Sunday, January 23, 2022

Blood on the Plains #2 - Supply Run

An evening encounter and another run through of the Plains Wars adaption for Sharp Practice and a chance to get some of the new toys on the table.

A detachment of Cavalry with a wagon mounted Infantry company have been tasked with escorting a wagon of supplies, reaching the ford at the creek an Indian village was spotted blocking the passage of the column. 

The Indian's could be anywhere on the table so the army and their crow scouts would need to be cautious. They had the fire power but the Cheyanne and Sioux were swift.

The Crow scouts spotted a group of Sioux who fired from the tree line and scuttled back through the stand of trees. 

The cavalry sections swept the wooded areas and rises looking to spot any of the hostiles. The wagon train pressed.

Cresting the largest hill the cavalry spotted a hidden warband who with a war whoop who rushed towards the cavalry who headed back to the safety of the column.

At the base of the valley a further group of horsemen broke cover from behind a stand of trees and headed for the cavalry troop.

The Crow could only stand and watch as the Sioux poured down the hillside.

The hostiles caught the retreating cavalry, they broke and ran.

As with many an encounter with the Sioux they held the advantage but instead of closing on the column and the wagon they turned and headed across the creek taking their dead and wounded with them.

A good encounter ironing out a couple of kinks in the rules around low ammunition and evade rules.

A few more pieces to get off the paint table before a formal roll out at Hammerhead in March.

Thursday, January 20, 2022

Dispatches from the front XXI - The Butterfly Awakes.

A few weeks since the end of the holiday period and a couple 'additional' purchases that did not appear from the Christmas wish list.

I am not sure if it's the time of year or the fact that I am coming to the end of the Pony Wars Project with all the metal based and undercoated if I get them complete and the buildings by April I will have completed the entire project in 12 months now that is a record for me.

I have been distracted by thoughts of several fresh projects...... Idle hands and a Paypal War chest? ;-)

It started with the unboxing and a couple of games Undaunted: North Africa a cracking game and really well balanced, you need to apply the specialists in the right roles to ensure proper tactics pay off. Unlike the Normandy version this one is based on single figures and of course it led to the inevitable conversation about converting it to miniatures, after all I was looking for an opportunity to use my desert terrain a little more and Perry Miniatures have some lovely castings.

Game 1 - The scout was quick to clear the tiles ahead opening up the board for the demolition expert to destroy the plane and lorry before the Italians could stop them although there were some hairy moments when he was pinned on the open runway trying to plant the explosives.

Game 2 - The LRDG faced the might of the Italian Armour and the Boyes Rifle simply did not have the punch to kill the damn thing. The fascists were soon stripped of their supporting Infantry but the Allies had a risky time trying to dodge the mobile pill box as they attempted to destroy the fuel dump.

I could seriously be tempted in some figures for this especially as the figure count is rather low.

I picked up a copy of Silver Bayonet designed for Napoleonic monster hunting convincing myself that I would not any further figures (who am I trying to kid) as I have French for both Haiti and Egypt both regions lend themselves to monster folk lore. Could Claude Canard make a come back?

The rules are well produced and well polished in a format similar in style to Frost/Star Grave.

Next thing you know I am thinking about Russians and pinching some of the elements of the faction for the Russo Japanese War, which allow me to utilise some of my Water Margin collection besides who doesn't everyone need a hopping Vampire?

A restock from Foundry they were advertising a range of discounts on orders over £50 unfortunately paints were excluded which was a shame as I would have topped up the order to bring up to the first threshold so for once held back on knee jerk purchases :-)

Expensive postage and duty aside, I picked up an excellent Brain Bug for Starship Troopers. The Mongoose original has being going for in excess of £75.00 so this variant on Etsy was a great proxy. 
Good communication from AlieCatCraftsnStuff who scaled it down to 25mm scale.

Meanwhile as Covid starts to retreat again, it was nice to get some club time in.

I had an outing over to the Wyre Forest Club and had an excellent game of  Blucher, thanks to Neil for putting the game on and and Daniel my French opponent. A close run thing down to the very last turn.

On the right flank my Austrian Cavalry Corp ran into French Infantry which were surprisingly tough to drive from their defensive positions.

Meanwhile the French cavalry rode down the Austrian guns before exhausting themselves on the massed ranks of Austrian Line.

A great game mechanism and allows for some great master strokes across the table.

Over at the Wyverns another Arthurian outing using Song of Blades and Heroes this time Romano Britain's looking to turn back the Saxon raiders.

Quite the battle with a number of gory deaths messing up both sides formations and massed archery felling several of the armoured Britain's.

Until next time....

Saturday, January 15, 2022

Welcome the boys in blue - US Infantry for the Great Sioux War.

After a slight detour with the Excalibur project, back to the last of the US forces for the Great Sioux War and reinforcements in the shape of 3 companies of US Infantry with additional big men. 

Given the scale and my they do seem very small again having just completed the last of the 28mm, I opted for black hats to separate the Infantry from the canvas of the dismounted cavalry. Based in groups of 8 they should be an interesting proposition for the Indians.

