Armies in Plastic 54mm Woodland Indians Painted and Out in the Wild

I really enjoyed painting these 54mm Armies in Plastic Woodland Indians, plentiful straps and tassels and all.

They were part of a kind gift of a box of surplus mixed plastic figures from Alan Tradgardland Gruber for my Close Little Wars forest skirmishes.

I introduced them to the garden forests and mountains today, after a gloss spray varnish and final shiny paint bits.

These Woodland Indians of the little known Gull Tribe (see their prized head dress feathers) have little adornment and decoration, unlike other Indian Tribes in North Gondal and North Generica.

They are not as richly decorated as many of the Woodland Indians of the French Indian War and “The Revolutionary War”.

Lots of equipment detail to choose to paint (or not).
Halt! I have found trail signs … many Three Cornered Hat men went this way a few hours ago.

Looking through the uniform plates in various AWI books, Pinterest, box art and figures from different figure ranges (everything from John Jenkins and modern Wm. Britain’s to the shiny gloss Tradition of London range), I settled on a generic plainer shiny gloss look for my under-adorned Woodland Indian ImgaiNations tribe.

Interesting to look at the flintlock and powder horn equipment, tomahawk in its sling, knife held on the upper chest. Much of this equipment is found on the 54mm plastic AIP Gruber’s / Rogers Rangers figures AWI Light Infantry and Rangers that I painted last week.

I struggled a little to find the toy soldier look I wanted but used an old hollowcast painting trick of using bronze or copper skin tones.

Bronze or copper skin worked well enough repairing damaged old hollowcast Britain’s and other makers’ more 50s Hollywood Indians (and Cowboys). It didn’t work recently for some 54mm to 60mm Steve Weston plastic Mexican peasants.

So with these gloss toy soldier style Indians in mind I used Revell Aquacolor Acrylic Gloss Leather Brown for the Woodland Indian skin tone. All the other colours used were Matt like the musket in Matt Leather Brown and desert Afrikabraun for the Buckskin leggings and equipment. They were all going to get gloss spray varnished anyway.

The toy soldier style face was achieved with black pin dot eyes and eyebrows, red mouth dot (both using a shaved cocktail stick) and after gloss varnish, the final copper cheek dot.

This is how the Three Cornered Hat warriors (Tricornes) fight and die in the forest – in volley rows.

There was one interesting pose with a fearsome looking wooden root club. Interestingly the character is carrying a powder horn so has laid down a flintlock somewhere.

Having rewatched the 1992 Daniel Day Lewis Last of the Mohicans film for the Indian costumes, the slow reload of a flintlock musket is obviously a problem for troops engaging charging Natives in ‘Close Wars, type forest skirmishes and melees.

My Ladybird book version of Last of the Mohicans illustrated by Frank Humphris also came in handy for painting ideas. https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2020/05/10/classic-close-wars-and-comic-book-soldiers-back-to-the-forest/

Plain Indians rather than Plains Indians?

I could have spent a long time painting different Indian beadwork and breechclout patterns, legging ties etc and facial paints but I didn’t really want to. I tried one club figure with Citadel Agrax Earthshade Wash (brown) but I didn’t really think it would work with gloss varnish toy soldier style.

These were not the only Indians in the Back Yarden Forests.

This colourful Plains Indian is Crescent plastic repair and paint from a joblot from Alan Gruber

And finally –

How would they work in my Bold Frontiers pine forests?

Just what Bold Frontiers trees are designed for … painted or unpainted figures.

The Gull Tribe go clubbing or the Woodland Indian version of “Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush” ..

A shadowy Brown figure appears moving amongst the trees. Is it a fierce Brown bear?

Not a Bear! How! The Patrol Leader greets the brown clad figure. Friar, Friend or Foe?

Friend! Another log for the fire, please, friar!

(Camp fire by Safari Toob – Powhatan Indian camp set)

The Crescent / Kellogg’s Cornflakes 1960s plastic Friar Tuck is from the Robin Hood plastic range. We had him at home bizarrely painted bright gloss red ever since I was a child. Now over fifty years on, he finally gets a new gloss toy soldier paint job.

http://cerealoffers.com/Kelloggs/Cornflakes/1960s/Robin_Hood_Figures/robin_hood_figures.html

https://collectablefigures.wordpress.com/2011/05/26/crescent-part-1-plastic-and-cereal/

Next time we are in Sherwood Forest, this old Friar Tuck can take part!

