Monday, 27 June 2016

"Tommy's' Game" 2016.Romans vs Britons.

Last night,as an "Homage" to our friend Tommy,we had a most spectacular and thrilling game,with Brian and Paul commanding a Legion each,and myself commanding the Britons.

This is the "raison d'etre" of the game-Tommy was a real character,and we miss him from our games,although for the last couple of years of his life he rarely attended our games,but kept in touch via 'phone calls and the odd visit.

This is the table before any movement-Brian was in charge of the "Blue" legion,Paul the "Red"
In the foreground some Auxiliary units are already engaged with the Village defenders.

This melee went on for most of the game,eventually,because of the threat of Cohort Intervention,I was forced to retire !!

When we say "spectacular" we mean "spectacular"-look at those Roman lines-now let's see what the Britons can do to disrupt them!!!

The advance begins-my plan was to take out both Roman flanks then attack in the centre,with a combination of Warbands,Cavalry and Chariots(that were "lurking" in the woods)..............

"Lurking Chariots"-these actually didn't even get into combat!!-my fault as I didn't leave them any room to manoeuvre-what a waste!!!

Away we go!!-I thought that if I attacked the Junction of the two Legions,I could cause a split,and send my reserves and cavalry through the gap-dream on-these are Romans we are talking about!!!

I think Paul is trying to hide from the shower of javelins coming his way!His legion is about to be attacked,but Brian's seems to be holding on.

Paul's auxiliaries,in front of the burning village,are being forced back-Paul put his commander in to stem the retreat,got him killed,and the whole lot took off back to Rome-hurrah!!!-now for the big push.....................

My troops gather,ready to do battle with Paul's Legion,whilst in the background the melees rage on-what a game!!!-I hope Paul doesn't do one of his "Poses".........................

Oh dear me,dear me!!!-well that won't win the day for you-all along the table the battle is raging,but the Roman line is being "fragmented"-one last push should do it,but my warbands are getting weaker,and weaker!

As my warbands attack,Paul is put under tremendous pressure,but he counter-attacked on the left and won the ensuing fight-it was me who was split now!!-he kept piling cohorts and cavalry into the gap,and suddenly the tables have been turned!!!Brian has stabilised his lines and is advancing on my other flank-woe is me!!!!

Brian's advance put me under pressure and relieved the pressure on Paul-with my warbands in a desperate state,I had to admit defeat!!

One last shot showing Brian's line advancing against the village!!
What a fitting game for Tommy!-we all had to go and lie down in darkened rooms!!!-well done lads,and roll on Thursday-don't know what we'll be playing though.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Northumbria 1067AD,and a "whinge"

What could I possibly have to "whinge" about? Well, I placed an order for 5 Viking Command packs from Gripping Beast on Monday,I spoke to a very efficient and friendly man on the phone,and the figures arrived in a couple of days-great service,no problems with that!Because my Viking army was bought from Warrior Miniatures,they are "true" 25mm figures,so I knew that Gripping Beast figures would be 28mm,and a bit taller,but because they are meant to be Command figures,I was willing to accept that!
Three of the Five packs are great(it must be said that the detail on the figures is nothing short of Superb!) but two are at a "whopping" 35mm tall,and will not fit in at all with my Warrior figures.I phoned Gripping Beast(and spoke to the same man) and was told that they make their command groups bigger because they can be used as "Heroes" as well as Commanders!! and to be fair he said I could return the packs that were of no use to me,and they would refund my money-but this is not the point! the point is why don't they,on their web site,point out that the command packs in question(ie VIK1 and VIK18) are large 28mm(or even 35mm)

The figure on the left is from Warrior Miniatures,the central figure is perfectly acceptable as a Command figure from Gripping Beast,and the right hand figure,also from Gripping Beast, is,well, I rest my case!!!

This is from Warrior Miniatures catalogue,clearly showing that the figures in this section are "BIG",so there can be no confusion-come on Gripping Beast,get a grip!!!(quite clever that!!)
Right,"whinge" over,what about last night's game?

This is the scenario,actually taken from the "Anglo Saxon Chronicles"
Only Brian and I were playing last night,but Quality over Quantity always works!!Brian was Saxon,and I was Norman(who??)

