Sunday, January 31, 2010

Calling all Lardies

A co-pilot of mine, Bob has done some great work in putting together a Google Map he's lovingly called The Lardfinder.  Basically anyone out there who plays any of the Too Fat Lardies games should send an email through to to get yourself added to the map.  It serves two purposes really, the first being a fantastic tool to find like minded players who are located near you and secondly it's just plain nerdy-cool.  I could, and do, spend hours looking at stuff like this.

You can find a teeny tiny copy of the map down on the right hand side of my blog, go on scroll down and have a look.  You can also find a bigger version of it right here:

I have a selfish motivation to get as many Lardies from Victoria, Australia on the map but it would be fantastic to see if we can get at least one from every country.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Bag the Hun - Bonus Cards

Part of the Operation Bodenplatte scenarios I've been putting together includes a system where pilots can earn one-shot abilities to help mix things up on the table.  Some sceanarios call for selection from a specific set of cards while others allow the player to choose from any available.  Cards are selected secretly and are placed face down until played.

Until recetnly these cards have simply been scraps of paper with vague notes like "+/- 2 SPD then discard" so I thought that since I was already making some cards for BTH 2 I might put together a few using the new look.

Again the artwork has been borrowed from here, there and everywhere.  Also I not too happy with the images for "Whites" or "Finesse" but free time is short and so they'll do for now.

I don't want the cards to be too powerful but I'd like them to be able to add a little oomph when you really need it.  So I put it to everyone out there, what do you think?

Bag the Hun - More Decals

With the imminent release of Bag the Hun 2 I thought I should get some paint on the last couple bags of my Tumbling Dice aircraft, mainly the US and Japanese aircraft.  I had them all out on the painting table when I realised I didn't have any decals to finish them off.  That just wouldn't do, so I quickly jumped onto Dom's website and had a look for what decals I'd need.

Hmmm just what I thought, the US changed their roundels around a fair bit mid to late war and since I didn't want to paint up the same models for each period I settled on the "600-US-2" set (see below).  They're only used between '42-'43 but I think they'll look better on the small TD aircraft than the other designs would.

For the Japanese aircraft I went with the "600-JA-1" set, nothing to fancy but saves me having to paint a heap of red circles.   The white border should help the decal stand out too.

Lastly I thought I'd grab a set of Germain tail markings, set "300-GE-10a" to help finish off the bigger bombers.  These are actually 1/300 scale decals but should fit the bombers just fine, with a little luck the smaller may even go onto the fighters.

I was very tempted to pick up some more aircraft, specifically the late war German jet fighters, but I'll wait until I've had a good read through of the BTH2 rulebook before I make any purchases.  Besides the Bosche have little trouble knocking my Spits out of the sky as it is, do I really need to make it any easier for them?  I guess I could get some Meteors to even things up a little.  I have a birthday coming up soon, I think a celebratory purchase will be in order.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Warhawks and Crocodiles

If you play Wargods and field a Heru warband (and why wouldn't you?) then you need to get over to Crocodile's website now and grab the latest edition of their newsletter.

This edition contains the long awaited rules for the Asar Warhawks and accompanying characters, which have been unavailable for anyone unlucky enough to not have the approriate editions of the old Harbinger magazine (ie me).

There's also a few good articles on Heru warbands and some scenarios to boot.

This is just the push I need to get back to painting my warband.


Bag the Hun - Cards and Fighter Sheets

There's been some interest latley in the bits and pieces I've put together for Too Fat Lardies Bag The Hun so I thought rather than emailing this stuff around I'd upload them somewhere and paste the links here.

Fighter Sheets
There's plenty of these around the traps but I wanted one that would let me track a whole squadron on a single sheet.  Works a treat for those really big games.  When I get time, haha I made a funny, I'd like to make different versions of these for the Germans and maybe even make up some already filled out (we tend to play a lot of Spitfire vs 'Schmitt games).  I have a few bomber and fighter bomber ones of these too but they're nowhere near complete.

Download Fighter Sheets (PDF, 222kb)

Cards for BTH 1
My first attempt at making cards for any of the Too Fat Lardies games actually.  I'm pretty happy with the results but to be honest all I really did was redesigned some cards I found on the net somewhere (Dogs of War gaming group comes to mind but I'm not 100% sure).

Cards for BTH 2
These are still very much a work in progress given that the game isn't quite out yet.  They look a lot purtier, IMHO, than the 1st edition ones but they've taken maybe 5 times longer to make.

