Monday, March 3, 2014

Still More Forgotten Photos - Star Wars Fleet Action

Some of the chaps over at the Science Fiction and Fantasy Wargames Society were discussing Star Wars Fleet wargaming, so I decided to put my oar (or twin ion engines) in.

These may well be my oldest photos yet - from 2001 - so I apologise for the quality. Once I get the chance, I'll take new photies and replace them here.

These minis were either conversions from existing Galoob Micro Machines/Action Fleet or else heavily kit-bashed.

Below are two Imperial Serpent-class cruisers.  These are mostly milliput with some bits from Starblazers miniatures for the bridge.  Abaft starboard is an Interdictor Cruisers - notice the balls.

Below are two Imperial Nebulon Frigates.  These were kit-bashed from two of GDW's Sky Galleons of Mars plastic ships - maybe an End-Runner?  Various sections of plastic pipette, coffee stirrers and cocktail sticks were used, along with a healthy dose of Milliput.  The three little corvettes in the lower right hand corner were cut from the hanger of the die-cast metal Imperial SD.

Below, the two frigates are escorting a die-cast metal Imperial-class Star Destroyer and a slightly smaller Galoob plastic Victory-class Star Destroyer. The Interdictor cruiser can be seen at the top left.  This is a nice picture for showing the relevant size. The hex-grid is (IIRC) 1.5 inch.

Finally, the Rebel scum. All are from the Galoob Micro-Machine/Action Fleet line. The small MC40s were simply cut-down versions of the MC80.  I think the ship on the extreme left was a  Star Blazers figure, drafted as a Dreadnaught.

These were fun to make, in the days when I had a lot of free time.  The scale was dictated by the availability of the Mon Cal ships, as I had no intention of scratch building both sides.  Somewhere, I have the Super Star Destroyer "Executor" as a kit, which I have yet to build. Ah, someday....Ω

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Ziru Sirka Battleship

This is a scratch built Zirukaruna (Vilani for "Grand Emperor") Imperial battleship for playing the old GDW game Imperium with miniatures, using a combination of Full Thrust and/or Power Projection: Fleet. This ship represents the BB1 Battleship that becomes available in the game by successful petition to the Shadow

I'm trying to keep to the rough outline of the Imperial counters from the Imperium board game. Bits assembled from a table tennis/ping pong ball, with the lens ring of an old toy flashlight, plus particle batteries from the bits box. The aperture from the CPAWS spinal mount is a small drinking straw/coffee stick.

My design sequence is, admittedly, rather Byzantine - I try to keep to the original ratio of beams, missiles and shields as laid out in Imperium. The ship is designed using the MegaTraveller sequence, then converted to Power Projection.

As far as performance goes, this TL 11 brute masses 22,000 dt, lumbers along at Manoeuvre 2, has Jump 2 and is armed with a 1.75 gigawatt CPAWS spinal mount, two 100 ton CPAW bays, eight 50 ton missile bays, and a plethora of  lasers and sandcasters.

Being only partially streamlined, the Zirukaruna relies on support tankers for refueling; though it is possible to undertake wilderness refueling, the Vilani find it difficult to envision a battleship operating in wilderness conditions....Ω

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Traveller - Sharushid Type 42 Fire Direction Centre

Sharushid Type 42b ACV/FDC

These second-line vehicles are converted from obsolescent Imperial TL 10 Type 41 APCs.

Miniature by Laserburn/15mm UK - bits from GZG and Grendel

Nicknamed “The Pig” (V. ishalap) by both Confederation and Vilani troops alike, the design dates from the Pacification Wars, and the Type 41 lags a tech level behind its Type 52 replacement.

Tens of thousands of Type 41’s have been manufactured. The Vilani deplore waste, and as a result many of the mothballed T-41’s were sent to the Frontier Legions.  Others were pressed into service as support vehicles.

In conformance with standard Imperial doctrine, the Type 41 was designed without weaponry or firing ports. Frontier Legion motor pools often modify the design by adding firing ports and support weapon mounts. It is known that some Gisadia line artillery batteries on extended active service will add anti-personnel mines to the exterior.  These mines are detonated remotely as a last-ditch defense measure.

The T-42c is the hover version, and coordinates the artillery battery fire missions. In Striker II terms, it acts as a Staff Satellite Uplink Stand for artillery units.

This vehicle was something of a lark for me, in that I can only foresee one or two scenarios where this miniature will appear, but I had the extra miniature and wanted to see it painted. It could also be used as a communications vehicle or as an objective.

