Monday, March 29, 2010

New Project Updates

Unfortunately, I have no pictures. My schedule for the last month has not been pretty. Nonetheless, I've managed to squeeze in some work on this and that:

1. Bamboo forests: I got this fantastic idea to make dense bamboo forests off somebody's blog. You'd think I would have bookmarked it, but N-o-o-o! Anyway, its a simple method using small nails for the trees, sticking close together into thick cardstock, and then gluing flock on top of them all once they are painted. I can to a bunch of these in about an hour.

2. 28mm: Trying to figure out what the heck am I going to do with the 28mm bikers and the robots. I ordered some various figures to round out the human resistance. I also found buried in my unpainted pile a pack of some Kryomek aliens from Scotia-Grendel. I have those guys primed and just trying to think of what to paint them. Maybe I will have some sort of free-for-all games. I have some ideas for rules, but I will likely use Chain Reaction from Two Hour Wargames.

3. Minis for my nephew: My sister's younger son has some emotional issues including a form of Tourette's syndrome. He is not autistic, but sort of lives in his own little world. Last year, for Christmas, I bought him some little plastic figures from Games Workshop. He had a blast painting them. I recently ordered a bunch of plastic futuristic soldiers from eM-4 and will send them to him to paint up.

4. 1/300 buildings: I have two on hold that I need to finish, plus I need to get the Zwieback Hotel done.

Monday, March 8, 2010

And now for some griping....

Lately....lately as in the last three years, I've become somewhat of a rules junkie. I think I am looking for the holy grail of rules for all games modern: land, sea, and air. Recently, I came across a set of rules that sounded intriguing.

"I must have them!" I cried.

Well, maybe not, and here is the gripe. They rules themselves are not unreasonable in price, but it was the cost of shipping. The shipping cost was more than the cost of the rules themselves! And it wasn't like they were overseas, either. I kept mentally factoring in postage of a larger-than-letter parcel, plus maybe gas to drive to the post office, etc. Despite all that, I couldn't see the cost being so high. So, as much as I wanted to, I will have to say no to them, until the author of the rules gets a better distributor and/or brings the shipping price goes down.

This is sort of unusual because compared to other businesses that ship their goods through the mail, gaming companies seem to have reasonable shipping costs. For example, I use a lot of technical drawing pens for my research. I have to draw illustrations of the specimens that I study. These pens are expensive, but they weigh about the same as ball-point pen, in fact probably less given they are hallow inside (you have to fill them yourself with ink). Nonetheless, on-line art companies charge same high amount for shipping for these little pens as they do for about a pound of art paper. Why this disparity? It because they base the shipping on the cost of the item, not the weight! To me, they are double-charging you for the item. Unfortunately, good art supply stores around where I live are about as rare as wargaming shops, i.e. non-existent. Its, just my opinion here, but if a company wants repeat business, they are not going to get it by doing things like that.