Having read John Savage's articles in the excellent Christmas Lard Magazine 2021, it gave us the nudge that was needed to unbox figures that had been in hibernation for at least a decade.
John's article adapted Sharp Practice for the Sudan and included a series of linked campaign games introducing us to Colonel Dartington-Crystal. John's articles were for 28mm games, so to make them work for 15mm to give us the depth of fighting units we doubled the unit sizes but kept the firing stats the same, we converted the ranges from inches to centimetres and doubled them.
The Relief of Shah Wadi Wadi
Colonel Dartington-Crystal of the South
Borchester Regiment finds himself leading a small
force across the desert to the settlement of Shah Wadi
Wadi with orders to relieve the garrison and rescue
McCready and his daughters.
For the unit make up see the magazine a bargain at only Six English Pounds.
Sergeant Ted Grundy leads the defence of the garrison. The Colonel has to cross the table to reach the village as long as the Mahdi do not get in the way.
From the left and right flanks the Mahdist forces appear, looking to close on the British column and the defenders of the village.
It's been a while since I have played regular forces and when I spotted skirmishers in a stand of palm trees, how could I resist. The main Mahdist forces were several moves away and besides what were lancers for.....
As the gallop the lancers charged catching the evading skirmishers running them down.
Success was to be short lived, whilst only suffering a single casualty in the rout of the skirmishers, they were jumped by enemy cavalry, caught at the halt in a close fought battle despite their superior quality they were beaten back with their officer wounded. The village defenders would have to hold out on a little longer.
The left hand column swept towards the village.
Colonel Dartington-Crystal still had quite a distance to cover if he was to rescue McCready and his daughters.
The Dervish start to pick up pace, but the plucky Brits start to chip away at them, with volley after volley.
The defenders hold fast as the first of the Mahdist forces reach the wall, Ted Grundy urges his men to hold fast, they had stripped a couple of supporting groups from the mob, but needed the help of a fine chap and 'Victorian Hero' who rushed into the fight beating back the attackers.
The attack faltered and the Mahdists fell back. The men of the South Borchester Regiment had held on. Now just the small matter of getting McCready and his daughters back to the waiting steamer.
A fun encounter. The tweaks to 15mm worked well, I sense my Dervish opponent will be more tricky in the next encounter, the sheer volume and range of the British can disrupt even the largest mob, but the natives move fast and one's suspects without the clay walls the outcome at Shah Wadi Wadi could have been very different.