Monday, June 20, 2022

The long round north - Kings of Bronze #5

Yet another solo outing for Overseer Huharmati's and his Hittite raiding party.

After a string of successes Huharnati was heading north with his loot, when he was set upon by an Egyptian force looking to recapture the stolen booty. I picked what I thought was a reasonable escort force and provided the NYE's with +1 for each scale of troops, Lights, Regulars and Heavy. 

Dicing for where each blind would be coming on and the make up of each unit, Egyptians started to flood the table heading straight for the ramshackle village. Far too many 8,9, and 10's were rolled.

Decisions, decisions..... I planned on pinning the raiders in the village leaving the column to push on via the left flank. The javelin skirmishers rushed forwards to engage with the first of the Egyptian archers.

A column of mixed archers and spears marched through the village as light chariots skirted the right hand side of the village. The cards feel badly as the Hittites failed to get moving.

With the luck of the chips the Egyptian's were able to deploy fully in front of the village and loosed a volley of arrows, which peppered the Hittite formations. To counter this I was forced to bring up the heavy chariot as many of the Hittites forces were still unable to move.

The Heavy Chariot smashed into the unarmoured archers.... whilst the Hittite spear block was forced to line out as Egyptian light chariots rushed forwards.

The heavy chariot smashed into the unarmoured archers who turned and fled losing over half their number.

Meanwhile the chariots had crept just a little to close to the Hittite spears, I pushed them forwards catching the chariots cold and driving them backwards. 

Having regrouped from the routing of the archers, I sent the heavy chariot into the main body looking to disrupt them from their harassing fire.

Disaster strikes..... the archers are no match for the heavily armoured battle wagon however the only casualty is the leader of the chariot struck down in a lucky shot.

Broken Egyptians flood backwards through the village. The Chariot had once again done its work but shock was beginning to mount on the now leaderless chariot.

On the right the Egyptian spear block march forwards clashing spears with the main Hittite spear block, breaking their formation and sending them backwards without any losses of their own.

As the Hittites reformed they are hit by the light chariots. Light chariots are not the best in close combat, but against a weakened unit they can make an impact. I am starting to think it might be time to pull back the pack camels as the force morale starts to creep downwards for the Hittites.

With the Hittite ranks broken and being outnumbered 2:1 the Egyptians pressed on through the rough ground, things were looking nasty for the Hittites but miraculously the New Kingdom attackers were beaten back. It was now a race to the bottom with both sides force morale now only one poor result from breaking point.

Overseer Huharmati's jumped on the chariot and raced forwards catching an element of the shattered spear unit in the flank.

The spear unit broke and ran, the risk had paid off and the Egyptian force morale fell below zero. Just as they were about to strike a final blow. The Egyptian forces retired from the table.

After game thoughts....

Well that was a near run thing, I am still working out some of the kinks in the chariot rules around movement and firing which now seem a little more balanced around turning circles. Allowing the chariots to evade if attacked in the flank or rear seems reasonable which also leaves them vulnerable if caught facing forwards.

I did consider making light chariots a skirmish unit with no ability to close with formed bodies, their weakened combat power seemed ok if engaged in combat,

The heavy chariot is great against unarmoured troops their lack of saving throws was the difference in each combat result, which often tipped the balance.

Another one for the Hittites but only close, next up an attack on Huharnati's camp.

Monday, June 13, 2022

Dispatches from the front XXIV - Digital down loads & Kickstarters

Months without a major spend and then several come along at once.

The next 6 months could be really busy on the paint table. First up Baron's War Outremer and perhaps Andy's most successful yet, a monstrous £94 grand.... In a fit of madness I ended up going all in.....

Wow that's quite a lot of bare metal..... but this is perhaps a project that I have been on cusp of starting for over 30 years, right from when Standard Games brought out their version Outremer variant.

At the height of lockdown I played several games over Zoom of Standard Games wonderful Siege and if I wanted to recreate the Siege Warfare element I would need a fort to defend.... I was quick enough to pick up one of the few resin offerings.... What a fantastic piece of kit, perhaps the biggest one off purchase in several years. Roll on 2023 when delivery takes place.

Meanwhile like buses you back one and another comes along, whilst a game in it's own right the figures will make a great addition to the Elizabethan project.

Meanwhile a number of companies had offers to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee celebrations in the UK, the Too Fat Lardies had a 20% reduction which prompted me to make a couple of purchases for future games. The Swamp Fox has a great list of scenario's which I figured can be transferred to Haiti and Blitzkrieg 1940 gives me a whole raft of army lists for the main combatants in the early years of the war.

I do like to paint under pressure so with fresh lead landing in September, I best crack on and clear the decks as projects are starting to pile up.

Sunday, June 05, 2022

Hittites vs New Kingdom Egyptians - Kings of Bronze #4

It's been just under a year since the Hittites have graced the table on home turf.... blimey that went quick, but the recent burst of ancient activity gave me a nudge to get the troops back on the table and the Overseer Huharmati's drive to push back the Egyptians. 

After the last encounter having beaten back the Egyptians, word reaches Huharmati that the Egyptians have captured a number of Hittite nobles being held in a small village to the East. The object is to reach the village and free the prisoners or break the force morale of the defenders.

I adapted Platoon Forward and added a number of potential Egyptian forces on blinds markers on the table in Yellow, Orange and Pink forces these had the potential to be light, medium or heavy forces. Roll low and the blind could be nothing, roll high and the defenders get tougher.

Without knowing the strength of the New Kingdom forces the Hittite's advanced rushing forwards to seize ground and perhaps supress the blinds before they can be unearthed.

A number of flags were pulled from the bag and units started to cover the approach to the village and the village centre. You guessed it lots of high rolls.

