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.

Friday, December 24, 2021

Merry Christmas All.

Well here we are again.....

It was being to look like we are going to be sealed in our homes again but it looks like we should be Ok subject to the now regular daily testing.

Merry Christmas all.

I have dropped plenty of hints this year, I say hints more over the stuff I ordered myself so stay tuned for 2022 more Pony Wars (the Christmas Challenge to get everything complete), Korean Terrain and some 'V' Vehicles for starters.

looking further ahead I quite fancied a look at the 'Silver Bayonet', just trying to decide on which faction, it could be Spain, Haiti or Egypt for Napoleonic's or something really wild merging my Russo-Japanese War stuff with the Ming Dynasty....?

Part of me wants to get more use of the desert terrain so maybe some WW2 Italians vs LRDG?

I have a draw full of Ancients to finish so it would be good to get a few more chariot wars on the table.

I hope none is on the naughty list and as is customary in recent times. 'stay safe'.

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Excalibur 28mm - Mordred's Knights.

Having painted the good guys, time for the evil knights to take to the field. Another batch from Forlorn Hope games, I opted for a more burnished bronze armour to give them a very different look compared to their shinny opponents.

Lovely castings and they take the paint really well, they have a real oldhammer feel to them, but fortunately not too many skulls popular amongst Citadel back in the 80's.  

Loving the hammer chap slightly less armour but could be fun within the Songs of Blades and Heroes rules.

Unfortunately they were a little low on numbers but I spotted these on the Crooked Dice site, whilst ordering my own Christmas present, proper old school Chaos knights, slightly larger than the Forlorn Hope mini's but a good fit.

What a great place our hobby is, thanks to everyone who shouted out Mini-figs and their Excalibur range, I now have a young and old Mordred and a couple of Helen Mirren's on the paint table as Morgana Le Fey, they will be fun to paint but blimey 1981 makes you feel old :-)

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Dispatches from the front XX - Danes & Games.

Another Second Schleswig War outing - rather adapt for the last game of the year at the Wyvern's Club.

Henrik continues to expand his collection with hedges, rivers and fences... bbbrrrr......

The Danes take to field again looking to stem the advance of the Prussians and a fight for the farm house. 


Shifting the Jagers from the centre field was a real challenge, it took odds of 3:1 to eventually drive them back, but not without significant losses.

A fresh unit of Prussian cavalry take to the field - A lovely looking unit. Eagles of Empires gives a fun game. The points mechanism is a real challenge, with the switch between table top tactics and the drive for victory points. Not sure about the Hand to Hand Combat which feels a little bit clunky, but overall a a slick system and fast paced.

Meanwhile It's amazing what drives the trends on the blog. What keeps SPQR in the popularity list I tend not to see too many players playing it? Nice to see Laserburn creeping up ranks along with a little bit of Flash Gordon.

Thanks to everyone who called out Minifigs... I am now the proud owner of Modred and a few extra's to add to the Arthurian experience.

Sunday, December 05, 2021

Excalibur 28mm - Songs of Arthur and Merlin.

Now for something completely different.

Back in February I was tempted to put together a bunch of knights to play out John Boorman's Excalibur an 80's classic. The package arrived and there they sat in the draw whilst other projects came along, while having almost finished the Pony Wars projects thought I would revisit these.

I wanted a shiny vs dark feel, with plenty of plate and some great big swords. 

Forlorn Hope do some lovely castings which are perfect for what I had in mind.
First up the good guys.....

Several layers of silver gave me that glistening feel that I was after. With Royal Blue and White to give them a righteous feel.

I am not sure I will go as far as naming the knights of the Round Table, but some most definitely have a Lancelot and Gawain feel to them....
Not sure which one should be King Arthur.

I thought I would give Songs of Blades - Songs of Arthur and Merlin a run out, very low level with around 10 figures a side, this version has some nice touches including a nice mechanism for chivalry, penalising knights if they gang up on opponents or use missile weapons.  

What legend of Arthur could be complete without Merlin, I picked up this fine fellow from Studio Miniatures.

After months of 6mm these guys were a pleasure to paint and were so BIG.... so easy to put paint to metal.

Next up the bad guys.
Anyone know where I can get a Modred in 28mm?

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Sharp Practice Big Game - Haiti 1800

After the recent Mexican Game, I thought I would look to get all of the Haitian mini's on to the table top, in order to make it fit we opted for Toussaint L'Ouverture's invasion of Santo Domingo in late 1800, Spanish forces bolstered by the French look to defend the plantation house from the invading Haitian army bolstered by freed slaves.

