Monday, 27 April 2009

55 Days at Sea: Ship List: Other Nations

Turning now, to the remaining nations and their ships. I've had to rapidly update this list as I've literally stumbled over new information, and of course, its accuracy can't be guaranteed, but I'm sure that it represents most of what was present. One comment I must make is that not all of these vessels were present at the same time; if you arbitrarily divide the Boxer Rebellion into three phases, then the naval presence waxed and waned:

First Phase: The initial crisis, re-inforcement of the Legations, Admiral Seymour's abortive attempt at a relief expedition, would see the vessels listed in an earlier post referencing the Taku Forts bombardment website :
especially the smaller gunboats/TBDs.

Second Phase: The Taku Forts operation, Tientsin, and the successful relief of Peking under Gaselee, would see a large build-up from all nations, perhaps where vessels were arriving from further afield with troop re-inforcements.

Third Phase: The 'mopping up' operations under Count von Waldersee: This would perhaps see the relief of vessels earlier on station, and you could definitely point to a build up in the German presence, i.e, the Battleships Brandenburg and Worth. 

I'm afraid I'm not really confident enough to break down when each ship came and went; this isn't a doctoral thesis afterall!

Anyway, without further ado:


Protected Cruiser: D'Entrcasteaux: own class, N2324/23a
Descartes, Pascal: Descartes Class, N2326

2nd Class Cruiser: Jean Bart: Alger Class, N2328

GunBoat: Lion or Leon (?): class unknown, no direct Navwar equivalent.

Great web page regarding the French Squadron prior to 1900:

U.S.A. :

Battleship: Oregon: own class, (Indiana/Massachusetts), N6123

Protected Cruiser: Newark: San Francisco Class, N6330/31
Nashville: own class, no Navwar equivalent

Unprotected Cruiser: Yorktown: own class, no Navwar equivalent

Despatch Vessel: Monocacy: double-ended side wheeler, launched 1866, use N4711 Esplatore


Armoured Cruiser: Vettor Pisani: Carlo Alberto Class, N4308

Protected Cruiser: Stromboli, Ettore Fieramosca: Etna Class, no Navwar equivalent
Calabria: own class, N4309/25
Elba: own class, N4324


Armoured Cruiser: Kaiser und Konigin Maria Theresa: own class, N8133
Kaiser Karl IV: own class, no known Navwar equivalent

Protected Cruiser: Kaiserin Elisabeth: Kaiser Franz Josef Class, N8138
Zenta, Aspern: Zenta Class, N8137


Battleship: Brandenburg, Worth: Brandenburg Class, N3112

Armoured Cruiser: Kaiserin Augusta: own class, N3330/31

Protected Cruiser: Hansa, Hertha: Victoria Luise Class, (as Freya), N3327
Gefion: own class, no Navwar equivalent
Irene: own class, no Navwar equivalent
SeeAdler: Bussard Class, no Navwar equivalent

GunBoat: Iltis, class unknown, no Navwar equivalent


Battleship: Petropavlosk: Poltava Class, N7110
Cissoi Veliki: own class, N7111
Navarin: own class, N7112

Armoured Cruiser: Rossiya: own class, N7309/10
Dimitri Donskoi: own class, N7322a
Vladimir Monomakh: own class, N7323a
Rurik: own class, N7311/20

Protected Cruiser: Amiral Korniloff: own class, N7319/24

Sloop: Razboinik, Vjestnik: Kreisser Class, no Navwar equivalent

GunBoat: Sivutch, Bobr: Sivutch Class, no Navwar equivalent
Korietz, Mandjur: Mandjur Class, I used the Khabry, N7701

Armoured Gun Vessel: Gremyaschi, Otvajny: Grozyaschi Class, no Navwar equivalent

Torpedo Gunboat: Vsadnik, Gaidamk: Kazarski Class, I used Abrek, N7702
Gilyak: own class, could probably use the Abrek as well, or perhaps the Puilki, N7509.

Aaaaand Breathe......
Phew, that completes things so far, although of course a cogitation on the Chinese vessels that may have been around is forthcoming, as well as some more photos of the Russian and Japanese contingents done so far, so watch this space!

Sunday, 26 April 2009

55 Days at Sea: Ship List Extra!

A hot-off-the-press addition to my previous post on the British and Japanese ships; more information has come to light, typically just as I thought I had a good list put together!

