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 - as well as painting models, I also sell pre-painted models and assorted loose models and scenery on Etsy and Ebay. Links here!

* 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

SCENERY and TERRAIN - for pre-made, handcrafted items of scenery and terrain, please click here

For TUTORIALS please follow this link - click here

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Xericor's Tactica: Tips and Tricks - Playing one step ahead of your opponent, Part 1 Identifying Options

Heads or Tails?

We are all familiar with the simple coin toss right? It has two outcomes - it can land heads or it can land tails. But what if I told you it has more than two outcomes, that you are missing something, and that you can probably improve your game play if you follow this brief little lesson.

Lets look at this example from a typical hex based game.

When thinking about the movement of X, we can see it has 3 options - move into tile 1, move into tile 2, or move into tile 3.
Like the coin toss though, we are missing something. There is a 4th option.
If the coin has heads and tails, what happens if we drop the coin?
We have added another option that wasn't apparent at first.
Likewise in the hex example, Move to 1, Move to 2, and Move to 3 are all options, but also NO MOVE is an option, and one that we may not have thought of if we are pre-occupied with the question 'Where is X going to move to?'
The first step to playing ahead of your opponent is correctly identifying all their possible moves, including the not so obvious ones!

In some games, no move is not an option - the player must move something, and in many games the number of options may seem vast, but there are rules to all games, and any action must have a result no matter how complicated it may at first seem.

Consider the traditional game of Chess. White moves first, and each player has to move.
Though complicated and very hard to predict the exact move, the point remains that they must move and the number of possible moves are set.

If we think ahead, we can see every move that is available. This number will not change.

The number of moves is limited and set. In this example either of the two knights could move, and any of the pawns could move 1 or 2 places forward, for a total of 20 possible moves.

Even if you blindly gambled on where your opponent was going to move, you would have a 5% chance of being correct.

Now 5% is not a great number to begin to formulate your master plan on, but thankfully many games have obvious points or objectives.

Bellow is a bad example as it really doesn't need any thinking about - our opponent is very highly likely to move to Hex 2 as it will score them +1 point, but it serves as a basis for the lesson of playing one step ahead - we have identified all the possible options, chosen the one our opponent is likely to take, and we are already formulating our response one move ahead of time!

Thanks for reading.
Any comments, suggestions, or general feedback is always appreciated.
Next article we will look at taking this idea a step further.

Friday, 4 July 2014

Like an article? Consider buying a buddy a beer

When I sit down to write a post on my blog, its because I have a passion to do so. This is usually built on several hours of musing, thinking and planning. In short I love gaming, I love strategizing, I love the simple parts of the game and I love delving deep into the meta game. This is true for anything I take an interest in, be it boardgame, wargame, computer game. I love the mechanics and I love the maths.

Only once I have ran it through a thousand times in my head do I sit down and ramble on about it in an article here. This site is the culmination of a lot of thinking, furious typing on a calculator, and the epic scrawlings on multiple pieces of paper. And, sometimes, occasionally, when I get the time, the result of actual real practiced gaming!

Feedback has been great. Discussion even more so. The hits roll in on this site at a steady pace. Even articles I wrote a long time ago continue to be popular. I am glad people find my work interesting and (hopefully) helpful.

I toyed with the idea of perhaps adding 'Adverts' to the site in order to maybe generate a little income from the traffic I receive. Then I thought, nah. It doesn't really fit with the passion behind the site. People come here because they have an interest in what is written or shown, nobody wants to be bombarded with adverts, even if they relate in part to the subject matter.

Instead I have decided to set up this 'donate' page.

If you really like an article I have wrote, if it really helped you out, if you found it interesting please consider making a donation to show your appreciation of the time that went into writing it. 

Maybe I have done some painting for you and upon receipt of them, you love them, and think you have got a real bargain, tips are always welcome!

Donations can be in-game items, models, gaming materials, they don't have to be money (although that is really nice).

If I write a computer gaming article, then its fairly safe to say I play that game - rares, gold, skins, game time, credits, etc. All would be appreciated.

If its table-top miniature related that brought you here, my favourite periods are 6mm Ancients, 28mm Greek, and AWI British.

Or if you are feeling very generous, my Paypal is ''

Thanks folks!

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Fighting the good fight - one painter vs the hordes of lead!

Hey folks,

Its been a hectic few weeks but pleased to announce I have caught back up on orders. Many thanks to my current clients and those on the waiting list for your patience!

I choose to neglect this site somewhat while I was hammering on with my catch-up painting, now I am back on track I will hopefully get back into the practice of keeping this place up to date, writing new articles, sharing photos and giving my opinion in the form of reviews and guides.

So here we go,

First up - some nice 6mm. Always a favourite scale of mine, these models are Heroics and Ros

Next, a nice selection of 28mm WW2 British. Models are from Warlord Games plastic range (with a few metal mixed in). The plastic models are good solid sculpts and take the paint really well for plastics. I think this is largely due to the solid earth colours which tend to go on a little thicker than say a green or red paint.

Here we have 4 20-man regiments of Sikh Indians. Part of a very large commission I am working on (sneaking into shot on the right hand side: 28mm Perry ACW cannon!).

These models are very good sculpts, nice crisp and clean. They are somewhat 'tinny', they almost remind me of old school metal miniatures.

Close up shots,
Top - line infantry
Bottom - Command Group
Models are finished with dip and gloss varnish.


Finally... its not often I get time to actually paint anything for my own collection, but here we have a selection of ancient civilians to go with my Greek Collection.

Models are Foundry, and purchased at a great price from 'Colonel Bill'. If you haven't already, be sure to check out the Colonel Bill website (its easier and quicker than Ebay) for some great 2nd hand models at very reasonable prices.