Friday, 24 March 2017

Games Day March 2017

We had a great 1914 game at the last Tring Club Games Day, a single platoon of Belgians attempted to defend a village against three attacking German platoons. We played the game using the "Big" version of Chain of Command. I have also used CoC for the 1912 Balkans War and have been very impressed as the rules easily adapt for the earlier periods. The more rigid command structures and larger sub-units make it quite a different game to playing the rules for WW2.

It gave us an opportunity to use Henry's newly-finished, scratch built, Victorian brick buildings. Unfortunately I haven't got any interior shots of these, as he has really gone to town on them. The upper floors and roofs are removable and the interiors decorated and furnished with beds, tables, chairs and bar/shop counters etc. The buildings are intended for playing Frostgrave, but on a "Ripper Street" theme. However it's good to make use of them however we can.

Henry had the camera and was the Belgian player, so the pictures are mostly from his side of the table.

                                      The German players assemble their hordes of dastardly Huns.

                                              Brave Belgians prepare to face the onslaught!

                                                More Belgians race to take up position.
                                               The graveyard is turned into a strong-point.

               A dogcart machine gun deploys. The forward unit of Belgians are taking casualties in a crossfire between the advancing Germans and a platoon in the house at the left of the picture.

The game was an eventual victory for the Germans after a bayonet charge dislodged the last defenders from the house they had occupied. It was a great game and much fun was had by all the players.

Also in the hall was a large Warhammer 40K game (apparently the red cloth was not significant, someone had forgotten to bring the other black cloth!).

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Roman Civil War - starter battle

This was a simple game representing a Roman civil wars battle using Sword & Spear rules.

Bill has a load of Romans, but so far no opposition. So we split his Roman forces into Red and Blue for a civil war battle.

We played the game diagonally across the table.

The Red forces are deployed outside the fort in the corner ready to defend it against the attacking Blue forces.

On the far side the Auxiliaries and Cavalry forces approach each other. The Red cavalry units are in a line while the Blue cavalry units are still in a column.

As a result the first combat was between one unit of Blue cavalry and two units of Red cavalry which the Reds won.

Auxiliary infantry met in combat. At the same time the Red cavalry hit the second unit of Blue cavalry and soon routed them.

One unit of Red cavalry broke through and threatened the flank of the Blue advance.
In the top right corner, the Red cavalry break through and threaten the Blues' flank.

Blue Legionaries managed to turn to meet the cavalry on their flank and it all got a bit hectic in the centre with Red forces approaching on two sides..

A success for the Blue forces as the Red cavalry charged a unit of Legionaries and a Bolt Shooter and lost the combat.

However it wasn't enough to save the Blue forces who were now out of position to stop the Red advance.

We both enjoyed the game. Sword & Spear are great rules.

The Bolt Shooters didn’t score a hit all game. The only time they contributed to a success was in the melee at the end. Next time we might try treating the targets of Bolt Shooters as "Lacking Protection" instead of just "Ignores Armour".

Monday, 27 February 2017

Arnhem The battle in the town September 19th

This 20mm Rapid Fire game represents the attempt by the British Airborne to break through to the Arnhem bridge along the Utrecthseweg. Historically this ended disastrously for the British and was the final attempt to break through to the bridge.

The full table layout 

Under cover of darkness the South Staffords advanced up the main street.

 The South Staffords come under heavy fire and suffered heavy casualties. They fought their way into the Arnhem museum.

 The 11th Para move up the street in support.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

First Game of The Pikeman's Lament - Ottomans and Poles

We tried out The Pikeman's Lament at the last Tring Club night and were very pleased with the rules. We also managed to get almost 3 games into 3 hours playing time (due to unforeseen circumstances we had to cut the last game short, but I reckon another 30 minutes would have seen us to the end of that as well).

1 unit Winged Hussars - Elite Gallopers
1 unit Pancerni - Gallopers
2 units Cossacks - Raw Gallopers
1 unit Dragoons - Dragoons
1 unit Haiduk Infantry - Shot

I thought about making the Hussars Aggressive, but decided not to until we had tried a few games out. I'm still undecided with the Polish light cavalry, Tartars are obviously Dragoons, or Veteran Dragoons, but armed with lances I'm not sure whether the Cossacks were primarily skirmish or melee troops.

1 unit Sipahis of the Porte - Gallopers
3 units Feudal Sipahis - Trotters
1 unit Tartars - Veteran Dragoons
1 unit skirmish musketeers - Commanded Shot

Sipahis of the Porte tended to be used as the heavy cavalry reserve, so I felt Gallopers suited them better. I'm not sure about other Sipahis as Trotters, but that suits them better than Gallopers or Dragoons. I may need to play about with the troop types a little bit here.

The Games

The first game was the Ga Pa scenario. For some unknown reason the Polish Commander placed his officer in one of the Cossack units, which made him quite vulnerable. The Poles put their shot in the centre and quickly moved them onto a hill, where they stayed for the game, mainly sniping at passing Turkish horsemen at long range. On the left flank the Dragoons and Pancerni faced off against a unit of Sipahis and the skirmish infantry, whilst on the right flank the Hussars faced the Sipahis of the Porte supported by the Tartars. The Cossacks were in the centre on either side of the shot, facing the last 2 Sipahi units.

