Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Terracotta Warriors

Another Epcot goodie. Admittedly these are 1/3 scale replicas, but even so... I confess to being a wee bit tempted by a Chinese army in 28mm. 

Actually? Stuff that! Anyone fancy WAB in 600mm scale? :)

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Chain of Command pre-orders

It's available (after much proofing madness - I need to ship Rich a box of commas from Florida :D ).

Pre-orders, according to Rich, should ship around 21st August, so you have plenty of time to save up. There's a £22 rules in hardcopy+digital (PDF, or custom PDF for tablet, which will work on iPad or Android (or PC, for that matter)) bundle, and then you can add dice and tokens for a £33 bundle, and some very nice resin 28mm jump-off markers on top of that for a £40 bundle. 

For those wondering, the rules contain (perhaps inevitably) platoon + support lists for late war British, US, German and Russian. Further lists will be available as free downloads from the TFL website.

Today's completely unrelated pet peeve. Disney have redrawn ALL their theme park maps so the entrance is at the top, not the bottom. Can't find my way around anywhere any more :D

Monday, 29 July 2013

For the Saga players among my readers's a building project. A Norwegian 11th century stave church. This particular reconstruction is at Epcot. 

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Chain of Command pre-orders

By the time many of you read this (it's just before 7pm in Orlando) it should be worth a quick visit to the TFL store, as pre-orders for the eagerly awaited Chain of Command should be open on Monday morning.

I'll be right there, just as soon as I wake up :D

Saturday, 27 July 2013

"Carve Out A Kingdom" - recommended reading

For those interested in joining us for our Normans In Italy WAB campaign day in November, here's some light reading.

Grahame from our club happened on these in The Works for a fiver - they're of the historical fiction-based-on-fact genre, and are Jack Ludlow's Conquest trilogy. I'm about halfway through book one as part of my holiday reading (before I start my way through the Kindle books), and they're actually pretty good.

Enjoy :D

[PS: please excuse typos for a few - on wife's MacBook Air, and it's taking a while to get used to where the keys are!]

Friday, 26 July 2013

And we're off...

Made it as far as Gatwick overnight with no disasters, barring a totally predictable 10 minute delay on the East Coast mainline.

Which was actually worth it, otherwise I think we'd have missed THIS...

...sitting at the end of Platform 3 at Kings Cross.

Have a good couple of weeks, folks.

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Holiday Reading

E-books rock.

As I mentioned previously, free Kindle books are popping up regular as clockwork on Amazon UK and US - I have a Kindle-full (well, a Kindle App full, but you get the idea).

What may not be apparent from the screenshot is how many of these are published by Stackpole, who do seem to be bent on giving their entire catalogue free one book at a time!

Not complaining, mind!

Before that, though, I have the last of Chain of Command to proof read through for Rich, which should keep me amused on the plane. (Panic not, Rich, you'll get them by the end of Friday!).

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Ban Warhammer????

I'm trying to figure out what the author of this blog post on the Telegraph's site is on. I sincerely hope he's not serious, or even semi-serious and being artily ironic.

For all I've made it pretty clear in the past I'm not a Games Workshop fan, that's just ....meh. If it's meant as a mockery of the hobby, it's asinine, petty and cheap. The Telegraph must clearly be desperate to fill column inches.

For a longer and well-written critique, check out Big Lee's views on it, which appeared after I drafted this post last night, and pretty much match mine.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Photographing miniatures part 5 - keeping the camera still

Two random observations, first:

  1. Pageviews as I started this post: 122221. Nice number. That's a cue for... More gratuitous Kate (no, Beckinsale, not Middleton)!
  2. Piggin' 'eck, but it's hot!
On to the real post:

Chris Stoesen asked (both on blog and in email) some questions about photography, which prompted me to answer in email and consider the next couple of posts here.

If your aim is to have quite deep depth of field, you need a high f-stop, which means the lens lets in less light. Which forces you to have either a high ISO (to make the sensor more sensitive to light), in which case you get grainy/noisy images, or a low shutter speed (in order to let more light in). In which case... get camera shake.

