Fiends in Waistcoats Copyright 2012-2014 Robert Audin all rights reserved
The Zombie Incident of 1888 Copyright 2013-2014 Robert Audin all rights reserved
The Great Occult War Copyright 2014 Robert Audin all rights reserved

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Introducing Slumming in Goblintown

I've created a new blog to chronicle my miniatures exploits in a new period, well if the Lord of the Rings can be considered a period.  To bolster this period claim I'll add some Dark Ages history, literature and myth articles. After all that's what inspired the great author himself. I’ve been a long time miniatures gamer and fan of Lord of the Rings I’ve been collecting the GW LOTR figures since they first came out in 2001 in conjunction with the first LOTR film. I enjoy the game and have played a number of games after a new years clean up I’ve discovered that I have 100+ figures earmarked for my LOTR project yet not a single one is painted! 

 You can find it here.

Sorry Ste the wargaming community is much larger on Blogger. 

I hope I can keep up with you Mr. Bowmen.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Battleboards Videos

BattleBoards is one of the very few professional gaming terrain board makers in the world. They have made numerous gaming/display boards for manufactures and clubs to be exhibited at Salute in London. They have recently begun posting videos of their work on youtube. I have posted all the videos for their latest project WW2 Bolt Action Italy board here for your enjoyment. All though this is very advanced stuff, if you watch carefully you should be able to pick up some tips to use yourself no matter your personal level of terrain making. The link to BattleBoards is here.


Sunday, January 26, 2014

Paint Table Saturday

I've joined Sofie's Paint Table Saturday and movement that's sweeping the blogger community. Sofie of sofies-paint-blog has inspired the blogging community with one simple idea, every Saturday post your painting table. Off and on I've posted things I'm working on in my Work Bench series of posts.
 Now I don't have a permeate painting station I have to set it up each time I want to paint the picture below might give you a hint as to why. My poor artists daylight's on/off switch is no longer working thanks to being knocked from the table once too many times, but it soldiers on. I've recently cleaned off the kitchen table once my regular painting spot before it became a repository for random junk. Well its cleaned off enough to get some work done. So I unpacked the paints & brushes and dug up some LOTR miniatures to paint then to my surprise I gained a helper. 
Tiger! the curious kitty, she is the most curious cat I've ever had. For more on Tiger's miniature antics see here.

I will however post a painting table/work bench picture every Saturday from now on. Maybe I'll even get some painting in like yesterday.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Experiencing Technical Difficulties Please Stand By

Google's new One account All of Google concept has forced its way into every product Google now owns including Blogger. This has caused numerous problems for many users, myself included, that Blogger help has not helped. Google's idea is to use their product Chrome.
This chart of my viewers shows that people are moving to Chrome out of exasperation most likely. Fortunately I've overcome the obstacles Google has placed in a poor bloggers path. is the culprit behind everyone's picture posting and writing issues. Google is now casing static data, things they don't expect to change like the write new post window on this site so your browser will need to enable this 3rd party cookie in order to post on Blogger. Fun wasn't that!?

Normal posting should commence shortly.

On another not I've taken a page from some of the blogs I follow and I'll be starting a new blog to cover a new period. Well if LOTR was a period it will be covered in the new blog called Slumming in Goblintown. More on that in a future post.


Sunday, January 19, 2014

Games Workshop The Decline and Fall

Thurday January 16, 2014
“LONDON (Alliance News) - Games Workshop Group PLC sat firmly on the stock-market losers list Thursday, having seen almost a quarter wiped off its market value, after the games retailer reported a huge drop in profits and revenues for the first half of its financial year.
Shares in Games Workshop were the biggest faller on the London All-Share Thursday, down 24% at 548.00 pence per share.”
Many people have been blogging about this “shocking” event in this post I will show you that this is the beginning of Games Workshop’s inevitable fall into the dust heap of history.

Six months to 1 December 2013    Six months to 2 December 2012
          60.5m                                         67.5m

So Games Workshop lost 7 million in sales in the 1st half fiscal year of 2014. Considering the price of a GW miniature that is shocking. So what does GW’s report to shareholders say about this?

(From the GW financial report )
First half performance Sales in the first half of the year were down against the comparable period in the prior year, continuing the trend that developed in the second half of 2012/13. During the first half, the rapid transition from multi-man stores to one-man stores and the reduction of trading hours across the Group caused disruption in our retail chain. We also experienced some decline in sales through independent stockists.

