Two reviews of Age of Sigmar partwork added

Two contributors have now added reviews of a new offering from Warhammer Age of Sigmar, the first of several planned partworks now on sale in the UK.

The reviews are on the Reviews page.

Posted in Periods - Fantasy | Leave a comment

Rules for solo dungeon quest added

Paul Le Long put together a simple solo game of dungeon quest and shares the rules in this article from an earlier issue of Lone Warrior.

His rules are on the Complete Rule Sets page.

Posted in Board games, Periods - Fantasy | Leave a comment

New year, new sample article

Here’s a sample article from past issues of Lone Warrior to kick off the New Year. It’s by George Arnold and features some thoughts on how to transfer game mechanics from one game to another, even between periods.

It’s on the Sample Articles page.

Posted in Naval gaming, Periods - Ancient, Periods - World War I | Leave a comment

A painting project

By George Arnold

These days, I’m mostly finished with big painting projects. Any projects that come up now are smaller, easier (and much more enjoyable). In that vein, I recently decided to re-do some very old metal figures and give them a different look.

These are some ancient Greek peltasts from a company called Bresica Miniatures that operated out of Burbank, California, in the mid-1970s. They were one of several sets of Bresicas that I bought back then, some of the first metal figures I ever acquired. I’d come across the range in a catalogue when I was in my first job fresh out of grad school and finally had a (small) bit of disposable income to start upgrading the Airfix figures I’d been gaming with until then.

I originally painted these figures with enamels, in either black or white tunics. Years later, I stripped the paint from some of them and touched up others to get a less uniform look. But I was never satisfied with the result, so a few weeks ago, I again stripped the paint from all of them and started a new paint scheme from scratch.

This time, I went with a mix of reds, brown, grays and a few other shades. After a quick dry brush, I then picked out the other details. The detached shields were fiddlier to paint than I remembered, but my hand isn’t as steady as it was years ago either. I can always touch those up later if I decide to.

I mixed up the tunic colors so that each base is different. I also upgraded these fellows from their original javelins to thrusting spears. The figures, static and all the same poses in an old-school kind of way, are clearly based on drawings from the venerable “Armies of the Macedonian and Punic Wars” books from the Wargames Research Group. These figures represent thureophoroi, or later Greek peltasts, getting the name from the shape of their shield, a thureos. The bigger shield and the spear gave them an advantage over more lightly armed peltasts.

I still have a fair number of Bresica figures. The long-gone company had a good range of 20mm ancients that  fit well with 1/72 plastics like the old Airfix figures, although some of the Bresicas were quite inconsistent about scale, even within the same range.

About a dozen years ago, I added some 150 more Bresicas from a seller who wanted to get rid of them at a cut-rate price. Happy to oblige. A lot of those were Republican Romans and support troops, but I also got some very nice Italian hoplites that I’ve also incorporated into my hodge-podge ancients collection.

As some of my oldest metal ancient figures, these peltasts have taken part in many a battle over the years. It looks like they’ll be doing the same in the future, now in their latest finery.

Posted in Painting, Periods - Ancient | Leave a comment

No. 209 has been mailed, but please read this

To Lone Warrior Subscribers:

Lone Warrior 209 has just been e-mailed to all subscribers.  If you have not received yours, please send me a note at

Please include the e-mail address that you prefer to use to receive your Lone Warrior.

Thanks and Happy New Year,

Rich Barbuto

Posted in From the editor | Leave a comment

Another gamer’s gingerbread houses

By Rich Barbuto

The difference between little girls and little boys. The first photo shows four-year-old granddaughter decorating a few gingerbread houses. The next day, her six-year-old brother used his Star Wars figures to stage an assault on Po Dameron’s village.

Gingerbread Village

Raid on Dengar

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Some modelling skills required

By Rob Morgan

I built my first Airfix kit almost 60 years ago, and despite my youthful inexperience I made a fair go of it (the Boulton Paul Defiant 1940 Night Fighter, since you ask). Most of my older cousins were steeped in the flying model aircraft field — Kiel Kraft, I think they were called. All balsa wood and razor blades — far more complicated than plastic construction, at which, if I say so myself, over the decades I have become a skilled operator. I even built the Airfix Churchill Tank, and the Panther, both horrendous in terms of the suspension.

Now, as it’s Advent and I was feeling rather jovial, and in town with my eldest granddaughter, I bought a sort of  gingerbread house thing, which seemed a sound idea at the time. Hm?

“Can we build it this evening, Grandad?”

“Of course!” Be positive.

The house, about 10 inches long and six inches high, came from TYGER, the Danish shop, plenty of them around all over the UK. Cost three pounds. It bears the splendid title, Byg Selv Brunkagehus.

A kit? So no problem. Right up Grandad’s street, eh?

All Nanna (that’s my wife) had to do — well, I like her to feel involved — was make a cup of stiff icing sugar for the joints, and provide some sprinkly things, snowflakes and such like, from her baking cupboard.

“Are you sure about this?” she said, after 40 years of marriage, no faith in me. Me. A man who once  assembled 10 1/72nd Bren carriers in an hour.

There was, of course, no warning on the box , there’s  just a two-part roof, and four walls and a four-sided chimney construction. All simple enough. One of us, she’s six, was very enthusiastic; well, the gingerbread smelled lovely. I have no idea if any of you, skilled modellers as you all surely are, have ever been defeated by a simple box structure made out of frankly … biscuit!

It’s taken three days to get it sorted, and I — all right, we — still haven’t finished. The roof just won’t sit right, and as for the ***** chimney! My wife’s icing sugar store has been sorely depleted and we have a rash of small crunchy things all over the cake board on which I’m supposed to be building it. This, ladies and gentlemen is causing me more trouble than the upper wing and struts of an Airfix 1/72nd WWI R.E.8, reconaissance plane.