I should explain my sources somewhat, to show I'm not pulling this stuff out of my hat.  The starting point was Peter Fleming's "The Siege at Peking", followed by Dix's "All the World's Navies in the Boxer Rebellion", and bringing up the rear were the two available Osprey titles. To be honest, though, apart from the major warships, there wasn't that much detail here, so I started looking online, from the Taku forts bombardment page quoted in an earlier post, to the battleships-cruisers website and beyond.

The latest discovery then, is the following:

Scroll down in particular to the entry marked DNS 19 June 1900.

This site has interesting snippets from various English newspaper reports of the period, and is rich in names of the vessel involved. Of course, not everything you find on the web can be regarded as necessarily authoritative, and furthermore contemporary newspaper accounts might be based on speculation or contain factual errors, but having cross referenced as much as possible, this seems like a useful source.

The additional ships, then:

Great Britain:

Sloops: (What Jane's key terms as 'other ships of slight fighting value')

Unfortunately, there doesn't appear to be much coverage of this type or size of vessel in the Navwar range, but for reference:

Daphne, Phoenix: Swallow Class (?)
Redpole, Peacock, Plover: Pheasant Class (?)
Linnet, Swift, Esk: Class unknown

Also mentioned: 6 Gunboats or Torpedo gunboats, 4 River Gunboats, the Tamar 'receiving ship', Wivern 'coastal defence ship' and a 'surveying ship'.


Protected Cruiser: Yoshino: Yoshino Class, N5325.

Now, of note in the texts of the newspaper extracts is a large number of references to the ships of other nations, so I'll have to re-jig their lists a bit more too, and post later with the updates.

As always, any feedback will be appreciated, and if I'm going wrong somewhere, feel free to let me know.
One thing I am sure of, another big additional order to Navwar is in the pipeline!

Friday, 24 April 2009

55 Days at Sea: Ship List Update-Britain and Japan

An update, now, to the list of vessels that were in theatre during the Boxer Rebellion in 1900. Some ferreting around at, along with some 'deep googling' elsewhere, has revealed some more information on who was what, where, and when.
I can't say that this is by any means a perfect list, and anyone with more information is welcome to contribute, but this is what I have so far. Where known, I've included the ship type and class, and the relevant Navwar catalogue code for the vessel, type, or likely 'look-a-like':

Great Britain:

Battleship (First Class Modern Ironclad):

HMS Centurion, Barfleur: Centurion Class, Navwar N1130
Goliath: Canopus Class, N1127

Armoured Cruiser:

Orlando, Aurora, Undaunted: Orlando Class, N1352
Endymion: Edgar Class, N1342
Powerful: Powerful Class, N1344

1st Class Cruiser:

Dido, Isis: Eclipse Class, N1341

2nd Class Cruiser:

Bonaventure, Hermione: Astrea Class, N1357
Pique: Apollo or Aeolus Class, N1355
Arethusa: Leander Class: no known equivalent in Navwar catalogue

3rd Class Cruiser:

Mohawk, Cossack: Archer Class: no known equivalent in Navwar catalogue; some doubt as to whether Cossack was present, Mohawk was from Australian New South Wales contingent.

Wallaroo (ex-HMS Persian): Pearl Class, N1354, from Australian New South Wales contingent.

Torpedo Boat Destroyer:

Fame: Desperate Class, in Navwar catalogue under 'D' class destroyer, N1528
Whiting: Star Class, Navwar 'C' class destroyer, N1529

Torpedo Gunboat:

Lizard: Bramble Class, no known equivalent in Navwar catalogue, part of Australian NSW contingent
Algerine: Nymphe Class (?), no known equivalent in Navwar catalogue


Pygmy: Pygmy Class (?), no known Navwar equivalent
Protector: Class unknown, no Navwar equivalent, part of South Australian contingent

Despatch Vessel:

Alacrity: Class unknown, no Navwar equivalent

Steel Screw Sloop:

Rosario: Condor Class, no Navwar equivalent

Troop Ships/Hospital Ships:

SS Salamis: Class unknown, no Navwar equivalent, part of Australian NSW contingent
Orontes: Class unknown, no Navwar equivalent
Maine: Class unknown, no Navwar equivalent

As you can see, plenty of gaps in the coverage at Navwar, and my knowledge: any suggestions for good look-a-likes would be appreciated!