We view these as short term issues and expect to see growth return in both channels. We continue with our store opening programme (27 stores opened, 20 closed in the period) secure in the knowledge that our one man model allows us to insure new openings are profitable. In the future we expect to benefit from the more focussed selling operation across all channels against the background of a materially lower cost base.”

Ok so GW managements excuse for such a massive loss of sales the change from mulit-person to one-man retail stores. This is a major reorganization of their retail operations, and interestingly it removes the cudgel GW has been using to bludgeon the online retailer out of the GW racket. From now on GW will not be providing the “hobby content” (painting days, gaming days) that they have been known for. Now the move to push online retailers out of the GW market is revealed to be an important part of their sales strategy since a customer will no longer receive any more value through purchasing a product in a one man store than they would have on line.

Let’s take a closer look at the sales figures:


                                                  Six months to                    Six Months to
                                                  1 December 2013              2 December 2012
UK                                                        13.7m                               15.6m
Continental Europe                         16.9m                               19.6m
North America                                     15.6m                               18.1m
Australia                                                 4.6m                                 5.6m  

So here you can see that the independent sales contracts GW has forced upon its independent retailers and its constant price increases has resulted in loss of sales around the globe. What does the CEO have to say about this?

Here is the CEO’s assessment of 2012-13 from the financial report:
“Games Workshop has had a mixed year. Sales were stronger in the first half than the second, but cost control and cash management have strengthened throughout the period. We finish the year with the most profit this company has generated since flotation and have returned £18.4 million to our owners.”

So why is GW the things they are doing to their customers? This statement sums up the direction of Games Workshop quite nicely.
(From the Chairman’s Preamble of the same report.)

“During the year Mark Wells left Games Workshop, after more than ten years, five as chief executive, he has gone to graze in pastures new. His tenure as CEO saw our return on capital increase from around 10% to over 50%. He is a man who truly understands about shareholder value and put that understanding into good practice.
Thank you Mark, and good luck.”

As you can see “a return on capital” has been and reminds the goal of GW management. The owners of GW want a huge return on their investment and management is prepared to give it to them. Take a look at GW’s major investors.

The Nomad Investment Partnership LP 3,450,545     10.9 % of the company

Investec Asset Management Limited      3,087,765     9.7 % of the company

Ruffer LLP                                  2,492,260     7.9 % of the company

Phoenix Asset Management Partners Limited 1,865,218       5.9 % of the company

FIL Limited                                  1,753,900     5.5 % of the company

Legal & General                                    1,683,901     5.3 % of the company

Artemis Investment Management LLP    1,620,001     5.1 % of the company

Look these companies up on the web they are all small Hedge Funds, some rather shady looking like The Nomad Investment Partnership LP out of the Cayman Islands, looking to make money for their clients.

If you take a close look at GW’s revenues you’ll see that they’ve been inflated with massive price hicks over the last few years.

GW’s revenue by year.

          2013                       2012
          134.6m                   131.0m

2012                       2011
131.0m                   123.1m

2011                       2010
          123.1m                   126.5m

2010                                            2009
126.5m                  125.7m

2009                                           2008
125.7m                  110.3m

2008                                          2007
110.3m                  109.5m

2007                                         2006
111.5m                 115.2m

2006                                       2005
115.2m                136.6m

What’s all this Decline and Fall bull?! This massive revenue loss it the tipping point, the beginning of the end. I suspect out going CEO Mark Wells new full well that he brought the company to this point, but them he made millions as did the investors. They have been looting the company, any return even close to 50% is out right looting.

So now that Mark Wells is gone things will change for the better right? Wrong! The main driver of GW is now The Nomad Investment Partnership LP, the shadowy investment group out of the Cayman Islands. They have increased their position in GW and are now the dominate board controller. They want money, but Games Workshop did not declare a dividend this time the dividend for 2012 was 18p per share and 20p before that. So Expect big price increases in a few months once the sacking of the majority of retail sales staff fails to raise the stock price.

Here are the 3 reasons why GW is on the downward spiral;

1)    Price, GW’s marketing department has likened wargamers to heroin addicts we’ll see our mothers to get a fix. That’s true to a point and now the point has arrived. Across the globe wargamers have stopped buying GW not because they don’t want the goodies, but because they literally can’t afford it anymore.
2)    Loss of Standing, GW’s has abandoned the “hobby center” in favor of a tiny little one man shop. They are closing down the highly visible high street shops in favor of cheaper rents. These high street shops where the face of GW and a portal for main street to enter wargames street. This loss of visibility is immeasurable.
3)    Customer Feed Back, GW’s refusal to solicit or even listen to customer feed back of even the most basic sort has created a profound disconnect between then and their customers. Even the simplest complaint, no hobby content in the White Dwarf, is utterly ignored by a company that survives on discretionary funding. This disconnect not to mention the anger it has generated among its customers has, and will continue to accelerate its loss of sales.

Its fall will not be swift there will be 5-6 more years of falling revenues before GW is forced into receivership. But receivership is where this company is bound.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

HorrorClix the Trick Up a Horror gamers Sleeve.


Figures from the author's collection. 
Every horror figure collector should become acquainted with the HorrorClix line of pre-painted plastic figures. The original release featured Gothic horror standards like Jack the Ripper and Dracula, but for many the appeal of HorrorClix is in gaining low cost "grunt" monsters for your games like this Dire Wolf and Mummy.
But for me the real appear of HorroClix are all the unusual characters and figures found in its various lines like the one below.
Monster Patrol
 There are 3 expansions to HorrorClix; The Lab, containing Aliens (from the movie), Greys, Dinosaurs, zombies and mad science experiments,

 From the Lab expansion.
 Freakshow; includes clowns, animals and sideshow freaks,
The Zombie Puppeteer, Mr. Fright and the Fiji Mermaid are all from Freakshow.
And Nightmares supposedly inspired by classic literature.
I'm not aware of any classic literature with killer garden Gnomes.
HorrorClix are in 30mm heroic scale. See them pictured with West Wind zombies below for a size comparison.
 These are the 2 HorrorClix I have repainted and rebased so far.
 Consider HorrorClix's superhero cousin HeroClix in your quest for interesting figures to add to your Gothic horror collections. All though HeroClix is a line of Marvel and DC superhero figures many figures suitable for Gothic horror can be found there.
Like this woman werewolf in superhero bathing suit.
This is one of the better monsters' I've seen.
Dr. Jekyll transforming.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

LLedo Days Gone Bye Horse Drawn Carriages A Guide for 28mm Wargamers

28mm WarGaming With LLEDO
What you as a 28mm wargamer need to know is first that Lledo is a toy manufacturer and not a scale model maker. All of their vehicles both horse drawn and cars were made to fit a standard sized box. So what does that mean? Well Lledo vehicles fall into two general categories, 20mm(1/72nd) or 28mm or there about. I personally own 4 of the Lledo horse drawn models the Milk Float, Delivery Van, Omnibus and the Fire engine. Some models work perfectly for 28mm others do not.
 Omnibus with 28mm Eureka figures. 
As you can see the omnibus is much too small for 28mm use. I suspect the Tram is too small as well. 
 The Milk Float with 28mm Eureka figure.
The smaller carriages, the Milk Float, Delevery Van and Fire Engine work perfectly for 28mm.

Bare in mind that all the plastic horses provided with the carriages  are too small and will need to be replaced. 
Lledo plastic horse next to 28mm metal horse.
The next thing you have to bare in mind is that Lledo made money from selling the promotional value of ads on the toys, so those nicely printed ads on the carriages are not historically acurate at all. Also remember that there are a limited number of body types, the only thing that changes in a particular vehicle line (omnibus, milk float, etc..) are the ads printed on them.
See same toys different ads.

Below is a series of photos of the carriages upgraded to 28mm.  
 All carriages come with driver figures some of them are 28mm.
A short history taken from Wikipedia.
"Lledo was a brand of die cast toys, founded in 1982 by Matchbox co-founder Jack Odell and Burt Russell. The factory produced diecast vehicles in Enfield, England from 1983 to 1999. Models were later made in China. Lledo was a reversal of Odell's own surname. Lledo set out to specialize in replicating early Matchbox series styles, particularly the Models of Yesteryear range. The first Lledo models appeared on the market in early 1983. These were a horse-drawn tram, a horse-drawn milk float, a horse-drawn delivery van, a stagecoach-like omnibus, and a horse-drawn fire engine. Around April 1983 the first deliveries of the "Days Gone" range of models were shipped, soon after this, in order to further support the range required by the avid collecters, the company turned to the promotions market and started offering the models to companies as a quality, British made vehicle to carry logos for gifts, product launches and special promotions etc.  These promotional models were mostly produced in limited edition runs of 500 or 1000 models. Lledo went bankrupt in 1999, and the naming rights and model range were bought by Corgi which continued producing Lledo models in China until 2005, when the remaining models were merged into the Corgi Classics range. "

Guide to LLEDO Horse Drawn Carriages with Model Numbers

DG001 Horse Drawn Tran
DG002 Horse Drawn Milk Float
DG003, LP003, PM108, SP003 Horse Drawn Delivery Van
DG004, LP004 Horse Drawn Omnibus

DG005, LP005, SP005 Shand Mason Horse Drawn Fire Engine

DG011 Horse Drawn Removal Van

DG031 Horse Drawn Brewers Dray

PM115 Horse Drawn Tank Wagon 
(A special promotion for Standard Oil it may haven been given out by the company as a gift.)

 *DG-Days Gone Bye *LP-Lldeo Promotional *SP-Stevelyn Promotional

This article is from the Plastic Solider Review, a site for 1/72 scale wargamers is packed with  scale pictures of the accompanying Lledo plastic figures and other tidbits. Check it out.

Ebay and collector's web stores like this one seem to be the best place to get them.

Amazon is currently selling the Shand Mason Horse Drawn Fire Engine you can find it here and here. 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Feinds in Waistcoats appears on twitter!

Well Ladies and Gentlemen we all knew it would happen, a reference to my little blog has made it on twitter curtsey of Kenneth Hite the author of the Osprey Publications book NAZI OCCULT.
Now that I've been tweeted about must I open at twitter account?

Sunday, January 5, 2014

2013 A Review

Requiem is the very first kickstarter I've ever participated in. I found this to be enjoyable and I love the models I got from my pledge though I've found the new rules to be rather rushed.

I'm normally a huge reader so I'm not going list any where near the total number of books that I've read during the course of the year, but I will list a few I found to be outstanding.
This book is easy to read and crammed full of knowledge. I've never before been a keen follower of the great African explorers, that's always been my father, but this book has made me one.
I'm ashamed to say I've never read this before.
The short stories like the Suicide Club are even more interesting than the title story.
This is the first book of his I've ever read its a fantastic Sherlock Holmes style murder mystery, now I'll have to find the rest of his work in English I hope my French is beastly.
This is an Osprey Publication from their new Legends line. Ken Hite has blended fact and occultist fantasy into a wonderful read. The Osprey full color plates of hexansoldat are fantastic! I loved this book so much it's sparked a new special project "Fiends in Jackboots". You can buy it from Amazon here.

This the 2Hour Wargames WW2 game system and the Weird WW2 supplement. I own ATZ their popular zombie game rules favored by Vampifan its a great rules system.


Sadly this gritty and unpredictable show was cancelled by BBC America after the 2nd season. It's a crime against intelligent TV.

This wonderful show was cancelled by the BBC but after a petition its been picked up by another company. I expect to see some great new episodes in 2014.

This NBC show has nothing to do with Bram Stoker's novel and is woefully historically inaccurate when it comes to historical costume or period conventions. It does have some interesting ideas and I have some vain hopes for it's improvement.

I've tried to follow this show but I'm sorry to say this show is just plan bad. I hope it will improve in 2014.

I've been watching this show since it's beginning but its poor character development coupled with the serious zombie budget cut backs have soured the show for me. I'll wait to see the rest of season 4 on Netflix.

Well that's a quick peak at what I've enjoyed in 2013.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy 2014!

A Happy New Year to all may readers! On the first day of 2014 I'd like to post may last painted miniature for 2013. My painted miniature count for 2013 an abysmal 10 figures and 5 terrain pieces with several half finished miniatures laying about. But I've successfully made 74 posts this year and built up a readership. This blog has pushed me to get back into hobbying (is that a word?) and I expect it keep me in the hobby in 2014. Now to my last 2013 figure.

Mr. Fright
Mr. Fright is a Horrorclix repaint. He is from the Sideshow line of horroclix figures. He is is a very tall figure with an impressively gaunt build. He is mounted on a 40mm base. If you don't care about playing the horrorclix game and are as I was just looking for an interesting figure you can find a few on line for $2 or less.