As my RSI from the Painting Challenge recedes, it's time to take a moment, drink a mug of tea, and think about what's next. Like most of us, there are about 50 projects I'd like to be working on, and I don't feel bad about flitting around between them, but it is a good thing to have some general aspirational hobby goals. In no particular order, here are my top ten projects for the rest of the year.
1. Victorian Zombie Apocalypse
This is one of those projects entirely driven by a desire to paint some shiny miniatures. I really like the look of the fictional c.1900 female Hussars made by Hinterland Miniatures. Most miniatures of female characters in our hobby have traditionally reflected a rather sad adolescent male fantasy. You know, 'I'm a lusty barbarian wench with a massive sword, so big in fact that I don't need any armour apart from this chain mail G-String.' That kind of thing. The thing I like about Hinterland is that they have made a range of plausible female warriors that actually look like real women. I'd be happy to give them to my daughter to play with.
And they do make a pack of zombiefied Hussars.... Which got me thinking. 'Cos Westwind also have a pack of Victorian zombies.... And Northstar's 'Society of Thule' box contains some zombiefied Prussian Jaegers..... So I wrote to Nick Eyre at Northstar, and he was more than happy to just sell me 15 or so of the zombies.
People seem to like 'In Her Majesty's Name'. And there are rules for zombies on the IHMN website. But terrain.... hmmm. Well, I visited Wargames Vault, and checked out the 'Historic Olde Towne' from Stoezel's Structures. It's cheap, it'll be fun to make, and basically will give me a nice big Victorian city layout, with interior detail.
It seems the planets have aligned. I've got some cool minis on the way to paint, a nice terrain layout to build, and some rules to drive it. I reckon this will be fun.
2. Finish my Romano-British Army/b>
I'm looking forward to seeing this army finished. They are mainly destined for Dux Bellorum, but will also work for Impetus and Sword and Spear.
3. 6mm ECW Armies
Paul of the Man Cave will be back around the end of the year, and by the time he returns I must have two large ECW armies painted.... Large in numbers, that is.
4. Late War Germans, Soviets and Brits
I already have some armies painted for Battle Group Fall of the Reich, but I aim to add to them every now and then during the year. I particularly enjoyed making some urban warfare bases for some Germans during the Painting Challenge, and plan to do more of these.
5. Urban Terrain
For my Fall of the Reich games, I really want some urban terrain. It will be expensive to try to do something sizeable in MDF, so I'm thinking about making a board with lots of rubble and partial buildings, with occasional more intact structures, and maybe even adapting paper models to bulk out the cityscape.
6. Retreat from Moscow 1812
Another project driven by stunning figures, I plan to keep chipping away at painting the stunning range made by the Perrys for Napoleon's retreat from Moscow. No idea what rules they might be suitable for, but even if I never game with them, they are a privilege to paint.
7. Curse Agema Miniatures and their lovely Republican Romans! Curse War and Peace Games for that time they sold them for less than half price!! Curse my Lack of will power!!!
Nothing to add to that really....
8. Early War Germans
Add a few bits and bobs to my Battle Group Barbarossa army.
9. Western Desert
I reckon this will mainly be a 2016 project, but I'll be waiting eagerly for the new Battle Group supplements for the desert. I'm now pretty much like one of Pavlov's dogs, conditioned to buy whatever Plastic Soldier Company put out, so I'll pick up whatever desert armour they put out that I can afford. If they put out a box of Crusaders and I can't afford them, I'll rob a bank.
10. Something Shiny that I Haven't Anticipated But will end up dominating several months of my life
So there we have it: Some aspirations for the year. Should keep me out of mischief.