But we can fix that one. :D

Depending on your camera, you have a number of choices. First up, if you have a DSLR, is a proper floor-standing tripod. On the upside? It'll cope with the weight of a DSLR. Downsides: Unless you spend a reasonable amount of money, it'll be a faff to adjust and quite flimsy. If you go this route, Manfrotto are a good reliable make.

Next up is a tabletop tripod, that you can place on the wargames table. The downside is that this may overbalance if you have a DSLR with a heavy lens on it. But it's handy. One very tempting solution is the Gorillapod range,  which are infinitely and quickly adjustable and come in a range of sizes.

Last up is a beanbag. It's exactly what it says - you can plonk it on the table (moving aside figures if needed) and nestle the camera into it however suits. The Pod make one that's quite handy and cheap.

Whatever you're using, here are two key tips:

  1. Take your time to set up the shot. The figures aren't going anywhere.
  2. If your camera has a timed shutter release, use it. That way any wobble you set up in the camera + support by pressing the shutter will have time to die down.
Next up? White balance, and then composition.

Monday, 22 July 2013

Digital vs print rules....

PhilB produced a thought-provoking post today on the subject of distributing rules digitally, which set me to thinking: which do I prefer?

The first two sets of Lardies rules I bought were IABSM3 and Dux Britanniarum, and in both cases I bought the online version, because - well, duh - I have an iPad, I'm an unrepentant geek, and having rules on an iPad appeals to my inner techno-nerd.

Except? I now own both sets in physical print. And that isn't just because I like keeping the TFL guys from going bankrupt. I use both, for vastly different reasons.

I've found that having a copy of the rules in digital form makes writing about them, be it a blog, a battle report, a scenario, an email or a Summer Special article, much easier. I tend to work on a laptop with an external display, and being able to keep the rules open in a spare window is really handy. In addition, having a copy on the iPad is just really handy for those moments on the train, in bed or whether when I think "I wonder, what if..."


I've found that I much prefer playing off a physical printed book. Partly it's that an iPad tends to go to sleep when you put it down, and I have to keep mine set to PIN lock on sleep (it has my work email on it, and that's a condition of being able to do that). Partly it's that it's not quite as easy to flick pages on a tablet - admittedly, the latest TFL tablet editions do have a handy index which makes that a bit easier.

How about you?

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Cricketers in Wartime - Hedley Verity

Image: IWM/BBC
If you're English, it's probably not escaped your notice that we're currently 2-0 up in the Ashes series against what, to be honest, is one of the more dismal Aussie sides since Kim Hughes' tour of the West Indies in 1984. Being a lifelong cricket fan, and sometime technical architect for and CricketArchive, I'm rather enjoying this.

If you're an Aussie... sorry :D

If you're American, you're probably still bemused about cricket. This'll help...

Heh. Ok. Actually it won't. This will, though.

Come what may, you're probably wondering what this has to do with wargaming. Well: my eye was caught by an article in the BBC site today marking the passing of Yorkshire and England spinner Hedley Verity almost exactly 70 years ago.

He was a Captain in the Green Howards, alongside several others from the Yorkshire side, and was wounded and captured during the Allied invasion of Sicily. He died a few days later, on July 31 1943, from complications after a surgery to remove part of a rib pressing on his lung (under just a local!). The Guardian also has an excellent article on him.

As a cricketer, he was reckoned to be the best spinner in England in the immediate pre-war era:  he took all ten wickets in an innings in a county match twice, including the stunning figures of 19.4-16-10-10 against Notts in 1932, and 15 Australian wickets during the Lords' Ashes Test of 1934.

If you want to read about him in much more detail, the book to chase down is Hedley Verity: Portrait of a Cricketer, which I may well treat myself to sometime.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Advance vacation notice

Well, at least it's cooler today! The last few days in my part of the UK have been running Orlando, FL neck and neck for temperature, and not that far lower on humidity.