The Egyptians are quick to re-organised and formed a battle line as the Hittite chariots pressure the left flank masked by the high dune.

Luka Sea People mercenaries and allies of the Hittites crash into the Egyptian line from the dune but are swiftly bounced backwards taking a number of casualties.

The mass ranks of Egyptians hold the centre ground as a unit of Sherden Guard emerge from the village with the intention of bolstering the line, if only they could get an officer to activate them.

However the New Kingdom lines fixed in the centre of the table, they were unable to react to the horns of the Antelope the heavy chariots pushed around the left flank, would two light Egyptian chariots be enough to counter the threat?

Having tweaked the chariot runs recently and a good use of the heavy throwing spears. The medium Hittite chariot forced the Pharaoh's chariots backwards, the heavy Hittite chariot moves to exploit the gap.

Hittite spearmen catch the close order Egyptian troops with shields up after having been peppered by archers on the flank. Having spent all of their command flags they were unable to react to the charging Hittite warriors.

Having seen their close assault troops beaten back the Egyptian spearmen risked exposing their backs by wheeling into the Hittite ranks to beat back the Hittite warriors, however this saw them caught from behind by a fast moving spear unit, stepping out and crashing into the disorganised spearmen and their short lived victory. - 6",6",5" mighty lucky if you ask me....

The New Kingdom Egyptians morale dropped to zero as the Heavy Chariot tore through the unarmoured archers and the Sea People drove back the badly beaten shield wall.

Another victory for Overseer Huharmati's forces who simply walked into the village to release the Hittite nobles from captivity....

Great to get the Ancients back on the table, the blinds for Platoon Forward make for a varied scenario whether you are playing solo or multiple players. Perhaps the Egyptian centre could have been more aggressive before the Hittites got organised? The bows on the flank forced a poor tactical decision when the actual casualties were minimal. The Hittite chariots are tough and did well to stay away from the close order troops, but made a real mess of the light chariots and unarmoured archers.

If only the Sherden Guard could have gotten moving would it have been different?

Thursday, June 02, 2022

Hittite Skirmishers - Infamy Infamy

Yet more skirmishers for the Kings of Bronze project....

I am in the final sweep of the last the bare metal for the Ancient project, these are from Warlord Miniatures and can be used for Skirmishers or Javelin armed Chariot Runners.

These are a great addition to the Hittite forces and gives them a little more flex on the table, based for the Too Fat Lardies Infamy Infamy rules. 

With a 4 day bank holiday, a chance to get a few extra hours in on the paint table and perhaps a small game to give the Hittite's a run out.... 
The village of Tootandcommin is in Egyptian hands some where near the Hittite - New Kingdom Egyptian border. Can the Hittite forces capture the village and release their prisoners?

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Kings of Bronze - Prisoner of the Pharaoh.

Another dip into the box of spare metal.

These have been hanging around for quite a while, purchased from Foundry I am sure to make up the postage :-) 

They do some nice occasion pieces which can really bring the table to life, in this case Egyptian guards bringing in some prisoners together with a couple of overseers dishing out some justice to a captured Hittite.

I have added in some dice sabots so they can double up as object or shock markers. These will come in very useful for a number of scenario's.

Next up the last of the Ancient foot figures....

Monday, May 16, 2022

Silver Bayonet - Emerald Dragon Club

It's quite nice to flit between periods and topics at the moment, I am embracing my Wargames Butterfly another opportunity to clear some of the figures from the spares cupboard and a new faction for Silver Bayonet Edwardian style...

The war in Manchuria rumbled on and rumours of the weird the strange started to reach the newspapers in Europe.

The stories attracted adventurers and supernatural explorers - none more so than the Emerald Dragon Club with branches from London to Berlin including Port Arthur in Manchuria.

Countess Demitriov,  The leader known only as Victor, Bogdan Kilvov

Eric Wipsnade & Dermont Harris

Boris Kaslov, Dwight Lee & Percy Dumont

The occasional driver for the gang - Louis 'smiler' Letour 

A mix of manufacturers that I actually had lying around complimented by a Foundry Victorian villain pack which had been tucked away in the box of shame for years, The masks were a lovely touch.

These will make for an interesting faction sandwiched between the waring factions and things that go bump in the night :-)

Sunday, May 08, 2022

Desert Terrain make over and a new project.

The recent return to Kings of Bronze and the last of the New Kingdom Egyptians and Hittites gave me the most suitable nudge to complete some of the terrain pieces which were needing an upgrade.

I purchased some rough terrain several months ago but was a little disappointed when they arrived, they look okay from a distance but up close more of a decorators apron with what looks like masonry paint slapped all over the place.

I had toyed with simply putting them on ebay but as I had been working on some other pieces which looked far better and more in line with the Syria type terrain, I figured I would give them a make over with a new paint job and added large pebbles and tufts.

With the terrain make over bug firmly underway I had a crack at this plaster stream, which was a lovely gift but it just did not fit with my other European type terrain and another one of those items that looked far better in the picture than in the flesh. With high banks and a rough paint job it really didn't add anything to the table, but would make a great gully or small wadi. 

Several coats of paint and half a pack of grasses later and the small wadi is complete.

Plenty of twists and turns and whilst the pieces don't fit together that easily, it is sure to get more use in the desert than it would as a stream.

With a bunch of new terrain I have been thinking about how to make more use of it, whilst you could describe the Hittites and New Kingdom Egyptians as mainstream, for some in explicable reason I seem to be unable to stick to sensible armies or theatres and find myself gaming in areas that little more off the beaten track... So over the usual post game chat we talked about other desert periods.... 

So when a birthday gift landed in the shape of Perry's Desert Rats... how could I resist but find a use for them and a new project starts to take shape ;-)

Stay tuned over the next few weeks....