Introduction



Thanks for visiting my page. To help with navigation, here is a list of popular pages all about Marching in Colour

* The History of Marching In Colour - who is the man behind the words and service, how did it all come about

* Commissioning Models for Painting - how the process works, start to finish, and what you can expect

* Gallery of Artists Work - with over 20 years experience, here is a small sample of finished commissions

* Items For Sale or Trade - as well as painting models, I also sell pre-painted models and assorted loose models and scenery. Click the link for the current lists

* Trade in your old models for Painting Credit * click here for details

* To see details of all current commissions booked-in and estimated completion dates - click here

* SAC! - All articles relating to the game system can be found HERE




Wednesday, 14 September 2016

A look at 'STANDARDS'


To accommodate all budgets and requirements I offer multiple levels of painting, called 'Standards'.

The Standards act as a rough guide to keep me on track. I paint in waves and work on multiple models at once, kind of like a production line. The Standards are broken down into steps, and on my little production line I complete all of one step, on all of the models, before moving onto the next.

Working in such a way - to specific steps - allows me to add, or cut out steps, which in turn reduce the time (or increase the time) it takes to complete the models.

As I work and charge to an hourly rate, skipping or adding entire steps better allows me to price a commission. It also allows a client a more broader range of styles to choose from, and ensures we both understand just exactly what to expect from the commission.

Below is the 'Standards' chart I work to -


The first three steps are always the same regardless of Standard. All models are cleaned and prepped, given a white or black undercoat, then work begins with the base coasts. Fairly self-explanatory.

At 'E' Standard, the model is given a second base coat. This is usually a lighter shade of the original  base coat, and the first step at adding a level of shade.

I work with both paints and inks, and given the very high standard of most models these days, a light wash of assorted ink can really bring out the detail. Standard A is quick and easy, designed to get lots of troops painted fast, so doesn't get a wash. B gets a mix of wash or layered highlights, whichever better suits the model. C,D, and E, all receive full, and sometimes multiple washes.

Highlights by paint are regular from Standard C and upwards. with D and E each receiving an additional level of highlighting.

With the addition of the extra shading from the second base coat, Standard E, finishes with a more blended look that Standard D.
THE PHOTOS

Nothing shows Standard better than an actual photo! Please find below a series of photos to better visualise the differences in Standard. Clicking on an image should produce a larger image.

D to E - the difference of the second base coat is probably best seen in the body armour and helmet on the REAR (second) shot of models.




STANDARD A

The painting is always crisp and clear. A good example is the neck of this model, and the face/helmet/chin strap.

Any smudges or mistakes, slips of the brush, or running of colours etc are cleaned up so the paint is always and only where it should be.
STANDARD B

This standard receives either a light wash, or a shad of layering to produce shading. Often a mix of the two, sometimes just one or the other. Whichever better suits or is requested by the client.

Here we can see the armour has received an ink wash, and the uniform on the arms, a layer of lighter green.
 STANDARD C

Every part of the model receives an ink wash before highlighting begins.

This produces two to three levels of shading/highlighting - the base colour, the stain, and the painted highlight.
 STANDARD D

A second highlight provides an additional level of depth. This is best seen on the pocket and kneecap in this photo.
 STANDARD E

With two coats of paint prior to a wash, an extra levl of depth is created. This model's helmet and face (especially around the cheek), and also the neck, help to demonstrate the difference between D and E

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Marching In Colour hits FACEBOOK!

Howdy folks,

It has been a long time coming, but.... MiC is finally on Facebook!

You can visit and follow (and hopefully like and share) the page here -

MiC's FACEBOOK Page

The idea is to keep this blog for in-depth articles, stories and features, and to use the Facebook page as an almost daily update source.

Here for - reviews, and write ups, full photos etc
Facebook for - hourly/daily updates, whats on the workbench, sneaky photos of the work as the day progress etc


I can also better cross promote on Facebook, share other companies promotions, sales and announcements and so on. What I hope to do in the near future is combine promotions with MiC's service. For instance when a manufacturer runs a sale, or releases new models, I can run a joint promotion of painting those models. That way you can order new releases and have them painted straight away!

As always, feedback and suggestions on the idea are always welcomed and appreciated.

