Here you will find a review of rules, books, figures, games etc that we in the group have used. We will give it a marking out of 10, remember this our opinion there is no ulterior motive, we have reviewed these after we have purchased them.
This is being expanded - when we've sorted ourselves out we'll put a few more bits 'n bobs here, as well as adding in the links rather than relying on you looking up a search engine.
Books * Figures * Rules and Games * Suppliers
For real fun, try the Conway series and the Chatham Pictorial History series edited by Robert Gardiner: excellent pictures as well as useful historical notes and snippets.
The Langton Miniatures guides to Naval rigging and 1:1200 ship painting are excellent - how to produce really professional-looking rigging at that scale in easy steps.
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We'll be adding links here soon.
|AB Figures||OK, like almost eveeryone else we like AB figures - but why not try their WW2 20mm range?|
|Langton Miniatures||Yes, I know we like Langton and have mentioned them several times, but deservedly so. Rod's 1:1200 range of ships is absolutely superb. And his period buildings are not to be missed, either.|
|Ground Zero Games.||These guys produce some of the best spacecraft around. After possessing a very few but having done starship combat for some time I (Tim) took the plunge and recently ordered lots. Superb, though I had some casting and flash problems (but see below for their response). Another participation game coming up, perhaps? Full Thrust (space combat) and Dirtside (SF larger battles) are two of the main rulesets around today.|
|Front Rank||Their Wars of the Roses range is absolutely superb. Lovely casting, nice figures and well-produced (clean). It converted us (battle report coming soon) and at thiss scale something as colourful as WoR looks really good.|
|Essex Miniatures 15mm ancients||Essex have gradually replaced all the old Mike's Models and now have some really useful 15mm ancients - most of my (Tim) Crusader, Nubian, Mamluk and Moghul Indians are Essex. A few stiff poses but I'd recommend them to anyone wishing to start.|
|Peter Pig||All his ranges are full of character and nicely observed, some even with a sense of humour (try looking at his display range of C20 Italians a bit closely). His pirate range makes for an excellent naval shore crews for C18 games.|
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Just a few mentions of suppliers any of us think are particularly worthy of praise (or of warnings, of course). This is not necessarily the same as any assessment we may have made of their figures. We'll be adding a few star ratings to help.
|Ground Zero Games||Unknowingly I rang up two days before SELWG (major for SF sellers) with a
very large order (£100+) from their Full Thrust and Stargrunt ranges. I felt guilty
- living in a village in the middle of nowhere meant I didn't know it was on (and
wouldn't have rang!). Post is also very slow. Jon T. warned me they may not be
able to get it out before the Monday after SELWG but he'd try.
The result? I was surprised by a knock on the door the next morning: it turned out to be the postwoman with a registered parcel marked GZG. Fast, or what? What's more, Jon was very helpful and had an excellent telephone (customer) manner. Well done guys.
And Then when it turned out I was missing 4 pages in the rules and had some moulding problems GZG were very helpful and responsive, offering to replace the offending parts immediately, only asking that I send the problem models back for their analysis (it is useful, I know). Still 5 stars
|Essex||These would have been 3 or 4 stars as I have found the senior people there
really helpful in the past. But my wife ordered a birthday present
for me and ended up having a torrid time. The order arrived on time, and was
correct, and was billed correctly (3 stars at least). But, not knowing exactly
what she wanted my wife was dealt with somewhat unhelpfully by one member of staff
and the painted figures came through (C15 pikemen) without being positioned correctly
so I had to bend the arms into place and seperate hands from the torso in order to
get them to hold the pike.
But I've been moaned at before for sending in the wrong figure code - when I sent in the code from their catalogue which had been printed incorrectly. Not nice.
Not fun. It's a shame, too, as the rest of the staff are often really good, and helpful. And it now means I don't really want to ask my wife for anything else from Essex.
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Remember, we tend to look for simple rules which give plenty of feel and a good fast game. We're in this for fun, not as a serious contest.
The Langton "Signal for Close Action" rules have a very good feel, although we've built some amendments/simplifications around them for easy-to-pick up demonstration/participation games as they can get rather daunting for beginners. Try them, though, for when we've used the amendments everybody who's joined in has loved the rules.
We've tried out the Langton Fast Play rules for C18-19 warfare and now use them for our participation games at shows, albeit with a few added bits as we don't need them too simple! These are excellent, fast and very easy to pick up - if you've used the main rules you main find them almost too simple!
"Age of Reason" for C18 land warfare is simpler than it looks, giving a fairly fast game, though artillery are probably more effective than they really were for mid-century conflict. Essex stock them, we know, but we're sure you can get them almost anywhere.
And also on C18 land warfare, we recently tried "Principles of War" with the C18 adaptations. They take a little getting used to but once mastered the mechanisms are simple and powerful. We'll give a write-up some time....
"Rapid Fire" for WW2 battalion level games. We use these for modern warfare as well, but with a few additions and amendments.
"They Died for Glory" - Franco-Prussian rules : excellent, giving a nice, quick game.
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Page created 18/4/01 by Geoff Croudace. Last Updated 18/10/02 Tim Bancroft