Hing Fat 54mm Plastic WW2 Italian Infantry

Four figure samples of Hing Fat 54mm WW2 Italian Infantry

Hing Fat 54mm Samples group 3: The next instalment of painted Hing Fat 54mm plastic sample figures are these WW2 Italian infantry.

You may have read in my previous posts on WW2 French Infantry and WW2 Russian Infantry about how these arrived as a Lockdown gift from Peter Evans. These are spare sample figures – Peter imports these China Made figures and regularly sells sets of Hing Fat figures on his eBay shop figsculpt.

The whole unpainted Italian set in bright green plastic (!) can be seen on Peter’s eBay shop here:

Image: Figsculpt EBay site with permission.

I compared these Italian figures to the Airfix WW2 Italian Infantry which I painted in OOHO and 1:32 scale back around 1980. The latter larger figures are quite the collectors’ item now, due to a short production run.

The Hing Fat Italian’s eleven poses included this curious Bersaglieri, those of the splendid feathers on the hat or helmet and the impressive running trumpet playing.

Something about the gloves and jacket suggested snow clothing, so I checked out a suitable WW2 figure (albeit an Alpini?) Funcken’s Arms and Uniforms 18th Century to the Present Day – see further below.

The boots or legging on these Italian figures range from puttees to leather knee leggings. I like the contrast of the curious green grey leather of Italian equipment with the white snow jacket.

Hing Fat figures are toy soldiers, not military models. They are sometimes criticised for their over large weapons but these would survive vigorous play unlike some more fragile figures.

Funcken, 18th Century to the Present Day (left) snow suited Alpine Infantry WW2 figure and (right) Mollo / McGregor Blandford Colour Army Uniforms of WW2

One of the other figures has the curious soft fez headgear worn by blackshirts. Again in various uniform books, these are shown in Italian grey or desert khaki, so I opted for a desert khaki figure for contrast.

These fez figures would make some interesting Spanish Civil War conversions.

Finally the figure that look most like the Airfix poses, the lying down crawling whilst throwing a grenade action pose. I have amounted him on an MDF bases so you can see home more clearly and he can stand.

What took a while to track down before posting here were my Airfix Italian Infantry figures, not much used since they were painted c. 1980 / early 80s. I remember these coming out, a brand new set of Airfix figures, an exciting event worth saving the pocket money for.

Here to finish off are some comparison shots of Hing Fat and the nearest equivalent Airfix figures:

Hing Fat left, Airfix right.
Hing Fat centre, Airfix left and right
Hing Fat centre , Airfix left and right

The original seven Airfix poses with their battered 1980s paintwork including the stylish officer. Only one figure of my original 28 has a damaged rifle to repair.

So an interesting set, worth a few sets acquiring for games or conversions.

Next week’s sample will be … a surprise. (I haven’t decided yet.)

Meanwhile check out the Hing Fat range on Peter Evans Figsculpt eBay site.

Blog posted by Mark Norris, 27 April 2021

The Bald Headed End of the Broom – Battling Aggie defeats the Spanish Fury!

One of Steve Weston’s versatile Mexican peasants figures in a Tudor head-cloth

For those of you who wonder where the Arma-Dad’s Army 1590s Elizabethan Home Guard Project is going, here is my next addition to the Cornish Muster and townsfolk who oppose the Spanish Fury of the raids along the West Country coast.

‘Battling Aggie’ is a versatile Steve Weston Toy Co. Mexican peasant woman, easily adapted with a tissue paper or kitchen towel head scarf into a handy medieval and Tudor through the English and American Civil Wars to the Wild West.

Spanish Invaders – go home! Don’t look round, Don Pedro …

Her sister Suzie is a Suffragette …

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/03/31/marching-for-votes-for-women/

Or duelling Mexican peasants … where Pedro gets the Bald Headed End of the Broom, as the old folk song goes.

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/05/09/more-duelling-inspiration-mexicans/

Bald Headed End of the Broom?

