28 November 2011

Budget woes

Looks as if my planning tempo is going to slow down a bit - I'm facing the prospect of reduced hours at work.  This means that the GHQ project will slow down a bit until I get some funding.  It is not such a bad idea since I have yet to decide what exactly the project will encompass beyond getting some GHQ miniatures!

However, I am going to pick up on the MAATAC project as I already have some miniatures on hand.

Speaking of MAATAC, I believe that Eric Hotz is going to run another session for the Trumpeters on Friday December 2 - if you are in the Vancouver BC area you should stop in!

19 November 2011

Still scheming, dreaming of a WW2 plan

It is a good thing that I have yet to buy any micro-armour - I keep thinking of different theatres to work on!

I have discussed the eastern front (Europe) previously.  The western front of Europe is looking good also.  One could start with 1940 France and, using virtually the same terrain, play games set in 1944 France.  There is not so much variety in nationalities involved, but lots of miniatures are available.

Another theatre would be North Africa, and by this you could stretch it from Beirut or even Baghdad to Casablanca and all points in between.

And to top it all off, GHQ has started production of their Wehrmacht '47 line of what-if German vehicles - vehicles that were on the drawing boards at the end of the war.  This could be used to extend any European front, but I wonder if it would work so well in North Africa...

08 November 2011

The Plan, modified

What am I going to do about my plans for little tanks?

Well, first off, scale.  That's easy as I am going with 1/285.  I do not want to sound too jingoistic but I am going to try and source the miniatures from US manufacturers if I can.  That means mostly GHQ but CinC has a good selection including tanks that GHQ does not make.

Second, theatre of operations.  A wide open field here, but I am leaning towards The Great Patriotic War i.e. the Russian front.  Lots of variety for vehicles, with Soviet, German, Hungarian, Romanian, Italian, and others represented.  And Lend-Lease also!

Rules?  I have yet to decide and this will take some research.



I have not forgotten my MAATAC stuff, but they might need some repainting as I will probably use the same terrain - to a point - for MAATAC as with WW2.

31 October 2011

Still here!

It has been a while, but I have not forgotten!  Yes, I am still playing World of Tanks, but recently it has given me a new sense of impetus towards getting some paint on small lead tanks.  Along with the MAATAC stuff, I intend to get some of the fine models from GHQ just to see if I can paint them again - it has been 30 years since I first picked some micro-armour so it is a bit of a nostalgia trip.  I also found a nice site about painting micro-armour - some interesting tips there.

It might be a while but more pics are in store for the future.

28 October 2011

Another month gone by...

Well, October did not come out as expected, but now the crazy work schedule is passed, unfortunately into what could be a too-quiet work schedule...

So, I am trying to pick up the pieces of the projects left off from September.

First, the Tékumel miniatures.  The priest of Hrü'ü is almost done, just needs basing.  The priest of Vimúhla is next but still needs work.  The others are just barely past the primer stage.  I still need to finish off the Hlutrgú champions and shaman.  There is a set of Sérqu spearmen on the table, but I seem to have hit quite a painting block with them; nothing looks right.  So, I might put them aside and bring out the not-quite-finished Ever Present Glory archers.  And the ships - yet another dilemma!

Second, my play of computer games continues, but I have not posted much about it for months.  I am considering splitting off the 'Pixel' part of this blog onto a separate site of its own.

Third, the other miniatures that I want to paint should get some attention also.  Dwarves, Reptus, etc. are waiting in boxes and bags.  Maybe soon...


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12 October 2011

Again...

3 months between posts is too long.

As I am without any discretionary funds at the moment, and with a desire to paint up something 15mm, I am going to dig through my 15mm figure stash and come up with something to work on, just to see if I can paint this size of figure to my liking.  I know that there are some Landsknechts (Essex) in the box somewhere, and some late Middle Ages from Rank & File, among others, which is helpful as I am leaning towards a medieval project more than the classical ancients.

Pics, hopefully, will appear shortly...

24 September 2011

Trees, part 2

Continuing the slow progress routine:




Some of my first trees, specifically for Tékumel, with an Ever Present Glory trooper for scale.  The trunks need to be coated, the tops need flock, and then basing.




