Category Archives: AAR

Battleground 2016

Today I hired a little car and took myself down to Stockton-on-Tees for Battleground 2016, organised by Pendraken Miniatures.  This is the last show of the year for me and always a nice little event. The venue is easy to get to, lots of parking, cafe nearby, and a good size hall with good lighting. It’s a well organised and well publicised event with a good selection of traders, a good few participation games and some nice demo games. There is the now common TableTop sale area which seems to work well, although you have to grab the bargains when you see them because if you nip for a coffee and then pop back there’s a chance the guy will have finished his slot and taken his stuff away! Missed a couple books that way today…

So, before we get to the purchases (which were few) here’s some pics of some of the games. A plus point for the show is that each table has a large clear sign saying who is playing what on each table. Other shows take note! 

First up were Stafford and District Wargamers with a 10mm take on part of the battle of Ramilles. Nicely put together.20161126_110209 20161126_110228 20161126_110244Then we had a long game of the Battle of Skalitz from the 1866 Austro-Prussian War. Some very nice figures on the table but I felt the cloth shade of green was a little too green, though I admit it was probably the easiest solution for what was a big area to cover. By Durham Wargames. 20161126_110319 20161126_110636 20161126_110648 20161126_110717And again my local club, Tyneside Wargamers, had their big take (with little figures) on Cannae. Lots and lots of 10mm. 20161126_110755 20161126_110807 20161126_110816The Border Reivers put on their usual excellent display with a WW2 ‘Cross of Iron’ game.20161126_111730 20161126_111745 20161126_111757 20161126_111806Along from them was some excellent WW1 terrain from Generals and Kings. Very nice…20161126_111822 20161126_111837 20161126_111856 20161126_111903There were a good few participation games which seemed to attract attention throughout the day.20161126_111929And I still have no idea what the cup cake game was about!20161126_111944Simon Miller’s To The Strongest rules put in an appearance via the Old Guard Wargames Group. Very nicely presented 28mm figures.20161126_112016 20161126_112031 20161126_112048This was one of the more interesting games. Iacta Alea Est presented Jutland using the old Avalon Hill game of the same name. Had a nice and well informed chat with one of the guys running it. Meant to pop back to see how it turned out but never got chance. 20161126_112106 20161126_112349Redcar Ironbeards presented a Rapid Fire East Front game, Capture the Port.20161126_112401 20161126_112416 20161126_112433Rather nice little 10mm Sudan game from Independent Wargames Group – Blood on the Nile. I really must make a start on my 10mm Sudan!20161126_112504 20161126_112517 20161126_112528 20161126_112537 20161126_112542Then we had a very good looking Black Powder ACW game again from the Independent Wargames chaps. Really nice figures. And in my current favoured period.20161126_112559 20161126_112623 20161126_112632 20161126_112647And finally the Brompton Bankers had their excellent Toy Town Wars. Really cute stuff!20161126_113002 20161126_113018 20161126_113035 20161126_113103

There were a number of other particpation games I didn’t manager to snap but the full details are on the show website here.

I thoroughly enjoyed the day. Met up with Simon T (Goat Major) who was looking slightly battered! And chatted with various people thoughout the day. Yet again the Pendraken chaps are to be congratulated on a well presented show. I trust the number and trade made it all worthwhile for all concerned.

I have to be honest and say I didn’t REALLY need to buy anything at the show. Have plenty of recent odds and ends to keep me busy! I did spot a couple of books on Ironclads in the Table Top Sale but missed them. So I grabbed a couple of packs of MDF round bases and was happy to call it a day. Then Graham at Crann Tara dug out the boxes of 6mm SF he wanted to sell. So I grabbed the painted chaps for a good price and am negotiating for the big pile of unpainted! It’s all Dark Realm stuff which fits with lots of what I already have. Needless to say it needs rebasing!

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This might encourage me to finally finish and USE my 6mm SF!

A good day…

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Framlingham 2016 – Day Two

Day Two (Sunday) saw Tims H and W, Peeler and EB dabbling with 54mm SF which looked most enjoyable:

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The rest of us took part in a brilliant early C19th Colonial ImagiNation game put on by Paul Bright. The table looked excellent and Paul must be commended for such a pretty game. His own excellent collection was supplemented by the equally lovely figures of Tim H, Simon and Dave. You could not have wished for a better looking game!

20161016_104756The rules used were Shout Boys Shout which are Paul’s own. They are card activated and nice and simple to use and kept the game ticking along nicely. Although the six of us were broadly organised three a side, each contingent had its own secret little agenda! I’m sure the others will pop in to tell their own stories but mine was to be yet another tale of Woes and Ones! My three units of ‘native’ troops were supplemented by some regular light infantry.

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Moving round and through the difficult terrain made it difficult to coordinate the attacks against Simon’s regulars and the first unit did not do well.

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With their charge to contact stalled due to the cards and the regulars getting a couple of activations on the trot, things did not end well!

The next units again struggled to get forward without being picked off at distance but did at least make contact before dying!

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I was finally able to get two more units engaged but the dice did not go well and despite a longer than expected battle, they too died!