Which leads me neatly into a note that I'm on vacation from this coming Thursday for a fortnight (that's two weeks to you folks from across the pond) with Anne and James (and her sister and kids) to the aforementioned sunny Orlando. We will doubtless be crossing the Mouse's palm with silver, visiting Kennedy, catching a ball game and heaven knows what else. I am hoping to convince Anne that 'doing nothing' is as valid a use of a holiday as walking round Universal in 90 degree heat, but I guess we'll see when we get there!

Two things, as a result:

- I probably won't be keeping up the daily post schedule. You will get some posts, but, heck, I'm on holiday - there certainly won't be any battle reports!

- I have a large pile of parcels going in the USPS office in Orlando as soon as I get there - relax, US based prize draw winners, these are your prizes (and with NO love to the Royal Mail for their international parcel rates, which are beyond a joke). Non-US folks, I will try and make sure I get yours in the post before I go. Please accept my sincere apologies this has taken quite so long.

Friday, 19 July 2013

"Chain of Command" is close...

Final crazy proofing efforts are go - I know, as I've spent half today helping stamp out rampant semi-colons and liberally sow the text with commas. The rulebook looks great!

Advance orders will be able to be placed, according to Rich on the TFL list, in a week or so, and they'll be satisfied ahead of stock going to retailers. So watch this space (or the TFL site, or the list, or I suspect a whole boatload of other places).

I can't wait. It's daft - having helped playtest it I've had my eyes on the text, and played the game any number of times, but even so I really cannot wait to get my hands on an actual physical copy.

Can I also note that it's too damn hot to spend half the day with a laptop on your knees in shorts? :D

Thursday, 18 July 2013

"Carve Out A Kingdom" - save the date!

Wearing my committee hat, I'm happy to announce that Peterborough Wargames Club will be running another WAB gaming day on Sunday November 24th 2013

This will be:

An introduction and army list details will appear on the club site in the next week or so. Rest assured that if your immediate reaction is 'but I don't have an army for that', this may not be the case. Grahame from our club has been working on the lists starting from Armies of Antiquity 2 as a basis, and the details will include a lot of suggestions for how you can pass off an army as one of the lists, especially if you have anything El Cid or Age of Arthur related. Also note that next year's WABGT's period is 600AD to 1249AD, so it's not unlikely you can put together an army for both.

We're aiming to live up to the standard of last year's successful Bretwalda gaming day, with a number of believable new scenarios, good looking terrain and a friendly, laid-back atmosphere where taking part and having fun are as important as winning.

Watch out on the club site for more details and a signup form, and I'll make sure it gets mentioned here and elsewhere.

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Re an archaeological question

Thanks for everyone who answered my question on Sunday.

For those who are wondering, I picked for mine one of the more plausible sites of the battle of Mons Graupius. I know there's a whole bunch of candidate sites, but there are a couple of fascinating theories (see the Roman Scotland site for one) that given unlimited funds it would be great fun to explore.

More later, since I have an essay deadline of 5am :D

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Book review - "Battle! Practical Wargaming" - Charles Grant

If I had a pound for every day I had this out of the village library when I was a teenager, I'd probably have had enough for a pretty decent metal Napoleonic army.

It is, unquestionably, a classic among wargaming books. For all that Grant's forces are the neutrally named RED and BLACK (always in caps, too!), and he's doing a heroic job with what's available to him in terms of 20mm figures and vehicles, it manages to capture the atmosphere of WW2. The rules are, I'd strongly suspect, the foundation for any number of descendants ... in fact, I often wonder what a family tree of wargames rules would look like in terms of what borrowed concepts from what. Certainly the rules my school club used for almost all my time there were clearly a linear descendant of Grant's, and when I later grafted infantry and air rules on top, they fitted the mould.

The three game recaps are classics, too: "Action at Twin Farms" has long been a particular favourite of mine, and the other two don't fall that far behind.

