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Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Well John and I finally fought my SYW battle that has been ready for a week. Due to unforeseen circumstances we couldnt get in last weeks game. Anyway I commanded in the loosest sense of the word my French and Saxons against the Western allies of Brunswick and Hesse commanded by John.
In order to spice things up? I gave John a brigade of Grenadiers with the ability to rally from disorder on a throw of five. To offset that I allowed the French an extra light cavalry regiment and an extra half regiment of light troops. We also placed four objective markers  on the table which contained various victory points but neither of us knew exactly what they were.
I seem to constantly write about my poor dice throws but to be honest they usually balance out through a game. This battle was no different except my command throws were so bad at the start of battle that I was unable to recover from John's ability to position his troops and await my advance.
I was unable to move my brigades for three! moves failing virtually all my command throws even though the commanders were mainly an 8 which is usually pretty good. So the Franco/Saxon advance was erratic to say the least. Move three was especially galling as a threw a double six blunder and watched as my Grenadiers of France and their supports head towards the river and away from where I wanted them.
John decided to keep all his cavalry off table which had me attempting to second guess what he was up to. On my right I managed to throw forward the Polish/Saxon lancers unsupported and watched as they were shot away by John's light troops.The left initially was no better as the Arqubussiers de Grassin simply refused to budge and allowed my poor Saxons get shot up by artillery.

I finally looked like I was making progress as John failed to get his cavalry on the table through poor dice throws and I was able to thrust my centre brigade between his troops.It all looked good for the French after several setbacks.
My attack was then able to wheel left and right to engage John's off balance troops.So far so good.
The beauty of Blackpowder is the 'follow me rule' which can sometimes turn a desperate situation into a winning position. John had managed to get his cavalry onto the table but out of position on his left, meanwhile I had split his centre and just needed to push more troops into the gap. Enter the Duke of Brunswick who had to take command of his cavalry after their brigadier failed his command throw. Brunswick didnt fail and led a 'follow me' onto my flank.So cuirassiers against French line who couldnt even fire at them.

Monday, 11 December 2017

New post on my Renaissance Blog.

 Just the heads up really to say I have posted on my other blog, Wargaming the Borgias regarding my latest pike unit. This time for the French of Francis 1st..

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

New to Battle.

 I've been busy setting up my next wargame. John and I attempt to fight once a week and this week is my turn. So for a change I have decided to use my Western theatre Seven Years War figures ie my Hesse and Brunswick troops.I have kept my Hanoverians off table. Opposing them I have put out a mixed force of French and Saxons.
As I set them up I realised that a lot of the units had never been actually used in a game.The allies [ Hesse etc] were collected, rebased and touched up approximately six years ago but through various circumstances I wont go into, they have sat in boxes unused and unloved.
 Some of the Saxons have only been used once, but my polish light cavalry have never been on a table. Nothing to be proud of really. For some reason the photographs may not be of the best quality.
 The Brunswick contingent are made up of Hinchliffe figures with a small number of Garrison fusiliers. Gilder only ever made a small range of SYW sculpts but they are still lovely figures in my eyes.

 Talking of Hinchliffe. I had a few spare painted odds and sods, so I bought a few extra models to make up a unit of Union.Although the additional casts are small and quite thin, I must admit I enjoyed painting them. Again Gilder sculpted some nice figures that are full of life.They are now a Californian regiment of volunteers.

Thursday, 30 November 2017

The final Union Cavalry regiment.

Well I have completed the third Union cavalry regiment , which completes my brigade. I just need to buy and paint a few more dismounted figures.These are a combination of Perry plastics and Perry metal figures.I have one more rebel cavalry regiment to crack off, and then its just a few filler pieces to complete my ACW project. 

An image of the brigade, looks okay to me, but I dont expect them to be very effective against steady infantry.

I couldn't resist buying the old Hinchliffe signal tower. Once I had understood how it went together it was a pleasure to paint.Peter Gilder was a very clever bloke.

Monday, 27 November 2017

Battleground 2017.

