30 April, 2013

Tablescape Kickstarter by Secret Weapon

Roads. Urban roads.

Secret Weapon has launched a Kickstarter for their Tablescapes terrain tile sets. Of particular interest is the Urban Streets design: Injection molded plastic 12" tiles of roads and sidewalks... both normal and damaged. I'm in, for at least two! And maybe a set of damaged ones....

The sidewalks will be 2" wide with 8" of roadway. The clean streets version above will consist of 8 unique casts, with another 8 casts in the damaged series. You can get them as all clean, all damaged, or mixed.

12 days left to help out.

28 April, 2013

Scale Observations

First off, I saw IRONMAN 3 last night and loved it. Ben Kingsley was perfectly cast.

I realize that my enthusiasm for the film means it is likely that reviews will suck and the fan boys will hate it.

Screw 'em.

Anyhow, waiting for a train to Fukui. Train platforms: in a larger station they seem to be about two train widths wide. Making track and platform area roughly equal.

Tracks and ballast tend toward the same dirty rust color with bare metal on the tops of the track.

Japanese platforms have a knobbed yellow tile safety line running parallel to the platform edge, about a meter in. The platform itself is asphalt and greyish concrete construction with dual pillars on the edge sides about every 6 or 7 meters (about 2.5 per carriage length).

26 April, 2013

Modular Building Design

So here I am sitting on the train for Toyama. I'm early so we are just sitting at the platform waiting for our departure time.

Out the window is this building, just north of the station. It's the Kanazawa-eki Mae Dai-Ichi building, offices I think, with a build-in vertical carosel parking garage. Looking at it got me thinking about game terrain.

Most buildings in Japan are of modular construction. You can see that this one consists of a number of square wall sections, roughly 10' x 10'. I took the first picture from the same train last week, and tracked the building down on my way to the station today.
Interesting is that, although it is modular, it maintains a complex, non-boxy shape. That's something you don't often get with building kits.
I've been looking at Secret Weapon's Clean Streets terrain Kickstarter, most likely to go with Ameritown plastic buildings, however they can seem overscale with the true 28s I favor. Thus, the possibility of scratchbuilding is not completely dismissed.

Studying buildings like this will hopefully help me design decent buildings.

Oh, I want a laser cutter...

23 April, 2013

Updated Appearance - Now Including Identity!

Finally made a proper banner and logo for the blog.

When I started game blogging I had a different blog for each game: Savage Delta Green was the first. But that quickly got out of hand and I've switched to a unified gaming blog, that you see here now.

10x28mm is a good name. 28mm minis are my favorite... real 28mm - at eye level. I have at least 10 active projects competing for my attention at any particular time. And the combination has a subtle reference to Aliens (the M56 Smartguns, UA571 Sentry Guns, and M42A Scope Rifle fired the M250 10x28mm HEDP, according to the Colonial Marine Technical Manual). That's cool because gaming Aliens with Cyberpunk 2020 was a big thing for me in high school.

So the logo is supposed to look like a shell casing headstamp (yes, I know the M250 round was caseless, sue me) and the title banner includes the names of various games I play, or have played in the past. It only took 4 revisions to get it to look right on the page. Yeah Star Trek and Star Frontiers and a couple other games aren't conventionally considered "near future," but I don't care. Near future is a relative term... they are all in a future nearer than 40K or Dune... or compared to geological time.

22 April, 2013

Wargaming Survey

This survey made the rounds on many of the blogs I follow, several months back. I started a response then but never got around to posting it. It's been sitting in my draft folder. Time to fix that.

1. Favourite Wargaming period and why?

28mm (at eye level) near future. Always drawn to near future sci fi & technothrillers. Cyberpunk 2020 was my maturation into gaming; It's where I really began to write my own stuff, tweaked rules and really made the games my own. Because of that, near future (modern/cyberpunk-post-apocalyptic) is my favorite place to play.

2. Next period, money no object?
Star Trek based sci-fi. Real Star Trek not that crappy J.J. Abrams shlock. But the whole shebang - Original Series to Star Trek: Online. Have to be in 28mm of course.

3. Favourite 5 films?
Doomsday - all the fun of Road Warrior, Escape From New York and 28 Days Later, but crammed into Rhona Mitra's tight pants.  
Miller's Crossing - Best period gangster movie ever. Finney and Byrne are epic in this movie.
Terminator - not only is this a fun action/horror/sci-fi flick - it is also a superbly crafted film. Sad that Cameron's editorial eye has weakened over the years.
Apocalypse Now - best Vietnam themed movie.
Silverado - while I generally prefer spaghetti westerns, this is probably the best western I've ever seen. The only movie I've ever actually seen someone "cowboy up" in.

At least for the moment - this list is in somewhat of a constant state of flux: Often including Hardboiled, Sono Otoko Kyobo ni Tsuki, Run Lola Run, The Wrath of Khan... etc.

4. Favourite 5 TV series?
Max Headroom - far before it's time.
The Wire - never thought I'd like a series more than Homicide...
The Adventures of Brisco County Jr. - no comment needed - perfection.
Star Trek: The Next Generation - the high water mark of the franchise.
The Venture Brothers or Flight of the Conchords - it's like something I would create myself - if I was that creative.

