Sunday, 31 December 2017

2017 in Review

As has become customary on the last day of the year, here's a review of how I did against "the plan". Astute readers will have seen that I forgot to do a mid year review, so tgis could all be a nice - or nasty - surprise!

Renaissance Galleys

I said - I will continue to revise my squadron level rules, then work on the fleet action set to bring them to the same standard, and finally a campaign system catering for both fleet and squadron level games. No specific terrain or other bits and pieces needed except maybe an ornate fortification or two, and no need for any new models (any odds and sods I find to be finished off though). As a “stretch” target I may sort out some of my Valiant Armada era models as suitable Mediterranean roundships or visiting English and Dutch raiders.

I did - pretty well. The squadron level rules were completed and published and seem to be quite popular. I managed to repaint just about my entire collection of 1/1200 galleys and for the first time I  decades came up with paint jobs tht I was happy with. I sorted out several shore batteries, fortifications and other scenic bits, and got quite  a few games in during the Summer. The fleet level rules didn't get progressed, and he campaign system was put on hold when Simon Stokes released his "Stato da Mar" system. My own system is something I may come back to in 2018.

Summary - pretty good.

Fast Play 19th Century

I said - Continue to develop the rules for pre-dreads and WW1. Possibly develop a set of ship stats and a campaign system for the pacific War between Chile and Peru (probably sits best with” Broadside and Ram”. Look to push the B&R system back to cover the 1850s, possibly earlier.

I did - the main developments here were in my Russo Japanese and Spanish American War collections, both of which were overhauled and, in the case of the latter, significantly expanded. On the rules front I developed the quick play set from "Broadside and Ram" into a more pre-dread focussed set and then published campaign packs for RJW and Span Am. Both doing well at the moment. The Pacific War project was put on hold and is likely to be one of the first to kick off in 2018/

Summary - good

WW2 Eastern Front Skirmish

I said - Now “Winter Skirmish” as I have a US Army to finish, so the objective here is to sort out the Americans, knock up the requisite play aids for Operation Warboard and then get some games in. Also, sort out a few more terrain bits and pieces (slushy tracks, icy rivers and a European farmhouse based on the old Airfix La Haye Sainte, one of which I have kicking about somewhere.

I did - lots of modelling on this, both I terms of forces (plenty or new Russian, US and German vehicles, artillery and figures painted) and terrain 9a new terrain cloth, winter roads, woods, buildings etc.) The one thing I never got around to was actually playing a game, so the "Op Warboard" play aids are still outstanding.

Summary - pretty good

Form Line of Battle

I said - Yes, I WILL get some 1/450 xebecs and galleys sorted out

I did - not! Whilst I had plenty of ideas on what to do here I never actually got started. Hopefully yht interest at the BV club in doing some more FLoB games will prompt some action in 2018.

Summary - poor

Iron and Fire

I said - I have uncovered some more 1/1200 models (plus there’s some new ones from Pithead to do) so aiming to get these all finished. Then to embark on a programme to pre-generate ship cards in I&F format for all my models

I did - I managed to get all of the ships painted up, plus some renovations on my 1/1200 collection. I also managed to paint up several fortification sets that I'd had lying around, and at the time of writing I'm part way through modelling Fort St Philip and Fort St Philip. No work on the I&F cards however

Summary - fair

Coastal Forces

I said - As last year, I intend to spruce up my existing 1/600 collection and get a few games in. A stretch target will be to revise my fast play 1/1200 rules.

I did - some sprucing up, but precious little else

Summary - Poor

Other Bits and Pieces

As usual, other stiff cropped up and took away time from the planned projects. These included:

The 75th anniversary Battle of Midway game at the Tudor Arms

"Mad Wet Max” - went from a silly idea to an award-winning participation game in the space of a few months. It had its first outing at the naval Wargames Weekend, and then went on to win the "Best Participation Game" award at the Thornbury IPMS show (the 5th year in a row that I've won!)

Burma Skirmish - a big push on this with just about all my Australian/British and Japanese forces painted up, some scenery done and most of my USMC vehicles painted as well. Only the USMC troops to do now,

Liz and I started making a 15mm old English inn about 25 years ago. The roof remained unfinished for 23 of those 25 years.  I decided enough was enough and this was completed in January. I was very pleased with the results.

Ancient Naval - having sorted out my Renaissance galleys I applied the same techniques to my ancient collection. The result was a revised set of fast play rules and a collection of ships that I was very pleased with.

So, all in all a busy and productive year. As always some aspect s of he plan just didn't happen but generally because time was diverted into other things that went well. Overall, a pretty good wargaming year.

And I’d quite like to get some DBA, Fire and Fury and Napoleonic Fire and Fury games in too (oh, and my Sudan game too – been in the box for far too long!). 


  1. You have been busy. Good to see more of your rules being published!

  2. You've had a great year David. I've enjoyed your published games and look forward to more in 2018.

  3. It sounds like 2017 was a good year. I really enjoyed the pre-dreadnought stuff and Mad Wet Max. I'm looking forward to reading what you have planned for 2018.

  4. 25 years is a good long project. You can't rush these things!

  5. Hi David,
    I have recently about your Turkish Fire and Christian Fury naval rules, but I have not seen them advertised any where. Are they still available? Thanks in advance,
    John Mumby

  6. John, CFTF was an old set of rules for fleet action games from many years ago. Its on my list of sets to reinvigorate and update as I have some different ideas on how I'd do things now (and also a need to get them to integrate better with "Cannon Cross and Crescent"). Maybe a project for 2018

    1. Thanks for your answer. If I dive into Lepanto, what rules do you suggest, or should I wait for a revision of CFTF. I won't be getting the miniatures until Historicon in July.

  7. That's a full on year
    Like the breadth and depth of it!
    Nice models!