A few new internet references, particularly on the Australian involvement:

Scroll down to bottom of page for ship list:


Armoured Cruiser:

Tokiwa: Asama Class, N5312

Protected Cruiser:

Suma: Suma Class, N5329
Kasagi: Chitose Class, N5324


Atago: Maya Class, N5339

So, that's a start, anyway, I'll be adding in the other nations in future posts.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Weird World War I: Part 6

Now, as promised, photographic evidence of the latest Land Dreadnoughts to terrorise the Earth: introducing the 'Devastators', and their diminutive cousins, the 'intermediate' class of dreadnoughts!
Below we see a pair of the unfeasible self-propelled guns that are part of the arsenal of Austro-Hungary, in a camouflage scheme designed by Vienna's pre-eminent botanist, guaranteed to defeat the compound eyes of any invading Martian! (For which, read.....I went a bit mad with the paint-job.........oh well.)

They are teamed with their ammunition carriers with shell loading cranes, ensuring a never ending supply of crater-makers. (Unfortunately, I couldn't find the brass etched mesh I wanted to use for these, and had to go with simple plasti-card and wire; that's the problem with never throwing anything away - you can't find it when you need it.)
Obviously basing is yet to be done, I'm not sure yet if they should go on the same base, as it will be very large, although I suppose these behemoths probably wouldn't move around too much during a game.
The Navwar Karl-Gerat is absolutely ideal for this sort of conversion, it already looks the part, just some length added to the barrel and you have a super-weapon beyond all imagining; how much does it weigh.....who knows? What calibre......what do you fancy,
280mm.......380mm.....whatever you like!

Next up, something stirs in the hinterland of Anatolia, surely a Mark IV Tank? Yet it looks as if it is about to destroy that whole farm up ahead under its whirling tracks, and what is that on top?

Yes, you guessed it, we have the intermediate class Ottoman Land Dreadnought, complete with armoured observation turret in national stereotypical colour and form! O.K., I went a bit mad with the colour scheme here as well, but it's easily remedied if I feel differently in a couple of weeks (phew....what was I thinking?) Afterall, what self respecting servant of Attaturk would be seen without a Fez?

These represent a poor man's solution to matching the likes of Great Britain's HMLD Indefatigable seen in a previous post, and will certainly have no trouble dealing with standard AFVs or artillery. Navwar's Mk I 'Mother' does double duty here with a couple of additions from the bits box, again an easy conversion to do.

Talking of conversions, what about building from scratch, (In a sort of Dr Frankenstein, cannabilistic way...) well I had to go to Tsarist Russia for inspiration here, and have completed the production model of the 'Tsar Tank' or Neoptyr by Lebedenko, which has been given the armoured turntable of a decommissioned battleship in order to mount the world's first turnable turret on an AFV, shame it only mounts 47mm pop guns. Obviously the enemy will be frozen in terror at the ridiculous contraption as it approaches, and run for their lives!

Certainly, I had a lot of fun putting these chaps together, and they help to underline the world wide nature of the conflict of 'Weird' WWI; I think next I'll be looking at some of the Alien forces, making use of the 2mm Sci-Fi on offer from Irregular, that's if I don't get distracted by thinking about what the Japanese, Italians, or even the Americans might field!

Friday, 17 April 2009

55 Days at Sea: Part 6

Now a look at the forces deployed by some of the hotch-potch of nations assembled off the coast of China in 1900. Without a doubt the defeat suffered in the first Sino-Japanese War 0f 1898 had turned the spotlight on the weakness of the Manchu Court, and as Philip Joseph wrote: "The Balkan scramble over and the partition of Africa nearly complete, the disclosure of China's weakness by Japan served as an invitation to the colonising Powers to stake their claims in China." I guess everybody wanted a piece of the action in terms of treaty port concessions, access to markets and spheres of influence, and just as importantly, did not want to let their rivals get something to their own disadvantage, so all the colours of the rainbow were present - great for adding variety to a wargaming project such as this!

