More Goodness from MBA

Regular visitors to this site will know that a month or so ago I took advantage of the 50%-off Miniature Building Authority sale to order some 15mm terrain from the US. See the post by clicking here (will open in new window).

I was so pleased with the buildings, and the fact that the 50%-off made them affordable to buy from the US, that I decided I'd better get some more in order to make my middle eastern town a bit bigger. A few clicks later, and I had another of the compounds and four more little houses on the way.

Whilst I was on the site, a couple more of the buildings caught my eye, and I duly ordered some of them too: manufacturers take note: all you have to do is get me there!

First up is the sawmill. Great little building this, and ideal for one of the scenarios in Bashnya or Bust! Unfortunately, the site said it was out of stock, but an e-mail to Kirk (good man that he is) led to him uncovering one deep in the recesses of the warehouse.

A nice little building, quite distinctive, that comes with a couple of piles of wood (okay, so they are a bit pants!) and some fencing to make an outside area. Loving this: will make any wooden Russian town or village a bit more interesting.

The next thing to catch my eye was the MBA Russian church. I'd coveted one of these for some time, but the problem is I already have at least three (it might be four, I deliberately forget!) Russian churches. If I bought this one, I was well on the way to having enough to portray a different church in each of the various towns and villages  in all 32 of the Bashnya and, indeed, all the Vyazma, scenarios as well. I definitely did not need another Russian church.

So here is my new MBA Russian church proudly sitting on the tabletop:

Another lovely model that comes with two gold crosses for the steeple: a really nice touch as I am bound to break or lose one over the next few years.

Here are the two buildings together rather than in isolation, and you can see the new middle eastern kit behind them as well:

So how did the financing work out this time?

Using an exchange rate of $1.30:£1.00, here's the calculation, rounded to single units for ease of consumption:

  • List price: $290 (£223)
  • 50% off: $145 (£112)
  • P&P:  $85 (£65)
  • Tax: $36 (£28)
  • Total Paid: $266 (£205)

So a saving of around £20...and I have some very nice buildings that are usually only available (due to cost) in the States.

The MBA sale is still on, click on the banner below to visit their site. Please mention VL if you do end up buying: I've already received one angry e-mail from a spouse about the money spent by her other half the last time I posted about MBA!

TFL Painting Challenge: A Large Update

People have been busy! Plenty of entries flooding in. So, in no particular order, in today's update we have:

  • Andrew McCarthy finally gets off the mark with some WW1 British infantry
  • More WW1, but this time from Carole: some Scots
  • Chris Kay pops in a platoon or so of 15mm modern British infantry
  • Thomas sends in three figures
  • Mr Helliwell is still dabbling in the 1/72 medievals: a mass of longbowmen to be exact
  • Mervyn is back to Dux, with some Irish in 28mm
  • Mr Luther sends in a hodge podge of bits and pieces in a variety of scales
  • There's more Darkest Africa from Mr Burt
  • Koen pops in some beautifully painted French for Indochina, and some American Civil War figures as well
  • Stumpy has kept his painter busy, meaning he has loads of rebasing to share
  • And last, but by no means least, Mr Slade is back with some engineers, artillery and a few civilians

As always, clicking on the names, above, will open their Gallery in a new window.

Today's pictures are below:

A close up of some of Koen's Paras

Don't look at the figures: just look at Stumpy's re-basing!

Matt's engineers: Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble, Grubb!

TFL Painting Challenge: Another Sunday Morning Update

Good morning all. It's a beautiful day, so I'd better get the Painting Challenge updated before getting outside to enjoy it.

This week, in no particular order, we have:

  • Chris Kay with a mix of modern and post-modern work. Loving those Captain Scarlet vibes!
  • Some of the new PSC 15mm plastic carriers from Carole
  • Mr Luther paints some more for Burmese CoC, and fills in a couple of missing photos
  • Dem bones is rattlin': skeletons in 28mm from Matt Slade
  • Some nice Ashigaru from Mr Haines, who also has a Tiny Wargames battlemat
  • The usual mixed bag from Mr Ralls
  • Steve Burt is still in Darkest Africa
  • Mervyn is in Cyprus. No, really, but still manages to update the challenge with some of Conan's furniture and seven dead gunslingers
  • And last, but by no means least, the Great Gatzemeyer pops in a baggage train

As is now usual, clicking on the name of the painter will open their gallery in a new window.

