Friday, 14 June 2019

Game preview for Sunday 16th June 2019.

As there will be only three of us on Sunday,I thought I would put on a simple "kick and rush" Ancients game,featuring Spartans and Athenians and their respective Allies.

Scenario,with in-built objectives!-there will be one Spartan commander,and two Athenian commanders(to be picked on the night).

The table as Graham and Brian will see it on Sunday night.-Spartans on the left,and Athenians on the right.

Spartan allies facing Athenian allies across the Lokis stream.

The Spartan army,split into two distinct sections due to terrain features.

Two views of the Athenian column "snaking" its way towards the far hill.

The Spartan King and his bodyguard-with your shield or on it,old chap!!
Roll on Sunday!!

Thursday, 13 June 2019

"Fannying About"

Being retired(I don't know if I've mentioned that I'm retired before!) gives you a fair bit of spare time to "fanny about",doing little jobs that you've been promising to do for a long time,but never got round to it.Well,most of my "fannying about" takes place in my garage(aka club room!) and this week I've managed to take "fannying about" to a higher level...................

First job was refreshing my ancient old stream sections,that I must have had for well over twenty years-they are made of plaster but have stood the test of time and hundreds of battles!
I re-painted the sections,and re-flocked(?) them,and they will now stand the test of time and hundreds of battles for another twenty years.

Second job-refresh and re-paint our measuring sticks-good old permanent markers!!-actually quite time consuming,but it needed doing!

I bought these three buildings- from a guy in Falkirk,and after a bit of "haggling"(I always thought that was a baby Haggis-but apparently not!!) knocked the price down to 30 pounds(English money!)
I had to make new roofs for all of them,as the originals didn't fit properly,and added a dome to one of them,and with some twigs from my garden,made a lean-to roof for one of them!-busy,busy,busy!(the dome is a plastic soap powder scoop,minus the handle)

Fourth job-basing some plastic "foliage" bought at Pound Shop(don't ask how much!!)-this foliage will appear on most of our games in the near future-promise!!
I don't know how I found time to go to work!!!

Monday, 10 June 2019

Battle of Owl Abbey 1709.

This blog is a "tad" late due to Grand-parenting Duties!!! and gardening.
Last night saw us play this very interesting Marlburian game...........................

This is what made this game interesting-Paul was French,Dave was Bavarian,Brian was Provincials.whilst I was British and Graham was Dutch-we set up as per the scenario......

Top photo shows the British and Dutch set-up,bottom shows the French,Bavarian and provincial set-up-and yes there were a "few" troops on the board!!

Top photo shows the action between the British and French,middle photo shows the Dutch against the Provincials,and the bottom photo shows the British vs the Bavarians in the centre.
This was all nail-biting and intense stuff,and nobody had the upper hand-grand wargaming!!

In this shot Graham's Dutch are getting the better of Brian's Provincial troops,and putting the whole flank in peril(after getting his Cavalry Brigadier killed!!!) but a few of his regiments were suffering,and Dave was advancing to support Brian's flank.

Paul and I were having a right old "ding-dong" of a fight on our flank,eventually we had both fought each other to a virtual stand-still!!!

Dave and I were battling it out in the centre,when he unleashed his Bavarian Cuirassiers against my Grenadiers-this did cause a bit of a "stir" but we decided to agree to dis-agree about the tactics,and he drove my Grenadiers away,but his Cuirassiers were then hit by my cavalry,in the flank!!-wonderful stuff,but,at the end of the night,we really couldn't decide who had won,so we decided on a draw!!!
Paul and Dave are off to Belgium,to visit the battlefield of Waterloo, next Sunday,and it is my Son's wedding anniversary on Sunday,so we might not be playing,but we'll see!!

Monday, 3 June 2019

Rorke's Drift 11th Jan. 1879.

Last night we fought a "what if?" scenario,featuring the initial invasion of Zululand via the crossing at Rorke's Drift,and what another grand game it turned out to be!

Top photo is the scenario,bottom is the map taken from Ian Knight's Rorke's Drift book.
Dave,Brian and I were the Zulu commanders,whilst Paul and Graham were in charge of the British and allies.

