Aztec Temple Rehab

Sounds like a good concept for a reality show doesn’t it? Circa 1520 or so…

Actually, it’s my latest attempt at adding another structure to my Aztec terrain/buildings for games of Feudal Patrol in Mesoamerica (using my Civilizations Collide supplement). There have been a good number of buildings from me lately (which is why I did my contest). There is also a link at the end of this post on all of my project terrain and miniature builds for it.

And this particular post is dedicated to Ryan MacRae and Chris Rett. Why?

Well, this temple piece has a somewhat unclear past. It was given to me by Ryan MacRae and Christopher Rett. It was left over from their back room cleanout at the Great Stories store in Uxbridge, MA. Ryan said it was maybe originally found in his dad’s garage? Was it a souvenir? A kit project? A piece for a terrarium or even an aquarium? Who knows. All I saw in it was potential as a reasonable secondary temple-type building for Tenochtitlan. It was in two unconnected pieces, had a few cracks, and seemed to be somewhat ceramic. Obviously, I needed to have it match my other pieces. I was not thrilled with the stairs and their alignment, and it was mostly (but not totally) symmetrical. Though I believe something is either symmetrical or its not right? The top would not stay on the top if bumped. Anyways, I thought I could try to make something more useful out of it gaming-wise.

The piece as it was when I got it.

I thought it needed a base, and I did have an spare piece of Revell plywood that I cut to size up to the piece – as symmetrically as possible.

I then sanded the edges of the plywood and the bottom of the piece, and attached the two with wood glue. As you can see, I found a way to compress the two while the glue set!

I then decided to use black Milliput to construct the stairs. Why black? It was what was available! I don’t have a lot of experience with it, and I chose it due to being cheaper than green stuff. I did not expect to get great sculpted details on the stairs – I just wanted something that would be aesthetically ok on the tabletop. I did consider using square wood dowels, but the work involved in sizing them seemed disproportionate to the needs of this project. I also would make the steps wider and more visible – but still they would not useable by a figure on a base.

As for the sculpting – it was a bit more difficult than I had imagined beforehand. I tried to use the existing lines on the piece as guidelines, and was successful for the most part. It’s not Michelangelo, that’s for sure. I actually was a little disappointed at this point, but I pressed on thinking the rest of the rehab may go better, and let the Milliput cure.

The dusting process was similar to my previous efforts with MDF – that being painting the model with a PVA/water slurry and dusting with a salt shaker containing the dust. I did add (temporarily) extra neodymium magnets so as to prevent the dust from blocking the installed ones.

All dusted up – note the extra magnets as masking.

I then moved on to painting it. I dry brushed it and then painted it in the same color schemes as my MDF.

The piece after first dry brushing and base coating.

I then used Army Painter “Light Tone” on it and let it dry. Once dry, I added more highlights.

After adding the tone but before the final highlighting.
Completed!

To get a feel for the model, here are some eye candy shots.

One side
Opposite side
Top side view
Some Eagle and Jaguar Warriors and a Warrior Priest by the piece.

I learned a bit during the processes of this project. I’m on the fence on Milliput as an architectural sculpting agent – it was not easy to sculpt into the stairs and I did face a challenge with regards to the Milliput’s “slump” (a term used to describe how wet concrete settles and does not hold a shape). Though, the extreme slope of the stairs (as is found with the actual ones) made gravity NOT my friend in this aspect. Maybe green stuff or Apoxie Sculpt would have been easier but more expensive. I am unsure. I think my approach in the end worked out ok, and the painting helped I think – and you, dear reader, can let me know your assessments.

My biggest goal was for this piece to be a good add to my little mini Tenochtitlan tabletop. The next two pics are good comparisons. I think it succeeded. Not my finest work, but it is acceptable.

Next to the Temple High Throne
The piece seen next to all of my Aztec terrain (with some WIP Conquistador War Wagons in the back – more on them in a future post).

I think now my terrain just needs pavement and some causeways – I already have a working concept (below) and I will be making the surrounding lake swampy with some neat floating flora. More on this when I’m done with that!

My tabletop urban Aztec battlefield concept. There will be textured pavement and causeways on this MDF – and this will also be a future post! For rural areas, I have the other buildings.

The pavement is in WIP. I used MDF with sculpted DAS clay (including a Green stuff Aztec roller in judicious spots). It needs to set and get matte varnished, but I’m excited on the potential. I also need to build the causeways.

Pavement WIP

So that’s it for now – hope you enjoyed this post – let me know your thoughts – good, bad, or otherwise – in the comments section. Thanks for looking!

For all of my previous posts on games, units, and other projects for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide” – please see this page.

PAINTS, INKS, GLAZES, SHADES, WASHES, PIGMENTS, FLOCKING, GLUES AND MORE THAT I USED ON THIS MODEL

  1. Wood Glue
  2. Plastic Plates
  3. 1/8″ neodymium magnets
  4. Gorilla Glue
  5. Revell Birch plywood (1/4″ x 6″ x 12″)
  6. Paper clip wire
  7. Black Milliput
  8. All Living Things Dry Dust Bath (chinchilla dust)
  9. Vallejo “Flow Improver”
  10. Vallejo “Airbrush Thinner”
  11. Vallejo Model Air “Sand (Ivory)”
  12. Vallejo Model Color “Dark Sand”
  13. FolkArt “Yellow Ochre”
  14. Vallejo Model Color “Black”
  15. Vallejo Model Color “Red”
  16. Army Painter “Light Tone” (wash)

And the Winners of Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest are…

Back in March, I launched my second “giveaway” contest. Basically, it was called Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest, and I invited folks to guess as to when I would finish a bunch of terrain for my Aztec games of  Feudal Patrol games in Mesoamerica (using my Civilizations Collide supplement).

ALL OF MY TERRAIN SO FAR!

I have chronicled my progress here in this blog and I am hopeful that you’ve enjoyed the journey. I am happy to say that on today, May 22nd, 2021, I finally finished all of my pieces that were in the contest. Not ALL of what I have to build, but I am very close to done – more in a bit.

We had 18 entrants – not bad. And here – in no particular order – are the prizes I offered:

Prize A

Prize B

A three blister prize! Ral Partha 42-301 Aztec Generals, 42-305 Aztec Arrow Knights, and 42-309 Aztec Warriors w/Long Thrusting Spears (really tepoztopilli). 18 figures in total. All are unopened from the 1980’s. Works for 25mm or 28mm scale games.

Prize C

A two blister prize! Ral Partha 42-309 Aztec Warriors w/Long Thrusting Spears (really tepoztopilli) and 42-308 Aztec Warriors w/Darts & Light Spears (really atlatl) . 12 figures total. Both are unopened from the 1980’s. Works for 25mm or 28mm scale games.

Prize D

A two blister prize! Ral Partha 02-212 Savages: Bowmen (2 blisters – 12 figures total). Both are unopened from the 1990’s or early 2000’s. Works for 25mm or 28mm scale games.

Prize E

A primed and based resin African mask from Acheson Creations suitable for whatever you want to use it as!

So here are the results – please join me in congratulating the winners!

Check out any blogs you don’t know!

You can see how you ended up above – pretty interesting how as a group your average was 5/19 – just three days off!

1st Place: Buck Surdu from Buck’s Blog – just three days early! Taking the Gold for the USA!

2nd Place: Chris Palmer from the HAWKS blog! Taking the Silver for the USA!

3rd place: John from Just Needs Varnish! Taking the Bronze for the UK!

4th Place: TIM from The Imperfect Modeller! Another Brit!

5th Place: Pete from Pete’s S/P Blog (his second win!) One more for the UK!

Congrats to the winners! Buck gets first choice, then Chris gets second, then John third, then TIM fourth, then Pete gets what’s left.

Just confirm in the comments section which one you want, and then email me your shipping information to MarkAMorin@aol.com (I’m sure that will work fine – I have some of yours but just to be sure). That way the winners can choose from what’s left after higher winners have chosen.

Thanks to ALL of you (even if you lost) for playing and to ALL of you, more importantly, thank you for your encouragement and support!!! It really helped me and inspired me.

And check out the blogs listed – all are worth more than a look!

So what’s next for me? The following!

Going to convert this into a miniature temple for Tenochtitlan. It looks like something from a tourist shop of a DIY kit, but I’m grateful for it (thanks Ryan).
Conquistador War Wagons! Four of them (think wooden APC’s). From Gringo 40’s.
Cortes from Gringo 40’s

I’m also going to try to make Aztec “pavement” for Tenochtitlan. (no pic).

