Friday, 30 October 2009

Book Review - The Spartan Army!

Right then.

I have been interested in doing a book review for some time now so I thought I would chose an easy subject and one that many people may of read. My first review is the Spartan Army by Nick Sekunda published by Osprey!

I can honestly say that I am one of those people who have a large collection of Osprey books but have read a mere handful. In fact I think its only two. When I mean read, I mean read from the start to the end and not just taking a mere glance when I need to know what colour a Macedonian tunic should be or the colour of Royal Navy Battleship turrets in World War 1.

As I wanted to do a review I chose a subject that currently intrests me and one that would probably intrest many others, know small part due to the 300.

The book is part of the elite series of osprey titles and seems to follow the usual Osprey trend of a brief introduction and history of the subject peoples followed by a discription of their weapons, armour and appearance.

As well as this you get a number of colour plates in the middle of the book (altough this seems to be changing in later books) which are accompanied by plate discriptions at the back. There are also various black and white imagaes dotted around the text showing artifacts such as shields, statues and a whole host of other treasures. So far so good.

The artwork (Richard Hook) is fantastic and really does capture the imagination of the reader. The detail is excellent and I feel that Mr Hook has done an excellent job in showing the development of the Spartan Army. My knowledge of Spartan appearance is not to a high level but it was reassuring to see that Mr Hook hasn't placed the Lambda on the Spartan shields at Thermopylae and instead used them for Spartans during the Peloponnesian War. Such consideration for historical accuracy (or as near was we can get it) is always welcome to a stickler such as myself.

The content of the book is generally excellent. I am a fan of Nick Sekunda's work and he clearly has a passion for ancient Greek history. The information in the text was very informative and, importantly, very readable.

Whilst Mr Sekunda has mainly focused on the Hoplite side of the army he has included some information on its cavalry and light troops to.

As ever the subject matter has been throughly researched with a lot of primary sources being used. This, in my mind, enhances the reliability of the information given.

My only negative comment would be that I would of quite liked some information on the Spartan army after its defeat Leuctra at the hands of the Thebans. Although, arugably, the Spartans played less of a role in the Greek political world after this time, it would of have been intresting to see how the Spartans adapted to new troop types such as Macedonian phalangite and the thureophoroi.

Apart from that I overly enjoyed the book. It is well written and provides a good basic introduction into the Spartan army.

Rating 4:5

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Something different - 15mm Seleucids!!

Another update lucky people!!

This time its from my other big passion...15mm ancients! These chaps are Seleucid Argyraspides who the elite gaurds unit of the Seleucid kings.
The figures are from Chariot minatures who are very nice people and the shield decals are VVV. My only complaint about the figures (and its only slight) is the lenght of their spears as I would of thought they would have been longer like their pikemen couterparts! But still very nice figures and good starting block for my army.

I'm a big Seleucid fan as I did my dissertation on them at uni. As a result I want to get them as historicaly accurate as possible. I painted the tunics red and not purple because I had seen images of Alexanders Silver Shields in Red in the Ancient Warfare magazine and as the Argyraspides were based on this unit I thought it made sense.
My figure painting skills are taken from my father (who is a bloody good painter) and Minifigs, who do a bloody good guide on their website (and also on the Fanaticus site)
These figures (two bases) are for my FOG army but I will use them for DBA as well. Just need to get their Roman armed comrades and I shall be on my way.
Anyway I hope you enjoy them as much as I did painting them.
Tally Ho for now!

WW2 1/3000 - Royal Navy, Italian Navy and Kriegsmarine!

Right then ladies and gentlemen..after a bit of break I'm back with some new odds and ends.
Firstly we have my WW2 1/3000 ships. These are based the same as my WW1 and I think look quite good. I'm eager to press my Italian ships in to battle as I'm very proud of my 1/4 their ships, like most Italian things...are pretty damn smart.

Vittorio Veneto - (Navwar)

This is one of my favorite ships...very elegent lines and bloody powerfull to boot. Good model, my only complaint would be the hunk of metal under the rear turret guns but this was easily filed down. A nice job from the Navwar chaps!!!

Zara - (Skytrex)

A nice little model of the heavy cruiser Zara...I annoyingly missed some of the mold lines around the hull so had to scrape of the paint and touch up the paint but then dropped the bloody thing....still love the ship though.