Today's pictures are below:

This is the voice of the Mysterons...Captain Scarlet and friends from Chris Kay

Well it is a Sunday: a church and graveyard from Jason

Chi Ha from Mark Luther

Mr Haines' cannon fodder...I mean, Ashigaru

New Battlemats Arrive

One of my impulse purchases at Salute this year was a couple of battlemats from Tiny Wargames. As my tables are 6'x5', I custom  ordered one of the South Pacific coastal mats and one of the planet Mars mats, both cloth only, paying £150 for the two, including p&p.

Arriving home yesterday, well within the 21-day custom order time given by Tiny Wargames, I was greeted by a good sized package containing the two mats...and they are cracking!

First up, the coastal mat. Okay, so I could have got a slightly bigger one made (that's my fault!) but the mat looks fantastic and I cannot wait to try it out.

Here's a few pictures without any other terrain on board, just a couple of Japanese landing craft:

And here's the Mars mat: again looks great...and it makes me almost sorry that I've homogenised all my sci-fi troopers onto grass bases.

So a couple of recommended purchases there, and I shall be treating myself to a winter mat once the finances have recovered.

IABSM Scenario Book Sale

No, not mine, before you ask!

Fellow Lardy Chris Stoesen has written several scenario books for Lardy products, including the excellent In the Name of Roma covering the Italians on the Eastern Front:

"In July of 1941, the 80° Roma Regiment of the Pasubio Division boarded a train bound for Romania. Along with the rest of the Italian Expeditionary Corps in Russia (Corpo di Spedizione Italiano), they would advance through the Ukraine alongside their German allies. In the coming months, the 80° would be engaged in brutal fighting across 1400 miles of the Eastern Front – covering most of that on foot.

"IN THE NAME OF ROMA is a wargame supplement that contains 30 company and platoon level scenarios covering the actions of the 80a Roma Regiment from August to December of 1941. You’ll follow the 80th from the open steppe to the Donetz industrial basin, including the amphibious attacks across the Dnieper, and the fateful decision of Column Chiarimonti to attempt to seize Nikitovka."

This normally sells at $11, but is currently available at just $5.50 from Chris' website at Wargamer's Odds & Ends.

Incidentally, my scenario books are, from today, now available from this website using PayPal to buy them (previously you had to use a credit card). They are available from the BUY IABSM SCENARIO PACKS page of this website, available by clicking on the link or in the NavBar above.

As a reminder they are:


  • The September War, Part One (the invasion of Poland, September 1939)
  • The Defence of Calais (the defence of Calais, May 1940)
  • Operation Compas (action in the western desert, June 1940 to February 1941)
  • Fall of the Lion Gate (the fall of Singapore, December 1941 to February 1942)
  • Bloody Burma (the fall of Burma, December 1941 to May 1942)
  • Sicilian Weekend (the invasion of Sicily, July 1943)
  • Anzio: Wildcat to Whale (the Anzio campaign, January & February 1944)


  • Vyazma or Bust! (Eastern Front, 1941)
  • Bashnya or Bust! (Eastern Front, 1944)
  • Blenneville or Bust! (Normandy, 1944)

All my scenario books are fully IABSM V3 compatible.

TFL Painting Challenge: Easy Like Sunday Morning Update

Got to keep the Challenge updates coming, even if my own painting is suffering from a surfeit of Minecraft!