Until next time!

For all of my previous posts on games, units, and other projects for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide” – please see this page.

Aztec Temple Sentinel Tower & a Challenge Update

In this post I will share my latest MDF kit build for Feudal Patrol games in Mesoamerica (using my Civilizations Collide supplement). I was able to finish off another Aztec-inspired MDF kit. This one also came from from Things From the Basement via 4Ground via Badger Games (see it here). It is called Temple Sentinel Tower and is scaled for 28mm figures – and is just what it is described as being – a Temple Sentinel Tower which would be a nice piece of high ground for some missile troops.

This is part of “Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest” (which you will read more about shortly in this blog post), as well as the April painting challenge from Ann’s Immaterium called Ann’s “Paint the Crap You Already Own” challenge.

The kit as received.

It was an enjoyable kit to build. This one had a few challenges for the build as I needed to make sure that I could paint the inside of the tower as well as dust it up with chinchilla dust as I have been doing. I want all these cityscape Temple structures to match in character – and in color and texture. Basically, as you will see, I broke the kit into two parts until final assembly.

The kit after wiping down with a moist microfiber cloth. The instructions were good.
First day of assembly and setting up with PVA, rubber bands, and clamps.
The lower tower section is on the left – and the top here has been left to work on separately with paint and chinchilla dust as I have previously described (see this page). Having steel washers around held as weights with PVA gluing.
The tower sections awaiting base coating after dusting up with the chinchilla dust and watered down PVA slurry.
The sections after the base coat was applied and the dry brushing of the textures. The red, black, and yellow colors were painted after the dry brushing.

The finished Temple Sentinel Tower next to my previous MDF builds. I put a few missile troops up in the tower as examples.
Different angle view.
An Aztec veteran with an atlatl peers out while a macuahuitl-armed comrade guards the ladder access. A sling-armed novice is at the top of the ladder.
A close up of a bowman (front) and another slinger (left) in the tower.

I think this came out well – what do you think?

For the other pieces in the building contest, I was also able to airbrush a decent base coat on my remaining resin structures, as well as to start on the ground cover on their styrene bases.

The remaining resin structures – I have a good start on them.

This now leaves me with two more MDF builds – the Temple High Throne and the Sacrificial Altar – in addition to the resin. These are going to take a back seat to finishing the resin pieces. This is because as I have more paint on order to properly finish them similarly to my previous MDF kits. I have found that I’m going though a good amount of paints and washes (chinchilla dust and MDF can be thirsty).

I have also tried to show you, dear readers, the progress in my challenge in a non-award-winning video on IGTV and Instagram (well it hasn’t won yet, so there’s hope…).

My main communications channel is THIS BLOG! But, I’m just trying to keep up with the young ‘uns like IRO. It’s a bit of an unscripted thing – so enjoy! Without any further ado – here is the video link live from my cellar (that I cannot put on WordPress without paying more $$).

So as for the contest – I have a shot below that shows the range of guesses:

The contest IS ON! Who will win?

We’ve got American, Aussie, and Brit entries (what’s up with the rest of the world?). Thanks to all for entering and best of luck – and follow my progress (and your chances) here! The average is May 19th, with Azazel the earliest on 4/24/2021 and Ann the latest on 6/30/2021. Hell, your guesses are as good as mine at this point for sure.

A couple of small side notes. I was quite surprised and happy to see that 4Ground featured my work on their Facebook page – here is that Facebook link – and much thanks to our pal Kuribo who let me know on the blog that he saw it. Also, this marks my 30th post on this subject – and while I’m happy about the progress I’ve made – the listing of all the posts is getting to be a bit much (never mind approving all the WordPress pingbacks that this generates).

So, I’ve added a new selection on my main menu (“Gaming & Hobby Areas of Interest”), and under that will be individual genre selections. I’ve started with a page with a list of and links to all of my Mesoamerican posts called “Aztec, Conquistador, and Mesoamerican Hobby Projects Posts” – and I will (over time) be augmenting it with other stuff, such as retro sci-fi, France 1940, Normandy, etc. But I won’t get to that for a while – I’ll be focusing here on the Aztec stuff! I’ll still add the paints and materials section as before, mostly for my own references.

Thanks for looking and I hope that you can check out the video link and no matter what – let me know what you think of the tower – or my accent – or my graying hair – or whatever.

For all of my previous posts on games, units, and other projects for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide” – please see this page.

PAINTS, INKS, GLAZES, SHADES, WASHES, PIGMENTS, FLOCKING, GLUES AND MORE THAT I USED ON THESE PIECES:

  1. Elmer’s PVA Glue
  2. Poster tack
  3. Plastic Plates
  4. All Living Things Dry Dust Bath (chinchilla dust)
  5. Vallejo “Flow Improver”
  6. Vallejo “Airbrush Thinner”
  7. Vallejo Model Air “Sand (Ivory)”
  8. Vallejo Game Air “Desert Yellow”
  9. Vallejo Model Color “Dark Sand”
  10. Citadel “Ushabti Bone”
  11. DecoArt “Light Buttermilk”
  12. Vallejo Model Air “Wood”
  13. Vallejo Model Color “Red”
  14. Craftsmart “Black”
  15. Citadel “Yriel Yellow”
  16. Army Painter “Light Tone” (wash)
  17. Vallejo Game Air “Ivory”

Aztec Temple Corner Walls (Plus Some Life & Other Distractions Stuff Added In)

This blog is titled “Life, Golf, Miniatures, and Other Distractions” – and it’s not often that it’s about anything but miniatures. This post will definitely concern miniatures – but as the title suggests, a few other things are going to get added in after the miniature stuff.

Why you ask? Well, the long and short of my current predicament is that a member of my household is near the end, and I need to deal with the ramifications of that. It’s sad, but it’s time.

Oh, sorry, not a person, it’s my PC that is on its last legs – and it is already quite legless.

My PC has had multiple thermal shutdowns over the last few weeks – while in sleep mode! Argh! I decided that I would need to get a new desktop before I lose all my hobby work (plus everything else that is on the thing). I prefer a PC over a laptop, though I still look at WordPress on my iPhone and my iPad. I just compose on a PC. Anyways, I will be without a computer shortly – so I needed to get a post in. Therefore this post will cover some miniature stuff first and some fun (I think) extras – I hope that they will be somewhat interesting for you.

Plus, this is my largest list of hashtags ever (I think so anyways).

In my last post, as part of “Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest” (which you should enter soon by the way!) I discussed how I assembled and painted 8 Temple Columns for my Aztec games of Feudal Patrol using my Civilizations Collide supplement.  I had moved onto the MDF kits over my resin stuff as temperatures had been too cold here in Massachusetts to use rattlecans to prime outside. I truly enjoyed building and painting the MDF of my last post, and I certainly still have a love for using chinchilla dust.

My next MDF effort would be two kits of the “Temple Corner Walls” – from Things From the Basement via 4Ground via Badger Games (see it here). Each kit had one square pillar-like structure and two walls – six in total. The kits are very nice and pretty easy to work with in my opinion. I basically used the second approach from last time – assemble first, then dust up with the chinchilla dust and paint them.

An example of one kit out of the bag after cleaning it off with a moist microfiber cloth.
I have found with these MDF kits that it helps to dry fit first and organize the parts. Here you also see that I put an “up” arrow on the inside of the walls to help make sure that I did not assemble anything upside down.
I assembled the wall sections first and let the PVA dry overnight.
The next day, I added steel washers as weight to get the wall tops to glue flush to the previous step’s work. Then I glued to the bases (with the weights again).
All of the “Temple Corner Walls” assembled and ready to get dusted up and painted.
Here you see my early dry brushing after dusting – I use three colors to dry brush. I decided to paint the triangles in a red, black, and yellow pattern. You can see the paints that I used at the very end of this post.
After I dry brushed the structures, I toned down the dry brushing with Army Painter “Light Tone”. Between the “thirst” of both the MDF and the chinchilla dust, I ended up using the better part of two bottles of the AP tone. Here, these are all complete.

I tried to use my spray booth again for some shots here but I did get some weird shadows and alternatively unwanted shine that I did not like. So I went with what you see below. I’ll need to investigate a light box (maybe).

