Monday, 17 November 2014

"Across The Dead Earth" - WIP - Part One

For the past few weeks I’ve been reading with great envy a number of blog postings regarding the post-apocalyptic skirmish wargame “Across The Death Earth” by “Dead Earth Games”. I’m not entirely sure why I never opted in for the kickstarter but battle reports such as ‘Capture The Convoy’ on Simon Quinton’s “Brummie’s Wargaming Blog” made me determined to grab a copy of the rules just as soon as they were on general release. A couple of weeks ago this finally happened and I immediately ordered a copy their excellent rulebook. After a very quick turnaround it arrived and for the past few days, in between some other painting projects, I’ve been pouring through Rich Chappell’s extremely well-written ‘survival manual’ trying to work out what scenery and miniatures I need to get gaming in a world set “three generations on from The Last War”.

There's a very good review of the "Across The Death Earth" kickstarter and its models on "The Spiderweb Of History" blog here:
http://historyspiderweb.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/well-done-to.html

Back in March of this year I picked up a bag of 28mm scale wooden Commercial Style Buildings by “Wargame-Model-Mods”. Over three posts I constructed one of the larger buildings, textured it, painted it and based it… and then placed the remaining nine structures on a shelf for another day… Readers of the “Across The Dead Earth” scenery postings on both “Brummie’s Wargaming Blog” and “Brains And Guts” will know that these buildings are precisely what I need to create some fun-packed post-apocalyptic battles, so I’ve taken down three of “W-M-M” models and started painting them up so I’ll at least have a handful of structures to fight around during my first battle report.
As you can see these will be nothing actually fancy, just simply single-storey and ground floor ruins. But they should provide plenty of cover and vantage points to start with. If you fancy high-rise mayhem then I’d urge you to visit Lord Siwoc’s posting “Post Apoc Terrain Buildings” and see just what you can do with “W-M-M” buildings: http://lordsiwoc.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/post-apoc-terrain-buildings.html

Likewise Simon Quinton is doing a fantastic job on a scratch built piece of terrain on his blog here: http://brummieswargamingblog.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/post-apoc-terrain-piece.html

In addition I have been rummaging through my lead mountain trying to find some suitable miniatures for a couple of gangs. Now “Dead Earth Games” do produce some great models themselves, sculpted by one of my favourite sculptors Andrew May (of “Meridian Miniatures”). But I currently own a fair few unpainted figures so have really been trying and resist the urge to get any new models for the past few weeks; especially as they’ll be plenty of time for that next month.

Having read up about The State an idea occurred to me, and as a result I’ve dug out some London Bobbies miniatures from the “Empire Of The Dead” range by “West Wind Productions”. I actually started painting three of these back in July, but quickly put them back in a drawer when my attention wandered to something else. However I’ve now added a fourth flatfoot to the group as well as model of Queen Victoria with a gun, who’ll act as the group’s leader. The narrative goes that this particular gang considers itself to rule the Dead Earth in the former United Kingdom. So having raided Madame Tussauds my leader has donned some royal attire, and garbed her trusty gang members with some apparel from the Black Museum of New Scotland Yard. Thus ‘Queenie and her Peelers’ has been borne.
As I hope to use the campaign rules to build up this gang, they’re actually a rather low-costing group for now. Indeed with the exception of Queenie and her Light Machinegun, and her pistol-carrying sergeant, the others are all only armed with wooden truncheons (clubs). But as they all see their leader as the reigning sovereign, I’ve awarded each gang member the General Trait of Loyal. I’m hoping in future to perhaps build a second similarly influenced gang from The State and escalate the situation into a bizarre English Civil War campaign. 

