<![CDATA[Things on the Table - What\'s on the Table?]]>Tue, 02 Jul 2019 03:38:07 +0100Weebly<![CDATA[Operation: Last Train - volunteer success bonus]]>Sun, 07 Apr 2019 09:40:28 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/operation-last-train-volunteer-success-bonusFollowing on from the ‘sponsor a volunteer’ idea I posted the other day, I’ve decided to add a bonus of 10p per successful mission for each sponsored character. All they need to do is survive the mission (i.e. not be dead or M.I.A. once the end of mission bookkeeping is done), even if the mission failed to rescue any survivors. These bonuses will continue to clock up as more games get played.

Since these games may run for a while, I’ll set a meaningful target for when to apply the bonuses - either monthly or when certain amounts are raised, depending on how things pan out.

At the time of writing this, there are currently only 3 missions available so I may break my roster down into multiple squads (say around 50-60% of the total available) and have them each run the missions with a bit of fudging to say there are multiple instances of the scenarios that need to be co-ordinated to get the maximum number of folks to safety in the shortest amount of time. Those volunteers that survive will remain in their original squads but will be supplemented by those volunteers that have yet to see any action - rookies if you like.

Once there are more missions available, I’ll add them into the mix, however, judging by the uptake of Operation: Last Train, I can see a bunch of new stuff coming out real soon so there may not be a need to rinse/repeat so much after all.
<![CDATA[Operation: Last Train]]>Sat, 06 Apr 2019 14:35:37 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/operation-last-trainWhile watching a recent episode of “The Tabletop Engineer” on YouTube ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXNcbQJqxgY ), I was made aware of Joseph McCullough’s latest release. It’s a pet project of his called “Operation: Last Train” (O:LT) and I think it’s an awesome idea.

Rather than waste time writing my thoughts about it, I’ll just link Joe’s blog post since I agree with (and support) all of it. Please go check it out and come back here when you’re done. Meanwhile, I’ll grab a coffee. ( https://therenaissancetroll.blogspot.com/2019/03/operation-last-train-charity-wargame_8.html )

As I sit here enjoying my coffee, my brain has been mulling over a few ideas of how to “do my bit” for such a worthy cause and I’ve come up with a few, but for now I’ll just post these handful:
  • Design and document things to go on the table when playing O:LT, just as I would with my other games - with luck, folks may stumble across the posts and go click the link to Joe’s blog
  • Offer up slots on my roster of volunteers for sponsorship by people, (I’m thinking 10p per volunteer) and they get to name them, equip them and even background them if they want
  • Play and post mission sessions and keep a visible running total of what is raised for Joe’s JustGiving page for Save The Children
  • Upload any O:LT designs I make on to Thingiverse and rather than just make them 100% free like I normally would, I’ll be adding a suggestion that folks go pick up the rules if they don’t already have them (a lot of my designs get used in games other than what I create them for) and/or make a donation straight to Joe’s JustGiving page

As a closer, I’d just like to say that I don’t want this to come off as at all preachy or trying to guilt folks in to supporting something they don’t want to. Personally, I support three charities throughout the year and Save The Children isn’t one of them. However, that doesn’t mean that I can’t make a bit of extra effort, especially when that effort involves doing something I would gladly have done anyway (i.e. playing games) just to (a) support a good cause, and (b) show Joe that I appreciate what he does.]]>
<![CDATA[RoSD: Averel and his companions]]>Fri, 05 Apr 2019 11:29:04 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/rosd-averel-and-his-companionsIn preparation for my first foray into Rangers of Shadow Deep, I needed to create a Ranger and his warband.

Following the instructions in the core rulebook, I created my Ranger (Averel) and his four trusty companions: Cedrik (a Templar), Velius (a Rogue), Killian (an Archer) and Verner (a Swordsman).

Until I can decide on what miniatures I want to use, I’ve left the weapon choices generic and since I’m not sure how likely I am to use any of the skills, I opted to make Averel a bit of a Jack-of-all-trades, knowing that it may come back and bite me in the ass later. I gave each of the companions their +3 skill boosts to try and offset some areas I felt lacking in or thought could be better. Time will tell if this was wise or not.

