Happy Geek Pride Day and it’s my 3rd Blogaversary 25th May 2019

Distractions of my 1970s childhood, my first Star Wars figures, still with me!

May 25 2019 Geek Pride Day – time to get your Geek On!

We’re almost half the way through an irresolute year and its my 3rd Blogaversary, so time to say thanks to all my readers and commenters.

Celebrating my third happy year of random flibbertigibbet flitting from  subject to subject this year ranging from repairing  Broken Britain’s and lots of 54mm toy soldiers, the joy of the Job-lot, through cheap plastics, FEMbruary Land Girls, 15mm Mounties and on to my current project reproducing Scout Wide Games:


May 25 2018 last year my 2nd Blogaversary!


May 25 2017 was my 1st Blogaversary!


Geek Pride Day is another excuse for another Star Wars Day, being the first showing date in 1977 in the USA.



Alan of the Duchy of Tradgardland blog, the  Tradgardmastre, my Scouting Wide Games co-conspirator, has sent me a bag more USA Tim Mee Galaxy Laser Team figures over on a International / intergalactic Scouting exchange – thanks Alan!

He also mentioned what Games Workshop does for Scouting with a sponsored Warhammer craft badge: encouraging the next Geek generation to use fingers and thumbs for more than swiping and clicking. I wonder if any historical miniatures companies will follow suit? https://fundraising.scouts.org.uk/warhammer

However you spend you Geek Pride Day, whatever your Geek is, enjoy the day!

Genuine 1980 Geek Pride? check out great little D and D BBC Archive clip from 1980 with 80s hair at  https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2019/05/25/geek-pride-day-25th-may/

Blog Posted by Mark Man of TIN 25 May 2019.

Traitor’s Letter Scenario

Scouting Games 1910 – Robert Baden Powell 

Maudlin Jack Tar https://pampersandp.blogspot.com flagged up this interesting scenario he had spotted within the download of  Baden Powell’s 1910 Scouting Games.

Two sides of French and Prussians? This sounds like Franco Prussian War of 1870 rather than 1910.

It could be a great little wide games or tabletop scenario.

In reality, scout casualties would get bored, so Scouts knocked out by a ball or pine cone ‘hit’ could return to an ambulance base to be restored to life.

Taken from Scouting Games (1910 but this is the sixth edition] free download http://www.thedump.scoutscan.com/bp_games.pdf

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN (1970s Cub Scout, Bronze Arrow, Retired) on 21st May 2019.

Scout’s Chess

Scout’s Chess game from Chapter IV Indoor Games section of Scouting Games (1910) available here free  in the 6th edition. http://www.thedump.scoutscan.com/bp_games.pdf

This indoor wide game of Scouts Chess is in some ways similar to what I am trying to do in recreating Scout Wide Games as a ‘Tabletop Game’ or ‘Garden Game’.

The whole Scouting Games book is available free here:



With these [maps or boards], various kinds of Scouting Games can be played” –  Interesting to have a permanent map or game board or  tabletop etc, mapped “on a very  large scale” with marked in and restricted terrain, along with other game mechanisms of how to capture the runner scout (two cubs required) as well as movement rates.

Two scouts to catch one seems to be fairly standard form of capture in many Wide Games.

Suggested movement rates are:  1 inch per Scout each turn so if running, other scouts would presumably  move 1/2 inch walking. Alternatively it could be 2 inches per runner and 1 inch walker per walker “or other distance according to the scale of the map

I’m  sure a Bob Cordery chessboard gaming board variation could be worked out. However Scout’s Chess seems to get its name from its chess piece scouts (or flags), rather than a chessboard,  as the naturalistic map element of roads and tracks seems to be the important part, rather than the grid.

It reminds me a little of an old cornering Chessboard game called ‘Fox and Hounds’ that I used to play with my late cubmaster Dad.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN (1970s Cub Scout, Bronze Arrow, Retired).

Pound Store and Homecast Boy Scouts on the Painting Table

Not reliable casting weather to cast a few more  scouts to complete the Duchy of Tradgardland’s patrol


but a chance to get some more Scout painting done in between scribbling down more character card and Wide Games rules ideas.  I have found a treasure trove of vintage scout manuals free here http://www.thedump.scoutscan.com/games.html

All twenty Shiny Toy Soldiers Little Britons 42mm Range LBB30 Boy Scouts on the painting table – four of them are now full skirted Girl Scouts! Still fiddly faces and gloss varnish to do.