Here you see a fight among the “Temple Column Walls” (this post) and the “Temple Columns” (from my last post) between a squad of Conquistadores (and a wardog) against an Aztec squad and a supporting warrior priest. I think that I was successful at getting all to blend in well.

So, the Temple Corner Wall structures of this post are part of two “challenges”. The first is mine as mentioned earlier – “Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest” – in which I will give away free prizes to blog followers for being the closest to guess how long it will take me to finish all these buildings. The second is from Ann’s Immaterium, and is called Ann’s “Paint the Crap You Already Own” challenge. These definitely count there – and I hope there will be more for this April challenge.

I have ordered some more “Light Tone” – and with my remaining MDF I’ll need it. In the meantime, as an update – it warmed up here this week so I was also able to get my outside priming done – see below!

I was able to prime this week! I can now vary what I decide to complete.

I also am planning an update to my Civilizations Collide supplement, which will have rules for the falconet and some new scenarios (in addition to an overall update). So that might slow up my progress, as also golf might (haven’t played yet this year though). I also have been – wait for it – GAMING!

Well, remotely anyways. I was lucky enough to play in a Combat PatrolTM game last Saturday via Zoom with Sally4th’s Chris Abbey. Chris (in the UK) set up a James Bond game based on the 1977 film The Spy Who Loved Me that he called “Nobody Does it Better” (Carly Simon song of the movie). It featured the scene in the bad guy’s (Stromberg) supertanker interior hold (that held a captured US sub). The action focused on the scene where escaping British, Russian, and American crews fight the Stromberg goons to stop a nuclear launch. We had US and UK players – and I had James Bond. Our objective was to advance up the gantry and throw a satchel charge at the control room doors and blow it open. We had a lot of twists and turns in the game – James Bond’s satchel charge misfired, and so did a Stromberg flamethrower that would have fried him. A last second satchel charge throw from the Americans missed, but the explosive charge slid up to the door and blew it! Success! Notably, I had invited our blogger buddy TIM who got to watch the game – and it was fun to share the experience with him.

Take a look at the tabletop below – amazing!

The tabletop before the game.
Chris Abbey GM’s the game exceptionally well. We were moving up the gantry on the left – the control room was in the center of the far end.

I also had two other nice surprises. The first was in the mail from Buck Surdu – who sent me a couple of Wars of Ozz shirts. I did get in the Kickstarter for it (and the figures are available from Sally 4th and Old Glory in the US) -and the next project I plan to do is paint these figures.

The second surprise came in our local weekly newspaper (see below). I’ll let Andy Newton’s words speak for themselves, but given the last few months, this was a heartwarming bonus for us.

From The Spencer New Leader

And though my computer is a problem, I did get the email from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts that has allowed me and my wife to get our first “jabs” this weekend! Take that COVID-19!

So, until my computer situation is better – I’ll be painting and following up on my iPad. Maybe I’ll be back this weekend – in any case, let’s discuss this post! So feel free to let me know your thoughts and comment – and to enter the contest. Take care all and thanks for looking!

Miscellaneous details and references for those interested in that sort of thing:

Previous posts on games, units, and other projects for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide”

  1. Aztec Temple Corner Walls (Plus Some Life & Other Distractions Stuff Added In) (this post)
  2. Aztec Temple Columns and My New Love for Chinchilla Dust
  3. Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest
  4. Game Aids and Tools for Feudal Patrol games using the Civilizations Collide Supplement
  5. And the Winners of “Mark’s Conquistador Contest” are…
  6. Conquistador Cavalry. 24 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CON5 “Conquistador Cavalry in light armour 1” (4 horses & 4 riders); Outpost Wargame Services #CON6 “Conquistador Cavalry in full armour” (4 horses & 4 riders); Eureka Miniatures “Moving Horses” #100ANM05 (8 horses used as casualty markers).
  7. Conquistador Falconet and Crew (Artillery). 3 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CONA1 “Falconet and Crew”.
  8. More Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men. 8 figures total Outpost Wargame Services #CON001 “Sword and Buckler Men”.
  9. Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men (Wargames Foundry). 18 figures total in three blister packs: Wargames Foundry #SB015 “Swaggering Swordsmen”, #SB016 “Brutal Sword and Buckler Men”, and #SB017 “Bold Bladesmen”.
  10. Perro de Guerra (Conquistador War Dogs). 13 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONS6 “War Dogs” (8 war dogs); Eureka #100CON13 “Dog Handler and Dogs” (1 dog handler/pikeman and 4 war dogs)
  11. Conquistador Foot Command, Crossbowmen, and a Couple of Officers. 11 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONC1 “Conquistador Foot Command” (a leader, a banner bearer, a drummer, and a bugler); Eureka #100CON04 “Crossbowmen” (5 crossbowmen); and Eureka CONC1 “Conquistador Officer” and an unknown SKU officer (2 officers)
  12. Merciless Adventurers (this post) – Wargames Foundry #SB014 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  13. Audacious Arquebusiers! – Wargames Foundry #SB012 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  14. Mark’s Conquistador Contest – for my loyal blog followers!
  15. Montezuma and Chieftains – Wargames Foundry #AZ011 for Feudal Patrol – 6 Aztec figures (Montezuma, 4 Chieftains, 1 Warrior Priest)
  16. Aztec Shock Troops – Cuachic Warriors aka The Shorn Ones – 8 Aztec cuachicqueh warriors
  17. Tloxtoxl and the Priests of the Great Temple, Wargames Foundry AZ021 – 2 warrior priests, 1 priestess, 1 priest, 1 leader, and 1 signaler
  18. Civilizations Collide – The Wars of the Aztecs, the Inca, the Maya, and the Conquistadores is now available as a FREE Download for Feudal Patrol™ – plus a Feudal Patrol™ review!
  19. 18 Aztec Novice Warriors for Feudal Patrol Walk into a Bar – 18 Novice Warriors
  20. Aztec Warrior Priests (painted as Tlaxcalans), Ral Partha 42-302, circa 1988 (this post) – 6 figures – 6 Tlaxcalan Warrior Priests
  21. Tlaxcalan Novices, Elite Warriors, and Command Group – 18 figures – 8 Novice Tlaxcalan Warriors, 8 Elite Tlaxcalan Warriors, 1 Tlaxcalan Captain, 1 Tlaxcalan Conch Blower
  22. Tlaxcalan Archers – 8 Veteran Tlaxcalan Archers
  23. Aztec Game for Feudal Patrol across thousands of miles – via Zoom!
  24. Aztec Snake Woman and Drummer – 1 Aztec General, 1 Aztec Drummer
  25. A June and July Jaguar Warrior Frenzy (plus some Aztec Veterans and a Warrior Priest to Boot) – 3 Aztec Veteran Warriors, 17 Jaguar Warriors, 1 Aztec Warrior Priest
  26. Doubling Down – Aztec Veteran Warriors – 24 Aztec Veteran Warriors
  27. Aztec Arrow Knights, Ral Partha circa 1988 – 6 Aztec Arrow Knights
  28. Aztec Eagle Warriors from Tin Soldier UK – 6 Aztec Eagle Knights
  29. Aztec Novice Warriors and a few Frinx – 12 Novice Warriors

PAINTS, INKS, GLAZES, SHADES, WASHES, PIGMENTS, FLOCKING, GLUES AND MORE THAT I USED ON THESE PIECES:

  1. Elmer’s PVA Glue
  2. Poster tack
  3. Plastic Plates
  4. All Living Things Dry Dust Bath (chinchilla dust)
  5. Vallejo “Flow Improver”
  6. Vallejo “Airbrush Thinner”
  7. Vallejo Model Air “Sand (Ivory)”
  8. Vallejo Model Color “Dark Sand”
  9. Citadel “Ushabti Bone”
  10. DecoArt “Buttermilk”
  11. Vallejo Model Color “Red”
  12. Americana “Kelley Green”
  13. Craftsmart “Black”
  14. Citadel “Yriel Yellow”
  15. Army Painter “Light Tone” (wash)
  16. Vallejo Game Air “Desert Yellow”

Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest

Welcome to Mark’s Building Challenge Contest – a FREE chance for you (with no work at all except to follow my blog and guess correctly) to join me on the next leg of my Spanish Conquest journey for my 16th Century game supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide” . Actually, as my supplement covers pre-Spanish contact, it really is a focus on Mesoamerica and South America.