For now, I’m calling the roster part done and now it’s time to move on to more project prep.]]>
<![CDATA[Starting work on my first Rangers of Shadow Deep project]]>Thu, 04 Apr 2019 16:47:24 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/starting-work-on-my-first-rangers-of-shadow-deep-projectI love playing Frostgrave and I was excited to learn that its author, Joseph A. McCullough, had written a new game, similar to Frostgrave, but aimed more at solo play (although there are solo play scenarios and campaigns available for Frostgrave). This time, Rangers of Shadow Deep (RoSD) focusses not on a Wizard and his followers as they explore and loot their way through the frozen ruins of Felstad but rather on a Ranger and his warband as they follow the orders of their king to get to the bottom of the ‘weirdness’ coming from his borders and the neighbouring Shadow Deep.

The terrain (and to a degree, some of the miniatures) follow the same themes as in my Frostgrave projects. I had opted to make Felstad a lot less snowy and icy (the thawing process had proceeded faster/further) so that I could re-use the models in other projects. At the time I was thinking Mordheim, but since I can play RoSD solo at home, it’s an ideal one to jump the queue with and so here we begin.

RoSD missions can be either one-shots or linked scenarios. These missions can, in turn, be one-offs or linked together to form campaigns. To start with, I’m just going to run through the missions as presented in the core rulebook. The first of which is based around a small village nestled in the woods.

However, before I can begin play I need to gather a few things:
  • My Ranger and his warband. These will be created and statted up by me as per the core rules and written on a roster for reference during play.
  • The scenery and terrain required for the mission.
  • The miniatures - representing not just my Ranger and his warband but also all the creatures and NPCs they may meet during play.
  • Miscellaneous bits:
    • Dice (RoSD just uses d20s and I have a mass of these lying around)
    • Wound counters (more on this in a later post)
    • Measuring sticks/rules or gauges
    • Clue markers
    • Treasure markers

First up, and easiest to do, is create my Ranger and form his warband. This will require the core rulebook (which I have in print and PDF format) and a blank roster sheet. The sheet can be found in the rulebook if you want to photocopy it or else there are a host of fan-made sheets available on the Rangers of Shadow Deep Facebook page. ( https://www.facebook.com/groups/199819667485240/ )

Once I know what the characters will be (and possibly what they’ll be wearing/using), then I can begin digging through my miniatures collection or else sourcing new ones - like I need an excuse to buy more minis!

You can pick up a copy of the rules in lots of places: Amazon, direct from Osprey Publishing, or like I did, via DriveThruRPG.com]]>
<![CDATA[Currently printing on the Cetus3D]]>Sat, 30 Mar 2019 17:41:53 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/currently-printing-on-the-cetus3dPost-apocalyptic scenery
Since I have Fallout Wasteland Warfare and Rogue Stars both waiting in the wings for some tabletop loving, I figured it was time I got my 3D printing finger out and started producing some larger bits of scenery for use on the table.

Now I’m a Kickstarter and Patreon backer of Markus Kruse and his Terrain4Print works and in the past have used some of his excellent Sci-Fi Barracks models in my Shadow War: Armageddon games. Last year I proposed he build some post-apocalyptic models as part of his Patreon projects and boy did he over deliver with a shanty town, junk piles and barricade set! His Shanty Town models are now available for free on Thingiverse - www.thingiverse.com/Terrain4Print/collections/shanty-town

At the moment the Cetus3D is pumping out the house wall sections having already done the various barricades and junk piles. I will be adding some greebles (little detailed bits) to some of the walls and additional detailing work to rooftops, etc. to make them look as haphazard and individual as possible. Once they are all done I’ll work out exactly how I want them all to come together before I base and paint them.

There is way more than I need for a 3’ x 3’ (or even a 4’ by 4’) table, but it never hurts to have more just for variations sake.

The walls were all printed in PLA, at 0.2mm layer height using a 0.4mm nozzle with a 13% infill. Here’s an example of the detail they have. Front and rear sides are different and there are various designs covering a variety of sizes, both with and without windows/doors and with said doors/windows open or barricaded shut.

If the walls come with flat tops, they are designed to be used with the roof sections (shown further down), whereas irregular/jagged edged pieces are ruins or barricade pieces.

Markus has added holes in the edges/ends of the pieces so that they can be joined using small bits of 1.75mm filament, much like pinning joints on a miniature but they are easily filled in if you choose not.
There are also broken up wall sections for use as barricades or ruins, all following the same styles as the regular house walls - i.e., solid, openings, barricaded shut, etc.