NOTE: This is not a complete set.  All the core cards are there and the British and German airforces are covered but most of the other belligerants only have their character cards, and even then most of them are just copy/pastes of the British cards.

Download BTH 2 Cards (PDF, 2.5Mb)

So there you have it, if you download these and like them please do me a favour and leave a comment as it will motivated me to keep putting this stuff up.  Or if you don't like it then let me know why too.


Saturday, January 23, 2010

Bag the Hun Hex Mat Under the Microscope

A little while ago now I put together a nice hex mat for use with Bag the Hun, you can see the end result here, here and here.  There were a few bumps along the way which you can look at and grimace here and here.

So with all the lessons learned and as much information gathered as I could, how did I actually make it?

Step 1: Aerial photography
At work I have access to our GIS system which has aerial photography of our city and the local surrounds.  I spent quite a while trying to find an area that when zoomed out looked something like Europe during WW2.  Basically rolling hills, farms and small clusters of towns, nothing too modern.  I got the system to export the map as a whopping huge JPG.  At 200dpi the file is around 30mb and is 8,401x11,893 pixels in size.  Which when printed should come out to at least 106.7cm x 151cm (42"x59.5"), I'll explain more about that in step 3.

Step 2:  Hexes
I needed lots and lots of them, so how to put them in the image at the right size.  I had decided on 1.5" hexes as I wanted as many hexes as I could get on the mat.  I like playing big battles, 3 to 4 squadrons at a time big.  Bombers fit nicely on the 1.5" hexes although I haven't got any of the big boys, you know the FW200, B17's and so on.

Initially I used The Gimp to put the hexes in with a plugin in aptly named "Hex Grid".  There's probably other plugins that do it as well but this one was pretty easy.  I tested it on an A4 image first and went through a few iterations of filter/print/measure/repeat.

In the end though we used AutoCAD to render the hexes and then imported them and the aerial photo into our mapping software.  At that point we added a spiffy border and decided on a page size.

Step 3: Paper Size
We initially were going to print the mat on B0 sized paper but decided to go with "ISO B0 Oversized" or something or rather.  Bigger the better I thought, this ended up bighting me in the arse later though.  Before getting to far into steps 1 and 2, and assuming for the moment that money is no object here, I should have asked two vitally important questions:
  1. How big can I print this?
  2. And oh so more impartantly "at that size can I get it laminated?"
Step 4: Laminating
None of the copier places around town could laminate anything over 1m wide and/or 1.4m long. I was sunk in both areas.  After a day of calling around I eventually found a print house that could do what they call cold press laminating.  Laminating usually is the process of putting your work into a plastic pocket/sock and heating it up so that it seals both sides.  Cold press laminating uses rollers and great pressure to press plastic onto one side of your mat.  The plastic they used on mine was a matt plastic and didn't have the high gloss shine you usually get with laminating.  This looks fan-freaking-tastic on the table.

Step 5: Using It
The guy that did the laminating for me told me that I could roll this thing up and that it would roll out flat again even after being in storage for a while.  This is not the case.  However I do find that all it takes is a bit of BluTac and some stick tape and the mat stays nice and flat on the table.

Ahh the biggest question of all, how much did it cost me?  The printing cost me very little, but after asking around at work it would usually cost around the $20-$30AUS to print.  The cost will vary though depending on the resolution and quality it's printed at.  I went for 200dpi and normal quality, it doesn't need to be high-res or have lots of detail as that would just detract from your miniatures.  The laminating cost me $25AUS.

So would I do it again?  I don't know.  I do need some naval mats for the Pacific theater but I'm thinking I'll just go with a couple double sided Hotz Mats.  The felt makes them so much easier to store and just roll out on the table.  I love my western town mat I got from them and their prices aren't that much more than what it would cost me to make my own.

So that's how I made my BTH mat.  I'm sure I've missed something out or maybe just glossed over something to quickly, if so just leave a comment here and I'll do my best to clarify/expand.

Also if anyone wants a copy of the artwork or the completed mat files just drop an email to tcoombes @ bigpond dot net dot au.

Thanks for reading,


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Terrain - Hedges & Forests Part 7

The last month or so I've been spending a lot of time in the backyard building this:

Yep that's a lot of sleepers.  Something else there is a lot of is sawdust.  Usually I'll cut the timber outside so it just blows away but with threatening rain recently I had to move the saw into the garage.  The amount of sawdust that comes out of a single sleeper is just amazing so needless to say the floor was covered in the stuff.  I had swept it all up and was about to put it in the bin when the wargamer inside me thought "hey I can use this to finish my hedges".

