Friday, June 21, 2013

Old Glory WW1 Russian Casualties

Occasionally you still find pockets of the Internet that you just can't get any help on. One such challenge was trying to find suitable pictures of Old Glory's WW1 Russian Casualties.

When you click on the US or the UK web site you get the following.

Product ID: WWI-606
Russian Casualties

25mm scale - 10 figures
Price: $16.00
Google Images throw up no pictures..
So here they are...

Dust Tears & Dice bringing you Public Service wargaming.....

The sculpts need a little cleaning up and the faces lack the definintion of more recent manufacturers, but they do produce ranges with great depth.
But painted and based they will fit the bill and blend in nicely with the rest of my Russo-Japanese Collection.

What used to be a frustration has now turned into an obsession, over the years I had seen an increasing trend to move to blister packs of figures rather than single purchases, I understand the commercial reasons for this but there is always the occasion pack where you would get the odd sculpt you did not like or could not use, casualty figures used to be that pose, however since deciding on using these for shock point bases for the Too Fat Lardies rules, I have become a little obsessed seeking out the dead and the dying for all periods.

I found spotted these the other week from Front Rank Figurines, £1.80 a horse ans still available as a single purchase, they will certainly suit all periods.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

The Adventures of Claude Canard - A Sharp Practice Campaign

6 months of the year gone and very few distractions so far (ok so a few figures for Planet of the Apes), time to turn my attention to the Napoleon in Egypt Project.
I get more done with a target to aim for, so with that in mind thought I would kick off a number of linked games using the Too Fat Lardies excellent Sharp Practice Rules.

I recently picked up the supplement from the TFL's The Compleat Fondler a series of 18 linked scenario's based on and inspired by the Sharpe Series, they are a cracking read and full of great scenario's to play through, however lacking the suitable figures and terrain I thought I would "reimagine" the scenario's for the French in Egypt.

I give you the Adventures of Ensign Claude Canard and his Friend and mentor Ensign Côtelettes de Mouton of the French Sloop "Le Vendeen" a paradogy of all things Sharpe and Hornblower.

Ensign Claude Canard of the "Le Vendeen"

Every hero needs a side kick. Ensign Côtelettes de Mouton

Sailing ahead of the French Fleet they land in Egypt and are some of the first Frenchmen to reach land fall....

Who knows what adventures will take place..... 

Coming Soon 
Episode One - "Scaling New Heights" - Canard's First outing.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Brigade Games French Savants.

There is nothing like a gaming deadline to motivate you to get stuff finished, with an Egyptian outing tomorrow, I thought I would get the required Non-Player Characters off the painting table and on to the gaming table.

Once again Brigade Games excellent 28mm line for Napoleon in Egypt.



Thursday, June 13, 2013

Brigade Games French Sailors

Having finished off the last of the Ottoman Cavalry languishing on the paint table recently, it's given me a taste for Egypt again.
I picked these up 12 months ago when they were first released by Brigade games but it's taken a year to get them to the top of the painting queue sculpted by Paul Hicks they are full of Character and perhaps some of his best work, perfect for landing on hostile foreign shores.

The Officers are based on 2 pence piece's to represent Big Men under the Too Fat Lardies, Sharp Practice rules, now for a scenario to use them.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Operation Market Larden - A Day of Lard at Wyvern Wargamers.

Saturday saw the first formal out of the RJW Project at our club event Operation Market Larden, the plan was to have an open day devoted to Richard clarke's excellent Too Fat Lardies rules, the day did not disappoint, over 40 gamers, with 8 different games on offer including the forthcoming Chain of Command hosted by the man himself.

The day had a different feel to some of our previous events such as the Annual Saga event, the attendee's were very much more the "fun" gamer rather than some of the competition players who generally turn out for other events... I expected nothing less given the nature of Rich's rules... 

We have some learn's in terms of the next Lard Day, the Chain of Command rules were hugely popular, so we need to think about how this is balanced out next time.

I was able to put on Two Mud & Blood games during the day hosting two chaps who had made the trip up from from Bristol Steve & Craig. Great to meet fellow gamers who have the same approach to the hobby as we do. Thanks for coming along guys.

Steve's Blog can be found here. Wargaming Addict.

One of our guy's had done an excellent job of scratch building a complete section of trench and some great barrage markers for his WW1 project, but they were perfect for this encouter and an absolute pleasure to fight over.

On to the Action.
Game One.

The Action is set around the Battle of Murken 1905, the very end of the Russian line, the trenches are not extensive, the troops on both sides thinly spread as the main fighting is happening several miles to the West, but someone has to keep the opposition pinned.
Orders are for the Japanese to break into the Trench System in around 2 hours real time.

