Welcome to "Adventures in Lead", a blog dedicated to the hobby of miniature wargaming. The figures and terrain on this site are mainly for a campaign set in exotic "Indostan", a distant land bearing remarkable similarities to 18th century India during the Seven Years War. Bits and pieces from other projects may pop up here as well from time to time, including colonials, gladiators, pirates, dinosaur-hunting and even some RPG'ing.
The actual campaign journal and after action reports for the Indostan campaign can be found on their own blog - "Indostan: The Jewel in the Crown", the link to which is found by clicking the small image below-left.
If you do find anything remotely interesting on this blog please leave a comment, it's what keeps these sites going and their authors motivated - Thanks for looking.

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Building a 28mm Gladiator Arena (part I) for Blood on the Sands

 There is a small local gaming convention being run on the 2nd July called Shire Con, an adhoc mini MOAB of sorts, put on to compensate the fact that the last two MOABs have been cancelled due to COVID.It will be mostly Warhammer competitions no doubt but the opportunity presented itself for me run a participation game - so I thought it would be a good time to let Blood on the Sands into the wild again.Victor, one of the very active and invaluable play testers will be helping me out.

So for just under a week I have been attempting to get a proper gladiator amphitheater ready for Shire Con, something fit enough to display BotS on. There is nothing wrong with playing on a simple hex-grid, this is how BotS was designed to be played, but if you want to put on a spectacle it has to look the part. The arena would represent a small provincial amphitheater, something very far removed from the Colosseum. 

I have spoken about this before but enclosing an arena you intend on playing a game in is a very BAD idea. You quickly grow tired of reaching over the walls and down to the arena sands, especially playing a dynamic game like BotS where there is a lot of moving around. Thus, I opted for an open half-arena, for playability. I'm waiting on a pair of mdf doors and I have accepted the fact that the spectators I have had 3D printed by a mate will not be here in time. Still it would be nice to be able to play on this on Saturday regardless. The image below is where the build stands with 3 days until the con. Wish me luck...

I'll show some images of the process that got me here. Firstly transcribing a grid to the foam board. Not as tedious as it would seem and then lightly adding sand, grit and grout powder.

A good solid base for the arena walls and bleachers out of proper blue XPS foam. The green stuff is the horrid crap that our local hardware chain, Bunnings, is passing off as XPS. The Editor's box is made of foamcore and will house the doors.

The bleachers are made out of white packing foam as they will not be played on and will likely be covered in as many spectators as I can manage. Stairs were cut into the bleachers to make the arena as realistic as possible. The arena wall itself was covered in thick card not only to help hide all the sins but to give a nice smooth finish.

The walls of the arena will be edged with wooden railings, kindly laser cut by a friend from mdf. The cut-off ends of the arena have been finished as if to show the interior structure of the arena and in the Editor's box I used a modelling clay with a texture roller to make a stone patterned floor.

Sunday, June 5, 2022

Babel Expanded and Second Game of Ruthless

Six of us got together for a second game of Ruthless, riding off the success of our smaller first game.

To accommodate six players I had to increase the table size from 4' by 3', to a 6' by 3', which also meant adding quite a few more buildings.

The six factions were: Lawmen, Bounty Hunters, Pinkertons, the Durham Gang, Duke's Gang and Banditos. These were then roughly divided into sides, the "Good" guys (Lawmen, Bounty Hunters and Pinkertons) and the "Bad" guys (Durham Gang, Duke's Gang and Banditos). Alliances were pretty loose, especially amongst the "Bad" guys.

Each faction had their own goals and ways to achieve victory. The basic premise of the story is that the two outlaw gangs are robbing Babel's bank. They have a loose agreement concerning sharing the loot. The Pinkertons have arrived on a stagecoach in town to escort some passengers and their wealth, along with collecting some more cash from the bank. The Banditos know that the Pinkertons are carrying a small fortune on the coach and plan to rob them. Meanwhile, the Bounty Hunters have descended on Babel knowing there is a smorgasbord of bounties to be collected and the Lawmen are of course trying to prevent all of this chaos.

The game was fast and furious with a lot of blood being shed. The Durham Gang and the Banditos took the brunt of the early game casualties, allowing the Lawmen, Bounty Hunters and the Pinkertons to descend on Main Street and the Bank. The Durham Gang (played by me) were brutally gunned down (mainly by VERY unlucky dice rolling) while simultaneously trying to rescue the youngest Durham from the Jail and bravely (stupidly?) making escape out the front door of the Bank. The Mexicans faced a similar fate when two of them started shooting at the Pinkertons guarding the coach. With assistance from the Bounty Hunters the attempt was quickly thwarted and the Banditos hunted down.

This left the Lawmen to freely pursue Duke's Gang, who with hostages in tow and a good haul of loot were heading for their horses. Duke's Gang escaped out a Bank window and then into other buildings to avoid the hell, that was Main Street. A climatic battle took place in the graveyard which thwarted the gang's escape but also cost the Marshall his life.

Some of the highlights (more like lowlights) were; a mounted Bandito running down the Bounty Hunter boss; the Marshall taking on Duke's Gang in fisticuffs (because he couldn't shoot at them until shot at); a Bounty Hunter taking a hostage just before he was shot at and the poor hostage was killed instead; the deadly accuracy of the Pinkertons; the Durhams turning on Duke's Gang over loot; and last but not least the Bounty Hunters trying to claim the Durham as a bounty while he was already locked up in jail.

In the end the Pinkertons and Bounty Hunters came tied 1st Place and each of the other factions achieved only a single victory point each. A great game with a great group of guys. Can't wait to do it again.

Here are some random pictures of the game:



These are some of the cards that I made, including the faction "mission cards", character sheets and Bounty cards.