Tuesday 28 December 2021

Operation Turkey Dinner

 It is now a tradition that the Old Guard get together between Christmas and New Year to play a massive game. Over the last 12 months Dave and I have assembled significant Vietnam war collections mainly Empress and Gringos40 figures (both are fab).

So we planned Operation Turkey dinner with a USMC search and destroy mission to attack the village of Cho Mi (American Dog!)

The 3D hex map of the table (love my 3D hexes) THe USMC had an APC mounted platoon (James ran the vehicles and Ian the transported grunts) which would enter from the East. Angus commanded a 4 Huey strong helicopter wing, with Stig commanding the ferried troops. John has 2 sections of LRRP that would start on the map almost anywhere he wanted outside the village. He placed a section on each hill in the centre out of support of eachother. Wonder how this would work? We placed tiddlywinks in each hex (approx) and these would be reveal events when reached - both good and bad things. The 5 commanders had to collect points for killing VC/NVA, finding weapons caches and intel and war photographers could take glory shots for more points

East end of the table with Hueys

Middle table sowing the 2 low hills

Village of Cho Mi

THe whole 17ft

The 1st Huey lands on the northern most LZ and disembarks its marines, underfire from HMG AAA

John's LRRP section on the Northern hill are hard pressed with NVA and later VC emerginging from tunnels underneath the battlefield. I made some 3D tunnel networks in file boxes but forgot to photo them. James and Ian explored a couple and found a weapons cache and captured a VC officer and intel

The LRRP to the south are having a much easier times

As the APC platoon advances slowly a platoon of VC emerge from the jungle but a Skyhawk swoops in and annihilated them

Back at the LZ a Huey is downed by an RPG as it takes off

Immediately infront of the LZ John's section was surrounded and in desperation called in an artillery strike at Danger Close. This landed on his position but also wiped out several of the attacking NVA. It wasn't enough and the section was wiped out with the injured survivors captured and taken away by VC

THe marines are advancing from the LZ and have taken the hill, too late to save John's section

The APC platoon have reached the LZ and continue their advance

The Americans have reached the village and the Skyhawk is clearing the path.

John's LRRP section and James/Ians Gage Commander make the centre and the battle was over.

Fantastic days play, the scenario and rules worked really well and the 5 commanders worked well together, occasionally.

Tuesday 23 November 2021

2nd Lieb Husaren (Automata)

 Over the last few years I have built up a decent steampunk Prussian female force, mainly the now defunct Hinterland and Bad Squiddo with a few randoms. I recently purchased some cavalry from Bad Squiddo to expand the force. I present to you the 2nd Lieb Husaren (automata)

The 6 women unit are dressed in Prussian blue and ride pure white chargers

I say chargers but they are clockwork unicycle carousel unicorns, when else could a teutonic maiden need

The are part of the force commanded by the real life Princess Viktoria-Luise, who was made colonel in chief of the 2nd Lieb Husaren in 1909 

This unit is commanded by Duchess Greta von Prusen, lifelong friend of the Princess. She is never seen without a cup of black coffee in a china cup.

Enough of this madness. It was the Bttleground show at the weekend and I had a great time, but took no photos. The hall was fairly full, 500 attendees compared to the normal 600 and about 75% of the normal traders. I spend a fortune (I bought something from most traders), most of which has been passed to my family to give back to me a Christmas.

I did by a blister of WW2 US infantry from the bring and buy. One of the US figs looked like he belonged in Vietnam, so I painted him up accrdingly as a special forces chap.
Most of the stuff that didn't go to my family is being prepped for the challenge, which this year has a sci-fi theme. This is lucky as I have a collection of sci-fi types to paint.

Sunday 14 November 2021

A New Project

 It's been a month since my last post and I've not really been in the mood to post. I have, however done loads of stuff. I played a couple of games, another 7YW epic with Matt and a Bolt Action cold war gone hot battle of my US armoured infantry platoon vs Ian's Russians.

The 7YW battle was great, we are getting better at the rules and controlling our vast armies. This was the battle of Koln and once again I was the Austrians. 