Alan as Chief Scout of the Duchy of Tradgardland Scouts  has kindly sent my Boy Scouts the gift of a spare bicycle that he had in his Scout Troop stores.

A three part resin bicycle gifted to my scouts from Alan at the Duchy of Tradgardland. Two paper clip – Sass and Belle bicycle paper clips – male and female bicycles for comparison.
Toot toot! One of my homecast 60mm scout buglers  painted up and released (like the Duchy of Tradgardland’s versions) into the big outdoors.


I was hoping there was also a fun Pound Store Plastic alternative to buying or casting metal scout figures and the Wargaming Pastor had a good suggestion.

Two of my Pound Land “Penny Dreadful” figures converted into quick cheap scout figures. Still some painting to finish.

The Wargaming Pastor on Death Zap suggested that my floppy bush hatted Boer type figure conversions from Pound store tubs might convert well enough: “I’m tempted to collect a few scouts now, I’m wondering how easy it would be to modify some Airfix WW1 Americans or some of those Poundland chaps? Your Boer conversions would go a long way, then all I have to do is chop off the gun.”


I have quickly paint-bashed these two 32mm examples up to see how this might go.  The Wargaming Pastor’s clever suggestion does work!

The original ‘penny dreadful’ pound store figures and first paint draft of pound store Boy Scouts. A simple hole punched card rim  or page reinforcer trimmed to size makes the bush hat.

From pound store figures to more expensive pewter figures.

Looking for a Scout Trek or Treck Cart,  before I started converting home cast gun carriages  for their wheels, I came across the Phoenix 43 series by S&D / Phoenix which featured a trek cart, two separate scouts pushing and a Scoutmaster and Patrol Leader.


Designed for model railways, I bought a sample of each, not quite sure of size at the time.  They are not cheap at around £3 each figure but they are beautifully and crisply cast. They also have very speedy delivery.

Fortunately they do match with my Little Britons 42mm boys and will form a few character pieces such as a Patrol Leader and a Scoutmaster. The Treck Cart should form an interesting scenario focus for  Wide Games.

OF203 Scoutmaster next to one of my painted 42mm Little Britons range scouts and OF204 Boy Scout with pole. OF238 and OF239 form the trek cart crew.

So there we are … my Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts now have wheels in the form of bicycles and a trek cart.

The 20 scouts are closer to completed painting, mainly just touch ups and faces before a gloss varnish to match the toy soldier style.

I have also spent  £3 on a single metal scout and made one from a penny plastic figure.

Blogposted by Mark Man of TIN (1970s Cub Scout, Bronze Arrow, retired) on 19 May 2019.


Wide Games and the early Girl Scouts?

Girl Scouts?

With a tissue paper and PVA skirt conversion, these could be early Girl Scouts.

I am slowly trying to work out how to reproduce Boy Scout and Girl Scout Wide Games with miniature figures on the gaming table or in the garden.

These red petticoats have to go, far too Railway Children! First tissue paper conversions on four spare LBB30 Little Britons 42mm range Boy Scouts into early Girls Scouts and Guides.

Boy Scouts? Girl Scouts? Girl Guides? What’s in a name?

It took a while to establish standard Girl Scout or Guide uniforms – the blue uniform is more early Girl Guide like, the others more like early Girl Scouts. Paint work, not quite finished yet. 

In Britain since 1910, we have not had mainstream Girl Scouts,  after Guiding was set up to manage the enthusiastic adoption of Scouting for Boys by many Edwardian girls, sometimes originally in mixed troops.

However in some parts of the UK, across America and the world, Girl Scouts have survived in  both name and spirit.

The Girl Scouts of America kept their distinctive Scout name since their formation in 1912, led by Juliette Gordon Low. In this Very good history guide to the early Girl Scouts of Britain before they became Girl Guides, it mentions Cuckoo Patrol Girl Scout troops, the fears about mixed groups, suffragette activities and WW1 and the fact when Guides was set up in Britain  not all Girl Scouts  apparently transferred …


Following the publication of Scouting for Boys in January 1908 girls were actively engaging in Scouting, they had been just as inspired by the ideas in the book as their male counterparts. Troops and patrols of Girl Scouts were encouraged by Robert Baden-Powell;

“I think girls can get just as much healthy fun and as much value out of scouting as boys can. Some who have taken it up have proved themselves good souls in a very short time. As to pluck, women and girls can be just as brave as men and have over and over again proved it in times of danger. But for some reason it is not expected of them and consequentially it is seldom made part of their education, although it ought to be; for courage is not always born in people, but can generally be made by instruction.”