Email - Project_Vehemence@yahoo.co.uk

thanks
Chris

Saturday, 10 September 2016

September Update!

Howdy folks,

Its been a while! I hope you are all doing well.

For those of you who are not on my small mailing list (drop me an email at Project_Vehemence@yahoo.co.uk and I'll add you to it), I thought it was about time I posted a little update on why this site has been so quiet lately.

Firstly I am still painting, and will be taking new commissions again real soon.

The reason for my absence was down to illness. I haven't been well, and still arent, though I am far better than I was. I am currently awaiting a hospital appointment for tests. As soon as I know anything further, I'll post a fresh update.

This bought of ill health left me unable to paint, and with a fairly large backlog of commissions booked in. Now I am back painting, I have cleared many of them, and priority is on finishing the rest. Aside from the need to complete promised commissions the other reason why I haven't taken any new commissions is, and I am happy to say, due to the coming revamp of Marching In Colour!


I have been painting, on and off taking commissions, since the late 90's and I have learnt a lot during the years. Getting back on my feet after being ill has spurred me back in to action and I have a ton of new ideas for MiC and the commission service.

The first of which is a brand new overhaul of the prices. Big changes include -

 * Going back to a multiple level of standard. Those of you who can remember the old 'Rank and File' painting option will be pleased to see the return of something similar, with prices now from £2.00 per 28mm model!

 * Better balanced service, and fairer prices overall. Prices have been balanced to better reflect time taken. This means a slight increase across the board for more detailed work, but a better shift overall for easier models to paint.

With the old system I worked to a broad 'average'. The time and money I lost undercharging for detailed Marlburian uniforms with lace and trim and turns, collars, cuffs and reverse musicians was   made up for slightly by using the same pricing model for naked celt warriors - both types at £3.00 each, but the time taken differed by a fair whack. This will be no longer the case, the new pricing model better balances cost vs time taken.

The new pricing page has been finished and you can check it out here - NEW PRICING STRUCTURE   I would love to hear your thoughts on this new structure. Please email any comments to Project_Vehemence@yahoo.co.uk  so I can be sure to read them.


I have a number of other revisions and updates that I am working on, and will roll them out in due course. A new buy/sell page, a better schedule, a daily/hourly update system, and a social media presence  (argh! Facebook!) are all in the works and coming soon.

Its good to be back.

Open for new commissions real soon.

thanks
Chris








Monday, 2 May 2016

SAC! - Play test the game - Bandit Camp

Hi folks,

Thanks for visiting and supporting the idea of SAC! through reading and test playing this scenario.
If you do manage to find the time to play through it, I would love to hear your feedback. You can email me directly at - Project_Vehemence@yahoo.co.uk

I have played through the scenario myself on a number of occasions before writing this invitation. To view one of my games, please follow this link - http://marchingincolour.blogspot.co.uk/2016/05/sac-play-test-game-2-bandit-camp.html


The Scenario - 

The player takes command of a small group of soldiers lead by a low-ranking officer without much experience. The goal is to clear out a local group of bandits who have made camp in a patch of woodland.

This scenario is very flexible with regards to setting and models. You could play a small group of Romans vs bandits, Anglo-Saxons, medieval, or even fantasy.


Models Needed - 

10 models and 1 officer for the soldiers
10 models and 1 leader for the bandits


Scenery Needed -

Although the scenario calls for the setting to be a 'woodland', this like the models and period is flexible. It could as easily be a mountain region, or a swamp. What is important is that the board is set up something like the shot below -


The board should be around 48" in length, and 20" wide. The terrain around the two roads should be very rough and almost inaccessible


The Set-Up

The Soldiers - begin at the bottom of the map. The 10 soldiers must be split into two groups of 5 models each. The models in each group operate (move and fight) together, and models from each group must stay within 3" of another member of the same group.

The Officer is an independent character, he moves and fights on his own initiative and does NOT require and order to activate.


The Bandits - operate in a similar fashion. Place one group of 5 in the bandit camp, and keep the other group of 5 models off the table for now.

The Bandit Leader - starts in the bandit camp alongside the unit of 5 models. Like the Officer in the Solider's force, the Bandit Leader is an independent character and doesn't need an order to activate.