My orginal plans were to use the Woodland Scenics stuff to add foliage to the hedges, and the results look great but it's very time consuming and I really don't think I'll bother to finish them all like this.

At the end of the day these ones are going to look like sawdust covered foam no matter how I paint them... but at least this way I can see them getting done.  I've only flocked the three large hedges and two small ones seen here as I want to see the end result before I committ myself to going down this path.

More photos to come.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Battletech has made a bit of a resurgance at our club lately and I can't help but be tempted to start playing again.  A quick trip to the back shed yielded two boxes, one of rulebooks and supplements and the other was my unpainted mechs.

I have another box somewhere of my painted mechs, mostly plastics but I recall having metal minis for Panther, Goliath, Hatchetman and a couple from *other* games and a small squag ov vehicles as well.  I'll keep looking and post photos when I can.

As for the guys at the clud it's a case of good news and bad news, funny how they always come together.  Good news is that their preferred era is around 3025, my personal favourite.  The bad news is evident from the photo above, only two mechs fit into that era.  I hope I find that other box soon, until then I'll just use the clan stuff as proxies.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Bloodbowl: Moortoen Flinggers vs Red Mountain Spiders

I managed to catch up with Toby tonight and we got in a long overdue game of Bloodbowl.  The Spiders (Goblins, TR 167) threatened to overrun the Moortown Flinggers (Halflings, TR 139) early on the game by breaking away to 1-0 and injuring four Halflings and killing one more.

The Halflings equalised late in the first half with the classic "run, hand off, run, throw, catch and run" play.  A one turn touchdown from one end of the pitch to the other.  The photo below shows the majestic moment.

The Spiders responded with the ever classic "Toss a Goblin" play and scored with their own one turn touchdown.  Not to be outdone the Halflings answered with their variation "Toss a Fling" which was successful right up the llast go for it roll in the endzone, rolled a one, burnt a re-roll, rolled another one.  One turn touchdowns aren't very common but to almost have three back to back is incredible.

Early in the second half the Halflings managed to even the scores at two aside.  It came down to the last two turns where either side could have scored.  The Spiders' luck managed to hold out longer than the Halfings and walked away with a 3-2 win.

A lineman and one of the treemen each managed to get their second skils.  Probably go with Diving Tackle for the Halfling and Guard for the treeman.

A great game and a great start to the season for the Halflings... well at least we were competitive, another turn or two and we could have walked away the winners.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Are... Are You My Conscience?

Twice now I've been in the process of placing an order at Pico Armor when I've just stopped and closed the browser window.  Why?  I'm not sure exactly.  Guilt maybe, I do have a lot of unpainted stuff sitting around and maybe I should paint that first.  It's not exactly the money either, the value of the miniatures is fantastic but I'm thinking maybe I should be trying to fill out some of my other armies first with 28mm WW2 skirmish and Wargods being the focus.  At the moment that is, I could name maybe a dozen other games "I'm playing" if I tried. 

So that brings me to the fact that I have all these games that I'm not playing enough of already, do I want to add Blitzkreig Commander to that list?

So what do you guys think?  How many games is too many?  How often do you have to play a game to warrant spending more money on it?

Also bonus points to who can tell me the name of the movie that the title of this blog entry comes from.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


Just added a new feature to my blog which allows you to rate each of my blog entries as interesting or not.  So at the bottom of each post you can select either 'Interested' or 'Not Interested'.  This will help me guage the level of interest in each of the topics and I'll try to post accordingly.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

My Next Project... WW2 Africa in 1/600

Before start I want to you to go here and read.  I'm not quite sure how to put into words how excited I am about this so I'll summarise in point form:
  • Tanks, lot's of them!
  • At this scale terrain is really simple, pipe cleaners actually are tree sized and cotton wool does look like bocage.
  • Only $35US +PP for an army, with options.
  • More tanks.
  • Very easy to paint.
  • I already have a mountain of 1/600 decals.
  • I'll finally get to play Blitzkreig Commander... with lots and lots of tanks!
I'm very tempted to order a copy of Blitzkreig Commander II right now but I'll show some restraint and wait until I've had a few games of the first edition.  After all stats may have changed a little between editions but the OOB & TOE's won't have changed much.

Anyway I should get back to construction zone in the backyard.  Tonight I'll try to get some photos up of the ever so slowly progressing Wargods stuff.