5. Favourite book and author? 
Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets - David Simon
That's my favorite book, but my favorite author is probably Lovecraft.

6. Greatest General? Can’t count yourself!!
Oda Nobunaga - The man neutralized a province of ninja to dominate the country. Show me one other general who has done that.

7. Favourite Wargames rules?
Combat Zone. Rules made in a spirit in direct opposition to Games Workshop philosophy.  Foundry's Street Violence and The Rules With No Name are also favorites.

8. Favourite Sport and team?
Japanese survival games (airsoft)... Hamamatsu J's Unit   (><)v 

9. If you had a only use once time machine, when and where would you go?
October 1966 and cock block J.J. Abram's dad.

10. Last meal on Death Row?
Japanese Korean-style barbeque with kimchi and Kirin. The kind you get in Japan not Korea - it's like pizza in New York versus Rome.

11. Fantasy relationship and why?
Monica Bellucci. Have you seen Monica Bellucci? Look at Monica Bellucci and be happy...

12. If your life were a movie, who would play you?
Michael Fassbender is almost cool and handsome enough.

13. Favourite Comic Superhero?
Grey. He was a complete badass before he died and they made him into a flying weaponized cyborg.

14. Favourite Military quote?
"A sucking chest wound is nature's way of telling you to slow down. "

15. Historical destination to visit?
Someplace old I suppose. 

16. Biggest Wargaming regret?
Buying a Warhammer starting set at a GW shop in 1999; Oh what I could have done with that money, that didn't suck.

17. Favourite Fantasy job?
Making movies.

18. Favourite Song Top 5?
London Calling - The Clash
Girl U Want - DEVO
Immigraniada (We Comin' Rougher) - Gogol Bordello
Bullets - Archive
National Anthem of the Soviet Union - Sergei Mikhalkov

19. Favourite Wargaming Moment?
Naming all the soldiers in a German infantry squad after characters from Sesame Street.

20. The miserable Git question, what upsets you?
Conservative politics and J.J. Abrams' Star Trek.

21 April, 2013

Hot Wheels HIN Dodge Neon SRT-4 (mid-scale) and more...

So on the way home from work today I stopped by HOBBY OFF, basically a Half-Price Books for toys, models, and video games. Searching through the diecast cars led to a couple larger "1/64" Jada diecasts - that are actually about 1/55. Yeah, scale creep happens with diecast too.

Anyway, beside the register I found another display of diecast cars. There I discovered not only a few more 1/55s but also two Hot Wheels mid scales: a Dodge Neon SRT-4 and a VW Golf Mk4 (the Spinner in the pic is actually from the BladeRunner limited edition box set, not a find at HOBBY OFF).

I got them all and brought them home to measure and scale. I must get a proper pair of calipers for this in the future, but for the time being I make do with a tape measure. I measure length, width (without mirrors), width, height, and wheelbase. Calculations put all of the five I eyeballed as 1/55s as very close:
Jada '03 Infiniti G35 coupe = 1/56
Jada '03 Dodge Magnum R/T station wagon = 1/55
Jada '02 Nissan Silvia S15 coupe = 1/51
Jada Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII sedan = 1/54
Realtoy MB G-Wagon 460 2-dr = 1/56

True, the Silvia (far left) is a bit big, but since it was a small car it mixes well with the others.

Hot Wheels mid-scales are sold as 1/50s. I have a number of them, mostly 60s and 70s American muscle from the G Machines line with a few modern imports from the Dropstars line. These cars are well proportioned for minis, typically 1/50 in all dimensions but width, which is exaggerated to 1/43. Perfect for the exaggerated bulk of mini sculpts. 28mm figures aren't dwarfed by the car when standing beside it, but can reasonably fit inside with appropriate shoulder room. Truly the best of both worlds.

Sadly the mid-scale range seems to have been abandoned by HW, and the cars tend to fetch premium prices due to the HW collector's community. When I seached for more SRT-4s, with the idea of using the sedans as cop cars, I found them to run for about $50. That's crazy. Still, I'll pick them up as I see them, hoping to replace the 55s in the future.

11 April, 2013

Cyberpunk 2077 - Looking excellent.

Two months ago, CD Projekt Red dropped a teaser trailer for Cyberpunk 2077. With moving and life and all I haven't gotten to speaking on it until now.

It's a complete nerd-gasm. Chock full of references to the the pen-and-paper game (Network 54, Alt, Hammerman etc.). I am truly looking forward to this game, and the quality of the trailer leaves me very okay with waiting another two years.Cyberpunk is in good hands.

Speaking of hands... Maximum Mike (Pondsmith) was also featured in a CD Projekt Red video explaining Cyberpunk. It's also fantastic, a must watch.

I've read that Maximum Mike is working on developing a 4th edition of Cyberpunk to coincide with 2077. I truly hope this is true. Cyberpunk 203X (3rd ed.) was something of a misstep, not as bad as most make it out to be, but also not really worthy of succeeding CP2020. I truly hope that 4th edition is in the pipe, and that it is as excellent as 2077 promises to be.