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Happy New Year! Resolutions & Predictions…….

Wow! What a Christmas! I can’t believe how quickly time has flown since my last blog post. I had intended to write at least one more blog entry before the new year but I was caught out by just how busy Christmas turned out to be. This of course, is good news, so a big thank you to the record number of customers that visited my ebay shop. I can now pay the rent for another month! It wasn’t just business that was occupying me. Thanks to some really hard work on my part, I now have the body of a god…unfortunately it’s Buddha…so no more mince pies for me for a while.

It’s strange how in such a short period you can experience such highs & lows. One minute I was enjoying the perfect family Christmas at my Daughters (thank you again Victoria & Ed!), being waited on hand & foot, the next I am on the phone worrying because my Father had been taken into Hospital 240 miles away and was trying to establish that he was OK…He was, thank goodness and is now back home safely ( Thank you to the nurses at Torbay Hospital).

In between times, I have managed to get to see James Cameroons ‘Avatar’, which was absolutely brilliant in 3D, been to the pantomime with my young nieces Lucy & Hannah, celebrated New Year at a great party, read Antony Bevoirs book on the downfall of Berlin, watched too much TV ( The Gruffalo was the TV highlight for me), played numerous weird board games, usually under the influence of alcohol, got totally hooked on Generation Kill ( a DVD boxed set….’stay frosty people’ ….’Hitman Alpha to Godfather actual’…you’ve got to watch it if you remotely enjoyed Three Kings or Band of Brothers) and as I have already alluded to, eaten and imbided far too many calories.

So here I am on a quiet, snowy Saturday Morning, hangover now cured and ready to face the New Year. So it’s New Years resolution time. I actually enjoy setting New Years resolutions because I tend to think of them as an opportunity to dream about what I would like to do over the coming year rather than the things that I am going to stop doing. The whole New years resolution thing seems to have been hijacked by the anti fun brigade and the health police. Well I’m not going to worry about the odd half a stone that I’ve put on. It will tend to disappear over the next month now that I’m not surrounded by sausage rolls,mince pies, Pork pie (mmmm…proper Melton Mowbray pork pie & Cranberry jelly…stop it!), tins of Quality Street, Cold turkey, Cold Ham, Home made Chips, Bubble & Squeak, Christmas Cake and other such temptations. And the chances are that I will get slightly more exercise than popping the ring pull off the next can of Carling now that I am back at work so lets think about the important things in life, making model soldiers and model kits.

A good place to start with these things is to look at where you are now. In case you haven’t noticed,I really like making models of Necrons and this will continue. So my first New Years resolution is to complete my Necron Apocalypse army. I currently have around 6500 points of Necrons but there are a couple of areas where I am short. I have managed to get hold of a cheap Monolith as well as buying another new Monolith kit. My plan is that I will refurbish the second hand Monolith in the same style as my existing one and the other kit will also have the same paint scheme but will have LED lighting in it. I will then have 3 monoliths to field and just for fun, I will ambush one of my regular 40k opponents with a 3 monolith army list….hurrah!

Liths

I am also working on a Doomsday Monolith, here’s a sneak preview of the work in progress. Once finished, I intend to ensure that I organise a proper Apocalypse Battle so watch out for the battle report later in the year.

Doomsday lith

Also on the WIP list is a piece of scenery that I have put to one side. It’s meant to be an abandoned Imperial outpost that is part of a campaign that I completed last year. As it was, we fought the battle by improvising with the scenery that we had, so this piece was not used. I’m in the process of re writing the campaign and I will organise a re fight of the campaign so the Outpost will be finished.

scenery

The next piece that I’m working on is a mini diorama using the limited edition Necron Scarab on a dissecting table. I had sort of finished it….here it is.scarab disection

However, I’m not happy with it and I am going to add an Imperial scribe/scientist & a couple of Skull servos from the Inquisitor boxed set that I have had in the loft for some years. I think that this will then make a nice display piece along with my Necron Santa diorama!

As far as other Necron models go, I still have plenty of ideas yet so these will not be the only Necron projects. Now that I have strength in depth on the basic units I will ease up on these and only build conversions or scratch built projects, unless of course GW release a new codex, although my inside sources seem to indicate that this is unlikely, at least in the first half of the year. In the meantime, there is plenty of source material on the C’tan Forum and elsewhere on the web to keep me busy.