These are some of the curved barricade walls. Again they come in various sizes/curvatures, with and without windows/doors/barricading and with different detailing.
The roof sections were much thinner and so I upped the infill to 65% just to try and prevent breaking them when removing off the build surface.
Closer shots to get a better view of the detailing. Nothing to stop you adding more stuff on there later... like a worn out sofa or lookout post.
Here is a shot of some of the small obstacle pieces - basically, smaller barricades. Again, nice details - things like the draped tarp (which I forgot to remove the support material from the lower edge!) and the car door propped against the wall.
Here are some junk piles.
Here are shots of the various pieces, to give you an idea of what you can produce. Keep in mind that this is only what I’ve printed so far (about 60% - I’ve not even started the walkways yet!) and that there are no duplicate prints in there…
Here's what a quickly assembled shack might look like. Obviously the size/shape will vary according to what size and curvature walls you use. The rooftops can be made up of multiple sections to give a patchwork look, or you could leave gaps for that 'al fresco' vibe that's so now in the wastelands.
Same shack, different angle to show off more details.

As well as the shanty stuff, I also printed off some bits from other sources just to use up the end of the filament rolls when I didn't think I had enough left to make a full wall section.

Here are some rickety fences from Printable Scenery's "Ye Olde Fence" pack.
( https://www.printablescenery.com/product/ye-old-fence/ )
Some blasted trees from Thingiverse - "Tree terrain 28mm wargaming" by BlueBoxGoblin.
( http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3494132 )
A couple of ruined walls from Thingiverse - "Free Ruins for Castle Kickstarter" (only 2 walls) by Kaybee81
( http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3422482 )

Ignore the dangling mess in the archway and on some of the brick work, it could be painted up as vegetation but really it's just me being lazy and not tidying up the print before I photographed it!
Here they all are together, just because they look better at the the 3-foot rule of cool.

Back to the Shanty Town prints.

When I’m done printing all of the models, I’ll post up how much filament I used and what the approximate costs were to produce everything but for now, all of the stuff that's on the 80cm x 80cm (31½" x 31½") table is from 2 complete rolls of 1.75mm filament costing just under £15 per 1Kg roll.

On average, the walls took between 2-3 hours to print per piece and used about 25-30 grams of filament. I've bought an energy meter and I'll be doing some exact measuring during the next batch so I can give a more accurate, full cost-to-produce breakdown later.
To finish off this post, here are some closer shots of the tabletop to show off more of the detail.
<![CDATA[Going forward]]>Thu, 28 Mar 2019 15:14:53 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/going-forwardAs this website and blog goes forward, I’d like to see it grow and evolve. To that end I have put together some subjects I’d like to get in to and the reasoning behind my decisions.
Areas I’d like to cover:
  • Miniatures - Both regular and 3D printed. The suppliers I use and would recommend, as well as sources to print your own.
  • Scenery - Meaning the smaller/mid-sized bits and pieces that go on the tabletop. These can be either scratch-built, 3D printed or a mixture of both.
  • Terrain - These are the larger pieces or things that change the way the tabletop looks. Things like buildings, ruins, hills, water features, etc. Again, these can be either scratch-built, 3D printed or a mixture of both.
  • Painting - Now it’s all well and good having all these things to put on the table but they really need to be painted to some degree or other in order to make the most of them. I’ll show you mine if you show me yours!
  • Kickstarters - Or rather crowdfunding in general, as it relates to tabletop gaming and 3D printing. What have I backed and why did I back it? There may also be times when I won’t back something, but I would still recommend it for others - usually this is because it’s a variation on something I already have or else it’s just too rich for my blood at this time and I may go in as a late pledge after the dust settles.
  • Reviews - Although I’m not sure I’ll get to do many in-depth reviews, I’d certainly like to voice my opinions on the things I showcase here. As a consumer of gaming products for some 40+ years, I’d hope my experiences and feedback might count for something.
  • Battle reports - These won’t be the kind you see on YouTube - there are plenty of good (and bad) ones on there already. Rather, these will be snapshots of my games being played so you can see the things on the table in their natural habitats. I may offer insights on what I think of the game/scenario/mission but overall, it’s all about the tabletop eye candy and I’d rather not spoil things for anyone who may be about to play the same thing.
  • Editorials - These will be generic pieces that either don’t fall into any of the more specific areas above, or else they relate to the blog/website in general.