The upside for you? Well, besides getting to be a follower of my blog – which I (somewhat humbly) hope is a bonus in and of itself – you will have a chance to win – yes WIN – some free stuff (miniatures or a game – see below)! This is my second giveaway contest – the first was well-received and you can see the winners here. As before, followers of this blog (either email OR WordPress) are eligible).

The upside for me is that I will get a bit more motivation to get these buildings done – and hopefully done well for the tabletop and to pass your scrutiny. Plus it will be fun. I’m hoping that I will (and many others) be able to soon get what the Brits are calling “the jab” and return to more gaming. Having these buildings done would be the icing on the cake. I also would be able to find new homes for the prizes, which are indeed nice (ask last contests’ winners Pete, Mike, and Leif).

As for this contest – read on!

Just like before, I thought this would be another way to get you involved on this project other than just reading this blog. You get to compete and guess the date that I’ll actually finish the buildings!

I am writing this on March 23rd, 2021. I have not done ANYTHING with this stuff except to take the photos of them. I’ll need to wash and assemble and paint and base and anything else I feel is needed for this stuff. My experience working with resin is ok – see here, here, and here. My experience with MDF is much less – see here. I expect to start work TODAY, March 23rd, 2021 .

How long will this take – YOU get to guess.

My goal is to have some fun, and reward my followers and share some stuff that I enjoy. Secondly, it’s to get more followers and to grow the community. Thirdly, it’s to have fun (yes that’s fun twice). I do not currently monetize my blog, and I’m not looking to anytime soon by the way. Here are the rules – please note the underlined parts:

Rules of Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest:

HOW TO ENTER AND TO WIN:

  1. You must be an email or WordPress follower of my blog.
  2. You must pick a date (day, month, and year) that I will finish all of the Aztec Buildings shown here in this post.  Finishing means, to me, that I am ready for the figures to be shown on my blog and used in a game.  That is my call!
  3. You must let me know that you want in on the contest by midnight EDT (US East Coast time) on April 10th, 2021.  You do this by posting a comment that “you are in” here on this blog post in the comments section with the date information requested above in (2).
  4. Only one entry allowed per follower except as described in (5) below.
  5. If you get another person to follow my blog, you can earn another entry!  For each new follower that credits you as a referrer, you can get another entry.  All that person needs to do is comment on this post as in (3) above stating that he or she is “in” and who the referrer is.  The referrer can then reply to that comment with an additional entry date.
  6. Winners will be whoever is closest to the date I announce as the “completion date”.  That can be earlier or later – for example picking a date that is one day before is as good as if it’s one day after.  As there are multiple prizes, 1st place gets first choice, then 2nd, then third – and this time there is a 4th place! (Yes, I’m generous, eh?)   If two people pick the same date, which is possible and allowed, ties will be broken by who submitted the date first.  I reserve the right to add more prizes! 
  7. I also reserve the right to be the final judge on the contest – somebody’s gotta do that. When I finish, I will announce the winners.

So as for prizes, they will include metal miniatures, plus a brand-new shrink-wrapped unopened game is available that I will never get my wife to play – so it needs a new home. The minis are all vintage lead – and in original packaging. Great stuff I love but may not be able to paint soon – and they also deserve a home. First place gets first choice, and so on. And I will pay to ship them to the winners (including the US, UK, Australia – as long as I don’t need to hit the lottery for shipping)! So here are the current four prizes (and I may add more):

A three blister prize! Ral Partha 42-301 Aztec Generals, 42-305 Aztec Arrow Knights, and 42-309 Aztec Warriors w/Long Thrusting Spears (really tepoztopilli). 18 figures in total. All are unopened from the 1980’s. Works for 25mm or 28mm scale games.
A two blister prize! Ral Partha 42-309 Aztec Warriors w/Long Thrusting Spears (really tepoztopilli) and 42-308 Aztec Warriors w/Darts & Light Spears (really atlatl) . 12 figures total. Both are unopened from the 1980’s. Works for 25mm or 28mm scale games.
A two blister prize! Ral Partha 02-212 Savages: Bowmen (2 blisters – 12 figures total). Both are unopened from the 1990’s or early 2000’s. Works for 25mm or 28mm scale games.

Again, depending on participation and interest – I may add more. Hell, even if you win and don’t have a plan for them, these could be used as trade, or you could just tell me that “victory is enough” for you and to reward the next player or whatever you desire.

Your next questions should be – “what exactly is Mark trying to build and paint here?” and “how fast is he?”. For the second question, just check out my pages that show my previous projects. For example, 2021 is here,  2020 is here, and 2019 is here, but I list all my projects from 2016 onward under the “Miniatures and Projects” dropdown. This menu lets me track all I have done – and how, and can give you an idea.

Back to the contest. Here are the Aztec buildings (with links in the captions) of this next quest and this contest below. They are all scaled for 28mm. The resin buildings are from Acheson Creations, and there are 6 of them plus a group of scatter terrain that Acheson nicely threw in with my order. The MDF structures are creations from Things from the Basement creations via 4Ground via Badger Games. There are 7 kits of MDF.

Aztec peasant/farmers house
Aztec Noble’s house
Maize Storage Structure
Huaxtec House
Aztec Stone House
Cuezcomatl Granary Structure
This group includes several pieces of some scatter terrain that Acheson nicely threw in with my order (thank you!). I will include this as a part of the contest. There is also an African mask that I won’t include, but will likely paint for fun.
Two kits of “4 Temple Columns
Two kits of “Temple Corner Wall
One “Temple Sentinel Tower
One “Temple Sacrificial Altar
One “Temple High Throne

So, for now that’s the contest. I hope that you will enter and wish you the best of luck! Referrers are always welcome – just need to follow the rules and importantly be one of my blog followers – like the rules said!

For full disclosure, I have conferred with TIM on the resin and the MDF – and he gave me a few helpful pointers. He also pointed me in the direction of a nice Sarissa book on MDF that is very helpful. I’m sure he will join in the contest but that might change the dates you pick – or not -it’s up to you!

Stay tuned for updates as I finish pieces of this project – and I really hope that you find this fun. As I have been doing, I’ll leave a synopsis as usual like below. Stay safe and enter in the comments section!!

Miscellaneous details and references for those interested in that sort of thing:

Previous posts on games, units, and other projects for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide”

  1. Mark’s Aztec Building Challenge Contest (this post)
  2. Game Aids and Tools for Feudal Patrol games using the Civilizations Collide Supplement
  3. And the Winners of “Mark’s Conquistador Contest” are…
  4. Conquistador Cavalry. 24 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CON5 “Conquistador Cavalry in light armour 1” (4 horses & 4 riders); Outpost Wargame Services #CON6 “Conquistador Cavalry in full armour” (4 horses & 4 riders); Eureka Miniatures “Moving Horses” #100ANM05 (8 horses used as casualty markers).
  5. Conquistador Falconet and Crew (Artillery). 3 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CONA1 “Falconet and Crew”.
  6. More Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men. 8 figures total Outpost Wargame Services #CON001 “Sword and Buckler Men”.
  7. Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men (Wargames Foundry). 18 figures total in three blister packs: Wargames Foundry #SB015 “Swaggering Swordsmen”, #SB016 “Brutal Sword and Buckler Men”, and #SB017 “Bold Bladesmen”.
  8. Perro de Guerra (Conquistador War Dogs). 13 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONS6 “War Dogs” (8 war dogs); Eureka #100CON13 “Dog Handler and Dogs” (1 dog handler/pikeman and 4 war dogs)
  9. Conquistador Foot Command, Crossbowmen, and a Couple of Officers. 11 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONC1 “Conquistador Foot Command” (a leader, a banner bearer, a drummer, and a bugler); Eureka #100CON04 “Crossbowmen” (5 crossbowmen); and Eureka CONC1 “Conquistador Officer” and an unknown SKU officer (2 officers)
  10. Merciless Adventurers (this post) – Wargames Foundry #SB014 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  11. Audacious Arquebusiers! – Wargames Foundry #SB012 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  12. Mark’s Conquistador Contest – for my loyal blog followers!
  13. Montezuma and Chieftains – Wargames Foundry #AZ011 for Feudal Patrol – 6 Aztec figures (Montezuma, 4 Chieftains, 1 Warrior Priest)
  14. Aztec Shock Troops – Cuachic Warriors aka The Shorn Ones – 8 Aztec cuachicqueh warriors
  15. Tloxtoxl and the Priests of the Great Temple, Wargames Foundry AZ021 – 2 warrior priests, 1 priestess, 1 priest, 1 leader, and 1 signaler
  16. Civilizations Collide – The Wars of the Aztecs, the Inca, the Maya, and the Conquistadores is now available as a FREE Download for Feudal Patrol™ – plus a Feudal Patrol™ review!
  17. 18 Aztec Novice Warriors for Feudal Patrol Walk into a Bar – 18 Novice Warriors
  18. Aztec Warrior Priests (painted as Tlaxcalans), Ral Partha 42-302, circa 1988 (this post) – 6 figures – 6 Tlaxcalan Warrior Priests
  19. Tlaxcalan Novices, Elite Warriors, and Command Group – 18 figures – 8 Novice Tlaxcalan Warriors, 8 Elite Tlaxcalan Warriors, 1 Tlaxcalan Captain, 1 Tlaxcalan Conch Blower
  20. Tlaxcalan Archers – 8 Veteran Tlaxcalan Archers
  21. Aztec Game for Feudal Patrol across thousands of miles – via Zoom!
  22. Aztec Snake Woman and Drummer – 1 Aztec General, 1 Aztec Drummer
  23. A June and July Jaguar Warrior Frenzy (plus some Aztec Veterans and a Warrior Priest to Boot) – 3 Aztec Veteran Warriors, 17 Jaguar Warriors, 1 Aztec Warrior Priest
  24. Doubling Down – Aztec Veteran Warriors – 24 Aztec Veteran Warriors
  25. Aztec Arrow Knights, Ral Partha circa 1988 – 6 Aztec Arrow Knights
  26. Aztec Eagle Warriors from Tin Soldier UK – 6 Aztec Eagle Knights
  27. Aztec Novice Warriors and a few Frinx – 12 Novice Warriors