Finally, as far as the Necrons go, I have obtained some Battle field Gothic Necron Ships. I will definitely paint these and I hope to learn to use them in the game itself. I have grand ideas about combining all the 40k formats into one huge campaign and to this end I have also bought the Planetary Empire set. I’ll paint this to match my imagined world of Akhenaten III and modify some of the tiles to look like Necron outposts & cities. I also think that these tiles will make interesting bases fo the Battlefield Gothic Ships so I’ll give that a go as well.

I still enjoy playing 40K more than any of the other GW systems so although I am tempted to start a Fantasy army I think that my other GW project for the year is more likely to be another 40K army. I already have space marines and Imperial Guard so another Xenos army beckons……Tyranids! I don’t intend to build a massive army but it would be nice to alternate between tyranids and Necrons at the club so I’m going to paint a 2000pt Tyranid army once I catch sight of the new codex.

One of the other highlights of Christmas was that just before we broke up for the holidays, I was invited to Warlord Games Christmas get together and was lucky enough to get involved in a huge war game played with Napoleonic Armies using the new Black Powder Rules. It was great! The Black Powder rules are very playable and give just the sort of relaxed, enjoyable game that make you want to play again and again. I really enjoy rules sets that allow you to play without getting hung up on the rules themselves and Black Powder does just this. With this in mind, I am going to start my own Napoleonic Army. I have a set of Victrix Waterloo British Infantry that I have started to make & paint:

napoleonics

This really will be a long term project as at the rate that I paint it will take a month just to get this box finished but I will persevere and keep you updated with my progress.

My final New Years Resolution for my modelling projects is to start my own miniature version of Bovington Tank Museum. I visited Bovington in October last year and I thought that it was brilliant! I have many pictures and I will do a more thorough review at a later date. However, it was for me an inspiring visit and I would really like to start my own Tank Museum in miniature. I’ve always been fascinated by armoured warfare and I have in the past, built many a model tank. I became slightly disillusioned with this side of the hobby following an encounter with one of the pedantic ‘know it alls’ that you occasionally come across in the hobby. Unfortunately, I was young enough and impressionable enough to be upset by him criticising my work. It wouldn’t happen these days, l have thicker skin and if I ever do meet this sort ( fortunately, it’s very rare) I can just walk away smiling at their ignorance. However, the scale model scene can be daunting and although modellers such as Steve Zaloga can be inspirational, trying to produce something that looks half as good as their models seems to be beyond my ability. That said, I’m going to start again and start with a simple build from the box kit and see how I get on. So you can expect to see my Tank Model collection start this year. I plan to start at the beginning with one of the Emhar WW1 Tanks……

So all of the above should mean that I am kept busy with plenty of modelling projects, lots to learn, books to read, internet to research, games to play, it looks like 2010 is going to be great!

So what are my predictions for 2010.

Well for me, the recession will mean that we will spend more time at home, so I can build more models. I will look for ways to do this as cost effectively as possible and pass these ideas on through my Blog, so keep reading.

The improvements in technology will mean that more model soldiers become available in Plastic rather than metal, so it will become cheaper to build bigger armies. I think that Napoleonics will come back into fashion and the rise of historical & Factual wargames will lead the suits at GW to start thinking a bit more about their customers rather than their share price.

28mm scale will dominate wargaming and smaller scales will fall out of fashion as some gamers start to turn to 54mm. The exception to this will be Flames of War, which will continue to grow.

The continuing growth in the cottage industry side of the modelling business will mean more choice than ever for modellers and the internet will be the increasing place to buy your model supplies and do your research.

There will be a revival of Airfix thanks to the James May effect and their re tooled models will start to gain the respect of Modellers that Airfix used to have. This will help the continued growth of the grey haired brigade of modellers re entering the hobby.

Watch out for the first 3D printers to produce model soldiers to order.

More model kits will contain brass etched parts, resin extras, aluminium & metal gun barrels and non plastic extras under the influence of the growth of Chinese & Korean kit manufacturers.

Oh, and England will win the World Cup….No, I’m serious!

Happy New Year and enjoy your modelling!

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