This is an old English and American folk song, a snippet of which can be heard sung by Martin Carthy of Waterson: Carthy https://youtu.be/Z8M23Fl6T3M

And with lyrics here https://mainlynorfolk.info/watersons/songs/thebaldheadedendofthebroom.html

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 25 April 2021

Jungle or Desert Fighters? Some quick 54mm Pound Store Plastic conversions

The original pirate or clone Matchbox figures and the Bush hat conversions. I shall paint in the desert / jungle cravat …

These Matchbox 8th Army copies were amongst some of the unlovely but cheap plastic, increasing distorted mouldings that I bought from now vanished local pound stores around 2005/6.

I am intrigued by the way that as figures are copied, they change slowly into the suggestion of different figures. Great for conversion potential?

These sandpit pound store knock offs of long unavailable Matchbox figures have continued to evolve or de-evolve with less and less detail into even thinner shadows of themselves.

2019 Steam Fair haul – for scale two of my my original Airfix / Matchbox 54mm figures (centre) versus slowly de- evolving pound store copies.

‘Original’ unaltered pound store copies and my Bush hat conversions …

The bush hat conversions are made using a hole punched circle of card trimmed down to size and attached by PVA or UHU glue. These early crude attempts do have a unfortunate fashionable Edwardian ladies’ bonnet look.

Out in the garden / yarden jungle where they belong … danger lurks everywhere!

Once varnished or sealed, they could be useful for sandpit games or garden gaming, as well as on the tabletop.

They may not be lovely copies but ..

Over the years, many of my original Airfix and Matchbox 1:32 figures have not survived various house moves and downsizing into adulthood, so these copies were a good way in 2005/6 to bulk up available gaming and conversion figures for a cheerful pound a bag.

There are cheapish, (not quite) pocket money alternatives out there again now, ranging from Hing Fat 54mm to reissued late 2021 Airfix (£9 a box for 14 figures or 65p each!)

Again, these are painted in simple or traditional toy soldier style in Revell Aquacolor Acrylics. These will then receive the shiny toy soldier gloss varnish treatment, which also protects them during handling.

The original Matchbox figures can be seen in 1:72/76 scale here; poses were copied for the 1:32 offering http://www.plasticsoldierreview.com/ManufacturerList.aspx?id=15

Matchbox WW2 figure homecast moulds 2021?

Dunken sells these Matchbox and Airfix WW2 figures as home casting moulds (once available through Prince August) – they are still available in the USA (and overseas?) via Rich at Dunken . https://www.dunken.com/product-category/our-products/molds/dunken-molds/world-war-ii/

How many kilted bagpipe Eighth Army figures do you need?

54mm Matchbox copy figures 2021?

If you search around online, you will find these Matchbox copies of four colour, four different nations Matchbox copies of German, Japanese, American and Eighth Army Infantry in its various incarnations or tubs. The Americans are widely available as reprints.

How many kilted bagpipe Eighth Army figures do you need?

Screenshot April 2021 of such four nations ‘currently available’ figures from Amazon UK – Matchbox copies.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 15 April 2021

54mm Hing Fat WW2 Russian sample figures

Photographed straight off the painting table – shiny toy soldier Russians!

Russians! This is the second trio of figures that I have painted up from Peter Evans’ kind gift of some Hing Fat sample figures.

The first post a week or two ago was WW2 French:

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2021/03/29/hing-fat-plastic-54mm-french-ww2-figures/

Peter sells these interesting 54mm plastic Hing Fat figures via his eBay shop / seller site figsculpt https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/figsculpt

The full set of the Hing Fat WW2 Russians (image: Figsculpt EBay site)

These are attractive figures that remind me of Airfix and Matchbox, which I would happily have bought and played with as a child and that work well today.

I have painted these with glossy shiny toy soldier style with pink cheek dots but I have yet to gloss varnish these. These were painted using Revell Aquacolor Acrylics. My gloss spray varnish supplies nursed through Lockdown have finally run out.

