Sunday, January 7, 2018

My Wargaming Goals for 2018

The beginning of a new year is always a good occasion for recapitulation and contemplation. However, I don't want to look back but ahead: What do I want to do in 2018 in terms of tabletop wargaming hobby activities?

Firstly, I have to say that I am not the type for new year's resolutions. But I must admit that I have been posting less and less on the blog, which is mostly due to the large number of in-progress works and projects. It is easy to get lost and carried away in the many wonderful facets of the hobby (hence the lead mountain syndrome, which is more a "resin mountain" in my case). I think that if I prioritize the little and big projects that I am working on and articulate some goals, that I will find it easier to work on them with a bit of discipline. Granted, this is all still hobby in the end, but I do find it satisfying to complete things - be it the painting of a building, the building of a terrain piece or the definition of the rules for a certain scenario. Throughout the year, the following will hopefully help me remind myself which projects I really need to finish, or at least make some progress, instead of switching to another project that tickles my fancy.


I really really want to finish the British cutter model from Games of War, which has been sitting here in its near completed state for more than half a year now. All that's left is the sails and maybe a bit of rigging. The vessel can already be seen in some photos in the blog post about the pirates crew by Simon Bradley.

I am still a bit unsure of how exactly to do the sails although I have been collecting some useful posts and videos I came across on Facebook. The facebook group for Firelock's "Blood & Plunder" is a great resource for ship modeling, even if you are not playing their game.

Speaking of Blood & Plunder: They will deliver their second Kickstarter around May and I am looking forward to holding their new massive Galleon in hands. So besides finishing the cutter, I would like to do at least one more ship - either the galleon or another large ship by Games of War, which are really beautiful models.

Jungle Board

The incomplete jungle table for now
I began "working" on a jungle board back in 2010 when my gaming group was playing "Legends of the High Seas". I built a few small jungle terrain sections which I finally painted a few weeks ago. In theory, a jungle board is amongst the easiest to do: Get a good gaming mat with a grasslands motif and add aquarium decorations as terrain and aquarium plastic plants as vegetation. Well, as usual the devil is in the details and it comes down to how ambitious you want to be with your table.

I plan to do a few more jungle sections so that the board is properly filled and I hope to find some good materials for vegetation so that it doesn't look too cheap. Also, I bought the Caribbean pirate buildings from Games of War and the Spanish Style Church from Empress Miniatures. Thanks to the wonderful beach gaming mat from Deep-Cut Studios it doesn't take that much to have a cool jungle table. Once the buildings are painted and the jungle sections are done, I think I will be happy with my jungle board.

The Port of Gierburg

WIP photo of the second section of
the Port of Gierburg board
The Port of Gierburg is my ever ongoing gaming board project. I am at a point where I need to get my hands dirty and build the elevated level with integrated facades and stuff. I made some good progress in 2017 and I should really make some more progress on the board this year. I won't be lying to myself here: I don't think it is reasonable to assume that I finish the board section this year but hopefully I can at least finish the building of it. I totally want to run some games on this board and the sooner the better.

Dogs Ahoy!

By now it should be obvious what my overall theme is. Dogs Ahoy! is the name of my pirate skirmish rules set. I have been working on these rules over the last couple of years (well, on and off, of course) and they are usually what we use when we run games. I use these rules to put all the things into it that I learned from playing Mordheim and creating Border Town Burning and playing other pirate games or small skirmish games in general: different (swashbuckling) fighting styles, relevant positioning of characters and activations, campaigns with objectives and special scenarios for attaining infamy or glory, and so much more.

I made a huge step forward with the rules during December last year and I am almost at the point where the first full draft is done, i.e. all aspects of the rules are defined so it is a matter of fine-tuning and tweaking from then on. I don't have any concrete plans with regards to publishing yet. My focus is on getting things right and I am taking the time that's necessary.

Dogs Ahoy! rule book (provisional cover and layout)

Stuff put on hold

All the other ships: Beside the ships I mentioned above, my shipyard is full of other models, including the three ships from Ainsty and the first three models from Firelock Games. I must admit that I won't have the time to paint them all and I really do not need any more ships. No. No...
The Ruined Coaching Inn: The huge ruin by Tabletop World is now out of production and I am happy that I bought it back when it was available. I have already started painting it and I am about half-way done. Before I continue with it, though, I need to finish my jungle terrain pieces. And there are still many more lovely half-timbered houses waiting for paint (mostly Tabletop World but also some from Grand Manner).
Coaches & Wagons: These are the three architectural/terrain/non-mini things I love: half-timbered houses, sailing ships and coaches. I just love the elegance of a stage coach or hansom cab. As usual this results in having a huge collection that waits to get painted. Just like ships and actually houses as well I need to accept that I really do not need any more coaches. I recently started painting one of the coaches and I just might finish that one so that I have at least one finished coach. But the others will have to wait.

The Coach, work in progress (available from Schilling-Figuren)

Alright, so that's my plans for 2018. Let's hope I pull through. Now time to get cracking!


  1. Should be a good year - be great to see this project carry on.

  2. Hmm, I would love to see what your doing with Dogs Ahoy, being a pirate player myself. Drop me a line I would love to take a look at it.

  3. @Mike: Thank you!

    @Tim: Thanks a lot for the offer, Tim! I will definately get back to you after a little clean-up work on the rules. It is still because of your great work with LotHS that I am playing pirates until today (and probably that I am still in the hobby at all).


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