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21 September 2011

A bit of clean-up

AS there is not too much going on at the hobby table at the moment except indecision, my thoughts are turning towards changing around the look of the blog.  Blogger is quite different now, with many new options that are readily available to the casual user.  Now it will not be like the last time I tried to change the look here - no huge swaths of red!

Also, I seem to have picked up an invite to Google+.  Is there anything there that could tempt a tabletop gamer like myself (I do not RP much anymore, never got past the hack&slash part...)


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09 September 2011

A new book

Well, new for my library!




I was able to pick this up for $8 recently.  It has some great reviews and the price was right.  I intend to read through it with an eye for converting it to a more Tékumel-style game, but it could be useful for the oft-threatened ancients project...




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05 September 2011

Tékumel naval, part 5

A little bit of progress here with my first Tékumel-style naval vessel:




The original mini is a Xyston Hellenistic Quinquireme, which can be seen in its original form here.  In its Tékumel form, it shall be a Tsolyáni Qél.  I have changed around the deck somewhat as compared to the original, and readers of long standing will also notice that yet again I have changed my mind about the masts!!!    The base is a piece of 3mm thick plywood, 80mm by 40mm, from Litko.  


It is not quite completely assembled, as evidenced by the parts alongside the base, but it is really coming together this time and I am satisfied with my plan for the ultimate form.




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29 August 2011

A new Tékumel-related blog

Skein of Destiny is a new Tékumel-related blog with a purpose of gathering news and more links to all things of note with regards to Tékumel gaming.  Go have a look-see!




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24 August 2011

Tékumel priests, part 3

More slow progress:




On the left, the priest of Hrü'ü has received the first gloss protective coat.  I am still trying to sort out the reds on the priest of Vimúhla (second from left).  No major changes on the priestess of Dlamélish (second from right), and thanks to Chirine I adjusted some of the bare flesh areas of the priestess of Avanthé (far right), although I was a bit sloppy with their placement and will need to touch them up soon.




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20 August 2011

Carnivoran RAATACs for MAATAC


Front, side, and rear views of the Carnivoran RAATAC.  These are a bit bigger than their Terran counterparts.



A comparison to the Fang class destroyer - the RAATAC is almost taller than the destroyer!

Hlutrgú, part 5

The first 5 of my Hlutrgú warband are finally complete:




I tried to give a little variation in the minis by slightly bending the arms and legs.  The metal used is a bit bendy and the pose can be altered just by using hand pressure.  I used some artistic license to alter the coloration also; three of the Hlutrgú above have splotches, and one is very pale in comparison - a young Hlutrgú in my book.


Another pic, showing the basing:




I did not go with a swampy scheme although I could change that in the future.  The materials are very simple, just Woodland Scenics flock and talus for the most part.  The larger, darker rocks are crushed walnut shells, which I found at the local pet store.  My 7-lb bag will last me several lifetimes!




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16 August 2011

Tékumel big battles, part 1.1

One small detail that I should have noted in my previous post:

The vast majority of my Tékumel minis are mounted on 7/8" fender washers - which is unfortunately a really odd size and I kind of regret it.  Litko and others sell large bases for 1" or 20mm rounds; 7/8" is right in the middle of those two sizes.  I am not really desiring to rebase yet again but it might be the only way.


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14 August 2011

My approach to Tékumel big battles, part 1

As part of my Tékumel gaming, I would really like to do some large battles; i.e. where the are units of soldiers on the tabletop not just individuals.  Now, I should have thought about it more before, as the round bases that I favor for my troops look great for skirmishes, but do have problems when trying to combine them for the units that I envision.  Here is an example:





In my mind, this would be a single cohort of the First Legion of Ever Present Glory.  They are sitting on a piece of magnetic sheet material that was a freebie with a phone book (remember those?).  It is 3 inches square.  A cohort should be the smallest unit in the big battles that I would like to play out.  The problem here is that I would like to have the cohort's base match up with the bases of the individual minis, which would mean building up the top of the base to help conceal the round bases.  The only item that would really be an issue would be making nice round holes in the cohort base for the individuals.