I finally bought my own copy two weeks ago - there's a decent second hand market in them, if you look around. It's one of those books that, somehow, it's better to own than just read, but if you're short on book budget, the whole book is available as a legal download from the NZ Meccano Magazine site, via here. Seriously though? It should be in every wargamer's collection if they have even a passing interest in WW2.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Battle report - 15 July 2013 - WAB

It has been a while since I last played WAB - the WABGT, in fact, in February.

To be perfectly honest, it was too darn hot to play WAB, or anything else with that level of occasionally nit-picky rules. But I did need the practice, so Grahame and I tried one of the scenarios for the Rushden Axes tournament in August, his Late Imperial Romans against my Palmyrans.

What can I say? I lost :D It was fun, though.

A very wacky set up, this one. A river along the length of the table, and triangular set up areas diagonally across the table.

Made for some interesting setup choices: clearly I had to charge my cataphracts down the length of the table, since in WAB they are a bit like Disaster Area's sunship - steer like an absolute cow.

This is definitely one of those scenarios where you need to use some form of combined arms - unsupported units in what turns into a long, thin battle don't last long.

One unit of cataphracts got stuck into one of Grahame's cohorts, which tends to favour the cataphracts as they have a ridiculously good save.

However, as they were rather lacking in support, due to another messy scrap in the middle of the table, they collected some foederati cavalry up the rear, and then another cohort in the flank...

As they say - a battle's only a waste if you don't learn from it...

In other news - where would you keep the new, unpainted figure that's the general for your cataphract-based army...

Yes, that's right. In the box with the cataphracts, you idiot!!!

Sometimes, I am hopeless. :D

Sunday, 14 July 2013

The best laid plans...

So, after a scorchingly hot, but great day out at Flag Fen with some folks from my course, I had a cunning plan in three stages.

Part 1: dig out my copy of WAB2's Armies of Antiquity and cobble together a 2100 point Palmyran list (using my Parthians).

Mission accomplished, at least a first cut. We'll see how it goes when I play test it down the club on Monday against AndyB.

Part 2: find the nice figure I have for Queen Zenobia, which is somewhere in my hopefully ordered filing system in the workshop. It's actually the Layla bint Suraya bint Javaira figure from Hell Dorado, but it's rather cool.

Aaaaand.. fail. Grr. It's not in any of the boxes it should be in, nor in any of the ones I've looked in that it shouldn't be. And it's also muggy and hot, and I'm done looking for tonight since any more looking requires, realistically, a trip down to Hobbycraft or Staples for some more Really Useful Boxes to tidy the remainder of the unpainted pile and all the scenic scatters into.....

...which rather scotches Part 3: paint her, or at least make a start.

Ah well.

I think I'm going to curl up with a Scotch and enjoy the Ashes highlights. Apologies to any Aussies among my followers :D

Saturday, 13 July 2013

An archaeology question

My assignment for my course this week is quite an interesting one, and I thought I'd share:
Sit back and think of what [tomb, memorial or] battlefield you hope someday to visit. This can be from any time period and from any part of the world. Explain your choice.
I've already made my choice, which I'll explain in a later post.

Which would YOU pick?

Friday, 12 July 2013

Battle Report - 10-Jul-2013 - Dux Britanniarum

As promised, the OOC report on Wednesday night's little... ahem... scrap.

I'd just finished another couple of plain terrain tiles (600mm sq hardboard, 600mm sq x 50mm blue craft foam and Javis 'hairy' summer grass sheet), so we went with my tiles rather than the usual Citadel cloth, as the grass on them matches the grass on my various terrain pieces. (You should be able to spot the two pieces that are Andy's as a result!)

We rolled the village raid, with the village in the centre of the right hand edge, and the Britons coming on from the worst place possible, namely the top left corner. This time, we did remember that Andy's sown all his provinces with watchtowers, so he gets to arrive a turn earlier than he otherwise might. This meant I only got a turn's head start.

Easy enough plan - I packed Beornwulf and a unit of warriors off to do the looting, and the rest to head off the Britons.