Robert Baden-Powell, The Scout, May 1908

One group of Girl Scouts, sadly only known to us as “Kangaroo Patrol” were so inspired by this quote that they copied it out at the beginning of their patrol magazine in May 1909.   Their magazine was full of adventure stories with Scouts preventing robberies and kidnappings, it also showed girls and boys Scouting together.

Text source: https://heritage.scouts.org.uk/explore/early-days-of-scouting-1907-1920/scoutingforgirls/

Sounds like a good mixed patrol name – Kangaroos!

The British Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts movement (1909), sometimes known as Peace Scouts, ran in parallel for a time, absorbing Girl Scouts who did not want to transfer into Guiding in 1910.


Wonderfully the BBS and BGS troops still exist in small numbers in Britain and elsewhere proudly wearing the old fashioned uniform, open to boys and girls  and linked to the worldwide scouting movement.


Uniforms and patrol flags British Boy Scout and British Girl Scouts 2018/19 website

Baden Powell was surprised but not antagonistic towards the enthusiatic uptake of Scouting for Boys by the kind of vigorous “intelligent sort of girl who likes boys’ games and books” as H.G. Wells observed in his preface to Little Wars  a few years later in 1913.

British Boys Scouts BBS British Girls Scouts BGS 2019 website photo: Close up details of long socks, patrol colours on garters? Scout staves and patrol flags. Khaki hats and shirts.  The girls are wearing Navy Blue shorts (or maybe culottes) like the boys.

“As records show, at this time Baden-Powell was clearly supportive of Girl Scouts. In May 1908 he wrote to one Girl who enquired that she would be welcome to set up a Patrol of Girl Scouts, and in his regular column in ‘The Scout’ in January 1909 he stated of the girls that “some of them are really capable Scouts” …”


“ …In the 1909 edition of Scouting for Boys the uniform suggestions included recommending blue skirts for Girl Scouts. Large Scout Rallies were held, including one at Scotstoun near Glasgow, where Girl Scouts were both specifically invited, and warmly welcomed.” Source: Leslie’s guiding history website.

1909 Early Girls Scouts UK before Guiding: improvised like the Boy Scouts. Colour schemes: Khaki bush hat, long sleeved khaki shirt tucked into a Lincoln Green, dark grey or Navy Blue skirt.

Useful painting or colour scheme tip : blue skirts rather than the Boy Scout blue shorts mentioned in the 1909 Scouting for Boys. Dark Blue went on to become the colour of early Guide uniforms.

Cropped close up on the Girl Scouts attending the Crystal Place rally 4 September 1909 – a much reproduced photo.

So clearly, throughout 1908 and much of 1909, Girl Scouts were welcomed, both unofficially and officially” including the Crystal Place rally in 1909 where early Girl Scouts were photographed amongst the boys. It is reported that more than 1000 Girl Scouts were present.

“By late 1909 amongst the official Scout membership of 55,000 there were already over 6000 Girl Scouts officially registered, and more registering daily.” Leslie’s Guiding History.

Blue uniform, blue colour and a glimpse of uniform

By 1910, Guiding had been established to protect the reputation of these Edwardian girls and of the fledgeling Scout Movement. Scouting for Boys was adapted by Baden Powell and his  sister Agnes into a Guiding Manual, “How Girls Can Help Build The Empire”,  designed to equip girls with camping skills, homecraft and child care skills for adult life in Britain or upcountry in the Empire.


It would be almost 70 years before mixed older (Venture) Scout groups were established again in Britain.

Early Girl Scout – Leslie’s Guiding History website
Another fierce looking early Girl Scout from the Leslie’s Guiding History Website.

Leslie’s Guiding Ideas Website also has some contemporary Guiding / Girl Scouts Wide Games  Scenarios, worth coming back to:


Guiding and scouting being world movements, it is of course possible that fictional  Imagi-Nations like the Bronte family’s  Gondal and Gaaldine, or the many great Tintin-esque Imagi-Nations and Grand Duchys created by gamers could have their own Boy Scout and Girl Scout movements.

Girl Scouts of Gaaldine or Gondal?

Boy Scouts of Angria or Generica, anyone?

