Monday, October 30, 2023

Dispatches from the Front XXX - Prague Special.

A weekend away in the wonderful city of Prague amongst the usual touristy visits a quick trip to the Czech Resistance Museum. The Museum tells the story of the brave Czech paratroopers who dropped into their homeland to support the resistance effort and under Operation Anthropoid assassinate SS Obergrupenfuhrer Reinhard Heydrich.

Jan Kubis and Josef Gabcik escaped to the church of Saint Cyril and Methodius which now housed the museum, hiding out in the crypt under the Cathedral for 20 days with five more paratroopers they later died in a battle with over 700 German Troops.

The memorial on the outside of the church and the only natural light afforded to the paratroopers.

Well worth a visit if you are in the city, a little off the beaten track but well worth seeking it out, we went on a Sunday morning which was rather sobering to hear hymns being sung in the church above the crypt. I should add it's free to enter which was rather surprising, well worth a donation if you can afford it.

After that a rather leisurely walk to the Vytopna restaurant a wonderful steakhouse which houses a 400m miniature railway which runs around the entire restaurant, which delivers your food and drinks to your station stop....  I could get into model railways if this was the regular gathering.

Friday, October 27, 2023

Commonwealth Support Elements - Bolt Action

How time flies...

I put these together back in July, but it's taken a couple of months to get these to the front of the paint queue. All models from Warlord Games.

First up, the ever reliable Boyes Anti-Tank Rifle, a mix of head gear gives the Commonwealth chaps a little extra to stop the enemy armour. 

A touch of kit bashing with Afrika Korps Arms on Bitish bodies, do you really need a map reader for a 2" mortar? - But he will double up as an FAO when required.

How the heavy stuff, mounted on single bases with a sabot for kills.

A 3'inch Mortar with the troopers in shorts only, it's hot work manning a mortar in the desert.

The 2 pdr AT Gun is a great kit the Quick Firing weapon was pretty good at blunting the early war German and Italian Armour.

Bring on the Germans....

Sunday, October 22, 2023

2nd Section of Commonwealth Infantry

Yet another section of Commonwealth Infantry clear the paint table.

This time with a mix of tin hats and slouch hats and all wearing back packs so I can identify these on the table from other sections.

10 Australians to help break the Vichy French all figures from Warlord Games. A mix of an NCO armed with a SMG and a Bren team in support.

Next support the long awaited support weapons.

Friday, October 20, 2023

Cotswold Day 2023 - Dust up in the Desert.

Thanks to Keith Flint for organising another great day of gaming in the heart of the Cotswolds. A fantastic bunch of gamers with some wonderful games on offer. Nice to meet up with some friendly faces and catch up on what projects are underway.

We opted for a big dust up in the desert with a combined German/Italian force taking on the British and Free French more on that later on. Sadly I was tethered to the table I did not get round to taking photo's but fortunately there are some great blog entries from fellow gamers here.

Wargames With Toy Soldiers: 1685 - 1985: Cotswold Wargames Day 2023 (

A relaxing day with plans already afoot for next year..... 

With plenty of space in the hall, it's a great opportunity to put on a large game. The Free French were holding the settlement with the German and Italian forces coming on three different axis roads, the allies had to hold the majority of the buildings by 4.00pm

Whilst the Axis forces planned their advance in the early morning sunshine, they returned to the hall to find the allies had placed wire and minefields to hinder their advance.

The Italians came on from the left and right flank a mix of light armour and infantry.

The allies were unmasked as the axis forces pushed at the perimeter 

As the hours ticked by the allies were being to be thinned out, but they hung on.

The cavalry arrives in the shape of a flying column of British light tanks and infantry, skirting the edge of the table they clattered into the flank of the Italians who threw everything they could at the attackers from engineers to flame tanks, but the tide was turning and the Italians and Germans were unable to secure the objective.

Fantastic fun with every player fully involved from start to finish with plenty of laughs along the way, what more can you ask for on a day out......