Above we see most of the Austro-Hungarian contingent, led by the armoured cruiser Kaiser und Konigin Maria Theresa; I had recently come across the following website:

which has an excellent overview of their deployment; it also allowed me to add the Aspern and Kaiserin Elisabeth to the growing list of vessels to include! (Aspern is still in drydock on the workbench...) Factoid of the week here is the presence on board the Maria Theresa of one Georg Ludwig von Trapp, yes, he of The Sound of Music fame! (It gives you an excuse to stay in the room if a female member of your family insists on watching Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer in the film....) See a summary of his military career here, and blot out all thought of the singing:

Navwar's models of the Austro-Hungarians are nicely sculpted and detailed, and give a good sense of the neat proportions of these ships. Of course, the reason these were on the scene in 1900, was in order to not to lose out to their country's great rival, namely Italy, which had never forgiven them for winning the battle of Lissa in 1866 - a good source of rivalry for my 'what if' scenarios.
Italy was a sort of johnny-come-lately to the rather tawdry horse race to cut a piece of the Chinese pie, and had demanded the lease of San Men Bay in Chekiang as a treaty port in 1899, which was apparently one of the five remaining places in China that no other country had yet made a bid upon! Ironically, the Chinese rejected the application, and no doubt in something of a huff, the Italians despatched the protected cruisers Elba and Calabria:

Navwar's version of the Lombardia class ship, the Elba, is a little disappointing in terms of the detail to her aft section, and does not match the view I have of her in the Janes book in this respect, but the Calabria has a great business-like look about her.

Next up we have the fledgling superpower that was America, fresh from her resounding naval victories in the Spanish-American War of 1898, which meant she was now punching her weight amongst the more established powers. Furthermore, in great contrast to the rapacious land-grabbing of the others, the U.S. had negotiated the Treaty of Wanghia with China, and earned trade and missionary agreements with no need for any territorial concessions on the part of the Chinese, so probably held the moral high ground during this camapign, or at least more than any other nation. (Now you knew Charlton Heston would never represent the baddies!)
Her small squadron is led by the battleship Oregon, apparently a bit of a tub in terms of sea-worthiness and stability, but mounting the largest guns of any vessel in the campaign, at 13". Not forgetting she was recently battle-tested, at Santiago Bay, in Cuba, where she did the damage to Spain's Cristobal Colon:

She is accompanied by the Cruiser Newark, a model that comes with a great set of sails from Navwar, which I had to leave out for the sake of consistency, as no doubt these would have been struck before combat; I am thinking about maybe adding masts to all the models at some point, but as this was my first attempt at 1/3000th, I did not want to get too bogged down in scratch building (Was that a fore, main or mizzen?) the requisite pieces from the start.

Finally, we have the little treasure that was the Monocacy, a Civil War era sidewheeler - so what's not to love about it! I had to use Navwar's Italian 'Esplatore' Despatch vessel here as a look-alike, with the aft funnel removed, but this is a great looking miniature even in this small scale. Lots of detail on this ship at this excellent website:

Next up we have the Ancien Regime in all its Gloire, why, la Belle France, of course! She is represented by a trio of sleek, greyhound-like ships, D'Entrecasteaux, Descartes and Pascal:

The sculpts here appear rather narrow in comparison to ships of the other nations, although perhaps this is true to the originals in terms of proportions, and when unpainted rather resemble submarines than cruisers!

Finally we have France's teutonic neighbour with some real mean machines; if the Descartes is a greyhound, these guys are war elephants! Navwar has done a great job here in giving these a properly functional look, and the detail on the Kaiserin Augusta in particular is excellent, probably the best of all the models used here so far.

If we are looking for the villain of the piece, Peter Fleming sums it up well in his book "The Siege at Peking":

"It was however Germany, who, by siezing the port of Kiachow in Shantung, supplied what had been justly called 'not the sole, but the principal cause' of the Boxer Rising and its sponsorship by the central her coup de main Germany gained a ninety nine year's lease of Kiachow Bay, and the city of Tsing-Tao......and extensive railway and mining concessions in Shantung. The Boxers made their first appearance in the province a few months later."

Foreign influence and interference was bound to eventually provoke a backlash, and it is against this backdrop that the various heros and villains assembled off the Taku Bar in 1900.
In the next post, Ill be having a look at the two competing countries that had the most geographical influence in the region, namely Japan and Russia, with a bevy of ships that would later fight it out in the Russo-Japanese War at Tsushima and elsewhere, or if my devious plan works, just might be seen facing off in Chinese waters a few years earlier than planned!

Monday, 13 April 2009

2mm buildings comparison: Part 2

A late entry, now, into the debate on suitable buildings for use with 2mm minis, and a somewhat unconventional idea on what to use. Yes, you've guessed it, 1/3000th scale ones!

