Category Archives: savage swans

Framlingham 2018 Day 2

After the Russian/Allied setback on Day 1 we decided we all wanted to play another game on the Sunday so we jiggled the terrain and had the British/Allied forces pushing out and attacking the Russian forces. We drew lots for opponents but kept the same forces as the day before. I drew Iain (Essex Boy) as my opponent.. which I knew would result in an ‘entertaining’ game… In an attempt to prevent the usual ruinous cavalry events he is famous for, this time he brought an entirely infantry force to the game made up of two brigades: the Erbprinz (Spencer Smith Little Britons) and the Dystopia National Guard (lovely little figures sculpted, cast and painted by himself) along with a machine gun and a field piece.

After removing a few walls that is was decided would too generously aid an all infantry force, we deployed. My Savage Swans had as captives two Boy Scouts and the unofficial objective of the game was for Iain to recapture them.

My forces deployed at the baseline
And advancing rapidly to gain the centre and some cover
While Iain’s troops did the same with the Erbprinz heading for the cover of the wall

The battle was really in two halves – physically and emotionally! But the events and outcome were strongly shaped by random weather events which from early on saw all units reduced to half movement due to mud and several periods where visibility was so reduced it was impossible for most troops to see anything to shoot at. My rapid advance on the left stalled and Iain was able to make the hedge first. He then let loose multiple withering volleys the vast majority of which I saved! I was then able to deploy and return fire and drove off one unit quickly. 

The Swans and Altefritzenburgers advance rapidly
First casualties
The Swans take fire both from the front and the distance field gun
But one unit is driven back from the hedge

In the centre I pushed forward both Jaegers and these were to do sterling work peppering the advancing troops and holding them back. The Russian Jaegers found alcohol in the nearby house and become very drunk but still fought on until the remaining officer charged the enemy, pistol in one hand and broken bottle in the other, to die a heroes death!

The Jaegers harass the enemy
The devastation on the left
The enraged Jaeger officer having a “are you looking at me?” moment!

On the right, things were not going well for the cavalry. With the Erbprinz advancing valiantly into the fray (or hiding behind a big wall as some would call it…) there was little point in a frontal attack. And getting too close put them at risk from the gun, and staying back allowed the gun and troops to shoot across at the other troops. And when the movement was reduced to half there was no way they could redeploy to the left, and advancing was slow and left them exposed for too long. After a lot of effort I finally got both heavy units brigaded again only for a random Boy Scout to offer to lead them around the flank only to abandon them in a walled enclosure further to the rear! Although the Cuirassiers and the Cossacks tried to advance they were shot to pieces before getting anywhere near the halved charge range! Finally, they and the Naval Battalion in the centre started to withdraw having already lost the machine gun.

Erbprinz hiding…
The mightily confused and lead astray heavy cavalry
The attempted advance against the Erbprinz who had bravely stepped over the wall…
Driven back

While Jaegers died valiantly in the centre and cavalry were frustrated by mud and Boy Scouts on the right the Altefritzenburgers and Swans fought on! Despite exchanging volleys and saving well the extra cover from the hedge was to tell and finally the Altefritzenburgers, reduced to half, fell back in disarray!

Exchanging volleys
Driven from the field!

The Swans on the other hand fought valiantly! As they approached they took fire from front and side and in the fusillade of lead the CO, Oberstmajor Johann Patrick von Donovan, was struck down and severely wounded! This did not stop them pressing on and exchanging fire! But casualties mounted and they stopped at the hedge line and fought and died to a man! Hugely outgunned and outnumbered it was a valiant stand! They left a trail of dead behind them.

The end is near
Casualties mount
The Boy Scouts stand bewildered amongst the dead!
The trail of dead viewed by the seriously wounded von Donovan as he crawls from the field

The Boy Scouts were then taken into the uncertain care of the Erbprinz regiment and the battle was over!

It was an excellent game and it’s always great fun playing Iain, even if he does argue lots! 🙂 I just didn’t have the infantry to fight what was basically an infantry battle and when I could have used the cavalry to at least hold and threaten, the mud made getting them anywhere impossible. Iain had some shocking dice at times but also some convenient brigade activations at crucial times. But overall it balanced out. The card systems works well and is fun. There was some concern that as a force reduces in size those few units can sometimes get multiple activations in succession and zip around a lot. But nothing happened that detracted from the overall fun! I’ll be buying the rules when they are released. 