Here is another view:





Three cohorts in these pics.  One of the issues with the somewhat large size of the cohort bases is my desire to protect the lowered spears of the front rank.


At the most radical, I could try to make two different sets of minis - one on round bases for skirmishes and another set permanently affixed to cohort bases.  The lowered spearmen would be good for skirmish battles, but I dread the thought of not being able to utilize all of my minis for whatever battle I choose.


I guess I will need to sit down and try to make a cohort base for the individuals.  If it is easy and practical then I will be quite satisfied.




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Another MAATAC game by Eric Hotz!

Eric Hotz hosted another beautiful MAATAC game with the Trumpeters; full set of pics Here.

Eric, you mention that you use a modified, faster version of the venerable MAATAC rules.  Can you share some of the changes?

03 August 2011

Hijacked

Sometimes things just happen!


That is a screenshot of one my vehicles in World of Tanks...  Fun and free to play, a dangerous combination!

Regular posting will return soon, I promise...

25 July 2011

Tékumel priests, part 2... and TGN!

Just a work in progress shot:




The priest of Hrü'ü (far left) is nearly done - the plume needs touch-up and the mask (my third try) needs something more.  The priest of Vimúhla (second from left) needs more red!  I think I went a little overboard with the blue on the shoulders... but he is not nearly done yet.  The reds will take some work to look good.  The priestesses of Dlamélish (second from right) and Avánthe (far right) are just starting to get some paint and are a long way from being completed.




And, I have been added to the Tabletop Gaming News TGN Blog Network!  Thank you Zac, and Hello to the TGN network!






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23 July 2011

Trees, part 1

No gaming table should be without trees.  And there is a multitude of good-looking pre-made trees out there of many sizes.  But, being short of funds and always desiring a unique look to my projects, I am going to try and build my own.




This is the base material for the trunks/branches.  These are cotton pipecleaners, not the nylon ones from the craft store.  I bought these many moons ago, and they have been sitting patiently in a box for just this moment.






Contents of the package.  There are 32 of them in each package.






Construction of the trunk is simple - just twist three of the pipecleaners together, leaving enough at each end for roots or branches.






These are made with six pipecleaners, mostly to give more branches and to make the trunk bigger.  I wish I had included the scale for the pics - maybe next time.






I cut approximately 1 inch off each of these pipecleaners prior to twisting to make some slightly shorter trees.


The next step is to coat the trunks and branches with some modeling paste to stiffen the structure a bit and cover up the obvious nature of the construction.




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19 July 2011

Dusting off this blog!

It has been a while...

Despite my affinity for 28mm, I am reconsidering 15mm mostly due to cost and space.  Money is tight at the moment as is space for games.  Also, 15mm looks better in a mass-battle aspect; 28mm nails it for skirmishes.

Along with this, the rest of the project is up for reconsideration also.  Greeks/Persians are still a possibility, but I am also thinking about Successors, Romans/Gauls/Pontics, Late Romans, and 13th century medieval.  Rules are another aspect up in the air; there are many possibilities and I can not rule out the chance that I will want to paint up some fantasy armies as well!

So, hopefully much to blog about.

17 July 2011

Tékumel naval, part 4

After some thought and research, I am dusting off this project and giving it another try.  A recent and sudden cash crunch here in my household is also making me go back to previously purchased minis instead of splashing out for more!

Of course, this project re-start could not be free of some minor drama... And the dilemma of the day involves rigging.  There are two styles - sails and masts up, or sails and masts removed.  For a great example of fully rigged ancient ships, take a look at Hetairoi's gallery.  Beautiful stuff!  And on the opposite tack, some great examples of un-rigged ancient ships can be found at one of the many Roman Seas galleries.

I am going with the un-rigged method, for a couple of reasons.  First, it will be quicker to get the ships fitted out for a game.  Second, from a historical viewpoint, oared warships, at least those of the Greeks and Romans, et al, went into combat with their masts and sails removed unless in extreme situations.  Third, the lack of masts might make the decks more visible, and I have some ideas for reconstructing the deckwork and adding shipboard artillery.

Of course, I decided this AFTER drilling holes for masts through the deck of my first warship!


