Scouting Wide Games in postcards, art and as RPGs – links

Crossposted (with apologies if you get this twice) from my original Man of TIN blog page to readers of my Man Of TIN Blog Two (progression / succession site] here:

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2022/06/19/scouting-wide-games-in-art-and-on-postcards-and-as-rpgs-links/

There – that brings us up to date with the ongoing Scouting Wide Games for the Tabletop Project. This also fits my DMZ Demilitarised gaming mood.

Blog posted on 18/ 19 June (Happy Father’s Day!) by Mark Man of TIN, 1970s British Cub Scout (Bronze Arrow, retired).

Scouting Wide Games, Girl Scouts, RPGs, D&D and Stranger Things

“Maisie” early Girl Scout as drawn by Doris Weston 1909 – Scout Heritage Service

This accomplished hand drawn 1909 image of Girl Scout ‘Maisie’ by Doris Watson in The Scouts Heritage Trust online museum has a Tolkein-esque / RPG Role Playing Games character feel.

Adventuring in the Shire(s)? Boy and early Girl Scouts of Kangaroo Patrol together on Wide Games – scandalous in 1909? – as drawn by Doris Weston 1909. Image source: Scout Heritage Service. They remind me a little of my one (and the only surviving?) copy of The Warrior and Pacific Magazine, a handwritten and illustrated 1901 magazine.

Heresy alert: I admit here that never have I ever managed to read any Tolkien and I have also steered clear of the films.

My fantasy fiction universe is far more simplistic, ranging in childhood from the early Narnia books, Enid Blyton’ s The Land Of Far Beyond (her simplified version of The Pilgrim’s Progress) to Norton Juster and Jules Feiffer’s The Phantom Tollbooth (it could be the ImagiNations map below?)

More recently as an adult I have managed to read the multi volume Harry Potter series, the rebooted Bronte juvenilia of Celia Rees’ Glass Town Wars and Philip Reeve’s Mortal Engines sagas.

Maybe it’s the big casts of characters? I generally don’t enjoy War and Peace style books or films with huge numbers of oddly or multiply named characters. I generally prefer the smaller casts and character complexity of the 8iaverage Mr. Men book.

Maybe it’s the sacred canon of it all, the huge back story and overall fan worship of these classic books that puts me off, having tried to read them a couple of times. At least I tried.

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Inspired by Alan (Duchy of Tradgardland) Gruber with his grasp of games mechanics and the Tolkien universe, we hope together between us one day to build in to the slowly developing Scouting Wide Games for the Tabletop Project an element of some character complexity of different abilities (age, special skills, in this case scout badges earned etc.) which is pretty standard stuff from role playing games.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2019/05/15/scout-wide-games-rules-ideas-1/

This would make more of a character of each Boy Scout, Girl Scout or Camp Fire Girl figure and add complexity to their Patrol / team strengths and differences.

We wanted to build this character and skills element into the Snowball Fight games as well – marksman, artful dodger, frozen fingers etc.

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I have to say I am already on a back foot here, having struggled to get my (solo Airfix kid) gaming head round even the simplest D&D starter set that I received one Christmas / teenage birthday in the mid 1980s. Maybe my Mum and Dad thought it would be a good thing for me to try it. Thanks – I still have the books and dice, minus the box, but again have never managed to get my head round this starter game, despite several attempts.

Stranger Things and Dungeons and Dragons graphic novel – page illustration.

My fantasy RPG role playing gaming limit was the Steve Jackson type Fighting Fantasy paperback books with built in Umpire or Dungeon Master, perfect for solo gaming. Everything else chit and token and card and chart driven still feels too much like maths homework.

In gaming terms, “I am a bear of very little brain and long words bother me …” to misquote A.A. Milne. For “long words”, read cards, charts, activation tables and massive thick rule books.

I am not (and was not) being too much of a wargames hermit here, I knew very few gamers growing up, didn’t have an accessible games club and certainly no helpful Librarian Gamers to hand. I realise I was lucky enough though to have a branch library system where you could freely borrow a wider range of history, uniforms, modelling and wargames books than you could nowadays.

Why am I thinking about this RPG stuff?

My recent favourite viewing since Lockdown started in 2020 has been the D&D influenced Netflix series Stranger Things, set in a high school and local community of small town America in the mid 80s and the Cold War.

