Thursday, March 21, 2013

Vikings are the New Pirates!

Remember a few years back when Pirates of the Caribbean movies were all the rage? In the microcosm of miniature wargaming, piratical miniature battles also gained additional table-love. Like many, I painted a small band when one of the local groups started a skirmish campaign using Legends of the High Seas.

And now it’s time for the Vikings to take center stage! How do I know this? 

  • Several sets of Dark Ages/Vikings rules have been or shall soon be released, and even some older ones re-released.
  • New Viking figures are being produced in metal and plastic.
  • The History Channel has a scripted miniseries on the topic: Vikings. *UPDATE*: A second season of 10 episodes has been ordered!
  • How to Train Your Dragon (2010) - a CGI children's movie about Vikings with Scottish accents learning to live with dragons - spawned a successful TV show, Dragons: Riders of Berk, and a second movie is in the works for release in 2014. 
  • Inexpensive lots of Viking miniatures have disappeared from eBay and other online markets, only to be replaced by packs of new figures at retail prices or unimpressively painted, used armies.
  • The cover of the flyer from the Miniature Figure Collectors of America has Vikings on the cover.

Coincidence? I think not!

I’m quite happy about this because it’s always been a period of interest, with four painted warbands already in the collection. Yes, being ahead of a miniature wargaming trend is an odd experience.

Modified a set of simple rules for Viking skirmishing a couple years back that are fun, fast and FREE: RAVENFEAST - newly updated, version 1.2. Sample stats that are given were designed for ease of play at conventions, but rules for designing your own troops are included. Remember: these are not the legions of Rome; they’re Scandinavian farmers behaving badly!

I was fortunate enough to run a driftage rights skirmish at the local club a couple weeks back which inspired painting another two basic warbands (in the works) and then expanding them all. Also need to make up a serviceable farmstead for raiding and burning.

Any suggestions on a good online how-to for thatched rooves on wargaming buildings?

Thanks for stopping by!

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