Thursday, July 30, 2009
The French were holed up in a Spanish farm, hunting a spy, unbeknowst to them, Riflemen, under Lt. Blunt, had found the French; but unaware of the spy were going to ruin everyone's day by torching the farm and killing the Frogs! The spy himself managed to make a run for it, and the game began at that point, with the spy and the firing party running away from the burning building, whilst the French sought to get the papers they needed and withdraw.
Too add to the complexity (perhaps too much for a short game) it was getting dark, and our activities were likely to alert both local Spanish patrols and the French main body.
In the end Lt. Blunt tried to save the Spy, once he realised he was about; but the French just managed to snatch the papers. Their local losses were severe, And at one point it looked like they would be cut off by the arrival of Spanish Junta troops. But the appearance of a Company of French (or at least their vanguard) and the onset of night, meant they were able to slip away. A good fun game; though already we are getting too ambitious. Our second game, and yet we used over forty figures, in a skirmish!
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Duly I used the Ambush scenario. Now it was to have been a match between my Dwarves and James' Chaos warriors; but on the day a first-timer turned up with a Wood Elf army, looking for a game. As we were the only Warhammer in town, I took on the role of Umpire and let them get on with it.
The deployment and rules were essentially as written by Mr Grant.
Though it became apparent straight away that despite his orders, the Wood Elf player was going to look to fight the enemy wherever possible. Though the wagons they needed to escort of the field were looked after a little, they moved too slowly to reach safety, and the best fighting force of the Elves was moving into the trees to find the Chaos warriors.
Find them they did, but they could easily have outrun them instead. As it was, losses and the repelling of Dryad attacks caused one wagon crew to panic and rout back into chaos' hands.
Monday, July 27, 2009
The figures are some simple but creative conversions on the Perry British. Mostly it was trimming the spare belts and straps away (tedious, but worth it), Clipping off cartridge packs and water canteens to kit them, and adding swords from the unused 'Waterloo period' parts. The shako's were the Waterloo period officer models, but due to the limited numbers available to me I used a Bicorn for the officer, and a bare head.
Lastly, two of the figures were done as artillery train guards, not a complex job at all.
Sunday, July 26, 2009
I signed up to the Leeds Nightowls painting challenge, with the grandiose declaration of producing a Anglo-Portuguese army in the next twelve months, starting from August. Personally, unless I go back to France again, I think that is a shoe-in. But what else did I have kicking around to do. Well a quick assessment says the following:
- Two 24 man British infantry battalions
- Two 24man French infantry battalions
- 18 man Ottonian Frank infantry unit
- 8 man Ottonian Frank cavalry unit
That totals to 114 infantry and 8 cavalry; before any additional purchases are required.
Purchasing desires? I wouldn't be a wargamer without any of those, but I have to keep in mind a) the Pledge - dont buy more than you paint/sell, and b) my present state of abject poverty. Still in the long term I boiled it down to four themes:
Napoleonic British; mostly Victrix at first.
ACW; Union artillery and command. A small element, mostly to round out what I've got as a little army rather than anything grander.
War of 1812; a dozen militia and 6 or so Dragoons. To give scenarios plenty of variety. Spare British models will be seconded to America for personalities and extra units.
Ancient Sparta. I'd no special interest in revisiting these until I saw previews of the new Wargames Factory Numidian infantry set (AKA Generic Light Infantry 500bc-100ad). I quite fancy a pack of these (28 figures for $20) to knock up a unit or two of peltast types. They may even produce an allied Hoplite unit at a pinch.
So until I next go for a rummage in my stores (80 miles away) that's what I'll be working on.
Friday, July 24, 2009
Once you get in to a routine with painting, it is easy to crank out the goods; especially when there is an incentive of generating a bit of money. Last weeks Italians sold instantly, maybe I'll do the same with these chaps:
26th Panzer Grenadier Regiment, made from the Valiant Miniatures sets. Took about 12 hours over four days.
Airfix US Marines. These were always one of my favourite sets of plastic 20mm models, the animation of the figures is just lovely, so natural. Thanks to a near total absence of kit, these guys probably took less than three hours to paint!
Right, I'm off to the pub, for the first time in ages, hooray!
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
I've been writing some rules, for skirmish gaming the period (which once finessed will appear on the blog for one and all to use). The requirements for the game as a consequence were a small table and a handful of models. As can be seen above we used a huge 4 foot square layout of farmland around a critical bridge.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
And so, it was my first game of AK47 Republic in some two years. I took the role of The Ntumtulanders, in their characteristic dark green equipment, whilst Colin took on the role of the Lbotunese and their somewhat hotchpotch forces.
It was Colins’ first actual game, though he had read the rules several times apparently, he found himself in defence and deployed his available forces sensibly enough; and selected my table edge as per the rules. As I however knew the values of the three objectives I felt I could win the game simply by staying close to my deployment zone and awaiting reinforcements.
Ntumtu mechanised infantry advanced on the hills north of the Cwhanginki farmstead; whilst a militia artillery battery deployed in the forests to it’s east. The enemy responded with a concentration of fire on the mortars and was able to force them to withdraw. However by this point, the Lbotunese armoured car squadron had been destroyed, and Ntumtu reserves were outflanking the Lbotunese Township from the far north.
So it was a win for me, but more importantly, Colin enjoyed the game, and found the rules playable and entertaining. In AK47 nothing is ever certain, and this game was typical of that. Had it lasted another turn, Colin may well have won.