Scenario Special Rules

This scenario uses the following special rules - 

Areas 1 and 2 

The areas marked 1 and 2 on the map are special event zones. When a player moves a unit into either area roll 1D6,

1-3: The Bandits have set traps here. The unit must end its move immediately and takes 1 point of armour damage.
4-6: The Bandits launch an ambush! Place the 5 models of the bandit unit in base to base contact with the 5 models of the players unit. Fight a round of combat immediately


Bandit Camp - Personal Challenge

When the player makes it to this location two events will trigger. Firstly the Bandit Leader will issue a challenge to Personal Combat to the player's Officer. The Officer may accept or decline.

If the Officer accepts - the two models are immediately placed into single combat. No other units may influence this combat.
If the Officer declines - the Officer will fight at -1 H2H value. In addition, any remaining bandits will receive +1 to their Morale score.

Optional: Bandit Reinforcements
The second event at the Camp will only trigger if the event at Area 1/2 was a Trap and not an Ambush. At the start of the 2nd turn of combat in the Bandit Camp place the off table bandit unit at Area 1 or 2. This unit will activate in the Bandits phase and automatically head back to the camp to join the fight.  This is a special form of movement that doesn't require an Order. 


Bandit Morale?
The Bandits in this scenario don't have much desire for an all-out fight with the Soldiers. Anytime a Bandit has the option to fall back from losing combat they should do so. 


Model Stats

The Players force - 
Officer: Move:5   Leadership:2    H2H:3d6   Assist:+2    Morale:2d6+2    Weapon:3   Armour:9 
Soldiers: Move:5     H2H: 2d6+2    Assist:+3     Morale: 2d6+1    Weapon: 3     Armour: 9

The Bandits - 
Leader: Move:6   Leadership: 2    H2H: 2d6+2   Assist:+2     Morale:2d6+1   Weapon: 3    Armour:4
Bandits: Move:6    H2H:2d6    Assist:+2     Morale:2d6     Weapon: 3     Armour:3  


Victory Conditions

The Player wins if he manages to defeat the Bandit Leader. If the Bandit Leader flees the table the scenario is lost.




The Rules - SAC! light

Units in SAC! normally have more stats than featured (including special skills) but for this game we will be using a very basic version of the rules. The idea is to collect feedback on the command structure, movement, and basic combat.

The stats used are as follows - 

Move - the maximum amount a model can move in inches.
Run - a model may run an additional amount of inches up to half its original movement.

H2H - Hand-to-Hand, the fight/combat value of the model
Morale - the conviction and staying power of the model

Weapon Damage - the power of the models weapon  
Armour - the defensive strength of the models armour


Order Phase

You will need 4d6 for this phase, ideally two different colours. 2 red dice, 2 black dice for example.

These dice represent the Leadership values of both the Soldier's Officer, and the Bandit's Leader.

Roll all 4 dice together, Each dice represents 'One Order', and the number showing is the phase of the turn it can be executed in. Any tied dice, then the Soldiers activate first.

An example of a Turn Order is shown below -


What you can do in a Phase

A note on the Bandits - the Bandits will take no action until the players forces reach either of the areas marked 1 or 2 on the map. Then they will follow a turn order and activate as normal. The Bandit leader will remain in his camp, but will order any units he has to engage the players forces by the shortest route.


Step 1 - Issue an 'Order'

Orders are issued from the Officer, to a unit of Soldiers. To issue an order the Officer must have a clear Line of Sight to at least one model in the unit. Friendly models do block line of sight.

For this scenario all the terrain should be assumed to also block line of sight.


Step 2 - Activate the Unit

Once an order has been issued to a Unit, that order can Move or Run.
If the movement ends with models in base-to-base contact with a Bandit unit, a round of combat will be fought.

A note on the Officer - this model never needs to receive an order to activate and may activate in any phase in which you issue an order.

Sticking with our Phase Order above, the Soldiers activate in Phase 1 and 3 when given an order. The Officer can activate in Phase 1 or 3 for free, either before, after, or alongside the activating unit.


Step 3 - Move or Run

All models in the unit move together and must remain within 3" of another member of the same unit.
Any movement that ends in base contact with an enemy model will result in a round of combat being fought. Where contact does occur, and where move distances allow, all models of a unit should be placed in front base-to base contact with all models of the enemy unit. Lining-up for combat should look something like this -

Note - one red model moves slightly to make way for a blue model. There are advanced rules for combat in the normal version of SAC! but we are using a 'light' version of the rules for this scenario.