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My light troops took a little longer to get in to action but finally got to attack troops in one of the huts.

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Despite finally help wipe out the occupants they were then unable to get into the hut before Simon’s troops re-occupied it and were finally beaten back and forced to rout… Having lost my native units already this left me with no troops on the table! I did roll a LOT of ones though…

Meanwhile, Alex suffered greatly from Gary’s natives who kept popping up out of the jungle and wreaking havoc! He was eventually to join me with no troops left on the table!

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Dave had plenty to contend with with Paul’s chaps attacking. Even though wiping out the cavalry he spent many turns battling with the natives.

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He also had to deal with the backstabbing from Simon as he tried to escort a prisoner which Simon was tasked with freeing. This resulted in the escort being attacked and surrounded by three units. They fought valiantly for a good number of turns before finally surrendering.

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With the perimeter secured, the prisoner taken and very little enemy left Simon was just left to escort his chap off table to secure victory!

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Gary was also to claim a victory by having wiped out ALL the redcoats! The less said about  the result for me, Alex and Dave the better…

The whole game was great fun and looked bloody brilliant!

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Thanks again to Paul. A great game. Lots more pics in the Fram 2016 Day 2 gallery.

And a great weekend. Tim H did us proud again. The usual good LAW gathering!

I MAY have picked up some assorted ACW related lead but more on that in another post!

 

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Framlingham 2016 – Day One

Another LAW gathering. This time in Framlingham, Suffolk (again) and ably organised by Tim Hall. Ten of us gathered for a most excellent weekend of gaming. Day One, Saturday, saw The Two Tim’s hosting a 54mm FIW game using Tim H’s lovely collection.

20161015_113719 20161015_113728 20161015_113736 20161015_140209 20161015_140221 20161015_140236It did, as ever look excellent. I believe the game was played twice with the victory shared.

The other six of us (Gary, Alex, Dave, Simon, Peeler and myself) partook of a large DBN game of Vitoria. I’ve played DBN a couple of times before and rather enjoyed it. I do have this minor craving to do the bases using 3mm figures rather than 15mm but I have to concur that once the game is underway the scale of figures becomes irrelevant. The rules give a good, fast moving game that FEELS like a battle.

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The French were deployed historically, myself taking the role of Gazan. Peeler was overall CinC and Simon took the role of Reille(?). The decision was really how long to try and hold Wellington/Hill on the left before the bridges were forced to the North.

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I tried to pull back gracefully but the dice were not kind and my sacrificial units, although fully embracing their sacrifice role, died a little too quickly!

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Rather carelessly (and assuming a modicum of honourable behaviour from the British) I left Gazan a little exposed while cordinating the withrawal and a battery of horse artillery rode up and poured canister into the poor chap!

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This rather impeded my plans and allowed the British to push forward. I still managed to get my troops back to the designated line of resistance.

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However this was not without cost….

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Meanwhile, Peeler and Simon were battling valiantly to defend the bridges and although inflicting heavy losses the crossings were forced.

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The game was to last 22 turns and in that time the loss of 22 French stands would spell defeat. Come turn 20 a sequence of rather bad rolls by Peeler saw a quick succession of losses. This was to prove too much on top of the losses of Gazan’s Corps and victory went to the Allies despite the French being well placed for a last stand!

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It was good fun. I did roll a lot of 1s and lost a lot of combats that should have lasted a turn or two more. But in the end, the excessive losses from the retreat, and the loss of Gazan was the decider. So close…

Thanks go to Alex for the scenario and ‘running’ the game and to Peeler for creating the excellent table! An excellent day! All the pictures are in this gallery: Framlingham Day 1

 

 

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Fire and Fury in the Attic – Part 2

I’ll assume the Union are attacking Southwards! Union start. Ward’s Division begins a slow crossing of the eastern ford.

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While Berdan’s Division marches rapidly up the road and across the main ford.20160723_125149

Meanwhile the rebel division to the west pushes forward into the valley.

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And the rest of the CSA struggle to cross the hills in their path.

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Ward finally pushes foreward into the fields, still a little uncoordinated but the delays in the Confederate advance give them time.

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Berdan advances rapidly but struggles to deploy his brigades as the rebels rapidly approach. The Corps artillery has been deployed on the high ground to cover the attack

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And the two batteries take their toll on the advancing troops.

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Berdan still struggles to deploy…20160723_131844

However, Bentley and Ward have now crossed into the fields and deployed to await the attack.

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Berdan deploys just in time to face the first charge!

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And against the odds throws back the rebel assault!

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Meanwhile in the centre the rebel attack is taking time to develop so Bentley and Ward push forward to bring the battle to them.

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Berdan manages to bring his third brigade in to support the line as more rebels line up to attack.

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And Ward’s brigades destroy the first rebel brigade to attack, sending them reeling to the rear!

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The flank is now clear to allow Ward to swing round as the rest of the Confederate division to engage Bentley’s green brigades

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Four brigades are in action with the rebel experience surely to carry the day?

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But no! The enthusiasm of the new troops throws back the rebel brigades is disarray! (Blame my daughter who was throwing the dice at this point!)

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The victorious troops prepare to advance!