The table before any movement,Durham is in the top right corner-it hasn't actually changed much!!

Inspirational!! everyone should own a copy-I hadn't realised how much War and turmoil there was in our country before, and after, the "Invasion"

The Norman light infantry are advancing against the Saxon Fyrd,blocking the approach to Durham,whilst my heavies are forming up to cross the river.

I have moved my heavy infantry across the river and am approaching Brian's "shield wall" on the hill.

Brian's "Fyrd" clashes with my Light infantry-this turned into quite a tussle,and at one point my troops were driven back,and it looked like I would have to retire(it's good being retired!), however a couple of good(lucky?) dice throws saved the day!!

I am now in a position to attack the "shield wall"-my cavalry are moving to the right,in an attempt to throw Brian off balance and keep him guessing as to what I was doing(if only I knew myself!!)

A formidable wall of Iron and Axes-this is going to be tough!!

"CRASH!" the Normans charge up the hill,only to be met with a resolute defence from the Saxon Huscarls-Brian managed to "kill" 4 leaders out of 6,which threatened to end the game there and then!!-however,I fought back and managed to break the Wall on my left and push Brian's troops back-hurrah!!

On my right flank,Brian's "Fyrd" is beaten and being pursued into Durham,which was the objective of the game,so in theory I won,but Brian was fighting back on the hill,and a stalemate was reached-so a Draw was declared!!

Durham's a lovely place-just look at the "cathedral", perfect in every detail,if you look closely you can see Robbie Roddis standing outside the main door(probably collecting from the poor,to pay for his expensive book,so he can join an "elite" web site that I've heard of!!)
The game was very interesting and the more we learn of the troop types and tactics,the better the games will be.
Roll on Sunday-ancients,Romans vs Britons.

Monday, 20 June 2016

Battle of Wavre 19th June 1815.

Last night we had a most excellent  game,which was devised by Dave,who provided the Historical scenario,as well as all the figures-well done,an absolutely thrilling game,played by Brian and Paul as Prussians,and Dave and I as French.

This shot shows the table before any movement,Wavre is in the top right corner and Limal is in the bottom left-the river took a whole move to cross, and dis-ordered any troops requiring them to spend a whole move reforming!!!!-this was not going to be easy for the French!

Dave opened the proceedings by firing on Brian's troops placed on the hill-we still use the "old-fashioned" bounce stick to determine where the ball from the cannon,actually lands,then bounces onwards,using a coloured dice which matches the colours on the stick!!

My Infantry,Cavalry and Guns have "burst" out of Limal village,and are masking the woods,as well as moving to attack the hill in support of Dave's advance.Both Paul and Brian aimed their batteries at me,and inflicted alot of damage-the swines!!!

Dave's advance and attack on Wavre,was nothing short of "magnificent"-we brought our reserve troops onto the board on move number 3,to groans and rude comments from the Prussians!!-they are making their way to the left of the bridge,ready to cross when the Prussian cavalry threat has been removed(well,that was the plan!!!)

Brian and Dave "slug" it out in Wavre-this tussle lasted almost the whole of the game,each side being pushed back,then sending in reinforcements,winning,then losing-great stuff,and marvellous wargaming!!

With the Wavre battle raging in the background,Brian is musing at how we are going to get over the river with "millions" of cavalry blocking our way!!(so were we!!)

With a good(and beautifully painted) leader anything is possible!!-and so it was.We managed to get my cavalry to carry out a "blocking" attack,whilst Dave's cavalry crossed the river and reformed-Paul was sending in wave after wave of Dragoons and Lancers,trying to prevent us from attacking his central position on the hill!

Paul's face says it all-desperation is setting in(not really,he always looks like that!!!)
This is a good shot of most of the table,showing the French closing in on the central hill.

As Wavre is still being contested,a furious fire-fight erupts!!-Dave was hard pushed here,but just managed to force the Prussians to retire,and the hill was almost ours-hurrah!!

Brian's body-language is now telling the story!!-all is lost for the Prussians,despite Paul putting a massive counter-attack on my troops guarding the left flank,facing the woods.