And for my blog buddy IRO, as it’s still March, here’s another t-shirt shot – well it’s still cold, so he gets a sweatshirt shot. It’s a Massachusetts outline with a Boston Bruins logo in different colors. Normally the Bruins (my favorite hockey team) colors are Black and Gold, but my lovely wife wanted me to have something other than those colors – so Red White and Blue are ok too!!

For IRO!

NOW ENTER!

Game Aids and Tools for Feudal Patrol games using the Civilizations Collide Supplement

It’s my blogaversary! I started this blog 6 years ago today on March 19th, 2015!! It all started with this post – The Story of the Nightmare Legion. It’s been a fun journey.

I started this blog to share my minis and to share stuff that I learned after an extended absence from the hobby. I wanted to help with lessons learned and the like. Since then it’s been a blast, and I really appreciate all of you who read and follow this little blog of mine! I certainly have been inspired by yours.

This current post was one with which I struggled as far as deciding on whether or not to do write it as it involves making stuff to make my games easier for the players and for me as a GM. In the end, I was encouraged to give it a go (thanks IRO and TIM!). So, this post will be more of a how to (and a throwback to some of my earlier projects) in terms of stuff I have conceived of, designed, and built for my Feudal Patrol games using my supplement Civilizations Collide. After reading this, you might have some new ideas, you might know about some new materials, or you might just think that I am nuts. After all, the stuff I will show took 3+weeks to make.

Now, before I go any further, I want to emphasize that I did not need to do any of these projects to play Feudal Patrol™. Period. I did because they suited my personal needs and – well – I get thoughts of stuff in my head that need realization.

Buck’s Feudal Patrol rules have more than adequate tools and game aids. They are fantastic. My goals here were for myself so that I can make my games easier for me mainly. Also, with 216 available figures for a game of Civilizations Collide, I needed some tools if I am going to provide CHOICE and AGENCY to my players.

To accomplish this, I have broken down my efforts into “challenges” with some supporting pics and links for the materials and tools. I hope that you find them interesting as they are really how I built “stuff” for my games.

The Under-Base Label Challenge

Challenge: The Conquistadores arrived in Mesoamerica in the early 16th Century and there had been many different Mesoamerican civilizations for centuries prior to that.  “Uniforms” in this era were anything but uniform.  In the game, Warbands and Elements within Warbands are composed of figures that are attired, armored, and armed differently.  In terms of both figure identification and using the points system to build Elements and Warbands, this poses a challenge, especially with my 216 available figures.  Having thought of this from the beginning of this project, I had kept an identification Excel spreadsheet for all 216 figures throughout the project – which helped immeasurably with having identification data for each figure.   I did take many pictures and also wrote (somewhat illegibly as is my curse) on the bottoms of the figures’ bases with a Sharpie.  However, I needed a clear and legible solution for the tabletop.   

Goal:  Make all figures easily and individually identifiable.  Ideally, have a system that identifies each figure and the points cost for each under the 1” and 1.25″ steel washer bases.

Solution: Create custom labels for use under the 1” and 1.25″ steel washer bases.

Process:  Using PowerPoint, I designed a ¾” round label that has both the figure identification number and the figure point value on it.  I cut and pasted additional circles and aligned them on the sheet for future removal.  Alignment of the circles and editing them was easy with PowerPoint – and was very helpful in later steps with the paper trimmer.  I filled one sheet or slide in PowerPoint full of the circles.  At that point all I needed to do was to copy that entire sheet and make a second sheet, and so on.  This enabled me to edit each circle on the subsequent sheets for all 216 figures.  I inputted the figure numbers and the point values from my master spreadsheet onto the circles.  I used a color code for the round labels by type – grey for the Conquistadores, gold for the Aztecs, and red for the Tlaxcalans. I also used a thick point circle on the border of the circles – I used 1.5 but I could have gone thicker.  The thicker borders help with aligning them for punching out later.  I then printed off the sheets of labels on Avery™ #8165 8.5” x 11” Trueblock® shipping labels that I bought at Staples. I took each sheet and used my Fiskars® SureCut™ Deluxe Paper Trimmer (from Michaels) to cut thin strips holding multiple labels.  This made punching out the labels easier.  I used my 5/8” punch from Michaels (Lever Punch, Circle by Recollections™), punch out the labels.  Even though the punch was 5/8” versus the 3/4” circle – they aligned better – as the thick point border helped me to position the strip.  The punch has a clear underside so you can see if you are aligned or not.  I affixed the labels to the underside of each base of each of the 216 figures.  I store and transport my figures in 11-liter Really Useful Boxes (which I bought from Staples but this UK company has their own website too in the US)  lined with Aleene’s® Magnetic Tacky Sheets™ (which Michaels sometimes carries too).  The labels did not impede the magnetic attraction that I needed because they were smaller in diameter than the 1” bases – and were centered on the washers – leaving enough steel available to get a “bite”.

End result:  Every figure now has a printed label with its ID number and point value printed on it underneath as you see below.

Printed off labels shown here in front of my PowerPoint design. Note the hole punch – trimming these with the Fiskars trimmer made punching them a breeze. (As if punching 216 labels could ever be considered a breeze!)
Example of the under-label of a Conquistador Sword & Buckler Man figure.

The Really Useful Box Organization Challenge

Challenge:  I can store and transport each of the figures in my Really Useful Boxes, but setting up a game and gathering figures from 216 figures for a warband can be too time-consuming if one has to look at each figure’s undersides!  I needed to make my Really Useful Boxes even more useful.

Goal: Make my Really Useful Boxes more organized and more functional such that each figure has an easily identifiable slot for selection and also to speed pick up after a game.

Solution: Design and build a system within each Really Useful Box that facilitates easy figure identification for both gathering figures for a game and picking them up after a game while preserving any benefits for storage and transport.

Process:  Each 11-liter Really Useful Box is about 12” x 14.5”.  I could have gone through endless iterations of how to organize the figures so that they would fit, and never be 100% sure my set up would work in reality.  I came up with an idea that I think worked.  Here again I went to PowerPoint.  Most of my figures are on 1” bases, but a few are on 1.25” bases.  I decided that I would make 3/8” labeling strips in layers upon which I could affix the figure identification numbers.  I wanted each figure to have 1/8” clearance on both sides, so each row would be 1.5”.  To verify how this would work, I made shapes in PowerPoint at 50% scale such that they fit on the screen.  The shapes included how much space I would need for each type of figure. This really worked – and is a process that I will use again.  You can see below my rough plan.  Once I had my rough design, employing my Fiskars® SureCut™ Deluxe Paper Trimmer I cut strips of card stock and affixed them to the magnetically-lines Really Useful Boxes with small balls of poster tack.  Then I made a second set of card stock strips to go on top of the first sets, affixing them with poster tack.  Lastly, I just printed off my Excel spreadsheet pages onto card stock with the figure identification numbers on them, trimmed them up, and affixing them to the now-raised card stock “line” with poster tack.  For the Conquistador cavalry, I made little corrals as they were in need of a bit more support.  I then put all of the figures into the boxes as you see below – I ended up needing 4 boxes.