 The table view from the South, two lines of trenches with wire to their front.

View from the North with high Millet masking the flank and a compound securing the line.


The Blinds are deployed and both sides roll away looking to spot their prey.

The Japanese are spotted and rush forward, having committed 75% of their forces to a strong left hook flanking the Russian positions.

The Russian's line trenches looking to pour fire into the advancing Japanese, figures largely from the excellent Tsuba Miniatures.

The Russian's had checked the Japanese advance placing the bulk of their force to the left of the trench system and supported by a HMG to bolster their defences.

Yet more Russian's fill the rear trench works.

 The Japanese press on, but begin to pick up Shock points as the they press the Russian left. A section deploys in the Millet field pinning the Russian's in their trenches.

The Tree line serves to slow the Japanese attack and despite a number of valiant charges they are unable to break into the Russian lines.

A marginal victory to the Russians.

Game Two

A very different affair the Russian's concerned about the left flank had strengthen it substantially, but were caught cold and coupled with a poor run of cards which restricted their movement were unable to bring their numbers to bear before the Japanese broke into the trenches.

Russian Infantry line the forward trenches.

Once again the Japanese sweep forward, using the additional "Banzi" card which provides them with a bonus move to close with the trench line before the Russians can bring sufficient fire down on them to slow the advance.

The Russian's attempt to rush forward additional forces to cut off this attack, but Friction and Hesitant Troop Cards make the advance a slow process. Reinforcements from Copplestone Castings Back of Beyond Figure range.

The Russian lines split in two.

Japanese in the trenches.

Charging down the trench line they catch the Russian defenders cold who rout form their position as the Japanese have over 4x the attack dice of the defenders.

Having hardly caught their breath and hindered by 6 points of shock they are charged by Chinese Honghuzi Bandits who force them to flee to the rear of the trench system, unable to recover for the rest of the game.

Forced to counter attack their own trench, the Russian's suffer the same fate as the Japanese in the first encounter.

Victory to the Japanese.

A cracking couple of games, unfortunately I fear they have only served to add to the painting backlog as I now have a list of "extra's" needed for the next encounter....

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Wargaming the Nine Years War (1594-1603)

Wow a day's holiday and a chance of an all day game, what's not to like and finally a chance to put out all of the Irish & English for the Plantation Wars.....

But first the History lesson.
The Nine years War began with Hugh Maguire's revolt in Fermanagh, caused by the introduction of an English sheriff into his territory in 1593. Maguire soon found support from his neighbours in Donegal.

The Irish had numerous successes in battle in the early years of the Nine Years War. Maguire defeated the English at the Ford of the Biscuits in Fermanagh named for the English rations seen floating down the river, aid for the Irish came in the form of funds and arms from Catholic Spain, but it was not until 1601 that military assistance finally arrived.

The scenario represents a push by Spanish & Irish forces into County Cork against a small English Force who must hold the road until the end of the game to allow the English to muster their main force off table or at least damage the Anglo Spanish forces for future engagements....
The English are out numbered at least 4:1 but are generally a better quality than the bulk of the Irish forces.

The view from the Irish end of the table, the Spanish & Irish forces must enter on turn one and must clear the road to win the game, the English are hidden and can deploy from the walled enclosure backwards.

With three units of Musket armed trained bands and a detachment of German Heavy Cavalry they will be hard pressed as the Irish and Spanish out number them both in terms of missile troops and Cavalry.

I opted to play English, Turn 1 the Irish advance on to the table on a broad frontage, with Irish Kern on the right wing pushing through the bog towards the hidden English positions, in the centre light cavalry advance up the road, whilst heavily armoured Gallowglas and war dogs push through the orchard. Bloody Hell perhaps I had over done it on the figure front?


The English rise from their hidden positions, I opted for a forward defence allowing me to buy time to fall back hopefully breaking up the Irish advance. With a unit of Calivers lining the stone wall, I let fly a volley causing several casualties in the unarmoured Kern wading through the boggy ground, perhaps this was not going to be as bad after all, 7 Irish losses for no English.


Further back I deployed a unit of Flanders veterans armed with Muskets they carried a longer range and bigger punch than the Calivers and some good dice rolls again took several more Irish from out of the attack.

The Irish light cavalry push forward looking to outflank my advance units, but I counter this by bringing a detachment of Pistol armed Reiters to slow their advance. This heavy cavalry should smash through the javelin armed Irish Cavalry thought I.

The thunder of hooves down the centre track as the more numerous light cavalry look to close with the well armoured German Cavalry, for good measure I unmask my 3rd trained band and shot a number of cavalry from the saddle, that should help allowing me to break through in the centre and get behind the Irish lines.