Step 4 - Combat

Combat is handled by a single role of the dice for each side.

If one side has more models engaged than the other, such as if one unit has lost a casualty, or the Officer (or Bandit Leader) joins a combat, these models add their 'Assist' value to the dice roll.

The score of the dice are added together, and the totals of each side compared. The higher score is the Winner, the lower is the Loser. Any tied scores result in a Draw.

The Winner then compares their 'Weapon Damage' to the Losers 'Armour' value.

If the Weapon Damage is Higher - one model from the losing side is removed as a casualty.
If the Weapon Damage is Equal, or Lower - the Armour Value of the losing side is reduced by 1 point.

SPECIAL RULE - Any dice (from either side) that score a '6' automatically inflict 1 point of armour damage on their opponent. This is inflicted regardless of who wins or loses, and is inflicted BEFORE calculating the Weapon Damage vs Armour.

The Loser then chooses to either stay in combat or attempt to withdraw.


If the Loser chooses to Stay, another round of combat will be fought when either unit receives a new order (in a subsequent turn), or another unit engages in combat.

If the Loser choose to Withdraw, they immediately make a full move (Run Speed) directly away from the combat. They then must test their 'Morale'

To test Moral the unit rolls dice equal to its Morale stat. If they roll 10 or higher they have PASSED. If they roll under 10 they have FAILED.

A unit which passed its Morale falls back in good order. They may face any direction and suffer no negative effects.

A unit which failed its Moral test is 'Routing'.

A note on 'Routing' - Routing units are moved at the start of every subsequent turn, before the command dice are rolled. They may not be given orders, but an order may be spent on them to try and rally the unit.

To successfully rally, a unit needs to roll equal to or above 10 on their Morale dice.



Once the action of the losing unit has been resolved, the Winner must resolve their action. 

If the Loser chose to Stay, then the Winner must also Stay.

If the Loser chose to withdraw, then the Winner must follow them UNLESS they pass a Morale test. 

If they pass a Morale test, they may,
Hold Position - stay where they are, but may change formation, and/or facing, or
Fall Back - take a free move (up to Run distance) directly back from the combat.

If they fail their Morale test, then they must PURSUE the retreating enemy unit by making a Run move directly after them.


If the Winning Unit pursues the Losing unit and connects, one of two results will happen, based on if the losing unit has fallen back or routed.

Fallen Back - the two units remain in combat and will fight again next turn.
Routed - the losing unit automatically takes 2 armour points of damage. If this damage is higher than the units current armour, or the unit has no armour left, the unit takes one casualty.


A Note on Multiple Combats

Although this scenario is small in terms of units and characters, there is still the possibility of finding combat between more than 1vs1. Wherever you find multiple combats you still only roll 1 attack per side. When choosing which stat from which unit/model to use, always use the unit with the most models in combat.

For example, where a unit and a character are fighting another unit - use the units base stats, and the characters 'assist' value.

It is also important to note that 'Assist' is PER MODEL.
So, where a unit of 5 models is in combat against a unit of 5 and another unit of 4, both sides would still only roll 1 set of dice. The side with the 4 and 5 models, would use the H2H stat of the majority (5) unit, while each of the 4 models would add their assist bonus (if their assist was +2 each, that would be +8 total), assuming all models are in base-to-base contact.


End Phase

Once all orders have been issued and resolved, the turn ends, Any orders which cannot be issued are lost. A new turn then begins with a new roll of the Leadership dice, and the turn begins again.

Units still in combat from the previous turn do NOT require an order to fight this round, but may only be activated in the order shown on the leadership dice.

For example if the player rolls 2 and 5, and has one unit already in combat, that unit may fight a round of combat in either phase 2 or phase 5 but does not require an actual order to be spent to do so. A player can spend the order as normal on their other unit (turn 2 for example could see one unit activate as normal through the command order AND the combat also fight).










SAC! - Play-test Game 2: The Bandit Camp

Following on from the first play test game featured for SAC! - Mill Raid - I am happy to present the second featured game - Bandit Camp.