End result:  Every figure has a labeled slot as you see below.

Really Useful Boxes before modifying them.
Using PowerPoint as a CAD program, I designed the reorganization. Before any cutting!
Aztec Box 1 finished
Aztec Box 2 finished
Conquistador Box 1 finished – note the cavalry corral.
Conquistador/Tlaxcalan Box 2 finished

The Movement Tray Challenge

Challenge: I needed a safer way to transport figures to and from the tabletop.

Goal: Design and make a couple of magnetically-lined movement trays.

Process:  This was pretty simple.  I just used some old 1/8” thick balsa wood under two Aleene’s® Magnetic Tacky Sheets™ and reinforced the glue with wood glue.  After being weighted down, the sheets were firmly attached.

End result:  Success – I have two movement boards!

Magnetic Movement tray with some Conquistador Sword & Buckler Men
Magnetic Movement Tray with some Aztec Cuachicqueh

The “Menu” Challenge

Challenge: Many of my games will be virtual, and some will be at convention games.  I needed a simple way to convey two key concepts.  First, I needed to present to the players the options that they had available with regards to figures’ stats and cost.  Secondly, I needed to help them organize their troops – especially as Aztecs and Tlaxcalans have special organizations. In my games they are bigger and can have novice warriors attached.  Normally, an Element in Feudal Patrol™ is 4-5 figures plus a leader figure.  A Warband consists of 2-4 Elements plus a Warband Leader.  To reflect how the Aztecs waged war, their Elements are bigger – adding up to 5 novice warriors to each Element (if they pay the point costs of course).  This is useful as the novices can be assigned to drag away any incapacitated enemy for either sacrifice or slavery – which is historically in line with what they actually did do.  Killing an enemy was regarded as “clumsy”. Additionally, each Mesoamerican Warband can have a Warrior Priest, who can both fight and help with Aztec or Tlaxcalan Morale results during a battle.  At this point, my players could look at the figures in the boxes, but not have any information save the figure number, what he’s carrying and wearing, and the point value (if you pick one up to see the label).  Certainly, this would not be efficient.

Goal: Design and make a simple way (a “menu” system) for players to make informed choices for both virtual and in-person games.

Process:  What I did here was to go back to my Excel spreadsheet and size up the data to fit on a dashboard (more on that in a bit).  Then I adapted Buck Surdu’s excellent data cards to fit on a single strip in Excel that would fit approximately 8” wide and 3/8” high.  These I would make for each of my 216 figures – plus 4 additional to represent having the Army leader (Cortes or Pizarro) as a mounted versus dismounted choice for the Conquistadores.  Each section of the Word document (basically a “menu” of figure choices) was organized as you see below.  I then cut and pasted the strips from Excel into Word as pictures (paste special).  I then added some brief information about the figures, as well as a picture of each of the 216 to help further identify the players’ options.  Lastly, I created worksheets at the end of each “menu” to help the players build their forces.  To do this, I went back to PowerPoint, and created the shapes that I wanted for the worksheets.  I saved each individual slide as a JPEG (make sure you choose “Just This One” when it asks, and then edited the JPEG size.  If it did not work, I just went back to the PowerPoint, resized, resaved as a JPEG, and repasted in Word.  You can see the results below.

End result:  I have three good menus that I can email or hand out to players at the beginning of a game and they will speed up the time for players to make their troop choices.  As a side note, I prefer that players get to make choices in games!

Screen shot from Aztec Menu
Screen shot from Conquistador Menu
Screen shot from Tlaxcalan Menu
Screen shot from Aztec Menu showing worksheets

The Dashboard and Stat Strip Challenge

Challenge: The players need a quick and easy reference system that designates their troops’ stats, and one that does not take up a lot of space.

Goal:  Design and build a system of sufficient dashboards and supporting elements of appropriate ease and flexibility such that the players can play easier and faster and have more fun.

Process:  I do like gaming systems and setups that are flexible – that is giving players adequate AGENCY. As you have read, the menus allow the players to make their choices, but to have them write down all data at the game’s beginning could be a bit of a pain.  Plus, there can be a variety of differnt types of figures in some Elements.  My solution was to build on what I already had been developing.  I designed a dashboard in Excel that would accommodate being printed off on card stock and placed in a 5.5” x 8.5” sheet protector such as this one from Staples.  And remember the stat lines from the menus?  I used them to fit on the dashboards.  How you say? Well first, I special-ordered steel base material in sizes of 5.5” x 8.5” from Wargames Accessories.  The steel sheets do have some rough edges – which I covered with scrap pieces from the Avery shipping labels with no problems.  These steel sheets fit inside the sheet protectors and under the dashboards – and I made 31 of these.  Then I cut and pasted each individual stat lines into Word as pictures.  Then I printed off each of these 216 + 4 stat lines (220 in total) onto strips of card stock and trimmed them with the paper trimmer to fit on the dashboards.  To affix them to the dashboards, I needed magnetic strips – 220 of them.  I found a really nice source on Amazon of 8.5” x 11” sheets made by Craftopia called Adhesive Magnetic Sheets that are the best that I have found.  Again, my paper trimmer helped here to trim the magnetic strips to ¼” size width (fitting nicely under the 3/8” wide stat strips).  I did need to replace my Fiskars blade once and augment that effort with scissors.  Each of the 220 strips could be now be added to the dashboards, but how to organize and store these!  My answer would come from Wal-Mart.  Cookie sheets!  I found inexpensive cookie sheets (see photo below) for $1.50 each that stack together.  I organized the strips as you see below and added troop categories – basically mirroring the menus.

End result:  I have a pretty decent system now for organizing a game.  I have every figure’s stat line on a removable magnetically-backed card on 10 stackable cookie sheets.  These stat lines fit perfectly on sheet protector-encased steel dashboards. 

Cutting magnets and stat strips
A dashboard with a stat strip flipped over to show the magnet underneath
Example of an Elite Cuahchic Dashboard – as Elites they would not have novices attached but if this was a Veteran Dashboard there would be sufficient room for the novices’ stat strips
An example of a Conquistador Dashboard
My solution for organizing my stat strips!
My 10 cookie sheets with stat strips, as well as the dashboards and other aids discussed here.
Closer shot of the cookie sheets with the labels on them mirroring the menus
The cookie sheets stack nicely for transport

The Tabletop ID Challenge

Challenge: Using the dashboards is useful, but telling which figure is which on the tabletop can be a challenge, especially virtually.  As with the previous challenges, the figure’s lack of uniformity poses a gaming identification challenge.

Goal: Design and create a system that would allow for easy identification of the figures but would not overly detract from the aesthetic of the game.

Process:  I thought that as I used steel washers under my figures, my best option was to try something else in the realm of magnets.  But what?  I used some refrigerator magnets as prototypes of “under-magnets”, developed the concept, and then used PowerPoint to refine it.  However, the concept of cutting out a few hundred magnets by hand was not appealing to me – plus I saw that they would look rough on the edges.  I contacted Fridgedoor in Quincy, MA and worked with them to make me the magnets.  There did not need to be any fancy printing on the bottom (non-magnetic) side as I knew that would be too tough and expensive.  I had them make 20 mil thick sheets with each sheet having 11 of the under-magnets that could be easily popped out.  One side (facing the figure) would be magnetic and the other printed black.  The square jutting out on the magnetic side would be where I would affix labels for the figures.  I used PowerPoint to make sets of differently colored and designed labels for the figures’ little jutting square.  For the Elements, I made L, 1-10, and X (L for the Leader, 1-10 for the figure in the Element, and X for the baggie I would store them in).  Then I printed them off, trimmed them, and affixed them.  I ended up with 34 sets bags of under-magnets in individual little zip lock with ID numbers.  This was made up of 33 sets of 11 and 1 set of 24 (different for Warband Leaders, Army Leaders, and Warrior Priests) for a grand total of 387 total under-magnets.  I stored these in a small Really Useful Box, which in turn goes into another Really Useful Box for the game (see below).