Screenshot from the opening scene of Series 1 Volume 1 of Stranger (Netflix) and apparently the first one filmed – the child character / actors have grown up a lot since 2015.

D&D and its character monsters are a recurring theme throughout the four series released so far out of a total five.

The child characters often interpret the weird, surreal or criminal events happening in their small town America community of Hawkins Indiana as if they are caused by D&D evil monsters.

By Series 4 some of ‘The Hellfire Club’ of D&D players at the local High School are being hunted down as potential suspects in some of the weird unexplained deaths in the area. This is developing a plot point from the real historical events surrounding fears of D&D being seen by some as occult satanic devil worship in mid 80s America. Bizarre.

Erica, feisty younger sister of Lucas Sinclair, one of the African American main child characters, is glimpsed in Series 4 painting a Dungeons and Dragons female warrior figure.

I’m not the only one who noticed that the Science teacher Mr. Scott Clarke is also spotted painting fantasy miniatures in Series 3. Image: u/Floatsm Stranger Things Reddit forum.

Is the figure painting and gaming suggesting Nerdcore or Nerdcool?

Some fan theories about Stranger Things suggest that all the ‘real world’ events and characters, monster battles and deaths that happen in the Stranger Things series are in fact all fantasies happening within a game of Dungeons and Dragons.

A sort of Mr. Benn story ending or one of those schoolboy stories that ends “…and then I woke up and it was all a dream. (Or was it?)”

I had been told about the series by work colleagues a few years ago but didn’t have Netflix until Lockdown 2020 so I missed the first three series of Stranger Things on release. As a result, it has been a strange experience to watch the build up to the release of the delayed current fourth series. Filming was halted for two years by COVID, whilst the content of the new series was extensively trailed, hyped and anticipated on Youtube channels and discussion boards.

This was a new thing for me, seeing the build up or countdown in real live time to the current Series 4 (which is set in March 1986) and now the same teaser anticipation of the final fifth series all happening on ‘Social Media’.

(1986? Where was I and what was I doing in March 1986 in small town Britain? Not playing D&D obviously).

Trailer snippets, sneaked photos from filming, posters, interviews and comic con appearances by cast members are now endlessly discussed online forums and Youtube as fans and pundits try to predict what will happen next, who will die and what some little “Easter egg” clue might mean.

The mid 80s film references and pop culture snippets along with the Eighties Pop music soundtrack are part of the familiar nostalgia and success or “warmth” of the show.

I’m not sure what a British small town or suburban setting of this set in the 80s would be like – Grange Hill with monsters? Rentaghost?

What a shame also that it isn’t historical wargaming that has created this fandom intensity. I expect that Stranger Things may have created a renewed or higher profile of fantasy role playing games amongst a new multiracial audience of young men and women. Even if the game itself and STEM science is also seen as a geek or nerd thing in the series?

As with many sports and games in books, films and in real life, how bravely and honestly you play the game is often a judgement or delineation of courage and character.

I can’t quite yet see Donald Featherstone’s War Games or Battles with Model Soldiers as the back drop to a 1960s – 1970s based major TV series anyone? Apart from Callan, that is.

I wrote a little more about Stranger Things here on my previous power cut and skateboarder figure posts:

https://manoftinblogtwo.wordpress.com/2022/02/19/storm-eunice-power-cuts-comic-books-space-wars-and-toy-soldiers/

https://manoftinblogtwo.wordpress.com/2022/02/13/fembruary-22-sk8r-girl-stranger-things-have-been-known/

More striking comic book cover artwork, this one by Kyle Lambert … 

This graphic novel spin off from the series by Netflix is endorsed by the makers of Dungeons and Dragons. A useful bit of product placement and mutual endorsement.

A Stranger Things themed starter set of Dungeons and Dragons exists, based on the one that the characters use in the series, sadly without an accompanying Stranger Things character miniatures range.

I have resisted buying this set so far, wondering would it be any different from the puzzling starter set I was given in the mid 80s? Would it play solo?

The Basic D& D starter set rules are available online free on their website, 180 pages worth:

https://media.wizards.com/2018/dnd/downloads/DnD_BasicRules_2018.pdf

The Stranger Things Netflix Youtube channel has filmed several sessions of the young actors as themselves, out of character and costume, learning to play Dungeons and Dragons:

YouTube video of the cast actors learning to play a D and D game.