 Well Saturday was the Battleground Wargames Show at Durham University Buildings in Middlesbrough? Which by the way is in Cleveland. I dont know why the University has buildings there either.
   Leon of Pendraken Games took over the running of the show after the closure of the sports building in Stockton on Tees finished off the wonderful wargames show that had been run by Dave Clemmett and Thomas Davidson since the 1980's. It was one of the very first shows that the Independent Wargames Group staged a game in a foolish attempt to entice the non wargaming public to take up the hobby.
 The old Durham club shows were our first, but that is a whole different story and water now under the bridge.
The event at Whitley Bay in 1983 was the first where we received recognition for our efforts and we even got a mention in the Miniature Wargames magazine way back then, which actually meant a lot, but I digress.
 In those early days, like many wargamers of a certain age we were keen to go virtually anywhere to set up our figures and attempt to draw in the public. Naive yes, but it certainly was a great incentive to paint up stuff for each respective show. I think at one stage we averaged five plus shows a year, stretching from Scotland down to West Yorkshire. Not bad for two daft lads from the North East.It cost a lot, in time, physical effort and hard earned cash. But being young we could manage the effort  fairly easily. However over the years the number of shows we 'did' has shrunk to just one a year. Battleground.
 The reason I have touched on this, is that after Battlegound 2017 we have decided to retire from the display circuit and it seemed very fitting that the ACW game would be our last display staged at a show. I was struggling on Saturday and I know John was waddling around like a man with a broken back, so what is normally a great event proved very trying for us and especially John's son,  Neil who had to suffer the whinging of two old gits.Not good.
 So John and I will only attend shows as viewers of other wargamers efforts and hopefully not offer up too much unwanted advice to the wargamers presenting their displays.
Anyway onto the show. Leon has accomplished wonders in resurrecting the Cleveland Show and on Saturday I thought the lad couldn't get it any better, given there is only him and a bit of help I assume from a small group of friends. Good directions, good venue, free parking, free entry, and free tea to all contributors. The lad done really good. Bigger show organisers should come and see how to do things with no fuss. What was particularly noticeable was the large number of historically based wargames, and not a zombie in sight.
 John and his son Neil, very kindly let me display the ACW armies that I have been painting up these last 14 months.They were originally going to stage an ACW using John's brilliant 10mm figures but agreed to up scale the display. The actual event was very busy and I think the numbers will be well up on last year. There certainly seemed to be a lot of young people and their dads. I was especially impressed by the talk I had with two young teenagers about Plastic Perry figures. The pair were as keen as mustard about the collection they were putting together.If they hadn't been nearly six feet tall and articulate they would have reminded me of me.
 Usually I get to take photographs of all the historical games at a show but it just didnt happen for various reasons and I can only apologise. I do know Neil of the Hunwickian Blog took some great images and I am certain he will put them on his blog.
We were next to Andy Callan who had produced another set of rules, this time for 18th century sieges. This time he was using Spencer Smith figures and his two sides of rules. I was kindly given a set of them by Andy and I know they will be innovative and fun. I wish he would take the trouble to write a couple of articles for the wargaming magazines, God knows they need some inspirational wargaming material.
   It looks like ACW is the flavour of the wargames season with three games on show at Battleground. Shaun Lowery and the Durham Wargames Group who was near us staged a Port Republic 28mm game with figures from his beautiful collection and using Johnny Reb rules.
 Dave Docherty and his posse staged a 10mm ACW game with some beautifully painted figures, but again I can only apologise that I didnt take any photographs. I did get over to the Westerhope Lads, and I use this term very loosely given their respective ages, to see their Clive in India game. It was a lovely game and John had done his usual search through the skips of Newcastle to find other peoples property to enhance their display.
It was good to meet and talk with a number of wargamers that I only bump into at shows and it was especially nice to talk to Charlie Wesencraft who looks ever younger every time we meet.
  So I can only apologise again for the dearth of images, but hope Neil downloads his stuff.
Anyway may I thoroughly recommend the Battleground show to any wargamer who wants a stress free day out. And its free you know.

'So that's all we've got time for, so its Goodnight from me , and its Goodnight from him............Goodnight.'

Thursday, 23 November 2017

A new green Union regiment completed for Saturday.

 One thing I always enjoyed about putting on a game at a wargames show was the pressure to complete some unit that would be needed on the day. Invariably it's never needed but it does get one working. Anyway I knocked off this Union regiment to debut on Saturday. Given the newness of them I expect they will run away at the first sniff of combat. They can however use the bits of new road that I have been working on.

In between making some pieces of road, and painting these chaps I 'found' some spare renaissance figures that I never used on my Italian Wars project. I have posted a few images on my other blog.

My 6mm Napoleonic set up.

My 6mm Napoleonic set up.
Austria 1809.

Austrian Hussars

Austrian Hussars
Hinchliffe figures

Austrian Grenzer

Austrian Grenzer
Austrian Grenzer

Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2013
Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2012

Smoggycon 2012
Smoggycon 2012

Smoogycon 2009

Smoogycon 2009
My French getting another beating