End result:  I have now a soup-to-nuts system for setting up and running my game more efficiently for both virtual and in-person games that is useful and easily transported.

My under-magnet design. Not rocket science!
Popping out manufactured under-magnets
Working on the under-magnets labels
How the under-magnets will be used. Here, a Tlaxcalan figure has a Leader under-magnet. The rest of the set is above him, including the “X” marked baggie. Multiple color schemes were used.
Lots of sets of under-magnets
Here you can see a group of Conquistadores and some Aztec Cuachicqueh engaging in battle – the under-magnets show who is who easily.

I hope that you enjoyed this blog (and all the other ones for the last 6 years!). Just for kicks, please take a look at my very first post, The Story of the Nightmare Legion. Here’s hoping I keep doing more and reading and more of yours as well – and let me know if any of my somewhat insane stuff inspires you or if I need to be medicated – just asking!

And here’s a pic for IRO who asked for a T-shirt shot in March. Not ready for selfies I guess.

GO ARMY! BEAT NAVY!

I’ll be announcing my next free giveaway contest soon – this time I’ve got some terrain to do and if you guess closest you can win stuff FREE from me. Just like in the last contest!

Don’t forget to let share your thoughts in the comments section!

Miscellaneous details and references for those interested in that sort of thing:

Previous posts on games, units, and other projects for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide”

  1. Game Aids and Tools for Feudal Patrol games using the Civilizations Collide Supplement (this post)
  2. And the Winners of “Mark’s Conquistador Contest” are…
  3. Conquistador Cavalry. 24 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CON5 “Conquistador Cavalry in light armour 1” (4 horses & 4 riders); Outpost Wargame Services #CON6 “Conquistador Cavalry in full armour” (4 horses & 4 riders); Eureka Miniatures “Moving Horses” #100ANM05 (8 horses used as casualty markers).
  4. Conquistador Falconet and Crew (Artillery). 3 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CONA1 “Falconet and Crew”.
  5. More Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men. 8 figures total Outpost Wargame Services #CON001 “Sword and Buckler Men”.
  6. Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men (Wargames Foundry). 18 figures total in three blister packs: Wargames Foundry #SB015 “Swaggering Swordsmen”, #SB016 “Brutal Sword and Buckler Men”, and #SB017 “Bold Bladesmen”.
  7. Perro de Guerra (Conquistador War Dogs). 13 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONS6 “War Dogs” (8 war dogs); Eureka #100CON13 “Dog Handler and Dogs” (1 dog handler/pikeman and 4 war dogs)
  8. Conquistador Foot Command, Crossbowmen, and a Couple of Officers. 11 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONC1 “Conquistador Foot Command” (a leader, a banner bearer, a drummer, and a bugler); Eureka #100CON04 “Crossbowmen” (5 crossbowmen); and Eureka CONC1 “Conquistador Officer” and an unknown SKU officer (2 officers)
  9. Merciless Adventurers (this post) – Wargames Foundry #SB014 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  10. Audacious Arquebusiers! – Wargames Foundry #SB012 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  11. Mark’s Conquistador Contest – for my loyal blog followers!
  12. Montezuma and Chieftains – Wargames Foundry #AZ011 for Feudal Patrol – 6 Aztec figures (Montezuma, 4 Chieftains, 1 Warrior Priest)
  13. Aztec Shock Troops – Cuachic Warriors aka The Shorn Ones – 8 Aztec cuachicqueh warriors
  14. Tloxtoxl and the Priests of the Great Temple, Wargames Foundry AZ021 – 2 warrior priests, 1 priestess, 1 priest, 1 leader, and 1 signaler
  15. Civilizations Collide – The Wars of the Aztecs, the Inca, the Maya, and the Conquistadores is now available as a FREE Download for Feudal Patrol™ – plus a Feudal Patrol™ review!
  16. 18 Aztec Novice Warriors for Feudal Patrol Walk into a Bar – 18 Novice Warriors
  17. Aztec Warrior Priests (painted as Tlaxcalans), Ral Partha 42-302, circa 1988 (this post) – 6 figures – 6 Tlaxcalan Warrior Priests
  18. Tlaxcalan Novices, Elite Warriors, and Command Group – 18 figures – 8 Novice Tlaxcalan Warriors, 8 Elite Tlaxcalan Warriors, 1 Tlaxcalan Captain, 1 Tlaxcalan Conch Blower
  19. Tlaxcalan Archers – 8 Veteran Tlaxcalan Archers
  20. Aztec Game for Feudal Patrol across thousands of miles – via Zoom!
  21. Aztec Snake Woman and Drummer – 1 Aztec General, 1 Aztec Drummer
  22. A June and July Jaguar Warrior Frenzy (plus some Aztec Veterans and a Warrior Priest to Boot) – 3 Aztec Veteran Warriors, 17 Jaguar Warriors, 1 Aztec Warrior Priest
  23. Doubling Down – Aztec Veteran Warriors – 24 Aztec Veteran Warriors
  24. Aztec Arrow Knights, Ral Partha circa 1988 – 6 Aztec Arrow Knights
  25. Aztec Eagle Warriors from Tin Soldier UK – 6 Aztec Eagle Knights
  26. Aztec Novice Warriors and a few Frinx – 12 Novice Warriors

Total figures completed to date for this project: 230 figures:  109 Aztecs, 32 Tlaxcalans, 89 Spanish Conquistadores

Next up – buildings! 

Able Company Kickstarter

Hello dear readers – a very quick post. I have been knee-deep in making game aids (dashboard, magnetic figure data strips, and more). I’ll be sharing those and catching up on your blog posts (as I always do eventually). BUT, I just saw this new Kickstarter from Sally 4th in the UK that just caught my fancy, and I thought I’d share it.

As a kid in the 1970’s I read a lot of comic books, and this homage really struck a chord, and I thought it might with you folks as well, as well as any fans of classic movies. Here is the link.

I am not financially involved with this – just sharing with you cool kids!

Now back to working on my game aids!

And the winners of “Mark’s Conquistador Contest” are…

Don’t you love suspense? Well, I have just a tiny bit here for you all!

I started “Mark’s Conquistador Contest” – for my loyal blog followers back on December 15, 2020. It’s purpose was threefold: one, to give myself a challenge to finish off my last 89 figures (all Conquistadores) for my for Civilizations Collide scenarios for games of Feudal PatrolTM  ; two, to offer a prize of miniatures to worthy homes that could use them; and three, to have a fun journey along the way with my followers.

The entire project began nearly a year ago in April of 2020. I had spent the month of March 2020 and part of April 2020 doing my research, for the supplement and looking at sources for appropriate miniatures for the Aztecs, the Tlaxcalans, and the Conquistadores. I finished off 230 miniatures in total for the project.

I need more boxes!

I managed, with YOUR inspiration, to finish everything on Valentine’s Day, February 14th, 2021. This meant that I got the 89 done in 61 days – including all those holidays! That’s an average of 1.459 per day (according to my spreadsheet that all of you are completely unsurprised that I used).

At the beginning on 12/15/2020
Now finished – all of the Conquistadores together.

As for the contest – the three prizes were as follows (in no particular order):

3 25mm Ral Partha Aztec blister packs
3 15mm Minifig blister packs
2 Ral Partha Colonials cavalry packs

The rules were as follows:

Rules of Mark’s Conquistador Contest:

TO ENTER AND TO WIN:

  1. You must be an email or WordPress follower of my blog.
  2. You must pick a date (day, month, and year) that I will finish the Conquistador miniatures shown here in this post.  Finishing means, to me, that I am ready for the figures to be shown on my blog and used in a game.  That is my call!
  3. You must let me know that you want in on the contest by midnight EST (US East Coast time) on January 2nd, 2021.  You do this by posting a comment that “you are in” here on this blog post in the comments section with the date information requested above in (2).
  4. Only one entry allowed per follower except as described in (5) below.
  5. If you get another person to follow my blog, you can earn another entry!  For each new follower that credits you as a referrer, you can get another entry.  All that person needs to do is comment on this post as in (3) above stating that he or she is “in” and who the referrer is.  The referrer can then reply to that comment with an additional entry date.
  6. Winners will be whoever is closest to the date I announce as the “completion date”.  That can be earlier or later – for example picking a date that is one day before is as good as if it’s one day after.  As there are multiple prizes, 1st place gets first choice, then 2nd, then third.   If two people pick the same date, ties will be broken by who submitted the date first.  I reserve the right to add more prizes! 
  7. I also reserve the right to be the final judge on the contest – somebody’s gotta do that. When I finish, I will announce the winners.