"What!" I hear you cry, "we thought he was going a bit too far when he started talking about 1/12ooth for use with 1/900th figures - now he's really lost the plot...."

Well, in typically unmathematical fashion (Scale purists should look away now), I'm throwing away all the various zeros, and putting down a few more comparison photos of some buildings I've just got hold of, concentrating on the 'look' of them when next to 2mm figures.

In the photo above, we have, from the right, 1/1200th Rod Langton, in the middle foreground, Irregular's IKS10, and at the rear and extreme left, the new bee in my bonnet, Navwar's 1/3000th Harbour Pieces.

These were, of course, obtained in order to put together some terrain for my '55 Days at Sea' naval project, and as you can see below, consisted of a pack of 3MH5 Sailing Era strips of Storehouses & 3MH5A Extensions, and one of 3MH6 Sailing Era Workshops & 3MH6A Dockyard House.

The casting and sculpting definition on these pieces is not that great, although it is certainly no worse than the IKS10 from Irregular, and the proportions overall are quite nice. The strips of storehouses measure some 40mm long, and come with two extension pieces that have an overlapping dormer roof, (That unfortunately does not have a high enough pitch, so will need some creative basing to get it to fit), two of each in the pack at £1.10, so if you're searching for look-alikes for terraced housing, these will compare very well with the single row IKS4 available from Irregular themselves, which retails at £1.50.

That depends, of course, on whether you're sceptical about such small scale buildings fitting with 2mm minis, but bear with me....

We see below Langton, Irregular and Navwar 1/3000th next to two blocks of Soldados from Santa Anna's Mexican Army, so i think that, scale differences aside, the 'look' of the real estate is not too much out of synch:

These buildings are designed to replicate ones that are extremely large in real life, so punch above their weight when up against these 2mm giants:

Compare their appearance with IKS10:

Not so very different, methinks, well, at least to my eye, anyway. My weapon of choice is still the Rod Langton 1/1200th, such as the cottages seen in the last picture, and I'll be using the Navwar ones for the 1/3000th scale project as planned, but for the money, the scale impostors from them are worth a shot to add variety to your choice of 2mm property stock:

Monday, 6 April 2009

Weird World War I: Part 5

O.K. - I'm bringing out the Land Dreadnought Big Guns - literally! Emboldened by the rail gun seen in a previous post, I'm having a go at converting some 6mm minis into a class of 'Devastators', weapons capable of taking out a land Dreadnought at one blow, if only from the enormous H.E. and cratering effect of one of their shells.
This is obviously a way for the less technologically capable or budget-starved nations, who are unable to produce the real thing themselves, to employ existing weapons, whether Naval or siege guns, to deadly effect. Once motorized, these weapons can avoid the pitfalls of being stuck in fixed defences, moving from site to site, evading detection, whilst stalking their prey.
I use the term stalk here, advisedly, of course, given that they will weigh hundreds of tons!
I started with a ready-made devastator of unfeasible proportions that actually existed, the German 'Karl Gerat' tracked mortar of WWII vintage. This holds the title of the largest Self-propelled Gun ever made, topping out at 124 tons, and mounting a 60cm or 24" gun capable of firing 1 round every 10 minutes!
This doesn't need much doing to it to give it a 'Weird WWI' look, but I had been admiring the newly released land train models from Brigade recently, and realised that a weapon of this size would need equally large ammunition which it could not effectively carry by itself, so I decided to add on a transport vehicle in convoy to form a truly enormous weapons system. Navwar's G075, and GWG6 A7V Uberlandwagen pair up below, the latter forming the rear transport section:

Mocking up an idea of the two together, (forgive the blue-tac!) we have a carrier which will have an added ammunition lift and some oversized shells on board. These I found rolling around in a desk drawer at work, not sure if they are some sort of pen nib or electrical connector, but they fit the bill as giant, heavy duty shells. I'm going to add some semblance of connector and loading gear, probably from some brass etched mesh I've got left over from an old project.