This shows the table(minus the Zulu army!) with the NNC and allied horse crossing on both flanks,the British camp is in the process of being established in the centre-what a peaceful scene!

OMG!! where did they come from?? As Dave,commanding the right horn,and Brian,commanding the left horn,advance ,my centre regiments come onto the board-29 regiments so far,with a further 8 regiments in reserve,if we need them-things are looking black(no pun intended!) for the British.Both Graham and Paul needed to consolidate their positions-and quickly!!

My attack on the camp develops nicely,but a couple of well-aimed artillery shots,from Graham's batteries,stopped one of my front line regiments,that,combined with Paul's volley fire,almost stopped the whole attack!!!But what of the horn attacks?????

Top photo shows Dave's regiments moving towards the river bank,but he encountered a bit of resistance from Paul's NNC,which held him up a bit-bottom photo shows Brian's regiments forming up to charge Graham's British-he also set his NNC on the Zulu,which also held Brian up for a while too!!

The camp is well and truly under pressure now! and both flanks are also under so much pressure,that,if they were a bunch of grapes,they would have been wine by now!!!

Without drink even being involved,Paul for some inexplicable reason sent two companies of the 24th into an abandoned kraal,and was assailed by 4 of my regiments!!-what followed was the stuff of legends and "last stands",but eventually both companies were wiped out!!!!-in the background you can see Dave's regiments have crossed the river and are attacking the troops on the hill.

Brian has pushed Graham's troops back into the river,and,despite an heroic effort,the flank was lost-hurrah!!

Dave is "washing " his spears in British blood! and Paul's command has collapsed-another hurrah!!

One last shot-the flanks have gone and the camp is in Zulu hands-all is lost,and with cries of "back to the mission station boys!" the British have lost-back to the "drawing board" should really be the cry!!
Another exciting game,full of tension,colour and jolly banter-roll on next week,we haven't had a Horse and Musket game for a while,so you never know!!

Monday, 27 May 2019

Battle of Gurarat 1884.

Last night we had the closest run Colonial game I can remember,for a long,long time!
The basis for the game was that Brian and Graham were sitting in my kitchen,with a map of the table(minus the village!) and being "fed" information from a Heliograph team,which was plotting a safe passage for the main square,whilst trying to locate the village!!-meanwhile the Dervish hordes,being controlled by myself,Paul and Dave,were moving  to surround the square and,hopefully, wipe it out!!

Top photo is the scenario,second is the list of messages,given to Brian and Graham,move by move,and last is the list of troops they had to form their square.

This is the map,of the table(remember that Brian and Graham had this map,minus the village!)
The heliograph team moved from hill "A" to the oasis,then onto hill "B"(and subsequently got wiped out!!!!)

Top photo is the table at the start of the game,bottom is the square's composition as decided by Brian and Graham(I think that if they'd operated the cavalry outside of the square,and maintained the rest of their troops in this formation,they would have won!)

The storm clouds gather!-top is Paul's command,bottom is Dave's-my troops were moving out of the village and onto hill"B"-the British were worried!!!,can you tell?????

Concentration! but the square is looking good-if it only maintains that formation,they should be okay(my troops are leaving the village in the foreground).

Oh no!!-the British have broken their square,for the sake of fire-power,and are putting the cavalry in the gap-fatal mistake-Brian's Naval Brigade look good though!

Dave has launched a superb attack on the rear face of the square,in the top photo you can see that he has also attacked the cavalry, making up the right face-he won the melee with the cavalry and drove them back into the middle,leaving a gaping hole!!!-hurrah!

These two photo's show both my attack on the corner of the square and Paul's attack on the left face-spectacular,or what???
The British were now panicking,moving troops around,facing first this way,then that way-no cohesion,flanks up in the air-all is lost-another hurrah!!

This overhead view captures the spirit of this game,but to give the British commanders their deserved due,they didn't give up too easily,and fought on!!

The end-the square is no more!! only one thing left to do...........................

Hang the war correspondents!!(on my scratch-built gallows!) starting with Melton Prior!!
This was a great game,and actually very closely fought-at one point the Dervish commanders thought that they were beaten!!
Well done to us all,and roll on next Sunday!