Some lively Russian figures and a curiously posed rifleman, shooting from high up or aiming low.

I like the range of costume and headgear, as well as the one with shovel tucked into a belt, protecting the back? Armour plating?

Size comparison with 1:32 Airfix Russians that I painted and gloss varnished when I was a child.

One of my 45 year old Airfix Russians had a crumbling base and missing SMG barrel end, so this has been repaired with wire and a new MDF base. He lives to fight again alongside the new Hing Fat recruits.

Curiously the old Airfix 1:32 Russians are not currently in the Airfix winter 2021 rerelease / preorder. Previous releases are around secondhand online.

Next week: Probably – Italians.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 14 April 2021

The Land of Counterpane Invaded – Part 2 The Battle

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April 2021 – the 2016 design finally realised on the kitchen table at last.

 

Previously on The Land Of Counterpane Invaded Part 1: Making The Bed 

Now in  part 2 , The Battle. 

The Opening Scenario:

The main aim is to rescue the men and women of the Thyer Brigadia (FMS) troops, whose supply waggon cannot cross the  missing or destroyed river bridge.

Has the bridge been deliberately destroyed?

The only remaining crossing is a small foot bridge to the south, too small for the waggon to safely cross. This crossing is below an old ruined trading post, burnt out long ago, along  with the ruined windmill and distant village in the hills, all in ruins like much of this troubled and desolate frontier valley. 

Fearing an ambush in this lawless and disputed border region, the stranded waggon party  have sent back a rider to bring help. As evening approaches they have unloaded the waggon and  taken refuge with their stores  in this burnt out hilltop ruin of an old crossing post.

The old lady in their party is sick. The two feisty young Kontraupan sisters ‘Hetty’ and ‘Harriet’ have stayed with the troops in order to nurse her.

The Thyer Brigadia sentry on the opposite ridge sounds the alarm as a small patrol of red enemy Rugasian troops comes storming over the hillside.  

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Back of Postcard Rules (similar to the 30mm Flats game, loosely based on Featherstone rules) – see link end of this 30mm Flats post here . Adapted to work on a square grid. 1 inch from the Flats rules becomes one square (which is just over 2 inches). 

Four figures or two horses can occupy one blanket square. 

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Sketch Map of The Land of  Counterpane 

Compass points have been drawn across it to help determine point of entry and exit of various troops. 

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Bird’s eye view of the opening scenario before the  first Rugasian Redcoats arrive from the SW. 

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April 2021 – the 2016 design finally realised on the kitchen table at last.

 

This game was played solo in one evening, over 16 turns as darkness fell outside.  

D6 dice were thrown to determine the game turn (2d6) and compass entry points (2d6) of diffrent Rugasian (Red or RM) and Bluan (Blue – B ) and Thyer Brigadian (TB) troops. 

Compass points – 2d6 – 1  North, 2 Northeast, 3 Northwest, 4 South, 5 SE, 6 SW, E 7, W 8+

Chronology of the arrival of different units

This was written out for clarity before Turn 1 started. 

Turn 1 – first Rugasian infantry patrol appear on board at SW

Turn 5 – first Rugasian  cavalry / horse artillery unit at S. – Single cannon. 

Turn 6 – first Bluan infantry patrol arrives N (on NE side of river)

Turn 7 – Second Rugasian infantry patrol appear W.

Turn 8 – Blue cavalry rider returns from raising the alarm – NW

Turn 11 – Second Bluan infantry patrol arrives – N

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2 coloured D6 dice thrown to see which side has highest score and moves first – IGO YUGO – see rules at end of post. Winner moves first (any melee?), loser moves second (any melee?), winner fires first, loser fires second.  