Some times some of the first time players amongst the young actors like Natalia Dyer seem a little nonplussed or puzzled by the game, so I am not alone, despite the experienced Dungeon Master (Umpire) Chris Perkins (in Santa hat) who says he helped develop D and D.

Monster visuals are included to help make this otherwise two-hour long, verbally described (and thus very wordy) game a little more visual.

The recent June 2022 Netflix Geeked Geek Week(end) online weekend featured a D and D game with more of the cast and new Dungeon Master on Youtube, with again some interesting graphic inserts of game locations to make it more interesting viewing.

Here, zombie legs and body parts attack the “party members”:

Image source: https://youtu.be/V820DbU1JF

Hawks End might be a pun on Hawkins, Indiana, the small town setting of Stranger Things.

Useful visual resources to help viewers understand the scenario and possibly replay it themselves.

Snowball Fights and Scouting Wide Games?

So after all this, where does that get us with our Snowball Fights and Scouting Word Games?

We can match the visual resources on a basic level, looking at the BP style Scenario maps from Wide Games.

Will we introduce a dark or light fantasy underside to their Edwardian / WW1 world through to 1940s 50s historical world?

Will it be more weird E. Nesbit and Psammead than Stranger Things and its D & D Monster Manual Handbook?

As several people have pointed out in comments on my Scouting Wide Games posts, without having the necessary Boy Scout or Girl Scout figures (as few available in most scales), you could easily use suitable available lead or plastic figures to match whatever the pirate, police, robbers, gangsters, smugglers, Cowboys, natives, Knights, spy characters that the Wide Game Book scenarios have suggested.

This could use cheap plastic knights, cowboys, Indians, pirates etc

We could through suitable figures enter into the imaginative make believe world of these (miniature or real) Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, going underneath the disguise or transformed by the imaginative magic of the Cloak Of Romance.

The Cloak Of Romance?

Baden Powell suggested that the Cloak Of Romance is what makes a Wide Game not a walk in the (familiar) park or streets or fields but something more magical or imaginative through such role playing.

Edwardian LARPing? With a pretty fantastical reading list!

The text of Wide Games (1933/ 1944) freely available here:

http://www.thedump.scoutscan.com/WideGames.pdf

The Dump Scourscan scouting resource site also hosts a free copy of The Book Of Cub Scout Games:

Source: free download scan off Miss Vera Barclay’s Book http://www.thedump.scoutscan.com/cubscoutgames.pdf

I like this “Make the Games Cubby” quote in the preface by Baden Powell

Were the Kibbo Kift one such imaginative bunch of disillusioned Scoutmasters and “back to the land” camping types in the 1920s with their odd folkloric rituals that far off from this Cloak Of Romance?

The Kibbo Kift – my next figure conversion and uniform challenge for my STS 42mm LBB 30 Boy Scout figure?

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Blog posted by Mark Man Of TIN 1970s British Cub Scout, Bronze Arrow (retired), and failed 1980s D&D player / Tolkien reader on 13 June 2022

Appendix – “Make the Games Cubby” text from The Book Of Cub Scout Games, V.C. Barclay, 1919

FOREWORD

PLAY IS THE FIRST GREAT EDUCATOR

THIS is the text on which I have preached in the Handbook. Just as for young animals, so for the Cub Scout, ‘play is the thing.’ I have advocated in the book that the principle for dealing with Cub Packs is that of making the Cubs a happy family – not a family, but a happy family.

But when they play they should be encouraged not to mess about but to play heartily. Games properly organised develop the important items of laughter, good nature, and comradeship as well as physical health and activity, while team games further develop unselfishness, esprit de corps and fair play.

But through it all I continually lay the stress upon laughter. Another text that you will find in the Handbook is that ‘he who laughs much lies little.’

It is, of course, easy to state generalities like these. It is another matter to devise the details by which they can be put into practice. This important part of the proposition Miss Barclay has by her unique experience with Cubs successfully achieved, and in the following pages she gives a resume of games such as will be of infinite value to the teachers of young boys in putting into them the foundation of Character, Health and Happiness.

ROBERT BADEN-POWELL.

Why Play Games?

Games are admittedly a very important part of Pack life. Here are five good reasons why you should include plenty of them in your programme.