Games I’d like to feature
This list will undoubtedly grow as more and more games are released every day now and I still struggle to wade through what is already available and I dig through my Kickstarter ‘mound of shame’. For now, here’s a list (in no real order) of what I know I have on the back burner just waiting for me to either finish building, painting or using (and photographing) on the tabletop:
  • Zombicide - Black Plague
  • Massive Darkness
  • Frostgrave
  • Rangers of Shadow Deep
  • Last Days: Zombie Apocalypse
  • Rogue Stars
  • Dracula’s America
  • Fallout Wasteland Warfare
  • Mordheim
  • Necromunda (old school version)
  • Space Hulk
  • Gaslands
  • Gorka Morka
  • Descent - Journey into Darkness
  • Twisted
  • Blood Bowl
As you can see, they are mostly board games and skirmish miniature games. I do play a lot of tabletop RPGs but since almost everything that can be used in the above games can also be used in RPGs, there’s no real point in concentrating on individual RPG systems. Everyone will know what they like/don’t like to see in their own RPG play sessions and so I leave it up to the individual to decide what they want to pick and mix for use on their own particular table.

Oh, and no, I don’t play wargames. Not since I was a kid in high school and fell afoul of historical Napoleonic wargaming.

Anything above a squad of 12 to 15 men just isn’t for me. I can’t seem to care enough about what happens to hordes of nameless troops to get any real sense of enjoyment out of spending what is almost always many, many hours of ‘you-go, I-go’ back and forth drudgery. I’d much rather have the game over and done in a couple of hours of focused gameplay where it matters to me exactly what happens to who, and at the end of it I feel as if I’ve accomplished something meaningful.

That’s not to say that I don’t appreciate what goes on to a wargaming table - a lot of the folks I follow online are dedicated battlemeisters and I’m more than happy to ogle their stuff and steal their ideas for use on my tables. I encourage everyone to do the same - go look at what other folks are doing and ask yourself if any of it would work on your own tabletop. That’s why I think that any wargamers out there could still get some use from the stuff on these pages - just multiply the amounts or scale up/down accordingly to match whatever your preferred rule system requires.
<![CDATA[Migration of the old "Adventures in 3D Printing" blog completed]]>Thu, 28 Mar 2019 11:16:09 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/migration-of-the-old-adventures-in-3d-printing-blog-completedAll of the content (posts/pictures) from my old Google+ collection called "Adventures in 3D Printing" have been reposted into a section on here (not very imaginatively) entitled, "Old Blog". You can find it via the menu bar at the top of the page.
<![CDATA[New Blog, New Post]]>Wed, 27 Mar 2019 08:48:45 GMThttp://thingsonthetable.com/whats-on-the-table/new-blog-new-postNot a lot to say at the moment, just that I'm slowly migrating my old blog posts and photos over from my (soon-to-expire) Google+ collection, "Adventures in 3D Printing" - you can find them in the 'Old Blog' section.

As soon as I'm done with that I can start working on the new content, and boy do I have a lot of catching up to do! I may not have been busy online but I sure have back in the real world. I have so many projects that are clamouring for my attention right now it's a pretty hectic juggling act just trying to make any real headway at all.

What to expect from this new site? Well, for starters, since it's a dedicated hosted website and blog, it should be easier to control, navigate and find things. Secondly, it's way easier to link and cross-link things here than the way things used to be over on Google+, and that should encourage me to write more since I hated the limitations it put on me.

Things I'd like to cover here:
  • Obviously the same sort of posts as I used to do - ones that show what I've been working on regarding my tabletop gaming.
  • More painting/finishing posts - the things sadly missing from the old blog.
  • Some battle reports showing off the stuff I've made and hopefully inspiring others to take up the challenge to add some more 'things' to their tabletops.
  • Reviews (Kickstarter and others) as they pertain to tabletop gaming and the making of things to go with them.

That's not an exhaustative list by any means but it's a start and should give anyone who happens to find this place in the cyber wilderness a hint as to what they've stumbled across.

For now though, I'm off to make something...