Gisby's Gaming Blog

October 16, 2016

SPACE 1889: Ship’s Artillery

My SPACE 1889 kick was started when I bought a Crossover Miniatures Omura class airship. It’s a 28mm laser-cut MDF ‘not-a-Hullcutter’ and is pretty darn big, with room for a lot of crew.


It also needs a lot of artillery for the deck, with various long and short guns, and a massive Lob Gun amidship.

The Lob Gun (above) is an ECW mortar from RENEGADE. It’s a lovely piece, and comes with huge cannonballs and a powder charge.(Plus an ECW crew, of course)

The Master Gunner is converted from a Wood Elf archer, and the assistant is converted from the open-handed Elf. All figures are from Forlorn Hope Games.


All other gunners are also made from the same open-handed Elf, with slow matches and rammers added from wire.


The guns are from the Irregular Miniatures Pirates range: There are three different barrels, but all carriages are the same. Each gun comes in four parts: Barrel, carriage, and two very tiny  trunnion straps.

As it happens, I needed three different rates of cannon, so they were perfect.


The rammers are made from a piece of wire. One end has a brush made from crochet cotton wrapped around the end and hardened with cyano adhesive. The other end has a block made from a strip of paper wrapped around the shaft and hardened with cyano.


The slow match is a fine wire wrapped around a heavier wire. I made a prototype y-shaped linstock, but it looked too high-tech to me. I wanted more primitive gunnery for my Martians.


I went for a dark grey-blue uniform because gunnery is a dirty business, and this shade won’t show the grime so much.


This gun is on a prototype deck base. It’s about the right size, but the final bases will be planked rather than a plain square of wood.


If worst comes to worst, they make a fairly worthwhile battery for a fortress.

October 6, 2016

Irregular Miniatures Celts

Filed under: Ancients, Celts, Irregular Miniatures, Moonraker Miniatures — gisby @ 17:39


These are Irregular Miniatures Celts, the three Command figures plus some of the variants of IP29 and IP30. They provide a nice 15-figure General and bodyguard unit.


These are the Command figures (IP40 a, b, c), unmodified except for replacing the standard shaft with wire.


The spearmen come with open hands for the wire spears supplied.


I have heard Irregular described as ‘Old School’ wargaming figures, and I suppose they are. But Irregular was providing codes with head, equipment, and pose variations long before it became fashionable.


It’s actually nice to see figures that aren’t waving their arms about pointlessly: They fit on their bases and rank up nicely.


September 18, 2016

Barsoom: A Few Beasts


A Bronze Age Miniatures Banth. Rawr!


Bronze Age Miniatures Calot. He’s not exactly how I pictured a Calot, but I like him.


This is a plastic D&D monster that I use as an Apt. Strictly speaking, he doesn’t look like an Apt, but whenever anyone sees him they go ‘Ah! An Apt!’


I gave him a mane so you could tell him from his harem.

September 4, 2016

SPACE 1889: Martian Artillery


My Martians needed artillery. So I went to the Irregular Miniatures site, and found a renaissance cannon. Animal-headed, it was alien-looking enough to be perfect.

So I ordered it.

When it arrived, it was beautiful, just like in the picture. It was just a bit bigger than I expected. I was looking for a field piece, and got a huge field piece. But hey, nobody said the Martians had well-designed artillery.


I picked up four RAFM artillerymen to man it. I made the gun tools out of wire.


All in all, I rather like it as a unit. The gun is impressive, and sized way out of proportion to it’s effectiveness.

August 26, 2016

SPACE 1889: Black Legion

This was the second of my RAFM Martian Legions. After I painted the first, I decided to check my unpainted figures to see what more I had. I was sure I had a legion and a half unpainted.

I first checked my painted figures. To my surprise I found a legion-and-a-half painted, far more than expected. Not well painted, I really hated them. They were converted to different weapon styles, and painted as individuals. They just didn’t look good.


I went to my unpainted pile, and lo and behold, there was still a legion-and-a-half in my unpainted pile. At some point I had picked up another Legion, giving me a total of four.

So I stripped the painted figures, re-armed them to fit in the Legion, and started painting them.

I wanted an elite-in-their-own-opinion unit, dressed in black and red.I was trying for a dramatic look. I’m not sure how successful it was.


The officer has had his sword replaced with a wire blade, shaped and flattened. The standard bearer is the Martian from the Adventurers pack.


The halberdier has a glaive, made from wire.He was one of the figures converted to wield two swords


The big sword also has a wire blade. I went with a darker steel for their armour, with a darker black wash. (A darker wash, not a darker black, duh)


This halberdier has a cutting spear, also made from wire. This unit seems heavy on figures retrofitted back from my conversions.