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Rugasian Redcoats storm the slippy steep slopes of the ridge

 

Turn 1 – The first Rugasian (RM or Red)  troops move first, fast up the valley slopes from the West towards the lone Thyer Brigadia (TB or Blue) sentry Kverko who is keeping watch beside the dead tree on Wounded Tree- Knee ridge. Can they surprise and overpower him before he raises the alarm? 

D6 thrown to see if the Thyer Brigadia (TB or Blue) sentry notices the RM troops – 1,2, 3 Yes, 4,5,6 N0. 

The sentry Kverko fails to spot them on the first turn. No firing takes place as they are both / all out of range. 

He spots them on the first move of second turn and sounds the alarm, letting off a warning shot at the Rugasian infantry, only to be shot down, easily silhouetted against the sky  by the Reds. 

In Turns 3 and 4 as the Rugasian infantry line the brow of the ridge opposite the trading post, the remaining Thyer Brigadian sentries start heading back towards the cover of  the hilltop ruin. They are few in number, so were spread out on watch. They are all still out of firing range of the enemy. 

By Turn 5, the jingling rumble of the Rugasian horse artillery is heard and they arrive in the river valley to the South along the Rugasian troop side of the valley. 

By Turn 6 the first Rugasian infantry have  crossing the foot bridge and are heading up the steep slopes of the hilltop ruin, within rifle range of the Thyer Brigadian troops. The first TB shots miss, although Hetty Kontraupan gets a pistol hit through a loophole in the wall on the first Rugasian trooper to reach the boardwalk outside the ruin, this is then deflected in a savings throw. Nice shot all the same, Hetty!

Her sister Harriet has drawn a wicked looking sabre and whirls this around menacingly over the rough old gate used to block the doorway. 

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Tricky hill slopes – Bluan pound store troops of the rescue party led by old lead veteran Capitano Harry Counterpayne.

 

By Turn 7, the first glimpse of Bluan infantry border patrol from the North’s  distant Counterpane hills. A spirited “huzzah!” from the besieged blue coated Thyer Brigadians is heartily echoed by the Bluan troops racing to the rescue. The Rugasians turn their eyes  briefly to the North, then push on.  

The Thyer Brigadian troops and sentries, mostly safe behind the walls of the ruin, fire on the Rugasian infantry appearing in front of the ruin. One Rugasian Redcoat is hit outside the ruin window.

The last Thyer Brigadian sentry Vagono, still to return to the ruin, is using the abandoned waggon as cover; he fires on the Rugasian Cavalry and horse artillery riders opposite as they pass up the valley to deploy in flat ground by the destroyed Bedford river bridge. Vagono misses, and curses, knowing that once the gun is unhitched and deployed in Turn 9, it will be ready to fire  at the hilltop ruin in Turn Ten.

If the sentry Vagano could only pick off some of the 3 horse artillery crew needed to man the gun, even if they replace them with willing volunteers from the Rugasian infantry, this will force the gun crew to delay firing and dice for readiness. 

When it is the Rugasian turn to fire, they hit two of the Thyer Brigadian infantry in the ruined house window. Despite being behind cover, they fail their savings throw and both are killed. This leaves few defenders in the ruin. 

Meanwhile, whatever alarm the arrival of the distant Bluan patrol might cause, off to the west shielded from view behind the Wounded Tree-Knee ridge, the second Rugasian infantry patrol enters the board. 

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Turn 8 –  Tarantara! The Thyer Brigadian / Bluan cavalry rider sent for help appears to the Northwest. he heads towards the waggon in the hop to hitch it up and be able to evacuate the women and other defenders from the ruin. 

Things are looking bad for the thinning number of defenders in the hilltop ruin as more of the Rugasian infantry patrol head down hill from the cover of an old stone wall. Before, they were in cover but just a bit too far away to get a good shot at the ruined house. 

The Rugasian infantry outside the ruin now fire at Hetty, Harriet and the Thyer Brigadian soldiers. One Rugasian  scores a hit – but who is the casualty? 

