EXERT FROM APPENDIX 1 from Don Featherstone's Battles With Model Soldiers
(The book that got me started.)

"Nothing in these pages is a dictate, no word says you must or you shall do it this way. On the contrary, the book sets out from the very beginning to stimulate the reader to think for himself, and to use what he has read merely as a foundation for efforts and ideas which reflect his own temperament and character. Only in this way will he obtain maximum satisfaction from the hobby of battling with model soldiers."

-Don Featherstone 1918 - 2013

Sunday, January 21, 2018

In Sunny Italy

I headed up the valley yesterday for a game at Jeff's place (Armchair Commander blog). What with one thing and another we ended up with only 3 on the day instead of the hoped for 6-7 players but three was more than sufficient for a very enjoyable social gaming day.

Me on the table.
A 15mm Battle Honours FRW Austrian General that I painted back in the late '80s/early 90's but who now fights for Jeff. The stand with him is the remnant of a brigade about to launch  a final Death or Glory charge.

Jeff had the Battle of Raab set up in 15mm for Commit the Guard. These are a set of army level rules with Brigade sized units for play on hexes. It was only my 2nd time with the rules but I'm starting to get a handle on them and they flowed well and provided an enjoyable game with a reasonable feel. 

Its also a set with upside down dice, which is to say that 1's are good, 6's bad. I like to think my tactics were appropriate but I'm afraid that what would have been a horrible dice day with many rules, turned 'appropriate' into 'brilliant'.

Reviewing the rules before we start.The hex mat was homemade by Jeff.

In any event my mostly militia light cavalry managed to successfully defend the river crossing against superior numbers of France's Italian minions and Elite French cavalry. Technically we were only halfway through the wargame scenario when we had to call it but it ended with a bang when  my leader  led the remnants of one of my regular Hussar brigades forward routing a French cavalry brigade through  an Italian Brigade formed in Square and following up to disperse the infantry as well, wiping out the last French bridgehead in my sector, but dying at the head of the exhausted Hussars.

Late afternoon, just before the second French offensive established two short live bridgeheads on their right flank.

An excellent day with friends and miniatures.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Meanwhile where the Hosts Gather...

A slightly modified Dragon Rampant game is now posted on my Gathering of Hosts Blog.


Sunday, January 14, 2018

They Shall Not Pass (wrap up)

An old version of the Tin Army gave a really good game yesterday but it had so many holes and unaddressed issues in it that a quick assessment was that there were good reasons why I abandoned that line of attack several years ago. However, the search has led me back to the Square Brigadier before I streamlined it. So I'm pretending that the 3rd game never happened and am presenting a quick glimpse of the revised old style Square Brigadier game instead.

May as well call this lot British and German. Probably the autumn of 1914 and the British are trying to avoid being cutoff. 
The rules were basically a late 19thC version of the War of 1812 one that I did in 2016. Two dice for stationary fire, 1/2 dice if 1/2 move, no separate melee phase, attacks resolved 1 on 1 when they happen, 1/2 casualties for cover etc. My old pinned/disordered/give ground rule for this period was also restored and updated. Together these small, simple things made all the difference in the feel.
The game was a bit too fast paced and exciting so I forgot to stop for pictures. Here we are on Turn 6. The British appeared to be in good shape to break through and escape before the main German force can deploy.
 The end result was the best game of the 4 and makes me wonder why I had thought that I had to stream line a simple game that had worked. I never quite get everything in properly in the first draft (link) but its available playable (unless you are planning to do amphibious ops, engineering etc)
About turn 10.
I think saboteurs got at the British dice.
Sadly, just when I'm keen to get back to building the British/Faraway forces, I need to switch my attention to Prince Valiant and start working on my Huzzah! game for a week or two at least.