ImagiNations Mapped

Please note: Tony Adams’ map of his ImagiNations world Tian is copyrighted. I have taken a screenshot, very tiny here, to give you an idea how professional this looks and showcase his blog.

I love a good map on a blog or in a book. I noticed this beautiful map on Tony Adams’ The Woodscrew Miniature Army blog. He has been writing recently about his reimagined Earth in the form of his ImagiNations world Tian.

Please note his map is personal and copyright and not to be used or published without his permission.

It was made for Tony by a professional cartographer, Greg Shipp of Lost in Maps, prepared from Tony’s sketches.

Screenshot from Greg Shipp’s website Lost in Maps.

Tony has been setting out in print over several blog posts the background to his reimagined version of the world for his ImagiNations.

One of the interesting points he made is that his reimagined world and its armies c. the Eighteen Nineties has only coal and therefore steam power, but no reserves of oil or petroleum. So effectively, what some others would call ‘steam punk’.

As Tony says in his first Tian related post on Thursday 5th March 2020:

“In most respects my planet has evolved in the same way as  Earth and has now reached the equivalent of the 1890’s on Earth. At this time however, progress has slowed in some areas. My planet’s development is firmly harnessed to the horse and steam train as the only forms of transportation and apart from the very earliest experiments in coal fired steam generation of electricity, the future holds no prospect of an Earth like oil based revolution.

Small quantities of oil for lubrication purposes and a little gas are becoming available as by products from steaming of coal for the production of coke for iron smelting but these are still very infant technologies. However, radio technology has advanced a little faster than on Earth and is at a level similar to that on Earth in 1918. In addition the telephone and telegraph are in widespread use and general industrial capabilities are very close to those on earth in the 1890s.”


I first came across Tony Adams when I found his blog about his Miniature Woodscrew Army, inspired by an article in Miniature Warfare in 1969. Tony then kindly sent me some vintage Airfix 1960s figures that he had spare, as he is not currently wargaming. Some of these repainted and rebased figures have featured on this blog such as

Tony’s blog and book reviews (often about military logistics) are worth dropping in on from time to time. I’m sure Tony would welcome people’s comments:

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 29th March 2020

Asterix creator Albert Uderzo RIP

Sad news that at the grand age of 92 Albert Uderzo the illustrator of Asterix books and illustrator / writer of the later ones has died

The announcement on the official Asterix website

As you can see from my book pile above, the Asterix books were and still are a major inspiration to my occasional Roman and Ancients Games – Full Metal Hic Jacet.

A sad day for Tidders and his Asterix inspired 54mm gaming website By Toutatis! or Romans Go Home

Gone – but what a joyous visual legacy Uderzo and Goscinny have left, one that for me easily matches Tintin. Both these sets of comic books or graphic novels were a main stay of my branch library borrowing throughout my childhood.

Happy memories of Airfix Romans versus Asterix Ancient Britain’s and Sheriff of Nottingham figures.

Happy memories of Weetabix cereal packs with Asterix scenes and cardboard Asterix figures

Blogposted by Mark Man of TIN, 70s wargaming kid with Cardboard Asterix figures off the back of cereal boxes, 24 March 2020

Glass Town by Isabel Greenberg – Bronte ImagiNations in graphic novel form

Now at the top of my reading list, the new Bronte juvenile ImagiNations in lively graphic novel form – Glass Town by Isabel Greenberg:

There is more about the author here and sample pages on her website:

This book is all very useful and inspiring for my ongoing Bronte inspired ImagiNations game. I am currently about halfway through this pleasingly hefty full colour hardback graphic novel:

Blogposted by Mark Man of TIN, 23 March 2020

Happy Mother’s Day – Time to Burn the Toast

Mother’s Day 2016 as drawn by me …

We usually celebrate Father’s Day on our blogs (proudly displaying a happy haul of hobby gifts). but what about Mother’s Day on our blogs?

Many must be pondering: What to do on a weekend where national advice is “don’t go to see your elderly mother on Mother’s Day to keep her safe” in these self isolation times?

I came across this drawing that I did of the traditional national “burning of the toast” and breakfast in bed, ready to be turned into a Mother’s Day Card for my late Mum back in about 2016. I must have taken a couple of photos of it before it was sent off.

Look after your Mums, if you’ve still got ’em!

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 22 March 2020

The late Donald Featherstone’s 102nd Birthday

Today would have been the late Donald Featherstone’s birthday, born 20 March 1918.

Happy Birthday Don! You changed lots of lives (of mostly men of a certain age).

To celebrate this year, I bought reprints through the History of Wargaming Project of two of Donald’s classic books that I had not read for years:

Previously on Donald Featherstone’s birthday last year 2019:

And how to celebrate his centenary or his birthday in 2018:

This is how it all started for me as a boy with Don’s book from the branch library, the very copy that I bought when it was sold off.

Boyhood Airfix, boyhood copy of War Games … still have them. Picture from:

War Games being the source of my favourite rules, Featherstone’s simplest rules in its Appendix ‘Close Wars’:

Happy Birthday, Donald Featherstone.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 20 March 2020.

