Monday, 17 March 2014

Measuring in SAGA

Most wargames call for some sort of measurement and SAGA is no different. However, where SAGA does diverge a bit is that there are only four measured distances, called (imaginatively enough) Long, Medium, Short and Very Short. The old reliable tape measure will of course deliver, but for speed and simplicity, measuring sticks are prefered in the game.

There are a number of ways you can proceed. The rulebook contains templates for measuring sticks, which are also available on the SAGA forum. Printing/copying these, cutting them out and sticking them to cardboard will give functional, if rather flimsy and short-lived measuring sticks. If you are time-poor, or not handy with making things, a number of companies will sell you a set of MDF ones, in many cases laser-cut with nice faction designs on them. Or you could make you own.

Of course, I made my own.

These, quick and easy, came out of a strip of hardwood bullnose moulding. The length (enough for several sets) came from a DIY store for a couple of quid. Just to prove I can do it, this was strictly a hand tools job. I marked off the lengths, cut them on a mitre box, then gave the ends a  light chamfer with a block plane. Some sanding (carefully, so as not to alter the length!) and it's job done. Fifteen minutes, end to end.

Excuse my mess!

They can be painted, waxed, varnished, engraved, tarted up with decals or marked with poker work (or any combination thereof!). I went with decals, with length symbols from the furthark and Aniron fonts, plus a couple of boars. Looking for other potential markings was the dodgiest bit of all. Surf the net for Saxon or even "English" symbols and it seems as if you're only ever one click away from some extremely unpleasant and unrighteous content! Those of you doing this on company computers - beware.

Spray booth is looking tatty - give it another coat!

Three sprayed coats of laquer was fine on the decals, but it was soon obvious it would need about thirty to make any difference on the wood, so I brushed on one coat of yacht varnish that sorted everything out. You need a nice glossy varnished surface to apply the decals over (old scale modeller's trick!).

 Ready to go!

 Here they are with the decals in place, and a couple of furhther coats of varnish to protect them from rough handling and aggression (by players or miniatures!)

Sorry lads, better luck next turn!

So here we are, demonstrating to the Anglo-Saxons hearthguard that they are just barely out of range to mash the Scots warriors - or have a go, anyway.

Merry Meet Again!


  1. Nice work! I'm thinking of some made of iron sheet right at the moment.

  2. Great work! Might have to try and do the same myself! Though as Moiterei also said metal ones would be nice. Can't wait to see those if you end up doing that too :)