Being a member of the “Cult of the Shiny” here is the latest selection of items recently cleared off the painting table – alright if I’m honest most have been off the table for a few weeks but I have just got around to basing them.
First up comes the finished vehicles for a LRDG skirmish force I have been slowly building up for some time for use with Bolt Action.
The Bolt Action list replicates a raiding party rather than just the LRDG Patrols so as well as the Chevy Trucks some other transports were needed.
But armed patrol trucks first with “scorpion” bofors
And with some of the LRDG crew
The models are from Company B and Offensive Miniatures
Before the LRDG managed to acquire the iconic Chevy’s they used a number of Ford trucks and I loved the model, so decided to use a couple of these as “transports” (models are from Company B)
Finally the remaining vehicles are the British Morris 15cwt wagons (mix of Perry’s and Warlord)
Again these are a mix of Perry’s and Warlord
Now all I have to do is paint the rest of the British LRDG and Infantry and then start on the Germans (doh!!)
Next up was a few additional figures for the Congo Skirmish game, starting with some warrior characters, who said “two heads are better than one”
And then some local fauna and hazards
With the wildlife out of the way, next lot is back to Blighty in the form of additional transport for the Very British Civil War
Very British Civil War
Found in the local model shop and just a bit of touching up required on some:
But with a spare 37mm Bofors from the LRDG it seemed a shame not to use it and this grew into a simple conversion for the LMS Railway Volunteers as a “portee”
Last but not least was the Napoleonic Project I have been working on and 2 more Battalions have been completed.
Starting with the line regiment (Warlord)
24 Man unit in Greatcoat
I do like the Sapper in the Command group
Next up was a Légère Battalion (Wargames Foundry) at 36 man
Also Voltiguers (Perry’s) for the skirmish screens
And finally for the French the first of the limbers (Perry’s) – set up as a ammunition caisson
So that is the backlog cleared and back to painting and just to prove how much of a “butterfly” in terms of periods, well what is undercoated at the moment is some more French Voltigeurs and some Saracen Light Horse Archers for SAGA Cross and Crescent Faction.
Just remember you can never have to many periods on the go!!!!
Well this weeks game was something new a game of Sails of Glory the Napoleonic Naval game. While I and some of the others have played Napoleonic Naval games in the past this is the first time with these rules. The game was organised by Alan, with Nigel, Dave and Julian taking the Johnny French and me, Alan and Paul playing the British fleet.
The fleets were organised with 3 ships a side each composed of a 1st Rate, 3rd Rate (74) and a Frigate.
The game itself is surprisingly quick to pick-up and easy to plot and control with all bookkeeping managed through the main board for each ship.
No fancy manoeuvring in this first game with some basic jostling for position by ships trying not to get better positions.
Early hilarity was had by the British when it emerged all three French commanders had made the same mistake and instead of increasing sail had actually reduced sail at the same time.
In the early engagements the frigates were the first to manoeuvre into position and the French frigate had the temerity to shoot at the British 3 Decker I controlled, he would learn to regret that later!!
The 74’s approached each other and traded broadsides and at this point Nigel proved he didn’t need dice to be unlucky. All damage is done by drawing chits and on this occasion while Nigel managed to wipe hull box and put damage on a second, Paul with the British 74 drew a lot better damage chits and took at least 3 hull boxes from Nigel’s 74 and did a couple of special damages. Paul then made good use of the British “quick re-load special rule” to deliver another broadside next go which further damaged the French 74.
Both the British and French 3 Decker’s had manoeuvred and exchanged broadside inflicting slight damage on each other, with the French coming out of it slightly better off.
At this stage the French 74 had sailed into range of the British 1st Rate as well as the 74 and as I was about to deliver a broadside – Dave pointed out I had put the wrong broadside fire marker on my action sheet – damn!! So I couldn’t fire.
But next turn with both broadsides loaded and the correct tasks selected on the board the situation was remedied, also with great skill and dexterity Nigel had managed to manoeuvre his ship so my 1st rate could “rake” his bows.
Taking damage from Paul and 10 damage markers from the 1st Rate all hull boxes were wiped out and the 74 was pounded into submission.
Also at this stage the British 1st Rate got his revenge on the French frigate, which had already been badly damaged in the dual with the Alan’s British frigate. With only a slight pang of regret my 1st rate fired a long range broadside on the frigate and again the Frenchie struck its colours.
At this stage with only the French 1st Rate in action and being damaged decided survival was better than glory and the game was called with a British victory.
I was very impressed by the game mechanics and how easy it had been to pick up the advanced rules, however I would not fancy controlling more than a couple of ships or confusion could reign.
