The Village – Buildings I

Here we go with the first buildings, and I have chosen to do a pair of small peasant buildings for the village. Start simple I always say.

The materials for this build shall be@

  • 5mm Foamboard [Walls],
  • Catfood Sachet carton card [Base and Roof], and
  • matchsticks and strip wood [Wooden details].

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The idea is to develop a method of quickly creating good looking houses to provide cover and concealment on the battlefield. These will not be building you can take the roof off. They are too small to have any effective fighting inside so I’m assuming that the residents, seeing the impending combat, have barricaded their doors.

Having worked with foamboard before I find it to be easy to cut and very sturdy – especially if it is based.

I intend to put most of the detail on the walls and roof and paint it before I assemble the whole building. I find that flat surfaces are much easier to work on that 3D shapes.

More updates as I progress…

So it begins…

As I have said a few times now we shall be mounting three participation games at Salute 2015 and then onto a number of other shows.

We had considered just buying all the kit we need, but have decided to produce as much as we can ourselves because we are gamers and modellers and painters and hobbyists.

The idea is to have three one metre/yard square fields of play so that six players can experience Daisho simultaneously. Like its parent game – In Her Majesty’s Name! – Daisho needs plenty terrain to create a sense of immersion for the players and to provide tactical cover and concealment in play.

Well, my first pieces are being laid down today and it is something simple to warm up my craft muscles after a long hiatus spending my time writing. Medieval Japanese villages feature a lot of sturdy fencing to keep out vermin, to delineate individual property and to act as makeshift walls against raids by neighbours, bandits and ronin.

To make these I have chosen to work in wood, specifically lollipop/tongue depressors sticks, match sticks and coffee stirrers. Using thin wood like this has many advantages:

  • it is easy to cut and work
  • it is relatively cheap
  • you can use PVA adhesive, and
  • it takes stains very well.

Here are the materials I shall be working with on my work table:

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The lollipop stick is to form a sturdy base upon which the fence panels can be mounted. The rounded end of the sticks will make it easy to arrange fences end to end and at corners and angles.

The coffee stirrers are cut into 20, 25 & 30mm lengths and left fairly rough. This is peasant garden fencing after all, not a Samurai garden show.

As you see below the different length of coffee stirrers are arranged side by side and then the longer match sticks are used to glue them together. Using the full actual lengths of the sticks from the craft pack I bought I find that I can cover a lollipop stick with three fence panels.

 

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Once I have three panels I can simply glue them, in a rough line, on top of the Lollipop stick.

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As you can see the different fence board heights allow figures to fight across the fence, use if for cover and fire their weapons from behind it.

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All this took about 15 minutes to do one fence. With practice, I reckon I shall be able to turn out half a dozen per hour, which is good as I expect to need a few dozen.

The remaining jobs have to wait until the glue is completely dry and will include basing materials and staining the fence posts and boards. I shall post again when I have a few of these to show.

My next experiment will be building a fence with a gate in it. Watch this space.

Update!

Here is the gate I promised earlier:

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Daishō is complete

The manuscript for Daishō is complete.

Forty-five thousand words in about ninety A4 pages now awaits layout and publication. For those of you that have followed our In Her Majesty’s Name series, that is almost twice as big as the first IHMN book.

As we know you all love eye-candy we shall be putting in lots of photos of miniatures in action, some of which shall come from our friends in the industry and others from our stalwart play-testers.

However, we want to open our doors to photographic contributions from you. What we are looking for are pictures of well-painted medieval Japanese figures, posed against suitable terrain, preferably in the midst of glorious combat.

Any picture we choose to use in the book earns the contributor a credit in the acknowledgments and a free, signed copy a soon as we receive them from the printer. So, pre-launch.

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The manufacturer of the figures and terrain is irrelevant as Daishō is not tied to any particular figures company though we would like to know so we can credit them as well.

If you would like to contribute, please send your pictures to craigcartmell@yahoo.com, or send us a link to where we can view them. They need to be as large as possible (i.e. around 2mb) as this makes a difference to the printed version.

Project update

So here we are, Daisho is written and currently in the hands of our valiant reviewers/proofreaders. Playtesting has gone well and the game has proven popular with the players.

We have got quotes from the printers and are on the cusp of agreeing a distribution deal with a splendid games company. As soon as that is sealed we’ll be sorting out the layout and it will be off to printers. In other words, everything is on track for the launch at Salute 2015.

Much of the early spring will be spent painting figures and building terrain for the Daisho participation games. We’re looking to create four battlefields, each a yard/metre square, with plenty of terrain, objectives and supporting material. In addition to this there will be eight different buntai for players to try out. We’ll present three of these battlefields at Salute and then we shall each have two to take to separate shows in the North (me) and the South (Charles).

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The spring and summer will be spent promoting Daisho in the press, on the blog and various fora, and in the field at a number of shows across the UK. By autumn, we should know if it is a success though given the excellent reception In Her Majesty’s Name has had we are quietly confident.

After that, we’ll be completing IHMN Gothic for publication and continuing to create original supporting material for both IHMN and Daisho.

We shall be looking at other projects during the year and already have a short list of stuff we would like to do, the general idea being to publish another game in 2016 and so on. We are always open to ideas from you all, though we cannot guarantee that we will be able to fit them in.

For those of you who think we are slacker, we are not full-time games developers and writers. So we have to fit all this in around our already busy lives as both of us have ‘proper jobs’, friends, family and other interests. My personal dream would be to retire and write full-time though I could not possibly afford to do so at this time.