A quick d6 throw resolves the issue –  red, blue and white dice are thrown , 1 for each character. Both women are safe as the third Thyer Brigadian infantry man collapses to the ground, dead. As the defenders return fire, Hetty aims another pistol shot but misses. 

The lone Thyer Brigadian sentry Vagono sheltering by the waggon is more successful – he fires at the Rugasian Horse artillery riders and scores a hit.

Which is killed though, rider or horse?    d6 – 1,2,3 rider killed or 4,5,6 horse killed, rider dismounts. 

Not only does the lone sentry Vagono manage to kill one rider, the Bluan Infantry patrol from the North are now close in  range enough to bring down two more horses. Their  Rugasian riders dismount from their fatlly wounded horses and begin unhitching the single gun.

At this point, whilst most casualties have been left where they fell,  I removed the mounted figures and replaced them with some handy dismounted Herald plastic lifeguard figures. 

Turn 9 

With several defenders of the ruin fallen, three Rugasian infantrymen on the board walk outside the ruin try to climb inside through the barricaded door and ruined window.

Are they successful? Quick d6 throw 1,2, 3,4 – remain outside, 5, 6 climb inside. 

Only one Rugasian makes it into through the barricaded doorway. He is then close enough to instantly melee with the sabre wielding Harriet Kontraupan.

 

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Sadly despite inflicting two wounds on the Rugasian attacker with her sabre, Harriet is fatally wounded three times and collapses to the ground, only  yards from her sister Hetty. 

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The 3 wound or life points tally system used in Melee can be seen here in my gaming notebook alongside Kaptain Kobold’s very tidy dice version of the Gerald De Gre origin /   Donald Featherstone’s  Solo Wargaming ‘Parry and Lunge’ duelling or melee rules. 

In the Bluan / Thyer Brigadian turn to fire, Hetty aims her pistol at point blank range at the Rugasian infantryman who slew her sister. However, tears in her eyes,  she again misses her target. Bad luck, Hetty! 

More successfully the flag-carrying Thyer Brigadian Ensign Flago puts down his sword and flag to pick  up an abandoned rifle. He shoots the Rugasian attacker – Harriet is swiftly avenged! 

Ensign Flago dodges another bullet (savings throw) from two Rugasian infantry at the window. 

Turn Ten

The Rugasian cannon is now deployed ready to fire.  

Rugasian infantry move first, crossing the bridge , they turn to meet the first Bluan patrol closing in on them. Above them up the slope at the ruin, two more Rugasian infantry try to scramble in through the window frame. As one succeeds (d6 throw), he confronts  the Ensign Flago in Melee – and the Rugasian loses!  

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The Bluan infantry patrol led by Capitano ‘Harry’ Counterpane / Kontraupan split as he heads towards the red troops at the  bridge, whilst others aim for the Rugasian cannon.  

As the Bluan / TB  cavalryman hitches up the waggon, the lone Thyer Brigadian sentry Vagano heads up the hill to the ruin to join the remaining defenders. 

Boom! The Rugasian Horse artillery cannon fires  – at Close Range up to 6 squares needing a 5 or 6 to hit,  then roll d6 for number of casualties. Up to 5 characters in and around the ruin are hit. 5 d6 savings throws are thrown including for those under cover.   Two characters under cover roll successful savings throws – that means the casualties   are one Rugasian infantryman hit by his own side, the lone sentry Vagono and one  defender under cover.

But which defender? 

Three coloured d6 are thrown – the old sick lady (red), Hetty Kontraupan (blue) and Ensign Flago (white). Sadly Ensign Flago takes their hit for the team, the last of the Thyer Brigadian escort troops. 

With just the old sick lady and Hetty left in the ruin, they both consider what to do? 

d6 1,2 – retreat via window towards the hitched waggon, 3-4 freeze, 5,6 stay put. They roll 5 and  so stay put. 

The Bluan patrol fire at the cannon and second unit of Rugasian infantry arriving from the west, knocking out more of the cannon crew. 