The table comprises the plantation grounds and house, the slave quarters and on the far right (bottom) the jungle hinterland.

To speed up the game we dispensed with the Tiffin card on the first turn which allowed each side to form a suitable battle plan, each side had two Force Morale cards, Spanish, French, Haitian & Freed Slaves. This should allow players to marshal their resources a little better.

The opening turns and the band of slaves waste no time in rushing forwards towards the compound which houses the slave quarters and it's thick stone walls.

In the centre Haitian Line and Light troops enter the plantation grounds heading towards the main house.

The Colonials are having a tough time of it, unable to get the required tokens they are under pressure on the right having to throw skirmish units forwards to stem the advancing invaders. The plantation employees fired off a volley as the Haitian's came on in force.

Haitian cavalry drove off the plantation workers and crashed into the Spanish light infantry who were unable to react but could not afford to give ground to the galloping cavalry.

The Spanish are beaten back losing half their number, for the loss of only one rider. Not the best of starts for the defenders.

On the left flank the slaves had freed the enslaved plantation workers and held the compound cutting off the French militia who were holding the outside of the compound. The opening moves had not been kind on the French and Spanish as the Haitians held the initiative.

Whilst the flanks contracted, in the centre the French line advanced to counter the advancing slave forces in the orchard. Whilst the French cannon were rolled forwards to cover the plantation grounds. Would the guns tip the balance?

The French militia's luck ran out they formed to stand against the slaves who rushed in brandishing their big choppers taking chunks out of the untrained unit. The colonial cavalry were called forth to plug the gap.

Things had stabilized on the right, the cavalry initial success had been blunted by multiple shock points and with the Spanish Dogs about to be let loose they beat a retreat, leaving the advance to the infantry who were now crossing the creek.

The French ordered one of their best units forward into the compound to halt the slaves hold up in the compound, the sailors were tough, tomahawks and aggressive if anyone could counter the rampaging slaves it would be them.

Great dice a string of 5's and 6's drove off the slaves, whilst the slaves were great if charging they were rather brittle if caught standing still and they were no match for the sailors. The compound was back in French control. 

In the centre the Haitian regulars were having a tough time, the French had made slow progress crossing the fence into the grounds of the plantation, but with light infantry now in the main house and the French Cannon inflicting numerous shock points, it would be a tough ask to advance against odds of at least 4:1.

Was the encounter turning in favour of the French?
The compound was firmly in French hands although Haitian light infantry defended the breach, angry slaves had finished off the beaten militia but in a weakened state now faced off against the colonial dragoons.

On the right the Spanish line were advancing towards the tree line to counter the slave musketeers who had crossed the creek in force.

Was the orchard key?
The French line were primed and ready, but the slave army was massing for the final push that might break the French morale.
Time for a cuppa and then on for another round.

Buoyed by tea and biscuits the Colonial troops wasted no time in pushing the Haitian line from the planation grounds, they advanced on mass through the sugar field and wiping out the remaining section who looked to hold their ground. Whilst the Spaniards protected the flank from the freed slaves moving through the hinterland.

Whilst the French pressed on the right, the slaves made their move in the orchard, skirmishers and mass muskets rushed forwards to close with the French defenders.

The mass ranks of French continued their advance, it seemed that nothing could stop them as the Haitian and slave forces were split in two. The solid mass unnerved the Haitian commander.

However the Haitians had not been idle and weeks of drill had prepared them for this very event, the low fence of stone and timber stalled the French long enough for the free people to first one good volley, which shook the Infantry as they closed on the Haitians.

Plantation slaves rushed forwards and Haitian regulars caught the French battalion in the flank, the French were beaten and fell back in disarray, this victory would be sung about in camp fires for many years to come.

The French centre was broken, their force morale a single point from breaking, one more poor roll and they would be leaving the field. What a turn around by the free people.

However the battle was down to the wire, the Haitian slave brigade was not having it their own way with only two force morale points left, if the slave forces could be broken this would be balance the battle and much like cricket could end in a draw after a bruising encounter.

The French charged led by the General throwing back the slave militia who had lined the orchard wall, the slave brigade's morale fell by a further point, victory was within the grasp of the French however the French colonial battalion was in poor shape and a ragged round of musket fire from the remaining skirmishers broken the battalion and the French force morale.

What a great game.....
Lots of figures on the table and two force morale cards gave a good balance, at no point was their more than 2 force morale points between the forces.

The battle swung back and forth just what you want for a big battle....