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2020/05/30/quarter-staff-fighting-in-sherwood-forest/

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 14 / 15 August 2020

American Indians First Nations or Imagi-Nations?

Another lucky bid online for a few pounds brought this haul of battered and colourful American Indians.

17N Britain’s brave with rifle or the similar posed John Hill Co. (JohillCo) post War Indian on Guard.

I wanted to pick up a cheap and colourful opponent for my Redcoats or Bluecoat Troops, a wily native ally to match my Zulus.

A few broken spears and rifles are no problem to fix.

These rifle, bow and spear toting native warriors should prove great for garden and tabletop games once repaired and mounted on tuppenny bases. They are almost perfect for Donald Featherstone’s simple Close Wars skirmish rules (in his appendix to his War Games 1962).

More correctly these figure should be known today as Native Americans, First Nations or First Peoples but the ones you can see here are pure Imagi-Nations,  wily natives straight out of Hollywood B Movies and Wild West TV shows.

A mixture of makers –  Johillco, Britains and Crescent 50 and 54mm. Bottom row 2 is a slim thin Crescent 1950s die cast, covered in cracks. 
FiguresA wide variety of  figures from a range of makers:  top left first 2 Britain’s figures , top row 3,4 and 6 are otherwise Crescent 1950s. Bottom right damaged Timpo archers, 1950s. 

Nicely animated crawling Braves sneaking up on an unwary opponent!

I get the feeling that some manufacturers might have quite enjoyed sculpting the animated poses and bright colours after producing regiment after regiment of increasingly khaki figures.

I’m sure after World War 1 these Indians  also fitted a need to get away from the reality and aftermath of modern war off and away to the lawless and heroic but imaginary frontiers of the ‘Wild Wild West’, so popular in its many formats in fiction, cinema and Buffalo Bill shows.

1950s Timpo Indian Drummer (left) and Crescent chief seated right (prewar?) 
Johillco Indian with Tomahawk (postwar)
Right – Johillco crawling Indian.
Not a Red Indian more of a bronzed one with this unusual red bronze metallic painted skin tone – Crescent 1950s figure with broken rifle. I have also seen this paint finish used on Crescent postwar American GI mortar crew troops stripped to the waist that may have suggested African Americans?
An animated Indian Chief figure on the hunt from William Britain 16N Crown Range of figures
Elaborate head dress on a Britain’s chief or Medicine Man with Tomahawk on movable arm (Pre and post war).
Fine Crescent 1950s Indian chief dancing with shield minus tomahawk and (right) medicine man with snake curled up leg!

A curious hole which may have held a pin to attach a shield? Not sure of maker yet. 

Two of the T and B (Taylor and Barrett) figures were a bit smaller scale, around 40mm. They blend quite well with the 40mm Holger Erickson Prince August Homecast moulds.

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Taylor and Barrett Indians can be seen alongside my home cast and based 40mm Prince August figures.

ID of figures based on figure markings and Norman Joplin’s wonderful The Great Book of Hollowcast Figures.

Blogposted by Mark  Man of TIN, 21 June 2018.

 

 

Flint and Feather, Scissors Paper Stone!

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Five Combat or Life points steadily crossed out as they receive a hit – setting up a Lunge Cut Thrust A4 paper arena for some duelling and walloping with sticks. Looking at the dice, I’m not sure where this is in the game play … 

I have been looking to expand the range of moves in the Lunge, Cut and Thrust duelling game created by Gerard De Gre (published in Donald Featherstone’s Solo Wargaming). https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/duelling-in-the-sandpit-lunge-cut-and-stop-thrust/

One blog reader (thanks!) suggested looking at Flint and Feather rules by Crucible Crush in Canada written by Howard Whitehouse.

I recognised this name from reading a fun and crazy set of “Caveman” conflict rules written by one Howard “Ugga” Whitehouse in Miniature Wargames many years ago (early 2000s?), again also with a Scissors, Paper, Stone game mechanic. I am now casting up some Prince August cavemen this summer to finally try this out as a solo game.