The whole, of course, will base up at a whopping 80x40mm, so definitely not for the faint hearted!
Next up, I've invested in a pair of Navwar's GWB19 Mk I Tank 'Mother' - this will form the basis of a sort of intermediate Land Dreadnought, as if an existing armoured vehicle had been super-sized in order to compete with the amphibious monsters of the Great Powers. I think the addition of a top turret should add more than a flavour of the AFV seen in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade as the plaything of the Ottoman Governor, so this will definitely serve as the front-line machine of the Turks. As you can see, this will base up at 40x40mm, so should scale well alongside existing minis.

Finally we have the work-in-progress photos of the production model of the Lebedenko Tank from Tsarist Russia. Based on the bonkers concept of the giant bicycle-wheeled behemoth seen here: (Scroll down to the bottom of the page)

This version has done away with the wheels that were so vulnerable to artillery fire with something armoured and is seen below for comparison against the Grand Char de Rupture La Normandie:

It has been cannibalised from the rear wheels of the aforementioned 'Mother', the carriage of a 15mm Zulu-War era light field gun, and other various plastic and metal bits and bobs: observant readers will notice a miniature hex nut, some steel pins, and parts of a Royal British Legion Remembrance Day poppy (Never throw anything away!).
Will this weapon be any more successful than the original? We shall any event, I think these new entries prove that the Global arms race has begun in earnest!

Photos of painted examples to follow as soon as they're ready.

Thursday, 2 April 2009

6mm North West Frontier: Part 3

"The enemy were massing in inconvenient strength among the hills, and the moving of many green standards warned.....that the tribes were 'up'.....Then the foe began to shout with a great shouting, and a mass - a black mass - detached itself from the main body, and rolled over the ground with horrid speed...."

(From 'The Drums of the Fore and Aft' by Rudyard Kipling)

Well not quite a mass, but 32 blocks or so done so far, for a total of 196 'figures'. As you may have seen in a previous post, the Afghan/Pathan range from Irregular is quite typical of their output; at first sight a bit lumpen, but on closer inspection, some detail and character emerge.
In a sense, I think a better painter than myself could do a lot with these figures, but I just went for a bright and cheerful colour scheme, and tried to show up the main areas of the sculpt, rather than outlining every strap, belt or fold.

Afterall, the curse of doing a Colonial period is the fact that the Native side always requires large numbers, but these figure blocks paint up quickly, and look good from a 'table top / three foot rule' distance. The basing is the same as the Imperial Troops; although you could argue for a sort of horde like basing in depth, given the characteristic use of ambush by these tribesmen, I went for a skirmish line that would allow them to line up behind terrain or scenery.

What I have done, however, rather than merely basing whole blocks side by side, is to continue the strategy I had with the command stands, and cut and chopped here and there to add variety, or even lopped off the odd miscast figure or two.

The only individual command stand I have done is the counterpart to the British Brigadier, in this case an Emir or 'Mad Mullah', accompanied by his Russian advisers. (Have to have some representatives of the Great Game on hand!) This base is made up of GWR15, Russian Generals and mounted messenger, and IND35 Gurkha Command with two kneeling figures removed from either end. This block has a good looking standard, as well as two native drummers, although it's important to note that it does not depict Ghurkas under British command, but rather a commander of an earlier era, so it adds a bit of variety to the Pathan leaders: 

Cutting and chopping the various stands also allows better placement of flags, so that I could identify a Left, Right and Centre amongst the Pathan troops:

As the framework of the project was the Tirah campaign, there were, I'm afraid, no cavalry or artillery to speak of on the native side, so for a bit of extra interest I added in a couple of IND66 Afghan Regular Infantry; at the time, the British were nervous that the uprising might become more widespread, and draw in the forces of neighbouring Afghanistan, so these chaps are deserters, who have crossed the border to join their cousins in making war on the infidel. 

Next we have a pic of the final group of native troops on the Imperial side; IND34 Gurkha Infantry, a stand of kneeling firers, and IND51, Mutiny era Gurkha Rifles skirmishing. Both of these are a little underwhelming, unfortunately not a brandished khukri amongst them!

Finally, as promised, a shot of the Elephant Gun tramping toward the Khyber Pass:

All in all, the figures from Irregular available to cover this period are cheap and cheerful, and sometimes do not quite meet expectations in terms of variety of poses or clarity of sculpts. For the life of me, however, I can't find it in me to be disappointed, as they allowed a quick and dirty painter like me to set up both sides of the conflict relatively easily, and overall gave a good enough flavor of the period, enough to inspire me to actually make it to the gaming table and try them out for once!