1. The boys love games; and the Pack should give them what they like, especially when it is something so good for them.

2. They are the best training in discipline, because they make for self-discipline while in strenuous action, and self-control while excited.

3. They are the best form of physical exercise because they consist of natural movements, done at the boy’s own pace; and supply as much exercise as each needs. And, what is more, the joy and keenness they provoke are as much a tonic to the nervous system, as the exercise is a means of toning up the muscles, quickening the breathing, and increasing the circulation.

4. Games are true character training in a number of ways. The many virtues that get practised while playing the great variety of games that are possible in Cubbing, get built up into the character, because they are practised voluntarily, with real joy and enthusiasm.

5. Games make for quickness, deftness, poise, suppleness, resource of the body and its members in adapting to situations. A boy who has not played all these games of ours is obviously clumsy compared to a Cub.

Make the Games Cubby

Many of the games in the various books are, of course, played by the Scouts – but you cannot leave them out on that account.

One of the ways to prevent the Cub becoming too familiar with what he will find again on going up to the Scouts, is to dress the games up in a romantic setting – not only the Jungle story, but Indians, Explorers, Highwaymen and Police, Detectives, Giants and Tom Thumb, Robinson Crusoe, Peter Pan. (Avoid war settings, however).*

[* Note: the first edition was printed at the end of WW1 in 1919.]

This is not only a matter of the name given to the game, but of all sorts of details that a resourceful Akela will be able to think out. It adds to the pleasure of boys of that age. And if it adds to the work of Akela, well, all that is worth doing in Pack life means preparation.

For Cubs of Different Ages Cubs are young animals in a state of rapid change. At 8-9 they need games that are either romp or make-believe or (like Jungle dances) both.

Cubs of 9- 10 want something a bit more enterprising – ‘acting’ rather than make-believe; a rough and ready contest with beginnings of co-operation; opportunities of displaying individual skill. Cubs of 10-11 already want games that are becoming more the games of a boy than of a child, they need Scout games, though they are, of course, only doing Cub work still.

Robert Baden-Powell

Michael Bentine, Potty Time and the Potty Khyber Pass

Bob Cordery’s recent posts on amusing pun names for ImagiNations and his reprint of Eric Knowles’ Madasahatta Campaign reminded me of a childhood memory …

Michael Bentine’s Potty Time was one of those bizarre childhood TV memories especially the surreal battle scenes on beautiful terrain with movement by puffs of smoke and air?

I remember his Waterloo battlefield.

In this paperback book version is the Carry On meets the Goons version of the Potty Khyber Pass Story – 1940s Service humour for the slightly puzzled 70s child!

In 1974 the puns are cheerfully painful – Afgoonistan – Pottistan – Himalayas Heralayas … Foothills

Aircraft and parachute supply drops turn up, making it more like Donald Featherstone’s chapter (in Wargames Campaigns ?) on the North West Frontier Campaign between the World Wars (using Airfix Arab natives fighting off Airfix Eighth Army in steel helmets and shorts) than Gunga Din and The Four Feathers. A bit of Kipling-esque doggerel ballad of Mad Carew (MC) and The Green Eye Of the Little Yellow God is added for good measure.

The elephant gun is inspired.

It’s pure Goon Show on a page with the sad absence of Major Dennis Bloodnok. Not that he or his drinks cabinet would be anywhere near the sound of guns anyway.

A lot of this humour is obviously based on colonial and army ‘types‘ that Bentine, Sellers, Secombe and Milligan had met during the War.

The Foot Hills joke is repeated oddly in my Land Of Counterpane blanket grid based war game in or on the Bed

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Potty Time snippets such as Northwest Frontier can be found on YouTube such as:

https://youtu.be/dsfu1E2Xp9s

The bizarre Indo-Welsh accents have not worn well, like much colonial humour from fellow Goons Spike Milligan (himself born and raised in Imperial era India) and Peter Sellers.

The model making is a bit rough but charming:

Yet again the charming Elephant Gun

Bentine and Milligan

Michael Bentine was one of the early Goon Show cast and writers, alongside fellow Goon and toy soldier collector Spike Milligan:

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/04/17/spike-milligan-100-and-his-toy-soldiers/

https://youtu.be/FjoBwn9IbHw

https://sidetracked2017blog.wordpress.com/2019/10/22/inky-stephens-and-spike-milligan/

Part Peruvian, Micheal Bentine’s autobiography The Reluctant Jester recounts his bizarre wartime life, every bit as strange as Spike Milligan’s wartime memoirs.