This weeks game organised by Paul meant that we broke out the War of Spanish Succession troops, but the scenario was based on the Battle of Fontenoy from the War of Austrian Succession just to confuse everyone!!
The forces of The Pragmatic Army were controlled by Julian (British Right wing), Dave (Dutch and British Cavalry – centre) and Alan (Dutch Left Wing).
While the gallant French were shuffled about the table by Nigel (French Right Wing) and my good self commanding the French Right.
Deployment was based on the battle with 2 French Brigades holding between Fontenoy and the woods on their left
A Brigade in reserve and Cavalry supporting the French right
And a Brigade holding the right with lots of guns in redoubts (hee hee!!)
While the Allied Army had 2 British brigades on their right with supporting British Cavalry.
And two Dutch Brigade in the centre and left wing again with a brigade of Dutch and Austrian Cavalry.
The opening moves of the game provided the initial entertainment as the British 1st Brigade advanced and the rest of the army stayed still watching them advance.
However the Allied Left wing eventually joined in sneaking down the flank trying to avoid the French Artillery – but we had light not battalion guns so they were still in range (ha!!)
On the Allied right flank the British advance was slowed by the need to keep dressing lines as the French artillery took its toll (I kept throwing 6’s to disorder units) but they slowly ground forward and musket fire was exchanged.
But while the defenders were disordered they were still holding out.
But the French line was holding, even if I had to use the CinC Marechal Comte De Saxe to rally the front line regiments to hold in the line (more of that later)
Exchange of musketry – bit the French had more Artillery which told in the end.
But in the centre trying to get the Artillery to deploy but blundered so it wandered forward causing a road block for the British Cavalry.
In advancing it also took casualties and became shaken.
In Fontenoy the 2 French units were now facing off against 8 Dutch Battalions but holding their own.
It was at this stage that the French unit where the C in C was attached received a deadly shattering volley from the Guards – was shaken – tested morale and broke taking the C in C with them and the hole in the line shown below was the result – I had my usual calm and collected response to this set back – turning the air a nice shade of French blue!!!!
Meanwhile the heat was being turned up on Fontenoy and the Dutch prepared to assault, but the defenders held on for a couple of turns.
It was at this stage that Campbell (well done Julian) supported the French cause by blundering and leading his brigade to the back of the table (how we laughed, well at least I did)
This was important as one of the British line had broken and the Scots Fusiliers were shaken as well as the Skirmishers in the wood.
But the smile was soon wiped from my face, trying to rally casualties off the Garde Francais led to a “blunder” of my own and they took shelter behind a reserve regiment.
But not to worry we have a new C in C, the King no less but the bugger is not allowed to move from the hill!!!!
But at this stage the 1st British brigade breaks and retreats bumping into Campbell’s brigade making its way forward again.
As this is going on the British Cavalry is performing some sort of dressage routine in the middle of the field.
But on the up side for the allies the 1st Dutch Brigade finally breaks into Fontenoy when one of the defenders finally breaks.
As the game was nearing its end the Cavalry came out to play with Cuirassiers de Roi driving off one Dutch cavalry, while the Dutch Garde Dragoons do the same to a French unit. Shortly after this both cavalry brigades break in mutually assured destruction mode.
But it gets worse for the French as the Dutch destroy the last of the defenders and take Fontenoy.
But revenge was at hand as a French Infantry unit “enfiladed” the Dutch line and delivered a shattering volley, which meant that the 2nd Dutch Infantry brigade became shaken.
It was at this stage the game was called – although the Dutch had taken Fontenoy they had lost 2 Infantry and a Cavalry brigade while the French had only lost a Cavalry Brigade. The Dutch left flank had gone, so a French victory was called (hurrah) but don’t mention the C in C.
For this weeks game we were back to the Dark Continent for a game of “Congo”, the scenario was an amended version of “The Bao-Bao Berries” that appeared in Wargames Illustrated Issue 356 – but heavily amended to cope with 4 columns involved in the game.
For my version all four columns were on the hunt for the mysterious Bao-Bao berries and victory points were available for:
getting the berries back to camp
looting berries from the native village
loot tokens picked up during the game.
For this game there were 4 columns which were:
British Explorer (White Man’s Expedition) – Julian
The Belgium Botanical Expedition (White Man’s Expedition) – Paul
Arab Herbalists (Sultanate of Zanzibar) – Nigel
African Foragers (The African Kingdoms) – Alan
The table had a peaceful native village in the centre and surrounding areas where the elusive berries grew. Each column would enter the board within 24″ of the board corners to start their hunt.
I wondered if everyone realised no victory points could be gained from killing the other columns as the Zanzibar player deployed his Askaris to threaten the flank of the African Kingdom troops who soon countered with deploying their King and his Married Warriors to face them off.
