Friday, 2 June 2017

More African Antics

I've been a bit busy recently with work but still found time to finish off bits and pieces here and there for games set in Darkest Africa. So time for a quick update...

First off, I managed to organise a mid-week gaming session and introduced two friends from the club to Congo.

They played the Last Queen scenario with Dan's African Kingdom trying to stop David's White Man Expedition from making off with the crown. 

Much fatigue was earn't in this game and although the crown was recovered, the White Men just managed to scrape a victory on points. 

A couple of weeks back I also managed to get a game in of Death in the Dark Continent. This is a game that I really like. It has an excellent game mechanic for disorder and the alternate unit move system with distances randomly determined really makes players think about what to move and when. 

When painting terrain for Congo, I decided to focus on Savannah. Despite only 3 of the 12 available Congo scenarios (including two published in magazines) being based in Savannah, this turned out to be a good move. My Azande force is built from Congo's African Kingdom and their 'Home Terrain' in DitDC is 'grassland'. In game terms, grassland is Savannah but with fewer trees. 

The gaming mat I use for Congo is marketed as a 'Zulu mat' and is actually 6' x 4'. I fold it for Congo, but the full size cloth mat is perfect for DitDC. 

In out first game of DitDC, my Azande skirmishers suffered terribly at the hands of Paul's Zulu warriors. For our next game I've decided that my Azande will probably dig a few pitfall traps.

In DitDC pitfall traps are sized the same as a base that holds two skirmishers, so I started by cutting some pieces from hardboard. 

These were than covered in filler, allowed to partially set and then uneven rectangles were pushed into the filler using polystyrene. Once fully dried, I covered in my usual sand mix, primed and painted to match the rest of my Savannah terrain. 

For this I use cheap acrylic paints available at craft stores. The colours I use are 'Suede' for the base coat, with a very dilute 'Burnt Umber' wash and a final highlight with 'Sandstone'. The pits were painted a very dark brown (Valejo 'black brown').

I then cut up some of the rubberised horsehair that I previously used to make a bomas for my village and sprinkled this over the pits, using PVA to glue it down. Finally I added a few scenic tufts. The idea was to leave just enough of the dark pit visible to give a hint that the base may be concealing something. It'll be interesting to see how useful they are in a game.

Now it's time to knuckle down and try and get my Azande finished!


  1. Your table and scenery inspiration! Brilliant stuff!

    1. Thanks Gordon, when playing at home I have a bit more time to prep the table.

  2. Superb! What did you make the Elephant Grass out of?

    1. Thanks Simon. The elephant grass is made from natural brush bristles taken from cheap eBay brushes. The metal cover is pulled away with pliers leaving the bristles pre clumped. These are then attached to a base with a hot glue gun and the tips flayed somewhat with an old shaver.

    2. Cheers, clever, very clever!