Regular readers may now point out to me that I'm going against several bits of my own advice, including a) remember the objective and more importantly b) your best chance comes if you search in parallel with as many groups and Big Men as possible.

Yes. I am.

And I paid for it.

And yet, despite that, it nearly worked.

First up, Aelfric and the hearthguard got to face off against Andy's hearthguard and a unit of warriors in shieldwall.

First round definitely went my way, as I had the proverbial nice fat fistful of useful cards, and Andy tried his best but (being restricted as to how fast he can move in shieldwall) came up short.

As you can see, I had a Carpe Diem, a Goad, a Bounding Move, a Strong Arm and an Aggressive Charge, all boar-suited. So loads of dice, and I managed to drive off one unit, and make him fall back.

In the next turn, I got to activate again and charge again. With ANOTHER Strong Arm. Round two... was a bit tougher, in part because a third unit of Britons had come up in support. In fact, one of my hearthguard units lost its amphora and ran away. Fortunately, I managed to pull the other unit away before it got thumped again.
By then, Ecgwine's warriors had made it through the woods, and were in the process of lining up against Maximus Minimus and a group of 18 British levy, who were also being annoyed by Lavinia's archers.

That fight went through multiple rounds - including Andy having absolutely miserable luck with movement -winding up an inch short on a charge, due to subtractions for shock when he only actually needed to move an inch.

I lost count of how many Strong Arm cards I played in that battle - at least two, if not three.

Meanwhile,  my remaining hearthguard unit pulled back behind a hill, and Andy's missile troops proceeded to pick on it. As it was down to two figures, I advanced on the missile troops to chase them off. Which was all very well, but exposed me rather to Andy's survivors from the original fight, who were in discinctly better shape.

Despite him failing to make contact first time out, he won that fight too. Cue departure of second unit of hearthguard. Cue more loss of my force morale.

Back in the fight with Maximus Minimus, Ecgwine's warriors managed to drive off two off the three units of levy and left the third sufficiently shaken not to be a threat.

I moved my missile troops to try and take some shock off Andy's hearthguard. Sensibly, he charged them away.

Meanwhile, the looting? Not going very well. Going to have to win this one by clearing the field of Britons, methinks.

So it's crunch time. Ecgwine's warriors turn to face up against Andy's hearthguard. They're not in shieldwall, and I have a decent hand...

Barring the fact that it's down to the mercy of the activation deck who goes first, and I don't have a Step Forth or an Evade to change this. In fact, I haven't seen either all game (just four or five Strong Arm's instead!).

Time to draw...

British Lord.

Game over :D Well - in two rounds of combat. I survived the first, losing one group doing so, as did Andy. But the second round was hearthguard against warriors, and that was only ever going to go one way.

This definitely ranks as one of the best Dux Britanniarum raids Andy and I have fought, probably ever. As ever, my thanks to Andy (whose report can be found here) for a cracking game.

Thursday, 11 July 2013

"To Britain's Shores" - Chapter 10 - Fen Raiding

"Were you trying to get yourself killed?" It's Ecgwine, clearly less than happy with his woman.

"You can talk. What in the Christ's name were you doing charging back into the Praefectus' [1] men?" Lavinia. it would appear, is no less upset. "Especially after he'd already taken down most of our Gedriht. You're good. Not immortal."

For a Briton, she doesn't make a bad fist of the Saxon word for hearthguard. Ecgwine stares at her, blinks. Shakes his head. Quietly. "I though he'd killed you all."

She blinks. Sighs, reaches up and lays a hand on on his cheek, wordlessly.

Ah, me. Young love. I manage a smile, despite being bone-weary. I can hardly blame either of them for looking for an oultet for their frustration, either, Today was.... hard. On all of us.

The little village on the edge of the fens looked easy pickings, especially since we'd managed to sneak most of the way past one of the British watchtowers before they spotted us, and Beornwulf and his warriors were in the village almost before the main force of the Britons got anywhere near us.

It should have been easy. 

Should have.