The model is an old Laserburn Hover APC, soon to be available in resin from 15mm UK, with GZG and Grendel bits added. I'm only partially finished with painting it, but I wanted to get at least one post up for January...Ω

Friday, December 27, 2013

Traveller - 15mm Ziru Sirka Point Defense Sleds

Sharushid Type 53 Fire Support/Point Defense ACV IFV
The Type 53 uses the standard Imperial Type 52 hover-sled chassis, with the addition of a larger turret housing a 44mm mass-driver and coaxial VRF gauss gun. Most of the infantry stations have been removed to accommodate the sensors and fire control computer.  The MD gun is designed to destroy light tanks and APCs/AIFVs, though it can also be used to shoot down indirect-fire munitions.  Supplementing the main gun, and linked to the main fire control is the coaxial VRF gauss gun. The VRF gauss gun is tasked as the primary Point Defense and anti-infantry weapon.

The majority of armored vehicles in Ziru Sirka service represent some sort of trade-off, and the Type 53 is no exception. Designed to provide medium fire support to infantry, the Type 53 is also tasked with providing point defense against enemy missiles, rockets and artillery shells, leading one Terran military expert to describe the Type 53 as a cross between an alligator and an ostrich.

The 44mm MD gun being insufficient to penetrate the front armor of most ConFed tanks, the T-53 mounts four 84mm anti-tank missiles in the anti-armor role. Missile reloads are stored in the vehicle: a veteran crew can replace each spent missile in about a minute per missile.

Critics of the Type 53 often cite the weak armor (easily penetrated by the latest RAM grenades) relative slow speed of the missiles, and dual role.  By combining fire support and point defense into one vehicle, the Imperium has essentially created a high-value APC that looks like a tank, hunts like a tank and draws fire like a tank, while having none of the advantages of a tank.    The coaxial mounting of the main gun/VFR gauss gun forces the Type 53 crew to concentrate on one task at a time (either Fire Support or Point Defense), which proved limiting during the Interstellar Wars.


During the later period of the Interstellar Wars an additional VRF gun was mounted atop the turret* displacing the EMS sensor dome. This allowed the upgraded Type 53 (designated Type 53A1) to engage multiple targets without degrading performance....Ω

*the Frontier Legion is credited with salvaging a Type 52 and creating the first Type 53A1 prototype. Imperial Quartermasters deny this, of course, as the proper patents were never submitted.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

15mm Ziru Sirka Artillery - revisited

For years, I've had a Stan Johansen Star Armor Grav Gun Platform gathering dust on the shelf.  As with some of my Star Armor tank castings, someone gave it to me. This came in handy, as there was something about the Star Armor ACV tank hulls that, for the Imperial Artillery, simply wasn't working for me. The hulls I had been given were designed for hover tanks, and as the Vilani say, tradition must be honoured. I wanted something that looked like big honking gun platforms.

Back to the project at hand. After dremeling the grav bits off,  the Johansen gun platform fits the separately-purchasable hover skirt nicely, and reminded me in a way of the M270. True, the gun platform is exposed, inviting a troubling counter-battery strike - however, the Vilani Imperium enjoys a tech advantage over their opponents, and invariably out-ranges Op-force batteries by a comfortable margin. Perhaps the Vilani see a protected gun platform as a sign of weakness.

Gun Section Reports: READY...

I think the result is an improvement.

Specs for this brute were generated using Fire, Fusion and Steel - using electro-thermic chemical propellant, this gun hurls a 288mm (450kg) warhead 57ks or 35 miles. 

Not bad for TL 11...Ω

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Traveller 15mm Ziru Sirka Artillery

Modern artillery has such a long range, in 15mm it can often be represented off board. In the Traveller universe, this is especially true for futuristic artillery, so I don't often deploy grav or GEV artillery vehicles in my table top war games.

This changed a few weeks ago. In helping an old friend clean out his basement hobby area, I was rewarded with some nice bits of old Stan Johansen Star Armor - some GEV hulls and artillery pieces.  After transferring them to *my* basement hobby table, I began to think of scenarios involving artillery vehicles in the First Imperium.

Show with 15mm GZG New Anglian Federation

One scenario which keeps recommending itself is a Delta Sierra/Deep Serious situation where a battery is being threatened by an over-run; probably the worst thing for a gunner is to lose his gun.

Missile Battery

This idea was combined with another I had written down to form a scenario where the Imperial GEV artillery was "ambushed", while en-route to their next firing position, by Terran Confederation Recon troops.  The Terrans are trying to destroy the Imperial vehicles, whilst the Imperials are trying to get into firing position. The guns become victory objectives for both sides, whilst the massive firepower becomes tertiary to the scenario.

Of course, once I had hit on the scenario, I had to order more vehicles from Stan Johansen.  My friend had given me enough miniatures to peak my interest, but not enough to carry out this new escapade.

Thanks guy...Ω