So, in no particular order, today we have:

  • Mervyn with some Hoplites
  • Medic! Kev supplies his ACW armies with some casualty markers
  • It's more re-basing from Stumpy
  • Carole with some wizards
  • Mr Helliwell is still trying to restrain himself from buying too many 20mm figures...I think we all know how that one is going to pan out!
  • More Confederates from Jason Ralls, who seems to be on a roll
  • Mr Burt returns to Darkest Africa
  • And, last but not least, it's CoC in the Pacific Theatre for Mr Luther

As always, clicking on the names above will open the person's gallery in a new window.

Today's pictures:

some of stumpy's re-based hanoverians

some of mr ralls' confederates ( and a union medic)

IABSM AAR: South of Radekhov

Another fantastic battle report from Mark Luther from a game of I Ain't Been Shot, Mum played with micro armour. This encounter was a colossal tank fest, with huge numbers of AFVs on either side.

I've also presented the pics in a slightly different format to the usual gallery. Let me know if toy prefer them that way, and I'll go back and change some of Mark's other AARs into the same format.

Click on the pic below to see all:

First of the Hura Infantry

Just a quick post today before we're off to the cinema to watch Guardians of the Galaxy 2. Can't wait!

Anyway, the first platoon of Hura infantry leaves the painting table: three squads of eight plus a Big Man:

Two more platoons to go and then it's time to find them some vehicles.

Oh, and the Scorecard for the Painting Challenge is finally updated! Apologies for the delay.

MBA Middle Eastern Town Arrives

Some of you may have read the news that terrain manufacturer Miniature Building Authority is moving out of the 15mm space and, as a result, selling of their stock of 15mm terrain pieces at 50% off list price.

The MBA buildings are the ones that come painted and in two halves: put the halves together, you have a pristine building, but take the top half off and you have a ruined building. Ideal for IABSM when you're trying to show a building rendered unstable by artillery fire!

I've often lusted after their stuff, but as they are in the US it hasn't been economical to buy any. With the sale, however, it seemed to be worth having a punt, despite the shipping and tax I would have to pay. I duly contacted Kirk at MBA, we sorted how much the postage would be, and I ordered a complete middle eastern town for my desert war and 6DW collection.

After I'd paid the VAT, Parcelforce duly delivered a big box, which unpacked as follows:

Very nice looking and I'm very happy with them. So happy, in fact, that I've gone back and asked for more!

Anyway, what I'm sure you're all interested in is the financials: how did it work out.

Using an exchange rate of $1.30:£1.00, here's the calculation, rounded to single units for ease of consumption:

  • List price: $316 (£243)
  • 50% off: $158 (£122)
  • P&P:  $88 (£68)
  • Tax: $59 (£45)
  • Total Paid: $305 (£235)

As you can see, although I didn't really save any money (£8 or $11!), the sale made the buildings cheap enough to import. Given the quality of the products, well worth investing if you ask me.

MBA are also discounting some of their 28mm buildings. For those interested in either scale, you can click on the link below to visit their site. If you do end up ordering anything, please mention Vis Lardica when you do so.

For Sale: Kev's Desert War Collection

In addition to his many other talents (househusband, father, wargamer, ballet dancer) fellow Lardy Kev "Fat Wally" Lowth is a professional figure painter. You can see many examples of his work in his Painting Challenge galleries.

All his new stuff means that he is having to clear space in his collection, and his chosen sacrificial lambs are his 15mm WW2 desert war collection: both Afrika Korps and 8th Army, plus a whole load of scenics.

You can download the whole list of what's for sale by clicking here.

And can see examples from the collection by clicking on the links below:

He's looking to shift the lot for £1,650, and would be prepared to accept payment in three instalments. If you're a serious prospect, then please e-mail him on

Here are some more pictures:

Kev's website can be reached by clicking here.


TFL Painting Challenge: Another Update

Less than a week since the last update, and I think it's time for another one: I've got to keep on top of all the submissions pouring in!