Blogposted by Mark Man of TIN (1970s Cub Scout, Bronze Arrow, Retired) 17 May 2019


Scout Wide Games Rules Ideas # 1


Alan Gruber (Duchy of Tradgardland blog) and I have been independently reading the old scouting book Wide Games (1933) with ideas of how these outdoor games might translate into tabletop and garden games with figures.

LBB30 Boy Scout from the Little Britons / Shiny Toy Soldiers 42mm range.

As with any set of gaming rules, the basics have to be set out – Movement, Melee, Missile Firing,  Morale, that sort of thing.

Victory Conditions –  A lot of this scenario stuff is set out for us in the detailed briefings in Wide Games.


1 figure = 1 Scout.

1 figure equals 1 Scout.

A patrol is made up of 8 scouts including patrol leader and bugler.

A Scout at one early point could be a boy or girl. In the early days (1907-1910) Girl Scouts would have undertaken these Wide Games, possibly even alongside or against Boy Scout Patrols. Girl  Guiding from 1910 carried this Wide Games tradition on.

Four spare Boy Scouts are now Girl Scouts and Guides … figures almost finished, almost painted.

Then there is the challenge of movement.

Movement Rates

Depending what ground scale and figure scale that you are working with, you would need to set out a suitable movement rate of X inches, hexes or squares per turn.

Basic Walking Pace in Open Country – X inches or X hexes

Scout’s Pace – Walking Pace x 50%, so X x 0.5 per inches or hexes

Scout’s Pace is a curious hybrid of ‘walk 20 paces, run 20 paces’, designed to sustainably go faster and further without being too puffed to pass on messages.

Boy Scouts came from many nations … again, based and almost painted.

How Terrain, Weather and Time of Day Affects Movement 

Wide Games and Scouting For Boys often notes off-road terrain as Thick Or Open:

Thick Country takes twice as long to traverse. Half the normal walking or scouts Pace of  X inches or hexes

Tracks – moves on paths have X inch bonus.

Open Country – normal Walking or Scout’s Pace

Walking On the Road – Normal walking pace or Scout’s Pace.

Bicycle on Road – 2 x Scout’s Pace. Edwardian bicycles probably wouldn’t go off road well.

Uphill – movement reduce by half. Downhill normal pace.

Fog and mist – half normal pace, recuced visibility. Scout’s Pace unavailable in fog and mist.

Night-time – half normal pace, reduced visibility. Scout’s Pace unavailable at night.

Snow and Ice – half normal pace. Scout’s Pace unavailable on snow and ice – Increased risk of accidents.

Bogs and marshland can be deemed uncrossable or at half speed.

All fields of standing crops must be placed out of bounds.



Stealth Moves?

Speed of movement would vary with stealth  and cover / ground.

Stalking / Quiet / Concealed Movement Pace – half normal pace. Scout’s Pace unavailable in stalking mode.

If you have the One rate for quiet moving through a wood etc, then the alternative Scout’s Pace  for pursuit / rapid noisy movement.

‘Thick country’ is distinguished as taking twice as long to cross from ‘open country’ in terms of movement. Obviously roads would have faster pace / movement.

Two Girl Scouts capture the single Boy Scout … to be escorted back to base.

Resolving Capture and Combat

It takes two scouts to capture another enemy scout and take him or her blindfold  captive back to their base.

‘Vikings’ (Wide Game 1, a Flag Raid scenario) mentions that the aim should be success “by strategy rather than force, so not more than two go together at one time and it is regarded as shameful for more than two to attack one man.”

One scout however can take the wool ‘life’ of an enemy scout, effectively removing them from the game. The scout who loses a wool life can take no active part until he or she has  returned by the most immediate route back to the (neutral) Ambulance base, where a new life is restored. A scout who has lost a wool ‘life’ can be indicated by a curtain ring or other token.

How this affects points is mentioned at the end.

Range Weapons

In the Scouting for Boys examples of Wide Games, the Snow Fort scenario sees Snowballs being used as ammunition.

Whiting Balls or wooden darts with blunt ends marked in chalk are also recommended. Hits on enemy scouts would be clearly visible to an umpire.

Weapons Range: X inches or hexes / squares,  to be decided, further than normal walking pace?

Some of these sections come not from Wide Games but straight from Donald Featherstone’s Close Wars simple rules (appendix to War Games).

