Friday 26 February 2021

Back in Nam

 Dave and me have careered into the Vietnam war, I've collected Empress minis (it all started with a flash sale) and Dave have gone for Gringo40s. It a score draw on who has the best figures. Between the 2 of us we have 2 platoons of USMC (Dave's to be painted) and 2 companies of Vietnamese plus support.

I've been tinkering around with Bolt Action rules and a dungeon crawl style game with cards being drawn each move to either give the USMC artillery support or to bring NVA and VC on the table. 

Last night we played our 1st  play test of the rules

3ft by 4ft jungle terrain. Aim is to get 3 four man and command fire teams across the table and off the other side

1 very small early skirmish, NVA destroyed before firing a shot and the infantry race through the jungle. You draw a card at the start of your move unless you run, then it's the end of the move,

Dave was very lucky

Until he tripped 3 booby traps in quick succession. Pinning the commander and taking out 1 marine. Casualties have to be rescued and exvac'd. Helicopter called for

Then an entire NVA platoon appeared to the West, less than 8 inches from the pinned command and M60 team

The USMC managed to pin the NVA 

and call for an artillery strike - very danger close - impossible for the USMC to not be hit

The 3 NVA units all recieve pins but no casulaties but the M60 team is obliterated

The pins and fire fro the 2 remaining fire teams are enough to rout the NVA . Helicopter evac arrives to take the bodies and another wounded man away

Remaining fire team and commander make it off the table.

It was great fun and the rules worked well and the battle was frenetic. Some tweaks needed. Had to buy more figures for casualties. 
The final score was 1 NVA platoon destroyed, 5 US marines killed, 1 by NVA, 1 by booby trap and 3 by friendly fire
I'll add the rules as blog page after tinkering.

As for the forces

NVA - Empress

VC - Westwind, not great figs

M113 and Photographer - The Assault Group 

USMC Platoon - Empress

Huey - Butlers Printd Models - nice but annoying to clean up

Monday 8 February 2021

Unboxing a Warlord Games Mystery Box

 I do love a mystery box. I've started and finished many a collection with a Northstar Lucky bag, I do miss them, So around Christmas time Warlord were offering a mystery box for £45 with at least £85 of stuff in it. Be in no doubt that with will mainly be stuff they couldn't shift (the end of line and slow moving stock). But as you will be aware much of my collection is a bit random.

So here we go

A box, incase you didn't know

An open box with stuff

2 terminator genisys Sci Fi trooper sprues - nice addition to Sci Fi collection

Laser pointer, nice to have one of these

Cruel Seas Russian Bronekater with Katyusha. Don't play this but the club does so I now have side to play

Blood Red Skies, 6 Mustangs - don't play this but it's 6 aircraft for Flames. Although they are blue!

Jersey Barriers - useful

6 Dr Whos and K9 - who doesn't love Dr Who

Dice - can never have too many

Another pointer - line not dot

Char B1 Bis - Perfect for my French WW2 force

Judge Dredd Rules - have some figs for this, but no Judges

So overall only 1 miss (Mustangs) but uses for the rest even if it is just an interesting painting task. So I've been and checked out the prices and it adds up to £154 at full price. Marvellous

Saturday 6 February 2021

Battle of Damstadtl

 Last week I ran a 7 Years War online battle. Matt was playing the Prussians and Steve the Austrians. they both sent me orders in 3 turn blocks based on very limited information and I played the battle and sent them back limited feedback from the various brigades. I really enjoyed it.

Matt was protecting convoy and would recieve significant reinforcements after turn 3. Steve laid the ambush and would recieve significant reinforcements from turn 6. The real battle took place in Moravia in 1758 and the Austrians routed the enemy, captured the convoy of 4000 wagons and 2500 cattle. they caprured so much stuff that they had to burn the stuff they couldn't carry away. The loss of the convoy meant that the Prussians had to retreat from Moravia and probably saved Austria. How did Steve do?

The Austrian Ambush with artillery and infantry on the hill and Grenzers in the woods opposite. There are cavalry behind the far hill

The Prussian convoy, didn't all quit fit onthe table at the start. Strong vanguard of hussars and infantry by crappy convoy guard units behind

As the Hussars pass the grenzers in the wood the grenzers and the artillery open fire and mess up the Hussars very badly. However the rest of the convoy are a long way back.

The convoy halts and the vanguard fans out. The Prussians are very badly outnumbered and the Austrians need to attack and run them over. However a fire fight ensues with the Austrians only tentatively advancing. This could be a mistake

Turn 4 and the Prussian reinforcements arrive on mass very quickly. The Prussians now outnumber the Austrians. The convoy could be safe.

The Austrians dvance to engage the vanguard, the Hussars still exist but not for long

This it the only image Steve got of the battle, from the head of his commander

Same for Matt

The traffic jam around the convoy needs some space and a 2nd Prussian Hussar regiment moves tothe East and suddenly has a clear run at the Austrian artillery. If they can strike home, it's at least 2 moves, then it will all be over

The Austrians see this and move a grenadier regiment to cover

Meanwhile the Autrian infantry engages the Prussian vanguard at point blank range and maul them badly

Disaster. The Austrian reinforcements appear to the rear and the unprotected convoy, all the Prussians are to the front. The forces are now about equal

The Prussians and now manged to turn their rear to face the Austrians. will it be enough?

THe Prussians have managed to flank the advancing Austrians at the front and the Austrian infantry fail to strike home. the Austrian attack was impacted by the Hussars to the east

Austrian Horse Grenadiers charge at the front and rout the Prussian infantry and the way to the convoy is clear, but the Austrian cavalry are disordered and can't launch a sweeping attack.
THe same happens at the rear and the weight of Prussian fire releives the pressue

THe Prussian Hussars charge and push back the shaken covering Austrain infantry

At that point I call the game. th Prussians haven't made it off the board but the Austrians are shattered. They only have 8 units left and 4 of those are shaken. 

The game played really well, it is very hard to give the right amount of information back to the commanders. It was played with my 10mm 7YW collection and Black Powder rules. I used cm not inches for the distances and that worked perfectly. Some of the regiments had battalion guns and in Black Powder these are massively overpowered (at close range a battalion gun has the same power as the whole battalion so I simply added 1 dice to the firepower and that worked).
Overall the battle was defined by 2 things

1. THe Austrians opened fire too early this kept the convoy out of reach and allowed the reinforcements to catch up quickly
2. The Prussian Hussar regiment that moved to the East totally threw the Austrians and was a lucky move, wasn't planned as an attack but simply to move them out of the way

Right back to the challenge and my annual quest to come 2nd.