Evie’s gone to bed, and I’m just pouring a stiff malt whisky. Be warned, some modelling skills definitely required. Merry Christmas to you all.

Posted in Battle reports, Periods - Modern | Leave a comment

Next issue of Lone Warrior coming up

The next issue of Lone Warrior is in the final stages of production and should be e-mailed within a few days, according to Editor Rich Barbuto.

Here’s a preview of the articles in No. 209:

  • “Ill Met By Moonlight” (or The ‘Black Spot’ Returns) by Steve Turner. This includes charts to determine just how certain characters are wounded or killed during campaigns, to add to any narratives.
  • “M.U.Sk in Space” by Kevin White. Some skirmish rules for space combat, with suggestions for trying the period without a lot of cost.
  • “Victory in the Pacific 2.0” by George Arnold. Sequence of Events and Order Charts to “solo-ize” this old Avalon Hill board game.
  • “A Solo Wargame Engine” by Joao Lima. Ways of simulating the tactical decisions by a soloist’s opponent, with charts and explanations for an Ancients game.
  • “Sentinels of the Multiverse Game Review” by Craig Dunglison. A review of the card game, with suggestions for creating a campaign based on the game.
  • “Lord of the Rings …” by Rob Morgan. A review of a paperback called “Lord of the Rings: Weapons and Warfare” which offers many insights into the original Tolkien books.
  • “The Crusade of Nicopolis” by Robert Stevens. An historical look at a lesser known crusade, plus some notes for gaming out the battle of Nicopolis itself.
  • “Bunker Hill Reconsidered” by Marvin Scott. A refight of the American War of Independence, with the potential to change the battle’s outcome.
  • “Ship Rules for the Middle Ages” by Rob Morgan. Quick rules for naval encounters during the Middle Ages.
  • Plus a so-far unidentified article, as promised by the Editor.

With the usual complement of color photos, maps and charts, this is another “shot in the arm” for soloists looking for ideas for enjoying the hobby. Coming soon!

Posted in Latest issue of LW | Leave a comment

‘Kamikaze Attack’ rules added

Mike Crane’s World War II naval/air rules for the later Pacific war have now been added.

“Kamikaze Attack” is on the Complete Rule Sets page.

Posted in Air gaming, Naval gaming, Periods - World War II | Leave a comment

Women and table-top wars

By Rob Morgan

H.G. Wells, when he wrote his legendary wargaming work, didn’t exclude girls and women from the potential of playing those “Little Wars,” so how did about 50 percent of the population slip away from the several genres that make up this hobby? I don’t recall ever coming across a female wargamer in historical gaming. There are plenty out there who role-play and who game in the science fiction and fantasy genres, but I have never met a girl or woman moving her Bonapartist armies or her Roman legions across the table, or her ironclad fleets over the ballroom floor (that’s an allusion to Fletcher Pratt, incidentally). Maybe things will change.

Is the problem the lack of female warriors and military generally? Women have been involved in warfare — front-line warfare, not merely supporting roles — since antiquity. Medieval Warfare issued a special on warrior princesses and heroines not long back, and there are some well known individuals in history. Not just Jeanne d’Arc and Matilda either! If you look at the modern era, in the Great War and the many conflicts referred to as the Russian Civil War these days, there were numerous all-women combat units. A photo of a group of British re-enactors of one of those units is shown here.

Women re-enactors.

In World War II (or the Great Patriotic War), the USSR had thousands of female combatants, from aircrew and tank crews to elite snipers. In earlier wars, of course, women tended to dress up as men in taking up arms, and to do so individually rather than as large organised groups. Partisans and guerrillas were a different kettle of fish, and I suspect that someone is going to be able to point to an armed force of female soldiery that I don’t yet know about. But there’s only one female militia fighter in BUM’s Spanish Civil War Militia set!

Anyway, I looked around in 20mm, and found a few examples of women soldiers. Surprisingly, no manufacturer makes a Soviet female group, though there are individual figures in a few sets — traffic police, pilots, and women officers — but not in combat poses. There are few others. I like the female figures in two of the Red Box sets. Their “gangsters’ provide two 20th century armed women, with a wide range of possibilities. Their “police and citizens” set has a very good woman with a rifle and in a long dress. She’d suit most wars post-1850. Take a look too at the Red Box civilian volunteers from the Boxer Rebellion, two good armed women there, and a couple of suitable, convertible figures in the IMEX Pilgrim pack.

Not much before that period. Few female figures at all, in fact. There’s a good woman in a long dress in the Airfix Wagon Train set. She can have a weapon added to her right hand with little effort and “do” service in wars in the 17th century and beyond.

In the medieval period, well, yes, there’s Joan of Arc in the set of her army by Strelets. She’s mounted, harnessed and bearing a ridiculously small pennon — all in all, not particularly warlike, in my opinion. She has only one companion and that’s the single mounted female Maid Marian in the Airfix Robin Hood set.

That is, until someone adds some female combat troops to their WWII and WWI sets, and to their SCW figures, to their Napoleonic guerrilla forces and to their partisans and rebels of all periods. Certainly, to their 16th century and 30 Years War ranges.

A thought: Who makes a decent baggage train or camp followers (often armed and in combat) in any of the Horse and Musket period wars? I haven’t considered what can be converted, of course, and some figures can do without too much difficulty. Others certainly can’t.

Something of a gap, eh?

Posted in Periods - General history, Wargaming | 3 Comments