In which I blog about my miniature wargaming and whatever else takes my interest!

In which I blog about my miniature wargaming and whatever else takes my interest!

Saturday, May 14, 2016

The Princess of Mars

One of the blogs I follow posts very rarely but when it does it is usually a VSF on Mars game in 15mm. This club has it all in a wild mash-up of H.G. Wells and Edgar Rice Burroughs; green skinned Tharks, Red Martians, eight legged thoats, canals plus the cephalopod Martians with their tripods and heat rays. Plus of course all the Earthly Great Powers who have exported the Great Game to the Red Planet complete with steam tanks.

So I thought I'd read a bit of the source material. I always do like to research properly after all. And after seeing images like this on line, well what's not to like:

I down loaded a copy of A Princess of Mars from my library. It was a wonderful story told extremely badly. I can see why fantasy artists love Barsoom. I can see the appeal of graphic novels (especially with Dejah Thoris bouncing around, if you don't know who that is just Google search images of her).

But Burroughs uses a lot of five dollars words to get anywhere and then very quickly jumps through all the action. So even though Mikey has the complete series and has offered to loan them, I don't think I shall bother reading any more. I suffered through the Conan novels in high school at a friend's insistence. I won't repeat the exercise.

Too bad though. Scantily clad girls with large breasts, flying ships, strange creatures and exotic locales are all good things. But I do like to have them with decent writing.


  1. Yes, I know what you mean. The concept is wonderful, the writing... not so much.

  2. I fully agree about the ERB writing - inspiring it is not.

    But the Great Game (as you put it) in a setting of ERB/HG Wells/Space:1889 is quite the thing!

    I shall, however, forbear from making any comment on the effect of reduced gravity on mammary glands.

  3. One of my projects is to do some Barsoom wargaming. I still enjoy the books and I also liked the movie. Plenty of inspiration for a variety of gaming treatments and scales.

    1. I haven't had a chance to see the movie yet. Still want to.
      Black Hat are the only actual Barsoom figures I've seen though.

    2. Black Hat are the only ones in 15mm/18mm that I know of, although some manufacturers' elves can pass muster in that scale.

      If you go up to 28/32mm you do get a larger selection, with Bronze Age probably being the most Barsoomian:
      Parroom Station ( have some nice figures, but there seems to have been a parting of the ways with Brigade Games, so they are not for sale currently.
      RAFM's range ( is designed specifically for Space:1889, is not terribly Barsoom, but is quite popular.
      Ironclad Miniatures also do a less than Barsoomsan range here:

  4. I have bought some Tinman miniatures for Barsoom RPG/Skirmish. Yet to paint them, but very happy with them.

    Peter Pig has some suitable figures in 15mm as well

    I plan to get some of the latter for a HotT army (the rules include army lists for Barsoom iirc)