Sunday, 27 November 2016

The Pikeman's Lament - Wargames Illustrated flick through video (and pre-orders from North Star)

My eagle-eyed co-author Michael, over at his Dalauppror blog, has spotted a video review of our up-coming rules. Check it out here.

And by happy co-incidence (or maybe good planning, certainly by someone other than me!), North Star now have a pre-order page for the rules, where you can purchase the book at a slightly reduced price. With my previous Osprey rules, it seems that North Star get their stock in and orders out earlier than mass market retailers such as Amazon, so it's a fair bet that will happen for The Pikeman's Lament too (no promises of course, as this is out of my control). Head over to North Star's order page here.

Albert Ball: This time not Nottingham but Tangmere

Concluding my short series of photos about Ball, here are a couple of unexpected finds, photographed on a trip to Tangmere RAF museum, very close to where I live. I wasn't expecting any Albert Ball connection, but there you go.

I hope you've enjoyed this slightly more personal than usual look at a First World War ace.

In memory of Albert Ball, VC, DSO and two bars, MC
14 August 1896 to 7 May 1917

Saturday, 26 November 2016

Albert Ball and Nottingham: Part 4

The last of my Albert Ball photos from Nottingham. These are from the Sherwood Foresters museum in Nottingham Castle.  No captions here as the museum has done most of the hard work for us.

To see all of the photos, click on the label 'Albert Ball' to the right.

Monday, 21 November 2016

TMWWBK in Wargames Illustrated 350 (December)

Just a little head's up and a bit of eye candy for you.

The Pig War sample field forces I included in The Men Who Would Be Kings rulebook seems to have been a bit of a hit with some gamers, so I've written a slightly more in depth piece about this war-that-never-was for the new issue of WI.

And if you've never heard of the Pig War... well, buy a copy of the December issue and you'll find out about something new! It's a superb 'what if'.

Alan Perry has taken some absolutely cracking shots to go with the article, and I've included one here to whet your whistle. There's something very pleasing about this Red vs Blue encounter....

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

The Pikeman's Lament advance arrives

Although it's publishing at the end of January, I've received my first advance copy of the new rules by Michael Leck and myself. Here's a little photo, fresh from the envelope.

This is always an exciting time in the run up to publication, as it means that the main shipment has left the printer and is sailing to my side of the world in the next couple of weeks.


Copies should be with the usual retailers in mid- or late January I suspect.

Albert Ball and Nottingham: Part 3

Continuing my photos taken in Nottingham, relating to the First World War pilot Albert Ball. This time, we move to Nottingham Castle's gardens, for views of the Albert Ball memorial there.

There's some excellent Pathe newesreel of the unveiling in 1921 HERE.

As before, click on the label 'Albert Ball' over the the right to see more of my photos.

The memorial showing Ball in flying gear.
Close up of one of the inscriptions.
Well that's definitely an SE5.

Close up of the main inscription.

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Saxon Miniatures have some Arthurian cavalry coming!

I saw this photo on the Saxon Miniatures Facebook page... now this is exciting news, as I've loved the Saxon Miniatures ranges so far.

Not sure if they'll match up with my Footsore cavalry - the Footsore infantry are just that little bit bulkier in my opinion - but they might well be the nudge I need to finish off my Saxon Miniatures armies.

Here's hoping it won't be too long before they're out.

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

I'm selling a couple of my 15mm Dragon Rampant armies on eBay...

With a deep breath, I've decided to sell up my 15mm fantasy armies and concentrate on larger scales. I'm keeping a few of my rarer models (such as the Copplestone Roman the man himself gave me), but the armies I used to playtest Dragon Rampant with, and who feature in the book, are being flogged off. And flogged off cheap like the birdy.

If you're interested in expanding your collection as mine recedes, please take a look:

Wood Elves

Northern barbarians

The barbarians feature my ever-popular Massive War Hedgehog.

The auction listings tell you which pages of the rulebook they feature on, too.

If you're interested, happy bidding.

Saturday, 5 November 2016

Albert Ball and Nottingham: Part 2

As previously outlined, I'm sharing a series of photos I took on a visit to Nottingham last year, all relating to the air ace Albert Ball.

This collection of photos were taken in Lenton, just to the west of the city centre and the home of Ball's family. Hopefully they'll be of interest to others who are interested in Ball but will never get to Nottingham... I think they're a fitting reminder that this 'killing machine' had a human side (a very human side, judging by the contents of his letters home).

Let's start with three houses in which the family lived (a few photos of Ball as a returning war hero were taken outside the Lenton Road house - the space next to it was a building site at the time I took the photos, so it's possible that this view may no longer be available). From there we'll visit the local church with a memorial to Ball, the houses built in his memory, and the Lenton War Memorial.

Click on the 'Albert Ball' label to the right to see the full collection of photos.

The Ball home on the corner of Lenton Boulevard and
Mettham Street; I believe this is where Albert Ball
was born.
The Ball home on Sherwin Road.

The Ball home on Lenton Road.

Holy Trinity Church, Lenton. There is
a memorial on the wall to Ball (see below).

The memorial to Ball; unfortunately, the
church was undergoing renovation during
my visit, so this was the closest I got (poking
my camera through the cladding).

The Albert Ball Memorial Homes. Built by his 
father in 1922, with a number of flight
themed features (see HERE).

The cupola atop the Memorial Homes has an aircraft
wind vane.

On closer inspection, I did wonder whether the aircraft was
modelled on the Austin-Ball AFB1, which Ball had
a hand in designing (or at least publicising).
They seem to share the same stocky characteristics, although
I could'nt get a good enough photo to be sure.

Outside the Memorial Homes is Lenton's War Memorial. As
shown below, Ball is listed on it.

Closer view of one of the memorial's plaques.
Ball's commemoration on the war memorial.


Friday, 4 November 2016

Albert Ball and Nottingham: Part 1

Last year, on a visit to catch up with some chums in Nottingham, I decided to take myself on a little tour of some of the city's lesser known sites. These lesser known sites related to the First World War air ace Albert Ball, a son of the city.

Now, as a kid I had a fair obsession with First World War aircraft (I still do, but to a much lesser, and perhaps healthier (!) extent), shared with my Dad. For some reason no longer remembered, my favourite amongst these pioneers of aerial warfare was Albert Ball. He was certainly a brave fellow, and flew some of my favourite aircraft (this could have been part of the appeal, he got to fly Bristol Scout after all!), was highly decorated and became quite a 'media celebrity' before his untimely death.

It's easy enough to find out more about Ball online, so I shan't go into further detail here, other than to share the rather fine cartoon you can see above. There are a few decent books about him, from which I gleaned much of the biographical information to send me on a little tour around the suburb of Lenton.

Instead of sharing Ball's story as others have done before, over a short series of posts I'll share the photos I took in Nottingham, commemorating the man himself and his relationship with the city. Click on the 'Albert Ball' label to the right to see the full collection (I'll be posting them over the next few days).