And this soon escalated as the Zanzibar Baluchis and African Fanatical Warriors were deployed in support
But the Zanzibar player did deploy some troops to hunt for the berries.
Meanwhile at the other end of the board the Belgium Botanists start heading for the berry bushes.
Things had got vicious with the married warriors driving off the Askaris and then the Fanatical Warriors engaging the Baluchis but not a berry in sight
However in another area the Kings Witchdoctor had found a bush and started to pick its berries, finally starting to earn some victory points.
Meanwhile the Botanist had found a Bao-Bao bush and also located some loot.
At the same time the British had also located a source of berries.
On the other side the British Expedition did what the British did best and started looting the local village.
Seeing the British success the Belgium head for the village.
But the British success is short lived as the bush soon empties of berries after only 2 are gathered.
As the Belgium column starts to loot the village someone drops a match and the hut goes up in flames!!
On the other side of the table the other 2 are still battering seven shades out of each other with both the leaders units being reduced to a single figure plus the bosses, and the Fanatics getting ready for another charge.
Not on camera the Witchdoctor had been attempting to cast magic, the first attempt was unsuccessful, on trying a second time not only did he draw the “panic” stress marker that meant his head exploded but also the “wildlife” marker that meant a Lion started stalking the Belgium troops.
The lions stalk was shortlived as the Belgium Askari gave up looting the village to go “big game” hunting and came away with a nice rug (another loot token to the Belgium’s). It was also at this stage of the game that the European Columns had seriously started to blow lumps out of each other in the race for resources.
As the end of the game drew close the Zanzibar Muskets tried to cut some of the African Kingdom troops off from their camp to grab their berries (sounds painful I hear you say) but were spotted
Yes they have, after losing the last of his Married Warriors (some explianing to do there when he gets home) the King joins the last of the Fanatics and heads towards the last of the Zanzibar forces annoying his men.
So at the end of the 6 turns how did the points situation stand?
Well the winners were the Belgium Botanist (well done Paul) with 35 Victory Points, 2nd was the African Kingdoms (Alan) with 32 Victory Points despite spending half the game kicking lumps out of the Zanzibar Expedition, 3rd was the Zanzibar Column (Nigel) with 16 Victory Points – more focus on the objectives next time that man and less on beating up the natives and bringing up the rear with 4th place the British Expedition (Julian) with 12 Victory Points – which has triggered an investigation by the National Geographical Society into how an Englishman let a Johnny Foreigner beat him.
All in all another cracking game and I have not mentioned the Zanzibar lads disturbing a Rhino near a berry bush, the Belgium’s being attacked by a flock of angry vultures and surviving and the British discovering a member of a lost expedition and then sacrificing him to shooting to save losing an Adventurer (most unsporting that man).
This weeks game was based on the battle of Rocroi, taken from the scenario in “The Devils Playground” supplement. With various English Civil War forces masquerading as Spanish and French forces (although some have very nice new command stands).
The Spanish were played by Dave and Julian, while the French were controlled by Paul and my good self with Nigel taking the role of umpire.
Both sides were deployed with Infantry in the centre and cavalry battalia on the wings.
The French first turn showed glimpses of things to come, as the centre and right wing advanced – the commander on the left (me) threw an 11 trying to order the Croat cavalry forward so the left wing didn’t move. Taking advantage of this the Spanish right wing cavalry quickly advanced and tried to charge but failed to reach the French.
The French left wing cavalry charged, but did not get the success they wanted and both sides withdrew to start again.
On the French right flank a similar engagement was taking place but with more success with the French pushing the Spanish back.
While in the centre the Spanish Tercios roll forward and the French try to use their superiority in firepower to inflict some casualties – but in these early engagements the Spanish out shoot the French – with much Gallic cursing in the background.
Meanwhile on the French left wing round 2 is declared and cavalry engage again.
While in the centre the infantry continued to shoot lumps out of each other as the rear Tercio tried some nifty tap dancing to move into the front line.
Tap dancing Tercios
French holding the line
On the French right wing the French cavalry had done their job and cleared flank.
On the left my dice rolling had done it again and on a blunder (double 6 follwoed by another 6) the French Guard Gendarmes had launched an charge against some musketeers defending the wood line – these chaps soon discovered that even cover does not protect them that much and were ridden down.
What was that saying “better to be lucky than good” although the artillery had lost their target.
In the centre the “tap dancing” tercios had finally managed to get a clear path and started to advance on the French. But with both cavalry wings defeated would it be in time.
Hope came in the form of some Spanish reserve cavalry – but the French were ready for them.
