Thursday, September 18, 2014

Mayan Ruins Cozumel and Belize

The first stop on this cruise was Cozumel and Ariana and I went to place call Faro Celarain or Punta Sur. Its and ecological Park with a Large Lagoon that is filled with Crocodiles, a light house and a few small ruins left by the Mayans. The Structure above is also a small temple (maybe shrine is a better word) that also functioned as a primitive weather station.
The dome at the top has three holes made using shells at each of the 4 points of the compass.   The changing wind would change in tone, pitch and volume would provide the people of the island a clue as to coming weather.  The doors on the lower part also a line with the sun on certain days of the year(our guide showed us a picture but at a near by museum but he din't know when it happened and the writing with the picture was in Spanish).
This second building is beside the first our guide told us it have functioned as a beacon or light house.
Our second port was in Belize were we made our way to Altun Ha (this is a modern name the real name of the city is not yet know)

They don't look like much do they? just some low hills... but this land is flat without any hills.
each rise of the ground is the remnants of an ancient structure over grown with earth and plants of the jungle...
This looks more like what you expect right?  These are Temples that have been uncovered and partly restored. I didn't get a picture showing it but the restores carefully did there work so that it could be distinguished form the original.  Ancient work has square stones, modern work has rounded stones.
These are the only remaining original steps of an old temple that seems to only be a step hill if you didn't see them.
This is the Temple of the Sun the largest of the temples as yet uncovered (at most 10% of the ancient city has been uncovered the rest remain in the dominion of the jungle)
These structures are to the right of the Temple of the Sun they were three buildings but they have been built into one.  One of their functions was to house a ceremonial bath where priests would come to purify themselves before entering the temples.

That is the face of the Sun God Kinich Ahau
Close ups of the Temple of the sun note these structure have interior chambers that we cold not enter many of them served as tombs.
Its a long climb to the top of the temple, these stairs are modern to preserve the original structure.
Between these two picture you can see how steep it is.

And now you have a view of Altun Ha that was once reserved for the high priest alone.
The location and its Sun Temple is on the local beer, which is decent beer at least as good as any of the mass produced brews here in the USA.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Back from Vacation

I just spent the last 7 days on board the lovely Carnival Liberty exploring the coast of Central America.  No new additions to the Forts of the Caribbean segment as there were none in this area.  We did see some Mayan Ruins that were pretty cool.
Last vacation I narrowly won the Skip-bo Tournament... this time Ariana kicked my Ass winning all but two games and most of them weren't even close.  More latter.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Saxon Leaders Work in progress


 Saxon Lord in both battle and common dress.

 Banerman (no game function but he looks cool)
 Lord's Champion for those times when I can't be bothered to slay my enemies personally
 Priests... because the gods must be appeased and I needed an excuse to get this fine miniature
Still a lot of work to do on these but its a slow week so I thought I would show you (some) of what I have been working on.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Surface Battle Group(1)

Chris and I met at the Hobby Bunker Thursday night to try out a modern naval combat game called surface battle group (v3) that Chris was hot to play. Chris had some very sharp looking 1/6k scale ships for us to play with.
This tiny version of the Iowa was on of my favorites of his set (though you won't see it in the battle).  Our game matched a Soviet Attack sub against a US Frigate.  I took the Soviet sub.
Sorry for the green sea... you might see three subs there but only one is real... part of the hidden movement rules.
Chris launched helicopters for ASW Search Chris was able to zero in on the real sub pretty quick but the need to require the sub each turn meant I could sometimes "disappear." 
The game of cat an mouse was on and Chris struck firs with air launched torpedoes.. that I managed to doge.
Chris fired a ship launch torpedo at me but it lost tracking. mine tracked true and despite Chris' and is very cleaver turn away maneuver my shot ran true but didn't strike.
 Chris had reloaded his helicopters and I felt I was running out of time.  I fired two torpedoes at minimum range.
 The first missed but the second landed a hit....
Which left the US frigate sinking and burning..   It was a lot of maneuvering for one shot but that's how sub warfare is. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Hobby Bunker Game day (2) 10) WW 1 Eastern Front 2nd Masurian Lakes February, 1915

Dave Soucy had set up a game using modified Kampgroup commander rules. World War one on the Eastern front doesn't show up often on the gaming table so I wanted to give this a try.
 Cassocks guard key villages on the land bridge across the lakes
Dave gave me this neat little map the red line is the main Russian line of resistance. looking a the map and the few troops I could see on the board I decided I would use my Jagers and Ulans to attack the right most village then use the rest of my force to sweep across the lake to take the rear two villages (my mission was to capture two villages)
 The woods provide me with some cover and my Jagers have a number of HMGs to pin down the Ruddians
 off to a good start getting a good hits on the Cossacks.
 I dismounted my Ulans to make them less of a target but the Ruskies still got in some good hits.
 My advance across the ice is going well and my opponent, Tim is worried.
 I fire on the wooded Island form three sides..
 Then we start close in Jagers and Ulans both... I have decided this is the key position...

 My attack drives the infantry...
 on the left t I have started to drive back the Russian Cavalry
 The Cossacks counter attack its a hard fight...
 but we hold just barely but we hold....
 And my men clear the woods flanking the lake... Russian reinforcements arrive in the empty villages but I have an edge in numbers if only barely.  Tim starts to shift men to cover that attack
Tim had to leave early so I launch an attack on the village it is repulsed by the narrowest of margins and we wrap the game up.  I feel like if I had the time I could have managed to break my way into the village.  This was may second experience with Kamphgroup commander and I like the system, hope to get more games in in the future.

Polish Poster Objectives

TJ saw my objective markers and indicated he would be interested in getting a set of four. Your only going to see three below because one of them is a surprise for his son.

TJ plays a Polish army so he wanted his Objectives to be appropriate for a Polish army.  I did some hunting around and found a several but suggested these two to TJ
This is to my mind the Classic propaganda image relating to Poland. It was used in the Classic World War II computer Game Hearts of Iron.  I believe it was produced by the Polish government in London to help remind the British of their support.
 I found this second on line and it was new to me. I believe it was aimed at the US and British Governments in the late war to remind us of the great contribution Poland made to the War.  Also to remind us that selling them out to the Russians would be an ignoble thing to do. (We did it any way)
 The slogan reads Poles Fight On a great message.
 The upper portion show a list of Battles in which Polish forces played a rolled.
You may be able to read them better here.
Finally TJ wanted a German Poster for "the other Guy" to use if he was short an objective. Sending these and the 4th Objective (I will show it latter I promise) latter today or tomorrow.