Sunday, May 31, 2015

Spaceships

One group of items needed for Human Space were spaceships.   At this point I have decided to use Brigade Models British ships for the Federation, the German ships for the Pantharii Imperium, the Indonesian ships for the Dominion, and the American ships for the aliens.  All were given a flat black primer coating.  The various factions are covered in a previous post at
 
Two views of an alien dreadnaught in the back, a Dominion battle cruiser to its front, a federation destroyer at the bottom left, and a Pantharii destroyer at the bottom right.

I had considered using one of two different rule sets.  These are 2300 AD Star Cruiser
http://www.wargamevault.com/product/421/2300-AD-Star-Cruiser?term=star+cruiser+&it=1

and Saganami Island Tactical Simulator
http://www.wargamevault.com/product/140093/Saganami-Island-Tactical-Simulator-Rule-Book?term=saganami

Saganami is based on David Weber's Honorverse series of books.  The space battles in his books are some of the batter hard science fiction instead of the Star Wars space opera battles.  Star Cruiser is actually quite similar when it comes to types of weapons and types of defensive systems.  The propulsion systems are entirely different though.  They both take into account stealth and detection of targets.  The movement and firing mechanisms in Saganami are also more complex.

At this point Star Cruiser will most likely be the rule system that I use.  While it is a two dimensional board game the movement and game systems are easily adaptable to 3 dimensions.  It also includes a manual for designing your own ships.   Saganami looses out due to a lack of rules for designing and building your own ships.   Saganami uses the same basic rules as Attack Vector and Squadron Strike from Ad Astra Games.  Ad Astra has a ship building tool for Squadron Strike.  However, it is only available if you purchase the $60US boxed game with a serial number.  There are also some other utilities available for creating box miniatures for the game, but these require a subscription service.

The items I was looking for in a rule set were:
three dimensional movement

defensive systems like modern day stealth capabilities, electronic counter measures, point defense, armor, decoys, shields.  Shields are a bit of a question though as a shield that would stop a beam weapon or object would also tend to leave a ship blind as it would have to block all types of electro-magnetic waves/light.

sensors for detecting other ships/objects, both passive and active.   Passive would detect heat, particle or electromagnetic emissions.  Active would be similar to radar where a beam/signal is sent that bounces off the object and is returned to the sender.  Of course, this would also make the emitter a highly detectable target (here I am, shoot me!)

Weapons such as beam or missiles.   Beam weapons would have an almost infinite range as there is almost nothing in space to stop or disperse them.  However, they cannot change direction and if the target moves out of the path of the beam before contact,  that would determine the maximum range based on the speed of light, the space, and time per turn scales.  Modern day missiles have programmed targeting such as cruise missiles or target guidance systems that an operator  can use to guide the missile to the target.  These allow the missiles to track a target over a much greater distance than a direct fire beam weapon would be capable of hitting.

Sensor drones.  Devices to aid in detecting enemy ships and guiding missiles to a target.  If using active sensors then it could also allow friendly ships to "hide" behind the emissions of the drone. 

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Converting Hellenistic Generals

While the four main 6mm miniatures manufacturers make Greek generals, none of the mounted generals are armed with the Xyston as used by Alexander the Great, his successors, or other Hellenistic generals.  The Greek general pack from Baccus includes nine mounted generals and eight foot figures.  The foot figures are fine for hoplite armies, but the mounted figures are either armed with swords or pointing.  Baccus has also released a pack of Prodomoi for their successor range which are dynamically posed.

In order to create generals armed with Xystons some conversion work was needed.  The first picture shows the Prodomoi strip at the top and the generals at the bottom.   The tool I used to swap heads from the middle general figure to the last prodomoi figure is a rail cutter from a model railroad supplier.  This tool is designed to create a flat cut on one side instead of an angled cut on both sides.  This allows the head to be joined to the body with a smooth flat surface for both the head and body making a stronger join using super glue.

Figures and cutting tool
Converted figure on the left.

I also had a Baccus companion cavalry figure that had broken at the legs.  I cut the xyston off and glued it to the pointing figure of the general strip.   Using some scrap pieces I added the rear part of the xyston to the figure and also to the middle figure keeping the sword as the front part of the xyston.  The position of the rear general's arm and sword prevents it from being converted without repositioning it.   Checking the Baccus catalog I also noticed that the Italian infantry and cavalry had feathered helmets that might be used for additional conversions and have ordered them.  It will be a few weeks before they arrive.  The Italians will also be useful for Pyrrhus Italian allies.

Now it is time to finish painting the generals.

The other conversions.