This picture is jsut a teaser and Matt's full write up can be found here. As you can tell still not really in the mood for writing.

The 2nd battle against Ian was fun. THe main issue with Bolt action is tat tanks are very hard to kill, generally you need 3 consecutive 5+ rolls to take out a tank. In the 1st battle, sorry no pictures, I killed both his T34s in the 1st turn! So we set up again and once more the tanks died easily but this one was closer, another victory for me.

The painting challenge is approaching and I have been restocking the lead pile. This challenge will focus on Sci fi and fantasy for a change. With that in mind I have started collecting and painting a Lizardman army using 3-D printed resin figures from Sundered Studios., the figures are exceptionally good. I've made a start

Albertosaurus with howdah. The dinosaur is from the Honourable Lead Boiler Suit Company and is great. It's a big unit, although not strickly in the force list for KoW or Warhammer, but then again I don't care. 

Unit of Skink blowpipers. I bought the figures in 32mm scale to give them a bit of size and these are same size as 28mm humans. Painted these in blue, obviously and they were a joy I've got some Stellar Warriors and they are massive.

Skink general on nanotyranosaur (Honourable Lead Boiler Suit)

Unit and a third of skink javelins, again a joy to paint. These are based on my magnetic sabot bases for KoW.
The army is about 1/3 it's final size and I will buy some Wargames Atlantic to see how they compare.

Finally it's been a sad couple of weeks with the untimely death of Scotty. His funeral was last week and he was buried in his 1879 British army officiers uniform, always appropriate for a man who got married at Whitby Goth weekend.
Dave has been tasked with sorting out his collection for Julie, his wife, and zoom chat with Dave are punctuated with exclamations from Dave of "Fucking Hell Scotty" as he opens another box of horded toys. I have bought some from him and will paint up some 28mm Pirate ships for the challenge.

Keep well and I will write again in about a month!

Monday 11 October 2021

2nd Italian Wars Campaign - Seige of Florence

 Dear reader when we last left Italy Bologna had just defeated Florence in battle and had forced the Florentines back to Florence and were laying seige. The armies of Genoa were advancing to the Bolognese borders to the south albeit somewhat slowly and the Florentine allies, Venice, were advancing into Florentine territory to to come the aid of Florence.

So basically I had a camera meltdown and am mssing some pictures. The battle started with the Bologna besieging Florence. A smal portion of the Bolognese army was behind earthworks , mainly missle and cannon troops. The rest of the Bolognese army was drawn up behind facing the relieving Florentine army which was coming in on the flank. The beseiged forces also ventured out to join the fray. The Florentine armies have a large number of cannon but the Bolognese only 1. However the Bolognese army is bigger than the 2 Florentine armies combined. Can the Florentines bring enough forces to bear.

The battle field have Florence at one end and a village in the centre. The earthworks were between the village and Florence

A partially randomised deployment sees the Florentine infantry (top) attack the Bolognese beseigers in the flank while the other Florentine army emerges from the city

Florentine pike block clash with Bolognese halberders. There was only going to be one winner here but the halberders made the pikemen pay dearly. Meanwhile Florentine foot knights advance throught the village

Over on the left the Florentine cavaly are facing 3 Bolognese pike blocks. Can they keep them engaged long enough for the 2 florentine armies to combine

Knights and pikes clash

Knights die

Meanwhile the Florentine infanty continues, but slowly and painfully. Foot knights clash with bowmen and the fight is brutal witht he bowmen putting up brave resistence. The knights struggle but win eventually The pike block is staggered by a devastating volley from a troop of aquebusiers and wavers

On the left all Florentine resistence as ended and the Bolognese pike blocks and cavalry wheel right to engage the rest of the army

Foot knights and aquebusiers take up position int the village to hold them

As the rest of the Florentines arrive

But they are too late. The Florentine army is reduced to 2 very battered pike blocks, a single unit of knights and a unit of crossbowmen. They are out manned and out horsed and the city of Florence is no more.