Having scored several more hits on the Irish for no losses, I decided to pull back the first unit as the Irish and Spanish pushed through the field sacrificing firing for movement.

I unleash the last of my cavalry hoping to split the Irish command, being heavily armoured I gambled on their mobility and firepower, coupled with a saving through on a 3-6 would break the Irish lines. My infantry were falling back being harried by the advancing Spanish and I needed to distract the left wing of the Irish Army.

With the advancing cavalry pressing the centre the Gallowglas head up the high ground safe from the marauding cavalry, which forces me to pull troops from the flank of the Irish cavalry in the road, the chainmail made them a real tough opponent and the few rounds I was able to get off made no real impact on their steady advance.


The cavalry melee in the road ebbed too and flowed, I discharged my pistols as I closed but the Irish threw their spears and scored an unlikely hit killing the lead cavalryman, this was going to be tougher than I planned.
In the centre the Trained Band fell back as musket balls and spears peppered their position and the Anglo-Spanish closed on the centre field. I started to loss Infantry, the losses this turn were equal, I really could not afford that exchange rate.

Two English musketeers are caught at the hedge row, beating off the Spanish buckler men before joining their unit.

The Gallowglas press home their attack on the hill, musket rounds appear to make no difference and the last thing I want is to get caught in a bloody melee when faced with those two handed axes. I throw 3 Captains into the mix to bolster the position, but still the warriors come on. I am getting worried now... 3 Hours in and could I hold out for 2 more hours.

Unwilling to commit my scant resources for a hill outside of the main objective, I fall back leaving the hill in the hands of the Irish.


The trap is sprung, I knew I had released my heavy cavalry a turn to early but not winning the initiative forced me make my move, the heavy cavalry crashed into the War dogs, if I could break through I could turn the flank, but the crafty Irish poured fire into them from the hillside and then to top it all the Gallowglas charged into my flank surround several of the cavalrymen who were brought down under blows from double handed axes.... ouch...

Yet more bad luck and hoots of laugher from my Irish opponent, unable to hold the hedge row, Spanish buckler men and Gallowglas charged into the flank of my cavalry in the road, surrounded and unable to retreat they fell to the swarming attackers. My unarmoured Caliver unit could only look having moved they were unable to fire and stop the massacre. Things were really not going my way now.....

Surrounded by war dogs to their front, chainmail wearing axe welding fanatics to their flank and rear and musketmen lining the stone wall, the remaining cavalry are defeated one man at a time, whilst I could claim that they tied up numerous enemy forces for over an hour in reality the attack was a disaster.

With the trained bands in retreat the Irish Kern begin to flank the English musketmen, Spanish musket fire begins to take it's toll of the unarmoured infantry falling back in the field and 2 more Englishmen fell.


In the centre having defeated my Cavalry attack the Spanish and Irish pushed back the English Calivers towards the final barricades at the cross roads.

The trained band is pinned back against the building and tree line as the spearmen and buckler men closed in on them.

Heavy Irish cavalry swing round threatening my left flank, I have to bring my reserves into play under command of my colonel. I have nothing left to bring into play, it's not looking good for the English.

In the centre Irish charge down the road, with nothing but a few log barricades and the remants of the calviermen to stop them.

On the right flank Irish light cavalry leap the defences and close with the defenders from the hill, I am now under attack from all sides and the day is lost, it's now a fight for pride....

My Colonel heads into the thick of battle cutting down several of the unarmoured Kern and a Spanish Captain.

The Spanish CinC steps forward and enters into a dual with the English lord, what a time to throw a string of ones, my leader is killed, all around him Englishmen are dying and falling back....Good job he was not alive to see it.

A view from on high, out numbered by odds of 5:1 the last of the English are slowly being squeezed on all sides.. Cavalry have broken through my thinly held perimeter Irish Kern are seen crossing the fields the path to Cork is open........

Ok so an Irish victory, once I started to fall back, I lost a significant proportion of fire power which saw the Irish casualties slow and the English mount, killing the kern was easy, but the armoured foot was more of a challenge, perhaps I could have used my cavalry elsewhere to hit and run the advancing Irish, but I gambled on a full blood and guts charge which simply did not pay off.

A cracking days gaming for once played to completion.....
Just the push I need to finish those extra couple of Foundry units sitting on the painting table.

Played using the LOTR rules with a few minor adaptions for the Irish Plantation Wars, figures a mix of Foundry, Gripping Beast, Crusader, Pendraken Miniatures and Sgt Major Miniatures the old Vendal range.