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Potty Time’s battle scenes and Carry on up the Khyber Pass were both influences on my childhood gaming.

These three Potty Time mini – snippets on Youtube by Minkypook give a flavour of this terrain modelling.

https://youtu.be/U2dTLJyZgNo

https://youtu.be/QvQaLJl8tpM

https://youtu.be/9Rpwyww3Umw

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The Carry On up the Khyber Pass influence on my gaming can be seen here on my cheap “penny dreadful” Colonial conversions here:

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/11/26/pound-store-plastic-colonial-infantry-on-the-painting-table/

Finally …

I didn’t hear The Goon Show on the radio until it was repeated on Sundays on BBC radio in the early 1980s. I taped everyone I could.

My late Dad mentioned then that he hadn’t liked The Goon Show or found it funny on first hearing it on the radio as a 50s teenager, not until he had done his National Service in the Army. Only then, he said, he liked it a bit more as he understood a lot of the service humour that crept past unwitting BBC censors.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 10 June 2022

My Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Parade Part 2

In part 1 I shared a few photos of my Platinum Jubilee Parade of lead, aluminium and Plastic Guardsmen, bands and of course the Queen.

Sharps toffee tin (QE 2) and Blue Bird Household Cavalry sentry tins

https://manoftinblogtwo.wordpress.com/2022/06/02/my-queens-platinum-jubilee-parade-1/

but I also wanted to air and share some of my other Guards ceremonial parade collection.

Riley’s Toffee Tin

A few more Guardsmen turned up this morning Just before Trooping the Colour began.

Late on parade?

I was wearing my finest Guards tie for the occasion, designed and made for me by one of the family …

Some of these parading Guards toy soldiers from my childhood were out on parade for the Silver Jubilee of 1977 (The year of Punk, the Pistols and God Save The Queen). I remember seeing these extravagantly dressed colourful popinjay punks in London as a child at the time.

I need Peter Cole’s Replicants youth types for a suitable punk plastic figure!

Punks? Anarchy in the UK? Call out the Guards!

My Guards collection ranges from chocolate boxes of old (in 1953) which were sadly already empty when I found this delightful Dairy Box …

To attractively packaged new chocolate soldiers of 2022 … Mmm, thanks!

It’s all gone a bit ‘guardsman’ (Cath Kidston)

A great snowy Guards Christmas card by Clare Wilson

I have featured this lovely Peter Spier book cover before with lovely sound page.

Off to deepest Germany for Erzgebirge wooden guardsman in those delicate wooden boxes …

A gift a few years back of a nicely packaged sentry in its Guards sentry box with a secret under that black bearskin hat (not a busby)

The secret under his bearskin?

This 1:12 trio – below – were bought one day in a seaside post office at a good discount a few years ago and have been saved for a rainy day …

Finally my ‘Cakes Of Death’ rough experiments of 2015/16 using Fimo polymer clay with cake or chocolate silicon moulds to make cheap custom figure conversions:

FIMO packs and pin swords were added to make these flat figures more 3D and rounded.

Blog posted by Mark Man Of TIN Platinum Jubilee weekend 2 June 2022

Even the house mice got in on the Jubbly act; not so sure about those red and white muffins / cakes though …

My Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Parade 1

Parade panorama – Broken down into smaller sections below.

This small parade is made up of a few of my childhood plastic and Britain’s Deetail figures that have now been paraded by several generations of my family,

along with other lead, aluminium and plastic figures from various makers since collected and from travels all over Britain, some still in need of repair,

and some homecasts that I have made and painted. All mostly 54mm.

Can you spot my homecast avatar Man of TIN saluting?

I ran out of space on the mantelpiece , so couldn’t fit on all my redcoats, pipers, and all. Then there’s the unpainted plastic …

More Guards and Jubilee fun of chocolate boxes, cake toppers, toffee tins and other Guards Toy Soldier stuff in part two of this post this weekend.

Blog posted by Mark Man Of TIN on Platinum Jubilee Day, Thursday 2nd June 2022

My 6th Blogaversary 2022 finds me DMZ Demilitarised

More unusual uniform research for figure conversions? African-American Camp Fire Girls USA or YWCA Girls amongst the early Guides movements would have looked like this. Image source: Marcia Chatelain, South Side Girls.