Turn 11  – Huzzah! Waving their flag, the second Bluan infantry border patrol appears to the North. 

Meanwhile back in the ‘valley of death’, as red and blue bodies pile up, Capitano ‘Harry’ Kontraupan of the Bluan infantry loses his second  Melee with a Rugasian redcoat at the footbridge, becoming one of several more Bluan and Rugasian melee casualties.

Thankfully the Rugasian cannon remains unable to fire. 

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By Turn 12, the second Redcoat infantry group which has arrived from the West now fires on the second  Bluan infantry platoon. 

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By Turn 13, several Bluan infantry reach the hilltop ruin to join Hetty and the sick old lady who are sheltering there. The Bluan waggon is hitched and now heads for shelter behind the ruin but Hetty stays put.  

During Turn 14, the Rugasian horse artillery cannon is hitched up and led off. (d6 Saddle up cannon? 1-4 yes, 5-6 no).  In exchanges of rifle fire across the river, the Rugasian redcoats fire poorly and the Bluan forces fire well. More redcoats fall. 

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A repaired Britain’s household cavalryman takes away the sole Rugasian horse artillery gun. 

By Turn 15, after desultory firing by the last remaining Rugasian soldiers, they throw a d6 deciding roll (1,3,5 retreat or 2,4,6 attack)  and retreat. 

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By Turn 16, the Bluan flag flies over the hilltop ruin. Huzzah! 

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Aftermath

In the aftermath, Hetty and the Blue Cavalaryman escort the sick old lady home in the waggon, returning with the stores and bodies of Harriet and Harry Kontraupan back to the safety of Thyer Brigadia. 

The Bluan troops quickly bury the dead.  Keeping some spare stores from the waggon, they leave a three man patrol in the ruins to watch for further enemy activity.

Verdict: An exciting solo game, worthy of the finest pound store figures and vintage hollowcasts alike. Only 5 slow years since the sketch of the terrain and the playing. 

Playing using the blanket squares as movement and firing range did lead to some oddities of measuring that hexes normally don’t present for me. I think that Bob Cordery in the Portable Wargame book / blog and Phil Dutre in his blog have explored the grid square reasons for this. 

Figures

The red and blue infantry were mostly cheap pound store plastic warrior ‘shiny toy soldier style’ paint conversions  of cloned WW2 figures, roughly about 42mm. https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/11/10/pound-store-42mm-infantry-army-red-army-blue/

Thyer Brigadia hollowcast repairs https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2020/09/12/repairing-broken-britains-thyer-brigadia-colour-party-finished-in-54mm/

A few old hollowcasts and other plastic figures were mixed in for good measure, along with some suitable wooden scenery blocks, building and gun to match that older Land of Counterpane vintage feeling.  

The main hilltop ruin is built out of terracotta self drying clay and parts of an old digital radio wooden case https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/10/14/from-old-digital-radio-to-54mm-houses-and-coastal-gun-emplacement/

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 6 April 2021 

 

radio conversion to 

 

 

The Land of Counterpane Invaded! Part 1

Preparation for the Game:

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Essential reading matter for The Land Of Counterpane Invaded – or useful book hills under the blanket?

Making the Bed’

I have been tinkering with the idea of a Land of Counterpane game, since writing a post in 2016 about this famous toy soldier poem by RLS (Robert Louis Stevenson, an early wargamer).

This poem from A Child’s Garden of Verses (1885) is strongly linked in my mind to the chapter in Donald Featherstone’s Solo Wargaming entitled ‘War Gaming in Bed’. I found the rules in this humorous chapter such useful skirmish rules as a child.

The arrival of a blue chequered blanket into the house recently gave me the game mat for Counterpane that I have been looking for.

Setting up and playing the game, I encountered many of the problems noted by Featherstone about the apparent attractiveness of the bed as toy soldier terrain. If you are in bed, you can make the most marvellous mountains, valleys and hills with your knees and feet.

