Saturday, 23 September 2017

The road to Brocul Harum 1920

My face was just turning ghostly, as Angus decided to set up a 28mm Back of Beyond - Setting the East Ablaze! game for this Thursday, (Actually it was when he tried to sing like Johnny Cash, that it turned to a whiter shade of pale).
Campbell, Tim and me were defending said road (and village) from Bokhara to Samarkand (as a Muslim League of Bokhari (Campbell), Ottomans (Tim) and some Basmachi (me) against Angus and Bill with a shit load of Bolsheviks (armoured cars, machine guns, armoured train and artillery even from a (surprise surprise!!) later flank attack).

The Reds were coming out of the woods to get the town (village) - that was their objective, as we were out classed, if not even outnumbered (at least with the tokens in the bag) and tactically out-manoeuvered. How despicable, if that has to come within a game set-up and is not properly "earned" through owned initiative and forward thinking in tactical movement ... but my German side is getting away with me ... so true to my nature, I came up with a plan. Campbell commanded at the beginning: "What ever you do, don't charge the machine guns!!!" and well, if our 3rd class cavalry had to die, anyway (quote Tim: "They are shit!") at least they could save us time. So I proposed to let our horses meet the Infantry onslaught, get killed in the process, while our rest of army took position in the houses and defend the city.

It worked. In several brutal actions swords, scimitars and shabbraques flying high in the blodied desert sand, but we stopped the quick access of the Red army - we delayed them, no single house was in their hands at the end of the game!! And even the armoured train or the all of a sudden Thekka and artillery flank attack could not break our grip of the city. What a victory!
What a shame that even unfair set-up condition could not bring victory to a far better equipped and tactically positioned army!! References to possible future conditions are an unveiled attempt to change the victory conditions in retrospect and earn my utmost disrespect. Pfui!

Do not listen to Bolshevik propaganda under:

Watch out for the truth in the following holy pictures:

The Golden Horde ...

My brothers in arms (or comic books)
The Red army approaches!

The Red hordes 
The last image of my brave Riders intact

The flank of the city

The centre

The Thekka flank attack ... surprisingly uneffectful ...

My cavalry beaten but not destroyed!

My other riders unit came from the flank and crossed the railway under machine gun fire!

had to stop infront of the soldiers of the reds

to the shock of my Commander in Chief (off image)

But then it won every single melee -  massacred the Infidels

... just to be wiped out on spot by some cowardly machine gun fire from some communist sailors

even the turn dice were against us (all red moves) the purple one was mine

The iron monster seemed unstoppable

even the turks couldn‘t change that

the situation at the end of the night ...

Thursday, 14 September 2017

1870 Das Ge-Metzel at Stagnantville (battle of Fiesingen)

Me and Angus dived again into the Franco-Prussian War with our 10mm contingent of troops (minis by me and Jack, as we still lack French) by trying out Kevin Calder‘s "Bonnie Blue Flag" set of rules. We just made simple adjustments and kept skirmish simple and reduced the amount of cavalry in this game.

I set up with my 3rd corps v. Alvesleben 12" into the northern edge of the table with the hamlet of "Fiesingen", were as Angus defended the road around Metz and "Stagnantville" with his French corps. To be fair, I outnumbered him to begin with. Progress was slow as we changed inches into centimeter. But my Krupp guns opened up and were hacking breaches in his little maginot line right from the start...

The Krupps out ranged the Frenchies just by 4, which is a bit of a joke, but then the chassepot and needlegun distance wasn't so far away either. We didn't play the large unit rule and didn't invent something for "pinned down" ... so it was all about getting the basic rules into our heads and the flow going.

As half Prussian, I did what was expected, I shot him off the table, as Angus as usual refused to move or attack. Hence he lost first his artillery and then the mitrailleuses. Then the time out (10pm club ends) prevented further massacre on the French side. It was an easy win.

Resumee: I especially liked the idea that the command can flow/replace "hitpoints" to units struck hard by attrition. For the FPW it certainly needs a bit tweaks, but its simple and fast, I can only recommend. The Krupps need just a little bit more range the chassepots a bit more to the needle guns, the Prussians need some extra officers and the artillery needs maybe ammo supply carts. In short – If both players would be able to either temporarily or locally off set their initial handicaps (i.e. the French command was shit, but if the French player could concentrate his dice one one flank for example...) this could be a great game .... five out of five.

For Angus‘ extensive report on the French demise follow the link:

Following some impressions de la guerre,  see below...

Thursday, 31 August 2017

The Ambush at the Brenner 1524

It was about time ... the Kaiser needed reinforcements for the built up towards Pavia, so the Venetian Alpine side became a dangerously stretched supply line for the Imperials. In our little What if scenario the Kaiserlichen had to juggle an artillery train through a mountain gap just when some Venetians arrived to challenge their trespassing. Me and Angus were trying out some Pike&Shotte Rules Plus amends and he in particular wanted to try out his newly Ventetian Rodelerii!!

So each got 2 pike block plus some auxilliari units and guns and The Imperials had to juggle the heavier guns across a 8x6 table or at least two of them!

The start of the battle was slow as usual, my Gendarmes and heavy cavalry didn‘t move for 3 turns! But also Angus decided stage an attack from the north but kept his units out of charge distance.
So I went in with some of my sword and bucklers and Doppel-söldner in reckless small charges, which cost me  5 units in the end ... while Angus Venetians slowly dribbled down the mountain slopes. He actually made a bit of a fuzz as he contested the Rodeleros combat dice ... saying there were just too small to contest a pikeblock on their own ... well he had 2 units of them... maybe we change their  hand2hand value to 4 next time ...
The slowliness of my gendarmes paid out for Angus this time, as they weren't there, when his heavy cavalieri slashed through my stradioti lines and definitively blocked the way out for my gun train.

Well it was late in the evening, but you can argue that, that was it for the imperial guns. Either they would be wasted at a stand off or captured by getting away so - it was a club first – the Venetians had won!!! And beware of the Venetian Rodelerii! Even if Angus didn't thad a chance to try them out this time, I guess he has by now a pretty good idea what they can do to a Pike block.

Figures by me and Angus, mostly Perry's, Foundry and Warlord games, Flags by me or Flags of War or Petes Flags, Terrain By the club, Scenario by me,

The Imperial Landsknechte are finally moving in!
The Artillery train at the beginning ...

The light guns support the blocks!
My light Horse tries to get away from the enemy

The Venetian gun lines are at the northern hills 
The Venetians wait ...
still less movement as I hoped for ...
The blocks are forming 
The guns train covered by the blocks
sneakingly marching  towards the east ...
behind a wall of pikes
The Doppelsöldner  charge 
The Fugger block moves up too
My Spanish Rodeleros hit the Tyrolean pike block ... Angus was not amused 
My Arquebusiers attacked the gun and got traversing fire of the Venetian crossbowmen ... ouch!
Forward with the guns!!! 
Mayhem in the centre!
The Fugger block moves in ...
But then the Venetian Elmeti strike!!!
A last pike charge fails ...

the initial plan
The story set up

The gun train ...

The Venetian  stats with some copy & paste errors

our special rules

The Imperials (with some copy&paste errors)