Today is my 6th Blogaversary, the 6th anniversary of my first Man Of TIN blog post in 2016.

A lot has happened this past year since the 5th Blogaversary. It has certainly been a bit of a strange year, on top of the ongoing COVID disruptions to normal life .

The invasion of the Ukraine in late February and the prospect of war spreading across Eastern Europe and beyond, even going nuclear, brought most of my gaming, ImagiNations or hobby activities to a halt.

Since then I have avoided khaki, grunge, guns and ‘modern’ warfare for the time being.

Well not entirely khaki free, as my Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts from Scouting Wide Games for the Tabletop Project originally wore a khaki uniform.

My time since February 2022, when not busy with work, has been spent instead digging around newspaper and photo archives looking for the spirit of early scouting, guiding and forgotten youth movements in Britain, New Zealand and America. Lots of uniform research has ended up here on my Scouting Wide Games blog: https://tabletopscoutingwidegames.wordpress.com

Instead I have been focusing on non-lethal strategy games – Scouting Wide Games, Skatebaord graffiti games, Suffragette billposting and Snowball fights. All the S-sees!

https://manoftinblogtwo.wordpress.com/2022/02/24/some-more-peaceful-or-non-lethal-tabletop-strategy-games/

LBB30 Boy Scout STS Little Britons 42mm range conversions into Girl Scouts and Camp Fire Girls for Scouting Wide Games. Hopefully not unchaperoned!

Camp Fire Girls USA – the patriotic Minute Girls version of 1917. Red white and blue with the addition of red neckties to the white Middy tops and dark blue skirts.

What happened over the last year and what halted back in February?

May 2021 to February 2022 – before invasions began IRL – I was working on lots of enjoyable butterfly painting and gaming projects from Tankette Tuesdays to FEMbruary Space Princesses:

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2022/02/23/fembruary-figures-good-queen-bess-and-the-generic-empress/

https://manoftinblogtwo.wordpress.com/2022/03/08/fembruary-female-figure-number-four-1970s-space-princess-on-the-painting-table/

In fact it was all very Watch This Space? A lot of Space; I was watching a lot of SciFi (Battlestar Galactica 2004 reboot, bad Star Wars rip offs and The Orville) so was steadily working through SciFi figures for Close Little Star Wars such as the odd 1981 Airfix Space Warriors, figure group by group.

https://manoftinblogtwo.wordpress.com/2022/02/13/airfix-1981-space-warriors-samurai-robots/

The Spanish Arma-Dad’s Army Project came to a halt:

https://manoftinblogtwo.wordpress.com/2022/02/04/spanish-fury-ii-54mm-chintoys-spanish-warriors-and-conquistadors/

Cataloguing Peter Laing 15mm figures towards the 50th anniversary in October / November 1972 has slowed down or halted, but lots done so far!

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2022/01/08/the-benefits-of-15mm-scale-explained-to-the-little-woman-in-your-life-some-early-peter-laing-adverts-in-wargamers-newsletter-1970s/

https://collectingpeterlaing15mmfigures.wordpress.com/2021/11/09/peter-laing-15mm-id-post-3/

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Some of my new gaming years resolutions have been halted since late February 2022.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/12/31/what-will-2022-bring-2/

but there have been a lot of posts on early wargaming this blog year including Donald Featherstone and H. G. Wells

Battling Bronte sisters and Boggarts https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/11/21/battling-bronte-sisters-and-branwell-conversions-from-bad-squiddo-little-wolves-figures-wip/

Svenmarck invaded 1940 has halted and these vintage Airfix Marines and Para “chubsters” are now back resting in their Really Useful Boxes:

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/07/18/airfix-ooho-british-paratroops-chubsters/

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/06/07/from-the-halls-of-montezuma-airfix-version-1-us-marines-1963/

Since last May there have been lots more rebased and restored vintage Airfix …

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/06/13/wades-toy-soldier-artillery-from-vintage-airfix-ooho-french-artillery-imaginations/

including these accidentally very Ukrainian coloured ImagiNations Airfix figures.

So that was Blog Year Five! Who knows what Blog Year Six will bring?

Snowball fight anyone?