Thanks again to Tim H and Simon T for all the setup work and all the guys for making it a fun weekend both on the table and in the evenings. And also to Paul for giving me a lift which made the whole trip possible.

I might need some more Shiny toys…

And here’s a small gallery with all the pics and a few at the end from other games.

20181014_102634

Image 1 of 41

 

And Simon took a load of pics as well which you can see on the LAW forum. His iPad seemed to take much better photos!

http://www.looseasswargamers.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=400

http://www.looseasswargamers.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=401

 

 

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We need bigger Swans!

Needless to say, for the coming 42mm Shiny game this weekend, I needed to do the Savage Swans in yet another scale! I’d done them in their C19th FPW’ish incarnation for previous Ayton games so it seemed sensible to do the same sort of figure for the 42mm versions. I used the same Spencer Smith STS Prussian marching figure. I do find this a bit of a pain to paint because of all the extra equipment and may see if there is a similar figure I could use with less… And for the Swans I went for the head with the plume! So, here are the Swans! Again… And commanded by Oberstmajor Johann Patrick von Donovan.

I needed to add a scabbard for him and used some thin card to make the straps for it. Then soaked them in super glue to harden them.

So we have the final little contingent for the game. Only two units of foot and some Jaeger but nice to get something done for it.

There will be pics of the game after the weekend. It’s going to look very lovely and shiny!

 

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ShedCon 2018 – Grays

Despite a knackered foot and hobbling around I made the trip down to the home of Iain Burt (Essex Boy) in Grays for a 20mm WSS game to christen his shed! 

The shed is outstanding. Plenty of room for an 8’x5′ table and six of us around it. Lots of storage at one end and under table. The table is great, can be reduced in size to 6’x5′ if needed and was all built by Iain himself. The raised edge has hills and sky painted on to aid with taking nice pictures! I arrived Friday afternoon and although Iain has been planning an preparing this game for over six months I was roped into painting the bases in trees and later he was finishing basing figures! But the plan in the day was to get up early and at 8am go into the shed to lay out the table. That shouldn’t  take long should it? I knew he has some painted blankets so just throw those down and lay out the terrain on top? Not Iain… 

First a layer of 1″ polystyrene laid down followed by a double layer of compressed underfloor insulation sheets….

The river sections were then laid out and the course marked and the whole thing cut out of the insulation board to create a recess.

The blankets were then laid down, tucked under the boards and locked in by the edges and pressed into the recess to allow  the river to sit in that with matching blanket material to blend it in. A LOT of work but it really looked good.

Now the roads. These were made for the game and just needed laying out as planned as they only fitted one way. Half an hour late after looking at pictures and ‘trimming’ a few bits they finally all fitted! 🙂

A few buildings and fields and a LOT of trees added and we had the final table. Well worth the effort. The trees especially looked the part.

The scenario was a simple one. Myself and Dave Hall were defending the road junctions. Five wagons were placed at road entry points (mostly on the far side) and at end of game the other side (Simon, Gary and Tim) had to have clear roads to exit at least three of the wagons off their side of the table. As long as we had a unit that could charge the road along a route then it was blocked. We started with four infantry brigades deployed anywhere two feet away from the three ‘enemy’ sides of the table. They started with five brigades coming on at table edges. Other brigades (cavalry and infantry) were fed in to either side as Iain saw fit. Rules were based on Rank and File with a few mods from Iain.

I’ll post all the pics in a gallery but a few here to describe the key events of the game. I was defending the right against Simon with a Yomper brigade (it’s the name we give to the figure!) which included the Savage Swans and the Alterfritzenburg brigade was deployed centrally to cover against a central attack by Tim. 

Dave had the tougher job of defending the left village and centre against a determined Gary and Tim.

The battle around the village was savage with Gary having to battle through angry townsfolk and then unit after unit being thrown back before, after pushing and pushing, Dave was thrown back. Although, the road was almost open Dave was able to put up a final line of defence and with a unit of cuirassier in support still controlled the crucial junction.