My eyesight is definitely declining, having based these and sculpted the bases it was only then that I spotted one of the privates was facing the wrong way..... Perhaps he is covering the rear or needs to concentrate when loading.... :-) 

5 new Big men should give me plenty more command options, these were from the Baccus ACW range.

If the Infantry are not enough perhaps the Lone Ranger and Tonto can help, a key addition to the Pony Wars Rules but could be a fun option for the Sharp Practice games.

Maybe a rule tweak to turn back the Sioux? - "Kemosabe I am not sure you have enough bullets in those silver pistols"...

Next up the final hurdle... another 100 Sioux.... gulp.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

The first game of the year - The Hunt for Morgana

Nice to start to get back into the swing of things.... and an attempt to play with all the freshly painted toys more quickly. First up an outing for Song of Arthur and Merlin from the Ganesha Games stable, the perfect rule set for a quick evening game. 

The Arthur and Merlin rules are a great set covering the classic Arthurian folklore through to the Celtic/Welsh King and that of Romano-British, so plenty to choose from.

I picked the High Medieval setting for this outing and following the Excalibur movie timeline with which portrays Morgana as King Arthur's half sister and Mordred Arthur's illegitimate son... 

On with the game.

Morgana slipped out of Camelot taking a young Mordred with her, Arthur set out with several of his knights to bring her back. Morgana reached the village of Galeford closely following by Arthur she was looking to hide in the village hoping to wait out until her own knights arrive at the village.

To make things interesting I hid 6 tokens within the central buildings, Morgana was marked on one counter so neither of us knew where she is hiding.

Morgana was able to beguile a number of villagers to hopefully hold off Arthur and his knights whilst her own Knights appeared to whisk her away. She was not able to activate until found by either side.

The points per side were even by Morgana was a Q2+ Legendary Wizard and at 260 points 8 times the host of a lowly Knight.

The knights advanced to the cross roads clattering into the village strong men. One of the intriguing part of the rules is the Chivalry rule, which rewards good acts, such as not striking a fallen enemy, but loses chivalry points for acts like ambushing there opponent. On when Knights achieved a set number of points could they take part in a quest and in our games then would be given a name and greater character skills.

It turns out Arthurs knights are really good at seek and Morgana was rubbish at hiding, found in the first building in a filthy stable of all places.

Overcoming the shame of it hiding in a stable, she was able to slip out of the grip of the advancing knight and was now protected by an evil warrior, whilst another of Arthur's knights was engaged by a local villager.

In the centre of the table, the villages were defeated, an evil knight encountered Sir Galahad, the only named Knight in Arthurs ranks who bettered his counterpart striking him dead. +1 Chivalry Point.

Morgana and Mordred ran for the outskirts of the village but was surrounded by Knights, despite one of her villagers taking down one of Arthur's men she was unable to escape.

A great first game, Arthur gained a Chivalry point, so to did Sir Galahad. However one of his knights could not help himself and struck a fallen opponent losing a point. 
Could he be turned to the darkness?

More games to follow......

Friday, January 07, 2022

Excalibur - Arise Sir Boorman.

How about that for influence. 

A mere month since I started a small project to recreate Excalibur for Songs of Blades and Heroes than the director John Boorman is knighted for services for film.

Thanks to everyone who helped me track down the Mordred and Morgana castings. Buried deep in the Minifigs catalogue it was almost a quest in itself. They are however lovely castings and have captured the movie brilliantly.

L-R (Wilderness) Lancelot, King Arthur. Mordred and Morgana.

Mordred with spear in hand and Morgana ready to cast her evil spells.

Good King Arthur and his trusty Champion Lancelot back from self imposed exile.

Morgana and the child Mordred - Merlin's see's the future.

Mordred masses his forces looking to over throw King Arthur.

The Knights of the Round Table stand firm against the forces of darkness.

The scene is set for the final battle at Camlann, will Mordred win and seize Excalibur and the Crown.

Looking forward to getting these on the table for some quick evening games and a quest or two.

Sunday, January 02, 2022

Baccus Civilians - 1st post of the year.

First post of the year and the settlers make it off the paint table after all, every wagon train needs some passengers. Similar in design to the Indians I have based them on circular bases with a sabot to record casualties.

The bases contain a mix of women and children all of which will need defending from the Sioux and Cheyenne as they cross the Prairie.

Not a bad start to the year... Next up a race between the final batch of mounted Sioux and King Arthur... Now that is a mash up.

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Baccus - Pony Wars Indian villagers and Christmas deliveries.

Well after a few weeks of  'eavy metal' back to the 6mm bare metal and civilians groups for the Indians. 

These will serve as a useful addition to the collection and give the Indians something to defend and the cavalry a target to kill or capture.

I opted for round bases to make them easy to identify on the table and a sabot to denote wounds on the base.

Baccus reinforcements landed on the door mat prior to Christmas, they were intercepted by the family and wrapped up.... good old Santa. It beats socks....

Some nice pieces from Leven Miniatures giving me a home for cavalry with a fort and tented camp, together with a Church and Cabin.

Baccus delivered a bunch of Infantry, cannon, officers and a whole bunch of extra Sioux. With a few days off until New Year, a good opportunity to move some of these through the painting queue and prep for 2022.