Blog posted by Mark Man Of TIN, sixth Blogaversary, 25 May 2022

May the Fourth Be With You! International or InterGalactic Star Wars Day 2022

Some suitable reading …

What I like about this hefty hardback book is the original storyboards and early character designs for each of the first three films (IV V VI), the “original trilogy”. These are arguably (for me) the best of the nine films and the ones I saw in the cinema as an impressionable child and teenager.

Released on May 25th 1977 in the USA, Star Wars was released in Britain on 27 December 1977, so I must have seen it early in 1978. I remember the spaceship opening very very clearly!

Life changed c. 1977/78. Playground games changed, pocket money priorities changed, “must-have toys” changed, what comics you read changed; everything was space again, since the Apollo Moon landings were now over.

The silver jubilee was forgotten. Exotic looking Punks on Top of the Pops and in town now had their freakish alien rivals.

The Bionic Man and Bionic Woman and the Fembots now also had their rivals in the form of droids and space heroes and intergalactic villains.

Time-travelling Doctor Who’s bad guys like Daleks and Cybermen suddenly had planet-killing alien rivals and evil empires.

Who you were in your childhood street, garden and playground games changed.

Even childhood pinups changed when blonde crime fighting TV princesses in Charley’s Angels and The Bionic Woman with their Farrah Flicks suddenly had feisty gutsy dark haired Star Wars Space princesses to contend with.

Action Man and my Airfix figures had their first serious rival, although Airfix (slowly) responded by film two in 1981, producing their own odd Space Warriors figures and carrying a short-lived range of Star Wars kits.

For me, Rogue One is the best of the standalone spin-off films and series. Before we geek out on this listing business, back to my book choice, here’s the back cover of this lovely book with an early sketch of Darth Vader (top right).

You’ve seen my bashed original childhood Star Wars action figures before on International Star Wars Day. That’s where my non-Airfix pocket money went in the late 1970s and early 80s. One month’s pocket money each! Priceless, not worth much but I still have every single one of my original ones today (some seen below).

But enough, where are the proper toy soldiers you ask?

You’ve seen my Close Little Space Wars Games in the Back Yarden with a wellsian 54mm mix of plastic Star Wars and Pound Store Space Warriors figures.

Previously on May the 4th …

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/05/04/may-the-4th-be-with-you-happy-international-star-wars-day-2021/

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/tag/international-star-wars-day/

This year’s offerings for May the 4th? My bashed up metal 54mm plus sized figures, bashed enough at some point to deserve a shiny toy soldier gloss repaint.

Boba Fett – the recent Disney Star Wars The Mandalorion and Book Of Fett Series were both quite enjoyable.

Marked on the bases “1994 Lucasfilm Ltd Made in China Kenner” and figure reference number.

One Wookie minus its laser cross bow bolt rifle thingy, one Luke Skywalker minus light sabre laser sword in his training pilot suit from Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (along with Boba Fett).

And for some reason, two Han Solos … they were part of a job lot of figures.

Maybe one Han can become a cowboy … Star Wars and its spin off series being ‘space wild western’ movie?

Happy International Star Wars Day 2022!

What are your best Star Wars memories, moment, movies or merchandising?

Blog posted by Mark Man Of TIN on International Star Wars Day, May the 4th 2022

DMZ Demilitarised blog posts resume tomorrow until real world hostilities cease. Snowball fights on Ice Planet Hoth, anyone?

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Not enough Star Wars geekery for one blogpost? We can do this all over again on my Man Of TIN Blogaversary and Geek Pride Day, both of which happen every May the 25th:

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2019/05/25/happy-geek-pride-day-and-its-my-3rd-blogaversary-25th-may-2019/

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geek_Pride_Day

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Previously on International Star Wars Day

2021 https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/05/04/may-the-4th-be-with-you-happy-international-star-wars-day-2021/

2020 https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2020/05/04/international-star-wars-day-may-the-fourth-be-with-you/

2019 https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2019/05/04/farewell-chewbacca-may-the-4th-be-with-you/

2018 https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/03/17/march-reading-minor-galactic-epic-fail/

2017 https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2017/05/04/happy-international-star-wars-day-may-the-4th-be-with-you/

2016 https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/09/25/in-a-garden-far-far-away/


British Camp Fire Girls in the 1920s

The little known British version of the American Camp Fire Girls (1925 British handbook photo)

Another enjoyable research ‘rabbit hole’ for my Scouting Wide Games for the Tabletop Project, in hobby terms let’s call it obscure uniform research and gaming scenarios for my DMZ demilitarised Project:

Crossposted from my Tabletop Scouting Wide Games Blog:

https://tabletopscoutingwidegames.wordpress.com/2022/04/19/british-camp-fire-girls-in-the-press-1920syy/

This will all somehow eventually make it onto the tabletop or garden in the form of gaming figure conversions to match my Girl Scouts, Guides, Boy Scouts Figures.