In the centre Tim had a tough task. Both myself and Dave had brigades blocking his way and the impassable woods made it hard to make numbers tell as he tried to cross the river and bring his force to bear. Two gun batteries caused casualties even at distance and as both were often able to converge on one unit it made progress slow. However, as the flanks came under more pressure and unit had to be moved in support the defence in the centre weakened and with a little more time the defence would have collapsed. However, time was on the side of the defenders!

My battle was to be a grinding affair on the right to seize control of the road. After Simon’s initial attack stalled he withdrew to control the road. As his cavalry came on some went up into the woods to battle with some stubborn local militia. As his force consolidated its defence it became clear I would need to advance and contest the road as if we did lose the other flank then we could not afford to give an easy ‘point’ away here. So my first brigade advanced and the ensuing firefights did not go well for me. Supporting dragoons and cuirassiers came up and the dragoons charged into the face of multiple battalions and guns and did not fair well! The supporting cavalry did push back Simon’s line but they too were eventually thrown back. The Savage Swans were the only unit of the brigade to survive and as supporting units of Altefritzenburgers, battered from their own battles, came up in support it was clear that here too the defenders still contested the road. 

So, as the day drew to a close it was decide the defenders had done their duty and held the roads! It was a great game. The rules worked well. Each unit rolled for quality as they took their first test. I ended up with quite a few green troops! We used low ammunition rolls which restricted the power of guns a little. And the various markers and flags that Iain produced made the game flow really well. Equally the good company and their approach to the game did likewise. A pleasure to play with the chaps again! Here we all are: Iain Burt, Simon Tonkiss, Andy McMaster, Dave Hall, Gary Phillips and Tim Hall.

It was a pleasure to play with Iain and Gary’s collections and to christen the new shed in such fine a manner. Many thanks to Iain for all the work put in.

And as a final note, I spent the Sunday helping Iain buy a new PC and then setting it all up for him. I was rather shocked when I saw the PC it was replacing! I don’t think I’ve seen a monitor that small for nearly ten years!

Thanks for looking. All the images from the day are at: ShedCon 2018 Gallery

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As Ayton looms…

…I’m finally cracking on with the figures needed. To add to the crossbowmen I finished a few weeks ago I’ve added 12 more Foot Sergeants (though they may end up as Yeoman!) and 6 Foot Men at Arms. All are Conquest Normans. And as I’m retaining the Savage Swans theme the tough chaps get the usual colour scheme! I’ve got another 12 foot and 6 mounted half done. Hope to get them finished by Friday. Then may attempt some more!

Ayton always provides a good focus for painting. If only I could realise that a few weeks earlier….

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Von Don Corp. Air Support

Many moons ago (2011!!) I decided to re-use some random 1/300 SF models to recreate the Savage Swans (my ImagiNation force which started in the C18th) as the military arm of VonDon Corporation (von Donovan being the family name of the original commander of the Swans) and relocate them to the not too distant future! http://blog.belisarius.org.uk/2011/09/fubar-vondon-corp-complete.html Although I re-painted a Red Dwarf Starbug as a basic transport vessel I’ve never added any combat craft… until now…

Although I’ve been focused on X-Wing the last week I’ve also prepped a few things to paint for a little LAW painting challenge and for Ayton. And as I’ve been prepping stuff for use in Horizon Wars I thought I’d paint a few ships that I got off my mate Slugbalancer a few years ago! These are from an old Star War range that I’ve not really seen anywhere else but found this pic online:

So as I wanted these for VonDon Corp. they needed to be in the standard buff and green colour scheme. I’d forgotten I did the other stuff green and then added the buff but the other way round seems to work OK as well. So here we have the VDC Combat Air Support.

One Ganymede Fighter and two Burt Assault Support Ships (know by the troops as the Burt Big Ass).

Quite pleased with them really. Wasn’t sure how to do the canopy glass but it doesn’t look too bad painted. The planned X-Wing tonight didn’t happen. Party as the lad was a total nightmare this morning so we are each in each others bad books, and partly he had a friend over to play.May have to wait until the weekend now…

A

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