Then the Spanish players (well Julian) decided to join my bad dice throwing exhibition act and threw a double 1 with the Heavy Artillery which meant that it exploded and was out of the game.
Now it was down to the Infantry in the centre – while the Spanish Pike was mainly untouched, we had managed to strip a lot of the shot units away once we worked out how to hit with the shooting dice.
In the end the French managed to strip away and shake enough of the shot units to break the lead battallia
When time was called the French had gained their victory conditions of controlling all four edges of the board – so very similar outcome to the real battle.
For this week game we are back in the realm of the John Wayne US Cavalry Movies with another outing of Pony Wars or “B Troop Ain’t Coming Back” by special request of David who missed the last game.
In this scenario the job of the US Cavalry was to round up the Settlers but also attack the Indian Village – to enable this they started with 4 Troops of Cavalry led of course by a certain Gen G.A.Custer (but more of that later).
As with the last game – Paul ran the game, Alan, David, Dave, Julian and Nigel took the role of the US Cavalry and my good self assisted as an unbiased umpire moving the Injuns around the board (what makes this fun is that arrival, movement and actions are all randomly controlled).
The board had the usual 2 homesteads, a church, stagecoach station and Indian Village.
It’s a long way to the Fort
Unsuspecting Indian Village
Early on the “smoke signals” appeared over the board which meant more event cards were drawn – both good and bad for the US Cavalry.
One of the early cards was reinforcements for the cavalry in the form of a group heroic Volunteer Scouts.
But they soon have company as an “Injun” war party advance towards the homestead.
As the Injuns attacked the Homestead and the Scouts their commander (not naming names Alan) bravely let the Homesteaders take an extra casualty rather than risking another saving throw on the scouts – not very John Wayne really.
On the other side of the board the Gunrunners arrived and linked up with a war-party – did they get the guns – did they buggery – they took the whisky and left the board with the Gunrunners to party 😭
As the Injuns got drunk the Cavalry approached the Church to rescue the congregation.
While on the other side of the table a Wagon Train appears where the homestead is under attack – so circles (well triangle) the wagons.
While in the centre progressed is slowed by an ambush in one of the passes.
By now even more things had appeared with the Deadwood Stage racing the Wagon Train followed by the Pony Express rider things were getting busy near the Stagecoach Station.
After driving off the initial attack – the homestead is reinforced by a Cavalry Section and ammunition wagon as the Injuns mass for another attack
While in the centre more cavalry head for the Injun Village
But with the Injuns heavily outnumbered they decide that discretion is the better part of valour and the noble savages bugger off the board!!!!
But congestion is getting worse at the Stagecoach station.
But the Indian Scouts are ambushed in the pass and hold up the advance on the Injuns Left.
But D Troop heads for the pass at the right of the village
But as Custer rides through the central pass he gets a nasty surprise
On the Injuns right fighting is getting desperate – but my dice throwing comes to the Injuns rescue and the Cavalry are beaten back – hah!!! (impartial umpire smirk)
But in the centre Custer manages to clear the pass as the ambushers fall back
Now on the left, after successfully defending the homesteaders (well at least some of them) and handing them over to the Cavalry – do the scouts bravely ride to Custer’s rescue? Do they buggery the “bravely” chase after the Wagon Train to escort it to the fort.
On the right more cavalry appear
While A Troop managed to get the Homesteaders away – there leader and some of his men make a last stand, but again with skillful dice throwing by yours truly most of A Troop bites the dust with their leader.
While on the right the Injuns stop another attack by the Cavalry
Then just as the US Cavalry thought they had a chance – the largest war party available appeared behind the Indian Village (told you better to be lucky).
Custer faces off to three war parties – but doesn’t see the true danger
As time was called – Custer was held in melee with one war band and outnumbered 4:1 but he is about to be outnumbed 14:1 – last stand anyone.
Again another great and enjoyable game and thanks to Paul for arranging and supplying the figures and terrain.
Last week finally managed to get around to basing some units that have been off my painting table for a while now. These are part of a slow burning (and some would say very slow) French Napoleonic force I am building (previous 2 battalions on previous post).
First up is some heavy metal to support the forces French Foot Artillery (8pdr) from Redoubt.
Then there are 2 Line Battalions (Wargames Foundry) which are both going to be the 2nd Battalions
Still not fully finished as I have yet to add the standards (only just got the finials from Warlord).
Next some of the horse flesh and while I love the figures (and I still have 2 more to paint) I am not doing hussars again in a hurry – these are painted as the 2nd Hussars (Perry Plastics)
Officer and Musician
Last but not least the Brigadier and Aide (Perrys)
Now all I have to do is the other 6 battalions and the cavalry regiments, oh and I forgot to mention the limbers.