Paul's counter-attack-almost successful,I think that had he put the attack in a couple of moves earlier,the battle may have had a different out-come!!
Well played everyone,and another big thank-you to Dave for his efforts.
Roll on Thursday,we will be using the same terrain(because I think it is great!) and probably a Saxon and Norman game.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Battle of Fort St George,Zululand 1879.

Last night Brian and I packed our suitcases with sun cream,pith helmets and spare dentures and took ourselves off to Africa!!

Scenario and table before any movement,Brian opted to command the British,leaving me with the task of capturing the Fort and destroying the "occupants".

My Zulus(proper plural is "amaZulu") adopting the classic Chest and Horns formation,advance against Brian's forward units of RHA and NNC,who fled back to the Fort area(a wise move,Brian!!)

The troops in the Fort open up on my leading elements of my right horn,meanwhile the troops in the foreground have been told to "stand to" just in case they are attacked!(as if!!!)

This shows my right horn attacking over open ground,and covering a good distance too!
They were "shot to sh-t!!" by Brian's brave defenders!!

HOWEVER, one regiment did manage to penetrate the defences,and caused all kinds of mayhem-hurrah!!

My Left Horn is attacking,successfully, and the British defending the small enclosure and hastily built barricade,is in trouble-I have also managed to get my "chest" regiments into a good attacking position-is this going to be a rare Zulu victory??

My left horn is driving the British troops back,and my centre is also attacking,Brian,by this time was asking to lie down in a darkened room!

The British are being over-run,with no hope of victory,the Zulu were declared winners-hurrah!!

One last despairing shot of the table at the end of the game!!
Roll on Sunday,Dave has prepared a Napoleonic game,which takes the onus off me for once-come on Dave,this will be a good'un,I feel it in my waters!!!

Monday, 13 June 2016

Battle of Fenton Crossings 1645.

Last night the "Feisty Five" of Graham,Paul,Brian,Dave and I had an absolutely splendid game,fast,colourful and exciting-grand stuff!!

The scenario and table before any movement-Brian,Paul and Graham were the Royalists and Dave and I were the Parliamentarians.All was set for a great game!

It was all action from move number one-this is my initial assault on the village and large field,being ably defended by Graham-our plan was to attack in overwhelming numbers,forcing Paul to commit his reserve infantry,to help Graham-this worked,sort of, but Paul sent the reserve too late to assist him!!!-hurrah!

In the centre,consisting of cavalry,Dave has sent 2 regiments of his "Ironsides" cavalry to instigate the attack,and my troopers are following up to give support-wonderful wargaming!

Dave's infantry are attacking Brian's on our left flank-what a tussle!!-doesn't Brian look like a certain Winston Churchill in this shot?-however,after Thursday's antics he'll probably be saying "We will bite them on the beaches!!!"

Oh no!! he's at it again-having killed and officer,he "whipped" his teeth out and did a sort of "Jig"-I wonder if we can get him barred from the club!!

The cavalry battle is swinging both ways,neither side getting an advantage-Paul is feeding units into the melee,and it is not looking good for the Parliamentarians!!

Having been beaten back from my first assault on the village,I have re-organised my lines and a second assault is going in,Graham's defenders are weakened,and,with a bit of luck,I should manage to capture the village.

I have!!-hurrah,the left flank of the Royalists has collapsed,but what of Dave's flank?

He has held it!!-another hurrah!!-The Royalists have failed to meet their objectives,so Dave and I were declared the winners,although it must be said that the central cavalry battle was still on-going,and it was looking "bleak" for the Parliamentarians!
Well done to everyone,a great game.
Dave and Brian brought along their latest "Painting Offerings" for us to "Ooh and Arrgh" over,and here they are...................

"Maison du Roi" Elite miniatures by Dave-bloody show-off!!

Prussians and Russians-Napoleonic,Elite Miniatures by Dave-full of action.

Brian's British infantry-a whole box full of them,Crusader miniatures-absolutely marvellous!

Another shot of these well-painted figures-it's a bit "uncanny" but if you look closely at the figure on the left at the back of the base,well,it looks an awful lot like Brian!!!!-how does he do it??
Roll on Thursday--no idea what we'll be playing yet,but inbetween I am going down to Charlie Wesencraft's club on Wednesday to run through a Viking Raid game they are putting at the "Low Light" museum on 30th July.