The British Praefect seems to care a lot about that village. Those damn Britons would not lie down, despite Aelftric's first charge, and Ecgwine proving himself more than competent to deal with their little man and his warriors. We fought, and fought, and fought again, till both sides were just about dead on their feet. And in the end, they prevailed, as with their final charge with the remains of their hearthguard they broke Ecgwine's war band, and, damn them, killed Theobald.

Theobald's been with us longer than just about anyone - he had Ecgwine under his wing and talked some sense into him the first year we were here in Britain, and his grizzled grey hair hid a warrior's cunning, someone Aelfric often turned to for an opinion. 


Tonight, we get drunk, and light pyres for him and the others we lost. Tomorrow? We start planning afresh. Those Britons won't get away with this forever.

[1] Yes. They finally found out Andrusius got promoted. :D

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Cutting it fine tonight...

... but I have a good excuse, as my good friend Andy Hawes has just this minute left after possibly the most epic game of Dux Britanniarum ever. On the edge until the last combat, gods alone know how many turns, and nearly twice through the Fate deck.

Reports to follow, but not now, as I am wiped.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Force Morale and context

A discussion on the TFL group got me thinking about morale. Specifically, the question of why we have morale rules at all, and how deep they need to go in order to make man behave 'correctly' under combat conditions.

A cusp.
Morale seems to divide into two: first, there's unconscious actions. Fundamentally, these are the ones driven by the raw fight/flight reflex, and reflects that point at which your force flips over the cusp from fight to flight. This is all modelled by a branch of science called Catastrophe Theory, which I remember pretty vividly from a Royal Institution Christmas lecture (video link!) in my early teens. Essentially, under normal conditions, the transition from fight to flight is smooth and relatively rational. Under stress, the curve sort of folds back on itself, and given enough provocation you drop off the high (fight) part of the curve onto the lower (flight) part, and pretty much can't get back until you've calmed down. The converse also holds - if you're scared, and provoked enough, you can flip the other way.

These can be modelled with dice effects and rules: they're semi-predictable, but uncontrollable at the conscious level, so you shouldn't be able to override them by, if you like, gamer decree.

The conscious effects are rather more interesting. Do we continue the attack? Dare we risk it? Many systems have global force breakpoints to handle this - once you pass army breakpoint your army flees, and that's it. There's an argument that the whole 'La Guarde recule!' reaction is just a larger version of the fear/fight cusp, and in fact there will come a point when it's all too much for your army and that's it, whatever you do.

But the interesting thing is this. If your game is set in a larger context, how much of that kind of thing do you find yourself doing anyway? If you know that if you retreat NOW you'll concede a 2 point loss in campaign terms, will you do it, rather than push on to break point and risk a 5 point loss? Will you resist the temptation to send a damaged unit back into the fray if you know it'll take it longer to recover afterwards as a result?

Context is everything. Discuss :D

Monday, 8 July 2013

Some teaser pictures from last Saturday

German: predominantly Warlord plastics (me) and some Westwind (I think) (Gary)
British: mix of Artizan, Blacktree, etc (Gary)

Mix of 1/48 Tamiya and 1/50 Corgi (Gary)

Terrain cloth: Games Workshop
Buildings: (eBay), unknown
Trees: assorted (me!)
Roads, hedge: Last Valley
Walls: unknown (Gary)

Sunday, 7 July 2013

After a very hectic weekend...

...involving a wargames show, too much gardening ("you're kidding, dear, you really want THAT out from amid the roses???"), a drive to Dulwich and back to plot a musical for the 2014 Worldcon, I don't, I fear, have much to report...

...except that:
  • Warlord are dreadfully slow. The order I placed on Monday that it would have been REALLY NICE to have for this Saturday just gone is still marked as 'in picking'. Not impressed at all, guys. If it's still in picking next time I check on Monday, I'm cancelling it.
  • Remember me ranting about backups? The good news is that for reasons best known to itself, the hard drive that wouldn't spin up decided it would when sat on my desk at work on Friday. End result, 65GB of irreplacable video and audio files retrieved to another machine... or three. Phew.
P.S. It is, in the words of the song, Too Damn Hot.