One dice thrown for each scout firing –  6 scores a hit.

If the scout firer is undercover whilst the scout target is in the open, then a 5 or 6 will secure a hit.

Featherstone Savings Throws

Each Scout casualty has the chance of only being judged lightly wounded and fighting on. Each Scout casualty has a dice thrown for him, a 4, 5 or 6 means that he is only lightly wounded and carries on. If the scout casualty is under cover, then he or she is saved by 3, 4, 5 or 6.


If scouts come into contact (adjacent squares etc / bases touching) then some form of Melee ensues. Some Hand-to-Hand Fighting does take place in early scouting ranging from Jujitsu, boxing, Cornish or Celtic wrestling and quarter staffs / staves, all permitted.

Kaptain Kobold’s simple dice no cards version of the Parry / Lunge duelling. Dice used to mark health or life points left. Steve Weston’s duelling Mexican Peasants in 54mm.

Scout versus Scout with each man having one dice throw, the highest number wins. The losing Scout who loses a ‘wool life’ must return to base camp / ambulance camp to restore his life.


Quarter Staves / staff fighting can take place using Gerard De Gre duelling rules. Each Scout has so many life or melee points, which reduces with each hit.




Melee Concealed Number System

An alternative Melee system from Wide Games no. 3 – Staffs  – has a hidden numbering system, 1 to 8 being allocated to each patrol and concealed from the enemy  (maybe on their base). The number was only revealed when challenged – sometimes finding out that you have challenged a higher number too late, if you are low numbered! This solves the taking of the wool life, based on whether Scout is higher or lower.

Scout No. 7 beats the lower number Scout No. 4 from a rival patrol.

Interestingly in Scouting for Boys (1908),  BP suggests Patrols have regular  numbers: Patrol Leader 1 with whistle, Corporal 2, scouts 3 and 4, scouts 5 and 6, scouts 7 and 8 working in pairs. No mention of the bugler!

As mentioned in Staffs (Wide Games no. 3) a kind of wild card that no 1 (patrol leader) can take number 7, so is both strong and vulnerable.

Wild Card – here patrol leader No. 1 trumps the higher number Scout No 7.

These could be inscribed on the figure bases of scout models.

Morale and Scouts Honour 

“Camp raiding is strictly prohibited” (Rule 340)  – against Scout’s Honour. Scout’s Honour could be an interesting alternative scoring system or points system. For example:

  • Points are deducted from a patrol or Scout for each Scout being captured or losing a “life”.
  • Points are gained per patrol or Scout for attaining another’s wool life, captive or token object.

Morale (health or energy points) could be boosted by good turn cards or weather. Wet weather, lack of food, cold etc might affect a Scout’s combat effectiveness if using RPG type cards. Still to be worked out …

Chance Cards or Event Cards – still to be worked out.

Commonly used in Wide Games, further change of instructions or note of wounded casualties were issued as letters opened after so many turns, hampering or altering the briefing to each patrol.

The delaying envelopes opened at set times to slow down or change the missions for three teams of Scout “Polar Explorers” (Cordon Breaking; Wide Game 6 Polar Dash)

These are some initial rules notes ideas … to be tried, discarded, continued and added to.

The Duchy of Tradgardland Scouts

Alan, as Chief Scout of the D of T Scouts, seen here: http://tradgardland.blogspot.com/2019/05/scouts-for-wide-games.html

added some new suggested interesting ideas that he is working on:

Re. Movement:  Could X be measured (if not using grids) by a scale scout pole, X being the length of a scout pole?
I am working on encounter tables. I wondered [about] a random rout speed (if chased by bull or dog for example), throw two d6 and that is the distance to be moved.
I also wondered about stopping for a turn when climbing walls or barbed wire fences or it costs half a move to cross.
Alan and I both thought of some kind of Skirmish / RPG type character cards, as we are only dealing with small numbers of a couple of patrols of eight Scouts each, not huge battalions.
A range of hair and skin colours for the Boy and Girl Scouts when painting might help link a figure  to these character cards with suitable Edwardian to 1950s nicknames: Ginger, Carrots, Snowy, etc.
Alan suggests of this individual cards: 
Allow scouts to be given “traits” before the game, some positives and some negatives.
For example faster / slower,  adding to or taking away from base movement rates. Also ability to move stealthily or spot.
Traits come be rolled for randomly, say throw 9 or above on 2d 6 and choose a trait for that particular scout.
Limited ammunition of say three shots only and perhaps the option then to return to base to get more.
Lots of interesting game ideas here from Alan ranging from varied bound distances to limited ammunition (with the exception of snow balls!)
Good fun,  both collaborating on and experimenting on rules apart. 

