Saturday, 30 July 2016

High Light at the "Low Light"

Charlie Wesencraft and his group put on a viking demonstration game at the Low Light Museum today,featuring a raid on the Priory at Tynemouth,so my wife and paid it a visit.
The museum charges £2 a head(no concessions!) for entry,and to be quite honest,it wasn't worth it-but that's another thing!
On with the demo. game,Charlie,Dave(1) and Dave(2),Mike,Paul and Mel were present and when I got there the game was just starting-everyone moving figures and happily chatting,in an upstairs room with a good size table.
The scenario was played around a sizable Viking force having landed by ship,and striking inland to attack the Priory,which was being defended by a sizable Saxon force!!.................

First move,Mike is looking pensive!-the Priory is the building at the far end of the table.

Dave(1),Charlie and Dave(2) planning their next move.

The Vikings are approaching the Priory,but are about to be attacked by a Saxon warband.

What every good Viking Horde needs-lots of dice,a pen some paper, a tape,and of course a few ships!!!!

I hope that's not Viking "Grog" in that cup,Charlie!!-the Vikings are making headway now,and clearing the landing area.

The counter-attack begins-Mike and Paul are quickly moving to defend the Priory,is Mel going to lend a hand?

Of course he is!!-however a bad dice throw prevented him from moving all of his troops,but the ones he did move are looking good.............................

Here they are,splendid with their new flag!! At this point in the proceedings my wife wanted a cup of coffee,so down to the attached cafe we went!!(I won't even mention the conversation about "two black coffees please"-"you mean Americano's?"-one of my steely stares later sorted him out!!!!) two black(!!) coffees and two very small cheese scones later(and a £7 hole in my pocket) I ascended the two flights of stairs(a lift was available) to say Cheerio to the "boys" and to take one last photo..............................

The Priory looks in danger!! and action is ensuing along the whole length of the table.
Well done to Charlie and his Group for putting on this game,I hope it attracted a lot of attention.

Friday, 29 July 2016

Viking Battle-tactical try-out.

Last night Dave,Brian and I tried out some fine-tuning of our rules to try and cover the tactics that the Vikings used-it's still a learning curve,but we're getting there!!

A simple scenario(for simple people?) the Saxon Fyrd holding a village against Viking Raiders,and a Viking force taking on the Saxon Huscarls placed on a hill(they always seem to be on a hill!!)

The firm Fyrd folk(try saying that after a couple of drinks!) holding the village-we gave them a much reduced fighting ability,but they were behind a fence so gave them a fighting chance(as Dave found out) against the Vikings.

The Saxon Huscarls awaiting the Viking attackers,my research has shown that the Viking archers would probably be behind the main line of Warriors,and mixed in with them,not separate.

After a couple of set-backs the Vikings did eventually "gain access to the village" and set fire to one of the huts-hurrah(and about bloody time too!!)

The Vikings have "bounced" off the Huscarls on the hill,but are doing much better against the ones on the flat(so that's why they are always on a hill!!)

Dave has taken the village,so game over!-we discussed various aspects of the Viking way of fighting and decided that more games are required before we get the hang of it-and that's what wargaming is all about,I think.
We also discussed WW2 rules,both commercial and "house" and we decided to give a combination of both a "go" on Sunday.
On Monday I ordered 20 Viking Figures,to "crew" my plastic ship,from Warrior Miniatures,they arrived on Tuesday,and I had them painted and based by Thursday................

I now have nothing left to paint-how on earth am I going to fill my time in???-no doubt I'll think of something!

Wednesday, 27 July 2016


I have recently noticed a massive increase in the "page views" on our blog,and they are all from Russia!!-can anyone explain this,and are there any other bloggers finding the same?-Herkybird's Nest is reporting the same.

See what I mean-in one day,Wednesday 20th July I had 958 "views",all from Russia-very strange,but very gratifying if the Russians have taken an interest in our blog!!

Monday, 25 July 2016

Viking Ship and Settlement-update.

For my Birthday,two weeks ago, I got some Viking Command Groups,a Viking ship and a Viking Settlement-they are all now finished!

I decided,before I started to build this kit,that I would be using it as a Wargames model,so left out parts like the rigging,anchor,cleats,oars and awning,so that I could put figures on board the model.The most difficult part of the construction was putting the "decals" onto the shields and attaching the shields to the side of the ship.

The prow and the stern Dragon's head and tail had to be painted-the detail is very good-apparently these were removable,and when the Viking raiding parties were approaching their homeland,they took them off so that they didn't frighten the existing "land gods".

I stuck the ship onto some hardboard with a mixture of Super glue,No Nails and PVA!!-that should fix it!!!!

The base has been painted blue with white "foam" at the prow,and photographed in front of the Viking Settlement......................................

The settlement under construction and the tools of the trade needed-this took me back to my school days,using scissors to cut and score!!!-the buildings went together very easily,and even I could follow the simple instructions!!-I stuck the "base board" onto hardboard to give the whole thing rigidity.

Each building has a specific place on the base board,although I found that they will be inter-changeable for wargaming purposes.Also for wargaming,I decided not to construct all of the buildings(some are quite small!) so that I can put figures on the base,as defenders or attackers!!!

The completed project-I made ten buildings and stuck them onto Hardboard to give them a bit of weight and rigidity-the overall effect is,I think, quite good,and will be used as a Saxon/Viking/Norman village in the next few weeks.
I have been very busy over the past two weeks,and have enjoyed painting the Gripping Beast Viking Command groups(despite their size!!)