This uses a ‘Rock/Paper/Scissors’ form of deciding how warriors attack and defend. It was available in beta version (free) and being playtested.

https://www.cruciblecrush.com/files/Flint%20and%20Feather%20Basic%20Rules(1).pdf

Looks great fun for a club game (no pun intended) and the PDF rule set  is attractively illustrated with some beautiful Native American Indian figures, terrain, canoes, buildings. https://www.cruciblecrush.com/flint-feather/

The link came from a comment thread about Lunge, Cut and Stop Thrust on Tradgardmastre’s blog.

http://tradgardland.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/master-classes.html#comment-form

Players choose or use a deck of cards (at the back of the PDF rule book) to indicate which option below is selected.

“Key Characters – not only Great Warriors and Companions but Shamen and Healers – get to choose their maneuver, placing the card face down on the table but keeping it hidden until both sides reveal their maneuvers. Others choose cards randomly and reveal once both sides have placed their cards face down on the table. Obviously, “Huh!” is an accidental choice that only occurs only when the figure rolls, rather than chooses, an option.” Flint and Feather rules PDF

Attacker options

1) Swing: a good strong swipe at the foe. Often risky … (Flint and Feather goes on to suggest the  ‘Best’ weapon for each  manoeuvre).

2) Cut: a dependable attack, without much risk of disaster …

3) Lunge: a fierce thrust …

4) Bash: A Strong overhead blow …

5) Taunt: no armed attack at all, but a pithy insult to taunt the enemy …

6) Huh!: accidentally failing to make any attack, and possibly making a fool of yourself in the process. Not a deliberate choice …

 

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Flint and Feather beta play test rules include these attractive playing cards.

The Defender has also six  options – again, “Huh!” is an accidental choice.

1) Counter Blow: hitting the other fellow before he strikes you! Risky …

2) Leap Aside: dodge that blow and show off your agility …

3) Jump Back: see him swing at thin air …

4) Duck: Drop down! …

5) Parry: the safest way of fending off an assault, with shield or with weapon. It’s good to have a shield! …

6) Huh!: accidentally failing to offer any defense at all. Usually not a deliberate choice.

One aspect I like is that it shares some of the move words from Gerard De Gre’s Lunge, Cut and Stop Thrust duelling game.

Flint and Feather has a combat table that is similar in appearance but larger than to Gerard De Gre in Lunge, Cut and Stop Thrust 

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Surely if they have a HuH! move, that nobody would choose by choice, there should also be a clumsy  “whoops-a-daisy” move.

I have changed this into a more Lunge, Cut and Stop Thrust type simple table.

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Roughed out first draft of the Close combat table

Using The X cards used in Lunge, Cut and Stop Thrust game means that you can have a mixture of Both Hit, None Hit / Both Miss and random event cards such as the Whoops- a-Daisy falling over, ducking, run away, etc and whether a hit is landed or not on either player.

Numbering the Attack and Defence Options 1-6 means that a solo or two player version could be used, rolling dice to randomly select attack, defence or both moves , rather than relying on cards.

If Huh! got too annoying, another unused move type could be added in such as Thrust and the Hit on Attacker / Defender options rewritten for this line.

It remains to be seen how Taunt will work outside of the Flint and Feather rules context. It sounds much like “sledging” in modern sport, designed to put your opponent off their game. It usually ends up with attackers being hit!

Testing Out a Dice version 

I ran a quick play test of the dice choice option using suitable lead figures on a paper sheet using red dice for attacker, green dice for defender. Dice were used instead of cards for selecting the attack and defence options.

Instead of 5 combat point counters, quick scrawled circles are crossed off as combat points are lost or one added if you win the contest and defeat your opponent.

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It works fast and well enough to link into other files where melee combat takes place such as my Little Close Wars skirmish games. https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/06/09/close-little-wars-featherstones-simplest-rules/

Sparking of Scissors Paper Stone, after a big of scratching of heads, I finally worked out what the current freebie Sainsbury’s handout Lego cards are supposed to be, having spotted scissors paper stone logos on the cards. Good fun as a family card game, along with fast snap and dominoes if you look at the brick dots on the back etc. They were free with purchases at Sainsbury’s (May to early June 2017).

Stone blunts scissors, scissors cut paper, paper wraps stone …

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Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN, June 2017