Their everyday meeting or camping dress, not their now controversial Native American Indian ceremonial robes. Image source: 1925 British Camp Fire Girls handbook (my collection)

First of several forthcoming blog posts on obscure uniformed youth movements (to include in future the strangely robed Kibbo Kift – thanks Alan!)

Blog Crossposted by Mark Man Of TIN, 1970s Cub Scout (Bronze Arrow, retired) 23 April 2022 – St Georges Day – be kind to Dragons!

Weeble Pilot Easter Painted Egg

I liked Marvin at Suburban Militarism’s Easter painted egg blog this year:

https://suburbanmilitarism.wordpress.com/2022/04/17/easter-bunnies-and-a-scotch-egg/

So here is my version from last year, based on my earliest Airfix collections in the early 1970s – Weebles (“wobble but they don’t fall down”).

One of my favourite Weebles was the pilot figure and his plane, so last Easter I reproduced him in painted egg form with acrylic paint and Black Sharpie pen, alongside one of my original Weeble figures of the policeman which I still have.

Here is Alan Weeble, one of my original and surviving Weeble Pilots. Pure Battle of Britain stuff!

Dapper Air Force blue tie painted by my late Dad.

My Weeble studies tell me that these Airfix British Weebles are quite different from the American Romper Room original Weebles.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN Blog Easter 2022 – Happy Easter!

B.P.S. Blog Post Script

Marvin’s comment reminded me of this bashed EBay research screenshot in my collection:

“Excellent (I promise no more egg puns from me this year) You’re a talented Weeble egg painter. I’m sure you’ll agree, it’s not easy to paint on that curved surface! I had that very Weeble too, not Airforce blue but I think possibly red? It was the only one in my possession as I recall and that pilot Weeble rode in a helicopter / egg cup.

I had this ‘egg cup’ Weeble helicopter but the pilot with brown helmet and blue bass as shown.

I agree, drawing and painting on a curved surface is not easy!

The Volunteer Inn

On my seaside travels over the last few years, I came across this interesting ‘modern’ Pub sign in Lyme Regis in Dorset.

Historic England Grade II listing of this 19th century cladding to an older core building: https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1279364

This post is for Marvin at the Suburban Militarism blog, with his interest in Volunteer and Yeomanry Regiments from the Napoleonic Wars and mid Victorian period 1850s.

I am a little confused as to the Pub Sign uniform, this redcoat with green facings looks like he has a 18th century to Napoleonic helmet, like a Tarleton or Light Infantry Helmet? Some of the Rifle Volunteers were derided by satirists for their very fancy uniforms.

Images: In These Times, Living In Britain through Napoleons Wars, Jenny Uglow

Lyme Regis was well established as a seaside town by this time, it features in Jane Austen’s novels and is famous for its fossil cliffs and collector Mary Anning. John Fowle’s book (and subsequent film) French Lieutenant’s Woman, is set in the mid Victorian period in the town.

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* Full text available on JSTOR

Sea Fencibles https://dorset-ancestors.com/?p=566

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This is not the first Rifle Volunteer Inn I have come across in my travels:

The Rifle Volunteer in St Ann’s Chapel, Gunnislake, Cornwall – no pub sign

The Volunteer Rifleman’s Arms, Bath – the “Volly” – no pub sign

A quick web search suggests that there are similar Rifle Volunteer public houses in Epsom, Stoke on Trent, Kidsgrove, Sevenoaks, Oxhey, Chipping Campden, Glastonbury and other places in Britain.

Just as the Rifle Volunteers had Drill Halls, presumably for some Rifle Volunteers, these public houses must have been their rallying point, either sociably or military terms.

Blog posted by Mark Man Of TIN, April 2022