Donald Featherstone in his Solo Wargames book mentioned in a chapter on “Wargaming In Bed” exploring the apparent possibilities of lying in bed as wargames terrain

“At first glance beds , with their blanket-covered hummocks, hills and valleys, might seem pretty reasonable places upon which to fight a wargame, but experiment soon proves that this is not so.

In the first place, the figures will not stand up and even the most judicious positioning of the legs under the bedclothes so as to make the hills less steep will eventually be defeated by cramp if nothing else …”

This excerpt is from Chapter 20, “Wargaming in Bed” in Solo Wargaming by Donald Featherstone (1973 /2009 reprint p. 139), an excellent chapter full of suitably simple rules for skirmishes with jousting knights or duellists.

“After all, the easiest wargames terrain is a cloth draped over hills made of books, again if only you can manage to get your figures to stand up on it”, I wrote in late 2016.

This was what I had in mind back in late 2016

In lieu of legs and feet, I first tried pillows and long thin cushions that made a great terrain with slopes, but a terrain on which no toy soldier could stand and fight.

Instead I resorted to the boyhood standard of big chunky books under the blanket or cloth.

Soldiers still have some issues about standing to fight on rising hill slopes.

The choice of book hills was fun. One leg valley was made up of a bound volume of the Strand with H G Wells’ original Floor Games article. Within this volume I keep my original H G Wells’ Little Wars article from the Windsor Magazine 1912/13, Part 2: The Battle for Hook’s Farm.

Another ‘leg’ was made up of 1897 bound volumes of The Windsor Magazine and of The Girl’s Own Annual that I had randomly acquired long ago, both full of ripping yarns. Amongst the Counterpane ‘Two Pillows’ hills was another bound volume – Dicken’s Household Words magazine, Volume 2 from 1851.

Good solid unmovable foundations for my red and blue Pound Store Plastic Warriors to battle over!

 

Pound Store finest, the Red Rugas-ian troops (Rugaj Manteloj or Red Coats) from Rugas, one of the FMS Forgotten Minor States, can be seen here storming the steep slopes of Wounded Tree-Knee ridge. This is guarded by a single blue-coated Thyer Brigadia sentry (Britains’ hollowcast conversion)  standing next to a lovely old  Britain’s plastic farm tree from my childhood farm set. 

Propped up on the twin peaks or pillow hills,  overlooking all is RLS, the child sick in bed from the Land Of Counterpane poem, as painted by American illustrator Jessie Willcox Smith. 

The rough sketch map of the  Counterpane ‘game bed’ (2021) picks out and names different features, some in Esperanto. Oddly from the 1890s, this became a common neutral langauge  or lingua franca in the Forgotten Minor States (FMS) troubled borderlands of Mittel Mittel Europe of my ImagiNations.  

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It is overdrawn with compass directions, helpful for marking entry and exit points of different troops, selected randomly by d6 dice throw.

In part 2 (my next blog post),  I shall feature the desperate and bloody fight to rescue the men and women of the Thyer Brigadia (FMS) troops, whose supply waggon cannot cross the  missing or destroyed river bridge.

Fearing an ambush in this lawless and disputed border region, they have sent back a rider to bring help. As evening approaches they have unloaded the waggon and  taken refuge with their stores  in this burnt out hilltop ruin of an old crossing post.

The old lady in their party is sick. The two feisty young Kontraupan sisters ‘Hetty’ and ‘Harriet’ have stayed with the troops in order to nurse her.

The Thyer Brigadia sentry on the opposite ridge sounds the alarm as a small patrol of red enemy Rugasian troops comes storming over the hillside.  

TO BE CONTINUED … 

Figures are a mixture of random hollowcast figures,  as well as mostly 42mm red and blue ‘shiny toy soldier style’ painted plastics pound store copies of WW2 figures https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/11/10/pound-store-42mm-infantry-army-red-army-blue/ 

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN 6 April 2021