For now however I just want to get the buildings finished and the miniatures painted. Having pondered how to actually create the bluish black colour Victorian Policemen are typically painted, I’ve decided to simply give the models a deep blue undercoat and then apply a couple of washes of black ink. The copper’s cloaks themselves will be black, and that should give me plenty of dark colours upon which I can pick out silver buttons and belt buckles.For those especially interested in “Across The Death Earth” then a link to their webstore can be found here: http://www.deadearth.co.uk

Simon Quinton’s “Capture The Convoy” battle report is here:
http://brummieswargamingblog.blogsport.co.uk/2014/11/capture-convoy-across-dead-earth-game.html

20 comments:

  1. Brilliant! Glad you were able to get the rules finally! Will be looking forward to further progress!

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    1. Many thanks. I'm delighted to have got them. Apologies for forgetting to include your review of the KS and models in my posting. I've added a link :-)

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  2. The beauty of scenery like you're making is that it can be used in a wide variety of games and genres. By the way, I really like Queenie and her machine gun. It just goes to show that many figures can be used with a little imagination.

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    1. So true about the scenery Vampifan and you can bet it'll be appearing in a battle report just as soon as the PVA is dry :-) I think Queenie was one of those light bulb moments we all get now and then. Hopefully she'll soon be fully painted and raising hell on the tabletop. Thanks :-)

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  3. Some interesting distractions here and great progress on the buildings. At some point I'm looking forward to having a closer look at the Across the Dead Earth stuff myself having backed it.

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    1. Thanks Michael. I keep telling myself I'm going to stick to just one or two rulesets. For a long while it was just going to be "Savage Worlds" but since I've returned to "7TV". Plan to stick with that one but AtDE wooed me with its great narrative... and everyone else's blog postings :-)

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  4. I approve heartily of using figures in multipurpose roles and across genres - western gifures could just as easily be used to from Victorian to modern periods.

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    1. I wholeheartedly agree Zabadak. Though the AtDE minis are rather nice and a new (all girl) gang has just been announced. But I've more than enough minis to keep me painting 'til Doomsday already and its nice to try and get some of them on the tabletop as a result :-)

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  5. Love the backstory, I've avoided AtDE so far dew to the fact I know I'll get addicted to it but won't find anyone to play local (Just like 90% of the games I like hehe). Can't wait too see more.

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    1. Thanks Chico. Queenie and her Peelers certainly seem to be a popular idea, so I'm hoping to actually stick with them for a while. I'm the same Ref local games too, hence I tend to always paint two sides up for most, as opponents are few are far between.

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  6. Awesome shall look forward to seeing your board and factions take shape then do battle!

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    1. As I was explaining to Rich Chappell, this is all your fault Simon!!! I missed the KS and was blissfully unaware of AtDE until you started posting about it :-P Apparently you cost a lot of other gamers money in the same way as you've cost me :-)

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  7. Great progress on another new project.

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    1. Cheers Bob. At first I read your comment as "...on YET another new project". I'm truly hoping to stick with this one although my guilty conscience could be pricking me about some of my previous great ideas :-)

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  8. You know, I have about 10 square feet of old foamcore board that I've been umming and ah-ing about what to do with for the past two years. Maybe I should attempt something like this too?

    Good stuff though and thanks for post those links to other blogs - some really good stuff there!

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    1. Many thanks and you're very welcome Dai. Lots of good "Across The Dead Earth" postings out there, and they all inspired me to get on board :-) As Vampifan says, my scenery will be rather generic, so should do for all sorts of gaming. Let me know if you start doing some WIP and I'll be happy to include a link in my next "AtDE" update here :-)

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  9. What an interesting idea! I suppose you could always add some gentlemen or guardsmen with rifles later on?

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    1. Very true Colgar6, and indeed I already own some Victorian Gentlemen with guns models and assorted Guardsmen (with bearskins).

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  10. Somehow I missed this post... Oh well, I commented in our gaming group on FB.

    It is looking good indeed mate. And I too like the use of other minis as well. Really a lot of character from Queen meanie and her thugs!

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    1. Many thanks indeed LS. That was a truly inspirational posting you put up on your blog. Certainly got me digging out my buildings :-)

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