I understand a third edition of these rules is due out soon, I wonder though what really could need changing in them. I’ve never had any complaints with the first edition.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Simple enough chaps with a neat but basic black wash technique. 35 models in total.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
The unit is the 17th US regular infantry, who saw service in Ohio on the shores of Lake Erie. The information on the uniforms came from the excellent Blandford Press ‘The United States Infantry – An Illustrated History 1775-1918’, which features loads of information and of course illustrations.
So now there are opponents for the riflemen; and next up, aside from an actual game with them, is this little group of figures; with a very particular role to fulfil.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
So, this is my first unit of Napoleonic troops*. The 60th Royal American Rifles. The uniform is based on contemporary illustrations reproduced in various books, and was painted as they would have appeared after a period of time on campaign; i.e. somewhat worn.
The models are the excellent Perry plastics, though with only two poses and ten figures I felt it necessary to produce a command element. The left over bits from my American Civil war troops came in very handy here, providing the parts for a bugler and a cavalry sabre for the Lieutenant; now who would that be reminiscent of? Lt. Blunt here would certainly not know!
The Dark green is German Camouflage Green in the Vallejo range; the unit was issued deep blue overalls, but often resorted to the local brown cloth when wear and tear made items unusable. Note all the little details, which I'm quite pleased with, the regimental no on the knapsacks, the silver buttons, water canteens and so on. Fiddly, but worth it.
Thursday, July 09, 2009
Actually it was at the Leeds Nightowls; My original game fell through, but as I'd brought a backup plan, we gave the Trafalgar rules an airing.
I quickly knocked up a couple of small fleets, though this is not a speedy task of course when you have to copy out the profile sheets by hand. A small American fleet of 250 points would face a similarly sized British fleet. Broadly speaking the forces were:
America: a 5th Rate Frigate, a Ship-Sloop and an overgunned Brig
Britain: two 6th Rate Frigates and a Cutter
Ross, my opponent, took command of the British; whilst, the day after Independance day I led the American fleet. I sent out my light ships ahead, knowing they had pound for pound more firepower than any one of his frigates. I hoped to lure at least on ship into a trap. As with any game based on warfare of this type though, the wind had the biggest influence on our manouevres.
My brig was able to move behind and savagely rake the enemy cutter with fire, ending it's involvement in the battle. My Sloop however was unable to slow the Frigate on its' own and instead found itself boarded. The short boarding action saw the Royal Navy capture the ship; but choose to leave it uncrewed so they could focus both their vessels on my larger frigate. My Brig came under fire from the trailing frigate and was soon also out of action. I had to commit my flagship therefore, and in a brutal exchange it left one Frigate burning.
Commander Ross decided to concentrate on fighting me rather than the fire and paid the price, when his frigate's powder room (rolled a one on the blaze table and) exploded. The ruins of the ship were no longer a fighting force; had he fought the fire the ship would have been saved.
His other vessel now found that wind and inertia took it away from the fight, and so the battle ended. On the grounds that I could at least retrieve my sloop, I was considered the victor, though it was a bloody victory for sure.
As to the rules, well, they are simplistic, but they are also fast and pretty clearly written, sailing is realistic enough, though shooting seems too generous and brutal at times. This game was followed up by a second one featuring the Americans against Barbary pirates (though not featuring any photos); so we managed two games, with beginner players in four hours. What's more the rules seemed to turn several members of the club onto the period. No bad thing.
Incidentally, as nice as real models would be, I think the 'Pirates' card models look absolutely fine for this sort of game. As their a cheap way of playing too - especially as the club had a box of twenty or so ships in the bottom of a store cupboard!
Wednesday, July 08, 2009
Lots of great character, though I'm a little disappointed with how the shields came out, not my best work; but as I'm glad to be finished with them, they'll do!
Monday, July 06, 2009
The rules used were Fire and Fury, which under the guidance of Mark (the clubs de-facto historical gaming numero-uno) seemed pretty straight forward, giving a balance between simple mechanics and command and control nuances.
As the title suggests, the scenario was based on Picketts Charge at Gettysburg; but due to figure ratio's and such like, we had the Union as the ones on the attack instead. Here we can see some of the Confederacy on a slight rise behind lines of abatis.
Somehow, My flank avoided the slaughterous fire of the Napoleons and reached the abatis intact; from there we prepared the enemy with fire for the assault.
Wednesday, July 01, 2009
Well, I’ve pretty much reached a stage of having painted everything I had to hand modelwise. I don’t know whether I’m happy about that either, as I will end up kicking my heels without painting to do, or worse, spend money I haven’t got – except in paypal.
The latest items to be completed though are two more units of Union infantry; the 5th
After these I knocked up another unit for my Dogs of War. I managed to get some old Empire plastic spearmen off eBay last summer, though they were not in a great state, they were only about a fiver.
I’m glad I re-did the hats in the end, as they look both a lot more like the one photograph I found of them wearing the hat, and they ultimately look much nicer on the models. In general compared to the first two units I painted, these figures are more accurate in terms of how their kit is prepared, with grey or blue covered canteens, brass plates and for the 5th at least, darker uniforms.
So the brigade as it looks now, a tidy little army!
I had to remove their shields and find a way to extend the spears into pikes. The varied thicknesses of the extensions looked horrible so I added the ribbons to the pikes to mask the join. I also had to fill numerous bits of damage to the shield arms, and in one case pretty much rebuild a figure in order to make up the numbers. Only the standard bearer was stock, he looks suspiciously like the army’s paymaster too.
Maybe he’s his twin brother. Anyway, the results are pleasing given the condition of the models.
So the running totals for the year so far are thus:
The problem is I have only around 40 figures left to paint, and many of those I neither need to add to armies, or care to paint.
What next then?