The Roaring Northerners are Dave Stewart, John Hill and Iain Robertson; a loose affiliation of tabletop wargamers and figure painters who inhabit the frozen and somewhat soggy wastelands of west central Scotland. Shadowy and secretive, they stoically quest to reduce the scale of the lead mountain that threatens to engulf them all, and perhaps even find the time for the occasional game...
....This is their story

Friday, 30 May 2014

More Sillyness...

Paul Kidby 'Discworld' miniatures this time.

First, Sergeant Sam Vimes of the City Watch in 'Dirty Harry' pose.
Complete with loaded crossbow.

Then Lord Havelock Vetinari the 'Patrician'.
In suitably menacing and thoughtful pose.

Random silly figures, just because.

Makes a change from the normal and keeps the interest I find.

I also acquired a 'Cohen the Barbarian' figure, but he has defeated me so far, oh well back to the vaguely historical in due course.



Tuesday, 27 May 2014

And now for something completely different.....

I picked this figure up at Carronade earlier this month and couldn't resist having a go.

The strange little fellow is from Northumbrian Tin Soldier, out of their Nightfolk range and is called 'The Sentinel'

NTS, describes the range as being 'Dark fantasy figures inspired by the tales and traditions of faerie and folklore'. Sounds fair enough to me!

The range is very new and can be found at

I understand that the range is so new that there are no specific rules yet, but some are due out soon. The range was around 12 figures at the time I purchased this chap, but more have already been added.

Not sure what I will do with this fellow, but I suspect a small collection of these beautifully sculpted figures may make its way across my painting table over the coming months.

The figure is supplied with a slotted base and was very well cast with little cleaning up required. A quick undercoat and we were off and running.

A real departure from my usual and great fun.

All the very best to David and Jayne in this new venture.

As ever, comments and criticisms gratefully received.



Friday, 23 May 2014

Wednesday Game. Wars of the Roses.

So Wednesday saw me and John Lining up some old favourites from the 28mm Mediaevals box for a Wars of the Roses game.

John took the Lancastrian side and I lined up the Yorkists with imported mercenaries.

As a variation, and because we know how each other plays, it was decided to draw maps and deploy 'blind' on this occasion. The sides were roughly equal with 48 'elements' each.

The Lancastrians deployed with Archers and Crossbowmen screening Men at arms on their left, soon  joined by the Lancastrian cavalry contingent.

In their centre, they had hauled up an impressive gun park, it's morale stiffened by the presence of the overall commander and his retinue. " I will personally skewer the first man who leaves his post!"

Their right was anchored on the church of St Mark and it's handy walls. Again a heavy screen of archery covered a hard core of men at arms.

The Yorkists lined up with an archery heavy right wing with attendant men at arms, a lighter gun park in the centre with a formidable pike block and cavalry, and they decided to pack all their mercenaries on the left wing. this consisted of a lighter pike block, crossbowmen and hand gunners screened by a line of pavissiers.

First moves saw a cautious advance from the Yorkists, while the Lancastrians got into their stride and crunched upfield. On their left the Lancastrian cavalry were particularly eager, and the lighter sergeants poured forward toward the Yorkist archery, followed closely by the Lancastrian heavies.

The very ground began to shake and the Yorkist archers, veterans to a man on this wing, nocked arrows and waited for their orders....

As Lancastrians passed the pre-arranged range markers, the orders came. "Draw.......Loose!"
The arrow cloud rose and fell and the Sergeants never even came close to the Yorkist lines.  Most fell in a welter of screaming horseflesh and men. those who survived were stunned and stationary and fell or fled as the Yorkist archers started to pick out individual targets.

The heavies still came on but were hampered getting past their fallen comrades and lost men as well to the relentless arrow storm.

In the centre, the Lancastrian guns were galling the Yorkist cavalry into precipitate action, and on the Lancastrian right, the infantry moved steadily forward whilst their mercenary opponents inexplicably hesitated.

On the Lancastrian left, the heavies finally got to grips with the Yorkist archers, but the cost had been high, and though they extracted some measure of revenge, eventually even the plate-clad flower of the Lancastrian army was all but destroyed, their sorry remnants leaving the field shocked and tattered.

Meanwhile on the other wing, the mercenaries finally got a move on and in a significant blow for technology, the hand gunners produced their first ever recorded success, blowing away an element of crossbowmen. Sadly this was their only contribution and as they valiantly tried to reload, the Lancastrian crossbowmen loosed a devastating volley which destroyed them utterly.

Alongside the hand gunners, the pavissiers advanced to contact.

The Yorkist centre, unable to withstand the attentions of the Lancastrian guns launched its entire cavalry force forward and the pike block rumbled forth in attendance.

The Lancastrian gunners faced a horrifying choice, stay, and get skewered...or run and get skewered!

Unsurprisingly they fell to their guns with a will.

The Yorkist, mercenary left was still lagging and seemed reluctant to engage, with the exception of the pavissiers who were giving a good account of themselves but buckling under the strain.

The Yorkist gunners were plying a lively trade, but with limited results.

In the centre, the Lancastrian gun park blew away the last of the Yorkist cavalry just as they reached the gun muzzles. The Yorkist pike had been delayed by the attentions of a unit of crossbowmen and arrived at the guns just as they were able to swivel and fire after despatching the horsemen.

The pike staggered, came on, staggered again and finally overran one gun crew before coming to a halt. Their ranks tattered and rent by the unexpectedly effective Lancastrian guns.

At this point the Yorkist mercenaries also started to falter, units failing and fleeing one after another.

Despite some heroic efforts on the other wing where the Yorkist men at arms had come to bill strokes with their Lancastrian opponents, it was clear that the house of Lancaster had won the day!

A great game played in the right spirit.....and yet again John ended in possession of the field!

