Saturday, 30 August 2014

IHMN buildings - a dilemma solved.

Like many wargamers, I have an issue with storage space. I simply do not have enough of it. SWMBO disagrees with me on this, but then I take issue with the amount of shoes she has. We have an uneasy truce on this subject, especially since I downsized everything to 10mm, more-or-less, several years ago. However the matter has recently raised its ugly head once again in the form of scenery for IHMN; specifically buildings.

Now I know from my time as an avid Mordheim player that 28mm buildings, even wrecked ones, take up a lot of space. For Mordheim you really need a lot of buildings to make the game work. The same could be said to be true for IHMN. You see many lovely looking tables on various Blogs, all beautifully layed out with plenty of buildings to give the Victorian Gothic/Steampunk feel to the table. They remind me so much of Mordheim...

But as already mentioned, this is simply not an option available to me on the storage front. Then there is the cost issue. This is not to be taken lightly. Whereas I can buy an IHMN Company for less than £20, to put the required amount of buildings on the table to get that Gothic feel, would set me back up to ten times this amount, even more if I wanted to. Although the table would look stunning, I simply cannot justify spending this amount of money for a game that I only play occasionally, no matter how much I enjoy it. Also it would only get used for that game and no other, whereas my 10mm scenery gets used for Dux Bellorum, Blitzkreig Commander, Black Powder etc, so it is easier to justify spending money on this.

So how to solve the problem? My friend Craig has come up with a rather nice solution to this dilemma, with his magnetic scenery, which having seen it in the flesh, works really well. However I prefer more solid buildings, that can have figures put in them (which to be fair Craig could do with some simple tweaks to his construction) and which are more 3D in their nature. I thought of going down the route taken by Matakishis's Tea House, which provides a very quick way of making certain types of buildings. This I will certainly try in the future, especially for a planned campaign for IHMN, but I wanted a quicker route to getting some buildings on the table.

So I looked towards the now ubiquitous laser cut mdf buildings route, as 'pioneered' by 4ground a few years ago. These buildings are so popular now that it is rare not to see them at any wargames show on a demo table. Relatively new to the market are Sarissa Precision, who offer an equally impressive range of buildings, but un-painted compared to the 4Ground ones. Since I last checked both companies, their ranges have increased with an awful lot of nice extras being added, even including vehicles. After much perusing of their respective websites, I decided to go down this route and with Sarissa, as they were cheaper and offered in my mind a nicer range of buildings. As I plan to add details to their basic kits, them not being painted was not an issue for me, especially as I have a full spray shop at my disposal at work.

The question was which buildings to choose and how many? The latter was easily answered by a quick scale drawing that showed that around 3-5 buildings would provide a nice amount of cover, not look to cluttered and be easy to store. As I want my table to be rural or semi-suburban, in the end I choose some buildings (see below) from their WWII range as I liked the look of them and they fitted in nicely with the plans for my table.


Small House

Small Terraced House,

These came to only £35, with P&P being only £2.50, which I was pleasantly suprised at. As mentionend above, I plan to 'upgrade' these buildings before painting them, using some of the techniques as shown by Emmanuel Nouaillier, which I think you will agree produce incredible results. Alongside this I will use these buildings as a guide size wise to scratch build a few of my own to increase my 'real estate' as and when required. However my first job is to get these onto to the table as quickly as possible, not an easy task with my butterfly nature...

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