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16 July 2011

Terran Light War Machine for MAATAC

Yet another pic:


Terran Monarch class Light war machine.  The turret is a separate piece.


And, a top-down pic of the Terran light war machine, destroyer, and APC:

13 July 2011

A MAATAC game...

Eric Hotz recently put on a great-looking MAATAC scenario for the Trumpeters club - wish I could have been there!

09 July 2011

The hobby table...

Just a brief pic for today's post:


Some interesting if slow-moving projects here - a warband of Hlutrgú almost finished; a few extra Ever Present Glory troopers awaiting matte finishing; priests and priestesses of Tékumel with black undercoat; some high command minis of various Tékumel empires awaiting attention (thanks again Jeff!); the first few Sérqu minis; assorted generic fantasy minis; some of those MAATAC tanks; and assorted tools of the trade.  Oh yes, and an oared warship, whose project has been reconsidered and a tiny bit of progress accomplished!


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Terran Destroyer class for MAATAC

I am slowly progressing through the collection; here is one more installment:


This is the Terran Thunder class destroyer.  There are three beam weapons, and two of the Terran-standard small turrets, used I believe for close-in protection from infantry and missiles.

02 July 2011

Terran APC for MAATAC

I am slowly progressing through what is left of my MAATAC collection, and here is another pic:


This is the Terran Lightning class personnel carrier.  The mini is a one-piece casting.  There are three light beam weapons (somewhat visible in this view) mounted on top.

To the best I can ascertain, my old Superior MAATAC minis are gone, along with my old copy of the rules.  All that is left is what I am slowly posting here.  These are all cast by Monday Knight.  I do have a good-sized Terran force, but only a small handful of Carnivoran and even less Entomolian minis, and no Aquarian or Avarian minis.  This is not a major problem though (although the loss of the old, painted minis is not good) as this is intended to be a slow-burning project.  The terrain especially will be different from anything I have tried previously - never have tried a snow environment!

27 June 2011

Terran RAATACs, part 2

I should have thought of this with the first post, but here is a pic comparing the Terran RAATAC to the Conqueror medium war machine:

25 June 2011

Tékumel priests, part 1

So, I have some Tsolyánu troops painted up, but no Tékumel force is complete without priests.  For quite a while, I did not have any suitable miniatures for priests/priestesses, but Chirine came to my rescue with a package of wonderful old minis.  Among these minis were some priests/priestesses:




From the left:  Hrü'ü, Vimúhla, and Dlamélish.  The priestess of Dlamélish is a Ral Partha sculpt, while the other two are from the now-defunct PHD Games.  These minis are definitely not the same size of today's '28mm' figures, but they look nice for being at least 33-year-old sculpts.  I do find the limbs, especially the feet and ankles, of the Vimúhla priest to be rather spindly!






From the left:  Avánthe and Karakán.  The priestess of Avánthe is another Ral Partha figure from the 1970's, while the priest of Karakán is another way out-of-production PHD mini.  The Karakán priest is well-proportioned for today's standards, although he has some flash.




I was a bit worried about how well these minis would fit in with my selection of 'heroic 28mm' minis, so I drafted one of my Ever Present Glory minis for a comparison:




With the old minis posed on my usual fender washer bases, I do not see anything to be worried about, at least with the priests of Vimúhla and Karakán.




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18 June 2011

Terran RAATAC's for MAATAC


Terran RAATAC - from the left:  front, right, back, left view

RAATAC in MAATAC are a kind of robotic infantry, perhaps more akin to power armor infantry of more traditional sci-fi forces.  I believe that there are rules for regular leg infantry in the original MAATAC rules, but there were not any specific infantry minis.

15 June 2011

Terran Heavy War Machine for MAATAC

After a bit of digging, I found two of these:



Two views of the Terran Devastation class Heavy war machine for MAATAC.  This is a good sized piece of pewter, with two twin-barrel turrets, a commander's cupola weapon, a bow-mounted weapon, and plenty of small anti-personnel/close defense turrets.

Ooopps

My new blog - Small Scale Stuff - should now be viewable, sorry 'bout that!