So, in no particular order, we have:

  • Jason Ralls, back from the dead, with some 28mm ACW figures
  • Andrew Helliwell continues his medieval collection, but makes the fatal mistake of trying a new scale. That road lies only to ruin!
  • Following Andrew down the two-scale path is Mr Kay: some lovely Pulp figures in 28mm followed by the start of a Team Yankee collection. The end is nigh!
  • Already a Cold War king, Egg adds to his force with some teeny-tiny modern West German infantry platoons. As he says: lots of firepower, but not a lot of points for the Challenge.
  • The Great Gatzemeyer pops in some more Dropzone Commander miniatures. Lovely sculpts: if only they did them in 15mm...
  • Is it a bird? Is it a 'plane? No...but it is another entry from Thomas Nissvik. Thomas' entries are like buses: nothing for ages, then three all at once! Here he has three Walking Dead figures from Mantic.
  • Carole Flint sends in a couple of female magic users and some CoC jump off points.
  • The increasingly prolific Mr Davenport submits another Napoleonic division in 18mm (and this one has tartan!) and a mighty horde of 28mm Baja warriors for some North Africa colonial action
  • And last, but by no means least, Steve Burt has, according to him, the last of the Carthaginians...but we don't believe him, do we!

As usual, clicking on the name of the person above will open their full gallery in a new window and, as I'm updating this before work, the Scoreboard won't be updated until I can get to my home PC.

Here are today's pictures. Little beauties, the lot of 'em!

Another division from Mr Davenport

Gorgeous Pulp figures from Hasslefree from Chris Kay

Zouaves from Lazarus himself: Mr Ralls

Modern West German infantry from Egg

IABSM AAR: Random Game in Russia

Here's another game report from the blog "Burt's Stuff". That's my translation of Las Partidas de Burt : a Spanish language blog devoted to all sorts of wargaming.

I've used Google and my own limited Spanish to translate the report, so any inaccuracies or poor use of English are mine alone!

Similar to some of Burt's other games, here is a Soviet attack on a German-held town somewhere on the Eastern Front in 1944. Click on the picture to the right to see all.

Now that's an awful lot of Soviet Blinds!

Salute 2017

I thought it was a rather good Salute this year: certainly better than the last few.

Why was it so good? Well, here's a few fairly random thoughts:

No queue at all

By the time I arrived, 10.45 am, the queue had completely died down, and after a coffee and a sandwich I was able to walk straight in.

I understand from some people that the pre-opening-queue hall was just about full as the doors actually opened, meaning their current way of doing things is now strained to the limit, but for this year, as last, it worked. Well done the organisers: makes a big difference!

Sharp Practice demo game in full swing


I thought that this year's show was the busiest I had been at for years. This gave the show, even in the afternoon, a real buzz...and because the show is in such a large venue, even with the busy-ness, there was plenty of room to move around.


Usually I come away from Salute thinking that I've been trapped in a dungeon for a few hours. I don't know what they've done differently, or whether it's just me, but this year I thought that it was considerably lighter than last year.

Traders & Bargains

Now there are always lots of traders at Salute, which is good, but nothing particularly exciting. I keep myself fairly well abreast of what's available, so rarely do I get the pleasant surprise of a new discovery.

Not so this year: not only did GZG have some fantastic hover disks for the Xar (see previous post on the need for vehicles for the little Critters!) but an outfit called Troll Trader had loads of the more obscure Battlefront box sets (i.e. the sort of thing that is usually priced highly because people only ever buy one) for dirt cheap prices. I picked up the Amtrack box set at seven vehicles for £40; more US landing craft at £5 each; and ten Japanese tanks at £2.40 each.

Lead mountain now fully replenished!

Demo Games

Again it may just be me, but I thought here were a ton more demo games than usual. Combined with the traders, this meant that it took me until well into the afternoon to think that I had actually at least glanced at everything there was to see.

I left at about 3pm, but felt that I could have stayed longer. It was the wallet that made me leave: it's piteous cries of "no more, no more"...

The Lardies

And finally, what made the show really buzz for me was the huge number of Lardies that it was good to chat with. I won't name check everybody, but nice to see Ralph and Matt, Kev, Sid, Big Rich, Panda and all the other Lard Island regulars.

Roll on next year!