Saturday, 6 July 2013

Metagames Con Peterborough

Back from a fun day at Metagames Con, run by the Regional Peterborough Gaming Society, about whom I knew nothing until last week :D

My only real complaint was that it was a bit on the warm side today - fortunately we had a big fan right next to our two display games, we we were pretty ok, although my car was hot when I got back to it.

Our club put on two games - one a Chain of Command demo, the other a 40K game. Make the most of it - you won't see pictures of 40K on here often! As for the Chain of Command, you'll have to wait for the full report for a while: in summary, though, Gary took the Germans to my British, and we agreed on a win for the British after my Force Morale was reduced to 1.

In addition there were games of X-Wing and Flames of War, several board games and RPGs, and a decent trade stand courtesy of local game shop Rift. All in all? Great event, and handily local. And it's only an hour on the train from Kings Cross, folks! Come next time.

Friday, 5 July 2013

Warlord and Mongoose join forces


Wasn't expecting that one.

And I quote:
"We are delighted to announce an agreement between these two progressive games companies that will see Warlord Games exclusively manufacture and distribute Mongoose Publishing’s Judge Dredd miniatures game. 
Maybe we should arrange for some more space for our Judge Dredd tournament!

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Remember me ranting about backups?

That's here, in case you missed it.

Well, here's a cautionary tale.

I co-produced and MD'ed a fantasy musical, which started life as a set of songs a couple of decades ago and plain grew, at a SF con a few years ago. We got FOUR people to video it from different angles, and I took all four sets of video files, and, just to prove I'm not a complete moron, backed them up on TWO different hard drives, one a HP Media Vault, one a WD 1TB external USB drive, because when we have more time, we're going to make a DVD.

Both of these have been stored in reasonable conditions in two different rooms in the house.

The HP Media Vault packed up a couple of months ago. I finally got around to checking it this week, because I need those video files. The drive has the click of death, and isn't coming back.

No worries. I can get the files off the WD external.

It won't spin up.


You can never have enough backups of critical data.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Metagames Con, Peterborough, 6th July

Apologies for the lateness of this one (due to somewhat last minute planning and too many folks from the club being on holiday), but
we have a local War / Roleplaying / Board / Card game con happening this weekend!

Admission's only £3, and there's on-site parking (or it's only a short bus ride from the station).

I and Gary from the club should be there with what promises to be a very interesting game of Chain of Command - I can't say more than that for now, but if you can find the time to pop along you can play 'guess the scenario'. We should also have a 40K demo game as well.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Trouble At T'Mill is now live on Facebook

Hey - it works for other people!

If you want to keep notified of new posts, you might find it easier to follow the blog's page on Facebook, especially if you haven't found a good replacement for Google Reader yet :D I'll try and share each new post on the page as and when I post.

If you want to follow me, feel free, but do introduce yourself, and be aware that I have an electic range of interests, and my stream can cover anything and everything up to and including SciFi, music, Christianity, guitar playing, history, writing, programming, photography, archaeology, TV, technology, raising a teenager, cats, Apple, cricket, baseball, NFL, Formula 1, the Internet and stupidity.

Monday, 1 July 2013

Announcing Necropolis 2 - Judge Dredd Miniatures Tournament

Date: Sunday, September 8th
Time: 9:00am-5:00pm
Location: Peterborough Wargames Club, St John Ambulance Hall, Peterborough

Judge Death and the Dark Judges have returned to Mega City One; only Dredd and the forces of the Justice Department stand between them and the inhabitants of the city. Can the Dark Judges be defeated, or will they succeed in sentencing the citizens to Death?

Choose a side and join in this one-day Judge Dredd tournament/campaign, culminating in a multi-player battle for the fate of the city.

Tickets: £10. Contact to book a place, or watch out on our website for more details and an online booking form. We're hoping to have some support from the guys from Mongoose on the day, as well.
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