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN (1970s Cub Scout, Bronze Arrow, retired) on 15 May 2019. 

1p and 2p Copper Coins to stay in UK circulation

Some of my Prince August 32mm eleven home casts alongside Pound Store ‘Penny Dreadful’ conversion figures, all cheaply  based on penny bases.

Good news for many gamers that those lovely magnetic (post 1992) 1p and 2p coins are staying in UK circulation after a recent consultation https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/penny-coins-1p-2p-access-save-hm-treasury-a8897936.html

1p and 2p coins are so useful for basing gaming figures, especially giving that little bit of weight and magnetic bases to plastic figures. I have been using this penny basing method for Airfix figures since about 2001.

Credit where credit is due (we are talking money after all) I learnt about this magnetic aspect from Bob Cordery’s blog http://wargamingmiscellany.blogspot.com/2010/01/single-figure-bases-cheap-bases.html

42mm range Little Britons LBB30 Boy Scout based on a penny

So it is still possible to keep asking for bags of penny and Tuppence coins, if ever in my local bank branch. Trips to the seaside also have those fabulous seaside amusements with the 2p change machines – I sometimes get a couple of pounds of these, quickly and discreetly select through them. I then use the pre-1992 non magnetic ones in the copper waterfall and tuppenny flipper machines, at which I rarely win anything back . So the amusements people can’t complain too much!

Blogposted by Mark Man of TIN 9 May 2019 – The third anniversary of creating the Man of TIN blog.

However my blog birthday remains the date of my first tentative Man of TIN post on the 25th May, which is  coincidentally Geek Pride Day, Towel Day, a Discworkd / Pratchett day  and a Star Wars anniversary too!


Further Wide Game Design Ideas


Unfinished paint scheme for LBB30 Boy Scout from the Shiny Toy Soldiers ‘Little Britons’ 42mm range from Spencer Smith Miniatures. Gloss toy soldier finish.

Further thoughts from Alan Gruber, the Duchy of Tradgardland as we individually read our way through the 1933 booklet Wide Games by Gilcraft of the Scout Association, looking for useful tips for game scenarios.

1. “You could use other figures to represent the scouts as they perceive themselves.
So in a pirate wide game use pirate figures or medieval, use Robin Hood ones.
It is a conceit also to allow to use any figures for those who don’t have model scouts.” 
2. Encounter tables for bulls, angry policemen etc
3. Weather tables too, effects on  morale, more dangerous to run etc.
Weather like snow and rain would also affect how easy it was to read tracks, leave tracks etc.
Lots of other ideas here to affect character card number ratings or add chance and event cards.
4. Morale, how the scouts are feeling and can they be bothered to continue in terms of fed up, bad weather,  skint knees, losing game etc.
5. First aid for minor injuries. Chance of minor injuries when jumping,cycling, going through nettles,brambles etc. affects desire to continue.
6. Small possibility of twisted ankles, broken legs. Obviously affects movement and distracts fellow scouts from the wide games by needing to go and get help.
I think this is an interesting idea for random chance cards or Umpire intervention. Most Boy Scouts and Scoutmasters would have some First Aid training; some Wide Games introduced instructions during the game with ‘casualties’ that would need treating and taking to collection points (where points would be given for their dressings).
The  HQ base or Red Cross / Ambulance Base was where Scouts also have to return if they lose a ‘wool life’ and temporarily have left the game.
Alan Gruber goes on to mention even more ‘fantastic’ ideas:
“Years ago I helped occasionally with a friend’s Brownie pack by doing things like being a guest at their hostess badge tea party and with Thinking Day. The leader and girls often sent me a thank you card. They often featured Margaret Tarrant paintings of Brownies with wee folklore figures such as faeries etc. They were charming.”
World Thinking Day, formerly Thinking Day, is celebrated annually on 22 February by all Girl Guides and Girl Scouts. This was Baden Powell’s birthday, along with that of his wife Olave, one of the early Chief Guides.  It is also celebrated by Scout and Guide organizations and some boy-oriented associations around the world.
You can  see this Margaret Tarrant artwork here on this Guiding website https://owl-and-toadstool.blogspot.com/2014/12/margaret-tarrant-girl-guide-artwork.html
“In the Wide Games book there is mention of Puck of Pook’s Hill as a background for games.”
Puck of Pook’s Hill is a fantasy book by Rudyard Kipling, published in 1906, containing a series of short historical fantasy stories set in different periods of English history.
Alan suggests: “What about taking things a step further and having real mythological creatures interacting with the scouts?  All foreign scouts could have their own creatures like Tomten for Danish scouts etc.”
There are excellent illustrated  Tomten and Gnome picture books available translated into English.
With both our initial thoughts both being that each Scout could have a Role Playing Game Style ratings card for his or her abilities, experiences, success or failures, then introducing suitably national Fantastic Beasts makes sense. Hogwarts territory, this.  Girl Scoutes or Boy Scoutes versus Zombies, anyone?