The figures look better after retrofitting than they did when converted, and I am overall quite pleased with the results. The red and black looks sort-of-dramatic, and the unit looks good en masse.

Two more units to go!


August 19, 2016

SPACE 1889: Imperial Legion

This was the first of my RAFM Martian Legions: It was inspired by a unit Skrapwelder had painted. Before that I wasn’t really a big fan of these figures.

My first attempt at painting the figures wasn’t a success: I painted them as individuals for roleplaying, and modified their weapons, etc. I didn’t like how they turned out, even though it was my fault.

This group I painted as a unit.

They are in fact a new pack from RAFM, and I was a bit worried when I ordered them. The figures are over 25 years old, and they could be using some pretty awful moulds. But no worry, the moulds were great, and the figures were as crisp and clean as they were in 1989.


The set has 19 figures, plus a commander on a Gashant, divided about half-and-half between shooters and cutters. Since I am using TSATF for my big battles, I needed 20 figures per unit.


Thankfully I had plenty of the Martian adventurer from their personalities pack, and I made him into a standard bearer. (His sword blade has been replaced with one made of wire.)


The big swords and shield gunners protect the command element and are a hard striking force.


The wings of the unit are made of pole weapons paired with muskets.


I tried to give the halbardiers better hair, because I wasn’t a fan of the mohawk they had. Better or not, it’s different.

I really like the look as a unit, and I decided to see what more I had in storage…..

August 14, 2016

SPACE 1889: Raptors

I wanted something spectacular and over-the top for my Martian forces, a unit that would inspire both fear and terror, and add a ‘cool unit’ factor to the game.

Since I was already using a lot of Dark Elves for my forces, I opted for the ex-Grenadier  Dark Elf Raptor cavalry, obtained from Forlorn Hope Games. I figured MY Mars would have Raptors.

Imagine my joy: The new SPACE 1889 rules already had Raptors on Mars!


In line, it’s a foot across, and is easily the heaviest unit on the table. I may choose to field it as two six-man units.


The raptors are quite scary: Well detailed, and supplied randomly with open or closed mouths. The riders have nicely detailed armour that highlights well.

raptorregstd raptorregstd1

I chose a crescent design for the standard, because it mirrors the lunate shields. I copied the raptor markings from a picture on the internet.


A wedge of raptors, in case a line doesn’t hit hard enough.


To be honest, with those tails waving around, a wedge is the easiest formation to rank up other than a line.

August 12, 2016

Home-Grown Askaris

Years ago, I sculpted a bunch of figures for a company that shall remain nameless. They were state of the art for 1975, but it hadn’t been 1975 for many years.

I did however sculpt an Askari miniature, and kept a mould of him: Based on a Belgian Askari, he was pretty generic, so I have painted units of them in blue, khaki, and white, and he serves in many of my armies without raising eyebrows.


I recently found a TSATF unit’s worth in a box, based and primed, so I painted them as yet another bunch of Belgians.

The command figures are random figures from my Victorian spares. I think the Officer is from (long gone) ItalWars, and the NCO from Warrior Miniatures.


My Askari is not so bad: If I could only sculpt hands, feet, faces, and bodies, he’d be great!

August 6, 2016

SPACE 1889 Cavalry

Filed under: Forlorn Hope Games, SPACE 1889, Victorian Adventure Gaming — gisby @ 00:01

This is a sort-of SPACE 1889/Barsoom mashup.

Many years ago I bought a whole bunch of Ral Partha Hexatrixes to use as Thoats, but never did anything with them. They only had six legs, but it’s still more than four….thoatcav1

So I got a bunch of Wood  Elf cavalry from Forlorn Hope Games and mounted them on the Thoats. Apparently MY Mars has Thoats.




August 5, 2016

Phagon Battle Clones

Filed under: Moonraker Miniatures, Science Fiction — gisby @ 02:46

Nothing much to add: It’s a bunch of Phagon Battle Clones from Moonraker Miniatures. I’m a big fan of the range (and the Phagons themselves.) They are a joy to paint, and paint up so very well.

phbc5 phbc4

I’m using them as proxies for Chigg troops from ‘Space: Above and Beyond.’ They don’t really look a lot like the Chiggs except for being aliens in armour, but they look good, and that’s more important.


The bodies are dark gunmetal, washed with black, and lightly highlighted with steel. The bronze weapons and copper trim make them quite dazzling in daylight, I wish the photos showed it better.


Their eyes are painted gold, with a translucent layer of red over them: I was hoping for an amazing effect, or depth, but it just looks red.


Like the Chiggs, they have troopers with heavy blades instead of bayonets. Very cool.

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