Completed last March
Pirates are figures I sometimes paint a few of while doing something else and I recently started work on three more of the Foundry ones. I didn't note on this blog that last year I painted a couple of pirates which were included as a freebie included with a Foundry order last year.
For International Talk like a Pirate Day last September I photographed all my painted pirates and was surprised at how many I had painted. I have a feeling that 2014 is going to be much more of a pirate year.
Firstly, there is the new Osprey pirate rules by Chris Peers, On the Seven Seas. I have played several of Mr Peers rules which are enjoyable, although tend to have very heavy casualties.
To go along with these North Star are releasing a new range of pirates. The four they have previewed so far, which are sculpted by Steve Saleh, look tremendous. If they are the same size as his Ronin figures they will match perfectly with the Foundry ones. They are due out this summer. Can't wait!
Hopefully, and if the cover of the rules is anything to go by, he will do a few lady pirates to go with the Black Scorpion ones I have already got. I treat pirates as a fantasy game so don't worry about the fact that the two most famous lady pirates were so ugly everyone thought they were men.
One thing which it would be nice to see is earlier period pirates from the time of Henry Morgan, with matchlocks and apostles, rather than the post 1700 style which are seen in virtually every range. In addition it would be nice if someone made local colonial government garrison troops to take on the pirates. I think Brigade Games promised these when they started their pirates range but they never materialised.
Finally, and possibly even more important, is the new pirate eight part TV series, Black Sails, by Starz the US TV station that gave us Spartacus. This is produced by Michael (transformers) Bay, which should be enough to put me right off but such is the man's power in Hollywood that they have already commissioned a second ten part series which is currently being filmed.
It has had mixed reviews based on previews. It premiers in the US this Saturday but there is no news about it showing in the UK yet so I'll probably have to wait for the DVD. The producers are making all sorts of claims about showing the real world of pirates for the first time but that just seems like an excuse to include lots of violence, swearing and sex. And why not?
Set in 1715, it purports to tell the early life of Captain Flint (Toby Stephens)and Long John Silver from Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island. However, I don't recall such things as a feisty lesbian tavern owner from the book! It also mixes up Stevenson's characters with real pirates such as Anne Bonny.
Clara Paget as Anne Bonny
The series was, unlike Pirates of the Caribbean which did film in the Caribbean, filmed in South Africa but the few external shots I have seen look fine and aren't like, for example, Cutthroat Island which was filmed in Thailand and looked like it.
As usual, for pirate films, the producers give the crew an enormous pirate ship rather than the smaller vessels most pirates actually used.
So, a much more swashbuckling year on the wargaming front is envisioned!