On the left the Dragoons hung back whilst the Pancerni rapidly advanced against the Sipahis. The Turkish infantry ducked into a nearby wood, from whence they picked off a passing Pancerni. The Pancerni charged and we followed what was to become the standard format for melees in this game. The Gallopers won the melee, the Trotters failed their morale test and fell back, wavering. The Gallopers used their compulsory follow-up, winning again. I rolled crap morale dice and the Trotters routed. The Pancerni had only lost 1 man in melee, but the skirmishers in the wood picked off another one, so at least they were down to half strength.

On the right the Tartars advanced into range of the Winged Hussars and killed one man. Now the Hussars charged but the Tartars evaded out of range, peppering the Hussars with arrows. This opened up a gap between the Hussars and the Officer's Cossack unit and I threw my Sipahis of the Porte into the gap, supported by another unit of Sipahis. Now my Tartars attempted to Skirmish again, hoping to kill another Hussar and remain out of charge range. This is where things went really pear shaped as I rolled a double 1, then my Tartars went loopy and charged the Hussars! (On a roll of double 1 or 6 for an activation, you roll on a Good/Bad Things happen table). Of course the Hussars counter charged and smashed the Tartars in melee. The Tartars failed their morale roll and fell back wavering, The Hussars Followed up, won again and, guess what, the Tartars routed!!! Sound familiar?

                                               Tartars frustrating the Winged Hussars...

                                                ....then stupidly charging them.........

                                            ...exit stage left, pursued by Hussars!

Tuesday, 14 February 2017


Last summer the club was generously given a load of older wargames figures. I ended up with 2 Renaissance armies, Ottomans and Poles, and I thought it time I caught up on the Polish contingent. Like the Ottomans, they are a mix of old manufacturers from the 1970s/80s, mostly Minifigs and Hinchcliffe, with a few Essex. I quite like this as it's taking me back to the figures I started gaming with in my youth. Again I decided to pretty much leave the painting as it was, other than where an obvious touch-up was required. All I'd do was give the figures a clean, a dark wash and rebase.

The Poles were not a complete army, consisting of about 22 cavalry and 45 infantry, with only 2 Winged Hussars! The infantry would do, but I was way short-handed on cavalry for a Polish army. I've been keeping my eyes open for old figures to fit in with these and had picked up a unit of  dragoons and a unit of Winged Hussars. As I've recently picked up the new Osprey rules The Pikeman's Lament and arranged a game for later this month, I thought it was time to get the Poles into battle order.

Unfortunately I didn't take any pictures of the figures before I got started, but if you look back at the posts on the Ottomans you will get the idea.

                                                 The whole army (so far)
                                                      The original Winged Hussars

                                                    More Winged Hussars

                                              Panernci/Armoured Cossack Cavalry

                                                        Cossack/Tartar Cavalry



                                                                    More Infantry

Just in time for the game on Friday! A big thanks to Nigel Billington for letting me download his fantastic Polish flags.
Obviously I need more cavalry for a credible Polish army. The Hinchliffe Winged Hussars are still available so I can add a few friends to my lonely pair and make up another unit. I'll just keep looking for some more old Pancerni and Cossack cavalry.

Saturday, 17 December 2016

Gaming in Colonial Africa 2

We played some more TMWWBK games at club last Friday, four players using half size units we managed to get three games into about three and a half hours gaming time.

All three games pitted Terrible Turks against Dastardly Huns arguing over who had the right to oppress the local population. As we had two new players the first game was a straight up "Kill 'em All" game, them we played "Get Off My Land" and "Run To The Hills" scenarios from the book.

                                               Turkish infantry shelter in the jungle

The Turks:
3 units Line Infantry (Regular Inf)
2 units Militia (Irregular Inf - Unenthusiastic)

The Germans:
1 unit Colonial Inf (Regular Inf - Veteran)
1 unit Askari (Irregular Inf - Veteran)
1 unit Settler Volunteers (Irregular Inf - Veteran & Well Armed)
1 unit native allies (Tribal Inf - Elite & Fierce)

                                           German Settlers - a mean bunch!

Saturday, 10 December 2016

D-Day +2, Norrey and Putot

At our Games Day on 26th November 2016,  We put on a large Rapid Fire game set in Normandy.

D-Day +2, 8th June 1944
After landing at Juno Beach the Canadians 3rd Division moved inland towards its objective of Capriquet Airfield. Whist moving forward and occupying the villages of Bretteville and Putot the Canadians were attacked by the recently arrived 12th SS Panzer Division. The game was based on the fighting that took place on the 8th of June.

The Germans were played by Mark and Colin. The Canadians by Henry and Graham. Ian Willer umpired.

The Germans plan was for the 12th SS Recce Battalion to attack Norrey. The 1st Battalion 26th SS Panzer Grenadiers attacked Cardonville and the 2nd Battalion attacked Putot.
The Canadians plan was for the Regina Rifles to defend Norrey and Bretteville and the Royal Winnipeg Rifles to defend Putot and Cardonville.

The Recce Battalion attacked Norrey and destroyed the two Companies defending the village. However the Canadian artillery and Mortars weakened the Recce unit.