Andrea Doria - (Navwar)

HMS Renown - (Sktrex- I think!)

Another one of my favs is the old Renown...not sure why but she is a lovely ship and Britians last Battlecruiser!

HMS Prince of Wales- (Navwar)

Prinz Eugen - (Navwar)

Scharnhorst - (Navwar)

My all time fav ships is the Scharnhorst and her sister - undergunned but not badly armoured, had they been upgunned to 15" guns then they would of been very deadly ships!!! Like the VV they had elegent lines and nice ships!

Bismarck - (Navwar)
The big bad Bismarck. Caused a lot of trouble for the allies (well the Good old Royal Navy) but probably more on a Psychological level. Had the Kriegsmarine had a few more of these monsters then maybe they would of had a better chance against the Royal Navy...but thats a big 'maybe'
So there is my WW2 fleet..not bad and can be easily used to practising GQ3. Not sure if the German labels are correct but I imagine some kind sir will let me know!
As a result I'm not sure what to paint up now in regards to ships....maybe some smaller stuff for the Med, or some WW1 Med navies..suggestions would be welcome!!

Sunday, 9 August 2009

WW1 Aircraft

My Venture into the First World War continues. This time its the aircraft that are getting a look in!!

After a longish break I have gone back to the 1/72 kits which I intend to wargame with.

I thougt I would go with something easy so got an Airfix Fokker Dr1 which I will paint up as Voss' as I never did when I first made the kits!!!

Tis a funny kit and the bits do not fit all that well but you have to love it.

I also played my first (and Second game) of wings of war the other day and to my surpries it was actually very good. If you like a fun game and into the dog fighting then this is a nice litte game!! More updates to come soon.

Tally Ho!!!

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

1/3000 Custom Minas Geraes

Keeping with the 1/3000 theame I am scratch building a battleship on the Minas Geraes class which was used by Brazil.

The reasson for doing this is the new Fleet Action Imminent suppliment which covers some of the South American navies. I figured I needed a break from the North Sea!

Unfortunalty Navwar and sktyrex don't make this model but hey, it gives me a chance to learn a new skill.

Anyway here is a couple of pictures of my ship in the construction stage. Basicly a big blob!

The hull was made from the same thick plastic card that I used to base my ship. A thinner bit of card was used to create the upper hull. Miliput was used to fill in areas and extend and shape the upper deck.

The next stage is to shape the miliput parts, create the bridge and drill in wire to build up the funnels. The turrets I hope my father will be making as he is very skilled at sculpting.

Tally ho for now!

1/3000 WW1

This is my first update!!! Horrah!!

Below are a couple of pictures of my WW1 project. Most of my ships are geared up for Dogger bank which I play using the very good General Qaurters 3 rules!!
So far I have played a few games all with differnt out comes. Tis worth a look this set!!!!

The British and German Fleet

SMS Derfflinger

Probably my favourite of the Dogger bank battle. This ship, like most of my other ships, is based on thick plastic card which is then covered with the Vallejo water effect. I then use a cocktail stick to create a wave effect. The ship then slides out, leave it for a few hours and then its dry!!! Cool!

HMS Tiger

SMS Blucher

The poor Blucher, designed in response to the British Invincible class but secrecy on the British side meant that the Germans believed that the Invincibles were to be armed with 9" guns. As a result the Blucher was armed with 8". Still I think she is somewhat of a beautiful ship!

HMS Iron Duke

Overall I'm happy with my results with my little ships. My fleet is ever growing so I'm sure that I'll have more to show in the future. At the moment I'm working on some WW2 British and Italians.!!!!!

Monday, 20 July 2009

Laneism is Reborn

Back in 2001ish I started Lanism which was simpley me ranting about life in around a Plmyouth with the odd teen rampage on Poltics and parties that I had been to!

Not much as really changed apart from the parties have gone and been replaced by my private hobby.....wargaming...yes I finally came out as a gamer!

So now this blog will explore that many periods that I now game but it will also include some reviews on any decent films and music that is out there (which is difficult as all good music died with Joy Divsion and Thin Lizzy).

There will of be course be a number of poltical rants which really means I'll be moaning about the goverment for some reasson or the other.

Tally Ho for now!