The five groups,looking suitably aggressive!!!

Hagar the Horrible!!!-lovely figures.

We did have a game last night and I took 13 photographs,however they were all blurred due to,which I found out this morning, a smear of grease(or something!!!) on the lense,so the only record I have of the game is the scenario and map,which I took this morning....................

Graham and Brian were the Roman commanders,and suffice to say that the Britons attacked in over-whelming numbers and "knacked" the Romans-hurrah!!
Charlie Wesencraft and his group are putting on a Viking demonstration game on Saturday the 30th of July, at the Low Light Museum in North Shields,so Brian and I will be going along to see what it's like,I'm sure that anyone going along will be made welcome,and there's a cafe attached serving drinks and meals-so that's Saturday sewn up!!!
Roll on Thursday,very strong possibility of a Viking Game!!!!

Friday, 22 July 2016

Battle of Unter Glau/Ober Glau 1756.

Because of a late cancellation by Paul, the "thrifty three" of Graham,Brian and I had a grand 7YW game involving Prussians against Russians and Austrians.

Top photo is scenario and bottom is the table before any movement-I opted to command the Russians and Austrians,whilst Brian was in charge of the Prussian Infantry and Graham commanded the Prussian Cavalry and Artillery-all was set for a grand game,involving grand manoeuvering,grand fire-fights and grand melees,culminating in a grand victory for the Russians-hurrah!!

Ignoring the power of their artillery batteries(and accepted tactics of the day!) the Prussian infantry and cavalry advanced down the throats of my guns,and were subjected to cannister fire,causing a few casualties,which told later on in the game.
The above shot shows Graham's cavalry attacking mine,resulting in an inconclusive melee,but also causing his cavalry to come to a halt.-this was going to be bloody!!

Brian's infantry,using their superior movement rate,advances against my infantry,who had been ordered not to move forward until the artillery had fired three shots.Brian's "impetuous" move had the effect of masking his artillery,thus giving me a grand advantage.
Graham then turned a battery to fire on the Austrians,advancing towards the villages,which was a welcome relief to my troops!!

A general view down the table,showing the action going on all over it!!-I had ordered my third line of infantry to form column,and march to outflank Brian's infantry-you can see them doing this in the middle distance-the fight for the village was just a "side-show" but it seemed to take on an over-importance to the Prussians,especially the artillery,who probably could have been better employed firing at the Russian line instead of supporting Brian's infantry in the village, but hindsight is a wonderful thing!

My out-flanking move is complete,and Brian's line is now in trouble-Graham is not pulling a "funny" face,he always looks like that!!!

The cavalry battle is now looking "messy" to say the least!-neither side has an advantage-yet!

Brian's infantry have decided to go home,leaving the Russians masters of the field!!
But what of the cavalry?-I was getting the upper hand,but slowly,however due to the infantry winning in the centre(but not in the village!!!) it was decided that the Prussians had shot their bolt,and I was declared the winner of this most grand game-well done to us all.
Holiday season is upon us,so we won't be seeing Paul for a couple of weeks,and Graham after Sunday,so Brian and I can indulge ourselves in a feast of Ancient games-hurrah!!
Roll on Sunday,probably Romans against Britons.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Caesars Egyptian Folly.47BC

Whenever I come up with a scenario,I always try and build in a tactical or logistical problem for both sides,and last night's game was no exception!!!

Top photo is the scenario,and bottom is the table before any movement.Graham drew the "short straw" and ended up commanding the 13th Legion,in defensive square around the oasis,I was Caesar commanding the 10th Legion,Brian was Ptolomey,commanding the centre and left of the Egyptians,and Paul was Prince Aarken commanding the right,consisting of Loads of skirmishers and 3 heavy units of infantry.

Brian and I started the battle by moving forward our light troops-Brian,surprisingly,split his light chariots,moving 2 against my lights and 2 against the Legion-this had the effect of weakening his fire-power against my flank,and allowed me to move into melee-hurrah!!

The beleaguered 13th could only stand there and take it!!!-Paul moved his heavies onto the hill awaiting an opportunity to attack, once the cohorts were weakened-the sneaky swine!!!

My 10th Legion is advancing,and forming line,to try and support the 13th-the Egyptians in the centre are moving forward to contest the cohorts-is he mad???
But what of the flank?

Brian is looking worried,as well he should!-my cavalry are attempting to disrupt his line,however with some well-aimed bow shots,he managed to drive one unit away and stalled the other! My lights are giving Brian's a lesson in how to fight though,and the flank would soon be mine-another hurrah!!

Despite being seriously weakened,Graham took the opportunity,when my cohorts were close enough,to break formation and attack!!!-it should be noted that at the end of the game,the 13th had lost half of it's strength!!!

In the centre,Brian has attacked the cohorts,but "bounced",and even putting his commander into the fray,along with his bodyguard,the day was lost for the Egyptians...................

One final shot showing the state of play along the whole table!
This was a great game,both sides were given real problems,but got them sorted-well done lads!
Brian has been painting furiously over the past few weeks,and his WW2 collection is nearing completion-he brought his newest items,a Panther tank and a Jag-Panther for us to "Ooh and Ahhh" over.They look magnificent,great job Brian!!

Marvellous,to say the least!!-I am not a WW2 buff,but can't wait to see Brian's collection go into action,and take part in various scenarios/situations.
We will probably be playing on Thursday,but have no idea what period we will be playing.