Tuesday, June 28, 2016

A Break From Terrain

I am getting pretty close to the amount of terrain I need for the first battle of my campaign. About the only thing left is some fields of crops, need to check that I have enough paved road segments, and a truck stop, which is the biggie.

As I am figuring out how to make the truck stop, I decided to work on some odds and ends. First up, solving the problem of the tipping Caribou transport plane. I should have gone with my gut and made a clear, removable peg that served to hold the back end up, but NO-O-O!!! I had to try to cut out the back part of the plane to make it lighter. The result: EPIC FAIL!

Well, that looks like crap.
I drilled a bunch of holes, one of which pushed the sides of the plane out. After three holes, I decided this wasn't going to work. I globbed some nasty model putty in hopes that it will harden well. I still have to put at least one more layer on in the morning. I am hoping that the putty will be hard enough to drill a small hole for a peg.

After that waste of about one and a half hours, I wanted to feel like I accomplished something this evening, so I went back to a project I started in 2009, but never finished. This was improving the hold of GHQ's turrets to the hulls on their Chinese Type 63 tanks. This was more of a pertinent project because the Type 63s will be used in the first battle. Back in 2009, I used rare-earth magnets, but I was burnt out from just making big holes with large pin vises. Instead I used some really tiny nails to do the job.

Tiny nail resting comfortably on a piece of carpet
I only had to drill small holes in the bottom of the turret and on the body of the tank. The flat head of the nail will hold the turret in place:

It was a little work to make sure that the nail was reasonably perpendicular to the bottom plane of the turret, but they all seemed to work out. The turrets rotate smoothly.

The left and center have the nails for pins, the right has a magnet

This was a lot less work than the magnets. My only concern is that someone might try yanking off the turret, which may pull nail out. Time will tell. More importantly, it soothed my soul after the Caribou disaster.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Aircraft Issues

I recently discovered Amphibmods. Its a small company that makes microscale landing craft, riverine combat ships, and aircraft. They have a small, but useful selection of military transport planes that are in metal and very inexpensive! I got some C-7 Caribou. The Caribou are solid metal. I decided to build them with the landing gear down. Unfortunately, It finished up looking like this:

Because it is solid, I couldn't put any weights in its nose. There were several suggestions from the 6mm Facebook group to dig out the metal at the tail end and fill the spaces with putty. I think I would have a major and messy job on my hands if I did that. It is not a top priority to finish it, so I will dwell on this problem while working on other things.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Bought the Farm(s)

I've had a little time at night to continue working on terrain pieces. This latest work has been on building farms. I scoured the web looking for what a typical non-Western farm looks like. In the US, Canada and Europe, there are typical farm buildings like a barn, but outside of these regions, all bets are off. I just decided to create what my own farms having gotten nowhere on the internet.

This is the one I finished last night:

I am particularly proud of the stairs. It took me almost as long to make those as the rest of the farm complex:

Here is one I made about a year ago:

I think my recent farm is a great improvement. It was a lot easier to use thin cardboard to make walls, and they look nicer, too. The polymer clay was very difficult to make them.

Why walled farms? Why not? I could probably also use them for walled parts of town.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Thinking About Activation

I've gotten some time to work on things and am currently working on some farm pieces. I should have a post on these maybe next week when I return from vacation.

For quite some time, I have been mulling over methods of activation. Lately, the idea of strict I go/you go games have repulsed me at a visceral level (or maybe it's just my body is still reacting to not having a gall bladder). I've been exploring the various means of activation and how they might fit into a solo game. Here are some in no particular order of preference. I'm sure you all familiar with most.

Alternate Activation
It's been called the new IGOUGO system. Each side takes turns activating a single unit.

Chit System
IGOUGO but each side gets a certain number of chits representing how many units can be activated.  Can be a fixed number or randomized like DBA.

Random Cards
There are a whole bunch of rules that use card activation, I Ain't Been Shot Mum is an example of card activation. For my purposes, each unit, probably consisting of a company gets a card. You mix up the cards and pull out a card. That is the unit that activates. Now, once you've activated a unit, there are probably a number of ways to decide who does what within the unit. The issue I see is that might be too random at a level above skirmish. There is no sense of coordination among units. Combat Cards is another set of card-activated rules. I reviewed this set of rules in a while back.

Warmaster/Cold War Commander
Its been awhile since I've read through the rules, but I like the ability to activate a unit more than one time with the fear of command fail ending the whole shebang.

Infinity the Game/Iron Cross
Once again, TheEvileMonkeigh at Delta Vector has an excellent game review, this time of Infinity. I downloaded them, but never really looked at them. They have a system that seems to allow for a great deal of decision making depending on how you want to spend your points. As far as I can tell from thereviews, the new WWII rules Iron Cross uses a very similar system, which additionally allows for the opponent to use their points to react to any actions.

One of the issues with all of these is how to translate them into solo gaming. I think some will work better than others. Would a hybrid syem be the way to go? For example,  I would use the Infinity mechanism whereas the AI would randomly drawn cards.