Bring Me Some Men Who Are Stout Hearted Men!

“Stout Hearted Men” 1921 France

If you needed a ‘band’ of brothers for an ImagiNations regiment, look no further.

I’ve no idea who this merry band are (see clues below) but just thought them a “great bunch of lads” with a fine selection of hats worth sharing with the world.

I found this fine photograph postcard on EBay whilst searching for early scouting images. I bought it from a seller in Portugal. It was postmarked France 1921, post WW1 including “Menars 19 April 1921. Loire et Cher”

It is addressed to: Henri Moreau a Villeneuve, Cne (Commune?) de St Denis sur Loire, Par Mesnau. (“By Mesnau”)

According to the trusty Wikipedia, Saint-Denis-sur-Loire and Menars are both communes in the Loir-et-Cher department of central France. It is a suburb of Blois, 7 km northeast of the town, and lies on the river Loire, 63 km southwest of Orléans.

Checking maps, Villeneuve and Menars are towns or villages within this area

Several postmarks – Victor ? [Loir] et Cher? 18 April 1921 / Menars 19 April 1921 Loire et Cher.

“Cher Camarade, Deux mots pour te dire del’ invitations, que je l’avais parle vient, Je me suits assure de ton Bon affections. Anatole Cournois. Envoi de Pepe. Bonjour et au revoir. Je compte sur toi.” Anatole Cournois

Which roughly translates as:

“Dear Comrade, Two words to tell you of the invitations I had spoken about, I am making sure of your good affections. [Messages scribbled into corners] Sending Pepe. Hello and goodbye. I count on you.” Anatole Cournois

A French tricolour flag with some French writing “[fran]caise? … de la …” and what looks like the figure of a Morris dancer with cross straps can be seen at the back? The odd tricolour sash can be seen in the left front rank.

I wonder if Anatole or Henri is pictured?

No idea which group they are from or form the band for. Some of them look old enough to have been Poilus in the Great War.

Blog posted by Mark, stouthearted Man of TIN, 14 March 2020.

The Stout Hearted Men reference? The blog post title is a song by Nelson Eddy from New Moon (1940), which I recall hearing being much parodied on the Morecambe and Wise 1973 Christmas show.

Celebrating International Women’s Day 2020 but sadly I’m not taking the Girl Scouts to Woking Games Day next weekend

Heading off a few weeks ago from the West Country to Woking, trek cart and all, to take part in the 54mm Games Day …

Recalled to Base: Heading back to the West Country without reaching Woking, due to the changing national situation

Daisy Patrol and the other tiny patrols of early Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts were travelling across and down from Tradgardland, Scotland and up from the West Country to meet at a tiny “lead Jamboree” in Woking and demonstrate Scouting Wide Games for the Tabletop. They have now turned homewards.

Sadly our tiny #MARCHing band of scouts who set off in #FEMbruary didn’t quite get to Woking. Maybe next year!


Unfortunately after long preparation I won’t now be going to the Little Wars Revisited Forum 54mm Woking Games Day on the 14th March 2020.

Neither will Alan Tradgardland Gruber, my co-creator of the Scouting Wide Games for the Tabletop games be attending, for much the same reasons.

I hope that Mike Lewis the organiser and the other players have a great day. I look forward to seeing the photos on the blogs.

This is purely a personal decision, due to the changing national situation of Coronavirus, being part of that at-risk group with existing medical conditions of past lung problems and diabetes.


Today it is International Women’s Day, IWD March 8th 2020, a good day to celebrate the past and present achievements of over half the world’s population.

IWD March 8th is also the end of #FEMbruary, the gaming, modelling and painting challenge by Alex at Lead Balloony to include more believable female miniatures in gaming and encourage more female gamers and modellers. My completed Girl Scout Patrol above is my contribution:

So today is a good chance to celebrate the achievements of remarkable women like Agnes Baden-Powell and Juliette ‘Daisy’ Gordon Low, founders of the Girl Guides and the Girl Scouts of America.

Agnes Baden-Powell set up Guides before Olave Baden-Powell, BP’s wife, became Chief Guide

An excellent biography of Juliette Daisy Gordon Low by Stacy A. Cordery .

Archery was one of the skills Daisy Gordon Low encouraged her Girl Scouts to practice.

Boy Scouting or Scouting for Boys offered so much to Edwardian girls that many embraced the opportunities offered to boys. Baden Powell did not discourage this but aware of public opinion on boys and girls mixing unchaperoned, eventually asked his sister Agnes to create a specific movement for the thousands of Girl Scouts – and that is how Girl Guides was born.

Alan Gruber and I have been tracking down more about early scouting, both boys and girls, to add strong period flavour to our future Wide Games. Very few Girl Scout or Girl Guide gaming figures exist.

Recently as part of our #FEMbruary contribution we posted an old 1893 article from Girls Own Paper about Women Soldiers:

However you choose to celebrate International Women’s Day, have a good weekend.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, IWD 8 March 2020