Unlike the first game which focused largely on the narrative, this play test will highlight more of the combat through showing the actual dice rolls and outcomes.

This game is also available for you to play test for yourself (and I would love to hear your views and feedback!). Full details of trying SAC! for yourself can be found here - Play Test Bandit Camp


A couple of notes -

* This game uses a set of 'light' rules, not the full version of SAC!

* The Command Dice for the turn are located in the top right of the photos. These show the initiative order for the current turn.

* Text descriptions are under the photos and you can click on some photos for a larger shot.


Scenario Details

This is a solo scenario - player vs enemies. Although it could be modified to suit two or more players if needed. It is also flexible in terms or period, suiting anything from Ancients through to Medieval. It could even be run as Elves vs Orcs if so inclined!

In the Campaign game the player would use forces from their own lists, but for this game the player gets a set number of troops. This force consists of one junior, inexperienced officer, and two units of relatively reliable and trained troops.

The mission is simple - find and locate the Bandit camp, and deal with their leader!

The board has a special set-up as shown below,

A single path branches into two roads once it reaches the wooded area. The clearing at the far end represents the Bandit's camp. Each approach has a hidden surprise for the player....


The players forces - 
Two units of Roman Legion and a Centurion Officer


The Bandit force -
Two units of brigands and the Bandit Leader


The Bandit Leader and one unit start in the camp. 
The other unit waits as a possible ambush on one of the roads approaching the camp.


The Romans march into the woodland and reach one of two 'event' locations. 
On a 1-3 the area is trapped, on a 4-6 the bandits spring an ambush. In this play through, the event is a trap and the lead Legion loses a point of armour (8 remaining).


The normal move of the Legion is 5", and they can run an extra half of this, for a total move of 7.5".
Enough to reach the clearing and the camp!


Next to act this turn are the bandits. The dice in the top right hand corner are black for Legion, red for Bandits. The Legion advanced in to the camp on phase one of this turn, the bandits charge also in phase one. The draw is handled by a mechanic called 'Advantage', and is usually held by the force who wins the most combats in a round. It also changes when they lose more combats in a single turn than they win. For this game though, Advantage, and thus the ability to go first on any ties will always be held by the player, regardless of combat results.


Units in SAC! must maximize frontage where movement allows. 
This means each bandit (if they can move far enough) must engage one-on-one with the Legion. 


The first round of combat is fought. Red dice are Bandits, black dice are Legion.
The Bandits fight at 2d6, the better trained Legion fight at 2d6+2. 
Even with the Legions extra bonus they lose this round of combat!

Any combat dice which score a '6' do one automatic damage regardless of winner/loser so the Legion suffer another armour point of damage (dropping them to 7 armour remaining). They also lost the combat so weapon strength (3) is compared to current armour (7) to see if any casualties are inflicted. The heavily armoured legion take the blows on their shields, but drop their armour by another point (6 points remaining!).


Loser chooses to stay or withdraw from a round of combat. The lead Legion decides to stand. 
On phase 2 of this round, the second unit of Legion move up the road to the camp.


The scenario states that on the start of the 2nd round of combat in the camp the remaining Bandit unit will be alerted to the combat and head back to the camp to defend.


Troops in combat don't need orders to fight, but they still must obey the initiative order. As the player holds the first phase they decide to fight another round of combat as the first option.

The Legion wins the round, but this time its a bloody affair. Two sixes - one for each side - has been rolled, so both sides take damage. The Legion won so their weapon strength (3) is compared to the Bandits current armour (was 4, but the 6 reduces this to 3). Luckily the Bandits just have enough armour to avoid a casualty, but next time they wont be so lucky!


This scenario states that if a Bandit unit loses combat they will retreat.
The Bandits run from combat.


When a loser runs from a combat they have lost, they must test their Morale. If they pass then the retreat will be an orderly withdrawal. If they fail... then its a rout.. the Bandits have a Moral of 2d6 and need to score 10 or above to pass. They roll a '7'. It's not a retreat - its a run for your lives!


As winner of the combat the Legion can follow up the attack by charging after the bandits, or they can attempt to show restraint by holding position. To hold requires a Morale test. The player decides to grab space and advance into the camp. The armour of the Legion makes them slower than the Bandits, so although they advance, they cant catch the bandits this turn.