It’s been fun along the way – as people (Buck and Roger mostly) were telling me to SLOW DOWN. But, I kept on, hoping to get them done as well and as quickly as I could (sorry Buck and Roger!).

So here are the results – please join me in congratulating:

1st Place: Pete from SP’s Project Blog – nailed the date on the nose!

2nd Place: Mike from despartaferres/redcaer1690 – got second by the tiebreaker rule as he picked 6 days early but picked earlier than the third place winner who is.

3rd place: Leif (an email follower and fellow member of the my club The Mass Pikemen) who also picked 6 days away from 2/14 (but picked 9 days later than Mike did.

Overall and final standings

Congrats to the winners! Pete gets first choice, then Mike, and Leif gets what’s left. Just confirm in the comments section which one you want, and then email me your shipping information to MarkAMorin@aol.com (I’m sure that will work fine).

I will, as I intimated earlier, be doing this again (if there is interest) for all the terrain I have to do for the project. I’m hoping to have more prizes to give away (and maybe even better ones) but I need to get some game-specific stuff done in terms of game aids and the like first. I will NOT begin painting terrain before the next contest – which will begin, as this one did, with a blog post.

Thanks to ALL of you (even Roger😆) for playing and to ALL of you, more importantly, thank you for your encouragement and support!!! It really helped me and inspired me.

Miscellaneous details and references for those interested in that sort of thing:

Previous posts on games, units, and other projects for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest supplement for Feudal Patrol™ – “Civilizations Collide”

  1. And the Winners of “Mark’s Conquistador Contest” are…(this post).
  2. Conquistador Cavalry. 24 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CON5 “Conquistador Cavalry in light armour 1” (4 horses & 4 riders); Outpost Wargame Services #CON6 “Conquistador Cavalry in full armour” (4 horses & 4 riders); Eureka Miniatures “Moving Horses” #100ANM05 (8 horses used as casualty markers).
  3. Conquistador Falconet and Crew (Artillery). 3 figures total: Outpost Wargame Services #CONA1 “Falconet and Crew”.
  4. More Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men. 8 figures total Outpost Wargame Services #CON001 “Sword and Buckler Men”.
  5. Conquistador Sword and Buckler Men (Wargames Foundry). 18 figures total in three blister packs: Wargames Foundry #SB015 “Swaggering Swordsmen”, #SB016 “Brutal Sword and Buckler Men”, and #SB017 “Bold Bladesmen”.
  6. Perro de Guerra (Conquistador War Dogs). 13 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONS6 “War Dogs” (8 war dogs); Eureka #100CON13 “Dog Handler and Dogs” (1 dog handler/pikeman and 4 war dogs)
  7. Conquistador Foot Command, Crossbowmen, and a Couple of Officers. 11 figures total: Outpost Wargames Services #CONC1 “Conquistador Foot Command” (a leader, a banner bearer, a drummer, and a bugler); Eureka #100CON04 “Crossbowmen” (5 crossbowmen); and Eureka CONC1 “Conquistador Officer” and an unknown SKU officer (2 officers)
  8. Merciless Adventurers (this post) – Wargames Foundry #SB014 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  9. Audacious Arquebusiers! – Wargames Foundry #SB012 (6 Conquistadores with arquebuses)
  10. Mark’s Conquistador Contest – for my loyal blog followers!
  11. Montezuma and Chieftains – Wargames Foundry #AZ011 for Feudal Patrol – 6 Aztec figures (Montezuma, 4 Chieftains, 1 Warrior Priest)
  12. Aztec Shock Troops – Cuachic Warriors aka The Shorn Ones – 8 Aztec cuachicqueh warriors
  13. Tloxtoxl and the Priests of the Great Temple, Wargames Foundry AZ021 – 2 warrior priests, 1 priestess, 1 priest, 1 leader, and 1 signaler
  14. Civilizations Collide – The Wars of the Aztecs, the Inca, the Maya, and the Conquistadores is now available as a FREE Download for Feudal Patrol™ – plus a Feudal Patrol™ review!
  15. 18 Aztec Novice Warriors for Feudal Patrol Walk into a Bar – 18 Novice Warriors
  16. Aztec Warrior Priests (painted as Tlaxcalans), Ral Partha 42-302, circa 1988 (this post) – 6 figures – 6 Tlaxcalan Warrior Priests
  17. Tlaxcalan Novices, Elite Warriors, and Command Group – 18 figures – 8 Novice Tlaxcalan Warriors, 8 Elite Tlaxcalan Warriors, 1 Tlaxcalan Captain, 1 Tlaxcalan Conch Blower
  18. Tlaxcalan Archers – 8 Veteran Tlaxcalan Archers
  19. Aztec Game for Feudal Patrol across thousands of miles – via Zoom!
  20. Aztec Snake Woman and Drummer – 1 Aztec General, 1 Aztec Drummer
  21. A June and July Jaguar Warrior Frenzy (plus some Aztec Veterans and a Warrior Priest to Boot) – 3 Aztec Veteran Warriors, 17 Jaguar Warriors, 1 Aztec Warrior Priest
  22. Doubling Down – Aztec Veteran Warriors – 24 Aztec Veteran Warriors
  23. Aztec Arrow Knights, Ral Partha circa 1988 – 6 Aztec Arrow Knights
  24. Aztec Eagle Warriors from Tin Soldier UK – 6 Aztec Eagle Knights
  25. Aztec Novice Warriors and a few Frinx – 12 Novice Warriors

Total figures completed to date for this project: 230 figures:  109 Aztecs, 32 Tlaxcalans, 89 Spanish Conquistadores (ZERO more to go in Mark’s Conquistador Contest!)

Woo hoo!

Sci-Fi/Pulp/Retro Diorama

This is a New Year’s Eve post from my Aussie buddy, IRO who can be found at https://imperialrebelork.wordpress.com/2020/12/31/sci-fi-pulp-retro-diorama/ and thought I’d share it. He incorporated one of my creations (my Mark 1 Sphere Tank) into a wonderful retro sci-fi diorama. Very cool, and thank you so much IRO!

Hello all, Well it’s 11:09pm on New Years Eve and I’m typing out a blog haha, I know how to party! I have a nicely aged Scotch beside with some Bob …

Sci-Fi/Pulp/Retro Diorama

Mark’s Conquistador Contest – It’s On!

In any auto race, the signal to start is the waving of a flag. The one you see here is my making of Hernan Cortes’ banner of the Virgin Mary that the Conquistadores carried in Mesoamerica. It indeed will be carried by one of the soon-to-be-finished figures in the contest, so I thought it would be appropriate. Well, midnight passed last night and the Mark’s Conquistador Contest has officially started, and the flag is waved.

I have tabulated the list of entrants that you will see in the Excel chart below – sorted from earliest pick to the latest one.

You guys knew I’d have to have a spreadsheet!

I have listed the blog handles and the blogs of those who entered if you’d like to check them out. And you should if you do not know them. Click on their comments avatar to see them as they can be found in the comments section on the original contest post here. You can find most everyone on WordPress. However, a couple of entrants haven’t a blog to my knowledge (Leif Magnuson and Dave Wood), while Dave Stone is on blogger, and Buck has his own website. Buck is also on the HAWKS site with his fellow HAWKS Greg and Chris (cjpalmer), though Greg also has a WordPress site.

The contest is on!

We have 18 entrants. The average of the dates chosen was March 24th, 2021. The dates have a 101 day range, with Mike at despartaferres picking the earliest (February 8th) and Roger at Rantings From the Wargame Table playing the long game at May 2oth. The good news is that there will be no ties – as all dates are different and none are equidistant from the average.

I am making good progress and will be posting about that shortly. I know that many of the miniatures will take me longer to paint, and some much less. And I do have an airbrush…at this point, it’s anyone’s game. So stay tuned! Thanks to all who entered and good luck!

As a reminder for what the prize choices are for the three top winners: