Thursday, January 26, 2012

Space Demons and Garn and Felids oh my!

Well, just imagine how pleased we were to find out, accidentally, that the readers of The Miniatures Page had nominated three of our ranges for Best 15mm Sci Fi alien line!  And they are of course our three most popular ranges, the Space Demons, the Felids and the Garn. 

If you want to vote, the poll is here:

You get to vote for any five choices, you don't have to just vote for one.  Of course there are a whole mess of great models there for you to choose, great evidence of the renaissance in 15mm SF gaming.

Thanks to everyone who nominated the models!  And they are in such splendid company.   I'm very proud!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Dropship Horizon goes in-depth on the Horizon Explorer

Dropship Mark has some exclusive photos of our upcoming ATV, the Horizon, as well as its military equivalent, the Iguana.  Take a look at it here:

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Federal XM6 Advanced Grav Tank Programme

After the success of the Mobility Enhancement Programme for the Siler, and subsequent retrofitting to lighter armoured vehicles as well, the Federal Army established a research battalion, the 1RB, for testing purposebuilt grav tech vehicles. The winner in the evaluation was a design now designated the XM-6, a very large anti-grav tank in two submarks, the XM6A, which mounts a rail gun, and the XM6B, which mounts a shutter-muzzle fusion cannon. Each vehicle has two multipurpose laser defence batteries reminiscent of the defence turrets on the Siler, but of greatly enhanced accuracy and lethality.

One benefit of the anti-grav tech is the ability to make a larger craft, and the hull of the XM6 is 12.5 meters long.

In development is an ADC (armoured drone carrier) version of the XM6 carrying the Slayer drone and their techs/operators.  In planning for the deployment of these vehicles it is anticipated that the use of advanced combat drones will better suit the unit's deployment than human infantry combatants, and as such the Slayer will substitute its ability to enter built up areas and perform other traditional infantry functions. 

The images below show the pattern masters that will be used to make the resin castings.  It's quite a large vehicle, about 125mm long.  The images show parts breakdown as well.  In the rear can be seen the thrusters that propel the vehicle out of orbit and in space, for low orbit redeployment to the fleet.

One of the images just shows the hull from the side, it's very sleek and we will try to retain that shark-like look when the ADC is designed.  This will have launch bays/racks for the Slayer, which will be a small grav drone about the size of a human, mounting a light pulse cannon (approximately the size of a SAW) and a grenade launcher.  I considered having a traditional infantry carrier for the research battalion, but it hardly seems a step forward to have these incredibly high-tech vehicles make entry and deploy for battle only to have humans popping out of the APCs like they were hover Hanomags! The Slayer will be a sleek little kit all its own, one-piece to the extent practical.

There's also an image showing the bottom of the hull with the grav surfaces, much more advanced in tech than the crude grav plates retrofitted to the existing low-riding grav vehicles (masterfully designed to look like that by Mark Mondragon, and then replicated by Coolhand on the medium vehicles).  Our assumption is that the grav drive works by pushing against the gravity field of the planet, so when the tanks are deployed from space they free fall through the atmosphere, perhaps using their thrusters for limited manoeuvre, but then as they get closer to the planet's surface the grav drive kicks in.  The same goes for leaving the theatre after operations are complete, except the tank would then need to use its thrusters to leave the planet's atmosphere.

That's our story and we're sticking with it!

Off to the casters, hope to have them back within two months or so....

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Khurasan 15mm Sci Fi Building Parts, a Look at the Parts

Just received the prints for our modular 15mm sci fi building parts.  These are in wall segments in 75mm or 100mm length.  Take a look!

Here are four walls, two 100mm and two 75mm, with a roof cap on. Note that nothing is glued together, they are just held together by inertia.  This was the intent -- to make assembly as simple as possible.  We've had three different walls made in each length -- a blank wall, a door/window wall, and a window wall.  To start there are two roof caps -- 75x75 and 75x100.  If there is a big call for 100x100 we will have the bigger square roof cap made too.

Roof's off! Again the pieces are really just holding each other together.  Note the lip around the top leading edge of each wall, which together will hold the roof cap on, or will hold on higher levels if the gamer wants to make multiple levels.

Look ma, no hands!  Flipped over, here's the view from the bottom.  Once again it's just holding itself together.  Of course you'll glue your walls but this just indicates how easy assembly will be.  I think I will assemble them exactly this way -- use a roof part as a template, then put the parts together which will make sure the walls assemble level.

Frankly, even that's not necessary -- the walls are thick enough that they level themselves out when placed together.  There's also a lip that allows you to guide the parts right together so they snuggle in where they need to be.  I've heard some stories about how tricky these wall-buildup structures can be to put together and so I did not want to proceed unless that difficulty essentially went away, and playing with the print pieces suggests it has been sent off!

1BR, 1BTH in Battle Torn nghbrhd!   Here's the view from the inside.

There are print lines on the pieces but the beauty of flat parts is that the lines are only on the side edges, so all I have to do is sand them off the sides of the roof caps and we are ready to get them cast.  So they should be going off to the casters to be done up in resin this week.  My caster has a ton of stuff to cast for me, but I'm hoping to have them back within a month.  Roof accessories, including parapets to wrap around the rooftop of this building (giving your resistance fighters some place to take cover on the roof), have been designed and will be printed next.  Stay tuned!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Dropship Horizon turns 1,000!

1,000 posts, that is, and the great Mark Hannam, the Dropship pilot himself, has come back to celebrate that amazing achievement (in only three years?!?!?) with a special preview of an upcoming Khurasan vehicle (two actually), so go check it out!