parked.
You may recall me mentioning my acquisition of a copy of Command and Colours: Samurai Battles. The latter half of the 16th century in Japan is a perennial favourite of mine - I blame Akira Kurosawa and James Clavell - and so I am quite keen to get some games in with this. I am also looking to get hold of a copy of the old Milton Bradley game Shogun that has over 400 assorted Samurai era foot figures (sadly no mounted but the figures fit perfectly with Zvezda 1:72nd scale figures) with a view to painting up some representative forces. That in itself is a mighty bold statement from someone that is ordinarily a reluctant figure painter at best! Seriously though, a brace of Portable Wargame sized forces or even tailoring something to suit the Command and Colours version is not beyond the realms of possibility. Detail wise the figures in the board game are probably the only one I would consider painting in any event.
If anyone has a copy of this game or would be happily to sell some of the figures please let me know!
I still rather fancy trying this using the block armies but there would be some work to do beforehand in respect of terrain. I will get to it at some point but have no idea when!
There is an air on inevitably that I will revisit this campaign at some point. At the present time I am thinking about the blocks and a large scale map - large enough for me to use my 6ft by 4ft table, thereby satisfying my inner Napoleon… Of course the map would need to be prepared but one get a little detail like that get in the way of such a grand design.
This is going to be the big one. Aside from the naval dimension I am looking at the armies using the War in the Age of Imperialism figures supplemented by other ranges of 1:72nd plastics. Very much in the planning stages (and yes, I am already having problems with this, mainly around ships) and I am looking forward to this. It will be a slow burner and a long runner.
You know I mentioned that the standard infantry figure from the WITAOI board game looked very much like a Zulu War period figure? Well, as a little side hustle I am seriously concerning a Portable Colonial Wargame Zulu War set up. The VSF part is a ‘side hustle of a side hustle’ in that I rather fancy using the Hat Biblical era Sea Peoples as Red Martians for some Space 1889 style gaming and yes, Sky Galleons and Cloudships will feature.
I have an awful lot of plastic Risk: Medieval figures (loosely based on Viking, Byzantine, Frankish and Saracen types) that are crying out for something to be done with them - the only problem is that they are quite small so may look out pf place with certain 1:72nd scale plastics. I will look at his more closely in due course but for now my thinking is very much along the imagi-nation route.
WW1 and 2
For WW1 East Africa and the Arab Revolt continue to inspire and will feature in one capacity or another - for the former the Lake Tanganyika campaign and possibly something involving S.M.S. Konigsberg. I raher like the idea of something aerial but that would be some way away.
WW2 presents a whole world of challenges - mainly due to the fact that I am interested in many facets of the conflict. I am unsure what I would tackle although Wing Leader: Victories certainly has some potential.
I fancy some special forces style games - SAS, SBS, SOE etc which will mean very much skirmish level. If I am honest I am thinking that board games will satisfy the bulk of my aspirations in respect of WW2.
A few ideas are currently being considered. Mechs - gotta love a large stompy fighting machine - are certainly on the agenda as well as some kind of skirmish set up. I am aware that Dan Mersey has a Sci Fi skirmish set from the ‘Rampant’ stable which should be fun. I also have the small matter of starships to consider - I have some models but am planning on building some for something rather unusual - I will say no more for now.
Age of Sail
I am confident that my building technique would work just as well for the age of sail as it does for the steam and sail period. I have a couple of ideas in mind for something Napoleonic related in a modest way - no Trafalgar sized slugfests - involving Frigates and smaller, possibly with the odd ship of the line for good measure. There may even be some shore raids in evidence using 1:72nd plastics but this will be for another day. The challenge I have at present is designing a hull template although I have a stack of Warlord Black Seas models I could play around with.
So what is missing?
The obvious omission is the whole pre dreadnought thing. Madasahatta will be a late ironclad/early pre dreadnought set up (currently I am looking at the period 1885 to 1895 for the ships) and for sure there will be a few historical liberties taken with what is available to the combatants. Naval combat in the Madasahatta world will be relatively low level in turns of the amount of material - remember that this is essentially a Colonial style set up - and will feature ships that are for the most part ‘second division’ types with the odd smattering of more modern vessels, typically ‘showing the flag’.
The above is very much a work in progress and by no stretch of the imagination is carved in stone. It is merely a snapshot of where I am at in terms of the current crop of projects and ideas. I have to say that I find it very therapeutic to sit and plan these kind of things and to be honest it is the first time I have really felt like doing so this year. I am sure that these ideas will wax and wane in terms of feasibility over time but it does not hurt to indulge one’s imagination from time to time. Some of these will be tackled, some will be discarded and no doubt newer ‘Ooh shiny!’ Things will appear but that is half the fun!