Saturday, 26 March 2016

Adobe buildings and some naval gaming from the Tin Shed

At last the Easter long weekend has come and a chap can spend more time in his tin shed!

Having the opportunity now to use larger war gaming tables brings with it the need to increase my terrain holdings. The first project was to construct some more Adobe dwellings (in 15mm) to bulk out my villages for ITLSU.
A few simple cork buildings and the corner towers for a Ottoman fort for use in Gallipoli (in particular Sedd el Bahr castle for V-Beach landings) and Middle East scenarios.
I've been using Woodland Scenics plaster cloth over the cork to give a better textured finish. Here you see the plaster laid over the roofs with the walls to follow.
With the new set-up in the shed, I've been keen to do a little naval gaming and in a moment of creativity decided to create a backdrop on canvas which I can use to improve the feel of the table. I was rather pleased with what was achieved with three acrylic colours and absolutely no pre-planning - I just mixed a few blues and greys on the fly and slapped it on. Now the base cloth looks rubbish - so that is next!
A set-up atmospheric shot of some Panzerschiffe 1:2400 ships taking advantage of the new backdrop.
Battle off Ulsan
A favourite encounter of mine (because it's the only Russo-Japanese War naval scenario I have the ships for!) is the engagement off Ulsan, Korea, in The Sea Of Japan, on 14 August 1904, 0500 Hrs.

I have played this scenario with a number of rule sets (see earlier posts), but this time I return to Coaling Stations, a set of quick play pre-dreadnaught rules by Twylite Games I keep coming back to. I really like the card mechanism for giving orders - it tends to add a little 'fog of war' to solo naval gaming.

Here's a shot of the opening salvo!
Through the light mist that persisted to midday (in this scenario) Admiral Kamimura (right) spots Admiral Iessen's Vladivostok Squadron at a distance of 3.2 nautical miles and opens fire with his 8-inch guns scoring a hit
on the Gromoboi.
I've been working on improving the way I store gaming aids on the table. I've recently transferred all my markers into old tobacco tins as I feel they give a nice feel to the table. In this case, the Capstan Old Navy Cut tobacco tin seems quite appropriate (even if it hales from 30 years after the RJ War)!


  1. Pleased to see I'm not the only one who uses the Battle off Ulsan as a test scenario for new rules sets. I've not tried Coaling Stations so will have to have a look later.


  2. Thanks for dropping by, Richard. Yes, what started as a convenience (e.g. what I had the ships for) has become exactly that - a great test scenario for new rules! A nice simple cruiser action like this should still have the opportunity to expose the nuances of a new ruleset, I feel. I like the concept behind Coaling Stations - the rules have some holes and could do with a serious re-write, but I keep coming back nevertheless. I'd be keen to hear your thoughts if you give them a go. Cheers Alan