Orders require line of sight to issue. As last phase was the players phase one, now it is the Bandits phase one (as shown by the red dice in the upper right of the photo). The bandit checks line of sight to his reinforcements out on the path and shouts for them to hurry up!


The bandits second unit heeds the leaders command and rushes back to the camp.

In normal SAC! units can be issued 2nd orders in the same turn by using a mechanic called 'Push'.
This is the 'light' version of the game and the Push mechanic is not included so the turn ends with the second unit of Legion moving further along the road.


After the command dice are rolled for a fresh turn, all units routing move before any orders are given.
The routing Bandits make it to the edge of the board!


The Bandits have the first action holding the red 'two'. 
The second unit of bandits rush at the harried first Legion unit. Again, models must be placed 1v1 at the front edge of the enemy unit.


Another scenario special rule sees the Bandit Leader issue a direct challenge to single combat to the players Officer. If the player accepts the two will fight, if the player chooses to decline the offer, the bandits will gain a Morale bonus. The player decides to chance the single combat and the two are moved into base to base contact.


The Legion's first unit again loses the dice roll and suffers yet another point of armour loss!


The Bandit Leader fights at 2d6+2, the Officer at 3d6.
The players Officer loses the combat and suffers two damage - 1 for losing, and 1 for the '6' rolled by the Bandit Leader. Characters also suffer Morale, so rather than risk a rout by the Officer the player decides to hold combat and hope for a better result next turn,


The second Legion can just make it into combat to help their troubled friends.


Multiple combats are still one combat roll vs one combat roll.
Any extra models add their 'assist' value to the score.


The dice rolls are 7 - 7, but with the Legions normal +2 and +12 from 4 assists, they easily win this round. Full SAC! rules give a better advantage to sides with more men and greatly increased rolls. SAC! light though does not, so despite an epic win, only normal weapon strength vs normal armour is compared. 


Units routing are always moved at the start of the turn. This effectively counts as a move (or as an order), so they cannot be moved again. They can however be ordered to rally. The score needed to rally is 10 or above. Luckily for the Bandits they make the roll and rally!


A new turn sees the Player first to act and on phase one they fight another round of combat in the mass melee. The combat is won by the Legion, but another 6 from the bandits means another point of armour lost on the first legion.


The bandits lower armour is now not high enough to stop the Legions weapon strength. From here on in every round of combat they lose will likely be a casualty. 
The first model to fall this game is a bandit.


The bandits fall back, and roll a double 6 for their Morale!


The momentum swings in favour of the Officer and he inflicts two damage on the Bandit chief!


The Legion move into the camp as the current turn draws to an end.


The Bandits roll first action on the new turn, and charge into the second Legion.
The Bandits win the combat and inflict a point of damage, but the Legion manages to land a number of good blows and inflicts a point of damage in return.


The Bandits on the edge of the board are now just in range of the first Legion unit.

The combat though does NOT go in their favour. Not only do they lose a point of armour from the bandits '6' but now their armour is below the weapon strength of the bandits...


.. the result is the first player casualty! A Legionnaire falls!


The personal combat this round is won by the players Officer. 
An extra bonus is the roll of a '6', for 2pts of damage this round.


The damage is enough to fell the Bandit Leader, and he goes down as a casualty.

In the campaign game, a casualty doesn't necessarily mean the model is killed. They could just be injured or knocked out. The damage to their armour will also need to be repaired as well!


The first Legion unit, though seriously exhausted, manage to win the combat.

Note the Leadership dice - the Bandit leader has fallen so the Bandits roll no dice!
They can only react and run when they lose combat.


Another bandit goes down as casualty.


The remaining bandits run for their lives!


The second Bandit unit manages to win the combat.
Winners cannot voluntarily withdraw from combat so the Bandits are unable to react to the danger behind them.


The player charges the first Legion unit and the Officer into the combat.
There is no point rolling any further dice from here - it is clear the player has won!


This is just a stand alone test game, but in the full SAC! campaign the player would earn experience points and rewards to further advance their forces. The damage they have taken - armour points, casualties etc would also need to be addressed. SAC! includes rules for characters such as Armour and Weaponsmiths, as well as ownership and control of places like 'Forges' to build and repair items!

Thanks for reading!