Comments as ever welcome and appreciated.

Yes I am aware of the anachronisms. 'The Company of the Rose' ( My Guys) were originally put together as a 100 years War/Free Company, but hey I am shameless! I am also suitably ashamed at fielding unbased figures for a game. My only excuse is that it was the only way to make up the numbers.

All the best.


Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Norman Infantry.

A new unit of Infantry I've been working on this week.

These guys are from Old Glory and are nominally from their El Cid range.

The idea is to work up a polyglot bunch of units working towards a game based loosely on the Norman campaigns in southern Italy, Sicily and into the Byzantine Empire. Eventually I hope to develop one or even a series of campaigns out of it, but whether that will ever see the gaming table is another matter.

Their accompanying cavalry are in the background based and undercoated.

Quite happy with these guys though, so felt obliged to share.

Next up a 28mm Mediaeval game which we hope to get played in the next few days.

As ever comments appreciated.



Saturday, 17 May 2014


Just a bit of fun.

28mm chickens to enhance our FaIW tables. Supplied by Warbases and at £1.50 for the lot I couldn't resist.

Also acquired at the time sheep and farm dogs, just to make the settlement look more authentic. And a rowing boat for transport. The table will look good, but I'm not sure if we're getting a bit fiddly for actual play!

Believe it or not I did spend some time researching the look of 18th century chickens, though I don't doubt that if they make an appearance in a mediaeval game, someone will point out that they are the wrong type of chicken!

Next up I'm working on some 15mm Normans for an upcoming campaign.

As ever comments welcome.....keep 'em clean though!


Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Carronade 10/05/2014.

The Falkirk Wargames Club show 'Carronade' has become one of the highlights of the Scottish calendar over the last few years. All three of us were hoping to attend, but it seems shift patterns never allow more than any random two of us to be in one place at the same time! This time it was John and me who were the lucky ones.

The organisers at the club had outdone themselves this year with a superb range of both club tables and traders. New faces and established names in both categories made for a great day out as ever.

The Graeme High School site has up till now seemed roomy and comfortable for the show, yet this year for the first time, despite the size of the site it just started to seem a bit cramped, despite having two main halls and a connecting corridor downstairs and two further small halls in use upstairs. We arrived about half an hour after doors opened and had to sneak the car into a space where maybe it shouldn't have been as the school car parks were already chokker. A fantastic problem for the club to have to deal with long term!

First up I will show some of the tables I found interesting. I have to stress there were a large number of club tables which are not covered here. This is no reflection on them as I really think the overall standard was as good as I have ever seen at a show, but there is only so much I can post here.

Firstly, the redoubtable club from RAF Leuchars produced yet another entertaining participation game. This time it was a Dambusters raid and involved the participants piloting a Lancaster down the Lake to blow up the dam at the end. Suitable headwear was provide for each crew and much fun had by all.

Next Durham Wargames Club and their Huge Napoleonic table 'Once upon a time in the Low Countries'.... 54mm for heaven's sake! Huge amounts of painting and very impressive.

Here is South East Scotland Wargames Club's D-Day game in 28mm. Complete with accoutrements and working lighthouse.

Next up Kirriemuir and a beautiful 28mm Ancient Greek game called 'Heads I win tails you lose'. Some superb figure painting here which I fear I have not done justice to.

Tradeston WGC a recently established club with a nice ACW game in 28mm. 'The Battle of Krayser's Farm'.

Westerhope WGG brought their '1984 Battle for Trafalgar Square' an interesting what if game complete with flickering lights under the smoke.

Dunfermline WC and one of two Bannockburn games on the day. Nicely presented and again some lovely figures.

Dingwall WGC and a 28mm participation game 'Tuffnalls Bridge'. Loosely based on Pegasus Bridge, this was nicely presented and very well staffed. much interest through the day. Complete with Para Patches for the victorious!

Gourock WGA and an ACW naval game. A 'what if' assuming a French intervention.

Glasgow and District, and the second Bannockburn game of the day. This time a participation game entitled 'Break the Schiltron'.

Finally, we have Dumfries Wargames Club and a beautiful Samurai game in 28mm entitled 'Tajima at the Bridge'. The table was superb and the finishing touches supplied by the Japanese lanterns and especially the cherry blossom trees just made it. Contact Jim Wallace ( sorry Jim, lack of sleep! ) for more information on how to obtain both.

Next some of the traders.

Aventine Miniatures. It is always a treat to talk with guys who are so knowledgeable and enthusiastic about their period and who are determined to maintain and expand a solid range rather than flitting about.

Ian at Eagle Miniatures who I am grateful to for being prepared to sell individual figures from his 28mm SYW range, allowing me to add specific items to the FaIW games.

David Holland from Northumbrian Tin Soldier. A new venture offering a range of 'Dark Fantasy' figures called 'Nightfolk', interesting grotesques which in the end I couldn't resist acquiring an example of...purely in the interests of research you understand!

Warbases (under the huddle left) from whom I was persuaded to acquire a range of 28mm chickens, sheep and farm dogs ( I kid you not!) as well as topping up my stock of MDF basing discs. I also acquired a 28mm rowing boat plus accessories from Games of War.

Apart from these guys there was a fine range of traders including of course Dave Thomas, Caliver, Last Valley, Colonel Bill etc, etc.........My self restraint was quite outstanding...though Mrs Stewart may not agree when she eventually unearths the stash!

Last but not least, the painting competition, well attended and to a superb standard.....

And the flea market....much sweat and rucksack jostling to be beholden, but good business conducted all day.

This was a great day out as ever and congratulations are due to the organisers who produced a superb  show. The only problems I can see are that it may be in danger of outgrowing it's already substantial venue and the canteen seemed to struggle at times with the demands of tubby wargamers, me very much included!

Comments as ever gratefully received.