Saturday, October 14, 2023

Australian Infantry - Warlord Miniatures.

Nothing gets the brush strokes goings than a big game...

As the Cotswold Day looms the Australians take to the field add to the Commonwealth forces for Operation Exporter.

Warlord Miniatures a 10 man section with a Bren Team and NCO armed with an SMG.

Stay tuned for the big game....

Thursday, October 12, 2023

Silver Bayonet - Will the real Claude please step forward.

Rejoice, rejoice Claude has been found.

How the gang is all here let's see if they can do any better than the stunt double.

Now on with the mission, The Tomb of El Cid was raided by an unknown party and the Hispanic hero’s bones, Crucifix and Sword  have disappeared, spread across Spain, each waring faction is on a quest for the various artefacts.

If they can be recovered this will give a massive boost for the various nations, the Spanish can clear there lands of foreign influence, the Brits can defeat the French, the French can defeat the British… EL Cid’s influence is significant for all.

After the first encounter the Spanish are in procession of part of El Cid’s skeleton and are making their way to the Monastery of San Pedro de Cardena when a messenger reaches the parties that some of the Cid’s bones are hoarded by a monstrous troll who lives underneath a nearby bridge.

Everyone rushes to hunt down the beast and secure the second part of the puzzle.

You have to say that for the Spanish they do like to get stuck in... heading straight for the bridge.

The Brits and the French unimpressed with the aggressive Spaniards poured fire into the attackers but under a hail of shot the Spanish reached the bridge. 

On the bridge the troll surfaced throwing boulders at the Spanish, but a blunderbuss round caught him squarely in the chest, followed swiftly by a musket round which finished him off... some much for the terror of San Pedro de Cardena.

The Spanish had the second part of the puzzle and were running for the road, Claude waded across the river as the Brits headed for the row boat, but despite killing a number of the Spanish the remainder escaped the table.

Two nil to the men from Spain...

Another fun encounter players are finding there feet and understanding the limitations of some of the creatures that stalk the land.... Let's see how they get on with a Church Yard full of Zombies...

Sunday, October 08, 2023

A dry run.... War in the desert.....

Club night and Operation Crusader with the British forces pushing towards Tobruk, elements of the 7th Armoured Division meet the Ariete Division holding the Axis flank at Bir El Gubi

With the Cotswold day only a week away, we play tested a couple of tweaks to Bolt Action, blending elements of Chain of Command to add some fog of war to the game.

The Italian Ariete Division were dug in somewhere on the on the right side of the table, minefields and barbwire block the allied advance, the leader of the Italians was a technical man with a good reputation and had secured support from a friend in the artillery who had provided him with several salvo's on key positions.

The Allied orders are simple scout the defenders and exploit any gaps reaching the far side of the table.

The British bolstered by a full squadron of light tanks rushed them on to the table.

The Italians had planned well selecting 4 places on the table to bring their artillery into play and selected Turn 3 & 4 to bring the artillery barrage down. 105mm Shells crashed down amongst the advancing infantry and armour. Whilst casualties were light the shock points disrupted the attack. 

The Allies pushed on forcing the Axis forces to unmask, Infantry in fox holes and support weapons tucked into the wadi.

The Light tanks found a gap in the line and entered the right hand wadi, forcing the Italians to head back to the main line.

However a combination of Infantry AT rounds and the arrival of an M11/40 took out one of the recon vehicles.

The clock ticked on, a second Vickers had cleared the wadi and had rounded the wire defences but it was countered by the Italian Armour, stripped of its armour and still suffering from the Artillery the Infantry were going nowhere fast.

with both teams force morale dangerously close to breaking we called it day. The game flowed really well and the pre-planning and hidden positioning gave a more serious feel to Bolt Action, adding in some  random events to disrupt the running of each turn.

With so much kit on the table we will need to tweak the order dice to keep things moving.
Right back to the brushes.