MAATAC project split

Just a brief note -  I am splitting my MAATAC stuff off onto its own blog - Small Scale Stuff.  (Yes, I do not listen to my own good advice!)


I am returning this channel to its previously scheduled Tékumel and other fantasy goodness...


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The Plan

Yes, a plan would be great!

If you have seen any of my other blogs, you will know that I tend to suffer from a combination of 'project creep' and 'Oh-Shiny-itis'.  I am going to endeavor to keep these in check with the MAATAC project...

First - find and catalog what minis I have in hand.  The previous post was a great start, but a copy of the MAATAC rules and more minis should be here someplace.

Second - find and list the other minis I need.  I am certain that I do not have any infantry or air support.  Other than the RAATAC's, the MAATAC line does not have 'infantry', so I will go off searching for suitable minis from other vendors.  Same thing with aircraft.

Third - terrain.  I have no 1/285 terrain, but I have a lot of ideas!  One issue that I discussed with my lovely wife (and primary gaming partner) has been resolved - a wintry landscape will be used, hence the white basecoat on the Conquerors pictured previous.

Fourth - rules.  I am a rules hoarder from long ago, and I will need to go through and list everything that is remotely useful, as this will provide much of the foundation for the minis shopping list.


Meanwhile, I will continue to slap white paint onto the vehicles I have already found.

12 June 2011

MAATAC

(NOTE:  This is a copy of a previous post on one of my other blogs)


The recent announcement of five (yes five!) new vehicles for the venerable MAATAC miniatures line from Monday Knight Productions (see this link) got me to digging into my boxes of old gaming stuff, and, indeed, I do have some dusty, old, half-forgotten MAATAC minis. First up, Terrans:




This is the Conqueror class Medium war machine. This mini, and the entire MAATAC line, is nominally 1/300 scale, but as one can observe in the pics, they are large. The detailing is good, and this particular tank has twin turret-mounted cannons, a large bow-mounted weapon, and small turrets on the hull sides.




This is a Carnivoran Gnasher class Light war machine. Tracked, like the Terran above, with one main gun in the turret, this vehicle has a low profile.





Two views of the Carnivoran Fang class Destroyer. Low and wide, with an abundance of hull-mounted weapons (no turret) - if I remember the original MAATAC rules correctly these are torpedo (missile) launchers. Nice detailing, if you can get by the mold lines that I forgot to remove many years ago!




An Entomolian Black Widow class Destroyer. Again, legs instead of tracks, and a large fixed hull-mounted cannon.



An Entomolian Fire Ant class Light war machine. High profile, with legs instead of tracks. Lots of hull and turret detail on this one.


The group shot:




These vehicles are big, and I do not have any of the heavy war machines! Hmmm, I thought that I did have some, and some of the robot infantry (RAATACs); more digging for me then.
I am not sure what to do with them however. I do like tanks, but I would need appropriate rules and of course many more minis, including infantry and maybe even some sort of aerial support. And, interesting terrain. I have long thought to myself that if I was to launch a micro-armour style project, it would be in a very specific environment, with desert or snowy conditions being the major contenders.

One more blog...

So here we are, at the start of yet another blog.  Why am I starting up another (check my profile!)?  Maybe it is because small minis were my first - micro-armour battles using CinC and GHQ and Heroics & Ros, way back in  1982.  I still find 1/285-1/300-6mm minis to be fascinating; if only I could convince my wife of that! (She prefers 28mm)  The mass effect of lots of minis on a small base is wonderful, and getting reasonably close to ground scale is a plus.

I intend to keep this to land battles.  If you are interested in naval stuff look to my Mini Ship Gaming blog.  As far as aerial matters, I can foresee some air support in certain genres of land battles, but nothing more...

11 June 2011

Another distraction - MAATAC

The recent announcement of five (yes five!) new vehicles for the venerable MAATAC miniatures line from Monday Knight Productions (see this link) got me to digging into my boxes of old gaming stuff, and, indeed, I do have some dusty, old, half-forgotten MAATAC minis. First up, Terrans:




This is the Conqueror class Medium war machine. This mini, and the entire MAATAC line, is nominally 1/300 scale, but as one can observe in the pics, they are large. The detailing is good, and this particular tank has twin turret-mounted cannons, a large bow-mounted weapon, and small turrets on the hull sides.