Alan also wrote: “I like the comment on page 40 of the Wide games book

“In  playing these games it should be remembered that they improve very much on the second and third trial, as minor rules have often to be introduced to suit local circumstances.” Same applies to us who write Wargame rules…”
This is much my style of gaming: If in doubt, invent a dice roll!
Lots of interesting ideas from Alan.
I have been busy painting and casting today, as I continue to read through Wide Games, along with a reprint of the 1908 Scouting for Boys and the colour reprint of the Ogden Scouting series 5 sets of Cigarette Cards.
By chance in my small collection of old metal moulds for home-casting, I have these two stiff semi flat Scout figures who are about 54 to 60 mm tall. The fragile plastic figure is a curious “odd one out” from my childhood, one of the US Marx series Boy Scout, missing his hatchet.


Paint schemes ideas in a glimpse of this fascinating reprinted Ogden’s Cigarette card Scouting series (there is some irony in that Baden Powell warned against the health effects of smoking).
Baden Powell’s scouts have a little knapsack and blanket roll or coat, worth adding to some figures with Fimo Polymer Clay?


Wide Games or Weird Wyde Games rules –  very much still Work in Progress.

20 Boy scout figures on the painting table, 2 patrols of 8, leaving four who will become Girl Scout figures with full skirts.

More on British Girl Scouts in a forthcoming blog post.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN (with comments from Alan Gruber,  Duchy of Tradgardland) 5 May 2019.

Farewell Chewbacca – May the 4th Be With You!


Some of my playworn original Star Wars figures from the 1970s …

Sad news that another of the original Star Wars cast has passed away, Peter Mayhew the very tall actor who played Chewbacca, announced on the eve of International Star Wars Day (May the 4th – be with you!)

In honour of the day  and Peter Mayhew’s memory, here is  a small parade of some my childhood Star Wars figures from the early films. Each represents a part of my mis-spent youth, literally, as if I spent no other pocket money I could scratch together in 1978 about one pound a month. That was what each Star Wars figure cost in the shops. Birthdays and Christmas might stretch to a spaceship or a playset.

More pocket money gone (each figure a month’s pocket money) as the Rebel Forces build up on ice planet Hoth for the Empire Strikes Back. The TaunTaun creature must have been Christmas or Birthday funds.

By hiding the fiddly bits like guns away in a tin, I still have a few of them left, surprisingly  as they have now been played with by several generations of the family over the last forty years.

The bases stopped them being quite as tippy, although lining them up for a photo, they were still fairly unbalanced. On their own they could not stand up well at all which made play a problem, but with no bases they could fit into vehicles  or onto lugs on playset bases.

My investment in Darth Vader and the Dark Side – a motley squad of Stormtroopers, snow troopers, pilots and Death Star technicians. Over a year’s worth of pocket money here!

Star Wars remains one of my favourite films, one of the few films I have seen twice in the cinema as a child. It enlarged the scope of my imaginative games beyond soldiers, knights, cops and robbers and cowboys and Indians. Suddenly everything was space crazy again.

Collecting these figures put a serious dent in my pocket money, so the Airfix figures came second place for several years. Star Wars and action figures must have been a serious challenge for toy and model firms like Airfix and Britain’s.

I haven’t used these large Action figures in any space gaming scenarios since the 1980s. However I do have some smaller 54mm figures that I still use: https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/09/25/close-little-space-wars/



Star Wars formed part of my childhood reading too!


However you spend today, have a Happy International Star Wars Day. May the 4th be with you!


Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN on May the 4th 2019. Another new film due this year …