Bolognese troops occupy the city. Only Venice, who are one turn away can restore Florence, ore will they just pick over the bones of the state


Monday 20 September 2021

The 2nd Italian Wars Campaign

 As autumn draws in it is time to pick up the wargaming baton again. I've played a few battles of the last month or so, including 2 epic 10mm 7 Years War battles against Matt. These have been the highlight of wargaming and exactly how I imagined wargaming to be. Massive armies with sweeping attacks and valiant defence.

The bug is back, although still not painting manically. I have decided to play another solo Italian Wars campaign. I made a few tweaks, extension to the wargaming table (you may spot it) gives me a 6 by 3 table, more points for the terrrain and therfore bigger armies. I have added a campaign set of rules on the blog pages (see top a page).

The new map. 4 of the 4 states can field 2 or 3 armies and Bologna can only field 1 so is vulnerable.
The campaign starts slowly with peace between all the nations and an alliance between Milan and Bologna. The the Pope dies and all hell breaks loose. There is war between Bologna and the states of Venice, Genoa and Florence. Milan sits it out as it currently has good relations with all states but the war will change that quickly.
Bologna needs to attack quickly and attacks it nearest neighbour Florence while Venice and Genoa start to probe the Bolognese borders. The 2 armies meet outside Florence. Bologna can only field 1 army but it is 1/3 bigger than Florence can field. A decisive victory here could knock Florence out of the war quickly.

The battle field. both flanks are cavalry heavy

The Bolognese centre has massed pike blocks

Whereas the Florentine centre is very weak with lots of cannons. Hopefully they can thin out the pike blocks sufficiently to make a difference. So the flanks will control the battle. if Florence can win then the blocks will be very vulnerable, but if Bologna wins the flanks then the battle is over

Both sides advance

On the Bolognese left knights clash

Epic dice rolls from the Florentines rout one unit  and waver another. This side looks doomed for the Bolognese

On the right Florence has done similar. I unit of Bolognese demi lancers is very battered and 1 unit of stradiots has been routed. This is going to be an epic victory for Florence
On the right the stradiots and demi lancers have seen off the knights, my nerve rolls were terrible all game and if you said boo to a unit I would rout then
As we left it on the left the Florentines were about to rout the Bolognese knights and they charged in, causing huge wounds. The Bolognese knights have 18 wounds and can only survive if they roll a double 1

Which they do, unbelievably. They smash back into the Florentine knghts rout and Bologna holds both flanks

The same knights then despatch a unit of wounded halberders

The pike blocks advance and the Florentine army decides enough is enough and leaves with undue haste

I do think the pike blocks look cool.

This was a decisive victory for Bologna and the Florentine army is chased back to it's capital. The Bolognese follow up, capture a town, giving them an extra army, and besiege Florence. Florence has another army but can it beat the larger Bolognese army and lift the seige. Can Bologna capture Florence and knock them out of the game before Genoa and Venice pounce.
This was a great little battle with massive ebbs and flows. This is going to be a good campaign and the outcome could all have swung on a double 1.

Saturday I recieved very sad news that Noel Williams had died suddenly. Noel was a professional poet and a participant in the Analogue Painting Challenge and will be remembered for his great flights of fancy, tremendous wit and enormous painting output. He will be sadly missed.

Sunday 15 August 2021

WW2 US Armoured Infantry Platoon

 So Matt you were correct, I've finished my platoon. My US armoured infantry platoon, circa 1943/43 is kinda done.

The full force is 5 M3A1 Half tracks (Warlord) each armed with a .50 cal HMG, the gunners made from the bits box

Infantry section, 8 men, inc BAR and rifle grenade, and a bazooka.

Another 1. All the infantry are from the Parry's plastic box (except 2 I had knocking about). For North Africa there were bazookas but nobody had training so rifle grenades were used and 37mm AT gun. The 37mm AT gun was a permanent feature throughout the war even though it was obsolete vs tanks. Need to buy one. 

Command platoon with officer and sniper

Macine gun section with 2 .30 cal

Mortar section. Only 8 figs in this section so 37mm AT will join these

Couple more shots

Really liked painting these. Will need more troops to make our usual sized battle, 20-24 units (currently 17) and have found some Shermans to add to mix. Next stop North Africa, or Italy