This is a Carnivoran Gnasher class Light war machine. Tracked, like the Terran above, with one main gun in the turret, this vehicle has a low profile.




Two views of the Carnivoran Fang class Destroyer. Low and wide, with an abundance of hull-mounted weapons (no turret) - if I remember the original MAATAC rules correctly these are torpedo (missile) launchers. Nice detailing, if you can get by the mold lines that I forgot to remove many years ago!




An Entomolian Fire Ant class Light war machine. High profile, with legs instead of tracks. Lots of hull and turret detail on this one.



An Entomolian Black Widow class Destroyer. Again, legs instead of tracks, and a large fixed hull-mounted cannon.


The group shot:



These vehicles are big, and I do not have any of the heavy war machines! Hmmm, I thought that I did have some, and some of the robot infantry (RAATACs); more digging for me then.

I am not sure what to do with them however. I do like tanks, but I would need appropriate rules and of course many more minis, including infantry and maybe even some sort of aerial support. And, interesting terrain. I have long thought to myself that if I was to launch a micro-armour style project, it would be in a very specific environment, with desert or snowy conditions being the major contenders.


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22 May 2011

Hlutrgú, part 4

A little bit closer to completion, every week - here is a pic of the current look:



On the left, the mini has its second coat of neat Future. On the right, the mini has a coat of Pebeo matte finish on top of the Future - cuts the shine right down, although I appear to have missed a few spots. Also just visible on the right-hand mini is a mottled stripe pattern, although it seems to be just a bit light compared to the rest of the skin.


One more pic from the table:



The first set of shields for my Sérqu troops (and two for some dwarfs), coated in Reaper Master Paint brush-on primer.


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08 May 2011

Line-up

OK, it is time to stop and take stock of what is going on at the hobby table. I have to do this on occasion as I suffer greatly from 'oh-shiny'-itis and as my lovely wife says, I do need to keep to three projects in order to get anything done!

Top of the list, of course, is Tékumel. My Hlutrgú warband is nearing completion (pics soon!). Sérqu is next and the Qól after that. The big problem at this moment is getting organized and ordering all of the new stuff Howard has lined up for the Tékumel Club! I also have some recent additions (thanks Jeff!) to get into the painting queue as well. And, with almost enough minis finished for games, the need of proper terrain is rising.

Next - I want to set up several groups of minis for fantasy skirmish gaming a la Song of Blades & Heroes. SBH is a generic set, so almost anything goes. I see this project as a salve for my oh-shiny-itis, as I can purchase and paint small quantities of diverse minis and they will go together on the table. I envision mixing Landsknechts, Romans, Vikings, and Sumerians with dwarves, elves, Reptus, orcs, and maybe even *shudder* Tékumel...

Way in the distance, I am preparing for one more try at a historical project. 5th century BCE is leading the pack - Greeks and Persians. Mini selection is not a stumbling point here - lots of great minis out there - but the choice of appropriate rules is key for me and that might take a while. This is a project for the future, maybe even next year.


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21 April 2011

Tékumel naval, part 3

With a little bit of free time at the table recently, I turned to making my first scratch-built Tékumel ship, a srügánta (comparable to a Greek bireme):


Plastic and balsa together for the hull. Oh boy, is it a chunky ship! Just goes to show that simply measuring things does not make a nice mini. The srügánta drawing in Qadárdàlikoi is much more sleek, although it does have an interesting sternwalk. Also, when I realized that my ship was not coming along, I made a very simple mistake and did not test-fit the aft superstructure piece before gluing it down; if you could see the mini from a top view it would be obvious, and too wide.

With the above in mind, I tried to draw some designs for more suitable ships:


The versions of srügánta here are still fairly chunky compared to the original, so I need to work with that. The zírunel, however, should be properly large and imposing and the drawing tries to be. I am also experimenting with slightly different architecture styles for the different nations plying the seas. I would like the ships of Tsolyánu flotillas to not only be a different color but a subtly different shape from their Mu'ugalavyáni counterparts.


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