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Meanwhile, on the other flank, Berdan’s division is now fully engaged!

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But disruption and low ammo are taking their toll.20160723_150515

And the Union line, despite support from the batteries to their rear, is pushed back…

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And the rebels prepare to go in again.

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And with Bentley pursuing the enemy in the woods, Ward divides his division and sends a brigade to threaten the rebel attack on their right.20160723_184148

Berdan’s line begins to weaken as another brigade descends from the hills.

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Will support arrive in time?

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The final assault takes place as the rebels bring forward fresh brigades from their rear support.

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And in the centre the green troops realise that the enemy they threw back are not defeated!

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The end is near for Berdan. His left and central brigades flee the field (my daughter rolling 9s and 10s!)

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And the breakthrough charge hitting the remaining badly weakened brigade that Berdan himself is trying to stiffen! But to no avail as that brigade too is thrown back with Berdan and many troops captured.

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And the victorous rebels push across the stream to threaten the batteries to the rear.

20160723_191426At this point there was a bit of a lull as life got in the way again. The collapse of the Union right seemed to negate their victory on the left and left the potential for the victorious Rebel brigades to turn and descend on the rear of the forward troops. However, this would be under the fire of the Union guns. It really depended on the two Union brigades destroying the Rebel brigade on their left.  So it seemed prudent to try a couple more turns.

Ward’s lead brigade descended on the rebel flank and the large green brigades attacked frontally. The rebel fire was ineffectual and in the ensuing combat the Confederates were swept from the field with heavy loss!

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The left flank of the Union flank was victorious!20160727_135006

It was now the turn of the other Rebel brigades to take fire from the Union guns and they suffered badly with two brigades stopped in their tracks one fleeing the field.

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The victorious Union troops now turned to face the disrupted Rebel line…20160727_140225

And the Union Corps commander managed to rally one of the routed brigades and bring them back up under cover of their guns. 20160727_140242

And the final positions saw the disrupted Rebels facing relatively fresh troops and increased fire from the massed guns to their now rear. I decide at this point they would concede the field while they still had a chance to escape!20160727_140250So that was it. A game at last! I’m not sure I got everything right with Fire and Fury. I kept it simple in terms of troops types and lining up combats. The D10 range had some important effects, especially at the end for the Confederates who were unable to re-deploy to avoid the guns and face the coming threats. The Union on the other hand had the resounding victory on their left and were able re-deploy and rally when needed.

The Rebs who collapsed on the left were the newest troops in my ranks – previously belonging to Essex Boy! – and in the fine wargames tradition of new troops they ran well!

I think I may re-do the table and have at it again!

A

 

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Fire and Fury in the attic – Part 1

First a little background. I’ve wanted to set up a game at home for quite a long time but getting my game top clear has proved a problem. As well as deciding WHAT to play. Usually the delay in the latter results in the former getting cluttered again and then months pass by. Again… This time however I cleared the top, laid out my Mat-o-War and after settling on a 15mm game I dug out the bits of scenery I have and laid them out… I then decided I was missing essential stuff so bought more roads, hills and based up trees I had (see my last post) . Although I had originally planned to field my 15mm AWI forces the enjoyable game of Fire and Fury at the Whitley Bay club on Tuesday settled me on rolling out my 15mm ACW armies.

These armies have travelled a little. MANY moons ago I went up to the Claymore Show with the Tyneside Wargames Club and on the Bring and Buy there was a largish 15mm Minifigs Union army. This was 2nd Generation Minifigs. Plainly but neatly painted and based for Fire and Fury. I wish the CSA army had been there as well! It was however entirely infantry and artillery. I assume someone else grabbed the cavalry. There was unpainted stuff as well and I planned to paint this as CSA. Inevitably it never happened as I had just met my now wife and was slightly distracted! I eventually gave up and sold the army for £50 to my mate Billy in Birmingham. Roll forward a good few years and I fancied trying ACW again as Sam Mustafa’s Longstreet had just come out. I asked to buy it back. In the meantime Billy has added a decent CSA force to it and a copy of Fire and Fury rules. He generously sold me the lot for £50 on the understanding that if I ever decide to part with it again I had first to offer it all to him. For £50! Which was fair!

As ever, nothing much happened but as part of the Analogue Painting Challenge in 2014 I decided to paint some of the cavalry as the Union will still missing these. These came out quite well but I never did any more!

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And a couple of month ago Essex Boy sold me his few painted Confederate troops which I immediately re-based for Fire and Fury.

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And so we come to today. As I’m still fairly new to the rules I wanted a simple game and rather than try and pick a ‘real’ scenario a little Googling led me to an old Fire and Fury page which had pre-generated armies for use in competitions. I just chose two corps that had no cavalry and rolled the random events they suggested. This gave me two forces with a few Exceptional commanders.

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So I plonked the lot on either side of the table with little thought as to who was facing who.

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The Union are on the right and will be crossing the stream at the two fording points and with a bit more effort at the point near the righthand woods. The CSA are deployed to the left. I decided to make the upper levels of the hills rough terrain which I thought would offset any delays with the Union crossing the water.

We shall see what happened in the next post!

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